By the time you open these pages, the Senate will be locked in one of the most important legislative battles of our time: whether or not to extend health insurance coverage to all Americans, and how. But the health-care debate is only one of many facing this country, from higher-education quality to state budget deficits to American foreign policy in the Middle East.
Each of these subjects, and more, is covered in the Winter 2010 issue. In our cover story, Kevin Carey, an analyst at the think-tank Education Sector, explains that quality, not just access, is a pressing issue in American higher education, driven by a skewed ranking system that prioritizes lavish budgets and higher tuition rates over student aptitude. The answer, he writes, lies in bringing objective data to education “consumers,” no easy task in the face of an entrenched and surprisingly powerful higher ed lobby.
In foreign policy, Shadi Hamid examines the role that a more democratic Egypt can play in Middle East peace, if President Obama can just reorient his approach to the country. Peter Edelman presents a new agenda for the inner city, Greg Anrig offers a novel solution to the state budget crisis, and veteran Ted Kennedy watcher Thomas Oliphant gives his unique take on the Senate’s late Liberal Lion.
America stands at the crossroads of history. Will we stick to the same stale ideas that have failed us before? Or will we embrace new thinking that truly lives up to the challenges of the moment and tries to
shape our future for the better?
Democracy has always believed that the second question must be answered with a resounding “Yes!” In this issue Leslie Gelb, the emeritus chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations, analyzes the failures of the elite media during the Iraq War and offers a new path for American political journalism. Veteran political correspondent Ronald Brownstein shows why so many analysts got Karl Rove wrong while journalist James Traub explains why America should still push for expanded democracy abroad. Marcy Darnovsky calls for a new progressive bioethics, Michael Lind outlines a return to utility capitalism, and David Callahan demonstrates how progressives can construct a new approach to American values. It is a broad and exciting menu of articles from some of the country’s most important progressive thinkers—an issue not to be missed!
As the the Bush presidency recedes into the past and the Obama era begins, America stands at the crossroads of history. Will we stick to the same stale ideas that have failed us before? Or will we embrace new thinking that truly lives up to the challenges of the moment and tries to shape our future for the better?
Democracy has always believed that the second question must be answered with a resounding “Yes!” In this issue, Charles Kupchan and Adam Mount, international affairs experts at Georgetown, propose a new, post-Bush progressive foreign policy doctrine: “The Autonomy Rule.” Dalton Conley, an NYU professor and author of the recently released Elsewhere, U.S.A., calls for the creation of an American sovereign wealth fund to strengthen our economy. And Elaine Kamarck, who oversaw some of the most essential reforms of the Clinton years, advises the Obama Administration on the difficulty of not just passing reforms, but implementing them over the long-term. Finally, in addition to our other pieces, take a look at Matt Bai’s article on the political implications of the Internet. Bai, whose reporting for The New York Times Magazine is often agenda-setting, writes that while not all the evidence is in, it seems that the Web is indeed a good thing for our democracy.
A little more than a month from now, the Bush era will give way to Obama’s America. Rarely has the nation been as enthusiastically engaged in the political process as it is today. But where do we go from here? What does Obama’s America mean?
This is precisely the sort of question we always intended Democracy to address. And so, in this issue, we have asked five of the country’s leading progressive voices to analyze the state of five central American values. Harvard Law Professor and bankruptcy expert Elizabeth Warren looks at opportunity, Duke Law’s Jedediah Purdy considers community, the University of Chicago’s Geoffrey Stone takes on liberty, NYU’s Michael Waldman examines democracy, and Harvard sociologist Orlando Patterson looks at equality. All these authors come down hard on the Bush Administration, but they also hold out hope that President-elect Obama will resurrect the values that so many Americans hold dear.