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1  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / U.S. Presidential Election Results / Re: Why does the media use the "wrong" colors? on: July 30, 2014, 07:18:50 pm
Up until the year 2000, there was no set color scheme and newspapers and TV networks generally used blue for the president's party and red for the opposition. The 2000 Election Debacle caused the red for Republicans/blue for Democrats map to be up on TV screens for weeks on end, giving rise to talk of "red states" and "blue states".

This is part of the story. Most networks had specific schemes to rotate to colors once color TV was available. One network (NBC?) switched the color of the incumbent party every cycle, so that a party that won as a challenger would have the same color for their reelection. Reagan was blue for 1980 and 1984 on NBC, but Bush was red. Bush became blue as the incumbent party switched in 1992 as Clinton was elected as the red party on their map. The color scheme was set for Dem blue in 2000.

Tim Russert is given much of the credit for referring to states as Red/Blue on the Today show leading up to the election. It might have been a blip in history, but the colored maps frozen night after night on the news during the FL vote-counting mess helped cement that. Of course the normal rotation would have kept Bush red in 2004, but the more permanent assignments had stuck by then.

2  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / U.S. Presidential Election Results / Re: Had George Bush dumped Dan Quayle back in '92 on: July 30, 2014, 06:36:19 pm
In 1994 I had the opportunity to meet one of the top campaign staffers for Quayle in '92. He told some fascinating behind-the-scenes accounts. For example in the spring of '92 the Bush team had no idea how disengaged the President seemed to the public, particularly after the famous footage from NH when he didn't recognize a bar code scanner at the general store. The Quayle team felt that if the campaign was to succeed they had to energize a new base of voters. Their internal analysis showed that a rising group of "values voters" were an ideal place to start. The Pres' team didn't show any interest. In order to force their hand the crafted the Murphy Brown statement for Quayle, knowing that it would be perceived in the media as a gaffe. This was supposed to be the entree for the Pres to begin a discussion with values voters, but rather than pick up the ball that was tossed his way or repudiate that direction, Bush left Quayle to twist in the wind for a number of days. The Quayle guys were beside themselves and saw little hope for the Pres after that.
3  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Plan to split California into 6 states advances on: July 30, 2014, 06:16:13 pm
Hell no!  I need my in-state tuition!
Yeah, hows that going to work.  Maybe there will be an extra-state agency, but most likely not.

Many states have reciprocal arrangements for university tuition. Sometimes there are unilateral discounts. There's no reason that a split CA wouldn't come to some arrangement.
4  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Weighted Voting For Congress on: July 30, 2014, 12:30:10 pm
Alternatives

I would let Jackson and Hillsdale switch districts.  While this does drop the population for Eastern Michigan and make the border more irregular, I think that there may be a Jackson-Battle Creek-Kalamazoo linkage.

Jackson is sometimes placed with SE MI and sometimes in a greater Lansing/Mid Michigan region, but I've never seen it thought of as part of an extended Battle Creek/Kzoo area. Hillsdale is less glued than Jackson, but seems more likely to stay with Jackson than not. Looking at Mid Michigan, it's clear that Gratiot and Isabella (with Central MI U) should shift to go with Lansing and the Tri-Cities.
The connection with  Battle Creek and Kalamazoo would be I-94 and similar sized cities.  But since Battle Creek is on the western edge of Calhoun there isn't much commuting.  It is much stronger into Ann Arbor.

What I meant by "letting Jackson and Hillsdale switch districts", is that it would not change the theme of the district, nor would it cause population problems.  They are on the periphery of the region.  I could see that people might prefer to be associated with the smaller cities of western Michigan.

There is not much of a commuting connection between Isabella and Midland, other than what you would expect to a somewhat close population center.  More people commute into Gratiot and Clare, than they do to Midland.  Gratiot commutes to the north.  Clinton doesn't have the jobs, and Lansing is to far.   I suspect that CMU would be considered the local university for the whole Huron-side of the northern lower peninsula.  Ferris State is in Big Rapids on the Lake Michigan side, and Northern Michigan University and Michigan Tech are in the UP.

I wouldn't characterize this as "should".  I wouldn't object to an initiated change.

I was moving beyond commuting patterns and looking at how groups like the business organizations, tourist bureaus and state agencies see those counties. I presume to some extent they are following local identification within regions.
The regional planning commission for Jackson, Hillsdale, (and Lenawee) is separate from those for southeast (Detroit metro), Lansing, and Kalamazoo-Battle Creek.  This indicates when they were setting up the councils that there was a feeling that Jackson either partially was tied to each of them.  In each case, they would also be peripheral to the other groups (ie Detroit metro plus Jackson; Lansing, also included Jackson; Kalamazoo and Battle Creek, and on down the road some, Jackson.)

In Michigan, they may have agglomerated areas.   The numbering and shapes suggests strongly that the western shoreline region split the from the western region.  Muskegon may not have wanted to be dominated by Grand Rapids.  The Flint region is odd in that it named based on the initial letter of the three counties, "GLS".  Perhaps the tri-cities did not want to be dominated by Flint.   The tip of thumb was too small for its region, and Saginaw Bay provides a unifying theme.

Note that as in Florida, the regions recognize the division of the northern lower peninsula between the two shorelines, with 3 Lake Michigan regions, and 2 Lake Huron regions.

I saw sources with smaller regions that had Jackson separate, but clearly it's too small to consider on its own. I looked at those entities that were using larger groups to see how the smallest regions might combine. At the same time, I want to balance that against the population requirements. I found fits of Jackson with either Lansing or Detroit, but not with Battle Creek. The Huron district is the least populated, so keeping Jackson with Lansing satisfies both observed groupings and better population balance. That same logic leads me to the Gratiot & Isabella shift, where both regional groupings and population equality are improved by the shift. I suppose that the individual border counties could vote themselves into another district as long as the population limits were not crossed.

My last two FL plans took that same approach. I went back to regions that were often too small for a district, then looked to assemble them into appropriate sized districts balancing the populations with larger regional groupings. In FL there is far less flexibility with county shifts on population. That in turn would make it harder for a region like SW FL to vote itself elsewhere, since that creates a domino effect, for example if all of SW goes to Tampa, Polk gets pushed out, but they might not want to vote for that change. Unlike MI, FL may have to be resigned to only statewide, up or down approval of a plan.
5  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Is the death penalty justice or revenge? on: July 30, 2014, 07:02:56 am
Suppose a convicted serial killer is sentenced to natural life in prison without parole. While in prison the killer manages to fabricate a knife and kills a prison guard. There is no additional incarceration that the justice system can add to the killer's sentence. If the death penalty is used in this case, I would consider it justice, not revenge.

To be honest, that's more an argument against sentences without parole than a justification for capital punishment.

By all means, keep some people locked up for the rest of their natural lives, but it should be subject to review after a certain amount of time in the vast majority of cases. It's ok if the result is that parole shouldn't be granted for whatever reason, but taking away all hope takes away any incentive to rehabilitate.

And then if the guy given no chance at parole because he killed a prison guard dills again inside? Muon's question is too legitimate to be ducked.

What about people who are wrongly convicted and sentenced to death?

That's one reason to restrict its application to someone who has been convicted of murders that occurred on two separate dates. The wrongful convictions for death sentences that I've looked at all involved single attacks, but sometimes included multiple victims. By restricting it to separate days those cases would be excluded.
6  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Weighted Voting For Congress on: July 29, 2014, 11:16:14 pm
Alternatives

I would let Jackson and Hillsdale switch districts.  While this does drop the population for Eastern Michigan and make the border more irregular, I think that there may be a Jackson-Battle Creek-Kalamazoo linkage.

Jackson is sometimes placed with SE MI and sometimes in a greater Lansing/Mid Michigan region, but I've never seen it thought of as part of an extended Battle Creek/Kzoo area. Hillsdale is less glued than Jackson, but seems more likely to stay with Jackson than not. Looking at Mid Michigan, it's clear that Gratiot and Isabella (with Central MI U) should shift to go with Lansing and the Tri-Cities.
The connection with  Battle Creek and Kalamazoo would be I-94 and similar sized cities.  But since Battle Creek is on the western edge of Calhoun there isn't much commuting.  It is much stronger into Ann Arbor.

What I meant by "letting Jackson and Hillsdale switch districts", is that it would not change the theme of the district, nor would it cause population problems.  They are on the periphery of the region.  I could see that people might prefer to be associated with the smaller cities of western Michigan.

There is not much of a commuting connection between Isabella and Midland, other than what you would expect to a somewhat close population center.  More people commute into Gratiot and Clare, than they do to Midland.  Gratiot commutes to the north.  Clinton doesn't have the jobs, and Lansing is to far.   I suspect that CMU would be considered the local university for the whole Huron-side of the northern lower peninsula.  Ferris State is in Big Rapids on the Lake Michigan side, and Northern Michigan University and Michigan Tech are in the UP.

I wouldn't characterize this as "should".  I wouldn't object to an initiated change.

I was moving beyond commuting patterns and looking at how groups like the business organizations, tourist bureaus and state agencies see those counties. I presume to some extent they are following local identification within regions.
7  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Weighted Voting For Congress on: July 29, 2014, 05:27:47 pm
Here's version 2 of my draft plan. In addition to the population I have included the PVI of each district in square brackets, with positive values for D PVIs and negative numbers for R PVIs.

MI (3)
   Mackinac (MI) 3400K [-4.2]
   Huron (MI) 2620K [+3.6]
   St Clair (MI) 3864K [+10.6]

I have it:

Michigan 3300K
Eastern Michigan 2720
Detroit 3864

You may have displaced the population from Lenawee.

Alternative Names

Michigan
The Great Lakes State
Great Lakes
Peninsulas
Yuper-Looper
Mackinac
Michilimackinac

Eastern Michigan
Thumb

Detroit

Alternatives

I would let Jackson and Hillsdale switch districts.  While this does drop the population for Eastern Michigan and make the border more irregular, I think that there may be a Jackson-Battle Creek-Kalamazoo linkage.

History

Michigan gained its second representative in 1860, and its 3rd in 1890.  Initially it barely held onto the 3rd, but with the development of auto industry easily maintained its 3rd, and gained a 4th in 1950.  It lost the 4th in 1990.

Michigan was the 7th largest state from 1920 to 1970, and has been 7th, 8th, or 9th, since 1880, passing Kentucky, Indiana, Missouri, and Massachusetts during the past 130 years, while falling behind California, Texas, and Florida.  But Michigan will likely fall to 10th in 2020 as Georgia and North Carolina surpass it.

Thanks for the catch. I'll update my PVIs as well.

Jackson is sometimes placed with SE MI and sometimes in a greater Lansing/Mid Michigan region, but I've never seen it thought of as part of an extended Battle Creek/Kzoo area. Hillsdale is less glued than Jackson, but seems more likely to stay with Jackson than not. Looking at Mid Michigan, it's clear that Gratiot and Isabella (with Central MI U) should shift to go with Lansing and the Tri-Cities.
8  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Top 25 animated shows on: July 29, 2014, 01:20:11 pm
Courage the Cowardly Dog should at least get a mention for it serving as a vehicle for horror to become an acceptable type of children's entertainment. 

From the link, this is supposed to be a list for adults.
9  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2014 Gubernatorial Election Polls / Re: IL-Reboot Illinois/WeAskAmerica: Gov. Quinn (D) down 14 on: July 29, 2014, 01:14:25 pm
Can someone other than WAA poll this race?

As I've said in the past, when someone wants to pay another pollster, then it will happen. Pollsters don't work for free.

Historically the big media outlets in IL have been cheap on polling before Labor Day, and even then they don't track frequently. Smaller media websites with a specific political focus like Reboot IL and Capitol Fax are more likely to engage in polling at this time of year.
10  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Weighted Voting For Congress on: July 29, 2014, 07:22:57 am
Quite frankly, any district south of Gainesville and north of Homestead that borders both coasts is a travesty that Floridians would not countenance.  SWFL belongs with Tampa.

The problem is that without the SW the rest of S FL is only 1/3 of the state's population. That would be great for 6 districts, but with only 5 a small S FL forces the northern three districts to be overpopulated. If SW FL goes with central FL, then something else has to go with the south, either Polk or Brevard. There are mathematical ways to avoid that, but they involve pushing all the northern districts to the upper limits of population.

In addition, deep SW FL may not go with the Miami metro, but I couldn't find any sources from FL that say it's part of Tampa Bay either. That line seems to go south at most to Sarasota. SW only counts there if you consider the whole Gulf Coast, but that ignores the more traditional north-central-south splits of FL.

That brings up one other southern combination. It is somewhat inspired by the FL 25th CD that links parts of M-D to inland Collier. Here it links M-D with all of SW, and has better population than the SW-Palm Beach link. This Everglades district also better preserves the Hispanic CoI with a majority of the population (50.3%) and near voting age majority (49.7% HVAP).



Appalachicola, 3326K, O'08 41.8%
Tampa Bay, 4390K, O'08 50.4%
Cape Canaveral, 3693K, O'08 51.0%
Okeechobee, 3722K, O'08 61.8%
Everglades, 3669K, O'08 52.7%
11  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Top 25 animated shows on: July 28, 2014, 10:37:23 pm
where's Ren & Stimpy?
#5 on the list
Quote
(As an aside, I'm a little disappointed with your analysis of Rocky.  What about Fractured Fairy Tales?  Or Peabody and Sherman?  And who could forget Boris and Natasha?  That show was a bed of morality, sociology, and physics wrapped in wisdom and spiced with magic, wit, and humor.  It was a veritable chimichanga for the senses, but with entertainment as the main condiment instead of of pico de gallo.)
Like I said, I was just a little kid the last time I saw the show...which was like a hundred years ago.

I agree with the rest of your assessment.

I don't know the right placing for many of the shows, but given the time, technology, and culture it's hard for me to see why Rocky and Bullwinkle isn't at least 3rd on that list. I find myself still using quotes from the show I heard as a preschooler. Yet 50 years later I still occasionally learn references to the show's satirical targets that I didn't appreciate at the time and have to grin at the discovery.
12  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Have you ever donated money to a politician, political campaign, or PAC? on: July 28, 2014, 09:40:03 pm
Even if they don't, I still mail in my contribution. The Postal Service can use the extra first-class mail volume, and I don't mind paying the extra $0.49 for the privilege of feeling like a cleverdick for a little while.

Unfortunately its unlikely that anyone in a position to appreciate your cleverness will see it. If the solicitation is from a state or national party, some salaried clerical worker will open the mail. There's even some high likelihood that your donation will be discarded since it will cost more in time to process than the value of your gift. The one exception would be if the organization was actively trying to boost donations from small donors, when 1 cent would work for them as well.
13  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Weighted Voting For Congress on: July 28, 2014, 06:55:38 pm
Digging around FL resources that identified regions, I find that eight seem to describe the state. Population-wise the whole state is 5.54 of the quota, so the ideal district would be 1.11 of a quota, and could help justify a district slightly over 1.33.

The SE region covers Indian River to Monroe, and has population 1.83 times the quota. If it constitutes two districts alone the other three districts would have to average 1.24 of the quota. That gets difficult with the 1.33 limit.

The Tampa Bay region either consists of the core MSA (Hernando, Hillsborough, Pasco, Pinellas) or an extended region that includes Citrus, Polk, Manatee and Sarasota. The core region is 0.82 of the quota and the full region is 1.25 of the quota.

The SW region has a core of Charlotte, Collier and Lee which makes up only 0.32 of the quota. Sometimes the region is expanded north to Manatee and Sarasota and inland to DeSoto, Glades, and Hendry.

The South Central region has the six interior counties south of Polk and makes up 0.07 of the quota.

The Central region has a core of the CSA of Orlando/Daytona Beach/The Villages plus Brevard county with a population of 0.99 of the quota. Marion county is frequently in this region and brings the full region to 1.09 of the quota.

The remaining three regions are in North FL. Northwest is the Panhandle east through Jefferson county. Northeast is the Jacksonville CSA. North Central is the remaining area in between. It makes up 0.98 of the quota. If Marion is shifted north is rises to 1.08 of the quota, and with Marion and Citrus it goes to 1.12 of the quota.

The simplest grouping of the regions is to take the three northern regions together as a district for 0.98 of the quota. The full Tampa and Central regions each form a district with 1.25 and 1.09 of the quota respectively. That leaves adding the core SW and S Central districts to the Southeast bringing it to 2.22 of the quota. That then can be split between the southern three counties of the SE (1.27) and the rest of the combined South FL (0.95) to put all within quota limits.

It provides one clearly north FL district, two clearly central FL districts, and two for south FL. No district exceeds the upper limit of 1.33. It does go across the peninsula, but only for the Fort Myers area, so it avoids linking Sarasota to Palm Beach.



Appalachicola, 3326K, O'08 41.8%
Tampa Bay, 4229K, O'08 50.7%
Cape Canaveral, 3693K, O'08 51.0%
Okeechobee, 3236K, O'08 51.6%
Everglades, 4317K, O'08 62.1%
14  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Poll: Capitalism dying? on: July 27, 2014, 10:59:15 pm

The article goes into depth on four rather extreme outcomes, but lacks discussion as to how the current market economies might evolve to those outcomes. Market economies in practice are tied to the political powers, and the pathway for one to evolve requires thought about how the political structure would react. The author partly recognizes this in his discussion that there were ideas that could have addressed the USSR's failure but for the technical and political obstacles. Even though technology evolves, the political structures may not.

To the OP, technology may alter the traditional role of labor, but one's time remains a fixed commodity, so I expect that some sort of market could remain for that aspect of "labor". Similarly technology might alleviate the scarcity of many things, but things like land will be inherently fixed despite technology. If market economies remain for the management of fixed or scarce resources, then at least some elements of capitalism will survive.

15  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Is the death penalty justice or revenge? on: July 27, 2014, 04:41:44 pm
If a person is convicted of a criminal misdemeanor, the penalty is often a fine. That penalty is not intended to be preventative, it's a form of punishment which matches the level of the fine to the severity of the crime. If the fine were preventative, the level would be set based on the wealth of the perpetrator, but it's not. Your statement implies that criminal fines for misdemeanors as generally imposed are evil.
When dealing with less serious crimes, besides preventative justice and retributive "justice", there is also reparative justice.

A fine would be preventative (and in some cases, reparative).

I disagree that fines as they exist are intended as punishment only. They are intended to prevent it from happening again, and sometimes to repair the damage. If any are intended as punishment, then they are immoral. It can be preventative and not based on the perpetrator's income. Though it would be a neat idea to begin to base some fines on a person's income.

Fines and other penalties are designed to show that inappropriate actions have consequences. For most people the knowledge of those consequences can be a deterrent. There is a population for whom even knowledge of the consequences fails as a deterrent. Whether such a person is a child who misbehaved or an adult who intentionally breaks the law, the consequence becomes a punishment.  There can even be an acceptance of that punishment when the person decides that the action was worth the risk of said punishment.
16  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: How do you pronounce the word "cretin"? on: July 27, 2014, 03:24:07 pm
I'm with ilikeverin, considering that most of my pronunciation stems from my Midwestern family and a dozen years growing up in MN. So I voted other, since the t isn't really pronounced except as a stop between syllables. However, if asked to think about saying it alone for someone, I'd be prone to put the t in.
17  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: What does the red mean? on: July 27, 2014, 03:16:28 pm
This bomb (it) uses under our control (is a harnessing of) nuclear energy (the basic power of the universe).
18  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Which electoral districts (CDs or equivelant) have you been to in 2014? on: July 27, 2014, 01:02:37 pm
A dinner in Hyde Park and a visit to a coal mine complete IL for me.


FL-8,18,20,21,22,23,24,25,26,27
IL-1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18
IA-1,4
MA-2,3,4,5,7,8
MI-13
MN-1,2
WI-1,2,3,5,6

Total: 40 44

19  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: House Redistricting Co-op on: July 27, 2014, 11:41:01 am

Certainly, should an Idaho map that contains both Canyon and Ada counties in one district be used for the thread? My only concern is having North Idaho and SE Idaho in one district.

That gets back to definitions. Is it better to split the Boise metro, or to put the opposite parts of the state together? The tougher question is why shouldn't the opposite parts of the state be together? Can it be quantified or clearly described?

Fair mapping is tough to defend without principles. States that have fair mapping have language defining how to draw the map. Some states are much better than others at stating what fair means. That gives us the ability to say what we mean, and how it might be better than what states currently use.
What about swapping Payette, Gem, and Boise for Minidoka, Lincoln, and Jerome, making a more Boise-centric district (plus Twin Falls).

Northern Idaho is isolated from all of southern Idaho.  Driving from Pocatello to Couer d'Alene is about the same as Boise to Couer d'Alene, and the best routes may be through the Tri Cities in Washington, or Butte and Missoula in Montana.

At the time of Wesberry v Sanders, Idaho was very malapportioned 409K vs 257K.  The northern district included Canyon (Nampa) while the southern included Ada (Boise).  That is, they were trying to include everything feasible in a Northern Idaho district and were still coming up short.

The minimum change option was to split Boise.  With the growth of Boise, it may be feasible now to have a deformed quarter-doughnut.


A swap of Gem and Washington for Camas, Lincoln, and Minidoka creates districts that are only 669 from the quota. It also maintains the I-84 corridor from Boise to Twin Falls in one district, and keeps Boise county with the only good road connection across the mountains from N to SE in the other district.
20  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Weighted Voting For Congress on: July 27, 2014, 08:38:39 am
So I think I can stipulate the following:

Avoiding the cross-peninsula district and preserving the Tampa UCC would justify a district at 1.35 of the quota, but no more.

Polk is sufficiently independent of both Tampa and Orlando that there is no compelling reason to place it with either.

The Hispanic CoI does not require a stand-alone district for Miami.

The revised guidelines suggest that some consideration be given to population equality, so why not keep M-D with Broward, and place Polk and the other inland counties in the Okeechobee district. The result reduces the difference in population between the largest and smallest districts.



Appalachicola, 3467K, O'08 41.8%
Tampa Bay, 4586K, O'08 49.7%
Cape Canaveral, 3693K, O'08 51.0%
Okeechobee, 2738K, O'08 54.1%
Everglades, 4317K, O'08 62.1%

What are the Hispanic #s on the Everglades district?  I assume it's plurality but not majority?

HVAP 48.5%, WVAP 29.2%, BVAP 18.7%, so it's still strongly majority minority, but with the older Cubans voting R, there probably isn't bloc voting.

There is not that much difference in equality.  I think Polk should be with either the Tampa or the Orlando district, unless totally impossible.  If there were 6 districts, I think the 6th would have to go on the Gulf Coast, and the Sarasota to Naples district might have to pull in Polk.

I didn't switch Marion for population reasons.  Marion has some commuting to Lake and Sumter, but also some to Alachua, but a large share stays in the county.  There might be some sense of community with University of Florida, at least the football team.

This puts Polk in an unusual position. It is sufficiently independent of both Tampa and Orlando, that it need not go with either, yet your position is that it should go with one of those two. It seems that rationally it's either independent or it isn't. If it is independent then the guideline suggesting that there be some attention to population equality takes hold. I used the same logic for Marion.

This seems to put Polk in a pseudo-independent status. There's a larger sense of FL regions - north, central, and south, and Polk is not on the border, but definitely in the central region with Tampa and Orlando. A meta-guideline seems to be that one should not take core counties out of their region.

But then I have the following conundrum. Lee county is definitely not in the central region, yet there is a higher priority on placing it with Tampa which is central then keeping it in the south. So the anti-crossing desire trumps the regionalism there, but not when it comes to Polk.
21  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Plan to split California into 6 states advances on: July 27, 2014, 08:05:28 am
Are these awful names set it stone? Surely they can do better than just a directional California name...

Not that I'd vote for this anyway, but the names would be enough for me to vote No if I otherwise liked it.

I tend to agree, but I suspect there are electoral considerations at work. Picking a name other than a bland direction is more likely to lose votes than to gain them.

Silicon Valley isn't a direction, and I think Monterey, San Francisco, and Antioch will agree that they're not silicon valley.

None of the 3 UCs in "Silicon Valley" (Berkeley, San Francisco, and Santa Cruz) are actually in silicon valley. Silicon Valley generally means Santa Clara county, Fremont, Palo Alto, and Redwood City.

Good point, but in SF (and the other locales you mention) will the choice of Silicon Valley as a name move votes more one way or the other?
22  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Plan to split California into 6 states advances on: July 26, 2014, 11:33:58 pm
Are these awful names set it stone? Surely they can do better than just a directional California name...

Not that I'd vote for this anyway, but the names would be enough for me to vote No if I otherwise liked it.

I tend to agree, but I suspect there are electoral considerations at work. Picking a name other than a bland direction is more likely to lose votes than to gain them.
23  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Is the death penalty justice or revenge? on: July 26, 2014, 11:31:50 pm
It's a false dichotomy -- "justice" and "revenge" are very, very frequently -- perhaps most of the time -- the same thing. Since I support the death penalty and justice has more positive connotations I voted for that, but the distinction is totally meaningless.

There's a difference between consequences meant as punishment/retribution, and consequences meant for prevention.

When you lock someone in jail, you're doing it so they might reform (preventative), so that it will deter others (preventative), and to keep the individual from doing the illegal act again (preventative).

The only other option, besides preventative, for locking someone in jail is for retribution/punishment.

Justice based on preventing evil acts = good. "Justice" based on retribution/punishment = evil.

The only way the death penalty can ever be preventative (and morally justifiable) is if locking a person in jail, even in solitary for life, would not be able to prevent the individual from doing harm... either because of the person's influence from simply being alive, or if a breakout was a real concern.

There's a very real distinction between justice and revenge. One is for the well-being of all individuals in society, the other is for the suffering/death of an individual to satisfy the desires of others.

If a person is convicted of a criminal misdemeanor, the penalty is often a fine. That penalty is not intended to be preventative, it's a form of punishment which matches the level of the fine to the severity of the crime. If the fine were preventative, the level would be set based on the wealth of the perpetrator, but it's not. Your statement implies that criminal fines for misdemeanors as generally imposed are evil.
24  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Weighted Voting For Congress on: July 26, 2014, 11:20:05 pm
So I think I can stipulate the following:

Avoiding the cross-peninsula district and preserving the Tampa UCC would justify a district at 1.35 of the quota, but no more.

Polk is sufficiently independent of both Tampa and Orlando that there is no compelling reason to place it with either.

The Hispanic CoI does not require a stand-alone district for Miami.

The revised guidelines suggest that some consideration be given to population equality, so why not keep M-D with Broward, and place Polk and the other inland counties in the Okeechobee district. The result reduces the difference in population between the largest and smallest districts.



Appalachicola, 3467K, O'08 41.8%
Tampa Bay, 4586K, O'08 49.7%
Cape Canaveral, 3693K, O'08 51.0%
Okeechobee, 2738K, O'08 54.1%
Everglades, 4317K, O'08 62.1%
25  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Opinion of Stella Artois on: July 26, 2014, 10:17:31 pm
Stella may be the Belgian Bud, but I find it has more flavor even if the bodies are similar. There are times when a light lager is fine, and Stella can fill that. However, in honor of Tour de France champion Vincenzo Nibali I went with Peroni tonight.
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