Stephen Reader

Stephen Reader appears in the following:

Jimmy McMillan is a Republican

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

That's right. Founder, patriarch, and perma-candidate of the Rent is Too Damn High party, has found a new home: the GOP.

Comments [1]

The State Budget Crunch

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

State budget gaps were really quite huge. If you add up all those numbers during the recession, budget gaps totaled about $500 billion. The stimulus offered about $280 billion to states, including things like grants for building roads. The part that was really just to plug state budget holes was only about $150 billion. It was a modest portion of the total problem, and temporary. A lot of governors on both sides of the aisle will say that they really saw it as an essential lifeline. The issue is that now it's going away.

Tracy Gordon, fellow at Brookings studying state and local public finances, on the Brian Lehrer Show.

Comments [5]

As Congress Parties Like it's 1995, Government Shutdown on the Way?

Monday, February 21, 2011

This past weekend, the GOP-controlled House of Representatives passed a continuing resolution to cut $61 billion from President Obama's budget for 2011. Needless to say, Democrats hate it, and the legislation faces much higher hurdles on its way to becoming a law. But should the Senate reject or Obama veto, Republicans have promised not to reauthorize spending once the government runs out of money—in two weeks. If that happens, the federal government will essentially stop working.


In Libya, Government Vows to 'Fight to the Last Bullet'

Monday, February 21, 2011

The escalating violence is in a sense explained by the fact that the security organizations owe their loyalty very directly to Qaddafi. There is no way back. This is either kill or get killed. It's vice versa for the population: if you're known to act against the interests of Qaddafi, in sense you're in the same boat. For both sides this is a life or death situation. That introduces a dynamic that escalates violence very rapidly, knowing that if your side doesn't win the results will be very dire.

Dirk Vandewall, associate professor of government at Dartmouth College and author of A History of Modern Libya, on the Brian Lehrer Show.


Timeline: What's Happening in Wisconsin?

Monday, February 21, 2011

A lot can happen in a week, especially in a state that's trying to balance its budget by asking for concessions from public employees. In the wake of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's budget proposal, and the ensuing outrage from public sector unions still embroiling the capitol, here's a day-by-day breakdown of what's happening the state.

Comments [5]

Protecting Journalists

Friday, February 18, 2011

Journalists are seen as putting themselves on an airplane and into the fray. It's a kind of "you didnt have to be there" attitude...There's a lot of condemnation for independent freelancers that a lot of networks rely on. Frequently, there isn't that sympathy as much as there is for tourists or someone who just happened to be there by accident.

Maryam Ishani, a reporter who was assaulted in Cairo during anti-government protests, on the Brian Lehrer Show.

Comments [5]

Facing Big Budget Gap, CT Governor Calls for Higher Taxes

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy released his budget proposal for fiscal years 2012-2013 Wednesday morning, and while it shares a lot in common with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo's, it departs on one significant, contentious aspect: taxes. Malloy said he wants to raise them; Cuomo promises he won't.

Comments [1]

The Speaker's Speech

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I fully recognize that Governor Cuomo has no choice but to make tough decisions and pass a budget that has cuts in it. All I ask is that New York City not be cut worse than anywhere else. As far as aid to municipalities, all other jurisdictions are getting their funding cut by two percent; we're getting our total allocation of $300 million zeroed out. We'll take our fair share and not complain about it, but we don't want to take more than our fair share.

—New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn talks about some of the ideas in her State of the City address The Brian Lehrer Show

Comments [9]

The 2011 Food Crisis

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

High food prices are not by themselves a guarantee that governments will fall, because if it were, we'd see overhauls in the governments of India or China. It's certainly the case that higher food prices combined with other things are like revolution kindling. A food price spike can spark something that can turn into this kind of democratic overhaul.

Raj Patel, visiting scholar at UC Berkeley's Center for African Studies, on The Brian Lehrer Show

Comments [19]

Obama's Budget, the GOP Budget and Missing Entitlements

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

House Republicans hate President Obama's $3.7 trillion budget. Rep. Paul Ryan has been loud and clear about an alternative he'd like to see implemented. His "Roadmap for America's Future Act" is a proposal that's been around since last year; it's even been in circulation long enough for the Congressional Budget Office to evaluate it and conclude that Ryan's plan would produce surpluses by 2080, whereas the current trajectory suggests deficits at 42 percent of GDP by that time.

So why aren't you hearing widespread GOP support for a proposal that would curb spending and cancel deficits? Simple: Because it privatizes Social Security.


Egypt in the Eyes of the USA

Monday, February 14, 2011

To some extent, we all know democracy works best when it comes from the country itself, out of its own traditions, its own people, its own leadership. Egypt has demonstrated that, not that a foreign country can make those kinds of things happen. We ought to be very carfeul about that.

—Ambassador Thomas Pickering,of the National Committee on American Foreign Policy, on The Brian Lehrer Show

Comments [3]

Pres. Obama: 'The People of Egypt Have Spoken.'

Friday, February 11, 2011

Hours after the resignation of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, President Barack Obama remarked on the situation from the Grand Foyer of the White House.

"The people of Egypt have spoken," Obama said. "Their voices have been heard. And Egypt will never be the same."

Comments [4]

At CPAC, a Conservative House Divided?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The annual Conservative Political Action Conference is always a big shindig, but this year there will be some new faces at the planning table: GOProud, a gay group that implicitly supports gay marriage in addition to the usual laundry list of conservative ideals. GOProud's attendance was enough to set off a boycott of CPAC by prominent conservative politicans and groups, including individuals who had previously attended the conference and even delivered keynote speeches there.


Strange Bedfellows Block Patriot Act

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Even going back to the original passage of the Patriot Act, you found folks like Grover Norquist and Americans for Tax Reform, these arch-conservatives teaming up with the ACLU. So there's a long tradition, not always within the elected Republican party establishment itself, but certainly across ideological boundaries, of people who are protective of civil liberties and skeptical of intrusive government.

Julian Sanchez, research fellow at the Cato Institute, on The Brian Lehrer Show

Comments [3]

Rejecting The Muslim Brotherhood

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

The Muslim Brotherhood is so elusive and, in a way, far more dangerous than al-Qaeda because of their ability to participate in a democratic system even though they have undemocratic objectives, and to make everybody believe they are peaceful...Once they get to a place of power, we've seen quite the opposite

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, former member the Muslim Brotherhood in Kenya and the author of Nomad: From Islam to America: A Personal Journey Through the Clash of Civilizations, on The Brian Lehrer Show.

Comments [34]

Who Benefits from the HuffPost and AOL Merger?

Monday, February 07, 2011

I'm a big believer in brands. Arianna is a big brand and she's become an even bigger brand. And Glenn's obviously a big brand today. There couldn't be a better deal for both companies. It's an acceleration of everything that Tim [Armstrong, AOL CEO] has said he wanted to do.

— Betsy Morgan, President of Glenn Beck's The Blaze and former CEO of The Huffington Post on the Brian Lehrer Show.

Comments [25]

Iowa Caucuses: America's Political Dinner Bell

Monday, February 07, 2011

American democracy, in a nutshell: Every four years, a bunch of Iowans gather in public schools, libraries, and homes across their great state to decide who will get to be the most powerful person on Earth.

Okay, not quite, but it’s something like that. Since 1972, Iowa has had first dibs on picking the names that will appear on presidential ballots across the nation come November.


In Show of Solidarity With Egyptians, Hundreds Converge on Times Square

Friday, February 04, 2011

As a nascent revolution rages in Cairo, demonstrations in support of Egyptian protestors continue to take place throughout New York City. Beginning last Saturday with a rally in front of the United Nations headquarters, a week of public organizing was capped off by a large, loud gathering on Friday in Times Square.

Comments [2]

Cuomo's Budget: The Day After

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Many of the changes the governor is seeking are going to have to be obtained at the contract table. Some union leaders I'm talking to are saying, people can do all the Power Point presentations and television ads they want. When we get to the bargaining table, there's going to be nobody else in the room...We're going to have a very different conversation.

Errol Louis, host of NY1's Inside City Hall, on The Brian Lehrer Show

Comments [9]

Word Choice: Declaring a Revolution

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

In media coverage of recent events in Egypt, one word is used more cautiously than any other: revolution. That's with good reason—after all, we're not sure if what's happening in Egypt is really a revolution. At least, not yet.

Comments [2]