Showing posts from November, 2013

I Like This Map: 50 States Of Equal Population


Bin Laden, Libya, Iran: Obama's Master Strokes

English: President Barack Obama listens during one in a series of meetings discussing the mission against Osama bin Laden, in the Situation Room of the White House, May 1, 2011. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Even since 9/11 I have thought of this whole "war" as something of the magnitude of the Cold War. And three of the major moves have happened on Barack Obama's watch. Getting Bin Laden was a master stroke. Going into Libya was another big one. Quiet diplomacy does not hit the sexy meter like getting Bin Laden does. But what has just been achieved on Iran is of the same magnitude as the Bin Laden achievement. Kudos the president. He promised on Bin Laden in 2007, he delivered. He also promised on Iran, and he has now delivered.

Tough talk accompanied by inaction or stupid actions is not superior to quiet diplomacy that brings forth meaningful, measurable desired change. I take weapons of mass destruction seriously. And if engaging is the safer thing to do, engage one must,…

Bill de Blasio And The Democrats Of New York City

Bill de Blasio (Photo credit: Kevdiaphoto) (written for Vishwa Sandesh)

Bill de Blasio And The Democrats Of New York City
By Paramendra Bhagat (

For a city that is so dominantly Democratic, it has had non Democrats for Mayor a long, long time. Rudy Giuliani did two terms, Mike Bloomberg did three terms. Primaries tend to be so fragmented, and the winners of the past were so torn apart by the various groups that helped them and now needed favors done, the electorate has been just fine electing the likes of Bloomberg. Point to be noted, Bloomberg was a Democrat before he decided to run for Mayor. When he did decide to run, he figured ploughing through the mud of a Democratic primary was just not worth it, and so he switched parties, just because.

This city is like an ATM that Democrats across the country use. They come, they raise money, and they go wherever it is they have to go.

Bill de Blasio was not the early lead. But once he gained momentum, he really gain…

Elizabeth Warren And 2016

An interesting article popped up in New Republic last week. It basically says Senator Elizabeth Warren might upend Hillary Clinton for the 2016 race. It is convincing. But the big question for me with Elizabeth Warren, as with Hillary Clinton, is: will she even run? Some argue she does not know much foreign policy. You could have said the same thing about Bill Clinton in 1991.

A heartwarming theme in the talk for me is that looks like the top two contenders for 2016 are both women. After a black president it is time America got itself a woman president.

New Republic: Hillary's Nightmare? A Democratic Party That Realizes Its Soul Lies With Elizabeth Warren
Think of the Republican Party after George W. Bush. Or, you know, Yugoslavia. ..... any candidate who challenged Clinton would need several key assets. The candidate would almost certainly have to be a woman, given Democrats’ desire to make history again. She would have to amass huge piles of money with relatively little effort…

Modi Has Momentum

Modi has momentum right now. It is because he is the only person who is running for Prime Minister. Nitish sure is not running. If Modi can bag 20 seats in Bihar and 30 in Uttar Pradesh, he might be able to get the BJP past 200 seats nationally. And if he manages that, a lot of non-Congress, non-BJP parties will feel an immense pull to join his coalition. Several parties in the South don't seem to have issues with Modi.

You can argue a BJP with 200 or 220 seats still creates room for a major non-BJP alliance. True, but that alliance will likely not be a strong one, especially if formed after the elections are over. It might last two years. And then Modi might be able to get the BJP past the 272 mark on its own. And then the BJP is the new Congress.

That is one scenario.

Another scenario is one where the BJP does not cross the 200 mark and is maybe around 160 or 170. And the Congress is below the 150 mark. And there is a post poll formation of a Third Front, and after some fierc…