Chris Hayes, Editor-at-Large of The Nation, hosts “All In with Chris Hayes” at 8 p.m. ET Monday through Friday on MSNBC.
Previously, Hayes hosted the weekend program “Up w/ Chris Hayes,” which premiered in 2011. Prior to joining MSNBC as an anchor, Chris had previously served as a frequent substitute host for “The Rachel Maddow Show” and “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell.” Chris became a MSNBC contributor in 2010 and has been with The Nation since 2007.
He is a former Fellow at Harvard University’s Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics. From 2008-2010, he was a Bernard Schwartz Fellow at the New America Foundation. From 2005 to 2006, Chris was a Schumann Center Writing Fellow at In These Times.
Since 2002, Hayes has written on a wide variety of political and social issues, from union organizing and economic democracy, to the intersection of politics and technology. His essays, articles and reviews have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Time, The Nation, The American Prospect, The New Republic, The Washington Monthly, the Guardian, and The Chicago Reader.
His first book, Twilight of the Elites: America After Meritocracy, which is about the crisis of authority in American life, was published in June 2012. Chris grew up in the Bronx, graduated from Brown University in 2001 with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy.
To piggy-back (no pun intended) on one of Chris's posts from yesterday, it also bears noting how thoroughly overblown the current debate over Congressional pork is. One: it's more than a little duplicitous for the GOP to suddenly start stampeding down the earmark warpath after pork-barrel spending tripled under their watch (while since 2006, Democrats have slashed earmarks by 43% and created new earmark disclosure rules). Two: the degree of fanfare the DeMint-McCain proposal has drummed up seems to me a bit ludicrous. While it's always refreshing to see members demonstrate commitment to reform, the DeMint-McCain proposal is nothing more than a temporary, one-year ban--kind of like the one the Democrats passed after they took over Congress.
With the GOP continuing to gleefully reprove Democrats on the issue, it certainly doesn't help that McCain has consistently foregone earmarks, while Clinton ranks as one of the Senate's top 10 earmark-grossing members. But for now, when Sen. DeMint crows, "The jig's up on earmarks," remember that he's only referring to this election year (in which not many spending bills are expected to pass anyway).
While overall the post-2006 congress has been a massive disappointment, that is almost entirely due to the inability to overcome both filibusters and backslapping tradition in the Senate, . The house really has done a remarkably good job of reliably producing good legislation, which is then either ignored by the Senate or vetoed by the president.
The senate's been debating the budget the last day and a half, and it's generally been an unedifying show. Republican senators talk exclusively about tax cuts and reigning in spending, but by "spending" they mean "non-military spending that doesn't happen in my state or help my major corporate donors." And Democrats keep harping endlessly on the debt and deficit. Yes, the Bush administration has squandered a surplus on tax cuts for the rich, a bloody, immoral war and a massive escalation of the security state. But! The Republicans are right when they point out that thedebt as a percentage of GDP is towards the high end, but not outside historical norms and that last year's deficit was well within historical norms as a percentage of GDP.
I've never seen any polling data anywhere that suggests the deficit and debt moves voters, even if voters say they care about it. The problem isn't the debt as such, it's the massive increase in military spending, the long term challenge of health care costs and massively expensive tax cuts. The "debt" is too abstract to be politically useful, and harping on it confuses the symptom for the cause.
For this reason, I was heartened by this exchange betwen Sen Kyl and Sen. Sanders yesterday on the senate floor:
Stocks of private equity companies, most notably Blackstone, are tanking.
Of course the magic of leverage is that a little bit of up front capital can be turned into massive profits. But on the way down, it means very little margin for error if the companies you snatch up start hemorrhaging value.
SEIU has been attempting to shine the light of accountability on Blackstone, which is one the nation's largest employers.
I try not to post here too much about the campaign, mostly because I don't quite trust myself to be completely fair at this point, but it must be said that the recent jive from the Clintons about Obama as veep is unbearably condescending. It's basically saying to all the Obama supporters (the party's black base, and young voters particularly) that you kids can get in the back of the bus, just let us drive.
But as Obama , it's a bit rich for the candidate who's won a) less states b) less votes and c) less delegates to be offering the other candidate a spot on her ticket. And it's even harder to take when you consider that the Clinton campaign spends half its time saying Barack Obama isn't ready to be Commander in Chief and the other half of their time saying what a great Vice President he would make.
Well, I don't have much to add to all the frenetic speculation and schaundenfraude following word that Eliot Spitzer has been linked to a prostitution ring. But the whole sordid mess reminded me of this Mark Twain quote:
Every one is a moon, and has a dark side which he never shows anybody.
Te-Ping and I were just discussing this, and wondering whether it's the case a)that success in electoral politics requires a degree of hubris and ego-mania that also leads high-profile politicians to transgress and believe they won't be caught or b) any random sampling of people subjected to the scrutiny of elected officials would yield a roughly similar amount of improprieties, and sins.