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1  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Why does Hollywood have no originality anymore? on: April 03, 2014, 04:31:52 pm
I noticed this trend several years ago. Why take the risk if you don't have to? If two movies have an equal expected return but one is more risky, then a risk averse corporation will choose the other. It's that simple. Spiderman 5 is still Spiderman.
2  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Presidential Election Trends / Re: Gallup: US Seniors have realigned with the Republican Party on: April 03, 2014, 01:53:08 pm
It appears most of the shift was actually from 1993 to 2003.
3  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Question for Hillary Clinton supporters: Do you want a competitive primary? on: April 02, 2014, 10:54:18 am
Quite a few democracy-haters out here. Why the hate for competition?

Why fight a war when you don't have to?

For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the acme of skill. ~ The Art of War
4  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Question for Hillary Clinton supporters: Do you want a competitive primary? on: April 01, 2014, 11:53:25 am
No. Any position she is "pushed" to during a primary is worthless. I'm more interested in whether she is naturally inclined to run on anything interesting.

She's going to be 68 years old; saving up as much energy for the GE is probably a good idea.
5  General Discussion / History / Re: By what point was the Soviet Union's fall inevitable? on: March 26, 2014, 04:43:04 pm
Probably around 1990 or 1991. If Gorbachev had sided with the August 1991 "putsch", they might have had a chance.
6  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Turkey bans Twitter, accuses them of "systematic character assassination" on: March 26, 2014, 02:10:17 pm
Not sure if this is a joke. Every single person in Turkey is on twitter to the nearest million?
7  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Moscow signals concern for Russians in Estonia on: March 20, 2014, 10:38:59 pm
So what if Russia invades Estonia? Is the U.S. really going to war against a country with 5,000 ICBMs over Estonia? Most likely it'll expose NATO as an empty piece of paper.
8  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Why are Asian Americans Democrats? on: March 20, 2014, 12:15:53 pm
Asian Americans are assimilating. We can debate the extent to which Republicans welcome minorities or not. But one of the norms in American culture these days is that minorities are supposed to be Democratic. Asian Americans who still identify with their home country could easily vote Republican due to foreign policy issues. Or they could identify strongly as American but vote based on their interpretation of the issues (pro-business, Christian) irregardless of cultural norms. But once they encounter this cultural norm that Republicans are unfriendly to minorities, that is going to push them in a Democratic direction. It also helps that the vast majority of them are concentrated in places like California, Hawaii, New York, and New Jersey where assimilation means assimilating into a Democratic-dominated political culture.
9  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: The "Who is running?" tea leaves thread on: March 19, 2014, 08:26:34 am
Hillary Clinton's Circle Isn't Sure She Should Run for President in 2016

Quote
... some of Mrs. Clinton's closest confidants and allies aren't sold on the idea that she should run. Their cautions add an unpredictable element as Mrs. Clinton weighs whether to seek the presidency again, a decision she says she plans to make later this year.

One of Mrs. Clinton's top advisers and former aides, Cheryl Mills, believes she should stay out of the contest and has told her as much, according to people familiar with her views...

Linda Bloodworth-Thomason, a longtime friend of the Clintons who has made films for their past campaigns, said she thinks Mrs. Clinton would like to run, and that she would like to see her friend do what makes her happiest.

She added: "I'm not in the political camp; I'm in the friends camp. And the friends camp definitely has concerns about her running.''

Link
10  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: March 15, 2014, 11:34:58 pm
The level of naivety of Westerners is sickening.

Do tell.

Well, everyone here seems to assume than Putin is rational and mentally sane. I'm not sure at all of that.

Well everyone here seems to assume Kim Jong Un is rational and mentally sane.
11  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Plane with 239 people on board crashes into Gulf of Thailand (or somewhere else) on: March 13, 2014, 12:48:17 pm
It's not that complicated. It's obvious by now that there was some sort of suicide mission by the pilot. The transponders were turned off deliberately. The only question is the motivation.
12  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: The Big Bang Theory vs. South Park on: March 13, 2014, 10:58:09 am
South Park : not particularly my kind of politics, more importantly, not my kind of humor. but artistically it seems a lot more impressive than TBBT
13  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Opinion of The Big Bang Theory on: March 13, 2014, 10:52:27 am
I'm with Gustaf on this one. I saw a few episodes and it's okay, but not great. I don't watch enough TV to compare it with any other show such as Community, however. In terms of pure wit it certainly falls short of South Park.
14  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Kevin Swanson; Disney Movie "Frozen" promoting bestiality,homosexuality on: March 12, 2014, 07:28:57 pm
Great. Now I have to see it.
15  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Alan Grayson's Wife Files for Divorce, Claims Abuse on: March 07, 2014, 05:35:15 pm
Sure he's innocent in the court of law until proven guilty, but he's built his career on his public image and being a showman. That's gone now unless these allegations are very conclusively discredited.
16  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Senate defeats Gillibrand military sexual assault bill on: March 06, 2014, 03:45:02 pm
McCaskill

Particularly depressing considering how she won reelection.

Because she proposed an alternative solution to addressing the issue? I really don't see the problem here - the argument that Gillibrand's legislation won't fix the problem doesn't seem on the face of it to be automatically illegitimate. What is the problem with proposing an alternative, and potentially more effective, solution?

Well from a strictly anti-reform standpoint, proposing a weaker alternative would be inevitable. It put opponents of independent prosecution in a better position by allowing them to claim "yes, we're behind a solution too and we have a Democratic woman behind us" even if said reforms largely tinker around the edges. Even assuming Akin would be a "nay", Gillibrand would arguably have been in a stronger position had McCaskill lost.
17  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Which MSNBC or Fox News personality is the most biased, toxic or uncharismatic? on: March 05, 2014, 04:42:41 pm
Other: I don't watch cable news

^^^

Seriously. I've actually been trying to get more into TV recently, and cable news is about #50 on my list of things to catch up on.
18  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of ag on: March 04, 2014, 07:42:21 pm
This has certainly happened to me before, so I can't condemn him. Some issues just hit close to home.
19  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Pro-EU demonstrations in Ukraine on: March 01, 2014, 02:47:44 pm
Putin is scary... I had this feeling during Georgia 2008. Countries need to respect other countries' territorial sovereignty. The difference between this and what the U.S. does, the U.S. goes in, installs a new government, and then eventually, for the most part, leaves. Iraq, today, is effectively independent. It's not clear if that's the intention in Crimea. This would be more like the U.S. invading Nova Scotia. It has the appearance of a naked land grab. Exactly the kind of behavior the U.S. intervened in the first Gulf war to stop. If this kind of behavior is allowed to go forward, international relations could start devolving into a pre-WWII type situation where larger states simply gobble up smaller ones.
20  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: When 'religious liberty' was used to justify racism instead of homophobia on: February 28, 2014, 03:21:00 pm
The problem is that religion can be interpreted or crafted to justify anything. We must continually navigate the boundaries between religious freedom and other laws and social customs.
21  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of Eraserhead on: February 14, 2014, 05:35:08 pm
Is he a political reporter?
22  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: 2016: An uninspiring race? on: February 14, 2014, 11:32:07 am
I am inspired by Hillary... not because she is a woman... not because of what she has been through... but because of what she has done. Championing health care. Calling out the right wing noise machine in the late 1990s. Campaigning in poor areas of the country the rest of the party has long given up on in 2008. Serving as Secretary of State the way her boss wanted her to (he didn't want her to secure major treaties, etc.). To me that's a lot more inspiring than any of the other candidates in '00, '04, '08 or '12 were.
23  General Politics / Economics / Working Hours vs. Health on: February 12, 2014, 02:57:17 pm
If Obamacare means Americans choose to work fewer hours, it may be a feature, not a bug, in terms of increasing our health Wink

http://www.economist.com/blogs/freeexchange/2014/01/working-hours
24  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: DEMS ONLY: Was Obamacare worth it? on: February 10, 2014, 10:53:57 pm
Millions more people will get health care because of it. Yes, it was worth it.

This. And I'm not even sure it'll be the last word on health care policy, but someone needed to smash a battering ram through the status quo. Now the issue though is that we need to get as many uninsured as possible who want to sign up, signed up, and we're falling behind on this.
25  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: True Detective [HBO] on: February 10, 2014, 10:46:23 pm
Dumb q, but is this available to anyone who doesn't have an HBO subscription?
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