Monday, April 02, 2007

CUSPS Revisited/Spring/Kiva/Trivia

(P1) Political

Edwards and Obama Tied For CUSPS Lead

Recall (Feb. 13th) that in the first CUSPS ("Coletti's Unabashedly Subjective Presidential Scale") I gave Barrack Obama a slight edge over John Edwards. Now they are in a tie. The reason why I have not given Edwards a clear lead is that my selection criteria involve both policy and electability. The position-oriented Edwards, in my estimation, currently surpasses all candidates in policy because he has clearly defined written positions on heath care, the environment, labor, and the war. However, Barrack remains the rock star especially within the younger echelons of his party.

As to Hillary Clinton, she has the money, mainstream party backing, and what I would call a "cynical stay-out-of-trouble" stance.

Here are my latest ratings based both upon the public good and electability" This time I've thrown in a few "pros" and "cons" as well:

John Edwards ( D-NC)
8 Excellent hard working well-researched thought on actual plans for health care, the environment, labor and the war. Has courage. Would be top choice. Has a way to go to overcome early Clinton and Obama starts. Making up ground.

Hillary Clinton (D-NY) 6 The Democratic front runner by virtue of name recognition, money, mainstream party support, and attempting to say nothing controversial. I believe her nomination could result in a Demo loss during a time when it should reap an easy win. Don't insult me by saying that I'm opposed "because she is a woman." She's the wrong woman. Either Madeline Albright or Nancy Pelosi would be infinitely better.

Barrack Obama (D-Illinois) 8 Still a strong ethical choice. Solid on issues including the war. Very serious thinker. More electable than Edwards at this point.

Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) 2 Perennial candidate and strongest liberal. Nothing wrong with his positions. Unelectable.

Chris Dodd (D-Connecticut) 3 Strong Democratic and Liberal positions. Will have great difficulty catching on with the electorate.

Joe Biden (D-Delaware) 4 Intelligent and highly experienced especially in international policy. Had best hope for a cabinet or supreme court nomination. He gets himself into too much difficulty by being verbose.

Mike Gravel (D- Virginia) 2 Crusader for universal non-profit health care. Will be 78 at time of election.

John Mc Cain (R-Arizona) minus 1 History of courage and perseverance. But ultraconservative who flip flops to look good and generally ends up looking bad as a result. Detested even by his Republican Senate colleagues.

Rudy Giuliani (R- Ny) minus 2 Executive experience but also hair trigger temper/no diplomacy/by all accounts impossible to work with/overrated on security/one-day wonder.

Tommy Thompson (R-Wisc.) 1 Latecomer popular with conservatives. Experienced governor and health secretary. Some interest in health initiatives. Probably the wrong ones. May be a Republican "sleeper" and mainstream choice.

Tom Tancredo (R-Colorado) minus 4 Ultra conservative who fortunately has no chance of doing more than (by virtue of declaring "candidacy") forcing me to type his name here.

Ron Paul (R-PA) 0 Appeared on Bill Maher. More of a libertarian. Opposes the Civil War 1860-65 (seriously). Somewhat of a consistent thinker.

Mitt Romney (R-Mass) minus 2 I really have little understanding of this man and his confusing position shifts. Somehow he did get elected governor of Massachusetts, and his Mormonism surprisingly didn't stop him there. It will nationally, however.

Mike Huckabee (R-Arkansas) 2 Good guy image. Being minister may appeal to Christian voters - "social Christianity"- claims more interest in peoples' needs rather than fundamentalist agenda. Conservative who has long way to go with name recognition.

Sam Brownback (R-Kansas) minus279 Where to begin? I won't.

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(P2) Poetical

Another Spring

The seasons revolve and the years change
With no assistance or supervision.
The moon, without taking thought,
Moves in its cycle, full, crescent, and full.

The white moon enters the heart of the river;
The air is drugged with azalea blossoms;
Deep in the night a pine cone falls;
Our campfire dies out in the empty mountains.

The sharp stars flicker in the tremulous branches;
The lake is black, bottomless in the crystalline night;
High in the sky the Northern Crown
Is cut in half by the dim summit of a snow peak.

O heart, heart, so singularly
Intransigent and corruptible,
Here we lie entranced by the starlit water,
And moments that should each last forever

Slide unconsciously by us like water.

- Kenneth Rexroth

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(P3) Philosophical

Here's Something You and I Can Do To Stem Poverty and Divert Folks From Terrorism

The following is from a recent Nicholas Kristof column. You may find yourself motivated.

KABUL, Afghanistan

For those readers who ask me what they can do to help fight poverty, one option is to sit down at your computer and become a microfinancier.

That’s what I did recently. From my laptop in New York, I lent $25 each to the owner of a TV repair shop in Afghanistan, a baker in Afghanistan, and a single mother running a clothing shop in the Dominican Republic. I did this through, a Web site that provides information about entrepreneurs in poor countries — their photos, loan proposals and credit history — and allows people to make direct loans to them.

To read the rest of the column, press here.

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Trivia Quiz

Who said?

"It is a quite special secret pleasure, how the people around us fail to realize what is really happening to them."

Put your answer here


Duncan said...

Way too early to make predictions, of course, but I must continue to disagree with your opinion that Obama (why doesn't he call himself Barry like he used too?)is more electable than Edwards. He gets a lot of attention, true, but watch for the "silent majority" on election day.

If these are the best the Dems have to offer, my pick is Edwards for all the reasons you mentioned.

Richardson seems to be off your list. Is that on purpose? I still kind of like him....a little bit.

Again, too early to tell, but the Democrats have all the makings of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory if they're not careful.

Edward Coletti said...

Richardson still is undeclared.

Bob Fischer said...

Knowing that there are no Republican '8's out there must mean the candidates fielded are totally inadequate or the one doing the scoring is left handed? Is that possible on a blog?

Edward Coletti said...

Bob, Yes, indeed, I do type with my left hand. I also type with my right hand. I type with both hands. I'm a pretty good typist. Still, I wouldn't want you to think I'm even-handed either.

Judy Carlin said...

Enjoyed your posting and loved the poem. Jon Carroll did a spring column today. His conclusion: he hasn't tired of spring yet--me either!