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16726  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Best way to reform Social Security? on: May 20, 2008, 01:04:01 pm
Social Security is currently in the middle of gradually raising the age at which full benefits can be received to age 67.  The first step should be to continue that to age 70 and raise the age at which partial benefits can be obtained from 62 to 65 at the same time.  We live longer on average than when Social Security was started.  Bringing the number of years for which an average person receives benefits down to something closer to what was originally envisaged is the first step that should be taken.
16727  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: Atlas Forum '08: October 23-26 on: May 20, 2008, 12:50:19 pm
Governor HappyWarrior is in Frankfort, Kentuckey speaking on gun control.  Specifically he highlights the need to eliminate assault rifles but allow responsible gun ownership for all other guns saying, "You don't fire an AK when you go dear hunting."

The Association for Simplified Spelling makes Governor HappyWarrior its example of the weak as to why spelling needs to be simplified.
16728  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Death With Dignity Act [Debate open] on: May 20, 2008, 12:46:26 pm
Speaking solely for myself, and not for the court, nor to bind my options if a case concerning this should reach the court while I am still there, clause 16 of the Powers of the Senate section, would seem to be the firmest constitutional basis for this bill:
"To provide for the humanitarian relief of the distress caused by unpredictable events of natural or man-made origin."

While the intent of that clause was to allow the government to provide disaster relief, the language might be interpreted as sufficiently broad as to encompass legalizing euthanasia.

As an aside, let me point out that repeal of the Assisted Suicide Funding Restriction Act of 1997 [42 U.S.C. 14401 et seq.] would be a definitely constitutional way to deal with this issue at a Federal level.
16729  General Discussion / History / Re: Presidential Trivia on: May 19, 2008, 11:08:44 pm
Additional hint.  George W. Bush may join this group.
16730  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: Atlas Forum '08: October 23-26 on: May 19, 2008, 08:55:10 pm
The NASB (National Association of Small Businesses) is in need of a new CEO.
16731  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Ernest / Bacon King - Simplicity in Motion on: May 19, 2008, 02:24:56 pm
My proposal was not made for the purpose of scoring political points, but I am not so non-partisan as to ignore them when they are there to be had.  While I sadly agree with Mr. Moderate's diagnosis of the ills that Atlasia faces, I strongly disagree with his prescription.  Campaigns are waged around political issues, not structural minutiae.  Atlasia needs more politics, not less as Mr. Moderate contends.  Strongly held and contested positions on the issues before us will make Atlasia more vibrant again, and my proposal was put forth so that issues raised by the President would be certain to be considered in a timely fashion by the Senate.

I am a centrist by temperament, but it is not a centrism born of the idea that politics should be a pottage in which all ideas are stewed together until they form a mushy mixture of uniform flavor.  You will definitely be able to tell what is what in the stew of policy initiatives I put forth.

My campaign's theme of simplicity is not born from the idea that simplicity is in and of itself a virtue.  Rather, government needs to be simplified so as to be understandable by the electorate and so that it can concentrate on its core competences of securing our national defense, providing the foundations for a prosperous modern economy, and securing equality of opportunity for all.

Our drug laws do none of these things.  Indeed, our current drug laws serve only to weaken our national defense, undermine the foundations for a prosperous modern economy, and secure equality of opportunity for violent criminals.  That is why overhauling Atlasia's drug policy will be one of the central tasks an Ernest administration will undertake.  Because taxation will play a significant part in the overhaul of drug policy, simplifying other forms of taxation is also something my administration will seek to achieve at the same time, so as to produce a coherent, simplified, and equitable tax code.
16732  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Spring 2008 Progressive Primary on: May 19, 2008, 12:44:29 pm
Baltimore, Maryland.

Seconded.
16733  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Ernest / Bacon King - Simplicity in Motion on: May 19, 2008, 12:42:28 pm
From a campaign speech at an automobile plant in Michigan:

"Mr. Moderate seems to believe in having his cake and eating yours too when it comes to separation of powers.  He derides my proposal for improving the ability of a President to get his legislation passed as an impingement upon the separation of powers but then goes on to talk about installing a PPT that he finds agreeable to himself.  Install?  A PPT is chosen by the Senate, not the President, and I in no way seek to erode that separation of power.

"Nor does my proposal require a breaching of the walls between the legislative and the executive any more than it already is.  Recognizing the separation of powers concern, I put forth an alternative version in which the Vice President who is elected with the President and serves as the President of the Senate would be the person charged with representing the President's agenda in the Senate.

"Given his choice of a running mate with an eye to collecting votes more than to selecting someone with political views similar to those he propounds, I can well understand why he neglects that alternative.  A Vice Presidential slot for bills in the Senate might well end up doing more to impede the President's agenda than helping it if the Mr. Moderate/Ebowed ticket is elected this June."
16734  General Discussion / History / Re: Presidential Trivia on: May 18, 2008, 10:02:56 pm
I'm assuming that you're not angling for airports named indirectly for a president by being named for a city that was named for a President.

Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport - Springfield, Illinois
Gerald R. Ford International Airport - Grand Rapids, Michigan
John F. Kennedy International Airport - New York, New York
George Bush Intercontinental Airport - Houston, Texas
Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport - Arlington, Virginia



What do John Q, Adams, Van Buren, Polk, Pierce, Lincoln, Garfield, Cleveland, Theodore Roosevelt, Taft, Kennedy, Carter, and Clinton have in common that no other President shares with them so far?
16735  Election Archive / 2008 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: NE: Rasmussen: McCain beats Obama by 11, Clinton by 23 on: May 18, 2008, 09:07:01 pm
Some break-downs by CD would be nice, since Obama may be competitive in CD1 or 2 while still losing the state by 10 points.

The SUSA poll back in February did CD breakdowns.  That poll didn't factor in Independents like this one did, so if you take the swing as being 5 points (the amount McCain improved between the two polls) that makes the CD's as follows:

NE1: 47-39
NE2: 48-40
NE3: 58-30

I doubt the swing is uniform, but even so, with these numbers I can't see Obama snatching a CD away from McCain.  That doesn't mean these numbers will be the final numbers tho.
16736  Election Archive / 2008 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: AK: Research 2000: McCain beats Obama by 7, but Clinton by 18 on: May 18, 2008, 08:41:55 pm
Ok, back on subject!!!  They only way Obama could carry AK is if a thrid party candidate runs strong in there. Remember, in 1992, Clinton almost won the state because of a strong third party. Anyways I don't think it will happen.

It could, but Obama will need enough of a lead nationally to make the potential third party Alaskan voters feel that they aren't wasting votes that could decide the national election.
16737  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: If You Were Elected Pope, What Name Would You Take? on: May 18, 2008, 08:04:53 pm
Francis I - for much the same reasons as the fictional Declan Walsh did in the novel Vicar of Christ.  The simplicity of the Franciscans blended with the zeal of the Jesuits.
16738  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Gustaf's Philosophical question number 3 (LAST ONE WITH TROLLEYS!!) on: May 18, 2008, 07:45:31 pm
No.  If I'm not big enough  to stop the trolley and I try to push a bigger person in front of the trolley there is a probability greater than zero that the big guy will push back or pull me along and I'll end up getting killed by the crazy trolley.  That assumes that the big guy is not a philosopher.  If he is then he will so stunned by the actual appearance of what he had always assumed to be a hypothetical trolley, that I would not be taking any risk by pushing him in front of it.
16739  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Ernest / Bacon King - Simplicity in Motion on: May 18, 2008, 07:27:17 pm
National Press Club - Nyman, DC

I come here today to speak on a topic I hadn't particularly expected to during this campaign, structural reform.  At least this one won't involve any constitutional amendments or similar nonsense to enact, just a change to the Senate Rules.

All of the major presidential candidate have put forth proposals that they would like to see enacted, but given the nature of the pace of the Senate calendar, it certainly won't be until at least their second Senate and could well be their second term before any of them reach the Senate floor.  Such a glacial pace makes a mockery of the Presidency.  The rules provide for specific slots for specific purposes, and it would be fitting that one of the general slots be set aside for bills selected by the President.

This Presidential slot could be controlled either directly by the President, or by having a slot that would programmable at the sole discretion of the Vice President, if the Senate does not desire to give the executive branch direct access to the Senate queue.   The latter option has its advantages as it would give Presidential candidates additional reasons to pick a running mate because of similar political views and not because of a desire to pick up a machine endorsement.

I am willing to take some questions now.
16740  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Senate Protest and Analysis Thread on: May 18, 2008, 06:45:01 pm
Call it something other than tabling please.  To table has directly opposite meanings in American and British, and since quite a few people here have British rather than American as their first language it would be nice to avoid predictable confusion.
16741  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: To me it seems pretty silly that Obama thinks he can ACTUALLY get North Caro on: May 09, 2008, 06:04:23 pm
Obama can win North Carolina this time, but not if this is a close election where North Carolina's electoral votes would be needed to give him the victory over McCain.  If Obama gets into the 300-350 EV range then NC will be in play.
16742  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: WWI and WWII Discussion on: May 08, 2008, 03:18:33 pm
1. Using the just-war theory, what justification did America have to get involved in WWI (and don't say "Lusitania". That was a British ship that had prior warning about a German attack.)

The Zimmermann telegram of course. If you don't know about that one, then uhm...

Mexico didn't invade us though. They were simply asked to.

The US saw the telegram as a provocation. Germany was asking a country to invade a country not officially at war with Germany.

Not at all.  The Zimmerman Telegram only called for asking if Mexico would be willing to invade the United States if the United States entered the war against Germany.  Hence Germany was asking a country to invade a country if it ever became officially at war with Germany.
16743  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Could Saddam Hussein win a Democratic primary? on: May 08, 2008, 03:12:45 pm

I can hear his slogan now:  "Vote for me, or I will gas your neighborhood."

Gas didn't work as an issue for Hillary, so why would it for Saddam?
16744  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Fines on businesses that hire illegal aliens on: May 08, 2008, 03:02:16 pm
Yes and no.  The only way to stop people from coming here illegally for economic reasons is to make it too costly to the employer to hire them.  If we aren't going to meaningfully sanction employers then we should stop restricting economic immigration.
16745  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Tomorrow, for the first time in my life, I get to have ORAL... on: May 08, 2008, 01:11:33 pm
Like any good centrist, I happen to follow the middle path.  My top two wisdom teeth went about ten years ago (they came out crooked), but the bottom two are fine.
16746  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: Obama's Veep Possibilities on: May 07, 2008, 06:54:53 pm
On the surface, Gov. Rendell would seem to be a good choice.  Obama needs to pick someone from the Clinton camp to heal the party and Pennsylvania is a swing state that he needs and can win.
16747  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: RISK Domination VI: Round 10 (TN2024) on: May 07, 2008, 06:32:36 pm
Unable to make any further moves, General X's turn has ended.

Might want to fix this.

Meh.  It's a much cooler name, don't you agree?

Only if you can't wait for the Speed racer movie to come out.
16748  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: Atlas Forum '08: September 5-8 on: May 07, 2008, 05:22:01 pm
To clarify a few things, the NASB (National Association of Small Businesses) will be holding its New Hampshire debate in late October or early November.  Candidates who wish to participate should PM me and I'll send them a few questions to be answered which I will then use to produce a debate summary.
16749  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: Will Hillary drop out on May 13th or very shortly after? on: May 07, 2008, 05:15:10 pm
No -she will be out within the first week of June. 

Agreed.  She won't drop out before June 3.  Unless an unexpected wave of superdelegates commit sooner than the last primary, Obama won't have clinched it until then.
16750  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Opinion of this debate... Me and Bono... I have permission to post this BTW on: May 07, 2008, 04:45:03 pm
The answer to "why does 2+2=4?" is the same to "Why does it take 3 women with PMS to change a light bulb?"

IT JUST DOES!@!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Actually 2+2 = 11 to people who think that there are three sides to every problem.
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