The Smiley Smile Message Board

Non Smiley Smile Stuff => The Sandbox => Topic started by: the captain on November 10, 2016, 03:42:32 PM



Title: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on November 10, 2016, 03:42:32 PM
For those people who aren't interested in continuing to insult each other about the same few things and instead realize that the future remains before us, enjoy this thread. We've got a lame-duck session with the shadow of an impending Voldermort administration and two Republican-controlled houses of congress looming large.

As is always the case after an election, there is talk of the need to unify. How do you suggest this happen, and what are the odds? What might congress try to do this year? What do you hope to see from the Voldermort administration?

I'd ask that people consider the reality that the 50-plus percent of American voters who opposed each major party candidate means that obviously magical conversions of the opposition aren't realistic options. Consider the absurdity of demanding or expecting ideological purity.

My hope is that Voldermort's repeated statements about a massive infrastructure program are realized as legislation. This is something the Obama administration has sough but been stymied by the GOP House. Perhaps their GOP president can convince them that this kind of spending is beneficial, not only for the actual projects themselves, but the jobs they create and the low interest rates at which money can be borrowed to fund it all. Famously, Eisenhower underwent the massive interstate highway system. Why not do a roads, bridges, etc., program?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ForHerCryingSoul on November 10, 2016, 05:56:49 PM
I think a Trump administration for four years will obviously:

Repeal Obamacare (key provisions that fund it) - maybe not during the first 100 days of office, but shortly afterword.

Elect a conservative Supreme Court Justice - it is also unknown if any other vacancies will occur during his administration, but I speculate at least one other vacancy, and resulting appointment of conservative Justice, tilting the Supreme Court to Republican favor.

A strong reinforcement of the 2nd Amendment - might reopen the gun-show loophole?  In any case, this administration will allow more people to obtain guns and/or keep them.

Worsening race relations - We'll see.  Day 1 of Trump's presidency doesn't look good on either side of the spectrum.  Everyone is attacking each other.

A unified GOP (mostly) for years to come. - Establishment Republicans might as well leave at this point.  The party will push a new populist agenda.

Other, less obvious acts with a Republican senate and House will pass as well, the Democratic minority will try to filibuster, but this is what I think will actually pass:

An end to TPP and NAFTA - effectively ending Clintonist-economics

A repeal of the Net Neutrality Agreement (I don't know what this act is called, but bear with me here)

Construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline will resume

Budget cuts on anything related to the environment, education to fit with cutting of business regulations (I won't get into detail here right now), with a rise in spending on military, healthcare (Medicare, Soc. Security).  There will be points I miss here, I will not go into detail, don't spew fire in me...  I'll let someone else fill in the blanks here.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ForHerCryingSoul on November 10, 2016, 06:03:20 PM
I'll miss some points, so add with what you see fit.   :afro


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on November 10, 2016, 06:14:09 PM
I think a Trump administration for four years will obviously:

Repeal Obamacare (key provisions that fund it) - maybe not during the first 100 days of office, but shortly afterword.

Elect a conservative Supreme Court Justice - it is also unknown if any other vacancies will occur during his administration, but I speculate at least one other vacancy, and resulting appointment of conservative Justice, tilting the Supreme Court to Republican favor.

A strong reinforcement of the 2nd Amendment - might reopen the gun-show loophole?  In any case, this administration will allow more people to obtain guns and/or keep them.

Worsening race relations - We'll see.  Day 1 of Trump's presidency doesn't look good on either side of the spectrum.  Everyone is attacking each other.

A unified GOP (mostly) for years to come. - Establishment Republicans might as well leave at this point.  The party will push a new populist agenda.

Other, less obvious acts with a Republican senate and House will pass as well, the Democratic minority will try to filibuster, but this is what I think will actually pass:

An end to TPP and NAFTA - effectively ending Clintonist-economics

A repeal of the Net Neutrality Agreement (I don't know what this act is called, but bear with me here)

Construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline will resume

Budget cuts on anything related to the environment, education to fit with cutting of business regulations (I won't get into detail here right now), with a rise in spending on military, healthcare (Medicare, Soc. Security).  There will be points I miss here, I will not go into detail, don't spew fire in me...  I'll let someone else fill in the blanks here.


Quote
An end to TPP and NAFTA - effectively ending Clintonist-economics

I am SO in favor of this...but the rest scare the bloody hell out of me


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 11, 2016, 10:47:09 AM
I see most remain more interested in fighting...

I'm not so sure about ACA repeal--but with a strong caveat: I'm entirely sure that it will technically be repealed. But because many aspects of ACA are popular when taken on their own merit, because it's politically hard to take away something already given, and politicians live to be re-elected--to say nothing of the fact that ACA was a GOP program until presented by a Dem--I wouldn't be surprised to see it's "replacement" retain huge swaths of it. Oh there will be changes, and the changes will be the left in the talking points, but it may well be more a rebranding than an actual overhaul. (I watched a Brookings Institution panel yesterday and their experts suggested something similar. I felt smart 😀)

As for race (and partisan) relations, we'll see. So far the principals are setting a good example, for the most part. It's the supporters acting like classless trash.

The "gun show loophole" hasn't been closed, as far as I know, so I don't think it can be reopened.

I'll be curious to see what happens with the evangelicals' issues, such as with gay rights, as I suspect his support for evangelicals was a put-on.

And I'll be curious to see whether Dems act like the petulant GOP of the past 8 years or can find a way to argue with dignity and work together when they can.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 11, 2016, 10:53:46 AM
Time for CNN (captain news network)? ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 11, 2016, 10:56:35 AM
Re NAFTA/TPP, one thing that's important to remember is that the lost manufacturing jobs people bemoan aren't returning REGARDLESS of trade deals. Manufacturing is actually doing well in the USA right now...it's just done with far fewer people. We can't pretend we can roll back the clock: we need to find new jobs that are still necessary, because mechanization, computerization, and automation are replacing us, like it or not.

I don't like companies chasing the lowest costs solely for their bottom line to the detriment of their employees and communities, so don't take this the wrong way. I'm just not sure that ship can turn around again. You can't MAKE companies spend more money on unnecessary people.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on November 11, 2016, 11:39:10 AM
Re NAFTA/TPP, one thing that's important to remember is that the lost manufacturing jobs people bemoan aren't returning REGARDLESS of trade deals. Manufacturing is actually doing well in the USA right now...it's just done with far fewer people. We can't pretend we can roll back the clock: we need to find new jobs that are still necessary, because mechanization, computerization, and automation are replacing us, like it or not.

I don't like companies chasing the lowest costs solely for their bottom line to the detriment of their employees and communities, so don't take this the wrong way. I'm just not sure that ship can turn around again. You can't MAKE companies spend more money on unnecessary people.

I know, but let's not make it worse!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 11, 2016, 11:42:52 AM
In my state, agricultural exports are huge, and trade agreements are a big part of that. Ditto medical devices.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 11, 2016, 12:38:43 PM
Trade between nations is cornerstone of economic growth and prosperity. It might be in the country's best interests to maintain the current trade policies.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 11, 2016, 12:49:23 PM
I don't mean to imply that any and every trade deal is inherently good--far from it. But this campaign season has seen them childishly oversimplified to mean "exodus of factory jobs," which isn't all they are, either. Reality can be complicated, but it's worth it to try to understand. Maybe name-calling and tribalism are just more fun.  :-\


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 11, 2016, 01:10:35 PM
Yeah industries are not as labor intensive as they were 30 years ago.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 11, 2016, 02:15:32 PM
No, not even close. There was fear at the turn of the 19th to 20th century that mechanization might make work unnecessary, and people began to speculate what would happen next. Obviously we found ways to continue to employ people for the most part. But the same question is relevant again now, and far more legitimate. We see people on both sides of the aisle seriously discussing things like a national payment, "universal basic income," to all adults. Just because. It sounds crazy until you start thinking, what do we do with people who literally cannot work because there are no jobs? In the Clinton years, we heard about a pivot to a "knowledge economy," but that's optimistic: not everyone can found a start-up. And despite its growth, the service industry can't take on everyone. We don't need 150 million baristas, bartenders, hairstylists, and hotel maids. Factories have already stopped employing massive numbers. Offices have spent 30 years downsizing and will do even more as AI becomes closer to reality. It's not just any industry, it's every industry. Unless people find a new way to work, we may simply not have enough jobs--not because of outsourcing, but because they simply won't be necessary.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 12, 2016, 06:03:57 AM

I'm not so sure about ACA repeal--but with a strong caveat: I'm entirely sure that it will technically be repealed. But because many aspects of ACA are popular when taken on their own merit, because it's politically hard to take away something already given, and politicians live to be re-elected--to say nothing of the fact that ACA was a GOP program until presented by a Dem--I wouldn't be surprised to see it's "replacement" retain huge swaths of it. Oh there will be changes, and the changes will be the left in the talking points, but it may well be more a rebranding than an actual overhaul. (I watched a Brookings Institution panel yesterday and their experts suggested something similar. I felt smart 😀)

I hereby declare myself a genius!  :lol :lol  I saw that Trump has now said he may support amending rather than repealing the ACA, and favors keeping some of the popular parts of it (which of course can't really be done without keeping the unpopular--e.g.,, paying for it--parts). The reality of politics is, there ends up being a reality to politics. People complain about politicians, but they "go establishment" because there are realities to governance. Campaign rhetoric is nonsense, and it's unfortunate that's the part of politics that gets attention (and that candidates find it necessary ... though it is, because hyperbole is the only thing that gets anyone's attention).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 12, 2016, 06:13:27 AM
For the record, that means in the first three-plus days since the election, we have seen signals of:
  • A metaphorical rather than physical wall, probably supplemented with some smaller walls, without pushing for Mexico to pay. (Gingrich to supporters.)
  • Moderation on the ACA repeal and replace (Trump)
  • No prosecution of Sec. Clinton (Trump)
  • The typical use of paid lobbyists to fill (the 2,000 or so...) political positions within various agencies. Drain the swamp, eh? We now have a Big Food lobbyist overseeing Ag positions, a climate change denier at EPA, an oil lobbyist at energy, and a telecom lobbyist at FCC (to say nothing of rumors of Jamie Dimon to lead Treasury)

For better and worse (in certain ways), I expect the Trump administration to be basically a modern Republican administration, with the primary difference being a purely symbolic president with a penchant for going off script and saying things that cause problems for his staff and the country. But if people thought Cheney was too powerful, I don't think they'll care for the Pence-Trump dynamic. Remember the reported (but denied) incident of Trump, via Kushner, offering Kasich the opportunity to be VP and basically do all the work while Trump would "make America great again?" I think that's exactly the deal Pence is getting.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 12, 2016, 06:32:06 AM
No, not even close. There was fear at the turn of the 19th to 20th century that mechanization might make work unnecessary, and people began to speculate what would happen next. Obviously we found ways to continue to employ people for the most part. But the same question is relevant again now, and far more legitimate. We see people on both sides of the aisle seriously discussing things like a national payment, "universal basic income," to all adults. Just because. It sounds crazy until you start thinking, what do we do with people who literally cannot work because there are no jobs? In the Clinton years, we heard about a pivot to a "knowledge economy," but that's optimistic: not everyone can found a start-up. And despite its growth, the service industry can't take on everyone. We don't need 150 million baristas, bartenders, hairstylists, and hotel maids. Factories have already stopped employing massive numbers. Offices have spent 30 years downsizing and will do even more as AI becomes closer to reality. It's not just any industry, it's every industry. Unless people find a new way to work, we may simply not have enough jobs--not because of outsourcing, but because they simply won't be necessary.
Reduce weekly hours and increase vacation time.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 12, 2016, 06:40:14 AM
I would (probably obviously) strongly support that. But it certainly would be an uphill battle to convince private businesses to finance that idea without government subsidies to do it. That's one of the benefits of the UBI idea, as I understand it. Frankly I'm already opposed to our employer-based healthcare, so I'd rather not have other benefits flow from government through business to citizens.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: wilsonart1 on November 12, 2016, 07:19:12 AM
In Europe people have started putting a safety pin on their cloths.  This shows strangers that you respect and will treat them with dignity, and are safe around you. This may catch on here, don't really know!  Just don't buy a red or blue one I guess.  Keep an open mind. Hopefully we'll be impressed by what Trump delivers. I want America to succeed.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 12, 2016, 08:44:12 AM
Stars upon thars...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 13, 2016, 06:02:29 AM
It's interesting trying to follow the rumors of who might get cabinet and leadership positions, considering consequences of the alt-right "outsiders" like Bannon, Gen. Flynn, and the whole Trump clan versus the myriad of self-branded outsiders who are anything but, the retreads like Giuliani and Gingrich or the current officeholders like Christie, Hensarling, and Sessions. So many of their positions contradict one another ... making them I guess perfect for Trump, whose positions have up to now contradicted his own other positions, too.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 14, 2016, 04:51:36 AM
It's interesting trying to follow the rumors of who might get cabinet and leadership positions, considering consequences of the alt-right "outsiders" like Bannon, Gen. Flynn, and the whole Trump clan versus the myriad of self-branded outsiders who are anything but, the retreads like Giuliani and Gingrich or the current officeholders like Christie, Hensarling, and Sessions. So many of their positions contradict one another ... making them I guess perfect for Trump, whose positions have up to now contradicted his own other positions, too.
Preibus Bannon.
I hope the latter is a toss. But it's hardly a good sign for conciliation. And it indicates that the hate rhetoric and conspiracy theory mongering will continue at the White House.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 14, 2016, 05:26:19 AM
Obviously I'm pretty down on both of those, but especially Bannon. Hopefully it's just a bone for that crowd and he'll be a batshit voice mostly ignored for more typical GOP voices that, while I also strongly dislike, tend not to be quite so absurd-conspiratorial and overtly hateful. I could imagine Bannon in a sounding-board role, too. He seems to know the pulse of that segment of citizens. So perhaps the heavy lifting on actual policy goes to the Pence crew and they run things by Bannon to see whether and how they can sell it. (Because I think there will be a lot to sell, i.e. many major campaign promises they won't even fully pursue, much less achieve.)

But of course we have to wait and see.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 14, 2016, 10:18:20 AM
Complete agreement!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 14, 2016, 03:46:48 PM
My local congressman, Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) of the 5th district, has thrown his hat into the ring to seek the DNC Chair position. He has been backed so far by Sen. Sanders and Sen. Schumer. In that he's the first Muslim elected to Congress, I assume there will be plenty of silliness from Fox et al. (There is already a headline about "ties to Nation of Islam.") He has represented us since 2007 in a seat that hasn't gone Republican since the GOP's Walter Judd lost it in '63.

I'm not sure how I feel about the idea, actually. I'd prefer he focus on the business of legislating over party-building. Then again, as someone more committed to the business of party-destroying, I may not be the best guy to weigh in on that...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Moon Dawg on November 14, 2016, 03:58:26 PM
  Clinton speaking fees have dropped to $10.98 per speech. The free market at its finest.  :lol


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 15, 2016, 04:05:36 AM
NPR reports Giuliani is leading choice for Sec of State. Now that is a terrible choice.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 15, 2016, 05:51:14 AM
Something is deeply wrong with that guy these days. The "america's mayor" days are long gone.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 15, 2016, 06:05:24 AM
He was given excess credit in the first place simply by being mayor of a place that was attacked. He's praised for his "response," but what precisely did he do? The 9/11 Commission Report actually faults him for not having been more ready for such a disaster.

And since his failed presidential bid, he did what several other former GOP candidates (McCain, Huckabee) have done, which is disown any previously moderate, aisle-crossing, or humane positions they'd previously taken in order to be corporate (Fox) partisan shills. It's barely hyperbole to say Giuliani has spoken in nothing but hateful hyperbole since 2008.

I might worry more about him at State or Justice than I do about Trump.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 15, 2016, 06:11:48 AM
Exactly right on the Commission report, he also insisted on putting the emergency command center in the WTC complex despite all other officials opposing it. The NYC response was crippled when the command center went down. These days, he has a strange look in his eye like he is about to have a breakdown as he talks fast as sh*t about Trump is king.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 15, 2016, 06:16:56 AM
By the way, I want to be clear that this isn't sour grapes. First, I wasn't a Clinton fan even though I did vote Clinton, and second, I respect the reality of the election: we'll have a Republican, and quite possibly some combination of hawkish and conservative administration. That's the deal. But there are smart, good people who fit those criteria. Then there is Giuliani.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 15, 2016, 06:20:53 AM
Agreed, and no Filleplage rants to say otherwise here! :-D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 15, 2016, 06:34:54 AM
I welcome coherent, intelligent, honest debate.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 15, 2016, 06:42:16 AM
Bolton is a war hawk, but is still way more qualified for the job than Guilani.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 15, 2016, 04:00:46 PM
There's a 50-minute WSJ interview with Giuliani on youtube. He claims the US exit of Iraq was the worst decision in the history of the nation. "The way we exited Iraq was the worst decision in American history."

I think he's forgetting a few decisions. You know, little things ... slavery in the constitution, genocide of natives, Jim Crow, internment camps, dropping nukes, Vietnam, fucking illegally and stupidly invading Iraq in the first place...just little things like that.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: NOLA BB Fan on November 15, 2016, 04:28:05 PM
Yes, Giuliani is way past his "sell by date."

Tonight, on the TCM network, the movie "The Candidate" will be shown.
Haven't seen it since it came out years ago, but remember Robert Redford's character's final line.
Wonder if Trump said that, or at least thought it:

"What do we do now?"


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 16, 2016, 05:49:17 AM
NYT has a lead story today on what can only be described as the arrogant bungling of Trump's transition team. Obviously there's no love lost between the ultimate establishment publication and Trump, but their reporting is that the staff shakeups from Christie onward were score-settling by Kushner because Christie put his dad in jail. Foreign leaders have been unable to reach him, and he did his first conversations without State Dept briefings. Yesterday fmr (very conservative) State Dept official Eliot Cohen, who had previously called on conservatives to give him a chance, walked that back after meeting the transition team and said:

"Stay away. They're angry, arrogant, screaming 'you LOST.' Will be ugly."

Indeed.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 16, 2016, 06:41:00 AM
Not good news Captain! :-\


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 16, 2016, 07:13:53 AM
Better than the rash of hate crimes around the mpls metro area this past week in the name of Trump. It seems for some, we're freed of this pesky "political correctness" that was stopping us from painting swastikas, dropping n-bombs, and roughing up preteen Muslim girls at middle school. Make America great again, you pieces of sh*t...*

*Should be obvious I'm not directly blaming the president-elect or nonviolent and ethical supporters of his. But if it wasn't, now it should be. If it still isn't, you're too dumb to be helped and I suspect you're enjoying your newfound liberation from PC with no shortage of n-bombs, yourself.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 16, 2016, 07:41:37 AM
That is sickening, my brother said he has seen tons of trucks flying confederate flags and Trump stickers....

Make racial hate great again..... ::)



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 16, 2016, 04:02:52 PM
My local congressman, Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) of the 5th district, has thrown his hat into the ring to seek the DNC Chair position. He has been backed so far by Sen. Sanders and Sen. Schumer. In that he's the first Muslim elected to Congress, I assume there will be plenty of silliness from Fox et al. (There is already a headline about "ties to Nation of Islam.") He has represented us since 2007 in a seat that hasn't gone Republican since the GOP's Walter Judd lost it in '63.

I'm not sure how I feel about the idea, actually. I'd prefer he focus on the business of legislating over party-building. Then again, as someone more committed to the business of party-destroying, I may not be the best guy to weigh in on that...

I wrote his office to weigh in against this. I don't anticipate a (real) response or to get my way, but I did make my voice heard. I like and have voted for Rep. Ellison with each election, but I do not believe it is appropriate for an elected representative--especially considering the time they all already spend campaigning and fundraising--to spend yet more of his time on national strategizing and fundraising for the party.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SurfRiderHawaii on November 16, 2016, 10:44:26 PM
My local congressman, Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) of the 5th district, has thrown his hat into the ring to seek the DNC Chair position. He has been backed so far by Sen. Sanders and Sen. Schumer. In that he's the first Muslim elected to Congress, I assume there will be plenty of silliness from Fox et al. (There is already a headline about "ties to Nation of Islam.") He has represented us since 2007 in a seat that hasn't gone Republican since the GOP's Walter Judd lost it in '63.

I'm not sure how I feel about the idea, actually. I'd prefer he focus on the business of legislating over party-building. Then again, as someone more committed to the business of party-destroying, I may not be the best guy to weigh in on that...

I wrote his office to weigh in against this. I don't anticipate a (real) response or to get my way, but I did make my voice heard. I like and have voted for Rep. Ellison with each election, but I do not believe it is appropriate for an elected representative--especially considering the time they all already spend campaigning and fundraising--to spend yet more of his time on national strategizing and fundraising for the party.

Great analysis so far Luther! But Ellison won't have much legislating to do with Republicans controlling Congress.

Who would you rather see running the DNC? Certainly time for a housecleaning! 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 17, 2016, 03:38:29 AM
If the Democrats are going to have any success moderating some of the policies, it needs to be all hands on deck all the time. Being a minority is harder work than being a majority.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 17, 2016, 04:35:09 AM
The lobbying ban would have teeth if it were that someone couldn't be a lobbyist for x years before joining the administration. As it is, it just adds a step for the onboarding process: file to withdraw your lobby registration.
As it is, it's just a show. Pence didn't get rid of his personal senior advisor, a lobbyist. He just filed his withdrawal papers yesterday.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 17, 2016, 04:45:27 AM
I agree with Emily and disagree ORR (about legislating). I think that if the GOP is willing to allow any participation by the minority--and considering the typical midterm backlash from majorities that overplay their hands--the Democrats should absolutely do it. I think they should work on bills to make awful ones bad, bad ones mediocre, mediocre ones ok, and so on. They should give input at every opportunity. They should work to co-sponsor wherever they can, which could include infrastructure, maybe prison reform, addiction treatment programs, and anything else they may be able to find common ground on. And they should loudly and clearly tout their grown-up approach to being a minority party and the good aspects of bills they put forward so the people can understand what it is they do. If they waste time being obstructionist a la the GOP the past 8 years, I will be furious with them.

On that note, over to the DNC Chair. I think it was Slate that quoted Ellison as saying something like "we need to fight Trump at every turn." I hope that's either out of context or said in a moment of emotion, because I disagree entirely. I want a Democratic party that picks and chooses its fights wisely, not one that folds its arms over its chest and pouts for four years. Who do I want to be the DNC Chair? I don't know or care all that much, other than someone who is not a current member of Congress or elected official: those people have jobs to do. It could be a former, a la Howard Dean, who is running.

What I'd like the party to do is consider Minnesota's history: in this state, the Democratic party is actually the DFL: the Democratic-Farmer-Labor party, the result of a 1944 merger. What this allowed was a continued focus on precisely the demographics that the GOP owned this election (and recent elections) nationally, demographics who actually benefit from traditional Democratic positions but tend to be a bit more socially conservative. However, we've also maintained sufficient social liberalism probably through the urban core of the D in the DFL. The factions moderate one another somewhat, sure, but that's a compromise that is inevitable with diverse populations.

Granted, this time around, the outstate counties did vote Republican. But historically people from both parties have done well across this state, whether in farming country, mining country, logging country, the Duluth (shipping, etc.) area, the Twin Cities metro--everywhere. I'd like a DNC Chair who can remind Democrats that traditional Democratic economic policies are beneficial for the many, even while nudging those rural voters toward social liberalism through effective messaging.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 17, 2016, 04:54:09 AM
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2016/11/16/if-trump-wants-to-close-lobbying-loopholes-ethics-lawyers-have-written-a-proposal-to-do-just-that/
This proposal proposes a ban on lobbyists registered within the last two (I think) years, which is a limit Obama imposed, though Obama only restricted lobbyists from the same industry they'd be representing. It also bans unregistered lobbyists.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 17, 2016, 05:15:59 AM
Unfortunately any previous restrictions left loopholes so as to be irrelevant, a la Gingrich's lucrative stint as a "consultant." Thanks for the link, I'll read up.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 17, 2016, 11:41:57 AM
Today's news seems mostly to be:

 - J Kushner is meeting with attorneys to see whether he can get away with what on it's face seems a blatant violation of anti-nepotism law and fill a senior position. Reportedly his hope is that by taking no salary and putting the "newspaper" he runs (NY Observer, a sad, partisan rag), he can do it. Those steps seem irrelevant to the anti-nepotism law though, though I'm no lawyer...

 - Gov Haley (R-SC) is being mentioned for a cabinet role--maybe State! While I don't see her as any more qualified than Giuliani because even her House experience was, committee-wise, based on domestic affairs, I'd certainly take her over Giuliani.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SurfRiderHawaii on November 17, 2016, 01:53:09 PM
I agree with Emily and disagree ORR (about legislating). I think that if the GOP is willing to allow any participation by the minority--and considering the typical midterm backlash from majorities that overplay their hands--the Democrats should absolutely do it. I think they should work on bills to make awful ones bad, bad ones mediocre, mediocre ones ok, and so on. They should give input at every opportunity. They should work to co-sponsor wherever they can, which could include infrastructure, maybe prison reform, addiction treatment programs, and anything else they may be able to find common ground on. And they should loudly and clearly tout their grown-up approach to being a minority party and the good aspects of bills they put forward so the people can understand what it is they do. If they waste time being obstructionist a la the GOP the past 8 years, I will be furious with them.

On that note, over to the DNC Chair. I think it was Slate that quoted Ellison as saying something like "we need to fight Trump at every turn." I hope that's either out of context or said in a moment of emotion, because I disagree entirely. I want a Democratic party that picks and chooses its fights wisely, not one that folds its arms over its chest and pouts for four years. Who do I want to be the DNC Chair? I don't know or care all that much, other than someone who is not a current member of Congress or elected official: those people have jobs to do. It could be a former, a la Howard Dean, who is running.

What I'd like the party to do is consider Minnesota's history: in this state, the Democratic party is actually the DFL: the Democratic-Farmer-Labor party, the result of a 1944 merger. What this allowed was a continued focus on precisely the demographics that the GOP owned this election (and recent elections) nationally, demographics who actually benefit from traditional Democratic positions but tend to be a bit more socially conservative. However, we've also maintained sufficient social liberalism probably through the urban core of the D in the DFL. The factions moderate one another somewhat, sure, but that's a compromise that is inevitable with diverse populations.

Granted, this time around, the outstate counties did vote Republican. But historically people from both parties have done well across this state, whether in farming country, mining country, logging country, the Duluth (shipping, etc.) area, the Twin Cities metro--everywhere. I'd like a DNC Chair who can remind Democrats that traditional Democratic economic policies are beneficial for the many, even while nudging those rural voters toward social liberalism through effective messaging.


http://m.gazette.com/the-latest-pence-tells-house-gop-to-buckle-up/article/feed/422641

Buckle up for a breakneck pace says Mike Pence.  The House Democrats have little, if any, power. I mean, couldn't stop the Republicans voting to dismantle the ACA like 100 times.

Democrats in the House can give all the speeches they want but they have no power! They couldn't stop the endless Benghazi hearings (which we will never hear about again). If Ellison is the best person for the job, he ought to do it. We need all new blood! Peloci should also step aside.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 17, 2016, 02:56:17 PM
I still think Democrats should work together with Republicans at every opportunity and promote the hell out of themselves as the grown-ups. Otherwise every criticism over the past 8 years was bullshit and they have no credibility left. Obviously things are going to go Republicans' way for at least two years. But sometimes what matters isn't how you handle winning, but how you handle losing.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 17, 2016, 03:26:56 PM
Somehow this year various inaccurate notions about our political system became popular beliefs. One is that a party chair is a person of significant influence. The DNC doesn't set policy, choose candidates, or run campaigns. They are basically a fundraising clearing house. In non-presidential election years, that's basically it. In presidential campaign years, they do some scheduling and help the state parties coordinate with the presidential campaign. I think it's wasteful to put someone who is either popular and already has a job in the government, or who is skilled and already has a job using those skills in government, in a DNC role.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 17, 2016, 03:35:18 PM
YES.

Obviously the kerfuffle with Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and the Trump-Preibus hot-and-cold relationship brought the role to the forefront, but you're absolutely right that it is primarily a fundraising (and sometimes logistics) position. That's why I don't want my congressman wasting his time doing that, what I consider the worst aspect of our entire goshdarn government.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 18, 2016, 06:17:31 AM
Well, looking like a racist who couldn't get approved as a federal judge will be Attorney General, a hysterical Islamophobe will be National Security Advisor, and a racist, pro-torture, pro-domestic surveillance Islamophobe to lead the CIA. So this administration is looking pretty sweet...  :-\


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ForHerCryingSoul on November 18, 2016, 09:24:53 AM
Well, looking like a racist who couldn't get approved as a federal judge will be Attorney General, a hysterical Islamophobe will be National Security Advisor, and a racist, pro-torture, pro-domestic surveillance Islamophobe to lead the CIA. So this administration is looking pretty sweet...  :-\
It's looking pretty white-nationalistic to me.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 18, 2016, 09:59:35 AM
Well, looking like a racist who couldn't get approved as a federal judge will be Attorney General, a hysterical Islamophobe will be National Security Advisor, and a racist, pro-torture, pro-domestic surveillance Islamophobe to lead the CIA. So this administration is looking pretty sweet...  :-\
It's looking pretty white-nationalistic to me.

Sometimes you have to distinguish campaign trail language from actual intent. And other times people just say what they mean. Usually I'm happy when people say what they mean, but in this case, I was hoping for the former phenomenon.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 22, 2016, 03:40:26 PM
For the record, that means in the first three-plus days since the election, we have seen signals of:
  • A metaphorical rather than physical wall, probably supplemented with some smaller walls, without pushing for Mexico to pay. (Gingrich to supporters.)
  • Moderation on the ACA repeal and replace (Trump)
  • No prosecution of Sec. Clinton (Trump)
  • The typical use of paid lobbyists to fill (the 2,000 or so...) political positions within various agencies. Drain the swamp, eh? We now have a Big Food lobbyist overseeing Ag positions, a climate change denier at EPA, an oil lobbyist at energy, and a telecom lobbyist at FCC (to say nothing of rumors of Jamie Dimon to lead Treasury)

For better and worse (in certain ways), I expect the Trump administration to be basically a modern Republican administration, with the primary difference being a purely symbolic president with a penchant for going off script and saying things that cause problems for his staff and the country. But if people thought Cheney was too powerful, I don't think they'll care for the Pence-Trump dynamic. Remember the reported (but denied) incident of Trump, via Kushner, offering Kasich the opportunity to be VP and basically do all the work while Trump would "make America great again?" I think that's exactly the deal Pence is getting.

  • Questioning value of torture
  • Openness to remaining in Paris climate accord

But still acting like a petulant child about musicals-gone-wrong and the media in general.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 22, 2016, 07:09:47 PM
For the record, that means in the first three-plus days since the election, we have seen signals of:
  • A metaphorical rather than physical wall, probably supplemented with some smaller walls, without pushing for Mexico to pay. (Gingrich to supporters.)
  • Moderation on the ACA repeal and replace (Trump)
  • No prosecution of Sec. Clinton (Trump)
  • The typical use of paid lobbyists to fill (the 2,000 or so...) political positions within various agencies. Drain the swamp, eh? We now have a Big Food lobbyist overseeing Ag positions, a climate change denier at EPA, an oil lobbyist at energy, and a telecom lobbyist at FCC (to say nothing of rumors of Jamie Dimon to lead Treasury)

For better and worse (in certain ways), I expect the Trump administration to be basically a modern Republican administration, with the primary difference being a purely symbolic president with a penchant for going off script and saying things that cause problems for his staff and the country. But if people thought Cheney was too powerful, I don't think they'll care for the Pence-Trump dynamic. Remember the reported (but denied) incident of Trump, via Kushner, offering Kasich the opportunity to be VP and basically do all the work while Trump would "make America great again?" I think that's exactly the deal Pence is getting.

  • Questioning value of torture
  • Openness to remaining in Paris climate accord

But still acting like a petulant child about musicals-gone-wrong and the media in general.
Here's my take on Trump: he is a narcissistic petulant child. He really thinks it's "unfair" when SNL makes fun of him or when the media writes negative stories about him. He really thinks of the world  - of everything in the world - in terms of winning and losing - it's all a zero-sum game to him. And he's amoral and thinks it's fine to lie and say really awful things if he thinks it will help him win. He really doesn't grasp that there's a bigger meaning to what a presidential candidate says and does. And he probably thinks about policy as simplistically as he talks about policy and understands government as little as he seems to.
But I think he's also flexible - see the amoralism above. If he perceives that he will "win" at the presidency by toning it down, he will. The positions he took on the campaign trail were a combination of opportunism - what he perceived would get votes - and opportunism - what policies will actually benefit him personally. He'll certainly try to keep the latter, but the former he will only keep if he perceives that he gains more by keeping them than by losing them.
He's also sexist and believes in weird racial theories. He goes on about genetics and about having a smart uncle and being german so he's genetically better than other people. And I think he's authentically an asshole.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 23, 2016, 05:53:03 AM
That sums it up pretty accurately, I'd say.

By the way, for those who were all amped up about the Clinton Foundation and its purported corruption and conflict of interest, I hope you're paying attention to the discussion on the subject as it relates to Trump's businesses. And his sudden proclamations that it is fine for him to remain involved in his private business while running the country. Drain the swamp, indeed...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 24, 2016, 05:33:56 AM
A handful of new, uninspiring cabinet picks.
  • Gov. Haley for the UN Ambassador (actually the best pick so far of the cabinet, probably...shudder)
  • Betsy DeVos, who inherited her money and has been a GOP fundraiser/operative, primarily in funneling money out of public schools toward "school choice," for Sec. of Education. Ugh.
  • Dr. Carson for Sec of HUD. LOL. I can't imagine what in Carson's background qualifies him. (I don't think Haley has any particular relevant experience either, but at least she seems less ... hmm, what's the word? Stupid.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 25, 2016, 05:45:57 AM
Well, it sure is refreshing watching the swamp drain--no more business as usual! Obama's Commerce Secretary, Hyatt Hotels heiress and major financial backer of Obama, will be on her way out, of course. And in her place, we'll get Wilbur Ross, major Trump campaign donor and billionaire known as the "king of bankruptcy"; and his deputy secretary will be Republican megadonor Todd Ricketts, whose father founded TD Ameritrade. Yes, the swamp is empty now. Things are being done differently! (Especially if by "differently" we mean swap out your megadonor heirs and heiresses for my megadonor heir and heiresses.)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 26, 2016, 02:12:19 PM
He has his own business - to liquidate that or to really blind-trust it would be appropriate and he should do it, but I can acknowledge it's a bigger deal than to put strict stock-and-bond investments into a trust, as most presidents have to do. However, so far, it doesn't appear that Trump's done that, or plans to do that even with his stock investments - for instance, he holds stock in multiple energy companies, including the a company that has 1/4 share of the Dakota Pipeline. Trump seems to be heading toward transparently using the presidency for personal enrichment, while president.

Separately, I wish the federal government would take some action to protect the Pipeline protesters and reconsider at least the position of the Pipeline, if not the whole thing.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 26, 2016, 02:16:26 PM
He has his own business - to liquidate that or to really blind-trust it would be appropriate and he should do it, but I can acknowledge it's a bigger deal than to put strict stock-and-bond investments into a trust, as most presidents have to do. However, so far, it doesn't appear that Trump's done that, or plans to do that even with his stock investments - for instance, he holds stock in multiple energy companies, including the a company that has 1/4 share of the Dakota Pipeline. Trump seems to be heading toward transparently using the presidency for personal enrichment, while president.

Especially after the criticisms of the alleged use of the Sec of State position to influence Clinton Foundation donations, it is absolutely remarkable that he is publicly defending his own right to keep running his business while in office, even literally while in the office (i.e., on political calls). I hope every supporter is paying close attention and not missing the irony...I'd think they'd be outraged.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 26, 2016, 02:25:47 PM
I wrote this at the same time you wrote your above comment - it does not pretend to be a response to your comment.

Trump's ties to fake news (and the Republican Party's ties to fake news in general) are multiple. Indeed, fake news is, for the most part, Republican-driven. It's not just Steve Bannon. Laura Ingraham and KellyAnne Conway's friend Floyd Brown, a long-time Republican operative, own companies that run right-wing fake news sites. A Trump PAC funds WorldNetDaily, a right-wing fake news site.
Independent fake news writers have reported that there isn't a sustainable market for Democrat/moderate/progressive fake news. They don't click on it enough. I expect traditional conservatives don't either, but they're a dying breed.
Basically, as I've mentioned before, the right-wing narrative is a fake narrative. What I frequently puzzle over is how many of them know that? I often read comments/blog posts in which the writer persists in the fake news based outrage after they've clearly read other comments that debunk the fake news. It often seems they KNOW the news is fake, but persist in talking about it and letting it affect their ideas.
This is something I've been puzzling over for some years. Now, (I firmly believe) fake news is responsible not just for a number of congress people and state government officials. It's responsible for the presidency. What happens that people embrace fake news, bogus conspiracy theories, unfounded "scandals", seemingly knowingly, and use those things to attack a candidate but ignore when their own candidate factually does the same thing?
What is the psychological deal here?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 26, 2016, 05:48:36 PM
It has been an interesting development. My gut feeling would be that it isn't inherently a conservative versus liberal phenomenon*, though I absolutely admit that it seems to slant heavily that way. So does that mean that at present there are more anti-establishment types on the right, people who are unwilling to trust institutions? If a left-leaning populism grows, would fake news grow correspondingly with them?



*I'd actually guess in a vacuum the opposite: conservatives tend to value and promote institutions more than liberals. But that's obviously not true in reality right now.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 26, 2016, 07:46:34 PM
It has been an interesting development. My gut feeling would be that it isn't inherently a conservative versus liberal phenomenon*, though I absolutely admit that it seems to slant heavily that way. So does that mean that at present there are more anti-establishment types on the right, people who are unwilling to trust institutions? If a left-leaning populism grows, would fake news grow correspondingly with them?



*I'd actually guess in a vacuum the opposite: conservatives tend to value and promote institutions more than liberals. But that's obviously not true in reality right now.

Up until the 70s, I'd say your guess would be right about anti-public-institutionalism.  But since the early 80s, the right has been increasingly anti-government and I think establishment Republicans have willingly played along with the extreme, conspiracy, fake-news part of the base. And sometimes they've led it. But only part of it is anti-establishment. Republicans started doing suggestive push-polls in the 90s against each other. There was the famous McCain push-poll in 2000. http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2004/11/mccain200411
The politics of scandal-mongering is really what I'm talking about. Particularly fake scandal mongering. Like the "Clinton body count" stories about all the "mysterious deaths surrounding the Clintons," including "some role" in JFK Jr.'s death. (Laura Ingraham specialty. Her site produced this video https://www.facebook.com/LifeZette/videos/356164274715005/
Or the false claim that so so evil George Soros owns the main voting-machine making company. Or all the other ridiculous Soros stories. So, he's a really good example. The right has the Koch brothers and the left has Soros. But the left doesn't have a bunch of "scandals" generated about the Koch brothers. They just support awful things. The right seems to need to make scandals. All the Soros scandals. Can't they just be scandalized that he's funding things they don't support, like I am about the Kochses (plural?)? Why do they need to scandalize everything?
Then there was the Clinton and Podesta pedophile ring based in some DC Pizza place. Here's Obama turning the white house US flag into a white flag of surrender on the White House logo: https://archive.fo/7RwN4 - that's via KellyAnne's colleague, Brown. He also informed us that "Muslims were ordered to vote Hillary" and that Clinton went on a "drug holiday" before the Vegas debate.
These are among the more ridiculous and extreme examples, but they are all examples of work by people who are either publicly recognized media figures or long-time paid high-level Republican campaign operatives. They aren't just internet cranks.
None of this is anti-institution. Just dirty campaigning. And widely accepted and passed-around on the internet dirty campaigning.
I have to think that a lot of the people who "share" these stories know they're fake. 400,000+ shares on the "Clinton body count" video. But the audience seems to revel in it. I don't understand it.





Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 27, 2016, 05:51:11 AM
They're inconsistent in their anti-government attitudes, though. They're still disproportionately fond of the military. And as we watch BLM or during Occupy, conservatives were mostly on the sides of police. Even during the discussions of the Patriot Act, NSA, etc., it seems to me more conservatives were OK with illegal (or legal but extreme) surveillance than liberals. But I agree that their candidates rant and rail against the very institutions they're running for, and conservatives have those tropes of "he never had a real job, he has only been in Congress," etc.

And this is partly about institutions because it's the institution of the [legitimate] press they're ignoring or not trusting. Once freed from the real media, they can pick and choose the stories they like best.

Whether they really believe them, that's beyond me. I think a lot of people do, but then again, I'm a condescending asshole who thinks very little of most people.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: MonsterMash on November 27, 2016, 07:15:21 AM
He has his own business - to liquidate that or to really blind-trust it would be appropriate and he should do it, but I can acknowledge it's a bigger deal than to put strict stock-and-bond investments into a trust, as most presidents have to do. However, so far, it doesn't appear that Trump's done that, or plans to do that even with his stock investments - for instance, he holds stock in multiple energy companies, including the a company that has 1/4 share of the Dakota Pipeline. Trump seems to be heading toward transparently using the presidency for personal enrichment, while president.

Separately, I wish the federal government would take some action to protect the Pipeline protesters and reconsider at least the position of the Pipeline, if not the whole thing.



I believe that is the real reason why Trump ran for president, we know he's probably not as rich as he claims to be hence the refusal to release his tax returns. As Putin has shown and why Trump probably admires him is that being president is a great way to make yourself rich Putin is rumoured to be worth billions despite not being a businessman and in theory a public servant. Trump could give federal construction contracts to the Trump organization or promise permits to companies in exchange for buying real estate from the Trump organization or influence banks to give his companies more favourable lending terms but threatening them with investigations and new regulations the possibilities of how to make money are endless provided you don't care about ethics and just want to make as much money as possible. If trump wasn't exceedingly wealthy before he came into the White House he will be once he leaves


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: MonsterMash on November 27, 2016, 07:17:34 AM
He has his own business - to liquidate that or to really blind-trust it would be appropriate and he should do it, but I can acknowledge it's a bigger deal than to put strict stock-and-bond investments into a trust, as most presidents have to do. However, so far, it doesn't appear that Trump's done that, or plans to do that even with his stock investments - for instance, he holds stock in multiple energy companies, including the a company that has 1/4 share of the Dakota Pipeline. Trump seems to be heading toward transparently using the presidency for personal enrichment, while president.

Separately, I wish the federal government would take some action to protect the Pipeline protesters and reconsider at least the position of the Pipeline, if not the whole thing.



I believe that is the real reason why Trump ran for to become president, we know he's probably not as rich as he claims to be hence the refusal to release his tax returns. As Putin has shown and why Trump probably admires him is that being president is a great way to make yourself rich Putin is rumoured to be worth billions despite not being a businessman and in theory a public servant. Trump could give federal construction contracts to the Trump organization or promise permits to companies in exchange for buying real estate from the Trump organization or influence banks to give his companies more favourable lending terms but threatening them with investigations and new regulations the possibilities of how to make money are endless provided you don't care about ethics and just want to make as much money as possible. If Trump wasn't exceedingly wealthy before he came into the White House he will be once he leaves.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 27, 2016, 07:32:17 AM
MonsterMash and le captain, good points and interesting thoughts. Thank you.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 27, 2016, 05:31:25 PM
“In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.”

  - Pres. Elect Donald Trump, offering all the evidence one would expect him to provide. Which is to say, of course, none.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 27, 2016, 09:06:49 PM
“In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.”

  - Pres. Elect Donald Trump, offering all the evidence one would expect him to provide. Which is to say, of course, none.
It was reported on his buddy Alex Jones' fake news and conspiracy site, InfoWars - 3,000,000 illegal votes! InfoWars' source was a guy who tweeted.

Our president-elect regularly spreads fake news.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 27, 2016, 09:39:54 PM
“In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.”

  - Pres. Elect Donald Trump, offering all the evidence one would expect him to provide. Which is to say, of course, none.
It was reported on his buddy Alex Jones' fake news and conspiracy site, InfoWars - 3,000,000 illegal votes! InfoWars' source was a guy who tweeted.

Our president-elect regularly spreads fake news.

He's going to muddy this talk about the popular vote into a complete stalemate, he operated like this throughout his whole campaign.

I bet within 2 weeks far fewer people will be talking about voting.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 28, 2016, 05:08:18 AM
Of course they are. It will be two more weeks since the last election and the next won't be for quite a while. Naturally there willl be less talk about voting. And there's no existing competition to have a stalemate over. I really just don't know what you're talking about.
However, back to the fake news topic and your enthusiasm for Trump's manipulation. You have asserted that willingness to lie and manipulate will make him a good president. I believe they will contribute to him being a bad president. Is there a point with you at which lying to "win" becomes a bad thing? Do you feel like policy based on improving actual reality, not based on manipulation, matters at all? Do you think that honesty matters at all? Do you think it's OK if a president sows discord and lies constantly, as long as he "wins"?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 28, 2016, 05:11:39 AM
Though here's an important voting topic that will be going on for years: http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/11/22/opinion/voting-rights-in-the-age-of-trump.html


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 28, 2016, 05:46:49 AM
I don't know if it's restricting voting rights, 1st amendment infringement, defunding public schools, or generally batshit-inflammatory military/security leaders that worries me most.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on November 28, 2016, 06:26:37 AM
Quote
Here's my take on Trump: he is a narcissistic petulant child. He really thinks it's "unfair" when SNL makes fun of him or when the media writes negative stories about him. He really thinks of the world  - of everything in the world - in terms of winning and losing - it's all a zero-sum game to him. And he's amoral and thinks it's fine to lie and say really awful things if he thinks it will help him win. He really doesn't grasp that there's a bigger meaning to what a presidential candidate says and does. And he probably thinks about policy as simplistically as he talks about policy and understands government as little as he seems to.
But I think he's also flexible - see the amoralism above. If he perceives that he will "win" at the presidency by toning it down, he will. The positions he took on the campaign trail were a combination of opportunism - what he perceived would get votes - and opportunism - what policies will actually benefit him personally. He'll certainly try to keep the latter, but the former he will only keep if he perceives that he gains more by keeping them than by losing them.
He's also sexist and believes in weird racial theories. He goes on about genetics and about having a smart uncle and being german so he's genetically better than other people. And I think he's authentically an asshole.

That's a pretty good description.  I like to view him as a dysfunctional, thin-skinned, poorly-formed adult.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 28, 2016, 07:42:39 AM
Of course they are. It will be two more weeks since the last election and the next won't be for quite a while. Naturally there willl be less talk about voting. And there's no existing competition to have a stalemate over. I really just don't know what you're talking about.
However, back to the fake news topic and your enthusiasm for Trump's manipulation. You have asserted that willingness to lie and manipulate will make him a good president. I believe they will contribute to him being a bad president. Is there a point with you at which lying to "win" becomes a bad thing? Do you feel like policy based on improving actual reality, not based on manipulation, matters at all? Do you think that honesty matters at all? Do you think it's OK if a president sows discord and lies constantly, as long as he "wins"?

Well, I walked into a minefield there didn't I?

The point that I was trying to get across was that with the new tweet about 3 million illegal votes, that's him using a rope-a-dope strategy. It might seem like a huge target and something to 'Gotcha!' him on, but I don't think anyone's going to land a punch. The angry people are just gonna wear themselves out. do some extreme fact checking and until the next big 'mistake' or whatever you wanna call it. 2 weeks from now, the popular vote argument will be completely defanged and won't come up much at all. He knows how to nullify an argument, and the guy is a pro at it. I mean, remember how big of a deal his tax returns were? It was meant to a bombshell, huge and people really hammered on about it. Well, the election has come and he managed to win without releasing them. It's pretty much been nullified.

I think Trump will be a good president, but we'll just have to wait and see. I don't think he's thin skinned or that he has a bad temperament either. One line during the campaign was 'A man who can be provoked by a tweet should not have his hands anywhere near the nuclear codes'. I think he's proven time and time again that HE is a master of provoking people in 140 or less, plenty of proof on this site alone.

As for the news, this election cycle the media just popped out non-stop propaganda on both sides, there has been collusion between major networks and political parties, so I think the term fake news stretches out way further than Alex Jones.

I probably skimmed over some of your points, so I'm sorry about that, but if you wanna have a proper back and forth about this, we should take it to the Campaign thread. I don't wanna take over The Captain's thread because it's being steered in a certain direction and I'd probably make it go round in circles.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 28, 2016, 07:44:42 AM
The Captain for president 2020! ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 28, 2016, 08:37:23 AM
It's not my thread, SinisterSmile. I just started to to move into current events rather than rehashing what went wrong in the campaign. By all means, contribute any such comments, arguments, etc you'd like.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 28, 2016, 11:08:16 AM
Gen Petraeus has apparently emerged as a kind of compromise candidate for State, with detractors for both Giuliani and Romney. It seems Trump's interest in protecting classified information is malleable when the crime is for the benefit of something he believes in: infidelity.

Imagine the childish nicknames he'd have earned had he been a presidential candidate!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 28, 2016, 07:02:25 PM
Of course they are. It will be two more weeks since the last election and the next won't be for quite a while. Naturally there willl be less talk about voting. And there's no existing competition to have a stalemate over. I really just don't know what you're talking about.
However, back to the fake news topic and your enthusiasm for Trump's manipulation. You have asserted that willingness to lie and manipulate will make him a good president. I believe they will contribute to him being a bad president. Is there a point with you at which lying to "win" becomes a bad thing? Do you feel like policy based on improving actual reality, not based on manipulation, matters at all? Do you think that honesty matters at all? Do you think it's OK if a president sows discord and lies constantly, as long as he "wins"?

Well, I walked into a minefield there didn't I?

The point that I was trying to get across was that with the new tweet about 3 million illegal votes, that's him using a rope-a-dope strategy. It might seem like a huge target and something to 'Gotcha!' him on, but I don't think anyone's going to land a punch. The angry people are just gonna wear themselves out. do some extreme fact checking and until the next big 'mistake' or whatever you wanna call it. 2 weeks from now, the popular vote argument will be completely defanged and won't come up much at all. He knows how to nullify an argument, and the guy is a pro at it. I mean, remember how big of a deal his tax returns were? It was meant to a bombshell, huge and people really hammered on about it. Well, the election has come and he managed to win without releasing them. It's pretty much been nullified.
I still don't understand what you're talking about. Recount or not, his tweet or not, people will still be very conscious that this was one of the least-popularly elected presidents in history. Unlike the Miss Universe pageant thing, that's not the sort of information historians and journalists forget. Regarding everyone else, it doesn't matter. He's no longer campaigning. Two months ago, your point might be valid. Right now, lying to manipulate people about this serves no purpose. The recount isn't a threat to him (though of course his tweet supports, incorrectly, that there should be a recount/investigation so he contradicted himself, as usual), and the popular vote point wouldn't continue to be brought up for long whether he tweeted or not. But his tweet is not going to stop people from mentioning it in discussions where it's pertinent. It's just pointless stupidity.
Regarding his taxes, it's quite obvious that his supporters never cared. He didn't affect that. The people who care care and the people who don't don't without regard to his tweets. It wasn't nullified with the people who care and he didn't convince those who care not to care.
I think Trump will be a good president, but we'll just have to wait and see. I don't think he's thin skinned or that he has a bad temperament either. One line during the campaign was 'A man who can be provoked by a tweet should not have his hands anywhere near the nuclear codes'. I think he's proven time and time again that HE is a master of provoking people in 140 or less, plenty of proof on this site alone.
Do you think provoking people is an important skill for a president?
As for the news, this election cycle the media just popped out non-stop propaganda on both sides, there has been collusion between major networks and political parties, so I think the term fake news stretches out way further than Alex Jones.
Indeed it stretches way further than Alex Jones, as I expressed in an earlier post. The "both sides" things is just factually a false equivalence.
I probably skimmed over some of your points, so I'm sorry about that, but if you wanna have a proper back and forth about this, we should take it to the Campaign thread. I don't wanna take over The Captain's thread because it's being steered in a certain direction and I'd probably make it go round in circles.
I'd appreciate it if you'd answer some of my questions. As I expressed earlier in this thread, I'm baffled by the spreading of fake news AS IF it's true when some of the people spreading it know it's false and don't profit from it. It's pretty clear there's a mass phenomenon of people knowing that fake news is the only justification for their candidate and, instead of thinking they should probably rethink their candidate, they decide to embrace fake news. You seem to be among them. So I'm curious - if fake news is necessary for your candidate, don't you think that reflects badly on the candidate? And now that he's president-elect, don't you think his continuing to spread fake news (ie. lying to the public in ways that are destructive to Democracy) is a problem? If not, why?
Everything you've said positive about trump is basically that you think he's a skillful liar and manipulator. Why does this translate to you, in the absence of decent policy proposals, to a likely good president? Do you feel that policy is completely unimportant and that the presidency is only about skillful public manipulation to garner presidential popularity? And is there a line you would draw when lying for political ends is inappropriate?
I sincerely do not understand the thinking and would appreciate if you would answer some of my questions.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 28, 2016, 07:06:14 PM
Gen Petraeus has apparently emerged as a kind of compromise candidate for State, with detractors for both Giuliani and Romney. It seems Trump's interest in protecting classified information is malleable when the crime is for the benefit of something he believes in: infidelity.

Imagine the childish nicknames he'd have earned had he been a presidential candidate!
I've known General Petraeus for many years. He's a nice and very smart man who acted out a sadly common mid-latish life ridicularity. I'm sorry to say that I still think that this would be a grossly hypocritical and inappropriate appointment.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 28, 2016, 10:05:31 PM
Quote
I still don't understand what you're talking about. Recount or not, his tweet or not, people will still be very conscious that this was one of the least-popularly elected presidents in history.
A lot of people on social media still haven't accepted him as President and are still clinging to the popular vote argument/vote recount in certain states. This tweet brings it up and forces people to process it. I don't think it's manipulation, it's negotiation. You might see it as whining or something else, I see it as a good move.

Quote
However, back to the fake news topic and your enthusiasm for Trump's manipulation. You have asserted that willingness to lie and manipulate will make him a good president. I believe they will contribute to him being a bad president.
I think he's playing the role of politician and he's light years ahead of anyone else at the moment, you make it sound like he's using mind control.

Quote
Is there a point with you at which lying to "win" becomes a bad thing?
Of course, I'll letcha know if we start going down that path.

Quote
Do you feel like policy based on improving actual reality, not based on manipulation, matters at all?
Sure. I think Trump will improve reality.

Quote
Do you think that honesty matters at all?
I think Trump has been the most honest of the politicians this cycle.

Quote
Do you think it's OK if a president sows discord and lies constantly, as long as he "wins"?
I think what Trump is doing is fine and that you might be overly critical, but we will just have to see how he acts as President.

Quote
Do you think provoking people is an important skill for a president?
Getting results is important, and Trump hasn't missed his mark yet.

Quote
Indeed it stretches way further than Alex Jones, as I expressed in an earlier post. The "both sides" things is just factually a false equivalence.
Well, we should figure out what real news is before we go further, because both sides are beyond dirty. We could really go back and forth with this one, so it's like only if you want to.

Quote
I'm baffled by the spreading of fake news AS IF it's true when some of the people spreading it know it's false and don't profit from it. It's pretty clear there's a mass phenomenon of people knowing that fake news is the only justification for their candidate and, instead of thinking they should probably rethink their candidate, they decide to embrace fake news. You seem to be among them. So I'm curious - if fake news is necessary for your candidate, don't you think that reflects badly on the candidate?
I still don't get all this fake news stuff. Hillary had CNN working overtime to protect her, are they real news?

Quote
And now that he's president-elect, don't you think his continuing to spread fake news (ie. lying to the public in ways that are destructive to Democracy) is a problem?
You say lying, I say negotiating. I don't think he's doing any damage with his tweets, I think we can both agree that he's a master baiter though, right?

Quote
Everything you've said positive about trump is basically that you think he's a skillful liar and manipulator.
Fantastic public speaker, excellent persuader, knows where and when to pick a fight. He's not the be all end all, but he has a lot of positives.

Quote
Why does this translate to you, in the absence of decent policy proposals, to a likely good president?
I can't give you the hard evidence you want, but just like when I predicted his win during the primaries, chalk it up to a gut feeling. He'll be good.

Quote
Do you feel that policy is completely unimportant and that the presidency is only about skillful public manipulation to garner presidential popularity?
Policy is important and I think Trump will surprise many of his naysayers when it comes to policy, not all but many. Watch this space.

Quote
And is there a line you would draw when lying for political ends is inappropriate?
Maybe if he got caught saying that he had private position and a public position on everything, and when questioned he blamed it on a Spielberg movie. I'd have to throw in the towel after that (this is a joke by the way)

Quote
I sincerely do not understand the thinking and would appreciate if you would answer some of my questions.
I would have appreciated discussing how Hillary's campaign failed without being called a woman hater, but you can't always get what you want.

Damn, wall of text. Sorry for any errors or mistakes in there



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SurfRiderHawaii on November 28, 2016, 10:27:16 PM
I am trying to understand why Jill Stein is pushing these recounts. Is she trying to deflect the fact that her candidacy greatly contributed to Trump's victory, and in doing so, environmental regulations will be rolled back by 70 years and the EPA gutted. I mean, really, what was she thinking when she ran. She arrived at the DNC escorted by a Fox News crew.

Great job Green Party and the dopes who voted for it!  All the while, wrapped up in the Dakota Pipeline protest. The pipeline which Trump is heavily invested in.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 29, 2016, 03:55:12 AM
Quote
I still don't understand what you're talking about. Recount or not, his tweet or not, people will still be very conscious that this was one of the least-popularly elected presidents in history.
A lot of people on social media still haven't accepted him as President and are still clinging to the popular vote argument/vote recount in certain states. This tweet brings it up and forces people to process it. I don't think it's manipulation, it's negotiation.
[\quote]
It really doesn't force people to process anything. It's a lie. You know it's a lie. And it's an irresponsible, destructive lie. It doesn't negotiate anything. It's a fact that he lost the popular vote by a whopping amount and the people who support him will take the lie as a further excuse to allow authoritarianism, which I'm guessing you think is a good thing at this point. But it will do nothing to reduce the fact that he lost the popular vote and since it's such a transparent lie, it won't affect anyone's knowledge or opinion on that.
Quote from: SinisterSmile link=topic=24566.msg596503#msg596503 date=1480399531
[quote
However, back to the fake news topic and your enthusiasm for Trump's manipulation. You have asserted that willingness to lie and manipulate will make him a good president. I believe they will contribute to him being a bad president.
I think he's playing the role of politician and he's light years ahead of anyone else at the moment, you make it sound like he's using mind control.

Quote
Is there a point with you at which lying to "win" becomes a bad thing?
Of course, I'll letcha know if we start going down that path.

Quote
Do you feel like policy based on improving actual reality, not based on manipulation, matters at all?
Sure. I think Trump will improve reality.

Quote
Do you think that honesty matters at all?
I think Trump has been the most honest of the politicians this cycle.

Quote
Do you think it's OK if a president sows discord and lies constantly, as long as he "wins"?
I think what Trump is doing is fine and that you might be overly critical, but we will just have to see how he acts as President.

Quote
Do you think provoking people is an important skill for a president?
Getting results is important, and Trump hasn't missed his mark yet.

Quote
Indeed it stretches way further than Alex Jones, as I expressed in an earlier post. The "both sides" things is just factually a false equivalence.
Well, we should figure out what real news is before we go further, because both sides are beyond dirty. We could really go back and forth with this one, so it's like only if you want to.

Quote
I'm baffled by the spreading of fake news AS IF it's true when some of the people spreading it know it's false and don't profit from it. It's pretty clear there's a mass phenomenon of people knowing that fake news is the only justification for their candidate and, instead of thinking they should probably rethink their candidate, they decide to embrace fake news. You seem to be among them. So I'm curious - if fake news is necessary for your candidate, don't you think that reflects badly on the candidate?
I still don't get all this fake news stuff. Hillary had CNN working overtime to protect her, are they real news?

Quote
And now that he's president-elect, don't you think his continuing to spread fake news (ie. lying to the public in ways that are destructive to Democracy) is a problem?
You say lying, I say negotiating. I don't think he's doing any damage with his tweets, I think we can both agree that he's a master baiter though, right?

Quote
Everything you've said positive about trump is basically that you think he's a skillful liar and manipulator.
Fantastic public speaker, excellent persuader, knows where and when to pick a fight. He's not the be all end all, but he has a lot of positives.

Quote
Why does this translate to you, in the absence of decent policy proposals, to a likely good president?
I can't give you the hard evidence you want, but just like when I predicted his win during the primaries, chalk it up to a gut feeling. He'll be good.

Quote
Do you feel that policy is completely unimportant and that the presidency is only about skillful public manipulation to garner presidential popularity?
Policy is important and I think Trump will surprise many of his naysayers when it comes to policy, not all but many. Watch this space.

Quote
And is there a line you would draw when lying for political ends is inappropriate?
Maybe if he got caught saying that he had private position and a public position on everything, and when questioned he blamed it on a Spielberg movie. I'd have to throw in the towel after that (this is a joke by the way)

Quote
I sincerely do not understand the thinking and would appreciate if you would answer some of my questions.
I would have appreciated discussing how Hillary's campaign failed without being called a woman hater, but you can't always get what you want.

Damn, wall of text. Sorry for any errors or mistakes in there


Wow. So you don't differentiate at all between news that reports actual facts, albeit with a slant, and news that is pure fiction?
And you don't see a problem with pressing discord and destruction in the guise of "negotiation"?
It's interesting, though, that you have ONLY listened to Trump and read his version of the news. It creates a very pure image of Trump-think.
Do you think it makes no difference what the president does as long as he's effective in doing it?
What do you believe, not in terms of slogans but in terms of actual policy, Trump's plans are, what do you believe he'll succeed in actually doing and how do you think those policies will make things actually better?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 07:15:54 AM
I am trying to understand why Jill Stein is pushing these recounts. Is she trying to deflect the fact that her candidacy greatly contributed to Trump's victory,

Except that it didn't in any way whatsoever that we know of. That is a complete fabrication.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 07:37:39 AM
I can't give you the hard evidence you want, but just like when I predicted his win during the primaries, chalk it up to a gut feeling. He'll be good.

OK, in that case, can you possibly answer some direct questions.

His tax plan to reduce the top tier tax percentage, has historically only led to the disenfranchisement of the working class, the dissipation of the middle class, the inflation of personal debt and the inflation of national debt. The difference between Trump and these previous cases is that he wishes to impose this policy in an even more extreme fashion. What do you think is good about that?

On election day, the World Meteorological Organization released information that illustrated uncontroversially the striking man made contributions to climate change. They noted that "2016 will be the hottest year on record," that "Concentrations of major greenhouse gases in the atmosphere continue to increase to new records," and that "there was significant and very early melting of the Greenland ice sheet." Trump's decision in this case is largely to ignore this. What do you think is good about that?

Furthermore, there have already been severe consequences as a result of these major environmental changes, not the least of which being environmental migration. As the WMO point out, "in 2015 there were 19.2 million new displacements associated with weather, water, climate and geophysical hazards in 113 countries, more than twice as many as for conflict and violence." In the upcoming years, no matter what Trump says about immigration, there will be simply no way he could ever possibly adhere to those standards, at least not without killing many people. What do you think is good about that?

Trump has made no bones about his opposition to basic entrenched rights. So, for example, he has argued that he is in favour of "expanding libel laws" to target news organizations who write things about him that he doesn't like. What do you think is good about that?

In terms of international policies, most politicians propose a coherent one, whether you can agree with it or not. Trump still hasn't put forward a consistent foreign policy. What do you think is good about that?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 07:45:15 AM
Don't forget reinstituting torture (contrary to international law and studies proving its ineffectiveness) and other punishments on free speech (beyond libel, such as threatening imprisonment or even revoking citizenship of people who burn the flag). Oh he's so clever! He's gonna be so great! I feel the country re-greatening already! ::)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 07:50:18 AM
Don't forget reinstituting torture (contrary to international law and studies proving its ineffectiveness)

Yes, what he's said there has been heinous, though I might file that under the "incoherent foreign policy" header, since he's reversed position on that. Sort of. In an unclear way. So ultimately, I feel like his torture comments come from a basic lack of clarity when it comes to international decisions.

Quote
and other punishments on free speech (beyond libel, such as threatening imprisonment or even revoking citizenship of people who burn the flag).

Yeah, that one I didn't add because I just saw it today and I am waiting to see how it plays out. But, yes, it's ridiculous.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 07:59:23 AM
Is she trying to deflect the fact that her candidacy greatly contributed to Trump's victory ...
Great job Green Party and the dopes who voted for it! 
The issue I have with people complaining about other voting blocs as “costing us the election” is twofold:
 
1) As I’ve argued before on this board, that assumes the people who voted otherwise wanted things to go your way, which by definition (e.g., voting for someone else), they didn’t. You can rant until you’re blue in the face that any reasonable person would blah blah blah lesser of two evils  blah blah blah logical conclusion. But it’s YOUR conclusion FOR THEM. Not their conclusion for themselves. If someone decides two the two most likely winners are both equally unacceptable, or even unequally unacceptable but unacceptable, that’s that. S/he can vote however s/he chooses.
 
2) You can select any segment of voters who didn’t vote your way and conduct the same exercise. You can blame Stein voters if you want, but why not blame the more progressive of the Johnson voters? If only they’d understood that Clinton was more likely to [pursue issue of choice] than Trump… Or blame the moderate Republicans who align with Clinton more than Trump on almost everything other than abortion, but still voted GOP out of the typical tribal loyalties, or maybe over the Supreme Court. Or blame the Democrats who stayed home. Or blame populist conservatives whose interests would be better served by Clinton than by the moron-wolf in populist's clothing. Or blame the progressive Democrats who align with Stein, but voted Clinton: those damn Clinton voters cost Stein the election (if you want to play that game). The scapegoat options are literally endless.
 
Point being, there are sufficient subgroups of non-Clinton voters who could have given Clinton a victory except for one major problem: they were voting for someone other than Clinton, which means THEY DIDN’T WANT CLINTON. They have no obligation to help Clinton supporters get their way. Everyone has a right to vote for the candidate of his or her own choice for whatever reason s/he finds persuasive. If your persuasion attempts are too weak to convince those people, that’s not their shortcoming.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 29, 2016, 09:21:09 AM
I also suspect that his "rigged" and "illegal votes" talk is a set-up to institute more voting restrictions.
And there are abortion rights.
And he and his education secretary both advocate cutting public education funding.
His infrastructure plan is just to give a bunch of money to private construction  companies (who work closely with real estate developers, of course).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 09:45:46 AM
Point being, there are sufficient subgroups of non-Clinton voters who could have given Clinton a victory except for one major problem: they were voting for someone other than Clinton, which means THEY DIDN’T WANT CLINTON. They have no obligation to help Clinton supporters get their way. Everyone has a right to vote for the candidate of his or her own choice for whatever reason s/he finds persuasive. If your persuasion attempts are too weak to convince those people, that’s not their shortcoming.

Excellent point. When the supporters of the liberal establishment aren't espousing a very odd strain of anti-democratic rhetoric, they are pointing fingers at everybody else who won't get in line. This is not particularly surprising. After all, this was a presidential candidate who privately said that the US should have flat-out undermined democracy in Palestine. And it's not surprising that the fingers are being pointed elsewhere. After all, the liberal establishment and their supporters fundamentally believe that their position is the right one. So, for them, it was inconceivable that the public didn't support Clinton because she was a bad candidate. And so a bunch of other reasons have to be invented. And, as you point out, this reasons are almost comically unending. Here's one that blames it on Jon Stewart retiring:

http://tvline.com/2016/11/11/hillary-clinton-elected-president-jon-stewart-daily-show/

And furthermore, one could ask Clinton supporters why they didn't apply this same standard to themselves when she was running up against Obama in 2008?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SurfRiderHawaii on November 29, 2016, 10:39:49 AM
I am trying to understand why Jill Stein is pushing these recounts. Is she trying to deflect the fact that her candidacy greatly contributed to Trump's victory,

Except that it didn't in any way whatsoever that we know of. That is a complete fabrication.

Except it's not! Your statement is like all the fake news going around. Multiple analysis from multiple sources confirm the conclusion. You simply are in denial on your wasted vote!

 http://www.cnn.com/2016/11/10/politics/gary-johnson-jill-stein-spoiler/index.html


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 10:44:25 AM
The story admits it is speculative.

Quote
It's impossible to know how an election could have gone under hypothetical scenarios ... If Johnson and Stein weren't in the race, it's also possible many of their supporters may have stayed home. But if about half of Johnson's supporters would have voted for Clinton over Trump, and if most of Stein's supporters broke for the Democrats, the electoral map would have been decidedly different.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 10:45:32 AM
I am trying to understand why Jill Stein is pushing these recounts. Is she trying to deflect the fact that her candidacy greatly contributed to Trump's victory,

Except that it didn't in any way whatsoever that we know of. That is a complete fabrication.

Except it's not! Your statement is like all the fake news going around. Multiple analysis from multiple sources confirm the conclusion. You simply are in denial on your wasted vote!

 http://www.cnn.com/2016/11/10/politics/gary-johnson-jill-stein-spoiler/index.html

We have talked about this before. As you know, the statistics show that even if every Jill Stein voter voted for Clinton, Trump would still be president. And none of the stories you are linking to say otherwise, except they are desperately attempting to massage the statistics to avoid the fact that Clinton lost because she was not a good candidate. This is why I find the term "fake news" somewhat problematic because the mainstream media is certainly as capable of being fake as any of the online sources.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 10:47:20 AM
Also isn't CSM Canadian, and this couldn't vote? If so, ORR, that's twice you've mistakenly blamed someone for "wasting" their votes: to me, when I voted the way you did, and I think to CSM, who can't vote in American elections. Please look before you leap for these erroneous conclusions and subsequent wrongful accusations.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 10:48:27 AM
Also isn't CSM Canadian, and this couldn't vote? If so, ORR, that's twice you've mistakenly blamed someone for "wasting" their votes: to me, when I voted the way you did, and I think to CSM, who can't vote in American elections. Please look before you leap for these erroneous conclusions and subsequent wrongful accusations.

Yes, and furthermore, on this very site, not long before the election, I said exactly what I said on this site about Obama in 2012, that the best solution would be to vote for Clinton in a swing state.

Here's where I say it: http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,20357.msg593278.html#msg593278

And here I am saying virtually the same thing about Obama in 2012: http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,14227.msg316114.html#msg316114


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SurfRiderHawaii on November 29, 2016, 10:58:57 AM
Is she trying to deflect the fact that her candidacy greatly contributed to Trump's victory ...
Great job Green Party and the dopes who voted for it!  
The issue I have with people complaining about other voting blocs as “costing us the election” is twofold:
 
1) As I’ve argued before on this board, that assumes the people who voted otherwise wanted things to go your way, which by definition (e.g., voting for someone else), they didn’t. You can rant until you’re blue in the face that any reasonable person would blah blah blah lesser of two evils  blah blah blah logical conclusion. But it’s YOUR conclusion FOR THEM. Not their conclusion for themselves. If someone decides two the two most likely winners are both equally unacceptable, or even unequally unacceptable but unacceptable, that’s that. S/he can vote however s/he chooses.
 
2) You can select any segment of voters who didn’t vote your way and conduct the same exercise. You can blame Stein voters if you want, but why not blame the more progressive of the Johnson voters? If only they’d understood that Clinton was more likely to [pursue issue of choice] than Trump… Or blame the moderate Republicans who align with Clinton more than Trump on almost everything other than abortion, but still voted GOP out of the typical tribal loyalties, or maybe over the Supreme Court. Or blame the Democrats who stayed home. Or blame populist conservatives whose interests would be better served by Clinton than by the moron-wolf in populist's clothing. Or blame the progressive Democrats who align with Stein, but voted Clinton: those damn Clinton voters cost Stein the election (if you want to play that game). The scapegoat options are literally endless.
 
Point being, there are sufficient subgroups of non-Clinton voters who could have given Clinton a victory except for one major problem: they were voting for someone other than Clinton, which means THEY DIDN’T WANT CLINTON. They have no obligation to help Clinton supporters get their way. Everyone has a right to vote for the candidate of his or her own choice for whatever reason s/he finds persuasive. If your persuasion attempts are too weak to convince those people, that’s not their shortcoming.

The great flaw in your continuing flawed argument is that:

A. There were only two candidates running who could possibly  be elected - Trump or Clinton. Like Clinton or not, her positions are light years in liberal contrast to Trump. My choice to be President  wasn't running so I had to choose between a known, unexciting career bureaucrat to a dangerous, right wing, buffoon!

B. If you are a left leaning person, your choice not to vote for Clinton was essentially a vote for Trump. The slim margins of the swing states were so close that you Stein votes swing it for Trump in several states.

C. Luther, you continue are argue against the choice YOU made. You said something like you pinched your nose and voted Clinton because the possibility of Trump was unacceptable!


Anyway, my post was mainly about Stein's motivation for a recount. This thread concerns post election developments.
Any theories on the recounts?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 11:09:25 AM
I argue against the choice I made because I acknowledge everyone's freedom to choose for him- or herself. I'm nothing special and may have chosen wrong. The argument that only the majors can ever win shows cowardice or lack of political imagination, really, and it's how the parties keep us in line.

I think the recounts are a waste of time, money, and energy, and do nothing but increase the already wide chasm between Americans despite no chance of changing anything. And even if they somehow showed a reversal of results in enough states to switch the result, how does that happen after a concession? What about the inevitable drawn-out lawsuits? Who would be president in the interim? Would both candidates' transition teams move forward? It's nonsense for no good reason. Trump won, unfortunately. People and parties who oppose him should put their own houses in order.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SurfRiderHawaii on November 29, 2016, 11:26:35 AM
The story admits it is speculative.

Quote
It's impossible to know how an election could have gone under hypothetical scenarios ... If Johnson and Stein weren't in the race, it's also possible many of their supporters may have stayed home. But if about half of Johnson's supporters would have voted for Clinton over Trump, and if most of Stein's supporters broke for the Democrats, the electoral map would have been decidedly different.



The story never uses that word or phrase. Arguably is a different word.

You sound like Trump. That climate change due to man made actions in speculative.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 11:34:38 AM
Now THAT is an absurd analogy. The story admits it is hypothetical, and goes on to say IF certain hypothetical scenarios played out a certain way (based on the third party candidates' own guesses and positioning, not on facts), THEN it could be true that the race would've turned out otherwise. Which is so obvious asbto not require even being stated. But so are literally countless other hypothetical but counter factual scenarios, as I outlined earlier.

In no way is that remotely similar to a climate change denier rejecting overwhelming evidence.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SurfRiderHawaii on November 29, 2016, 12:45:46 PM
Now THAT is an absurd analogy. The story admits it is hypothetical, and goes on to say IF certain hypothetical scenarios played out a certain way (based on the third party candidates' own guesses and positioning, not on facts), THEN it could be true that the race would've turned out otherwise. Which is so obvious asbto not require even being stated. But so are literally countless other hypothetical but counter factual scenarios, as I outlined earlier.

In no way is that remotely similar to a climate change denier rejecting overwhelming evidence.

The story uses none of those words. No speculative, no hypothetical. What is absurd is your determination to argue about anything and everything! Your own actions in voting Clinton contradict your own speculation.

Seems you'd rather argue about this than address the recount question as it adds to the perception that Stein now feels a responsibility for helping elect Trump.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 01:04:49 PM
The story admits it is speculative.

Quote
It's impossible to know how an election could have gone under hypothetical scenarios ... If Johnson and Stein weren't in the race, it's also possible many of their supporters may have stayed home. But if about half of Johnson's supporters would have voted for Clinton over Trump, and if most of Stein's supporters broke for the Democrats, the electoral map would have been decidedly different.



I do like to debate, that's true. But I think you're mistaken about the article: the part I quoted (and re-quoted here for convenience) most certainly says "hypothetical," and then lays out a hypothetical outcome. Maybe I'm fucking up somewhere, as I am semi-sneakily doing all this on my phone at work...

I'll dig in more later. Because it's fun.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 02:18:49 PM
Now THAT is an absurd analogy. The story admits it is hypothetical, and goes on to say IF certain hypothetical scenarios played out a certain way (based on the third party candidates' own guesses and positioning, not on facts), THEN it could be true that the race would've turned out otherwise. Which is so obvious asbto not require even being stated. But so are literally countless other hypothetical but counter factual scenarios, as I outlined earlier.

In no way is that remotely similar to a climate change denier rejecting overwhelming evidence.

The story uses none of those words. No speculative, no hypothetical. What is absurd is your determination to argue about anything and everything! Your own actions in voting Clinton contradict your own speculation.

Seems you'd rather argue about this than address the recount question as it adds to the perception that Stein now feels a responsibility for helping elect Trump.

That may be the perception, but even if Stein felt that way she would be wrong since thus far no evidence suggests that she did help elect Trump. Personally, I think that she is active on this issue because she was the one candidate who actively tried to do the right thing, rather than serve the interests of others.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 02:54:31 PM
I must also say, again, that I find this discussion particularly unfortunate in light of the fact that in 2008, Clinton supporters were adamant  about not supporting Obama. Indeed, in one poll 38% of Clinton supporters said they would vote for McCain over Obama. The fact that the conversation in 2016 became about how Bernie Sanders supporters and indeed Sanders himself were not quick enough to throw their support behind Clinton, then about how Stein supporters should be voting for Clinton is simply textbook hypocrisy and the gall that has been shown on this issue is off the charts. But there is a particular characteristic amongst Clinton supporters, and I can't say it's a good one, where the sentiment seems to be that she should simply be unopposed. But I find the argument very unconvincing and, also, obscenely hypocritical.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 03:04:16 PM
The story admits it is speculative.

Quote
It's impossible to know how an election could have gone under hypothetical scenarios ... If Johnson and Stein weren't in the race, it's also possible many of their supporters may have stayed home. But if about half of Johnson's supporters would have voted for Clinton over Trump, and if most of Stein's supporters broke for the Democrats, the electoral map would have been decidedly different.



I do like to debate, that's true. But I think you're mistaken about the article: the part I quoted (and re-quoted here for convenience) most certainly says "hypothetical," and then lays out a hypothetical outcome. Maybe I'm fucking up somewhere, as I am semi-sneakily doing all this on my phone at work...

I'll dig in more later. Because it's fun.

ORR, I was not mistaken. I correctly quoted the article. Paragraph four is where my quote (requoted above) begins. Note: hypothetical. Then it goes on to do exactly as I said, which was lay out a counterfactual outcome that could have been different if Stein AND Johnson voters had voted according to those candidates' speculation, polling, or messaging. However, their logic was this to assign those votes to Clinton:
  • Johnson said he believed his supporters would draw equally from Trump and Clinton.
  • The article said Stein "made a constant, explicit appeal to disenchanted Democrats and former supporters of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders"

From those two debatable "facts," it said that IF those people (half of Johnson's and all of Stein's) voters had indeed voted half and half, and for Clinton, respectively, then Clinton would have won. And I say again, well, duh. But there is no reason to believe a) those two items were necessarily true, especially the first one, and b) that they would indeed vote that way if not for Johnson and Stein, respectively. That is speculative. Which is what I said. Correctly.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 03:05:44 PM

Seems you'd rather argue about this than address the recount question as it adds to the perception that Stein now feels a responsibility for helping elect Trump.

The reason I don't want to argue about the perception of Stein's feelings is that I can't possibly know Stein's feelings and "the perception" begs the question "among whom?" I don't care who perceives what about someone else's feelings. But I did explain my thoughts about the recount already.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 03:10:07 PM
The swamp is drained just a little bit more with yet another stellar, "everyman" cabinet nomination: former Goldman Sachs partner and hedge fund manager Steven Mnuchin. Finally, someone who understands Joe Average will change the culture of that revolving door between Goldman Sachs and Washing--oh. Oh, wait. Never mind.

Trump supporters are paying attention, I hope. He sure told it like it is. Nothing but the truth, straight talk. For f***'s sake.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 29, 2016, 03:18:23 PM
True that Cap... :'(


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 29, 2016, 03:20:08 PM
Point being, there are sufficient subgroups of non-Clinton voters who could have given Clinton a victory except for one major problem: they were voting for someone other than Clinton, which means THEY DIDN’T WANT CLINTON. They have no obligation to help Clinton supporters get their way. Everyone has a right to vote for the candidate of his or her own choice for whatever reason s/he finds persuasive. If your persuasion attempts are too weak to convince those people, that’s not their shortcoming.

Excellent point. When the supporters of the liberal establishment aren't espousing a very odd strain of anti-democratic rhetoric, they are pointing fingers at everybody else who won't get in line. This is not particularly surprising. After all, this was a presidential candidate who privately said that the US should have flat-out undermined democracy in Palestine. And it's not surprising that the fingers are being pointed elsewhere. After all, the liberal establishment and their supporters fundamentally believe that their position is the right one. So, for them, it was inconceivable that the public didn't support Clinton because she was a bad candidate. And so a bunch of other reasons have to be invented. And, as you point out, this reasons are almost comically unending. Here's one that blames it on Jon Stewart retiring:

http://tvline.com/2016/11/11/hillary-clinton-elected-president-jon-stewart-daily-show/

And furthermore, one could ask Clinton supporters why they didn't apply this same standard to themselves when she was running up against Obama in 2008?
My reasons for supporting Clinton are:
1. Not Trump.
2. The fake-scandal machine is sick and should be eradicated. I don't think she would be able to do anything about it, but the notion of a victory for the fake-scandal machine is about as negative to me as a victory for Trump. They are two sides of the same misinformation coin.
3. I think the situation of women in our culture one generation down the road would be greatly improved by the simple fact of having had a woman president.
4.  Pragmatism and not being particularly impressed that Sanders or Stein had a chance or would be effective. Johnson wasn't an option for me.

Reason 4 is not a reason to have an issue with anyone who supported Stein, Johnson or Sanders. Reason 2 isn't either, if I felt that Stein, Johnson and Sanders and their supporters were making sufficient effort to combat the fake scandals and news. It's not purely Clinton, of course. It's Obama too. And it would have been them had they gained a major party nomination or sufficient support to be competitive. It's the way the right has been operating for years, but it has now involved sufficient portions of the population that not only congressional and local and state seats, but the presidency, has been affected by it. I don't know how much time you guys spend looking at right-wing non-traditional media, but it's extreme, it's dangerous, it's a false reality, and it's popular. My understanding is that you believe this is an understandable choice by people disaffected by the economy or by government, but on that basis, the votes should have been somewhat even across ethnicities, unless one believes that only white people are disaffected by the economy or government.
I find it impossible to believe that the right-wing political-media machine is not affecting elections based on complete falsity. And maybe you guys are young, but that is not a usual circumstance. It's a new and extremely dangerous circumstance. So, to the degree that I haven't seen Sanders/Stein/Johnson supporters object vociferously and urgently to this facet of the campaign, and to the degree that I've actually seen them further it, either out of ignorance or opportunism, I'm pretty disturbed and put off by the "left" options.
For the first reason, I'm disappointed in anyone who didn't consider that a primary imperative.

CSM, what did you mean by the very last line of the quoted post? - oh - I missed your post that furthered that thought. I agree that the not-getting-behind-Obama was problematic. However, that ignores the Trump is singularly awful dimension.  And, while Clinton supporters engaged in that, Clinton herself certainly did not.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 03:37:36 PM
The fake news thing is a real, huge, and terrifying development. There have always been lies spread through elections, but in my younger days you'd hear about things like flyers being placed on cars outside of churches in South Carolina. I mean, they were smear campaigns, for sure, but they had a hard time disseminating them so broadly because that was expensive. The internet has lowered the bar for entry so much, and the incessant attack on real media has turned opinion to a false equivalence: "it's all slanted for or against one team or the other, so it's all the same. I pick this one."


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 29, 2016, 03:51:57 PM
Regarding "blame", it's a pointless exercise, but of course everyone who was eligible and did not vote for Clinton in the states she lost, and everyone who did vote for Trump in those states, is responsible for the outcome.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 03:57:09 PM
My reasons for supporting Clinton are:
1. Not Trump.
2. The fake-scandal machine is sick and should be eradicated. I don't think she would be able to do anything about it, but the notion of a victory for the fake-scandal machine is about as negative to me as a victory for Trump. They are two sides of the same misinformation coin.
3. I think the situation of women in our culture one generation down the road would be greatly improved by the simple fact of having had a woman president.
4.  Pragmatism and not being particularly impressed that Sanders or Stein had a chance or would be effective. Johnson wasn't an option for me.

Reason 4 is not a reason to have an issue with anyone who supported Stein, Johnson or Sanders. Reason 2 isn't either, if I felt that Stein, Johnson and Sanders and their supporters were making sufficient effort to combat the fake scandals and news. It's not purely Clinton, of course. It's Obama too. And it would have been them had they gained a major party nomination or sufficient support to be competitive. It's the way the right has been operating for years, but it has now involved sufficient portions of the population that not only congressional and local and state seats, but the presidency, has been affected by it. I don't know how much time you guys spend looking at right-wing non-traditional media, but it's extreme, it's dangerous, it's a false reality, and it's popular. My understanding is that you believe this is an understandable choice by people disaffected by the economy or by government, but on that basis, the votes should have been somewhat even across ethnicities, unless one believes that only white people are disaffected by the economy or government.
I find it impossible to believe that the right-wing political-media machine is not affecting elections based on complete falsity. And maybe you guys are young, but that is not a usual circumstance. It's a new and extremely dangerous circumstance. So, to the degree that I haven't seen Sanders/Stein/Johnson supporters object vociferously and urgently to this facet of the campaign, and to the degree that I've actually seen them further it, either out of ignorance or opportunism, I'm pretty disturbed and put off by the "left" options.
For the first reason, I'm disappointed in anyone who didn't consider that a primary imperative.

CSM, what did you mean by the very last line of the quoted post? - oh - I missed your post that furthered that thought. I agree that the not-getting-behind-Obama was problematic. However, that ignores the Trump is singularly awful dimension.  And, while Clinton supporters engaged in that, Clinton herself certainly did not.

First I should say that from our discussions here, I don't necessarily consider you to be a supporter of the liberal establishment, which was who my post was largely critical of. And as for the last point, I am making a similar case regarding Clinton supporters, not about Clinton herself. I will say, though, that I'm not particularly convinced by the response that Trump is what made this particular time different. After all, both the events leading up to the election and most respected studies demonstrated that if people were particularly concerned about the unique dangers of Trump then they would have been better off backing Sanders rather than Clinton. But that's not what happened.  I'm sure it's the case that Clinton did not encourage her supporters to vote for the Republican party. And personally I am not particularly bothered by the fact that these voters didn't vote for Obama, but, to use a cliche, what's good for the goose is good for the gander, and the fact that Clinton supporters are now being critical of Stein voters and Sanders supporters is disturbing.

As for your points, I agree with your first point, as I did say that if I had the chance, I would have also voted against Trump in swing states by voting for Clinton.

While I think I see your point about the fake-scandal machine, I'm not sure I fully understand. Are you saying that it was the responsibility of Sanders and Stein the counteract the fake news stories that were generally not coming from their side and their base that was directed towards their opponent? If that's the case, was Clinton responsible for making a statement about the hit pieces on Stein based largely off of fabricated information coming out of the liberal establishment? And while you note that you haven't seen Sanders and Stein (I am avoiding Johnson because I think he's a lunatic) object "vociferously and urgently to this facet of the campaign," I might counter that by saying that the best way to object to it is to promote critical thinking. And, in my view, no two opponents were doing that more than Sanders and Stein, but certainly not Trump and certainly not Clinton. I don't think you can convincingly object to deceptive media while simultaneously being outed for telling Wall Street big wigs that you have a private policy that is different from your public policy, or that the US should have been more active in undermining democracy in foreign countries. In my view, you combat distortions with honesty and critical thinking, and I think many voters out there quite rightly thought that Clinton was ineffective in doing that. I would argue that Sanders and Stein, though, were far more effective on those issues.

I agree with your third point. Just as I thought Obama's victory was symbolically important, so too would Clinton's victory. Again, though, I am speaking about a certain sector of the population who are eagerly demonizing Jill Stein, so from that quarter, I don't find the argument convincing. But, personally, I do think that it is important to have a woman be president, for the reasons that you describe, and it is a genuine scandal that there have been no women presidents historically in the country. That said, is gender reason enough to vote for someone? I might ask what effect Margaret Thatcher had on the women of England. It's hard to say - maybe it was positive, but what we know for sure is that under Thatcher, poverty skyrocketed, including three times as much child poverty, millions of children became malnourished, formerly eradicated diseases returned, etc. In that case, I would have urged voters in England to vote against Thatcher, even if there would have been a symbolic value of having a female prime minister. So I do agree that this is an important value, I also think that there are competing values that need to be considered.

As for your fourth point, I do agree that Stein would have had no chance at winning the election. But given the climate of this election, I think just about every solid study suggests that Sanders would have had a better chance at beating Trump than Clinton. However, as I noted in my post above, it's a strange symptom of the Clinton supporters to eliminate any possible opposition so Sanders had to go. It was, in my view, the wrong choice but not surprising.

At this point, though, we have to recognize the fact that Clinton got nearly as many votes as Obama did in the previous election so it becomes difficult to say for sure exactly what the strategy could have been apart from running a better candidate in a more well-functioning democratic system.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 29, 2016, 04:00:10 PM
Regarding "blame", it's a pointless exercise, but of course everyone who was eligible and did not vote for Clinton in the states she lost, and everyone who did vote for Trump in those states, is responsible for the outcome.
That, I agree with. But further, every voter (and eligible non-voter) is in part responsible for the outcome, because the outcome is the result of every vote and (eligible) non-vote.

But mostly, I think the blaming stuff is childish and counterproductive. Understanding reality and your contribution (or lack of same) to it is good. Making a point of calling out people who differed with you with "Shame! Blame!" isn't good.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 29, 2016, 05:56:36 PM
Quote from: Emily
Wow. So you don't differentiate at all between news that reports actual facts, albeit with a slant, and news that is pure fiction?
Tell me what real news is, and I'll try present my case better.
Quote from: Emily
And you don't see a problem with pressing discord and destruction in the guise of "negotiation"?
I don't have a problem with his tweets. It gets people talking and if he's straight lying, he can be easily fact checked.
Quote from: Emily
It's interesting, though, that you have ONLY listened to Trump and read his version of the news. It creates a very pure image of Trump-think.
I don't follow news sites at all, I do my own research and followed both candidates on twitter. Earlier you told me that Trump only got the nomination due to extreme luck. Do you still think it was luck that allowed him to win the election?
Quote from: Emily
Do you think it makes no difference what the president does as long as he's effective in doing it?
More than one way to skin a cat. He isn't operating in the box that people are trying to place on him, and I understand how that can be upsetting. Don't think he's committed any big sins yet.
Quote from: Emily
What do you believe, not in terms of slogans but in terms of actual policy, Trump's plans are, what do you believe he'll succeed in actually doing and how do you think those policies will make things actually better?
This will either make you scoff or make you laugh, but I don't really worry about the policy. I'm sure someone more eloquent than me could make a good case for Trump's policy, but it's not my strong suit. He's super adaptable to his climate and can take constructive criticism, so I believe he'll do a good job. I'm going to bet that everything will be just fine, his policy and temperament isn't going to destroy the world and we'll keep slowly going forward. Baby steps.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 29, 2016, 06:11:56 PM
I can't give you the hard evidence you want, but just like when I predicted his win during the primaries, chalk it up to a gut feeling. He'll be good.

OK, in that case, can you possibly answer some direct questions.

His tax plan to reduce the top tier tax percentage, has historically only led to the disenfranchisement of the working class, the dissipation of the middle class, the inflation of personal debt and the inflation of national debt. The difference between Trump and these previous cases is that he wishes to impose this policy in an even more extreme fashion. What do you think is good about that?

On election day, the World Meteorological Organization released information that illustrated uncontroversially the striking man made contributions to climate change. They noted that "2016 will be the hottest year on record," that "Concentrations of major greenhouse gases in the atmosphere continue to increase to new records," and that "there was significant and very early melting of the Greenland ice sheet." Trump's decision in this case is largely to ignore this. What do you think is good about that?

Furthermore, there have already been severe consequences as a result of these major environmental changes, not the least of which being environmental migration. As the WMO point out, "in 2015 there were 19.2 million new displacements associated with weather, water, climate and geophysical hazards in 113 countries, more than twice as many as for conflict and violence." In the upcoming years, no matter what Trump says about immigration, there will be simply no way he could ever possibly adhere to those standards, at least not without killing many people. What do you think is good about that?

Trump has made no bones about his opposition to basic entrenched rights. So, for example, he has argued that he is in favour of "expanding libel laws" to target news organizations who write things about him that he doesn't like. What do you think is good about that?

In terms of international policies, most politicians propose a coherent one, whether you can agree with it or not. Trump still hasn't put forward a consistent foreign policy. What do you think is good about that?

I think all of these can be summed up by saying lets just wait and see what happens. We've only seen the trailer, the movie hasn't begun yet and there's plenty of twists and turns ahead. That's my very simplified version. I think he'll do well and that's my feeling.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on November 29, 2016, 06:12:59 PM
Quote
This will either make you scoff or make you laugh, but I don't really worry about the policy. I'm sure someone more eloquent than me could make a good case for Trump's policy, but it's not my strong suit.
If the policy means nothing to you, then what is the reason for voting for him (or anybody, for that matter)?

Quote
I'm going to bet that everything will be just fine, his policy and temperament isn't going to destroy the world and we'll keep slowly going forward.

Depends on who you mean by "we". Those who aren't in the upper tax brackets may disagree with  you.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 29, 2016, 06:14:02 PM

First I should say that from our discussions here, I don't necessarily consider you to be a supporter of the liberal establishment, which was who my post was largely critical of. And as for the last point, I am making a similar case regarding Clinton supporters, not about Clinton herself. I will say, though, that I'm not particularly convinced by the response that Trump is what made this particular time different. After all, both the events leading up to the election and most respected studies demonstrated that if people were particularly concerned about the unique dangers of Trump then they would have been better off backing Sanders rather than Clinton. But that's not what happened.  I'm sure it's the case that Clinton did not encourage her supporters to vote for the Republican party. And personally I am not particularly bothered by the fact that these voters didn't vote for Obama, but, to use a cliche, what's good for the goose is good for the gander, and the fact that Clinton supporters are now being critical of Stein voters and Sanders supporters is disturbing.

As for your points, I agree with your first point, as I did say that if I had the chance, I would have also voted against Trump in swing states by voting for Clinton.

While I think I see your point about the fake-scandal machine, I'm not sure I fully understand. Are you saying that it was the responsibility of Sanders and Stein the counteract the fake news stories that were generally not coming from their side and their base that was directed towards their opponent? If that's the case, was Clinton responsible for making a statement about the hit pieces on Stein based largely off of fabricated information coming out of the liberal establishment? And while you note that you haven't seen Sanders and Stein (I am avoiding Johnson because I think he's a lunatic) object "vociferously and urgently to this facet of the campaign," I might counter that by saying that the best way to object to it is to promote critical thinking. And, in my view, no two opponents were doing that more than Sanders and Stein, but certainly not Trump and certainly not Clinton. I don't think you can convincingly object to deceptive media while simultaneously being outed for telling Wall Street big wigs that you have a private policy that is different from your public policy, or that the US should have been more active in undermining democracy in foreign countries. In my view, you combat distortions with honesty and critical thinking, and I think many voters out there quite rightly thought that Clinton was ineffective in doing that. I would argue that Sanders and Stein, though, were far more effective on those issues.
I was specifically referring to Sanders and Stein supporters rather than Sanders and Stein themselves: I have not seen their supporters make a point of objecting to the dominance of fake news in this campaign and I have seen them further fake news, which was disappointing. I certainly think that they (the supporters) have a responsibility (as does everyone) to object to and to not further fake news. When I've seen Sanders supporters further fake things against Clinton, I'm sorry to say that it unfairly gave me a bad feeling about Sanders, which I tried to overcome but found difficult. But beyond supporters, yes, I think ALL candidates and in fact everybody, public or private, has a responsibility to make an effort to combat the scourge. And I was very disappointed overall at the population in general for not combatting it more strongly and at non-Clinton supporters for sitting by and watching it happen without objecting further. The fact that you don't support Clinton is not an excuse for not trying to stop something that is so extremely destructive to a system in which the government is chosen by general public elections. But yes, Stein, Clinton, Sanders, Johnson, Obama, and even Trump, as people who are or seek to be leaders in that government, that relies on informed citizens for wise selections, should be particularly active in denouncing false information.
Regarding critical thinking - there's a lot of space between someone who wants to defund public education and someone who doesn't; someone who is allied with people who explicitly put in their party platform that they don't support teaching critical thinking because it has "the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority" and someone who doesn't; someone who is a science denier and allies himself with people who want to teach creationism "alongside" evolution. Yes, Clinton is a cynic about politics (perhaps deservedly so given the treatment she's received), but to lump her with Trump in terms of education seems a bit much.
[/quote]
I agree with your third point. Just as I thought Obama's victory was symbolically important, so too would Clinton's victory. Again, though, I am speaking about a certain sector of the population who are eagerly demonizing Jill Stein, so from that quarter, I don't find the argument convincing. But, personally, I do think that it is important to have a woman be president, for the reasons that you describe, and it is a genuine scandal that there have been no women presidents historically in the country. That said, is gender reason enough to vote for someone? I might ask what effect Margaret Thatcher had on the women of England. It's hard to say - maybe it was positive, but what we know for sure is that under Thatcher, poverty skyrocketed, including three times as much child poverty, millions of children became malnourished, formerly eradicated diseases returned, etc. In that case, I would have urged voters in England to vote against Thatcher, even if there would have been a symbolic value of having a female prime minister. So I do agree that this is an important value, I also think that there are competing values that need to be considered.
I don't disagree with this in the least.
As for your fourth point, I do agree that Stein would have had no chance at winning the election. But given the climate of this election, I think just about every solid study suggests that Sanders would have had a better chance at beating Trump than Clinton. However, as I noted in my post above, it's a strange symptom of the Clinton supporters to eliminate any possible opposition so Sanders had to go. It was, in my view, the wrong choice but not surprising.

At this point, though, we have to recognize the fact that Clinton got nearly as many votes as Obama did in the previous election so it becomes difficult to say for sure exactly what the strategy could have been apart from running a better candidate in a more well-functioning democratic system.
I'm curious about the studies to which you refer. I've not seen them and based on the information I have, I don't suspect Sanders would have had a better outcome, so they must be taking something into account that I am not, or have analyzed data differently. Can you provide links?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 06:22:41 PM
I can't give you the hard evidence you want, but just like when I predicted his win during the primaries, chalk it up to a gut feeling. He'll be good.

OK, in that case, can you possibly answer some direct questions.

His tax plan to reduce the top tier tax percentage, has historically only led to the disenfranchisement of the working class, the dissipation of the middle class, the inflation of personal debt and the inflation of national debt. The difference between Trump and these previous cases is that he wishes to impose this policy in an even more extreme fashion. What do you think is good about that?

On election day, the World Meteorological Organization released information that illustrated uncontroversially the striking man made contributions to climate change. They noted that "2016 will be the hottest year on record," that "Concentrations of major greenhouse gases in the atmosphere continue to increase to new records," and that "there was significant and very early melting of the Greenland ice sheet." Trump's decision in this case is largely to ignore this. What do you think is good about that?

Furthermore, there have already been severe consequences as a result of these major environmental changes, not the least of which being environmental migration. As the WMO point out, "in 2015 there were 19.2 million new displacements associated with weather, water, climate and geophysical hazards in 113 countries, more than twice as many as for conflict and violence." In the upcoming years, no matter what Trump says about immigration, there will be simply no way he could ever possibly adhere to those standards, at least not without killing many people. What do you think is good about that?

Trump has made no bones about his opposition to basic entrenched rights. So, for example, he has argued that he is in favour of "expanding libel laws" to target news organizations who write things about him that he doesn't like. What do you think is good about that?

In terms of international policies, most politicians propose a coherent one, whether you can agree with it or not. Trump still hasn't put forward a consistent foreign policy. What do you think is good about that?

I think all of these can be summed up by saying lets just wait and see what happens. We've only seen the trailer, the movie hasn't begun yet and there's plenty of twists and turns ahead. That's my very simplified version. I think he'll do well and that's my feeling.

Okay, but based on what? Because I could, say, point to the policies of Bernie Sanders and Jill Stein and specifically say why I think they'd do a good job. Furthermore, I could distinguish between the Clinton policies and the Trump policies to point out why Clinton would do a better job than Trump. So, I'm curious why you think he'd do a good job, because merely saying that you think he will is meaningless.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 29, 2016, 06:37:29 PM
Quote from: Emily
Wow. So you don't differentiate at all between news that reports actual facts, albeit with a slant, and news that is pure fiction?
Tell me what real news is, and I'll try present my case better.
News based on facts, not fiction.
Quote from: Emily
And you don't see a problem with pressing discord and destruction in the guise of "negotiation"?
I don't have a problem with his tweets. It gets people talking and if he's straight lying, he can be easily fact checked.
So you are fine with the constant misinformation emanating from him and his campaign and his allies? And you're fine with him encouraging his supporters in their misinformed evaluation of, say, the effects and degree of illegal immigration and about the level of violent crime committed by illegal immigrants? And you're fine with him implying - actually straight out saying, really - that American Muslims, as a class, protect terrorists and don't cooperate with law enforcement? Don't you see that this kind of thing encourages violence? Is that really OK with you?
Quote from: Emily
It's interesting, though, that you have ONLY listened to Trump and read his version of the news. It creates a very pure image of Trump-think.
I don't follow news sites at all, I do my own research and followed both candidates on twitter. Earlier you told me that Trump only got the nomination due to extreme luck. Do you still think it was luck that allowed him to win the election?
In your own research you didn't learn that the original speech in which Clinton made the public/private remark was her talking it in the context of the Lincoln movie. That that was where the quote came from? Apparently not - because you repeated Trump's line about her "blaming" Lincoln. It's pretty clear from the original context that she meant, though it was badly worded, as she explained in the debate, that for a politician, public speaking is about ideals and goals, while the private work is about compromise, exchange and negotiation. That's just a fact of our system. It seems from things you've said here and on the other thread that your research is limited to one-sided sources.
Quote from: Emily
Do you think it makes no difference what the president does as long as he's effective in doing it?
More than one way to skin a cat. He isn't operating in the box that people are trying to place on him, and I understand how that can be upsetting. Don't think he's committed any big sins yet.


Quote from: Emily
What do you believe, not in terms of slogans but in terms of actual policy, Trump's plans are, what do you believe he'll succeed in actually doing and how do you think those policies will make things actually better?
This will either make you scoff or make you laugh, but I don't really worry about the policy. I'm sure someone more eloquent than me could make a good case for Trump's policy, but it's not my strong suit. He's super adaptable to his climate and can take constructive criticism, so I believe he'll do a good job. I'm going to bet that everything will be just fine, his policy and temperament isn't going to destroy the world and we'll keep slowly going forward. Baby steps.
No. No one more eloquent than you can make a good case for Trump's policies. So basically you just have a crush on him. OK.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 29, 2016, 06:43:33 PM
Quote from: ♩♬☮ Vegan ♯♫♩☮
If the policy means nothing to you, then what is the reason for voting for him (or anybody, for that matter)?
I'm not American, so I didn't vote. This election wasn't won on policy, so that's why I'm not invested that deeply in it, but if he stays as adaptable as he was during the campaign, I think you're country is in good, large hands. He's great at controlling a situation.

Quote
Depends on who you mean by "we". Those who aren't in the upper tax brackets may disagree with  you.
The world generally. There's been stacks of gloom and doom, talks about secret nazi factions and general hysteria. I don't think the world is gonna do a 180, 8 years from now most people will wonder what all the fuss was about.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 29, 2016, 06:47:53 PM
I can't give you the hard evidence you want, but just like when I predicted his win during the primaries, chalk it up to a gut feeling. He'll be good.

OK, in that case, can you possibly answer some direct questions.

His tax plan to reduce the top tier tax percentage, has historically only led to the disenfranchisement of the working class, the dissipation of the middle class, the inflation of personal debt and the inflation of national debt. The difference between Trump and these previous cases is that he wishes to impose this policy in an even more extreme fashion. What do you think is good about that?

On election day, the World Meteorological Organization released information that illustrated uncontroversially the striking man made contributions to climate change. They noted that "2016 will be the hottest year on record," that "Concentrations of major greenhouse gases in the atmosphere continue to increase to new records," and that "there was significant and very early melting of the Greenland ice sheet." Trump's decision in this case is largely to ignore this. What do you think is good about that?

Furthermore, there have already been severe consequences as a result of these major environmental changes, not the least of which being environmental migration. As the WMO point out, "in 2015 there were 19.2 million new displacements associated with weather, water, climate and geophysical hazards in 113 countries, more than twice as many as for conflict and violence." In the upcoming years, no matter what Trump says about immigration, there will be simply no way he could ever possibly adhere to those standards, at least not without killing many people. What do you think is good about that?

Trump has made no bones about his opposition to basic entrenched rights. So, for example, he has argued that he is in favour of "expanding libel laws" to target news organizations who write things about him that he doesn't like. What do you think is good about that?

In terms of international policies, most politicians propose a coherent one, whether you can agree with it or not. Trump still hasn't put forward a consistent foreign policy. What do you think is good about that?

I think all of these can be summed up by saying lets just wait and see what happens. We've only seen the trailer, the movie hasn't begun yet and there's plenty of twists and turns ahead. That's my very simplified version. I think he'll do well and that's my feeling.

Okay, but based on what? Because I could, say, point to the policies of Bernie Sanders and Jill Stein and specifically say why I think they'd do a good job. Furthermore, I could distinguish between the Clinton policies and the Trump policies to point out why Clinton would do a better job than Trump. So, I'm curious why you think he'd do a good job, because merely saying that you think he will is meaningless.

Based on how well he ran his campaign, his persuasion skills and his negotiating skills. For a man with no political experience, he passed the job interview with flying colours and surprised many people. I believe he'll continue to do so. It's all very fluid.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 06:51:05 PM
Based on how well he ran his campaign, his persuasion skills and his negotiating skills. For a man with no political experience, he passed the job interview with flying colours and surprised many people. I believe he'll continue to do so. It's all very fluid.

OK, but I'm still a bit confused. His policies suggest disaster. So are you saying that when this disaster inevitably comes, he will be really good at convincing people that he wasn't responsible? Because if that's your argument, I might agree.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 29, 2016, 07:06:27 PM
Quote from: Emily
News based on facts, not fiction.
I mean, could you list a couple?

Quote from: Emily
So you are fine with the constant misinformation emanating from him and his campaign and his allies? And you're fine with him encouraging his supporters in their misinformed evaluation of, say, the effects and degree of illegal immigration and about the level of violent crime committed by illegal immigrants? And you're fine with him implying - actually straight out saying, really - that American Muslims, as a class, protect terrorists and don't cooperate with law enforcement? Don't you see that this kind of thing encourages violence? Is that really OK with you?
Could you link me to this misinformation about illegal immigration?  I need to touch up before I comment on it.
I think the media is the biggest pot stirrer when it comes to violence. Try wearing a MAGA hat in California and see what happens, though I do think there are problems on both sides and I absolutely do not condone violence.
Have there been certain American Muslims that have protect terrorists? Well yeah, that's just the truth.

Quote from: Emily
In your own research you didn't learn that the original speech in which Clinton made the public/private remark was her talking it in the context of the Lincoln movie. That that was where the quote came from? Apparently not - because you repeated Trump's line about her "blaming" Lincoln. It's pretty clear from the original context that she meant, though it was badly worded, as she explained in the debate, that for a politician, public speaking is about ideals and goals, while the private work is about compromise, exchange and negotiation. That's just a fact of our system. It seems from things you've said here and on the other thread that your research is limited to one-sided sources.
I clearly said that was a joke, didn't I?

Quote from: Emily
No. No one more eloquent than you can make a good case for Trump's policies. So basically you just have a crush on him. OK.
I mean I'm sure I could find someone that explains it much better, but if I did would you listen?

And I still wanna know if you changed your mind about his extreme luck.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on November 29, 2016, 07:06:55 PM
Quote from: ♩♬☮ Vegan ♯♫♩☮
If the policy means nothing to you, then what is the reason for voting for him (or anybody, for that matter)?
I'm not American, so I didn't vote. This election wasn't won on policy, so that's why I'm not invested that deeply in it, but if he stays as adaptable as he was during the campaign, I think you're country is in good, large hands. He's great at controlling a situation.

Quote
Depends on who you mean by "we". Those who aren't in the upper tax brackets may disagree with  you.
The world generally. There's been stacks of gloom and doom, talks about secret nazi factions and general hysteria. I don't think the world is gonna do a 180, 8 years from now most people will wonder what all the fuss was about.

The people who have been chosen for his cabinet,unfortunately, have not been good choices; pretty much across the board, those not in the op 1% will definitely feel the pinch, financially and otherwise.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 29, 2016, 07:09:07 PM
Based on how well he ran his campaign, his persuasion skills and his negotiating skills. For a man with no political experience, he passed the job interview with flying colours and surprised many people. I believe he'll continue to do so. It's all very fluid.

OK, but I'm still a bit confused. His policies suggest disaster. So are you saying that when this disaster inevitably comes, he will be really good at convincing people that he wasn't responsible? Because if that's your argument, I might agree.

No sweat. I'm saying that he'll steer away from any big disaster before it comes. There are more than 2 dimensions at play, it might look inevitable on paper, but so did a Clinton presidency.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 29, 2016, 07:12:11 PM
Quote from: ♩♬☮ Vegan ♯♫♩☮
If the policy means nothing to you, then what is the reason for voting for him (or anybody, for that matter)?
I'm not American, so I didn't vote. This election wasn't won on policy, so that's why I'm not invested that deeply in it, but if he stays as adaptable as he was during the campaign, I think you're country is in good, large hands. He's great at controlling a situation.

Quote
Depends on who you mean by "we". Those who aren't in the upper tax brackets may disagree with  you.
The world generally. There's been stacks of gloom and doom, talks about secret nazi factions and general hysteria. I don't think the world is gonna do a 180, 8 years from now most people will wonder what all the fuss was about.

The people who have been chosen for his cabinet,unfortunately, have not been good choices; pretty much across the board, those not in the op 1% will definitely feel the pinch, financially and otherwise.

I won't lie, I've seen some of the baggage that some of his picks have and it's not all good stuff. I wouldn't be surprised if there are stacks of firings down the line, considering who their boss is.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 07:25:40 PM
I was specifically referring to Sanders and Stein supporters rather than Sanders and Stein themselves: I have not seen their supporters make a point of objecting to the dominance of fake news in this campaign and I have seen them further fake news, which was disappointing. I certainly think that they (the supporters) have a responsibility (as does everyone) to object to and to not further fake news. When I've seen Sanders supporters further fake things against Clinton, I'm sorry to say that it unfairly gave me a bad feeling about Sanders, which I tried to overcome but found difficult. But beyond supporters, yes, I think ALL candidates and in fact everybody, public or private, has a responsibility to make an effort to combat the scourge. And I was very disappointed overall at the population in general for not combatting it more strongly and at non-Clinton supporters for sitting by and watching it happen without objecting further. The fact that you don't support Clinton is not an excuse for not trying to stop something that is so extremely destructive to a system in which the government is chosen by general public elections. But yes, Stein, Clinton, Sanders, Johnson, Obama, and even Trump, as people who are or seek to be leaders in that government, that relies on informed citizens for wise selections, should be particularly active in denouncing false information.

My apologies for missing your point a bit here. However, if by "you," you mean me, I'm a bit surprised because both you and I, and others like The Captain, were frequently working to dismantle some prevalent false narratives here, some surrounding Clinton. Here's an example of an instance of that:

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,20357.msg581361.html#msg581361

And I think it's fair to note that despite not being an American voter, I was more supportive of both Sanders and Stein and still made "a point of objecting to the dominance of fake news in this campaign." However, as I noted above, I object to the term fake news the way it's currently being used mostly because I think it emanates out of a certain belief about mainstream news which I don't think is a particularly healthy way of promoting critical thinking (I don't lump you in with that group). I have no doubt that this right-wing extremist media is heinous and that it is having a serious effect when it comes to distorting public opinion. However, mainstream media, which I still think is more powerful, not just because of the concentration of power but because it essentially sets the tone and the agenda for most people entering into political discussion (online or elsewhere) distorts reality in a way that may not be as ludicrous of a distortion but probably misinforms more people. So while I will definitely combat misinformation where I see it no matter what it is, it just so happens that closer to the election, I was personally seeing more misinformation emanating from the centre-right status quo outlets that were by-and-large backing Clinton, and so that's what I ended up talking about. Apart from the discussions I had on here with certain posters who are now mostly gone, I rarely encountered the extremist positions that are undoubtedly shaping minds in a negative way.

Quote
Regarding critical thinking - there's a lot of space between someone who wants to defund public education and someone who doesn't; someone who is allied with people who explicitly put in their party platform that they don't support teaching critical thinking because it has "the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority" and someone who doesn't; someone who is a science denier and allies himself with people who want to teach creationism "alongside" evolution. Yes, Clinton is a cynic about politics (perhaps deservedly so given the treatment she's received), but to lump her with Trump in terms of education seems a bit much.

I agree there's a significant difference between Clinton and Trump in their positions. But I wasn't so much talking about education when I mentioned critical thinking. Mostly I was thinking about the candidates ability to think critically about politics in the United States. And to be perfectly honest, I see very little ability either from Clinton or anybody from the mainstream DNC for that matter as having the ability to think in these terms. There's actually quite a good interview if you can find it where the great Amy Goodman gets Bill Clinton on the phone when he was campaigning for Al Gore in 2000. Goodman took the opportunity to ask Clinton some serious policy questions. I don't think Clinton had ever been asked questions like this before and by the end of the interview, Clinton goes from his usual self to being irate and angry that Goodman would even be daring to ask these questions. Madeleine Albright had much the same reaction to Goodman. You'll probably recall that Albright in an interview said that the sanctions against Iraq which led to the deaths of 500,000 children was "worth it."Albright eventually backed away from the comment but when Goodman asked her if she thought the sanctions helped to lay "the groundwork for later being able to target Iraq and make it more acceptable on the part of the Bush administration," Albright became offended and proceeded to once again defend the sanctions. This, to me, is not a party that thinks critically nor is it frequently able to accept the truth when it is presented to them. The DNC, and Clinton among them, live in their own bubble with their own version of events which, to me, is a complete fabrication of reality. Do I like the fabrication more than like I like the one coming from the extreme right? Absolutely. Is it a fabrication that is less dangerous? Definitely. Are both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton critical thinkers? In my view, no.

Quote
I'm curious about the studies to which you refer. I've not seen them and based on the information I have, I don't suspect Sanders would have had a better outcome, so they must be taking something into account that I am not, or have analyzed data differently. Can you provide links?


Glenn Greenwald recently pointed out how "It’s astonishing that those of us who tried frantically to warn Democrats that nominating Hillary Clinton was a huge and scary gamble — that all empirical evidence showed that she could lose to anyone and Bernie Sanders would be a much stronger candidate, especially in this climate — are now the ones being blamed: by the very same people who insisted on ignoring all that data and nominating her anyway." Greenwald linked to his own very good analysis of the evidence:

https://theintercept.com/2016/02/24/with-trump-looming-should-dems-take-a-huge-electability-gamble-by-nominating-hillary-clinton/

And while one could say that the polls don't tell us anything, I think it is important to note that the polls in general gave Clinton specifically an advantage that didn't exist. And in actual real life cases, even when the polls were leaning more towards Clinton, the voters would end up going with Sanders, which is exactly what happened in Michigan. So it seems to me that not only does the data support this, but so did the actual outcomes.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 29, 2016, 07:34:14 PM
Quote from: Emily
News based on facts, not fiction.
I mean, could you list a couple?

Quote from: Emily
So you are fine with the constant misinformation emanating from him and his campaign and his allies? And you're fine with him encouraging his supporters in their misinformed evaluation of, say, the effects and degree of illegal immigration and about the level of violent crime committed by illegal immigrants? And you're fine with him implying - actually straight out saying, really - that American Muslims, as a class, protect terrorists and don't cooperate with law enforcement? Don't you see that this kind of thing encourages violence? Is that really OK with you?
Could you link me to this misinformation about illegal immigration?  I need to touch up before I comment on it.
I think the media is the biggest pot stirrer when it comes to violence. Try wearing a MAGA hat in California and see what happens, though I do think there are problems on both sides and I absolutely do not condone violence.
Have there been certain American Muslims that have protect terrorists? Well yeah, that's just the truth.

Quote from: Emily
In your own research you didn't learn that the original speech in which Clinton made the public/private remark was her talking it in the context of the Lincoln movie. That that was where the quote came from? Apparently not - because you repeated Trump's line about her "blaming" Lincoln. It's pretty clear from the original context that she meant, though it was badly worded, as she explained in the debate, that for a politician, public speaking is about ideals and goals, while the private work is about compromise, exchange and negotiation. That's just a fact of our system. It seems from things you've said here and on the other thread that your research is limited to one-sided sources.
I clearly said that was a joke, didn't I?

Quote from: Emily
No. No one more eloquent than you can make a good case for Trump's policies. So basically you just have a crush on him. OK.
I mean I'm sure I could find someone that explains it much better, but if I did would you listen?

And I still wanna know if you changed your mind about his extreme luck.
I listed some fake news sites and items above in this thread.
Regarding illegal immigration - I'm baffled. That was the cornerstone of his campaign and you don't know what he's said? Just search 'Trump illegal immigrants criminals' or 'trump illegal immigrants taking jobs'
Regarding Muslims first, it's not what Trump said that certain American Muslims protected terrorists. Second, certain American Christians and probably American Jews and possibly American Sikhs and Buddhists have too. There's no evidence that more American Muslims have than anyone else, so singling them out as a group is implying something incorrect and is a dangerous way for a public figure to speak.
Regarding his policies,  I know what his policies are; I've studied history and economics; I've consulted with experts. I don't need someone "eloquent" to explain to me why they think that Trump's policies are good policies. Reagan is perfectly eloquent. He's already explained it. And he was wrong, as history shows. If you know someone who is going to explain that history, I and every professional economist not paid by Trump are wrong, I'll listen.
You seem to think that electing a president is similar to choosing who to root for on Survivor. Policy matters. Legal rights matter. This is real sh*t. It is going to mean children lose their parents. It is going to mean ill people lose their health insurance. It is going to mean more poverty. This is real.
And no, I haven't changed my mind about his luck, and I don't think it's extreme. I think it's chance that he's the idiot who was born rich and with a big blowhard personality and 0 ethics or concern for the damage he leaves in his wake (or even an understanding of it) and was constantly trying to run for office for decades and the circumstances came around that his opportunistic, autocratic rage fit neatly with a right-wing machine that's been building over the last few decades. His success has not been due to his skill. Just due to his having the right personality and platform (not policy platform, but media platform) for the right-wing demagogue Bannon and his ilk were waiting for.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 29, 2016, 07:56:50 PM
I was specifically referring to Sanders and Stein supporters rather than Sanders and Stein themselves: I have not seen their supporters make a point of objecting to the dominance of fake news in this campaign and I have seen them further fake news, which was disappointing. I certainly think that they (the supporters) have a responsibility (as does everyone) to object to and to not further fake news. When I've seen Sanders supporters further fake things against Clinton, I'm sorry to say that it unfairly gave me a bad feeling about Sanders, which I tried to overcome but found difficult. But beyond supporters, yes, I think ALL candidates and in fact everybody, public or private, has a responsibility to make an effort to combat the scourge. And I was very disappointed overall at the population in general for not combatting it more strongly and at non-Clinton supporters for sitting by and watching it happen without objecting further. The fact that you don't support Clinton is not an excuse for not trying to stop something that is so extremely destructive to a system in which the government is chosen by general public elections. But yes, Stein, Clinton, Sanders, Johnson, Obama, and even Trump, as people who are or seek to be leaders in that government, that relies on informed citizens for wise selections, should be particularly active in denouncing false information.

My apologies for missing your point a bit here. However, if by "you," you mean me, I'm a bit surprised because both you and I, and others like The Captain, were frequently working to dismantle some prevalent false narratives here, some surrounding Clinton. Here's an example of an instance of that:

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,20357.msg581361.html#msg581361

And I think it's fair to note that despite not being an American voter, I was more supportive of both Sanders and Stein and still made "a point of objecting to the dominance of fake news in this campaign." However, as I noted above, I object to the term fake news the way it's currently being used mostly because I think it emanates out of a certain belief about mainstream news which I don't think is a particularly healthy way of promoting critical thinking (I don't lump you in with that group). I have no doubt that this right-wing extremist media is heinous and that it is having a serious effect when it comes to distorting public opinion. However, mainstream media, which I still think is more powerful, not just because of the concentration of power but because it essentially sets the tone and the agenda for most people entering into political discussion (online or elsewhere) distorts reality in a way that may not be as ludicrous of a distortion but probably misinforms more people. So while I will definitely combat misinformation where I see it no matter what it is, it just so happens that closer to the election, I was personally seeing more misinformation emanating from the centre-right status quo outlets that were by-and-large backing Clinton, and so that's what I ended up talking about. Apart from the discussions I had on here with certain posters who are now mostly gone, I rarely encountered the extremist positions that are undoubtedly shaping minds in a negative way.

Quote
Regarding critical thinking - there's a lot of space between someone who wants to defund public education and someone who doesn't; someone who is allied with people who explicitly put in their party platform that they don't support teaching critical thinking because it has "the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority" and someone who doesn't; someone who is a science denier and allies himself with people who want to teach creationism "alongside" evolution. Yes, Clinton is a cynic about politics (perhaps deservedly so given the treatment she's received), but to lump her with Trump in terms of education seems a bit much.

I agree there's a significant difference between Clinton and Trump in their positions. But I wasn't so much talking about education when I mentioned critical thinking. Mostly I was thinking about the candidates ability to think critically about politics in the United States. And to be perfectly honest, I see very little ability either from Clinton or anybody from the mainstream DNC for that matter as having the ability to think in these terms. There's actually quite a good interview if you can find it where the great Amy Goodman gets Bill Clinton on the phone when he was campaigning for Al Gore in 2000. Goodman took the opportunity to ask Clinton some serious policy questions. I don't think Clinton had ever been asked questions like this before and by the end of the interview, Clinton goes from his usual self to being irate and angry that Goodman would even be daring to ask these questions. Madeleine Albright had much the same reaction to Goodman. You'll probably recall that Albright in an interview said that the sanctions against Iraq which led to the deaths of 500,000 children was "worth it."Albright eventually backed away from the comment but when Goodman asked her if she thought the sanctions helped to lay "the groundwork for later being able to target Iraq and make it more acceptable on the part of the Bush administration," Albright became offended and proceeded to once again defend the sanctions. This, to me, is not a party that thinks critically nor is it frequently able to accept the truth when it is presented to them. The DNC, and Clinton among them, live in their own bubble with their own version of events which, to me, is a complete fabrication of reality. Do I like the fabrication more than like I like the one coming from the extreme right? Absolutely. Is it a fabrication that is less dangerous? Definitely. Are both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton critical thinkers? In my view, no.

Quote
I'm curious about the studies to which you refer. I've not seen them and based on the information I have, I don't suspect Sanders would have had a better outcome, so they must be taking something into account that I am not, or have analyzed data differently. Can you provide links?


Glenn Greenwald recently pointed out how "It’s astonishing that those of us who tried frantically to warn Democrats that nominating Hillary Clinton was a huge and scary gamble — that all empirical evidence showed that she could lose to anyone and Bernie Sanders would be a much stronger candidate, especially in this climate — are now the ones being blamed: by the very same people who insisted on ignoring all that data and nominating her anyway." Greenwald linked to his own very good analysis of the evidence:

https://theintercept.com/2016/02/24/with-trump-looming-should-dems-take-a-huge-electability-gamble-by-nominating-hillary-clinton/

And while one could say that the polls don't tell us anything, I think it is important to note that the polls in general gave Clinton specifically an advantage that didn't exist. And in actual real life cases, even when the polls were leaning more towards Clinton, the voters would end up going with Sanders, which is exactly what happened in Michigan. So it seems to me that not only does the data support this, but so did the actual outcomes.

Not at all. By 'you' I meant, and should have said, 'one'. I did not mean you, or the Captain, or 'Vegan'.
I'm not wholly comfortable with the term 'fake news' either. It's the current term. I've been kind of flopping around trying to find the right term, but have been unable to.
Regarding the media - the mainstream media was open in it's support of Clinton toward the end - more as a reaction against Trump than for Clinton, I believe. The mainstream media has a history of being mainly very negative about Clinton. But I'm not sure that the mainstream media has that much control over information anymore. I think there is a significant enough to sway an election portion of the population that immediately distrusts anything reported by the mainstream media and immediately believes anything reported by alternate sites, which range from being quite accurate to being absolutely inaccurate in their reporting. A significant constellation of those sites are extreme right-wing and intentionally lie regularly. Here's a list of the most popular right-wing sites in 2014:
http://rightwingnews.com/special/the-top-100-conservative-websites-of-2014/
Literally half in the top 10 don't even pretend to be fact-based. And you can see that they are much-frequented sites. Breitbart is now the 35th most frequented site in the US (not news site, but SITE). I think you underestimate the impact of the right-wing internet media.
Mainstream media - at least you can read between the lines and learn some real information. Breitbart, which is mainstream media now, you can't. They publish things that are completely false.

Regarding the critical thinking and Goodman and the Sanders' studies and your comments on the polls - I take your points and will read/listen. I'm inclined to expect you're right about the first two and not about the 3rd, but I'm open to the idea that I'm wrong there - so I'll try to take it in objectively.
However, I'm trying to get on a regular sleep schedule and it's a half hour past my bedtime - so the reading I'll do on the train tomorrow, the listening, tomorrow evening, depending on how much attention my daughter feels like she needs. In any case, I'll do the listening soon.
Thank you.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 29, 2016, 07:59:10 PM
I was specifically referring to Sanders and Stein supporters rather than Sanders and Stein themselves: I have not seen their supporters make a point of objecting to the dominance of fake news in this campaign and I have seen them further fake news, which was disappointing. I certainly think that they (the supporters) have a responsibility (as does everyone) to object to and to not further fake news. When I've seen Sanders supporters further fake things against Clinton, I'm sorry to say that it unfairly gave me a bad feeling about Sanders, which I tried to overcome but found difficult. But beyond supporters, yes, I think ALL candidates and in fact everybody, public or private, has a responsibility to make an effort to combat the scourge. And I was very disappointed overall at the population in general for not combatting it more strongly and at non-Clinton supporters for sitting by and watching it happen without objecting further. The fact that you don't support Clinton is not an excuse for not trying to stop something that is so extremely destructive to a system in which the government is chosen by general public elections. But yes, Stein, Clinton, Sanders, Johnson, Obama, and even Trump, as people who are or seek to be leaders in that government, that relies on informed citizens for wise selections, should be particularly active in denouncing false information.

My apologies for missing your point a bit here. However, if by "you," you mean me, I'm a bit surprised because both you and I, and others like The Captain, were frequently working to dismantle some prevalent false narratives here, some surrounding Clinton. Here's an example of an instance of that:

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,20357.msg581361.html#msg581361

And I think it's fair to note that despite not being an American voter, I was more supportive of both Sanders and Stein and still made "a point of objecting to the dominance of fake news in this campaign." However, as I noted above, I object to the term fake news the way it's currently being used mostly because I think it emanates out of a certain belief about mainstream news which I don't think is a particularly healthy way of promoting critical thinking (I don't lump you in with that group). I have no doubt that this right-wing extremist media is heinous and that it is having a serious effect when it comes to distorting public opinion. However, mainstream media, which I still think is more powerful, not just because of the concentration of power but because it essentially sets the tone and the agenda for most people entering into political discussion (online or elsewhere) distorts reality in a way that may not be as ludicrous of a distortion but probably misinforms more people. So while I will definitely combat misinformation where I see it no matter what it is, it just so happens that closer to the election, I was personally seeing more misinformation emanating from the centre-right status quo outlets that were by-and-large backing Clinton, and so that's what I ended up talking about. Apart from the discussions I had on here with certain posters who are now mostly gone, I rarely encountered the extremist positions that are undoubtedly shaping minds in a negative way.

Quote
Regarding critical thinking - there's a lot of space between someone who wants to defund public education and someone who doesn't; someone who is allied with people who explicitly put in their party platform that they don't support teaching critical thinking because it has "the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority" and someone who doesn't; someone who is a science denier and allies himself with people who want to teach creationism "alongside" evolution. Yes, Clinton is a cynic about politics (perhaps deservedly so given the treatment she's received), but to lump her with Trump in terms of education seems a bit much.

I agree there's a significant difference between Clinton and Trump in their positions. But I wasn't so much talking about education when I mentioned critical thinking. Mostly I was thinking about the candidates ability to think critically about politics in the United States. And to be perfectly honest, I see very little ability either from Clinton or anybody from the mainstream DNC for that matter as having the ability to think in these terms. There's actually quite a good interview if you can find it where the great Amy Goodman gets Bill Clinton on the phone when he was campaigning for Al Gore in 2000. Goodman took the opportunity to ask Clinton some serious policy questions. I don't think Clinton had ever been asked questions like this before and by the end of the interview, Clinton goes from his usual self to being irate and angry that Goodman would even be daring to ask these questions. Madeleine Albright had much the same reaction to Goodman. You'll probably recall that Albright in an interview said that the sanctions against Iraq which led to the deaths of 500,000 children was "worth it."Albright eventually backed away from the comment but when Goodman asked her if she thought the sanctions helped to lay "the groundwork for later being able to target Iraq and make it more acceptable on the part of the Bush administration," Albright became offended and proceeded to once again defend the sanctions. This, to me, is not a party that thinks critically nor is it frequently able to accept the truth when it is presented to them. The DNC, and Clinton among them, live in their own bubble with their own version of events which, to me, is a complete fabrication of reality. Do I like the fabrication more than like I like the one coming from the extreme right? Absolutely. Is it a fabrication that is less dangerous? Definitely. Are both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton critical thinkers? In my view, no.

Quote
I'm curious about the studies to which you refer. I've not seen them and based on the information I have, I don't suspect Sanders would have had a better outcome, so they must be taking something into account that I am not, or have analyzed data differently. Can you provide links?


Glenn Greenwald recently pointed out how "It’s astonishing that those of us who tried frantically to warn Democrats that nominating Hillary Clinton was a huge and scary gamble — that all empirical evidence showed that she could lose to anyone and Bernie Sanders would be a much stronger candidate, especially in this climate — are now the ones being blamed: by the very same people who insisted on ignoring all that data and nominating her anyway." Greenwald linked to his own very good analysis of the evidence:

https://theintercept.com/2016/02/24/with-trump-looming-should-dems-take-a-huge-electability-gamble-by-nominating-hillary-clinton/

And while one could say that the polls don't tell us anything, I think it is important to note that the polls in general gave Clinton specifically an advantage that didn't exist. And in actual real life cases, even when the polls were leaning more towards Clinton, the voters would end up going with Sanders, which is exactly what happened in Michigan. So it seems to me that not only does the data support this, but so did the actual outcomes.

Not at all. By 'you' I meant, and should have said, 'one'. I did not mean you, or the Captain, or 'Vegan'.
I'm not wholly comfortable with the term 'fake news' either. It's the current term. I've been kind of flopping around trying to find the right term, but have been unable to.
Regarding the media - the mainstream media was open in it's support of Clinton toward the end - more as a reaction against Trump than for Clinton, I believe. The mainstream media has a history of being mainly very negative about Clinton. But I'm not sure that the mainstream media has that much control over information anymore. I think there is a significant enough to sway an election portion of the population that immediately distrusts anything reported by the mainstream media and immediately believes anything reported by alternate sites, which range from being quite accurate to being absolutely inaccurate in their reporting. A significant constellation of those sites are extreme right-wing and intentionally lie regularly. Here's a list of the most popular right-wing sites in 2014:
http://rightwingnews.com/special/the-top-100-conservative-websites-of-2014/
Literally half in the top 10 don't even pretend to be fact-based. And you can see that they are much-frequented sites. Breitbart is now the 35th most frequented site in the US (not news site, but SITE). I think you underestimate the impact of the right-wing internet media.
Mainstream media - at least you can read between the lines and learn some real information. Breitbart, which is mainstream media now, you can't. They publish things that are completely false.

Regarding the critical thinking and Goodman and the Sanders' studies and your comments on the polls - I take your points and will read/listen. I'm inclined to expect you're right about the first two and not about the 3rd, but I'm open to the idea that I'm wrong there - so I'll try to take it in objectively.
However, I'm trying to get on a regular sleep schedule and it's a half hour past my bedtime - so the reading I'll do on the train tomorrow, the listening, tomorrow evening, depending on how much attention my daughter feels like she needs. In any case, I'll do the listening soon.
Thank you.


Thank you! Always good to chat. And as always I think we are more in agreement than disagreement, which is important.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 29, 2016, 08:16:48 PM
Quote
I listed some fake news sites and items above in this thread.
I'm asking for what you consider to be real news. I know what you believe fake news to be, like what is real news to you? Please list what you consider factual news so I can understand your view point better.

Quote
Regarding illegal immigration - I'm baffled. That was the cornerstone of his campaign and you don't know what he's said? Just search 'Trump illegal immigrants criminals' or 'trump illegal immigrants taking jobs'
I know what he's said about the border, bad people, drugs pouring in. What's the big misinformation that he pushed?

Quote
Regarding Muslims first, it's not what Trump said that certain American Muslims protected terrorists. Second, certain American Christians and probably American Jews and possibly American Sikhs and Buddhists have too. There's no evidence that more American Muslims have than anyone else, so singling them out as a group is implying something incorrect and is a dangerous way for a public figure to speak.
This is another one I'm fuzzy on. When did he say it was an entire class?

Quote
Regarding his policies,  I know what his policies are; I've studied history and economics; I've consulted with experts. I don't need someone "eloquent" to explain to me why they think that Trump's policies are good policies. Reagan is perfectly eloquent. He's already explained it. And he was wrong, as history shows. If you know someone who is going to explain that history, I and every professional economist not paid by Trump are wrong, I'll listen.
Experts can be wrong, I think this cycle showed that, but that's not the point I want to make. I wanted to say that someone could explain their support for Trump better than I could. I don't think I can change your mind or rock your world, but I don't think my support of him should baffle or shock you.

Quote
You seem to think that electing a president is similar to choosing who to root for on Survivor.
The campaign is a lot like Survivor, don't you think? And funnily, plenty of women have won before.

Quote
Policy matters. Legal rights matter. This is real sh*t. It is going to mean children lose their parents. It is going to mean ill people lose their health insurance. It is going to mean more poverty. This is real sh*t.[/i]
How are children going to lose parents? I say just wait and see what moves he makes instead of jumping to the worst case scenarios, things change all the time.

Quote
And no, I haven't changed my mind about his luck, and I don't think it's extreme. I think it's chance that he's the idiot who was born rich and with a big blowhard personality and 0 ethics or concern for the damage he leaves in his wake (or even an understanding of it) and was constantly trying to run for office for decades and the circumstances came around that his opportunistic, autocratic rage fit neatly with a right-wing machine that's been building over the last few decades. His success has not been due to his skill. Just due to his having the right personality and platform (not policy platform, but media platform) for the right-wing demagogue Bannon and his ilk were waiting for.
So did Hillary lose due to bad luck? I mean, he smashed her in the electoral vote, there are plenty of factors in play. From my point of view, if Hillary can't take down a 'lucky idiot' with no political experience, then it's a good thing she didn't get the top job. Come 2020, if people don't adapt to Trump, he's going to steamroll the competition and it's gonna be a white knuckled 8 years for them.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 30, 2016, 03:51:28 AM
I specifically suggested you use the words "crime" and "taking jobs" in your searches. That might be a tip-off to the oft-repeated, false assertions Trump has made. For the other, https://www.google.com/amp/www.vox.com/platform/amp/2016/6/14/11925278/trump-speech-muslims?client=safari.
Regarding losing parents - that's what deportation does. It's also what no health insurance does. It's also what poverty does.
It is not at all like survivor in its import in reality or in what qualities matter.
People have asked multiple times for you to explain why you support Trump other than "he won, so he's got to be good," which to any thinking adult is on it's face absurd. Based on this and your dodging or ignorance regarding Trump's policies and campaign themes, your avoidance of engaging with adult reality, your illogic and your admiration of school yard skills, I've come to the conclusion that you are callow (and extraordinarily callous). I sincerely hope you are actually very young or very old. Preferably very old because,you are exhibiting a complete lack of empathy and I don't think that can be learned.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 30, 2016, 03:54:55 AM
People have asked multiple times for you to explain why you support Trump other than "he won, so he's got to be good," which to any thinking adult is on it's face absurd. Based on this, your dodging or ignorance regarding what Trunp has said, your avoidance of engaging with adult reality, your illogic and your admiration of school yard skills, I've come to the conclusion that you are callow (and extraordinarily callous). I sincerely hope you are actually very young or very old.

I'd just like us to find a half way point, if you can answer my questions I think that'd help.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 30, 2016, 04:05:05 AM
People have asked multiple times for you to explain why you support Trump other than "he won, so he's got to be good," which to any thinking adult is on it's face absurd. Based on this, your dodging or ignorance regarding what Trunp has said, your avoidance of engaging with adult reality, your illogic and your admiration of school yard skills, I've come to the conclusion that you are callow (and extraordinarily callous). I sincerely hope you are actually very young or very old.

I'd just like us to find a half way point, if you can answer my questions I think that'd help.
I've added to my above post. There's no half-way point if you won't engage with things that matter.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 30, 2016, 04:14:07 AM
Sinistersmile is Barron Trump! :hat


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 30, 2016, 04:18:33 AM
People have asked multiple times for you to explain why you support Trump other than "he won, so he's got to be good," which to any thinking adult is on it's face absurd. Based on this, your dodging or ignorance regarding what Trunp has said, your avoidance of engaging with adult reality, your illogic and your admiration of school yard skills, I've come to the conclusion that you are callow (and extraordinarily callous). I sincerely hope you are actually very young or very old.

I'd just like us to find a half way point, if you can answer my questions I think that'd help.
I've added to my above post. There's no half-way point if you won't engage with things that matter.

Sorry, I am trying. I get like 3 or 4 people hitting me with big questions so I do apologize if I miss some or don't delve deep enough.

Truthfully, I'm very interested in what you consider real news. I'll try my best to answer the rest, but if you could list a few real news outlets, I think that'd speed things along.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 30, 2016, 04:20:02 AM
Sinistersmile is Barron Trump! :hat

Same hair, no lie!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on November 30, 2016, 04:35:57 AM
Well played sir! :lol


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on November 30, 2016, 05:01:25 AM
Quote
I specifically suggested you use the words "crime" and "taking jobs" in your searches. That might be a tip-off to the oft-repeated, false assertions Trump has made. For the other, https://www.google.com/amp/www.vox.com/platform/amp/2016/6/14/11925278/trump-speech-muslims?client=safari.
The reason why I would have liked direct links from you is due to this fake/real news fiasco. I want to see from your perspective what qualified as real. Before I comment on this article, is it safe to assume that this is a non-fake website?

Quote
Regarding losing parents - that's what deportation does.
I thought he was only deporting people staying in the country illegally, right?

Quote
It's also what no health insurance does. It's also what poverty does.
Won't lie, the health insurance stuff over there does my head in, I have to look into it more.

Quote
It is not at all like survivor in its import in reality or in what qualities matter.
In a very simplified way, the general election is like Survivor. It's an extremely emotional game. If you want to come out on top, you have to defend your gameplay and convince people to vote you as the winner. I'm glad you bought up the Survivor angle, and I'd be happy to delve deeper into it if you wanna.

Quote
People have asked multiple times for you to explain why you support Trump other than "he won, so he's got to be good," which to any thinking adult is on it's face absurd.
He won because he was good, and my thinking is more along the lines of 'he earned it, give him a chance and he might surprise you'. There are a lot of reasons why I support him, I repeated them here plenty. Also, I think you'll admit this has been a very absurd election

Quote
Based on this and your dodging or ignorance regarding Trump's policies and campaign themes
I think Trump's going to be pretty flexible with his policies, and I don't think the world is going to end with him, I'm not going to get too worked up over it.

Quote
Your avoidance of engaging with adult reality
In my reality, I predicted he would win in the face of bad polls and I explained my reasoning for the decision. Also featured in my reality is President Trump, so I'm happy with where I'm at.

Quote
Your illogic and your admiration of school yard skills
I like his ability to take a punch and work a situation to his favour, amongst other things.

Quote
I've come to the conclusion that you are callow (and extraordinarily callous).
I think optimistic is a better word.

Quote
I sincerely hope you are actually very young or very old. Preferably very old because,you are exhibiting a complete lack of empathy and I don't think that can be learned.
Why do you want me to be old, so I die faster or something? I hope not. You can say I lack empathy, but I'm being very patient and trying to get my point of view across. We don't have to agree, but I'd like to have a conversation without being talked down to.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 30, 2016, 05:24:27 AM
People have asked multiple times for you to explain why you support Trump other than "he won, so he's got to be good," which to any thinking adult is on it's face absurd. Based on this, your dodging or ignorance regarding what Trunp has said, your avoidance of engaging with adult reality, your illogic and your admiration of school yard skills, I've come to the conclusion that you are callow (and extraordinarily callous). I sincerely hope you are actually very young or very old.

I'd just like us to find a half way point, if you can answer my questions I think that'd help.
I've added to my above post. There's no half-way point if you won't engage with things that matter.

Sorry, I am trying. I get like 3 or 4 people hitting me with big questions so I do apologize if I miss some or don't delve deep enough.

Truthfully, I'm very interested in what you consider real news. I'll try my best to answer the rest, but if you could list a few real news outlets, I think that'd speed things along.
I don't put faith in any particular news outlet. They all have a raison d'etre that might skew their editorial choices and they all hire humans who have their own flaws. ALL traditional mainstream sources make a point of reporting stories (and one must learn to distinguish reporting from editorializing) based on fact. Almost all have a corporate and government bias and some are more slightly to the corporate left and some to the right. None simply post things that they know are factually incorrect or with the conscious intention of leaving the reader with a false impression of the facts, though they all sometimes err or report a selection of facts considered important to their angle, so one should seek out another version to get a full picture. There is no news story that matters to me that I don't check several sources, some mainstream, some independent right, some independent left, There is no outlet that I go straight to as "my news source."  It's important to me to find the root of each story that matters so I will always click through or search out the original source if available. I will usually check a somewhat random selection of outlets to see the headlines and go from there.
Left sources, like Mother Jones and The Nation, and right sources like the Financial Times and The Economist try to adhere to the truth and often report different stories from the mainstream media.
BBC, PBS and formerly Al Jazeera are mainstream sources that are probably the strictest about accuracy and lack of bias.
But it's important to separate bias from straight fiction and intentional manipulation. The New York Times, for instance, is held up as being biased for its negative reporting on Trump. 1. They were still factual and took a long time before they reported several stories that were circulating in less careful publications because they researched and found evidence before they reported. 2. There's a false equivalence in the idea that a journal should be equally negative/positive with each candidate. In this case, there was a lot more negative to say about Trump.  To report the encouragement of white supremacy, say,  as if it's just a routine campaign story balanced against the opponent's negatives would be not balance but a tremendous bias for the white supremacy promoter. 3. anyway the emails were the most covered story of the campaign, including in the NYT and at CNN, so this "pro-Clinton" thing is a myth.
But 1. Is the most pertinent. They still reported facts. The NYT and Post and, yes, CNN, but also the WSJ and the National Review,refrained from reporting outright lies and manipulations such as the ones pushed and passed around on the new right-wing media. That has in the past been relegated to a few tabloids (i.e.  The National Enquirer) that the vast majority of people knew should be taken with a hunk of salt. That has changed.
There are a few relatively unsuccessful equivalent fake and/or intentionally lying and manipulating news sources on the left, but it is literally a multi-billion dollar industry on the right. As I said above, the main campaign tactic of this wing is to personally smear and to appeal to bigotry through manipulation. This has been, part and parcel, the campaign of Trump. Trump didn't invent it, but he was the perfect front-man for it. It's a thoroughly repulsive turn of events.
Beyond this, I will not engage with you unless you indicate good faith in engaging with the seriousness of the topic at hand and with the real issues that the Captain and CSM have raised.





Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 30, 2016, 05:26:48 AM
Though your message was specifically for Emily, I wanted to respond to a few things:

I thought he was only deporting people staying in the country illegally, right?

Wrong. He has said he would deport children of illegal immigrants despite the fact that they are US citizens. And that's putting aside the fact that even if he were just deporting illegal immigrants, it would be impossible and also, in my view, harsh for the sake of being harsh.

Quote
I think Trump's going to be pretty flexible with his policies, and I don't think the world is going to end with him, I'm not going to get too worked up over it.

Just to be clear, you saw a flexibility in Trump that makes you think he would reverse all of his policies? If so, where did you see that kind of flexibility? Remember when he was on Colbert and said he didn't have to apologize to anyone for anything?

Quote
I like his ability to take a punch

He recently threw a childish tantrum because someone at a theatre was critical of his vice president and proceeded to say that the theatre should be the kind of safe space that his advocates have been criticizing for years. How do you view that as being able "to take a punch"?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 30, 2016, 05:59:08 AM
I'll say this re flexibility: he has continuously changed positions on many issues--most issues--and has on several (outlined above, a few pages back in sure) gone to more traditional positions since being elected.

This "flexibility"--one might call it cluelessness, oh-sh*t-this-is-real acknowledgement, or good old fashioned lying--could be positive or negative, relatively speaking.

Positive because some of his campaign nonsense ranged from illegal to unconstitutional to immoral, and at best radical. And like it or not, the world likes stability, predictability. This In many  ways, even a typical GOP administration is preferable to candidate Trump, because at least we know they wouldn't name reality stars to the cabinet or start a war with the U.K. over a Scot tweeting a joke about his hair. So, "flexibility" to walk back from moronic and amoral "policy" (to more traditional positions that I often still find severely lacking, sometimes corrupt and immoral) is seemingly out there, and that's a plus.

But on the other side, for whom and what did his voters vote if positions are so easily discarded? Even if his "flexibility" ends up with him pointing in a less terrifying position, how is outright lying to win acceptable? The end doesn't justify the means, even if it's the right (or less shockingly wrong) end. If he ends up--as seems likely to me based on his cabinet--leading some typical, pro-rich, deregulating, pro-corporate Republican administration (only with juvenile tweeting and bluster to keep reality tv fans engaged), ought not the Everyman who voted for "draining the swamp," for jobs, for healthcare and retirement security, for staying out of foreign wars, shouldn't that Everyman be FURIOUS that he was lied to, explicitly and repeatedly, only to later witness "flexibility?"


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 30, 2016, 06:05:20 AM
I look forward to seeing details of the deal struck with Carrier "to keep close to 1,000 jobs in Indy." (Their tweet)

Presumably we're talking about tax breaks, of which I'm often wary because the things those taxes pay for don't disappear, meaning either needs go unmet or a shell game just makes someone **cough cough the public** pay for it elsewhere.

But I'm trying to keep an open mind, and certainly I'm glad if jobs are not lost. (Not lost isn't the same as added, but it's better than lost.)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on November 30, 2016, 06:07:16 AM
The swamp is drained just a little bit more with yet another stellar, "everyman" cabinet nomination: former Goldman Sachs partner and hedge fund manager Steven Mnuchin. Finally, someone who understands Joe Average will change the culture of that revolving door between Goldman Sachs and Washing--oh. Oh, wait. Never mind.

Trump supporters are paying attention, I hope. He sure told it like it is. Nothing but the truth, straight talk. For f***'s sake.

I remember when after Obama took power in 2008/09, he began to fill his administration with status quo old-school government figures after running on a platform of hope and change. He held a press conference after appointing several of these figures and one reporter quite appropriately asked, "what about the hope and change?" Obama replied, "the change is me" and left it at that. From the beginning of the whole campaign, I knew that the hope and change rhetoric was just that - an empty message backed with almost no substance to garner the votes of the population who were genuinely tired of politics-as-usual this time. His staff additions and the press conference that followed, though, solidified in a real sense precisely how empty this rhetoric all was and that, in fact, Obama would represent the same interests that had always dominated political life in the country.

Now, in my view, we have the same exact story being replayed here. As Glenn Greenwald just pointed out on Twitter a few minutes ago, "Steven Mnuchin is basically the cartoon-villain personification of everything alt-right rails against & Trump put him in charge of Treasury." Indeed, this moment must illustrate to Trump supporters what a sham his entire campaign was - what an absolute con it was and that, in fact, like I said months ago on this board, Trump really represents the status quo politics-as-usual position far more than he presents himself to the public. But my guess is that ardent Trump supporters will be as willing to admit this as ardent Obama supporters were willing to admit it in 2008.

For my earlier thoughts on Trump, please see here: http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,23492.msg563861.html#msg563861


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 30, 2016, 06:25:13 AM
Yeah, The Obama appointments and his stimulus plan were very annoying, though his previous votes or notable non-votes were a clue ahead of time. For what the core Trump supporters see and read and think (see comments for the latter), Breitbart.com is the source. They have no 'front page' reporting on Mnuchin. You won't see it if you go to the site and look. They had this yesterday evening, but removed it from sight when the comments were hating: http://www.breitbart.com/2016-presidential-race/2016/11/29/donald-trump-to-appoint-former-goldman-sachs-partner-steven-mnuchin-as-treasury-secretary/#disqus_thread


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on November 30, 2016, 10:09:02 AM
I look forward to seeing details of the deal struck with Carrier "to keep close to 1,000 jobs in Indy." (Their tweet)

Presumably we're talking about tax breaks, of which I'm often wary because the things those taxes pay for don't disappear, meaning either needs go unmet or a shell game just makes someone **cough cough the public** pay for it elsewhere.

But I'm trying to keep an open mind, and certainly I'm glad if jobs are not lost. (Not lost isn't the same as added, but it's better than lost.)

Carrier is owned by United Technologies (a defense contractor).  It's not hard to apply pressure.  By the way, Trump's tax cuts are expected to add 10 trillion dollars to the national debt, and Trump has no plan on how get the money back.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on November 30, 2016, 10:18:36 AM
Yes, the tax cuts have been inexplicable. My understanding (from today's W Post) is that even if you use the "dynamic scoring" that supply-sliders try to argue in such things (i.e., the economic growth will result in increased revenues), it's still at best going to add $2-4 trillion to the federal debt over a decade.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on November 30, 2016, 02:10:54 PM
It's ridiculous. No one believes we're that far over on the Laffer curve.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 01, 2016, 04:55:31 AM
I've been thinking about my comments and CSM's comments on the media and 'bias'. Of course bias is subjective. If one is leaning - what is one leaning toward and what is one leaning from? My comments mainly took as the center the status quo. So a left of right bias would be away from that center. All of the mainline journals have a bias for the status quo, but may lean away to the 'left' or 'right' or most often, toward deeper corporatism, left or right.
So when I mentioned journals that have a 'left' or 'right' bias, that was against the status quo in the US.
I will add that the status quo has shifted over the last couple of years but also significantly since the 80s, and before that it had shifted significantly since the 50s which was a significant shift since the teens and twenties. Maybe there's a 35-year or so pattern.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on December 01, 2016, 11:26:58 AM
I don't put faith in any particular news outlet. They all have a raison d'etre that might skew their editorial choices and they all hire humans who have their own flaws. ALL traditional mainstream sources make a point of reporting stories (and one must learn to distinguish reporting from editorializing) based on fact. Almost all have a corporate and government bias and some are more slightly to the corporate left and some to the right. None simply post things that they know are factually incorrect or with the conscious intention of leaving the reader with a false impression of the facts, though they all sometimes err or report a selection of facts considered important to their angle, so one should seek out another version to get a full picture. There is no news story that matters to me that I don't check several sources, some mainstream, some independent right, some independent left, There is no outlet that I go straight to as "my news source."  It's important to me to find the root of each story that matters so I will always click through or search out the original source if available. I will usually check a somewhat random selection of outlets to see the headlines and go from there.
Left sources, like Mother Jones and The Nation, and right sources like the Financial Times and The Economist try to adhere to the truth and often report different stories from the mainstream media.
BBC, PBS and formerly Al Jazeera are mainstream sources that are probably the strictest about accuracy and lack of bias.
But it's important to separate bias from straight fiction and intentional manipulation. The New York Times, for instance, is held up as being biased for its negative reporting on Trump. 1. They were still factual and took a long time before they reported several stories that were circulating in less careful publications because they researched and found evidence before they reported. 2. There's a false equivalence in the idea that a journal should be equally negative/positive with each candidate. In this case, there was a lot more negative to say about Trump.  To report the encouragement of white supremacy, say,  as if it's just a routine campaign story balanced against the opponent's negatives would be not balance but a tremendous bias for the white supremacy promoter. 3. anyway the emails were the most covered story of the campaign, including in the NYT and at CNN, so this "pro-Clinton" thing is a myth.
But 1. Is the most pertinent. They still reported facts. The NYT and Post and, yes, CNN, but also the WSJ and the National Review,refrained from reporting outright lies and manipulations such as the ones pushed and passed around on the new right-wing media. That has in the past been relegated to a few tabloids (i.e.  The National Enquirer) that the vast majority of people knew should be taken with a hunk of salt. That has changed.
There are a few relatively unsuccessful equivalent fake and/or intentionally lying and manipulating news sources on the left, but it is literally a multi-billion dollar industry on the right. As I said above, the main campaign tactic of this wing is to personally smear and to appeal to bigotry through manipulation. This has been, part and parcel, the campaign of Trump. Trump didn't invent it, but he was the perfect front-man for it. It's a thoroughly repulsive turn of events.
Beyond this, I will not engage with you unless you indicate good faith in engaging with the seriousness of the topic at hand and with the real issues that the Captain and CSM have raised.

I agree with most of what you are saying here, Emily, though I might add that when a media outlet prints a false story based on false information because it reinforces their pre-set agenda and assumptions about what is true, then I think that ends up being the same thing. The actions might be different - one is more wilful than the other - but the consequences end up being the same:   the public becomes misinformed.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on December 02, 2016, 08:38:15 AM
Based on how well he ran his campaign, his persuasion skills and his negotiating skills. For a man with no political experience, he passed the job interview with flying colours and surprised many people. I believe he'll continue to do so. It's all very fluid.

SinisterSmile, I'm curious on your thoughts on a recent development. Trump has had his first chance since being elected to put his "persuasion skills and negotiating skills" to work in his negotiations with Carrier. And as far as I'm concerned, he failed. Contrary to his assertions, Carrier is sending jobs to Mexico and are also now getting a tax break upwards of 7 million dollars. What are your thoughts?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: B.E. on December 05, 2016, 05:07:57 PM
Apparently, Trump received a phone call from China Taiwan...any thoughts?

Seems like an interesting issue. I stumbled upon these interviews which were conducted in the autumn of 2001.
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/china/experts/taiwan.html (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/china/experts/taiwan.html)

The Chinese Foreign Ministry's spokesperson lost me here..."no one in the world is more eager than China to find a peaceful solution to the Taiwan question. We have always advocated peaceful reunification on the principle of one China, two systems...this is our basic principle and it has remained unchanged" Question: Why do you not renounce your use of force against Taiwan? "It is just because we want to solve the Taiwan question peacefully that we cannot give up the use of force. If we give up the use of force, that will only make a peaceful solution impossible. For instance, if the Taiwan separatists declare Taiwan independent, then how do we react? ..."


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 05, 2016, 05:25:29 PM
I actually think that answer is a political reality, at least of the realpolitik sort. The threat of force is an important bargaining chip in negotiation, even if you have no interest whatsoever in using it. (I'm not speaking for China's actual motivations, here. Just the theory more generally speaking.) To me, this is like a mild or one-sided version of threat of mutual destruction that the USA and USSR had throughout the Cold War.

We want X.

We could destroy [or in other examples at least harm] you.

Now ... back to "we want X..."


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: B.E. on December 05, 2016, 05:52:30 PM
Oh, I agree. In regard to the quote I posted, I suppose I was hoping to find a more reasonable or nuanced stance from China. For me, in addition to being 'lost' (in the sense that I was not persuaded), I was disturbingly amused. But I'm not well informed or, admittedly, even aware of the situation prior to all the news coverage. Do you see One China as anything other than a charade? If not, is China not embarrassed? Will they ever let go? Taiwanese people don't identify with the People's Republic (or even China, with increasing numbers). I understand that China is very serious about unifying the country, that it's no joke to them, and that the US wouldn't want to be (or feel) responsible for an attack on Taiwan, but does that preclude the United States' position from ever changing? Is it simply a case of the US valuing their relationship with China more than Taiwan (understandable considering what you outlined).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 05, 2016, 08:45:36 PM
There are separatist groups in many countries, including in the US. There are hundreds around the world. In the US we had a war to keep a separatist group from leaving. When we talk about separatists groups in countries we don't like the government of, we talk of the "right to self-determination." That right disappears when we talk of separatist groups within countries we do like the government of - then they are right-wing or left-wing radicals or terrorists.
I don't really feel it's appropriate for the US to weigh in on the rights or lack thereof of separatist groups in other countries.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: B.E. on December 06, 2016, 12:01:20 AM
There are separatist groups in many countries, including in the US. There are hundreds around the world. In the US we had a war to keep a separatist group from leaving. When we talk about separatists groups in countries we don't like the government of, we talk of the "right to self-determination." That right disappears when we talk of separatist groups within countries we do like the government of - then they are right-wing or left-wing radicals or terrorists.
I don't really feel it's appropriate for the US to weigh in on the rights or lack thereof of separatist groups in other countries.

I agree with this, except that it doesn't appear Taiwan is simply a group of people. If it weren't for certain countries weighing in on the sovereignty of Taiwan, it would (presumably) be recognized as an independent country. The US civil war resulted in the union remaining intact. The PRC never conquered Taiwan. They have been two separate states (with their own governments) ever since. It's too bad they were both so insistent on claiming otherwise during the '50s-70s. That generation is long gone now.

Getting back to the Trump news coverage, well, it's just a shame to me that communication is vilified. Forget the US, China, Taiwan, Trump...why should it be news that two world leaders are communicating? If anything, it should only be news if they refuse to communicate! That would just be unreasonable IMO...ideally speaking, of course.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 06, 2016, 05:10:06 AM
There are separatist groups in many countries, including in the US. There are hundreds around the world. In the US we had a war to keep a separatist group from leaving. When we talk about separatists groups in countries we don't like the government of, we talk of the "right to self-determination." That right disappears when we talk of separatist groups within countries we do like the government of - then they are right-wing or left-wing radicals or terrorists.
I don't really feel it's appropriate for the US to weigh in on the rights or lack thereof of separatist groups in other countries.

I agree with this, except that it doesn't appear Taiwan is simply a group of people.  If it weren't for certain countries weighing in on the sovereignty of Taiwan, it would (presumably) be recognized as an independent country.
So if more countries recognized it as a country, more countries would recognize it as a country?

 The US civil war resulted in the union remaining intact. The PRC never conquered Taiwan. They have been two separate states (with their own governments) ever since. It's too bad they were both so insistent on claiming otherwise during the '50s-70s. That generation is long gone now.

In this post and the one above you imply that it's a given that Taiwan should be recognized. So when a dictator is overthrown, let's say Mussolini or Somoza, if they aren't hunted down and killed, but instead find an outpost where they park with an armed force and some followers, is it a given that the world should recognize that outpost as a country? 
Of if I found a government and no one 'conquers' me for 50 years, does that mean I get to be my own country?
When you get involved with defining who should be a country using logic or ethics, you get into an irresolvable quagmire. Every opinion on this matter that claims to be based on logic or ethics resolves ultimately with "'everyone should be their own country" or "whoever in the world has the strongest military gets to decide what country everyone belongs to." Everything in between involves choosing based on personal preferences. Who is recognized is therefore based on the subjective and realpolitik guesses of the recognizer. Unless one agrees that everyone is their own country, there are no ethics involved. Evidently Trump guesses he can 'win' something from shaking up the status quo.
Getting back to the Trump news coverage, well, it's just a shame to me that communication is vilified. Forget the US, China, Taiwan, Trump...why should it be news that two world leaders are communicating? If anything, it should only be news if they refuse to communicate! That would just be unreasonable IMO...ideally speaking, of course.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 06, 2016, 05:18:00 AM
I don't know enough about the region or its history to comment on China and Taiwan. But I do think, as Emily said, we tend to be hypocritical about who should be a country ... and there may well be no non-hypocritical answer. Reality seems to be that whoever wants to be one and is militarily capable of maintaining their status as one--or increasingly, who has others willing and able to defend them--gets to be one. But nation-states are truly artificial things. The idea that some defined "people" exist on some nation-state-appropriate level and have a shared will is kind of ridiculous.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: B.E. on December 06, 2016, 07:36:52 AM
There are separatist groups in many countries, including in the US. There are hundreds around the world. In the US we had a war to keep a separatist group from leaving. When we talk about separatists groups in countries we don't like the government of, we talk of the "right to self-determination." That right disappears when we talk of separatist groups within countries we do like the government of - then they are right-wing or left-wing radicals or terrorists.
I don't really feel it's appropriate for the US to weigh in on the rights or lack thereof of separatist groups in other countries.

I agree with this, except that it doesn't appear Taiwan is simply a group of people.  If it weren't for certain countries weighing in on the sovereignty of Taiwan, it would (presumably) be recognized as an independent country.
So if more countries recognized it as a country, more countries would recognize it as a country?
:lol I was afraid you'd hit me with that! I was trying to address the underlying issue...what is a country, exactly? Is its existence entirely dependent on recognition by certain other countries?...while also squaring that with the notion that it’s inappropriate for countries to weigh in on such rights.     *I expand on this below

I don't know enough about the region or its history to comment on China and Taiwan. But I do think, as Emily said, we tend to be hypocritical about who should be a country ... and there may well be no non-hypocritical answer. Reality seems to be that whoever wants to be one and is militarily capable of maintaining their status as one--or increasingly, who has others willing and able to defend them--gets to be one.

Right. Surely, this is true. And it’s probably not of much importance to dwell on any other definition of a country. I don't necessarily believe that a country can exist if its not recognized. I'm just pondering it.

The idea that some defined "people" exist on some nation-state-appropriate level and have a shared will is kind of ridiculous.

If I understand you correctly, this was a distinction I was trying to make. Taiwan appears to be more than a nation of people who share common customs and worldview (who are otherwise ruled and governed by another state).

In this post and the one above you imply that it's a given that Taiwan should be recognized. So when a dictator is overthrown, let's say Mussolini or Somoza, if they aren't hunted down and killed, but instead find an outpost where they park with an armed force and some followers, is it a given that the world should recognize that outpost as a country?  
Of if I found a government and no one 'conquers' me for 50 years, does that mean I get to be my own country?
When you get involved with defining who should be a country using logic or ethics, you get into an irresolvable quagmire. Every opinion on this matter that claims to be based on logic or ethics resolves ultimately with "'everyone should be their own country" or "whoever in the world has the strongest military gets to decide what country everyone belongs to." Everything in between involves choosing based on personal preferences. Who is recognized is therefore based on the subjective and realpolitik guesses of the recognizer. Unless one agrees that everyone is their own country, there are no ethics involved.

I guess it comes down to constitutive or declarative theory of statehood. Not that I'm familiar with these terms, but recognition by others is a key distinction. I don't think my thoughts have much to do with ethics (though sure I'm biased against "communist" China on some level), just that I question the legitimacy of "you are what we say you are because we say you are". In that sense I suppose I'm looking for an objective truth, but I'll admit to not fully understanding your point about logic/ethics as it pertains to this situation. Now, not everyone adopts the PRC's view on this. Some countries still recognize the ROC of controlling all of China. Does that make it so? The US (and many other "major" countries) supported the ROC as a member of the UN and acknowledged them as controlling all of China. This went on for decades. And now for decades the UN (with STRONG opposition from the PRC) won't allow them to rejoin. The thing that distinguishes this for me is that the PRC does not rule Taiwan, and what's more, they never have. For your first example... depends on the size of the outpost ;D. Sounds like a country in the making. The China/Taiwan situation is odd because it was never settled and both just claimed to control all of China for many years, when neither functionally did. As to your second example...if you can find some territory to claim, I suppose you are a country in the making. I guess in reality it just comes down to if you're recognized by other countries as such. But not just any country, important ones.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 06, 2016, 07:49:12 AM
The idea that some defined "people" exist on some nation-state-appropriate level and have a shared will is kind of ridiculous.

If I understand you correctly, this was a distinction I was trying to make. Taiwan appears to be more than a nation of people who share common customs and worldview (who are otherwise ruled and governed by another state).


Yeah, I think you understand me correctly. But to mess with any semblance of coherence I might have presented, allow me to start babbling. It seems that people often recognize some inherent naturalness of a nation, but the artificiality of a state. I'm increasingly wondering whether a nation is a natural thing, either, or is just another artificial idea. Usually the idea is (as you say) that some ethnic group sharing culture is a nation, and over the past couple centuries, those have tended to be the same boundaries for their states. The nation-state.

But really, those boundaries of nation seem as artificial as the boundaries of state to me. One could slice and dice a nation just like one can slice and dice a congressional district in gerrymandering. Even when we say "but the people in [X boundaries] voted to be [in/out]," that is only relevant if the boundaries of those voted are first accepted as the appropriate boundaries.

That could be a really dumb train of thought I've not really worked through. But it's something that has occasionally crossed my mind in the past few years, especially with Russia's Eastern European adventures, ISIS, and other boundary-smashing exercises.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 06, 2016, 08:29:31 AM
My point is that there is no objective truth that can be generally applied. Each situation is in some way different and no one can make a declarative statement about what they think defines a country or what should be a country and have it logically stick unless their definition is 'each person is a country' or 'countries are defined by force'. Your post above seems to be relying on 'if some group or person controls an area by force, that area is a country and the controllers are the government.'
Is that your definition? That is indeed a way of looking at it. What would you say re: Tibet, Eastern Europe during the Cold War, areas controlled by ISIS and rebel groups throughout the world, in Colombia, say? Is Colombia really two countries we? Do you consider the Civil War of the US not a civil war but an invasion of the south, one country, by the north, another country?

Captain - fully agree re: "natural" nations. Populations can be sliced and diced as many ways as there are people.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 06, 2016, 10:00:45 AM
"Military needs more money, military needs more money..." say nearly all U.S. politicians.

Or not.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/pentagon-buries-evidence-of-125-billion-in-bureaucratic-waste/2016/12/05/e0668c76-9af6-11e6-a0ed-ab0774c1eaa5_story.html?hpid=hp_hp-banner-main_pentagon-0655pm%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.ed526dc746db


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 06, 2016, 10:27:40 AM
Wonder if he's going to try to get gov't to pay to use his private jet instead of cancelled AF1


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 06, 2016, 10:36:02 AM
I saw the headline but haven't even read in detail about the AF1 stuff. Where are they in the process? Is cancellation even a realistic option? (Not to mention he has no authority for another six weeks.) If $x billion has been spent or contractually guaranteed, there may not be all that much to be said or done about it. I have previously heard--Slate Political Gabfest, maybe?--speculation that he may have wanted to use his own jet, though. That was prior to any mention of the new AF1 contract.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 06, 2016, 12:02:58 PM
The contract is pretty new and hasn't accrued costs yet. The majority of the 4 billion is apparently not for Boeing - that's the project budget ( 2.9 B) and procurement (1 B); so Boeing's contract would be a portion of the 1 B for procurement of 2 very advanced planes. I have no knowledge of how that compares to other sophisticated planes and whether the Pres. should have it at all is a whole 'nother conversation.  
The gov't paid to use Trump's plane and space in Trump Tower for sec. service during campaign. Looks like gov't will rent space in Trump Tower as long as his wife and son remain there...
But he just really damaged Boeing with a false implication about their business. Most of the cost is for Pentagon engineering, etc. see your above post.

Yes, purely speculation about whether this plane stuff is related, unlike the factual Pizzagate.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 06, 2016, 03:35:22 PM
I can't even say anything about the whole pizza thing without getting pretty angry now that shots have been fired. (Actually I was already pretty angry.)

If indeed Mr. Trump intends to keep his own jet(s?), one wonders the cost of retrofitting them with the necessary technology for security and communications. And what happens to them in 4 (or, nonexistent God forbid, 8) years. On that general idea, as Emily noted, we'll be paying to safeguard Trump Tower. Presumably we'll also be paying to protect an assortment of buildings around the world with the man's name on them (even if he doesn't have jack sh*t to do with them other than the name and cash he collects for it). (I cannot imagine how he even could, much less whether or how he will, remove himself from his brand ... especially since his brand is only his name, not anything he does or makes, since he does nothing well and makes nothing at all.)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 06, 2016, 03:37:21 PM
Drain the swamp :Bob Dole is a paid lobbyist for Taiwan and has been hosting meetings between Taiwanese officials and Trump for months.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 06, 2016, 03:46:21 PM
Drain the swamp :Bob Dole is a paid lobbyist for Taiwan and has been hosting meetings between Taiwanese officials and Trump for months.

I had just heard today that Dole helped coordinate the infamous call. Nothing drains the swamp quite so much as involving someone who was almost never out of office from 1950-1996 and who has been a "consultant" as well as special counsel for a major corporate law firm (Alston & Bird).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 06, 2016, 04:49:30 PM
General Flynn is more like General Ripper!  ::)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: B.E. on December 06, 2016, 07:47:36 PM
Your post above seems to be relying on 'if some group or person controls an area by force, that area is a country and the controllers are the government.' Is that your definition? That is indeed a way of looking at it. What would you say re: Tibet, Eastern Europe during the Cold War, areas controlled by ISIS and rebel groups throughout the world, in Colombia, say? Is Colombia really two countries we? Do you consider the Civil War of the US not a civil war but an invasion of the south, one country, by the north, another country?

That's a large part of it, yes. My criteria for a country would be 1) permanent population 2) defined territory 3) government with domestic sovereignty

This definition is very similar to The Montevideo Convention definition, with the exception of adding the phrase “domestic sovereignty”. I chose that to denote de facto control over a state exercised by an authority organized within the state. De jure sovereignty in the absence of actual control would not be sufficient. Countries must not be dependent on or subjected to the rule of other states. Furthermore, I don’t think recognition in and of itself determines the existence of a country.

My posts have been written from this perspective. I should have outlined my thoughts, but I hadn’t formed them yet, nor do I consider them complete. Also, you may notice that I’ve left out: 4) capacity to enter into relations with other states. It seems redundant (or unnecessary?) to me, but that could just be my ignorance. If it’s necessary to add that, to make sense of my position, then please do so.

As for your examples, well, if any of those situations had met my definition, then, yes, they should have been considered a country. I know very little about some of these situations, but I’ll try…Tibet? I couldn’t say, but perhaps condition #3 would not be met? Hong Kong, for instance, while quite independent of China, still depends on China for its military force and its highest political position is appointed by the PRC. The USSR exerted significant influence over numerous Eastern European countries. So called “puppet states” would not meet condition #3.  I’m not sure if the situation in Colombia meets any of these conditions. Granted, my knowledge of Colombia consists of a quick skim of Wikipedia, but I read about numerous political groups fighting different causes over a 50 year civil war. I found a map indicating the “presence” of one of the groups, but I’m not sure condition #2 could be met, nor #3. ISIS could conceivably meet my definition in the future, as with any other group. Theoretically, during conflict, I imagine the boundaries of a territory shifting as actual control shifts, but in practice the territory must be settled (which typically won't happen until the fighting ends). As for the US civil war, states seceded and formed the Confederacy. At that moment did they meet my definition? Possibly, yes. Had they won the war, absolutely they would have formed a new country. At which time, the illegality of the succession (from the North's point of view) would be irrelevant. Instead, the states were reinstated into the union and no amount of Confederate flag bumper stickers will change the fact that the driver of the car is a citizen of the USA.

Emily, just to be clear, what is your position? Do you think Taiwan meets my definition, but not yours? As you are a proponent of the constitutive theory of statehood? If so, what combination of recognition is adequate? You mentioned Tibet. Mongolia recognized Tibet, yet Tibet was not considered a country.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 07, 2016, 10:13:55 AM
Rep. Ellison has said he'd step down from his House seat if named DNC chair. That's nice but it also means MN's newest Rep would have lowest seniority in Congress when s/he is elected in 17: we'd lose all the seniority Ellison has obtained in his dozen or so years. Seniority matters as it affects committee appointments, as well as just good old-fashioned relationships and trust (if anyone in Congress has such things anymore).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 07, 2016, 02:49:57 PM
The Oklahoma AG, who doesn't even believe climate change is a real thing (much less that humans have any role in it) and who has railed against environmental regulations particularly as they affect the oil industry, is going to be named to lead the Environmental Protection Agency.

Will a pacifist lead Defense? Perhaps a convicted felon to lead Justice? It's just absurd.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 07, 2016, 03:03:36 PM
Help me Captain! :P


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on December 07, 2016, 03:04:54 PM
Linda McMahon (yes, the former CEO of WWE and wife of Vince McMahon) was named to Trump's cabinet today as "small business administrator". I guess because nothing says "small business" like a billion dollar publicly-traded company.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 07, 2016, 03:05:49 PM
I would rather it be Vince! ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on December 07, 2016, 03:13:14 PM
I'd rather the ghost of Randy Savage be the Minister of Slim Jims(tm) but hey


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 07, 2016, 03:16:47 PM
 :lol
Billy Castillo minister of summer means fun!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 07, 2016, 03:20:36 PM
Your post above seems to be relying on 'if some group or person controls an area by force, that area is a country and the controllers are the government.' Is that your definition? That is indeed a way of looking at it. What would you say re: Tibet, Eastern Europe during the Cold War, areas controlled by ISIS and rebel groups throughout the world, in Colombia, say? Is Colombia really two countries we? Do you consider the Civil War of the US not a civil war but an invasion of the south, one country, by the north, another country?

That's a large part of it, yes. My criteria for a country would be 1) permanent population 2) defined territory 3) government with domestic sovereignty

This definition is very similar to The Montevideo Convention definition, with the exception of adding the phrase “domestic sovereignty”. I chose that to denote de facto control over a state exercised by an authority organized within the state. De jure sovereignty in the absence of actual control would not be sufficient. Countries must not be dependent on or subjected to the rule of other states. Furthermore, I don’t think recognition in and of itself determines the existence of a country.

My posts have been written from this perspective. I should have outlined my thoughts, but I hadn’t formed them yet, nor do I consider them complete. Also, you may notice that I’ve left out: 4) capacity to enter into relations with other states. It seems redundant (or unnecessary?) to me, but that could just be my ignorance. If it’s necessary to add that, to make sense of my position, then please do so.

As for your examples, well, if any of those situations had met my definition, then, yes, they should have been considered a country. I know very little about some of these situations, but I’ll try…Tibet? I couldn’t say, but perhaps condition #3 would not be met? Hong Kong, for instance, while quite independent of China, still depends on China for its military force and its highest political position is appointed by the PRC. The USSR exerted significant influence over numerous Eastern European countries. So called “puppet states” would not meet condition #3.  I’m not sure if the situation in Colombia meets any of these conditions. Granted, my knowledge of Colombia consists of a quick skim of Wikipedia, but I read about numerous political groups fighting different causes over a 50 year civil war. I found a map indicating the “presence” of one of the groups, but I’m not sure condition #2 could be met, nor #3. ISIS could conceivably meet my definition in the future, as with any other group. Theoretically, during conflict, I imagine the boundaries of a territory shifting as actual control shifts, but in practice the territory must be settled (which typically won't happen until the fighting ends). As for the US civil war, states seceded and formed the Confederacy. At that moment did they meet my definition? Possibly, yes. Had they won the war, absolutely they would have formed a new country. At which time, the illegality of the succession (from the North's point of view) would be irrelevant. Instead, the states were reinstated into the union and no amount of Confederate flag bumper stickers will change the fact that the driver of the car is a citizen of the USA.

Emily, just to be clear, what is your position? Do you think Taiwan meets my definition, but not yours? As you are a proponent of the constitutive theory of statehood? If so, what combination of recognition is adequate? You mentioned Tibet. Mongolia recognized Tibet, yet Tibet was not considered a country.

The definition you use can be logically consistent and adheres to the latter of the two logical definitions I described: countries are defined by force and there are no actual ethics or laws that apply.
In real life the details of the Montevideo definition didn't apply until the realpolitik of the early-mid twentieth century and it stopped applying almost immediately thereafter.
I, also in theory, object strongly to the notion that we should all be perpetual victims of other people's force, so I choose the opposite. Each person should be their own country.
Regarding Taiwan, that's a question regarding reality, so neither of our preferred theories apply. Do I think they should or shouldn't be recognized?  In terms of practical reality, it would be a mistake for the US to do so at this point; there is neither a strong argument to do so in terms of international law, human rights, justice, cynical benefit, global stability, ethics, anything really.  There are not many strong arguments to not do so either, but stability and cynical benefit would lean toward not doing so.
I also don't know how you conclude that I am a proponent of the constitutive theory of statehood. I am not. I think there is no consistent theory of statehood other than pure force. And I reject that on ethical grounds.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on December 07, 2016, 03:25:46 PM
:lol
Billy Castillo minister of summer means fun!

8)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 07, 2016, 03:29:41 PM
You beat out Bruce Johnston dammit!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 07, 2016, 03:31:01 PM
I, also in theory, object strongly to the notion that we should all be perpetual victims of other people's force, so I choose the opposite. Each person should be their own country.

That's the most interesting thing I've read in a while. If it's a common idea, forgive my ignorance. (Do it! I'll say Hail Marys or something!)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 07, 2016, 03:39:25 PM
I, also in theory, object strongly to the notion that we should all be perpetual victims of other people's force, so I choose the opposite. Each person should be their own country.

That's the most interesting thing I've read in a while. If it's a common idea, forgive my ignorance. (Do it! I'll say Hail Marys or something!)
It's not common, but it's also not original. I would probably except people who are by their own necessity dependents, like children to a certain age. But association with a governing body should be voluntary.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 07, 2016, 03:41:35 PM
I, also in theory, object strongly to the notion that we should all be perpetual victims of other people's force, so I choose the opposite. Each person should be their own country.

That's the most interesting thing I've read in a while. If it's a common idea, forgive my ignorance. (Do it! I'll say Hail Marys or something!)
It's not common, but it's also not original. I would probably except people who are by their own necessity dependents, like children to a certain age. But association with a governing body should be voluntary.

Re that last sentence, I've wondered about that exact thing: should citizenship be an opt-in, rather than an opt-out, situation? But from a practical perspective, how could such a thing work? (I mean in terms of protection and such. If I live in XYZ, America, and I don't opt in to citizenship, how can I expect public services?)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 07, 2016, 03:48:40 PM
started typing but now must wait until after daughter's bedtime.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 07, 2016, 04:05:23 PM
 :thumbsup


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 07, 2016, 07:28:47 PM
....'kay
Let me premise this with the fact that I haven't thought this through to all the gory details because I'm not that much of a philosopher. I can't push my brain too far along a path that I know has no practical reality.

From a practical perspective, such a thing could not work until after the apocalypse or something because it would only work if we gave up the idea that land should be divvied up among states. However, territorial government, codified government, and power rulers were not common until around the biblical era and were rare in the Americas and Africa until the colonial era. There's indication that they existed - they popped up here and there in Egypt, Cambodia, Tibet, around the fertile crescent. Interestingly, very little in Europe before Greece. While the types of populations we have now didn't exit then, population density didn't seem to be key to whether power-based government existed. While Montezuma had a pretty serious power structure happening, the Navajo and other Arizona region nations didn't, with similar population sizes.
"My" idea was floated a bit here and there by colonists in the Americas in the 17th and 18th centuries - during the weird transitional stateless moments. Thomas Jefferson considered that free association and territory-free government was an ideal but was already too cynical to think it an option for Europeans, even those in the Americas. The idea evaporated pretty quickly as new power structures engulfed the continents. 

In our current reality, you must belong to some state because all land belongs to some state. And, really, you only can belong to the state you were born to unless you get permission to join a different state. We're all basically forcibly owned by a state from birth to death.
Theoretically, however, governing bodies could be free associations that do not own land. Let's say New York City has a primary governing body that virtually everyone belongs to. The association doesn't own the land. You can live in the city without being a member of that association. If you aren't, however, that association can deny you services. So, given that it's a big city, it would probably be best to be a member. But if enough people in NY decide to form a different association, they could probably have 2 or 3 functioning associations and make it work. An association would also be free to sell services.
Out in Wyoming, however, there may be many people who do not belong to any governing association. And if you really don't like the options (of any of the associations or of not being in an association) in NY, you're free to leave.

Essentially, there would be many, small, flexible, varying and optional governing bodies that fluctuate according to people's fluctuating demand. People would be likely to choose where to live based on the sort of association they'd like to join, because the associations would most likely be regional - an association mainly in New Jersey isn't likely to be able to provide useful services to someone living in Buenos Aires.

The basic and obvious flaw is how do you keep associations from violating the 2 organizing principles - that of free association and that of non-territorialism? Once an association violates the principles, it becomes a threat to other associations. I haven't thought that through but I imagine it's been thought through by someone and someone has a theory.







Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: B.E. on December 07, 2016, 09:52:22 PM
What authority (if any) would an association have over none members?

Edit: I don't know. If humanity had a 'redo' and started from here, i think it could very well end up right where we are now. I'm concerned this would be less secure and less stable. Especially, if there are more than one association in a region. In the absence of a 'law of the land', where everyone is subject to the same rules, how can order be maintained? I still think it's gonna come down to force (unfortunately). Can my association protect me? There probably wouldn't be much of a choice between joining or not joining the more powerful association (or the association), unless you have the means to relocate. Perhaps it's just my mind trying to comprehend a foreign idea, but it's freaking out over the potential dangers...the only way I could see multiple associations existing peacefully within the same region is if they were very similar (and worked together). That would be cool, to have that freedom.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 08, 2016, 03:48:59 AM
My personal opinion is that it's the structures we have in place that create most of the dangers you fear. You're kind of assuming that people have an essentially violent and criminal nature. I'm assuming not. Some few people, yes, but most violence and criminality arises from conditions. That's fairly evident because everywhere in the world at every point in history violence shows up in repeated conditions. Eliminate the conditions, you eliminate the majority of the violence.

ETA: Let me reiterate that power-states really existed only sporadically for 99% of history. It's only a very recent phenomenon that the broad population became subject to states. Obviously technology changes circumstances, but we're not a stupid species. If we overcame the inclination of the states to keep us ignorant, brutal and unthinking, all kinds of things are possible.

EATA: now I'm going down the rabbit hole: let me reiterate also that I expressed the distance that this has from our current reality and that there would have to be a destructive shock of major proportions to even open the door to this possibility, which I wouldn't wish for. I spend more time thinking about realistic possibilities. I don't follow nonrealism very far.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 08, 2016, 05:12:14 AM
Trump voters chose a big absurd TV show instead of a Presidency.  The TV show is playing and they're entertained as desired. Meanwhile...

- what do you wanna bet that there was actually a conversation involving Trump and top advisers early in this process in which they decided to drag out SoS explicitly to keep up suspense and viewership?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: CM Punky Brewster on December 08, 2016, 07:13:29 AM
I would rather it be Vince! ;D

Vince can barely run WWE!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 08, 2016, 07:31:10 AM
True that, have Shane or Step. then! :lol


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 08, 2016, 09:55:49 AM
The hits keep coming: who better to advocate for labor than multimillionaire CEO of Hardee's/Carl's Jr, with a long history of opposing raising minimum wage, overtime pay, and assorted worker protections. The DOL will be in such good hands... :wall


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 08, 2016, 10:15:09 AM
Hear, hear! An opinion piece on the political correctness on the right.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2016/12/07/the-right-has-its-own-version-of-political-correctness-its-just-as-stifling/?hpid=hp_no-name_opinion-card-b%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.07b0281c670b


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on December 08, 2016, 10:27:57 AM
Hear, hear! An opinion piece on the political correctness on the right.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2016/12/07/the-right-has-its-own-version-of-political-correctness-its-just-as-stifling/?hpid=hp_no-name_opinion-card-b%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.07b0281c670b

Great article. Have been saying this for years. There are so many leftist positions that you simply cannot express in the United States. And this is far more pervasive that the kinds of claims that the alt right have been making.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: B.E. on December 08, 2016, 11:23:54 AM
Trump has chosen Iowa Gov. Terry Brandstad as China Ambassador. Apparently, Brandstad has a relationship with the President of China which goes back to the '80s. I just thought it was interesting that in the wake of the Taiwan phone call and Trump's recent tweets that I turned on the TV to China's praise of his pick. I was surprised and not surprised considering how Trump operates. For those who follow politics much more closely than I, is this a good pick? Or at least a reasonable one?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 08, 2016, 03:32:05 PM
While I live next door to the north, I have to admit I don't know a ton about Gov. Branstad other than that he's been hugely popular in Iowa. He was governor there throughout most of the 80s and 90s, and then again for the past couple of terms. I think he's more an old-school Midwestern Republican, historically, in that with so much agriculture in Iowa, one would historically almost have to support various government programs. (Think about how unpopular it has been for the Rand Paul and Ted Cruz types to say that ethanol ought not be subsidized, for example: a good point for their doctrine, but wildly unpopular to say in Iowa.)

But as far as his potential impact as ambassador, I have no idea. I'd assume it's a reward for Branstad's surprising and unpopular early loyalty to Trump.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 08, 2016, 03:51:03 PM
There's another demographic with whom Trump already has problems who might not be so pleased with the nomination of Puzder
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=EPOcxNMzNhc
"I like our ads. I like beautiful women eating burgers in bikinis. I think it's very American."

But I shouldn't mention that because people like me mentioning that creates Trump voters so I should shut up and sit down and let the bros handle things.
As if that attitude doesn't create Trump voters.
Oh. And yeah. Women are commercial products.
https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.entrepreneur.com/amphtml/246487?client=safari


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 08, 2016, 04:11:34 PM
I can just hear Steve Bannon responding to you right now.

I have to admit, the oversized, over-baconed burgers, low-wage employees, and utterly sexless oversexed commercials were the first things that occurred to me when I heard of the impending appointment. And I thought, "yeah, that's about right."


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 08, 2016, 04:24:26 PM
I can just hear Steve Bannon responding to you right now.

I have to admit, the oversized, over-baconed burgers, low-wage employees, and utterly sexless oversexed commercials were the first things that occurred to me when I heard of the impending appointment. And I thought, "yeah, that's about right."
:-D  it is, isn't it?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 08, 2016, 05:28:25 PM
Now my family is trashing Keith Ellison because the right-wing media told them to. ::)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 09, 2016, 04:57:01 AM
God complex ("I''m the only one!")
Racial demagoguery and a focus on "bad elements", the threat of the outsider
Attacking the press, specifically saying he'd curtail its freedom
Having an internally controlled press organ that publishes as if it's independent
Excused as not meant to be taken literally
Military running civilian agencies
Picking and choosing individual businesses to reward or shame
Using private citizens as "lessons" to others through rewards or shame
Appointing people to head agencies that those people openly want to dismantle
Nah - no valid fascism comparisons here.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 09, 2016, 09:14:07 AM
I wonder if part of the hesitation to make the connections stem from the old "banality of evil" idea: Trump doesn't seem like some evil genius, but just an egotistical if bumbling self-promoter. Could someone without any particular (much less particularly evil) ideology lead an administration into something with such dark overtones?

History would say yes, I think. Not to say that particularly horrific outcomes are inevitable, or even likely. But possible? Sure. The good news is that the USA is far, far more stable than the countries overtaken by fascists.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on December 09, 2016, 09:45:57 AM
Ah, finally back in the saddle after some unexpected health issues. I'll try and get up to speed on what I've missed.

I did catch that Trump won Time's Person Of The Year. I think their might be some media bias, when I won in 2006 everyone was congratulatory, but he wins and people are jumping outta their skin to make a Hitler comparison?  ??? Something is up!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 09, 2016, 09:49:53 AM
Glad you're back and hopefully healthy.

I'm never up for anyone to jump out of their skins. Calm evaluations and assessments, those are my preference.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on December 09, 2016, 09:56:26 AM
Thanks captain.

There hasn't been much in the news about US politics my way so hopefully as the saying goes, no news is good news.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 09, 2016, 09:58:46 AM
There hasn't been much in the news about US politics my way so hopefully as the saying goes, no news is good news.

Unfortunately the media tends to stop covering the mundane-seeming but important things once the horse-races are over. There has been a lot going on, actually, as Trump has been nominating people to his Cabinet. (I am among those very, very unimpressed with most of his choices, many of whom are directly opposed to his purported mission to help the working class and "drain the swamp" of typical Wall Street types ... which is not a surprise, just a disappointment.)

Do you mind me asking where you are, country-wise? I know you've said you're outside the US but don't recall you saying where you are.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on December 09, 2016, 10:05:27 AM
There hasn't been much in the news about US politics my way so hopefully as the saying goes, no news is good news.

Unfortunately the media tends to stop covering the mundane-seeming but important things once the horse-races are over. There has been a lot going on, actually, as Trump has been nominating people to his Cabinet. (I am among those very, very unimpressed with most of his choices, many of whom are directly opposed to his purported mission to help the working class and "drain the swamp" of typical Wall Street types ... which is not a surprise, just a disappointment.)

Do you mind me asking where you are, country-wise? I know you've said you're outside the US but don't recall you saying where you are.

Over in Australia. Truthfully. there have been some picks that I'm pretty iffy about, but I hope they'll surprise me. What did you think about Gen. James Mattis as a pick? I like the guy.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 09, 2016, 10:21:01 AM
I'm not a huge fan, but neither do I think he's the worst nomination so far. I like that he's opposed to torture and opposed to undoing the Iran deal. I like that he appears to be, from what I can tell, a very good military mind. What I don't like is that he was so recently in the military: we have a policy in the U.S. about not naming current or recent military to lead the Dept of Defense, and he'd need a special waiver to do so. On its own, that wouldn't be make-or-break for me, but he's something like the third or fourth high-ranking military person in this cabinet. I don't like the over-militarization of the government. What's the old line? When you're a hammer, everything looks like a nail...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 09, 2016, 12:48:16 PM
The fascist comparisons have been increasingly apt for a while. Can't imagine what Time has to do with it.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on December 10, 2016, 12:55:41 AM
For some people it's a case of confirmation bias, but at the heart of it, I was just making a silly joke.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 10, 2016, 03:58:55 AM
I doubt it. No one started out thinking Trump was a fascist.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 10, 2016, 04:00:28 AM
I wonder if part of the hesitation to make the connections stem from the old "banality of evil" idea: Trump doesn't seem like some evil genius, but just an egotistical if bumbling self-promoter. Could someone without any particular (much less particularly evil) ideology lead an administration into something with such dark overtones?

History would say yes, I think. Not to say that particularly horrific outcomes are inevitable, or even likely. But possible? Sure. The good news is that the USA is far, far more stable than the countries overtaken by fascists.
Stalin would be the big one - but Batista and Peron were also opportunists who seem to have devised their ideologies to fit the occasion.  And all three were bumblers.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 10, 2016, 04:01:24 AM
Derp


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 10, 2016, 04:32:48 AM
I doubt it. No one started out thinking Trump was a fascist.
True: no one took him remotely seriously, including as a fascist. Idiot, yes. Funny guy, maybe. Obama antagonist, clearly. But nobody said "keep an eye on him, he's showing fascist tendencies" before the campaign began.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 10, 2016, 05:41:53 AM
Jesus...
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2016/12/09/exxon-ceo-rex-tillerson-emerges-as-trumps-top-secretary-of-state-candidate/?hpid=hp_rhp-top-table-main_tillerson-814am%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.4a8c905d94a1


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 10, 2016, 06:44:42 AM
It's hard to believe who, after three or four such annointed "top choices," is really the favorite (if anyone). Seems like a series of weather balloons to me. Leak a name, gauge reaction. But we've had Giuliani, Romney, Petraeus, and Bolton all called top choices at some point or other, not to mention another half-dozen names or more mentioned.

This would be a rotten choice, but hey, what's new...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 10, 2016, 06:47:02 AM
By the way, as many know by now, the CIA reports with confidence that Russia intervened in this election by hacking both parties' emails (the Republicans dispute this) and leaking only harmful Democratic ones to Wikileaks, etc. I understand the report (or possibly officers separately? I got this from an NPR story) also indicates they were involved in Brexit and Ukraine elections. I fully expect them to be involved in the next German one, as they no doubt want Merkel out.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/09/us/obama-russia-election-hack.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 11, 2016, 06:37:10 AM
Annnnnd Mr. Trump denies Russian hacking. Why? Because he knows better than experts. After all, he receives daily intelligence briefings and can make up his own mind, right? Well...

Quote
“I think it’s ridiculous,” Trump said in an interview with Fox News Sunday, his first Sunday show appearance since the election. “I think it’s just another excuse. I don’t believe it … No, I don’t believe it at all.”

Trump also denied the importance of receiving the daily intelligence briefing that is traditional for presidents and presidents-elect. He has received the briefings only sporadically since winning the election.

“I get it when I need it,” he said. “I’m, like, a smart person. I don’t have to be told the same thing in the same words every single day for the next eight years.”
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2016/12/11/trump-denies-cia-report-russia-intervened-to-help-him-win-election/?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_trumpcia-914am%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.e67522e70dc0

That's right, he doesn't think he needs daily, or even regular, intelligence briefings. Nah, the occasional tidbit is no-doubt sufficient when you don't care what's actually happening in the world to begin with... See how easy life is? Doubt Russians hacked political parties to help you win because you'd prefer there be no cloud over your victory. Reject information from people who know better than you. Presto: you have received no information that contradicts your previous, uninformed opinion.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 11, 2016, 08:39:56 AM
https://www.google.com/amp/heavy.com/news/2016/12/donald-trump-complain-time-magazine-man-person-of-the-year-rally-baton-rouge-video/amp/?client=safari
These voters aren't motivated by misogyny.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 11, 2016, 09:29:27 AM
Annnnnd Mr. Trump denies Russian hacking. Why? Because he knows better than experts. After all, he receives daily intelligence briefings and can make up his own mind, right? Well...

Quote
“I think it’s ridiculous,” Trump said in an interview with Fox News Sunday, his first Sunday show appearance since the election. “I think it’s just another excuse. I don’t believe it … No, I don’t believe it at all.”

Trump also denied the importance of receiving the daily intelligence briefing that is traditional for presidents and presidents-elect. He has received the briefings only sporadically since winning the election.

“I get it when I need it,” he said. “I’m, like, a smart person. I don’t have to be told the same thing in the same words every single day for the next eight years.”
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2016/12/11/trump-denies-cia-report-russia-intervened-to-help-him-win-election/?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_trumpcia-914am%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.e67522e70dc0

That's right, he doesn't think he needs daily, or even regular, intelligence briefings. Nah, the occasional tidbit is no-doubt sufficient when you don't care what's actually happening in the world to begin with... See how easy life is? Doubt Russians hacked political parties to help you win because you'd prefer there be no cloud over your victory. Reject information from people who know better than you. Presto: you have received no information that contradicts your previous, uninformed opinion.


But as Trump points out, he's smart, therefore he doesn't need knowledge.
(? Does the latter half of that assertion prove the first half wrong?)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 13, 2016, 08:29:20 AM
For f***'s sake, Gov Perry to lead Dept of Oops? Is it just absurdist comedy to keep nominating people fundamentally opposed to the existence or missions of the departments they are supposed to run?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 13, 2016, 09:25:32 AM
For f***'s sake, Gov Perry to lead Dept of Oops? Is it just absurdist comedy to keep nominating people fundamentally opposed to the existence or missions of the departments they are supposed to run?
What to conclude when, as you say, appointees are foxes in henhouses, pres-to-be repeatedly casts doubt on llegitimacy of voting, information and facts, the judiciary and executive agencies and shows no inclination of even pretending he's going to eliminate conflicts of interest?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on December 13, 2016, 01:15:42 PM
For f***'s sake, Gov Perry to lead Dept of Oops? Is it just absurdist comedy to keep nominating people fundamentally opposed to the existence or missions of the departments they are supposed to run?

Yeah.  Reagan did the same thing...and too bad trickle-down does not work.  History may repeat itself again.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 13, 2016, 03:20:31 PM
No mention of Mexico, either regarding NAFTA or immigrants, but otherwise a good parsing of Trump's potential intentions regarding foreign policy.
http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/white-house/trump-s-secretary-state-pick-may-help-direct-shift-u-n695486
Thoughts?

And there's this. I would laugh if it weren't real.
Scientists are frantically copying US climate data, fearing it might vanish under Trump:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/12/13/scientists-are-frantically-copying-u-s-climate-data-fearing-it-might-vanish-under-trump/?client=safari


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 13, 2016, 03:54:45 PM
Re that latter point, it's not entirely unbelievable, is it? I haven't read the article, but was going to say something on a similar topic: the questionnaire asking for names of everyone who worked on or attended conventions/seminars on climate science over the past five years, and their notes or emails regarding same. The Oops Dept is, to their credit, so far refusing to turn over names.  (Aforementioned two sentences based on an NPR story I heard this afternoon.)

I'll check out that story you linked, thanks.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 13, 2016, 03:56:33 PM
I read that too. Very creepy and concerning.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 13, 2016, 09:18:54 PM
Here you go, the captain:
(https://s30.postimg.org/rxc9u6oj5/dingo.jpg)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 14, 2016, 03:00:07 PM
Way to go, Americans. At the behest of Putin, you crucified a woman who spent her life trying to do what she thought was a positive contribution.
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/13/us/politics/russia-hack-election-dnc.html?referer=


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 14, 2016, 03:26:08 PM
Way to go, Americans. At the behest of Putin, you crucified a woman who spent her life trying to do what she thought was a positive contribution.
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/13/us/politics/russia-hack-election-dnc.html?referer=
Emily, you forget, this is just the left's propaganda wing trying to discredit Trump's victory when in reality, if there was any hacking at all, it may well have been done by China or somebody in his bed (I think he said?) in New Jersey. (Not quite sure why the hacking was supposed to be from a bed. That's some weird porn, man...)

Seriously, I read that story earlier today and thought it was pretty thorough reporting, not to mention compellingly told.

I like the dingo-baby tweet.  :lol



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 16, 2016, 05:53:51 AM
The hits keep coming. An ambassador to Israel who is pro-illegal settlements, anti-two state solution, compares left-leaning American Jews to Nazi sympathizers, and is saying he'll work from the (non-existent) embassy in Jerusalem. Oh, but at least he has plenty of diplomatic experience. Wait, he has no diplomatic experience. f*** you, David Friedman. And f*** you, Donald Trump. I don't think anyone can deny I've tried to be level-headed about this election and want to give every benefit of the doubt. But I'm so goshdarn sick of these terrible choices and incessant stupidities still spewing out of that president-elect's Twitter account and mouth... I don't know whether to just hole up for four years or start a nonstop protest rant of some sort. I'm just glad federal power is limited, executive power is checked, and hopefully some people around the world understand that this idiot asshole doesn't speak for us all.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/15/us/politics/donald-trump-david-friedman-israel-ambassador.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 16, 2016, 07:00:37 AM
Less depressing, the president signed the BOT Act into law yesterday. The new law, introduced to the senate by Sen. Moran (R-Kan) and co-sponsored by Sen. Schumer (D-NY), Sen. Fischer (R-NE), Sen. Blumenthal (D-CT), Sen. Nelson (R-Fla), Sen. Klobuchar (D-Minn), Sen. Cantwell (D-Wash), Sen. Warner (D-Va), and Sen. Stabenow (D-Mich), outlaws the use of bots to circumvent ticket sale limits and to the interstate resale of tickets acquired via such circumvention.

https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/senate-bill/3183

Sadly it's too late for many of us: for example, I paid double what I planned to pay for four front-center BW tickets for two balcony tickets this fall thanks to absurdly obvious bot-buying on a weekday mid-morning as the tickets were gobbled up before my eyes... But at least going forward we ought to have a fighting chance to buy the tickets we want.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 16, 2016, 07:05:05 AM
There is hope... :smokin


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 16, 2016, 07:18:34 AM
I'm not one for cliches, but what the hell: even a broken clock is right twice a day.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 18, 2016, 05:47:44 AM
There is a serious information processing gap in this country, thus the vulnerability to fake news: https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/monkey-cage/wp/2016/12/18/a-new-poll-shows-an-astonishing-52-of-republicans-think-trump-won-the-popular-vote/?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 18, 2016, 06:04:10 AM
It's pretty amazing: and unfortunately it's not the only topic on which people's knowledge varies widely based on party (or some other characteristic). I've listened to a few interviews lately, including with people whose political positions I don't associate with, like Ben Shapiro, in which people across the political spectrum bemoan this exact phenomenon: people illustrating literally the idea of a party line, with not just political positions somehow aligning up and down a platform with a party's--already ridiculous, in my opinion--but their general opinions and understanding of the world, too. It's only explainable by the idea of extreme association with tribes, and putting tribe above everything else to the point of rejecting everything else.

As the president said in his press conference the other day, there is something wrong when a large segment of people are willing to trust an adversary like Putin above their opposition party in this country because their partisan animosity has grown so extreme, so deep. So I am saying again, as I tried to do during the campaign (until my brain just melted before the white-hot ignorance and duplicity of the president elect) and have said since election day, I want to play a part in changing that. I want to take people's opinions seriously. I want to assume their best intentions--at least "regular" people and even officials below the highest levels--rather than their worst. I want to minimize my own hyperbole as often as possible. And I want to listen to enough of their media and have real conversations to the point that we can at least all agree that fellow citizens (hell, fellow humans) aren't out to destroy the world just to spite us and our parties.

Along the same lines of misunderstandings of reality and the fake news topic, by the way... I'm sure many people have heard the president elect talking about his historic landslide victory in the Electoral College throughout his "victory tour." For the record, that victory in the electoral college ranks 46th of 58 elections. It is not historic in the sense of margin of victory, even in the Electoral College. (Obviously, he lost the popular vote by several million, so its even less historic there.) If it is historic, it is because he won as a celebrity with no political experience running as much against his own party as his opposition party and discounted at the start by virtually everyone of substance. That is historic.

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/12/18/us/elections/donald-trump-electoral-college-popular-vote.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0

(By the way, my conciliatory words above don't apply to the president elect. I will be charitable as often as possible, but I will also be honest. I think no more highly of him now than I did then, and if anything, less so. I still think he's a rude, arrogant, vindictive, ignorant con artist. I'm not insulting everyone who voted for him, by any means. I understand wanting "change," and think Obama voters in '08 were similarly fuzzy about the relationship between the word and the candidate. But I think Trump is a dangerous clown whom I hope keeps his mouth and twitter fingers quiet for four years, at which time he is soundly beaten by virtually anyone.)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 18, 2016, 07:42:12 AM
He hasn't yet won the electoral college vote, but I understand what you're saying. Assuming they vote according to pledge, he won by fewer than 40,000 votes. He lost the popular vote by, as you say, a significant margin; he's won a smalller portion of the electorate by any president in history; and Republicans in congress received fewer votes than Democrats in congress. This whole "by the people" thing is completely out the window. At this point, it's "by the rural people."

On the other topic, It's hard to take people's opinions seriously when their opinions are based on lies.

Do you have any evidence that the false information thing is evenly spread across the spectrum? It's not what I've seen in multiple studies. I understand you try hard to be balanced but I think you're engaging in false equivalence.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 18, 2016, 08:03:37 AM
Re electoral college vote, sorry, I should have been clear. Obviously the vote hasn't happened yet. But in terms of pledged votes.

Did I say false information is evenly spread across the spectrum? I don't think it is, and didn't mean to say or imply it. But I do think the party-line / ideology beliefs are relatively similar on both sides: I would bet you could do a good job of predicting a person's assorted positions by, say, two or three initial questions. And I don't think those positions necessarily follow logically from those two or three initial questions. That tells me we're looking at tribalism/partisanship. I don't mean to say that's identical to belief in false news--though I do suspect it means people are prone to some degree of party-line echo chambering regardless of political affiliation. (Again, that isn't the same as believing false news, but it's maybe near the edge of the downward slope.)

The full-on false news--not just partisan or ideological slant, but fiction presented as fact--I think is more about intelligence and education. Or rather, lack of same. Obviously this makes me come across as an asshole, which, luckily, is what I tend to be (more often than I'd care to be), so I may as well continue that streak. (After all, I'm the guy who has openly questioned the merits of democracy based on this same total disrespect for the people's intelligence. Though I also in the same breath acknowledge no better system and my discomfort at that statement.) I think stupid or less educated people fall for more fake news. (And no, not all uneducated people are stupid, nor are all stupid people uneducated. Obviously.) But when we are talking about what demographics supported the president-elect, and what demographics seem to have believed the fiction presented as fact, well ... stupid people fall for lies. Maybe they don't understand the kinds of checks that go into proper journalism. Maybe they just lack critical thinking skills. Maybe they lack the baseline of information/education to identify the blatant contradictory bullshit they're spouting when it's spouted unto them. (Not sure why I shifted into pseudobiblical language. Call it fun.) But I don't think it's necessarily a GOP-Dem thing or a right-left thing, other than the coincidence of who is supporting the GOP these past decades based on the GOP's outreach and affiliation.

I should think through what I write before I write it. But I don't. So feel free to point out whatever stupidities I've written. I'm sure there are some.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 18, 2016, 04:31:25 PM
Your comment is entirely coherent and not at all stupid, though I have a different take that I will write about later.
Right now, I'm just going to comment that Breitbart has announced its intention to expand in the UK and mainland Europe. So, it's taking the same strategy it took here: publish articles that have false implications or are downright false about "establishment" people and organizations to get the ignorant up in arms. It's a disease.
Here are some from today:
http://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/12/18/fake-news-bbc-reports-cheapest-ever-xmas-3-days-later-claims-brexit-increasing-xmas-prices/
http://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/12/17/impartial-bbc-calls-trump-election-american-tragedy/


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 18, 2016, 07:49:48 PM
There's a part of me that thinks that the difference between the mass of "liberals" and "conservatives" is only vaguely related to political or economic philosophy at this point, in the US. I think that in the '70s, a set of Republican operatives started putting out feelers to see if they could get a positive response among a particular set of the population to a false narrative. I think the response was positive and over time an increasing number of people have been pushing that false narrative and getting an increasing number of believers. I think that the reason "conservatives" don't seem like conservatives anymore is because they aren't. They are uneducated and unthinking people believing a false set of ideas that have been pushed by cynical conservatives to get more votes. Actual conservatives are a small number of people who initially benefited from this, but who have now been pushed aside by the very population their operatives were propagandizing. Their propaganda was so successful that now the propagandized have taken over.
I think the reason "liberals" or "progressives" or whatever aren't really left anymore is that, where they used to be, is everyone else. Everyone who reacts negatively to the false narrative. So "liberals" are conservatives, liberals, progressives, moderates, socialists, capitalists, everyone who isn't comfortable with the manner or the substance of the radically propagandized right. And "conservatives" are the radically propagandized right.
So there is really an essential difference between left and right as they are now defined in the US - but the differences aren't really at heart political differences. They are more deeply qualitative.
Let me be clear - I am not referring to ALL Democrats or Republicans or ALL Liberals or Conservatives. I'm referring to the mass left and mass right and the mass difference. There are of course sad conservatives and Republicans who are serious about their political philosophy or their understanding of policy but are now marginalized by the mass right, who are the radically propagandized. There are also sad liberals and Democrats (and progressives, etc.) who are serious about their political philosophy or their understanding of policy but are now marginalized by the mass left, which is an undefined mess of people who only have in common not being radically propagandized.
What's scary is that 42% of Americans have been radically propagandized and believe all kinds of truly crazy sh*t. And that's not just crazy stuff about Clinton pizzeria scandals or Obama planning to round them up into retraining camps, but stuff that has been completely normalized but would be crazy to someone not in our nutcase vortex: "job creators," illegal immigrants driving down wages, factories will come back if NAFTA goes away, "religious freedom" means that people in government positions can discriminate against gay people, Muslims are all intent on destroying us because they hate "our freedoms," government = bad by definition (unless we're talking about the police or military in which case they are absolutely all heroes), the US was founded as a "Christian nation", there is no discrimination against minorities, white men are suffering from discrimination, cutting taxes will increase revenue, privatizing schools will make schools better in places where there's no money, the environment is not suffering from human-generated climate change, it's a basic American tenet of freedom that people can be walking around Walmart with obvious guns, trying to close background-check loopholes is a violation of the second amendment, just all kinds of stupid garbage.
Basically, 42% of Americans believe in an alternate reality. And those 42% of Americans are the people we now call "conservative". But an actual conservative from 40 years ago would look at this list of positions and not recognize them as conservative in the least.
So, I think the fact that the people who believe completely fake news are more likely to be right/GOP is not because right/GOP as it traditionally has been is more likely to be stupid, but that right/GOP as it is is people who are likely to believe completely fake news. I think that's the core definition of the right/GOP at this point. The parties are now the fake news party (and those who are still clinging to it because the false narrative was originally cynically driven by some on the traditional right and a few still think the cynical conservatives are in control, but really complete nihilists and stooges have taken over from the cynics) and the not fake news party and that's the only real difference.
Right up through the 1990s, the majority of publicly recognized Republicans were people who were able to discuss issues within the realm of rationality.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 18, 2016, 07:53:00 PM
And this seemed thoughtful and worthy of consideration:
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/17/opinion/sunday/arguing-the-truth-with-trump-and-putin.html?ribbon-ad-idx=4&rref=opinion


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 20, 2016, 05:46:17 AM
Emily, I read your thoughts and agreed with a lot. Been somewhat busy and so haven't responded but I may. Or maybe I'll leave it at that: plenty of agreement. After all, I think a special "guest poster" may need to make an appearance in the idiotic "listening to BBs will get you arrested" thread...

Meanwhile, I don't think we've mentioned outgoing gov McCrory and that shocking GOP legislature. I mean honestly...it's amazing.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on December 20, 2016, 08:15:42 AM
Way to go, Americans. At the behest of Putin, you crucified a woman who spent her life trying to do what she thought was a positive contribution.
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/13/us/politics/russia-hack-election-dnc.html?referer=

What do you think is worse? That there is unconfirmed evidence that Putin may have influenced the US election or that there is confirmed evidence that Hillary Clinton regretted not influencing the Palestinian election?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 21, 2016, 04:55:17 PM
https://www.yahoo.com/amphtml/news/gingrich-says-trump-is-done-with-drain-the-swamp-slogan-173426892.html?

The headline, in the link, says it all. No need to click.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 21, 2016, 05:55:53 PM
I saw that too. In the linked article Newt says:

"I’ve noticed on a couple of fronts, like people chanting ‘lock her up,’ that he’s in a different role now and maybe he feels that as president, as the next president of the United States, that he should be marginally more dignified than talking about alligators in swamps."

I wonder whether the irony of it all is lost on the former speaker, discussing whether a metaphor intended to get across an actually good point is undignified for a president, even as that future president continues to almost daily lash out like a bratty adolescent on twitter, usually not on subject, but just with mean-spirited personal insults, every time someone is critical of him.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 21, 2016, 06:01:17 PM
Way to go, Americans. At the behest of Putin, you crucified a woman who spent her life trying to do what she thought was a positive contribution.
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/13/us/politics/russia-hack-election-dnc.html?referer=

What do you think is worse? That there is unconfirmed evidence that Putin may have influenced the US election or that there is confirmed evidence that Hillary Clinton regretted not influencing the Palestinian election?
Annoyingly, I'm going to deny the validity of the question except as a hypothetical one.
So, as a hypothetical, if one person is suspected of doing something super-wrong and another expressed regret at not doing something super-wrong, I'd have a bigger issue with the suspicion of actual super-wrong-doing.
For the validity, first Putin: there has been firm evidence available for a while (before the US presidential campaign) that the Russian government employed internet propagandists to influence Ukrainian especially but also European, generally, public opinion. There's strong evidence that predates the US presidential election that the Russian government had employed hackers that accessed US and other government data. Straight out in the open, RT was heavily involved in misinformation campaigning for Trump. That is enough for me as the misinformation is, to my mind, the biggest problem. The emails alone are not the issue; the misinformation regarding the emails is. And RT certainly engaged in that. So, as there is open evidence that the Russian government was involved in pro-Trump, anti-Clinton misinformation campaigning; extensive evidence that the Russian government was involved in more subtle pro-T, anti-C misinformation campaigning; extensive evidence that the Russian government employs political hackers; it's a fact that Stone, who is a long-term Trump associate who worked on Trump's behalf throughout the year, has a partnership with Manafort, who was Trump's campaign manager and worked with Russia on Ukraine, knew of the Wikileaks leaks ahead of time; and that Assange has a positive relationship with the Russian government media, and all the evidence presented in the Times piece above, it's pretty well established to me that the Russian government actively meddled with the US election and are doing so with several European elections.
Do I assume the US has not done the same where able and interested? No. Do I object to the US radio-propagandizing Cubans, for example? Yes, vociferously and frequently. Do I object generally to the US interfering in other counties politics, particularly as we are usually on the side of baddies? Yes. Do I expect that Clinton has OKed something similar? Most likely, if it was her role to do so. Does that make it OK that Russia did it? No, it's wrong in all cases. Does it bother me particularly that someone I think is very repulsive and corrosive to the country my daughter is going to grow up and probably live her life in, who will remove her rights, destroy her environment, reduce her opportunities and security, increase the violence around her, decrease her ability to have respect for the people she lives among benefitted from this? Yes. And does the fact that I'm interacting with people who support him, and whom I'm convinced supported him either because they are supremacists or because they were propagandize by exactly that misinformation but I don't know their views on Israel-Palestine affect what I say here? Yes.

Regarding Clinton, I haven't seen confirmed evidence of her regretting not influencing the Palestinian election. I've seen a story sourced exclusively to a site run by Trump's son-in-law that quoted Clinton thusly:
"I do not think we should have pushed for an election in the Palestinian territories. I think that was a big mistake,” said Sen. Clinton. “And if we were going to push for an election, then we should have made sure that we did something to determine who was going to win.”
A few problems, as far as I've been able to ascertain, though I haven't read the whole internet.  Correct me if I missed something.
1. The source is one guy who says he has a tape but the tape hasn't been released.
2. The quote was supposedly to the editorial board of the Jewish Press but I haven't seen anyone else from the board confirm; nor have I seen the "reporters" who "reported" the story try to get confirmation from anyone but the one source.
3. It's supposedly from an editorial board meeting a decade ago but no one reported it until Trump's son-in-law in the G.E. against Clinton?
4. The context isn't there - the entire transcript isn't available. If she did say it, might she not have meant they should have 'figured out' who would have won before they supported the election, rather than the other definition of 'determined' - controlled? Given that no one commented at the time, that's what I assumed she meant.
If what I assumed was right, it's still not cool, but it's a very different statement from the one implied.
But, again, even if she did say it and meant it the way it's implied she meant it, a regret about NOT doing something bad is not to me as bad as ACTUALLY doing something bad. And, also, again, I'm confident the US has done awful things, but that does not make it OK that idiots voted for Trump due to blatant misinformation.

So, I think the "confirmed" and "unconfirmed" from your question are invalid, based on the information I have.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 21, 2016, 06:03:02 PM
I saw that too. In the linked article Newt says:

"I’ve noticed on a couple of fronts, like people chanting ‘lock her up,’ that he’s in a different role now and maybe he feels that as president, as the next president of the United States, that he should be marginally more dignified than talking about alligators in swamps."

I wonder whether the irony of it all is lost on the former speaker, discussing whether a metaphor intended to get across an actually good point is undignified for a president, even as that future president continues to almost daily lash out like a bratty adolescent on twitter, usually not on subject, but just with mean-spirited personal insults, every time someone is critical of him.
Or that maybe he's not using the slogan because he actually is making no effort to carry out what the slogan promises.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 21, 2016, 06:23:06 PM
Emily, I read your thoughts and agreed with a lot. Been somewhat busy and so haven't responded but I may. Or maybe I'll leave it at that: plenty of agreement. After all, I think a special "guest poster" may need to make an appearance in the idiotic "listening to BBs will get you arrested" thread...

Meanwhile, I don't think we've mentioned outgoing gov McCrory and that shocking GOP legislature. I mean honestly...it's amazing.
Consider it mentioned. Good lord.
And, while I don't miss the original, that guest poster is probably my favorite of all posters.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on December 21, 2016, 07:08:38 PM
Which guest poster? I'm so lost right now :lol


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on December 21, 2016, 07:09:20 PM
Way to go, Americans. At the behest of Putin, you crucified a woman who spent her life trying to do what she thought was a positive contribution.
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/13/us/politics/russia-hack-election-dnc.html?referer=

What do you think is worse? That there is unconfirmed evidence that Putin may have influenced the US election or that there is confirmed evidence that Hillary Clinton regretted not influencing the Palestinian election?
Annoyingly, I'm going to deny the validity of the question except as a hypothetical one.
So, as a hypothetical, if one person is suspected of doing something super-wrong and another expressed regret at not doing something super-wrong, I'd have a bigger issue with the suspicion of actual super-wrong-doing.
For the validity, first Putin: there has been firm evidence available for a while (before the US presidential campaign) that the Russian government employed internet propagandists to influence Ukrainian especially but also European, generally, public opinion. There's strong evidence that predates the US presidential election that the Russian government had employed hackers that accessed US and other government data. Straight out in the open, RT was heavily involved in misinformation campaigning for Trump. That is enough for me as the misinformation is, to my mind, the biggest problem. The emails alone are not the issue; the misinformation regarding the emails is. And RT certainly engaged in that. So, as there is open evidence that the Russian government was involved in pro-Trump, anti-Clinton misinformation campaigning; extensive evidence that the Russian government was involved in more subtle pro-T, anti-C misinformation campaigning; extensive evidence that the Russian government employs political hackers; it's a fact that Stone, who is a long-term Trump associate who worked on Trump's behalf throughout the year, has a partnership with Manafort, who was Trump's campaign manager and worked with Russia on Ukraine, knew of the Wikileaks leaks ahead of time; and that Assange has a positive relationship with the Russian government media, and all the evidence presented in the Times piece above, it's pretty well established to me that the Russian government actively meddled with the US election and are doing so with several European elections.
Do I assume the US has not done the same where able and interested? No. Do I object to the US radio-propagandizing Cubans, for example? Yes, vociferously and frequently. Do I object generally to the US interfering in other counties politics, particularly as we are usually on the side of baddies? Yes. Do I expect that Clinton has OKed something similar? Most likely, if it was her role to do so. Does that make it OK that Russia did it? No, it's wrong in all cases. Does it bother me particularly that someone I think is very repulsive and corrosive to the country my daughter is going to grow up and probably live her life in, who will remove her rights, destroy her environment, reduce her opportunities and security, increase the violence around her, decrease her ability to have respect for the people she lives among benefitted from this? Yes. And does the fact that I'm interacting with people who support him, and whom I'm convinced supported him either because they are supremacists or because they were propagandize by exactly that misinformation but I don't know their views on Israel-Palestine affect what I say here? Yes.

Regarding Clinton, I haven't seen confirmed evidence of her regretting not influencing the Palestinian election. I've seen a story sourced exclusively to a site run by Trump's son-in-law that quoted Clinton thusly:
"I do not think we should have pushed for an election in the Palestinian territories. I think that was a big mistake,” said Sen. Clinton. “And if we were going to push for an election, then we should have made sure that we did something to determine who was going to win.”
A few problems, as far as I've been able to ascertain, though I haven't read the whole internet.  Correct me if I missed something.
1. The source is one guy who says he has a tape but the tape hasn't been released.
2. The quote was supposedly to the editorial board of the Jewish Press but I haven't seen anyone else from the board confirm; nor have I seen the "reporters" who "reported" the story try to get confirmation from anyone but the one source.
3. It's supposedly from an editorial board meeting a decade ago but no one reported it until Trump's son-in-law in the G.E. against Clinton?
4. The context isn't there - the entire transcript isn't available. If she did say it, might she not have meant they should have 'figured out' who would have won before they supported the election, rather than the other definition of 'determined' - controlled? Given that no one commented at the time, that's what I assumed she meant.
If what I assumed was right, it's still not cool, but it's a very different statement from the one implied.
But, again, even if she did say it and meant it the way it's implied she meant it, a regret about NOT doing something bad is not to me as bad as ACTUALLY doing something bad. And, also, again, I'm confident the US has done awful things, but that does not make it OK that idiots voted for Trump due to blatant misinformation.

So, I think the "confirmed" and "unconfirmed" from your question are invalid, based on the information I have.

Regarding the Clinton quote, the audio has been available since the story leaked. In fact, it was a link to the audio on this site that I heard at least a month ago. Here is a clip of it:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tw7At6IsRKY

And, in that case, yes, she did regret not doing something bad but it did reveal her position on interfering on the democratic processes of other countries: she is in favour of it. In that case, it is sheer hypocrisy for Democrats to now say how dare the Russians interfere to the extent that Clinton lost the election, since Clinton herself is on record as supporting such practices.

Regarding Putin's involvement, what we have is an anonymous source claiming that the CIA has information that Putin hacked the election. This is hardly conclusive proof and most serious journalists are writing about it in that way. See the following:

https://theintercept.com/2016/12/10/anonymous-leaks-to-the-washpost-about-the-cias-russia-beliefs-are-no-substitute-for-evidence/

I'm not saying it didn't happen. There's a good chance it did. Powerful leaders of powerful countries are frequently in favour of interfering with the democratic processes of other countries. The US has a long history of this and Clinton's remarks on Palestine fit in nicely with that history. I agree that it is not okay "that idiots voted for Trump due to blatant misinformation." But I would argue that it is equally misinforming people to paint this incident as voters "crucifying a woman who spent her life trying to do what she thought was a positive contribution ... at the behest of Putin." In reality, the story is currently that there may be evidence that Putin tampered with a democratic process, preventing the election of a powerful figure who is on record as favouring interfering in the democratic systems of others.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 21, 2016, 10:49:11 PM
Ok. But that audio is still limited in context and indicates to me even more from tone that she meant ''figure out', not 'control.' The tape is meant to be 45 minutes. Did they release the whole thing?
But either way, as I said, I have no doubt the US has interfered with other elections (of course the US has, that's well established) and I wouldn't doubt that Clinton has done so if given the opportunity and motive. But it would only be hypocrisy if the people who have a problem with Russia doing it don't have a problem with the US doing it.
Regarding Putin, we have all the evidence that I've said above, which is more than an anonymous source. The Greenwald piece puts the FBI against the CIA with one saying Trump has no direct link to the Russian government and one saying he does as if that makes it a toss-up when we don't need either to tell us that Manafort was his campaign manager, so there's a direct link right there. And one doesn't need the CIA or FBI to tell us that thousands of pro-Trump twitter bots and social media accounts were sourced in Russia or that Sputnik and RT originated misinformation like the Clinton health stories.
So we disagree about the evidence. Some was too blatant to deny, I think, and you don't need the anonymous source, the CIA or the FBI to support it.
But, I don't know that the reaction is primarily "how dare Putin?" so much as "here is more evidence that this campaign was not on the up-and-up". Just as when the US interferes with an election, that election is to a degree invalidated, would not this one be as well?
It seems there is a flip to your flip - if it's problematic for the US to do it, is it not problematic for Russia to do it? Do you not agree that when the US does it, we can't rightly consider that election to be open and honest? Would the same not apply when it's done to the US?
Are my statement ("...positive contribution") and yours ("...favoring interfering") mutually exclusive? I don't think they are and I think they are both true.

Edited way later for a clarification: when you say "Democrats" do you mean Washington Democrats or general population Democrats? My answe was assuming the latter.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 21, 2016, 10:49:58 PM
Which guest poster? I'm so lost right now :lol
Crypto FDP


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 22, 2016, 04:20:00 AM
I saw that too. In the linked article Newt says:

"I’ve noticed on a couple of fronts, like people chanting ‘lock her up,’ that he’s in a different role now and maybe he feels that as president, as the next president of the United States, that he should be marginally more dignified than talking about alligators in swamps."

I wonder whether the irony of it all is lost on the former speaker, discussing whether a metaphor intended to get across an actually good point is undignified for a president, even as that future president continues to almost daily lash out like a bratty adolescent on twitter, usually not on subject, but just with mean-spirited personal insults, every time someone is critical of him.
Or that maybe he's not using the slogan because he actually is making no effort to carry out what the slogan promises.
that part was beyond obvious from, well, the moment he vomited the words. Longtime corrupt business celeb surrounded by longtime "outsider" pols and hacks doing away with the environments in which they thrive? Uh yeah...

The only surprising part (or is it? Not ifobe subscribes to my "everybody's an idiot" theory!) is that anyone believed him. Ever. About anything other than "I grab 'em by the..." That part rang true.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on December 22, 2016, 04:30:32 AM
we need to hear "her" thoughts on Gingrich's comments... ;)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on December 22, 2016, 06:40:28 AM
Ok. But that audio is still limited in context and indicates to me even more from tone that she meant ''figure out', not 'control.' The tape is meant to be 45 minutes. Did they release the whole thing?
But either way, as I said, I have no doubt the US has interfered with other elections (of course the US has, that's well established) and I wouldn't doubt that Clinton has done so if given the opportunity and motive. But it would only be hypocrisy if the people who have a problem with Russia doing it don't have a problem with the US doing it.
Regarding Putin, we have all the evidence that I've said above, which is more than an anonymous source. The Greenwald piece puts the FBI against the CIA with one saying Trump has no direct link to the Russian government and one saying he does as if that makes it a toss-up when we don't need either to tell us that Manafort was his campaign manager, so there's a direct link right there. And one doesn't need the CIA or FBI to tell us that thousands of pro-Trump twitter bots and social media accounts were sourced in Russia or that Sputnik and RT originated misinformation like the Clinton health stories.
So we disagree about the evidence. Some was too blatant to deny, I think, and you don't need the anonymous source, the CIA or the FBI to support it.
But, I don't know that the reaction is primarily "how dare Putin?" so much as "here is more evidence that this campaign was not on the up-and-up". Just as when the US interferes with an election, that election is to a degree invalidated, would not this one be as well?
It seems there is a flip to your flip - if it's problematic for the US to do it, is it not problematic for Russia to do it? Do you not agree that when the US does it, we can't rightly consider that election to be open and honest? Would the same not apply when it's done to the US?
Are my statement ("...positive contribution") and yours ("...favoring interfering") mutually exclusive? I don't think they are and I think they are both true.

Edited way later for a clarification: when you say "Democrats" do you mean Washington Democrats or general population Democrats? My answe was assuming the latter.

Again, while we do disagree on some points here, I do find that we still agree more than disagree. What I objected to the most in your post was your framing of the situation. Certainly if Russia tampered with the democratic process, they can be criticized. However, my feelings on the issue are much the same as my feelings (that you agreed with) towards heinous actions committed by atrocious terrorists that I have discussed on this site. You can read those thoughts here:

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,20357.msg581496.html#msg581496

Your statement and my statement are not mutually exclusive but I do object to the way that you framed the issue. To be perfectly honest, I find most of the discussion about Russia right now to be frighteningly reminiscent of Cold War-era discussions and it seems to be that a good portion of the American political establishment (voiced most ardently by Washington Democrats and the mainstream media) is aiming to return to that sort of environment, a dangerous aim in my view. Part and parcel to the renewal of this rhetoric is to, once again, exaggerate the threat posed by Russia. As you are familiar with history, I am sure you will recall the many stories about dangerous Communist infiltration that was feared to pose a threat to the American way of life. This record is simply being replayed, this time most significantly by the American liberal establishment, often with the circulation of stories that provide a great amount of accusations but very little evidence to reinforce them. The Washington Post has been particularly bad in its own spreading of fake news. So I had significant issues with the "at the behest of Putin" element of your quotation.

As for the element of your statement that Clinton "spent her life trying to do what she thought was a positive contribution," this may very well be true but then it is simply a truism that most political figures, even deplorable dictators, believe that they were trying to make positive contributions. But if I interpret your meaning correctly, you appear to be saying that it was a good thing that Clinton tried to make what she thought was a positive contribution, and therefore it was an issue that her campaign was railroaded at the behest of Putin. To me this is problematic for several reasons. One, it suggests that outsider interference is acceptable for leaders who aren't trying to make positive contributions (a historically slippery slope argument, as we know) and second it makes Clinton's contributions (which amount to a pretty lousy record of political work) appear positive despite your use of "she thought." So while elsewhere you do acknowledge Clinton's shortcomings and despite the fact that our two points of view are not mutually exclusive, I nevertheless find it a bit odd to frame this story as you did. And in light of the lengths that the liberal establishment has been going through this year to undermine legitimate criticism against them, blame others for their own inadequacies and their failure to win an election, and simultaneously, by and large, manufacture a Russian threat while carrying out aggressive actions towards them, I think we need to attend to the ways in which we talk about the issue of Russia and Clinton and investigate how our instincts may be being shaped by institutional forces with agendas to mislead the public.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 22, 2016, 10:20:16 AM
CSM and Emily, I enjoy reading your political posts. You're both very knowledgeable and thoughtful, not to mention ready to challenge default positions many of us have.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 22, 2016, 10:44:15 AM
There are a lot of different things going on here, from my perspective, and I am, again, on a phone, so forgive me if this is too disorganized to be clear.
Regarding the earlier discussion with FDP - that's where my final edit to my above post comes in. In that discussion we were talking about governing Democrats.  If you are talking about governing Democrats, yes, any *shock and outrage* expressed regarding electoral interference is both fake and hypocritical.  Regarding general population Democrats, shock would be naive or fake. But for a GP Democrat, outrage may not be hypocritical. It may be consistent. So in my comments above, I was assuming the latter, or more specifically, me. I don't feel hypocritical being pissed off by a tampered with election as I'm usually pissed off by tampered with elections.

Regarding Russia - first - what am I outraged by? Am I outraged by Russia tampering? Not specifically. I'm outraged by, as I think has been documented in multiple threads on this site, the misinformation that I think is driving American politics. I'm outraged by the corporate interests that pay for it, the hacks that bring it to their radio shows and websites, the idiots who spread it and vote based on it, and the foreign government that actively participates in it, both against their own population and against our population.
You and I may differ about the Soviet Union and that may be a whole other discussion. But, to me,  the Soviet Union was pretty well hijacked by authoritarian oligarchs by the mid-twenties. Stalin ran an intense misinformation based propaganda machine that is a nice precursor to Putin's.
Do I think the red scare stuff in the US made sense or was OK?  No. not because the Soviet Union didn't suck, but because the red scare stuff went after leftists by linking them to the Soviet Union when the Soviet Union wasn't left. The Soviet Union was basically a reintroduction of serfdom- the Tsarist order without the Tsar. Corporate interests took a advantage of the Russian Revolution by pretending it wasn't overthrown, pretending the Soviet Union was left, then vilifying the US left based on that, and running them underground.
Without regard to Russian or US history, I think Putin deserves the censure. The US does a lot that's wrong, but it does have on its side the one good point that, until now, white nationalist movements have not been publicly successful (well... since we stopped, you know, being an essentially white nationalist country). They've been very successful in Russia, increasingly so in Western Europe, and now successful in the US. And I believe that Putin is an active contributor to that movement and that it's right to counter that movement.
Do I need to step back and think about that witch hunt having parallels to the "red scare" witch hunts? I do - and I will. Thanks for the prompt. But I can't come to the conclusion that it's not right to counter white nationalism, or Christian nationalism, or nationalism. And I do think there's a difference in the reality of the threat. But I think you and I differ in our evaluation of the level and extent of the reality of that threat. I think you give "revolting against elites" credence where I see revolting FOR elites. Different elites, but elites none-the-less.
Regarding Clinton, you and I have a gap there as well. She is pro-corporate, as almost all the electeds in DC are, and almost all Americans as well. She is war-like and believes in American exceptionalism and that it's OK to use violence to extract resources from other lands (and our own), as do almost all electeds in DC.
BUT, unlike almost all electeds in DC, she also has a legitimate consistent record of a PRIMARY focus, ahead of those things, on women's health, education and rights, and children's health, education and rights. That's her main deal. She sees that stuff through a corporatist lens at times, and through a warlike lens at times, but there are not many humans who can see things outside their frame of reference. So, within the common American frame of reference, I think she's preferable to many other electeds and has done decent work on important (to me) issues. I have huge problems with that frame of reference, but I've long accepted that in order for the frame to change, education, the media, the general zeitgeist has to change due to some shock. . In the meantime, the government will govern within that frame. Within that frame, I think Clinton is a decent person. I think the whole satanising of her is bullshit.
It's sort of an understanding of humanity perspective. Most people think and work and live with a very limited scope of understanding. So if I look at the population of the US in 1860, I will judge people on their actions very differently from how I would judge someone in the US today. Given their frame - their education, access to information, culturalization - are they trying to make good choices and make things better not only for themselves or some limited in-group, or are their choices driven by greed, hatred, etc? So a white person from 1860s US could do the exact same thing as a white person from 2016 US and I would judge the action differently.
I think that within Clinton's frame of reference, which is pro-corporate, pro-government violence, standard late 20th century US fare, she's made better, kinder choices than most of her peers. It could've been better, but it could've been a lot worse. Obama, Biden, Kerry, Gore, Feinstein, Boxer, Brown, Kerrey, Edwards, and we can go into McCain, Bush, Bush, Dole, etc. How does she compare to them? Positively. She worked hard and consistently in one area (yes, social justice, gasp) that matters to me, unlike the rest of them. (Gore perhaps.) And given that that's her frame, I think she worked with good intentions, and I don't think that applies to everyone.
A shorter way to say this - while Clinton may have -100 on corporate friendliness, she has -50 on foreign policy as she worked hard to push women's education and rights as SoS and +90 on social justice, while most DC Democrats are -100, -100, +10.  As I consider DC Democrats to be her frame, I don't have this "Clinton = evil bad person" thing. I have more of a "she's a decent person making choices in a bad frame." As I would say for a white person from the 1860s US who says some really racist stuff and maybe does some racist stuff, but is actively fighting against the institution of slavery.
Does that make sense? So, the treatment of Clinton, whom I believe acts well within her frame ( the "lock her up" witch b*tch c*nt bringing the women from her husband's betrayals to a debate,etc.) actually outraged and disgusted me and made me empathize with her way more than you.
The fact that the people who did this call themselves "We the People" and "real Americans" but are driven partially by misinformation from a non-American propaganda campaign set me off on a sarcasm train. I have a lot of feelings about the Clinton thing that you don't share. I think it's like going to downtown Akron, picking one guy who tepidly supported Trump but spoke out against the real Trump transgressions  and pillorying him publicly, driving him out of the community into shame and hiding, and acting like he's somehow a massively evil individual when maybe he's a good guy doing his best within his frame of reference. Or doing the same to my racist abolitionist in the 1860s. That's what I saw this campaign.
Sorry for the complete rambliness.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 22, 2016, 10:45:07 AM
CSM and Emily, I enjoy reading your political posts. You're both very knowledgeable and thoughtful, not to mention ready to challenge default positions many of us have.

SOOOO mutual.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on December 23, 2016, 08:09:53 AM
There are a lot of different things going on here, from my perspective, and I am, again, on a phone, so forgive me if this is too disorganized to be clear.
Regarding the earlier discussion with FDP - that's where my final edit to my above post comes in. In that discussion we were talking about governing Democrats.  If you are talking about governing Democrats, yes, any *shock and outrage* expressed regarding electoral interference is both fake and hypocritical.  Regarding general population Democrats, shock would be naive or fake. But for a GP Democrat, outrage may not be hypocritical. It may be consistent. So in my comments above, I was assuming the latter, or more specifically, me. I don't feel hypocritical being pissed off by a tampered with election as I'm usually pissed off by tampered with elections.

I completely agree here. As I hope you know, I greatly respect your opinion and I think by now I understand your positions on the issues. But I should have made it clear that I wasn't calling you a hypocrite for your stance. I apologize for that.

Quote
You and I may differ about the Soviet Union and that may be a whole other discussion. But, to me,  the Soviet Union was pretty well hijacked by authoritarian oligarchs by the mid-twenties. Stalin ran an intense misinformation based propaganda machine that is a nice precursor to Putin's.
Do I think the red scare stuff in the US made sense or was OK?  No. not because the Soviet Union didn't suck, but because the red scare stuff went after leftists by linking them to the Soviet Union when the Soviet Union wasn't left. The Soviet Union was basically a reintroduction of serfdom- the Tsarist order without the Tsar. Corporate interests took a advantage of the Russian Revolution by pretending it wasn't overthrown, pretending the Soviet Union was left, then vilifying the US left based on that, and running them underground.

We don't differ about the Soviet Union at all. I've said much the same thing, though not as convincingly, here:

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,22945.msg544759.html#msg544759

Quote
Without regard to Russian or US history, I think Putin deserves the censure. The US does a lot that's wrong, but it does have on its side the one good point that, until now, white nationalist movements have not been publicly successful (well... since we stopped, you know, being an essentially white nationalist country). They've been very successful in Russia, increasingly so in Western Europe, and now successful in the US. And I believe that Putin is an active contributor to that movement and that it's right to counter that movement.
Do I need to step back and think about that witch hunt having parallels to the "red scare" witch hunts? I do - and I will. Thanks for the prompt. But I can't come to the conclusion that it's not right to counter white nationalism, or Christian nationalism, or nationalism.

I agree we should counter the movement but I also think we need to be careful about how we counter the movement. I thought Saddam Hussein was a tyrannical monster who committed terrible atrocities. While I would say and would have said then that Hussein deserved censure, I also argued vehemently against the invasion of the country and the regime change that subsequently followed. Moreover, as awful a monster as Hussein was, I also argued against the construction of both him and Iraq by the Western mainstream media because, while partly true, it was also a fabricated construction in order to drum up support for military intervention. I opposed the invasion for several reasons, most glaringly because it was a gross violation of international law. But, moreover, I also opposed it on the grounds that it would increase the threats to global security. Copying and pasting what I've written here before, in October of 2002, in the lead up to the Iraq war, the FBI observed “that a war with Iraq could trigger new domestic terrorism risks.” Meanwhile, Jean-Louis Bruguiere, “the leading French investigation magistrate in charge of counter-terrorism affairs,” observed that “Attacking Iraq would intensify Islamic terrorism, not reduce it.” This, of course, is the reality that came to be and we are now dealing with and, in some places of the world, suffering in large scale ways, as a result of the political establishment not listening to or carrying about these warnings.

In the case of Russia, we have to remember that the United States has been actively participating in hostile and aggressive actions against Russia since the fall of the Berlin wall (the Cold War actions are another kettle of fish) by beginning the process of pushing NATO to the Russian borders. There is now a major US military build up there - and this isn't just because of Putin. It's been in the works for over twenty-five years. And a military battle between the US and Russia poses, in my view, a far greater threat to global security than even the invasion of Iraq did. Several weeks ago, critics quite rightly pointed out the dangers of the Trump-Taiwan call. Is it not similarly dangerous to continually and aggressively piss off the unstable nuclear threat that Russia is at the moment? Even if in bringing up white nationalism we are going to draw parallels between Putin and Hitler (another age-old bit of rhetorical propaganda that I find problematic in this case too), you would surely agree that WWII would have played out much differently had both the US and Germany had nuclear weapons. The liberal establishment in the US seems to be in favour of some kind of fight with Russia - a fight that has been established by the West in their military build up along the Russian borders. And they are now, in my view, attempting to garner support for this fight by actively presenting hearsay as if it were evidence. And while I agree that we should be countering white nationalism, racism, and misinformation that has negative consequences (and, similarly, we shouldn't be justifying or underestimating the terrible actions carried out by the Russian government), I also don't think we are doing anybody any favours by countering this with our own misinformation that is largely spun out by a corporate and political establishment whose goal seems to be an unnecessary and catastrophic war. I suppose in the 1980s it would have been noble for some Western activists to focus attention on, say, Soviet actions in Afghanistan. However, my position would have been that while it was correct to oppose those actions, that it was nevertheless the wrong issue for Western activists to focus on and moreover, I might ask them to consider what institutional forces were at work in shaping that issue as the one to focus on.

Quote
And I do think there's a difference in the reality of the threat. But I think you and I differ in our evaluation of the level and extent of the reality of that threat. I think you give "revolting against elites" credence where I see revolting FOR elites. Different elites, but elites none-the-less.

I'm afraid I don't understand what you mean by this. Who do I see as revolting against elites but are actually revolting for elites?

Quote
A shorter way to say this - while Clinton may have -100 on corporate friendliness, she has -50 on foreign policy as she worked hard to push women's education and rights as SoS and +90 on social justice, while most DC Democrats are -100, -100, +10.  As I consider DC Democrats to be her frame, I don't have this "Clinton = evil bad person" thing. I have more of a "she's a decent person making choices in a bad frame." As I would say for a white person from the 1860s US who says some really racist stuff and maybe does some racist stuff, but is actively fighting against the institution of slavery.
Does that make sense?

It does make sense. Unfortunately for Clinton, it's 2016 and not 2004 and I think this is a crucial difference. In 2004, the American public sentiment and the dominant political system was such that there was no choice but to go full on and support a candidate like Clinton - one who was socially liberal but pretty far right-wing on just about every other issue. But the world changed by 2016. By 2016, the American population had been quite rightly fed up with the political and economic establishment that was running the country and they were now aware of what was true for such a long time that this establishment had been contributing so negatively to their everyday life. Trump, as we know, hijacked this sentiment and used it for his own ends. The Washington Democrat establishment did all but ignore the sentiment completely, believing that their same old way of doing things would work again. Their ignorance to the realities of American life was so severe that they didn't even campaign in states that they believed were locks, despite many analysts saying otherwise. This ignorance of the American people and confidence in the status quo was precisely what many Americans were upset about in 2016. While it by and large always worked for both political parties up until, say, 2008, it's now, quite simply, a different world. Indeed, this was the first time in a very long time, when the candidate with the largest financial backing did not win the US election (though, in all fairness, she did win the popular vote).

 I say this in all seriousness: had the liberal establishment had any idea of what the world was like out there, they should have been plunging their focus, attention, and resources into Bernie Sanders' campaign not the monied, Wall Street candidate. Even without this attention and without these resources, the evidence shows that he had a better chance of winning against Trump than Clinton. You can imagine what could have happened had he had Clinton's backing. And yet the dominant argument became that he should be supporting her, a dreadful miscalculation in terms of strategy, in my opinion.

I agree that Clinton is comparatively strong on social justice, whether she's that much stronger than other Democrats, I'll have to take your word. However, there have been some good studies to suggest that in the US, a politician's social outreach is often tied to their financial backing. In other words, Clinton was much stronger in African American communities than Bernie Sanders was, but that was mostly because Sanders didn't have the same resources as Clinton and couldn't get his message into communities as well as Clinton could. The same could be said even more for candidates like Jill Stein. This point only reinforces your own observation that Clinton even approaches social justice “through a corporatist lens.” This suggests to me, though, that it is important for activists to pressure the establishment into giving their support to the candidate who will best serve the needs of that population. And given that Clinton has historically been in favour of policies that, in my view, have done a great deal of damage to minoritized communities (including women), such as the welfare reform bills carried out by Bill Clinton which destroyed the American welfare system, I'm not sure she was the right candidate. As Jacobin points out, for example, welfare reform led to the “Surveillance of low-income women [and] punished black women in disproportionate numbers, resulting in more black children in foster care and black women in prison.” In that case, I would have to imagine that any candidate with a better economic platform than Clinton's would have been better for the issues that you raise: women's health, education and rights, and children's health, education and rights.

I understand and agree with your point that in the US there are very few options and that in such an environment you have to make concessions. This is why I’m on record on this site as supporting Clinton against Trump. But I’m sure you agree that we make concessions so that we might get to something better. To me, that’s the end goal: to not just accept and praise that which we are conceding, but to continually work to do better. But the liberal establishment, just like the extreme right-wing establishment, has a tremendous amount of clout and is skilled at undermining and dodging those attempts. And one of the ways they are doing that right now (and have been doing for a year) is by stifling legitimate criticism of Hillary Clinton, painting her, instead, as an excellent candidate whose aim for presidency was undermined by racists, misogynists, idiots, James Comey, Russians, Jon Stewart retiring, etc. To me, this is a great effort in maintaining the status quo within the Democratic party. It does little to help improve anything and, even as a secondary goal, it won’t even help win them the next election because for so many people, it is a transparent attempt by an elite institution to preserve its elite status and there is now a great amount of cynicism about that that didn’t exist at the same level ten years ago. If the left right now is serious about being the left, then they need to put the energy, resources, and focus their attention in pressuring the Democratic party to clean house and to coax candidates who actually hold genuine progressive policies and work to challenge the dominant institutions in the country. To do anything but that, in my view, is to tread water and I see a lot of water treading going on at the moment.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on December 23, 2016, 08:10:43 AM
CSM and Emily, I enjoy reading your political posts. You're both very knowledgeable and thoughtful, not to mention ready to challenge default positions many of us have.

SOOOO mutual.

Same here!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 23, 2016, 11:01:44 AM
CSM and Emily, I enjoy reading your political posts. You're both very knowledgeable and thoughtful, not to mention ready to challenge default positions many of us have.

SOOOO mutual.

Same here!
Yay. Happy corner.
Very good points above. I will respond.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 23, 2016, 12:59:43 PM


Quote
Without regard to Russian or US history, I think Putin deserves the censure. The US does a lot that's wrong, but it does have on its side the one good point that, until now, white nationalist movements have not been publicly successful (well... since we stopped, you know, being an essentially white nationalist country). They've been very successful in Russia, increasingly so in Western Europe, and now successful in the US. And I believe that Putin is an active contributor to that movement and that it's right to counter that movement.
Do I need to step back and think about that witch hunt having parallels to the "red scare" witch hunts? I do - and I will. Thanks for the prompt. But I can't come to the conclusion that it's not right to counter white nationalism, or Christian nationalism, or nationalism.

I agree we should counter the movement but I also think we need to be careful about how we counter the movement. I thought Saddam Hussein was a tyrannical monster who committed terrible atrocities. While I would say and would have said then that Hussein deserved censure, I also argued vehemently against the invasion of the country and the regime change that subsequently followed. Moreover, as awful a monster as Hussein was, I also argued against the construction of both him and Iraq by the Western mainstream media because, while partly true, it was also a fabricated construction in order to drum up support for military intervention. I opposed the invasion for several reasons, most glaringly because it was a gross violation of international law. But, moreover, I also opposed it on the grounds that it would increase the threats to global security. Copying and pasting what I've written here before, in October of 2002, in the lead up to the Iraq war, the FBI observed “that a war with Iraq could trigger new domestic terrorism risks.” Meanwhile, Jean-Louis Bruguiere, “the leading French investigation magistrate in charge of counter-terrorism affairs,” observed that “Attacking Iraq would intensify Islamic terrorism, not reduce it.” This, of course, is the reality that came to be and we are now dealing with and, in some places of the world, suffering in large scale ways, as a result of the political establishment not listening to or carrying about these warnings.

In the case of Russia, we have to remember that the United States has been actively participating in hostile and aggressive actions against Russia since the fall of the Berlin wall (the Cold War actions are another kettle of fish) by beginning the process of pushing NATO to the Russian borders. There is now a major US military build up there - and this isn't just because of Putin. It's been in the works for over twenty-five years. And a military battle between the US and Russia poses, in my view, a far greater threat to global security than even the invasion of Iraq did. Several weeks ago, critics quite rightly pointed out the dangers of the Trump-Taiwan call. Is it not similarly dangerous to continually and aggressively piss off the unstable nuclear threat that Russia is at the moment? Even if in bringing up white nationalism we are going to draw parallels between Putin and Hitler (another age-old bit of rhetorical propaganda that I find problematic in this case too), you would surely agree that WWII would have played out much differently had both the US and Germany had nuclear weapons. The liberal establishment in the US seems to be in favour of some kind of fight with Russia - a fight that has been established by the West in their military build up along the Russian borders. And they are now, in my view, attempting to garner support for this fight by actively presenting hearsay as if it were evidence. And while I agree that we should be countering white nationalism, racism, and misinformation that has negative consequences (and, similarly, we shouldn't be justifying or underestimating the terrible actions carried out by the Russian government), I also don't think we are doing anybody any favours by countering this with our own misinformation that is largely spun out by a corporate and political establishment whose goal seems to be an unnecessary and catastrophic war. I suppose in the 1980s it would have been noble for some Western activists to focus attention on, say, Soviet actions in Afghanistan. However, my position would have been that while it was correct to oppose those actions, that it was nevertheless the wrong issue for Western activists to focus on and moreover, I might ask them to consider what institutional forces were at work in shaping that issue as the one to focus on.
I actually completely agree. I don't think making a fuss about Putin is what the US government should be doing right now. Unfortunately, Putin has inserted himself into my pet issue - the radicalization of the American right (and I firmly believe he has and I still disagree with you about evidence). So I'm griping about Putin and his role in misinformation - but I don't think that here's anything for the gov't to do about that other than focusing on improving education (which won't happen for at least four years). I mention Putin as an added point to the misinformation problem - not as an urging to combat Putin.
However - I do think that Russia is aggressively expansionist and that countering that is an appropriate action for the international community. When the USSR broke up, Russia tried hard to retain control of its colonies, particularly those with significant oil or potential pipeline routes. It has insinuated itself into the politics of those that did officially break away to his he degree that several "presidents" who have put off further elections in their countries are Russian puppets. There is a strong sense in Russia that the former colonies, east and west, should "belong" to Russia. It's not uncommon for Malarossya to still be used for the Galician region and Ukraine.
Note: I said international community, not the US. The US is not in a position to bug other places about colonialism. However, Western European countries who have divested themselves of their colonies, former colonies, and the countries under discussion should feel free, as far as I'm concerned, to band together to address expansionist movement by Russia.

I have arrived at my station. I will respond to the below this evening.




Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 23, 2016, 06:48:34 PM
Trump would not approve of me because I have insufficient stamina. I'm falling asleep. Hasta manana.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 27, 2016, 05:21:54 AM
There are a lot of different things going on here, from my perspective, and I am, again, on a phone, so forgive me if this is too disorganized to be clear.
Regarding the earlier discussion with FDP - that's where my final edit to my above post comes in. In that discussion we were talking about governing Democrats.  If you are talking about governing Democrats, yes, any *shock and outrage* expressed regarding electoral interference is both fake and hypocritical.  Regarding general population Democrats, shock would be naive or fake. But for a GP Democrat, outrage may not be hypocritical. It may be consistent. So in my comments above, I was assuming the latter, or more specifically, me. I don't feel hypocritical being pissed off by a tampered with election as I'm usually pissed off by tampered with elections.

I completely agree here. As I hope you know, I greatly respect your opinion and I think by now I understand your positions on the issues. But I should have made it clear that I wasn't calling you a hypocrite for your stance. I apologize for that.

Quote
You and I may differ about the Soviet Union and that may be a whole other discussion. But, to me,  the Soviet Union was pretty well hijacked by authoritarian oligarchs by the mid-twenties. Stalin ran an intense misinformation based propaganda machine that is a nice precursor to Putin's.
Do I think the red scare stuff in the US made sense or was OK?  No. not because the Soviet Union didn't suck, but because the red scare stuff went after leftists by linking them to the Soviet Union when the Soviet Union wasn't left. The Soviet Union was basically a reintroduction of serfdom- the Tsarist order without the Tsar. Corporate interests took a advantage of the Russian Revolution by pretending it wasn't overthrown, pretending the Soviet Union was left, then vilifying the US left based on that, and running them underground.

We don't differ about the Soviet Union at all. I've said much the same thing, though not as convincingly, here:

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,22945.msg544759.html#msg544759

Quote
Without regard to Russian or US history, I think Putin deserves the censure. The US does a lot that's wrong, but it does have on its side the one good point that, until now, white nationalist movements have not been publicly successful (well... since we stopped, you know, being an essentially white nationalist country). They've been very successful in Russia, increasingly so in Western Europe, and now successful in the US. And I believe that Putin is an active contributor to that movement and that it's right to counter that movement.
Do I need to step back and think about that witch hunt having parallels to the "red scare" witch hunts? I do - and I will. Thanks for the prompt. But I can't come to the conclusion that it's not right to counter white nationalism, or Christian nationalism, or nationalism.

I agree we should counter the movement but I also think we need to be careful about how we counter the movement. I thought Saddam Hussein was a tyrannical monster who committed terrible atrocities. While I would say and would have said then that Hussein deserved censure, I also argued vehemently against the invasion of the country and the regime change that subsequently followed. Moreover, as awful a monster as Hussein was, I also argued against the construction of both him and Iraq by the Western mainstream media because, while partly true, it was also a fabricated construction in order to drum up support for military intervention. I opposed the invasion for several reasons, most glaringly because it was a gross violation of international law. But, moreover, I also opposed it on the grounds that it would increase the threats to global security. Copying and pasting what I've written here before, in October of 2002, in the lead up to the Iraq war, the FBI observed “that a war with Iraq could trigger new domestic terrorism risks.” Meanwhile, Jean-Louis Bruguiere, “the leading French investigation magistrate in charge of counter-terrorism affairs,” observed that “Attacking Iraq would intensify Islamic terrorism, not reduce it.” This, of course, is the reality that came to be and we are now dealing with and, in some places of the world, suffering in large scale ways, as a result of the political establishment not listening to or carrying about these warnings.

In the case of Russia, we have to remember that the United States has been actively participating in hostile and aggressive actions against Russia since the fall of the Berlin wall (the Cold War actions are another kettle of fish) by beginning the process of pushing NATO to the Russian borders. There is now a major US military build up there - and this isn't just because of Putin. It's been in the works for over twenty-five years. And a military battle between the US and Russia poses, in my view, a far greater threat to global security than even the invasion of Iraq did. Several weeks ago, critics quite rightly pointed out the dangers of the Trump-Taiwan call. Is it not similarly dangerous to continually and aggressively piss off the unstable nuclear threat that Russia is at the moment? Even if in bringing up white nationalism we are going to draw parallels between Putin and Hitler (another age-old bit of rhetorical propaganda that I find problematic in this case too), you would surely agree that WWII would have played out much differently had both the US and Germany had nuclear weapons. The liberal establishment in the US seems to be in favour of some kind of fight with Russia - a fight that has been established by the West in their military build up along the Russian borders. And they are now, in my view, attempting to garner support for this fight by actively presenting hearsay as if it were evidence. And while I agree that we should be countering white nationalism, racism, and misinformation that has negative consequences (and, similarly, we shouldn't be justifying or underestimating the terrible actions carried out by the Russian government), I also don't think we are doing anybody any favours by countering this with our own misinformation that is largely spun out by a corporate and political establishment whose goal seems to be an unnecessary and catastrophic war. I suppose in the 1980s it would have been noble for some Western activists to focus attention on, say, Soviet actions in Afghanistan. However, my position would have been that while it was correct to oppose those actions, that it was nevertheless the wrong issue for Western activists to focus on and moreover, I might ask them to consider what institutional forces were at work in shaping that issue as the one to focus on.

Quote
And I do think there's a difference in the reality of the threat. But I think you and I differ in our evaluation of the level and extent of the reality of that threat. I think you give "revolting against elites" credence where I see revolting FOR elites. Different elites, but elites none-the-less.

I'm afraid I don't understand what you mean by this. Who do I see as revolting against elites but are actually revolting for elites?

Quote
A shorter way to say this - while Clinton may have -100 on corporate friendliness, she has -50 on foreign policy as she worked hard to push women's education and rights as SoS and +90 on social justice, while most DC Democrats are -100, -100, +10.  As I consider DC Democrats to be her frame, I don't have this "Clinton = evil bad person" thing. I have more of a "she's a decent person making choices in a bad frame." As I would say for a white person from the 1860s US who says some really racist stuff and maybe does some racist stuff, but is actively fighting against the institution of slavery.
Does that make sense?

It does make sense. Unfortunately for Clinton, it's 2016 and not 2004 and I think this is a crucial difference. In 2004, the American public sentiment and the dominant political system was such that there was no choice but to go full on and support a candidate like Clinton - one who was socially liberal but pretty far right-wing on just about every other issue. But the world changed by 2016. By 2016, the American population had been quite rightly fed up with the political and economic establishment that was running the country and they were now aware of what was true for such a long time that this establishment had been contributing so negatively to their everyday life. Trump, as we know, hijacked this sentiment and used it for his own ends. The Washington Democrat establishment did all but ignore the sentiment completely, believing that their same old way of doing things would work again. Their ignorance to the realities of American life was so severe that they didn't even campaign in states that they believed were locks, despite many analysts saying otherwise. This ignorance of the American people and confidence in the status quo was precisely what many Americans were upset about in 2016. While it by and large always worked for both political parties up until, say, 2008, it's now, quite simply, a different world. Indeed, this was the first time in a very long time, when the candidate with the largest financial backing did not win the US election (though, in all fairness, she did win the popular vote).

 I say this in all seriousness: had the liberal establishment had any idea of what the world was like out there, they should have been plunging their focus, attention, and resources into Bernie Sanders' campaign not the monied, Wall Street candidate. Even without this attention and without these resources, the evidence shows that he had a better chance of winning against Trump than Clinton. You can imagine what could have happened had he had Clinton's backing. And yet the dominant argument became that he should be supporting her, a dreadful miscalculation in terms of strategy, in my opinion.


Thank you for your patience, as manana became 4 days later.
The thing above about revolt for or against elites that you didn't understand is about this: the motivation of Trump voters. I did, long ago, find and listen to the Amy Goodman clip and read the Sanders would have won article and found that my thinking was affected - or one of my battling internal thoughts was strengthened against another - by the Amy Goodman part, but I found the Sanders part unconvincing. Neither of us has evidence that will establish a definitive right or wrong, so I'm inclined to think it's an agree to disagree sort t of thing - something I rarely do!
But I think Trump voters are NOT Sanders voters. Spend some time hanging around on rightwing sites and read the articles and the comments. There are millions - the Daily Caller, Breitbart, Ingraham, Malkin, freerepublic, infowars, etc. They might be upset with the establishment, but their idea of "the establishment" is "liberals" and, <<cringe at using the word; it repulses me beyond I think anything with its's bundle of misogyny, racism and representation of everything I hate>> "cucks". They were only going to support someone who allows them to think that their election would provide "punishment", a come-uppance for, a crushing of "political correctness" and everything to do with Obama and with feminism and diversity. They were never going to get behind Sanders and they weren't revolting against the establishment. They were revolting FOR corporations against people who want gun control and who want socialized healthcare and a decent safety net (except for white rural people because when they need assistance they aren't "living off the system" they are just getting what's coming to them. They were revolting to privatize education and to keep gas cheap and to crush Islam and those who don't demonize non-Christians. They were revolting to keep out brown people and to reinstate the primacy of white maledom. If Bernie Sanders said what they wanted to hear, he would have become Trump and the left wouldn't have supported him. Look at those sites and read polling of Trump voters. Their biggest enemy isn't the economy (they aren't even the people suffering the most from the economy) and it's not the establishment  it's what they bundle under "political correctness". In surveys that actually listed "political correctness" that's what they chose as their biggest concern. In others, they chose terrorism or immigration, all in cases where the economy was an option. CLINTON voters chose the economy as their primary motivator.
So I think you've misread what's going on here. I think you're right about what they SHOULD be concerned about or motivated by, but not what they ARE.
And if they were, Clinton's policies would have been better than Trump's.

Unfortunately, I'm breaking off again.
I will try to get to the next part later today.


I agree that Clinton is comparatively strong on social justice, whether she's that much stronger than other Democrats, I'll have to take your word. However, there have been some good studies to suggest that in the US, a politician's social outreach is often tied to their financial backing. In other words, Clinton was much stronger in African American communities than Bernie Sanders was, but that was mostly because Sanders didn't have the same resources as Clinton and couldn't get his message into communities as well as Clinton could. The same could be said even more for candidates like Jill Stein. This point only reinforces your own observation that Clinton even approaches social justice “through a corporatist lens.” This suggests to me, though, that it is important for activists to pressure the establishment into giving their support to the candidate who will best serve the needs of that population. And given that Clinton has historically been in favour of policies that, in my view, have done a great deal of damage to minoritized communities (including women), such as the welfare reform bills carried out by Bill Clinton which destroyed the American welfare system, I'm not sure she was the right candidate. As Jacobin points out, for example, welfare reform led to the “Surveillance of low-income women [and] punished black women in disproportionate numbers, resulting in more black children in foster care and black women in prison.” In that case, I would have to imagine that any candidate with a better economic platform than Clinton's would have been better for the issues that you raise: women's health, education and rights, and children's health, education and rights.

I understand and agree with your point that in the US there are very few options and that in such an environment you have to make concessions. This is why I’m on record on this site as supporting Clinton against Trump. But I’m sure you agree that we make concessions so that we might get to something better. To me, that’s the end goal: to not just accept and praise that which we are conceding, but to continually work to do better. But the liberal establishment, just like the extreme right-wing establishment, has a tremendous amount of clout and is skilled at undermining and dodging those attempts. And one of the ways they are doing that right now (and have been doing for a year) is by stifling legitimate criticism of Hillary Clinton, painting her, instead, as an excellent candidate whose aim for presidency was undermined by racists, misogynists, idiots, James Comey, Russians, Jon Stewart retiring, etc. To me, this is a great effort in maintaining the status quo within the Democratic party. It does little to help improve anything and, even as a secondary goal, it won’t even help win them the next election because for so many people, it is a transparent attempt by an elite institution to preserve its elite status and there is now a great amount of cynicism about that that didn’t exist at the same level ten years ago. If the left right now is serious about being the left, then they need to put the energy, resources, and focus their attention in pressuring the Democratic party to clean house and to coax candidates who actually hold genuine progressive policies and work to challenge the dominant institutions in the country. To do anything but that, in my view, is to tread water and I see a lot of water treading going on at the moment.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 27, 2016, 03:51:47 PM

I agree that Clinton is comparatively strong on social justice, whether she's that much stronger than other Democrats, I'll have to take your word. However, there have been some good studies to suggest that in the US, a politician's social outreach is often tied to their financial backing. In other words, Clinton was much stronger in African American communities than Bernie Sanders was, but that was mostly because Sanders didn't have the same resources as Clinton and couldn't get his message into communities as well as Clinton could. The same could be said even more for candidates like Jill Stein. This point only reinforces your own observation that Clinton even approaches social justice “through a corporatist lens.” This suggests to me, though, that it is important for activists to pressure the establishment into giving their support to the candidate who will best serve the needs of that population. And given that Clinton has historically been in favour of policies that, in my view, have done a great deal of damage to minoritized communities (including women), such as the welfare reform bills carried out by Bill Clinton which destroyed the American welfare system, I'm not sure she was the right candidate. As Jacobin points out, for example, welfare reform led to the “Surveillance of low-income women [and] punished black women in disproportionate numbers, resulting in more black children in foster care and black women in prison.” In that case, I would have to imagine that any candidate with a better economic platform than Clinton's would have been better for the issues that you raise: women's health, education and rights, and children's health, education and rights.

Yes - the welfare reform and the criminal justice reform from B Clinton's presidency were awful. Here's a difficult queation for me: where does he end and she begin? We all know it's expected of the spouse of the president to smile and support everything he does. We also know that the press talked a lot about how she damaged his presidency by being too feminist, too independent, etc. we know she caved to pressur to change her hair and clothes and make up to those of a Washington wife. We know she resist d and made sarcasteic comments and that commenters and her husband's campaign team went berserk. We know she was considered a liability until he was caught cheating on her.
So do we now say that his legislation is on her because she smiled and nodded as demanded?
During law school she worked for a local children's aid org. She participated in civil rights actions. She wrote a thesis that Newt Gingrich faked outrage about during B Clinton's campaign because she "compared the family to slavery" (she pointed out that kids had no more legal rights than slaves.) She volunteered at a free legal services clinic and, separately, worked pro bono on child abuse cases. She did research for Mondale's subcommittee for migratory labor. For her summer internship she chose a firm that specialized in rights and civil liberties law. She then worked at the children's defense fund. When she went to Arkansas, one of the first things she did was set up a free legal aid clinic at the university at which she worked. When she joined a law firm, she spent significant time doing pro bono advocacy.
Here's where things start to change: B Clinton is elected governor. Then after one term, he loses. The media says he lost because people didn't n't approve of his wife: she kept her last name, she works, she's a feminist, she doesn't wear make up: Arkansans can't relate to her. She starts changing all that. He gets reelected. From then on, she subsumes herself in support of his career. Every time she expresses her independent opinion or steps out of political wife mode - the media says she's a liability. She starts wearing monochrome suits and helmet hair. She transforms into modern Hillary - who also over time publicly supports her husband's policies.
But, still founded the Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families and was a director then chair of the Legal Services Corporation under Carter. In Arkansas she chaired the rural health advisory committee, expanding medical services that rural poor people.  
Etc. etc. even as sec. of State she made meetings conditional on women's and children's rights; she ensured that US foreign aid was supporting women's and children's health - as well as men's which is the default. She  started a clean cook-stoves initiatives which, if you've spent time listening to Nicaraguans hacking at age 20 and learn that lung diesease is the primary cause of early death, you realize is not as trump vial as it may sound, and so on.
So, while I agree that she's severely compromised in terms of corporatism and the war industry, and while because of those things, she would never be my dream nominee, I think that her core is focused elsewhere and that the public image of her as driven by those things - or your comment above regarding social outreach being tied to financial backing miss the point. Her core is feminist. I believe that.
Here's a story that I may have put on this board before. It happened when I was very young and it affected my thinking.
A friend of my dad's moved to the very rightwing (among academic economists)University of Chicago. When he moved, he was significantly left. When he died he was significantly right. He obit said that this was inevitable because he was liberal, and a liberal is open to other's reasoning and is willing to meet people halfway, by nature. Thus a liberal at the U of Chicago is going to compromise to the right so often that he will eventually be right himself.
I don't know about that being a truism, but it's what I think happened to H Clinton. This, though I firmly disagree with her on the majority of her policies, I feel comfortable thinking of her as someone who is actually well-intentioned (not in the sense that everyone is, but in the sense that some people are actually just asshole les, some people are so passive it doesn't matter, and some people actively seek to do the right thing). I think she's in the latter group but that her ties have led her down the wrong path. And I DON'T pretend that would have magically disappeared if she were president. I would've been very annoyed by a lot of her policy - but I imagine less than an am by Obama's. I think she would've been a modest improvement.
So, this, and the fact that I, a woman in a field still dominated by men, in which i'm often the only woman in the room, in which I get some of the same reactions as Clinton, in which people who are CERTAIN they don't have a sexist bone in their body judge me differently from my male peers. In which I have to worry about whether I'm smiling to much or seeming angry or emotional or blah blah. In which much of the vibe - the different standards, the kinds of things people choose to indicate why they don't support her - of the "she's not a good candidate" think reeks of sexism - it gives me a different fish to fry. Were she a man, my response would've probably been different. But my response is driven to a great degree by other people's responses to her, which I find incredibly frustrating.



I understand and agree with your point that in the US there are very few options and that in such an environment you have to make concessions. This is why I’m on record on this site as supporting Clinton against Trump. But I’m sure you agree that we make concessions so that we might get to something better. To me, that’s the end goal: to not just accept and praise that which we are conceding, but to continually work to do better. But the liberal establishment, just like the extreme right-wing establishment, has a tremendous amount of clout and is skilled at undermining and dodging those attempts. And one of the ways they are doing that right now (and have been doing for a year) is by stifling legitimate criticism of Hillary Clinton, painting her, instead, as an excellent candidate whose aim for presidency was undermined by racists, misogynists, idiots, James Comey, Russians, Jon Stewart retiring, etc. To me, this is a great effort in maintaining the status quo within the Democratic party. It does little to help improve anything and, even as a secondary goal, it won’t even help win them the next election because for so many people, it is a transparent attempt by an elite institution to preserve its elite status and there is now a great amount of cynicism about that that didn’t exist at the same level ten years ago. If the left right now is serious about being the left, then they need to put the energy, resources, and focus their attention in pressuring the Democratic party to clean house and to coax candidates who actually hold genuine progressive policies and work to challenge the dominant institutions in the country. To do anything but that, in my view, is to tread water and I see a lot of water treading going on at the moment.
To me, there's a two-fold thing here:
1. I do think misogyny had a strong impact on her lack of support.
2. For the rest, I don't think any Democratic candidate would've been able to stop the train that's been increasing in speed and strength since it was set on the tracks in the 70s. This crazy right-wing movement was going to have its day. Maybe another candidate could have won, but their presidency would've been more derailed than Obama's. Until this business is somehow exercised, it's going to be an albatross around our necks or some such metaphorical mess. And I don't know so much about Jon Stewart': retiring, but I believe all the rest of the factory's s you listed are linked.


PS - add to my last comment, above this one, I think the "elite" has been very responsive to the demands of Trump voters - for years it's been cutting taxes, cutting school and other public service funding, liberalizing gun laws, trying to pass bathroom bills, not confirming liberal judges, arming the police with military-grad weapons, eliminating unions, everything they want, they are getting. And pretty much have been. The elites haven't been neglecting those voters at all.

Good lord - typorama. That's what happens when I'm on my phone and want to get it all out before the end of the train ride!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 27, 2016, 05:24:51 PM
I'll summarize that last post like this: having been a college-aged woman when the Clintons showed up, I was not a fan of B Clinton but was a fan of H Clinton's open feminism, which was very rare and not considered a good idea. I became aware of what she'd done in her career and was impressed. I then watched her get crushed. I'm pretty confident the rise of Rush Limbaugh was linked to the reaction a lot of Americans had to her.  This is when "feminazi" became a term and she was its most frequent target. i feel that much of what's going on in US politics is, ultimately, a reaction against feminism and the ways that feminism has radically changed our culture in the last 50 years.
For me, much of who Clinton is has been defined by that reaction. She's symbolic.  So I can't judge her the way you do - just on her policies. She's a symbol for a cultural war in which I am firmly entrenched. And I feel that much of the opposition to her was driven by partisans in that war.
So this is where the "crucified" and the positive description of her as a person comes from. 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 28, 2016, 04:18:32 AM
Good grief. This is sourced to a real poll.
https://today.yougov.com/news/2016/12/27/belief-conspiracies-largely-depends-political-iden/

And CSM - the Clinton voters are there with Russia hacking (the numbers saying it's true should only be at the level of "preponderance of the evidence" but they are at "no reasonable doubt" levels. They also 50% believe that actual votes were tampered with - for that I haven't seen ANY evidence or even an accusation.

For Trump supporters, there's the (I believe) more ludicrous pizzagate, a significant minority believe aobama was born in Kenya (???), Trump's "millions" of illegal votes.

Weirdly, a majority of Clinton voters said that there were WMDs in Iraq "that were never found". I have to wonder if there was a misunderstanding on the part of subjects. At first I read it as "WMDs were never found" in which case I would've said 'true'.

Apparenly majorities of BOTH believe vaccinations cause autism and half of BOTH believe the GEC was “secretly organized by a handful of Wall Street bankers.” I wonder if the response to that would've been different if "intentionally" was inserted.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 28, 2016, 07:39:50 AM
I think the "elite" has been very responsive to the demands of Trump voters - for years it's been cutting taxes, cutting school and other public service funding, liberalizing gun laws, trying to pass bathroom bills, not confirming liberal judges, arming the police with military-grad weapons, eliminating unions, everything they want, they are getting. And pretty much have been. The elites haven't been neglecting those voters at all.

This general idea is something I've been noticing a lot lately: the constant need to be behind (underdog, or oppressed, or whatever the situation calls for), presumably to drum up fundraising and excitement. You need to generate demand, and so you can't get complacent or admit if/when you're already winning. Throughout the Cold War, we heard about how the Soviets were so dangerous, that they were winning the arms race, when any sober review showed they were far behind American might. A charity works hard at messaging to ensure that--however successful it is--people hear that the battle's not won, the disease isn't cured, or there is some new element of the problem to focus on. "We need your help ... click here to donate now!"

So for eight years, we heard totally baseless nonsense about the government coming to take away your guns. Not to regulate them further, no, that's not dramatic. President Obama was going to make all guns illegal. He was going to confiscate them. He was sending in troops to Texas to enforce this action there, first, remember? That little story was REAL. (Not its absurd fairy tale narrative; the story itself.) Right-wing readers believed that sh*t. An ex-girlfriend of mine's dad stocked up on ammo--surprise! the prices had increased dramatically!--because of this. An uncle did the same. Meanwhile actual proposals to slightly regulate the sale of firearms were dismissed entirely as a smokescreen. And we saw the truth. Which was nothing. Nothing happened because nothing was ever going to happen. I expect apologies from the paranoids to start rolling in any time... Gun owners are not the threatened, losing side. They and their supporters are a strong majority in this country. Their rights aren't in danger, despite one party being unable to go a single rally or press conference without bragging about their willingness to stand up to protect the 2nd Amendment, an amendment in no need of protection.

The War on Christmas is another example. Christians are under fire! They're being ATTACKED! It's illegal to practice Christianity in America, where Shariah law rules. Except that's moronic. Christianity may be declining somewhat, but that's a demographic thing more than anything else; this place isn't about to write Shariah into the law books unless it's under its cousin, which would be found in, um, Jewish and Christian holy books (see: Leviticus). ("Oh wait, Luther, we don't take those bits seriously. They were for a different time and place. It's the Muslims we need to worry about.") We've got a huge majority of people constantly shrieking about how they're being oppressed by tiny, weak minorities who have so little power that their lunatics' attempts to find it inevitably involve self immolation: the powerless man's violence.

I know that was just an aside in your post, Emily, but since I'd been thinking about it...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: the captain on December 28, 2016, 07:56:26 AM
To tack onto that thought, by the way, that's one thing I do fear about the coming government: when president, senate, house, and many states are so fully under one party's control, from whence do its mouthpieces find an oppressor? How can "we" be a victimized minority when we're a large majority in power? Well, I fear "we" can always find a "they," who will by definition be minority (considering the majority is in power). Somebody has to be blamed when the world still has problems, when (as anyone with any sense would know) the manufacturing jobs of the '40s-'70s don't come back, when a high school diploma still isn't sufficient to be employed, when salaries and benefits don't climb even though corporate taxes are cut or unions destroyed, when there are non-Christians or non-whites or non-whites expecting equality, when science continues to show that the world isn't 5,000 years old and humanity wasn't shaped from the mud and/or a rib... It has to be somebody's fault, damnit! We're losing!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Emily on December 28, 2016, 08:55:42 AM
One thing to keep in mind, there will be an uptick in economic activity if Trump passes both his spending and tax cut plans. It will be creating a deeper long-term problem, but will give him and his supporters lots of opportunity to claim success and vindication (see Reagan). It's, again, an education and "real news" problem.
However, there's nothing in his proposals to address income inequality and increase jobs for unskilled labor, so yeah - without NAFTA and brown immigrants, where will the blame go?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Voldermort Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on December 29, 2016, 07:35:41 AM
You realize you're not supposed to say his name.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Voldermort Administration
Post by: the captain on December 29, 2016, 07:40:18 AM
So Trump gets converted to a fantasy movie villain name? We can't say the name of the president of the United States? That's fucking idiotic.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Voldermort Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on December 29, 2016, 09:45:53 AM
So Voldermort gets converted to a fantasy movie villain name? We can't say the name of the president of the United States? That's fucking idiotic.

It's a joke dude, because the mere mention of his name seems to start arguments. It's not permanent. Lighten up.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Voldermort Administration
Post by: the captain on December 29, 2016, 09:53:21 AM
So Voldermort gets converted to a fantasy movie villain name? We can't say the name of the president of the United States? That's fucking idiotic.

It's a joke dude, because the mere mention of his name seems to start arguments. It's not permanent. Lighten up.
Will do. I didn't get the joke, and as you know, there was the other thread that was unpleasant for me (since it seemed to possibly affect the future existence of this thread).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Voldermort Administration
Post by: Emily on December 29, 2016, 07:20:40 PM
Well, they did say something about US representatives in Russia being "harassed." I don't know what that's about, but I hope there's more than meets the eye to justify the Obama escalation regarding Russia.
On the flip side, I guess a strong statement regarding Israeli settlements is better late than never.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Voldermort Administration
Post by: Emily on December 29, 2016, 08:02:57 PM
I see you!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Voldermort Administration
Post by: the captain on December 30, 2016, 07:35:31 AM
On Russia, I don't know what to think, either with these specific new sanctions or in general. I was mildly surprised at Russia not retaliating by kicking out our diplomats, etc., as Lavrov reportedly recommended. But maybe the message was presented that they'd been caught pants-down with the hacking and that if there were any retaliation to the "punishment," things would be made even worse for them? Meanwhile, they're the key driver of the latest and greatest purported Syrian cease-fire, which (of course) doesn't include ISIS or other Russian-defined terrorists, a definition which may well then be expanded to include most rebels, whom Syria and Russia more or less called terrorists and jihadists all along. (Russia is always happy to describe dissidents as terrorists.)

By the way, is there any doubt Putin will run again in '18, thus keeping him in power until '24?

On Israel, it's amazing that sticking to the long-standing policy of this country, not to mention terms more or less agreed to by both Israel and the Palestinians, can be seen as betrayal, a stab in the back, anti-Semitism, etc. From what I see, Netanyahu has been an absolute tragedy. Yet we keep giving them billions.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Rocky Raccoon on December 30, 2016, 02:25:07 PM
Netanyahu is a disgrace.  His attitude has only put Israel and Jews in more danger.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on December 30, 2016, 02:25:52 PM
Definitely agreed


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on December 31, 2016, 01:05:58 PM
Legacy-building is something every outgoing president, regardless of party, does--or at least has done throughout my conscious lifetime. But I'm wondering people's feelings about when that effort isn't just relegated to P.R., which I think everyone can understand and more or less ignore--the final press conference, the final interviews with major outlets, the assorted speeches--and veers into building obstacle courses for the next administration, in such cases when that administration will obviously oppose the outgoing president's objectives. As the NYT said today:

Quote
[Obama] is using every power at his disposal to cement his legacy and establish his priorities as the law of the land.

He has banned oil drilling off the Atlantic coast, established new environmental monuments, protected funding for Planned Parenthood clinics, ordered the transfer of detainees from Guantánamo Bay, criticized Israeli settlements and punished Russia for interfering in the recent elections through cyberattacks.

The next president may be able to roll back some, or even most, of those actions, a point that Mr. Obama’s top aides concede. But every step the current president takes requires Mr. Trump to overcome one more legislative or procedural hurdle as he seeks to change direction in Washington.
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/31/us/politics/obama-last-days-trump-transition.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

Do you think this is the right way to exit office? The smart way (in the short term? long term?)? After all, there will come a time in four, eight, or however many years when a Republican administration will leave office to be replaced by a Democratic one (or, gods willing, some other, less rancid party).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on December 31, 2016, 04:17:05 PM
I don't, no. I think some of it is to force Trump's actions out into the open - when he undoes some of Obama's executive orders, there won't be a process, so they can be done in a day with a handy tweet about something else dominating the news cycle, while undoing some of this will require a longer process, thus will make it more likely to get attention. Some, I think, is Obama saying "sh*t, all that trying to move incrementally and massage opinion meant that I didn't get as much done as I wanted and there's no way my successor is going to keep nudging things along in this direction so I'm going to just push it as much as I can while I have the chance", some is intentional stumbling blocks and some is pointed payback because Trump has crossed the line in doing things people usually wait until after their inauguration to do. But the things both are doing break processes that aren't codified but are a traditional part of the transfer of power. We've had similarly nasty transitions  before, but not since the post-civil war era.
This has been a nasty year.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on December 31, 2016, 04:20:53 PM
I notice there's been thread title censorship.  ::)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on December 31, 2016, 05:12:14 PM
I notice there's been thread title censorship.  ::)
I did that in the hopes that nobody would have to see the word that makes them feel all bad inside and then to inappropriately post about politics in the Beach Boys forum, after which the only logical conclusion would be to ban talk of politics in the politics thread of the Sandbox. I mean, obviously.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on December 31, 2016, 06:22:35 PM
Good thinking


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 01, 2017, 09:28:46 PM
Trump's team has at least two prominent links to CEI - its primary funded is Exxon and his science-skeptic EPA transition lead is a director. Here's their legislative agenda:
https://cei.org/agendaforcongress-2017
This is about 50% of what the greater of two evils looks like.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 02, 2017, 11:11:28 AM
What I most find interesting/amusing are the adjectives or purported outcomes (to vaguely / generic proposed actions) used in this sort of thing.

Strengthen Disclosure with a “Regulatory Report Card” - this doesn't strengthen disclosure, it gives a convenient way to know the scoring as developed by this entity. It says "we (dis)like them/it," not "this is what happened."

Restrain the Runaway Administrative State by Reining in Chevron Deference - I admit I have no idea what "Chevron deference" is, but even NOT knowing, we're presupposing a "runaway administrative state" in need of restraint.

Bring Accountability to the Unaccountable Consumer Financial Protection Bureau - presupposes the CFPB has no accountability, while the CFPB director is appointed by the president and approved by the senate (i.e., more or less as accountable as most high-level appointments)--and to a 5-year term, no less, meaning that terms are likely to cross administrations, and thus serve both parties--must testify before congress twice a year, is subject to GAO audits, etc.

Remove Bogus Climate Planning from Federal Land Policy - Bogus? As determined by...? Especially comical, considering "Require all Agencies to Meet Rigorous Scientific Standards."

Protect Internet Freedom against Burdensome Net Neutrality Mandates - Orwellian.

Protect Consumer Freedom by Ensuring Access to Genetically Engineered Foods - Orwellian.

Actually the entirety of the Food, Drugs, and Consumer Freedom section is pretty entertaining in that way.




Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 02, 2017, 04:42:28 PM
Yeah. The FDA-related parts seemed the most special to me, too.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 02, 2017, 04:53:38 PM
Yeah. The FDA-related parts seemed the most special to me, too.

What? Sorry, didn't catch that, just trying to promote peace and order by giving neighborhood kids loaded automatic rifles and to enable good health by poisoning the water.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 02, 2017, 04:55:30 PM
Captain for prez! ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 02, 2017, 05:03:39 PM
I'm interested in hearing what you agreed with.

To be honest, I'll have to go back and peruse to find specific examples, but I can generally answer by saying I have a certain respect for and identification with classical liberalism. Not wholly, by any means, but somewhat. While I realize a few of us here are lumped together to be of a single mind, the reality is my personal political beliefs are quite a jumble that blends aspects of (at least) classical liberalism and social democracy, maybe even with a shake of conservatism here and there.

There are also some arguments about what the federal government has jurisdiction over under the constitution, and I have to admit that (barring constitutional amendments, which as someone who gives the constitution no particular scriptural standing, I am fine with, though it's a burdensome process) I have to hear out. Now to be clear on that last point, I'm no lawyer and haven't spent all that much time investigating the justification for federal intervention in these supposedly states' issues. I just say that if there are legitimate questions about them, that's fair, even if I don't like the outcomes. The end doesn't justify the means.

So in the end, I am always in a state of unease about where to draw the line between equality of opportunity and equality of outcome, especially considering it seems to me that outcomes are the most obvious and maybe only way to measure opportunities on a broad scale (while admitting that through individual cases it's obvious why there would be inequalities of outcome regardless of opportunity). I hope you'll grant me leeway as someone whose political ideology doesn't exist yet; it's morphing pretty consistently as I read, learn, converse, and think about it.

I think further discussion on this ought to be in the politics thread lest anyone post about Trump in the Beach Boys forum.
I'd gathered that you are more classically liberal than I. You are more a questioner than opinionizer - so to what degree is fuzzy.
I don't see how people can even imagine there's anything approaching equality of opportunity when some kids are hungry and some are not and when schools are so vastly different in quality, among other starting-point differences. If people were serious about equality of opportunity, they'd do more to even-out kid's experiences. Really, I could be all-in conservative (well, not really, but I could consider it a workable philosophy) if things were socialized for children, people with disabilities, and the elderly or infirm.
One area in which I agree with conservatives is that I prefer more local government. Something expensive like healthcare or the military gains a lot from economies of scale, though even so, I'd probably prefer region-based rather than national plans for both. States are really too small for usefulness for the most part. Obviously, Texas and California would be exceptions.
 The glaring problem with states' rights, of course, is that some states have really wanted to exercise those rights in ways that infringe on civil or voting rights.
Looking back at the book, I'm startled at how warlike it is. I'd forgotten that. That always seems like a disconnected part of conservative philosophy. It doesn't fit, to me. The best part of conservative philosophy is the "live and let live" part, but they don't seem to extend that to a nation-to-nation level.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 02, 2017, 05:21:11 PM
Re the warlike aspect, absolutely. Truly terrifying to think that there was presumably some large segment of the population thinking that way, including people of some power.

Re the equality of opportunity/outcome, I agree. As I said, it's something I'm always uneasy about, but not something I think has tipped too far, necessarily. I'm someone who has happily argued for something like 100% estate taxes, actually.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 02, 2017, 05:31:20 PM
Trump's tax returns are the link to Rex Tillerson and Putin!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 03, 2017, 05:14:22 AM
While the first part of this WSJ piece on Trump's responses to the hacking intelligence is wrong - there was not a consensus on WMD and the evidence provided to the Bush administration was explicitly noncommittal; the Bush admin. lied about that - and while I don't support the Obama admin. response, it lays out pretty well my concerns  about the issue.
His China/North Korea tweets are also concerning. We'll see if he can bully/flatter his way through international relations the way he could bully/flatter his way through a US campaign, but the target populations are very different.

https:/www.wsj.com/amp/articles/what-does-trump-know-about-russia-1483398736?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 03, 2017, 05:36:56 AM
House GOP voted, apparently against the advice of Spkr Ryan, to put the independent Office of Congressional Ethics under the control of the partisan (surprise! Run by GOP at the moment) House Ethics Committee. OCE was established after the Abramoff scandal (Rep Net, R-Ohio) Duke Cunningham, R-Ca, and Rep Jefferson, D-La.

One-party rule, no foresight.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 03, 2017, 06:11:41 AM
That kind of negates the purpose.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 03, 2017, 06:16:59 AM
Don't worry, I'm sure if there's a sufficiently explosive scandal in the future, whoever has the House at that point will redo something similar after the fact. Because while NOBODY could predict such abuses of power or ethical lapses, the House is always doing its best for the people...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 03, 2017, 08:39:03 AM
While calling OCE unfair, Trump spoke (ER, tweeted) against the GOP House's proposed rules change re ethics. Good for him.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 03, 2017, 09:56:25 AM
While calling OCE unfair, Trump spoke (ER, tweeted) against the GOP House's proposed rules change re ethics. Good for him.
and the GOP House reverses course. Embarrassing for them, I assume and hope: it should be.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 03, 2017, 11:24:11 AM
It's an interesting dynamic. The first open demonstration of what will be an ongoing back and forth on how differences between the Executive branch and Legislative Republicans will be handled.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 03, 2017, 11:43:07 AM
I agree. Despite some of those cabinet nominations, I think it's important to keep in mind Trump isn't a conservative or even a loyal Republican: he's going to say and do whatever he thinks makes him look best to whoever's love he craves at any given time. Sometimes it'll lead him in awful directions but sometimes it'll mean he's going to stand up to the party. Occasionally the results will be better than a liberal may expect, whatever the reasoning behind it may be.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 04, 2017, 06:06:31 AM
Our next AG, folks (because you know senators love their own), lying to bolster what is otherwise (as previously discussed here) his record AGAINST civil rights. Good for those who publicly shamed him on it. Too bad it won't matter.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/jeff-sessions-says-he-handled-these-civil-rights-cases-he-barely-touched-them/2017/01/03/4ddfffa6-d0fa-11e6-a783-cd3fa950f2fd_story.html?hpid=hp_no-name_opinion-card-c%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.6f2e1ef6f8d9


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 05, 2017, 04:34:41 PM
We've occasionally discussed "fake news" here, so I think this is apropos. While I'm a half-hearted champion of the mainstream media titans--which is to say I value journalistic training, standards, and resources above Joe Public's blog, which isn't to say Joe Public's blog may not be great, necessarily--this is important. I think Greenwald has a valid point (though he's also had grudges against mainstream media since ... Iraq war?). This is not a matter of equivalence in my opinion, as partisan webrags (tm) smear sh*t on your device's screens with reckless abandon. But Greenwald is right: the titans are all too often happy to jump at shadows and scream "ghost!", and all too quiet in acknowledging mistakes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvEaFUaQjuE


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 05, 2017, 05:32:55 PM
I didn't really want to respond in the politics thread before I had an opportunity to respond to Emily's thoughtful post in response to my own earlier post but I just want to say quickly that I also agree with Greenwald here. I have followed his work for quite some time and I think I can say confidently that he would probably agree with you (as would I) and say that the mainstream media is still very much a far more valuable resource than Joe Public's blog but because that is the case, they should also be held to a much higher standard when it comes to honest reporting. This is true not just because they are a more valuable resource, but also because they have such an affect on the public mindset. They have the resources to get their information out to the largest audience, they largely dictate what gets to count as "news," and they are in many ways agenda setters. In many ways, I think that their fake stories can have more significant consequences.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 06, 2017, 05:31:55 AM
My goodness, please don't refrain on my behalf. No headphones, on train. Can't watch video. :-(


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 06, 2017, 07:20:16 PM
“The dishonest media does not report that any money spent on building the Great Wall (for sake of speed), will be paid back by Mexico later!”

I can't say how much disdain I have for this guy. In what world would it be ethical to even ask Mexico to pay for this stupid wall? In what world is it not repulsive to propose this wall and build a campaign on it and call it "great"? In what world is it "dishonest" to say what you legitimately believe to be true? He's absolutely disgusting.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 06, 2017, 08:41:16 PM
We've occasionally discussed "fake news" here, so I think this is apropos. While I'm a half-hearted champion of the mainstream media titans--which is to say I value journalistic training, standards, and resources above Joe Public's blog, which isn't to say Joe Public's blog may not be great, necessarily--this is important. I think Greenwald has a valid point (though he's also had grudges against mainstream media since ... Iraq war?). This is not a matter of equivalence in my opinion, as partisan webrags (tm) smear sh*t on your device's screens with reckless abandon. But Greenwald is right: the titans are all too often happy to jump at shadows and scream "ghost!", and all too quiet in acknowledging mistakes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvEaFUaQjuE
i watched and I agree.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: 18thofMay on January 10, 2017, 07:20:00 PM
#GOLDENSHOWERS


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 11, 2017, 10:39:23 AM
Too much news. The confirmation hearings, the press conference, Comey, Russians, even Meryl Streep. Just too much.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 11, 2017, 10:52:23 AM
Was Filleplage the lady reading all the legalese mumbo jumbo after Trump ran off the stage today? >:D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 13, 2017, 01:15:52 PM
This might be the most cathartic, brilliant, yet frightening satire bit I've seen so far:

https://twitter.com/HamillHimself/status/817901534948179968


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 13, 2017, 01:17:30 PM
And this, an imaginary look at what Trump's response to Mark Hamill would be. Again, brilliant (though requiring some familiarity with Trump's tweets and some basic Star Wars familiarity):

https://twitter.com/HamillHimself/status/818568321612148738


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 13, 2017, 01:22:05 PM
Oh my god. So good.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: CenturyDeprived on January 13, 2017, 03:36:37 PM
Gotta love the implication by mtaber in the Trump inauguration thread that calling out Bannon for being intolerant for using "dikes" as a slur against lesbians is itself an act of intolerance.

By that logic, anyone like MLK Jr. who stood up to people being called the "n" word is also intolerant for not being tolerant, and by not just laying down and surrendering to allowing such slurs to be commonplace.

Amazing feats of logic.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on January 13, 2017, 03:44:34 PM
Gotta love the implication by mtaber in the Trump inauguration thread that calling out Bannon for being intolerant for using "dikes" as a slur against lesbians is itself an act of intolerance.

By that logic, anyone like MLK Jr. who stood up to people being called the "n" word is also intolerant for not being tolerant, and by not just laying down and surrendering to allowing such slurs to be commonplace.

Amazing feats of logic.

Agreed


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on January 13, 2017, 09:00:27 PM
Wait... if Three Doors Down is playing the "inauguration" then who's covering their shifts at Applebee's?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: mtaber on January 14, 2017, 03:31:55 AM
CenturyDeprived - I did not imply that we should be tolerant of slurs against LGBT people.  I did not imply that we should be tolerant of racial slurs.  I said we should be tolerant of people with different views than ours, at least within reason.  People in the Trump camp have said and done highly insensitive things.  People in the Clinton camp have said and done highly insensitive things.  This thread was obviously started with the intention, not of being about the ramifications of the band's appearing to take sides politically, but rather about the ramifications of the band's apparent support of a political figure the poster does not like.  I'm not saying Trump is great.  I'm not saying Clinton is great.  These two may have been the worst two candidates in American history.  If you're going to bash Trump supporters, you should also be bashing Clinton supporters.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 14, 2017, 07:06:15 AM
CenturyDeprived - I did not imply that we should be tolerant of slurs against LGBT people.  I did not imply that we should be tolerant of racial slurs.  I said we should be tolerant of people with different views than ours, at least within reason.  People in the Trump camp have said and done highly insensitive things.  People in the Clinton camp have said and done highly insensitive things.  This thread was obviously started with the intention, not of being about the ramifications of the band's appearing to take sides politically, but rather about the ramifications of the band's apparent support of a political figure the poster does not like.  I'm not saying Trump is great.  I'm not saying Clinton is great.  These two may have been the worst two candidates in American history.  If you're going to bash Trump supporters, you should also be bashing Clinton supporters.
Stevenson, Eisenhower, Kefauver, Kennedy, Nixon, Cabot Lodge, Johnson, Goldwater, Humphrey, Kennedy, McGovern, Ford, Rockefeller, Carter, Mondale, Kennedy, Anderson, Bush, Reagan, Ferraro, Quayle, Dukakis, Bentson, Clinton, Gore, Perot, Dole, Kemp, Nader, Lieberman, Edwards, Bush, Cheney, Kerry, Obama, Biden, McCain, Romney, Ryan, Clinton, Kaine, Stein, Johnson, Trump
You can group these people in many ways. Some have done or said despicable things. Most I have disagreed with fervently on more than one topic. Several have employed racial "dog-whistles." Most have been dishonest to greater or lesser degrees.
Only one has exhibited extensive ignorance on the issues and governance, pure contempt for honesty and the checks on the presidency, and centered his campaign around lies and attacks on minorities and women.
That is why objections to him are not like objections to other candidates and other president-elects.

And, I forgot, persisted in broad attacks on his opponent and her supporters after the election.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: mtaber on January 14, 2017, 09:34:58 AM
I respect your right to your opinion, Emily. 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: CenturyDeprived on January 14, 2017, 10:03:15 AM
CenturyDeprived - I did not imply that we should be tolerant of slurs against LGBT people.  I did not imply that we should be tolerant of racial slurs.  I said we should be tolerant of people with different views than ours, at least within reason.  People in the Trump camp have said and done highly insensitive things.  People in the Clinton camp have said and done highly insensitive things.  This thread was obviously started with the intention, not of being about the ramifications of the band's appearing to take sides politically, but rather about the ramifications of the band's apparent support of a political figure the poster does not like.  I'm not saying Trump is great.  I'm not saying Clinton is great.  These two may have been the worst two candidates in American history.  If you're going to bash Trump supporters, you should also be bashing Clinton supporters.

mtaber - One thing you should know, I am no big fan of Hillary myself. In a previous thread, I had a long discussion about my deep issues with her.  I agree that some of the things which people defend her (and the people surrounding her) for are truly ridiculous and indefensible.  Her most ardent fans are people who have drank the Kool-Aid just as much as Trump fans have drank the Kool-Aid.  It bugs the crap out of me very much so.

That said, I won't begin to put her anywhere near the same gutter league as Trump and his cabinet.  To me, Trump and those around him have the attitude of "I don't give a flying f*** about anyone except ourselves...women, marginalized communities, etc. be damned".  It's a very special kind of despicable, which is in its own solar system or galaxy.  Hillary Clinton, while deeply flawed, was a vastly preferable choice on many levels.  I don't really care to get into another discussion of comparing those two candidates, because I have been there and done that.

I generally agree with your statement "we should be tolerant of people with different views than ours, at least within reason."  But where I draw the line is defending, minimizing, or legitimizing racism and bigotry. That just doesn't fly. I won't just "let it go" if somebody is trying to imply that those things are *anything* but completely despicable, reprehensible, and unacceptable in public officials.  

That's not something I can agree to disagree about. Pence is a piece of sh*t. Bannon is a piece of sh*t.  Trump is reprehensible beyond imagination.  They have done everything in their power to imply that gay folks can go f*** off for all they care, that women are little more than objects, and the entire races of people can be painted with wide brushes and vilified.  And that apologies are for suckers. The incredibly insensitive way in which these people have conducted themselves will continue to lead to major, major unrest because they lack any sort of empathy or sensitivity. Trump doesn't know the meaning of the word empathy. Not whatsoever. I don't believe there is any wiggle room in those statements. If that makes me intolerant, sorry.

I think that many people just don't think that gay rights, for example, are that big a deal.  Privately, they are really sick of hearing about it, and probably roll their eyes all the time when nobody is looking. But they don't feel it's culturally acceptable to outright say that, so they just bend themselves into a pretzel trying to defend/minimize terrible things.

And of course, time and time again, every time I encounter somebody who defends these things, they are inevitably a white, heterosexual person almost without fail.  It's so predictable that it's laughable. Not that there is anything whatsoever wrong with being a white, heterosexual person.  Many such people have tremendous empathy across the board and "get it".  I don't like to see that group of people vilified with blanket statements, or to become punching bags either. But it comes as little surprise that people who downplay things (which will not directly affect them) just *happen* to by and large be people who are not going to be directly at risk for what these punks who are about to take power will unleash in terms of dangerous public sentiment.

I will be civil when arguing about it, but I won't just agree to disagree but when it comes to someone defending blatant, slur-using, unapologetic bigots. It has to be completely unacceptable, or our society is really going to be f*cked if that type of stuff is legitimized by those in power who are able to somehow get away with it.  

It should be everybody's moral obligation and responsibility, regardless of political party, to make sure that people in power do not simply "get away with" behaving in the manner that this cabinet behaves unapologetically.  The lack of empathy that many intelligent people, who should really know better, display with regards to this administration is truly shocking and jaw-dropping beyond words.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 14, 2017, 09:19:53 PM
CenturyDeprived - I did not imply that we should be tolerant of slurs against LGBT people.  I did not imply that we should be tolerant of racial slurs.  I said we should be tolerant of people with different views than ours, at least within reason.  People in the Trump camp have said and done highly insensitive things.  People in the Clinton camp have said and done highly insensitive things.  This thread was obviously started with the intention, not of being about the ramifications of the band's appearing to take sides politically, but rather about the ramifications of the band's apparent support of a political figure the poster does not like.  I'm not saying Trump is great.  I'm not saying Clinton is great.  These two may have been the worst two candidates in American history.  If you're going to bash Trump supporters, you should also be bashing Clinton supporters.

This false equivalency of Trump and Clinton entirely misses the point of the outrage regarding the idea of the BBs name being associated with Trump. I can certainly understand why anyone who thinks Trump and Clinton are simply equally objectionable are left scratching their heads at the outrage of BB fans and the public in general.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 14, 2017, 09:21:17 PM
More from The Joker as Trump:

https://audioboom.com/posts/5495377-return-of-the-trumpster


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 15, 2017, 05:34:55 AM
More from The Joker as Trump:

https://audioboom.com/posts/5495377-return-of-the-trumpster
I want an extension that plays a joker reading every time I see a Trump tweet


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: CenturyDeprived on January 15, 2017, 09:25:34 AM
More from The Joker as Trump:

https://audioboom.com/posts/5495377-return-of-the-trumpster

Genius. Simply genius.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: CM Punky Brewster on January 15, 2017, 10:57:06 AM
Wait... if Three Doors Down is playing the "inauguration" then who's covering their shifts at Applebee's?

I coulda sworn they worked at Waffle House.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: CenturyDeprived on January 15, 2017, 12:51:08 PM
Wait... if Three Doors Down is playing the "inauguration" then who's covering their shifts at Applebee's?

I coulda sworn they worked at Waffle House.

Chick-fil-A is more likely, what with that chain's stellar history with gay rights and such.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: MyDrKnowsItKeepsMeCalm on January 16, 2017, 01:41:54 PM
In today's news, the Bruce Springsteen TRIBUTE band booked for the inauguration has now dropped out.   :lol



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Alex on January 16, 2017, 03:07:39 PM
Wait... if Three Doors Down is playing the "inauguration" then who's covering their shifts at Applebee's?

I coulda sworn they worked at Waffle House.

Chick-fil-A is more likely, what with that chain's stellar history with gay rights and such.

Slightly OT, hope this post is ok...

I actually used to like 3 Doors Down at one point in time (I was only 14!). I bought their first album because I liked Kryptonite, ended up also buying their second album a couple years later. My fondness for their music slowly wore off over time. Around 2003 I realized they sounded exactly like Creed, Fuel, Nickelback, Staind, etc. etc. I gave my copies of their albums to a kid who did still like 3DD. Their playing at the second Bush inauguration was the final nail in the coffin. I went from indifference of their music to outright hatred and (immaturely) started associating the entire post-grunge genre with the right wing and rednecks (I eventually mellowed on that, but I still don't care for post-grunge). Fortunately, I was just a few months away from my initial Pet Sounds and SMiLE phase.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: KDS on January 17, 2017, 06:17:20 AM
Wait... if Three Doors Down is playing the "inauguration" then who's covering their shifts at Applebee's?

I coulda sworn they worked at Waffle House.

Chick-fil-A is more likely, what with that chain's stellar history with gay rights and such.

Slightly OT, hope this post is ok...

I actually used to like 3 Doors Down at one point in time (I was only 14!). I bought their first album because I liked Kryptonite, ended up also buying their second album a couple years later. My fondness for their music slowly wore off over time. Around 2003 I realized they sounded exactly like Creed, Fuel, Nickelback, Staind, etc. etc. I gave my copies of their albums to a kid who did still like 3DD. Their playing at the second Bush inauguration was the final nail in the coffin. I went from indifference of their music to outright hatred and (immaturely) started associating the entire post-grunge genre with the right wing and rednecks (I eventually mellowed on that, but I still don't care for post-grunge). Fortunately, I was just a few months away from my initial Pet Sounds and SMiLE phase.

Yes, the Summer of 2000.  I was 19 going on 20, and every time Kryptonite came on the radio, I blared it.  Funnily enough, that song actually sounded fresh on rock radio in 2000, as were we used to rap/rock, and CA rock like Smashmouth and Sugar Ray. 

I'm glad I never bought the 3DD album, because the song, and the band got old quick, and like you said, they blended in with the ultra bland, paint by numbers rock scene in the US in the early 2000s. 



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 19, 2017, 07:32:00 AM
The Joker once again:

https://audioboom.com/posts/5501476-a-very-special-message-for-martin-luther-king-day


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 19, 2017, 08:02:33 PM
Thanks again, HeyJude. Love it.

On a different topic:
I spent about an hour a few months ago trying to point out to Breitbarters and facebookers the signs of fake in this story:
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/18/us/fake-news-hillary-clinton-cameron-harris.amp.html?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 19, 2017, 08:06:04 PM
Then there's this, the conclusions of which are arguable, but the underlying facts about Erik Prince and his disinformation is not.

http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/us_587ed24fe4b0b110fe11dbf9


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 20, 2017, 07:08:18 AM
It appears the modus operandi is to do in office the same thing as the campaign, which is to do *everything* unethically so that everything blends together and nothing particularly sticks out because it's all awful and unethical.

We just have to hope the press doesn't totally suck I guess.

I had a serious conversation yesterday. No hyperbole, no particular humor. We were trying to determine what at this point Trump could possibly do that would actually result in legitimate outrage resulting in some sort of actual action (investigation leading to actual prosecution, impeachment, etc.), and we couldn't really think of *any* scenario where we would be 100% certain anything would happen.

Tape surfacing with Trump using the N word (long rumored to exist somewhere)? I don't think that would do anything, and sadly would probably have not sunk his election hopes either.

We finally came around to the obvious huge extremes, like a murder charge or some serious violent felony or something, and I think even if he was up on murder charges he'd probably hang on until he was actually convicted, and he if he wasn't convicted, he would stay on and run for re-election.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 20, 2017, 07:20:25 AM
I had a serious conversation yesterday. No hyperbole, no particular humor. We were trying to determine what at this point Trump could possibly do that would actually result in legitimate outrage resulting in some sort of actual action (investigation leading to actual prosecution, impeachment, etc.), and we couldn't really think of *any* scenario where we would be 100% certain anything would happen. 

You're right. And this is why more effort needs to go into explaining why his actual policies are terrible and harmful.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 20, 2017, 08:47:23 AM
Agree with both - however, I don't think there's any policy explainer who would be heard. I think the target audience is well-trained to dismiss the explainer.
Somehow  getting a handle on teaching actual critical thinking and source evaluation in primary and secondary school needs to be prioritized.
There have been multiple studies showing that teenagers and college students are, for the most part, unable to distinguish among sources and don't have the skills and/or desire to validate the information they receive.
The internet has completely changed how information is disseminated and education needs to be restructured accordingly.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 20, 2017, 08:59:26 AM
Absolutely.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 20, 2017, 09:29:36 AM
I was pulled into this article by the title, thinking "wouldn't it be Trump who owes Christians?" in the frequent use of 'Christians' to refer to a subset of evangelicals. Turned out to be a reasonable article.
I wonder how often he should be given the benefit of the doubt, though. Hasn't that happened several times?
https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/01/20/three-things-every-christian-owes-president-trump.amp.html


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 20, 2017, 10:12:25 AM
Well that was a gross speech.
I often wonder this about Trump: does he understand what it is that he does that repels so many people and he just doesn't care, or does he really not know?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Empire Of Love on January 20, 2017, 11:09:36 AM
Agree with both - however, I don't think there's any policy explainer who would be heard. I think the target audience is well-trained to dismiss the explainer.
Somehow  getting a handle on teaching actual critical thinking and source evaluation in primary and secondary school needs to be prioritized.
There have been multiple studies showing that teenagers and college students are, for the most part, unable to distinguish among sources and don't have the skills and/or desire to validate the information they receive.
The internet has completely changed how information is disseminated and education needs to be restructured accordingly.

Completely separate from the overall political argument(s) of this thread: could you let us know what credentials you have that enable you to be immune to propaganda and proficient in critical thinking?

EoL


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 20, 2017, 11:42:36 AM
Agree with both - however, I don't think there's any policy explainer who would be heard. I think the target audience is well-trained to dismiss the explainer.
Somehow  getting a handle on teaching actual critical thinking and source evaluation in primary and secondary school needs to be prioritized.
There have been multiple studies showing that teenagers and college students are, for the most part, unable to distinguish among sources and don't have the skills and/or desire to validate the information they receive.
The internet has completely changed how information is disseminated and education needs to be restructured accordingly.

Completely separate from the overall political argument(s) of this thread: could you let us know what credentials you have that enable you to be immune to propaganda and proficient in critical thinking?

EoL

I don't want to speak for her but it is a fairly gross mischaracterization of her point to suggest that she is arguing that you need credentials in order to be immune to propaganda and proficient in critical thinking.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 20, 2017, 12:13:41 PM
Yeah. I don't really get the question. I don't think anyone is "immune" from propaganda, but certainly one can gain skills to filter it better, look for supporting evidence or lack thereof, etc. but I don't think there's a credentialing organization.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Empire Of Love on January 20, 2017, 12:46:40 PM
Yeah. I don't really get the question. I don't think anyone is "immune" from propaganda, but certainly one can gain skills to filter it better, look for supporting evidence or lack thereof, etc. but I don't think there's a credentialing organization.

I was using the word in its secondary sense (from www.dictionary.com, not the standard of the English language but I believe it will suffice for this particular purpose):

Credential: 2. anything that provides the basis for confidence, belief, credit, etc.

What I would like to know is what gives you the confidence to speak of others as being subject to propaganda (well-trained to dismiss the explainer) and lacking basic critical thinking skills (There have been multiple studies...), yet you don't seem to think of yourself in this way.  From your posts it is clear that you know quite a bit - but knowing information and being able to accurately assess it are two different things.  You present yourself as someone confident in your opinions and confident that others are wrong, so I naturally wonder what gives you this confidence.  How can you be certain you are not the one who is well-trained and in need of critical thinking skills?

EoL


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 20, 2017, 12:55:15 PM
Ah. Well, there are several pointers that one could use. First, there are exams, essays, various academic and professional challenges that provide one with comparative data. But beyond that, critical thinking and checking sources are learned skills and processes that I consciously use when evaluating news and it's very clear from my interactions with others here and elsewhere, as well as from studies, reports, examples, and polls, some of which have been referenced on this site, that many people form their political opinions, particularly their opinions about individuals in politics but also general opinions, without following any such process or without following a sufficient process.

Oh - and the topic was raised in this instance by an example of published disinformation that I had identified as false upon publication and is now not only proved false due to lack of credible supporting evidence and the use of an old English photo, an apparent fake subject name and a fishy single-source website (how I identified the fakeness at the time), but due to the author being found and his admission that it was disinformation.

Also, I'm good at math.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 20, 2017, 03:04:22 PM
A couple lines from his speech are nearly verbatim from Bane's (the supervillain in the film) speech in "The Dark Knight Rises."

I guess someone has to get Tom Hardy to do his own recording of the inauguration speech in Bane's voice now...

https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/the-fix/wp/2017/01/20/this-section-of-trumps-inaugural-address-sounds-a-lot-like-bane-from-batman/


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on January 20, 2017, 05:21:14 PM
I think it's funny that fake news still gets brought up while the same people probably believed the fake polls.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 20, 2017, 07:32:03 PM
Exhibit one: Sinister Smile. A nihilist who believed RT-sourced stories about Clinton's health and heaven knows what else.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on January 21, 2017, 12:57:57 AM
Exhibit one: Sinister Smile. A nihilist who believed RT-sourced stories about Clinton's health and heaven knows what else.

Could've also went with
Exhibit one: Sinister Smile. A down to earth guy that correctly predicted the outcome of the general election months in advance and managed to see through the fake polls  :angel:


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 21, 2017, 03:17:18 AM
The 2016 national polls were actually slightly closer to the mark than 2012. The polls weren't a big problem, but the media's lazy characterization of the polls and the election in general were problematic.

The media obviously finds it much easier to blame the polls than themselves.

https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-real-story-of-2016/




Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 21, 2017, 05:05:27 AM
Most of the state polls weren't much off either: the vast majority of states were correct; they showed the states that were close were close; and the "surprise" states that Clinton lost were shown as very close and, after the Comey letter, rapidly swinging to Trump with daily measurable movement so if one does the calculus of the arcs in the last weeks, a 20,000 or so win by Trump would be in the margin. So, yeah, "fake polls" is fake news.
So I could've gone with your suggestion, SinisterSmile, but I would've been wrong.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on January 21, 2017, 06:30:01 AM
You're allowed to admit that I predicted the outcome of the election Emily, I think that'd look pretty spiffy on that resume you made for me.

Now as for the polls, Clinton was leading pretty strong for ages, right? And then the wheels kinda came off at the end, yeah? Kinda reminds me of the tortoise and the hare, I think I might have mentioned that earlier as well.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 21, 2017, 08:15:44 AM
Now as for the polls, Clinton was leading pretty strong for ages, right?


And then millions more people voted for her.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on January 21, 2017, 08:26:40 AM
Now as for the polls, Clinton was leading pretty strong for ages, right?


And then millions more people voted for her.

That's true.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 21, 2017, 05:15:10 PM
You're allowed to admit that I predicted the outcome of the election Emily, I think that'd look pretty spiffy on that resume you made for me.

Now as for the polls, Clinton was leading pretty strong for ages, right? And then the wheels kinda came off at the end, yeah? Kinda reminds me of the tortoise and the hare, I think I might have mentioned that earlier as well.

No, she wasn't "leading pretty strong" for ages. There were always 8 or so states that were right on the margins and the national polls swung around pretty radically a few times.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 21, 2017, 08:18:52 PM

Now as for the polls, Clinton was leading pretty strong for ages, right? And then the wheels kinda came off at the end, yeah? Kinda reminds me of the tortoise and the hare, I think I might have mentioned that earlier as well.


Nope, the polls didn't show anything like this characterization. Again, read the 538 website.

To be clear, if the polls themselves have gotten too much blame, then misinterpretation and misreporting of the polls is a major part of the story. Throughout the campaign, the polls had hallmarks of high uncertainty, indicating a volatile election with large numbers of undecided voters.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on January 21, 2017, 08:19:49 PM
You're allowed to admit that I predicted the outcome of the election Emily, I think that'd look pretty spiffy on that resume you made for me.

Now as for the polls, Clinton was leading pretty strong for ages, right? And then the wheels kinda came off at the end, yeah? Kinda reminds me of the tortoise and the hare, I think I might have mentioned that earlier as well.

No, she wasn't "leading pretty strong" for ages. There were always 8 or so states that were right on the margins and the national polls swung around pretty radically a few times.


https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/2016-election-forecast/?ex_cid=rrpromo

Clinton looks like a real strong chance here, right?

Also, remember the 42 percent?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 21, 2017, 08:45:03 PM
Good grief. First, that's not a poll, it's a forecast. Second, it's a single moment, not "ages". Third, Trump's support went up and down but centered around 42% over time. It's gone down now, though.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on January 21, 2017, 09:03:11 PM
Good grief. First, that's not a poll, it's a forecast. Second, it's a single moment, not "ages". Third, Trump's support went up and down but centered around 42% over time. It's gone down now, though.

Good grief, plenty of polls to look at in there. Second, 538 supports my tortoise and hare analogy (which I love). Third, the 42% which you clung to doesn't matter, I told you he would be president aaaaaand he did.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 22, 2017, 01:10:11 AM
congrats, man


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on January 22, 2017, 01:21:20 AM
Thanks man.

Anyway, I feel like me and some users are kinda on some different wavelengths. Feels maybe we're just shooting off 'Gotchas!' that are flying past each other. I honestly respect opposing viewpoints, political leanings and everything else that goes along with it. I also respect the passion behid a lot of these posts and it's a good thing to see.

I'll bow out of these political threads. For me, the internet isn't my strongest method of conversing. If it was in person, we could probably find a good middleground for the other persons point of view.

Anyway, let's hope for a good future. No more gotchas from me, I hope that the country can come together regardless of who's in power and we can understand one another.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 22, 2017, 06:26:22 AM
Your only "gotcha" is yes, he won. How and why he won, no.
The tortoise and the hare: I don't remember that story being about a close race, with the the tortoise having surprising bursts that pulls him ahead, then jags where he falls way behind, but with him usually close behind, while his friends and others continually try to create roadblocks for the hare, and in the last moments, someone succeeds in tripping the hare, and the hare still crosses the finish line first but, due to a technicality, the tortoise is declared the winner. I thought the moral was "slow and steady wins the race" not "bluster, disinformation, and appeals to the worst in people wins the race." But I haven't read it since I was a child, so maybe I'm not remembering it right.

Regarding your link above, there are polls in there, but they don't support your point.

Bubs - I owe you a communication and it's been eating at me that I haven't done it. I hope everything is glorious. Very good to "see" you.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SurfRiderHawaii on January 22, 2017, 05:01:46 PM
Thanks man.

Anyway, I feel like me and some users are kinda on some different wavelengths. Feels maybe we're just shooting off 'Gotchas!' that are flying past each other. I honestly respect opposing viewpoints, political leanings and everything else that goes along with it. I also respect the passion behid a lot of these posts and it's a good thing to see.

I'll bow out of these political threads. For me, the internet isn't my strongest method of conversing. If it was in person, we could probably find a good middleground for the other persons point of view.

Anyway, let's hope for a good future. No more gotchas from me, I hope that the country can come together regardless of who's in power and we can understand one another.

Broken promises by Fuher CONALD already. Asks Congress for $50 billion to build his wall and he is not releasing his taxes. Not drain the swamp but stocking it full of the Goldman Saks flunkies he acused Hillary of being in bed with.

This will be like watching a train wreck in super slow motion. It will end badly!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Debbie KL on January 22, 2017, 05:40:39 PM
Thanks man.

Anyway, I feel like me and some users are kinda on some different wavelengths. Feels maybe we're just shooting off 'Gotchas!' that are flying past each other. I honestly respect opposing viewpoints, political leanings and everything else that goes along with it. I also respect the passion behid a lot of these posts and it's a good thing to see.

I'll bow out of these political threads. For me, the internet isn't my strongest method of conversing. If it was in person, we could probably find a good middleground for the other persons point of view.

Anyway, let's hope for a good future. No more gotchas from me, I hope that the country can come together regardless of who's in power and we can understand one another.


Broken promises by Fuher CONALD already. Asks Congress for $50 billion to build his wall and he is not releasing his taxes. Not drain the swamp but stocking it full of the Goldman Saks flunkies he acused Hillary of being in bed with.

This will be like watching a train wreck in super slow motion. It will end badly!

Sadly, we won't just be watching it.  We'll be living it.  We're certainly discovering the flaws in our system...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 22, 2017, 05:57:39 PM
I have to respect the way Donald is cutting out the middleman by just putting corporate leaders into powerful, government positions.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on January 23, 2017, 09:02:25 AM
Your only "gotcha" is yes, he won. How and why he won, no.
The tortoise and the hare: I don't remember that story being about a close race, with the the tortoise having surprising bursts that pulls him ahead, then jags where he falls way behind, but with him usually close behind, while his friends and others continually try to create roadblocks for the hare, and in the last moments, someone succeeds in tripping the hare, and the hare still crosses the finish line first but, due to a technicality, the tortoise is declared the winner. I thought the moral was "slow and steady wins the race" not "bluster, disinformation, and appeals to the worst in people wins the race." But I haven't read it since I was a child, so maybe I'm not remembering it right.

Regarding your link above, there are polls in there, but they don't support your point.

Bubs - I owe you a communication and it's been eating at me that I haven't done it. I hope everything is glorious. Very good to "see" you.


You believe that Clinton lost due to misogyny, I believe that Trump won due to having a much better campaign.
When I said that it was a good thing Trump was having numerous rallies, you said it gave you heebie jeebies or something along those lines.
I said that Trump did well in the debates, you said I was wrong and pointed me at statistics.
And now it seems that you think Trump won due to a technicality?
I'm not challenging you with this, I'm just pointing out that we have very different ideas and opinions.
I haven't once linked you to RT News or Brietbart, but you insist that I'm an avid reader. That's totally just in your head.

Like I said before, different wavelengths. It feels like you have to be doom and gloom to talk politics around here. There should be room for light hearted banter and without a 'Oh, so you think X?'. My hope is that everyone can understand each other and that becomes a reality.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 23, 2017, 09:57:29 AM
You're allowed to admit that I predicted the outcome of the election Emily, I think that'd look pretty spiffy on that resume you made for me.

Now as for the polls, Clinton was leading pretty strong for ages, right? And then the wheels kinda came off at the end, yeah? Kinda reminds me of the tortoise and the hare, I think I might have mentioned that earlier as well.

No, she wasn't "leading pretty strong" for ages. There were always 8 or so states that were right on the margins and the national polls swung around pretty radically a few times.


https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/2016-election-forecast/?ex_cid=rrpromo

Clinton looks like a real strong chance here, right?

Also, remember the 42 percent?

"Real strong chance" is far different from a "sure thing." Some outlets gave Clinton a 1.5% chance of losing. 538 gave her almost a 30% chance of losing. So 538 said Clinton was TWENTY TIMES more likely to lose than some other outlets.

Not understanding how a 30% chance of winning means it's VERY POSSIBLE to win and a win would therefore *not* be a jaw-dropping stunner is part of the reason the media reported and characterized the election so poorly, and part of the reason the public's perception of the election (and therefore ability to learn why and how it went down) is so severely compromised.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 23, 2017, 10:00:36 AM
Second, 538 supports my tortoise and hare analogy (which I love).

If you think the graph found on the very page you linked (the "how the forecast has changed" graph) proves a "tortoise and the hare" analogy, then you must be looking at something else. It clearly shows an up and down, back and forth, *volatile* election with a high level of uncertainty.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 23, 2017, 02:34:01 PM
Your only "gotcha" is yes, he won. How and why he won, no.
The tortoise and the hare: I don't remember that story being about a close race, with the the tortoise having surprising bursts that pulls him ahead, then jags where he falls way behind, but with him usually close behind, while his friends and others continually try to create roadblocks for the hare, and in the last moments, someone succeeds in tripping the hare, and the hare still crosses the finish line first but, due to a technicality, the tortoise is declared the winner. I thought the moral was "slow and steady wins the race" not "bluster, disinformation, and appeals to the worst in people wins the race." But I haven't read it since I was a child, so maybe I'm not remembering it right.

Regarding your link above, there are polls in there, but they don't support your point.

Bubs - I owe you a communication and it's been eating at me that I haven't done it. I hope everything is glorious. Very good to "see" you.


You believe that Clinton lost due to misogyny, I believe that Trump won due to having a much better campaign.
When I said that it was a good thing Trump was having numerous rallies, you said it gave you heebie jeebies or something along those lines.
I said that Trump did well in the debates, you said I was wrong and pointed me at statistics.
And now it seems that you think Trump won due to a technicality?
I'm not challenging you with this, I'm just pointing out that we have very different ideas and opinions.
I haven't once linked you to RT News or Brietbart, but you insist that I'm an avid reader. That's totally just in your head.

Like I said before, different wavelengths. It feels like you have to be doom and gloom to talk politics around here. There should be room for light hearted banter and without a 'Oh, so you think X?'. My hope is that everyone can understand each other and that becomes a reality.

He did, technically, win due to a technicality. But he wouldn't have won due to a technicality were it not for misogyny. He also wouldn't have won due to a technicality were it not for right-wing lies.
I haven't said you read Breitbart or RT, I think, but many of your ideas are sourced there.
Frankly the "everyone understand each other" goal is pretty hard when you support a candidate whose campaign was based on appealing to prejudice, bigotry, fear and resentment.
And it's pretty hard for most people, left and right, to understand supporting a candidate without regard to the policies he supports simply because you think he's persuasive.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Debbie KL on January 23, 2017, 05:15:29 PM
Your only "gotcha" is yes, he won. How and why he won, no.
The tortoise and the hare: I don't remember that story being about a close race, with the the tortoise having surprising bursts that pulls him ahead, then jags where he falls way behind, but with him usually close behind, while his friends and others continually try to create roadblocks for the hare, and in the last moments, someone succeeds in tripping the hare, and the hare still crosses the finish line first but, due to a technicality, the tortoise is declared the winner. I thought the moral was "slow and steady wins the race" not "bluster, disinformation, and appeals to the worst in people wins the race." But I haven't read it since I was a child, so maybe I'm not remembering it right.

Regarding your link above, there are polls in there, but they don't support your point.

Bubs - I owe you a communication and it's been eating at me that I haven't done it. I hope everything is glorious. Very good to "see" you.


You believe that Clinton lost due to misogyny, I believe that Trump won due to having a much better campaign.
When I said that it was a good thing Trump was having numerous rallies, you said it gave you heebie jeebies or something along those lines.
I said that Trump did well in the debates, you said I was wrong and pointed me at statistics.
And now it seems that you think Trump won due to a technicality?
I'm not challenging you with this, I'm just pointing out that we have very different ideas and opinions.
I haven't once linked you to RT News or Brietbart, but you insist that I'm an avid reader. That's totally just in your head.

Like I said before, different wavelengths. It feels like you have to be doom and gloom to talk politics around here. There should be room for light hearted banter and without a 'Oh, so you think X?'. My hope is that everyone can understand each other and that becomes a reality.

He did, technically, win due to a technicality. But he wouldn't have won due to a technicality were it not for misogyny. He also wouldn't have won due to a technicality were it not for right-wing lies.
I haven't said you read Breitbart or RT, I think, but many of your ideas are sourced there.
Frankly the "everyone understand each other" goal is pretty hard when you support a candidate whose campaign was based on appealing to prejudice, bigotry, fear and resentment.
And it's pretty hard for most people, left and right, to understand supporting a candidate without regard to the policies he supports simply because you think he's persuasive.

I fear this whole exchange will seem nostalgic and quaint when we have to deal with the reality of this man, his VP and his cabinet nominees.  I don't think I need to repeat the details of what happened and how many of us are questioning the legitimacy of this election, no matter how entertaining it has been. I realize that this is an entertainment MB, but it's not really amusing anymore.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 23, 2017, 05:53:55 PM
And it's pretty hard for most people, left and right, to understand supporting a candidate without regard to the policies he supports simply because you think he's persuasive.

I'm curious about this point too.

Question to Sinister Smile:

Let's take Trump out of the equation a moment and suppose we have a bird's-eye view of a candidate running for election who has genuinely nefarious plans that will purposefully harm a great deal of people only to empower himself more. Despite all of this, this candidate is very good at convincing a lot of people that he is the right person for the job largely through manipulative rhetorical techniques. Do you believe on the basis of that alone that this candidate should win the election or do you think the policies that we, from our bird's-eye view, know about are enough to suggest opposition to the candidate despite his persuasive strengths?


Title: The Daily Donald
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 23, 2017, 10:54:05 PM
Who knows if this will be a daily thing. It might be. It might be more frequent. The man delivers.

I have a lot of catching up to do, so let's start off with Trump's decision to go on vacation. The man who ridiculed Barack Obama for playing too much golf has decided to take off his first two days as the newly-inaugurated president.

Donald goes back on building the wall! Well, sort of. Now he's going to make you pay for it. Yay, taxes?

After promising to release his tax returns after the IRS audit was completed, he has now stated that he's never going to release his tax returns.

At a particularly heinous speech at the CIA headquarters, Donald whined about his low inauguration numbers in a room created to remember fallen CIA agents who gave their life for the United States. Furthermore, it's likely people were planted in the audience to cheer and laugh at his remarks, as actual CIA members understand the solemn nature of the room. One person remarked it "was like yelling 'Boo-yeah!' at a funeral."

On the subject of the inauguration, one of Donald's first actions as president was to lie to the American public for the sole purpose of protecting his pride.

More people attended protests than attended his inauguration.

Donald ordered a mass shutdown of government-run Twitter accounts after a tweet was made in reference to the number of people who attended his swearing in ceremony. They were told to find other means of alerting people to newly-developing emergencies. That's right: Donald's pride is more important than your life.

The cabinet position appointments are an absolute dumpster fire.

The Holman Rule has been brought back. This ominous little policy allows government officials to cut salaries down to $1. It has been used in the past to purge left-leaning individuals from all bodies of government.

Donald's presidency opens with the lowest approval ratings in the last 70 years. It was 45%.

The White House's phone number to leave comments has been shut down.

Republicans propose new bills to criminalize peaceful protest, which would violate the first amendment. This is a fun tidbit: "a North Dakota bill [...] would allow motorists to hit and kill protesters obstructing the highway 'as long as [the] driver does so accidentally.'"

Donald signs bill into law that restricts US funding for women's health programs. Groups are no longer allowed to broach the subject of abortion at the risk of losing assistance from the United States.

Donald's business, now run by his daughter, is receiving payments from a group that promotes tourism to Abu Dhabi.

And here's a fun, little video of all of Donald's lies since becoming president. (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-us-president-false-claims-inauguration-white-house-sean-spicer-kellyanen-conway-press-a7541171.html?)


I'm sure I've missed something, but I'm also sure I'll have ample opportunity to catch up. I'll see you all again soon.


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 23, 2017, 11:00:53 PM
Donald also ordered a hiring freeze for government positions. This new action is having immediate effect on our very own SMiLE-Brian.


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: undercover-m on January 23, 2017, 11:42:47 PM
He's put climate change deniers in charge of the EPA (http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/01/team-trump-is-launching-a-frontal-assault-on-the-epa.html).

He also said this (http://www.salon.com/2017/01/23/trumps-plan-to-slash-75-percent-of-regulations-will-come-at-the-cost-of-the-environment/):

"I’m a very big person when it comes to the environment. I have received awards on the environment. But some of that stuff makes it impossible to get anything built.”

He never explains what those mystery environment awards are.



Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: Emily on January 24, 2017, 04:59:43 AM
He reinstated the Mexico City rule. He used time at his first meeting with congressional leadership to whine out his lies about "millions of illegal voters" costing him the popular vote. He brought his own staff to *cheer* at his first press conference in months, as he did at the CIA gig, as referenced above by Bubs. While he goes on, Banelike, about 'the people', he appoints billionaires who have devoted their lives to personal and corporate profit at the expense of the health and prosperity of everyone else.
Bannon.


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 24, 2017, 05:08:50 AM
Donald also ordered a hiring freeze for government positions. This new action is having immediate effect our very own SMiLE-Brian.
:( Yeah.....


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: Emily on January 24, 2017, 05:14:17 AM
The thing is, that they'll back fill all that work with contractors, driving up the cost. This is an expensive symbolic move that will remove benefits from many employees.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 24, 2017, 05:15:57 AM
CSM, I've been waiting for a calm moment to gather my thoughts and discuss media with you. I hope you're still around in the future when I'm gathered!


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: Emily on January 24, 2017, 05:30:57 AM
I'm thinking the reinstatement of the Holman rule is related to Trump's team asking the agencies for names of individuals who worked on programs they don't like (climate science, women's rights...).


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 24, 2017, 06:18:50 AM
The thing is, that they'll back fill all that work with contractors, driving up the cost. This is an expensive symbolic move that will remove benefits from many employees.
Thank f*** I didn't vote for him like my family wanted me to!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: HeyJude on January 24, 2017, 07:42:57 AM
Maybe the most palatable way to watch the inauguration:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OM7B56xok9M


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 24, 2017, 02:28:38 PM
Man, Donald gets an early start to his day.

Sean Spicer, the second hardest working con man in the country, has covered up inauguration lies with further lies. Is caught in a lie again.

Donald continues to insist voter fraud robbed him of the popular vote. Paul Ryan, Mike Huckabee, and Lindsey Graham (and perhaps more high-profile Republicans) insist there is no evidence of any such voter fraud.

Donald is using executive action (something once considered unconstitutional when used by Obama) to push forward the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines.

The Environmental Protection Agency has been frozen. Employees are placed under gag orders.

Scientists working for the United States Department of Agriculture have been told to stop releasing their work to the public--the people who pay for their work with their taxes.

Those documents that prove he's divested himself of all business interests and signed over the operations to his sons? No one has seen them, including the Ethics Office. Reporters weren't allowed to view them.

When explaining their reason for the federal hiring freeze, the White House lies to the American public.

A third contributor to Breitbart has been welcomed into Donald's administration.

Not only does Donald decide to remove press from the White House, he also decides that he will personally pick which reporters will be allowed in. This will result in government-sanctioned news, i.e. propaganda.

He has also been given the green light to bring his son into his administration, which is in clear violation of past restrictions in place to prevent nepotism.


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 24, 2017, 02:42:41 PM
In other fun news, 1984 has been surging in popularity lately. In 1984, there is the concept of "Doublethink," which means "holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them." Let's see how Donald's administration enacts this concept:

Donald's people say it's impossible to quantify crowd sizes.
Donald's people say he had the biggest inauguration ever.

Or the concept of alternative facts. If the government finds a truth inconvenient, they'll simply make their own version of the truth. It's not a lie--it's an "alternative fact."


Perhaps even more concerning is how authoritarian everything is rapidly becoming, which is only exacerbated by having a popular figurehead for this new government. Has anyone seen that Black Mirror episode with the animated bear that does political commentary? Does anyone remember the giant face on the "BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU" posters from 1984?

Things look bleak.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 24, 2017, 06:12:33 PM
Here's an interesting soft take on politicking that I don't think is off.
I do have an issue with the framing, that I've seen in various forms, of "the problem with Democrats is they see the world rationally but people don't think rationally so Democrats lose." It takes people who do something, then says 'others don't do that, so people don't do that.' The people who do think rationally are also people. And if they think rationally, others can think rationally. I don't think the answer is to dumb things down for those who don't think rationally, but to improve education so they do. There is a point though that that's not where we ARE - so dumb down to get the power to improve education? It's back to pragmatism vs idealism which is a constant struggle for the left.

http://www.salon.com/2017/01/15/dont-think-of-a-rampaging-elephant-linguist-george-lakoff-explains-how-the-democrats-helped-elect-trump/

Edit: I was being lazy. By "dumb down" I mean present alternative facts that appeal to people's biases and otherwise follow the marketing suggestions in this article. Basically, get votes not by presenting policy but by playing by the right-wing "people are stupid so we're going to manipulate the morons" game, rather than get votes by saying "here are the policies and here's why they're better."


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: Emily on January 24, 2017, 06:33:35 PM
Oh - and declaring his own Inauguration Day the "National Day of Patriotic Devotion"


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 24, 2017, 07:40:59 PM
CSM, I've been waiting for a calm moment to gather my thoughts and discuss media with you. I hope you're still around in the future when I'm gathered!

I'd be happy to. I am teaching two courses at the moment so forgive me if I am slow in responding or miss something.


Title: Re: The Daily Donald
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 24, 2017, 08:04:40 PM
How long until he calls himself "our fearless leader," do you think


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 25, 2017, 12:40:39 AM
Apparently someone decided to lock my Daily Donald thread. I'll continue here.

One last, late-night update.

Apparently all this negative press is keeping Donald from enjoying the White House. I guess the job just isn't as fun as he expected.

Following his other actions to destroy the EPA, Donald has had ordered them to remove their page on climate change.

Donald, in his first few days as president, threatens to enact martial law in Chicago.

Donald is expected to sign several executive actions to stop immigration from mid-Eastern countries--unless he has a hotel located there.

He is also expected to sign an executive order to begin building the wall. I hope you're all ready to pay for it with more taxes.

Lastly, several different intelligence agencies and the Senate committee are investigating Donald's link to Russia. Will they find something? Hopefully.


What's the record for quickest impeachment? Let's beat that, guys.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: LostArt on January 25, 2017, 04:03:56 AM
Apparently someone decided to lock my Daily Donald thread. I'll continue here.

One last, late-night update.

Apparently all this negative press is keeping Donald from enjoying the White House. I guess the job just isn't as fun as he expected.

Following his other actions to destroy the EPA, Donald has had ordered them to remove their page on climate change.

Donald, in his first few days as president, threatens to enact martial law in Chicago.

Donald is expected to sign several executive actions to stop immigration from mid-Eastern countries--unless he has a hotel located there.

He is also expected to sign an executive order to begin building the wall. I hope you're all ready to pay for it with more taxes.

Lastly, several different intelligence agencies and the Senate committee are investigating Donald's link to Russia. Will they find something? Hopefully.


What's the record for quickest impeachment? Let's beat that, guys.

Why was that thread locked? 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: guitarfool2002 on January 25, 2017, 06:05:43 AM
Apparently someone decided to lock my Daily Donald thread. I'll continue here.

You already have the same thread with the same title and content started and running on the forum you manage. If people want to join in, they can go there.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 25, 2017, 06:18:52 AM
Yeah, Bubs. Posting duplicative content on this board and the other board with which this board's moderators and membership are obsessed is strictly forbidden. Check the rules. On this board, we only post ad infinitum about that other board, even more ad infinitum (infinity plus one!) about the well being of the board itself, those underhanded forces sneakily trying to take it down--YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE, READ MY POSTS!!!!!!!--and sometimes the Beach Boys. But no duplicative content. That's where we draw the line. Get with it, man.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: guitarfool2002 on January 25, 2017, 08:22:29 AM
"The Daily Donald" has now been merged with the Politics thread.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 25, 2017, 08:41:17 AM
Like many states, Minnesota is looking at healthcare solutions in this strange interim period. Our state-run exchange, MNSure, saw some high-profile insurers exit the market this past enrollment period and thus rates predictably skyrocketed. The legislature is looking at reimbursements, with agreement between the DFL (as the Democratic party is in Minnesota, merged with the old Farmer-Labor party) governor and GOP house and senate that they will do it, and the only question being how: insurance companies themselves giving discounts right off the bat, a state dept providing refunds (presumably through a vendor), etc.

The governor, Mark Dayton, gave his state of the state the other night in which he was going to outline his proposal to add a true public option to MNSure, which he says would keep premiums down if people who don't qualify under current rules could buy in. (In other words, more wealthy and healthy people, as opposed to those in the market now.) However, the GOP house and senate are pretty strongly opposed to that, as you might expect.

It is going to be interesting and more than a little scary watching yet another massive healthcare overhaul in the coming days, weeks, months, and (realistically) years. To me, healthcare is one area where ideology has to compromise with pragmatism ... yet sadly it is one area that seems very rarely to do so, at least in the loudest rhetoric.

EDIT: I meant to add, Gov. Dayton didn't get through his whole proposal because, as you may have seen or heard, he fainted during his speech, hitting his head on the podium while collapsing. He has since also disclosed that he has prostate cancer and will begin treatment soon, after being fully tested at Mayo. Best wishes for the governor, who had a rough session ahead even in the best of health.


Title: The Daily Donald
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 25, 2017, 02:29:18 PM
It's always fun to be censored.

Well, here we are again. One more day into Donny T's reign.

Good news! We've been demoted to a "flawed democracy!"

The ol' Don man is calling for an investigation into voter fraud, despite everyone telling him no voter fraud occurred. His lawyers have said no voter fraud occurred. Studies on voter fraud have found exceedingly minimal evidence of voter fraud. A study cited by the White House to support their voter fraud claims are being misinterpreted, according to the man who organized the study.

But Donald will only be investigating states that voted for the Democratic Party. He'll apparently be rewarding the states that voted for the Republican Party.

Two of Donald's advisors and his daughter are registered to vote in two states.

When Jill Stein attempted to perform a recount in Michigan, her efforts were put to an end by Donald and his people with a court filing that included the following: "All available evidence suggests that the 2016 general election was not tainted by fraud or mistake."

There is increasing evidence that Donald's actions are in fact reactions to news he sees on TV. He'll skip intelligence meetings because he's already a very smart man, and he doesn't bother to read the really long documents, but he'll sit in front of the TV and get his new filtered to him through the convex lens of Fox News.

Remember when Hillary had those private email servers? Donald's senior White House staff now have private email accounts. Trump is still using his old, unsecured phone.

After being treated like piles of garbage by Donald, scientists have decided to start running for office themselves. They're also having their very own march on Washington. Boy, it's gonna be a while before Donald can really enjoy the White House.

Speaking of which, a 70-foot banner that reads "RESIST" now hangs from a crane adjacent to the White House.

Donald's chief economic advisor will receive a $284,000,000 reward from Goldman Sachs.

South Dakota uses emergency powers to repeal anti-corruption laws and prevents people from having a referendum.

Donald's approval rating is much higher in Russia.

Donald's pick for attorney general continues to support major anti-LGBTQ bill.

Donald is expected to bring back overseas CIA black sites and reinstate torture. He's also denying prisoners' access to Red Cross services, which is a war crime. The White House claims the leaked document is fake, but they've also lied about... everything...

Another leaked document demonstrates Donald's plan to do away with environmental protection programs and reduce the EPA's budget by $800,000,000 in an effort to allow big business to f*** the environment into a poisonous desert.

Happy Wednesday.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 25, 2017, 02:59:01 PM
I don't get much news by day - but here's a little:
The person expected to be appointed to the civil rights division worked for the Republicans on a redistributing plan that was rejected by a court as race-based and worked on the N Carolina bathroom bill.
Trump's gag order includes scientists at the EPA from publishing in journals for peer-review because the pols want to vet them first to ensure they are on-point with the EPA's messaging.
Tbd on the latter.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 25, 2017, 03:01:49 PM
And it looks like the White House is sending out their own news packets with the title "Praise for President Trump’s Bold Action."

yay government-approved news


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 25, 2017, 03:41:12 PM
Bubs, you know I love you. But because I also love devil's advocacy:

I'm (obviously, so enjoy the understatement) no fan of the new president, but the titles of press releases are always dizzily spun. That's not unique. And Pres. Obama took more control of the image and output of his administration than anyone previously had, such as restricting photographers but then releasing administration-approved shots, etc. Propaganda from the White House (and congresspeople) is not new and it is not partisan.

And to be fair, we are a flawed democracy. Isn't that the basis of all social justice movements?

And writing things like "is expected to" isn't really fair reporting of what is happening. It's taking what someone else has said is expected and banking on it. In the case of bringing back CIA black sites, as I heard on NPR but haven't dug into further, that is based on a draft EO that talked about reconsidering the use of them, and that the draft had an explicit disclaimer and condemnation of torture. Now don't get me wrong, I don't believe this president himself has anything against torture, as he made clear repeatedly. But his Sec. of Defense also has made clear he doesn't believe in torture and seemed at one point to have converted the president on that.

I think getting caught up in opposition is as dangerous as getting caught up in support if it numbs reason or dulls criticism into bland, blunt, blanket opposition. If my mind were more of a thesaurus, I'd have come up with a b-begun synonym of opposition. That would have fucking ruled.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 25, 2017, 03:45:39 PM
Captain, what are your favorite alcoholic beverages these days? ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 25, 2017, 03:55:18 PM
For what it's worth, every time something has been "expected to happen," it has happened.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 25, 2017, 03:57:23 PM
Captain, what are your favorite alcoholic beverages these days? ;D
The ones I'm drinking. At this particular second, New Belgium's Whizbang blonde ale is pretty good (and about six inches from my right hand). This is the first I've had it--well last night was, when I bought the 12-pack. Not bad. And I'm always a sucker for dry red wines, pretty much across the spectrum of varietals and origins.

Why, may I ask, do you ask? My contrarianism got you thinking I'm drunk? (I'm not. Yet.)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 25, 2017, 03:59:58 PM
Wondering how you are numbing the pain of hard times of government insanity..... :hat


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 25, 2017, 04:00:51 PM
For what it's worth, every time something has been "expected to happen," it has happened.
He'll drop out of the primary because he doesn't actually want the job, just the media attention (especially to start his own Trump News Network)? He'll nominate Rudy Giuliani Sec. of State? He'll make fun of Christie's predilection for McDonald's--wait, that one did happen.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 25, 2017, 04:03:14 PM
Wondering how you are numbing the pain of hard times of government insanity..... :hat
Dissociation and lack of passion and activism. It's not as if I thought Pres. Obama were a savior or something, either. I'm nervous about this administration, but I was pessimistic about the last one, and the other alternative to this one. I'm extremely interested in politics, but I'm rarely convinced to raise my voice in the slightest in support of anyone, and I'm pretty quick to oppose everyone out of sport, if nothing else.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 25, 2017, 04:10:04 PM
For what it's worth, every time something has been "expected to happen," it has happened.
He'll drop out of the primary because he doesn't actually want the job, just the media attention (especially to start his own Trump News Network)? He'll nominate Rudy Giuliani Sec. of State? He'll make fun of Christie's predilection for McDonald's--wait, that one did happen.

I'm referring to what I've posted.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 25, 2017, 04:17:58 PM
Ah, gotcha. I'm not going to go through each item you've written that about, but I'll take your word for it because you're a fine chap. Not like the leather assless kind. Like a person.

By the way, I meant to comment on your note about 1984 being popular lately. So, too, is It Can't Happen Here, by the great-state-born Sinclair Lewis. I read it recently, for the first time. And wow. Prescient. Some of candidate Berzelius Windrip's platform and rhetoric are awfully familiar.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 25, 2017, 05:15:28 PM
I was rather enjoying a succinct list of the outrages and potential outrages of the day. I don't really have time to keep up on weekdays.


Title: The Daily Donald
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 25, 2017, 11:18:37 PM
One last update for today:

Trump Hotels will triple their US properties despite Donald's promise to not make any new deals while still in office.

Donald has finally made clear his suspicion of voter fraud! Pro golfer Bernhard Langer was in line to vote in Florida when he also witnessed Latino people in line to vote. When Donald finished relaying this story to his audience (and, yes, that's the whole story), he was met with silence. His Chief of Staff urged him to move on.

In actuality, Langer was the one committing voter fraud, as he was turned away for being a German citizen.

I'll see you all again in a dozen hours.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 26, 2017, 10:07:59 AM
Interesting possibility for blocking that stupid fucking wall.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/25/opinion/how-antonin-scalias-ghost-could-block-donald-trumps-wall.html?hpw&rref=opinion&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=well-region&region=bottom-well&WT.nav=bottom-well


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 26, 2017, 02:23:22 PM
Why do Trump/his supporters think a) it's ok to ask/force/expect Mexico to pay for a wall that the US builds and b) Mexico will pay for it?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 26, 2017, 02:37:33 PM
Why do Trump/his supporters think a) it's ok to ask/force/expect Mexico to pay for a wall that the US builds and b) Mexico will pay for it?

Good question, but maybe irrelevant, since the most recent plan floated is a 20% import tax on Mexican goods to "get Mexico to pay for it." Except, as probably anyone with any common sense could quickly figure out, any such costs on charged to the selling companies will obviously be tacked on to the products being sold, thus just passing along the cost to American consumers. Victory is, um, ours? That costlier avocado or t-shirt built a wall. Huzzah.

Spicer apparently later suggested such a tax would actually be on all imports, regardless of their country of origin. (What will we build with our Chinese import tax revenues? The mind spins.)

Plenty on the left would subscribe to this kind of thing as a way to raise costs of foreign-produced merchandise to help put American-made products (and theoretically, workers) on better footing. Let's just see how people feel when they realize that while some people might get higher wages out of it,* all people will pay more for goods.


*I doubt much of the wealth would be passed along to the workers. I would imagine any increases in profit on American-made goods would just be considered fair trade-off for said companies having stopped doing as much work overseas and importing it here. Or, even if they never had overseas production, simply making higher profits. Let's keep in mind that despite all the complaining about the dire economy, crippling regulation, etc, we've seen record profits in numerous industries in recent years. The economic issue isn't with industry, it's with labor, as in, profits aren't shared.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 26, 2017, 04:41:49 PM
Why do Trump/his supporters think a) it's ok to ask/force/expect Mexico to pay for a wall that the US builds and b) Mexico will pay for it?

Good question, but maybe irrelevant, since the most recent plan floated is a 20% import tax on Mexican goods to "get Mexico to pay for it." Except, as probably anyone with any common sense could quickly figure out, any such costs on charged to the selling companies will obviously be tacked on to the products being sold, thus just passing along the cost to American consumers. Victory is, um, ours? That costlier avocado or t-shirt built a wall. Huzzah.

Spicer apparently later suggested such a tax would actually be on all imports, regardless of their country of origin. (What will we build with our Chinese import tax revenues? The mind spins.)

Plenty on the left would subscribe to this kind of thing as a way to raise costs of foreign-produced merchandise to help put American-made products (and theoretically, workers) on better footing. Let's just see how people feel when they realize that while some people might get higher wages out of it,* all people will pay more for goods.


*I doubt much of the wealth would be passed along to the workers. I would imagine any increases in profit on American-made goods would just be considered fair trade-off for said companies having stopped doing as much work overseas and importing it here. Or, even if they never had overseas production, simply making higher profits. Let's keep in mind that despite all the complaining about the dire economy, crippling regulation, etc, we've seen record profits in numerous industries in recent years. The economic issue isn't with industry, it's with labor, as in, profits aren't shared.

Damn right. Kind of like when people argued that the Iraq invasion couldn't have been about the oil since gas prices hadn't gone down, as if the purpose of gaining access to oil reserves is to lower consumer costs.  ::)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 26, 2017, 05:07:45 PM
Kind of a slow day for our dear demagogue:

The entire State Department's senior management team has been removed from office without any replacements.

Donald's Chief strategist thinks the media should shut their mouths; apparently wishes to silence negative press.

The president of Mexico has scrapped his plans to visit the US. Donald plans to impose 20% tax on Mexican imports to pay for wall. Paul Ryan says Americans will pay for wall. Although the White House is now stepping back from that plan, they are still working on a plan to make you pay for it.

Donald continues to receive mysterious payments from foreign nations.

Here's a fun one: Donald plans to release a weekly list of crimes committed by immigrants. Whether they're illegal or not doesn't seem to matter and is not specified. And (come on, you saw this coming) Adolf Hitler did the same with his weekly report, The Criminal Jew.

Donald claims zero illegal votes were cast in his name.

Despite Kellyanne's claims that American's don't care, a White House petition to release the T-man's tax returns breaks the record for most signed.

On numerous occasions, Donald has claimed violent crimes have been increasing when they've actually been decreasing.

Scientists have begun to fight back against Donald and are creating their own, unofficial Twitter accounts to continue to communicate with the American public. One of the more high profile accounts is Rogue NASA. Two of the House's democrats believe the gag orders placed on federal employees violate federal laws.

Polls show that most of Donald's supporters believe his lies despite ample evidence to the contrary. His supporters believe he should be allowed to have his own private email server.

Donald is really upset that he's not popular now despite being president.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 26, 2017, 05:11:36 PM
Try this one out. How many can you spot from the past 5 days? I think I got 9.

The 14 Defining Characteristics of Fascism
1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism - Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.

2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights - Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.

3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause - The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.

4. Supremacy of the Military - Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.

5. Rampant Sexism - The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homosexuality are suppressed and the state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution.

6. Controlled Mass Media - Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.

7. Obsession with National Security - Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.

8. Religion and Government are Intertwined - Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government's policies or actions.

9. Corporate Power is Protected - The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.

10. Labor Power is Suppressed - Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed.

11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts - Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts and letters is openly attacked.

12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment - Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.

13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption - Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.

14. Fraudulent Elections - Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 26, 2017, 08:17:21 PM
Why do Trump/his supporters think a) it's ok to ask/force/expect Mexico to pay for a wall that the US builds and b) Mexico will pay for it?

Good question, but maybe irrelevant, since the most recent plan floated is a 20% import tax on Mexican goods to "get Mexico to pay for it." Except, as probably anyone with any common sense could quickly figure out, any such costs on charged to the selling companies will obviously be tacked on to the products being sold, thus just passing along the cost to American consumers. Victory is, um, ours? That costlier avocado or t-shirt built a wall. Huzzah.

Spicer apparently later suggested such a tax would actually be on all imports, regardless of their country of origin. (What will we build with our Chinese import tax revenues? The mind spins.)

Plenty on the left would subscribe to this kind of thing as a way to raise costs of foreign-produced merchandise to help put American-made products (and theoretically, workers) on better footing. Let's just see how people feel when they realize that while some people might get higher wages out of it,* all people will pay more for goods.


*I doubt much of the wealth would be passed along to the workers. I would imagine any increases in profit on American-made goods would just be considered fair trade-off for said companies having stopped doing as much work overseas and importing it here. Or, even if they never had overseas production, simply making higher profits. Let's keep in mind that despite all the complaining about the dire economy, crippling regulation, etc, we've seen record profits in numerous industries in recent years. The economic issue isn't with industry, it's with labor, as in, profits aren't shared.

Left free trader here - open borders for people and goods. Never understood the left being against this.
No - it won't be passed on to workers, either in time or money.

And thanks for the updates, Bubs. You're good at that.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 26, 2017, 10:30:21 PM
And thanks for the updates, Bubs. You're good at that.

I do it for selfish reasons! Helps me feel not quite so powerless.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 27, 2017, 08:19:16 AM
Try this one out. How many can you spot from the past 5 days? I think I got 9.
Based on statements of intent or attitude rather than action so far,  Trump and the overall current Republican regime:
The 14 Defining Characteristics of Fascism
1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism - Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.   Trump: 10 regime: 2 Actual action - yes

2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights - Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.
Trump: 10 regime: 4 actual action not yet, based on the common understanding of human rights in the US

3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause - The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.
Trump: 10 regime: 6 actual action YES

4. Supremacy of the Military - Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.
Trump: 7 regime 6 actual action not yet

5. Rampant Sexism - The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homosexuality are suppressed and the state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution.
Trump: 10 regime 9 actual action yes

6. Controlled Mass Media - Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.
Trump: evident desire 10 but given he won't get any legal structure around it and knows it: 6 regime 2 actual action - a bit

7. Obsession with National Security - Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.
Trump: 10 regime 3 actual action yes

8. Religion and Government are Intertwined - Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government's policies or actions.
Trump: 3, except he's obviously willing to go along with: regime 10 actual action yes

9. Corporate Power is Protected - The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.
Trump 10 regime 10 actual action yes

10. Labor Power is Suppressed - Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed.
This is really hard to measure because it's continued rather than new suppression, so it's hard to know the degree the currents are up on this.
So I'll just say: Trump 2 Regime 2 because they have both taken measures to avoid a resurgence but haven't taken measures to crack down - only because there's nothing to crack down on.

11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts - Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts and letters is openly attacked.
Trump 10 regime 9 actual action yes

12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment - Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.
Trump 10 regime 7 actual action not yet

13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption - Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.
Trump 10 regime 7 actual action yes

14. Fraudulent Elections - Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.
Trump 10 regime 10 actual action yes
note: this was off the top of my head over 10 minutes. I did not find a list of all actions and statements and quantify. I wouldn't be surprised if some of the "regime" numbers shifted if tested, because there are so many actions and varying statements among the hundreds of people involved; finding a median would take much more time. But I'm pretty comfortable with the Trump numbers and think that they would shift very little if tested.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 27, 2017, 08:41:49 AM

Here's a striking set of numbers:
In the summer of 2015, according to a Pew Research Center poll, Republicans said free trade deals had been good for the country by 51 to 39 percent. By the summer of 2016, Republicans said those deals had been bad for America by 61 percent to 32 percent.

and an opinion about why that might be:
It’s not that the deals had changed, or reality. It was that Donald Trump became the Republican nominee and his dark fearfulness became the party’s dark fearfulness. In this case fear is not a reaction to the world. It is a way of seeing the world. It propels your reactions to the world.

from:
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/27/opinion/the-politics-of-cowardice.html


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Empire Of Love on January 27, 2017, 10:02:10 AM
Here is a really interesting article that more or less supports what Sinister Smile has been saying (in regards to Trump running a brilliant campaign.  I am not sure this author means this in the same way Sinister Smile does, but regardless, I think he makes some great points.  The author also does an excellent job pointing out the hypocritical outrage that is so common in our post-modern culture.

http://thefederalist.com/2017/01/23/donald-trump-first-president-turn-postmodernism/

Trump may or may not be a stick in spoke of the wheels of the Hegelian dialectic/dialectical materialism (if you don't understand the Hegelian dialectic you don't understand how badly you are being played), but it wouldn't take much to turn the next four years into the anti-thesis of the new thesis that arose under Obama, giving us a nightmare synthesis we will all regret.  It will be an interesting, and potentially terrifying, four years - depending on how things play out.

EoL


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 27, 2017, 10:27:57 AM
EoL, I read that and have some thoughts but I'm at work and on a phone, so they'll have to wait.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 27, 2017, 11:44:27 PM
Another kinda slow day:

Republicans plan to get rid of the endangered species act.

Audio of Republicans acknowledging the numerous problems with repealing Obamacare is leaked. Republicans admit there is no replacement for Obamacare.

The KGB chief linked to the leaked Trump file (the one where he hires some prostitutes to pee on a bed) has been "mysteriously" found dead.

Trump's ban on immigration from certain countries apparently defies 1965 law created to prevent discrimination of this nature. He signed the bill into law on Holocaust Remembrance Day. In his Holocaust Remembrance Day statement, hed fails to mention Jews and their place in the Holocaust.

Mike Pence opposed Donald's ban on muslim immigrants in a tweet from 2015.

Some travelers may be barred from returning to America due to immigration ban.

The ban on immigration continues to exclude any countries where he has business dealings.

CEO of Russia's state oil company offered former Trump adviser ~20% stake in the company for lifting sanctions on Russia. Donald continues to consider lifting sanctions, despite everyone telling him not to. If sanctions are lifted, you can assume what happened.

Donald says two were fatally shot at Obama speech, which didn't happen. Donald says "sanctuary cities" are hotbeds for crime, while actual data disagrees with him.

Despite Donald's self-proclaimed business savvy, IBM lays off thousands of workers.

Mexicans plan to boycott the United States because of Donald. Peru and Columbia vow to stand with Mexico. Mexico continues to not pay for wall.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 27, 2017, 11:45:23 PM
This is a thing: Impeach Donald Trump Now (http://impeachdonaldtrumpnow.org/).

At the time of my posting this, there are 287,273 signatures.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 28, 2017, 06:37:34 AM

Audio of Republicans acknowledging the numerous problems with repealing Obamacare is leaked. Republicans admit there is no replacement for Obamacare.

There may be no better example of the cancer of cynical hyperpartisanship than healthcare over the past near-decade. Our healthcare system prior to Obamacare--despite recent Trumpisms about how people loved their pre-ACA healthcare environment, apparently forgetting about how costs skyrocketed annually, people were dropped or kept uncovered based on preexisting conditions, etc etc--was horribly flawed. Obamacare is horribly flawed. And the replacement, if and when it arrives, will be horribly flawed.

However, the cynical, short-term partisan interests have made and will keep making things worse. Republicans sat out the ACA rather than negotiate, and the Democrats were stupid to let them do it even if the resulting bipartisan ACA would have been worse (in their eyes), and the past six or seven years are the reason why: everything that has gone wrong, Republicans have been able to shout from the rooftops, "YOU DID THIS." They have been able to leverage any bad press (and of course ignore, suppress, or deny any good press) and quite correctly (on some level) say they are innocent of the law. Had the law been bipartisan, we could have been looking at improvements all along, a shared shame and an honest effort ahead.

Now Democrats, it seems, will be doing more or less the same thing. I've heard Sen. Schumer say Democrats would work with Republicans if the latter agreed to modify ACA rather than replace it. Republicans, being politically cornered after almost 10 years of ranting and railing about the falling black skies of ACA, cannot politically accept that suggestion, even as their own rhetoric has their theoretical replacement ever-nearer the ACA (pre-existing conditions, staying on parents' healthcare to 27, no lifetime limits, etc.), as was predictable considering the challenges associated with taking away benefits once they've been given (see: furor over every suggestion to modify Social Security or Medicare). So Republicans of course have to repeal and replace, even if it ends up more like a modification.

But if Democrats take that old Republican tactic, they'll find themselves in the same place the next time they're in control of government. They will, no doubt, exaggerate the bad parts of Trumpcare and ignore, suppress, or deny the good parts. They will have no choice but to go through the same rigmarole in the future. The two parties increasingly make it impossible to jointly own anything, and joint ownership has historically been the only way to pass and maintain major legislation. Anything less results in, well, this. This crap. Yes, bipartisan legislation ends up not especially pleasing to anyone, especially any ideologue. But it also ends up, say, 75% pleasing to 75% of the people, which is much more palatable (and sustainable) than 85% pleasing to 35% of the people. If every congressperson can go home and say "look, it's not great, but it's good--it's better than what we had, and we really came together to get it done for you," that's a solid result that usually keeps incumbents in office (historically, at least before Tea Party style "primarying"), which is all they care about anyway, at least until that lucrative "consulting" career on the horizon. Instead, we have half of lawmakers going home to dramatically rant and rave against the in-power party and the disaster of a law they passed/are passing just to whip up their magically gerrymandered safe-bases, and the other half going home to prove what a great job they did with their unsustainably passed, temporary law, apparently not smart enough to realize they've only got a few years before they're on the other side. Or maybe they know they'll be out of office and enjoying that "consulting" career by the time the music stops, not caring if there's no chair for them.

It's really frustrating.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 28, 2017, 07:23:28 AM
Here is a really interesting article that more or less supports what Sinister Smile has been saying (in regards to Trump running a brilliant campaign.  I am not sure this author means this in the same way Sinister Smile does, but regardless, I think he makes some great points.  The author also does an excellent job pointing out the hypocritical outrage that is so common in our post-modern culture.

http://thefederalist.com/2017/01/23/donald-trump-first-president-turn-postmodernism/

Trump may or may not be a stick in spoke of the wheels of the Hegelian dialectic/dialectical materialism (if you don't understand the Hegelian dialectic you don't understand how badly you are being played), but it wouldn't take much to turn the next four years into the anti-thesis of the new thesis that arose under Obama, giving us a nightmare synthesis we will all regret.  It will be an interesting, and potentially terrifying, four years - depending on how things play out.

EoL

That article seems to have been getting some play: while seeing if I could find anything about the author, I noticed it's being republished all over.

My main issue with it is a common one I have: it assigns an opposing faction or idea more power than it has. In this case, it's presupposed that there is a conscious, powerful postmodernist faction dominating society to which Trump can be an opponent. While the article was interesting, I'm not sure the reality is so sinister or intellectual. I don't think the USA is in the grasp of postmodernist powers, even if there are postmodernist ideas sprinkled around. The author has written about postmodernism in two of his three Federalist stories, but about whom I am not finding a lot else about him, other than that he works for the massive multinational government contractor CACI and is on the board of the Robertson Foundation for Government.

I think people's support of Trump was more of a gut-level opposition to Obama than anything else, which isn't surprising in that regime changes are pretty regularly just an exercise in opposition to some trait(s). If people saw Obama as an aloof elitist who fatally wouldn't use this or that phrase to describe terrorists--who was elected for those very traits as contrast to the down-homey Bush II--they liked the blunt crudeness of Trump. It isn't about a rejection of postmodernism, it's "I thought things would be better than they are but my life still kind of sucks." When their lives still kind of suck, they'll vote in the next charismatic candidate who sufficiently inspires or terrifies them. It won't be about ideology or philosophy, just as it hasn't been up to now.

And I think Trump's part in his own campaign was also a gut-level exercise in ego and narcissism, with any strategy--especially along the narrative here--being brought by Bannon after some up-and-down ideas from the previous advisors like Manafort. I don't think SinisterSmile's "tortoise and the hare genius campaign" holds water, and I don't think Ernst's story is more than an academic exercise.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 28, 2017, 06:26:33 PM
On a positive note, I would like to congratulate the good work of activists who got a temporary Fed. stay on the Muslim ban. THIS is what democracy looks like.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 28, 2017, 11:13:56 PM
The Day in Donald:

Donald is facing massive amounts of backlash from just about everyone at this point. His historically low entrance approval rate has continued to decrease. He's probably been sued more times than any other person to hold the presidency, and he's been in the position for about a week. Russians still like him, though.

And, like Chocolate Shake Man said, people are starting to fight back.





Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 29, 2017, 06:31:50 AM
The ban is a national embarrassment, and not only on moral grounds. From any other politician in history, the irony and/or hypocrisy of someone who campaigned against the inappropriateness-to-illegality of executive overreach to suddenly and blatantly use executive orders that are at least as consequential as any of the previous president's, for any other politician in history it would be shocking. The only reason this one gets a free pass is that people just shrug it off like he's your racist drunken uncle farting and dropping slurs at the table. "Haha, that's uncle Bob!" Shrug. "He's not a real politician! He isn't polished," which is moron-speak for "he's too stupid to say things that are factually correct and/or decent," or "we're all assholes too, so it's cool." f*** those morons.

Anyone who ever questioned Obama's use of executive orders but supports Trump's is an idiot or a hypocrite. Or both. f*** those morons.

If you're going to take stupid, hasty, almost certainly ineffective (if not counterproductive) moves, at least make sure the legislature goes on record to support it so they can be voted out. There are consequences to immediate actions that are not just immoral, but expensive and massively disruptive to people's lives. Imagine next time you're taking a vacation to Mexico only to be stopped in an airport there, questioned for a few hours (or a day), and sent back to the USA. Oh, and maybe your family was already in Mexico, and remains there. Oh well. It's only a few people, the administration says. 1% of travelers or whatever. So we're just being idiots and massively impacting the lives of 1% of people because we didn't think through, or didn't care, about practical realities on the ground. Much like was the case in the EO about undermining ACA. And any and every consequential EO. f*** those morons.

You hear all the time about how the markets like predictability, how important some kind of continuity and order is to business. Well, yeah, that's true. Because it's true of everyone, all the time, everywhere. For the government to blow sh*t up and laugh just because their ideologue website advisor counsel has the ear of the TV star moron president, that's pathetic and embarrassing. The "law and order" party apparently doesn't understand the concept of either when it suits them. Much as they don't mind EOs when they think they suit them. f*** those morons.

This isn't even about preventing terrorism or controlling our borders. It's about pragmatism--what will WORK for preventing terrorism?--and it's about basic human decency. f*** those morons.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 29, 2017, 07:07:18 AM
Couldn't have said it better. He manages to be worse than expected and those who continue to support him are running out of ways to claim they aren't irrational bigots.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 29, 2017, 07:23:46 AM
Couldn't have said it better.

Really? I don't see you as a "f*** those morons" kind of person.  ;D

Two other things.

1. On hypocrisy. Since I brought up the EO undermining the ACA without any real details, direction, replacement, plan for replacement, etc., I should also note this delicious little morsel. Remember the hay the GOP, Tea Partiers, conservatives, Trumpers, and various other factions made with Pelosi's quote about having to pass the ACA to see what's in it? (Because laws with lots of pages are bad, mind you. Tax codes, too. Lots of pages = bad.) Well, here we have a short EO that nobody can predict results of because there's no substance to it, it's every bit as shallow as a talking point on the campaign trail. And guess what that means, basically? "We'll have to wait and see what it means." So ok, you avoided the "too long/didn't read" boogeyman, but you have the same end result: SHUT THE f*** UP, THIS IS WHAT WE'RE DOING, IT DOESN'T MATTER THAT WE DON'T KNOW WHAT IT MEANS OR WILL DO, EITHER, BUT BY GOD, WE LIKE IT.

Conservatism, you may want to remember, is in large part based on valuing tradition and order, and hesitates to make dramatic change quickly because of unintended consequences. That's not me talking, that's not a criticism, that's just the reality of what conservatism is. Conservatives should be every bit as outraged as anyone else over these firebomb EOs.

2. None of my rantings or ravings this morning (or ever) are actually opposed to anyone's political ideology, necessarily. Conservatism is entirely valid. (It isn't being represented here by Trump in the slightest, but that's besides the point.) Your position has a right to be heard, to be debated, and to have a role in governance. That's a democratic republic with a legislature. But an "end justifies the means" mentality is more than just hypocritical and immoral, it's counterproductive to the security of anyone's objectives, because it inflames opposing viewpoints and ensures they will simply come back in opposition harder and with every one of the same tactics (as I raved about re healthcare yesterday). It's so fucking stupid. You're* so fucking stupid.

*If this doesn't apply to you, congrats! I'm not talking to you. If you are, well, you're fucking stupid. It's not my fault. I didn't drop you as a baby.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 29, 2017, 07:28:46 AM
I tend not to be fond of NYT Editorial Board editorials, but I think this one is a pretty good summary of some serious flaws with the petulant president.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/28/opinion/sunday/can-donald-trump-handle-the-truth.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=opinion-c-col-left-region&region=opinion-c-col-left-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-left-region&_r=0


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 29, 2017, 07:50:03 AM
Could you do a faux Filleplage post to make me believe in love again?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 29, 2017, 07:51:34 AM
I don't know what you're talking about.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 29, 2017, 08:03:18 AM
http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,24600.msg597293.html#msg597293          ;)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 29, 2017, 08:14:02 AM
Still no idea. That was just me posting in my usual, inimitable style, making the kind of logically sound points I always make.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 29, 2017, 08:21:00 AM
Fair enough, just reading your usual banter with her on the other board made my week.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 29, 2017, 11:04:22 AM
I don't want to be dual-posting everything, but I did post this at psf and want to do so here, too. Some might be interested.
...

Speaking of executive orders, by the way, with our new administration in place the data can be collected and reported on the previous one: Pres. Obama executed the fewest executive orders per year of any president since Pres. Cleveland. www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/01/23/obama-executive-orders/

Obviously substance and quantity are two different things, however, which I grant. Anyone interested in actually learning as opposed to taking their preferred media source's word for it can pretty easily dig in: www.archives.gov/federal-register/executive-orders/disposition.html

Pres. Trump, despite his own and his party's incessant rallying against the idea, has broken Obama's record for executive actions (EOs and Presidential Memoranda) in his first week, and I think any fair observer would agree they have been at least as substantive, if not more so. (Note that while the story used as a source here says he didn't release anything about ethics, he shortly thereafter did. It adds to the time former administration officials must sit before going into lobbying; however, it removes the time former lobbyists must wait before going to work for the agencies they lobbied. Cute.) www.npr.org/2017/01/28/512055554/trump-signs-a-record-number-of-executive-actions-but-nothing-about-ethics


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 30, 2017, 09:35:41 PM
I took yesterday off.

But today.... seriously (https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/30/us/politics/trump-immigration-ban-memo.html)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 31, 2017, 05:12:10 AM
Silence in this thread - what's there to say? We're going to have a constitutional crisis along here somewhere and it looks like a significant percentage will be on the side of Trump over everything that we claim to stand for as a country - even everything they have always claimed we stand for as a country. All the people who tell themselves they would have done differently than those who supported or turned a blind eye to slavery, genocide, fascism, internment, McCarthyism, etc. - now's the test - or have we already had it?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 31, 2017, 05:32:20 AM
Steve Bannon is running the country........ >:(


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 31, 2017, 05:55:56 AM
Silence in this thread - what's there to say? We're going to have a constitutional crisis along here somewhere and it looks like a significant percentage will be on the side of Trump over everything that we claim to stand for as a country - even everything they have always claimed we stand for as a country. All the people who tell themselves they would have done differently than those who supported or turned a blind eye to slavery, genocide, fascism, internment, McCarthyism, etc. - now's the test - or have we already had it?

Yeah, what can be said? It's time to organize and quickly. I am attending a peacefully rally today in protest of the ban and to show empathy for the people who lost their lives in Quebec as a result of all this hateful rhetoric that is so dominant right now. Every single person who is opposed to this President and I would guess it's the majority of the US need to make themselves visible and need to make themselves heard - as peacefully and as coherently and as organized and unified as possible.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on January 31, 2017, 06:03:27 AM
Oh, what’s the big deal? So the president ordered a possibly illegal, obviously immoral, and certainly ineffective solution to a problem that doesn’t exist, not only affecting the administration-counted 100ish people it meant to affect, but, oh, thousands of people as they try to go about their businesses and lives, just so he can score political points with people too dumb to understand that even if the “solution” works perfectly, it doesn’t actually do anything to address the problem that does exist.
 
Is it legal? I don’t know. I am not an attorney. Obviously some highly qualified attorneys think it is not, such as the recently fired Ms. Yates and those who filed suit. Obviously some think it may not be, such as the judge in New York who issued the stay. And obviously some think it is legal. This is one reason why we don’t dump such massive changes without “extreme vetting,” to use a phrase the guy in office likes to use. We seek counsel. (He obviously failed to go through Justice.) I know that the guy in office talked about how neato it would be for him to have secrets and then just act—BLAMMO!—but that is, like most of what comes out of his mouth, stupid for the most powerful nation on earth to do. We have citizens, businesses, allies, enemies. Instability is not good.
 
Is it moral? No. Banning—even temporarily—people who otherwise qualify to enter this country because the countries from which they come are predominantly populated by people whose religion is also used by some people—usually from OTHER COUNTRIES, and most often THIS COUNTRY (you orange f*ckwit)—who have committed terrorism in the U.S.? And especially banning refugees, people fleeing abhorrent conditions in their native countries that in many cases we caused or contributed to? Absolutely not. We should be ashamed of ourselves. And we’re causing more instability. Instability is not good.
 
Is it effective? No. First of all, there is vetting for people coming from these places. One could call it “extreme vetting” if one were an orangeish moron. It’s there already. Is it effective? Well, let’s see, so far zero people from these places have gotten through it and committed terror here, so I guess so far, it is. It won’t be perfect because committing these crimes is easy to do, regardless of vetting. People lie. People change over time. Such is life. But for the most part, our vetting has worked. This policy, however, will not actually stop terrorism. Homegrown terrorists—you know, the kind that exist in America in real life!?—aren’t affected by this. And what’s obvious, was predictable, and is already happening, is that actual overseas terrorists are using this as propaganda. Ta-da!
 
A problem that doesn’t exist? That phrase might have raised eyebrows. But I’m not saying terrorism doesn’t exist, or that Islamic terrorism (or whatever phrase anyone, including GOPers or conservatives prefer to use) doesn’t exist. Duh. But we have not had refugees or immigrants from the banned countries committing terrorism in the U.S. under existing policy. This is a flashy solution to a problem that isn’t there, executed to look tough and come through on a moronic campaign promise. Conversely, by the way, the countries that have exported terrorists who committed acts here? Y’know, the little, under-the-radar things like (oh, what was it called?) 9/11? Y’know, Saudi Arabia? Oh, not on the list. Or what’s that country that obviously was sheltering Bin Laden? Oh yeah, Pakistan. Oh, not on the list. Neat. Good job, Donnie, ya got ‘em!
 
You’ll have to excuse me not going into more details on certain things that, contrary to reasonably good writing style, will be in my summary anyway. But I do have a job (and a meeting in 6 minutes as I type this), so…
 
Exporters of terror will still export terror, in many cases (e.g. the countries just named) without any new controls. Some of those on the list might still export terror because it’s impossible to prevent terror without changing minds, and the vast majority of domestic terror isn’t coming from overseas. And we are bungling into new, blunt, ill-conceived, laughably executed orders that disrupt Americans’ and international people’s personal lives, American and international businesses, and international relationships with allies and enemies alike, the negative weight of which is entirely on the backs of the innocent, all so our new president can convince himself and maybe some of the more gullible or inattentive Americans who support him that he’s tough, that he’s a man of action, that he’s strong. Counsel clearly will not be sought. Dissent clearly will not be tolerated.
 
In short: immoral, questionably legal, certainly ineffective order whose execution was either bungled or misconceived (or both).
 
He isn’t Hitler. But he doesn’t have to be Hitler to be terrible. There are degrees of terrible, and “not being Hitler” is hardly a compliment. He’s a terrible, terrible president—and he’s only been at it for a week and a half. And worse, he’s a terrible, terrible human being … he’s been that for seven decades, and yet he was elected. I’ve never been so embarrassed as an American. The only real solace is the knowledge that most people in the world understand that most people in America did not vote for him and do not support him.
 
(I’m now officially in my meeting. Luckily it’s a call and the phone is on mute. Apologies for the hasty, sloppy conclusion.)
 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 31, 2017, 06:17:17 AM
Naomi Klein made the strong point that about half of Trump's campaign focused on bringing jobs and prosperity back to the American people and getting the US away from the domination of major financial institutions, while the other half focused on whipping up hysteria against women, minorities, and immigrants. Since he has already made it perfectly clear that he has no intention of bringing jobs and prosperity back to the American people, he has to mask that and distract the population who had been won over by that message by ramping up the only thing he has left: hatred against women, minorities, and immigrants.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 31, 2017, 06:30:29 AM
Great to hear CSM is rallying today!

Going to eat lunch with Addsome at Frans?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on January 31, 2017, 06:36:01 AM
Great to hear CSM is rallying today!

Going to eat lunch with Addsome at Frans?

Haha. Would love to! Unfortunately there are no Frans where I am living at the moment.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 31, 2017, 02:44:19 PM
Oh, what’s the big deal? So the president ordered a possibly illegal, obviously immoral, and certainly ineffective solution to a problem that doesn’t exist, not only affecting the administration-counted 100ish people it meant to affect, but, oh, thousands of people as they try to go about their businesses and lives, just so he can score political points with people too dumb to understand that even if the “solution” works perfectly, it doesn’t actually do anything to address the problem that does exist.
 
Is it legal? I don’t know. I am not an attorney. Obviously some highly qualified attorneys think it is not, such as the recently fired Ms. Yates and those who filed suit. Obviously some think it may not be, such as the judge in New York who issued the stay. And obviously some think it is legal. This is one reason why we don’t dump such massive changes without “extreme vetting,” to use a phrase the guy in office likes to use. We seek counsel. (He obviously failed to go through Justice.) I know that the guy in office talked about how neato it would be for him to have secrets and then just act—BLAMMO!—but that is, like most of what comes out of his mouth, stupid for the most powerful nation on earth to do. We have citizens, businesses, allies, enemies. Instability is not good.
 
Is it moral? No. Banning—even temporarily—people who otherwise qualify to enter this country because the countries from which they come are predominantly populated by people whose religion is also used by some people—usually from OTHER COUNTRIES, and most often THIS COUNTRY (you orange f*ckwit)—who have committed terrorism in the U.S.? And especially banning refugees, people fleeing abhorrent conditions in their native countries that in many cases we caused or contributed to? Absolutely not. We should be ashamed of ourselves. And we’re causing more instability. Instability is not good.
 
Is it effective? No. First of all, there is vetting for people coming from these places. One could call it “extreme vetting” if one were an orangeish moron. It’s there already. Is it effective? Well, let’s see, so far zero people from these places have gotten through it and committed terror here, so I guess so far, it is. It won’t be perfect because committing these crimes is easy to do, regardless of vetting. People lie. People change over time. Such is life. But for the most part, our vetting has worked. This policy, however, will not actually stop terrorism. Homegrown terrorists—you know, the kind that exist in America in real life!?—aren’t affected by this. And what’s obvious, was predictable, and is already happening, is that actual overseas terrorists are using this as propaganda. Ta-da!
 
A problem that doesn’t exist? That phrase might have raised eyebrows. But I’m not saying terrorism doesn’t exist, or that Islamic terrorism (or whatever phrase anyone, including GOPers or conservatives prefer to use) doesn’t exist. Duh. But we have not had refugees or immigrants from the banned countries committing terrorism in the U.S. under existing policy. This is a flashy solution to a problem that isn’t there, executed to look tough and come through on a moronic campaign promise. Conversely, by the way, the countries that have exported terrorists who committed acts here? Y’know, the little, under-the-radar things like (oh, what was it called?) 9/11? Y’know, Saudi Arabia? Oh, not on the list. Or what’s that country that obviously was sheltering Bin Laden? Oh yeah, Pakistan. Oh, not on the list. Neat. Good job, Donnie, ya got ‘em!
 
You’ll have to excuse me not going into more details on certain things that, contrary to reasonably good writing style, will be in my summary anyway. But I do have a job (and a meeting in 6 minutes as I type this), so…
 
Exporters of terror will still export terror, in many cases (e.g. the countries just named) without any new controls. Some of those on the list might still export terror because it’s impossible to prevent terror without changing minds, and the vast majority of domestic terror isn’t coming from overseas. And we are bungling into new, blunt, ill-conceived, laughably executed orders that disrupt Americans’ and international people’s personal lives, American and international businesses, and international relationships with allies and enemies alike, the negative weight of which is entirely on the backs of the innocent, all so our new president can convince himself and maybe some of the more gullible or inattentive Americans who support him that he’s tough, that he’s a man of action, that he’s strong. Counsel clearly will not be sought. Dissent clearly will not be tolerated.
 
In short: immoral, questionably legal, certainly ineffective order whose execution was either bungled or misconceived (or both).
 
He isn’t Hitler. But he doesn’t have to be Hitler to be terrible. There are degrees of terrible, and “not being Hitler” is hardly a compliment. He’s a terrible, terrible president—and he’s only been at it for a week and a half. And worse, he’s a terrible, terrible human being … he’s been that for seven decades, and yet he was elected. I’ve never been so embarrassed as an American. The only real solace is the knowledge that most people in the world understand that most people in America did not vote for him and do not support him.
 
(I’m now officially in my meeting. Luckily it’s a call and the phone is on mute. Apologies for the hasty, sloppy conclusion.)
 
All this, and more.  The ban is despicable but where the broader danger comes in is Trump throwing down the gauntlet to federal employees: 'me, and your job, or law - which is it?' This is where I'd expect the most right wing, the most conservative, the most ANYTHING that wants to bother to pretend to give a sh*t, excuse me, about the US, the world, ethics, anything, would draw the line.
Remember when Trump said the military would torture people at his command even if it's unconstitutional? This is the test. If the courts issued a stay, do we respect the stay? Trump has signaled 'no' - we do what Trump says regardless.
THIS is where the whole country is in the firing line.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on January 31, 2017, 02:51:29 PM
Steve Bannon is running the country........ >:(

Of course...Trump was a trojan horse, and will be nothing more than an offensive orange puppet. It's the guys pulling the strings that I'm deathly afraid of.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on January 31, 2017, 03:08:31 PM
My family loves Trump and Bannon.... :(


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on January 31, 2017, 05:51:26 PM
“A lot of people live better without having a job, than with having a job. I’ve had it where you have people and you want to hire them, but they can’t take the job for a period of nine months because they’re doing better now than they would with a job.”
“You know what solves it? When the economy crashes, when the country goes to total hell, and everything is a disaster, then you’ll have riots to go back to where we used to be, when we were great.”

Trump, Fox News interview, 2014.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: 18thofMay on January 31, 2017, 08:18:04 PM
“A lot of people live better without having a job, than with having a job. I’ve had it where you have people and you want to hire them, but they can’t take the job for a period of nine months because they’re doing better now than they would with a job.”
“You know what solves it? When the economy crashes, when the country goes to total hell, and everything is a disaster, then you’ll have riots to go back to where we used to be, when we were great.”

Trump, Fox News interview, 2014.
This is end game stuff here!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on January 31, 2017, 11:52:17 PM
It's hard to imagine now that he at one point was almost coherent. 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 01, 2017, 06:19:59 AM
Approximately 1k State Dept officials have signed a dissent cable against Trump's immigration EO, "far more than any dissent cable in recent years" per NYT. Among the comments in the still-draft, still-circulating letter, are:

- will not make America safer
- lasting shame
- alienate allies
- hurt America economically

Then again, the press secretary said any dissenters should get with the program or leave. And clearly that's the healthiest way to run a country: do not seek the counsel of professionals or experts, but rather act on the impulses of a failed businessman and reality show host, and his tight circle of media-professional ideologues, and silence or punish those initially ignored professionals and experts for sharing the wisdom of their experience when it contradicts your rash, blunt actions.

America is so fucking great again!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on February 01, 2017, 06:44:39 AM
Meanwhile Nancy Pelosi was on CNN last night explaining that the Democratic party will not court left-wing populism as a strategy to counter right-wing populism. It truly is now up to genuine democracy (ie. activism) to counter these horrible policies since it is abundantly clear that the political system is established in a way that allows for them to be put into place. That has always been the case, but it is quite obvious now.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 01, 2017, 09:55:01 AM
W Post printed an interesting op-ed from former AG William Barr arguing fthat Yates' instruction not to defend the immigration EO was inappropriate and that the president was right to fire her.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 01, 2017, 11:01:50 AM
I don't disagree. I think it was right for her to resist on personal ethics, and right for her to be let go (given that my personal ethics agree with her and the REALLY right thing was for her not to be asked to argue for such a thing in the first place).
However, apparently several judges have disagreed with Barr re: the legality and have issued stays on aspects. It appears that Trump initially responded that DHS should continue enforcing despite the stays. This is aside from Yates, but more important. Ethical resistance and the consequences have been a well-discussed and accepted and legal aspect of our civic structure. The executive branch not obeying the orders of the judicial branch is a different matter.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on February 01, 2017, 12:32:44 PM
The Daily Donald:

everything is f***ed


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 01, 2017, 12:49:59 PM
I didn't vote for Trump and I'm no supporter, but the ban on immigration does not bother me as much as it seems to bother everybody else.  I'd like to hear your take on the following:

Muslims, Sharia Law and the West.

My question is...a large part of the world's Muslim population (estimated around 50%) prefer religious law (Sharia) over constitutional law.  Isn't this is in direct conflict with our most fundamental beliefs?  Shouldn't this be a factor in our attitude towards Muslim immigration?     






Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on February 01, 2017, 12:51:46 PM
I wonder how many Republicans put God before the constitution.

Can we kick them out?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 01, 2017, 01:44:23 PM
I didn't vote for Trump and I'm no supporter, but the ban on immigration does not bother me as much as it seems to bother everybody else.  I'd like to hear your take on the following:

Muslims, Sharia Law and the West.

My question is...a large part of the world's Muslim population (estimated around 50%) prefer religious law (Sharia) over constitutional law.  Isn't this is in direct conflict with our most fundamental beliefs?  Shouldn't this be a factor in our attitude towards Muslim immigration?     





Great points/questions, and I'm going to respond when I'm home from the office--it'll be maybe two hours.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 01, 2017, 03:29:24 PM
I didn't vote for Trump and I'm no supporter, but the ban on immigration does not bother me as much as it seems to bother everybody else.  I'd like to hear your take on the following:

Muslims, Sharia Law and the West.

My question is...a large part of the world's Muslim population (estimated around 50%) prefer religious law (Sharia) over constitutional law.  Isn't this is in direct conflict with our most fundamental beliefs?  Shouldn't this be a factor in our attitude towards Muslim immigration?    





To me, this is pretty straightforward: in the US, you have freedom to practice your religion as you wish as long as you don't violate the laws of your jurisdiction. It's been asked and answered in court multiple times with Mormons, Christian Scientists, and many other religions and sects, both Christian and non Christian. It applies to Muslims already in the US. Jews in the US use Jewish courts to settle civil questions, as they have the right to do; but for criminal law, the criminal judicial process applies.
There have been Muslims in the US for at least two centuries. This is a settled question and is just being thrown up now to scare people.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 01, 2017, 04:27:50 PM
I didn't vote for Trump and I'm no supporter, but the ban on immigration does not bother me as much as it seems to bother everybody else.  I'd like to hear your take on the following:

Muslims, Sharia Law and the West.

My question is...a large part of the world's Muslim population (estimated around 50%) prefer religious law (Sharia) over constitutional law.  Isn't this is in direct conflict with our most fundamental beliefs?  Shouldn't this be a factor in our attitude towards Muslim immigration?     
Great points/questions, and I'm going to respond when I'm home from the office--it'll be maybe two hours.

I think this is hard to understand about Muslims from a Western perspective, especially a predominantly Christian perspective—or at least I often speak to and hear people who I think struggle with the nuances, based mostly on limited or one-dimensional exposure to actual Muslims. I’m going to make some imperfect analogies that I hope help, but I promise nothing!

First, let’s consider what Sharia law actually is. Or rather, what it is not. Sharia law is not a codified series of laws, rules, etc. It is theoretically the compiled teachings or laws of the Quran, the Hadith, and—you guessed it!—debate, precedent, etc. What this ends up meaning is Sharia law is about as concrete a thing as “Christian law” is, which is to say, it isn’t. And there isn’t a single nation on earth—not Saudi Arabia, not Iran—that operates under Sharia law. Think about that: Iran is an officially Islamic republic; Saudi Arabia is an officially Islamic monarchy. Even they have constitutions.

Second, let’s think about what it would mean for a Muslim to be asked, “which is more important, a country’s constitution or Sharia law?” That is very much like asking a Christian, “which is more important, a country’s constitution or Biblical law?” I’d be shocked if a good number of Christians would say constitution … even though they know damn well they don’t mean it. When people think about God’s law, they think about ultimate goodness, about ultimate right, about peace and love, and about justice. They tend to forget the parts about—to use Biblical law—priestly mildew inspections, assorted livestock sacrifices, not wearing clothes made from more than one fiber, etc. They ignore the parts about committing genocide, taking enemies’ virgins for your sex slaves. But wait, didn’t Christianity dump that nonsense? There’s plenty of nastiness in the NT as well, though in the interest of semi-brevity I’ll skip it for now.

Third, aren’t Muslims just different than “we” are? Well… Nah. I mean, Middle Easterners are different than Westerners. But how much of it is actually religion, versus other factors? Let’s look at the 2015 Pew Research information about religion, dealing with Americans of various religions.

On the importance of religion: Very / somewhat / not too much / not at all
Muslims: 64% / 24% / 8% / 2%
Christians: 68% / 25% / 5% / 2%
Jews: 35% / 36% / 20% / 9%

Religion’s guidance on right and wrong: religion / common sense / science
Muslims: 37% / 36% / 13%
Christians: 43% / 41% / 6%
Jews: 17% / 50% / 14%

Interpretation of scripture: literal word of god / not literal, but WoG / IDK/not WoG
Muslims: 42% / 31% / 27%
Christians: 39% / 33% / 28%
Jews: 11% / 24% / 65%

I don’t want to belabor this, but there are plenty of other interesting categories. Explore: http://www.pewforum.org/religious-landscape-study/

My point is, American Christians seem to take their religion at least as seriously and literally as American Muslims. Terrifyingly they seem to value science less.

Now, obviously, we’re by definition not talking about American Muslims when we’re talking about refugees, immigrants, etc. … yet. But what this information does show is, by being in America, people become Americanized. They hang on to cultural and religious traditions to some extent, but they tend to neuter them until there isn’t much left beyond niche restaurants and some words that make their way into the broader public’s consciousness.

So no, I don’t think that Muslims’ belief in Sharia law is especially important or meaningful, much less scary—at least not more scary than Christians’ belief in Biblical law. There are broad spectrums of the beliefs of subgroups in each bigger group, and most people here in America want to be here in America so they can just live their lives relatively freely, without fear of civil war, beheading, or drone-bombing. And here, most Muslims disregard the nastier parts of their scriptures in the same way most Christians do, and seem to have similar levels, manifestations, and degrees of faith as Christians.

As for the immigration EO itself, I described my thoughts about it above. I think it’s idiotic on many levels, and I think it will be ineffective at best and counterproductive at worst. (Reasoning above.) And also, just to be painfully obvious I don’t minimize in any way the reality of Islamic terrorism / jihadism / whatever you prefer to call it. There is obviously a problem within Islam that is currently just hideous. But that doesn’t make every step taken in the name of combatting the problem a positive step.

Hopefully that is a relatively coherent answer to your question. I realize I’m rambling somewhat but don’t want to go on indefinitely… If you have specific questions, points to debate, etc., I’d be happy to engage on them without getting into similar novels as this one.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 01, 2017, 08:13:40 PM
This is not a slam on you, Bachelor, but a thought that popped into my head just now - it seems like the last 100 or so times that I've seen reference to 'the west' or 'western civilization' it's been in tandem with positing that we should be illiberal because something is threatening to our westernness. That seems ironic to me as the whole basis of the historical notion of a 'western civilization' as a good thing was liberalism.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Unreconstructed Wilsonite on February 01, 2017, 11:46:55 PM
Now the orange bastard's berated and hung up on Malcolm Turnbull. I mean, I have no respect for Turnbull - spineless and will go down in history as inconsequential - but he still represents Australia, and Trump is incapable of showing any respect to even his allies
http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/this-is-the-worst-deal-ever-donald-trump-badgers-and-brags-in-call-with-malcolm-turnbull-20170202-gu3r6u.html


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SloopJohnB on February 02, 2017, 03:13:21 AM
(http://replygif.net/thumbnail/1388.gif)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 02, 2017, 05:24:31 AM
...we should be illiberal because something is threatening to our westernness. That seems ironic to me as the whole basis of the historical notion of a 'western civilization' as a good thing was liberalism.

I posted on psf this weekend a link to a panel discussion re combatting ISIS and its ilk that included a former director of Mossad, who had a great line, the thrust of which I wish more people subscribed to. It was along the lines of "it's better to suffer the occasional terrorist attack as free people than to become unfree." Balancing liberty with security is a challenge, but if we surrender too much liberty, what are we securing?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 02, 2017, 07:39:21 AM
Captain, have you ever shared a workplace with Muslims?  I don't mean the ones that have been Americanized, I mean the Muslims here less than 10 years, not American citizens.  I want to know what exposure you've had before I share my experiences.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 02, 2017, 08:23:50 AM
Captain, have you ever shared a workplace with Muslims?  I don't mean the ones that have been Americanized, I mean the Muslims here less than 10 years, not American citizens.  I want to know what exposure you've had before I share my experiences.

Yes. We've had everything at my current (longtime) employer from brand-new East African immigrants (big Somalian population here) to new Pakistanis and Muslim (and Hindu) Indians with only basic grasps of English and America in entry level jobs (call center, mail processing) to well educated Muslims who are newish to America but can easily step in to mid/high level professional positions, as well as American citizens who have been here longer or their whole lives. Diverse groups, diverse experiences, and I've had diverse experiences with them. Very few take advantage of the space we have for their prayers, and I've never noticed rhyme or reason to which do (in terms of national origin, time here, position). Ditto for things like attending happy hours, smoking, etc. some are really conservative and seemingly pious, some not.

I also used to hang out a lot in the area of heaviest concentration of new Somalian and Ethiopian immigrants here, in the West Bank/Cedar Riverside areas (where Sen Cruz ludicrously said we were basically under sharia law and should send in troops). In my younger, heavier-bar-drinking days, I'd be there 3-4 nights a week either to play shows or just hang out and drink. Weather permitting, there are always dozens to hundreds of these purported terrorists-in-waiting on the sidewalks and patios amidst U of MN students and bar crowds. I've never seen anything remotely like Islamic terror or even anti-western crime or hate. I have been hit up by newly arrived Muslim immigrants drinks, though. Somehow I doubt sharia law is on their minds, at least.

I'd like to hear your experiences.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on February 02, 2017, 09:41:26 AM
"Mr. Captain goes to Washington" to explain that to Trump...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on February 02, 2017, 01:20:42 PM
The Daily Donald:

Everything is still f***ed and only getting f*cker, but at least they withdrew from plans to begin drilling on public lands.

How are they seriously considering removing white supremacists from the list of extremist groups?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 02, 2017, 03:42:23 PM
I'm not particularly fond of the idea of the president's vow to "totally destroy" the so-called Johnson Amendment, which threatens religious institutions' tax-free status if they openly endorse or campaign for candidates during religious services / from the pulpit (as opposed to as private citizens, which they're allowed to do already).

I think it's bad for politics. I think it's bad for religion. I think it will simply add money and corruption to an environment already overflowing with both. And I think ignorant, innocent congregants are going to be forking over cash they think is helping do the Lord's work. And the Lord? He works in mysterious ways. Obviously.

So much for the wall separating church and state. Oh well, that wasn't such a big deal anyway, was it?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on February 02, 2017, 04:48:36 PM
We're moving the wall somewhere else


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: alf wiedersehen on February 02, 2017, 05:03:09 PM
This is an interesting quote:

"Lenin,” [Steve Bannon] answered, “wanted to destroy the state, and that’s my goal too. I want to bring everything crashing down, and destroy all of today’s establishment.” (http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/steve-bannon-will-lead-trumps-white-house)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: feelsflow on February 02, 2017, 11:58:10 PM
We're moving the wall somewhere else

I'm less concerned about the wall now.  I'm more concerned about how he wants to move push people around.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: feelsflow on February 03, 2017, 12:09:34 AM
This is an interesting quote:

"Lenin,” [Steve Bannon] answered, “wanted to destroy the state, and that’s my goal too. I want to bring everything crashing down, and destroy all of today’s establishment.” (http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/steve-bannon-will-lead-trumps-white-house)

Let's hope we have the power to change this.  I watched a Chris Mathews Town Hall tonight.  Did any of you guys see it?  There was a senator from Connecticut, Chris Murphy, who had some good ideas where to start.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 03, 2017, 06:24:06 AM
Not a big fan of the dual-board posts, but: A few unexpected things coming from the Trump administration. (There’s a sentence we may as well get used to.) These drew something almost like approval from NYT (though it seemed to credit the arrival of Tillerson and Mattis to their roles more than the president), though awfully tepid approval.
 
-       For the first time, the administration seemed to caution Israel against building new settlements (Israel having announced construction of 5,500 new homes in the West Bank, including the first new West Bank settlement in “many years” per NYT). “While we don’t believe the existence of settlements is an impediment to peace, the construction of new settlements or the expansion of existing settlements beyond their current borders may not be helpful in achieving that goal,” Press Sec. Spicer said in a statement. NYT says the announcement may have been based on a sideline conversation the president had with Jordan’s King Abdullah at the prayer breakfast.
 
-       Nikki Haley, in her first remarks to the UN Security Council, said “the dire situation in eastern Ukraine is one that demands clear and strong condemnation of Russian actions,” and said they would not lift sanctions until they stopped destabilizing Ukraine and pulled troops out of Crimea.
 
-       Per NYT, “the administration is planning economic sanctions on Iran “similar to those the Obama administration imposed just over a year ago” and “the White House has shown no indication that it plans to rip up Mr. Obama’s landmark nuclear deal.” This makes sense considering both Sec. Mattis and Sec. Tillerson have indicated support for the deal (or at least not bailing on the deal).
 
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/02/world/middleeast/iran-missile-test-trump.html?hp&_r=0
 
We all know my overall thoughts on the president, but all three of these points are generally positive, in my opinion. (I’m not certain about new economic sanctions on Iran, actually. Not opposed, not in favor. Just not certain.)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 03, 2017, 08:47:38 AM
Quote
And there isn’t a single nation on earth—not Saudi Arabia, not Iran—that operates under Sharia law. Think about that: Iran is an officially Islamic republic; Saudi Arabia is an officially Islamic monarchy. Even they have constitutions.

You need to do some research before making such claims.  A simple wiki search will show you what countries apply Sharia to all aspects of society.  Saudi Arabia and Iran apply Sharia fully.  These countries are theocracies, their government charter basically exists to make sure religious leaders have ultimate authority.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Application_of_Islamic_law_by_country (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Application_of_Islamic_law_by_country)

Anyway, back to what I was getting at.  Religion is pervasive in a Muslim's life, there is no comparison to how most American's worship (if they worship at all).  The two are actually closer to being completely opposite than mostly similar.  Islam imposes so many restrictions while Christians live virtually restriction free (at least most people I know).  I'll just give you a list of the crazy things I have witnessed regarding Muslims.

-Alcohol is forbidden.  You won't see them at a company Christmas party, at least I never have.
-They will only eat "Halal" meat.  Which basically means they cannot eat any of the things Americans eat (hamburger, cold cuts, etc, dinner at a restaurant).
-Ramadan.  For a full month of every year, they will travel back to their home country and celebrate their religion by fasting from sunrise to sunset.  They won't even brush their teeth during the day because some water or toothpaste might get in their stomach.  The Christian version is a 2 day meat fasting.
-Arranged marriages.  I believe their job choice is "generally arranged" too but I am not sure about this.  All of the Muslims I know had arranged marriages.
-Hygiene.  This is another big difference.  One employee had to be disciplined because he smelled so bad (every time he walked past me I would hold my breath).  This person claimed to shower once a week (which I don't believe) and he bathed by rubbing his body with olive oil.  The same problems continue today with most of the Muslims in the office.  I think it's a religion-based issue but I'm not sure.
-Jew hatred.  It's conditioned but it's real.  It's also eye-opening scary.
-Another fellow I know...his front teeth are falling out because of gum disease and bone loss.  He went to a dentist who recommended implants, but he refused because the implant uses cow bone.  He chose to suffer instead.
-Language. This is the one that irks me.  It may not be a Muslim thing, but they seem to have no interest in learning how to speak English.  They speak their native language at home and whenever speaking to friends/family, and their command of it never improves.  I would say first-grade level at best.  All I know is, if I moved to foreign country, I would learn to speak the language out of respect.

Anyway there is more but I can't remember it all.  All I'm trying to say is that even though the Muslims I have met are generally nice people (non-threatening, easy to talk to), we live in a free society and they don't.

   








 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 03, 2017, 09:45:48 AM
I'll get back to the sharia thing later, it's too nuanced to get into on a phone at work. I know your point but take some issue. I'll get to it later.

But as for the rest, that may be your experience but it's not mine--certainly not broadly anyway. As I said, my experience with Muslim immigrants  is really diverse, but the vast majority of people I've known and worked with don't fit into those behaviors, beliefs, or practices you mentioned.

Overall I think assimilation takes care of most issues such as those you've mentioned. And while some people say modern Muslim immigrants assimilate more slowly than previous waves of immigrants, I'm not sure that's true. For one, if we're talking about 1st generation, there's no way to tell yet, since historically all immigrants take more than the initial generation. Second, looking back, settled Americans always tend to say that "this new wave" (whatever it may be) isn't assimilating the way prior ones did, whether German, Irish, Jewish, Vietnamese, Hmong, Laotian. My suspicion is that people are just always unnerved by the newcomers until they're no longer new. Third, GOP Rep. Tom Emmer said--though I can't confirm--that there's evidence showing they're actually assimilating faster than previous groups. (Again, I can't verify, just an interesting assertion.)

 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 03, 2017, 10:09:12 AM
There was a story in our local paper today about just this topic, focused on a small city about 45 minutes south of the Twin Cities metro. It is closer to your perspective than mine. Thought you might enjoy it.

http://m.startribune.com/some-in-faribault-see-sense-not-bias-in-an-immigration-timeout/412636983/


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 03, 2017, 11:22:18 AM
Quote
And there isn’t a single nation on earth—not Saudi Arabia, not Iran—that operates under Sharia law. Think about that: Iran is an officially Islamic republic; Saudi Arabia is an officially Islamic monarchy. Even they have constitutions.

You need to do some research before making such claims.  A simple wiki search will show you what countries apply Sharia to all aspects of society.  Saudi Arabia and Iran apply Sharia fully.  These countries are theocracies, their government charter basically exists to make sure religious leaders have ultimate authority.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Application_of_Islamic_law_by_country (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Application_of_Islamic_law_by_country)

Anyway, back to what I was getting at.  Religion is pervasive in a Muslim's life, there is no comparison to how most American's worship (if they worship at all).  The two are actually closer to being completely opposite than mostly similar.  Islam imposes so many restrictions while Christians live virtually restriction free (at least most people I know).  I'll just give you a list of the crazy things I have witnessed regarding Muslims.

-Alcohol is forbidden.  You won't see them at a company Christmas party, at least I never have.
-They will only eat "Halal" meat.  Which basically means they cannot eat any of the things Americans eat (hamburger, cold cuts, etc, dinner at a restaurant).
-Ramadan.  For a full month of every year, they will travel back to their home country and celebrate their religion by fasting from sunrise to sunset.  They won't even brush their teeth during the day because some water or toothpaste might get in their stomach.  The Christian version is a 2 day meat fasting.
-Arranged marriages.  I believe their job choice is "generally arranged" too but I am not sure about this.  All of the Muslims I know had arranged marriages.
-Hygiene.  This is another big difference.  One employee had to be disciplined because he smelled so bad (every time he walked past me I would hold my breath).  This person claimed to shower once a week (which I don't believe) and he bathed by rubbing his body with olive oil.  The same problems continue today with most of the Muslims in the office.  I think it's a religion-based issue but I'm not sure.
-Jew hatred.  It's conditioned but it's real.  It's also eye-opening scary.
-Another fellow I know...his front teeth are falling out because of gum disease and bone loss.  He went to a dentist who recommended implants, but he refused because the implant uses cow bone.  He chose to suffer instead.
-Language. This is the one that irks me.  It may not be a Muslim thing, but they seem to have no interest in learning how to speak English.  They speak their native language at home and whenever speaking to friends/family, and their command of it never improves.  I would say first-grade level at best.  All I know is, if I moved to foreign country, I would learn to speak the language out of respect.

Anyway there is more but I can't remember it all.  All I'm trying to say is that even though the Muslims I have met are generally nice people (non-threatening, easy to talk to), we live in a free society and they don't.

 
All those same things apply to many Christians. Don't make the mistake of comparing immigrants from one culture to non immigrants from another, or one socio-economic class to another and call it comparing religions. Compare Christian and Muslim Syrian immigrants from the same economic class and region and level of religiosity. You'll find that there's a very small gap. Compare Eastern European Jewish and Christian immigrants from similar economic classes and levels of religiosity in the 1910s-30s and you'll find great similarity. Compare American 5th generation Muslims and Christians from the same economic class and level of religiosity and you'll find great similarities.
Look at fundamentalist Christian Central African groups and you'll find great similarity to fundamentalist Muslim Central African groups.
And, as the Captain says, look at media about waves of immigrants in the past: what were Americans saying about Germans, Chinese, Irish, French, Japanese and Vietnamese immigrants?
Also, I don't see how any of the listed issues have anything to do with a free society, rule-of-secular-law vs religious law, etc. Basically, that list of issues amounts to "I think they're icky and weird" which doesn't have wide philosophical support as a basis for discrimination.
The more things change, the more they're the same.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 03, 2017, 11:32:25 AM
Not a big fan of the dual-board posts, but: A few unexpected things coming from the Trump administration. (There’s a sentence we may as well get used to.) These drew something almost like approval from NYT (though it seemed to credit the arrival of Tillerson and Mattis to their roles more than the president), though awfully tepid approval.
 
-       For the first time, the administration seemed to caution Israel against building new settlements (Israel having announced construction of 5,500 new homes in the West Bank, including the first new West Bank settlement in “many years” per NYT). “While we don’t believe the existence of settlements is an impediment to peace, the construction of new settlements or the expansion of existing settlements beyond their current borders may not be helpful in achieving that goal,” Press Sec. Spicer said in a statement. NYT says the announcement may have been based on a sideline conversation the president had with Jordan’s King Abdullah at the prayer breakfast.
 
-       Nikki Haley, in her first remarks to the UN Security Council, said “the dire situation in eastern Ukraine is one that demands clear and strong condemnation of Russian actions,” and said they would not lift sanctions until they stopped destabilizing Ukraine and pulled troops out of Crimea.
 
-       Per NYT, “the administration is planning economic sanctions on Iran “similar to those the Obama administration imposed just over a year ago” and “the White House has shown no indication that it plans to rip up Mr. Obama’s landmark nuclear deal.” This makes sense considering both Sec. Mattis and Sec. Tillerson have indicated support for the deal (or at least not bailing on the deal).
 
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/02/world/middleeast/iran-missile-test-trump.html?hp&_r=0
 
We all know my overall thoughts on the president, but all three of these points are generally positive, in my opinion. (I’m not certain about new economic sanctions on Iran, actually. Not opposed, not in favor. Just not certain.)
I'm happy to take the latter two at face value.
The first seems to be another mismanagement walkback in response to a Jerusalem Post report that an unnamed Executive Branch official "told" the Netanyahu administration to stop expanding settlements during an as-yet unstarted Trump-led peace process. The leak, if it was one, led Spicer to soften that by saying that additional settlements "may not be helpful. " It's a waffle.
Curious - does anyone still believe that Trump has those much-vaunted executive skills?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 03, 2017, 03:57:40 PM
Quote
And there isn’t a single nation on earth—not Saudi Arabia, not Iran—that operates under Sharia law. Think about that: Iran is an officially Islamic republic; Saudi Arabia is an officially Islamic monarchy. Even they have constitutions.

You need to do some research before making such claims.  A simple wiki search will show you what countries apply Sharia to all aspects of society.  Saudi Arabia and Iran apply Sharia fully.  These countries are theocracies, their government charter basically exists to make sure religious leaders have ultimate authority.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Application_of_Islamic_law_by_country (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Application_of_Islamic_law_by_country)

My point, which I might have done a poor job of sharing in my previous post, is that because there is no codified "Sharia law," its application is laughable and (for practical purposes) nonexistent. The two major poles of the Middle Eastern Islamic world--Sunni Saudi Arabia and Shiite Iran--both are dictatorships that claim Islamic authority and Sharia. But Sharia, as I noted, is not just Quran and Haddith (which are already prone to interpretation) but eventually the teaching of the authorities. Convince a Saudi official that the Supreme Leader of Iran is ruling under Sharia law, or vice versa. Because it is so substantially based on the rulings of religious leaders--diverse religious leaders--there is no such thing. Analogously, give me a list of Christian doctrine. Odds are, I can provide examples of self-described Christians who reject whatever you tell me. The 10 commandments aren't even codified across denominations. Sharia Law? Ha. Far, far less so.

Anyway, back to what I was getting at.  Religion is pervasive in a Muslim's life, there is no comparison to how most American's worship (if they worship at all).  The two are actually closer to being completely opposite than mostly similar.  Islam imposes so many restrictions while Christians live virtually restriction free (at least most people I know).  I'll just give you a list of the crazy things I have witnessed regarding Muslims.

-Alcohol is forbidden.  You won't see them at a company Christmas party, at least I never have.
-They will only eat "Halal" meat.  Which basically means they cannot eat any of the things Americans eat (hamburger, cold cuts, etc, dinner at a restaurant).
-Ramadan.  For a full month of every year, they will travel back to their home country and celebrate their religion by fasting from sunrise to sunset.  They won't even brush their teeth during the day because some water or toothpaste might get in their stomach.  The Christian version is a 2 day meat fasting.
-Arranged marriages.  I believe their job choice is "generally arranged" too but I am not sure about this.  All of the Muslims I know had arranged marriages.
-Hygiene.  This is another big difference.  One employee had to be disciplined because he smelled so bad (every time he walked past me I would hold my breath).  This person claimed to shower once a week (which I don't believe) and he bathed by rubbing his body with olive oil.  The same problems continue today with most of the Muslims in the office.  I think it's a religion-based issue but I'm not sure.
-Jew hatred.  It's conditioned but it's real.  It's also eye-opening scary.
-Another fellow I know...his front teeth are falling out because of gum disease and bone loss.  He went to a dentist who recommended implants, but he refused because the implant uses cow bone.  He chose to suffer instead.
-Language. This is the one that irks me.  It may not be a Muslim thing, but they seem to have no interest in learning how to speak English.  They speak their native language at home and whenever speaking to friends/family, and their command of it never improves.  I would say first-grade level at best.  All I know is, if I moved to foreign country, I would learn to speak the language out of respect.

Anyway there is more but I can't remember it all.  All I'm trying to say is that even though the Muslims I have met are generally nice people (non-threatening, easy to talk to), we live in a free society and they don't.

Emily covered this, but this is overwhelmingly irrelevant to immigration, as I see it. Specifically, point by point:

- Alcohol. I'm a drunk. I'm drunk right now. But the fact that the Muslims you've encountered don't drink ... who cares? Some of my (Lutheran) family avoid alcohol, as do many Christians on a very formal, doctrinal basis. And as do others for non-religious purposes. What does this have to do with allowing immigrants?
- Halal meat. So what? Jews don't eat pork or shellfish. Vegetarians don't eat meat. Vegans don't eat animal products. Not sure the relevance.
- Ramadan. Travel back to their home country? I acknowledge the existence of Ramadan, but don't know about the travel part... Regardless, again, so what? What does that have to do with allowing immigrants?
- Arranged marriages. I think these are bullshit. Absurd. Yet ... this isn't reserved for Muslims. It is more about nation than religion, from what I know. And the only people I know personally who were parties to arranged marriages weren't Muslims, they were Hindus. Professionals. Educated. Totally assimilated ... except the arranged marriages. Again, not sure how it's relevant to immigration. (Historically you had marriage brokers in other groups as well: read some Isaac Bashevis Singer.)
- Hygiene. No doubt, I've experienced at work some immigrants who don't comply with American standards. Some were Muslim. Others were Eastern European Christians. Others were homegrown. Most were homegrown.
- Jew hatred. Can't speak to that. No experience about it.
- Choices about falling-out teeth. No experience on the subject, but can't imagine why you'd care, much less how it should affect immigration policy.
- Language - I think I covered this somewhat in my previous posts. First generations rarely become conversant. Second do. Third, assimilated.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 04, 2017, 06:45:31 AM
Trump twitted: "the opinion of this so-called judge, which essentially takes law enforcement away from our country, is ridiculous and will be overturned!"
This is the aspect of Trump that is most dangerous.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 04, 2017, 07:01:25 AM
I like "twitted," by the way.

One of my huge issues with him is exactly this: how he deals with challenges to him, his positions, etc. For example, on this EO in question, I've said all along that while I think it's stupid, I don't necessarily know that it's illegal. Opinion has been mixed on that question, from what I'm reading. But the point is, it's not a slam dunk. So ignoring that I would have also recommended a more measured path to executing the order in the first place, getting more counsel and softening the landing for it if the decision was to move ahead--ignoring that--why is it that Judge Robart has to be a "so-called judge?"

Everyone who has disagreed with him is weak, dumb, a failure, unqualified, etc. The president hears criticism and responds with childish, personal attacks.

For this, the president is an adolescent buffoon.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 04, 2017, 07:05:06 AM
On another topic, the president signed a memorandum that will help do away with the "fiduciary rule," which requires brokers to act in their clients' best interests (rather than the brokers' own best interests, e.g. highest profits or commissions) in providing retirement investment advice. I've never understood the controversy about the fiduciary rule.

If someone in the financial sector can explain to me why it's a bad thing, or an onerous regulation, that a financial advisor give advice in the best interest of his or her client, I'd appreciate it. Is it a fear of it being hard to prove in the event of a lawsuit or something?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 04, 2017, 07:51:35 AM
Nearly $100k of taxpayer money spent on a private business trip by Eric Trump.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/eric-trumps-trip-to-uruguay-cost-taxpayers-97830-in-hotel-bills/2017/02/03/ababd64e-e95c-11e6-bf6f-301b6b443624_story.html?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_ericsecret-413pm%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.d0fafd320d3c

"It was a high-profile jaunt out of the country for Eric, the fresh-faced executive of the Trump Organization who, like his father, pledged to keep the company separate from the presidency. ... The Uruguayan trip shows how the government is unavoidably entangled with the Trump company as a result of the president’s refusal to divest his ownership stake. In this case, government agencies are forced to pay to support business operations that ultimately help to enrich the president himself. Though the Trumps have pledged a division of business and government, they will nevertheless depend on the publicly funded protection granted to the first family as they travel the globe promoting their brand."


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 04, 2017, 10:01:27 PM
There was a story in our local paper today about just this topic, focused on a small city about 45 minutes south of the Twin Cities metro. It is closer to your perspective than mine. Thought you might enjoy it.

http://m.startribune.com/some-in-faribault-see-sense-not-bias-in-an-immigration-timeout/412636983/

Yeah, the problem with the whole assimilation thing is that it only works if the immigrants want it to happen (like my grandparents only spoke English the day they arrived and never looked back).  Some of today's immigrants want to build their own community and keep it their own, which I hope you can see is a problem.  It didn't work in Europe.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 05, 2017, 05:23:30 AM
My contention is that it's just a matter of time, though. I'm told many of my great-grandparents' peers never learned much English. They and their families and friends spoke Norwegian, danish and (unpopularly) German. Went to churches that held services exclusively in those languages. Lived and socialized in those ethnic enclaves.

Their kids went to public schools. Learned English. In some cases very controversially intermarried (a swede and a dame? Shocking.).

And by my parents' generation, it's all a memory. By mine, it's a curiosity of history.

The first generation probably won't assimilate: they rarely do. But they'll die: they always do. And the American born will be increasingly assimilated.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 05, 2017, 05:26:34 AM
The legal process continues on the 7-country travel EO: an appeals court refused the administration's request to overturn the Washington judge's temporary halt of the temporary ban. We will get new responses from each side today and tomorrow, respectively..


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on February 05, 2017, 07:50:34 AM
Yeah, the problem with the whole assimilation thing is that it only works if the immigrants want it to happen (like my grandparents only spoke English the day they arrived and never looked back).  Some of today's immigrants want to build their own community and keep it their own, which I hope you can see is a problem.  It didn't work in Europe.

It is important to keep in mind that the United States has played an active role rendering this part of the world unstable. People who migrate from that part of the world to the US do it in no small part to escape from the instability that the US has played a significant part in causing and continues to cause, and then once they flee they are then asked to change their habits, beliefs, and customs to suit the needs of the country who has just actively created the conditions that forced them to leave their country of origin. I hope you can see that that is a problem and maybe something we should focus on before whether or not these people are going to drink at the office party.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 05, 2017, 09:13:05 AM
As we prepare for something else to replace it, NYT published this interesting recap of some successes, failures, and too-soon-to-tells regarding the ACA.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/05/upshot/grading-obamacare-successes-failures-and-incompletes.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=second-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 05, 2017, 09:19:59 AM
Another of those hard-to-categorize dynamics where the administration is so contrary to the historical GOP (or establishment politicians in general of either party). Trump praising Putin, I think we're used to, but his apparent critique of the U.S. and painting an equivalence between Putin's Russia and the US is awfully unusual from Washington.

"Putin's a killer," Bill O'Reilly says.

"“There are a lot of killers,” Trump said. “We’ve got a lot of killers. What do you think? Our country’s so innocent?”

It's more akin to what we hear from Chris Hedges, Noam Chomsky, or Glenn Greenwald than any mainstream Republican or Democrat.

www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2017/02/05/gop-senators-blanch-at-trumps-latest-defense-of-putin/?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_pwr-putin-1111am%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.d9aebab005d6


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on February 05, 2017, 09:38:40 AM
Another of those hard-to-categorize dynamics where the administration is so contrary to the historical GOP (or establishment politicians in general of either party). Trump praising Putin, I think we're used to, but his apparent critique of the U.S. and painting an equivalence between Putin's Russia and the US is awfully unusual from Washington.

"Putin's a killer," Bill O'Reilly says.

"“There are a lot of killers,” Trump said. “We’ve got a lot of killers. What do you think? Our country’s so innocent?”

It's more akin to what we hear from Chris Hedges, Noam Chomsky, or Glenn Greenwald than any mainstream Republican or Democrat.

www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2017/02/05/gop-senators-blanch-at-trumps-latest-defense-of-putin/?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_pwr-putin-1111am%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.d9aebab005d6


Yes, and here is at least where we can have some optimism. Despite the incredibly awful policies and hateful rhetoric, I still see more potential in-roads and potential room for conversation with the current version of the extreme right than I did with, say, the Bush Republicans or the Romney Republicans. Forget what Trump really believes for a second. Let's say many of his supporters agree with the rhetoric that Wall Street has had a corrupting influence on American life, that NAFTA is bad, that TPP is bad, that our foreign entanglements are bad, and that we shouldn't purposefully escalate violence with other dangerous countries. If they do agree with that, then that's a great start - and a much greater start than what I have seen from the extreme right in a long time. Obviously that doesn't mean you accept the misogyny and racism and bizarre adherence to de-regulated capitalism, but it also doesn't mean that you write these people off completely because it might mean losing a lot of productive common ground.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 05, 2017, 09:41:50 AM
Forget what Trump really believes for a second.

Lord knows he will. ba-dum dum (crash).

Thanks, folks, I'll be here all week. These are the jokes. Tip your servers.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 05, 2017, 11:19:47 AM
My contention is that it's just a matter of time, though. I'm told many of my great-grandparents' peers never learned much English. They and their families and friends spoke Norwegian, danish and (unpopularly) German. Went to churches that held services exclusively in those languages. Lived and socialized in those ethnic enclaves.

Their kids went to public schools. Learned English. In some cases very controversially intermarried (a swede and a dame? Shocking.).

And by my parents' generation, it's all a memory. By mine, it's a curiosity of history.

The first generation probably won't assimilate: they rarely do. But they'll die: they always do. And the American born will be increasingly assimilated.
Just to add to this: my mother's parents immigrated from Ukraine (and Poland but she was Ukrainian, ethnically, and there's a fuzzy border thing around there).  They lived in a Slavic enclave surrounded by tons of relatives and all spoke Ukrainian to each other. My grandparents came when they were in their teens (met and married here). They never learned fluent English. They never went to anything but the Orthodox Church. Never learned to cook or enjoy anything but gross boiled cabbage, pirogie, lots of potatoes, beets, etc. They encouraged their kids to stay and marry in the neighborhood. None did. None of their grandkids speak any Ukrainian and none particularly like boiled cabbage or go to the Orthodox Church.
My dad's family (all except for 1 great great grandparent- the Protestant) has been in the US for 150 years. One shockingly married the Protestant after the first generation. After that, until my dad's generation, every single member in the whole tree can be traced back to Ireland. Mainly lived in an Irish enclave in Chicago. Papists. Pretty much everything said above about Muslims was said about papists.
In New England there were schools run in the French language and in the Portuguese language for French (Canadian) and Portuguese immigrants for a few generations each. The North End in Boston is still an Italian enclave and the South End still Irish (though in the last 20 years both are being priced out and now they are becoming rich people enclaves). The papists showed no interest in assimilating. In NY, too, there are Irish, Italian, East European, Chinese, Vietnamese and Jewish enclaves. No particular attempts at assimilation, though it still happens, for the most part with younger generations. The average age in the enclave keeps going up as younger people leave. Though some stay around.
If your ancestors arrived during a wave from their part of the world, odds are they didn't work too hard to assimilate either. But their kids did.

Do people get terribly upset about the Orthodox Jews in NY who have lived in a tight enclave with their own schools, shops, community centers, rites, and very closed communities for 5-6 generations now? They used to. But they got over it because it doesn't hurt anyone else.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 05, 2017, 11:20:23 AM
Yeah, the problem with the whole assimilation thing is that it only works if the immigrants want it to happen (like my grandparents only spoke English the day they arrived and never looked back).  Some of today's immigrants want to build their own community and keep it their own, which I hope you can see is a problem.  It didn't work in Europe.

It is important to keep in mind that the United States has played an active role rendering this part of the world unstable. People who migrate from that part of the world to the US do it in no small part to escape from the instability that the US has played a significant part in causing and continues to cause, and then once they flee they are then asked to change their habits, beliefs, and customs to suit the needs of the country who has just actively created the conditions that forced them to leave their country of origin. I hope you can see that that is a problem and maybe something we should focus on before whether or not these people are going to drink at the office party.
And this.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 05, 2017, 11:31:28 AM
Another of those hard-to-categorize dynamics where the administration is so contrary to the historical GOP (or establishment politicians in general of either party). Trump praising Putin, I think we're used to, but his apparent critique of the U.S. and painting an equivalence between Putin's Russia and the US is awfully unusual from Washington.

"Putin's a killer," Bill O'Reilly says.

"“There are a lot of killers,” Trump said. “We’ve got a lot of killers. What do you think? Our country’s so innocent?”

It's more akin to what we hear from Chris Hedges, Noam Chomsky, or Glenn Greenwald than any mainstream Republican or Democrat.

www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2017/02/05/gop-senators-blanch-at-trumps-latest-defense-of-putin/?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_pwr-putin-1111am%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.d9aebab005d6


Yes, and here is at least where we can have some optimism. Despite the incredibly awful policies and hateful rhetoric, I still see more potential in-roads and potential room for conversation with the current version of the extreme right than I did with, say, the Bush Republicans or the Romney Republicans. Forget what Trump really believes for a second. Let's say many of his supporters agree with the rhetoric that Wall Street has had a corrupting influence on American life, that NAFTA is bad, that TPP is bad, that our foreign entanglements are bad, and that we shouldn't purposefully escalate violence with other dangerous countries. If they do agree with that, then that's a great start - and a much greater start than what I have seen from the extreme right in a long time. Obviously that doesn't mean you accept the misogyny and racism and bizarre adherence to de-regulated capitalism, but it also doesn't mean that you write these people off completely because it might mean losing a lot of productive common ground.
Except they support some of the same policies for different reasons (except there's some overlap on free trade agreements) so the common ground is illusory. 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 05, 2017, 11:41:49 AM
Sometimes common ground regardless of reason could be worthwhile.

But in this instance, I'm not looking at it as a point of common ground with the president at all. I'm more interested in it as a curiosity, the awkward complication in his own administration and party. I've written him off entirely in terms of anything related to the (im)morality of the country's behavior around the world. We know enough about the president to know how moral he is. I look at this as an accidental bit of truth, but not a harbringer of change. He's not apologizing for the US's behavior, but rather he's using it to validate Putin's.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 05, 2017, 11:54:53 AM
Sometimes common ground regardless of reason could be worthwhile.

But in this instance, I'm not looking at it as a point of common ground with the president at all. I'm more interested in it as a curiosity, the awkward complication in his own administration and party. I've written him off entirely in terms of anything related to the (im)morality of the country's behavior around the world. We know enough about the president to know how moral he is. I look at this as an accidental bit of truth, but not a harbringer of change. He's not apologizing for the US's behavior, but rather he's using it to validate Putin's.
Common ground for different reasons can be useful in a particular instance, but the different reasons won't coincide in enough instances to create ongoing commonalities.
So, I don't think there's a general principle (on either side really) that we shouldn't purposefully escalate violence with other dangerous countries. There are some who think we shouldn't purposefully escalate violence in general; there are some who think we should be close white-power allies with Russia; there are those who think we shouldn't pick on Russia because they are dangerous; there are those who think motivations for criticizing Russia are hypocritical or historical knee-jerk. So some of these can get together and agree we should step back from Russia (I don't agree at all with the Cohen/Greenwald take on Russia, btw), and that will be nice for them in the instance, but won't represent general foreign policy common ground. Similar with choices in the Middle East.
But - regarding your Trump point - it's a very interesting position. He's got a small collection of appointed and elected people who agree with him, or at least with most of what he's done since elected, and a much larger collection of those who disagree to some degree, and are trying to figure out how to work with him and what he really wants. It's a bizarre administration and time in history.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 05, 2017, 01:27:17 PM
Quote
Do people get terribly upset about the Orthodox Jews in NY who have lived in a tight enclave with their own schools, shops, community centers, rites, and very closed communities for 5-6 generations now? They used to. But they got over it because it doesn't hurt anyone else.

I'm glad you brought this up, because Orthodox Jews do still live apart to a certain degree.  They live in Jewish neighborhoods and only attend Jewish schools.  BUT...they only represent 10% of the Jewish population.  What may be more important is that the U.S. has maintained an unshakable alliance with Israel for 50+ years.  You can't say that about countries that impose sharia law on it's population.  They are traditionally enemies of the U.S. for good reason.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 05, 2017, 01:36:29 PM
Quote
Do people get terribly upset about the Orthodox Jews in NY who have lived in a tight enclave with their own schools, shops, community centers, rites, and very closed communities for 5-6 generations now? They used to. But they got over it because it doesn't hurt anyone else.

I'm glad you brought this up, because Orthodox Jews do still live apart to a certain degree.  They live in Jewish neighborhoods and only attend Jewish schools.  BUT...they only represent 10% of the Jewish population.  What may be more important is that the U.S. has maintained an unshakable alliance with Israel for 50+ years.  You can't say that about countries that impose sharia law on it's population.  They are traditionally enemies of the U.S. for good reason.

The US has been in an "unshakable alliance" with Saudi Arabia for more than 80 years.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 05, 2017, 01:54:34 PM
The US and its Western European allies created both Israel and Saudi Arabia. US alliances have nothing to do with the culture of the people or the form of government that they live under, as long as that government Is willing to do business with US corporations on the US' terms.
In any case, I'm not clear on your point. Is it that because we are allies with Israel, Jews in a Brooklyn enclave (very few of whom are Israeli) should feel no pressure to assimilate and it's quite all right that they keep kosher and have arranged marriages but Persians in another enclave, because we are not allies with Iran, must stop keeping halal and must completely change their culture instantly or they should be banned? Is this your proposition?
The essential point here is that you are responding to the same fears that Americans have had regarding every wave of immigrants since the founding of the country (since before the founding of the country) and those fears have consistently proved wrong, and they've already been proven wrong in this case by millions of Muslim Americans.
You disregarded the rest of my post and the captain's points. Do you have any evidence that your concerns are different in any substantial way from those expressed by your forebears?

https://www.nps.gov/liho/learn/historyculture/knownothingparty.htm
http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/immigrants-conspiracies-and-secret-society-launched-american-nativism-180961915/
https://thesocietypages.org/socimages/2014/06/20/old-yellow-peril-anti-chinese-posters/
https://thesocietypages.org/socimages/2008/10/06/negative-stereotypes-of-the-irish/
https://www.theatlantic.com/amp/article/383248/
http://web.uvic.ca/~ayh/Lee.pdf

Shiny and new: http://www.npr.org/2017/02/04/513469442/bostons-immigration-history-repeats-itself-in-trumps-policies

The more I think of the above statement, the weirder it is: none of the Muslim countries are "traditionally enemies of the US".




Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 05, 2017, 02:18:30 PM

Everyone who has disagreed with him is weak, dumb, a failure, unqualified, etc. The president hears criticism and responds with childish, personal attacks.

For this, the president is an adolescent buffoon.
Similarly adolescent is how he calls every criticism of him, personal or professional, "unfair".


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Lee Marshall on February 05, 2017, 09:08:12 PM
I jotted this down today after being inspired by one of the super bowl TV commercials...

Dumb T. [Trumpty] Wanted his ‘wall’.
But Dumb T. [Trumpty] would stumble and fall.
None of Trump’s ‘asses’. Nor his hoard of ‘yes men’.
Knew how to put ‘the Donald’ together again.




Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Gertie J. on February 05, 2017, 09:31:16 PM
rofl


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: JK on February 06, 2017, 02:46:50 AM
I jotted this down today after being inspired by one of the super bowl TV commercials...

Dumb T. [Trumpty] Wanted his ‘wall’.
But Dumb T. [Trumpty] would stumble and fall.
None of Trump’s ‘asses’. Nor his hoard of ‘yes men’.
Knew how to put ‘the Donald’ together again.

 :lol :lol :lol

[My one contribution to this thread]


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 09, 2017, 07:38:34 AM
Quote
Do people get terribly upset about the Orthodox Jews in NY who have lived in a tight enclave with their own schools, shops, community centers, rites, and very closed communities for 5-6 generations now? They used to. But they got over it because it doesn't hurt anyone else.

I'm glad you brought this up, because Orthodox Jews do still live apart to a certain degree.  They live in Jewish neighborhoods and only attend Jewish schools.  BUT...they only represent 10% of the Jewish population.  What may be more important is that the U.S. has maintained an unshakable alliance with Israel for 50+ years.  You can't say that about countries that impose sharia law on it's population.  They are traditionally enemies of the U.S. for good reason.

The US has been in an "unshakable alliance" with Saudi Arabia for more than 80 years.

Do you really think Saudis are U.S. allies?  15/19 9-11 hijackers were Saudis.  There is a difference between being an ally (like Israel) and maintaining a marriage of convenience based on regional conflict and oil. 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 09, 2017, 07:43:39 AM
Quote
The more I think of the above statement, the weirder it is: none of the Muslim countries are "traditionally enemies of the US".

Emily, do you consider ISIS to be an enemy of the United States?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 09, 2017, 09:09:49 AM
Quote
Do people get terribly upset about the Orthodox Jews in NY who have lived in a tight enclave with their own schools, shops, community centers, rites, and very closed communities for 5-6 generations now? They used to. But they got over it because it doesn't hurt anyone else.

I'm glad you brought this up, because Orthodox Jews do still live apart to a certain degree.  They live in Jewish neighborhoods and only attend Jewish schools.  BUT...they only represent 10% of the Jewish population.  What may be more important is that the U.S. has maintained an unshakable alliance with Israel for 50+ years.  You can't say that about countries that impose sharia law on it's population.  They are traditionally enemies of the U.S. for good reason.

The US has been in an "unshakable alliance" with Saudi Arabia for more than 80 years.

Do you really think Saudis are U.S. allies?  15/19 9-11 hijackers were Saudis.  There is a difference between being an ally (like Israel) and maintaining a marriage of convenience based on regional conflict and oil. 

Absolutely, I think the governments have been steadfast allies since before the modern Israeli state came into existence (which is what makes is so sad-funny that we've ignored their role in fomenting islamism).

I also think all international alliances are marriages of convenience: nation-states don't cooperate because of warm feelings, but shared interests. The shared values talk is crap, in my opinion.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 09, 2017, 04:36:26 PM
The 9th Circuit's decision (to deny) the administration's request for a stay on the temporary restraining order previously placed on the EO "travel ban." It's interesting reading, if you're into this kind of thing.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/02/09/us/document-Ninth-Circuit-s-Decision-on-Trump-s-Travel-Ban.html


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 09, 2017, 07:23:52 PM
Quote
The more I think of the above statement, the weirder it is: none of the Muslim countries are "traditionally enemies of the US".

Emily, do you consider ISIS to be an enemy of the United States?
Of course, by definition. But it isn't a country and hasn't been around long enough to be "traditionally enemies" of anyone.
What Muslim country is traditionally an enemy of the United States?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 10, 2017, 08:01:25 AM
Quote
The more I think of the above statement, the weirder it is: none of the Muslim countries are "traditionally enemies of the US".

Emily, do you consider ISIS to be an enemy of the United States?
Of course, by definition. But it isn't a country and hasn't been around long enough to be "traditionally enemies" of anyone.
What Muslim country is traditionally an enemy of the United States?

You said "by definition" that ISIS is an enemy.  Since they are not a country then they are something else...violent Islamic fundamentalists seeking there own Sharia-based Islamic state.  This is the entire point of my argument.  Islamic fundamentalism is the enemy, and this is why they don't belong here.

Traditional Islamic enemies of the U.S.? Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Libya, Yemen you could probably throw Pakistan in there too, since it has so many ties to terrorists.  Keep the time frame relative ok?  I know who the Shah is.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 10, 2017, 08:05:44 AM
Quote
I also think all international alliances are marriages of convenience: nation-states don't cooperate because of warm feelings, but shared interests. The shared values talk is crap, in my opinion.

Do you think the Korean War and Vietnam wars were based on convenience or ideology?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 10, 2017, 08:26:08 AM
Quote
I also think all international alliances are marriages of convenience: nation-states don't cooperate because of warm feelings, but shared interests. The shared values talk is crap, in my opinion.

Do you think the Korean War and Vietnam wars were based on convenience or ideology?

First I have to be honest and say I don't really know. I'm 40, and so anything I know about them is not first-hand. And school wasn't of any help because, well, school didn't really talk much about either of those conflicts. Propagandized American history was more glorious founding, glorious Civil War, a little confused WWI, glorious WWII, and the semesters end.

From what I know, I'd say both were certainly touted as ideological but were more exercises in realpolitik. I think they were attempts to minimize Soviet and Chinese influence not because of communism, necessarily, but because the Soviets and Chinese were (over time--certainly not at the beginning of Korea) nuclear powers that weren't allied with the west. If they had been other, non-communist systems of government, I think we'd have acted the same way and there still would have been Korean and Vietnam wars. But it's hard to sell that to the public. It's easier to sell the evils of that atheistic system that wants to rob you of your private property, just like it's easier to sell those evil Muslims who hate our freedom.

But again, I have to be clear that I am not only no expert on Korea or Vietnam, but barely even an amateur. I'll keep learning and hopefully have better understanding someday. But what I do feel pretty confident about generally is that writing good versus evil narratives is usually propaganda and always an oversimplification of reality. Nobody ever claims the role of the evil in those stories...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on February 10, 2017, 08:53:59 AM
Islamic fundamentalism is the enemy, and this is why they don't belong here.

This is true neither in principle or practice. The United States is currently massively supporting Saudi Arabia which is probably the heart of Islamic fundamentalism in the world and has been for decades because, like Israel whom you mention above, they are a valuable strategic ally in the region. This is the same reason why both the Carter and Reagan Administration vigorously supported the radical Islamization program carried out by Zia-ul-Haq in Pakistan from the late 70s right through the 1980s. Quite recently, in 2012, the US largely supported militant fundamentalist groups in Syria as a strategy to counter Assad, with the knowledge that it would most like turn into the horrific organization it actually became.

In fact, if you look at the history of US foreign policy up until today the real enemy are countries where the population want to have some kind of control over their lives beyond US influence. The US will support any country or organization, including Islamic fundamentalist ones, who are on board with quelling those interests.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 10, 2017, 09:05:42 AM

In fact, if you look at the history of US foreign policy up until today the real enemy are countries where the population want to have some kind of control over their lives beyond US influence. The US will support any country or organization, including Islamic fundamentalist ones, who are on board with quelling those interests.

This is an embarrassing point that a former director of Mossad said quite directly in a panel discussion also featuring a former US intelligence official. I posted the link on another board and will find and link it here, too. The US official did not dispute the fact. It's a plain reality.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 10, 2017, 09:13:04 AM
Here it is:

https://youtu.be/RQtQgj_A7cQ?t=17m16s

This is former director of Mossad, Tamir Pardo, and former director of CIA, Michael Morrell. And it's cued up to the relevant moments (though I thought the whole discussion was really interesting).

"I think that one major problem is that for decades, we and everyone made a distinction between good terrorists and bad terrorists. In the '80s, the Taliban were very good terrorists. They were supported by the United States," says Pardo. He goes on to talk about terrorists Israel supported, and then says that this wasn't unique to us, but that Russia and other powers acted the same. It's just the ugly reality of the world. There aren't white and black hats on the heads of state.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 10, 2017, 02:05:42 PM
Quote
The more I think of the above statement, the weirder it is: none of the Muslim countries are "traditionally enemies of the US".

Emily, do you consider ISIS to be an enemy of the United States?
Of course, by definition. But it isn't a country and hasn't been around long enough to be "traditionally enemies" of anyone.
What Muslim country is traditionally an enemy of the United States?

 
You said "by definition" that ISIS is an enemy.  Since they are not a country then they are something else...violent Islamic fundamentalists seeking there own Sharia-based Islamic state.  This is the entire point of my argument.  Islamic fundamentalism is the enemy, and this is why they don't belong here.

Traditional Islamic enemies of the U.S.? Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Libya, Yemen you could probably throw Pakistan in there too, since it has so many ties to terrorists.  Keep the time frame relative ok?  I know who the Shah is.
"... and this is why they don't belong here." I don't think anyone is arguing that ISIS 'belongs here.' - except in a chickens coming home to roost sort of way. And even then, it's sardonic- not meant to mean we should allow members of ISIS to immigrate.

They are a US enemy 'by definition' because they have declared hostility toward the US and the US has declared hostility toward them. The actual definition of 'enemy' has no ideological component. Nor does the US's definition of enemy, though I believe ISIS's does.

'Traditional' implies a significant time frame. None of those places are traditional enemies of the US. Many of them have been allies of the US and the only thing that changed that was geopolitics. A few of those places were traditionally US allies while they supported terrorism (Pakistan is a prime example). We traditionally support terrorists as long as the terrorism benefits US corporate  interests.
The US's founding issue with ANY of its 'enemies' is economics, not ideology.
If you think it's ideology, explain why we are allies, traditionally, with so many regimes with practices against our supposed ideology and why we support the overthrow of regimes that align with our supposed ideology?
One caveat to all I've said in this post: it applies unless you are saying that the US's ideology is 'US corporate interests come before any other consideration'. If so, I apologize. You're quite right.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Lee Marshall on February 11, 2017, 05:17:41 AM
To paraphrase President Frank Underwood..."We don't fight TERROR...We create it."  That's it in a nutshell.  More Americans are killed by lightning than by terrorists.  So to spew the 'company line' is to buy into fiction and fantasy.  YES...some folks have died...at the hands of terrorism...both homegrown and flown in...but not near any degree that would prompt the inflamed bullshit presented by Russia's best buddy...Hotel boy.  Watch the terror THEY'LL collectively create before 'his hairiness' is impeached.  AND that's gonna happen.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 11, 2017, 06:37:23 AM
As seemed likely at the time--remember Russia shockingly choosing not to retaliate when we kicked a handful of their "diplomats" out of the country?--it now seems Nat'l Security Advisor Michael Flynn did discuss Russian sanctions (or the rolling back of same) with Russian officials prior to the Trump administration being in office. This is illegal. He also lied about it when previously questioned.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/flynn-holds-call-with-pence-amid-calls-for-probes-of-contacts-with-russian-ambassador/2017/02/10/f8fb83a0-efe1-11e6-9973-c5efb7ccfb0d_story.html?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_flynn-820pm%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.4406879f3c42

Though to be fair, Flynn isn't admitting his pretty obvious lie. He's instead saying he doesn't remember. Naturally. So what's going to happen? A different Post story says:

Quote
In any other administration with any other president, Flynn would be on very thin ice. At the least, he misremembered — repeatedly — the fact that he had talked about U.S. sanctions against Russia in conversations with the Russian ambassador during the presidential transition. At the most, well, I'll leave that to your imagination — but suffice to say it's not good.

But this isn't a traditional president or a traditional administration. Trump prides himself on not doing the allegedly politically savvy thing and not bowing to pressure from the political establishment. Plus, Flynn is one of Trump's earliest and most ardent supporters — often introducing the candidate on the campaign trail in the waning months of the race. Trump prizes loyalty — especially loyalty expressed early on when he didn't look like a winner — and Flynn has shown that in spades.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/02/10/just-how-much-trouble-is-michael-flynn-in/?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_fix-flynn-325pm%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.d60a6397be21


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 13, 2017, 05:03:59 AM
An article on Stephen Miller (https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/politics/stephen-miller-a-key-engineer-for-trumps-america-first-agenda/2017/02/11/a70cb3f0-e809-11e6-bf6f-301b6b443624_story.html) brought me sudden clarity on a thought that's been bumping around the shadows for a bit that aligns, I think, with CSM's generally expressed opinion: the Democratic and Republican Parties are not really left/right at all anymore, though they have modest leanings those ways. They are cosmopolitan/white parochial.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 13, 2017, 07:45:24 AM
An article on Stephen Miller (https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/politics/stephen-miller-a-key-engineer-for-trumps-america-first-agenda/2017/02/11/a70cb3f0-e809-11e6-bf6f-301b6b443624_story.html) brought me sudden clarity on a thought that's been bumping around the shadows for a bit that aligns, I think, with CSM's generally expressed opinion: the Democratic and Republican Parties are not really left/right at all anymore, though they have modest leanings those ways. They are cosmopolitan/white parochial.
To add to this, upon further reflection:
There are cosmopolitan people who are economically 'right' and those who are economically 'left.'  The same with white parochial people. In a multi-party system, this wouldn't be a particular challenge. There would be 4+ parties resolving the matrix and issues revolving around social justice would have one set of coalitions and issues revolving around economics would have another. In a two party system, there are competing interests. Right now, the parties are aligned based on social justice issues, not economics. I expect that the powers-that-be are happy with that, and they encourage it in subtle and not-so-subtle ways, as they benefit from it.
It causes rifts that are surprising sometimes, but make sense. The Sanders supporters were unified in their economics positions but not on social justice. There were plenty of 'right' social people supporting Sanders, alienating some Democrats (including me). So while many left people were anti-Clinton because she's too right on economics, the other style of left people had problems with Sanders because his tent left room for followers who dismissed what is of tantamount importance to them. There are similar struggles on the right.
It's unclear to me how this can be resolved with two parties.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 14, 2017, 05:18:10 AM
And Flynn is out.

"Unfortunately ... I inadvertently briefed the Vice President Elect and others with incomplete information regarding my phone calls with the Russian Ambassador."

That sounds much better than "I illegally discussed sanctions without being an authorized rep of the USA and lied when I got caught."

Dumped by consecutive administrations. Impressive. Speaking of criminals, NPR reported Petraeus is on the short list of possible replacements.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: harrisonjon on February 14, 2017, 07:44:14 AM
He's been pushed for lying to Pence rather than the lies he told to the public, so in a way, he's not a yet a precedent for people having to go when they lie (otherwise Trump would obviously be toast many times over, as would Pence).

I still love America - I emigrated to here after all - but Trump is a new low in my lifetime, worse than Nixon and GWB, although we await to see how many people die on his watch compared to their very high bodycounts.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 14, 2017, 06:30:00 PM
And Flynn is out.

"Unfortunately ... I inadvertently briefed the Vice President Elect and others with incomplete information regarding my phone calls with the Russian Ambassador."

That sounds much better than "I illegally discussed sanctions without being an authorized rep of the USA and lied when I got caught."

Dumped by consecutive administrations. Impressive. Speaking of criminals, NPR reported Petraeus is on the short list of possible replacements.
The gaping absence from his letter is any hint that the Pres. and/or Vice Pres would have any problem with what he did had they been fully briefed. It's an "oops, I forgot to tell them" not an "oops, I said something I shouldn't have said to the ambassador." Also, he specifically mentions he forgot to  tell Pence, not Trump, an interesting omission.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: harrisonjon on February 15, 2017, 02:44:33 AM
What's most depressing is that to 99% of Republicans this probably is water off a duck's back. Trump is surpassing Nixon in sleaze and corruption and nobody blinks on that side of the aisle, probably because they think Trump could carry out the equivalent of the Manson murders and still get re-elected.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 15, 2017, 05:35:06 AM
I think plenty ofRepublicans, and far more conservatives, are very troubled by the administration, or at least Trump and Breitbart. But many held their noses and voted over that SCOTUS pick. The irony is that HRC was probably closer to most mainstream GOP positions (not counting abortion) than Trump, at least before she was pulled left by Bernie's popularity.

I'd say impeachment is inevitable if the GOP didn't control congress. But since they do, it's just fascinating watching the intraparty dynamics (while fingers are crossed that nothing TOO terrible happens).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: thorgil on February 15, 2017, 07:20:09 AM
An article on Stephen Miller (https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/politics/stephen-miller-a-key-engineer-for-trumps-america-first-agenda/2017/02/11/a70cb3f0-e809-11e6-bf6f-301b6b443624_story.html) brought me sudden clarity on a thought that's been bumping around the shadows for a bit that aligns, I think, with CSM's generally expressed opinion: the Democratic and Republican Parties are not really left/right at all anymore, though they have modest leanings those ways. They are cosmopolitan/white parochial.
To add to this, upon further reflection:
There are cosmopolitan people who are economically 'right' and those who are economically 'left.'  The same with white parochial people. In a multi-party system, this wouldn't be a particular challenge. There would be 4+ parties resolving the matrix and issues revolving around social justice would have one set of coalitions and issues revolving around economics would have another. In a two party system, there are competing interests. Right now, the parties are aligned based on social justice issues, not economics. I expect that the powers-that-be are happy with that, and they encourage it in subtle and not-so-subtle ways, as they benefit from it.
It causes rifts that are surprising sometimes, but make sense. The Sanders supporters were unified in their economics positions but not on social justice. There were plenty of 'right' social people supporting Sanders, alienating some Democrats (including me). So while many left people were anti-Clinton because she's too right on economics, the other style of left people had problems with Sanders because his tent left room for followers who dismissed what is of tantamount importance to them. There are similar struggles on the right.
It's unclear to me how this can be resolved with two parties.
I don't know ANY political parties any more, and anywhere, which I'd consider "left", even according to my minimalistic definition of "left": caring about the working class (including much of what was once the "middle class") enough to not simply let them lie down (after they have been exploited to the marrow) and die.
"Right" is of course the opposite: not giving a damn about people, and working exclusively for the profits of corporations, both economical (e.g. big banks) and political (e.g. the European Union).
In this sense, I agree 100% that there is no traditional "left" or "right" any more, but not because they'd have somehow found a middle ground. On the contrary, everybody now is "right" (in the wrong way): US republicans, US democrats, all parties anywhere else, and all the media.
The rest is smoke and mirrors.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Lee Marshall on February 15, 2017, 07:44:29 AM
Donald is on his way... ... ...out.  He has no real friends.  Even his own party would [secretly] be pleased as the sh*t-heals they truly are to see him go.  The American system of democracy is a failure.  As it sits...and as it's being used/abused currently...it no longer works for the people.  It's a veritable latrine.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 15, 2017, 03:27:55 PM
Yhe irony is that HRC was probably closer to most mainstream GOP positions (not counting abortion) than Trump, at least before she was pulled left by Bernie's popularity.



Economically. Socially, no.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 15, 2017, 03:36:14 PM
That's fair, though the funny thing is that Trump's own social policy positions might be more in line with her and Democrats anyway, not that he's above pandering to the religious right or other social conservatives for their votes.

Her foreign policy is another area where she may well be more in line with mainstream GOP than Trump, too, however. Her Syria recommendations weren't any different than McCain's or Grahams, really, were they? No-fly zones, arming "moderate" rebels, etc.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on February 15, 2017, 06:21:13 PM
Yhe irony is that HRC was probably closer to most mainstream GOP positions (not counting abortion) than Trump, at least before she was pulled left by Bernie's popularity.



Economically. Socially, no.

Clinton was against gay marriage until around 2013. To her credit, she has evolved on this issue but until the last three years or so, her position was quite firmly in line with the GOP, as were many other Democrats (Sanders, meanwhile, was on record as saying that laws regarding homosexuality should be abolished as far back as the 1970s). Furthermore, her social stance is very much tied to her economic stance. Indeed, the welfare reform laws which she was an ardent supporter of overwhelmingly targeted African Americans. Personally, I think that her greatest strength is on the environment and she has done some important things socially but I would say her overall position on social issues is pretty right-wing. But again, not uniquely so, just mostly the standard Democratic position on these issues.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 15, 2017, 06:29:56 PM
Democrats and Republicans have never had a hair's width between them on foreign policy. Until now, of course, if we're counting Trump as a Republican.
On social issues, let's watch what Trump does. He's maneuvering to restrict voting among the poor and urban (read black and Hispanic); he's nominated a justice specifically because he's approved by evangelicals and is frequently compared to Scalia; he's come out for "religious freedom" (i.e. discrimination against gays); he's spoken out in support of bathroom bills; he's spread slander about Muslims, illegal immigrants, and BLM. He's basically denied there are equal pay issues. He thinks poverty in black communities is due to a "lack of spirit"; his parental leave policy only applies to mothers;  whenever he talks about black communities he focuses pretty strictly on law enforcement; he appoints a secretary of education who intends to defund public education; his VP? Well...  his most senior advisor?  Umm. .. He has said he plans to restart the construction of the pipeline despite First Nation objections.
If "pandering" includes appointing them as judges and justices, cabinet secretaries and senior policy advisors, I don't know how that can be separated from actually having those positions.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 15, 2017, 06:41:26 PM

If "pandering" includes appointing them as judges and justices, cabinet secretaries and senior policy advisors, I don't know how that can be separated from actually having those positions.

As usual, you give me plenty to think about (which pisses me off  ;D). But the quoted part above, I honestly do tend to think that the appointments are overwhelmingly irrelevant to him, and that he's just willing to give them to people who got him elected. I don't think the guy has a strongly believed position on anything other than the cult of his self-worship. And so I think when a Bannon can offer him what sounds like a successful strategy, he figures what the f***, make him a senior advisor. If it requires right-wing Christians to win, great, toss 'em a VP. Admittedly, that's just my own little narrative that could be entirely wrong--and there is no difference from a practical perspective, in that the results are the same.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 15, 2017, 07:08:56 PM
A number of second-wave feminists had a problem with the gay marriage movement because it's so pro-marriage. There are complexities there. As Sec. of State she worked to get LGBT rights added to UN human rights resolutions; as senator she voted to end federal workplace discrimination; again as SoS, she changed the passport gender policy to reflect transgender gender and changed the depatment's benefits policies to apply equality to gay couples. And she was an activist as First Lady and SoS for women's rights and gay rights in parts of the world where they are less supported than here. She has acknowledged reparations as a legitimate consideration, she is a strong advocate of adding legislation to reinforce the voting rights act. As Senator, she co-sponsored a bill to increase funding for grants to hospitals and schools that serve First Nation communities, and of course there's CHIP. She advocates universal preschool, child care scholarships to support parents continuing their education and a whole lot of other education-related things that I've listed before. And all the women-related things that I've listed before.  
Clearly this stuff doesn't count for much among some people, but it does among others.

(In response to CSM above, not the captain)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 15, 2017, 07:11:25 PM

If "pandering" includes appointing them as judges and justices, cabinet secretaries and senior policy advisors, I don't know how that can be separated from actually having those positions.

As usual, you give me plenty to think about (which pisses me off  ;D). But the quoted part above, I honestly do tend to think that the appointments are overwhelmingly irrelevant to him, and that he's just willing to give them to people who got him elected. I don't think the guy has a strongly believed position on anything other than the cult of his self-worship. And so I think when a Bannon can offer him what sounds like a successful strategy, he figures what the f***, make him a senior advisor. If it requires right-wing Christians to win, great, toss 'em a VP. Admittedly, that's just my own little narrative that could be entirely wrong--and there is no difference from a practical perspective, in that the results are the same.
I don't disagree. But it matters more to me what becomes law or policy under him than what his personal opinion is. His personal opinion is obviously for sale to whoever flatters his ego best. It's worth little.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on February 15, 2017, 07:56:47 PM
A number of second-wave feminists had a problem with the gay marriage movement because it's so pro-marriage. There are complexities there.

Yes, but that's not why Clinton had a problem with the gay marriage movement, so I'm unsure of the relevance of that.

Quote
As Sec. of State she worked to get LGBT rights added to UN human rights resolutions; as senator she voted to end federal workplace discrimination; again as SoS, she changed the passport gender policy to reflect transgender gender and changed the depatment's benefits policies to apply equality to gay couples. And she was an activist as First Lady and SoS for women's rights and gay rights in parts of the world where they are less supported than here. She has acknowledged reparations as a legitimate consideration, she is a strong advocate of adding legislation to reinforce the voting rights act. As Senator, she co-sponsored a bill to increase funding for grants to hospitals and schools that serve First Nation communities, and of course there's CHIP. She advocates universal preschool, child care scholarships to support parents continuing their education and a whole lot of other education-related things that I've listed before. And all the women-related things that I've listed before.  
Clearly this stuff doesn't count for much among some people, but it does among others.

(In response to CSM above, not the captain)


It absolutely counts, and I gave her credit in my post. Yes, those things do count and are important just as her incredibly destructive positions on social issues also count. Just as it counts when someone might be in favour of the same policies as you but for different reasons, which is why you don't shut them down as a matter of principle.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 15, 2017, 08:23:10 PM
A number of second-wave feminists had a problem with the gay marriage movement because it's so pro-marriage. There are complexities there.

Yes, but that's not why Clinton had a problem with the gay marriage movement, so I'm unsure of the relevance of that.

Quote
As Sec. of State she worked to get LGBT rights added to UN human rights resolutions; as senator she voted to end federal workplace discrimination; again as SoS, she changed the passport gender policy to reflect transgender gender and changed the depatment's benefits policies to apply equality to gay couples. And she was an activist as First Lady and SoS for women's rights and gay rights in parts of the world where they are less supported than here. She has acknowledged reparations as a legitimate consideration, she is a strong advocate of adding legislation to reinforce the voting rights act. As Senator, she co-sponsored a bill to increase funding for grants to hospitals and schools that serve First Nation communities, and of course there's CHIP. She advocates universal preschool, child care scholarships to support parents continuing their education and a whole lot of other education-related things that I've listed before. And all the women-related things that I've listed before.  
Clearly this stuff doesn't count for much among some people, but it does among others.

(In response to CSM above, not the captain)


It absolutely counts, and I gave her credit in my post. Yes, those things do count and are important just as her incredibly destructive positions on social issues also count. Just as it counts when someone might be in favour of the same policies as you but for different reasons, which is why you don't shut them down as a matter of principle.

If someone is for the same one policy as I because our otherwise entirely opposed philosophies happen to cross in that one spot, and we differ in all other places, and if supporting that person's implementation of that policy would have further implications of forwarding a political philosophy that is entirely opposed to mine, thus facilitating the implementation of additional policies to which I am strongly opposed, it would not make sense for me to support that person and that person's policy efforts.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on February 15, 2017, 08:38:10 PM
A number of second-wave feminists had a problem with the gay marriage movement because it's so pro-marriage. There are complexities there.

Yes, but that's not why Clinton had a problem with the gay marriage movement, so I'm unsure of the relevance of that.

Quote
As Sec. of State she worked to get LGBT rights added to UN human rights resolutions; as senator she voted to end federal workplace discrimination; again as SoS, she changed the passport gender policy to reflect transgender gender and changed the depatment's benefits policies to apply equality to gay couples. And she was an activist as First Lady and SoS for women's rights and gay rights in parts of the world where they are less supported than here. She has acknowledged reparations as a legitimate consideration, she is a strong advocate of adding legislation to reinforce the voting rights act. As Senator, she co-sponsored a bill to increase funding for grants to hospitals and schools that serve First Nation communities, and of course there's CHIP. She advocates universal preschool, child care scholarships to support parents continuing their education and a whole lot of other education-related things that I've listed before. And all the women-related things that I've listed before.  
Clearly this stuff doesn't count for much among some people, but it does among others.

(In response to CSM above, not the captain)


It absolutely counts, and I gave her credit in my post. Yes, those things do count and are important just as her incredibly destructive positions on social issues also count. Just as it counts when someone might be in favour of the same policies as you but for different reasons, which is why you don't shut them down as a matter of principle.

If someone is for the same one policy as I because our otherwise entirely opposed philosophies happen to cross in that one spot, and we differ in all other places, and if supporting that person's implementation of that policy would have further implications of forwarding a political philosophy that is entirely opposed to mine, thus facilitating the implementation of additional policies to which I am strongly opposed, it would not make sense for me to support that person and that person's policy efforts.

Even if many lives are on the line? In the 1970s, there were two major factions opposed to the Vietnam war - the activist community and the corporate community. The latter was opposed for obviously terrible reasons - the war had become bad for business. Now, my guess is that if you asked the Vietnamese if it mattered that the reason the war ended there was for terrible reasons, they probably wouldn't care. Sometimes when it's a matter of thousands of lives being saved, I would suggest finding in-roads with people that you are entirely opposed to philosophically.

But, furthermore, the reality is that, today, many of these people with opposed philosophies have had their belief system hijacked by propaganda. They have been swayed before, which means they can be swayed back to a reasonable and rational position, and they are going be much more likely to do that if they are already half-way on board with many of the policies, which is what makes so many Trump supporters so much more malleable than Romney and Bush supporters ever were. The way the discourse seems to be these days, they appear more malleable than establishment Democrats (and their supporters) are at the moment. To write these people off is a grave strategic error in my view, impractical at best and dangerous at worst.

For much the same reason, I stressed the importance of voting for Clinton over Trump, and voting for Obama over Romney/McCain, etc. Sometimes you have to build connections with people even if they mostly represent everything that you stand in opposition to, because it will have the best temporary result and because it will give you the best opportunity for long-term gain.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 15, 2017, 08:50:58 PM
A number of second-wave feminists had a problem with the gay marriage movement because it's so pro-marriage. There are complexities there.

Yes, but that's not why Clinton had a problem with the gay marriage movement, so I'm unsure of the relevance of that.

Quote
As Sec. of State she worked to get LGBT rights added to UN human rights resolutions; as senator she voted to end federal workplace discrimination; again as SoS, she changed the passport gender policy to reflect transgender gender and changed the depatment's benefits policies to apply equality to gay couples. And she was an activist as First Lady and SoS for women's rights and gay rights in parts of the world where they are less supported than here. She has acknowledged reparations as a legitimate consideration, she is a strong advocate of adding legislation to reinforce the voting rights act. As Senator, she co-sponsored a bill to increase funding for grants to hospitals and schools that serve First Nation communities, and of course there's CHIP. She advocates universal preschool, child care scholarships to support parents continuing their education and a whole lot of other education-related things that I've listed before. And all the women-related things that I've listed before.  
Clearly this stuff doesn't count for much among some people, but it does among others.

(In response to CSM above, not the captain)


It absolutely counts, and I gave her credit in my post. Yes, those things do count and are important just as her incredibly destructive positions on social issues also count. Just as it counts when someone might be in favour of the same policies as you but for different reasons, which is why you don't shut them down as a matter of principle.

If someone is for the same one policy as I because our otherwise entirely opposed philosophies happen to cross in that one spot, and we differ in all other places, and if supporting that person's implementation of that policy would have further implications of forwarding a political philosophy that is entirely opposed to mine, thus facilitating the implementation of additional policies to which I am strongly opposed, it would not make sense for me to support that person and that person's policy efforts.

Even if many lives are on the line? In the 1970s, there were two major factions opposed to the Vietnam war - the activist community and the corporate community. The latter was opposed for obviously terrible reasons - the war had become bad for business. Now, my guess is that if you asked the Vietnamese if it mattered that the reason the war ended there was for terrible reasons, they probably wouldn't care. Sometimes when it's a matter of thousands of lives being saved, I would suggest finding in-roads with people that you are entirely opposed to philosophically.

But, furthermore, the reality is that, today, many of these people with opposed philosophies have had their belief system hijacked by propaganda. They have been swayed before, which means they can be swayed back to a reasonable and rational position, and they are going be much more likely to do that if they are already half-way on board with many of the policies, which is what makes so many Trump supporters so much more malleable than Romney and Bush supporters ever were. The way the discourse seems to be these days, they appear more malleable than establishment Democrats (and their supporters) are at the moment. To write these people off is a grave strategic error in my view, impractical at best and dangerous at worst.
Probably not if there are many lives on the line, but I don't perceive Trump's foreign policy as life saving.
I think we disagree about who Trump supporters are. I think they are people who are, at base, racist, misogynist, xenophobic and authoritarian and are willing to vote against their own economic interests because bigotry is more important to them than economic well-being. And that they hold so fiercely to their bigotry gives me the sense that they are very much not malleable.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 15, 2017, 08:53:26 PM
Let me ask you a question, in earnest, have you spent significant time reading the comments of Trump supporters on any of the big Trumpy sites?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on February 15, 2017, 09:02:24 PM
Let me ask you a question, in earnest, have you spent significant time reading the comments of Trump supporters on any of the big Trumpy sites?

No, I haven't. But even if I did, I wouldn't take it as a particularly good representation of his voters. I'd say about at least 70% of the comments that I see on videos on Youtube or news stories on the more moderate news sites (like CBC, here) tend to have an alt-right flavour to them. These people seem to have a vested interest in airing out their hateful venom online and they'll use any forum to do it. Naturally a "big Trumpy site" would be like a magnet for them.

I don't doubt by the way that Trump has many, many racist, misogynist, xenophobic and authoritarian supporters though.

And when I'm referring to saving lives, I'm not so much referring to Trump as I am his supporters who appear to ardently support the idea of disentangling ourselves from international military endeavours (though they appear wildly misguided in terms of how these endeavours began and why). That said, while I don't fully trust Trump on this, I can at least get on board with his position of wanting to reduce tensions with a supremely dangerous country, tensions that the establishment liberals seem only too happy to ignite these days. If he is earnest about that (and he seems to be switching back and forth daily), then, yes, that could save lives.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 15, 2017, 09:21:46 PM
Regarding Russia, it depends - is the goal to reduce tensions or is the goal to support Russian regional expansion and hegemony and partner with the very alt-right Russian regime in spreading alt-rightism (can I just say white male supremacy?)
The US right-wing movement has close ties with Russian and other European right-wing nationalist groups. And Trump's administration has multiple oil links to Russia who have been very inconvenienced by the sanctions.  i don't think this is an innocent lessening of tensions. I think it's a strategic consolidation of corporate interests supported by and supporting a movement to reinstate a cultural hegemony.

Regarding the disentangling, I can get behind that, but they weren't for disentangling when we got entangled and they were all for "keeping the oil". And they were pleased with Trump's very aggressive statements regarding the Middle East and his (as usual somewhat inconsistent) policies regarding Israel, which are hardly peace-making. I think their foreign policy ideas are more tied to whether they approve of the president than the policy and whether they perceive the US to be winning or losing at whatever they think the goal is. I agree there are some actual isolationists in there, but I don't think that's the majority.

Again, I think we have different ideas about who they are and what they support and why.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on February 16, 2017, 06:10:07 AM
Regarding Russia, it depends - is the goal to reduce tensions or is the goal to support Russian regional expansion and hegemony and partner with the very alt-right Russian regime in spreading alt-rightism (can I just say white male supremacy?)

As far as Russia's regional expansion goes, it's important to note that Putin's illegal expansion has been thus far motivated by very aggressive moves carried out by the US and NATO, after they broke previous agreements they had with Russia. Not that this is an excuse but things do happen for a reason. I think that NATO backing off from the aggressive stance could actually help prevent expansionist Russia since they have been, in many ways, a central cause for it.

I am sure there are very bad reasons motivating Trump's take on Russia but whatever they are, the consequences seem better than the Democrats finding it strategically important to star Cold War: The Sequel.

Quote
Regarding the disentangling, I can get behind that, but they weren't for disentangling when we got entangled and they were all for "keeping the oil".

Sorry to use it as an example again but with recall with Vietnam, the vast majority of the population weren't for disentangling when the US got entangled and were bombing South Vietnam relentlessly and yet what eventually emerged was one of the most significant and consequential activist movements in American history. Again, people's minds can change and it may be a slow process but it could be an extremely beneficial one.

Quote
And they were pleased with Trump's very aggressive statements regarding the Middle East and his (as usual somewhat inconsistent) policies regarding Israel, which are hardly peace-making.

I'm not entirely sure who "they" are here. Certainly the Trump supporters that I argued with on here kept making the case that the US should stay out of the Middle East. Here's an example:
http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,23034.msg548036.html#msg548036

Quote
Again, I think we have different ideas about who they are and what they support and why.

I think so. But I have seen too much to simply consider Trump voters to be primarily racists, misogynists, etc. Keep in mind that nearly 300 counties that had previously elected Obama twice went Trump this election. Also, have you seen the MSNBC special where Bernie Sanders debates Trump supporters? It's not only a pretty strong reflection of the beliefs of many Trump voters but also inspiring in terms of how easily Sanders convinces so many of them of leftist policies: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZK4lvRMANY

And have you seen the Trump Regrets twitter feed? Apart from just being amusing, it is a striking example of how people are genuinely confronting the sham of the Trump campaign. Here's a few Tweets:

"I voted for you but you're going to kill me with no medicine"

"I voted for Trump....but I am losing respect for him and his LYING.... GET RID OF    bannon  miller"

"where's the no nonsense outsider I voted for? Why did you get the biggest insider as your COS? He's undermining your agenda"

"Fake media? You're a fraud! I voted for you You've used fear mongering and eliminating programs from ppl who need it. JOKE!"

And this is just the last couple of days. This is obviously no scientific study but I think it speaks volumes about the reasons why many voted for Trump and now see him as standing in opposition to him.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: harrisonjon on February 16, 2017, 09:46:17 AM
The goal for Trump with Russia is going to be financial. I doubt there's any ideological or strategic thinking going on.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on February 16, 2017, 10:58:28 AM
Regarding Russia, it depends - is the goal to reduce tensions or is the goal to support Russian regional expansion and hegemony and partner with the very alt-right Russian regime in spreading alt-rightism (can I just say white male supremacy?)

As far as Russia's regional expansion goes, it's important to note that Putin's illegal expansion has been thus far motivated by very aggressive moves carried out by the US and NATO, after they broke previous agreements they had with Russia. Not that this is an excuse but things do happen for a reason. I think that NATO backing off from the aggressive stance could actually help prevent expansionist Russia since they have been, in many ways, a central cause for it.

I am sure there are very bad reasons motivating Trump's take on Russia but whatever they are, the consequences seem better than the Democrats finding it strategically important to star Cold War: The Sequel.

Quote
Regarding the disentangling, I can get behind that, but they weren't for disentangling when we got entangled and they were all for "keeping the oil".

Sorry to use it as an example again but with recall with Vietnam, the vast majority of the population weren't for disentangling when the US got entangled and were bombing South Vietnam relentlessly and yet what eventually emerged was one of the most significant and consequential activist movements in American history. Again, people's minds can change and it may be a slow process but it could be an extremely beneficial one.

Quote
And they were pleased with Trump's very aggressive statements regarding the Middle East and his (as usual somewhat inconsistent) policies regarding Israel, which are hardly peace-making.

I'm not entirely sure who "they" are here. Certainly the Trump supporters that I argued with on here kept making the case that the US should stay out of the Middle East. Here's an example:
http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,23034.msg548036.html#msg548036

Quote
Again, I think we have different ideas about who they are and what they support and why.

I think so. But I have seen too much to simply consider Trump voters to be primarily racists, misogynists, etc. Keep in mind that nearly 300 counties that had previously elected Obama twice went Trump this election. Also, have you seen the MSNBC special where Bernie Sanders debates Trump supporters? It's not only a pretty strong reflection of the beliefs of many Trump voters but also inspiring in terms of how easily Sanders convinces so many of them of leftist policies: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZK4lvRMANY

And have you seen the Trump Regrets twitter feed? Apart from just being amusing, it is a striking example of how people are genuinely confronting the sham of the Trump campaign. Here's a few Tweets:

"I voted for you but you're going to kill me with no medicine"

"I voted for Trump....but I am losing respect for him and his LYING.... GET RID OF    bannon  miller"

"where's the no nonsense outsider I voted for? Why did you get the biggest insider as your COS? He's undermining your agenda"

"Fake media? You're a fraud! I voted for you You've used fear mongering and eliminating programs from ppl who need it. JOKE!"

And this is just the last couple of days. This is obviously no scientific study but I think it speaks volumes about the reasons why many voted for Trump and now see him as standing in opposition to him.
Just like the conflicts in the Middle East are deeper than the last 15 years, so is the history of Russian expansionism. The policy of hegemony over the region has been around for much longer than NATO has existed. Under the tsarist, Soviet and post-Soviet governments, the policy of Russification had proceeded uninterrupted. Under Stalin, significant local populations were displaced and replaced by Russians, most often in the cities, but in the case of Ukraine, in the valuable agricultural territory, in the expensive Crimean resorts and in Crimean ports. Now Russia is using that forced population movement as a claim to that land - land that is the most valuable in Ukraine, and land that would provide Black Sea pipeline access for Russian oil.
Ukraine or other border countries choosing to ally themselves with NATO can be seen as NATO aggression but it can also be seen as independent countries' desire to form alliances that will help protect them from a powerful and predatory neighbor.
The Cohen argument on Russia is one that basically says that Russia should be ceded rights to all of its neighboring countries. It puts the left in a position in which it is criticizing the US for the same behavior that they defend for Russians. Either poorer, weaker countries that neighbor a big, powerful country should have their autonomy supported by the international community or they shouldn't and big, powerful countries should have the right to interfere, dictate, kill and take resources as a right of might. It's not right to have one set of principles for the US and another for
Russia.
No, I haven't seen the Sanders video (and I can't now). Yes, I have seen the regrets twitter feed. Your sample is not statistically stronger than my Trumpy commenters, so we haven't resolved that gap.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: mtaber on February 16, 2017, 02:32:15 PM
Here's why Trump won the election:

1) People are sick of "politics as usual" and "politicians as usual".  Clinton represents both. 

2) People are sick of the news media, which is predominantly liberal, pushing them to share their views - the news media no longer "reports what is happening" and now "reports what we, the news media, think about what's happening". 

3) People view Clinton as a criminal.

Labeling Trump supporters as racists, Emily?  It must be nice to be so open-minded...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 16, 2017, 04:29:00 PM
For your--all of your, that is--consideration and comment, from Democracy Now, "Greenwald: Empowering the "Deep State" to Undermine Trump is Prescription for Destroying Democracy"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jY1MiNfwcRg&t=3s


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on February 21, 2017, 06:22:25 AM
Interesting opinion piece by a senior fellow at the progressive Center for American Progress saying that the Democrats would be smarter to move left and recapture those more progressive voters who voted for minor parties than to focus on the much-discussed white working class, presumably centrist, former Obama voters who voted Trump.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/21/opinion/move-left-democrats.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=opinion-c-col-right-region&region=opinion-c-col-right-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-right-region

What I wonder is, is this even a true dichotomy? I'm not sure there was even a consistent difference between the former Democrats voting Trump and the former Democrats voting third party, in many cases. I can't even count how many people I talked to as Sanders's campaign wound down who said without him in the race, they'd probably vote Trump. Clearly, these people weren't thinking about the Democrats becoming more progressive, or more conservative. They were just normal people who (presumably) were attracted to what they saw as a shakeup--and probably heard a talking point or two they liked: job creation, opposition to trade agreements, or something.

Personally, I'd rather see every party stop chasing voters, and instead present positions that let voters choose them.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on February 21, 2017, 06:23:56 AM
Make voting great again.... ::)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: bachelorofbullets on February 21, 2017, 10:25:26 AM
Let me ask you a question, in earnest, have you spent significant time reading the comments of Trump supporters on any of the big Trumpy sites?

Sadly, most Trump supporters know little about politics.  I know many Trump voters and almost of all of them know little about politics, government or the most basic differences between Democrats and Republicans.  Most voted for Trump simply because they liked him, either that or they didn't like Hillary.  Also, Trump voters hold to very strong demographic lines, young people in general did not vote for him.  Many have been brainwashed by Fox News.  It's not a pretty situation, but their opinions are still legitamite.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on March 17, 2017, 07:13:10 AM
Just a quick update:

Yesterday the US government announced plans to place millions of Americans at significant nutritional risk by cutting food and poverty programs. They also bombed a mosque with 300 people inside killing over 40 people in what amounts to a serious war crime.

The barbaric enterprise not only continues but considerably ramps up.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: mtaber on March 17, 2017, 12:39:53 PM
The article that I read indicated doubts as to who bombed the mosque, perhaps the U.S., possibly Russia.  But, if there's any doubt, blame Trump!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 17, 2017, 12:56:19 PM
I think CSM has pretty consistently criticized U.S. "war on terror" bombings under any regime: nothing necessarily Trump specific. Obama was the one who ramped up drone bombing and was ok with extrajudicial killing of American citizens, after all.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on March 17, 2017, 01:57:05 PM
The article that I read indicated doubts as to who bombed the mosque, perhaps the U.S., possibly Russia.  But, if there's any doubt, blame Trump!

Well then I suggest you double-check what you read because the United States has outright admitted to bombing the region but denies hitting the mosque even though footage shows "a black placard naming a mosque and Islamic law school lean[ing] against a damaged building."

See here: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-39299266

So, definitely not Russia. The United States is 100% uncontroversially behind the bombings. The only thing they have put into question is what they targeted.

And, yes, as The Captain says, I have consistently criticized Obama's drone campaign on here (by all means, do a search) so I'm not sure who you are arguing against when you say "if there's any doubt, blame Trump" but it's certainly not me.

I will say that what is unquestionably true is that Trump has ramped up the bombing campaign following an administration that itself ramped up the bombing campaign.

So again I repeat: The barbaric enterprise not only continues but considerably ramps up.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on March 17, 2017, 01:59:38 PM
CSM for president! ( I know he is Canadian!)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on March 19, 2017, 08:45:58 PM
Some good commentary in here: https://www.project-syndicate.org/focal-points/trump-an-american-horror-story


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 24, 2017, 05:46:00 AM
I am watching the House today with much interest. The GOP healthcare plan, which has been dramatically revised in recent days to contradict numerous of the president's promises on the subject to win far-right appeal, still lacks the votes among both the farthest right and the farthest center of the GOP, and yet the president has basically levied an ultimatum: vote today. Whether they can corral the votes within however few hours they have left remains to be seen. The electoral fallout for various yes and no votes, of course, will be interesting: one can easily imagine primarying of those who didn't fall in line, resulting in a further right set of House members; yet might some of those legislators in places where the ACA (if not Obamacare...  ::) ) is popular be ousted for Democrats? I don't know.

It would be quite a stunning failure for the first major legislative proposal of this administration. And yet, of course, it hasn't happened yet. They may still get the votes, though I think the bill as-is wouldn't stand a chance in the senate.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on March 24, 2017, 06:27:34 AM
Here's hoping it doesn't go through.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on March 24, 2017, 06:45:03 AM
Agreed, CSM doesn't have room at home for Trump refugees! ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on March 24, 2017, 06:50:51 AM
Cap you watching Cspan?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 24, 2017, 06:53:59 AM
I've got a job, you know!

[That said, I am working from home and may or may not be watching CSPAN.]

[The answer is "may not be." Actually. I am half-watching a debate about religion.]


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on March 24, 2017, 07:20:56 AM
Cool, I am just at home! (work didn't need me today)

I am watching lighter fare like this : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hBnhT9FJbXk


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on March 24, 2017, 07:23:44 AM
Though on a serious note, the healthcare bill is not good for working americans since it cuts care to 24 million people and gives the rich $5,000.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 24, 2017, 07:36:27 AM
What I'd honestly like to see from this entire 7-plus-year debacle is for the parties to jointly identify the goals of a healthcare law and then jointly pass a bill that tries to achieve them. My personal preference is single-payer, tax-funded basic healthcare, with private insurance available to anyone who wants to make those above-and-beyond coverage decisions. But I realize that this isn't about to happen in this country, and so even if the Democrats were in the majority and able to ram that through, I don't think they should. Similarly, I don't think the GOP should try to ram through its ideal package (which it seems--much as was the case for Democrats 7 years ago--it cannot actually agree upon).

Rather than work so hard to gain their own parties' votes, I really wish they could come to a bipartisan bill that could pass. Otherwise I think this is going to just go on and on with the temporary loser in a furor at being shoved aside, and the temporary winner in the untenable position of having to get 100% agreement (and thus inevitable leverage from those holdouts).

The resulting law would not be something I'd like very much, I don't think. But if we at least had a set of objectives agreed upon (as I said above) and then had some kind of law in place that we could measure against those agreed-upon objectives, at least we'd be in a place where we could test those laws and refine them over time. Hopefully.

Call me a dreamer...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on March 24, 2017, 07:38:43 AM
Common Sense Cap!

Your system sounds workable with those who can pay for healthcare still able to buy it with the rest of us with single payer care. Only in america....


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 24, 2017, 07:45:43 AM
The real issue has to be agreeing on the policy objectives. That's the major sticking point, so any resulting bills or laws are going to be widely hated by someone or other.

Is the objective to ensure everyone has access to healthcare? Access to health insurance? That healthcare is affordable to more people? That health insurance is affordable to more people (or even everyone)? That healthcare is high quality for everyone? That health insurance is more standardized to cover a certain range of issues? What is it we are trying to do?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on March 24, 2017, 07:47:17 AM
Yeah the republicans seem to be struggling with those questions after eight years of "repeal and replace" slogans for Obamacare.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 24, 2017, 08:18:50 AM
I think most of the country struggles with those questions, not just Republicans. They're just the ones who are on the spot at the moment. Democrats had some similar questions seven years ago, which is why it was so hard for the president and party leaders to get everyone on board that time (not to mention part of why so many people lost their seats after their "yes" votes).

What most people actually want, of course, is a fairy tale: affordable or free healthcare to everyone. I can't imagine anyone of any political stripe saying "well hopefully the poor will just get sick and die." But how to get to broadly available healthcare isn't easy. Or cheap. And so we're in arguments about how best to get the most affordable coverage to the most people ... and then in the more libertarian-minded circles, the question of choice is also key.

(For me, that question is unrealistic, since once someone becomes seriously ill, he rarely says "well, I chose not to get insurance and I can't afford care right now, so I'll die at home quietly. That's only fair." And we have agreed as a nation that emergency room care will be provided regardless of ability to pay. As long as those things are true, some sort of mandate seems not only acceptable, but necessary. My opinion.)

These things are really basic, and yet they're really hard to solve--especially for anyone wedded to political ideologies. For anyone who has the time, I strongly recommend listening to the most recent episode of the podcast "Common Sense" by Dan Carlin, released about a week ago and on this topic.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on March 24, 2017, 09:01:09 AM
What most people actually want, of course, is a fairy tale: affordable or free healthcare to everyone. I can't imagine anyone of any political stripe saying "well hopefully the poor will just get sick and die." But how to get to broadly available healthcare isn't easy. Or cheap.

Not easy but studies show that a single-payer health care system would inevitably be cheaper than the health care systems that have existed in the United States:

http://cepr.net/blogs/beat-the-press/bernie-sanders-health-care-plan-could-save-the-country-20-trillion


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 24, 2017, 09:10:52 AM
Oh I agree with that. Our healthcare services here are far more expensive than those of most developed countries, many of which are single payer. I was just trying to make the fantasyland point of pie-in-the-sky, as if it could be perfect and free.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on March 24, 2017, 09:12:29 AM
Oh I see. OK I'm with you.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 24, 2017, 09:13:26 AM
I've tuned in to CSPAN now. Quite an amusing display of political theater from all legislators.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: B.E. on March 24, 2017, 09:57:29 AM
Anyone have any thoughts on the Gorsuch hearings? I realize it's not the most popular political topic of the week, but I listened to most of the proceedings on Monday and Tuesday and have read numerous articles in recent days. I was kind of surprised at the democrats incessant use of the phrase "little guys". I found it condescending. Also, there was a lot of (in my mind) inappropriate questioning by democrats that had little or nothing to do with Gorsuch. I guess they scored some political points? Congrats. Based on the actual questions, many democrats just seemed to be interested in determining whether Gorsuch would rule in favor of their interests (the actual law and separation of powers being of secondary concern, if at all). That was their litmus test. Granted, there could be other motivations for that line of questioning, but it didn't feel like it to me. There were certain senators I found particularly annoying and dishonest, but Hirono was an embarrassment. I literally had to mute my phone, I couldn't take it.

As for Trump's ultimatum...well I guess he's looking for a win...how about getting it right? Seems entirely childish.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 24, 2017, 10:05:18 AM
I find confirmation hearings really depressing. The Democrats are very blatantly doing whatever (little) they can out of (legitimate) spite stemming largely from the Garland non-hearings. And both parties have for years now focused almost exclusively on the outcomes of cases that haven't even been brought to the Court yet, not on nuances of those particular cases; the judges in question then talk a good game about their own integrity and lack of ideology, only to end up voting the predictable way on most of the divisive, high-impact cases. It's all a charade.

Garland deserved to be confirmed. Gorsuch now deserves to be confirmed.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: B.E. on March 24, 2017, 10:26:51 AM
Yeah, there was a lot of talk about Garland during the hearings. I wonder how out-of-bounds that really was (the non-hearing). I don't doubt that it was, just interested. It does seem to me that Garland and Gorsuch are both qualified and deserving of nomination/confirmation.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 24, 2017, 10:39:49 AM
Quick aside first, NYT reports that Speaker Ryan went to this White House this afternoon to inform the president he doesn't have the votes to pass AHCA and ask whether it could be pulled from consideration. (I don't know which would be more embarrassing for the GOP: pulling the bill because they don't have the votes, or letting it fail by votes.)

As for Garland/Gorsuch, I believe the non-hearing was unprecedented. The idea that an election-year nomination could not go through hearings and a vote is absurd and has no basis in history or the constitution. We don't let our elected officials take vacations for their final six months, or year, in office because there's an election coming up that might go another direction. They are in office until they are out of office and should do their jobs until then.

Even more annoying to me was that Garland was what in any other era of my lifetime would have been seen as a consensus-building, moderate choice. He had a reputation as being pretty middle-of-the-road, ideologically. So that was an olive branch of sorts to the right, almost acknowledging that a fringe progressive judge taking Scalia's seat was too dramatic an upheaval, too much to ask of senators in their confirmation votes. (I'm not saying that it would have been WRONG for Pres. Obama to go far left on that nomination; just that he seemed to be making a concession to the opposition with the pick in a show of good will.) And not only was that nomination of a highly qualified and respected judge ignored, but the next president did indeed go to a pretty ideologically driven judge instead. Gorsuch is qualified and should be approved, but the Republicans in the senate acted like sh*t last year.

My biggest issue with that behavior is that it's myopic. Does anyone think that bad behavior will serve to moderate the opposition? Obviously not. It begets similar behavior from the opposition. And so on, and on, and on. This is why I wish Democrats would act like grown-ups and not scream fire at every opportunity, not block everything they possibly can as long as they can, even if the bratty Republicans did exactly that. They should behave like adults, working together, passing whatever they can pass in good faith, etc., and most importantly, do the best P.R. job they can possibly do to the American people to show they've done exactly that, thus showing exactly the contrast with the Republicans that makes the latter look like bratty children. Alas, that isn't what is happening, or what is going to happen.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on March 25, 2017, 05:41:39 AM
The real issue has to be agreeing on the policy objectives. That's the major sticking point, so any resulting bills or laws are going to be widely hated by someone or other.

Is the objective to ensure everyone has access to healthcare? Access to health insurance? That healthcare is affordable to more people? That health insurance is affordable to more people (or even everyone)? That healthcare is high quality for everyone? That health insurance is more standardized to cover a certain range of issues? What is it we are trying to do?

The problem is that the objectives aren't shared - not because people aren't sensible enough to organize and identify them but because they actually aren't shared. Almost all Democrat voters support single-payer. Some Republican voters do. But a strong minority of Republican voters think it should go back how it was with maybe a small expansion of Medicaid. A smaller but powerful Republican minority think it should just be the market.  The representatives of the lattet two recognize that those aren't going to happen outright but their policy goal is to chip away. The former realizes it's not going to happen outright, but their policy goal is to tack things on.

Caveat - for the sake of this exercise, I pretended that representatives are actually representative of their constituents on this issue, but of course that's not accurate.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on March 25, 2017, 06:16:56 AM
I know. The difference between universal healthcare for all and no government intervention in healthcare is about as wide a chasm as one can have on the subject. In my little dream scenario, though, by actually publicly attempting the exercise, the public could theoretically weigh in more strongly and put pressure on their representatives to act accordingly.

But don't get me wrong, I have no illusions. The Democrats were only able to push through the ACA, which even the kindest GOP legislators considered to be big, bad socialism (while the fringe shouted about it as if it were a war crime). So something more progressive is probably impossible without a sea change, and we've just seen that something further right is also impossible for the time being.

If there is a way forward, though, it has to be bipartisan. That's the reality. Anything else will just result in the same kind of bullshit we've been living through.

Back to reality, though: yesterday was really interesting to witness. It was still more evidence that Trump wasn't in any way a unifying figure for the party (which, let's recall, had been seriously divided for years and unable to work together). And tax reform is on deck... I keep hearing that will be harder to pass, but I suspect the opposite, unfortunately. I think the GOP is more unified on those ideas, and the public is less likely to weigh in as vociferously as they do about healthcare, to which they more easily relate. .


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on March 25, 2017, 07:33:29 AM
Totally agree, including about tax changes ("reform" seems a misnomer.)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 05, 2017, 08:58:32 PM
Heard this on the radio today. It made me think of the Captain.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 06, 2017, 05:38:52 AM
Heard what?

I'm currently intrigued by Bannon's removal from Sec Council and can't wait to watch the dynamics.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 06, 2017, 05:04:12 PM
Heard what?

I'm currently intrigued by Bannon's removal from Sec Council and can't wait to watch the dynamics.
Sorry - forgot to paste the link:
http://www.npr.org/2017/04/05/522756860/ex-secretary-of-state-advocates-causes-not-key-in-modern-republican-agenda
Nothing all exciting and Bannony. Just some old-timey looking-weirdly-good-in-retrospect conservatism.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 06, 2017, 05:42:31 PM
Ha! For one of the weirder sentences you'll read today, I heard that story and thought of me, too! I thought about that same basic conversation I've had so often with people lately, how ex-politicians, and far more often Republican ex-politicians come across so much better than they used to. Some of it, surely, is being freed from political pressure. But on the right, it's also just that the tectonic plates have shifted so dramatically. But sadly not suddenly: instead a constant, regular drift. I guess I started with the wrong metaphor. Damnit.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 06, 2017, 06:10:27 PM
:-) Miss your posts, captain.
The Breitbart support for Trump is collapsing. I have a tiny little optimism that this whole adventure might prove to be an exorcism of some demons that have been haunting this country for a few decades.
Oh, and I think plates drift, so you're OK, metaphorically.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 06, 2017, 07:24:26 PM
At least 59 missiles launched on a Syrian air base by the US.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 06, 2017, 07:28:46 PM
My brief moment of tiny optimism has withered.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on April 07, 2017, 06:27:41 AM
At least 59 missiles launched on a Syrian air base by the US.

Appalling. Not surprisingly, the bombing has been welcomed by jihadi extremists in Syria.

Also, I wonder how Trump supporters will react to yet another about-face on his "outside-the-system" shtick.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 08, 2017, 05:45:51 AM
What do people think would be the best course or action or inaction regarding Syria? I have to admit that I remain conflicted about it all, just as I was throughout the Obama administration.

The attack Thursday night (by U.S. time) was illegal under international law because it was not self-defense and it was not authorized by the U.N. It was probably illegal under U.S. law, but was certainly in line with standard practice. But it was a response at a military target against a regime that has committed terrible war crimes against its population, and so I haven't been shedding tears for Assad.

But ... now what? We aren't going to get U.N. authorization because China and Russia both have been obstructing, and will continue to obstruct, any efforts to act against Assad. And probably worse, if Assad were removed from office, then what? This is a country whose so-called moderate or secular rebels don't seem to be anything like a majority, with not only ISIS but assorted other factions of varying severity of Islamist ideologies competing for power and influence. If we were to install a pro-Western regime, wouldn't it be something of an unpopular dictatorship almost by definition? (It's hard to imagine a democracy resulting in a pro-Western government.) And if we didn't, are things any better in Syria? Or are Sunni majorities just going to turn and oppress the Shiite, Alawite, Christian, or other minorities that Assad at least nominally represented or supported?

President Obama said at some point that the thing about being president is, nobody ever brings to you a question of a good choice versus a bad choice, but only questions with only bad choices. This seems to be one. I'm curious what others think is the correct course of action. Not "if only Obama had..." or "well we're only in this mess because we..." None of that. Just what should we do now based on where we stand?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 08, 2017, 07:39:58 AM
What do people think would be the best course or action or inaction regarding Syria? I have to admit that I remain conflicted about it all, just as I was throughout the Obama administration.

The attack Thursday night (by U.S. time) was illegal under international law because it was not self-defense and it was not authorized by the U.N. It was probably illegal under U.S. law, but was certainly in line with standard practice. But it was a response at a military target against a regime that has committed terrible war crimes against its population, and so I haven't been shedding tears for Assad.

But ... now what? We aren't going to get U.N. authorization because China and Russia both have been obstructing, and will continue to obstruct, any efforts to act against Assad. And probably worse, if Assad were removed from office, then what? This is a country whose so-called moderate or secular rebels don't seem to be anything like a majority, with not only ISIS but assorted other factions of varying severity of Islamist ideologies competing for power and influence. If we were to install a pro-Western regime, wouldn't it be something of an unpopular dictatorship almost by definition? (It's hard to imagine a democracy resulting in a pro-Western government.) And if we didn't, are things any better in Syria? Or are Sunni majorities just going to turn and oppress the Shiite, Alawite, Christian, or other minorities that Assad at least nominally represented or supported?

President Obama said at some point that the thing about being president is, nobody ever brings to you a question of a good choice versus a bad choice, but only questions with only bad choices. This seems to be one. I'm curious what others think is the correct course of action. Not "if only Obama had..." or "well we're only in this mess because we..." None of that. Just what should we do now based on where we stand?
I think nationalism is intractable but not inevitable, so I don't think the long-term outcome has to be that people will be oppressed based on their ethnicity. Short-term, yes, ethnicity seems to be a driving factor in Middle East relations, which the west has virulently encouraged for a few centuries now as a divide and conquer strategy.
I think it's, in a God sense, a western government moral sense, and in a realpolitik sense, best to not insert ourselves militarily.
God - we can pick a side and create a victory for that side: which side? None of the leadership of any of the existing factions would likely govern in a way that would not be repulsive to other factions. Not one of the factions is fighting to form a peaceful governing structure for all Syrians.
human moral - the US doesn't have standing to insert itself, and if it did, the God problem would apply.
realpolitik - So we do choose a side and insert ourselves - what happens? There's escalation, more death, extensive international tensions possibly bubbling over into other conflicts. Our side "loses" and we've done all that for nothing or our side "wins" and we've got another asshole dictatorship on our hands; we haven't improved the situation in the Middle East - some populations might be suppressed enough that there's no active war for a while, but suppressing populations inevitably ends in violence, so we've just put it off for another day, and in the meantime, probably made things worse for a lot of people. But we could probably take the oil!
There are no good guys here and I don't think it's really right to think there are bad guys either. There are millions of people who have been living in an untenable socio-political structure constructed by Europe a hundred years ago. The outcome is that, like in Europe after the structure imposed by the papacy collapsed, there will be a lot of conflict and struggle until a new balance is found.
What can be done to help?
1. Use political and economic pressure to keep other countries from interfering either by inserting military forces or supplying weapons. Try to get international support for building a perimeter through which weapons cannot be imported to the region in conflict.
2. Offer refuge to refugees and on-site or nearby medical and food aid, particularly to non-partisans.
4. Try to help regions that are not involved remain uninvolved by protecting them from incursions.
5. Don't imply that there are group rights for Sunni, Shi'a, Christians, Kurds, Druze, Allawi, etc. And don't render assistance based on group.

Nationalism is evil.
Regarding this actual bombing - it seems to have been ineffective in practical terms. I think it cost the US more in bombs than it cost Syria in damage. It didn't even shut down the one airbase.
The politics are really confusing: was that intentional? Is the Russia-US chest-thumping just posturing as they discussed the bombing ahead of time? Was this show of force for an American audience more than any other?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 08, 2017, 08:52:20 AM
In short, then, would it be fair to summarize your preference as containment of the problem, with humanitarian aid provided, and more or less hoping for the best (without directly influencing with respect to) the eventual political outcome?

The biggest obstacle I see is keeping other countries from interfering, considering we already know that Russia and Iran are helping Assad and Saudi Arabia (at least) is helping some rebel factions.

I agree overwhelmingly with your "nationalism is evil" sentence. Beyond that, I think it's just stupid. Literally idiotic, in that it is the illogical championing of a nation based on the accident of your birth location. It's no different than fanatically cheering your local sports team just because they happen to be local. There seems to be a little more room for it if one chooses his own nation, but most of us don't do that in any real sense. (Choosing not to leave an America in which I was born and lived my formative years, in which the vast majority of my family and friends live, and to which I am culturally acclimated, is hardly the same as choosing to be American, for example.) When it has ethnic overtones, it's also moronic in that sense, as if people grew out of that local dirt (as opposed to having just been some prior wave of migrants/immigrants who wandered in, or conquered, or whatever).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 08, 2017, 09:31:20 AM
Good summation, yes. And yes, you've identified the most challenging part. Iran and Russia pose different challenges. Iran is a good example of why nationalism is evil. If a state is defined by a nationality, it's inevitable that it will have contentious relationships, internal and external. Internal:  very few people actual have only one single ethnic heritage and even if you have a group that all consider themselves as belonging to one ethnicity, they will differ on how that should be expressed, but each will believe that the way he/she thinks it should be expressed is the mission of the state, leading to obvious conflict. External: they are making claims to certain resources and territory based on an impossible to define right and heritage and pitting themselves against the world as a singular set of people who, by definition, have different rights and interests than the rest of humanity. So Iran, as long as it defines itself as belonging to and representing shi'a, will be at odds and will be defensively aggressive. Much of that applies to Russia, too, as Russia has a deep history of "master race" thinking. They also have, with the US and, to a lesser extent, China, an attitude of a right to power and with Russia that takes a form of land expansion and maintaining global client-states.  
To be continued. My interruption is here.
Well, I'm back and see I was just blathering anyway, so in short, I agree.
But I have to think that the best approach to Russia and Iran is a little more carrot with the stick. Get them, both people and gov't to see the benefits of dropping nationalism and a contentious stance. But simultaneously be firm in containment. As long as the rest of the developed world doesn't take to nationalism, and if developing countries can actually develop (the US has to drop its economic expansionism here) eventually nationalist states will collapse from within.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 09, 2017, 06:44:58 AM
King Abdullah of Jordan in an interview in today's Washington Post -- https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/king-abdullah-compromise-with-russia-on-crimea-to-get-its-help-in-syria/2017/04/06/b985b894-1a61-11e7-bcc2-7d1a0973e7b2_story.html?hpid=hp_no-name_opinion-card-e%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.ce50a1d00451 (https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/king-abdullah-compromise-with-russia-on-crimea-to-get-its-help-in-syria/2017/04/06/b985b894-1a61-11e7-bcc2-7d1a0973e7b2_story.html?hpid=hp_no-name_opinion-card-e%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.ce50a1d00451) -- suggests the way to work with Russia on Syria is to concede Crimea (which may be a moot point by now anyway). Well, what he actually says is "If you come to an understanding on Crimea, I think you will see much more flexibility on Syria, and I think Ukraine then becomes the least problematic." But I think it's safe to say what he means is give up on Crimea, make your stand on Syria, and then Ukraine, meh, work out something or other.

I realize your "more carrot" comment was regarding nationalism, but I think the realpolitik sense of the carrot is what King Abdullah is saying. And while I think that may well be the reality of how to get it done, unfortunately then you're bargaining over other people without them being at the bargaining table. (Not unlike how the Middle East was carved up a century ago and leading to some of the troubles we're seeing now in the first place.)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 09, 2017, 11:17:38 AM
I figure people should bargain with their own carrots, not someone else's.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 09, 2017, 11:21:55 AM
A good thought, but unfortunately not the way of the world up to now.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on April 09, 2017, 11:27:24 AM
Good thing Trump doesn't tweet about basketball or the Captain would have problems....


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 09, 2017, 11:29:26 AM
A good thought, but unfortunately not the way of the world up to now.
Completely true. Foreign policy is almost always gamesmanship with no driving principles, But this is due to nationalist thinking. Some structures put in place after WWII, when there was a moment of clarity regarding the evils of nationalism, were a  positive movement. They're falling apart now, unfortunately.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 09, 2017, 11:34:41 AM
But also, saying, "here, if you stop in Syria we'll give you Ukraine" defeats the purpose. I don't mean use a carrot to get them out of Syria, I mean use a carrot to get them to stop their defensive expansionism. Giving in to the expansionism doesn't help.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 09, 2017, 11:36:02 AM
[Responding to the "Completely true..." post.]

Agreed, because of the loudly shrieked "globalism robs us of our sovereignty!" nonsense (as if multinational institutions weren't agreed upon by the member nations, and thus every bit as consistent with sovereignty as any other level of governance). No, no, let's go back to our little fiefdoms, do everything on a bilateral basis, and end up with a maze of absurd loyalties and feuds leading to more wars, all in the name of glorious nationalism. That'll be great.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 09, 2017, 11:37:54 AM
Indeed. Let's note that the countries who bought into those structures have not warred with each other since. Before that, they'd been at war nonstop since writing began.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on April 09, 2017, 11:40:21 AM
I miss the theme of coming together that led to the United Nations in 1945. That generation understood that dangers of nationalism all too well...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 09, 2017, 11:46:54 AM
But also, saying, "here, if you stop in Syria we'll give you Ukraine" defeats the purpose. I don't mean use a carrot to get them out of Syria, I mean use a carrot to get them to stop their defensive expansionism. Giving in to the expansionism doesn't help.
To cede a point to you - yes, I'm dodging the question of what to do about Russia and Iran with the specific Syria question because I have no good suggestions. Other than continue to apply economic and political pressure and hope that they will decide having a dictator in Syria is less important than having decent relationships with everyone else. However, decent relationships with everyone else will take a clear change of behavior on the part of everyone else, so I don't think that is a valid offering just now, so we've kind of screwed ourselves on that point.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 09, 2017, 12:02:08 PM
Indeed. Let's note that the countries who bought into those structures have not warred with each other since. Before that, they'd been at war nonstop since writing began.

Exactly, which is why the anti-EU fervor in particular strikes me as so, so stupid. That's not to say that the existing EU is a perfect entity, any more than any particular country's government is perfect. But the benefits of the EU should be obvious to anyone with the slightest education in history. (Hmmm, France and Germany aren't at war right now.) There are tweaks--even overhauls!--to be made to every institution on the planet. But baby/bathwater/etc.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: thorgil on April 12, 2017, 08:41:46 AM
You'd understand better the anti-EU sentiments if you had been born in Europe many years ago and seen the progressive economic and social deterioraton in your continent. The EU, with its inflexible "austerity" policy, literally reinvented European poverty after the 1960 Golden Age. What Greece has been subjected to is unforgivable. The British have been so lucky and clever in choosing to go away. They will fully realise this in a few years, when they will be like Norway but bigger.

And I don't like this name calling against different political opinions. It reeks of classic pro-system intolerance, where every dissenting voice is labeled as "stupid", "irresponsible" or the like.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on April 12, 2017, 09:59:38 AM
What do people think would be the best course or action or inaction regarding Syria?

I agree with Emily's point that there are no good guys in this fight.

I do think that working with Russia right now is the best way to somewhat quell the violence occurring in Syria. There's no question that Russia has done abominable work in Syria along with Assad. However, it is also important to point out that the US has now rejected two major proposals to work with Russia on subduing the violence. One was in 2012, when Russia proposed what Chomsky recently called "a negotiated settlement in which Assad would be phased out." The US rejected that proposal in favour of overthrowing the Assad regime - which meant, at the time, strengthening ISIS-style terrorist forces in the region and, ultimately, not overthrowing Assad, which would have been a disaster even if it had worked.

The second was a US-Russia ceasefire put in place in September 2016. There was some brief indication that the ceasefire was working, though, certainly opposition groups in Syria were resisting it. This plan which Obama appeared to support was opposed by the Pentagon, who were more interested in Cold War 2, and the US eventually violated the ceasefire pretty soon after it had been put into place and the madness continued.

This is obviously not a perfect solution because there isn't one. However, real lives do hang in the balance and those need to be the priority for any short-term solution.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 12, 2017, 10:12:12 AM
You'd understand better the anti-EU sentiments if you had been born in Europe many years ago and seen the progressive economic and social deterioraton in your continent. The EU, with its inflexible "austerity" policy, literally reinvented European poverty after the 1960 Golden Age. What Greece has been subjected to is unforgivable. The British have been so lucky and clever in choosing to go away. They will fully realise this in a few years, when they will be like Norway but bigger.

And I don't like this name calling against different political opinions. It reeks of classic pro-system intolerance, where every dissenting voice is labeled as "stupid", "irresponsible" or the like.

That's fair. The idea does seem stupid to me, though, for the overarching reason (general peace) I mentioned. That said, the keys to that sentence are "the idea" (not people holding it, necessarily) and "to me" (nothing approaching an authority, and admittedly an observer from another continent). I really believe reform trumps exit/dissolution.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on April 12, 2017, 10:19:56 AM
As expected Trump is pissing off everyone in the whole world ( left-wing, right-wing, Russia, NK, NATO, alt-right, etc) He is like the Kaiser in 1914 tearing at an unstable global political system


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on April 12, 2017, 10:24:30 AM
I really believe reform trumps exit/dissolution.

I agree with though the point Thorgil brings up about austerity is spot on.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 12, 2017, 10:27:42 AM
I really believe reform trumps exit/dissolution.

I agree with though the point Thorgil brings up about austerity is spot on.
So do I.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on April 12, 2017, 10:34:54 AM
As someone who teaches English, the mistakes I make on here are appalling. If it's any excuse, I do tend to write very quickly.

What I meant was "I agree with you [The Captain] though the point Thorgil brings up about austerity is spot on."

As a result of my error, you unintentionally agreed with my point agreeing with you. We may now both be in a Monty Python sketch.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 12, 2017, 10:41:46 AM
Lol, there's nowhere I'd rather be.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on April 12, 2017, 10:45:16 AM
From there to Python again...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 12, 2017, 02:43:07 PM
Agreeing austerity was terrible and, sorry, stupid. However, austerity and EU don't necessarily go hand-in-hand. Austerity was the economist-ignoring political fad. 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on April 13, 2017, 12:02:56 PM
The US has now dropped its largest non-nuclear bomb on Afghanistan. As Abby Martin has pointed out, the bomb has "a blast radius of a mile in every direction" and was dropped in a region where "95,000 human beings live."


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on April 13, 2017, 12:04:59 PM
Jesus....


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 13, 2017, 12:13:51 PM
The US has now dropped its largest non-nuclear bomb on Afghanistan. As Abby Martin has pointed out, the bomb has "a blast radius of a mile in every direction" and was dropped in a region where "95,000 human beings live."

A Tuesday strike in Syria has also been confirmed to have actually struck rebels we're supporting.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on April 13, 2017, 12:23:06 PM
The US has now dropped its largest non-nuclear bomb on Afghanistan. As Abby Martin has pointed out, the bomb has "a blast radius of a mile in every direction" and was dropped in a region where "95,000 human beings live."

A Tuesday strike in Syria has also been confirmed to have actually struck rebels we're supporting.

Yes, which is terrible but it is also the case that the US have been already funding attacks on the Syrian Democratic Forces through its support of Turkey. Though, to give credit to the US, they did take issue with Turkey trying to take Kurdish territory in Syria, but they have since moved to increase aid to the country. So the US support of this group is complicated to say the least.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 13, 2017, 04:05:19 PM
In short, then, would it be fair to summarize your preference as containment of the problem, with humanitarian aid provided, and more or less hoping for the best (without directly influencing with respect to) the eventual political outcome?


Or we could just bomb everyone.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 13, 2017, 04:20:19 PM
Trump's kind of old and doesn't know anything about economics. Thinking back on his campaign- "we'll have so many jobs; we'll
Spend a lot on the military; we'll spend a lot on infrastructure," i can't help but think that the New Deal and post WWII boom are as far as his economic understanding goes - the super-simple gov't-spends-money-on-industry-yay-strong-economy! thing that results in more money flowing through the economy while it's happening but no long-term economic gains and in fact takes resources from the production of consumer goods and services, increasing consumer prices.   I mean, we need to fix some bridges and roads and better high-speed travel and internet networks would contribute to the economy long term, but the kind of programs he's thinking of are best used during a recession (ahem, Obama are you listening?), and upping military spending is just unnecessary.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on April 13, 2017, 04:53:05 PM
Trump's kind of old and doesn't know anything about economics. Thinking back on his campaign- "we'll have so many jobs; we'll
Spend a lot on the military; we'll spend a lot on infrastructure," i can't help but think that the New Deal and post WWII boom are as far as his economic understanding goes

You might be being too generous here.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 14, 2017, 05:17:58 AM
Does anyone else find it odd that mainstream media keep referring to Jared Kushner and Gary Cohn as moderates? I mean, they're not Bannonesque. But moderate?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: thorgil on April 14, 2017, 05:58:33 AM
Whenever anyone is labeled as "moderate", I start looking for the rabid reactionary hiding under the word.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 14, 2017, 06:00:58 AM
I have to admit stupidity on this: do you mean the person being named moderate is the rabid reactionary, or the person doing the naming?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on April 14, 2017, 06:06:46 AM
Does anyone else find it odd that mainstream media keep referring to Jared Kushner and Gary Cohn as moderates? I mean, they're not Bannonesque. But moderate?

Unfortunately, I don't see it as being that odd given ideological position usually expressed by the mainstream media.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on April 14, 2017, 09:35:01 AM
I don't think I have much information regarding Kushner's actual opinion on almost anything.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on April 14, 2017, 09:45:41 AM
Well, maybe on Chris Christie.  ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: thorgil on April 19, 2017, 09:53:47 AM
I have to admit stupidity on this: do you mean the person being named moderate is the rabid reactionary, or the person doing the naming?
Let's keep it simple and say "both". See my signature.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on May 09, 2017, 06:30:51 PM
Huh. Ratings will go up.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on May 10, 2017, 09:45:59 AM
Just when you thought things couldn't get any crazier...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on May 10, 2017, 10:00:38 AM
Taking renters yet? :(


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Debbie KL on May 11, 2017, 04:09:02 PM
I'm still trying to connect my jaw to the rest of my face.  This is beyond insanity in the WH.  No one seems to be pretending anymore.  Fun, huh?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: 18thofMay on May 11, 2017, 11:18:22 PM
Surely even Trump's most hardened supporters can see this is a complete cluster f*** of gigantic proportions.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on May 12, 2017, 05:09:14 AM
Surely even Trump's most hardened supporters can see this is a complete cluster f*** of gigantic proportions.
Embarrassingly, they don't:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/politics/wp/2017/05/12/the-one-little-number-that-so-far-is-all-of-the-protection-donald-trump-needs/


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Cabinessenceking on May 16, 2017, 09:03:25 AM
Well, I wonder how that "Beach Boys" inauguration concert would be recalled by the end of this presidency.

What.
An.
Idiot.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: B.E. on May 16, 2017, 10:37:44 AM
Well, I wonder how that "Beach Boys" inauguration concert would be recalled by the end of this presidency.

What.
An.
Idiot.

The music will live on. Only a few people on BBs message boards will care.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 01, 2017, 12:47:28 PM
Trump pulls out of the Paris climate accord. If this doesn't illustrate that this is an administration full of dangerous madmen, I don't know what does.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: NOLA BB Fan on June 01, 2017, 03:06:52 PM
If this doesn't illustrate that this is an administration full of dangerous madmen, I don't know what does.

Exactly. And it's just beginning.  :-[


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 02, 2017, 11:17:31 AM
Today, Trump has made a move to hush up a 6,700 page report based on a year long investigation that demonstrates that the CIA's "interrogation methods — including waterboarding, sleep deprivation and other kinds of torture — were far more brutal and less effective than the C.I.A. described to policy makers, Congress and the public." The implications of all of this are dramatic and is yet another bold assertion that when the US engages in brutality and horrific actions around the world that it should go unquestioned.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/02/us/politics/cia-torture-report-trump.html?smid=tw-nytimes&smtyp=cur&_r=0


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: mtaber on June 02, 2017, 04:17:40 PM
America has not been this politically polarized ever before in my memory.  The left is WAY left and the right is WAY right.  I fear for the future. 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on June 02, 2017, 04:30:21 PM
Agreed mtaber, this is one divided country.... :-\


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 02, 2017, 05:12:12 PM
America has not been this politically polarized ever before in my memory.  The left is WAY left and the right is WAY right.  I fear for the future. 

Personally I don't see much of a far left voice out there, unfortunately.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: The Lovester on June 02, 2017, 05:21:15 PM
America has not been this politically polarized ever before in my memory.  The left is WAY left and the right is WAY right.  I fear for the future. 

Personally I don't see much of a far left voice out there, unfortunately.
Really? You didn't see the support Bernie had? I agree with mtaber, both sides are drifting farther and farther apart and it's getting harder and harder for anything good to happen, especially in the future after Trump is gone.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: mtaber on June 02, 2017, 07:35:12 PM
It's like both sides think that they have to "never give an inch" to the other side, for fear that they'll look weak.  So the right acts like everything their side does is 100% right, and the left acts like everything their side does is 100% right. 

And the news media is largely responsible.  The news used to be presented factually, unbiased, which allowed the consumer to form their own opinion.  Now, the news media has a biased slant on every story.

And the left certainly does have a voice in the news media.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: The Lovester on June 02, 2017, 09:15:45 PM
It's like both sides think that they have to "never give an inch" to the other side, for fear that they'll look weak.  So the right acts like everything their side does is 100% right, and the left acts like everything their side does is 100% right. 

And the news media is largely responsible.  The news used to be presented factually, unbiased, which allowed the consumer to form their own opinion.  Now, the news media has a biased slant on every story.

And the left certainly does have a voice in the news media.
Right, and the lefty bias in most media outlets just makes the right angrier, making them feel like they are under attack. It just adds fuel to the fire.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on June 03, 2017, 04:59:07 AM
We need Rocky back....


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 03, 2017, 04:59:44 AM
America has not been this politically polarized ever before in my memory.  The left is WAY left and the right is WAY right.  I fear for the future.  

Personally I don't see much of a far left voice out there, unfortunately.
Really? You didn't see the support Bernie had? I agree with mtaber, both sides are drifting farther and farther apart and it's getting harder and harder for anything good to happen, especially in the future after Trump is gone.

I was delighted with the support that Sanders received but I don't particularly consider Sanders to be "WAY left" as mtaber characterized it. The left, as far as I think of it, is the political ideology that has been, by and large, disenfranchised, marginalized, and delegitimized in the United States. Certainly, though, when you delegitimize and eliminate an entire political ideology from participating in civic life in the country, Sanders would look "WAY left" as he is as far left as one is allowed to go. But, traditionally, Sanders is a moderate whose policies do not sway much further left than those of the Roosevelt democrats. In that sense, Sanders is just left of centre. A genuine leftist candidate would be, say, calling for a general strike in order to abolish corporate order and demanding worker control of production. Sanders would never in a million years do that because he's a moderate but, quite, unfortunately, yes, pretty much as far to the left as you are allowed to go in a country where political expression is indeed curbed.

If you can find me a prominent voice in society who is calling for general strikes, the end of corporate order, and worker control of production, please let me know. Until then, I will say that, yes, uncontroversially, there is no voice out there on the left.

And the news media is largely responsible.  The news used to be presented factually, unbiased, which allowed the consumer to form their own opinion.  

When on earth was that? As far as I can tell, historically, the media ALWAYS reflected the interests of its owners.

Quote
And the left certainly does have a voice in the news media.

Since the left is, on principle, against the existence of corporations and since 90% of mainstream media is owned by 6 corporations, this is quite simply an impossibility unless you can point me to any of those news organizations who is in favour of their own termination.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 03, 2017, 08:12:28 AM
Normally I wait until someone responds before posting again but I want to add on to what I said above (please read above as well before responding to this post as this is just merely a continuation).

I want to further discuss this idea of there being a "left voice" in the media. Let's look at some examples.

Recently, there was a horrific and monstrous attack in Manchester which left 22 dead (not including bomber), many of which were children. This despicable act was quite rightly condemned and received substantial media coverage. At the same time, during the month of May, the United States was responsible for killing 225 civilians, including 44 children in Syrian air strikes. Now, forget left and right, given the numbers, a simply honest media would have given 10 times the amount of coverage to those brutal murders than what they would to the Manchester atrocities, if not more given the direct involvement of the US. Yet there was almost no coverage of those deaths at all - and what there was certainly paled in comparison to the Manchester tragedy. Yes, in this case, the corporate (read: right wing) interests in keeping that information largely silent, was the reason for the dishonestly.

And we can also ask how many news reports are there out of the mainstream media that discuss the fact that 90% of US drone attacks kill civilians (a conservative estimate, I add) and that, according to the FBI, contribute in a substantial way to the recruitment of fundamentalist terrorists, as did the US counter-Assad policies which were known at the time to be working to establish a "caliphate by Islamic extremists in Eastern Syria."

How many reports are there on the fact that the US is a leading contributor to massive war crimes in Yemen? Or how many media reports are there that the US circumvented their own laws to support a military coup in Honduras and then continued support there as the murder rate in the country doubled? In all these cases, if international law were consistently applied, US leadership would be called for international war crimes and subject to prosecution. Does the media note that? Or do they note how if the US applied their standards to themselves, they would be receptive to the idea of an outside country invading Washington, deposing the country of its democratically elected leader, and replacing him with a person open to the invading country's wishes (I should say here that I don't support this idea, just as I don't support US international endeavours that carry out the same action. I'm suggesting that an honest media would point out the massive hypocrisy here and they almost never do).

Does the media make the case that the central reason for Mexican migration are US-led NAFTA policies that by and large are the most harmful to Mexican labour? Or do they make the case that the most substantial contributor to environmental degradation are profit-led economic systems (in other words capitalism?) or do they merely call for a more regulated system (the moderate centre-left to centre-right position)?

I do think the answer to these questions are clear. If the media were honest, these issues would dominate the media coverage. Instead, the best we get from the liberal establishment end of things are Russia, Kathy Griffin, etc. But that's not left wing and it doesn't speak to the genuine issues that exist.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: mtaber on June 03, 2017, 01:08:04 PM
Geez... all I'm saying is that the "liberal vs. conservative" gap is ever-widening.  And that the news media contributes to the widening of this gap by taking sides, usually blatently.  There is very little that could be considered "common middle ground".


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on June 03, 2017, 01:11:32 PM
It's a lot of people like Kathy Griffin and Trump keeping our country apart. It's was so innocent when it was Rosie vs. Donald on the view.... ::)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 03, 2017, 01:15:41 PM
Geez... all I'm saying is that the "liberal vs. conservative" gap is ever-widening.  And that the news media contributes to the widening of this gap by taking sides, usually blatently.  There is very little that could be considered "common middle ground".

They take sides on an extremely narrow political spectrum that excludes a significant aspect of political ideology. While it is a problem that the media are taking sides in the manner that they're taking them, it is not the central problem - the central problem is the exclusion of political ideologies by the media, especially when that exclusion means excluding the truth. Personally, I would not be comforted by center-right liberals and right-wing extremists finding "common middle ground" - that would not bring us any closer to the truth and would simply maneuver people into occupying a pretty lousy space on the political spectrum. Somewhere between center-right and extreme right should not be a goal.

EDIT: Just  made an edit from "While it is a problem that the media are taking sides" to "While it is a problem that the media are taking sides in the manner that they're taking them." The reason why I made this change is because I think it is important that the media does take a side - namely, the side that the truth is on. Unfortunately, when people make a call for unbiased, objective media they are not making a call for a more honest media but rather a media that balances the true information with countering false information in the name of balance and objectivity - as in presenting both the idea that climate change is man-made and the idea that it's not. This so-called non-biased perspective is in fact completely biased, and it is also presenting a false narrative and a distorted version of reality. So I do think that it is the responsibility of journalists to choose a side - namely the truthful side. But I do think that the theatrical and performative way that news outlets currently take sides is a problem too - namely because it perpetuates the sham that there is a significant divergence of opinion being given in the mainstream.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: The Lovester on June 03, 2017, 02:15:41 PM
Geez... all I'm saying is that the "liberal vs. conservative" gap is ever-widening.  And that the news media contributes to the widening of this gap by taking sides, usually blatently.  There is very little that could be considered "common middle ground".

They take sides on an extremely narrow political spectrum that excludes a significant aspect of political ideology. While it is a problem that the media are taking sides in the manner that they're taking them, it is not the central problem - the central problem is the exclusion of political ideologies by the media, especially when that exclusion means excluding the truth. Personally, I would not be comforted by center-right liberals and right-wing extremists finding "common middle ground" - that would not bring us any closer to the truth and would simply maneuver people into occupying a pretty lousy space on the political spectrum. Somewhere between center-right and extreme right should not be a goal.

EDIT: Just  made an edit from "While it is a problem that the media are taking sides" to "While it is a problem that the media are taking sides in the manner that they're taking them." The reason why I made this change is because I think it is important that the media does take a side - namely, the side that the truth is on. Unfortunately, when people make a call for unbiased, objective media they are not making a call for a more honest media but rather a media that balances the true information with countering false information in the name of balance and objectivity - as in presenting both the idea that climate change is man-made and the idea that it's not. This so-called non-biased perspective is in fact completely biased, and it is also presenting a false narrative and a distorted version of reality. So I do think that it is the responsibility of journalists to choose a side - namely the truthful side. But I do think that the theatrical and performative way that news outlets currently take sides is a problem too - namely because it perpetuates the sham that there is a significant divergence of opinion being given in the mainstream.
Unbiased media doesn't mean that it has to funnel in false information to keep everyone happy? People will always be upset at the news, I'm tired of "news" sources giving their own spins on news stories. Or, if these news outlets are going to be biased, they should explicitly state so and not present themselves as an actual news source. Let me give you an example of what I'm talking about: when Trump made the "convefe" typo. It's funny yes, but the left leaning news sites are harping on it and are just making fun it. That's fine yes, but does it really need to take up news time? And then, Fox News will say "liberal media focused on typo instead of real issues," which pisses off the right and further divides everyone.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 03, 2017, 02:38:19 PM
Unbiased media doesn't mean that it has to funnel in false information to keep everyone happy?

To be honest, I can't imagine what an unbiased media would even look like. At a certain level, one has to make a choice about what they do and don't consider newsworthy and that's a subjective decision. And presenting everything that happens to everyone is an impossibility (and certainly shouldn't even be a goal). Furthermore, the moment you present a real event as a "story," you are imposing a narrative onto something that never had a narrative - and how you choose to narrativize an event is a subjective decision. And we shouldn't not impose that narrative structure - that's how people understand and process information. Simply getting a barrage of facts would be an incoherent mess and nobody would be able to understand anything. Insofar as a non-biased media is even possible (and at the moment I am unconvinced it is for the above reasons), I don't even think it's a particularly helpful model in making the population more knowledgeable about the world in which they live.

Quote
Let me give you an example of what I'm talking about: when Trump made the "convefe" typo. It's funny yes, but the left leaning news sites are harping on it and are just making fun it. That's fine yes, but does it really need to take up news time? And then, Fox News will say "liberal media focused on typo instead of real issues," which pisses off the right and further divides everyone.

Of course, the media is a farce in general and very rarely do any of the outlets focus on the real issues. The fact is that the liberal establishment will always be superficial in its presentation of information and Fox as a network expressing explicitly reactionary views will simply oppose whatever the liberal establishment presents as a matter of principle, even if they happened to say the same thing the day before. The whole thing is a circus.

EDIT: Just to build on what I said above, I don't think it much matters what the liberal establishments say and how they say it, Fox News will present it in a way that "pisses off the right" - that's essentially their function, as reactionaries. But, yes, I agree that the liberal establishment media does make it easy for them.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: mtaber on June 03, 2017, 04:51:58 PM
Lets just agree that things are f-ed up...


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 03, 2017, 07:18:28 PM
Lets just agree that things are f-ed up...

No doubt, things are  bad. But I do think there are possibilities for making things better. Part of that means though identifying the real problems and, from there, considering how to bring about a productive change.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on June 04, 2017, 02:28:39 AM
We need the BBs sitcom on tv for healing! ;)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: CM Punky Brewster on June 08, 2017, 08:11:54 AM
The US over the last 40 years has drifted so far to the right tbat even the country's liberals hate liberals.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 08, 2017, 10:35:01 AM
The US over the last 40 years has drifted so far to the right tbat even the country's liberals hate liberals.

Agreed but it's unfortunately not surprising. When you actively destroy left wing and labour movements, people have no choice but to align themselves with the ideologies that remain.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 08, 2017, 05:52:55 PM
On the other hand, as someone on Twitter just noted, the election situation in England tonight demonstrates what happens when a person with a genuine commitment to leftist principles can run in an election. Pretty exciting to see.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on June 08, 2017, 06:18:23 PM
Good things even if he doesn't win! :)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 08, 2017, 06:27:42 PM
Good things even if he doesn't win! :)

Yes absolutely!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on June 10, 2017, 08:22:37 PM
"We underscore that states that sponsor terrorism risk falling victim to the evil they promote."
The irony made me think of you, CSM!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 11, 2017, 06:51:56 AM
"We underscore that states that sponsor terrorism risk falling victim to the evil they promote."
The irony made me think of you, CSM!

Exactly. It is a concept that people understand when it applies to others.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on June 22, 2017, 11:49:52 AM
The proposals in AHCH to cut coverage and Medicaid are entirely in contradiction to what Trump promised as a candidate, demonstrating, once again, that his platform was, uncontroversially, nothing more than an elaborate scam.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on June 22, 2017, 11:50:59 AM
And we knew he was a conman for decades....  :-\


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 04, 2017, 11:03:41 AM
If there is one twitter thread to read today, this is the one: https://twitter.com/LanaDelRaytheon/status/882274173283745792


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: NOLA BB Fan on July 21, 2017, 08:11:00 PM
.
 :shrug


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 23, 2017, 10:15:49 AM
I can't give you the hard evidence you want, but just like when I predicted his win during the primaries, chalk it up to a gut feeling. He'll be good.

OK, in that case, can you possibly answer some direct questions.

His tax plan to reduce the top tier tax percentage, has historically only led to the disenfranchisement of the working class, the dissipation of the middle class, the inflation of personal debt and the inflation of national debt. The difference between Trump and these previous cases is that he wishes to impose this policy in an even more extreme fashion. What do you think is good about that?

On election day, the World Meteorological Organization released information that illustrated uncontroversially the striking man made contributions to climate change. They noted that "2016 will be the hottest year on record," that "Concentrations of major greenhouse gases in the atmosphere continue to increase to new records," and that "there was significant and very early melting of the Greenland ice sheet." Trump's decision in this case is largely to ignore this. What do you think is good about that?

Furthermore, there have already been severe consequences as a result of these major environmental changes, not the least of which being environmental migration. As the WMO point out, "in 2015 there were 19.2 million new displacements associated with weather, water, climate and geophysical hazards in 113 countries, more than twice as many as for conflict and violence." In the upcoming years, no matter what Trump says about immigration, there will be simply no way he could ever possibly adhere to those standards, at least not without killing many people. What do you think is good about that?

Trump has made no bones about his opposition to basic entrenched rights. So, for example, he has argued that he is in favour of "expanding libel laws" to target news organizations who write things about him that he doesn't like. What do you think is good about that?

In terms of international policies, most politicians propose a coherent one, whether you can agree with it or not. Trump still hasn't put forward a consistent foreign policy. What do you think is good about that?

I think all of these can be summed up by saying lets just wait and see what happens. We've only seen the trailer, the movie hasn't begun yet and there's plenty of twists and turns ahead. That's my very simplified version. I think he'll do well and that's my feeling.

Okay, but based on what? Because I could, say, point to the policies of Bernie Sanders and Jill Stein and specifically say why I think they'd do a good job. Furthermore, I could distinguish between the Clinton policies and the Trump policies to point out why Clinton would do a better job than Trump. So, I'm curious why you think he'd do a good job, because merely saying that you think he will is meaningless.

Based on how well he ran his campaign, his persuasion skills and his negotiating skills. For a man with no political experience, he passed the job interview with flying colours and surprised many people. I believe he'll continue to do so. It's all very fluid.

As per Brian Klass, we are now "6 months (182 days) in [and] Trump hasn't passed a single bill of 10 he promised to pass in his first 100 days." This is in spite of the fact that "Republicans control everything." I am just curious what Sinister Smile would have to say now about Trump's "persuasion skills and his negotiating skills."


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on July 23, 2017, 10:43:51 AM
CSM is laughing from an academic viewpoint! ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on July 24, 2017, 04:00:23 PM
CSM is laughing from an academic viewpoint! ;D
I'm crying (and fighting mad) from a reality viewpoint.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 24, 2017, 05:55:26 PM
CSM is laughing from an academic viewpoint! ;D
I'm crying (and fighting mad) from a reality viewpoint.

Same


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on July 24, 2017, 06:21:26 PM
If there is one twitter thread to read today, this is the one: https://twitter.com/LanaDelRaytheon/status/882274173283745792

Nothing like some American hating from an ignorant youth!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on July 24, 2017, 06:39:50 PM
Huh?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 24, 2017, 06:43:34 PM
If there is one twitter thread to read today, this is the one: https://twitter.com/LanaDelRaytheon/status/882274173283745792

Nothing like some American hating from an ignorant youth!

America truly has the market cornered on hating on other countries to the point of literally destroying them and the possibility of a decent existence there and then getting super defensive about people speaking about critically about it.

In other words, here's when it is acceptable in the US to hate a country: when a Catholic-led initiative teaches peasants Marxist doctrine, then it's acceptable to hate that policy so much that we train an army to spend years slaughtering 60, 000 people. Or when a government in a neighbouring country is improving the quality of life, literacy and nutrition standards but simultaneously nationalizing its resources and therefore excluding foreign operators from economic penetration. Then it's acceptable to hate the country so much that you state sponsor the bombing campaign, some of which purposefully targets innocent civilians, that murderis around 100,000 people in act declared by the International Criminal Court to be an unlawful use of violence. But you hate their policies so much you veto two UN security resolutions that call on you to stop these illegal terrorist attacks.

Here's when it's unacceptable in the US to hate a country: when someone points out the above facts.



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on July 24, 2017, 06:53:48 PM
CSM is laughing from an academic viewpoint! ;D
I'm crying (and fighting mad) from a reality viewpoint.

Same
Try this for CSM and Emily: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=bUYXVseSCJM


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on July 24, 2017, 07:05:19 PM
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=WZTfoq5gBEI


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on July 24, 2017, 07:53:28 PM
If there is one twitter thread to read today, this is the one: https://twitter.com/LanaDelRaytheon/status/882274173283745792

Nothing like some American hating from an ignorant youth!

America truly has the market cornered on hating on other countries to the point of literally destroying them and the possibility of a decent existence there and then getting super defensive about people speaking about critically about it.

In other words, here's when it is acceptable in the US to hate a country: when a Catholic-led initiative teaches peasants Marxist doctrine, then it's acceptable to hate that policy so much that we train an army to spend years slaughtering 60, 000 people. Or when a government in a neighbouring country is improving the quality of life, literacy and nutrition standards but simultaneously nationalizing its resources and therefore excluding foreign operators from economic penetration. Then it's acceptable to hate the country so much that you state sponsor the bombing campaign, some of which purposefully targets innocent civilians, that murderis around 100,000 people in act declared by the International Criminal Court to be an unlawful use of violence. But you hate their policies so much you veto two UN security resolutions that call on you to stop these illegal terrorist attacks.

Here's when it's unacceptable in the US to hate a country: when someone points out the above facts.


Preach. Hear hear. You go, girl. You said it. And all those things. Yes.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on July 24, 2017, 07:54:24 PM
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=WZTfoq5gBEI
Love this. Thanks.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on July 25, 2017, 06:22:06 AM
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=LpDQB9AuKv8


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 Trump Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 26, 2017, 06:06:59 AM
I can't give you the hard evidence you want, but just like when I predicted his win during the primaries, chalk it up to a gut feeling. He'll be good.

OK, in that case, can you possibly answer some direct questions.

His tax plan to reduce the top tier tax percentage, has historically only led to the disenfranchisement of the working class, the dissipation of the middle class, the inflation of personal debt and the inflation of national debt. The difference between Trump and these previous cases is that he wishes to impose this policy in an even more extreme fashion. What do you think is good about that?

On election day, the World Meteorological Organization released information that illustrated uncontroversially the striking man made contributions to climate change. They noted that "2016 will be the hottest year on record," that "Concentrations of major greenhouse gases in the atmosphere continue to increase to new records," and that "there was significant and very early melting of the Greenland ice sheet." Trump's decision in this case is largely to ignore this. What do you think is good about that?

Furthermore, there have already been severe consequences as a result of these major environmental changes, not the least of which being environmental migration. As the WMO point out, "in 2015 there were 19.2 million new displacements associated with weather, water, climate and geophysical hazards in 113 countries, more than twice as many as for conflict and violence." In the upcoming years, no matter what Trump says about immigration, there will be simply no way he could ever possibly adhere to those standards, at least not without killing many people. What do you think is good about that?

Trump has made no bones about his opposition to basic entrenched rights. So, for example, he has argued that he is in favour of "expanding libel laws" to target news organizations who write things about him that he doesn't like. What do you think is good about that?

In terms of international policies, most politicians propose a coherent one, whether you can agree with it or not. Trump still hasn't put forward a consistent foreign policy. What do you think is good about that?

I think all of these can be summed up by saying lets just wait and see what happens. We've only seen the trailer, the movie hasn't begun yet and there's plenty of twists and turns ahead. That's my very simplified version. I think he'll do well and that's my feeling.

Okay, but based on what? Because I could, say, point to the policies of Bernie Sanders and Jill Stein and specifically say why I think they'd do a good job. Furthermore, I could distinguish between the Clinton policies and the Trump policies to point out why Clinton would do a better job than Trump. So, I'm curious why you think he'd do a good job, because merely saying that you think he will is meaningless.

Based on how well he ran his campaign, his persuasion skills and his negotiating skills. For a man with no political experience, he passed the job interview with flying colours and surprised many people. I believe he'll continue to do so. It's all very fluid.

As per Brian Klass, we are now "6 months (182 days) in [and] Trump hasn't passed a single bill of 10 he promised to pass in his first 100 days." This is in spite of the fact that "Republicans control everything." I am just curious what Sinister Smile would have to say now about Trump's "persuasion skills and his negotiating skills."

UPDATE: And the next bid to repeal and replace Obamacare has failed. Another setback for the man with excellent persuasion skills and negotiating skills.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 26, 2017, 09:33:41 AM
And, of course, as a consequence of political incompetence and dwindling approval ratings, he has gone back to the old chestnut of dividing people amongst themselves - something Naomi Klein accurately predicted at the very inception of the Trump Admin - as that is a tried and true method of reinforcing power:

http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/26/politics/trump-military-transgender/index.html


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on July 26, 2017, 09:39:14 AM
Agreed, my brainwashed family watched his rally last night and his ideas sounded familiar. So I went on the southern poverty law center website and all Trump is pushing is white nationalism for a generalized audience.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 26, 2017, 10:01:36 AM
Agreed, my brainwashed family watched his rally last night and his ideas sounded familiar. So I went on the southern poverty law center website and all Trump is pushing is white nationalism for a generalized audience.

Yes. If there is a positive side to it, it's that it clearly illustrate the desperation and insecurity of the administration. And, indeed, they should feel insecure because if the previous election showed us anything it's that there is a now vibrant and more organized public opposition to the tyrannical rule of the exploitative ownership class that Trump represents. The negative side is that this sort of discourse has historically led to all sort of dangerous consequences about which people need to vigilant.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on July 26, 2017, 11:30:43 AM
Yeah, the really harsh demonization of immigrants and other groups really tipped me off to the tactics he was using these days. After complaining that people said the president was "unpresidential"  ::)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on July 26, 2017, 12:04:13 PM
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2017/07/26/trumps-argument-against-transgender-soldiers-echoes-one-used-against-gays-women-and-blacks/?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_analysis-1150a%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.8f1029b58659


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 26, 2017, 12:44:24 PM
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2017/07/26/trumps-argument-against-transgender-soldiers-echoes-one-used-against-gays-women-and-blacks/?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_analysis-1150a%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.8f1029b58659

Good article.

It's such a stupid argument. The US military is so bloated as it is that to complain at this point about rising costs due to transgendered people is just obscene beyond belief.

It is honestly despicable how politicians constantly use "rising taxes" to garner support from the public for cutting public services and social assistance while simultaneously behind closed doors investing public funds into programs on the grounds that it will strengthen and reinforce the country's most powerful people and institutions.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on July 27, 2017, 04:46:02 PM
Completely BS argument. Military health care pays for cosmetic surgery for cis people 
The move was completely cynical
Here, this checks out. You can find the debate in house transcripts and going back a month or so. Trump didn't care until it threatened the "win" on his damned BS wall:
http://www.politico.com/story/2017/07/26/trump-transgender-military-ban-behind-the-scenes-240990


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Empire Of Love on July 27, 2017, 05:08:16 PM
If only each side could see through the sophistry of their own side as well as they see through the sophistry of the other side.

EoL


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on July 27, 2017, 06:57:16 PM
If only human reason wasn't skewed by a need for symmetry.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Empire Of Love on July 27, 2017, 07:17:28 PM
If only human reason wasn't skewed by a need for symmetry.

If only you were responding to someone who had stated there was an equal amount of sophistry on each side.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 27, 2017, 08:15:11 PM
If only human reason wasn't skewed by a need for symmetry.

If only you were responding to someone who had stated there was an equal amount of sophistry on each side.

Then what are you saying exactly? Has someone here made a fallacious argument? If so, who and what was it?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 29, 2017, 08:47:10 AM
And, finally, the Senate has rejected the bid for a skinny repeal of Obamacare. With Republicans in control of everything, this truly demonstrates the political incompetence of Trump. Though, in this case, I would say that this is where his incompetence actually comes in handy because I would certainly want him to fail in his bid to repeal Obamacare in the name of taking healthcare away from 15 million Americans to save money for the nation's most powerful people.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on July 29, 2017, 08:58:33 AM
Where is sinistersmile? ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on July 29, 2017, 04:42:10 PM
A moment of respite. John McCain sure is mavericky.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 31, 2017, 09:59:34 AM
A new study has illustrated in striking detail the dangers of man-made climate change. Two different studies using two different methods predict catastrophic consequences by the 21st century - meaning that it will affect the lives of my child and her potential children.

I think we need to lay the blame where it deserves to be laid, namely on the fundamentalist devotion to the most dangerous ideology of our lives: capitalism.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on July 31, 2017, 01:56:05 PM
By end of 21st? By 22nd?
Do you have a link? Not that I need to read more bad news today.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on July 31, 2017, 02:35:43 PM
By end of 21st? By 22nd?
Do you have a link? Not that I need to read more bad news today.

By the end of the 21st:

http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/31/health/climate-change-two-degrees-studies/index.html


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: rab2591 on July 31, 2017, 02:38:43 PM
A new study has illustrating in striking detail the dangers of man-made climate change. Two different studies using two different methods predict catastrophic consequences by the 21st century - meaning that it will affect the lives of my child and her potential children.

I think we need to lay the blame where it deserves to be laid, namely on the fundamentalist devotion to the most dangerous ideology of our lives: capitalism.

Sent from my iPhone 7.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on August 12, 2017, 06:55:50 AM
Being a VA resident, this is scary stuff...
https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/fights-in-advance-of-saturday-protest-in-charlottesville/2017/08/12/155fb636-7f13-11e7-83c7-5bd5460f0d7e_story.html?hpid=hp_hp-more-top-stories_vaprotest-226am%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.3c693baf2ff7


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 12, 2017, 07:38:15 AM
Being a VA resident, this is scary stuff...
https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/fights-in-advance-of-saturday-protest-in-charlottesville/2017/08/12/155fb636-7f13-11e7-83c7-5bd5460f0d7e_story.html?hpid=hp_hp-more-top-stories_vaprotest-226am%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.3c693baf2ff7

It is scary stuff. But we have to remember that this sentiment has been around for a while now. I see at as the failure of the left, of which I count myself a member, that we haven't communicated our message as effectively as the right-wing extremists have.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 12, 2017, 11:25:28 AM
Virginia now declared a state of emergency. Car has just plowed through left-wing counter-protesters.

EDIT: At least one dead in what appears to be a right-wing white supremacist terror attack.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on August 12, 2017, 11:53:52 AM
Jesus, what a terrible day for a great city in VA....


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 12, 2017, 11:54:33 AM
Jesus, what a terrible day for a great city in VA....

Stay safe, SB.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: NOLA BB Fan on August 12, 2017, 12:34:56 PM
What the #%?+ is going on in our country? All this over a stupid statue! :thud

We're regressing to the early '60s.    :'(


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 12, 2017, 01:32:39 PM
What the #%?+ is going on in our country? All this over a stupid statue! :thud

We're regressing to the early '60s.    :'(

Here's my answer to your question:

Since the 1960s, the US public has become vastly more aware and knowledgeable and invested in the things that their government is doing. At the same time, there have been reforms put in place that have radically decreased the standard of living for the vast majority of the country while increasing the power and wealth of the country's ownership class. That this has happened in a period of increased awareness and activism has meant that a great deal of effort has been spent on propagandizing the public. It is inevitable that people are going to be mad about the conditions of their lives, so rather than allow for these people to explore for themselves the reason why, they must be presented with a distorted picture of reality. So whereas the real problem is the hegemonic structure of the corporate system that dominates all aspects of public life, people are being misled into directing their anger towards governments, minorities, women, other countries, etc. Of course, a great many people have not been propagandized but it has had an effect as those who have a vested interest in propagating this distorted worldview by and large control information.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on August 12, 2017, 07:51:48 PM
Never thought I'd read an American Manifesto bashing capitalism. Christ, a lot of this makes me physically cringe.

Also: Trump got healthcare to a vote in less than 200 days. We have 4 years to do this right. Actually, could be 8 years.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 12, 2017, 09:48:38 PM
Never thought I'd read an American Manifesto bashing capitalism. Christ, a lot of this makes me physically cringe.

Erm...Abraham Lincoln bashed it - he opposed the capitalist system of wage slavery that forced "the prudent, penniless beginner in the world" to "labor for wages." It was simply part of the conservative American tradition at that point to be extremely skeptical of a system that forced people to rent out their labour to a master.

And let's face it, America has never been a genuinely capitalist country so it's not like there's some natural correlation between America and capitalism.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on August 18, 2017, 05:14:20 AM
Re: healthcare - interesting thought that doing a bad and completely ineffectual job quickly is praiseworthy.
In other news, here's what I've been saying for 20 years, as a general pattern and for 1+ in the particular instance:

https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/33759251/2017-08_electionReport.pdf?sequence=3

PS. Some people still support Trump. Wtf?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 18, 2017, 05:31:08 AM
Re: healthcare - interesting thought that doing a bad and completely ineffectual job quickly is praiseworthy.

Ha - was that directed towards me? I didn't say it was praiseworthy. I said it was better that Trump couldn't repeal Obamacare than it was for him to repeal it and replace it with a more draconian system, as those were the two options at that point.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on August 18, 2017, 05:40:41 AM
No. It was in response to reply #697, which was in response to you.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 18, 2017, 05:41:42 AM
No. It was in response to reply #697, which was in response to you.

Gotcha!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 18, 2017, 06:00:02 AM
In other news, here's what I've been saying for 20 years, as a general pattern and for 1+ in the particular instance:

https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/33759251/2017-08_electionReport.pdf?sequence=3

I wish I could read that but my new computer seems to not open PDF links.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on August 18, 2017, 07:17:11 AM
Re: healthcare - interesting thought that doing a bad and completely ineffectual job quickly is praiseworthy.
In other news, here's what I've been saying for 20 years, as a general pattern and for 1+ in the particular instance:

https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/33759251/2017-08_electionReport.pdf?sequence=3

PS. Some people still support Trump. Wtf?

Thanks, Emily. Very interesting.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: B.E. on August 18, 2017, 09:06:03 AM
https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/33759251/2017-08_electionReport.pdf?sequence=3

Those high-resolution network maps are really cool! I've always been somewhat ignorant as to the political reputations of the various media sources, so this is great! Thanks.

Edit: ^That link is broken...
https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/33759251/2017-08_electionReport_0.pdf?sequence=9 (https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/33759251/2017-08_electionReport_0.pdf?sequence=9)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: ForHerCryingSoul on August 18, 2017, 10:20:36 AM
So Steve Bannon has resigned as chief strategist today.  Thoughts?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on August 18, 2017, 10:44:35 AM
Both hugely surprised and not remotely surprised, if that makes any sense.

I assumed Bannon wouldn't be in the administration for very long, in that he's pretty openly against the concept of administrations as they're currently understood to exist and function (i.e., the large and wide-ranging bureaucracies). He said as much himself all along. And of course very few people in administrations last more than a term ... and even one term. Then on top of that, there have been the rumors of him being on the outs on and off for months.

On the other hand, Trump's most recent rhetoric has been downright Bannonesque. So while they were reportedly feuding, he sure sounded like Bannon and not like the so-called moderating members of the administration.

It'll be interesting to see how Breitbart treats the administration going forward and how open Bannon is about his time there.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 18, 2017, 10:51:52 AM
Glad he's gone, of course, but it's important to remember that moves like these can work to placate an activist culture by suggesting that things will be better once we get rid of the bad eggs. There is a huge systemic issue here that existed before Trump and will continue after him if the focus is not on the system as whole but on its individual elements.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on August 18, 2017, 10:56:41 AM
A challenge with this administration is that in many eyes (such as mine), the bad eggs are diverse and numerous. Bannon was one, as are his rivals within the administration. So if Kushner wins the spat, am I supposed to be happy? The enemy of my enemy may well still be my enemy.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 18, 2017, 11:00:29 AM
A challenge with this administration is that in many eyes (such as mine), the bad eggs are diverse and numerous. Bannon was one, as are his rivals within the administration. So if Kushner wins the spat, am I supposed to be happy? The enemy of my enemy may well still be my enemy.

Yes, there are an abundance of bad eggs here.

My view though is that even if you could take all the bad eggs out, you'd still end up with a pretty lousy system. Nevertheless I am still in favour of taking out the really terrible eggs.

All this talk is making me not hungry.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on August 18, 2017, 11:02:26 AM
What, you don't like rotten eggs?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 18, 2017, 11:06:55 AM
What, you don't like rotten eggs?

 :lol

I've just had my fill.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on August 18, 2017, 11:12:59 AM
Faburge eggs anybody? ;)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on August 18, 2017, 07:12:38 PM
Aww. The whole gang's together again! Hi guys!


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on August 18, 2017, 07:27:09 PM
I'm curious about something, CSM. II agree with you about much with policy, particularly in foreign policy and most economics. But I'm not exactly sure what you mean when you refer to 'the system'. Do you refer to the actual structure of government? Or to the structures that have built up around and in  the government (lobbying, corporate patronage, secret 'intelligence' work, the 'MSM', etc)? Or the culture? Legal system or cultural system? All of the above?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: NOLA BB Fan on August 19, 2017, 08:41:20 PM
Did any of you read Trump's tweet from this afternoon?

"Our country has been divided for decades. Sometimes you need protest in order to heel, & we will heel, & be stronger than ever before!"

Are we a bunch of dogs?   :thud


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 20, 2017, 06:54:15 AM
I'm curious about something, CSM. II agree with you about much with policy, particularly in foreign policy and most economics. But I'm not exactly sure what you mean when you refer to 'the system'. Do you refer to the actual structure of government? Or to the structures that have built up around and in  the government (lobbying, corporate patronage, secret 'intelligence' work, the 'MSM', etc)? Or the culture? Legal system or cultural system? All of the above?

I remember that a conversation I had with a friend around 2003 or 2004 made me aware of the problems surrounding the bad apple/rotten egg belief. It all surrounded the 9/11 conspiracy theory which I and my fellow activist friends had a great deal of contempt for at the time. And my friend noted that at the root of so much of those conspiracy theories (the ones that didn't go completely into the world of fantasy, like the Illuminati conspiracy) was the idea that as long as you got rid of the Bush elements that everything would be fine.  The conspiracy theory then was not really a systemic critique. This is why Chomsky somewhat famously said about the conspiracy (much to the anger of many conspiracy theorists) that "even if it is true, who cares?" Now for someone who subscribes to the rotten egg belief, this question is just nonsensical but for those who believe the most significant problems are systematic, it makes perfect sense.

We can ask what were the consequences of Nixon being impeached, for example. What really changed? Ultimately, he was replaced by Ford who supported the same kind of atrocities that Nixon was notorious for carrying out, not the least of which was Indonesia's attack on East Timor. When Ford was voted out in favour of the Democratic dove candidate Jimmy Carter, Carter continued US support of Indonesia as it escalated the violence in the area. So, I suppose by system, I simply mean the power structure at work in the United States - or the dominant ideology - which by and large stays the same way no matter who the eggs are that are in charge. There are differences in degrees of rotten-ness to be sure but the main cause of the rot remains the same.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on August 20, 2017, 01:54:56 PM
I guess here's where I'm going: I support voting or at least some form of popular decision-making, whether by representation of some other form of popular input. So to me, the only means of change are: change gov't structure to another one with popular involvement; change who the population is (by, say, dissolving the US into separate countries); or by changing the minds of voters. Only the first, to me, would represent changing 'the system'.
So, when you say 'the system' do you mean the form of government or something else?



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 21, 2017, 04:49:32 AM
I guess here's where I'm going: I support voting or at least some form of popular decision-making, whether by representation of some other form of popular input. So to me, the only means of change are: change gov't structure to another one with popular involvement; change who the population is (by, say, dissolving the US into separate countries); or by changing the minds of voters. Only the first, to me, would represent changing 'the system'.
So, when you say 'the system' do you mean the form of government or something else?



Well, I don't necessarily see the government as the system. I suppose I mean the economic system. But, yes, if that changes that inevitably the government as it is structured now would change as well. I would agree that this change has to come from a popular movement. I don't think that a vote is going to do it, but certainly I think your phrasing - "change govt't structure to another one with popular involvement" is an apt way of putting it.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on August 21, 2017, 08:35:22 PM
Please don't take this as a challenge, it's legitimate curiosity with no underlying angle:
1. How to get there? Do you suppose people will vote in the current system to move to a different system or do you suppose an extra-constitutional event must occur?
2. i think I have a high-level idea of the economic system you advocate. What might the government look like?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 22, 2017, 06:39:26 AM
Please don't take this as a challenge, it's legitimate curiosity with no underlying angle:
1. How to get there? Do you suppose people will vote in the current system to move to a different system or do you suppose an extra-constitutional event must occur?
2. i think I have a high-level idea of the economic system you advocate. What might the government look like?

Happy to have the discussion.

I think that extra-constitutional actions are vital and necessary - mostly through direct action movements. The most effective of these, I think, would be with a General Strike but in order for that to happen you have to have a strong unionized population, so this would have to have occur in steps.

After this happens, I think that societies would be organized by directly democratic labour councils, with the full inclusion of the community.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on August 23, 2017, 01:51:57 PM
Feds are good for wars and taxes. That's all and that is what others like me will fight for and voted for. No extra-constitutional garbage. Let the states do what they were intended to do and leave the fed alone. 


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 23, 2017, 02:03:13 PM
Feds are good for wars and taxes. That's all and that is what others like me will fight for and voted for. No extra-constitutional garbage. Let the states do what they were intended to do and leave the fed alone. 

I just want to get a handle on your objective in this thread. It seems to me that you make a brief comment here once every two weeks or so that has some kind of tangential relationship to the topic being discussed. We try and engage with it but the point ends up largely just evaporating because you don't actually respond to the dialogue that you appear to want to start with your interjection. I would be happy to engage in a discussion with you on these topics but I can't muster a response to your points anymore as it appears that you don't particularly care about the responses you get.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on August 23, 2017, 07:15:45 PM
I'm just trying to provide a different point of view here. I feel like this is (because it is) an echo chamber of Trump hating big govt love. Not trying to sway anyone, just tired of seeing "do people still like Trump?"


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 23, 2017, 07:38:35 PM
I'm happy to engage with different points of view. But, to me, this makes more sense as a discussion, not just random points of view thrown around.

I also find it somewhat curious that you think this is an echo chamber of big govt love when, just a few posts above, I was arguing that an ideal society doesn't have a big government.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on August 23, 2017, 09:09:43 PM
I suppose its more of an anti trump echo chamber, i worded my post badly


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 24, 2017, 06:10:38 AM
I suppose its more of an anti trump echo chamber, i worded my post badly

I was trying for weeks to get Sinister Smile to respond to a point but he appears to not be around.

Again, I'm quite happy to have political debate here but it's not a political discussion with multiple sides if one of the sides just throws in a pro-Trump message once every two weeks. And, for the record, I am flabbergasted that you are challenging the echo chamber by finding the bright side in the fact that "Trump hasn't passed a single bill of 10 he promised to pass in his first 100 days" despite Republicans controlling everything. To consider that as anything other than staggering incompetence is not providing an alternative perspective, it's just spinning for the sake of it.

It seems, though, as if Trump has moved away from those issues towards more politically-friendly topics, such as expanding wars.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on August 28, 2017, 02:18:31 PM
I agree that the main posters in this thread have in common a distaste for Trump, but that doesn't make it an echo chamber. The Captain, CSM and I all have expressed clear differences on multiple points.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on August 31, 2017, 05:50:50 AM
I suppose its more of an anti trump echo chamber, i worded my post badly

I was trying for weeks to get Sinister Smile to respond to a point but he appears to not be around.

Again, I'm quite happy to have political debate here but it's not a political discussion with multiple sides if one of the sides just throws in a pro-Trump message once every two weeks. And, for the record, I am flabbergasted that you are challenging the echo chamber by finding the bright side in the fact that "Trump hasn't passed a single bill of 10 he promised to pass in his first 100 days" despite Republicans controlling everything. To consider that as anything other than staggering incompetence is not providing an alternative perspective, it's just spinning for the sake of it.

It seems, though, as if Trump has moved away from those issues towards more politically-friendly topics, such as expanding wars.

My batsignal went off. What's good my friend?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on August 31, 2017, 06:12:49 AM
I agree that the main posters in this thread have in common a distaste for Trump, but that doesn't make it an echo chamber. The Captain, CSM and I all have expressed clear differences on multiple points.

If I agree, do I risk contributing to the echo chamber?  ;D


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 31, 2017, 06:15:55 AM
I suppose its more of an anti trump echo chamber, i worded my post badly

I was trying for weeks to get Sinister Smile to respond to a point but he appears to not be around.

Again, I'm quite happy to have political debate here but it's not a political discussion with multiple sides if one of the sides just throws in a pro-Trump message once every two weeks. And, for the record, I am flabbergasted that you are challenging the echo chamber by finding the bright side in the fact that "Trump hasn't passed a single bill of 10 he promised to pass in his first 100 days" despite Republicans controlling everything. To consider that as anything other than staggering incompetence is not providing an alternative perspective, it's just spinning for the sake of it.

It seems, though, as if Trump has moved away from those issues towards more politically-friendly topics, such as expanding wars.

My batsignal went off. What's good my friend?

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,24566.msg615645.html#msg615645


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on August 31, 2017, 06:20:46 AM
I suppose its more of an anti trump echo chamber, i worded my post badly

I was trying for weeks to get Sinister Smile to respond to a point but he appears to not be around.

Again, I'm quite happy to have political debate here but it's not a political discussion with multiple sides if one of the sides just throws in a pro-Trump message once every two weeks. And, for the record, I am flabbergasted that you are challenging the echo chamber by finding the bright side in the fact that "Trump hasn't passed a single bill of 10 he promised to pass in his first 100 days" despite Republicans controlling everything. To consider that as anything other than staggering incompetence is not providing an alternative perspective, it's just spinning for the sake of it.

It seems, though, as if Trump has moved away from those issues towards more politically-friendly topics, such as expanding wars.

My batsignal went off. What's good my friend?

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,24566.msg615645.html#msg615645

I said what's 'good' my friend?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on August 31, 2017, 06:53:35 AM
I suppose its more of an anti trump echo chamber, i worded my post badly

I was trying for weeks to get Sinister Smile to respond to a point but he appears to not be around.

Again, I'm quite happy to have political debate here but it's not a political discussion with multiple sides if one of the sides just throws in a pro-Trump message once every two weeks. And, for the record, I am flabbergasted that you are challenging the echo chamber by finding the bright side in the fact that "Trump hasn't passed a single bill of 10 he promised to pass in his first 100 days" despite Republicans controlling everything. To consider that as anything other than staggering incompetence is not providing an alternative perspective, it's just spinning for the sake of it.

It seems, though, as if Trump has moved away from those issues towards more politically-friendly topics, such as expanding wars.

My batsignal went off. What's good my friend?

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,24566.msg615645.html#msg615645

I said what's 'good' my friend?

I'm glad we had this exchange.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on August 31, 2017, 07:22:13 AM
Are we supposed to list everything good in the world? Long list.

Or everything good in politics at the moment? Short list.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SinisterSmile on August 31, 2017, 08:06:58 AM
I suppose its more of an anti trump echo chamber, i worded my post badly

I was trying for weeks to get Sinister Smile to respond to a point but he appears to not be around.

Again, I'm quite happy to have political debate here but it's not a political discussion with multiple sides if one of the sides just throws in a pro-Trump message once every two weeks. And, for the record, I am flabbergasted that you are challenging the echo chamber by finding the bright side in the fact that "Trump hasn't passed a single bill of 10 he promised to pass in his first 100 days" despite Republicans controlling everything. To consider that as anything other than staggering incompetence is not providing an alternative perspective, it's just spinning for the sake of it.

It seems, though, as if Trump has moved away from those issues towards more politically-friendly topics, such as expanding wars.

My batsignal went off. What's good my friend?

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,24566.msg615645.html#msg615645

I said what's 'good' my friend?

I'm glad we had this exchange.

It's been too long


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on September 01, 2017, 10:16:45 AM
Finally ending DACA. Always thought it was a silly policy, why promote illegal immigration.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on September 01, 2017, 10:35:43 AM
Technically it wasn't promoting it, because that (illegal) immigration had already happened. The policy didn't carry forward to new arrivals.

I'm not advocating entirely open borders, and certainly agree that a state has the right (and to some extent, obligation) to protect its borders. But the people affected by DACA seem like a silly target, in that whatever costs they've had to America are most likely to be in the past, with their futures likely to be as contributors (based on the criteria for eligibility). If you're going to have stronger enforcement to keep our future, new arrivals, that can be more reasonably argued, since they are more likely to cost the country money in the short term. It's a legitimate argument to have. But to focus on these kids seems mostly just like a spiteful and political move to excite a base without having any particularly big effects or benefits.

It would be a political win for the president, though, among his base. I'll admit that. It's also a great example of why executive orders are pretty stupid. The amount of time and effort wasted on non-legislated directives that are made, unmade, made, and unmade for purely political reasons is absurd. I understand the frustration from presidents with legislatures not getting anything done, and I understand the political benefits to presidents. But that doesn't make it a huge waste of time, energy, and thus money.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on September 01, 2017, 10:57:23 AM
Knowing there are several left-leaning people who participate in this forum, I'm curious to hear your impressions about AntiFa-type groups and their activities. Talk about them from whatever perspective you'd like: are they necessary? morally justified? just another crew of thugs? doing more harm than good (or good than harm)? getting too much hype? not being talked about enough? intellectually coherent?

(I'm happy to hear from the right-leaning people, as well. It's just a little less likely to be interesting, in that relatively strong opposition is almost a given from that perspective, whereas there are quite a few different opinions I've heard from the left. But by all means, weigh in.)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on September 01, 2017, 11:16:33 AM
Finally ending DACA. Always thought it was a silly policy, why promote illegal immigration.

Because the thinking behind illegal immigration within the US typically amounts to this: we have the right to destroy somebody else's standard of living and people should not be allowed to escape from underneath our boot to come to an area not under threat of having their lives destroyed.

Consequently, anything that goes against that should be supported.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on September 01, 2017, 11:18:22 AM
Knowing there are several left-leaning people who participate in this forum, I'm curious to hear your impressions about AntiFa-type groups and their activities. Talk about them from whatever perspective you'd like: are they necessary? morally justified? just another crew of thugs? doing more harm than good (or good than harm)? getting too much hype? not being talked about enough? intellectually coherent?

(I'm happy to hear from the right-leaning people, as well. It's just a little less likely to be interesting, in that relatively strong opposition is almost a given from that perspective, whereas there are quite a few different opinions I've heard from the left. But by all means, weigh in.)

I think it's a nuanced issue. I support the aspects that are performing effective counter-demonstrations. I don't find the "punching Nazis" mentality to be helpful.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on September 01, 2017, 11:19:16 AM
Technically it wasn't promoting it, because that (illegal) immigration had already happened. The policy didn't carry forward to new arrivals.

I'm not advocating entirely open borders, and certainly agree that a state has the right (and to some extent, obligation) to protect its borders. But the people affected by DACA seem like a silly target, in that whatever costs they've had to America are most likely to be in the past, with their futures likely to be as contributors (based on the criteria for eligibility). If you're going to have stronger enforcement to keep our future, new arrivals, that can be more reasonably argued, since they are more likely to cost the country money in the short term. It's a legitimate argument to have. But to focus on these kids seems mostly just like a spiteful and political move to excite a base without having any particularly big effects or benefits.

It would be a political win for the president, though, among his base. I'll admit that. It's also a great example of why executive orders are pretty stupid. The amount of time and effort wasted on non-legislated directives that are made, unmade, made, and unmade for purely political reasons is absurd. I understand the frustration from presidents with legislatures not getting anything done, and I understand the political benefits to presidents. But that doesn't make it a huge waste of time, energy, and thus money.

For me personally, it isn't about the cost. It's about the principal and the safety issues. We have an immigration system to keep our country safe and circumventing that simply because you don't want to go through a long process (long because it needs to be) then you aren't acting in the best interest of your future nation.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on September 01, 2017, 11:22:25 AM
Knowing there are several left-leaning people who participate in this forum, I'm curious to hear your impressions about AntiFa-type groups and their activities. Talk about them from whatever perspective you'd like: are they necessary? morally justified? just another crew of thugs? doing more harm than good (or good than harm)? getting too much hype? not being talked about enough? intellectually coherent?

(I'm happy to hear from the right-leaning people, as well. It's just a little less likely to be interesting, in that relatively strong opposition is almost a given from that perspective, whereas there are quite a few different opinions I've heard from the left. But by all means, weigh in.)

I think it's a nuanced issue. I support the aspects that are performing effective counter-demonstrations. I don't find the "punching Nazis" mentality to be helpful.

Do you consider these situations "effective counter-demonstration"(s)?
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-berkeley-far-left-protests-milo-20170830-story.html

(edited to fix the (s) )


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: SMiLE Brian on September 01, 2017, 11:26:26 AM
Ending daca is just cold hearted, but what else do you expect from guy pandering to the alt-right... ::)


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on September 01, 2017, 11:29:45 AM
Technically it wasn't promoting it, because that (illegal) immigration had already happened. The policy didn't carry forward to new arrivals.

I'm not advocating entirely open borders, and certainly agree that a state has the right (and to some extent, obligation) to protect its borders. But the people affected by DACA seem like a silly target, in that whatever costs they've had to America are most likely to be in the past, with their futures likely to be as contributors (based on the criteria for eligibility). If you're going to have stronger enforcement to keep our future, new arrivals, that can be more reasonably argued, since they are more likely to cost the country money in the short term. It's a legitimate argument to have. But to focus on these kids seems mostly just like a spiteful and political move to excite a base without having any particularly big effects or benefits.

It would be a political win for the president, though, among his base. I'll admit that. It's also a great example of why executive orders are pretty stupid. The amount of time and effort wasted on non-legislated directives that are made, unmade, made, and unmade for purely political reasons is absurd. I understand the frustration from presidents with legislatures not getting anything done, and I understand the political benefits to presidents. But that doesn't make it a huge waste of time, energy, and thus money.

For me personally, it isn't about the cost. It's about the principal and the safety issues. We have an immigration system to keep our country safe and circumventing that simply because you don't want to go through a long process (long because it needs to be) then you aren't acting in the best interest of your future nation.

I understand that point of view, but again, that makes DACA a silly point of emphasis (other than maybe on principle). Safety issues are going to be minimal with these kids/young adults, presumably--no worse than American kids, anyway, as they've been vetted. Again, I think if it's about recent arrivals or not-yet-arrived immigrants, I think the argument makes more sense. This seems to be throwing out the baby with the bathwater to me. It's not the end of my world, by any means: not the hill I'd die on. But I can't imagine why it would be worth the right's time either, other than as an easy political victory because EOs are so (relatively) easy to undo and that base wants it.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on September 01, 2017, 11:31:31 AM
Knowing there are several left-leaning people who participate in this forum, I'm curious to hear your impressions about AntiFa-type groups and their activities. Talk about them from whatever perspective you'd like: are they necessary? morally justified? just another crew of thugs? doing more harm than good (or good than harm)? getting too much hype? not being talked about enough? intellectually coherent?

(I'm happy to hear from the right-leaning people, as well. It's just a little less likely to be interesting, in that relatively strong opposition is almost a given from that perspective, whereas there are quite a few different opinions I've heard from the left. But by all means, weigh in.)

I think it's a nuanced issue. I support the aspects that are performing effective counter-demonstrations. I don't find the "punching Nazis" mentality to be helpful.

Do you consider these situations "effective counter-demonstration"(s)?
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-berkeley-far-left-protests-milo-20170830-story.html

(edited to fix the (s) )

No, I don't. But don't you think that I made that clear in the post you are responding to?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on September 01, 2017, 11:32:41 AM
Knowing there are several left-leaning people who participate in this forum, I'm curious to hear your impressions about AntiFa-type groups and their activities. Talk about them from whatever perspective you'd like: are they necessary? morally justified? just another crew of thugs? doing more harm than good (or good than harm)? getting too much hype? not being talked about enough? intellectually coherent?

(I'm happy to hear from the right-leaning people, as well. It's just a little less likely to be interesting, in that relatively strong opposition is almost a given from that perspective, whereas there are quite a few different opinions I've heard from the left. But by all means, weigh in.)

I think it's a nuanced issue. I support the aspects that are performing effective counter-demonstrations. I don't find the "punching Nazis" mentality to be helpful.

Do you consider these situations "effective counter-demonstration"(s)?
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-berkeley-far-left-protests-milo-20170830-story.html

(edited to fix the (s) )

No, I don't. But don't you think that I made that clear in the post you are responding to?

This isn't about responding to violence, it's about silencing people they don't agree with.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Chocolate Shake Man on September 01, 2017, 11:37:31 AM
Knowing there are several left-leaning people who participate in this forum, I'm curious to hear your impressions about AntiFa-type groups and their activities. Talk about them from whatever perspective you'd like: are they necessary? morally justified? just another crew of thugs? doing more harm than good (or good than harm)? getting too much hype? not being talked about enough? intellectually coherent?

(I'm happy to hear from the right-leaning people, as well. It's just a little less likely to be interesting, in that relatively strong opposition is almost a given from that perspective, whereas there are quite a few different opinions I've heard from the left. But by all means, weigh in.)

I think it's a nuanced issue. I support the aspects that are performing effective counter-demonstrations. I don't find the "punching Nazis" mentality to be helpful.

Do you consider these situations "effective counter-demonstration"(s)?
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-berkeley-far-left-protests-milo-20170830-story.html

(edited to fix the (s) )

No, I don't. But don't you think that I made that clear in the post you are responding to?

This isn't about responding to violence, it's about silencing people they don't agree with.

Fair enough. Yes, I don't agree with that tactic of Antifa either. I do think they are an important organization but I do have criticisms of some of their tactics.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on September 01, 2017, 12:07:33 PM
Technically it wasn't promoting it, because that (illegal) immigration had already happened. The policy didn't carry forward to new arrivals.

I'm not advocating entirely open borders, and certainly agree that a state has the right (and to some extent, obligation) to protect its borders. But the people affected by DACA seem like a silly target, in that whatever costs they've had to America are most likely to be in the past, with their futures likely to be as contributors (based on the criteria for eligibility). If you're going to have stronger enforcement to keep our future, new arrivals, that can be more reasonably argued, since they are more likely to cost the country money in the short term. It's a legitimate argument to have. But to focus on these kids seems mostly just like a spiteful and political move to excite a base without having any particularly big effects or benefits.

It would be a political win for the president, though, among his base. I'll admit that. It's also a great example of why executive orders are pretty stupid. The amount of time and effort wasted on non-legislated directives that are made, unmade, made, and unmade for purely political reasons is absurd. I understand the frustration from presidents with legislatures not getting anything done, and I understand the political benefits to presidents. But that doesn't make it a huge waste of time, energy, and thus money.

For me personally, it isn't about the cost. It's about the principal and the safety issues. We have an immigration system to keep our country safe and circumventing that simply because you don't want to go through a long process (long because it needs to be) then you aren't acting in the best interest of your future nation.

I understand that point of view, but again, that makes DACA a silly point of emphasis (other than maybe on principle). Safety issues are going to be minimal with these kids/young adults, presumably--no worse than American kids, anyway, as they've been vetted. Again, I think if it's about recent arrivals or not-yet-arrived immigrants, I think the argument makes more sense. This seems to be throwing out the baby with the bathwater to me. It's not the end of my world, by any means: not the hill I'd die on. But I can't imagine why it would be worth the right's time either, other than as an easy political victory because EOs are so (relatively) easy to undo and that base wants it.

By the way, it doesn't seem as cut and dry as the initial post on the topic makes it sound: the Washington Post has a story up right now that the president hasn't decided yet on what to do, and faces opposition within the House (including Speaker Ryan), the Senate (including Sen. Hatch), and his administration (including Gen. Kelly).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: B.E. on September 02, 2017, 09:15:33 AM
In other news, here's what I've been saying for 20 years, as a general pattern and for 1+ in the particular instance:

https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/33759251/2017-08_electionReport.pdf?sequence=3

^This link is broken.

Partisanship, Propaganda, and Disinformation: Online Media and the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election
https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/33759251/2017-08_electionReport_0.pdf?sequence=9 (https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/33759251/2017-08_electionReport_0.pdf?sequence=9)



Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on September 08, 2017, 10:08:06 AM
Technically it wasn't promoting it, because that (illegal) immigration had already happened. The policy didn't carry forward to new arrivals.

I'm not advocating entirely open borders, and certainly agree that a state has the right (and to some extent, obligation) to protect its borders. But the people affected by DACA seem like a silly target, in that whatever costs they've had to America are most likely to be in the past, with their futures likely to be as contributors (based on the criteria for eligibility). If you're going to have stronger enforcement to keep our future, new arrivals, that can be more reasonably argued, since they are more likely to cost the country money in the short term. It's a legitimate argument to have. But to focus on these kids seems mostly just like a spiteful and political move to excite a base without having any particularly big effects or benefits.

It would be a political win for the president, though, among his base. I'll admit that. It's also a great example of why executive orders are pretty stupid. The amount of time and effort wasted on non-legislated directives that are made, unmade, made, and unmade for purely political reasons is absurd. I understand the frustration from presidents with legislatures not getting anything done, and I understand the political benefits to presidents. But that doesn't make it a huge waste of time, energy, and thus money.



For me personally, it isn't about the cost. It's about the principal and the safety issues. We have an immigration system to keep our country safe and circumventing that simply because you don't want to go through a long process (long because it needs to be) then you aren't acting in the best interest of your future nation.

I understand that point of view, but again, that makes DACA a silly point of emphasis (other than maybe on principle). Safety issues are going to be minimal with these kids/young adults, presumably--no worse than American kids, anyway, as they've been vetted. Again, I think if it's about recent arrivals or not-yet-arrived immigrants, I think the argument makes more sense. This seems to be throwing out the baby with the bathwater to me. It's not the end of my world, by any means: not the hill I'd die on. But I can't imagine why it would be worth the right's time either, other than as an easy political victory because EOs are so (relatively) easy to undo and that base wants it.

I'm dumber than I thought. I was a little surprised nobody had responded to my post (below) ... until checking back today and realizing I'd actually inserted it into the mess of quotes above. Maybe nobody wants to respond anyway, but at least now you can see what I was asking about before deciding!

So, on Sept 8, I posted:
FatherOfTheMan Sr101 (or others of similar mindset), how do you feel about Trump's announcement on DACA? Contrary to Sessions' and the Freedom Caucus types' preferences, it seems he is actually of a mind with the leadership of the Republicans in that he wants to preserve DACA, just in legislation as opposed to EO. Do you feel betrayed by that?


And now, on Sept. 14, with more progress having been done on this and related (and maybe unrelated) issues based on agreements with the Democratic leadership, I guess I'd ask the question again? Do you feel good that he's getting agreements, or do you feel that he's betraying the principles he ran on?


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: the captain on September 14, 2017, 03:03:29 PM
Bumping to call attention to my stupidity (and to seek the answer to the original question ... see above post).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: B.E. on September 14, 2017, 05:01:48 PM
I was really surprised to hear about the Schumer-Pelosi-Trump deal on the debt ceiling, government spending, and hurricane aid. Hard to even call that a 'deal'. What did the Democrats compromise? And now he's made another deal with the Democrats on DACA/Immigration (which doesn't include a wall). Trump supporters must be alarmed by his behavior, right? I think Trump was just fed up with the Republicans and wanted to get something done. Literally, anything. Which I think was made easier by the fact that i don't think he really cares all that much about any one policy or principle. He certainly succeeded in sending a message to the Republicans, though! Perhaps, this is an elaborate ploy by Trump to motivate the Republicans to get things done? I have my doubts. I think Trump is betting on tax reform. If he can get that one big win for his base, then they'll forget about the rest? In the short-term though, I think these deals hurt the Republicans efforts (provides Democrats leverage; debt ceiling and government shutdown just in time for Christmas!).


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: Emily on September 18, 2017, 03:24:12 PM
Hi!
So I seem to have missed DACA and Antifa:
DACA - I'm for open borders, so of course I'm against the repeal. I think Trump is trying to exercise his claimed but so far not in evidence deal-making skills. I'm a little concerned how it may turn out.
Antifa - frankly, the glorification of violence on the left concerns me. As do other impressions I've received that much of the left has decided to fight the right on the right's terms, which dismays me. Having said that, it's pretty hard to tell the reportage from the propaganda on Antifa and I suspect their violence is exaggerated.


Title: Re: Politics: 2016 Lame Duck and 2017 New Administration
Post by: FatherOfTheMan Sr101 on September 18, 2017, 05:32:30 PM
Watch Antifa attacks on people&