July 10, 2008

The righty bloggers' favorite elected Republican is...

... Bobby Jindal!

Intepretations?

I'm going with: We want our young, racially diverse guy too.

77 comments:

rhhardin said...

My impression is that he said the right words once.

That actually means a lot.

Palladian said...

The Obama of the right.

blake said...

The buzz on him is awfully good.

Unless it's coming from Beth.

Heh.

But there's a total Obama vibe, yeah. What's he done? Well, not much yet, and not all of that necessarily good. So we care because he's not-white and talks purty?

I like Flake, I think it is, who seems to have stayed strong on the porkbusting.

Invisible Man said...

Ah, Affirmative Action rears its ugly head on the right side of the blogosphere. Kind of ironic, don't you think?

mcg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mcg said...

Well, to be perfectly honest a person of East Indian descent doesn't push the same race buttons as a black or Hispanic person does. He just ain't been beat down enough. Consider about all the people questioning whether Obama was black enough, because his mother is white and his father wasn't the descendant of an American slave. Bobby Jindal is even less a minority viewed through such victimological lenses.

reader_iam said...

What's up with all this obsession with youth and thrusting people on the national stage who could use a couple-so terms more of seasoning?

"Going Green" seems to have a double meaning these days, in these United States.

reader_iam said...

I meant that comment to be directed in more than one direction. I put Obama in the same category.

EnigmatiCore said...

He seems to be doing a good job, but his creationism fetish is... disquieting.

Bissage said...

After hundreds of years of injustice, it's well past time an Indian-American should break through the buffalo hide ceiling.

Alan said...

I think it has more to do with Rush Limbaugh saying Jindal is the future of Conservatism and the GOP. Nevermind Jindal is a social conservative/religious right whack-job. As I've said in the past, Rush Limbaugh is too. Most people are suckered in to believe Rush isn't. But that's because Rush manages to hide his wackiness with a secular face.

MadisonMan said...

The Obama of the right.

They both originate from incredibly corrupt states!

Titan said...

The fact is, exorcisms are popular with the people. Jindal, as a participant in some, is their natural leader.

Balfegor said...

But there's a total Obama vibe, yeah. What's he done? Well, not much yet, and not all of that necessarily good. So we care because he's not-white and talks purty?

Well, he did administer Louisiana's health department, bringing them from bankruptcy into surplus. He was the head of a national commission on medicare in the late 90s. He's been Assistant Secretary of Health & Human Services, and President of the University of Lousiana. He's been a congressman, and now he's a governor. I mean, true, he's not accomplished all that much -- he has not stayed all that long in most of these posts, so it is somewhat hard to assess his accomplishments. But at leat he's accomplished something. Compared to Obama, he's practically an elder statesman.

Kirk Parker said...

Jindal is doing fabulously for his age; just give him a few more years, and some accomplishments as LA governor (like not getting indicted) and he should be ready for national Prime Time.

The same is true of Sarah Palin: very much a rising star, but that phrase strongly implies that some further rising is needed (and expected) before the person reaches the top echelon.

UWS guy said...

Well, according to the republican party nomination process palin and jindal will be ready when they're 70 years old and have been sitting senators for 30 years (see: Dole, Bob and McCain, John.)

UWS guy said...

They will also need to be war veterans who got their planes shot down.

see: George, herbert walker--Dole, Bob--McCain, John.

Bart Hall (Kansas, USA) said...

Jindal is:

a) conservative
b) coherent

That is currently much too rare in the Republican party these days.

He also got himself elected, on a conservative platform, in a state that has been run by Democrats for more than two generations.

Palin is:

a) conservative
b) coherent

And she's been successful (so far) in taking on your garden-variety wavering, unimaginative, corrupt Republican establishment in her home state.

Mandel (Ohio) bears watching for the same reasons, though he's not yet really done anything.

UWS guy said...

Jindal believes:

1: in exorcisms and has participated in one.
2: in intelligent design and voted to allow it to be taught in science classes.

ergo: Jindal will never run, nor win national office as both of those opinions are anethema to the values of the Enlightenment on which this country is founded.

Melinda said...

If Jindal were a comedian, we would say that he had a hook. Not that he has a prosthesis; but that he's "The Indian Guy With the Southern Accent." The way Henry Cho, who grew up in Tennessee, was "The Korean Redneck."

George said...

Fred Thompson....the sleeper candidate.

Knows how to drive a aircraft carrier, too.

dbp said...

UWS guy said...
Jindal believes:

1: in exorcisms and has participated in one.
2: in intelligent design and voted to allow it to be taught in science classes.

ergo: Jindal will never run, nor win national office as both of those opinions are anethema to the values of the Enlightenment on which this country is founded.

12:21 PM

I think most americans would find Obama's relations with a whacked-out preacher (Wright) and a domestic terrorist (Ayers) more off-putting than Jindal's eccentricities. And yet Obama will probably still be the next president. Never discount how weird you can be and still get elected to the highest office.

Titan said...

In both those cases, people don't seriously claim that Obama shares those views. (And he has specifically said that he doesn't.)

There's a difference between Jindal going to a church where the pastor believes in exorcism, and Jindal trying to get demons out of his personal friends through the laying on of hands.

Yachira said...

Yes, Mr. Jindal is very well spoken, and clean too!

Randy said...

Ann's take is the right one, I think. While Balfegor has a good point about his impressive resume, Reader's plea for more seasoning carries the day with me, given some of Jindal's policy positions that definitely would not fly outside of the state of Louisiana.

reader_iam said...

dbp:

You think more Americans would be more upset about Obama's fairly tenuous connection with Ayers (whom I despise with every breath in my body and view with complete and utter contempt, he and his wife both, make no mistake) than Jindal's advocacy for a requirement to teach intelligent design in science classes?

Well, you could very well be right. It makes me ill, however.

paul a'barge said...

I'm going with: We want our young, racially diverse guy too

Sigh.

Have you seen this guy speak about the issues?

If you set out to be deliberately misleading and insulting towards right wingers, you've succeeded.

Congratulations. I guess.

Bissage said...

I'm going with: We want our young, racially diverse guy too.

Which means that sublime moment of racial realpolitik from “The Verdict” needs an update to reflect the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society:

CONCANNON: (sternly) I'm going to tell you how you handle the fact that he's [sort of] black. You don't touch it. You don't mention it. You treat him like anybody else. Neither better or worse. And you get a [sort of] black lawyer to sit at our table.

YOUNG ATTORNEY: Yes, sir. [One sort of black lawyer, coming right up!]

Al Swearengen said...

An indian served with too much seasoning is not palatable in these parts. The curry distrubs my gleets.

Revenant said...

I'm not sure how much of it is a desire for a racially diverse guy and how much is just general discontent with the existing high-profile Republicans, all of whom seem to have been stinking up the place for at least 30 years apiece.

Randy said...

I'm not sure how much of it is a desire for a racially diverse guy and how much is just general discontent with the existing high-profile Republicans, all of whom seem to have been stinking up the place for at least 30 years apiece.

That bears repeating. So I just did. (Maybe I should have waited?)

Roger J. said...

As long as Mr Jindal is not caught with a live boy or dead girl, he will mostly likely be successful in LA--they do set the bar pretty high for political scandal there.

ricpic said...

The Obama of the right.

I agree. Jindal, like Obama, is an unknown quantity. He's made the right sounds. But where's the beef? As with Obama there is no beef...yet.

Of course, if I've misread Palladian's comment I'm sure he'll chastise me wickedly. Oh do it big boy, do it!

paul a'barge said...

Here's Jindal

This guy is hardly the Obama of the right.

Somebody is stuck on stupid.

blake said...

Touché, Reader...

Steven said...

Oh, no! Jindal actually has genuine religious beliefs! He's totally unsuitable! Political office should be restricted to secularists who only mouth platitudes about God in order to placate those ignorant middle Americans!

Sheesh. The belief in possession and exorcism is no more ridiculous and should be no more disqualifying for a politician than the belief in the existence of God, the soul, or an afterlife.

Beth said...

Jindal has been in a lot of positions, but he moves through them so quickly it's hard to assess what he's actually accomplished.

He portrays himself as a new model of politician, but he did plenty of backroom deal making (and deal breaking) in our recent legislative session. He wanted to get a voucher bill through, and to get that done, worked a deal to not veto legislative pay raises, though he'd promised to derail those raises in his campaign literature. He ended up vetoing them after citizens filed recalls for a bunch of lawmakers and for him. At the same time, he put through big pay raises for his main staff--of course, that we oppose raises for lawmakers and not for bureaucrats is not Jindal's fault, but the citizenry's.

He didn't trim spending, and his ethics reforn package -- which, by the way, I support -- excludes his own office, which I don't support.

So right now, I am dubious. He's not the bright new shining star people want to fantasize about. The intelligent design thing is going to cost us business development, which is more important than any jokes on Leno. I oppose vouchers and I suspect it's the beginning of a longer crusade against public education. But we'll see.

He did trim a hospitals project that I thought was terribly inflated and over-ambitious, and I commend him for that.

I'd be more hopeful for the future if he'd get rid of his mini-Rove, Tim Teepell. Teepell is probably responsible for some of his missteps in dealing with lawmakers in session, and he's a real live religious fundie nutcase.

Ultimately, I think Bobby is working the governship as he's worked his previous golden boy appointments: as a quick stop on the path up to the next big position. He runs fast, not deep.

Beth said...

how much is just general discontent with the existing high-profile Republicans, all of whom seem to have been stinking up the place for at least 30 years apiece

I agree, and that's how he packages himself, as the new kid on the block. He does not campaign on his ethnicity.

veni vidi vici said...

"and Jindal trying to get demons out of his personal friends through the laying on of hands."

Oh, so now he's a Sinead O'Connor fan too? That's the last straw!


rather than the "we want our youngish dark-skinned guy too", I'm more inclined to view it as, "We really don't want to win this one."

Jindal's lack of a track record would take Obama's inexperience off the table as an issue. Since it's McCain's only chance if he plays it correctly (witness Clinton's last 12 or so primary results, when she finally picked that lock correctly), picking Jindal, Palin or the like would indicate that "the fix is in".

In addition to looking like total weaknecked pandering. I expect more from the Republicans, but then again, they let the press choose their nominee (as did the Dems, fwiw).

Titan said...

Steven, I think most people agree that exorcisms reek more of "magic power". Belief in a soul is much more mainstream.
--
In other news, Charlie Christ kissed a girl, and he liked it.

Balfegor said...

Jindal's lack of a track record would take Obama's inexperience off the table as an issue.

Would it? I mean, Hillary Clinton wasn't experienced experienced, the way McCain is. She's only about twice as experienced as Obama, and that was more than enough to drive home exactly how little Obama has accomplished.

Jindal has, if anything, a slightly better experience ratio, vis-a-vis Obama. As Beth notes, it's hard to assess his accomplishments, since he moves fast, rather than deep, but you could spin this as a breadth of experience that neither Obama nor McCain share. (Not saying it's a good argument, but it's the positive spin).

Indeed, even the fact that he has things he could plausibly point to as accomplishments, despite being in most of these positions only a year or two, only highlights how ineffectual Obama has tended to be in his positions. What does he have to show for his years as a "community organizer?" One measley asbestos protest? As a state legislator? Years and years, but only one year of actual legislative accomplishment, and that mostly pushed to him by a more effective politician who had taken him under his wing (Emil Jones). And these decaying Obamavilles. As a US Senator? A nuclear proliferation statute that everyone already agreed on? This is not the record of a man who is going to revolutionise the world.

Of course, not everyone wants Obama to revolutionise things -- lots of voters would be happy for him just to sit there and look Black at them. So that might backfire. Indeed, I find that while my contempt for Obama has been increasing, over his past month of political cowardice, I'm also increasingly thinking that he probably couldn't be all that bad, given that he scares this easy. Lacks the backbone for it. McCain, in contrast, suffers from an excess of said backbone. And that's a point in Obama's favour, since McCain manifests his backbone mostly by sticking his thumb in the eye of people on the political Right, viz. me.

So there are pluses and minuses.

All that said, though, Jindal really does need about another 10 years. I mean, he's only been eligible for the Presidency for a year or so. Let's wait and see if he succeeds brilliantly. Or blows up, burns out, etc.

Revenant said...

The intelligent design thing is going to cost us business development, which is more important than any jokes on Leno. I oppose vouchers and I suspect it's the beginning of a longer crusade against public education. But we'll see.

Support for intelligent design might slightly discourage some businesses from locating in Louisiana, since their educated employees might balk at having their children taught Creationism. But at the same time, the public schools in Louisiana are some of the worst in America, routinely in the bottom 10 and often in the bottom 5 among the fifty states. What this means is that the aforementioned educated workers are *already* not going to want their kids taught in Louisiana schools, because with or without Creationism in the curriculum they're going to get a lousy education.

That's where the vouchers come in. School vouchers are a much bigger positive than Creationism is a negative, since vouchers make it easier for the children of the educated workers Louisiana is trying to attract to opt out of the failed public school system entirely and send their kids somewhere decent.

So far as most parents are concerned, I suspect the public schools could teach that up was down and the sky was red so long as the parents could get a voucher to have their kids taught somewhere else.

Revenant said...

Jindal's lack of a track record would take Obama's inexperience off the table as an issue.

I don't see how. For starters he would just be the VP candidate, and I don't see how "McCain's vice presidential pick only has slightly more experience than I do" works as a line of attack for Obama. Plus, as Balfegor pointed out, Jindal has SOME accomplishments he can point to; Obama does not.

veni vidi vici said...

Experience/inexperience is not for Obama to say, but his talking head media handlers. If you guys think the media won't bang the drum loudly to take every millimetre of doubt McCain gives them and turn it into a Trans-Canada Highway-length doubt about McCain, you are all high on much better substances than I've had the chance to sample.

veni vidi vici said...

As for Jindal's experience, wide, deep or otherwise, I'll share my impression of him, which comes largely from a "meta" glean off the National Review / Weekly Standard / etc. press and promotors that are out there:

Jindal got hired by a completely disillusioned and demoralized Louisiana electorate that was rudely awakened to how broken their existing political machine was/is. Regardless of what his campaign literature may have said about all those issues like school choice, intelligent design, abortions or whatever, I don't think it's unreasonable to believe that the state electorate looked at a guy that's apparently done a lot of things (or at least been a lot of high-ish places and ostensibly met and connected with the right people) and offers a practical, get-it-done attitude, and said, "Let's see what this guy can do with our problem [singular]."

Jindal's job -- his entire reason for being elected -- is to bring the Katrina/post-Katrina era to a conclusion and get the city and state beyond it and out of that rut. Until he accomplishes (or fails at) that, he has no business looking over the horizon at his next job opportunity. He asked for it, so now it's his stone to roll.

Just think, though, if he succeeds there, he will have an experience trump card that would be difficult for anyone to get around. But, to borrow W's phrase from his 2000 convention speech, "Not this year, not this time."

dbp said...

reader_iam: Jindal's advocacy for a requirement to teach intelligent design in science classes?

Well, you could very well be right. It makes me ill, however.

1:19 PM

Science does not need to be protected. The whole idea of science is that it is subject to experimentation, when it becomes protected dogma, it stops being science. Now, I am a scientist and have little doubt about natural selection--since I used to do artificial selection experiments--biochemical selection in a test tube etc.

I think it is more important to learn how science works and what is science (and what is not science), than any particular fact or theory. What better way to do this than to compare and contrast the evidence and logic behind evolution and "creation science".

Revenant said...

dbp,

The problem with teaching ID is that it teaches children that much of biology is completely outside of science -- impossible to explain, so don't bother even trying.

It would be one thing if they simply said "we think God created animals and humans as they exist today". That claim is wrong, but incorrect information can be overcome by asking the right questions. "Intelligent Design" is more insidious because it teaches children that they shouldn't even bother asking questions in the first place. Its goal is the establishment of ignorance as an official policy.

somefeller said...

Prediction: Bobby Jindal will be the Jack Kemp of the early 21st Century. Well-liked by many conservative activists and journalists and touted for the Presidency, but never quite getting there or living up to the potential that his fans said he had.

veni vidi vici said...

"Its goal is the establishment of ignorance as an official policy."

And this differs from the goal of the education establishment how, exactly?

Beth said...

School vouchers are a much bigger positive than Creationism is a negative, since vouchers make it easier for the children of the educated workers Louisiana is trying to attract to opt out of the failed public school system entirely and send their kids somewhere decent.

If I'm understanding the voucher bill correctly, the vouchers for Orleans Parish only, not the entire state. There are good public schools all around the state, but East Baton Rouge Parish and Orleans Parish schools are in the toilet.

The Creationism law affects all our public schools. I think it's best to consider the two issues of Creationism and vouchers separately; it's not like we had to get Creationism in our classrooms in order to make other moves to improve schools.

I favor a different route, and voted to allow more charter schools in our district, and before that, to allow the state to take over low-performing schools. Both measures have effectively marginalized our lousy local school board. Charter schools, unlike the private schools receiving vouchers, have to demonstrate performance through test scores. I am generally pro-union, but I put that aside to give charters the chance to promote school choice. The charter expansion started only two years ago and I would have preferred to see how that works before opening up the voucher option.

That Jindal pushed both vouchers and Creationism makes me more distrustful of him. I think he's working the agenda of the Center for National Policy, the Tim LaHaye group from whom he receives much support and with whom his chief of staff, Teepell, is involved. I'm not enthused about moving state funds into the coffers of churches.

Beth said...

Until he accomplishes (or fails at) that, he has no business looking over the horizon at his next job opportunity.

He's already looking for it. And because of his history, it's exactly what I expected.

He ran for re-election to the U.S. House in November 2006. He announced for governor in January 2007. He knew he'd be running for governor all along; why not drop out of the House race and let us elect someone without having to hold an expensive special election? He's an egoist. I guess that's nothing new in politics, but that's my point. The more Jindal wants to present as a new type of politician, the less you should believe him.

Beth said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Revenant said...

"Its goal is the establishment of ignorance as an official policy."

And this differs from the goal of the education establishment how, exactly?

The goal of the education establishment is to increase the size and budget of the education establishment. This has the side effect of worsening children's education, but it is patently absurd to think that the education establishment has the *goal* of making children more credulous and ignorant. For the most part the members of the establishment believe that they are helping children learn.

blake said...

Both measures have effectively marginalized our lousy local school board.

Wow, congratulations on that. I think it'd be easier to unseat the mob here.

For the most part the members of the establishment believe that they are helping children learn.

Well, again, here they aggressively attack anything that works, I think on the basis of the ramifications to their own power and that of th teacher's union. It's a "what's good for us is good for the kids" equation that's patently false, but they believe it with every fiber of their being, apparently.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

I still don't see why the theory of evolution and the theory of creationism are mutually exlusive.

Why couldn't there be a Master Architect who created the rules or the 'spark' that then follows the rules of evolution that may or may not have a final design model. (I don't mean that bada boom Adam and Eve and all the plants and animals are created overnight)

It's obvious to anyone who has ever raised farm animals or bred cats that evolution is selective. However the fundamental structure of the universe is constant on a molecular level. Ask any mathematican.

Why couldn't you teach both ideas?

Revenant said...

There are good public schools all around the state, but East Baton Rouge Parish and Orleans Parish schools are in the toilet.

There are isolated decent public schools almost anywhere, but overall Louisiana's public school system stinks; the state does lousy on standardized tests and has low rates of literacy and high school graduation. Besides, even if the schools in the entire rest of the state were wonderful, who the heck wants to relocate to backwoods Louisiana to raise their kids? New Orleans and to a (much) lesser extent Baton Rouge are the places Louisiana has the best chance of attracting business to.

The Creationism law affects all our public schools.

I was just responding to your claim that "[intelligent design] is going to cost us business development", not whether the overall effect on the state school system is negative (which of course it is). If you're a parent in Atlanta contemplating a move to Louisiana, "do the public schools in Bunkie teach the theory of evolution" is not going to be on your list of worries.

I think it's best to consider the two issues of Creationism and vouchers separately; it's not like we had to get Creationism in our classrooms in order to make other moves to improve schools.

My point is that the net effect of his policies is positive for growth opportunities. Obviously they would be even better if it wasn't for the creationism thing, but "creationism + vouchers" is still a big net plus, while "no creationism + no vouchers" is, given the pathetic state of public education in the state, a huge minus. "Vouchers + no creationism" would be the best of all possible worlds, but that's the problem with government-run schools in a democracy. They tend to teach what the majority believes, which is that God created life on Earth. You can't really have government-run schools that teach the majority things it doesn't want to hear without removing democracy from the process.

Charter schools, unlike the private schools receiving vouchers, have to demonstrate performance through test scores.

The problem with the "demonstrate performance through test scores" approach is that it still amounts to the education establishment deciding which schools deserve money and how to spend it. There is also the problem of cheating on the tests (which failing schools encourage) and "teaching to the test", which can short-change real education for the sake of bureaucratic ass-covering. Schools worried about their scores on the official standardized tests tend to throw everything that isn't on the test out the window -- i.e., give kids a narrowly focused, and thus inadequate, education.

Besides, the argument against vouchers depends on the axiom that parents can't figure out whether or not their kids are getting a good education -- that voucher schools can keep conning parents year after year and laughing all the way to the bank. That view is, to put it mildly, not realistic. The average parent has a much better understanding of his or her child's educational level than that child's teachers do. It is only at the low end of the bell curve that teachers -- who typically have to deal with between 30 to 200 students and are drawn from the low end of college graduates to begin with -- actually have a better understanding for teachers. Private schools could, perhaps, take advantage of those parents, but it is unrealistic to think that a private school could survive solely by recruiting the children of dimwits and ignoramuses.

I think he's working the agenda of the Center for National Policy

That's "Council", by the way. Maybe he does support their agenda, but vouchers are still a good idea. The Communist Party supported civil rights purely to encourage class warfare within the United States, but the civil rights movement was a good idea anyway. :)

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Maybe I don't understand what they mean by Creationism or Intellegent Design. Possibly someone could clarify.

Jindal is too young and untested to be considered for a National office at this time IMO. Maybe in a few years.

Balfegor said...

Re: Somefeller:

Prediction: Bobby Jindal will be the Jack Kemp of the early 21st Century. Well-liked by many conservative activists and journalists and touted for the Presidency, but never quite getting there or living up to the potential that his fans said he had.

"The morning had been golden; the noontide was bronze; and the evening lead. But all were polished till it shone after its fashion."

Well, a Curzon is fine too.

Revenant said...

I still don't see why the theory of evolution and the theory of creationism are mutually exclusive.

It depends on the kind of creationism. Obviously a belief that God created humans in our present form from nothing -- the most commonly-held Creationist belief -- is directly at odds with the theory that humans evolved from earlier life forms. Similarly, the popular "Intelligent Design" belief that certain structures cannot possibly have any explanation other than a creator are directly at odds with the theory that those structures evolved from earlier ones.

Why couldn't there be a Master Architect who created the rules or the 'spark' that then follows the rules of evolution

Well, the universe *could* have been sneezed out of the left nostril of the Bugblatter Beast. The reason we don't teach people that is that there isn't a lick of evidence for it. There's also the little fact that the Architect idea doesn't actually explain anything; it begs the question of the origins of the universe by positing a Creator and then refusing to explain where HE came from.

However the fundamental structure of the universe is constant on a molecular level. Ask any mathematican.

I think you mean that the fundamental constants of the universe don't change. The evidence for that theory is a bit mixed, but in any event it argues neither for not against a Creator.

At the molecular level, however, the universe is constantly changing and entirely unpredictable. It is only at the macro level that patterns emerge and predictions can be made. That's the essence of evolution, really: the cumulative effect of probabilities. We can't predict individual mutations, just as we can't predict how a single particle will behave -- but we can make highly accurate guesses about the cumulative effect of those individual random chances.

Maybe I don't understand what they mean by Creationism or Intellegent Design. Possibly someone could clarify.

There are countless forms of Creationism, of which Intelligent Design is one. Intelligent Design holds that there is evidence that the lifeforms on Earth were designed rather than naturally evolved, and typically tries to pass itself off as science (it isn't). Creationism encompasses everything from the Deistic "god created the universe and then left it to its own devices" to the old-school "God created Earth and all the life on it a few thousand years ago, as described in Genesis". All of these theories are alike inasmuch as there is no supporting evidence for them and thus no reason to tell children they are true, but they vary in the extent to which there is hard evidence AGAINST them (e.g., the Genesis story is absolutely wrong unless you also posit that God rigged the entire universe so that it *looked* billions of years old, and stuffed the Earth full of ancient-looking fossils while he was at it).

Beth said...

Besides, even if the schools in the entire rest of the state were wonderful, who the heck wants to relocate to backwoods Louisiana to raise their kids?

Indeed! And did you look on a map for Bunkie? You couldn't have picked a better example. Not that you can't pass a good time in Bunkie, but I wouldn't want to live there. Not since I've seen the bright lights of the big city.

My point is that the net effect of his policies is positive for growth opportunities.

If the coming couple of years show that to be true, I'll be glad. Right now, we're both speculating, based on our respective beliefs about public education.

But those vouchers aren't going to go to the families of people moving in with businesses. They're going to low-income kids in New Orleans. Charter schools, I think, will be a better draw for new residents. I expect he'll want to expand vouchers down the line, of course.

I've seen people be satisfied that their kids are in a safe school and behaving well, and despite being smart, not be aware that their particular private school's coursework was far less challenging than the magnet and charter schools in their area. Parents are just as prone to stereotypes as anyone else. I also doubt very strongly that those vouchers are going to be used for seats at Jesuit and Dominican (the best male and female Catholic schools in NOLA), either.

I don't worry too much about cheating on standardized tests because that seems to be hard to maintain; someone usually spills the beans. But teaching to the test is one of the things I'd blame for much of our school problems.

Charter schools at least get to be more creative in their curricula than standard public schools, even if they have to administer tests in fourth, eighth and twelth grade.

Point taken on the CNP; just because the agendas correlate doesn't necessarily mean anything more than that-- but living in Louisiana, I have to keep my eye on this guy and his posse. He's been in public life here for a good while, so I have an accumulated impression, and he's much farther to the right than I'm comfortable with. And keep in mind, even the Democrats are conservative in Louisiana.

Alan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alan said...

Why not teach the scientific controversy? :)

And BTW, I take issue with "God" disguising the planet's age with fossils and such to make it look much older than it is.

veni vidi vici said...

"unless you also posit that God rigged the entire universe so that it *looked* billions of years old, and stuffed the Earth full of ancient-looking fossils while he was at it"

I think that quote describes not the theory of Intelligent Design, but the lesser-known competing theory of Interior Design.

PatCA said...

Actually Jindal considers himself to be an American, not a Diversity American.

He lost me on intelligent design, and then in an appearance on TV he acted like he had way too much caffeine. But clean up Louisiana, and may New Orleans, too, Bobby, and I'm yours.

Sandra Palin, Sandra Palin!

dick said...

Beth,

I think that you also need to look at the rest of us who are not liberal but have had to put up with people who are much farther to the left that we are comfortable with. We have had to put up with that so why should you not also have to put up with people who are farther to the right than you are comfortable with.

I grew up in north central Ohio. Dennis Kuchinich was congressman from the next district over and about 15 miles from me. If I moved to the next town he would have been my congressman and for sure I would not have been comfortable with that yet I would have had to live with it.

The same goes for where I am now. My congressman is Anthony Weiner, the guy who is dating Huma, Hillary's assistant. He is way way way to the left of anything I could ever support. I have to live with that as well. Don't like it but the rest of the people here seem to vote for him. The same goes for Jindal in Louisiana.

Revenant said...

Why not teach the scientific controversy? :)

Alan, that is the funniest website I've seen in a while. Thanks for the link!

Steven said...

Titan --

Yes, belief in the soul is much more mainstream. And? I see no rational basis for the proposition that mainstream irrational-mystical beliefs should be less-disqualifying for office than non-mainstream irrational-mystical beliefs.

However, if we are going to apply such a standard, then let's apply it consistently. Let's have a massive poll of the religious beliefs of the American people, and any proposition that gets less than, say, 25% agreement, constitutes a disqualification for political office for being non-mainstream in religious beliefs.

Beth said...

However, if we are going to apply such a standard, then let's apply it consistently.

Why shouldn't each voter feel free to apply his or her own standard in judging each candidate?

Revenant said...

I see no rational basis for the proposition that mainstream irrational-mystical beliefs should be less-disqualifying for office than non-mainstream irrational-mystical beliefs.

We don't yet know where consciousness comes from. Belief in a soul is, therefore, consistent with existing scientific knowledge, if only in a "god of the gaps" sense. Beliefs in demonic possession, exorcism, and creationism generally are not, since we understand the real causes of the things those religious beliefs arose to explain. That's the key difference.

In other words, a person who believes in a soul is merely superstitious. A person who believes in demonic possession and the use of exorcism to cure it is not merely superstitious, but ignorant.

Steven said...

Nonsense, Revenant.

If the functioning of a subset of your brain cells is under the control of your soul, why can't malfunctions in other cells be the result of the control of other non-material spirits? Certainly, we can point to ways we can affect these malfunctions through physical means like drugs or surgery. But we can similarly demonstrate the alteration of consciousness in people through drugs and surgery. That, say, epilepsy's root cause is a spirit manipulating the neurons is no more unscientific than the belief that the root cause of conscious control of the body is the result of a spirit manipulating neurons.

Similarly, there is no scientific reason to prefer the hypothesis that God caused the Big Bang fifteen billion years ago to God creating the universe 6,000 years ago with internal evidence that it was fifteen billion years old. That the latter is less likely is entirely a theological opinion regarding the sort of choices God would make when creating a universe. Maybe He just likes making dinosaur fossils; no science can prove otherwise. You can no more prove that the universe is more than 6,000 years old by examination than you can prove the Holy Eucharist is mere bread and wine by examination.

Revenant said...

If the functioning of a subset of your brain cells is under the control of your soul

Religious people generally associate the soul with the sensation of consciousness, which is not at present associated with any particular "subset of of the brain cells". We really don't have the foggiest idea what consciousness is or what does or doesn't possess it. We don't even know if it is limited to things with brains or not.

why can't malfunctions in other cells be the result of the control of other non-material spirits?

Given that they respond to medical treatment and not to exorcism, the theory that they are the result of manipulation by evil spirits is not a good fit with the data. Plus, of course, believers in demonic possession generally reject the idea that there is an underlying material explanation -- i.e., they don't say "demons are causing a serotonin imbalance, which is causing aberrant behavior". They say "demons, not serotonin imbalances, are the cause of this aberrant behavior".

But we can similarly demonstrate the alteration of consciousness in people through drugs and surgery.

You're confusing consciousness with memory and thought. Since we rely on our memories and ability to think in order to self-describe our feelings of consciousness it cannot accurately distinguish "alteration of consciousness" from "alteration of thought and memory". We know drugs and surgery can affect the latter two. We do not know if it can affect the former, since (as I noted above) we don't know what consciousness is, exactly.

Similarly, there is no scientific reason to prefer the hypothesis that God caused the Big Bang fifteen billion years ago to God creating the universe 6,000 years ago with internal evidence that it was fifteen billion years old.

Well yes, actually, there is. It is called Occam's Razor.

Titan said...

I just found this piece on NRO arguing that Jindal should veto the creationism bill.

Wow. I had no idea Jindal has a biology degree. That makes his failure twice as bad.

Steven said...

Revenant, if you'd like to have a version of the soul in which consciousness is a free-floating phenomenon that does not control the person's thought and actions, well, that's fine, but you're not talking about the soul most people believe in. Shall we disqualify everyone who believes in the traditional idea of the soul from office?

Second, just because you can apply Occam's Razor to theology doesn't make the theology science. How and why God created the universe is a theological question from the moment the word "God" was inserted. Occam's Razor applied to the scientific question of how the universe came to be eliminates God entirely from the equation; an uncreated creator is automatically an additional entity above an uncreated universe. Shall we accordingly, either disqualify anyone who believes in a creator deity for their unscientific belief?

Randy said...

Why shouldn't each voter feel free to apply his or her own standard in judging each candidate?

Why not indeed? That said,an incredible amont of time, money, public and private pressure is expended to coerce individuals to act according to real and contrived group identity.

Revenant said...

Revenant, if you'd like to have a version of the soul in which consciousness is a free-floating phenomenon that does not control the person's thought and actions, well, that's fine, but you're not talking about the soul most people believe in.

False dichotomy. People are not restricted to believing in either (a) a soul that has no influence on their thoughts and actions or (b) a soul that controls "a subset of their brain cells". Also, given that people generally believe that they ARE their souls and their bodies are merely the things their souls travel around in, saying that they believe souls "control their thoughts" is inaccurate.

Shall we disqualify everyone who believes in the traditional idea of the soul from office?

There's no reason to. Unlike creationism and belief in demonic possession, people who believe in a soul aren't necessarily ignorant. Just credulous.

Second, just because you can apply Occam's Razor to theology doesn't make the theology science.

I applied Occam's Razor to science, not theology. You asked what the scientific reason was for not crediting the theory that an omnipotent deity rigged the universe to look billions of years old; the reason is that that theory is needlessly complicated and explains nothing that isn't adequately explained by the materialistic theories.

How and why God created the universe is a theological question from the moment the word "God" was inserted.

That question is theological because it presumes the existence of a god and asks only how that god created the universe. The question we're actually interested in here, however, is "how is it that the universe and the life in it exists", not "how did God create the universe". "God created the universe 6000 years ago and for unknown reasons tried to trick people into thinking it was much older" is a proposed *answer* to that question, and one which may be rejected on rational and scientific grounds without resorting to theology.

Shall we accordingly, either disqualify anyone who believes in a creator deity for their unscientific belief?

You can disqualify whomever you want. I consider the question moot, since all major party candidates claim to believe in a supreme being. The only relevant question is which candidate's religious beliefs are the most ridiculous.

The Exalted said...

stephen, we can reject your "false internal evidence" theory because its patently ridiculous. with that kind of logic, you can choose disbelieve any sort of evidence whatsoever. "maybe god chose to make the defendant's fingerprints appear on the gun even though he never handled it." absurd.

if jindal didn't possess these insane religous beliefs, he'd be a perfect choice for VP imo.
otherwise, if there is some way to rehabilitate his bush service, powell could be an inspired choice.

vbspurs said...

Love Bobby Jindal. The Conservatives of LGF lean against him because he supports ID/DI.

(I'm sorry, I don't follow the nuance differences. I believe in Evolution, and I'm a religious Catholic, but the topic simply doesn't energise me)

Jindal is the real-deal. He's a bit nerdy, but in a very likeable way.

I still believe he should wait, because in 12 years, he could be in the White House as President not Veep.

I'm still hoping for Palin of Alaska...

Cheers,
Victoria