Every three months Democracy brings you the latest in progressive thinking, whether it be Mark Schmitt’s widely read critique of the campaign finance reform movement (“Mismatching Funds,” Issue #4) or Elizabeth Warren’s influential proposal for a Financial Product Safety Commission (“Unsafe at Any Rate,” Issue #5), which quickly appeared as a plank in John Edwards’ campaign platform.
Our current issue, which you have just received, is one of our most important yet. Eschewing our usual format, we have dedicated the bulk of our front section to a groundbreaking symposium on the future of American policy in the Middle East. Entitled “After Iraq,” the symposium includes contributions from a dozen leading foreign-policy progressives, from terrorism expert Peter Bergen to Carnegie Endowment President Jessica Tuchman Mathews. We also have two other features, both on pressing economic issues: One, by Bill Clinton’s economic adviser, Gene Sperling, examines how progressives can embrace policies that both raise the economic tide and make sure that the tide lifts all boats equally; the other, by business leader Bernard Schwartz and New America Foundation Fellow Sherle Schwenninger, argues that progressives should resist pressure to focus on budget reduction and instead look for ways to boost public investment. We also have several strong book reviews in the issue, with contributions from Gregg Easterbrook, Tom Bender, and Mary Frances Berry.