Saturday, July 24, 2010

Voices You Should Know

In my last post I wrote that the only voice speaking truth to power on this whole sordid Shirley Sherrod affair was Anderson Cooper. I was watching Anderson at the time I wrote the post and watching Anderson in that tight black tee shirt of his forced all other thoughts out of my brain. Don't judge me, even the straight guys out there are envious of the way Mr. Cooper can wear a tee shirt. I would like to apologize to all of the people out there on TV, Radio and on-line who added their wise voices to the chorus of truth tellers. Those who know me are well aware that Rachel Maddow, Keith Olberman and Chris Matthews are an essential part of my information gathering process. The people I want to give props to are not as well know but they should be.

These are folks who I have come to depend on to clarify my thinking and provoke me to expand my view of the world around me. I have mentioned some of these big thinkers in the past but I want to give them their due. I have added some new links on this side where you can find them after you are done with me.

Joan Walsh can be found over at Salon. She is not on TV nearly enough and whenever she is on she speaks with such clarity that most of her opponents wither in her presence. Recently she gave a colleague a history lesson. The topic turned to the battle for the soul of the Republican Party and the other commentator said that parties tend to swing to extremes from time to time but then usually find their way back into the center, no argument there. Then, he went on to give the nomination in 1984 of Walter Mondale as an example of the Democrats nominating someone from their radical side. Joan's response was fast and furious and she gave a history lesson that brought me to my feet in my living room. Ms. Walsh's writing over the last few days has been nothing short of brilliant. Her Tweets are all over the map which makes her even more interesting and I always feel so honored when she takes the time to respond or comment on my Tweets.

Over at the Washington Post and on MSNBC you can find editorial writer Jonathan Capehart and Pulitzer Prize winning columnist Eugene Robinson. As with Joan Walsh these two men are always calm voices during the shout fests that MSNBC can sometimes become.

Mr. Capehart is young, stylish, witty & urbane. He wears the best ties on TV and they are always perfectly knotted. He is quickly becoming the voice of his generation on matters of race, sexual politics and any other issue he decides to speak/write about. He is the voice of the Washington Post but I suspect he will soon rise above that lofty position to become one of the go to and essential voice of our times. Another great Tweeter and he often responds back to my Tweets.

Eugene Robinson is a no nonsense yet poetic columnist. I always think I am smarter and better informed after reading him. His thoughts on race, politics, war and any other topic should be a must stop along the way to enlightenment. He writes with great clarity, humor and a forthrightness that we can all benefit from.

From The Nation you can find 3 writers and pundits who are quickly becoming favorites of mine. Christopher Hayes, Melissa Harris Lacewell and Katrina vanden Huevel. All three spend quality time in academia so they come at issues in a very thoughtful manner, Ms. Harris Lacewell is a Professor at Princeton. I am new to these three but I have found them to be very clear voices in the debates of the day and their honest defense of the left will prove them to become the leaders of the of progressive thought for years/decades to come. Mr. Hayes is great on Twitter but Ms. vanden Huevel Tweets on everything; we watch football games; reality shows and the Tony Awards together via Twitter.

Give these folks a chance to inform, enlighten and entertain you. If you have some suggestions for me please leave a comment and I will check him or her out and let you know what I think.


  1. I agree completely re your high praise of Joan Walsh...caustic, intelligent ne plus ultra, sure of her convictions. In my opinion the secrets of her success are her Irishness & her Catholic education kindergarten through college. Not long ago she & a fellow guest (I don't recall his name, but he was a far-right maniacal jerk, as I recall) began to snipe at each other. He made some comment to effect that he wouldn't tolerate her behavior were he married to her, to which she replied to effect how dare he slander her by even suggesting that she could be his spouse. The exchange reminded me of that famous exchange between Winston Churchill & Lady Astor re poison.;f=101;t=000069;p=0"Lady Astor, the first lady in the House of Commons once said to him: "If I was your wife, sir, I would poison your coffee." "If I was your husband, I would drink it," answered Churchill."

  2. I've just bumped into Glenn Greenwald @ggreenwald, who seems to have right much sense. He's on He'll be on MSNBC today.