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October 31, 2014, 07:35:38 pm
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News: Don't forget to get your 2013 Gubernatorial Endorsements and Predictions in!

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1  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Do you believe Senator Lindsey Graham is gay? on: Today at 04:56:44 pm
Speculation of the sexual orientation of a specific person based on rumours and particular traits is shameful, ignorant, and lazy (I am not invited to parties)

Agreed. On the other hand, it's hard not to crack up when he makes comments like this:

Quote from: Lindsey Graham
White men in male-only clubs are going to do great in my presidency.
2  Forum Community / Forum Community Election Match-ups / Re: The Obamanation vs. FreedomHawk on: Today at 03:24:20 pm
BRTD, please explain to me how anything that FreedomHawk has ever posted is worse than this:

I'm sure most people who get abortions are sluts that don't want to/can't handle children and want to keep sleeping around. That's not right.

This is not a unique post. See here, here, and here. And it's easy to find more examples.
3  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Game Moderation Abolition Amendment (Debating) on: Today at 03:09:08 pm
Atlasia's timeline is the product of a consensus among its players, not Game Moderator fiat. Much of the game - both governing and campaigning - consists of debating the effects of the policies of we propose in an attempt to influence that consensus. We don't need a central authority to run a simulation.
4  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Game Moderation Abolition Amendment (Debating) on: Today at 02:53:07 pm
We could realistically just do whatever we wanted if there were no consequences as long as we were all personally popular.

As far as I can tell, this has been true of Atlasia throughout its entire history even with a Game Moderator.
5  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Gubernatorial/Statewide Elections / Re: Cuomo v. Teachout on: Today at 01:08:03 pm
Shades of "He held the leaders coat." Bizarre.
6  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: The Senate Fair Participation Act (Debating) on: Today at 11:12:21 am
Shouldn't this be an amendment?

It would need to be one to be enforceable.

While I understand the appeal of term limits, I would expect them to harm the competitiveness of our elections and the quality of debate in the Senate.
7  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Game Moderation Abolition Amendment (Debating) on: Today at 10:40:50 am
No, not really.

Here's an offer for you, Windjammer: Volunteer to serve as GM and I will withdraw this bill immediately.
8  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Amendment to Official Senate Rules and Procedures (Debating) on: Today at 10:38:01 am
We can just vote on a PPT when we elect a Speaker. It's already in the Constitution, so I don't think it's a big deal.

Anyway, I think enough time expired after TNF and I called for a final vote that we need to have one.
9  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Game Moderation Abolition Amendment (Debating) on: Today at 10:32:24 am
Windjammer, the trouble is that producing cost analyses is boring work that ultimately adds nothing to the game. Most recent GMs don't even see this function as a part of the job.

How do you think the GM produces a cost estimate? He does the same research that anyone else could do in his absence. Real life legislators do this work from their own offices, so forcing the task on the GM actually detracts from the game's verisimilitude.

Of course it's easier for everyone who isn't the GM that way. But why is this arrangement better? It still requires that someone does the work, and, since most people find this work boring, we rarely have anyone to do it.
10  Forum Community / Forum Community Election Match-ups / Re: The Obamanation vs. FreedomHawk on: Today at 08:25:17 am
To quute the author of this poll:

Ha @ these results. Owned.

It's quite telling about this forum that a brutal misogynist and MRA is beating a usually strange and sometimes annoying troll.

Have you read any of Obamanation's posts on women? They're even worse.
11  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Game Moderation Abolition Amendment (Debating) on: October 30, 2014, 09:50:37 pm
We tend to argue over what the GM tells us anyway. All this would do is acknowledge what has been the case for most of the game's history - that our interpretation of how our actions shape events, and how that differs from the real world, is a democratic one.
12  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Would you rather live in Kansas City or San Francisco? on: October 30, 2014, 08:44:11 pm
Doesn't Kansas City have faster and more reliable internet access?
13  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of traininthedistance? on: October 30, 2014, 08:42:39 pm
One of my favorite posters. Traininthedistance is knowledgeable about the issues that I care most about, he adds an interesting perspective to every conversation that he takes part in, and I always learn something from his posts.
14  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Police Militarization and Civil Rights Act (Debating) on: October 30, 2014, 08:21:51 pm
Thanks, Bore. That sounds reasonable to me.
15  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Game Moderation Abolition Amendment (Debating) on: October 30, 2014, 08:20:30 pm
I know what most of you must be thinking: We just had this discussion last month, right?

I defended Game Moderator independence then, but ultimately I chose to vote against the amendment. Simply put, after seeing the rest of the Senate vote unanimously to confirm a Game Moderator in whom I had very little confidence, I realized that divorcing the office from the whims of the executive would not solve the office's problems.

The Senate has a poor track record of keeping delinquent officeholders accountable, and, sure enough, GM Sirnick has done nothing in the month since he was confirmed. More damning, no one had even commented on his absence until he posted a leave of absence earlier today.

Atlasia would be no worse off without a Game Moderator. We've functioned without one for months at a time before, and we're functioning without one now. The only effect of its absence would be to inconvenience a few people who want to estimate the costs and benefits of legislative proposals without doing any real work themselves.

I invite anyone who disagrees with me to describe what the office adds to the game and how it is actually achieving that.
16  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: The Office of President-Elect Lumine (Cabinet Time!) on: October 30, 2014, 08:00:08 pm
I agree with Griffin. As long we have a GM, he or she ought to be active. Maybe no one else is willing to serve, but the position has been functionally vacant for over a month. I hope that this will be resolved soon.
17  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Police Militarization and Civil Rights Act (Debating) on: October 30, 2014, 02:54:46 pm
I don't necessarily think it needs more elaboration - although what you've posted seems like an improvement to me. I'm just trying to establish the rationale for those restrictions, specifically.
18  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Legislation Introduction Thread on: October 30, 2014, 02:53:15 pm
Excellent. Senator TNF has my blessing to co-sponsor the amendment and, when necessary, to serve as its primary sponsor.
19  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: The P66 Initiative on: October 30, 2014, 02:51:10 pm
wait we annexed canada???

No, we established a common market with Canada. The treaty, signed and developed under President Marokai, includes a provision allowing Atlasian citizens living in Canada to vote in Atlasian elections from their home province.
20  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: The National Party HQ: New Brunswick, NJ on: October 30, 2014, 02:46:39 pm
Politics aside, everyone should know that Rpryor has been hard at work making a large number of updates to the wiki recently. Well done, and thank you!
21  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: 2014 October Presidential elections, political winner on: October 30, 2014, 02:43:29 pm
Though to my knowledge, DemPGH's failures in that regard were less severe in terms of the personal animosity he generated. The very same mechanisms (mainly as they relate to the Politburo) that you deride today were the ones you in part relied upon as President and embraced when they were beneficial to you. I bring it up because I think that the Nix I knew in 2013 would have made some pretty damn egregious mistakes and overreaches had he had a Senate capable of letting him do that, based on the private demeanor I knew; he didn't, and DemPGH did, and that's part of the point. Don't hate on the machine of today when it was your machine of yesterday, especially when nothing at all has really changed about it.

It is true that, as someone with a unique and interesting personality, I have always generated hostility among some posters. I make no apologies for this.

However, you do raise a strong point. I don't see the Politburo's influence as bad in principle. Labor's leadership could not have been more helpful to me during my presidency, at least if we leave the admittedly egregious case of Operation Rimjob aside. But I also benefited from an inner circle of advisers who were not Labor insiders - chief among them, ironically, was then-Vice President DemPGH - and good relationships with several Senators who were not members of our party.

DemPGH never had that advantage. (And when I encouraged more outreach and reconciliation, Snowstalker invented a conspiracy theory to discredit me.) If we can agree that this failure explains the collapse of his administration, who we decide to blame for is trivial in comparison. I speak in DemPGH's defense because he is my friend and because I think that popular opinion has unfairly indicted him for events that were not entirely his fault.

What sort of mistakes and overreach would you predict in the counterfactual regarding my presidency, anyway? Aside from Senate rules reform - which is happening now, anyway - there is not much that I would have or even could have done differently with a more pliant Senate. The lion's share of my actual mistakes involve being too open about my low opinion of certain behaviors, and I'd have made them in either case.
22  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Legislation Introduction Thread on: October 30, 2014, 01:03:53 pm
Game Moderation Abolition Amendment

1. The phrase "excluding the Game Moderator" is removed from Article V §1.1. ("Candidacy and Office Holding Rules").
2. Article VIII §2.5 ("The President shall appoint a Game Moderator with the advice and consent of the Senate...") is repealed.
3. Amendment XV ("Game Moderation Reform Amendment") is repealed.
23  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: 2014 October Presidential elections, political winner on: October 30, 2014, 12:55:31 pm
Labor gave us the most disastrous presidency in Atlasian history - and, let me be clear, I blame the festering hand of the Politburo more than DemPGH for everything that's gone wrong over the past four months - and suffered almost no electoral consequences. (Yes, even the presidential election - Labor has a natural disadvantage in presidential elections, and was never a favorite to win in October.) If that's not proof of political genius, I have no idea what is.

Well that's just ridiculous. The Politburo operated the very same as it did during your presidency and Marokai's presidency. The previous administration simply was...prone to bad decisions. Personally, I advised against both the resignation of windjammer (which ultimately triggered a cataclysm of events and consequences no one could foresee), against making sirnick GM (expecting bad behavior), and a couple other specific ones I forget at the moment.

Though perhaps a different handling of things was needed; you know first-hand that I practically never asked any Senator to vote a given way on a piece of legislation, and in two year's time, I can count on less than one hand the number of times I ever lost my temper over a Senator's vote. I regret not exerting more control over the caucus during the energy debate, even though I did grow disappointed when I saw our caucus fracturing on it after those who had offered no discussion whatsoever suddenly decided to chime in at the end. The difference between having effectively four members of your own party in the Senate during a term (which was what you really had) versus five members (which is what DemPGH had) makes a world of difference in how one acts as President; you were in less of a position to make bad decisions not because you are incapable of them, but because you didn't have the ability at the time to make them. Between Napoleon, Polnut and the right, you were quite constrained. I wonder if things would have been different had you not called Kalwejt "fycking useless" in IRC (something that for some reason, he still seems to hate me for)?

I don't want to re-litigate DemPGH's presidency, but I should clarify a few points:

1. I also advised against the Sirnick nomination and was the sole Senator to vote against his re-confirmation. You know that there's no disagreement between us on this. I wish that you had applied the same skepticism to the disastrous Hifly nomination.

2. Accepting Windjammer's resignation was probably the single best decision of DemPGH's presidency. (Those of us who were closest to the situation understand why.) Tyrion's first confirmation was never destined to fail, and would have passed easily had the White House been willing to work with a single non-Labor Senator.

I urged DemPGH to build alliances outside of the Labor Party throughout his presidency, even before leaving the party myself. You simply cannot be a successful president without those relationships, even if you have a slim majority in the Senate. Unfortunately, this never happened, and, yes, I blame the Politburo for creating a paranoid and intolerant atmosphere in which collaboration with those outside of the party was impossible.

3. Do you really want to revisit the energy nationalization bill? How you can look back at that debacle and decide that your greatest failure was not controlling Labor's Senators is beyond my understanding.

4. I have said far, far worse things than that on the IRC, but I'm not sure what that that has to do with anything.
24  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Martha Coakley on: October 30, 2014, 10:42:35 am
The phrase 'banality of evil' comes to mind.
25  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: 2014 October Presidential elections, political winner on: October 30, 2014, 10:41:05 am
Windjammer won in a landslide and with the votes of several Federalists. He could not have won at all without significant crossover support.
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