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76  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: April 22, 2015, 12:40:23 am
PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE TRANSCRIPT
September 15th, 1988

Moderator: I thank the three candidates for joining me in this exchange of ideas this evening. As candidates, you each owe it to the electorate to articulate and defend your ideas, so that we have an informed electorate. I will start this debate off with the question: Why do you each of you think that you are the most fit to govern?

Ho'kee: I am currently the Speaker of the House. Although the American people repudiated Democrats at the ballot box in 1986, this did not materialize itself in the forthcoming Congress' composition, due to a variety of mitigating factors. Despite that, I managed to cull enough Democratic Representatives to cross party-lines and vote for me as Speaker, for the benefit of the country. I think that alone speaks to my ability to bring both sides of the aisle together for a better America.

In addition to that, one of my proudest achievements has been shepherding through the Roth-Snell bill, which set our Social Security program on a path toward solvency. There were some instances of shared sacrifice, such as an increase in FICA taxes, but this bill also introduced a basic measure of means-testing and normalized our top-marginal tax rates to encourage innovation from our best and brightest. While extremists on either flange of the pot opposed this, we passed this for the good of the country.

Laxalt: I've been a registered Republican for most of my adult life. However, having been fed up with the current trajectories of both parties and our nation's political future, I've seen fit to work with the new political party: the Working Man's Party.

In many respects, I'm a conservative at heart. However, I feel that President Bentsen's executive actions on free trade are tantamount to selling The Big Three to Japan at the lowest bid possible. This is an industry that built the cars necessary for Americans to go West. This is an industry that built the tanks and planes necessary to defeat the forces of fascism. Now, however, we seem all too willing to sacrifice such an institution in order to pay thirty cents less at the gas pump. If elected, I would do what I can to revitalize this industry.

In addition, both of these parties are entrenched in the political system. I believe that our servicemen are the best and brighest that this country has to offer. However, the recent revelations about defense industry donations toward the Democratic campaigns demonstrate that we need fundamental campaign finance reform. If elected, I would work toward expanding ballot access toward third parties and placing actual limits on corporate donations. Neither of these men have an interest in doing that. In short, I believe I'm the most fit to govern because I am not bought or paid for by any interest except that of the American people.

Bentsen: Admittedly, I have a tough case to present before the American people. The economic indicators of our country are not great. Inflation has been a problem. We've struggled with our foreign policy over the past eight years. In spite of these difficulties that face our country, I think I am most qualified to govern this country for the next four years. As Vice President, I inherited some problems, but I've done my best to work towards solutions.

Our social welfare problems were facing big problems when I assumed office. My predecessor's administration had been ballooning the deficit to cover the shortfall. I worked with a Republican Congress to reach a reform that preserved Social Security without gutting benefits, like my opponents would like to. I worked toward a solution in the Panama Canal not because it was politically popular, but because it was the most equitable deal. I eliminated tariffs on imports not because I want to see our industry perish, but because I want to see our industry compete and our consumers benefit. In short, I'm asking for four more years because I am the only candidate on stage that will govern independently of public opinion.

Moderator: Moving to our first question, which is an important issue to many people. In 1973, the Supreme Court recognized the right to abortion in the infamous Roe vs. Wade ruling. Recently, the Wyde Amendment, which would have heavily restricted abortions, was defeated in Congress. Where do each of you stand on the matter of abortion?

Bentsen: It seems fool-hardy to me to enact a blanket ban on abortion. The reality is that the economically disadvantaged can not afford children, and there are some instances where abortion may be necessary for either medical or financial purposes. I don't think that it promotes the public interest to institute a blanket ban on abortions, as that will only force women into the shadows and into black markets. At the same time, after a certain period of gestation, it seems apparent that there is a human life at stake. The Roe issue gives us a bit of a legal abstraction, and I would favor leaving this issue to local governments in general.

Ho'kee: While the President claims to be pro-choice on these matters, his claim to the mantle is tenuous at best. Sure, he has bobbed and weaved just now in an effort to play both sides of the card. However, let's analyze the reality of the issue: in 1983, the aforementioned Wyde Amendment was sponsored. This was a constitutional amendment that would have severely hindered the availability of abortions. This amendment was sponsored by a Democratic Senator, Patton Wyde, and supported by the Democratic Majority Leader, Robert Byrd. The Democratic President, Scoop Jackson, supported it.

Who was the Democratic Vice President? None other than President Bentsen. Bentsen was second in the line of succession during the debate over the Wyde Amendment, and was a non-entity. So even if President Bentsen purports to be pro-choice, I think we ought to examine the realities of the situation.

Bentsen: Speaker Ho'kee is obfuscating the truth. While I was not excessively vocal in my opposition to the bill, I did state it on the few times I was asked. For somebody who has been in Washington for so long, you don't seem to understand the realities of it, Mr. Ho'kee. Protesting a bill that I am in no capacity to effect would simply have divided my administration and my party, and played right into your party's hands. I'm more focused on the big picture, and will continue to be as President.

Ho'kee: This is not the leadership that America needs. Straight from the President's mouth: when he was second in line to the Presidency, one of the most important and influential positions in America, Bentsen chose to stay quiet on this issue because he didn't want it to come up during dinner at the next Democratic outing. If you lacked the courage to confront Jackson on the issue, Mr. President, do you have the courage to look into that camera and confront the thousands of women who would be forced into the darkest of back alleys?

Bentsen: Setting the rest of that aside, do you really think that the Vice President is one of the most influential positions? That's ridic-

Moderator: Mr. President, I'm sorry, but we've got to let Senator Laxalt have an answer. You will have an opportunity at the next question.

Laxalt: You won't have any equivocations from me. I wholeheartedly support the rights of the unborn and would endorse any measure to expand protection to them. Although I think there ought to be more nuance than the Wyde Amendment allowed for, you would definitely see something similar advocated for by a prospective Laxalt Administration.
77  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: April 20, 2015, 09:11:58 pm
Joy to you: 1988

Areus Ho'kee and Ericson Snell were relaxing at the former's estate with a cadre of friends and associates. These gatherings were usually full of merriment and flamboyance, as Areus Ho'kee had met much success with his presidential run and other political endeavors. However, now that he had run into trouble, it seemed as if the energy had been sucked out of the room. Ho'kee and a few others looked toward a large television in the corner. "The latest set of polling shows that President Bentsen has reversed his deficit and opened up a large lead on Speaker of the House Areus Ho'kee..." said a reporter. Some of his friends looked mournfully at Ho'kee, as if the news were a funeral dirge.

Ho'kee soberly quaffed his glass of wine, saying nothing. Finally, Ericson Snell spoke of the elephant in the room and broke the uncomfortable silence. "I warned you that we'd have trouble with the Working Man's Party. Now Bentsen has the lead again. At the very least, you could have gone with Bill Armstrong over Lee Dreyfus. I think Laxalt would only be pulling three or four percent if we hadn't alienated so many people," he said. Ho'kee turned to look at Snell. "Are you suggesting that all of this is a waste? That I shouldn't be running?" he asked. "No, of course not. But I do think that a difficult tact would be appreciated. Gingrich or Armstrong wouldn't be struggling like this, I don't think," Snell responded.

Suddenly, someone rose up from the other end of the room and interjected."So basically what you're saying is, 'Areus Ho'kee shouldn't run.' You say that Areus has alienated many people - how so? His ideas, where he has campaigned, and how he has campaigned, have all been consistent with Maverick values; values that we all espouse, unless I'm mistaken. As Mavericks, we all oppose corruption, oppose reactionaries, and oppose the sort of macho chest beating that has been the de jure foreign policy of this country. If we win without campaigning on these values, we're just going to run into problems later on. Minds have to be changed.

Besides, you really think that Gingrich or Armstrong would be having an easier time? Newt Gingrich ran on a nebulous platform of 'more space exploration' and 'tax reform' while openly saying he wouldn't vet the beliefs of his Supreme Court nominees. That's to say nothing of the fact that he was up to his waist in personal scandals. As for Armstrong, he was on the wrong side of most issues and would be a step back from the progress we've made since 1980. Really, what do we have to be upset about? That a grab bag of lunatics are withholding their support from us?"

The speaker was Abimelech Delroy, the young Mayor of New York City. He won in an upset over Mayor Ed Koch three years ago, running in part on liberal dissatisfaction from his tough-on-crime policies and also against a nationally unpopular Democratic Party. Areus Ho'kee had always been doting on him, in a way Thad hadn't even seen towards his wife. The handsome Mayor had received notoriety for going against the grain of popular opinion and implementing rehabilitation programs to combat the spread of crack cocaine, which had mixed results. On the other hand, Mayor Delroy had also spearheaded an initiative to rehabilitate abandoned houses to be converted into micro-units. He was considered even-odds to win reelection.

Areus Ho'kee looked toward Abimelech with a prideful smile. Just then, Thad opened the door, cutting the debate short. "He's back!" exclaimed Areus. Between the melee at the convention floor and his last minute flight, Thad definitely looked a little worse for wear. However, he had what was most important: audio recordings of the Workign Man's Party's chaotic convention. Areus ran up to Thad, cupping his cheeks between his hands. "You made it back! Do you have anything?" he gushed. Thad nodded, proffering what he recorded. Areus and a few others listened intently, while his more peripheral guests talked amongst themselves.

At the end, Areus stood up and clapped. "Thad! You've done it!" he exclaimed. "Outright xenophobia and a convention brawl. To say nothing of the fact that a Klansman almost won the nomination of Laxalt's party." Areus looked toward the television with optimism. "There may be hope yet."
78  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: April 2015 At-large Senate Election on: April 19, 2015, 10:25:40 pm
[1] Polnut
[2] Poirot
79  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Ten-Party System on: April 19, 2015, 07:00:26 pm
Here's a more expansive palette if you want to use more than just red and blue:

80  About this Site / The Atlas / Re: Election What Ifs board question on: April 19, 2015, 06:17:17 pm
What exactly is the difference between the election what ifs main board, the past election what ifs, and the alternative elections boards?

I would imagine it's something like:

Main - Timelines
Past - Self explanatory
Alternative - Current or future elections

But it seems that all 3 boards are just a random jumble of everything instead of having any organization.

That's the standard that I've tried to maintain (re: I move election match-ups in the main board to the PWI childboard) but there doesn't seem to be a clear distinction, unfortunately.

I laid out a proposal along the lines of what you suggested a few years ago.
81  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Projects in the Pipeline to Replace Update on: April 16, 2015, 03:15:25 pm
So what is this whole t_host in-joke thing all about anyway?

It's the sort of thing that's funny if your humor palette ranges from whoopee cushions to truck balls.

Anywho, option 4 but it would probably have to be a tumblr account to stay in character.
82  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / You're an NFL team manager. You can pick one of these 2 players in their prime.. on: April 15, 2015, 04:32:41 pm
Vote!
83  About this Site / The Atlas / Re: Dave, I finally cleaned out my personal messages, but... on: April 15, 2015, 08:28:26 am
I haven't cleared my inbox out but as of this morning I have a new non-existent message as well and can't seem to see it/get rid of it.
84  About this Site / The Atlas / Re: Dave Can you please do a Swing Map for 1836, 1840 and 1844 on: April 13, 2015, 09:13:09 pm
Stop

These are 3 relatively simple ones to make I would assume

If they're so simple, you could always make them yourself.
85  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: The Joe Republic Bureau of Funny Post Archival on: April 13, 2015, 03:44:24 pm

Uh, that thread was about as funny as having dysentery.
86  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: April 07, 2015, 08:38:37 am
How much does Laxalt poll in the general election.

I struggle with national numbers, but 15%.
87  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: April 06, 2015, 11:45:15 pm
TIME - Laxalt cannonballs
August 6th, 1988

Laxalt a boon to the WMP

The tale of the Working Man's Party has been a bit of a roller coaster. It was first formed in 1985 due to dissatisfaction with a GOP that was perceived as too moderate and out-of-touch with middle-class Americans, a demographic that President Jackson had made inroads with in his two presidential elections. Despite having limited infrastructure and bottom-tier candidates, they polled eight percent of the vote and won a Senate election in Idaho. After the defection of newly-elected Senator Mike Foster, the Working Man's Party had two Senate seats. After such success they floundered in the presidential sweepstakes: their two main contenders were a little-known State Senator from Louisiana and a former Black Panther. Polls showed WMP candidates gathering a statistically insignificant percentage of the vote in presidential match-ups.

At one juncture, the Working Man's Party looked as if it was going to be rendered obsolete. Bill Armstrong, conservative Senator from Colorado, was within striking distance of winning the Republican nomination and had just won a close contest in Iowa. His opposition was divided between the nebulous Newt Gingrich, conniving Areus Ho'kee, and milquetoast Lowell Weicker. However, Speaker Ho'kee managed a comeback in New Hampshire and eventually captured the Republican nomination. Armstrong dropped out, and his sizable cohort of supporters scattered without direction, meaning that the Working Man's Party still had a conduit of support.

Coincidentally, Senator Paul Laxalt declared for the Working Man's Party nomination halfway through the nomination process. Laxalt was nearly the Republican nominee for President in 1984, thus offering new life for the Working Man's Party. In contrast to fringe characters like David Duke and Eldridge Cleaver, Laxalt has an actual career in national politics and was nearly the nominee of a major party in the United States. If Laxalt entered the race at Davis Griffith's suggestion, then the latter is a shrewd negotiator. However, if Laxalt did so on his own volition, then it may be divine intervention on behalf of the Working Man's Party.

Laxalt clinched the Working Man's Party's nomination at their convention several days ago, with the convention picking Meldrim Thomson as his Vice Presidential candidate. A conservative firebrand and former Wallace supporter, Meldrim Thomson was elected Governor of New Hampshire numerous times and brings additional gravitas to the ticket. Polling data seems to corroborate this thesis: weeks ago, nationwide polling showed Areus Ho'kee clobbering President Bentsen by 216 electoral votes. Now, with Laxalt being the official WMP nominee, President Bentsen leads Areus Ho'kee by 147 electoral votes, despite polling well below a majority of the popular vote.

This raises a point: will the Working Man's Party exist as a continuing force in American politics, or is this merely a fad? The argument can be made that third-parties are fleeting affairs at best, usually being subsumed by one of the two major parties. Perhaps the most viable path going forward for the WMP would be to rob the Republicans of a presidential election (as they seem poised to do) and alter them to be more amenable to their terms. However, the Working Man's Party is in a unique situation: polling data shows Laxalt tied with Ho'kee in Idaho, with Bentsen in Alabama, and within striking distance in Mississippi. Perhaps the WMP is here to stay.

The Laxalt Democrat?

Ostensibly speaking, President Bentsen's anemic approval ratings would have him dead to rights in this election. However, a schism in the Republican Party has given rise to an errant and robust splinter party: the Working Man's Party. Founded by a former Republican National Chairman, this party espouses tax cuts, an aggressive foreign policy, and strong social values. Considering the primary conflict between Areus Ho'kee and Bill Armstrong, it seems intuitive to think that this party is merely a siphon on Republican-leaning voters, and will only ensure Presidnt Bentsen's reelection. However, there is a potential factor of the "Laxalt Democrat."

In 1980, President Scoop Jackson reclaimed the White House for Democrats for the first time in twenty years. Some would claim that this was inevitable, given that Republicans had held the White House for twelve consecutive years and were bogged down in the morass of economic stagnation and a foreign policy crisis. However, the ensuing campaign and results belie that premise: in several polling instances, Vice President Howard Baker was competitive in trial heats with Scoop Jackson, and was within striking distance for victory. In addition, Baker had earned a reputation as a moderate who aided Nixon's eventual downfall, and had residual goodwill from his leadership in the initial Iran hostage crisis.

However, the result of the 1980 Presidential Election was almost a 500 electoral vote blow-out. Despite being a Southerner, Vice President Baker was shut-out in every Southern state except his own Tennessee. During the Sixties and Seventies, some were writing off the Democratic Party in the Deep South, due to gains made both by Richard Nixon and on the Congressional level. However, Jackson was able to reasonate with the traditional Southern Democratic electorate by touching on issues of morality and national security. Tied up in the quicksand of the Iran hostage crisis, the latter issue alone was enough to drag Baker down into one of the worst Republican showings since the Great Depression.

This phenomenon reoccured in the 1984 Presidential Election. For several weeks, it looked as if President Jackson was a spent force and would only be serving a single term. However, with a late military victory in Tehran, the United States Army retook the city and boosted the President's approval ratings enough for a last minute victory. Where this was most visible was in the South: Jackson sustained most of his vote totals in the South. He managed to pick-off Tennessee, which Mark Hatfield did not contest, and also staved off Hatfield's last-ditch effort to make Virginia competitive.

This all begs the question: why should President Bentsen be worried about losing this constituency to the shoestring operation of the Working Man's Party?

Despite being unpopular with the general electorate, the War in Iran is still popular with a large swath of Americans. President Bentsen is generally perceived as weak on this issue amongst the hawk community, and his dithering on the issue has helped him with neither the Left nor the Right. As far as the dovish vote goes, Speaker Areus Ho'kee has more or less consolidated that bloc. However, Bentsen's national security bonafides remain unproven, and he runs the risk of having his polling numbers being drawn and quartered by absolute doves and absolute hawks.

Another factor that enabled President Jackson to win as large as he did was his mantle of populism. During the Gerald Ford administration, the politically tone-deaf supply-siders made an effort to cut top marginal rates, despite an economic recession that hit working families the hardest. The response to this was a fervently populist Democratic campaign that manifested itself in the 1978 midterms, and in the 1980 election. While Vice President Baker did well in Southern metro areas, he was swamped in poor, rural white areas. By comparison, President Bentsen signed off on a deal with Areus Ho'kee that lowered the top marginal tax rate, while raising FICA taxes, which has only added fuel to the rhetorical fire of the Working Man's Party


HEAD-TO-HEAD MATCHUPS

June 2nd, 1988

Key:

Safe Republican: >10%

Slight Republican: 4-9%

Tossup: 3% difference

Slight Democratic: 4-9%

Safe Democratic: >10%

Ho'kee vs Bentsen vs Laxalt


293 - 146 - 99
88  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: April 05, 2015, 01:01:42 pm
Rupture: 1988

The first round of balloting was consistent with the Working Man's Party primaries: no candidate was close to a majority. Since Eldridge Cleaver's campaign was over for practical purposes, his delegates had no stake in supporting his candidacy in the second round. To the chagrin of Duke and his cohort of supporters, Cleaver's delegates broke in favor of Laxalt, who now seemed to hold a slim majority at Thad's guesstimate. The crowd around Thad grew loud and ornery. Sentiment seemed to rest with Duke. After a few minutes, the announcer returned to the stage.

"Since the balloting process has been within the margin, we are going to refer to the delegates appointed by the Working Man's Party Committee and to those by mail-in ballot." The announcer stepped aside, and a second man approached the podium with a long sheet of paper. "On behalf of the working men in Washington, Rhode Island, and Hawaii, I am proud to announce that it is representative of them that all ten of their delegates be awarded to Paul Laxalt," he read. "Every single one? Are you f***ing kidding me?" yelled the man behind Thad. "All that work just for Laxalt to swoop in, and they hand it to him on a platter? This is a joke."

The man motioned for the crowd to be at ease. Armored guards who were on the sidelines brandished batons and most of the dissidents quieted. "Since it is still within the margin, WMP bylaws dictate that we most go to the mail-in states. With a thousand ballots mailed in, nine-hundred and seventy-two were for Laxalt, and twenty-eight were for Duke. Two delegates are awarded to Laxalt." As the announcer continued reading, the momentum of the mail-in ballots was rolling in favor of Laxalt. Duke's supporters received a buoy of hope when Mississippi was read: fourteen delegates for Duke. There had been a sufficient amount of write-ins for Patton Wyde to qualify for a delegate, but he was ineligible.

"With all delegates having been tallied, Paul Laxalt has two-hundred and forty-five delegates. David Duke has one-hundred and eighty four delegates. With fifty-seven percent, Paul Laxalt has a clear majority and is officially the Working Man's Party nominee for President of the United States." As if on cue, there was a roar from the audience. "BULLSH**! BULLSH**! BULLSH**!" said one man. "Every f***ing mail-in ballot? This is a sham!" said another. Thad felt a slug against his ribs as he was shoved aside and fell to the ground, nearly losing his recorder in the process.

After getting stepped on twice, Thad scrambled back to his feet. The announcer fled from the podium as one man threw a bottle at him and several more were trying to storm the stage. Some of the better dressed men scurried toward the door, but things quickly devolved into a free-for-all as the guards descended upon the group with batons to brutalize the dissidents into submission. In the distance, Thad saw some of the announcers and other party figures scurrying into a room. Christian Mattingly held off two men before shutting the door. In the the midst of chaos, several guards made formation in front of the door to prevent a breach.

Thad ran toward the nearest exit as the epicenter of violence shifted toward the door where the guards were, catching several errant blows and shoves on the way. He tripped over a large object, only to turn and see that it was the body of Lawrence Ponder; either unconscious or dead. His forehead was bloodied and his eyes seemed lifeless. Thad felt pity for the man, but had no time to get bogged down trying to help him, and he finally managed to make his escape, boarding the first bus in sight.

There were only six other people on the bus, some of which were giving Thad odd looks. He looked in the rearview mirror, noticing a small cut. His ribs ached a little, and his outfit had been ruffled. Reflecting back on the melee, it had been the most combat he'd seen since Vietnam.
89  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: NE3: Distracted Drivers Act on: April 04, 2015, 11:35:51 pm
This legislation is effective, it does cut down on deaths and injuries on roads and highways.

No it isn't.

Quote from: Stephanie Hanes
The research presented Tuesday analyzes insurance claims in four states, and compares crash numbers before and after those states passed antitexting laws. It also compares those numbers with data from neighboring states that did not have texting bans. In each of the antitexting states – Washington, Minnesota, California, and Louisiana – crash numbers either remained the same or increased. And in all four, accidents increased among drivers younger than 25 – the group most likely to text behind the wheel.
citation

Quote
Let us, as legislators, start saving lives, not continue to endanger them.

Indeed. Let us vote down this legislation that is proven to increase traffic fatalities. We don't want more traffic fatalities, do we?
90  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Office of Governor Sawx - Come One, Come All (LG Nominated) on: April 04, 2015, 11:07:39 pm
Thank you Governor.
91  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update XXII: Cleaning Up the Meat at [redacted]. on: April 02, 2015, 12:35:02 am
Standing up for 8 hours would be tough, but that would be far more preferable to a call center.  I am staying far away from call centers.  I will only look at a call center when every other lead has been exhausted with no fruit.
92  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update XXII: Cleaning Up the Meat at [redacted]. on: April 01, 2015, 03:06:41 pm
lol. There is harm and foul. Whatever man. It's Papa's bank account that will suffer.

What harm is there in looking for another job while you still have a job?

Bushie, do not give up this job at [redacted].

If you quit this job after two weeks then you may as well wipe your ass with any future job application before turning it in, because that's what it'll look like anyway.
93  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Draft Joe Republic for Congress! on: March 31, 2015, 11:10:45 pm
Unrelated but back when I went to Vegas a few years ago I remember seeing this homeless guy with a sign that read "Umemployed circus clown, send me to Congress where I belong" or something to that effect.
94  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of spending $400 on a ham on: March 31, 2015, 05:13:52 pm
I'll get back on the Revolution tomorrow. I did nothing wrong at Best Buy. I don't feel bad at all. Plus, oakvale, it's Black Friday. It's no fun to be communist this weekend. I wanted to enjoy my shopping spree with the $400 ham I wanted to eat and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.  If you don't like it, then shut up and let me live my life.  I am still following the challenges Marx set forth.  Yes, I had a slip up tonight, but I have not completely blown it.
95  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: NE3: Distracted Drivers Act on: March 30, 2015, 10:50:12 pm
Quote
Oh, how will we enforce it?

As a legislator, this is a pretty important question. Laws aren't very effective (and can possibly be detrimental) if there isn't an efficient enforcement mechanism. What happened to good government?

Quote
We need to act, and we need to act now.

It's best not to let impulsion get the best of you. This is not a strawman; people literally did consider banning car radios at one point. Let's keep this in perspective.

Quote
Once drivers know and understand there is a tough distracted drivers law in effect, they will pay more attention to their driving.

Not necessarily true, and this is perhaps the biggest reason why texting-while-driving laws have been a bugbear for me.

Quote from: techdirt.com
A new study has shown that state laws banning driving while texting have not reduced accidents, and in some cases may have even resulted in more accidents. How could it have increased accidents? Because people who want to text anyway -- especially unskilled young drivers -- begin holding their phones lower to avoid detection, making it that much more difficult to control the car and be aware of their surroundings.
citation

In other words, laws such as these potentially lead to more accidents.

Quote
As an example, in one Canadian city there were 415 tickets issued in a one year period.  It is a start.

Pardon me for being petty, but an increase in the issuance of tickets does not necessarily conclude that law enforcement is doing its job.

Several years ago there was a scandal in Cranston, RI where police officers issued an excessive amount of parking tickets due to conflicts over contracts.

And of course, ticket quotas don't exist in today's Atlasia! *wink nudge*

More specifically to your example of a Canadian city, this problem isn't unique to Atlasia.

Quote
It’s happening in cities across Canada, but Winnipeg appears to be the worst.

Police there issued 57,000 tickets in 2011. In 2012, city hall asked the police to increase their revenue from tickets by $1.4 million.

Critics say police officers are under pressure to issue a certain number of tickets.
 “I think most officers would be happy to provide a discretionary warning,” said Mike Sutherland, head of the Winnipeg Police Association. “The difficulty comes when there are significant work place consequences imposed on officers if they fail to hand out a certain number of tickets in a prescribed period of time.”

Most of us would call that a quota, but police management and city bureaucrats are reluctant to use the “Q” word.
96  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update XXII: Cleaning Up the Meat at [redacted]. on: March 30, 2015, 06:53:40 pm

Indeed. I'm not wishing Bushie failure by any metric, but there needs to be perspective here.

Now, onto some serious relaxing!

TMI
97  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update XXII: Cleaning Up the Meat at [redacted]. on: March 30, 2015, 04:09:43 pm
I was backreading an old season and I found this:

1.  I will see the dietitian on Wednesday, July 10, 2013 at 13:00.
2.  I will come back with the same enthusiasm for Kenya like I did last year and I do now.
3.  I will plow through the CAD and be setting things up in Fort Worth a year from now.[/quote]
98  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: March 29, 2015, 12:50:08 am
Of Things to Come: 1988

Lawrence Ponder left the podium with applause that was as mild as his demeanor. "Thank you everybody. That was Lawrence Ponder, candidate for the Georgia House of Representatives, on behalf of David Duke. Next to speak is Christian Mattingly, on behalf of Senator Paul Laxalt, who could not be present today. I ask that we all give him a warm welcome, and I will yield this stage to him," said the announcer, before stepping aside.

Thad noticed a mountain of a man approach to take his place. His beard was a thicket penetrated only by the cigarette that protruded from his mouth, like a needle in a haystack. His shoulders were like pauldrons and he seemed ready to burst out of his suit. "Dallas! It's good to see you once more. Just a few short years ago, I wrote the founding manifesto of this party. Now I'm addressing it on behalf of a presidential candidate. I have to say, this is all pretty humbling.

A few years ago we were dismissed as an ego trip. As lunatics. As irrelevant. But when the dust settled from the 1986 elections, we had three Senate seats affiliated with our cause, and had eight percent of the popular vote in the 1986 midterm elections. The media went from writing us off as irrelevant to denigrating us as spoilers, as if we don't deserve to be in the race. This is a sign that our message is getting popular, my friends. But it's also a sign that this moment is crucial not to veer off into the depths of obscurity. There is a very real risk of our inclinations getting ahead of us, and I wouldn't want that to ruin our future as a viable alternative; which is why I am speaking here on behalf of Paul Laxalt.

Senator Laxalt has been a fighter on the War in Iran, even when the public opinion has gone in the other direction. Paul Laxalt has consistently voted against measures that would reduce our presence in the region, and has rightfully criticized the Bentsen administration for its dithering approach in Middle Eastern affairs. When running for the Republican nomination, Paul Laxalt promised a strong defense. Paul Laxalt has gone further than even Bill Armstrong, voting against the watered down Bentsen proposal and its nebulous concept of an 'advisory panel.' It's hard to argue that Laxalt would be weak on defense, by any perspective.

Senator Laxalt readily recognizes the structural problems that our economy faces. On one hand, it's a bizarre revisionism to suggest that we can isolate our consumer base from the rest of the world. On the other hand, there needs to be balance. A President Laxalt would restore the tariffs on Japanese exports that were waived during Bentsen's first term. However, we must also make it more productive for American auto manufacturers to do business at home. What we ought to be doing is preserving the current oil drilling regimen that President is doing, while federally arbitrating disputes between workers and auto-manufacturers, so that all parties in America can win.

Lastly, I would advise a different tack for our party than the one offered by Lawrence Ponder. I agree that a strong America is an employed America, and that our current illegal alien population is burdensome. However, real reform has to include a bare-bones method of citizenship. If these people are willing to work their knuckles to the bone, then we ought to welcome them as the next generation of entrepreneurs. I agree that we ought to strengthen our borders, but it seems awfully hypocritical of us to say that we're the freest nation in the world and then deny people a chance to make a new life here.

I don't mean to impugn my opponent's character. However, Senator Laxalt is a proven leader. Senator Laxalt has sponsored bills, and been in a deliberative federal body for over a decade. Senator Laxalt is a pragmatist, and has a true understanding of the concerns of the Working Man. I ask that the delegates tonight vote for Senator Paul Laxalt, so that our party can have some viability going into the future." Mattingly drew a mix of applause and boos, the latter presumably from Duke's supporters. Mattingly left the stage, undaunted by some of the jeering voices in the audience.

The announcer returned to the podium and demanded silence. "This is a convention, not a circus," he yelled. The rumbling among some of the dissident crowd members quieted to a murmur. "We will be moving on to balloting. As Eldridge Cleaver has decided not to contest the convention, his delegates will be unpledged on the first round, and then shall be free to vote as they please in the second round." Thad heard chuckling behind him. "Oh man, this is good for Duke. Cleaver was pretty hardcore. No chance of his boys going for Laxalt," said one voice. "What the hell happened to him?" asked a second voice. "Got arrested for some sh*t the other night. Like you said, Adam, that's how they are," said the first voice.

The announcer began reading from various slips of paper. "Texas reports in, with all two hundred of her delegates for Laxalt..."
99  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Izvestia: Official Atlasian News Service (BREAKING: PMA IS CRUSHED) on: March 28, 2015, 09:56:59 am
Senator's Attacker Arrested

(Nyman, D.C.) - A man who attacked Senate Speaker Windjammer (Labor-ME) was arrested during a routine questioning. The police had immediately became suspect of his behavior and, after some questions, the man confessed. His name is Adam Belieber (he actually did change his original name to this).


Booking photo

I was tired after all that cyberbullying from that Windjammer dude, he told the investigators. He even posted a picture of guillotine in a thread about me on the internet forum, you know? Btw, Mr. Detective, you make me flush Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy

hahahaha omg

Great work here Kal.
100  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: IDS 2: Stop PMing Me Act on: March 25, 2015, 07:54:04 pm
For the record, this has been tried and repealed before.
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