Tanay Kothari The reason Kobe Bryant, Usain Bolt, and Michael Phelps stand out has nothing to do with their gender; instead, their popularity is a function of their success over many years. For a female equivalent, look at the powerhouse beach volleyball team of Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings, which was absolutely touted as a big deal. That being said, the picture is changing, as you indicate. Female athletes got much more press this year.
Tanay Kothari As an isolated incident, this isn't a huge problem. However, if you look up the individuals that Mr. Romney has chosen to form his foreign policy team, you find a group consisting of former Bush advisors and notorious war hawks. There are certainly valid criticisms of the way Mr. Obama's team has handled foreign policy, but they have indisputably repaired America's image abroad. The Romney team appears to have different goals entirely.
Tanay Kothari Polling data suggests that the Hispanic community never really homogeneously supported Marco Rubio, with some voters taking offense to that notion itself. In any case, with Romney's ongoing tax return woes, I doubt he would have wanted to take a candidate with ongoing questions as to how he used his immigrant story as leverage to raise his political profile. As you put it in your own article, Romney wants someone who won't bring "baggage".
Tanay Kothari Great article! I think there's certainly a golden window of opportunity during which Secretary of State Clinton can affect change in Egypt, given her positive reputation, and that window will close soon. It looks like Mr. Morsi has tried diligently to reach out to women at the onset of his presidency, so this is certainly the time to stress the value of women's rights and advocate reforms before the realities of governing sink in.
Tanay Kothari The in-state tuition for law school at Berkeley is $50,000+. The guy making copies certainly isn't subsidizing your graduate school degree, since those payment plans are loan-based. Once you're a successful lawyer, odds are that your income will disqualify you from receiving much of a subsidy, period. However, the man that makes copies will have access to an affordable education for his children, which is largely subsidized by other people.
Tanay Kothari Gary, I understand your points. However, the state of the UCs, CSUs, and California community colleges at the moment is dire. The cost of getting a college degree, if measured in time, foregone income, and the possibility of income later, is higher than ever. This article not only calls for lower tuition, but a reformed system that will be efficient and reduce the need for deficit spending. I think we can agree on the statewide benefits of that.
Tanay Kothari Furthermore, your misguided logic can also be applied to justify not spending for elementary schools if one has no children, or not using taxpayer money for prisons because one does not ever intend to use that correctional service. The point is that our society, and certainly its system of taxation, doesn't work on the contract you suggest. An educated workforce brings more money into the state, and so it is certainly good for the "average Joe".
Tanay Kothari A good college education is absolutely a prerequisite to upward mobility. Millions of people in California cannot afford it, so the state subsidizes it because there are clear arguments that it serves the public good. It's generally not the children of millionaires that are getting subsidized heavily--the UC system really focuses on students from disadvantaged backgrounds. In general, it's the single mom's child that gets the financial benefit.
Tanay Kothari France are fun to watch, but I'm not yet sure how much they'll improve immediately. Deschamps is great, but under Blanc, the team sustained a 23-game unbeaten streak, including a win over Germany (which was missing a few key players, not unlike France). The problems, as you point out, are mostly attitude-related, especially Nasri's ongoing feud with the press. If Deschamps can reel in two or three of these players, I think France is top class.
Tanay Kothari Great article! This war against the arts has occurred at the federal level, too. Politicians like Sarah Palin have maligned the National Endowment for the Arts as cute, unnecessary, and even elitist frivolities in their calls to slash funding. Statistics show that the National Endowment for the Arts can employ more people with a given amount of funding than most alternatives. It's unfortunate that this job creation goes unnoticed.
Tanay Kothari Great article. There's really no good answer to the fact that the death penalty's application has been racially disproportionate, so I fear that it has just been accepted as a reality without a response. Capital punishment is also more expensive than life in prison for various reasons. With the economic argument accounted for and the fact that innocent people are often wrongly sentenced, I'm surprised at how much support there still is for this.
Tanay Kothari I share your doubts about the weight advantage and other scientific inconsistencies,<br>but I think the IOC has taken it into account. His 400m time doesn't look competitive<br>enough for a medal spot, so I don't think that will be a huge deal. I also doubt that<br>professional athletes who spend their lives training for this event, have sponsorship<br>deals riding on their success, and have beaten him before, will suddenly feel sorry<br>and slow down for him.
Tanay Kothari Nobody is advocating the practice of randomly taking guns out of the hands of responsible adults. I have no idea how this alarmist notion came about, but since it is now apparently well within the canon of "things worth discussing", I will attempt to do so. Mainstream gun control advocates are focusing on issues like ensuring that gun owners are registered. America's crime record is shameful compared to that of every other developed nation.
Tanay Kothari The example you propose with Ms. Hilton is laughably unrepresentative of 99.999% of the state. The media creates an atmosphere that fosters feelings of entitlement to create buzz that sells well nationwide. California bears no greater responsibility just because celebrities choose to live here. Gang violence in California's cities is definitely a problem, but, again, not drastically more so than in other urban areas nationwide.
Tanay Kothari Dave: The first two problems you bring up are omnipresent along the southern border. Texas and Arizona are victims, too. Let's stop pretending there's a link between California's policies and Mexico's drug violence. If anything, the Democrats' position on guns is aligned with the policies implemented by the safest nations in the world. And the birth of your so-called "entitlement society"? Mostly enacted by Lyndon Johnson, a Senator from...Texas.
Tanay Kothari To clarify, I think the message Republicans preach about fiscal responsibility is very important. Unfortunately, it has become a meaningless slogan that gets milked for political gain. Almost all credible estimates show positive fiscal benefits from the PPACA. There is no question worldwide that this model is superior. The idea that insurance companies will sacrifice profit to focus on quality without regulation care ought to be buried by now.
Tanay Kothari What Rick Scott did here is emphatically NOT a matter of perspective. This legislation has nothing to do with the government trying to "throw freebies" at people, and everything to do with creating an efficient, effective, and equitable system that delivers quality healthcare to all Americans at reasonable prices. Insurance companies in this country are responsible for insane healthcare costs. Rick Scott's decision here was nothing but political.
Tanay Kothari To put things in context, India has been independent for about 65 years; before then, the caste system existed for millennia. The various colonial powers that occupied India kept the caste system in place, as it was an easy way to divide and subjugate an otherwise formidably large population. This expectation that a nation can shed 2,000 years of heritage in two generations is unrealistic. The dissolution of the caste system will take take time.
Tanay Kothari There are interesting parallels between race issues in America today and India's struggle to counteract the effects of the caste system. Just as American affirmative action policies exist to close a perceived gap caused by generations of institutional inequality, India has tried to integrate lower castes with reserved university spots for (brace yourself, they are seriously referred to as) "backwards classes". (More in next post, character limit)
Tanay Kothari It goes without saying that the Hispanic vote is significant, but I'd contend that the question of their importance in this electoral cycle is still an open one. Half of America's Hispanic voters are concentrated in 5 states: California, Texas, New York, Illinois, and Arizona. Of these, only Arizona is competitive, and barely so. As such, I think you will see both candidates play less to the Hispanic vote than conventional wisdom might suggest.
Tanay Kothari The "small town" talk about Oklahoma City is silly. Its metro area population of 1.3 million is greater than that of Salt Lake City and New Orleans and around that of Memphis and Milwaukee. The Thunder got a franchise in OKC because they were bankrolled by wealthy Oklahomans, like billionaire Clay Bennett. Many of their best players, such as Durant, Westbrook, and Ibaka, were drafted in Seattle and not OKC. The contrast is really not that stark.
Tanay Kothari I don't really know or care if you're a Republican or a Democrat. You're willing to put your non-super PAC money where your mouth is. I have mad respect for you and hope to see you run in 2014.
Tanay Kothari Interesting post, but realistically speaking, Romney's cabinet is going to be staffed by various wealthy friends of his, not by some Republican dream team. There is no reason for most of these people to leave their current jobs, especially to serve Romney, for whom most of these people have offered tepid, if any, support.
Tanay Kothari To continue from my post below, while that paradigm shift has happened, and "being an outsider to politics" has suddenly become a golden trait for public office, military service has never really lost its luster. It's interesting to pinpoint what accounts for this difference. Is it brought about by the idea that the military is immune from judgment, or disillusionment with politicians, or the prowess of American entrepreneurship?