What’s a Moderate?

Moderation is the opposite of ideology. It’s flexible and solution oriented. Where an ideologue will reject a given solution because it doesn’t fit into a broader world view, a moderate will try anything that promises to work. Free markets where that looks promising, more regulation where it appears needed; tax cuts at moments when theContinue reading “What’s a Moderate?”

Goodbye, Populism

If there is anything President Joe Biden’s inaugural speech was not, it was populist. President Biden’s speech has justifiably won plaudits from across the spectrum, even including the Wall Street Journal. (It’s likely this will be the last time the Journal has much good to say about him, so drink it in while you can,Continue reading “Goodbye, Populism”

How Jim Clyburn Saved America

One thing you can say for Donald Trump: He sure knew how to unite the Democratic Party. My theory of the race in 2020 was the same as my theory for the Wisconsin governor’s race in 2018: First, do no harm. The shock and awe of Donald Trump’s surprise win in 2016 was so devastatingContinue reading “How Jim Clyburn Saved America”

Good For Her, Bad For Wisconsin

Andrea Palm got a new job and a promotion. Wisconsin is still mired in partisan gridlock. Pardon her if she shakes the dust of Wisconsin politics from her suit as she exits. Andrea Palm has resigned as Secretary of the Department of Health Services to take a job with the Biden administration as the nation’sContinue reading “Good For Her, Bad For Wisconsin”

Facts Are Real

On a campus where professors are seldom reticent to share their political views, Ken Mayer stands out for being meticulous in keeping his personal politics to himself. Mayer is a scholar who studies the American presidency and he teaches a course in that subject in the Political Science Department. He goes so far as toContinue reading “Facts Are Real”

Reason Prevails at the Madison City Council

The Madison City Council is on the verge of doing something sensible. It appears that it won’t pursue a dangerous policy to micro-manage how police handle incidents that threaten public safety. The quick background goes like this. This past May and June saw protests over the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. In Madison,Continue reading “Reason Prevails at the Madison City Council”

The Heroic Ten

Donald Trump’s second impeachment ranks as the most bipartisan among the four impeachment votes in American history. Still, ten Republican votes for impeachment is hardly a landslide. And in a party that Trump still owns until further notice, voting for impeachment took courage. You might assume that the ten all come from districts that JoeContinue reading “The Heroic Ten”

Loud, Proud and Moderate

This fall billboards popped up around Madison making a simple case. Shootings are up 78% and yet some members of the Madison Common Council want to defund the police. Both assertions are essentially true. To be clear, shots fired incidents are up by almost 80%, not the number of people hit by gun fire. ButContinue reading “Loud, Proud and Moderate”

What Will January 6, 2021 Mean?

December 7, 1941. September 11, 2001. January 6, 2021. These are three dates that will live in infamy. But the last is the most troubling because the first two were aggressions committed against the United States and they had the effect of bringing the country together in a common cause. (That national unity was squanderedContinue reading “What Will January 6, 2021 Mean?”

A Good Day for Democracy and Moderation

Today is a good day for America. Donald Trump has been badly weakened. Moderate Democrats will soon be in power in Washington. And our democratic institutions will survive a difficult stress test. The victory of Rev. Rafael Warnock and the apparent victory of Jon Ossoff in the Georgia U.S. Senate races means that our left-centerContinue reading “A Good Day for Democracy and Moderation”