We will not claim these recommended sites are “objective” but they are honest and spur critical thinking and have an independent edge. Those with cross-partisan policy making intentions — such as Grits for Breakfast and Charles Hugh Smith — are rare gems.
If you have other blogs, sites or books you’d like to see us list, please send them to us at email@example.com or post them at the bottom of this page in our comments section. And please tell us why you like the publication.
Thank you, you independent critical thinkers and open government advocates!
We recommend you add these to your reading lists:
Consortium News — the first investigative journalism on the net, founded by the guys who broke the Iran-Contra scandal in the 1980s and who came from and still work in “mainstream media” – with honesty and intellect galore.
Ballot Access News — written by the premiere ballot access expert in the country, Richard Winger. Take a look at the miles of work they do every month to chronicle lawsuits, petition drives, legislative changes, book reviews and more to open up and clean up elections in the USA. Subscribe if you care, like we do, about competitive elections!
Blog Maverick — The Mark Cuban Weblog: Know any billionaires who do their own weblog? This is one reason why some people call Mark Cuban the “people’s billionaire.”
Anti-War.com — “This site is devoted to the cause of non-interventionism and is read by libertarians, pacifists, leftists, “greens,” and independents alike, as well as many on the Right who agree with our opposition to imperialism.” Justin Raimondo, a Murray Rothbard libertarian, does a great job tracking this most important issue that involves the Presidency and highest levels of the U.S. government. Raimondo initially supported Trump but withdrew support stating that Trump could not be trusted.
David Stockman’s Contra-Corner: Get to know the brilliant, independently conservative and always bombastic former Director of the Office of Management and Budget under Reagan, who describes his blog as, “the only place where mainstream delusions and cant about the Warfare State, the Bailout State, Bubble Finance and Beltway Banditry are ripped, refuted and rebuked.” Stockman supported Trump for some illuminating reasons. Watch his 2/25/17 interview about Trump’s economic inheritance.
Democracy Now!: is a national, daily, independent, award-winning news program hosted by journalists Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez. Pioneering the largest public media collaboration in the U.S., Democracy Now! is broadcast on Pacifica, NPR, community, and college radio stations; on public access, PBS, satellite television (DISH network: Free Speech TV ch. 9415 and Link TV ch. 9410; DIRECTV: Free Speech TV ch. 348 and Link TV ch. 375); and on the internet. DN!’s podcast is one of the most popular on the web.
Charles Hugh Smith: A progressive independent thinker who deep dives into the “deep state” that is doing great harm to our country’s economic and security well-being.
ZeroHedge.com: a little doomsdayish, but who isn’t having come off of Wall Street (their names are fictitious). Moreover, if you don’t feel that way about the peril of the continuation of debt growth to keep our economy going, you’re not paying attention.
The Intercept: Glenn Greenwald, Edward Snowden’s attorney, perhaps it’s most famous writer and attorney has called the mainstream media on fake news with brilliance and finesse.
Grits for Breakfast: Scott Henson is an ace researcher, writer and policy guy on civil liberties and criminal justice in Texas. He also recently founded Just Liberty, a 501c4 organization that is pushing for common sense and very needed reforms winding their way through the sausage maker, otherwise known as the Texas legislature.
Texas Monthly Burka Blog: Longtime Texas political pundit, Paul Burka, retired after 34 years at Texas Monthly. His blog now aggregates some of the best political writers in Texas. Great stuff!
Quorum Report: Harvey Kronberg has our respect as a (if not, THE) top-notch political analyst of Texas politics. Though you have to subscribe for his worthy deep analysis dives, you can get the “Buzz” for free. These quick news alerts are a must see if you follow the Texas legislature. There are also his news clips that you can access for free — a daily compilation of Texas press.
Though we urge you to get to know who owns you local and state media, many of them, to their credit, fully disclose this information such as the Texas Tribune. If you’re lucky enough to have a local newspaper, we hope you will subscribe. Though many people are reading their news online, in rural communities, newspapers you can hold in your hand still play a very important role.
Your Local Press
If you’re lucky enough to have a local newspaper, we hope you will subscribe. Though many people are reading their news online, in rural communities, newspapers you can hold in your hand still play a very important role.
In Austin, we love The Austin Bulldog: longtime professional writer, Ken Martin, is still the best around for local Austin news with a bite.
In San Antonio, we have come to appreciate The Rivard Report: a local independent online publication.
Breaking the Two-Party Doom Loop by Lee Drutman: We’ve joined with the League of Independent Voters of Texas by starting a study group. Contact LIV at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 512.213.4511 (landline) to join the group.
Here’s what Rich Winger of Ballot Access News wrote about the “Doom Loop” book:
Although the title may sound lurid, “Doom Loop” is an established term. A synonym is “Reinforcing feedback loop”. A microphone connects to an amplifier; the microphone picks up a whisper; the amplifier makes the whisper louder; the microphone picks
up the noise and makes it louder, etc.
Drutman shows that since the 1980’s, the U.S. party system has become a doom loop. We have moved from the system of the 1950’s, when there were conservative Democrats and liberal Republicans, to today’s system in which the two major parties stand in fierce opposition on cultural, economic, and human rights values. Drutman writes, “America is divided over two competing visions of national identity. Politics is now all about winning and losing. Government is breaking down.” Also, “when partisanship turns toxic,
thinking your party is right turns to thinking the other party is not only wrong, but dangerously wrong – so dangerously wrong that should they ever get into power, their policies would pose an existential threat to the nation. When loyalty is absolute, parties can mislead voters they supposedly represent into supporting policies that in fact make their lives worse off. “
Drutman writes plainly and the book is easy to read, but it is backed up with hundreds of notes to scholarly publications. He shows that the solution is not to minimize political parties, but to change the election system so there are more parties with real power and seats in Congress. He describes the most commonly used forms of proportional representation. He concludes the type of proportional
representation which could plausibly be enacted in the United States is Multi-Winner Ranked-Choice Voting for congress, and Single-Winner Ranked-Choice Voting for president.