After weeks of bashing presumptive Democratic nominee Charlie Crist on various charges, the Let’s Get to Work Committee has actually released a positive ad entitled Grandpa. It’s a change in tact from a committee that has failed to raise Crist’s negative substantially enough to change the shape of the race, while the Governor’s negative numbers remain sky high. This is an effort to define Rick Scott in a more positive manner, perhaps part of a multiple ad strategy.
The Indian elections have concluded and right-wing BJP have won a mandate to govern. I am of two minds about this. The left-wing parties that made up the previous governing coalition tended to be ripe with corruption, economically backward and were drifting dangerously into the Russian sphere of influence with regards to foreign policy. However, the right-wing governing coalition that will come to power is led by a man who was denied a US visa by the Bush State Department for hateful speech towards Muslims. The BJP, who is by far the largest party of the incoming governing coalition is committed to Hinduveta which could be interpreted as a form of religious (Hindu) fascism. The party has the reputation of being anti-Muslim. Terrorism from radical Islamic groups has been a major problem in India since 1999. It has been argued that since the left-wing parties have sought Muslim votes domestically they have not taken as strong stand on terror as one might hope. Additionally, India is a secular country and more controversy has been created as Sharia Law is being implemented in areas with large Muslim populations much as it has been in the United Kingdom. But the BJPs rhetoric seems to be a conservative/fundamentalist reaction to the security threat and desire in some Islamic quarters for Sharia. It is worth noting India ‘s population is about 80% Hindu, and while terrorism is an issue the Muslims are not going to take over the country inspite of some fears of India being part of a “new caliphate,” something that is laughable and not even worthy of further discussion. Ultimately, if India which has fallen behind China dramatically in terms of economic growth since in the ten years of leftist rule rebounds financially I will be pleased with this new Government.
Sexism in journalism and US newsrooms is still alive and well. Female reporters and television personalities get fewer and fewer opportunities than their male counterparts. This has been well-documented through recent years and no need exists to rehash this information. Women are also held to a different usually higher standard then men in the profession. Against this background, it is easier to understand why people are so up in arms today about Jill Abramson’s firing from the New York Times. Talking Points Memo had a great article on double-standards in the newsroom that is worth reading.
On Ukraine, the situation continues to be fluid but one thing seems certain. Russia is backing the now four separate insurgencies taking place in the eastern part of the country. Based on international law, Russia could be classified now as a state-sponsor of terrorism. In fairness, this standard is applied when wanted by the US State Department. Perhaps the threat will give Secretary Kerry leverage in negotiations. I do want to remind readers that the United Kingdom, the closest ally of the US could have easily been placed on the state sponsor of terror list when elements of the Tory Government under Ted Heath in the early 1970s backed Ulster unionists that were crossing the border into the Republic of Ireland and committing acts of terror. By contrast the (Provisional) IRA post 1969 was NEVER supported by the Republic of Ireland’s Government.