Friday, October 8, 2010

Read Stuff, You Should

I've really fallen behind on this one, so some of these may be older, but still worth reading.  I'll start with something with which I disagree, but regular readers interested in what political science has to say about Congress should click through and read.  Essentially, there's a debate within the political science literature over whether parties in the legislature actually matter, or whether all that matters is ideological placement...perhaps because I'm really a parties scholar and not a legislatures scholar, or perhaps for other reasons, I tend to write as if parties matter and ignore the whole debate.  But it's good for people to know the other side, so read Barry Pump and keep it in mind the next time I write about potential party rule in the Senate or actual party rule in the House.  (I'd ask one question, however: isn't the difference between Arlen Specter, Republican and Arlen Specter, Democrat strong evidence that parties matter?).  More generally, I'll point out that there are often fairly significant differences among political scientists on fairly basic things, and while I try not to make strong claims for what "political scientists believe" in those areas, it's worth pointing out from time to time that I'm not trying here to give a full survey of research on every topic, even when I'm up to date on it.

OK, what do we have....

1. CoS: Matthew Dickinson on White House staff; Tim Fernholz makes the liberal case for Rahm; Ezra Klein reminds us that where you sit matters.

2. Elections:  Jamelle Bouie on the futility of running against Boehner; Dave Weigel is fond of Mike Castle; Jonathan Cohn is fond of Nancy Pelosi; and while I didn't expect to link to anything defending the GOP's amateurish Pledge, Ramesh Ponnuru is correct on this one.

3.  Matt Yglesias, counterfeiter.

4.  Mark Schmitt on the Democratic Party's 1970s debacle.

5.  Paul Waldman: not a fan of mind reading.

6.  Kevin Drum's wonderful article on the historical context of the Tea Partiers, and Ed Kilgore reminds everyone about abortion.

7.  Ezra Klein's interviews are just one of the very best things out there: I haven't read one yet that wasn't informative and interesting.  I highly recommend them.  Here's one with Nancy DeParle, but really they're all good.

8. And Marc Ambinder's classic turn as Woodward, which I'll package with Seth Masket's media complaint.

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