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July 02, 2015, 04:30:03 pm
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1  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Is Trump top tier/front-runner? on: July 01, 2015, 09:58:35 pm
Trump isn't a serious candidate...yet.

If he's polling like this three months from now, I will have to change my opinion. For now, though, Trump is basically a reservoir for undecided GOP voters.
2  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: The so-called "Demise" of the Republican Party is way overblown on: July 01, 2015, 04:05:51 pm
The Democratic Party basically doesn't have a bench, in large parts because of the wipeouts of 2010 and 2014. The state legislatures are so Republican that very little Democratic talent emerges that can run for federal office, even for vulnerable Republicans.

Until the Democrats fix their...farm teams, I suppose, their major league team will just keep aging and there's nothing really in the wings to take their places.
3  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Will Obama be remembered in the top 10 of Presidents? on: June 29, 2015, 10:36:12 am
I'm not sure about top 10. He'll easily be in the top half, though.
4  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Cruz to propose amendment to subject SCOTUS justices to election after 8 years on: June 28, 2015, 12:45:49 am
Retention elections are a terrible idea that will lead to miscarriages of justice trying to appeal to campaign donors.

That said, I wouldn't much mind if tenure on the Supreme Court were a fixed 10 years rather than life. That would instill some regular change in the Court while preserving judicial independence.
5  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Gay Marraige will be legal in 50 years on: June 26, 2015, 08:49:23 pm
Here's a fun thought: Brambila would probably last about two weeks on Atlas before getting banned today. 11 years ago, while outspoken, he was within (the right edge of) Atlas acceptable discourse.
6  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What will be the next big social issue? on: June 26, 2015, 08:18:18 pm
The two next big social issues will most unquestionably be the death penalty and gun control, without any doubt whatsoever. Just give it a little bit of time to mature, as with marriage equality. And maybe these issues won't need 50 years either, but rather some 11-19 or something. Future history writing usually do surprise us, especially so in this modern day of robotics and self-driving cars.

Okey, there are obviously more than just these two issues which are gonna be huge in the years going forward. Marihuana legalization and the end to mass incarceration are certainly gonna be just as important and epoque changing.

I could see death penalty abolition becoming a major movement soon. Gun control is a much bigger stretch.

Yep, agreed, but only for one reason: That it's written in the Constitution. Without the second amendment, I'm confident that the US currently would have had at least 90% less guns in circulation than it currently has.

Okey, that was perhaps a too bold statement. After all, USA has this pretty recent history of slavery/segregation/Jim Crow etcetera that makes my European experience a bit obsolete. Let me just say that it's complicated. As soon as the last remaining die hard racists will die out in 10-15-20 years from now, things will start to move really, really rapidly on this issue, even with all the baggage that is US history.

Well, regarding the death penalty, the change is already slowly and quietly taking place.



A lot of people aren't aware that executions have basically fallen off a cliff in terms of frequency over the last decade.

Gun control is an issue that there can be trimming around the edges of, but Americans love guns. This is a hard thing to get around. This is definitely the time to push for reform to the criminal justice system and to drug laws, but gun control is a non-starter.
7  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What will be the next big social issue? on: June 26, 2015, 07:42:13 pm
The two next big social issues will most unquestionably be the death penalty and gun control, without any doubt whatsoever. Just give it a little bit of time to mature, as with marriage equality. And maybe these issues won't need 50 years either, but rather some 11-19 or something. Future history writing usually do surprise us, especially so in this modern day of robotics and self-driving cars.

Okey, there are obviously more than just these two issues which are gonna be huge in the years going forward. Marihuana legalization and the end to mass incarceration are certainly gonna be just as important and epoque changing.

I could see death penalty abolition becoming a major movement soon. Gun control is a much bigger stretch.
8  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Breaking: Supreme Court rules SSM a legal right on: June 26, 2015, 04:33:54 pm

Besides the fact that 3 states are still pretending this ruling didn't happen.

That's an issue for the next few weeks. Even Bobby Jindal can't hold out very long against the US Supreme Court.
9  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What will be the next big social issue? on: June 26, 2015, 04:22:15 pm
The same one that has been a big issue since the 18th century: immigration. As long as the US exists, immigration will be the big "social issue."
10  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Polls on Same-Sex Marriage State Laws on: June 26, 2015, 09:23:33 am
The first post-court case polls will be fascinating.
11  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obamacare faces challenge at the US Supreme Court (oral arguments today) on: June 25, 2015, 12:53:45 pm
That's twice John Roberts has rescued Obama's signature achievement.
12  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: John Oliver condemns online harassment, the Internet responds predictably on: June 25, 2015, 12:37:08 am
And this thread is amply demonstrating the reason why this segment is so valuable.

SJWs are the bane of man. John Oliver deserves everything he gets.

Using the term SJW as a negative is one of those things, like a Confederate flag signature, that indicates that the person has nothing to say worth listening to.

Comparing a literal symbol of secession and figurative emblem of racism to a internet slang about overzealous bloggers is a massive hyperbole even by Atlas standards.

Bashing "social justice" sounds a whole lot like an endorsement of social injustice. I'm puzzled and a bit saddened that we've gotten to the point where a large segment of society is so twisted that it regards social justice and advocacy for it as a negative.
13  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: John Oliver condemns online harassment, the Internet responds predictably on: June 25, 2015, 12:19:11 am
And this thread is amply demonstrating the reason why this segment is so valuable.

It's always amusing watching how people react to the really mild and entry-level media critique that Sarkeesian does so personally. It's like she ran over your dog or something.

SJWs are the bane of man. John Oliver deserves everything he gets.

Using the term SJW as a negative is one of those things, like a Confederate flag signature, that indicates that the person has nothing to say worth listening to.
14  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Have we talked about how this sudden removal of Confederate stuff is a ruse? on: June 24, 2015, 03:40:24 pm
A lot of people in the South today, including in the Republican Party in the South, are either Northern transplants who moved south in the 1960s-1980s or the children of such people, and don't really have the ancestral connection to the old Stars and Bars* as people whose ancestors have been in Dixie for 200 years do. To a lot of people, including right wing businessmen and such, the Confederate flag is an embarrassment and "bad for business."

*Yes, I know that the X-shaped flag is not the Stars and Bars, shut up. Just because you're one of the few people who knows that the X-shaped battle flag isn't the actual flag of the Confederacy doesn't mean you need to pedantically correct everything.
15  General Politics / Economics / Re: Ventura: Eliminate Income Tax and Replace it with 15% National Sales Tax on: June 24, 2015, 02:44:25 pm
So...I currently live in Texas, which has an 8% state sales tax. Add on a 15% national sales tax and...23% sales tax on anything I would buy.

That is...pretty hefty. Wouldn't this incentivize me to begin importing things from overseas to avoid sales taxes and cut domestic businesses and Uncle Sam out of the loop? At that point, wouldn't it be cheaper to just buy things off of Amazon Canada and pay the shipping fees?
16  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / John Oliver condemns online harassment, the Internet responds predictably on: June 24, 2015, 02:40:54 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PuNIwYsz7PI

First off, this video has the worst like-dislike ratio of any Oliver video I checked, and I checked the more popular videos. With 1.9 million views in two days, this segment has been heavily viewed. Because Oliver chose to play about a ten second clip of some controversial people (Anita Sarkeesian and Brianna Wu), his video has been flooded with comments about how that was a terrible decision and what terrible people those two ladies are...proving his point. Certain segments of the population seems crazily determined to establish some sort of "bitch had it coming" justification for the crazy stuff that's happened to Sarkeesian and that alone is a good example of why John Oliver's segment is as important as it is.

In a civil society, a person should be free to express their opinions without threat of bodily harm or death. If you disagree with someone, criticizing that person or even organizing a boycott of that person are acceptable responses. Trying to chase people off the Internet and hunt them down in their ordinary lives for having the gall to express their opinions is monstrous. Thank you John Oliver for picking examples for your segment that would get this exact response so you could show the Internet just how ugly it has gotten.
17  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Opinion of Militant Atheism on: June 20, 2015, 11:39:34 am
or profoundly stupid remarks about Marxism being a 'secular religion', whatever the  that means

You know how you have a signature that is a stylized picture of Leon Trotsky looking far better than he ever did in life who has apparently grown to gigantic proportions such that his head is bigger than any of the Red Army soldiers he is commanding? That's basically what they mean.
18  General Discussion / Constitution and Law / Re: Will Obama have to call in the National Guard to enforce the gay marriage ruling? on: June 20, 2015, 11:35:46 am
No, that won't be necessary. Organized governmental resistance to this will be limited to grandstanding speeches and a few clerks who will let themselves get fired in order to get onto the right wing gravy train.
19  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Opinion of Militant Atheism on: June 19, 2015, 06:57:34 pm
Any movement with multiple figures saying variants of "philosophy is dead" has no intellectual appeal to me.
20  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Who will Trump go after most in debates? on: June 19, 2015, 02:04:58 am
My most fervent hope for the debate is that he is placed next to Chris Christie. They're both aggressive, confrontational guys with hair-trigger tempers. There is such a potential for a good old-fashioned "F**k me? No, f**k you!" New York showdown. Maybe they could exchange blows on the stage.
21  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: How did California gain 7 electoral votes in the 1980's? on: June 17, 2015, 10:35:42 am
"It never rains in Southern California."

Hence the perpetual drought and water shortages, yes.
22  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: President of Spokane NAACP outed as white imposter on: June 13, 2015, 12:48:26 pm
This woman's life story will make a great movie some day.
23  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Presidential Election Trends / Re: When will the USA have the first millenial (Y) president? on: June 11, 2015, 09:12:23 pm
The silent generation never had a POTUS.

1929-1945 was an era of pretty low birthrates, though (especially the tail end of that). It's also far and away the shortest timespan of these generational cohorts, IIRC.
24  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Best Senators of the Past 50 Years: Texas on: June 11, 2015, 01:00:05 pm
Voted Yarborough, though Dr. Krueger is a super-weird figure who is very much the opposite of the stereotypical Texas politician and, even as an appointed Senator, it's amazing someone with a doctorate in literature with a passion for poetry could be a US Senator from Texas.
25  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Presidential Election Trends / Re: When will the USA have the first millenial (Y) president? on: June 11, 2015, 12:04:45 pm
The idea that the biggest generational cohort ever won't produce a President at some point is kind of hilarious. (Yes, bigger than the subsequent one...birth rates in the late 2000s-2010s have been pretty anemic)

Granted if we keep having two-termers like we have been, there will be a lot fewer vacancies than there were in more unsettled times. (5 presidents in the 20 years 1961-1981 vs 3 presidents in the 24 years 1993-2017 offers far less opportunities for individual presidents from various cohorts).
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