Nationalists win big in election

The different countries that constitute the European Union held elections on Sunday for the European parliament.  Political parties that oppose the European Union won big, taking over a third of the parliamentary seats.  The winners included anti-immigration parties, traditional conservatives, and even neo-Nazi groups.

How do you account for this apparent rise of nationalism in a supposedly globalist and cosmopolitan era?  What does this mean for the United States?  Do you see any potential problems that this could bring?

[Read more…]

Maximum wage

Journalist Michael J. Totten visits Havana to see how things are going in still-Communist Cuba:

In the United States, we have a minimum wage; Cuba has a maximum wage—$20 a month for almost every job in the country. (Professionals such as doctors and lawyers can make a whopping $10 extra a month.) Sure, Cubans get “free” health care and education, but as Cuban exile and Yale historian Carlos Eire says, “All slave owners need to keep their slaves healthy and ensure that they have the skills to perform their tasks.” [Read more…]

Yet another Obamacare problem

Another Obamacare fiasco:

The government may be paying incorrect subsidies to more than 1 million Americans for their health plans in the new federal insurance marketplace and has been unable so far to fix the errors, according to internal documents and three people familiar with the situation. [Read more…]

Friend in the Senate

My friend Ben Sasse whom I’ve blogged about, won the Republican primary race for Senate in Nebraska.  Observers are saying he will be a shoo-in for election.  Pundits are calling this a “Tea Party” victory, but Ben is nothing like the angry-rabble of the stereotype.  He’s a scholar of public policy, the president of Midland University, and a former White House official.  (And, of interest to this blog, he is a Lutheran.)

Molly Ball, writing about Ben’s victory in the Atlantic, comments about the way the media keeps trying to make the elections fit the Procrustean bed of “Tea Party” vs. “Establishment.”  In reality, she points out, the best candidate tends to win against “rank incompetents” no matter who endorses them.  She calls Ben a “fusion” candidate that may be a herald of the future. [Read more…]

Anti-Obama but pro-Hillary

President Obama’s approval ratings are plummeting, and Democrats’ prospects for the House and Senate look bleak.  And yet in presidential polls, Hillary Clinton still beats all Republican candidates by far.  So a substantial demographic does not like President Obama but does like Hillary Clinton.  These are mostly blue collar workers and white Southerners, including many who do not describe themselves as liberal and quite a few evangelicals.  In other words, the old Democratic constituency that had been taken away by Ronald Reagan.  See a sample of E. J. Dionne’s discussion of this phenomenon after the jump. [Read more…]

Supreme Court allows Christian prayers in public meetings

The Supreme Court has ruled that public meetings, including those involving local governments, may feature distinctly Christian prayers, including those that are in the name of Jesus. [Read more…]