After 81 days in captivity, you really get to know someone. Photographer Jonathan Alpeyrie recalls teaching a Syrian warlord how to swim.
It’s not all soldiers and veterans at The Hero Summit. You’ve probably never heard of Jonathan Alpeyrie, and you may not think of photographers as heroes. But you might think just a little differently after you hear the story of his recent captivity in Syria for 81 days. Speaking to The Daily Beast’s Christopher Dickey, Alpeyrie revealed new details of his capture and captivity, which serve to remind that some journalists, too, risk life and limb.
The House speaker is trying to steer Republicans away from Obamacare, but Michael Needham, the young CEO of Heritage Action, is giving no ground. Eleanor Clift on his drive to reshape the party.
After the 2012 election, when other conservatives were licking their wounds, Michael Needham narrated a Heritage Action video declaring, “We are in a war,” a call to action for conservatives. Defunding Obamacare became the holy grail, with a passion that catapulted House Republicans into a government shutdown that Needham says he didn’t want. But in war, there’s always collateral damage. “Over the course of the next week, President Obama will feel the pain,” he says confidently.
The $100,000 payment to the family of a fallen service member—which is supposed to be a first and immediate installment on an unpayable debt—is being withheld in the shutdown. Michael Daly on the outrage.
Three days after the government shut down and two days before he was killed, 19-year-old Marine Lance Cpl. Jeremiah Collins Jr. went on Facebook.“Get it together Obama and not to mention Congress. Jesus! Make up your minds,” Collins wrote on October 3 from Afghanistan. “I will protect…my country with my life, but do not go fucking with the men and women that protect your sorry asses.”Collins had enlisted in June 2012 immediately after graduating from Alexander Hamilton High School in Milwaukee.
We know you're out there. David Frum calls upon the GOP's rational caucus to step up before it's too late.
Last week, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce declared in favor of a clean, unconditional vote to raise the debt ceiling and reopen the government. The Chamber pledged to support with campaign donations any Republican member of Congress who faced a primary challenge after casting such a vote. The Chamber's decision is not a turn of the tide, but it is a shift in the wind.I wrote recently about the bad habits among Republicans that have enabled this week's debt crisis, the latest in a long series of crises since 2009.
She hails from Berkeley and, some supporters hope, will make the Fed less beholden to Wall Street. But Russ Roberts says we’re in for more of the same bank-friendly policies.
After President Obama announced her nomination Wednesday, Janet Yellen will likely become the first woman to head the Fed. The Maestro has morphed into the Mistress.Summers has exited stage right, chased not by a bear, but by the indignant howls of those who saw him as unfit—too hawkish, too connected to Wall Street, and insufficiently empathetic. There is a breathless debate over whether Yellen will be the most powerful woman in America so far, perhaps above a Secretary of State or a Supreme Court justice.
It’s in the Senate’s hands now. If a few Republicans vote for Harry Reid’s debt measure, pressure will mount on John Boehner to tell the crazies to stuff it, says Michael Tomasky.
And now we go back to the Senate. Harry Reid announced yesterday afternoon that he’s going to present a “clean” (no Obamacare measures, no anything else) debt-limit increase, to last through December 2014, to the upper house. The vote, or at least the first vote, will take place Thursday. And the questions are straightforward: One, will Mitch McConnell permit (or can he prevent) a filibuster by one or more of the extremists? Two, if there is a filibuster, are there six Republicans, just six, who would agree that helping send the U.
Former Disney chairman Michael Eisner said if the government shutdown was ‘The Godfather,’ House Speaker John Boehner would be the spineless black sheep of the family. Lloyd Grove on the eyebrow-raising analogy.
Really? Is House Speaker John Boehner just like Fredo, the Corleone family’s weak-minded, spineless yet wildly ambitious black-sheep brother in The Godfather movies?That was the argument advanced by former Disney chairman Michael Eisner, a generous donor to Democratic candidates, during Wednesday morning’sSquawk Box on CNBC.“You have a character like Fredo in The Godfather who’s too weak to go against his own minority, let’s say, and do the right thing,” said Eisner, chairman of Tornante, a media and entertainment investment company, assessing the government shutdown and debt ceiling battle.
The guys on Wall Street will report to a woman as their boss—but that isn’t what’s truly remarkable. For the first time in a generation an actual Democrat will be in charge of monetary policy.
After months of indecision and the flotation—and puncturing—of a Larry Summers trial balloon, President Obama is set to nominate Janet Yellen to be the next chair of the Federal Reserve.The fact that Yellen,the current vice chair of the nation’s central bank, is a woman isn’t the most remarkable historical fact about her impending appointment. Of course, that is remarkable. For the first time in their careers, the heads of Wall Street’s investment banks and hedge funds will, in effect, be reporting to a woman as their boss.
After months of vacillating over the Egyptian military’s ouster of President Mohamed Morsi, the administration is finally cutting off some military assistance—and attracting fire from all sides over the decision, reports Josh Rogin.
The Obama administration’s announcement Wednesday that it will temporarily suspend some military assistance to Egypt comes too late to influence events on the ground and is only the latest example of its muddled and incoherent policy, say leading lawmakers and experts.The State Department said Wednesday that after a lengthy review, President Obama has decided to halt delivery of several major weapons systems to the Egyptian military as a response to the government’s violence against civilians during the July overthrow of President Mohamed Morsi and its continued suppression of press freedoms, extension of emergency laws restricting the freedom of assembly, and arrest and detention of senior leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood, often without charges.
Teaching for two years in Harlem, Jonathan Sheehan saw first-hand how standardized testing is destroying public education. But he has some ideas on how to fix it.
“Mr. Sheehan, A and B are both right!” one of my 5th-grade students uttered through gritted teeth. He was so angry and stressed that he snapped his pencil in half. The difference between the two choices on the mandated, high-stakes state test was trivial. I wasn’t even sure which answer was correct.On a different day of standardized testing, another student sat in her chair clutching her stomach. “I don’t feel well, Mr. Sheehan,” she pleaded.
Citizens United might not be the final frontier in rolling back campaign finance laws—on Tuesday the Supreme Court heard arguments in a new case, McCutcheon v. FEC. Ben Jacobs on the implications.
Is the Supreme Court going to invalidate campaign finance laws further in the aftermath of its 2010 decision in Citizens United?The court heard arguments Tuesday in the case of McCutcheon v. FEC, in which plaintiffs Shaun McCutcheon and the Republican National Committee are seeking to overturn aggregate limits for political donations in federal elections. Currently, federal law doesn’t just limit the amount of money that any individual can give to any federal candidate or campaign committee but the total amount that can be contributed.
The president rebutted the GOP claim that a default is no big deal on Tuesday but left a little wiggle room for Boehner, insisting he’s ‘compromised my whole political career.’ Eleanor Clift reports.
With the shutdown in its second week, President Obama chose the White House briefing room to lay out, once again, his strategy of no negotiations until the government is opened and the threat of defaulting on the debt removed. But he did leave a little wiggle room for a possible way out of the stalemate. He urged House Speaker John Boehner to put a resolution on the floor that would fund the government if only for a short time, a measure the president believes could pass with the necessary 218 votes.
A growing number of Republicans believe that we can survive a debt limit breach with little trouble. Yeah, that’s incredibly troubling.
During the first debt limit stand-off, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell designed a scheme that would end the then-crisis and preclude another one. Instead of waiting on congressional authorization to lift the debt ceiling, McConnell’s proposal would allow the president to do it himself. Congress could block the extension, but only with a two-thirds vote.It’s a good idea. As former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson told CNBC, the whole idea of a “debt limit” is redundant.
From the CIA to Treasury, the shutdown has crippled key national-security functions. But John Kerry’s State Department barely has a scratch. Josh Rogin and Eli Lake report.
Until yesterday, 400,000 Defense Department employees were furloughed without pay due to the government shutdown. At the Treasury Department, the offices that enforce and monitor sanctions on North Korea, Syria, and Iran have been reduced to a skeleton crew. And large numbers of CIA analysts and logistics officers—including, until last week, 72 percent of the civilian workforce—have been told to stay home until the government has a 2014 budget.
In budget crisis.
So the GOP is not really winning hearts and minds during the budget battle. Seventy percent of Americans disapprove of the way congressional Republicans are handling the crisis, according to a Washington Post/ABC News poll. What’s more, 51 percent of those said they disapproved “strongly” of the GOP’s actions. Congressional Democrats didn’t fare much better: 61 percent disapprove of their actions. President Obama’s approval rating, meanwhile, ticked up slightly, with 45 approving of the way he has handled the negotiations, up from 41 percent last week. He still has an overall 51 percent disapproval rating, with 39 disapproving “strongly.”
Saturday was the deadline to fix the site. Did they do it, and if so, does it even matter? The Sunday talk shows look at the practical and political future of Obamacare.
As Washington chewed over the Paul Ryan-Patty Murray budget deal, the Treasury Department announced a walloping drop in red ink. Turns out government didn’t need a “grand bargain” to get its fiscal house in order.