Wednesday, November 14, 2012

I Am For Direct Dialogue With Iran

Iran Twitter Flag
Iran Twitter Flag (Photo credit: People's Open Graphics)
The US talked to the Soviet Union and it had nuclear weapons. Iran does not have nuclear weapons, it might get them.

I belong in the war as a last resort school of thought. I think, in this case, dialogue is not the step before war. Dialogue will render war unnecessary.

Frankly, I think it is plain stupid not to talk.

Obama: Will 'Make a Push for Dialogue' with Iran on Nuclear Program
In President Barack Obama's Wednesday afternoon press conference, his first in eight months, he addressed the issue of negotiations over the Islamic Republic of Iran's nuclear program. ...... We've imposed the toughest sanctions in history. .... There should be a way in which they can enjoy peaceful nuclear power while still meeting their international obligations and providing clear assurances to the international community that they're not pursuing a nuclear weapon. ...... open up a dialogue between Iran and not just us but the international community .... we're not going to be constrained by diplomatic niceties or protocols.
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The Redistricting Menace

In 1996, House Democrats also won the popular vote but remained in the minority (kind of)
Democratic House candidates appear to have won more of the popular vote than their Republican counterparts on Tuesday, despite what looks as though it will be a 33- or 35-seat GOP majority. .... Democrats have won roughly 49 percent of the House vote, compared to 48.2 percent for Republicans. ..... Despite losing the popular vote, Republicans are set to have their second-biggest House majority in 60 years and their third-biggest since the Great Depression. ..... Redistricting drew such a GOP-friendly map that, in a neutral environment, Republicans have an inherent advantage. ..... Republicans were clearly favored in 195 House districts, compared to Democrats being favored in 166. Some of this is because Democratic voters are more concentrated in urban areas, but it’s also because the GOP drew some very favorable redistricting maps in important states like North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania. ..... Republicans were clearly favored in 195 House districts, compared to Democrats being favored in 166. Some of this is because Democratic voters are more concentrated in urban areas, but it’s also because the GOP drew some very favorable redistricting maps in important states like North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
How redistricting leads to a more partisan Congress — in two charts
89 of 435 congressional districts performed between 46 percent and 54 percent for each major political party in recent years. In other words, those were the real swing districts. ...... under the new congressional map created by redistricting — the districts where candidates are currently campaigning for seats in the next Congress — there are just 74 districts that fit that “swing district” bill. ..... 83 percent of congressional districts now clearly favor either Republicans or Democrats..... Redistricting is handled by the state legislatures in the vast majority of states — which leads lawmakers to draw safe districts for incumbents or, at least, draw districts that their party will be able to win. ..... There is an emerging movement to put that power in the hands of nonpartisan redistricting commissions.
Republicans, beaten and angry, disagree on what to do next
For many voters in broad swaths of the country — throughout California and elsewhere along the Pacific Coast, across the Northeast and the mid-Atlantic states — the Republican brand is poison. ...... "If we're going to be anything but a regional, middle-aged white-man party, we have to do the obvious thing, which is, first, accept the reality that America is a diverse nation and we need to start selling to those people," Weaver said. "There is climate change. Accept that. There are gay people in our midst, marrying one another. Get over it.... The government isn't going to deport 15 million [illegal immigrants], and they're not going to deport themselves."
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Bobby Saying All The Right Things

Biden, Bobby
Bobby Is Going To Run And Win In 2016
Bobby Will Run In 2016
Bobby Converting Is Not A Problem
Bobby Jindal
Bobby Jindal: Streamliner
Bobby For McCain's VP?
Bobby Jindal For President Of The United States 2016
Bobby 2016, Until Then Adios
Barack, Bobby

Bobby has to do nothing less than reconstruct the Republican Party, and I think he is making good early noises. You borrow money from China with which to give tax cuts to the rich, and the poor and the middle classes are saddled with interest payments on that borrowed money. How is that small government?

Paul Ryan is a fake intellectual. Bobby is the true intellectual.

Quote of the Day: Bobby Jindal Joins Ranks of GOPers Edging and Urging Towards More Moderate
“We’ve got to make sure that we are not the party of big business, big banks, big Wall Street bailouts, big corporate loopholes, big anything,” Jindal told POLITICO in a 45-minute telephone interview. “We cannot be, we must not be, the party that simply protects the rich so they get to keep their toys.” ...... “It is no secret we had a number of Republicans damage our brand this year with offensive, bizarre comments — enough of that,” Jindal said. “It’s not going to be the last time anyone says something stupid within our party, but it can’t be tolerated within our party. We’ve also had enough of this dumbed-down conservatism. We need to stop being simplistic, we need to trust the intelligence of the American people and we need to stop insulting the intelligence of the voters.” ....... Calling on the GOP to be “the party of ideas, details and intelligent solutions,” the Louisianan urged the party to “stop reducing everything to mindless slogans, tag lines, 30-second ads that all begin to sound the same. “ ..... He added: “Simply being the anti-Obama party didn’t work. You can’t beat something with nothing. The reality is we have to be a party of solutions and not just bumper-sticker slogans but real detailed policy solutions.”
Bobby Jindal, newly compassionate conservative, gives interview to Politico
Jindal, a skilled political sailor who can tack into the slightest change in the current wind, provided Politico with a series of remarkable quotes ..... Jindal urged Republicans to both reject anti-intellectualism and embrace a populist-tinged reform approach that he said would mitigate what exit polls show was one of President Barack Obama’s most effective lines of attack against Mitt Romney. ...... On cultural issues, he suggested the party not retreat from its stances opposing abortion rights and gay marriage but rather soften its tone on such matters. ..... “We’re a populist party and we’ve got to make that clear going forward,” he said. ....... “I got the best job in the world and I’m going to be focused on being governor of this great state for the next three years and being chairman of RGA next year and getting a bunch of great Republican governors elected”
Jindal: End 'dumbed-down conservatism'
Bobby Jindal on Monday called on Republicans to “stop being the stupid party” and make a concerted effort to reach a broader swath of voters with an inclusive economic message that pre-empts efforts to caricature the GOP as the party of the rich. ........ He was just as blunt on how the GOP should speak to voters, criticizing his party for offending and speaking down to much of the electorate. ...... his pointed comments reflect his intent on playing an active role in the party’s conversation and perhaps to pursue a presidential bid when his term is up at the start of 2016. ........ his analysis Monday suggests he’s aligning himself with an emerging school of thought on the right that the GOP’s consecutive White House defeats can’t merely be solved by passing an immigration reform bill and appealing more directly to nonwhites. Jindal, a Brown Graduate and Rhodes Scholar, is already a favorite of conservative intellectuals and his assessment that Republican difficulties owe as much to economics as demographics will be well-received by right-leaning thinkers. ...... not enough discussion of what they see as the party’s unimaginative, donor-driven fiscal policies. ...... Jindal, the son of Indian immigrants, said the GOP “must reject identity politics” and “treat folks as individuals, as Americans, not as members of special interest groups.” ...... “The Republican Party is going to fight for every single vote,” he said. “That means the 47 percent and the 53 percent, that means any other combination of numbers going up to 100 percent.” ...... “I think the president has said he wants to present a comprehensive approach; I think we as a party need to hear what he has to say and offer our ideas.” ...... Where Jindal showed a bit more daring was on the banking industry, something that Obama blistered Romney on and to which the GOP nominee offered little response. ...... Declaring that Republicans “can’t be beholden to special interests or banks,” the successor to Huey P. Long indicated support for provisions in the Dodd-Frank law, which requires banks to increase their reserves to prevent future taxpayer-funded bailouts. ..... Even more notably, Jindal suggested he’d look favorably on something akin to the “Volcker rule.” ...... “You’ve seen some conservatives come around to the idea that if banks are going to be using FDIC-insured deposits, they shouldn’t be allowed to co-mingle those funds with some of their riskier investment banking activity,” Jindal said. “There needs to be stronger walls between insured deposits, the taxpayer protected side of business and riskier side of business that generate these risks and profits.” ........ “I think special interests in general have certainly too much influence in Washington, D.C.” ...... Jindal decried “agnostic” lobbyists who work both parties. ..... “They’re access donors because they know whoever is in power — that’s who they want to be friends with to get their special perks in the Tax Code” ....... “We’re a populist party and we’ve got to make that clear going forward,” he said...... To Jindal, that means improving the quality of education for kids across class and racial lines. The author of a major school reform bill this year, he said education is one example of how government needs to be changed to adapt to the times....... “Let the dollar follow the child instead of making the child follow the dollar,” he said of his policies to support charter, private and home schooling...... More broadly, he called for “a bottom-up government that fits the digital age.” ...... calling for expanded oil and gas exploration while also looking more favorably than some Republicans on renewable-energy solutions. ....... Jindal, decrying the GOP’s tendency to reminisce about how things were “better in the good ol’ days,” is tougher on his party’s tone than its substance. He’s an unapologetic conservative who doesn’t want to deviate from small-government principles. But he’s firing a warning to Republicans that they must change how they’re perceived. ..... “You’ve got to give the president’s team credit: They did a very good job portraying the Republican Party as wanting to just preserve the status quo for those who’ve already been successful and burn the bridge behind them,” he acknowledged. “That’s not what we as a party stand for and what we as a party can stand for.”
Jindal: No comment on 2016 run
In his first interview since Mitt Romney's defeat, Jindal told Politico that the party needs to, "stop being the stupid party".
What's Ryan and Jindal's Solutions to What Ails the G.O.P.?
Some party leaders blame Republican voters and donors for being stuck in a rightwing media world ...... Romney and Ryan "got wiped out in the overwhelmingly white state of New Hampshire, and they underperformed in non-urban sections of Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa." On taxes, Ryan said he and House Republicans had already presented a plan, and called on Obama to offer his own. ...... Jindal says the problem actually is the Republican plan. ..... Jindal rejected Romney's 47 percent comments, and the idea of makers vs. takers, which Ryan has promoted ....... Jindal thinks the GOP must explain things better, but not necessarily with better slogans. ...... Jindal wants the GOP to "soften its tone" on social issues.
GOP soul-searching, 2016 edition
Hillary ponders the future
Clinton would dominate 2016 Iowa caucuses, PPP shows
Karen Hughes: I'll 'cut out' the tongue of GOPers talking rape
Finally, the Republican Party has to set a tone that is more respectful, positive and inclusive. The immigration rhetoric that came out of the Republican primary seemed harsh, unwelcoming and offputting to many minority voters. Obama increased his share of the Hispanic vote and won it 69 percent to 29 percent (per The New York Times exit poll); likewise he built a huge margin among Asian voters, 74-25, almost doubling the margin of his support compared to 2008. Both of those constituencies are hardworking, upwardly mobile, family-oriented, and should be open to Republican appeals if we don’t make them feel unwelcome....... And if another Republican man says anything about rape other than it is a horrific, violent crime, I want to personally cut out his tongue. The college-age daughters of many of my friends voted for Obama because they were completely turned off by Neanderthal comments like the suggestion of “legitimate rape.”
Obama defends Rice in face of GOP opposition

What about Rebecca Kleefisch for Bobby's running mate?

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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Bobby Converting Is Not A Problem

How Indian immigrants could save the Republican Party
Further, could it be just coincidence that both politicians converted to Christianity? He’s a Hindu-turned-Catholic and she’s a Sikh-turned-Methodist. Perhaps they have their legitimate reasons—it doesn’t get more personal than your name and your religion—but the party needs to proceed carefully: There’s a red flag if immigrant candidates don’t appeal to their own immigrant brethren. Indeed, Jindal and Haley have upset some Indians, who feel the candidates can take their campaign donations but had to become something else in order to be accepted by the Republican Party—and by America.
I was born a Hindu. I grew up a Hindu. When I came to America with 200 dollars in my backpocket - 70 of which I blew on my first cab ride from the airport to the college town - I was a Hindu. One year in America I became a Buddhist. This was in the Bible Belt South.

I recommend conversion to the hundreds of millions of Dalits - also known as untouchables - in South Asia. Become a Buddhist, become a Christian, become anything. Stop being a Hindu. I feel like that is the only way to break the back of the caste system.

Nothing that any black person goes through in America compares to what Dalits go through in India. And I have to face that fact, as I remain hypercritical when it comes to race relations in America. The status quo is not okay. Racial equality is not here yet, although we continue to make steady progress.

I note that both Bobby and Nikky are Pujabis. In 1984 there were major anti Sikh riots all across India. If I were a Sikh I might have wanted to dissociate myself from the larger Indian identity once and for all. It was that bad. The minority problem is there in every country. Look at the Buddhist-Muslim thing in Burma, the Buddhist-Hindu thing in Sri Lanka.

I was an Indian in Nepal growing up and I suffered. I was a political minority, though not a numerical one. I identify with the blacks in America because of who I was growing up in Nepal. But also because of the British unfairness at the British school in Nepal I went to. And the racist demonization at the white college in the South I attended that the powers that be happily participated in.

I don't know of any Indian Democrat who is Governor anywhere in America, not in New Jersey where a lot of Indians live, not in supposedly diversity friendly states like New York and California. And I never felt like Bobby was trying to hide his Indian identity, or that he had ever managed to hoodwink whites into thinking he was anything other than Indian. He is married to one. His children are Indian. He takes great pride in his family's story.

One of the things that I find fascinating about Bobby is he is truly conservative. He is hard core conservative like I am hard core progressive. He truly believes. And it is so obvious to me that he is very, very smart.

One has a right to choose one's party, one's political philosophy. One has a right to choose one's faith. I mean, why are we even arguing? That's basic stuff.

Bobby's presence at the other end of the spectrum has, if anything, made me want to take a second look at the conservative philosophy. It has made me want to take a second look at the Republican Party itself. Not that I want to join it - no, hell no - I am a happy Independent, a Democrat till 2008, ironically.

If I were to not see common cause with Bobby, it would be for social reasons. I am for gay marriage, for example. If this were the 1950s, I would have been anti segregation. Being pro gay marriage today is for me the same thing. I don't want to wake up 10 or 20 years from now having been on the wrong side of history today.

But if Bobby were to say gay marriage is an issue to be decided at the state level, I would agree. We could agree to disagree on the issue, but agree on how the country should go about it.

I moved to New York from Kentukcy/Indiana because I was not white. Maybe the gay people can too. For the time being.

I am for a small government. I think I always have been. When you move from an autocracy to being a democracy, you are reducing the size of the government. And I am all for that.

I am for common sense gun laws. The right to go hunting - I am more of a shoot with a camera kind of guy - does not mean allowing for machine guns on easy hands. Makes no sense. But I see the pro gun philosophy as one being for a small government. I am okay with the underlying meaning.

It should be possible to distill the conservative philosophy to its bare essentials, and to apply them to new facts, and come up with new sets of policies that go for social inclusion and economic growth, nationally and globally. Maybe Bobby the biology major at college will do that. But his party has not done it yet. There is work cut out for him.

Bobby Is Going To Run And Win In 2016

The conservative philosophy has to make sense in all income brackets, for all racial groups. It can't be a philosophy to give tax cuts to the super rich with money borrowed from China to be able to hoodwink white guys with high school diplomas for life in the South to come along for the ride.

The party of Lincoln has to go back to its roots and become a party that competes for black votes, not engages in voter suppression.
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