Joe Conason describes the gulf between Republicans' professed concern about the income gap between rich and poor and the actions they've undertaken over the last three decades that have widened that gap. And, I should add, the policies Republican candidates say they'll pursue in the future to address the gap -- repealing the capital gains tax, instituting a flat income tax, et cetera -- will further widen that gap. If it sounds like I'm beating a dead horse about this, it's because the "liberal" media will be too "polite" to notice the irony in its own coverage.
In a wide-ranging interview about his new science talk show, the estimable Neil deGrasse Tyson claims that denial of scientific truths constitutes "the beginning of the end of an informed democracy." I've got bad news for Mr. Tyson: denial of reason is the beginning of the end of an informed democracy, and that's been going on in right-wing circles for many years now. This notion that your "religious beliefs" allow you to nullify any law you like is just the latest iteration of that sad impulse.
George Lakey describes some of the right's most effective strategies in beating back progress. Main point: good lefties like ourselves should play offense, not defense. I call the "lesser-of-two-evils choice" a hostage situation, but Mr. Lakey reminds us to have a vision that slices through hostage crises like Alexander sliced the Gourdian knot. His description of the "good-cop-bad-cop" routine is also pretty solid (Republicans are the bad cop, Democrats the good, and I didn't even need to tell you, did I?)
From the "Not All People Who Display Their Faith in Public Are Jerks" file: a San Antonio chef who's been feeding the homeless for years evokes her religious beliefs in defying the city's feed-the-homeless-go-to-jail law. Of course she's breaking the law by doing that, but Rosa Parks broke the law, too, and a considerable amount of good came from that. These don't-feed-the-homeless ordinances are cruel and heartless, and while Ms. Cheever doesn't deserve a get-out-of-jail-free card because of her beliefs, the ordinances certainly deserve all the bad publicity they can get because of how they're treating her.
Finally, Zanna McKay at Yes! magazine describes the "slow cities" movement. If you live in a city (ahem!), you may be surprised to think of such a super-busy place as a place to "live slow," but cities have the advantage of being fairly compressed space-wise, which gives folks opportunities to engage in "slow" activities like walking. Even Tokyo has a "Sloth Club," though they're anything but the personification of one of the seven deadly sins.