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News: Cast your Ballot in the 2016 Mock Election

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1  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Trump approval ratings thread 1.1 on: Today at 02:01:53 pm
Republicans won the special elections on Tuesday.

Any legislative or electoral success of the GOP will cause Trump support to rise. Victory creates its own moral support even for despicable causes. 
2  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: The Disappearance of Virtue From American Politics on: Today at 09:10:55 am
Here is an interesting critical article:

To be clear, I too admire these sorts of people—again, who does not? But where do they go if there is nothing at all for them to do? Why train uncomplaining workers for a world without work? Sasse's own book opens with a warning that the kind of economy that rewarded this kind of work is about to go out the door and never come back, but the rest is a plea that the habits the economy supposedly rewarded remain in place without the reward. Like Animal Farm's pig-despot Napoleon, Sasse is telling a story that doesn't quite add up. Is being a nimble entrepreneur the same thing, after all, as being an adult? Is being a worker the same thing as being an adult?

The writer of the article to which you link cites the equine character 'Boxer' as a devoted worker with child-like faith in the system... Hitler and Stalin need plenty of such people to make their dehumanized orders churn out the weapons and provisions for aggressive warfare.  Once exhausted or crippled of such work one was expendable, like 'Boxer'. One started griping, and one went to a labor camp where one would be finished off by intensified toil on starvation rations. For humans that is the 'glue factory'.

Orwell was as much a critic of fascism as of Stalinism. Many now apply 1984 to Trump's America for the linguistic fraud, the inculcation of fear, and the disparity between official ideals and the vile reality. What is missing from fascism or Stalinism is the climate of personal fear when people dread the knock on the door at 2 AM from the Gestapo or the GPU.

Nasty systems, whether the plantation order of the Old South, fascist regimes, Stalin's Soviet Union, Japan of the WWII era, or Iraq under Satan  Hussein, compel people to work with promises of better (even if what is better is 'Pie in the Sky When You Die' for those who dedicate themselves most completely to providing the toil that the Master turns into his indulgence) things that never arrive. Such requires child-like faith in a brutal order... Education to bare literacy might even be excessive for a plantation slave, but bare literacy -- enough to allow one to be a factory laborer or cannon fodder in aggressive wars.  Anyone who runs afoul of the amoral exploitation by showing the dichotomy between demands and promises will be murdered.

...We are at the stage of economic development in which the production of more material objects  is unlikely to satisfy people except those with a 'hoarder' mentality. Except for fuels and food, most of our productivity in manufactured goods seems to go to replacement of worn, broken, or obsolete goods. Nobody is excited about getting more underwear, and most people excited about the newest electronic gadget are suckers. People can work, but much of the work now seems dedicated to paying off rentiers who make easy money by exploiting a scarcity that the rentiers maintain. Here's looking to you, President Trump!

The people who praise selfless toil of the common man  yet exploit that for their own extreme indulgence are the basest of hypocrites.

3  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: US Alt/Far-Right accuse upcoming "Star Trek Discovery" series of White genocide on: Today at 08:19:00 am
Do they not know anything about Gene Rodenberry?

Indeed. I recall a Jew, black woman, a Russian (!! Big deal in the 60s) and a gay Asian on the original version

Jewish cast members included William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, and Walter Koenig, and none of them seemed particularly Jewish; if anything, Spock's Vulcan character seemed like a synthesis of Buddhism and Quakerism. (Heck, I thought when I was a kid that William Shatner was a German-American, as he is from rural Iowa). DeForest Kelley and James Doohan were Celts. George Takei scrupulously stayed in the closet, at least on filmed footage. Nichelle Nichols, of course...  took a male part and did it well.
4  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Sen. Tom Cotton's Intern Calls Paul Ryan a ‘Cuck’ in Audio Recording on: Today at 08:07:22 am
Why would a reporter interview an intern?!

Because reckless people are good for the most shocking quotes.
5  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: California outmuscles Trump on vehicle emissions standards on: June 22, 2017, 10:51:58 pm
Donald Trump is an environmental disaster; he considers pollution progress.
6  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Sen. Tom Cotton's Intern Calls Paul Ryan a ‘Cuck’ in Audio Recording on: June 22, 2017, 10:49:45 pm
The infighting has begun, and Democrats are wisely keeping out of it. 
7  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Trump approval ratings thread 2.0 on: June 22, 2017, 11:14:10 am
Quinnipiac, Virginia

Approval for President Trump surges to 40%!

Virginia voters give President Donald Trump a negative 40 - 57 percent job approval rating, compared to a negative 36 - 57 percent approval in an April 11 poll.

"President Donald Trump is one unpopular dude in Virginia," Brown added. "Only 40 percent of voters in the Old Dominion give the president a thumbs up job performance rating. That's compared to 57 percent who give him a negative evaluation. Actually, the president's approval rating has been lower in some state and national polls, but the 40 - 57 percent score may be another sign of the bluing of the state and its continuing drift from its conservative roots."

Well, that change sis still within the margin of error.


Trump hurts any Republican politician.

The letter F shall signify a favorability poll, as the only polls that I have for Arizona,  Massachusetts and Oklahoma  

Even -- white

Blue, positive and 40-43%  20% saturation
............................ 44-47%  40%
............................ 48-50%  50%
............................ 51-55%  70%
............................ 56%+     90%

Red, negative and  48-50%  20% (raw approval or favorability)
..........................  44-47%  30%
..........................  40-43%  50%
..........................  35-39%  70%
.......................under  35%  90%

White - tie.
Colors chosen for partisan affiliation  

8  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Coats+Rogers tell Mueller that Trump asked to publicly deny collusion on: June 22, 2017, 09:55:00 am
Two of the nation's top intelligence officials told Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team and Senate investigators, in separate meetings last week, that President Donald Trump suggested they say publicly there was no collusion between his campaign and the Russians, according to multiple sources.

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and National Security Agency Director Adm. Mike Rogers described their interactions with the President about the Russia investigation as odd and uncomfortable, but said they did not believe the President gave them orders to interfere, according to multiple sources familiar with their accounts.

Sources say both men went further than they did in June 7 public hearings, when they provided little detail about the interactions.


One needs not go into great detail to deny something completely false. If someone accuses me of a despicable crime that I didn't do, I expect to brush it off easily. Guildy people have to put their guards up. 
9  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Democrats Are ‘Children Of Satan,’ Right-Wing Radio Host Says on: June 22, 2017, 09:50:37 am
The right-wing suggestion: that people not rich will humble themselves before their masters and dedicate their entire lives to the enrichment of their masters in one big, happy plantation.

Violence is wrong as a general rule.

I hate Donald Trump. I thought him merely a sick joke so long as I could avoid his influence. It's not because he is rich; it is because he uses his riches to create a nasty, vulgar world.  There are nasty, vulgar poor people, too, and I don't like them. But at least the poor have the excuse of inadequate education. Donald Trump has no such excuse; he is about as pure an egoist as a hero in an Ayn Rand novel -- the type who sees his selfish greed as a great virtue and the rightful role of the rest of humanity to defer to his selfish greed.   

The rich are fine when they get their riches by doing real good for people through innovations in commerce and technology. Whatever their faults, John D. Rockefeller at least got us inexpensive energy; Henry Ford got us some affordable cars; the movie moguls of the 1930s gave us a great wealth of cultural expression worthy of continued appreciation; Sam Walton made a lot of the good life available to people who had been priced out of it. So what does Trump do? He simply exploits a permanent scarcity in housing. Except for an excursion into reality TV -- bad reality TV worse than what I usually reject -- his entrepreneurial efforts have been failures. They guy lost money in casinos -- and in vodka. Can you imagine losing money as the owner of a casino or in making vodka?   

The only good thing that I can see about Donald Trump is that he is showing us what to reject in the next leader. He's making Obama look like an FDR or Lincoln by contrast even if Obama's temperament and inability to force his agenda suggests Eisenhower.   

Donald Trump is a corrupt kleptocrat who sees power solely as a pretext to enrich and indulge himself. His taste says "Ceausescu", "Qaddafi", or "Saddam". Does anyone want to guess what Warren Buffett thinks of him? 
10  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Trump: "I don't want poor people in my cabinet" on: June 22, 2017, 09:24:52 am
President J R Ewing Trump may play a populist game to gull the proles, but he then shafts them. It is not that he is rich that troubles me; it is that he is filthy rich, vile in his expression of wealth, and incredibly greedy. This man is a comic-book villain.

11  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Human nature on: June 21, 2017, 02:12:35 pm
Donald Trump is a walking indictment of human nature. Obviously, people need to be restrained (and by extension, governments).

Donald Trump is a walking indictment of the worst part of his class, people who believe that the rest of the world exists to enrich and indulge him. This is a man without empathy or scruples. At the low social end, one's upbringing brings about an Alton Coleman (serial killer) or Charles Manson (murderous cultist). In the social middle one might end up with sexual sadists (Ted Bundy, John Gacy) who end up killing people to hide their deviance for a while or a scammer like Bernie Madoff or Ken Lay. At the 'high' end the absolute worst were aristocrats of central Europe who perpetrated the Holocaust to destroy Jewish dissent with exploitative ideologies.

Unless sociopathic tendencies are genetic in nature, most people can learn some suitable values. A good society inculcates those values with active teaching and viable incentives.    
12  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Human nature on: June 21, 2017, 01:39:23 pm
We can choose good or evil, but a wholesome environment will lead most people to good. That is the qualification. There's a big difference between a Quaker world and a Nazi world.

So what leads people to be good? Appropriate inculcation of values -- like empathy, a good work ethic, respect for human difference, a desire for justice, and a rejection of excess. Of course there have been some very sick societies that bring out the worst. But those sick societies have a tendency to self-destruct.
13  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Which is worse? on: June 21, 2017, 01:27:40 pm
Humanity is good enough for near-anarchy (but one would still need a police force). Almost nobody is good enough to be a tyrant without being a monster.
14  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: You wake up as Trump on 20th January on: June 21, 2017, 07:44:41 am
Would I be like the "Tramp" character in Charlie Chaplin's masterful The Great Dictator? Telling people the obvious and necessary, contrary to the lies that they had recently been spoon-fed, would I tell people that Trump trashed that character matters greatly and that identity is all but meaningless? Would I tell people that they need to quit fearing the liars that exploit and abuse them? Would I tell people that they need to cherish justice and reason? Sure.   
15  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: WP: Trump seeks cuts to housing aid, except for program that brings him millions on: June 20, 2017, 10:15:27 pm
Dopes anyone ever expect Donald Trump to do anything contrary to his crudely-expressed class interests (so crudely that they fit anti-capitalist Communist propaganda of the Soviet era)  unless he makes a profit from the graft?
16  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Whither income inequality? on: June 20, 2017, 10:12:29 pm
Extreme -- because only 2% of the people matter to a majority of our politicians, the ones who rigidly obey the dictates of the corporate lobbyists hired to keep the empty-suit pols and fanatic right-wingers in line. No human suffering will be in excess so long as it indulges the economic elites.

17  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What is going on with American transportation and infrastructure? on: June 20, 2017, 05:38:44 am
Obama didn't use his brief chance to pass a major infrastructural revival and this is the end result.

He pushed Obamacare first.

The Trump agenda is privatization to monopolistic profiteers in return for what in many cases might best be described as maintenance.
18  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What is going on with American transportation and infrastructure? on: June 20, 2017, 12:26:13 am
The next big economic downturn will feature big expenditures in infrastructure, much as was so in the 1930s. The George Washington Bridge, the Golden Gate Bridge, the original (now replaced) Trans-Bay Bridge, and Boulder (now Hoover) Dam were Depression-era big projects. Big construction projects hire huge numbers of workers out of unemployment and devour huge quantities of steel, concrete, and glass. 

There is a large number of big infrastructure projects awaiting funding and votes. Michigan alone could stand to transform I-94 west of Ann Arbor from a tricky old four-lane freeway into a calmer six-lane expressway and re-engineer the tricky 69-94 cloverleaf interchange into a directional interchange. We could use the next generation of railroads. Urban transit  (could Atlanta use a subway?) almost asks for itself.

I wonder if a bridge from Long Island to Connecticut makes sense.   
19  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What are the roots of the current divisiveness of American politics/discourse? on: June 20, 2017, 12:09:25 am
George W Bush is a war criminal bro

then so are Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama by that same definition .

In reality none of them are war criminals, and actually I would support heavily sanctioning, undermining their political stability , and in many cases go to war with countries who would arrest Clinton, Bush , or Obama just cause they disagree with their foreign policies.

I must have missed when Barack Obama and Bill Clinton illegally invaded another nation or engaged in torture.

I think this is one of the things Republicans have learned: be as extreme as possible and then when called out on it, criticize the other side for using 'over the top rhetoric' and expect the lazy 'both sides do it/both sides are equally bad' crowd to jump in in defense and attack the 'over the top rhetoric.

What the Bush Administration did in foreign policy was materially significantly different from even the worst excesses of President Clinton or President Obama.

First of all the Iraq war wasn't illegal (by the US law it was legal ) . Obama did exactly what Bush did in Iraq , to Libya(regime change without being attacked by that country or being allied with a country who is our enemy ) .

The first Gulf war was perfectly legal as the liberation of Kuwait from a fraudulent annexation made as the result of an annexation. Obama inherited a war suspect in wisdom and could not avoid some of the consequences of the bungling of '43'.   
Bill Clinton imposed harsh sanctions on Iraq ,which resulted in countless of Iraqis to die under the guise Saddam still had WMD's.

I recall a map showing the potential range of missiles that Iraq had just before the invasion of Kuwait. That range included a significant chunk of the Soviet Union. Gorbachev also wanted the war machine of Iraq eviscerated -- especially the missiles and the poison gas programs. He is as culpable as the first Bush by your reasoning.

Saddam Hussein was once useful as a good customer of military equipment for his criminal war against the Islamic Republic of Iran which then had few friends. Once he invaded Kuwait he was no longer trustworthy. 

20  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Trump approval ratings thread 2.0 on: June 19, 2017, 10:49:32 pm
New poll: Trump underwater in Alaska:

Alaska -

Trump's approval - 44/48 (-4)
Lisa Murkowski - 35/43 (-8)
Trumpcare - 29/53 (-24)
Voting intention of Murkowski to Generic D - 39/31 (+8)
If Murkowski votes for AHCA, are you likely to vote for or against her - 22/49 (-27)

Nevada -

Trump's approval - 44/50 (-6)
Dean Heller - 31/44 (-13)
Trumpcare - 31/51 (-20)
Voting intention of Heller to Generic D - 39/46 (-7)
If Heller votes for AHCA, are you likely to vote for or against her - 27/45 (-18)

West Virginia -

Trump's approval - 55/36 (+19)
Shelly Capito - 42/33(+9)
Trumpcare - 35/11 (-6)
Voting intention of Shelly Capito to Generic D - 48/35 (+13)
If Heller votes for AHCA, are you likely to vote for or against her - 29/36 (-7)


First polls of any kind of Alaska and Nevada, apparently by an advocacy group -- but I understand that these polls were taken by PPP. Yes, I know that Alaska is a tough state to poll from outside the state because few pollsters can have such options as "Press '3' for Aleut" or "Press '4' for Inuit".

I am not using favorability polls unless the rating is uncontroversial and there is no approval poll.

The letter F shall signify a favorability poll, as the only polls that I have for Arizona,  Massachusetts and Oklahoma  

Even -- white

Blue, positive and 40-43%  20% saturation
............................ 44-47%  40%
............................ 48-50%  50%
............................ 51-55%  70%
............................ 56%+     90%

Red, negative and  48-50%  20% (raw approval or favorability)
..........................  44-47%  30%
..........................  40-43%  50%
..........................  35-39%  70%
.......................under  35%  90%

White - tie.
Colors chosen for partisan affiliation  

21  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What are the roots of the current divisiveness of American politics/discourse? on: June 19, 2017, 02:32:44 pm
The Democrat party is unable to man up and deal with losing an election....and has a kill list of the people who won the election.

Maybe go back to the old standard of trying to make Donald Trump a 1 term President?


Were it simply a matter of Donald Trump and the GOP bamboozling the American people to vote for him, that would be one thing. Elections have consequences, and people deserve the consequences of their folly when they vote for demagogues and corporate shills. That includes injustice and economic calamities.

If the election were shaped significantly by a foreign intelligence agency, then we did not have a free and fair election. If it is Russia that does the hack this time, then it could be China the next time -- maybe choosing that we elect a Democratic President and Democratic majorities in both Houses of Congress.

People connected to President Trump have inordinate numbers of ties to Russia -- not China, not India, not Japan, not any country in western Europe. Such causes the 2016 election to fail the 'stink test'.   
22  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Rep. Clay Higgins of LA to appear at Richard Spencer and Baked Alaska rally. on: June 19, 2017, 11:01:02 am
Richard Spencer... enough said.
23  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2020 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: What percentage of the African-American vote does Bernie Sanders win in the GE? on: June 19, 2017, 10:53:26 am
Donald Trump has done nothing to earn support from black voters.
24  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Jason Chaffetz: Trump is almost worse than Obama. Sessions worse than Lynch on: June 19, 2017, 10:21:23 am
Yes, it is Utah. Mormon country.

Whatever you think of their religion, Mormons at least have a solid community and take care of themselves. My impression of Utah is that if you arrive there you will need to larch onto some community (even if it isn't Mormon) that allows people to take care of themselves. But that would solve many problems in America inside or outside of Utah.

Utah is not a rich state -- but it gets some good results. Utah has good schools, good roads, and good opportunities for recreation. It helps that people smoke less and drink less, so people have longer careers and the state doesn't have to spend so much money on public health to treat poor people with emphysema and lung cancer. Contrast Louisiana, which has an above-average per capita income -- but its politics are horribly corrupt machine politics. Education is awful. Crime is high. Measures of health (smoking, alcoholism, and obesity) are awful. Heavy smokers and drinkers with obesity are poor prospects for any emergency medical care if they don't simply keel over and die. Yes, much of the income comes from the oil industry, and the effort goes into oil exploration and production and the profits and income get funneled quickly back to Texas, California, the UK, or wherever  the oil company is headquartered.   

(Don't blame obesity on Cajun cuisine, arguably the best regional cuisine in America. Blame instead the unhealthy habit of vegetating in front of the idiot screen watching televised sports or whatever else, beer in one hand and chips in another, neither of which is Cajun in origin).   

...Like middle-class Jews, blacks, Hispanics, and Asians, Mormons value education and family life. They prefer that their entertainment be intelligent and uplifting. We can all learn something from this. Even if we are in southeastern Kentucky or northern Louisiana.
25  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What are the roots of the current divisiveness of American politics/discourse? on: June 19, 2017, 10:02:06 am
Near autistic Partisan hacks who cant handle accepting any blame for anything.  Id say the responses in this thread are a pretty good indicator of how prevalent that cancer is.

I have Asperger's syndrome.  Or to put it more precisely, Asperger's syndrome has me. It has caused me much grief, and I stumbled through life until age 60 faulting my character or society in general for something that gave me great difficulty in getting and holding jobs. I got horrible advice from well-meaning people who led me in some of the worst career directions and life decisions possible for someone with Asperger's. Instead of trying office work I should have gone into some creative activity in which I had a chance so long as I showed adequate diligence and dedication. Where there are incentives and other encouragement, people turn their talents to productive activities and do well. Between the writing, art, music, and drama that I love -- and these are all expressions of humanity at its fullest -- I would have found something to my satisfaction. I simply could never get office politics.

The really-bad advice was to avoid the mental health system. There is no cure for Asperger's, but one can make adjustments to live a reasonably-normal life. One can be a good parent, but one had better be an adoptive parent -- especially if one ends up with a spouse who has Asperger's syndrome. Like attracts like.  One can dissolve the anxiety with an occasional drink; one drink does it. One beer or one glass of wine does the trick. One.

I am capable of moral judgment, indeed often harsh judgment of gross wrong-doing. I recognize the danger of anger, greed, and cruelty. I was old enough to see the contrast between the side of civil rights for Southern  blacks in contrast to white racism... yes, any side that must kill opponents to stifle a cause has a dubious cause. Male chauvinism? Once I was too old for Boy Scouts, all-male environments have lost all appeal to me.

...Last week at a filling station I saw a seven-year-old boy run away from his parents' (or custodial adults') vehicle. He showed a fear that seven-year-old boys never show. This was not "I don't want to see the dentist" fear. Seven-year-old boys don't show fear except of something that they have already experienced, like perhaps a beating by parents. What passed as his mother ordered him, with profanity, to get back into the car. His alleged father asked him if he was willing to put his job at risk, suggesting that he had the wrong set of priorities. I did not like what I saw. I told the store clerk what I saw and she called the police. I went out to gas up my car and watched the couple and their child. Maybe that couple figured out what I was up to, and figured that it was a bad idea to give their son a brutal spanking while I was around. They left, but not before I got their plate number.  

May that couple have a close encounter of the Blue kind. I am not referring to politics here -- I refer to the usual color of police uniforms. I may have thwarted some child endangerment. Who knows? They may have to take a junior-college course on child development that I found very useful in substitute school teaching.  

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