The Conversation

Politics: Policy issues, legislation and political topics of all sorts.

MUST READ: Can the Republicans be Saved from Obsolescence?

Feb 14, 2013 4:43 AM PT

This article from the New York Times (the liberal death star) is full of awesomeness. I am putting aside the less than pure motives for running this story, and focusing on the delicious nuggets of insight. 

Here are some choice experts:

“Then, once people think we’ve gotten them through the worst,” Jacobson said, “we pile on more — just the way Obama did.” He put up Slide 26, titled, “Running Up the Score.” “Obama was the very first candidate to appear on Reddit. We ask our clients, ‘Do you know what Reddit is?’ And only one of them did. Then we show them this photo of Obama hugging his wife with the caption ‘Four more years’ — an image no conservative likes. And we tell them, ‘Because of the way the Obama campaign used things like Reddit, that photo is the single-most popular image ever seen on Twitter or Facebook.’ Just to make sure there’s plenty of salt in the wound.”

.....

“There’s a feeling that Republican politics are more hierarchical than in the Democratic Party,” Ben Domenech, a 31-year-old blogger and research fellow at the libertarian Heartland Institute, told me. “There are always elders at the top who say, ‘That’s not important.’ And that’s where the left has beaten us, by giving smart people the space and trusting them to have success. It’s a fundamentally anti-entrepreneurial model we’ve embraced.”

.....

(Vincent) Harris told me he saw the Romney campaign as “a very insular, closed operation,” symptomatic of a partywide affliction. “There’s an old guard in Republican politics, and that old guard is mostly made up of television and direct-mail consultants,” he said.

....

Two days after Obama’s inauguration, Bret Jacobson flew to Charlotte to attend the R.N.C.’s winter conference and sit on a panel devoted to discussing new digital techniques. “Bret’s presentation was one of the best-received of the panel, by far,” the seminar’s organizer, Ryan Cassin, told me. Still, Jacobson was disappointed to see only 30 people in attendance. 

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Blaming Sandy on Climate Change, Obama Contradicts Himself in SOTU

Feb 13, 2013 8:30 PM PT

In response to Al Gore's Climate Change Hoax Revived After Obama's SOTU?:

It's interesting to see President Obama contradict himself again.  Back in November, when asked about climate change and its relation to Hurricane Sandy, Obama told an audience, "we can’t attribute any particular weather event to climate change." But suddenly, Obama didn't find it convenient anymore to tone down the "climate change caused Hurricane Sandy" hype in his SOTU.

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Al Gore's Climate Change Hoax Revived After Obama's SOTU?

Feb 13, 2013 6:47 PM PT

When President Barack Obama leaves office in January of 2016, he will be remembered by conservatives as a highly polarizing ideologue who was scornful of the constitutional restraints that limited his authority as president.  This evening’s SOTU speech only reaffirmed his well-deserved reputation that has effectively split the country along many fault lines.

One agenda item from Obama’s SOTU was his affirmative commitment to tackle the so called problem of climate change.   Obama indicated that if Congress didn’t act on the issue, he would take action- in all likelihood, he would attempt to enact tougher regulations that further stifle energy production and businesses through the Environmental Protection Agency.

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I Call It the 'Lil Wayne Effect'

Feb 13, 2013 6:36 PM PT

Sonnie, I have similar stories to tell about how it's usually best to not discuss politics with family members. My 22-year-old college educated cousin told me that even though Obama is the president, nothing's going to change for black people. 

I never really forgot the look in her eyes when she said those words to me. I can still remember the despair and the disappointment on her face. I recently had a similar conversation with a colleague of mine about how having a black president wasn't going to help the black community. To be sure he got his point across to me, my co-worker quoted Lil Wayne:

 "Tired of the same $&@!, don't know who to blame S&@!. And we knew a Black President wouldn't change $&@!"

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Now Introducing the 0%

Feb 13, 2013 5:04 PM PT

There are ten members of my family that still talk to me about politics. I usually don't give them my opinion.  I just sit and listen to their justifications of Obama's Presidency.  It helps me form my arguments.

So this morning I called to gauge their reaction to President Obama's State of the Union.  NONE OF THEM WATCHED.  I have met the 0%.

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Cuomo Delays Decision on Fracking in NY...Again

Feb 13, 2013 3:38 PM PT

It appears energy policy in New York state is now being guided by Yoko Ono. Gov. Cuomo has once again delayed a decision on whether or not to allow fracking in New York, a decision which garnered him a pat on the back from Yoko. Even the NY Times says politics, not science, is driving the decision:

Officials who have discussed the matter with the governor have said that his hesitation is principally political, not scientific. Mr. Cuomo, a Democrat, faces strident opposition on his party’s left, and activists are continually protesting in Albany against fracking.

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ICE Officer Contradicts Napolitano on Admin's Immigration Plan: "They've Completely Shut Us Out"

Feb 13, 2013 1:51 PM PT

At the Senate’s first hearing this year on immigration reform, Senator Jeff Sessions asked Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano if anyone from the administration had met with ICE agents to address their concerns.

Low moral has been a problem for ICE agents because of radical changes in immigration policies. The President of the ICE Employees Union, Chris Crane testified last week at a House hearing that his agency is "falling apart" and that "death or serious injury to ICE officers appears to be more acceptable to ICE, DHS and administration leadership than the public complaints lodged by special interest groups representing illegal aliens."

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Seeds of totalitarianism

Feb 13, 2013 1:39 PM PT

Professor Marc Lamont Hill is angling to become the public face of the "Team Dorner" mutants, popping up on CNN to hail the late left-wing spree killer as a "real-life superhero" whose story was "exciting" and brought much-needed attention to the subject of "police terrorism."  By that, he means other cops committing what he considers terrorism, not ex-cop-turned-terrorist Christopher Dorner.

Called out for this nauseating display, Hill essentially claims that he's just fascinated by the people who are fascinated by Dorner... a cute little "two degrees of separation" from evil.  He doesn't endorse what Dorner did, you understand.  He just endorses the people who endorse what Dorner did.  And now that all the bloodshed is behind us, why not take Dorner's brilliant manifesto and deep concerns seriously?  That way, his killing spree won't have been a "waste of our time."

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'The Ricks' Facing Off in a Shoot Out At the OK Political Corral

Feb 13, 2013 9:27 AM PT

During last night's State of the Union address, President Obama tastelessly declared that the victims of gun violence "deserve a vote" and called on Congress to take action to prevent future violence.  What those victims of gun violence really deserve is justice and a measure of respect- not a symbolic vote from Congress or legislation that affirmatively encroaches on the rights of law-abiding citizens to own certain types of guns.

Senator Diane Feinstein (D-CA) has already proposed a stringent gun-control bill that will face considerable push back from both Republicans and Democrats in the Congress, and it's not expected to pass the Republican controlled U.S. House of Representatives.

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The guarantee of success

Feb 13, 2013 8:47 AM PT

Among the lines in Obama's SOTU address that stuck out for me was: "It is our unfinished task to restore the basic bargain that built this country – the idea that if you work hard and meet your responsibilities, you can get ahead, no matter where you come from, what you look like, or who you love."

Really?  Where'd that "basic bargain" go?  Who made it impossible to get ahead based on where you come from, what you look like, or who you love... and why hasn't our massive decades-old engine of anti-discrimination already put them in jail?  

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