Research shows that global warming will hit the American economy hard, particularly in the South.
The 42nd Annual Meeting of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) got underway in earnest Wednesday at San Diego’s Manchester Grand Hyatt resort hotel. The mood was convivial and the attire corporate casual: Brooks Brothers suits without ties, Dockers and sports shirts.
Although this year’s star attractions — a GOP presidential frontrunner, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, and a returning presidential contender, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee — weren’t scheduled to speak until Thursday, conference delegates had plenty to do yesterday.
ALEC, a secretive rightwing bill mill that gets its funding from the Koch Brothers and global multibillion dollar corporations, has been described as a legislative dating service that arranges hookups between mostly Republican state lawmakers and corporate lobbyists.
The actual “dates” occur at meetings like those unfolding in San Diego — a council spokesperson said 1,300 conferees were in attendance — and take place behind locked doors,
In times of national crises, thoughtful journalists often hit the history books to find precedents and analogies.
Here’s a tip from a retired newspaper scribe turned history teacher: Look no farther than late 1860 and early 1861 to find historical parallels to our current crisis.
One hundred and fifty three autumns ago, our nation elected our first Republican president, Abraham Lincoln. Last fall, we re-elected our first African American president, Democrat Barack Obama.
The white, mostly Democratic, slave state South had an almost pathological hatred for Lincoln and his anti-slavery party.
Before the voters went to the polls on November 6, 1860, Southern politicians and newspaper editors warned that the slave states would secede if Lincoln won. (Eleven of 15 did; Kentucky, my home state, and Lincoln’s, did not.)
Today, many, if not most, House Republicans, and more than a few GOP senators, hate Obama to the point that they are willing to push the country into default and risk wrecking the economy over the Affordable Care Act,
Wigfall was another Lone Star State senator who viscerally hated a president of the other party.
The object of Wigfall’s deep disaffection was Abraham Lincoln, our first Republican president. Wigfall was a rabidly pro-slavery Democrat.
The GOP of “Lincoln and Liberty” is long gone. So is the Democratic Party of secession and slavery.
One could make a pretty fair argument that if Lincoln came back he’d be a Democrat, and Wigfall, a Republican.
Anyway, Wigfall was a leader of the “Fire-Eaters,” a group of fanatical Southern politicians who demonized and tried to delegitimized Lincoln and his anti-slavery “Black Republican” Party while whipping up secession sentiment in Dixie.
Lincoln was elected president in 1860 on a platform that called for stopping the spread of human bondage into the federal territories. White supremacists like Wigfall said Lincoln’s victory,