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February 25, 2017, 06:40:05 am
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News: Cast your Ballot in the 2016 Mock Election

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1  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Breitbart: Riots erupt in Sweden's capital just days after Trump comments on: February 21, 2017, 01:27:35 pm
Legitimately interesting in hearing a SJW justification for this crap.

People came to Sweden in the last 5 years. Given free housing, free services. Don't get jobs. Their neighborhoods are entirely made of their own people.

What possible justification do they have for rioting?

All there is denialism and "contextualization". Trump had no business, as a head of state talking about a friendly country, saying what he did (e.g. we wouldn't like it if European leaders starting talking about "police brutality" in the US), but he's not terribly wrong-- the situation in Sweden is near shambolic. They admitted as much when the government reversed course in 2015.
2  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: The New People's Party on: February 20, 2017, 12:00:40 pm
National salvation for the Western Region is necessary! It is disappointing Constitutional Revision and regional consolidation has not changed the fundamental trends.
3  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Which of these best describes your views regarding transgender individuals? on: February 20, 2017, 11:35:23 am
My view regarding the phrase "transgender individuals" is that the ongoing cannibalization of the word "people" by "individuals" on one front and "folks" on another is one of the most unlovely current trends in English.

Scarlet, I agree with almost all of what you're saying, but

Its almost impossible to lose weight once you gain it,

Can't confirm. My weight fluctuates a good deal based on the factors one would expect--how I'm eating and exercising and my stress levels. (This is actually unhealthier than being consistently slightly or moderately overweight, but it does mean that I could keep the weight off if I were able to eat well, exercise, and avoid constant stress for a decent length of time.)

Can someone please explain this to me? I asked about this a while ago, and why it was happening, but never got a straight answer.
4  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Does Greece have the highest percentage of Horrible People in the world? on: February 18, 2017, 06:31:52 pm
Still, you haven't answered the question: why is this the case? Is it endogenous?
5  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Dead people believed to be immortal on: February 18, 2017, 05:31:00 pm
Africans in this club (or at least "still alive"):

Yakubu Gowon
Shegu Shagari
Kenneth Kaunda (who's seen two of his successors die in office, plus another one)
6  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: BREAKING: Trump Considering Mobilizing 100K in Nat'l Guard to Deport Illegals on: February 17, 2017, 11:03:48 am
So this was from the AP, eh?  And you wonder why the guy goes spastic on the news media.  This stupid reporting plays right into his hand.

Indeed-- but it sounds like this was a set-up if anything. Radio silence when asked, then cry "fake news!" when they go ahead with the story.

Requests to the White House and the Department of Homeland Security for comment and a status report on the proposal were not answered.
7  General Politics / Economics / Re: Corporate short-termism on: February 06, 2017, 02:44:42 pm
With a large-scale repeal of financial regulations looming, this thread is more relevant than ever.

Dividends should be taxed as normal income in order to disincentivise their issuance and instead incentivise profit retention and reinvestment.

I've grown conflicted about this. The point of increasing reinvestment rates stands, but I wonder if disincentivising dividends, would only serve to encourage only more interventions aimed at raising share prices in the short term in order to compensate for the lost shareholder gains.

The issue, I suppose, is that these are meant to serve two different purposes in the service of boosting "long-termism". Reducing dividends encourages management to reinvest profits,  while a regular dividend might encourage investors to hold on to stock longer rather than seek the short term maximisation of "shareholder value", and thus reverse the trend of decline in the mean stock holding period.
8  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2020 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Kirsten Gillibrand Preparing for 2020 Presidential Run on: February 06, 2017, 02:29:52 pm
Just how much is she doubling down on the identity politics stuff, though? While I utterly loathe the entire phenomenon of "performative intersectionalism", and am ever more receptive to left-critiques of financialisation and economic short-termism (which HRC put out an admittedly admirable policy paper on back in 2015 but appeared to promptly forget), I'm not sure just how deep an embrace of identity politics is needed in order to justify shunning a candidate in favor of the presumable alternative of class based "democratic socialism".

But to clear, when I talk about "identity politics", I don't mean anodyne corporate "diversity promotion" or "Lean In" thinking. I'm talking about reductionistic "intersectional" theories that are hostile to free speech and intellectual freedom, promote pseudoscience and gross distortions of history in the name of "affirming the lived experiences of marginalised people folks", encourage victimisation mentalities; and the corresponding practices of ethnic "votebank politics", demographically-induced triumphalism, overt racial antagonism, and the idea that "justice" can effectively be dictated to the erstwhile oppressors without regard for their views. Obama dabbled in some elements of this while condemning others.

Does Gillibrand embrace this agenda?
9  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Gallup: 55% disapprove of Muslim ban, Plurality says Trump is "moving too fast" on: February 06, 2017, 02:01:45 pm
I mean, Maryland is gerrymandered for reasons other than partisan reasons. Most of the messiness is to create two separate districts for white Democrats from Baltimore and its suburbs (the real problem) and otherwise preserve incumbents in their districts. It's possible to draw a much neater map that is nonetheless solidly 7-1.

You can actually draw a relatively neat 8-0 map. It doesn't even split the Eastern Shore that bad and it uses the Bay Bridge to cross over into Prince George's County.

Amazing how a gerrymander can look better than what exists now (presumably also gerrymander).
10  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Will Ban Ki-moon Run? (Or, S. Korean presidential election – December 19, 2017) on: February 02, 2017, 03:27:01 pm
Turns out the answer is no.
11  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: French presidential election, April 23rd & May 7th, 2017 on: January 30, 2017, 10:53:33 am
Why is Hamon so pro military spending? I noticed he wants to raise spending to three percent of GDP. Are the French Left less antigonistic to military/nuclear arms than ours?

He's committed to that? Great; so I'm sure May can get away with doing it openly if she so pleased. As she should.
12  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Is this a legal ballot? on: January 30, 2017, 12:34:22 am
I'm glad I was able to inject some excitement into this race. Smiley
13  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: French presidential election, April 23rd & May 7th, 2017 on: January 29, 2017, 01:52:03 pm
I was thinking they'd do that, bus people in from all over. And I suppose they handed out the flags, and there probably was free food and drink. Always a winning strategy, that; it's how you make sure you don't end up with this:

14  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: French presidential election, April 23rd & May 7th, 2017 on: January 29, 2017, 01:32:38 pm
Mélenchon also got 100,000

social movements are more organised here

Could you elaborate? Are they better able to get people to turn out?
15  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: French presidential election, April 23rd & May 7th, 2017 on: January 29, 2017, 01:01:02 pm
At 5pm: 1,3 million voters (75% of the precincts, last week 1 million, 67% of the precincts)

Also, first big rally for Fillon today in Paris, 15 000 expected, but I read there were at best 8,000.

How did Sarkozy ever manage to get 100,000 people to turn out in 2012-- and not have it filled with protesters? In a country of 320 million, Romney could never imagine pulling off such a feat.

16  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: January 2017 House Special Election on: January 29, 2017, 11:41:33 am
ClarkKent if he didn't vote for Trump.
Otherwise Blair.
17  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: U.N. Passes Resolution Against Israel Settlements, U.S. Abstains on: January 28, 2017, 01:33:10 pm
Or North Korea, or Eritrea, or China or Russia or Duterte's Philippines or Iran for that matter.

Of course, if it was up to me, the UN would spend most of its time denouncing Eritrea. And there'd be a Ahmadnejad type spouting incendiary rhetoric about wiping it off the map.

But please, can someone please tell me how Israel will manage to maintain its nature as a Jewish and democratic state after annexing the entirety of the West Bank? It seems there would be three options, none of which would meet both criteria:

1) ethnic cleansing
2) political disenfranchisement of Palestinian autochtones
3) Northern Ireland-style power sharing

Claiming a right to territory because your ancestors inhabited it thousands of years ago is not congruent with the contemporary, rule-based world order we've tenuously managed to erect after surviving the horrors of war as mechanical slaughter. On these grounds virtually every country would have reason to make designs on the territories of their neighbors. Even less tenuous is are proclamations of GOD GRANTED LAND. If you want to raze the al-Aqsa Mosque, rebuild the Temple, and start a holy war in the pursuit of some messianic vision, that is your prerogative, but it is ridiculous to expect the support of the United States in any such endeavor, particularly considering most of its people regard said Messiah as having already been born, died, and risen from the dead two millennia ago.

I am in full agreement with Kalwejt-- there is no question as to the legitimacy of the State of Israel. Hamas are a terrorist gang and Fatah doesn't seem particularly peace-loving themselves. Arab states have traditionally been the aggressors against Israel, yes. But none of that lends itself to the justification of continued settlement construction and all but rejecting a two-state solution. I think Israel should finally be able to live in peace with its neighbors. Settlements are simply not congruent with that.

And what is this nonsense about the Hashemites being "murderous tyrants". They're probably the most reasonable people in the region at the moment.
18  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Hong Kong Chief Executive election, 2017 on: January 28, 2017, 12:21:24 pm
There's something rather ironic about a party called "Youngspiration" being led by someone named Sixtus.

I know very little about any of this, but Regina Ip seems like she'd be the sort of pro-Beijing hardliner that would inflame tensions.
19  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Brazil Presidential Election 2018 on: January 28, 2017, 12:18:19 pm
Heck, I'm not even certain we can definitely predict there will be an election, if the civilian government continue to muddle as they are doing.

That is an interesting possibility.
20  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Austrian Elections & Politics 3.0 on: January 28, 2017, 12:06:46 pm
Kurz: when Justin Trudeau is just too old for you...
21  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: French presidential election, April 23rd & May 7th, 2017 on: January 28, 2017, 11:16:44 am
I really hope the media drop the comparisons with America. I don't want France to be classified as Democrat vs Republican with Le Pen family as the teap party/trump movement.

Well, if they end up with a Melenchon-Le Pen run off, they will have managed to outdo us.
22  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Brazil Presidential Election 2018 on: January 26, 2017, 03:48:04 pm
Doesn't Lula look likely to go to jail?
23  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Chilean Presidential Election 2017 - Primary Polls, Piñera and Guillier strong on: January 26, 2017, 03:40:23 pm
Piñera is making a comeback? There's an unusual bright spot.
24  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Will Ban Ki-moon Run? (Or, S. Korean presidential election – December 19, 2017) on: January 26, 2017, 03:37:04 pm
Ban is faltering in the polls.
25  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / UT-Sen PrimR: Huntsman... +41 on: January 26, 2017, 11:56:14 am
Huntsman would beat Hatch in a Senate showdown, new poll finds

Nearly eight out of 10 Utahns say Sen. Orrin Hatch shouldn't run for an eighth term and that if the GOP primary were held now, a solid majority would pick former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman over Hatch, a new poll shows.

While just more than half of Utah voters approve of Hatch's job performance, the poll by The Salt Lake Tribune and the Hinckley Institute of Politics shows the state isn't ready to support the senator should he reverse a promise in his last campaign and seek re-election.

Some 78 percent opposed another bid by Hatch, with 58 percent of them saying he should "definitely not" run.

Asked whether they would support Hatch or Huntsman if the 2018 Republican primary were held now, some 62 percent of voters picked Huntsman and 21 percent chose Hatch
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