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News: Atlas Hardware Upgrade complete October 13, 2013.

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10976  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: North Carolina Senate 2008: Dole Leads Rivals on: September 20, 2007, 06:12:40 pm
A new Public Policy Polling (D) survey finds Sen. Elizabeth Dole (R-NC) leads State Rep. Grier Martin (D), 45% to 30%, and tops UNC basketball coach Dean Smith (D), 41% to 35%, in hypothetical general election match-ups for U.S. Senate.

Bad news for Grier Martin: he's moving backwards.

A July 2007 poll from the same firm had the race at Dole 43%; Martin 37%.

That is, of course, if you lend any credence to a PPP firm poll, which the July 2007 results seem to indicate you really shouldn't.
10977  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Gubernatorial/Statewide Elections / Re: First Research 2000 Indiana poll shows Daniels (R) ahead of Long-Thompson (D on: September 20, 2007, 03:14:38 pm
Is Long-Thompson really the best candidate the Democrats can find here?

How is she not a good candidate?  She's had experience in Congress and in government before and held a swing district until her defeat in the very Republican year of 2002.  Having said that I thought that Tim Roemer might well run. 

How is she not a good candidate?  Because she's lost more races for congress than she's won?  (Four and counting.)  Because she was a mere two-term Rep who served from 1991–1995, well over 12 years ago?  Because the only person genuinely excited about Jill Long Thompson's candidacy is Jill Long Thompson?
10978  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: New Hampshire Senate 2008: Field Clearing For Shaheen on: September 20, 2007, 03:05:25 pm
Very sad to hear.

You're the only person, of any political persuasion, who'd rather have the incompetent Katrina Swett as Senator than Jeanne Shaheen.

Oh, I think Dick Swett would rather have Katrina as Senator, and yes, I only made this post so I could once again insert the name 'Dick Swett' into civilized discussion.
10979  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Tightening the belt: Nassau bans trans fats on: September 20, 2007, 01:05:04 am
it's entirely unnecessary, has no health benefits whatsoever, and can be directly correlated to increased risk of coronary heart disease.

Which of these three will stop applying to eating at McDonalds once they make the switch away from trans fat?  (Hint: None.)
10980  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Primary for Atlas Progressives - offical thread on: September 20, 2007, 12:51:23 am
Regardless of political ideology, I am steadfastly opposed to removing anyone from the ballot for the reasons of "not being progressive enough."  If they're not progressive enough, then simply don't support them at the ballot box.
10981  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: Mike Johanns' Senate bid anger Farm Bill supporters on: September 20, 2007, 12:42:38 am
Actual title of the article: Bid ‘borders on irresponsible,’ says Sen. Conrad as Mike Johanns looks toward run for the Senate

The only Farm Bill supporters who are angered appear to be Democrats.  What a surprise!
10982  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: MN-03: Ramstead Retiring on: September 20, 2007, 12:41:05 am
MN-03 right now is contingent on candidate recruitment.  If the Democrats nominate someone too close to the middle, they'll lose support to an Indy candidate.

No, like I said, that shouldn't be a problem, Ralph Nader forever doomed that.

I wish you were right. But just last year, we narrowly lost two State Senate seats, which would've given Democrats a majority in the MI State Senate, because the Green Party siphoned off too many votes from the left (and, possibly, the disgruntled middle).

I know that when I'm disgruntled, the first thing I look for is the most bats**t nuts Green Party member I can find to vote for!  Smiley
10983  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: Thompson won't rule out drilling for oil... in Florida. on: September 19, 2007, 10:00:16 pm
I know there are sizable oil reserves off the Florida coast, and I know that unless oil gets to $500 a barrel, Florida will never support drilling to get to it.

Now, if *I* know about oil off the coast of Florida, why wouldn't a two-term senator from Tennessee?

They aren't talking about the coastal regions.  They are talking about the protected areas within the  Everglades.

Ah, okay.  Well, certainly, if you're going to be against one, you're going to be against the other.
10984  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Campaign Office for HappyWarrior on: September 19, 2007, 06:46:34 pm
I think both Inks and HappyWarrior make fine choices for Governor, but it's pretty clear to me that HappyWarrior is the most enthusiastic and energetic regarding the post.  I'd love to see all regions have the same kind of rejuvenation and resurgence that the Northeast is enjoying.

HappyWarrior has my support, as well.
10985  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: Thompson won't rule out drilling for oil... in Florida. on: September 19, 2007, 06:30:35 pm
He addressed that he didn't realize there was an oil source there and that he would have to look into it.

Honestly, that right there is the most worrying part.  Coastal drilling is a significant issue—and it has been for a while now.

Seriously, this is almost on par with not knowing that there's oil in the ANWR.

Back when Bush blocked access to the oil in Florida, the focus of most of the attention was on ANWAR, so unless you were keenly aware of Florida's oil (either following the events closely, live in Florida, or tied into the oil business), it wouldn't surprise me that someone didn't know about it.  I haven't looked, but I wonder if Florida's sandy ground would support a snorkel so someone could drill horizontally and tap the oil without ever putting the Everglades at risk.  That would be a win-win for everyone.

I know there are sizable oil reserves off the Florida coast, and I know that unless oil gets to $500 a barrel, Florida will never support drilling to get to it.

Now, if *I* know about oil off the coast of Florida, why wouldn't a two-term senator from Tennessee?
10986  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: 3rd Party from the right on: September 19, 2007, 06:27:11 pm
Alan Keyes as a Constitution Party candidate: guaranteed to get almost 10,000 votes nationwide!
10987  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: End of the Budget Amendment on: September 19, 2007, 12:57:03 pm
But it doesn't have to be, especially if the debate is shifted away from raw numbers and more towards general economic policy—which Atlasia definitely needs to have.

True enough. But I think in order to do that the budget system would have to be much simpler than current/former setup.

I don't think there's any arguement there that we should work towards a simpler budget setup.  That's why we need someone to be plying us with economic data—honestly, the most important figure are not the raw budget numbers, but the size of the deficit/surplus.  And I know there's been some crazy stuff going on in Atlasia to alter the figures (and that's another debate as to whether or not we should effectively "reset" our history, especially the ridiculous stuff), but a good "financial estimator" can just try their best to work it in.

By approaching the budget from that angle, rather than a revenue-minus-spending-equals-x angle, I think we could simplify things greatly.

And by costing out bills here going forward—I don't think it's unreasonable for Senators to have to give estimates of how much they'd cost the public if passed—coming up with next year's estimate will be a matter of simple math.
10988  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: How would a referendum on turning your city into a dry city go? on: September 19, 2007, 12:40:18 pm
itd probably pass.

heck, just last year the voters of the state of massachusetts rejected a referendum that would have allowed wine to be sold in grocery stores.  just shows how 'liberal' and 'progressive' we are here!

i may be wrong, but i still dont think liquor-by-the-drink is allowed here in medford.

liberal, my ass.

I think it's more negative connotations wet cities like Somerville and Cambridge have (most notably, the drunk, homeless guys begging for change).  I think Arlington is actually a dry town, IIRC.  I wouldn't be surprised if Medford would vote to make itself dry, but I'd suspect there's enough Tufts spillover that wet would carry the day.

Somerville is a good mix of old Italian families and yuppies/college kids.  I think dry would struggle to get to 30%.
10989  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: If you're the employer... on: September 19, 2007, 12:34:40 pm
Depends.  If it's just a regular office job with no face-to-face contact with clients, I'd be fine with a very minimal dress code so long as it was tasteful and didn't distract other employees (when I worked in publishing, going in to work in t-shirt, jeans, and sneakers was fine).

If it's a OTC sales job, I'd want my employees to be presentable and wearing something common that idenitfies them as an employee.  I'd be fine with guys in a store-supplied polo shirt and khakis—something they'd feel comfortable wearing.  If it's an OTC sales job at a clothing store, obviously, employees would be required to wear clothes sold at the store, and obviously, I'd be giving the employees a stipend and discount to do so.
10990  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: Thompson won't rule out drilling for oil... in Florida. on: September 19, 2007, 12:24:16 pm
He addressed that he didn't realize there was an oil source there and that he would have to look into it.

Honestly, that right there is the most worrying part.  Coastal drilling is a significant issue—and it has been for a while now.

Seriously, this is almost on par with not knowing that there's oil in the ANWR.
10991  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: MN-03: Ramstead Retiring on: September 19, 2007, 12:20:39 pm
Better chance at MN-03 than IL-14, that's for sure.

Oh, Lord yes.  MN-03 could be argued as a 50/50.  No way IL-14 can be.
10992  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: End of the Budget Amendment on: September 19, 2007, 12:18:47 pm
a GM named (I'm guessing we don't even have one at this point)

No, there is no GM anymore. The last one (ie; me) abolished the position (which I still think was the correct decision. The GM experiment was worth having, but it was still a failure).

Okay, so then some kind of amendment is still needed here: the budget process is constitutionally required to revolve around a position we don't have anymore.

Btw, the process of the budget was absolute hell and extremely dull to boot. Of course, my memories of it all are, perhaps, coloured by the fact that the time in which the Senate did budgets was also the time in which Vulgar Libertarianism* was the official ideology of this place.

But it doesn't have to be, especially if the debate is shifted away from raw numbers and more towards general economic policy—which Atlasia definitely needs to have.
10993  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Tightening the belt: Nassau bans trans fats on: September 19, 2007, 12:11:11 pm
The irony here is that public outrage about how unhealthy their old french fry oil—93% beef tallow—was what resulted in the introduction of their current cooking oil.

The problem is that going "trans-fat free" is more about marketing than it is anything else.  I mean, sure, trans fats aren't good for you—no kind of fat in the quantity people consume at a place like McDonalds is going to be.  It's not like people are going to stop having heart attacks from eating at McDonalds now.  The problem always was, and always will be, people eating too damn much of the stuff.

The free market is already moving away from trans fats because it's a great advertising gimmick.  But whatever, so long as the government feels good about itself.
10994  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Why did Clinton's approval go up when he was impeached? on: September 19, 2007, 11:56:39 am
Answer to the main question: because Clinton was successfully able to turn a trial about whether or not he committed "perjury" into a trial about whether or not he committed "adultery."

Clinton lied about his sex life. Libby lied about leaking information relating to national security. Which is more important?

Clinton perjured himself during a case about ruining Paula Jones' career.  Libby perjured himself during a case about ruining Valerie Plame's career.  The score there is a 1-1 tie so far as I'm concerned.
10995  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: Thompson won't rule out drilling for oil... in Florida. on: September 19, 2007, 11:48:35 am
Ol' man Thompson is just punting the state to Rudy, I see.
10996  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: 3rd Party from the right on: September 19, 2007, 11:46:18 am
I was just thinking about this, but what is the chances of a third party candidacy funded by the religious right for a Huckabee or Brownback ticket if someone like Rudy gets the GOP nom?

Not especially significant.  If the religious right can't organize enough to stop Rudy from getting the GOP nomination, then they're not going to be able to organize enough to mount a serious evangelical third party bid.

And neither Brownback nor Huckabee seem suicidal enough (or egotistical enough) to become the villian of a supermajority of Republicans nationwide.
10997  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: MN-03: Ramstead Retiring on: September 19, 2007, 11:43:39 am
IL-14: 50/50 chance Dems win

This is assuming Obama is the Dem nominee?

I think you have to assume a lot more than just Obama being the nominee for any of the Democratic political nobodies running to win in a GOP-leaning district like IL-14.
10998  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: NE-Senate-GOP-Primary: Bruning internal poll shows Johanns ahead on: September 19, 2007, 11:39:00 am
Q. What do Bob Kerrey and Bill Weld have in common?

They both spent the last year trying to pick up women in New York City bars?
10999  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Proportional Representation Bill on: September 19, 2007, 11:29:07 am
A great day, a day of a fair electoral system with PR is coming! Smiley

Half fair, half region-based, anyway.  Wink
11000  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: End of the Budget Amendment on: September 19, 2007, 11:28:24 am
I'd very much like to see us "mend it, and not end it."  Without a budget, there's absolutely no reason to even pretend we're a fiscally responsible governing body.

The whole process needs overhaul, I feel, but I think we can handle something like this once a year.

I agree. If Senators and candidates are often obliged to 'cost' any proposal they put before the electorate and again within the Senate, then we should be obliged to put forward a budget that takes these expenditures into account. Otherwise legislation, with no cost attached and no matter how expensive, is legitimised.

Having no budget and scant consideration for financial cost makes for bad legislation.

I certainly like the idea of Senators having to "cost"—or at least divine a good faith estimate (to be effectively ratified upon the bills passage)—each piece of legislation they put forward.  Obviously, this hasn't been an issue with most bills we've dealt with lately, but I've tried to be keenly aware of the fiscal impact of the bills I've proposed.

What I would like to see is (1) a GM named (I'm guessing we don't even have one at this point) to tell us the total tax revenues and expenses of Atlasia, even if it's just to say it's identical to that of the United States; and (2) debate in the Senate about whether or not to cut programs, raise taxes, or debt spend.  And then, moving forward, we could use the real world U.S. estimates adjusted by the costs/revenues unique to Atlasia.  I think this is all very doable, and not as hard as anyone really thinks.

Back when I was campaigning for the Senate, I created a spreadsheet with the financial impact of every bill ever passed by Atlasia.  I'll see if I can dig it up over the next 24 hours—if so, I'll post the link in the budget thread and see if that can be the starting point for some debate.
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