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April 16, 2014, 04:53:38 pm
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News: Don't forget to get your 2013 Gubernatorial Endorsements and Predictions in!

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1  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Dallasfan65 for Governor on: Today at 12:57:02 am
I endorse this.

Myself or the ballot? Tongue
2  Forum Community / Forum Community Election Match-ups / Re: Snowstalker vs The Tunguska Event of 1908 on: April 15, 2014, 08:00:01 pm
Already late to the circlejerk, I see. Regardless, can't compete with what was a really cool and ultimately harmless event.

It's nothing personal - I've been doing a few of these. Tongue
3  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Dallasfan65 for Governor on: April 15, 2014, 07:56:09 pm
Sample ballot:


As Governor, I hereby declare this polling place open at 12:01am EST on Friday April 18th, 2013.

This is the Northeast regional polling booth for the April 18-20 election. In this polling place, Northeast citizens are electing five members to the Assembly.

Votes for offices in this region are cast using PR-STV.  Voters who wish to preference more than one candidate should allocate a first preference for a candidate by marking a [1] in the space provided by that candidate's name, and proceeding to number as many preferences as they desire by marking a [2], [3], etc for as many candidates as they so desire.

A vote will be counted so long as the voter that casts it is eligible to vote in this election and casts  a formal ballot. A vote is formal so long as it contains numbered preferences with no duplicate numbers. A ballot containing Roman Numerals is not considered informal. A ballot in which candidates have been ranked a,b,c, etc is not considered informal so long as no letter has been repeated, and so long as a single candidate has been ranked a, for as long as the letters are consecutive with no duplicate letters. A ballot is formal if the CJO can determine the intent of the voter without interviewing that voter.

Per past practice, write-in votes are only counted for a candidate if he or she publicly declares a willingness to receive write-in votes for a particular office in the [name of election] before the polls close in the Candidate Declaration Thread or writes in his or her own name on the ballot for that particular office.

Votes for "NOTA" or "None of the Above" for any office are formal regardless of the preference assigned to it. Should a voter preference "NOTA" as well as other candidates, only his vote for "NOTA" will be counted.

This booth shall remain open until April 20th at 11:59:59 PM EST.  Editing your ballot at any point after posting will result in disqualification of your vote. I will be strictly enforcing the time parameters of this election, voting outside of the time parameters will disqualify your ballot.

Official Ballot

Northeast Assembly
Five people will be elected to the Assembly.

[ ] Deus Naturae (Democratic-Republican - New York)
[ ] SomebodyWhoExists (Labor - New York)
[ ] Napoleon (Labor - New York)
[ ] Write-in:____________
[ ] None of the Above
[ ] Abstain

NOTICE: BaconBacon96 is accepting write-ins.
4  Forum Community / Forum Community Election Match-ups / Snowstalker vs The Tunguska Event of 1908 on: April 15, 2014, 07:28:54 pm
Snowstalker vs The Tunguska Event of 1908
5  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: What is your alignment? on: April 15, 2014, 06:59:31 pm
You are 77.8% Good.
You are 38.5% Lawful.

Lawful Good
6  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Democratic-Republican Party Convention, April 2014 on: April 14, 2014, 06:43:34 pm
Ok, you've convinced me to have another go at it.

edit: oops - don't worry bmotley, I didn't mean you specifically. Tongue


Anyway, now's probably a good time to vote on endorsements.
7  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: 1888 Conventions on: April 14, 2014, 03:06:38 pm
Good point, though I don't see how the libertarian-leaners can outvote most everyone else.

Well there's Spiral, shua, Maxwell, Deus, and Sanchez - that makes five. Bmotley announced his support for Cleveland, making six, and I (who admittedly voted Whig:Merger) would make seven. Cleveland has 9 votes at the convention thus far.

Additionally, I think the last election proved that a Whig/Radical merger wouldn't make things competitive with the Destiny party still floating around.

Randall was intended to hurt Cleveland.
8  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: April 13, 2014, 11:21:36 pm
Given that Areus has a large network of supporters and surrogates backing him from Congress, who do the other candidates have lined up to help them?

I had an official list of all the GOP endorsers for various candidates on my desktop (too lazy to boot it up tonight.) The usual suspects support him (Mavericks like Snell, Garner, St. Avila, etc) but I also think I had Ed Zschau, Pete McCloskey, and Lee Dreyfus supporting him.
9  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: NE1: Less Energy Spending Act (Debating) on: April 13, 2014, 10:59:23 pm
I don't know that it'd be advisable to eliminate items outright from the budget, if only because the current legislation provides a useful template for future Governors with different agendas.

As you and I did for this current budget, we can always strip it to bare bones for a particular session.
10  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: 1888 Conventions on: April 13, 2014, 08:03:06 pm
Where would Theodore Roosevelt be at this point in time? In real life, he'd held a seat for a few years in the NY State Assembly, had become a widower, had lost an election for mayor, and had gotten re-married before Harrison made him a Civil Service Commissioner in 1889. With the Union party currently in the hands of its "reform" faction, might he have a good relationship with fellow New Yorker Grover Cleveland? Or is he still out West?

As well, it'd be interesting to see how he might interact with a President Custer.

Roosevelt is a mildly-decorated veteran of the Dakota War and just got elected to the New York Assembly. He's fond of Cleveland's stance on patronage, but is more partial to Cassius Clay's legacy (despite how checkered it may be.) Despite this he tends to eschew the current Union faction's party on tariffs and would like to see more bold action regarding trusts.

I introduce the option to merge, and no one wants to merge. Sad

The Destiny Party wants to Tongue

The Destiny Party will likely survive another election or two regardless. The "merger" option outright consolidates the Whigs and Radicals in favor of the People's Alliance, which would provide for more competitiveness in this series.

I swear half the voters are just voting for a name that's famous in real life.

Are you sure? There's a pretty vocal libertarian-leaning cohort in this series (myself, shua, Deus, Spiral, Max etc) which roughly squares up with Cleveland's vote total, give or take. For the record, I voted Whig: Merger this time.

I do agree that the famous names tend to do better than ones that are less prominent IRL (much to my disappointment) but I don't think it's solely attributable to that.
11  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Dallasfan65 for Governor on: April 13, 2014, 07:47:52 pm

Governor Dallasfan65 appearing via Skype.

"Pass good laws, good things happen. Pass bad laws, bad things happen."

Greetings, good people of the Northeast! I'm speaking with you to remind you once more that the Northeast Assembly Election will be taking place, this Thursday (the 17th.) Unfortunately, if my understanding of the constitution is correct, the deadline for declarations has already passed. This leaves us with three declared candidates for the Assembly: Napoleon, Deus Naturae, and SomebodyWhoExists.

It is my regret to say that cinyc won't be seeking reelection. While he and I probably agreed the least on bills being debated in the Assembly, he was a good public servant and the Northeast ran like a well-oiled machine during his speakership. It is my hope, however, that he makes a return at some point.

I'm not a member of the legislative branch at this juncture, but I nonetheless have some vested interest in getting a good Assembly to work with. That being said, here are my personal endorsements:

Deus Naturae - Deus Naturae is a relative newcomer to Atlasia. However, despite his short stint, he has been very active in the Assembly - not only proposing his own legislation, but seeking to amend and trim the fat from previous passed bills. Also, as my Lieutenant Governor, he has been pretty diligent in updating the Northeast Statute page. Deus has strong convictions, but has been willing to compromise and more often than not has gotten a majority of the Assembly to agree in the name of more effective government.

Napoleon - Napoleon is an old friend of mine. Despite a somewhat checkered past, it is my belief that Napoleon is a stellar legislator. During my tenure as Governor, he was instrumental in tackling the issue of bail reform, and has been an active participant on other legislation. In addition, considering his past service to the Northeast region, it's a no-brainer in my mind that he ought to be reelected for another term.

- SWE has provided good input in the Northeast Assembly, has been pleasant to work with, and has been an active contributor. I think that newbies are an integral part of the Atlasian political process, and that SWE deserves another term.

While we only have three candidates, there will be five seats to fill, meaning that two write-ins could be elected to the Assembly. I encourage any citizens interested in serving to accept write-ins, but I'll also be taking a proactive approach and will try to scout out some talent.
12  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: April 13, 2014, 07:19:53 pm
I take it you're pleased! Grin

Updated the second-to-last post to include a poem, since I thought it might be appropriate.
13  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: 1888 Conventions on: April 13, 2014, 11:18:42 am
I introduce the option to merge, and no one wants to merge. Sad
14  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: NE2: Amendment to the Employees Fair Treatment Act (Debating) on: April 13, 2014, 01:28:42 am
Quote from: amendment offered
Amendment to the Employees Fair Treatment Act
1. Sections One and Four of the Employees Fair Treatment Act of 2013 are hereby repealed in their entirety.
2. Any former employee currently receiving dismissal compensation shall continue to receive compensation until twelve months have passed since the date of his/her dismissal.

How about this?

That looks good to me.
15  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: NE2: Amendment to the Employees Fair Treatment Act (Debating) on: April 12, 2014, 09:43:02 pm
I'd sign this.

However, I think we ought to have a sunrise clause for the repeal of section four. There might be some people relying on that salary who haven't looked into other social welfare programs (like Nixcome) due to the expectation that they have a flow of income.

So perhaps a repeal of Section Four shouldn't be effective until 2015?
16  General Politics / Individual Politics / 1888 Conventions on: April 12, 2014, 09:33:01 pm
Governor Grover Cleveland was elected to the Presidency with a modest ~52% of the vote. However, despite getting a small majority, the Union Party gained a massive majority in the House of Representatives. While the Radicals and Whigs had agreed to a joint-convention, the procedure had not been so immaculate in down-ballot races. A month after the election, The New York Times reported of one congressional race that had pitted the Union nominee against the People's Alliance, Whig, and Radical parties. This was not the only incident of vote-splitting due to confusion, and the results were disastrous for the Radicals and Whigs.

Emboldened, Grover Cleveland and his Union Party had an ambitious agenda that was befitting of their majority. In 1885, they passed the Blaine-Carlisle Act, which incrementally set the United States to be on a complete gold standard by 1896, as to reduce financial backlash in the silver market. Despite this, the economic downturn started during Cassius Clay's presidency would be prolonged, with a decline in the industrial sector due to the cessation of hostilities with the Lakota and Cheyenne Indians. Another achievement of Cleveland's presidency would be the annexation of Babel. Enticed by Babel's gold reserves, the anti-expansionist Grover Cleveland accepted the annexation with a coalition of Unionists and the remaining Whigs and Radicals, though a sizable amount of his party voted against it. In addition, Cleveland would issue an executive order "to not enforce or recognize, the Anti-Polygamy Act in the newly annexed territories of the Mormons, as they are," in an effort to assuage the concerns of those in Babel.

Though Cleveland is somewhat popular with rank-and-file Unionists, there is some opposition in the establishment, much like there was with President Samuel Tilden. Nelson Aldrich, a young Senator from Rhode Island, is running on a pledge to repeal Blaine-Carlisle in favor of fiat currency, and to roll back Cassius Clay's Railroad Oversight Act. Similarly, he calls Cleveland's annexation of Babel "profane." Cleveland is still expected to win handily at the convention, though the tide could turn.

Despite the disappointing performance of Benjamin Harrison, there are some who wish to stick with the People's Alliance as a new political party outright. George Custer, a popular general and media personality, is considerd the favorite by some. George Custer is fairly moderate, espousing what he calls a "working man's conservatism," and compromises on several issues such as trust regulation, currency, and labor rights. Custer's chief political issue is population of the western territories, which makes him quite "Whiggish." Joseph Smith has abandoned his uncle's Radical Party in an effort to seek the nomination as well, contrasting against Custer's views with a platform entailing education reform, repeal of the Anti-Polygamy Act, and a more overseas-based expansionism.

The Whig Party is in dire straits once more. Their unity ticket with the Radicals failed spectacularly, and now those in the Destiny Party had defected to boot. Senator Newton Booth, though he is getting on in age, is running for a final time. He supports a continuance of federal homesteading, with an especial grant to those willing to populate the Dakota territory. In addition, he he too opposes Blaine-Carlisle, and wishes to switch to an exclusively silver standard. Zebulon Vance of North Carolina is also running. Though a political conservative, Vance's tenure as Governor has been unique in that Jim Crow laws have not been enacted, and that blacks have kept their voting rights. Lastly, there are also some Whigs who wish to support the Western Alliance nominee, and dissolve their party entirely.

The Radicals find themselves in a similar situation. Having lost a sizable amount of non-Mormons to the new People's Alliance Party, there are some who wish to dissolve the party outright and merge. John Ingalls, former Speaker of the House, is running a final time. In addition to supporting annexation of the Dakota territory, Ingalls supports monetary compensation and the option of citizenship for those of the Lakota and Cheyenne tribes, as well as citizenship. Ingalls also supports Clay's railroad regulation, and is calling for further oversights of trusts in general. Moses Thatcher, a young Senator from the new state of Babel, is contesting the Radical nomination as well. Moses Thatcher supports federal temperance legislation, but is out of step with his party in supporting Cleveland's push for the gold standard, having been Treasurer during Babel's period of independence.

Lastly, there is the Destiny Party. Born out of disaffected Whigs, some are skeptical as to whether the party will have relevance if the Whigs and Radicals aren't merged. However, there are some that are optimistic about the party's future, given that they attained 16% of the vote, despite little network and no party machinery. Samuel Randall, the party's chief founder and a former Whig leader in the House, is running for the nomination once more. In addition, former Whig activist William Walker is contending the Presidency on an expansionist platform that would make Randall blush, calling for American control of the entire continent. In addition, there's a movement to nominate George Custer, who is significantly less radical, but is considered a hero in America.

Three days.
17  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Office of Northeast Speaker cinyc on: April 12, 2014, 09:04:17 pm
Oh, bummer. I was counting on you running again. Undecided
18  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: April 12, 2014, 01:18:00 am
Night of the caucus: 1988

After Thad's relaxing Christmas night, he made his return to Washington D.C. He continued his usual activities of attending the Senate, casual drinking at the Drunken Dutchman, and enjoying a good night's sleep for about a week. However, one morning while sleeping on Scott Westman's couch, Thad had been roused from his slumber by the sound of knocking at the door. He lazily groaned while rolling off of the couch, before stumbling his way toward the door.

Thad opened the door to find a tall, dark man wearing sunglasses and a dark suit. It was Santiago St. Avila, a Senator from Washington. "You're awfully hard to track down, you know," said Santiago. Thad grinned and nodded. "Where is Lawrence? Usually it is he that is dispatched to find me," he said. "Lawrence has been working hard in Vermont, and while the tide has been turning there, it's by no means a safe bet. Support for Weicker is still strong," said Santiago. "I understand. Now, for what purpose have you come here?" asked Thad O'Connor.

"Our good friend Areus is having some of his closer friends over to watch the results of the Iowa Caucuses. He's quite optimistic, and he'd like you to come. I must warn you that it's in Vegas, though." Thad quickly realized that he'd have to fly. ""Come now, you've flown before," said Santiago, with a grin. "Anyways, Areus has a ticket prepared in case you'd like to be there. He'd also like for you to get Dent and Westman to come." Thad was confused. "I could not prevail upon either of them to support him," he said. "Yeah, he's aware. But he's persistent," said Santiago.

Soon after, Santiago St. Avila left, and Thad took up the unenviable task of convincing Westman to go to Areus' place in Vegas to watch the election returns. However, Scott Westman had not been bedded the night before, and was unapproachable. "Fly out to Vegas for his faggy little victory party? No thanks," he responded. Thad spoke to Jefferson Dent later that day, but was given a similar reception. "I really wish you wouldn't waste my time with this, Thad," said Dent. Thus, Thad would only enjoy the company of Lawrence Coventry and Ralph Stevenson on the long flight to Las Vegas.

The flight was not an easy one for Thad - none ever were. He busied himself with trying to sleep in his chair, while Lawrence and Ralph laughed and joked. Occasionally they would try to wake Thad, but they would be met with a terse response every time. When they landed Thad was still irritable and intemperate, despite his rest on the flight. Lawrence hailed a taxi, and within minutes they found themselves outside a lavish building.

Thad had been conditioned to expect Prudence outside the door. However, since they were at a different building, he was greeted by the stereotypical showgirl; her face was obscured by a gold peacock mask, and upon her head was a garish frilled headdress. Thad paid her no mind, though Lawrence and Ralph were visibly flustered. "How's it going, Tempest?" Lawrence would ask. The woman giggled, but offered no response as the three made their way through the doors. Lawrence pointed toward a set of stairs with a gold-speckled railing, and the three made their way down.

After some additional guidance, Thad found his feat treading a red plush carpet. "Welcome Thad!" exclaimed a voice - it was Areus Ho'kee himself. Visibly drunk, he rushed toward Thad and gave him a hug. "I'm glad to see that you guys made it. Where are Jefferson Dent and Scott Westman?" he asked. "Dent was bed-riddenly sick, and Scott said he still had no interest in supporting you," said Thad. Areus sighed. "The man's got an erection so often it's robbed his brain of blood," he said, in reference to Westman. Thad noticed Ericson Snell sitting on a large couch and offered a wave. "Hey Thad," said Snell, raising his drink as a means of greeting. He held a large cup of scotch "on the rocks" and seemed more affable than usual.

"Now that we've got some people here, I should see to it that we have adequate entertainment," said Ho'kee, and he took off.  Soon after, Melliflia made her way into the room. Much like the girl at the door, she was dressed like a typical showgirl, but her face had been adorned with synthetic jewels and her cheeks bedecked with glitter. She locked hands with Lawrence and the two held a kiss for half a minute, before she departed.

"Truly your relationship with her is inappropriate," said Ericson. "What makes you say that?" asked Lawrence in response. "You know what she is. For God's sake, she sleeps with men for money!" exclaimed Snell. "Those are 'clients.' That's strictly for work. Her and I have an understanding, and I'm fine wih that," said Lawrence. Snell was incredulous at this point. "How in the hell do expect to raise children in such an environment, then?" he asked.

"I don't wish to have kids," said Lawrence. "Boss-man had her tubes tied years ago. Unlike most of you, I think there's more to life than depositing your ejaculate into another human being," said Lawrence. Snell was about to respond when a voice had interjected. "We're all the by-product of somebody's ejaculate," it said. The whole room turned to see that Areus Ho'kee had returned. "I'm fine with any philandering that Lawrence does with Melliflia so long as it doesn't interfere with her work, and my bottom line," he said. Four girls flanked him, and they quickly took to "entertaining" the guests.

Snell was beside himself, but didn't pursue the conversation any further. Soon after, other Mavericks began to show up: Santiago St. Avila arrived, donning a black gaucho hat and a matching cloak. Alice Luce, whom Thad hadn't seen in years, sauntered in with a pair of black heels and a frilly cocktail dress. Numerous other friends and associates showed up intermittently, though Areus seemed most pleased when the young Abimelech Delroy showed up. Areus granted him an even more gratuitous greeting than he did Thad, and showered upon him an odd fatherly love.

The room took to talking, while Thad relaxed on the couch that Snell had been on earlier. Alice Luce was quick to seat herself next to Thad, offering little if any space between them. "I must say, I'm really impressed with the work you've been doing," she said, while her hand caressed the inside of Thad's thigh. Thad knew that her relations with Westman must have soured, since it'd been at least two years since she was last at his residence in D.C. He was quick to distance himself from her, sliding further down the couch. "What's the matter?" she asked seductively, pulling him back toward her.

"I don't think Scott would appreciate this. Not to mention, I have other obligations that I ought to keep. I apologize," said Thad. Alice grew frustrated and left, instead approaching Lawrence, who also rebuffed her advances. Thad would find himself in conversation with James Garner, and as the night progressed, so would his inebriation. Thus his mood had begun to improve. While all seemed to be ignoring the television, Areus was quick to command the room's attention when the news station announced that the caucuses had just ended.

"Good company, it is the likes of you that I owe this great victory to tonight. For every one architect, two dozen laborers are needed. The air conditioned drafting studio is a far cry from the sweltering heat and manual labor that goes into construction, but both are equally important. Thus, despite being the mind behind all of this, I could not have set it in motion without your help. Let us toast to a new political order that fundamentally challenges the existing dichotomy. Cheers," said Ho'kee, and he proferred his wine glass. The rest of the room drank in libation.

The Iowa Caucuses had ceased some time ago, but the winner still hadn't been projected. As the night progressed, the room gradually became less relaxed and the center of attention shifted toward the television. It wasn't until the wee hours of the next morning that there had been an official projection made. "All of the ballots have been counted, and after close scrutiny, we can confirm that Bill Armstrong has won the Iowa Caucuses."
19  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: April 12, 2014, 01:17:13 am
Christmas: 1987

Thad had not been to D.C. since that night he, Ho'kee, and the others had convened with Simpson. He had spent most of December touring Massachusetts and New Hampshire on behalf of Ho'kee's campaign, in hopes of persuading independent voters and those committed to ending the war in Iran to support Ho'kee. Some of these events, such those in Amherst, Massachusetts and Dartmouth, New Hampshire, drew several hundred people, while others such as those in Stockbridge only drew a dozen. Nonetheless, Thad worked doggedly in an effort to sway these states toward Ho'kee.

During this tour, he had not exactly been enjoying a lifestyle that was becoming of a United States Senator. This was not unusual to him, as he'd spent many a night either in Scott Westman's living room or in the storage room of the Stevenson Brewery, but even for Thad the stitched up couch in a random supporter's house was a bit taxing. That being said, the heaps of snow and the shrieks of wind gales were quick reminders to Thad that such a situation was preferable to sleeping in the back seat of his car. Thad kept to this schedule for several weeks, before encountering Ralph Stevenson at an event in Ossipee, New Hampshire.

"Good to see you, Thad. It's been a few weeks," said Ralph. Thad nodded in response. "So, I have to ask, what'll you be doing for Christmas in a few days?" asked Ralph. "I'd been considering renting a hotel room and buying some cheap wine," responded Thad. Ralph looked down at Thad with some pity. "Have any interest in keeping me company? I don't think I'll be spending much time with my family this year. In fact, we could invite Cynthia - I know she'd love to see you," he said. Thad found this agreeable, and assented to meet him on Christmas day. That night he slept in the house of a blonde woman in her sixties who seemed all too eager to host him. However, nothing came of the night except for a few free mixed drinks.

Thus, two days later he pulled into the driveway of Ralph's house outside of Portland. Noticing a wreath hanging off the door, he helped himself into Ralph's house. He was greeted by Ralph and Cynthia, in a candle-lit room. "Glad to see you made it, Thad!" said Ralph. Cynthia jumped from the couch and leapt into his arms. "Thad!" she exclaimed. He hugged her close for a few seconds, and then the two sat on the couch together. "Merry Christmas Thad," said Ralph. "So, how does it feel to be back home?"

"I'm not sure, in all honesty. It is helpful for constituent services, but the campaigning has become a bit tiresome," said Thad. "Well, look at it this way; this helps you get some exposure for the Senate race. You know that's still a thing, right?" asked Ralph. Thad nodded. "Of course. I wonder, is all this work for naught, though? What if Areus does not prevail in the Iowa Caucuses?" said Thad, rhetorically.

"Apparently Ho'kee has been putting in his all in Iowa. Lots of leaflets about Gingrich. It sounds a little unsavory to me, but I guess the end-game is what's important here," said Ralph. Cynthia nodded in concurrence, saying, "We gotta get Areus elected if we want to put an end to this nonsense in Iran. If one or two reputations are collateral, so be it. That's a lot less important than what's at stake for thousands of Americans." Thad merely nodded in agreement. Ralph decided to lighten the mood by approaching his turntable and putting on America's self-titled album.

The night progressed, and Ralph found himself to be the first to fall asleep. Thad and Cynthia sat quietly until the candles blew out. Suddenly, he felt a pair of hands push him on his back, and shortly after a pair of fingernails found purchase on the back of his head. "Good to have you alone..." said Cynthia. The moonlight shone out the window, and gave form to the dim silhouette of mistletoe dangling in front of his face. "Cynthia, is now the night?" asked Thad with hesitation. She sprang up from the couch in response.

"Is now the night?!" she exclaimed rhetorically. "Gee, I don't know Thad, when is the night! You've done nothing but dangle me from the edge of you finger for years! Make up your mind! What is it?" she exclaimed. Thad hurried to quiet her down. "I don't wish to wake Ralph," he said. "F*** Ralph! At what point am I the one that matters!" she shrieked, pushing Thad off of her. He backed off and she stormed off to the other side of the room, starting to cry.

It was this that triggered a moment of introspection within Thad. He grabbed the mistletoe that had been tossed aside, and approached her from behind. "Cynthia, it was wrong of me to be as dithering as I have. Such behavior is unbecoming of a man. While what happened in the past is important, I ought to acknowledge that life is ever-changing. From now on, I will be real to you," said Thad, as he clasped her hips. She turned to face him, asking, "Do you really mean that?"

Thad dangled the mistletoe in response.

He would later write a poem about Cynthia:

Her walk so mesmerizing
Hips sway to and fro
She was quite hypnotizing
No matter where she'd go
Symmetrical like a vase
And deft moves in stiletto
She could take the deepest bass
And turn it to falsetto
She caused most boys to swoon
Freckles so magnificent
Her skin could reflect the moon
And she looked so luminescent
Her dark red hair like a fire
And lips so plush
Her voice an angel choir
Could turn diamond to slush
Quite the treasure chest
Held in her bosom
Which could make any wave crest
And cause any weed to blossom
20  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: Office of Governor Dallasfan65 on: April 11, 2014, 04:39:19 pm
Northeastern Debate Repeal Act
1. The Northeast Debate Act of 2013 is hereby repealed.
2. The Amendment to the Northeast Debate Act of 2013 is hereby repealed.

K9 Unit Reform Act
1)   The use of narcotics-detection dogs by Northeastern law enforcement agencies is hereby banned in the Northeast. This does not prohibit other legal police activity involving dogs.
2)   Narcotics-detection dogs may be adopted by individuals trained to work with police dogs including but not limited to retired or former police officers and military officials.
3)   This legislation shall go into effect on January 1st, 2015.

I sign both,

21  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: NE2: K9 Unit Reform Act (Debating) on: April 09, 2014, 11:10:17 pm
I don't support taking away legitimate tools from law enforcement.  A properly trained narcotics dog is an asset to any police force.
The question is, can dogs be trained to the point where they can consistently sniff out illegal drugs? The evidence provided by Governor Dallasfan would suggest that the answer is no. Continuing to utilize an ineffective tool just seems like bad policy, regardless of where one stands on illegal narcotics.

That brings to mind another question: Currently, are there even narcotics that are illegal to possess in Atlasia?

Most of everything has been decriminalized in Atlasia. However, even in the United States, where alcohol prohibition has been lifted for nearly a century, there's still prosecution of illegal moonshining. I don't think it's a big leap of faith to suggest that law enforcement is still cracking down on substances that have only been decriminalized, or that such dogs are still in the employ of law enforcement for such purposes.

I think cinyc does raise a good point that such dogs may also be trained for other purposes, such as criminal pursuit or rescue, so Sirnick's amendment may be appropriate here.

Quote from: cinyc
Yes, they can consistently sniff out illegal drugs.  According to a Polish police study, drug dogs were effective in finding hidden drugs 88% of the time, giving false positives only 5% of the time.  Even in the toughest environments, like outdoor or car searches, they were more likely than not to find the drugs. 

I don't like to take legitimate tools away from law enforcement.  This isn't like a polygraph, which can be easily fooled.  A dog smells what he smells.

I'd like to take note that the dogs were most effective in detecting the most liberalized substance (marijuana) in the study, but I digress, since training methods may have adjusted accordingly.

But how about when the handlers aren't in on the gig?

A 2011 study led by the University of California at Davis neurologist Lisa Lit, reported in the journal Animal Cognition, shows how powerful a handler’s cuing of his dog can be. Lit and her colleagues had 18 handlers walk their police dogs through four rooms where they were told drug or explosive scents might be hidden but where in fact there were no target substances to be found. Each team went through each room twice, for a total of 144 sweeps, and generated 225 false alerts. The alerts occurred most frequently near markers that the handlers were told indicated the presence of scents; they were even more likely at those spots than at unmarked locations where the researchers had hidden Slim Jims and new tennis balls as distractions. “Human more than dog influences affected alert locations,” Lit and her colleagues concluded. “This confirms that handler beliefs affect outcomes of scent detection dog deployments.”

Surely a police agency would have some vested interest in trying to demonstrate that their own investigation methods work. I'd like to go with something with more independent scrutiny.

At best, an aggregate of cinyc's study and the ones that I've posted would indicate that a dog's effectiveness is "meh." Surely "meh" isn't muster for probable cause to search an entire person's person, or vehicle?
22  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: 1884 U.S. Presidential Election on: April 09, 2014, 10:23:46 am

Governor Grover Cleveland (Union-New York)/Representative Henry Adams (Union-Massachusetts), 287 electoral votes, 52.8% of the popular votep
Governor Benjamin Harrison (People's Alliance-Indiana)/Senator Joseph F. Smith (People's Alliance-Illinois) 91 electoral votes, 30.6% of the popular vote
Representative Samuel Randall (Destiny-Pennsylvania)/Senator John T. Morgan (Destiny-Alabama) 16.7% of the popular vote, 20 electoral votes
23  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: 1884 U.S. Presidential Election on: April 09, 2014, 09:05:29 am
Sorry for the wait. Been backed up with work, had an exam, etc.

'84 map is on the desktop and will be uploaded shortly.
24  Forum Community / Forum Community Election Match-ups / Guntaker vs The BP Oil Spill on: April 08, 2014, 10:00:18 pm
Guntaker vs The BP Oil Spill
25  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: NE2: K9 Unit Reform Act (Debating) on: April 07, 2014, 07:58:28 pm
That seems fair, sirnick, so long as we can get them prohibited from being used for narcotics-detection purposes. Amendment is friendly.
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