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April 27, 2015, 12:39:17 am
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News: Don't forget to get your 2013 Gubernatorial Endorsements and Predictions in!

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101  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Confirmation Hearing: Talleyrand for Dep. Secretary of Fed. Elections [voting] on: April 02, 2015, 07:33:19 am
By a vote of 7-0, Talleyrand is confirmed as Deputy Secretary of Federal Elections.
102  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Eine traurige Nachricht für euch on: April 02, 2015, 06:50:01 am
I guess if we got an official IP-address linked to his account that would help?

Anyway, I did search for some stuff, and the closest to what I found is a car colliding with a train on March 23rd near Zell am See, with to dead, both in their 40ies though... So I guess we can render this quite unlikely...

What's Tender's mail, by the way? Maybe that could help us find him on Facebook?

FWIW, if this sort of thing happened in the US, it's plausible that there'd be no reporting on it. But I don't know whether the Austrian media follow similar rules regarding suicides.
103  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Eine traurige Nachricht für euch on: April 01, 2015, 08:16:26 pm
Is anyone else familiar with Tender Branson's namesake? It makes this entire affair ten times creepier.

Quote
Tender Branson sits in the cockpit of a Boeing 747-400, telling his life story to the black box. He is alone in the plane, having hijacked it; he has released all of the plane's passengers and crew prior to this point. He explains the events leading up to the hijacking.

Tender is a member of the fanatical Creedish cult, which engaged in a mass suicide ten years previously. He is one of the Creedish members who was sent out into the world to work as a servant, and send his income back to the Creedish community. Creedish members have been steadily killing themselves since the mass suicide, in keeping with their belief that the deliverance is at hand
104  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Why is Trevor Noah allowed to post hateful remarks? on: April 01, 2015, 10:03:57 am
This Slate editorial has it right:

Quote
The problem is not that Trevor Noah tells offensive jokes. It’s not even that he routinely breaks The Daily Show's covenant of speaking truth to power in favor of speaking truth to fat chicks or Thai hookers or, as the Washington Post’s Wendy Todd points out, black Americans who give their kids names that Noah disapproves of. The problem is that Noah’s jokes are so annihilatingly stupid. Are they even jokes? Are they meta-jokes, like the “My arms are so tired” airplane joke he made on his first Daily Show appearance? Or did he mean that as a joke, too?!?
105  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Which state do you think has the biggest rural-urban divide? on: April 01, 2015, 09:53:40 am
If we're measuring this by plotting counties' population density against partisanship, and seeing who has the strongest correlation... I'm pretty sure the winner will be Delaware.

Counties are not the ideal unit of analysis for several reasons, but they are easy to work with, so I don't fault anyone for experimenting with the data just to see what happens. If we were actually attempting a serious ranking of every state we'd want to a use much smaller unit of analysis - ideally one that varies less, proportionally, in population (or, at least, we'd need to weight for it). And obviously there's no getting around the modifiable areal unit problem.

We're also not just interested in the strength of the correlation. As long we're sticking with ElectionsGuy's original question, we're looking for a state where the correlation between population density and voting behavior is strong and the degree of geographic variation in voting behavior is high.
106  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of the Cabrini-Green Housing Projects? on: March 31, 2015, 09:59:52 pm
Christ. I don't know about BRTD, but I've never enjoyed playing real-life Frogger.

For what it's worth, the main drag of Conshy is significantly less forbidding when you're actually in town, rather than looking at it from across the Schuylkill, and through the riverfront towers that replaced industrial land.  According to Street View they even have pedestrian bulb-outs at the corners.

[...]

By the standards of "suburbia", Conshohocken is indeed one of the good ones.  Of course, it was a separate town before "suburbia" was a thing, which is usually the case with those "good ones".

That is a much more pleasant image. I see that it has a gridded streets, too, and at a reasonable scale. Not bad at all, although as BRTD's preoccupation seems to have more to do with centrality than with it does with walkability, livability, neighborhood life, and so on, I doubt that it would hold much appeal to him.
107  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of whoever parked this car in my neighborhood on: March 31, 2015, 09:44:17 pm
Whoever they are, they're more of an FF than whoever parked this Jeep in my (also bump-prone) neighborhood:

108  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Trevor Noah to host Daily Show on: March 31, 2015, 02:14:45 pm
Buzzfeed has discovered some pretty cringe-worthy comments while investigating Noah's Twitter feed.

Most of the tweets that they've flagged are just dumb frat humor, but I laughed when I read this one because it's like something out of the Sage Garden:

109  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Mid-2014 county population estimates out tomorrow, March 26 on: March 31, 2015, 01:07:32 pm
Here is a clutch of choropleth maps that show estimated annual rates of change for the past five years by county. (Obviously, this image should be viewed at full size in another tab. Even that's smaller than I'd prefer, but this is the largest image that I could upload to the gallery.)



A note of caution about the scale bars - the maximum and minimum values shown are only the thresholds for the most extreme shades of color, i.e. they do not represent the maximum and minimum values for the category being mapped. (Also note that the ranges are not consistent, even when the colors are the same.)
110  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of the Cabrini-Green Housing Projects? on: March 31, 2015, 09:58:48 am
Christ. I don't know about BRTD, but I've never enjoyed playing real-life Frogger.
111  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Confirmation Hearing: Talleyrand for Dep. Secretary of Fed. Elections [voting] on: March 31, 2015, 09:55:07 am
Please cast your votes.
112  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: opinion of this image on: March 30, 2015, 08:16:21 pm
You know I had to follow the link, and what surprised me most was the cost of some of these things: http://money.cnn.com/infographic/luxury/the-cost-of-being-super-rich

So a flight attendent can make $150k/year as long as it's on private planes? You can make $90k/year just for driving rich people around? Holy sh[inks]. Then again for the type of people who work those types of occupations normally, can't blame them for milking rich idiots for all they have with insanely inflated salaries. But of course the idea that the people who are paying that much deserve sympathy as is the implication is just....

One assumes that those figures include fringe costs.
113  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Nigeria General Election - March 28, 2015 on: March 30, 2015, 01:18:18 pm
What program did you use to make that map? ArcGIS I assume?

It might look better if I had. I'm trying to add QGIS to my repertoire.
114  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of TED Talks on: March 30, 2015, 12:28:12 pm
I would be remiss if I didn't link to this comparison between TED and the Chautauqua movement:

Quote
The inchoate chattering is that of the managerial upper middle classes giving each other sloppy wet tongue kisses for being so incredibly aware, creative and wonderful masters of the universe.   The subject matter is pure beigeism, from revolutionary musings that conservatives might actually be human beings, to precocious teenagers who fuse out a couple of neutrons in their kitchen, to superhero teachers, to TV noodle theorists, to, well,  Jane freaking Fonda. The whole thing is so fey and revolting it makes me puke liverwurst in my mouth. I can almost smell the ripe stew of VC types sporting dockers pantaloons, the gaseous emanations of powerpoint and keynote slides, the toxic outgassing of parked Segways, the vegetarian salami stench of upper level human resources directors.

The average Chautauqua lecturer talking to the hayseeds is a regular  Marcus Tullius Cicero in comparison to their modern equivalent; certainly he was allowed to express thoughts more complex than ones which fit into an 18 minute presentation. While the yokel Chautauqua audience may have been less educated than the modern equivalent, they were also better dressed, better mannered, and nowhere near as smug. The two audiences appear equivalent in their superstition. The old audience believing in god and country, and the new one believing in sustainable, non-violent, managerial, egalitarian scientism. The old audience was geographically provincial; the new audience is socially provincial, probably regarding an infantryman or a cafeteria worker as a kind of exotic plankton; perhaps something akin to a sea urchin or bivalve.
115  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of TED Talks on: March 30, 2015, 12:08:48 pm


"My God, it's pure ideology!"
116  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Nigeria General Election - March 28, 2015 on: March 30, 2015, 12:03:03 pm
(but it is missing at least one that is shown there)

Follow up on this aside:

Quote
Election Results To Be Cancelled In Rivers State

Rivers State Governor Rotimi Amaechi has said that he believes that today’s presidential elections held in the State were irreparably compromised, and the results must be cancelled.

According to Sahara Reporter, Amaechi, All Progressives Congress (APC) leader, alleges that interference on the party of the ruling party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has adversely influenced the result of the contest. Claiming the PDP is working with officials and security agents to rig the contest by withholding result sheets, Amaechi says the results of the election today in Rivers cannot be trusted.
117  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Nigeria General Election - March 28, 2015 on: March 30, 2015, 11:59:57 am
I drafted this map just now based on the numbers from Politicus' link. It includes numbers from some states that are not included in the map at Simfan's link, (but it is missing at least one that is shown there):

118  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Trevor Noah to host Daily Show on: March 30, 2015, 09:39:34 am
Huh? The journalist?



Oh, Trevor Noah... Who the hell is that?

If the couple of clips that I just watched are representative of his talent, this choice does not bode well for the future of the show.

Can anyone more familiar with Noah's work and style explain why he might have been picked, other than the fact that he looks like he just walked off of a GQ photo shoot? Is this just another sign of the show's fading relevance, i.e. none of the better known candidates would commit to the job?
119  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Holiday meats on: March 30, 2015, 07:30:07 am
Oinky at Easter.  Turkey at Thanksgiving, and rib roast at Christmas.

I find it rather interesting that Christians celebrate their holiest holiday with an an animal that doesn't chew the cud!  The corrupted goat 'god' of the old testament demands you eat food only in his likeness.  Food not sacrificed to sustenance and bringing glory to Almighty God...but food sacrificed to the image of a false god.

Burn that food in front of him...he loves the smell of 'his' creation burning.  Just don't look behind the curtain.  What you'll find is simultaneously terrifying and utterly pathetic.

???????????
120  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: opinion of this image on: March 30, 2015, 05:56:23 am
Nice try, CNN, but the WSJ, as usual, has you beat:



And let's not even get started on the brilliant, ongoing act of trolling that is the NYT's Style section...
121  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Carly Fiorina vs. Michelle Bachmann on: March 30, 2015, 05:50:45 am
How will Carly Fiorina do in 2016 in comparison to how Michelle Bachmann did in 2008?

Hopefully better. Not really fair to compare her to a loon like Bachmann.

You are talking about someone who recently called for zero-based budgeting because federal employees are "watching porn all day." It may be unfair to compare her to Bachmann - personally I think that Donald Trump or Herman Cain is a more telling prototype for Fiorina's candidacy - but she's just as willing as any of them to throw out zany lines.
122  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Which state do you think has the biggest rural-urban divide? on: March 30, 2015, 05:41:37 am
Pennsylvania is probably the best answer for the Northeast, but it doesn't really compare with most states west of the Mississippi, reservations excepted.

Has anyone regressed population density vs. average R/D vote share by voting district/municipality/county/some other geographic unit for each state? That would be one way to come up with a quantifiable answer.
123  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Homeland Sec Approp Chair Rep.John Carter Worried Computers Could Use Encryption on: March 29, 2015, 09:06:30 pm
Quote
“Tech execs say privacy should be the paramount virtue,” Comey continued, “When I hear that I close my eyes and say try to image what the world looks like where pedophiles can’t be seen, kidnapper can’t be seen, drug dealers can’t be seen.”

You can't see anything when your eyes are closed. Odd choice of metaphor.

The word salad in the second quote makes me wonder if Director Comey had the misfortune to accidentally walk into an interview just after snorting a line of cocaine.
124  Questions and Answers / The Atlas / Re: Can't change map location on: March 29, 2015, 03:45:21 pm
Likewise:

125  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Something that sticks out like a sore thumb in the Star Wars Prequel trilogies on: March 29, 2015, 09:37:04 am
It's difficult to talk about the prequels without getting distracted by the fact that they are awful movies - and in so many different ways, too. Flat characters; muddled, incoherent, and contradictory plotting; ridiculous dialogue; uninspired directing; action sequences that are so fast-paced, overwhelmingly busy, and removed from the laws of physics that they are completely drained of tension, etc. This short clip from RLM's review of RotS illustrates the problems pretty effectively in about one minute.

I mention this because once you start thinking about the political systems of Star Wars it's difficult to make sense of what the Republic even does. Why levy taxes on interplanetary trade routes in the first place? Did the Senate need to buy more robes? Do the Jedi need money for midi-chlorian tests?

You can watch the original trilogy without thinking too hard about political actors because the plot is so straightforward - hero's journey, evil empire, etc. But political questions loom so heavily over the prequel trilogy that they're impossible to ignore. Maybe this is where some of you see moral grayness, but all that I can see is incoherence and a pretty ham-fisted attempt to draw some kind of Iraq War allegory.

Why should I care about Palpatine dissolving the Republic? If you return to the original trilogy after watching the prequels, it's suddenly a lot more difficult to establish that the Empire is any worse, despite the fact that it's run by power-hungry comic book villains. Unless you're a Jedi or a Senator, who cares?

Those movies are terrible.  If anything about the characters or plot doesn't make sense, it's because George Lucas doesn't care about characters or plot, he just wanted to play with various special effects.

And sell toys. And with green screens, he could do it all without ever leaving his director's chair!
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