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News: Don't forget to get your 2013 Gubernatorial Endorsements and Predictions in!

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1  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Opinion of Hamas on: July 28, 2014, 03:17:56 am
Actually, irrelevant. They are a horrid batch of idiots, but they are not the cause of anything.
2  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: The 2014 election season starts (June 24: CO, FL-19, MD, MS, NY, OK, SC, UT) on: June 24, 2014, 09:21:27 pm
I do not see how McDaniel wins.  Jones I think is likely to give him another net 2500 votes but he is behind by more than 4000 and there is still more of Hinds to come.

97% of Hinds has reported. So, it will be closer.
3  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: The 2014 election season starts (June 24: CO, FL-19, MD, MS, NY, OK, SC, UT) on: June 24, 2014, 09:15:55 pm
Getting very close, about 2.5 thousand votes margin at this point - and a lot of Jones still out.
4  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: The 2014 election season starts (June 24: CO, FL-19, MD, MS, NY, OK, SC, UT) on: June 24, 2014, 08:59:19 pm
Looks like campaign experience will win, having been forewarned in time. Barely though.
5  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: The 2014 election season starts (June 24: CO, FL-19, MD, MS, NY, OK, SC, UT) on: June 24, 2014, 08:15:49 pm
Quote from: Midwest Representative Adam C. FitzGerald
Cochran's lead has lessened a bit, 55-45, over McDaniel with 12% in. These returns are still very early and I still see a big McDaniel comeback very likely in the coming returns.

Any reason why you think that?

Jones county could be one.

Still does look like Cochran's campaign managed to get some black vote out for them.
6  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: The 2014 election season starts (June 24: CO, FL-19, MD, MS, NY, OK, SC, UT) on: June 24, 2014, 07:56:21 pm
Might be too early, but looks not too bad for Cochran.
7  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 12, 2014, 08:28:18 pm
As war I am describing moving in a large number foreign agents into the country. There is not even a pretense that these were locals - all the top military commanders are Russians, with basically no history anywhere in Ukraine. For one of the first press-conferences they pushed out the one Ukrainian they had - and even that one has spent the last 20 years in Crimea (at one of the press-conferences he started crying that his family and childhood friends from his native village in Ukraine proper have been calling him, cursing him as a traitor: he said he would never forgive this to Ukrainian media).  They literally had nobody else with even a plausible Southern Russian - forget, Ukrainian - accent. I mean, they barely have any military commander of importance who pronounces the "gamma" as a "h" - this is not even Ukrainian, all the adjacent Russian provinces share this (remember one Mikhail Horbachev?).  It is true, the self-declared "political leaders" of the DNR and LNR are locals -  the most important of them previously known, mainly, for participating in pyramid schemes or for impersonating Santa Claus, almost none of them who had previously been involved in any sort of politics at all (unless you count getting a 100 votes while miserably losing in a city council election or other exploits of the same nature). Nor are they in control of anything in their "Republics" - they are puppets, whom the Russians arrest for any disagreement (the mother of the "people's mayor" of Slavyansk has been on TV crying that they have taken her son somewhere and she does not know where he is).  Strelkov has made speech after speech lambasting the locals for refusing to join in the Struggle: "we came in to fight for you, and you do not want to move a finger". Yes, a popular struggle it is.

These (well-armed) foreign agents occupy not merely public buildings, but military and police installations, distribute guns to local criminals (starting a waive of marauder attackes), arrest or otherwise disappear hundreds of local residents (some of whom are later found dead), declare extra-judicial executions (based on a Soviet decree from June 22, 1941 - I am not joking, this is the preamble to an execution list produced by Strelkov), confiscate private property (such as cars, houses, etc.) for "revolutionary needs", take over a chunk of the border, thorough which they increasingly receive military equipment....

Yes, it is not a war. It is a picnic by a group of polite Russian tourists, who are simply "reconstructing" some scenes from WWI. How could Ukrainians be so mistaken?
8  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 12, 2014, 08:05:12 pm
Strongly nationalist repressive undemocratic regime, combining elements of personality cult of the National Leader, state capitalism (with private business and property rights operating at the pleasure of the Leader), servile judiciary, completely emasculated popular representation at all levels,   demonization of foreigners and selected minorities, marginalization of all opposition as "foreign agents", widespread use of criminal prosecution for political means, government control over most media (heavily used for internal propaganda purposes), strong expansionist demands towards neighbors, increasing militarization, expanded role of security services, use of extra-legal militarized formations by the government ... Should I continue? Any one of those or even a few together, perhaps, would not justify the "fascist" lable. But current Russian regime combines them all - and more. It is rapidly becoming a most classic fascist dictatorship - not recognizing it means either ignorance or intellectual dishonesty.

Anyway, the undisputed European fascists are in no doubt what they are facing. They all adore Mr. Putin - he is the one of them who got to live the dream.
9  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: SHOCK poll: Eric Cantor (R) in primary trouble !? on: June 12, 2014, 02:46:18 pm
So apparently Brat's campaign manager is...well...read for yourselves Tongue
http://news.yahoo.com/brat-campaign-manager-scrubs-facebook-page-after-election-173536113.html

He also has some pretty unorthodox economic views, especially for someone who is...err...an economics professor:
http://wonkwire.rollcall.com/2014/06/11/brat-says-bernanke-failed-underestimated-protestants/

I don't know if it is unorthodox for an economics professor, but it's clearly inspired by the work of Max Weber. 

It's honestly the sort of argument I'd expect from the sociologist in this race, not the economist. I don't mean that in a disparaging way at all--I have a higher opinion of sociology than of economics as an academic discipline, overall--but it's just not the sort of theory I'd expect to see come from an economics department.

It is coming from a theological seminary in this case Smiley

Randolph Macon College has a good religious studies program and is institutionally affiliated with the United Methodist Church, but it is not a theological seminary - it's a liberal arts college. When I visited there as a prospective student I got the impression of a beautiful campus with great professors, and students who were world-class experts in the consumption of booze.  There isn't generally a strong religious emphasis unless you seek it out.

Brat has a degree from Princeton Theological Seminary. I think ag is saying that those views are rooted in his religious education and not as much his economics education.

Exactly Smiley
10  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 12, 2014, 02:19:29 pm
Enjoy. http://echo.msk.ru/blog/maryautomne/1332306-echo/

There is more, if you are interested, but some of that is pretty graphic. Yandex груз 200, it will work.


I just was about to repeat that I did acknowledge that these guys tended to have RESIGNED from the Russian security services - sometimes days or weeks before finding themselves in Ukraine, so "technically" you were right. However, as of today, it seems, you are wrong even on technicality (not that being "technically" correct ever mattered).

http://www.ostro.org/general/society/news/446841/

Apparently, Russian anti-aircraft units have been protecting these tanks since the morning. This, by the way, is pretty deep inside Ukraine.

The war, of course, has been started and perpetuated BY the RUSSIANS. Nobody is even pretending otherwise - except in what goes for the consumption of some useful idiots in Europe. "Мы готовы умереть на развалинах Славянка, но с твердой верой, что наши убитые и раненые под безответным гаубичным огнем — не напрасные жертвы! И что мы не зря принесли с собой войну в этот прекрасный город и жертвы его населения тоже не напрасны!" This is not Ukrainian propaganda - this is His Excellency Comrade Strelkov, the Commander-in-Chief of the army of the Donetsk Republic in person (the gentleman, by the way, is a native of Moscow - he was a year senior to my wife in college - who had never lived anywhere near Donetsk). The victims are the victims of the Russians, whom you insist on defending. The war crimes are committed by the Russians - but, of course, as long as the war crimes are committed by true fascists you will always support them.
11  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: SHOCK poll: Eric Cantor (R) in primary trouble !? on: June 12, 2014, 12:26:08 am
He also has some pretty unorthodox economic views, especially for someone who is...err...an economics professor:
http://wonkwire.rollcall.com/2014/06/11/brat-says-bernanke-failed-underestimated-protestants/

I wonder, if he's ever been to South Africa Smiley)
12  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: SHOCK poll: Eric Cantor (R) in primary trouble !? on: June 12, 2014, 12:25:13 am
So apparently Brat's campaign manager is...well...read for yourselves Tongue
http://news.yahoo.com/brat-campaign-manager-scrubs-facebook-page-after-election-173536113.html

He also has some pretty unorthodox economic views, especially for someone who is...err...an economics professor:
http://wonkwire.rollcall.com/2014/06/11/brat-says-bernanke-failed-underestimated-protestants/

I don't know if it is unorthodox for an economics professor, but it's clearly inspired by the work of Max Weber. 

It's honestly the sort of argument I'd expect from the sociologist in this race, not the economist. I don't mean that in a disparaging way at all--I have a higher opinion of sociology than of economics as an academic discipline, overall--but it's just not the sort of theory I'd expect to see come from an economics department.

It is coming from a theological seminary in this case Smiley
13  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 11, 2014, 11:55:45 pm
One thing in which the Ukrainian government has been clearly delinquent is the refugee policy. It has been left to regions, really - very little is obviously done at the national level. And there has been a lot more done, it seems, about the Crimeans than about the Donetsk/Luhansk people (there the main preoccupation too frequently is that these may be infiltrators).

It goes beyond providing buses to take those who want to move (some public transportation still works in most places in any cas). At a minimum, what should have been done is creating an office in each regional capital responsible for temporary resettlement. A lot of the people in the affected regions are either retirees or state employees. They are left destitute in the worst-affected parts, which by itself prevents evacuation (for instance, in Slavyansk banks are closed and salaries/pensions are not being paid). The retirees should have been assisted in opening accounts in banks in locations of their choice.  State employees should have bee offered temporary transfers - even if, for the moment, there is no real job for them elsewhere. School year is over, fortunately, but schoolchildren also should be guaranteed places in schools. All evacuees should be paid some start-up money. Private companies should be offered tax incentives to hire them.
14  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: The 2014 election season starts (June 10: AR, ME, NV, ND, SC, VA) on: June 11, 2014, 12:39:43 am
I'm not sure if Democrats should be pleased by Cantor losing. Yes, Cantor's awful, but he was challenged from the right. Though I suppose it shakes up the GOP leadership and losing the only Republican Jew in Congress may have symbolic impact.

Well, at the very least the new guy will, for the moment, have no seniority and little weight in the House. So, the real question is, who replaces Cantor in the leadership. And that can go either way. A high profile Republican big shot has been taken out - without any effort by the Dems. Why would they be sorry?
15  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: SHOCK poll: Eric Cantor (R) in primary trouble !? on: June 10, 2014, 11:00:51 pm
It would be smart for the the Dems nationwide, at this point, to embrace the likes of Cochran and Cantor. Whether Cantor was or was not a moderate is irrelevant: he has to be a moderate now, at least in the Dems telling of it. The narrative should be: Republicans are killing off their moderates, those who are trying to make things work. Whether the local candidate is moderate or not, he will be in the caucus with the Brats and McDaniels. It will not hurt the actual Brats and McDaniels, of course, but it can build a narrative useful in more moderate places.
16  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: SHOCK poll: Eric Cantor (R) in primary trouble !? on: June 10, 2014, 10:52:07 pm
is it possible for him to run as an independent a la Murkowski or Lieberman?
He can do a write in like Murkowski, but he cant run as a independent.

The district is very Republican, but not so Republican that him getting any traction would keep it safe. It would be a crazy thing for him to attempt.
17  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: The 2014 election season starts (June 10: AR, ME, NV, ND, SC, VA) on: June 10, 2014, 08:08:38 pm
Brat is a colleague, of sorts. Unfortunately, he seems to have no publications in journals I have every heard of. The Dem is a sociologist - have no clue what he is supposed to be doing.
18  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: The 2014 election season starts (June 10: AR, ME, NV, ND, SC, VA) on: June 10, 2014, 07:54:10 pm
I believe, Cantor was the only Republican Jew in Congress.  Is there any chance somebody else gets in instead?
19  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Israel responds to new Palestinian gov. with settlement expansions on: June 09, 2014, 09:38:08 pm
I think even the Zionists realize that, but like the Palestinians, they too have essentially given up on the idea that a stable two-state solution is possible.  
I think most people realize that the only stable solution is a one state solution, with the two people living together, without apartheid. It's the most utopic but it's the only real stable solution... We will see in 50 years.

That would make the whole idea of Israel pointless and with the higher Palestinian birthrate it would quickly lead to an Arab majority.

This is true but it in no way invalidates anything swl said.

It invalidates the part about such a state being stable.
Why? Jews could live as a minority, like the whites in South-Africa. It's either that or colonization and ethnic cleansing.


The fact is, the one thing that unifies (almost all) Israeli right and (overwhelming majority of) its left is the basic Zionist idea of the Jewish state. This idea leaves me entirely cold - so whatever I write here is not about me. A one-state solution, whatever the ethnic or religious majority, is something I would find personally attractive. But that is exactly the reason I do not have anything to do with Israel.

But for the Israeli Jews this would require complete reassessment of who they are and why they are there. It would be not too bad for the religious types: for them the Holiness of the land is simply there, whoever else is there. But most secular Israelis would struggle to reconcile themselves to this being anything but the Jewish state. We might chuckle at the anachronistic romanticism of the Zionist myth, but it is real to them. Talk to the Peace Now people - as likely as not they want to give up the West Bank not merely because they see the injustice perpetuated against the Palestinians (which many do), but also because they see how it is threatening their dream of the Jewish state. It is their dream, as much as it is the dream of the likudniks.

One fights dreams at oneīs peril. If a one-state solution were adopted, there would be too many who would choose to fight. Though I do not share those emotions, I know where they are coming from. It is too dangerous to rouse them.
20  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 09, 2014, 09:13:52 pm

Regarding your ridiculous insinuation that I would want my country to be invaded, I probably should feel insulted but then I realized that you probably would like it very much if Russia was to be controlled by other countries, so it's not surprising that you're projecting your views on other people.

You really do not want Bulgaria to be returned into the fold? Then switch back on your eyes, your ears and your brain, and get to terms with what is going on. The largest European country has had a proper fascist regime installed, the regime bent on acquiring back what it considers lost. It is a clear and present danger to all around it. Not so much to myself - I live in one of the safest places there is out there in case the worst happens. But you do not have that luxury.

Enjoy

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vCsRaD-2uW0
21  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 09, 2014, 09:05:20 pm

The brave Ukrainians, protectors of the free world! Roll Eyes Thanks, I needed a laugh. I should probably ask why you think that Russia would invade Bulgaria, but I see your non-response to Snowstalker, so it's pointless to try again, as you obviously don't have any rational arguments to support this idea. And the saying was about Poland, not Bulgaria.


Good, somebody still can laugh. I cannot anymore, I cry. We do not know, who is going to be next: but we know, that it only can be stopped by resistance. Unless the Russians feel the pain, they will go on. You are lucky to not have the common border: but that might be only a matter of time.

BTW, I hear your government has had the temerity to suspend the Southern Flow, hasnīt it? How dared it?
22  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 09, 2014, 08:57:42 pm

Quote
5. It is well-documented that not only the Russians put their artillery within populated districts, but that they frequently use it to shoot other populated districts as well. You seem to ignore that little-significant fact. Ukrainians have to liberate their citizens who are in mortal danger from the invasion.
I don't exactly see how what Russia does excuse what Ukraine is doing (and it should be added that Russia was fighting actual terrorists). And the citizens in those regions were not in mortal danger until the Ukrainians began to "liberate" them (not to mention that they might not want to be liberated). It seems you are ignoring the Crimea, which despite being woefully deprived of a "liberation" campaign, suffered only three casualties. But I'm sure they're now envious there that the Donbas is about to be liberated Roll Eyes

I wonder, what would you consider adequate action, if Varna were occupied by the Russians who were going around killing people and staging extra-judicial executions.

Yes, Ukraine gave up Crimea without fight, because it hoped to avoid casualties. Its reward: Donetsk and Luhansk. If it did not resist there, it would have been Cherson and Odessa, Dnipropetrovsk and Charkiv, Sumy and Kyiv - and all the way to Lviv. So, they are resisting - how dare they.

Ukraine's basic excuse at this point is that it has given up its nukes back in the 1990s in exchange for "guarantees of territorial integrity". If it hadn't, it could have simply nuked Moscow - which would have been a proper response. But it cannot.
23  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 09, 2014, 08:53:33 pm

Quote
4. The Luhansk bombing was, it seems, a -up. I am not an expert, though, so I will wait for more info. Still, it is by no means a humanitarian disaster - the Russian headquarters took the brunt: during a major battle in which they were attacking (eventually, successfully) a military camp (it surrendered 24 hours later).  Still, doing that in the city center, I will be the first to acknowledge, was irresponsible. And, in the end, useless - they did lose the battle. Of course, if they did not care about the civilians they could have easily won: so far the Russians do not dare to put in the air force, so Ukrainian force could have been devastating. But in the city this would mean civilian casualties.
That's possible. It's also possible that they think that this would be going too and Russia's patience will finally run out. Or that they will lose planes - and considering the state of the Ukrainian army, that's not a minor worry. And when you look at the record of the Ukrainian army and the thugs pretending to be a National guard regarding civilian casualties, I don't think your arguments look especially convincing.

I did not get any of this, except something about "Russian patience". I think, it might be worth putting into a signature. Patience of a wolf with respect to the sheep that has the gall to try kicking. How dare it - it might hurt the babies.
24  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 09, 2014, 08:50:17 pm

I've seen the cluster bombing reported quite a bit in foreign media. For example here in Bulgaria it was reported by Darik Radio which is about as right-wing and anti-Russian as you can get here.

You have missed the news. Most European fascists have switched to adoring Russia: the last Great White Hope of Europe.
25  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: June 09, 2014, 08:48:42 pm

Quote
2. I never said it will happen this year. I continue saying that, unless Ukraine stands up and supported, it will happen quite soon.
Considering that Russia has now very good reasons to intervene against Ukraine, but is still doing basically nothing, your assertions do not seem to be based on anything but paranoia. Or perhaps a desire to get attention, but I prefer not to speculate. Though I wonder what your explanation is for why this ultra-aggressive Russia decided to start the wars of expansion against a country that actually gave it a pretty good excuse to do and in one of the few places where a Russian intervention would be welcomed.

Very good reasons - that Russia itself has manufactured with great care. Had the Ukrainians done nothing, of course, if they behaved as they in Crimea, Donetsk and Luhansk would have long been incorporated into Russia and the same "polite men" would have been in Cherson and Odessa by now.


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