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101  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Could Jeb Bush win California against Hillary Clinton? on: October 06, 2014, 09:49:51 pm
Is the white powder making a comeback? I hope not!
102  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: October 06, 2014, 09:44:40 pm
Connecticut, PPP. We have little polling for New England. The pattern of 2008 and 2010 suggests that the best that a Republican nominee can hope for in Connecticut is just under 40%.

http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/main/2014/10/malloy-leads-by-8-in-connecticut-governors-race.html

49/39 over Christie (+10)
50/37 over Bush (+13)
53/34 over Huckabee (+19)
54/35 over Paul (+19)
54/32 over Cruz (+22)


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
103  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Which culturally Southern state will be the first to legalize gay marriage? on: October 06, 2014, 04:49:52 pm
Virginia is no longer "southern", culturally or politically. We can almost describe it as "South Maryland".

Oklahoma is borderline.

Florida is questionable as a Southern state. 
104  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Polls on Same-Sex Marriage State Laws on: October 06, 2014, 04:45:23 pm
Quote
WASHINGTON In a move that may signal the inevitability of a nationwide right to same-sex marriage, the Supreme Court on Monday let stand appeals court rulings allowing such unions in five states.

The development, a major surprise, cleared the way for same-sex marriages in Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin. Officials in Virginia announced that marriages would start at 1 p.m. on Monday.

The decision to let the appeals court rulings stand, which came without explanation in a series of brief orders, will almost immediately increase the number of states allowing same-sex marriage from 19 to 24, along with the District of Columbia. The impact of the move will in short order be even broader.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/07/us/denying-review-justices-clear-way-for-gay-marriage-in-5-states.html?_r=0

THERE IS NO APPEAL BEYOND THE US SUPREME COURT. Not the President. Not Congress. Not the UN. Not the Pope. Not even God Almighty.


History moved at glacial speed for a couple months, and one-tenth of all states are compelled to accept SSM with one decision.

Recent YouGov map with appropriate modifications as of 4PM EST, 6 October 2014:



White -- SSM equality by law.
Yellow -- toss-up

I hereby abandon my earlier approval/disapproval/legality map and will make no further changes upon it.

States in white (and DC) already have legalized same-sex marriages. Other states are coded by district in those in which SSM was not permanently legalized as of 4PM EST on 6 October 2014:







Status of SSM in Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, or the Northern Marianas not shown.

4th circuit*
5th circuit
6th circuit*
8th circuit
9th circuit*
10th circuit*
11th circuit

*Next appeal, US Supreme court.

Colors have no political significance.

DC and all states within the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd circuit courts have legalized SSM.
Yellow -- toss-up.

Any district in which SSM is legalized by a decision of the US Supreme Court will go white.



105  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Polls on Same-Sex Marriage State Laws on: October 06, 2014, 04:27:44 pm
Assuming no shenanigans, next week 11 more states will be white. (How do you get a white color?)

Here is an example:

CA=4;55;1

"4" is yellow, and "1" gives a white color. I use "4" so that electoral votes can show up (for some other maps) because numbers show up as black on a state coded in yellow.   
106  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Polls on Same-Sex Marriage State Laws on: October 06, 2014, 03:39:47 pm
Recent YouGov map with appropriate modifications as of 6AM EST, 6 October 2014:



White -- SSM equality by law.
Yellow -- toss-up

I hereby abandon my earlier approval/disapproval/legality map and will make no further changes upon it.

States in white (and DC) already have legalized same-sex marriages. Other states are coded by district in those in which SSM was not permanently legalized as of 6AM EST on 6 October 2014:







Status of SSM in Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, or the Northern Marianas not shown.

4th circuit*
5th circuit
6th circuit*
7th circuit*
8th circuit
9th circuit*
10th circuit*
11th circuit

*Next appeal, US Supreme court.

Colors have no political significance.

DC and all states within the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd circuit courts have legalized SSM.
Yellow -- toss-up.

Any district in which SSM is legalized by a decision of the US Supreme Court will go white.


107  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Polls on Same-Sex Marriage State Laws on: October 06, 2014, 03:26:42 pm


The 7 missing pieces thus would become:

Alabama: Deep red
Idaho: Red
Oklahoma: Red
Missouri: Light red
Nebraska: Light red
South Dakota: Toss up
North Dakota: Green

Better than I had expected. Smiley

I am dropping this map because of the more complete map and adopting this one with modifications to be explained:
108  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Can Scott Walker Unite the GOP? (GQ) on: October 03, 2014, 10:52:19 am
There are a few knocks against him.

He may be seen as unnecessarily combative by some (although an attempt to emphasize that would make him more appealing to others) in comparison to Pence and Romney, who largely avoided these kinds of fights.

The lack of a college degree is a small issue. If he presents himself well, the narrative can be that he was in a position to choose a good job over the last year of college. But it leaves him more vulnerable to gaffes. There are reasons it's such a rarity to have a statewide officeholder who didn't finish college.

His biggest issue is lower name recognition. Before he can unite the right, he has to convince enough of them that he's the best choice.



He has made lots of enemies. He is already an object of vilification throughout the Midwest among Democrats. Those Democrats will have even more time to hone an anti-Walker message.

Having no college degree? That is itself no problem, but if he harbors anti-intellectual resentments he will win big in places in which anti-intellectualism is popular. Bear in mind that his anti-intellectualism goes not so much toward Noam Chomsky as it does toward the more commonplace second-grade teacher.

He has name recognition -- but much of it is already negative.

His biggest asset? He will easily get the financial backing of anyone who sees him likely to gut workplace safety, environmental protection, and unions.
109  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: October 03, 2014, 04:11:03 am
For what it's worth, Gravis, Montana.

Bush (R)- 45%
Clinton (D)- 36%

Paul (R)- 46%
Clinton (D)- 38%

Ryan (R)- 51%
Clinton (D)- 37%


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







110  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2014 Senatorial Election Polls / Re: IA: Selzer & Co.: Ernst up, outside MoE on: October 01, 2014, 10:21:24 pm
Ernst got caught in a lie about cap-and-trade hurting Iowa by making energy more expensive. The problem with that claim is that it has never been enacted and is unlikely to be enacted any time soon. Not until the Democrats get the House back (at least 2016) is there any chance of that.

Until I see otherwise, this race is lean R... but I have seen plenty of Republican campaigns implode over stupid stuff.   

How true is it that parties that are unpopular are actually losing races they should win? It could simply be that "scandals" are an excuse than a reason.

Huge amounts of money buying Orwellian propaganda as political ads that exploit fear and resentment.   
111  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Ted Cruz booed off stage at Middle Eastern Christian conference on: October 01, 2014, 10:17:24 pm
What bothered me most about Cruz's remarks was his statement "those who hate Jews hate Christians" and "If you hate the Jewish people you are not reflecting the teachings of Christ."

Really? Historically, massacring and expelling Jews have been extraordinarily popular amongst Christians. The Crusaders hated Jews, so according to Cruz they hated Christians as well.

As for the second statement, the gospel of John strongly denounces the Jews. In the Book of Revelations Jesus says that Jews are the "synagogue of Satan". 

As a Christian, I am deeply offended by Ted Cruz telling me who I can and can't hate.

Aren't Christians supposed to love everyone, even our enemies?

On some other forum, one poster (a self-proclaimed Christian) accused me of one of the worst crimes possible short of murder. I prayed for him and put the prayer for him in the forum so that he could  recognize what I was doing. After all, I am reasonably certain that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said plenty of prayers for those who hated him -- segregationist politicians and even terrorists.

 
112  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: October 01, 2014, 06:36:30 pm
A poll of registered voters:

50-40 Clinton/Christie
53-32 Clinton/Bush
55-31 Clinton/Paul



http://www.quinnipiac.edu/news-and-events/quinnipiac-university-poll/new-jersey/release-detail?ReleaseID=2087

Dominating.


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






113  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: October 01, 2014, 07:48:15 am
Iowa, PPP:

Clinton- 43%
Bush- 43%

Clinton- 45%
Christie- 41%

Clinton- 47%
Cruz- 39%

Clinton- 46%
Huckabee- 42%

Clinton- 47%
Paul- 42%

Trade-off of advantages between two Republicans.

PPP has once again polled the 2016 race in the normally not (so) competitive, jazzy, creole Mardi Gras state of Louisiana. Hillary leads two of her potential competitors, while trailing the three others by single digits:

Vs Jeb Bush: 41-49 (R+8%)
Vs Mike Huckabee: 43-50 (R+7%)
Vs Ted Cruz: 44-47 (R+3%)

Vs Bobby Jindal: 46-45 (D+1%)
Vs Chris Christie: 44-42 (D+2%)

http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/main/2014/09/cassidy-has-small-head-to-head-lead-over-landrieu.html#more


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





114  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2014 Senatorial Election Polls / Re: IA: Selzer & Co.: Ernst up, outside MoE on: September 29, 2014, 08:16:03 am
Ernst got caught in a lie about cap-and-trade hurting Iowa by making energy more expensive. The problem with that claim is that it has never been enacted and is unlikely to be enacted any time soon. Not until the Democrats get the House back (at least 2016) is there any chance of that.

Until I see otherwise, this race is lean R... but I have seen plenty of Republican campaigns implode over stupid stuff.   
115  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2014 Senatorial Election Polls / Re: IA: Quinnipac has Ernst +6 and at 50% on: September 29, 2014, 08:06:15 am
The GOP and GOP front groups could be money-bombing any Senate race possible.
116  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: Virginia-Roanoke College: Hillary leads by mindblowing margins on: September 27, 2014, 10:18:07 pm
I stand corrected. Cheating.

http://www.270towin.com/alternative-electoral-college-allocation-methods/

Here is one of the most unfair ways possible, one in which Republicans split the electoral vote where the Democrats do not have a majority*, and use winner-take-all where they have majorities in place:

http://www.270towin.com/alternative-electoral-college-allocation-methods/



The state's winner gets the first number in any split. There are no ties.



Romney won the state or district on a WTA or district basis
Romney would have won the majority under an allocation of a majority of districts
Obama would have won a majority under the most R-friendly distribution
Obama would have won all electoral votes on any basis



Florida goes 18 Romney, 11 Obama -- in case such is hard to see.

New Jersey goes 10 Obama, 4 Romney, likewise.
Massachusetts goes 8 Obama, 3 Romney.
California goes 34 Obama, 20 Romney, 1 G. Johnson.
Connecticut goes 5 Obama, 2 Romney.

*Gary Johnson, Libertarian, gets one electoral vote in California but nowhere else -- and is not shown in any other state.

Obama  (R) 220
Romney (R) 358
Johnson (L) 1


...Just think of all the people would would be complaining "I did not vote for that fool in the White House" in the event of an economic meltdown, a diplomatic or military debacle, or some profoundly-unpopular legislation.

Now, rigging things the opposite way:






Romney wins all electoral votes anyway

Obama picks up only one electoral vote 
Obama picks up 2 or 3 electoral votes
Obama picks up 4 electoral votes
Obama picks up 6 electoral votes
Obama picks up 15 electoral votes (Texas only)
Obama won the state in reality and would not have lost anything

Obama  (R) 383
Romney (R) 155


Maybe not so polarized. It's 384-154 if  Nebraska apportions its votes aside from the two statewide votes are allocated in proportion to the vote. Barack Obama won an absolute majority of the vote any way and got a distorted result in the Electoral College because he generally won most of 'his' states by smaller margins than he lost in those that he lost.


*The statewide winner gets the two electoral votes that could not be assigned to the districts. Votes for third-party and independent nominees who cannot get enough to win a proportion of the total vote as a fraction of the of the two votes are then ignored.  Votes are allotted so that the loser gets enough of the other electoral votes to get a full share of the total vote for the proportion for the total vote. All other electoral votes go to the winner. Thus if the Republican wins 47.8% of the popular vote in Washington State after independent and third-party candidates are ignored, he gets four electoral votes from Washington if the State's vote is allocated.


117  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: Virginia-Roanoke College: Hillary leads by mindblowing margins on: September 27, 2014, 09:35:55 pm
Just going by Virginia's current trends it could be similar to Wisconsin and Pennsylvania in terms of PVI. The GOP in the future needs a path without Virginia.

There isn't one.

FL + OH + CO + IA + NH

The GOP "brand" is tainted in Presidential politics. Except that the GOP was successful in gerrymandering states' congressional districts to create a permanent GOP majority in 2011, the Republicans would have lost the House in 2012.

The Republican Party needs to change its message to cease offending the sorts of people who might have voted for republicans in the past. Sure, it can get inordinate representation by achieving monolithic power where it has reliable majorities and splintering power where it has no such majority, but with such it is likely to be seen as an increasingly-intolerant and untrustworthy organization. 

 
118  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Colorado students walk out of class to protest right-wing revision of history on: September 27, 2014, 01:41:50 pm
I question whether its worth it to do a lot of history with middle schoolers. The age of the kids and nature of the teaching doesn't lend itself accurate teaching. High school seems like a much better time to get into history and civics.

Most of my middle school history was pretty shrill and simplistic. It was either "OMG teh Anglos were EVUL to the Natives/French!!!!" or "The Fathers of Confederation were SUPER SPECIAL AWESOME". High school provided an opportunity for a much more nuanced view.

I'd much rather cut out history in middle school and then do a solid in depth history course in high school than the mess memphis just described.



History should be different for middle schoolers, not just left out.  If you want to get away from the simplistic moralism, teach it in a different way.  Connect it to archaeology and the history of science and technology. I think it is a great time to do ancient history.

It makes sense. The further back in time one goes the less bias creeps into teaching. 
119  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What is Republican economic policy? on: September 26, 2014, 10:19:28 am
All for the few, and suffer with a smile for everyone else. A pure plutocracy except for a few concessions to the Religious Right (an abortion ban and perhaps a ban on contraception).
120  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: 2016 Official Polling Map Thread on: September 25, 2014, 01:40:49 pm
Virginia, Roanoake Poll:

Hillary vs Christie: D +10% (47-37)
Hillary vs Paul Ryan: D +13% (50-37)
Hillary vs Rand Paul: D +16% (51-35)

Writes Roanoke: "Clinton has widened her lead over both Paul and Ryan, but the Christie margin is unchanged. The July RC Poll included registered voters, but did not screen for likely voters, so the results may not be directly comparable. "

http://roanoke.edu/A-Z_Index/Institute_for_Policy_and_Opinion_Research/Recent_News_Releases/RC_Poll_Election_Sept_2014.htm

Nothing on Jeb Bush or Mike Huckabee. This confirms what a weak candidate Rand Paul would be, and that Paul Ryan has shown that he is not Presidential.


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







[/quote]
121  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Colorado students walk out of class to protest right-wing revision of history on: September 25, 2014, 01:34:18 pm
FWIW, I never studied anything beyond World War II in any elementary, middle or high school history class I ever took. There was never enough time in the school year to get further than that. I distinctly remember that in my 8th grade American history class, we started talking about World War I the last day of class before the final and our teacher said there wouldn't be anything about WWI on the final for that reason. He also claimed we were the worst class he ever had and that our counterproductive, off-topic behavior was the reason we only made it up to 1915-ish.
Unfortunately, this is a huge problem pretty much everywhere. As a crappy solution, Tennessee and Mississippi (maybe other states too, I don't know that much about every state's curriculum) do only through 1877 in 8th grade and then only do 1877-Present in high school US History. It's not much better.

I am personally a great fan of chronology, but  history education doesn't have to be chronological. Often you can start with current affairs - like when you take Islamic terrorism or Islamophobia in Europe and work your way backwards to the crusades and look at how Christians and Muslims have interacted and the resulting conflicts. I think that approachn is preferable on a lot of issues when you are teaching teenagers, generally you get more motivated students (the ones that can be motivated ...) if you start with current affairs and try to put them into historical perspective. US history is well suite for that approach.

Historical knowledge is generally pretty useless if you don't use it to think about how the world became what it is today. So critical thinking is at the core of studying history.


History is best written in sequences, but if it is to show causes one often must treat some events as practically irrelevant to others. The Crusades have nothing  to do with World War II, but they have much to do with Western-Islamic relations. The Russian Orthodox Church might be practically irrelevant to the history of the Soviet Union, but once the Soviet Union came to an end it becomes extremely relevant to Russia.

.........

Perhaps most significant to the walk-out is that it is an act of conscience against ideologues who have their own plans to turn schools into propaganda machines.  The Hard Right has its agenda for schools -- ensuring that those who attend school are fully convinced that capitalism at its most inequitable is the best of all possible worlds.
122  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: AG Eric Holder to Step Down on: September 25, 2014, 11:02:42 am
Quote
Two sources familiar with the decision tell NPR that Holder, 63, intends to leave the Justice Department as soon as his successor is confirmed, a process that could run through 2014 and even into next year. A former U.S. government official says Holder has been increasingly "adamant" about his desire to leave soon for fear he otherwise could be locked in to stay for much of the rest of President Obama's second term.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/09/25/351363171/eric-holder-to-step-down-as-attorney-general

Can't wait to see the smear job the GOP will do on whoever the President nominates, especially with mid-terms right around the corner...

They want one of their own -- someone who believes that government exists to enforce the will of the economic elites at the expense of everyone else.
123  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: "Give up your freedom and you can have sex all the time!" on: September 25, 2014, 09:16:58 am
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Applies to both Heritage and liberals.
Who said that?

The first part,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanlon%27s_razor
124  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Colorado students walk out of class to protest right-wing revision of history on: September 25, 2014, 09:12:30 am
Looks like we're in for another 50 years of White Guilt. I thought it would be done and dusted by the time the 21st century arrived.

Would you like children to learn that killing off the First Peoples was innocuous? Or that slavery was essential to the development of the American economy? Or that the incarceration of the Japanese in the western US was an unqualified good deed? Or that Jim Crow laws were innocuous?

We learn from history, much of it obscene tales written in the blood of innocent people, so that we do not make the same misjudgments when we have the opportunity to do otherwise.  
125  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Colorado students walk out of class to protest right-wing revision of history on: September 25, 2014, 09:07:24 am
Disgraceful. Utterly disgraceful. People go to school so they can be taught, not so they can offer up social and political commentary. I mean honestly, I'm sure the forebears of many of these kids would have given their right arm to be taught history, whether it was portrayed in a good light or not.

Can't they just go outside the school gates and smoke dope - that was sufficient 'rebellion' at my school Tongue.

The ones smoking dope aren't the ones who think that the school board is trying to manipulate them. High-school students savvy enough to understand psychological manipulation in the form of political propaganda offered as 'education' are the best-and-brightest, and not dullards with personal grudges against a teacher or school administrator.

Just think how manipulative education can be in dictatorial regimes. If kids were being taught how wonderful 'socialism' is as was the norm in the Soviet Union and its satellites, would you as a conservative find that troubling? Or how wonderful it is to fight and die for the glory of the nation as in fascist states like Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, and militarist Japan?

Even a word like "free" can be twisted into something perverse, as in "free" from capitalist exploitation, "free" from the Versailles treaty, "free" from the Jews, and from the beloved Horst-Wessel-Lied, the streets free to Nazi militias. In view of how "free enterprise" operates in the US today, it could mean that owners and managers are "free" to express their greed and power in the imposition of mass suffering.

Much is rotten in contemporary America. It is not the duty of the People to endorse the rottenness but instead to demand its excision through peaceful reform -- and to keep it out, as much as possible, from the public life. If We the People have no willingness to resist evil, whether of a tyrannical overlord or schemers from inside the System, then we Americans could end up with concentration camps and torture chambers -- maybe even peonage in all but name.
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