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Archive for April, 2010

Gaza’s place in the West Bank “miracle”

April 9th, 2010

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This piece was originally published in Foreign Policy.

Last year — in stories from the Wall Street Journal to the New York Times — we saw the emergence of a narrative that Palestinians in the West Bank are living through an economic miracle. One very important missing piece of this puzzling story is Gaza and its desperate state of affairs. While this may seem like a small story in the context of much larger conflict, the economic well-being of West Bank residents has taken on increasing importance as leaders on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian divide are banking on economic growth as a route to a viable two-state solution, while simultaneously ignoring the situation in Gaza. If there is one thing the Palestinians certainly aren’t buying, it’s this “West Bank economic miracle” narrative.

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The Tea Partiers: Hating Big Brother

April 7th, 2010

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This piece was originally posted in National Journal.

What’s driving the ferocious backlash against health care reform?

Some see racism and bigotry. Anti-immigration sentiment is certainly a component of the backlash. The outburst by Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C., (“You lie!”) during President Obama’s health care speech in September to a joint session of Congress was triggered by the president’s statement that the legislation would not provide free coverage to illegal immigrants.

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Bullish on November

April 6th, 2010

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This piece was originally published in Roll Call.

It is becoming clear that progressives need to lay the groundwork to claim success. No, not on health care — the benefits of which may take years to realize ­— but on the economy.

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Making health reform work

April 1st, 2010

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This piece was originally published in Politico.

With the passage of historic health care reform legislation, Democrats are rightly eager to explain what’s in the new law and ensure that Americans realize its immediate benefits. As Democrats see it, the more Americans learn the facts about reform, the more they will appreciate it.

But what could ultimately shape the public’s views are Americans’ direct experiences with reform. For better or for worse, health care reform — one of the greatest expansions of federal power in a half-century — occurred at a time of historically low trust in government. Opinion polls show barely one in five Americans believe the federal government does the right thing all or most of the time.

That means Democrats must now make the task of consumer-friendly reform its top priority.

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