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News: Don't forget to get your 2013 Gubernatorial Endorsements and Predictions in!

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1551  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: Mideast Voting Booth: Fix to the Mideast Emergency Budget Amendment on: April 12, 2013, 02:00:11 am
Aye
1552  General Politics / Economics / Re: Austrian Finance Minister attacks UK, US after their attack on banking secrecy on: April 11, 2013, 03:13:06 pm
Sounds fair to me, there is a lot of US/UK hypocrisy on this area.

Yes, it's about time. Mainly US authorities have basically adopted the position of a bully towards small countries while turning a blind eye on their own tax havens. Superpower politics at its worst.
1553  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Movimiento Atlasiano para la Defensa de la Libertad Electoral on: April 11, 2013, 02:55:40 pm
Wo chämtemer dän ä hii, wänn jede und jedi i sinere eigete Sprach oder öpe gar sim Dialäkt würd schriibe und so sini Schtim abgä?
1554  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Office and Campaign Headquarters of Mideast Speaker of the Assembly Inks.LWC on: April 11, 2013, 02:41:46 pm
Yes, you can. Endorsed!
1555  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: MA: Keeping the Voting Booths Clean Act (Debating) on: April 11, 2013, 02:36:14 pm
Let's keep things in perspective. What exactly does Section 9 of this bill (as introduced by the Speaker) do? What are the bill's advantages and disadvantages? First of all, the amendment makes our elections more accountable and transparent and - importantly - makes sure our Governor never has to deal with indecipherable ballots which are very time-consuming to count. By formally requiring voters to cast their ballots in English - a common-sense and unwritten law which is followed by 99% of all Atlasians - we can make sure that the Governor can count all votes in an easy and unproblematic way.
Now what are the potential downsides of the bill? Are those who oppose it afraid that English is established as the de facto official language this way? If yes, there's no reason to worry. Nowhere does our constitution say that English is the (sole) official language of the Mideast. Additionally, we have to keep in mind that Talleyrand's amendment would also be problematic from that point of view. Indeed, if voters can cast their ballots in languages other than English but are still required to indicate which language it is we have a case of discrimination against any language that is not English. (Inks also makes a good point - why should we let Google Translate dictate to us which language is acceptable and which isn't?)
Does a requirement for voters to cast their ballots in English deprive anyone of their right to express their will or does it make voting harder for anyone? If yes, I can see your point. If no, I don't think there's a reason to oppose Inks' bill.
1556  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: MA: The Much Better Mideast Emergency Budget Amendment (Final Vote) on: April 11, 2013, 02:18:34 am
Aye
1557  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: MA: Keeping the Voting Booths Clean Act (Debating) on: April 11, 2013, 02:18:00 am
Google translate has an option that can detect the language, so TexasDem's amendment doesn't do much.

Google Translate doesn't have some languages (like Cyrillic Moldavian or whatever it was) but in that case a note wouldn't help anyway.

Thanks for pointing that out. This is a good reason to require voters to cast their votes in English. Unless we should require all future election booth administrators to take classes in Cyrillic Moldovian or other languages/alphabets that Google Translate doesn't have.

Let me bring up another example to illustrate the problem of allowing voters to cast their ballot in whatever language they choose: For instance, a voter could use Russian sounds and Greek letters in his ballot; or worse, sounds and letters of languages that are even more exotic for most of us. The voter in question could still claim that his vote was in Russian because when you manage to read what he wrote you get a Russian word. However, it would be very hard for the administrator of the election to figure out what the voter intended. This may seem like a far-fetched example, but it shows that there is a loophole both under the current statute and with Talleyrand's amendment.
1558  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: MA: Common Courtesy While Driving Act (Vote to Override Veto) on: April 11, 2013, 02:12:35 am
I cast a symbolic AYE
1559  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Federalist Convention—LITTLE ROCK, AR (End. Declr. for IDS Emp./Leg. & NE Assy.) on: April 10, 2013, 03:03:57 pm
I don't think we should endorse Napoleon. He doesn't have a high opinion of us and our party:

Party name from the 1790s and policies from the 1920s. Joy.
1560  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Federalist Convention—LITTLE ROCK, AR (End. Declr. for IDS Emp./Leg. & NE Assy.) on: April 10, 2013, 08:55:16 am
Senator X also asked for our endorsement, for what it's worth.
1561  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Margaret Thatcher on: April 10, 2013, 06:24:08 am
I can't say very much good for her. Going back to when she was Education Secretary and ended free milk in schools. That's about as cold as you can get.

I recall having to bring 25 and later 50 cents from my house to pay for milk at school back in my elementary days.

And we didn't get any milk at all. As far as I remember that wasn't Thatcher's fault, though.
If Swiss schools are anything like French schools you probably got a much better lunch than milk. I miss French elementary school.

Except for tap water you don't usually get anything to eat or drink in Swiss schools unless you're in a day/boarding school, but there aren't too many children who go to such a place. The overwhelming majority of children have their lunch at home or at a day nursery.
1562  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Margaret Thatcher on: April 10, 2013, 01:21:52 am
I can't say very much good for her. Going back to when she was Education Secretary and ended free milk in schools. That's about as cold as you can get.

I recall having to bring 25 and later 50 cents from my house to pay for milk at school back in my elementary days.

And we didn't get any milk at all. As far as I remember that wasn't Thatcher's fault, though.
1563  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Margaret Thatcher dies at 87 on: April 09, 2013, 01:38:06 pm
Not that it matters on the international level, but the chairman of the Swiss Young Socialists posted on Facebook that it wasn't "cynical to drink a toast to Maggie's best day tonight". People like him are the future leaders of the Social Democratic Party in my country. What a delightful prospect!
1564  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Sentinel At Large Senate Election Poll on: April 09, 2013, 08:01:32 am
Now that Clarence is no longer among us (in the context of this election Wink), it's Hagrid, Matt and X.
1565  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: ZuWo and Cathcon: Experience and Leadership on: April 09, 2013, 01:52:01 am
Thank you, everyone, for your kind words, first or second preferences! In a close election like this one, second preferences are obviously of crucial importance. Smiley
1566  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: clarence for Senate 2013 on: April 09, 2013, 01:49:57 am
Sad to see you leave the Senate, but I hope you will find another role in Atlasia!
1567  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: MA: Common Courtesy While Driving Act (Final Vote) on: April 09, 2013, 01:47:50 am
Aye
1568  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Forum height poll on: April 08, 2013, 04:25:46 pm
174 cm, so option 4. I'd have liked to be a bit taller but it could have been worse.
1569  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: 2013 Elections in Germany on: April 08, 2013, 03:18:01 pm
Protip for all undecideds: Your decision won't matter anyway. Merkel and black-yellow will win handily. Only 2017 matters.

Are you really so sure? I agree that it's pretty safe to assume that Merkel will remain Chancellor but a grand coalition seems much more likely at this point.
1570  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / ZuWo/Cathcon for the Mideast: Experience and Leadership on: April 08, 2013, 03:08:46 pm
ZuWo/Cathcon for the Mideast: Experience and Leadership

When I decided to run for Governor and became aware that I had the unique opportunity to pick a fellow Mideasterner who would be my companion on this long and exciting journey, I realized that my running mate needs to have certain crucial qualities. Above all else, I wanted to pick someone who pays close attention to what is happening in our region and who is able to step in and take over my job if necessary. Of course, my Lt. Governor candidate also has to be someone who shares my basic political views and a person I get along with very well.

While there are quite a few people in the Mideast who meet these requirements, I ultimately decided to choose a fellow Mideasterner who has been very prominent on the federal stage in recent months. I am proud to present former Assemblymember, SoEA and candidate for President Cathcon as my running mate and candidate for Lt. Governor.
1571  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: ZuWo for Mideast Governor on: April 08, 2013, 04:23:49 am
Thanks, Winfield and Supersonic. You're very kind! Smiley

I will announce my choice for Lt. Governor later today.
1572  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Sentinel At Large Senate Poll on: April 08, 2013, 02:42:09 am
As of now, the three Federalists and X.
1573  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: MA: The Much Better Mideast Emergency Budget Amendment (Debating) on: April 08, 2013, 02:38:13 am
Oh, I missed that vote. I would have voted AYE, so I'm glad it passed.
1574  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: MA: Keeping the Voting Booths Clean Act (Debating) on: April 08, 2013, 02:25:43 am
I support this bill. The most recent special Senate election has shown that there is a need for clarification of what is allowed in the voting booth and what should be considered an act of campaigning for or against someone.
First of all, I think it's sensible to require that ballots be posted in English. To a certain degree we are all more or less able to read and write English and the official ballots are published in English anyway. Additionally, it's a real nuisance for the election booth administrator to try to determine and verify the intent of a voter who posts his ballot in a foreign language and uses a different alphabet (this happens regularly in the IDS and could be a potential problem in any other Atlasian region). I am aware that the election booth administrator is generally required to do everything in his power to determine voter intent, but I think we cannot require him to read and understand a ballot in very exotic languages ("exotic" from our point of view), which would be very time-consuming.
Secondly, comments such as "I happily/reluctantly vote for X" involve a value judgement and can, therefore, be interpreted as an attempt to influence other voters to vote in a certain way. Thus, ballots which include such comments should, in my opinion, be declared invalid.
1575  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: ZuWo for Mideast Governor on: April 07, 2013, 04:39:44 pm
Thank you Matt, Hagrid and Senator X!

Fortunately, the Mideast is in much better shape now than when I ran for Governor for the first time. We only used to have around 15 voters back then. How things have changed. Wink
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