• That in nation feeding in self-doubt it's more likely a Republican will be allowed (either by his or her own party or the national electorate) to run on the anti-war plank.

    That the Democrats will find surprsingly traction in the idea of Bush and the Administration being lawless...but no capitalize on it until 2012...when the nation's favorite attorney general is likely to lead the Dems back to the White House.

  • comment on a post The journey with Trippi, Dean and DFA over 7 years ago

    Just like Carter's moment in '76...history changes without warning.

    Now campaign websites all have blogs...now Daily Kos is among the top ten viewed internet sites and MyDD has it's own cult following.

    Jerome and Markos got a book deal.

    Tester won in Montana, Burner's looking good.

    So while the Republicans courts evangelicals and Fox News watchers, and the labor unions shrivel and die...the blogosphere grows.

    Caddell warned Carter in '77 that television would usher in the "permanent campaign" where a President would get no relief from the electoral calculus, at any time in his/her administration. The internet for what's it worth...has simply made the permanent campaign real-time as well.

  • One thing that's sort of important to realize in this discussion is that New Hampshire role as the "bad guy" is fairly new.

    For years, the party convention was the only game in town, and it was New Hampshire's embrace of the primary system that helped lend credence to state voters picking the candidate and not the "delegates" (i.e. insiders) at the Convention.

    Secondly, I don't think anyone in New Hampshire or Iowa asked for the sort of insane frontloading that has gone on during the last twenty years. (Maybe W-MUR-9's and the Des Moines Reigster's advertising departments)

    So I don't see what is mutually exclusive with the California Plan and New Hampshire going first. It is a small state...after all.

    If anything I think California Plan is flawed in that in doesn't address one important characteristic: money.

    Although you will never get the money "out of politics" the Party should use the California Plan to limit spending in those chosen states as well. That would solve the problem of Iowa and New Hampshire demanding to go first. If they retain their status, they would get only a fraction of the revenue from the primary season. If they hold out until later, the candidates could drop more money there.

    So looking at the primaries like an investor, if you are less assured that your candidate is on the verge or winning the nomination for a while, you might tone down your donations until the candidate gets some play in a few states. That again means that quieter, less populous (and geographically small) state will always end up being your first voting states in the primary.

    And that probably means forever...New Hampshire....gulp.

  • comment on a post California Redisctricting Redux over 7 years ago

    Another problem is that the Supreme Court struck down many years ago basing state level senates on county lines. This is one way California could really strike a good balance in the legislature. Taking a few sparsely populated counties, merging them into state senate districts and leaving more croweded ones to have their own.

    The logic is that this violates the "one man, one vote" concept. The irony is that US Congressional Districts need only represent the same number of votes in each district per state, not the same number of voters in each district nationwide.

    Lowenthal is saying what most people in California know...economic segregation is rife, and you are bound to have people living in self-made ghettos. As long as there is a consistent chain of representation...so that pepole with the same Congressman don't have different mayor, different school systems, different County supervisors and assemblymen...California is in good shape.

  • comment on a post Joe Klein Doesn't Get Montana's Senate Race over 7 years ago

    Chris Cilliza of Washington Post's the Fix recently also made a comment about how Tester's victory was surprising.

    Whatever mental disease Klein caught before arriving in Montana is apparently contagious.

  • on a comment on Campaign Stats Round-Up over 7 years ago

    I think Krugman is using the 2004 electoral map. In other words, he probably looked at Kerry's advantage in the popular vote and then began to simulate how more lopsided it would be to turn various states.

    His point is right on the money though. The Republicans hold their seats in the gerrymander such that all the districts are 60-40 GOP and then in the Dem districts lump them in 90-10. But this is actually because many of these districts were created to get minoirty representation in the 1960s and now concentrate urban voters together while disbursing the suburbs. Cleverly merging suburban and rural voters was the genesis of the 2004 exurban strategy.

  • comment on a post The Stevens Push Against Net Neutrality over 7 years ago

    Isn't what's really going on here is that while net neutrality is a problem for small websites owners...the "compromise" arises from the fact that Verizon et al want a way to wrest business away from Vonage and others?

  • comment on a post Akaka, Hawaii, Case, and Race over 7 years ago

    The reason the Akaka bill is a divise issue in Hawaii is that it's the "half a loaf". True sympathizers of sovereignty hate the Akaka bill as undermining their dream of independence. The conservatives believe that the native Hawaiian population already has lots of benefits under state law and doesn't need the designation of a federal Native Americans.

    Hawai'i is besot by lots of nasty problems, racial and otherwise. Case is hyperambitious...but his predecessor Patsy Mink died an awful death in office and there's reason to think Akaka may be incapacitated that way soon too.

    The better question isn't why the Hawaiian Democrats support ANWR...it's why Mary Landrieu does as her state continues to dissovle into the Gulf of Mexico.

  • comment on a post Jefferson: 'We're gonna need a bigger boat...' over 7 years ago

    Hmm....maybe those God fearing guys like Tom DeLay and Bush just had their prayers answered.

    Politically the "Jack Abramoff" card just went up in smoke and now it's up to Dems to hope that the Senate immigration bill drives Republicans en masse away from the polls.

    However, there's a recurring them in Bush's presidency of an ever-growing petrocracy...of a neo-imperalist vision of American military and economic forces controlling the world's oil supply. It goes without saying that the Justice Department must be REALLY interested in this and that this would pass even the Patrick Fitzgerald test.

  • Simply put, this all goes back to Rahm Emmanuel.

    He was trying to frame the inability to take back the House in '06 on Pelosi and Dean and gee how much better he would be as minority leader in '06 to pave the way for Hillary in '08.

    In the races where the D Triple C didn't or wouldn't get involved...lots of candidates figured out not only how to get the progressive base to turn out...but they also figured out how to stoke majority appeal.

    Angelides victory is huge...Tester's equally huge. Baxley's win in Alabama also is big.

    Dean's efforts at the state level seem to be working. Our Senate candidates seem also poised to reduce the Republican majority there.

    But good ol' Rahm seems ready to throw the House to defeat if it ensures his own personal gain. Yikes.

  • What I want to know is if the "businessmen" supporting the United Islamic Couts include Al Qaeda operatives who have camps there. Somalia is not some strategic gambit like Afghanistan...all the anarchy of the last fifteen years in and of itself has not meant much for the US.

    BUT...if the Al Qaeda has found itself a new home...this could be rough stuff should they reconstitute some of their training and operations managment in Somalia and stage another 9-11 magnitude attack. Unlike Afghanistan where the Northern Alliance were all too happy to be our ground troops...we'd have go in Black Hawk Down style after terrorist this time and pray we don't end with "ten thousand Mogadishus."

  • comment on a post Russ Feingold on C-Span Tonight over 7 years ago

    The shout out against the D Triple C was hilarious.

  • comment on a post Dem's Congressional Lead STILL Lags Indicators over 7 years ago

    Good work Paul in making a tremendously salient point. The national mood is continuing to turn against the establishment. It's too easy to show why.

    On immigration, Dem Congressmen support the plan which most conservatives would rather die than accept.

    On gas prices/inflation, the Dems didn't exactly win any fans by supporting the bankruptcy bill which basically tells the underclass of the US to go f*** themselves with regard to racking up debt and not cut back in lifestyle.

    On corruption and ethics, we have William Jefferson and Patty Kennedy sucking out the oxygen from the much bigger and more significant DeLay-Hastert-Abramoff iron triangle.

    On pension security, the Dems didn't really acknowledge the conviction of guys like Lay and Skilling enough, and play up the guys who got away like Richard Scrushy.

    On Iraq, it doesn't help that the lawmakers taking the hardest line on troop withdrawal are guys named Kerry.

    And worst of all, you have Rahm Emmanuel and Chuck Schumer playing sandbox with Dean over the campaign itself.

    About the only chance the Dems have in retaking the House in '06 is if bird flu turns out to predominately afflict conservatives.

  • comment on a post Talk about a Stupid Incentive System over 7 years ago

    The comment makes sense though given Rahm's careless disregard of Dean and the netroots in the Congressional midterms.

    Rahm wants to stick Dean with the blame for any failed chance to retake the House/Senate, consolidate his own power in the process and pave the way for Hillary.

  • Disclosure: I work at the Metropolitan Transit Authority as an intern, so do not construe anything said hereafter as "official comment".

    The thing with the Gold line extension is that rail maintenance costs are very significant. Most people who work at the MTA are actually big defenders of expanding rail...but the modeling done usually will tell you that ridership has to be high enough to justify the sky-high price of putting in rail.

    The other thing to keep in mind is compared to other mass transit agency how FAR everything in LA County is apart. The real issue is that for years, overdevelopment and racism spurred a transit strategy totally dependent on cheap gas and the speed advantage of automobiles. With traffic choking the region already one of those factors is gone, and the other one might also be history.

    The inevitable solution is intermodality, where commuter rail, light rail, and bus lines intersect and feed each other. But our ridership at MTA, as I can tell you having seen the stastics, isn't in 626.

    I have tremendous empathy for you because I used to live in the San Gabriel Valley and was orphaned before I could get my license either. I had to wait until I was 23 to buy a car and have some measure of "freedom". But my experience is that in college and in those early working years nothing beats a place with solid, reliable public transportation even if it means moving to some place that seems like teh sticks.

    Also, Dreier doesn't give a rats-ass about the cost. He was the Human Political Sacrifice selected by John and Ken's conservative radio show in 2004. One of the biggest complaints he gets from his office is how bad the traffic is. He wants to use the light rail to say...see I support solutions...so that he doesn't have to take a hard line on the real source of the traffic...China and our huge illegal alien popular in Los Angeles County.

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