The "mystery of the United States," writes Tom Frank, is that "wealth is today concentrated in fewer hands than it has been since the 1920s; workers have less power over the conditions under which they toil than ever before in our lifetimes; and the corporation has become the most powerful actor in our world. Yet that rightward shift - still going strong to this day - sells itself as a war against elites, a righteous uprising of the little guy against an obnoxious upper class." Nevertheless, he adds, "There is a grain of truth in the backlash stereotype of liberalism.
Believe it or not, the Bush campaign's TV ads list "an economy in recession, a stock market in decline" among the reasons to vote for their candidate.
The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to vote next week on a "cheeseburger bill." The bill -- the Personal Responsibility in Food Consumption Act (HR 339) -- would bar lawsuits against fast-food outlets accused of causing obesity.
The Democratic presidential campaigns of John Edwards and John Kerry have one thing in common: the racial make-up of their TV ads depends on where you watch them. An Edwards ad about job losses "running in Ohio... would be identical to one it ran in South Carolina last month if not for one thing" -- in the Ohio ad, the factory worker is white, but in South Carolina, the worker was black.
"Democrats are altering their approach to the Second Amendment this year in hopes of wooing Southern and rural voters, but the National Rifle Association (NRA) says it's positioned to expose what it calls 'camouflage candidates,'" PR Week's Douglas Quenqua reports. "A group of Democratic pollsters and strategists sent a memo to all Democratic candidates last month urging them to accentuate their intention to let gun owners keep their firearms while stressing the need for gun safety.
George W. Bush's campaign for re-election starts airing its first round of TV ads this week, PR Week reports. Campaign press secretary Scott Stanzel "denied reports that sinking poll numbers led the President to change strategy, abandoning an earlier plan to remain politically 'above the fray' until later this year," PR Week writes. "There's been lots of speculation, but we've always indicated that we were anxious for a debate once the race narrowed to two people," Stanzel told PR Week.
In a sign of "close tactical coordination with the White House" and "at a time when Sen John Kerry has surged ahead of Bush in the presidential popularity polls," Republican Senators planned a surprise debate on Iraq today. Majority Leader Bill Frist and Jon Kyl are leading the estimated six-hour rebuttal of Democratic criticisms.
According to New York Times reporter Adam Nagourney,"Senator John Edwards said yesterday that his proposal to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, a pact he has repeatedly blamed for economic distress, would not significantly cut the flow of jobs abroad." As Zachary Roth observes in on the Columbia Journalism Review's campaign weblog, that's not what Edwards said.
As job loss and unemployment become campaign issues, George W. Bush is struggling to whitewash his economic record.