Thursday, February 11, 2010

Blood in the Water

Well, Aaron Nicodemus, of The Worcester Telegram & Gazette reports that four Republican candidates and one independent have taken out nomination papers for the U.S. congressional seat in the third district of Massachusetts currently held by James McGovern. Among those candidates is Michael Stopa, physicist, blogger and political neophyte, whose web site can be found at

So here in Massachusetts there seems to be that ol' smell of blood in the water.


Anonymous said...

It's not about killing a weak prey, as your comment suggests.

It's about finding something better for all of us, irrespective of parties or anything else.

We can't continue on this course and the GOP and Dems deserve equal blame. I hope whoever replaces this guy, gets it.

I hope, but I'm not optimistic.


twopowernine said...

Hhelo. I am not American so you can tell me to mind my buiness. I saw you support troop buildup in Afghanistan. I remind you that Aghanistan troops are at the end of a long and vulnerable pipe line. The more troops teh harder to supply (1). I have nightmares just thinking in what happens if Pakistan cuts this supply windpipe.

What is needed is not more troops but
1) Other rules of engagement
2) Get the Euros to either pull their weight or move out of the way. Except for the British and to a lesser degree the French all they do is sit in their bases, seep beers and clog the supply lines.
3) Fight teh political war. That means
subtle (for now) pushes topwards desislamization, remind Afghans the high cost of the Hadj and so on. Many Pashtuns are resentful of Arabs. It is still truer in other ethnias.
4) Get rid of Karzai.

That would be far better than additional trops. It is entirely different than the surge in Irak: supply was far easier and its imporatnce was signalling that Americans were there to stay (thus reassuring anti-Al Quaida Iraki). Its sucess was due not to teh additional tropps but change in ROE and political work.

(1) I am just reading about Stalingrad. The Germans could have held until Spring if they had been 150,000. Bu they were 300,000 and supplying them exceeded the capacity of the Luftwaffe

twopowernine said...

To Anonymous

I remind you that unlike in European style Democracies only by name you aren't forced to eat the dog food presented by the parties. Instead yu have a say on the choice of candidates through the primaries. Now if you use to stay at home watching TV then you have only you to blame if neither the Democrat or Republican candidate suits you.

Robert said...

"Now if you use to stay at home watching TV then you have only you to blame if neither the Democrat or Republican candidate suits you."

Oh, I see. If I don't work and vote for a candidate who "suits me" I am to blame if one who doesn't suit me wins. But if I do work and vote for a candidate who suits me, and one who doesn't suit me wins anyway, which is overwhelmingly likely, then I just have to put up with it. Is that right?

Eric said...

Yes, Bobby, that's right. It is the way the Republic is set up.

twopowernine said...


I think I did a poor job at explaining myself. To make things cleaer I will tell you how it works in proportional systems favored in most European countries.

1) Party apparatchiks build lists of people to be included in the Party list and in what order. Input of the People in this: Zero. Input of Party voters over the Party line. Zero.

2) The Party tells people to vote for its list. You notice that there are many people you don't like in that list in fact one of them is a known paedophile. But he is in position 2 on the list meaning that while the Party will lose a number of votes (see below why this is not necessarily important) he will be elected anyway since there will ever be enough people voting for the party that it will get at least two representatives.

3) But the Party took a beating and that is bad for it isn't it? Not necessarily. Because who will govern will be decided by interparty negotiations totally behind People's backs. There is Party Alpha, Party Beta roughly the same size and a much smaller one Party Gamma. Both Alpha and Beta need Gamma in order to have the majority in Parliament and be able to govern. No matter how small Gamma has become (due to our hypothetic paedophile) as long as it is can handle the majority to either Alpha or Beta it has the same influence so Gamma doesn't care about number of votes. Same thing for the two major parties: as long as they don't fall so low that the sum of Beta+Gama becomes inferior to Alpha they don't care about losing votes. So election outcome is unimportant, what matters is negotiating power with partner.

So in a such system (favored in Europe) they have elections but no democracy (power of the people).

Perhaps I am being naive here but you Americans have far more power over the Parties , far more opportunities to control them (primaries) than Europeans have. Because there are a number of voters who will vote automatically Democrat or Republican whatever the candidate it is far easier to get one of them to represent your ideas than to grow a third Party out of nothing.

But \demagogic_mode_on you should stop whining like an Euro and take the problem in your hands like an American. \demagogic_mode_off

Tilam said...

According to the CBS poll, 81% of Americans do not think think Congress should be re-elected. (Who ARE those other 19%???)

I am not sure the GOP and Democrats are EQUALLY to blame, but they certainly share blame. Tom Delay's GOP grew government for their own power and destroyed the fiscal conservatives. Fiscal conservatism is back with a vengeance. It remains to be seen if the GOP can capitalize.

One thing is certain. Jim McGovern simply cannot offer a cogent defense of his votes. According to the Washington Post, since 2005 on every major vote, he has voted exactly as Nancy Pelosi. MA-3 deserves better than Pelosi in a tie.