• I was just thinking about this today.  The choice seemed to be whether we wanted Obama 2008 / Hillary 2016 or Hillary 2008 and Obama 2016.  Now we may not even get a Dem elected in 2012 because of the stupid economy and Obama's right-wing coddling positions.  Maybe he would have known better than to coddle right-wingers had he been allowed 8 more years to mature.  But whatever - "the fierce urgency of now" was his excuse for running.  Doesn't seem to have much urgency these days to help avoid a November butt-whooping.  Oh well...

  • Aren't most religious spaces in the country "open to all"?  I've never been denied entrance to a place of religious worship - anywhere.  And most big religious spaces have things like schools, adult education, athletic facilities, libraries, art stuidos, etc.  My place of worship has all of these things.  Still doesn't change the fact that this is a mosque.

  • >>Americans thought Japanese internment was a good idea and interracial marriage should be against the law. Does the fact that a majority feel it's wrong or offend their sensibilities make right?

    I'm not suggesting we take away anyone's rights.  Clearly the majority can be in the wrong if it advocates we do so. 

    >>And do a majority think Cordoba House it's wrong because of all the wrong reasons.

    I think it is a mosque.  I think it is too close to Ground Zero.  And from what I can see, this Rauf guy is questionable - especially since he is not taking community input seriously and has not called out Hamas in previous speeches.  Understanding the difference between Islamic sects is not my problem nor do I claim to be an expert on Islam.

  • I don't REALLY give a damn.  But, if you gave me a choice of another site, I'd pick the other site.  Just like if the US was building a military showcase museum in Japan, and my choices were "Hiroshima" or "some other site", I might be inclined to pick another site.

    If the question is whether the building is insensitive, I think the answer is clearly yes.  Now, does my opinion matter?  Maybe not... but at some level politicians and leaders are accountable to the preferences of their constituents.

    I guess you could say I am very modestly opposed to this project.  I think probably a good chunk of the US population is in the same boat.

  • >>To paraphrase Sam Harris, the claim that the events of September 11, 2001, had “nothing to do with monotheism” is an abject and destabilizing lie.

    I could also say "the claim that the events had nothing to do with humanity is an abject and destabilizing lie".  But it also had to do with radical Islam - see - and that is more specific, and therefore more meaningful - much more meaningful in this case.  Hence Sam Harris attempting to claim that this is about monotheism is completely missing the point, and is therefore an idiot.  Q.E.D.

  • I agree with #1.  My opposition to the mosque, and 70% of the country's opposition to it, is somewhat irrelevant.  But I feel that it is also important as a citizen and Constitutionally protected to be able to register your displeasure with what another group is doing.  My freedom to say that this is a stupid, insensitive project is just as important as the freedom of the group to go and build it.

    Also, suggesting to build the mosque somewhere else is hardly "the tyranny of the majority".  Perhaps some are taking this much farther than me, but all I'm saying is that this project is incredibly stupid and insensitive - and I'm well within my rights to say so.

  • Sam Harris is an idiot.

  • Lakrosse is not against the right to build the mosque.  The American people are not against the right of Muslims to build the mosque anywhere they want.  But for Democrats and the Muslim leaders who plan to build this thing not to realize how colossally stupid and insensitive this looks to the average American voter is difficult to comprehend. 

    Also, to most Americans, saying that something is 2 blocks away from something else still makes it *incredibly close*.  Generally the unit of measurement is miles, not city blocks.  90% of us do not live in New York city or in areas of comparable density, and if you want us to understand that this mosque is "far away" from the World Trade Center, you are going to have to do a better job.  A far better job, actually.

    But go ahead - call Lakrosse and me "haters of the Constitution" or what have you.  You are missing the point - this is a political issue, not a Constitutional one.  Constitutionally, as Democrats, we all agree that the Muslim group should be ABLE to build this thing.  Most of us also realize that by building it, this group will be showing the American people their insensitivity for 9/11 and its victims.

  • >>I have no idea why so many if not most of the diaries contributed to the site get so little commentary, but that seems to be the reality.

    Because you've almost single-handedly destroyed this site by repeatedly posting on nearly irrelevant topics to the Democratic party?  I mean - financial reform, health care, jobs, the economy, Iraq, Afghanistan - does Main Street have an opinion on any of these things - probably not... but we know that Main Street hates Israel.  Well, your opinion has been noted, and now mostly ignored... your opinion is not nuanced or interesting IMHO.  You may as well be blogging from Hamas headquarters AFAIK.  You should just get your own blog - I think "ihateisrael.blogspot.com" is available.

  • comment on a post Iranian aid ships head for Gaza over 4 years ago

    You think Israel is going to be letting in an Iranian "aid" ship?  Would the US let North Korea send an "aid" ship to Cuba?  Who does Iran / Gaza sympathizers think they are kidding - these are publicity stunts and nothing more - and really crappy publicity stunts at that.  If anything I think these things are back-firing for Gaza - contrary to what the MSM may indicate.  The key demographic is American foreign-policy middle of the road voters and conservatives, and "aid" ships armed with knives etc. and "Iranian aid" is only going to piss off the middle to right in the US.

    These ships aren't getting to Gaza - but you are right - "let the games begin" - what a joke.

  • on a comment on Big win in Houston over 4 years ago

    The split was Obama 228k to Clinton 176k in Harris County, which includes areas that are not part of Houston.


    Thanks for the clarification.  I was mistaken - I still think the larger point I was making about Parker voters is accurate.

  • on a comment on Big win in Houston over 4 years ago

    Just for clarity: The city of Houston voted something like 65% for Obama - in the General Election.  In the primaries, I'm pretty sure that Houston went narrowly for Clinton, and you saw similar demographic block trends from last night.

  • on a comment on Big win in Houston over 4 years ago

    I'm a Houstonian, so here's my take - this election was very similar to the split you saw in the Obama / Clinton race.  Gene Locke is a black Dem., and he was her opponent.  He tried to go for the conservative vote, however, as there was no conservative candidate that made it to the runoff.

    So I think in the end Parker ended up with most of the white liberal vote inside the 610 loop - she had 6 years of experience as City Controller and I think she came across as the most qualified candidate, so people voting based on qualifications voted for her.  Locke got the black vote and some more conservative voters on Houston's west side (Culberson's district).  But most conservative voters just stayed home - they were not happy at choosing between 2 Dems - the only conservative in the race, Morales, got 20% of the vote in the initial November race and was eliminated from the runoff.

    The city of Houston voted something like 65% for Obama.  So Locke's strategy of appealing to more conservative voters appears to have been misguided.  It's the Houston suburbs that are conservative, and they weren't voting in this election.

  • on a comment on Big win in Houston over 4 years ago

    Yes, it was brought up.  Some schmuck Hotze who apparently the Locke campaign may have been in bed with, and about 200+ preachers who basically denounced Parker for her sexuality.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/12/us/12h ouston.html

  • comment on a post Bus Rapid Transit Systems over 4 years ago

    I think really good BRT systems, and not just glorified bus lines, with their own ROW, really nice buses, stops, etc end up costing comparable to light rail for capital expenses (ie $30-$50 million / mile), and then they have higher operating expenses than light rail b/c typically your bus fleet requires many, many more operators than trains.

    And isn't Curitiba adding rail lines now?

    I think BRT is great, but light rail is still the way to go for denser areas (or areas where we should be promoting density) like most major US cities.


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