Aspen Ideas Festival: Niall Ferguson, David Gergen & Mort Zuckerman Fear-monger on Deficits



The opening forum at the political celebrity and policy wonk packed Aspen Ideas Festival which opened yesterday was titled “The Financial Crisis: Will It Lead to America’s Decline?” and featured historian Niall Ferguson, US News & World Report owner and real estate mogul Mort Zuckerman, and presidential adviser David Gergen.

Defending Michael Steele from War-Hungry RNC Members & Pentagon-Hugging Dems



Michael Steele is right on Afghanistan. The Republican National Committee Chairman, who is receiving a heap of scorn by war-hungry members of his party and by Democrats who want to puff up and act like the real defenders of the Pentagon faith, called the conflict in Afghanistan “a war of Obama’s choosing.” Former George W….

Lindsey Graham: In Today’s Republican Party, Reagan Wouldn’t Make it as a Republican



The Washington Post‘s Howard Kurtz profiles reactions to Tea-Partyism today and notes that Senator Lindsey Graham, who once told me that his favorite film was Seven Days in May and that one of his biggest fears for the country was national security and military demagoguery, doesn’t have much time for the Tea Party.

The Kurdish Issue and Turkey’s Future



(Photo Credit: Svenwerk’s Photostream) Ian Lesser‘s most recent “On Turkey” brief for the German Marshall Fund raises a number of important issues surrounding the United States’ relationship with Turkey. Most importantly, Lesser notes that those seeking to understand Turkey’s emerging regional role should examine Turkey’s internal political dynamics more closely.

Peterson Prevails: House Committee Approves Bill to Lift Travel Ban, Ag Export Restrictions



This is a guest post from Anya Landau French, who directs the New America Foundation/U.S.-Cuba Policy Initiative. This post originally appeared at The Havana Note. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson, a conservative Democrat from Minnesota, is generally a soft-spoken, easy-going legislator who eschews demagoguery.