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1  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Forum Community Guidelines on: August 01, 2014, 01:21:24 pm
What is the rule on copyright violations?
2  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: August 01, 2014, 01:14:37 pm
Quote
As for the presidential election in 2016 with alternative candidate match ups, voters were polled “If the election for President were held today and the candidates were Republican Rand Paul and Democrat Elizabeth Warren, whom would you vote for?”  A potential race between Rand Paul (R) and Elizabeth Warren (D) resulted in Paul holding an 11-point margin over Warren (44% to 33%) with 23% expressing uncertainty.

http://gravismarketing.com/polling-and-market-research/california-statewide-polling/

Talk about limited! Only two matchups, and only one of them has any relevance to this polling thread. But it does account for 10.2% of the electoral votes in the US. Like it or not it fills a gap.

Libertarians are a loud lot in California, but they also have a clear ceiling. I guess that Paul would not rise much from 40% of the vote share. Hillary Clinton will not lose California. I do not change my projection that she would get anything less than 55% of the vote -- heck, President Obama on this poll has a 48% approval rating in California, which is surely one of the highest.  

Most R voters in California are Libertarians, so I can't imagine Christie, Bush, or Huckabee faring any better.    

  

Hillary Clinton vs. Jeb Bush





Hillary Clinton vs. Chris Christie


   

Hillary Clinton vs. Mike Huckabee



Hillary Clinton vs. Rand Paul




blue, Republican -- red, Democratic

30% -- lead with 40-49% but a margin of 3% or less
40% -- lead with 40-49% but a margin of 4% or more
60% -- lead with 50-54%
70% -- lead with 55-59%
90% -- lead with 60% or more

3  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: How the Democratic Party became a tool for Wall-Street on: July 31, 2014, 03:40:29 pm
Real hate of working people implies a reversion to the 70-hour workweek and 40-year lifespan of industrial workers as was once the norm. That they are in the more 'socially advanced' retail or food service business is hardly an improvement. All that is necessary is that the social norms mandate that wages be so low that people must work to exhaustion just to get the most basic needs and pay off the grafters.

 
4  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: OH-Quinnipiac: Paul only trails Hillary by 4, leads among Indies on: July 31, 2014, 01:38:18 pm
These results make more sense for Florida than those of the Q poll of last week. They also make sense for Ohio.
5  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: July 31, 2014, 01:23:59 pm
Here's my projection of the 2016 election based upon what I see in Hillary Clinton against the main four potential nominees in current polls. I pay no attention to Ted Cruz, Mario Rubio, or Scott Walker, as they lose by ludicrous margins in all but sure-R states.  Nevada is 'new' to polling, and it shows a surprise even if the poll is by an R pollster. Under the circumstances, beggars can't be choosers.  



Legitimate swing states:

white -- mixed results or any tie
pink --   D lead in all 4 current polls, but swing states in 2008 and 2012
pale blue -- R lead in all current polls, all but one of them under 4%

Fringe swing states:

medium red -- D lead by at least 4% (but under 50%) in all but at most one poll but not swing states in 2008 or 2012
medium blue -- R lead by at least 4% (but under 50%) in all but at most one poll but not swing states in 2008 or 2012

Non-swing states
dark red -- D lead with at least 50% in at least two polls
dark blue -- R lead with at least 50% in at least two polls

Gray -- no polling

Now, based on how states did in 2008 and 2012 and how analogous states do, I fill in the rest:



Legitimate swing states:

white -- mixed results or any tie  66
pink --   D lead in all 4 current polls, but swing states in 2008 and 2012, or a split 81
pale blue -- R lead in all current polls, all but one of them under 4% 14

Fringe swing states:

medium red -- D lead by at least 4% (but under 50%) in all but at most one poll but not swing states in 2008 or 2012 50
medium blue -- R lead by at least 4% (but under 50%) in all but at most one poll but not swing states in 2008 or 2012 76

Non-swing states
dark red -- D lead with at least 50% in at least two polls 199
dark blue -- R lead with at least 50% in at least two polls 32

Gray --  I have no idea (no suitable analogues) 12

The controversial ones are Missouri (Georgia now looks like a good analogue for Missouri with KC + STL = ATL; it's about half Iowa and half Arkansas, which both register as ties), Tennessee (which I am placing politically about halfway between Georgia and Mississippi or Georgia and Kentucky). Until I see commanding evidence to the contrary I practically define Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, and Virginia as swing states. I'm giving ND as more solidly R than SD because of the boom in natural gas in North Dakota. Indiana? NE-02? Go figure.
 
I see America much less polarized now than it was in 2008 or 2012. 
6  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Polls on Same-Sex Marriage State Laws on: July 31, 2014, 01:08:40 pm
Quote
A federal appeals court ruling striking down Virginia's ban on same-sex marriage is reverberating across the state's border.

Roy Cooper, North Carolina's Democratic attorney general, said at a Monday press conference that he would no longer defend his state's constitutional ban, citing the precedent the Virginia ruling had set.

"Our attorneys have vigorously argued this case every step of the way," Cooper said. "But the 4th Circuit has ruled and the 4th Circuit is clear. There are really no arguments left to be made."

[...]

A lawsuit challenging North Carolina's ban had been put on hold pending the appeals court ruling.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/28/north-carolina-gay-marriage_n_5628129.html





For support and legality of same-sex marriage.

White -- same-sex marriage legal or has at the least been enacted. No further distinction.

Green -- same-sex marriage not legal, but more popular than unpopular or plurality support for legalization of SSM

65% or higher -- deep green (90% saturation)
60.0 - 64.9%  -- dark green  (70% saturation)
55.0 - 59.9%  -- medium green (50% saturation)
50.0 - 54.6% --  light green (30% saturation)
below 50% but positive -- aqua (20% saturation)

tie -- yellow

above 45.0% but negative -- hot pink (30% saturation)
40.0 - 44.9% -- medium red (50% saturation)
35.0 - 39.9%  -- ruby (60% saturation)
30.0 - 34.9%  -- maroon (70% saturation)
under 30% -- deep red  (90% saturation)

In view of the decisions of the 4th Federal Circuit Court, tan for states in which states have until August 18, 2014 in which to appeal the decision:  





Not sure why you made NC white, Cooper has stated he will no longer defend the legal challenges to the law in court, but same-sex marriage is still not legal in N.C

Correction made. One surrender by one elected official may not be enough.
7  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: July 31, 2014, 12:25:06 pm
Harper (R), Nevada:

Clinton (D) 47%
Paul (R) 44%

Clinton (D) 46%
Bush (R) 41%

Clinton (D) 48%
Martinez (R) 35%

http://www.ralstonreports.com/blog/poll-sandoval-would-defeat-reid-double-digits#.U9ptJ_l_vUU
http://cdn.ralstonreports.com/sites/default/files/HP%2014.07%20NV%20Memo.pdf

Limited results from an R pollster, but it is all that we have in Nevada so far. It corroborates the poor performance of Hillary Clinton in Colorado at least according to early polling. Harper must not take either Christie or Huckabee seriously.

 

Hillary Clinton vs. Jeb Bush





Hillary Clinton vs. Chris Christie


   

Hillary Clinton vs. Mike Huckabee



Hillary Clinton vs. Rand Paul




blue, Republican -- red, Democratic

30% -- lead with 40-49% but a margin of 3% or less
40% -- lead with 40-49% but a margin of 4% or more
60% -- lead with 50-54%
70% -- lead with 55-59%
90% -- lead with 60% or more
8  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: July 31, 2014, 06:22:50 am
Quinnipiac, Ohio'

Quote
Looking at the 2016 White House race, Ohio voters back Clinton over their Favorite Son, Gov. John Kasich, 47 - 40 percent. She tops other possible Republican contenders:

    46 - 42 percent over U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky;
    48 - 37 percent over former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush;
    46 - 37 percent over New Jersey Gov. Christopher Christie.

http://www.quinnipiac.edu/news-and-events/quinnipiac-university-poll/ohio/release-detail?ReleaseID=2066

Not at all suspect. Q is a good pollster. The Florida poll by Q still looks anomalous, and the Ohio poll does nothing to convince me that Florida will offer an easy victory for Hillary Clinton.  I am more likely to believe that the Ohio poll is right for both Florida and Ohio.

The Democratic nominee has not won Florida by a double-digit margin or even a high-single-digit margin since 1948, when Florida really was a Southern state.


Hillary Clinton vs. Jeb Bush





Hillary Clinton vs. Chris Christie


   

Hillary Clinton vs. Mike Huckabee



Hillary Clinton vs. Rand Paul




blue, Republican -- red, Democratic

30% -- lead with 40-49% but a margin of 3% or less
40% -- lead with 40-49% but a margin of 4% or more
60% -- lead with 50-54%
70% -- lead with 55-59%
90% -- lead with 60% or more
9  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: GOP just handed the Democrats the house im November on: July 31, 2014, 03:04:14 am
Quote
The House voted mostly along party lines Wednesday to authorize suing President Barack Obama, which Republicans called a principled move to rein in an increasingly lawless president and Democrats and the White House dismissed as a taxpayer-financed political stunt.

The resolution adopted 225-201 would authorize a lawsuit against the president over his implementation of the Affordable Care Act, with five Republicans joining all the Democrats in opposition...

Republicans say the unilateral employer mandate delay is just one example of the White House’s disregard for the rule of law. Indeed, when Speaker John A. Boehner first announced his intent to sue the president, Republicans weren’t sure which action they would target. They had a menu of options to chose from, which Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions, R-Texas, highlighted during the floor debate Wednesday.

http://blogs.rollcall.com/218/house-votes-to-sue-president-obama/?dcz=

Making government unworkable three months before the Congressional election. That is a high-risk gamble with a small reward in the event of success. I'm no gambler, but that seems the stupidest of all possible bets. If one is to take a bet with a low chance of success, then take something with a big payoff. 
10  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: GOP just handed the Democrats the house im November on: July 31, 2014, 02:18:46 am
The Republicans lose the House if the Democrats get a D+5 edge in Congressional balloting nationwide. Through gerrymandering the Republicans have a built-in advantage by 'packing and stacking' and were able to maintain control of the House in 2012 despite getting fewer votes nationwide in House races than Democrats, they have lots of R+3 or so seats to lose.   
11  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Would Mitt Romney endorse HRC if Rand is the Republican nominee? on: July 30, 2014, 10:44:02 am
Unless David Duke is the GOP nominee, Mitt Romney isn't ever endorsing a Democrat over a Republican. He is definitely a Republican first.

...or someone who denounces the LDS Church.

Otherwise, no.

Rand Paul would be a dreadful choice for President. If he claims the mantle of his father on economics, he is quite authoritarian on almost everything else. But that is fine for the GOP.

Establishment Republicans endorsed Goldwater in 1964.
12  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2014 Senatorial Election Polls / Re: AR: Hendrix College/Talk Business: Cotton Narrowly Leads Pryror on: July 30, 2014, 09:09:48 am
Quote
The high-stakes race for the U.S. Senate remains locked in a near dead heat 100 days before Election Day. Our last survey showed U.S. Senator Mark Pryor with a marginal lead. This survey, with a sample of nearly 1,800 Arkansans, shows a similar marginal lead for Congressman Tom Cotton (44% to 42%).

It will take more time to see if this marks any legitimate shift in Cotton’s direction or, instead, remains statistical noise in a race that has been airtight for months. In all likelihood, fall debates (still in discussion) mark the next major opportunity for either candidate to create space in the race.

In examining the cross tabs in the survey, expected patterns emerge.

A gender gap continues to express itself in the race with Pryor leading among women (45% to 40%) but Cotton is running up a much larger lead among men (49% 37%). The poll was weighted to match the turnout in the last mid-term election (2010), but the Cotton campaign hopes that it can create a November electorate that is closer to even in terms of gender composition.

- See more at: http://talkbusiness.net/2014/07/u-s-senate-poll-tom-cotton-44-mark-pryor-42/#sthash.KgexlF4Y.dpuf

This isn't 2010 anymore. This race is a true toss-up.
13  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2014 Gubernatorial Election Polls / Re: OH-Quinnipiac: Gov. Kasich+12 on: July 30, 2014, 07:11:42 am
They couldn't have waited another week or so until the ad is finished airing in the Cleveland and Columbus media markets? Quinnipiac seriously doesn't ever give FitzGerald enough credit. His campaign schedule is much more tedious than Kasich's and his last unknown figures I saw were at around 50%, not 67%. He has been getting his name out there through this ad, fundraisers and a lot of visits all around the state, contrary to Quinnipiac's belief that "no one knows him."

Don't enter this. Quinnipiac is the only pollster who believes this is a double digit race and as usual, Kasich's lead, job approval and lead among women is laughable. Their polls were so off in 2010's race and they're not even close this time, either. If anything, the internal is more on track with where this race is at with FitzGerald remaining competitive.

Good pollsters often have rigid schedules, and it is inappropriate for them to hold off just because an ad campaign is going on. Q will poll Ohio again; Q has a limited repertory of state4s in which it polls.  
14  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: Fox News national: Clinton leads Bush, Christie, Kasich, & Paul by double digits on: July 29, 2014, 04:24:17 pm
GenXers sure don't like Hilldog

It is an interesting question as to why Hillary does so much better than Obama with the olds but poorer with the GenXers. Could it simply be identity politics. Obama is seen as a Gen Xer and Hillary is a fellow old?



If one goes with the generational theory of Howe and Strauss, then Barack Obama (born 1961) is from the first year of births of Generation X. He is not going to formulate great new pronouncements of morality. People slightly older than he can do that quite well. He is more a pragmatist than a moralizer. Dispatching Osama bin Laden with a gangland-style hit establishes that he is no Boomer. The style suggests Al Capone, who did things that way to his rivals and those who crossed him.

Quote
Gen X seems like it does it's own thing, so it doesn't surprise me that they are the outliers  in this crosstab.

Boomers spoke often of 'doing your own thing' when they were young. They clamped down on that once Generation X tried that and did what Boomers would have never done. Boomers generally pretended to great moral objectives; Generation X did what they did out of unabashed hedonism. Generation X can be counted on to do what it does out of self-interest or the interest of loved ones younger than themselves.

Quote
   

This is what a double-digit Clinton win probably looks like. Assuming that the Q polls for Florida which show her with double-digit leads are nearly valid (historically, the Democratic ceiling for Florida is 52%l LBJ barely won the state in 1964), so far as I can tell. It would look much like an Eisenhower win in the 1950s:

(map excised for brevity)

She picks up everything along and east of the Mississippi River except for Alabama. Texas is the closest state, and it makes the difference between the Republican winning 36 and 74 electoral votes. By 9PM east coast time, Republicans start spiking the ratings for hockey and basketball games... or old movies.

Pale colors are for wins under 4%, middle colors are for wins by 4% to 9.999%;  dark colors are for wins by margins over 10%.   

This is definitely a map that I wouldn't rule out. Maybe ND would be pale blue or pale pink and MS pale blue, but I'm guessing that you were working off of polling for this, so it's just a tiny quibble on my part.

Remember: we haven't seen a Democrat win the Presidency by a margin of 10% to 15% in a two-way race or so since FDR beat Willkie in 1940. That does not count the LBJ blowout. Clinton won by about 10% in 1996, but probably because Perot siphoned off several million votes that ordinarily went Republican. FDR won by 7.5% in 1944 and Obama won by 7.2% in 2008.  If anyone agrees with my model for a 10%-12% win for Hillary Clinton, then I am amazed. Tiny quibbles are effective concurrence.

I didn't say that it was going to happen. Barack Obama won by Reagan-like landslide margins in about 20 states and lost by Mondale-like landslide margins in about 15 states in 2008. That is unlikely to ever be repeated for decades.  But if it does happen, the electoral map is more likely to resemble my proposition than just about anything else. To get such results, Hillary Clinton must keep the Obama 2008 coalition intact -- and recover the sorts of voters that Carter convinced in 1976 that haven't gone for a Democratic nominee for President since 2000. That is asking for a lot. It could happen. I just don't see it happening yet.

   

 
15  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: Fox News national: Clinton leads Bush, Christie, Kasich, & Paul by double digits on: July 29, 2014, 02:18:46 pm
This is what a double-digit Clinton win probably looks like. Assuming that the Q polls for Florida which show her with double-digit leads are nearly valid (historically, the Democratic ceiling for Florida is 52%l LBJ barely won the state in 1964), so far as I can tell. It would look much like an Eisenhower win in the 1950s:



She picks up everything along and east of the Mississippi River except for Alabama. Texas is the closest state, and it makes the difference between the Republican winning 36 and 74 electoral votes. By 9PM east coast time, Republicans start spiking the ratings for hockey and basketball games... or old movies.

Pale colors are for wins under 4%, middle colors are for wins by 4% to 9.999%;  dark colors are for wins by margins over 10%.   
16  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: July 29, 2014, 01:51:08 pm
PPP, Colorado

Leading 41/40 over Jeb Bush
Leading 45/39 over Chris Christie
Leading 44/43 over Ted Cruz
Leading 45/43 over Mike Huckabee
Trailing 44/45 to Rand Paul

http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/pdf/2014/COMiscResults.pdf

Hillary Clinton vs. Jeb Bush





Hillary Clinton vs. Chris Christie


   

Hillary Clinton vs. Mike Huckabee



Hillary Clinton vs. Rand Paul




blue, Republican -- red, Democratic

30% -- lead with 40-49% but a margin of 3% or less
40% -- lead with 40-49% but a margin of 4% or more
60% -- lead with 50-54%
70% -- lead with 55-59%
90% -- lead with 60% or more




17  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Polls on Same-Sex Marriage State Laws on: July 29, 2014, 01:47:39 pm
It sounded like a surrender.
18  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Why is President Obama's approval so low? on: July 29, 2014, 01:43:52 pm



And for a nice demonstration of my point:

Then you have this swarm of illegals coming across our border. The reaction from everyone I've spoken to is, "Send them packin'!" But then the President is silent. I've heard people recently asking, "Why won't the President do something!?!" I think the reason he won't address the problem, is because to him, innocent illegal Mexicans spilling into our country isn't a problem. It's the disconnect that even many Democrats have been speaking about in recent weeks.

Please pay closer attention, Low-Information-VoterTM.  Obama already announced they're being deported over a week ago.

When FoX Propaganda Channel has nothing to gain from criticizing Barack Obama, his approval ratings will be in the 50s. Count on it.
19  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Which countries are the biggest threats to the United States? on: July 29, 2014, 08:49:39 am
When all is said and done -- our own fascists. They don't need to prance around in brown shirts or rally around burning crosses to be thugs who first gut all that is good in America and put America at risk from countries like Germany and Japan with the decencies that America imposed upon them in 1945. 

America played a huge role in defeating the fascist powers in World War II because it kept a moral compass. The Axis Powers enslaved and plundered at will.  Once American troops took over another piece of real estate the war was over for those liberated or conquered, barring a desperate counter-attack like the Battle of the Bulge. American troops left nobody a reason for striking back behind the lines.

Fascism is about the purest pathology that any political entity could ever achieve. We need be reminded of what Laurence Britt warned us of in several pathological regimes:

http://www.secularhumanism.org/library/fi/britt_23_2.htm

Quote
1. Powerful and continuing expressions of nationalism. From the prominent displays of flags and bunting to the ubiquitous lapel pins, the fervor to show patriotic nationalism, both on the part of the regime itself and of citizens caught up in its frenzy, was always obvious. Catchy slogans, pride in the military, and demands for unity were common themes in expressing this nationalism. It was usually coupled with a suspicion of things foreign that often bordered on xenophobia.

2. Disdain for the importance of human rights. The regimes themselves viewed human rights as of little value and a hindrance to realizing the objectives of the ruling elite. Through clever use of propaganda, the population was brought to accept these human rights abuses by marginalizing, even demonizing, those being targeted. When abuse was egregious, the tactic was to use secrecy, denial, and disinformation.

3. Identification of enemies/scapegoats as a unifying cause. The most significant common thread among these regimes was the use of scapegoating as a means to divert the people’s attention from other problems, to shift blame for failures, and to channel frustration in controlled directions. The methods of choice—relentless propaganda and disinformation—were usually effective. Often the regimes would incite “spontaneous” acts against the target scapegoats, usually communists, socialists, liberals, Jews, ethnic and racial minorities, traditional national enemies, members of other religions, secularists, homosexuals, and “terrorists.” Active opponents of these regimes were inevitably labeled as terrorists and dealt with accordingly.

4. The supremacy of the military/avid militarism. Ruling elites always identified closely with the military and the industrial infrastructure that supported it. A disproportionate share of national resources was allocated to the military, even when domestic needs were acute. The military was seen as an expression of nationalism, and was used whenever possible to assert national goals, intimidate other nations, and increase the power and prestige of the ruling elite.

5. Rampant sexism. Beyond the simple fact that the political elite and the national culture were male-dominated, these regimes inevitably viewed women as second-class citizens. They were adamantly anti-abortion and also homophobic. These attitudes were usually codified in Draconian laws that enjoyed strong support by the orthodox religion of the country, thus lending the regime cover for its abuses.

6. A controlled mass media. Under some of the regimes, the mass media were under strict direct control and could be relied upon never to stray from the party line. Other regimes exercised more subtle power to ensure media orthodoxy. Methods included the control of licensing and access to resources, economic pressure, appeals to patriotism, and implied threats. The leaders of the mass media were often politically compatible with the power elite. The result was usually success in keeping the general public unaware of the regimes’ excesses.

7. Obsession with national security. Inevitably, a national security apparatus was under direct control of the ruling elite. It was usually an instrument of oppression, operating in secret and beyond any constraints. Its actions were justified under the rubric of protecting “national security,” and questioning its activities was portrayed as unpatriotic or even treasonous.

8. Religion and ruling elite tied together. Unlike communist regimes, the fascist and protofascist regimes were never proclaimed as godless by their opponents. In fact, most of the regimes attached themselves to the predominant religion of the country and chose to portray themselves as militant defenders of that religion. The fact that the ruling elite’s behavior was incompatible with the precepts of the religion was generally swept under the rug. Propaganda kept up the illusion that the ruling elites were defenders of the faith and opponents of the “godless.” A perception was manufactured that opposing the power elite was tantamount to an attack on religion.

9. Power of corporations protected. Although the personal life of ordinary citizens was under strict control, the ability of large corporations to operate in relative freedom was not compromised. The ruling elite saw the corporate structure as a way to not only ensure military production (in developed states), but also as an additional means of social control. Members of the economic elite were often pampered by the political elite to ensure a continued mutuality of interests, especially in the repression of “have-not” citizens.

10. Power of labor suppressed or eliminated. Since organized labor was seen as the one power center that could challenge the political hegemony of the ruling elite and its corporate allies, it was inevitably crushed or made powerless. The poor formed an underclass, viewed with suspicion or outright contempt. Under some regimes, being poor was considered akin to a vice.

11. Disdain and suppression of intellectuals and the arts. Intellectuals and the inherent freedom of ideas and expression associated with them were anathema to these regimes. Intellectual and academic freedom were considered subversive to national security and the patriotic ideal. Universities were tightly controlled; politically unreliable faculty harassed or eliminated. Unorthodox ideas or expressions of dissent were strongly attacked, silenced, or crushed. To these regimes, art and literature should serve the national interest or they had no right to exist.

12. Obsession with crime and punishment. Most of these regimes maintained Draconian systems of criminal justice with huge prison populations. The police were often glorified and had almost unchecked power, leading to rampant abuse. “Normal” and political crime were often merged into trumped-up criminal charges and sometimes used against political opponents of the regime. Fear, and hatred, of criminals or “traitors” was often promoted among the population as an excuse for more police power.

13. Rampant cronyism and corruption. Those in business circles and close to the power elite often used their position to enrich themselves. This corruption worked both ways; the power elite would receive financial gifts and property from the economic elite, who in turn would gain the benefit of government favoritism. Members of the power elite were in a position to obtain vast wealth from other sources as well: for example, by stealing national resources. With the national security apparatus under control and the media muzzled, this corruption was largely unconstrained and not well understood by the general population.

14. Fraudulent elections. Elections in the form of plebiscites or public opinion polls were usually bogus. When actual elections with candidates were held, they would usually be perverted by the power elite to get the desired result. Common methods included maintaining control of the election machinery, intimidating and disenfranchising opposition voters, destroying or disallowing legal votes, and, as a last resort, turning to a judiciary beholden to the power elite.


With the caveats that Dubya wasn't particularly sexist by American standards and the Rove-Cheney-Bush administration could not rig the 2006 midterm election or the 2008 general election... the 43rd Presidency was awful for most of the above reasons, and inexcusably so.  Take away the comic-opera nonsense, and some key players in the American Right would be very happy with a regime that mows down strikers or protesters and guarantees huge profits through wars. 

20  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: Fox News national: Clinton leads Bush, Christie, Kasich, & Paul by double digits on: July 29, 2014, 07:16:25 am
Interesting that they polled Kasich.

FoX News heavily plugged Kasich for the 2010 gubernatorial campaign.

...The strongest Democratic win of the Presidency in a binary election (Bill Clinton had Ross Perot helping take some usual GOP votes in 1992 and 1996) since 1964 was Barack Obama in 2008, and that was about a 7% edge. These splits suggest Eisenhower-scale wins of either 1952 or 1956.

Ike won 39 of 48 states in 1952 and 41 of 48 states in 1956. 
21  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Which countries are the biggest threats to the United States? on: July 29, 2014, 12:07:59 am
Liberia and Sierra Leone

Good point. Ebola kills.
22  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Polls on Same-Sex Marriage State Laws on: July 29, 2014, 12:06:04 am
Quote
A federal appeals court ruling striking down Virginia's ban on same-sex marriage is reverberating across the state's border.

Roy Cooper, North Carolina's Democratic attorney general, said at a Monday press conference that he would no longer defend his state's constitutional ban, citing the precedent the Virginia ruling had set.

"Our attorneys have vigorously argued this case every step of the way," Cooper said. "But the 4th Circuit has ruled and the 4th Circuit is clear. There are really no arguments left to be made."

[...]

A lawsuit challenging North Carolina's ban had been put on hold pending the appeals court ruling.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/28/north-carolina-gay-marriage_n_5628129.html





For support and legality of same-sex marriage.

White -- same-sex marriage legal or has at the least been enacted. No further distinction.

Green -- same-sex marriage not legal, but more popular than unpopular or plurality support for legalization of SSM

65% or higher -- deep green (90% saturation)
60.0 - 64.9%  -- dark green  (70% saturation)
55.0 - 59.9%  -- medium green (50% saturation)
50.0 - 54.6% --  light green (30% saturation)
below 50% but positive -- aqua (20% saturation)

tie -- yellow

above 45.0% but negative -- hot pink (30% saturation)
40.0 - 44.9% -- medium red (50% saturation)
35.0 - 39.9%  -- ruby (60% saturation)
30.0 - 34.9%  -- maroon (70% saturation)
under 30% -- deep red  (90% saturation)

In view of the decisions of the 4th Federal Circuit Court, tan for states in which states have until August 18, 2014 in which to appeal the decision:  


23  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: Fox News national: Clinton leads Bush, Christie, Kasich, & Paul by double digits on: July 28, 2014, 11:48:29 pm
Say what you want about FoX News as a source, its polling source (Opinion Dynamics) has been spot-on in recent elections. 

24  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: LA-PPP: Swing state on: July 28, 2014, 11:45:46 pm
why did the bottom fall out of Jindal so dramatically?

Probably because he decided he wanted to wage a war against his state's poor. Being an Asian, and even an Indian, one would expect him to have a high enough IQ not to do something as self-destructive as that.

don't all Republican governors do that?

Many have put themselves in danger of defeat by so doing -- and not only Jindal.
25  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Explain the following on: July 28, 2014, 09:31:06 pm
Blacks are generally less skilled because of inferior education. Plus, they get arrested more often, so it's harder to find work after they get out of prison.

Not all arrests lead to prison or even to convictions. An arrest is not itself a ground for rejecting a hire. The cops can make mistakes.

Here's a big one -- blacks are less likely to use illegal drugs than white people. They are more likely to be busted, perhaps because white people can often keep their drug use hidden. Drugs are a perverse luxury.

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To make matters worse, you've got things like minimum wage laws that discriminate against low-skilled workers (in some cases, rather openly. See: Davis-Bacon). There's other stuff like occupational licensing that discriminated against low-skilled poor people just trying to make a living (unlicensed street vendors being harassed by cops is an example of this).

It is more likely that blacks are less likely to find work because there are fewer jobs where black people live -- especially the low-paying retail and restaurant jobs. Having done some census work in the heavily-black and very poor south side of Dallas in 1990 (most of my Census work was on the more prosperous north side) I noticed how difficult it was to find restaurants of any kind, including even fast-food places. People earning near-minimum wages lack the disposable income for dining out. The idea that the great rib places are in the 'black' neighborhoods is a myth; the good ones may have black cooks and wait staff, but those are in the prosperous 'white' part of town and rely heavily upon white clientele. 

If blacks get low-paying jobs, then they must commute to get them. 

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Finally, blacks are more welfare-dependent than members of other races, which had caused the black illegitimacy rate to skyrocket and eroded the black family.

No. Until the 1960s, many Northern blacks (particularly men)  had well-paying, middle-income jobs in industry. Automation killed off many of those jobs, and ill-educated black men  either had to get college degrees or find themselves ruined. Welfare became commonplace after the industrial jobs disappeared. 

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Kids in single-parent homes are way less likely to succeed and more likely to become criminals.

Single-parent households would have the same effect if the cause were divorce or widowhood. Out-of-wedlock-birth often shows other pathologies, but I can hardly imagine a situation more likely to turn a kid into a sociopath than a divorce. Kids learn how to manipulate, but they lose all sense of security.    Just think of how nasty kids could get if they are 15 years old when Daddy casts off his 40-year-old wife for someone who resembles a centerfold model.

Most poor people do not become criminals. Sociopaths with none of the advantages become dumb crooks who get taken out of the gene pool until they are middle-aged. Sociopaths  from the upper class become the economic and political leaders who start wars, persecutions, and genocide.  In Hungary during WWII, the worst persecutors of Jews were from the aristocracy.

(OK, so we need to inculcate some ethical values into our kids applicable to all classes and cultures).   

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Welfare dependency retards earnings and IQ while destroying the work ethic by creating arbitrary income cut-offs that lead to situations where an increase in income derived from work will lead to a net income loss due to the loss of welfare payments.

Work is still a better deal than welfare -- if one can find full-time work. I know of one low-wage employer who tells its new hires how to use the welfare system to supplement low wages from part time work.
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