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News: Cast your Ballot in the 2016 Mock Election

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76  General Discussion / Constitution and Law / Re: Supreme Court nomination reforms on: April 11, 2017, 01:15:28 pm
Instead of indicating their assessment of a Supreme Court nominee after the President chose who to nominate, the ABA should first submit a list of who deserves to be nominated, and the President must choose from that list. We would need to amend the Constitution for this reform.

With this you would instantly politicize the ABA. Elections to the ABA Board of Governors and the House of Delegates would be fought on "what kind of judges should we force the President to choose for the Supreme Court." The power of the Court is too great and the fight for any political advantage too cutthroat for the ABA to remain non-partisan if you give them a huge amount of government power.

Plus, in my eyes, removing power from the popularly elected president in favor of a bunch of unrepresentative lawyers (elected only by other lawyers) would be an unacceptable erosion of democracy.
77  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: The Iron Throne, the V ASOIAF Game (Sign Up - Rules Thread) (Turn Open) on: April 10, 2017, 09:37:20 pm
I was right in my predictions for the wrong reasons. If I'd suspected Euron would go all in on the Lannisters I wouldn't have called him safe either.


Is Oberyn's army really still in Bronzegate? The writeup made it sound like it was now in the Reach. If it IS in the Reach, is that the only army facing off with mine near Brightwater Keep or was there a second Targaryen army there as well?
78  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Primus Inter Pares - October 2015 General Election on: April 10, 2017, 09:32:00 pm
Lib Dem, easily.
79  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Primus Inter Pares - October 2015 General Election on: April 10, 2017, 09:11:34 pm
What does "euroscepticism" by the Tories and New Deal mean in terms of policy proposals in the aftermath of an overwhelming Remain win?
80  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Most powerful country in Asia currently? on: April 10, 2017, 03:37:00 pm
I can't think of any area in which China is not the correct answer, even if you include Russia, except maaaybe naval power where I've seen it argued that Japan has an edge.
81  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: The Iron Throne, the V ASOIAF Game (Sign Up - Rules Thread) (Turn Open) on: April 10, 2017, 12:05:07 pm
Lumine when you say "x people will die", could you tell us the names please? Because it makes me so anxious lol

No way! Creating anticipation is the whole reason for telling us!
82  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: The Iron Throne, the V ASOIAF Game (Sign Up - Rules Thread) (Turn Open) on: April 09, 2017, 09:35:51 pm
Prediction time:

Mance, Doran, and Euron are safe. Doran, arguably the least healthy person outside Wyman Manderly in the series, is somehow going to outlive us all.

Even though I (presumably) went into battle, I think I'm ok as well.

I can only see 2 people getting GameOver'd:
Lysa and Catelyn: Lysa for her general insanity and Catelyn for her general unpopularity/ongoing rebellion. I'd bet pretty heavily on Catelyn, seeing as Enduro plans to not play next turn.

For deaths, several people were in risky situations. I'd bet:

Tyrion wasn't relieved in time and died.
Viserys was hammer and anvil'd between Drogo and the Stormlanders
One of Roose/Edric/Drogo went into a situation which had poor dice rolls. I'm inclined towards Roose, though I've felt like there is a Sword of Damocles hanging over Drogo since turn one and would never be surprised to see it fall.
83  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Which of these judicial philosophies describes Gorsuch? on: April 09, 2017, 08:53:38 pm
These descriptions are terrible and few if any fit. Scalia was not an originalist, dominionism doesn't fit as a judicial philosophy, establishment conservatism has no meaning in a judicial context, and proto-originalist is useless as well.

Gorsuch's past work indicates he'll be a legislative supremacist and probably a textialist. Therefore, Scalia is the closest answer.
I don't know how to label Roberts. Dominionism isn't a judicial philosophy but Santorum and Moore use it as one. I don't know how to label Alito. Alito seems to be like a Scalia who is not quite as textualist.

Scalia is ABSOLUTELY a textualist; he is THE BEST example of a textualist. Here's an (unfriendly) article highlighting that. Thomas is the true originalist and there are few (if any) like him in the federal judiciary.

Citizens United is not a textualist decision.

Quote from: Scalia's Concurrence in Citizen's United v. FEC
The Amendment is written in terms of "speech," not speakers. Its text offers no foothold for excluding any category of speaker, from single individuals to partnerships of individuals, to unincorporated associations of individuals, to invorporated associations of individuals-and the dissent offers no evidence about the original meaning of the text to support such an exclusion. We are therefore simply left with the question whether the speech at issue in this case is "speech" covered by the First Amendment. No one says otherwise. A documentary film critical of a potential Presidential candidate is core political speech, and its nature as such does not change simply because it was funded by a corporation.

Scalia's concurrence has his trademark close scrutiny of text. Actually, in general Citizens United is a bad example of Scalia's constitutional analysis as it was primarily written to counter Justice Steven's originalist dissent and so in general reads more like an originalist attack rather than a textual one. Scalia's dissents are almost always better than his concurrences.
84  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Which of these judicial philosophies describes Gorsuch? on: April 08, 2017, 10:40:11 pm
These descriptions are terrible and few if any fit. Scalia was not an originalist, dominionism doesn't fit as a judicial philosophy, establishment conservatism has no meaning in a judicial context, and proto-originalist is useless as well.

Gorsuch's past work indicates he'll be a legislative supremacist and probably a textialist. Therefore, Scalia is the closest answer.
I don't know how to label Roberts. Dominionism isn't a judicial philosophy but Santorum and Moore use it as one. I don't know how to label Alito. Alito seems to be like a Scalia who is not quite as textualist.

Scalia is ABSOLUTELY a textualist; he is THE BEST example of a textualist. Here's an (unfriendly) article highlighting that. Thomas is the true originalist and there are few (if any) like him in the federal judiciary.
85  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Which of these judicial philosophies describes Gorsuch? on: April 08, 2017, 10:18:35 pm
These descriptions are terrible and few if any fit. Scalia was not an originalist, dominionism doesn't fit as a judicial philosophy, establishment conservatism has no meaning in a judicial context, and proto-originalist is useless as well.

Gorsuch's past work indicates he'll be a legislative supremacist and probably a textialist. Therefore, Scalia is the closest answer.
86  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Primus Inter Pares - 2015 EU Referendum on: April 08, 2017, 10:02:40 pm
Remain, naturally.
87  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: The Iron Throne, the V ASOIAF Game (Sign Up - Rules Thread) (Turn Open) on: April 08, 2017, 08:17:47 pm
Any deaths?
88  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Do you support the missile strikes on Syria? on: April 07, 2017, 12:10:03 pm
Absolutely. Assad is a murderous tyrant who gassed his own people-he must be punished. If the US failed to act as Obama did in 2013, it would show the US and international law are toothless and have no bark to their bite. While intervention has risks, continuing the slaughter in Syria and allowing Assad to gas his people unabated would be a far bigger risk. Assad invited the strike through his own actions. This should have been done years ago.

This is my view exactly. The only thing I'd add is that this strike was perfectly justifiable under international law. An attack on Syria based on responsibility to protect is not aggression; just the opposite. All countries have an obligation to take any action necessary to stop a jus cogens offense and if the administration is arguing that this small attack is all that is necessary to stop the further use of chemical weapons then there's no problem with it.
89  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Should "Seminole Wind" be the state song of Florida? on: April 05, 2017, 01:35:35 pm
Old Folks at Home is fine. If we need to save a state song, I prefer it to be distinguished, recognizable, and able to stand the test of time. Random country song #6210 is none of those things. The throwaway racial references have been expunged from the official version so that doesn't convince me either. Plus, opening up the pandora's box of changing the state song is not something I want to do; no way Miami and Gainesville (and probably Tampa and Orlando too) would be happy with Seminole Winds. Its hard enough to get every part of the state to agree to something; best let sleeping dogs lie.
90  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Supreme Court Justices on: April 03, 2017, 03:01:11 pm
I always liked Cardozo's frustration with people who act like there's One True Interpretation that liberal/conservative judges have strayed from:

Quote
It is well enough to say that we shall be consistent, but consistent with what? . . . The origins of the rule? The course and tendency of development? With logic or philosophy? With the fundamental conceptions of jurisprudence? All these loyalties are possible. All have sometimes prevailed.


A conservative court rules based on the Republican Party platform (Citizens United, Hobby Lobby).
A liberal court rules based on the Constitution (Roe, Obergefell, Miller V. Alabama)

That being said, I HAVE to assume this is a parody. Roe was made with a tenuous link to the already hilariously shaky interpretation of "penumbras and emanations of Bill of Rights guarantees" in Griswold. Obergefell explicitly ignored standard equal protection analysis and used a strained substantive due process analysis to avoid recognizing gays as a protected class. Miller, unable to rely on standard "evolving standards of decency" analysis because states were actually moving toward stronger punishment of juveniles, instead unconventionally relied on psychiatric papers as its primary justification. None of these are consistent and none are good hallmarks for "rules based on the constitution."

Citizens United was a logical, if unexpected, leap in the corporate personhood doctrine which has existed in common law for centuries. It followed from the ruling in Buckley that contributions to campaigns were speech and that this speech could only be restricted in certain ways.  
91  General Discussion / Constitution and Law / Re: Self Defense on: April 02, 2017, 12:26:41 am
The traditional self-defense rule is essentially this

Quote from: New York Penal Law Article 35
"a person may...use physical force upon another person when and to the extent he reasonably believes such to be necessary to defend himself or a third person from what he reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of unlawful physical force by such other person."


As far as I'm aware this is the law (unchanged from common law) everywhere, possibly phrased in slightly different ways. Differences arise when it comes to the use of deadly force in self-defense. As killing people is a big deal, traditionally this required multiple extra things:

1. A reasonable belief that someone is about to cause death, serious injury, or one or two other very violent crimes to your person

2. A reasonable belief that ONLY deadly force could prevent this; if you could have shot your aggressor in the foot or head just as easily the law doesn't like it if you go for headshots.

3. You can't have instigated the conflict yourself (the "initial aggressor rule")

4. You don't have the option of attaining safety walking away without using deadly force (the "duty to retreat").

Note that rule 4 never applied to your house; since "a man's house is his castle" it was treated as the place where you should feel safest, so you had no duty to retreat out of it (the "Castle Doctrine"). What "Stand Your Ground laws" do is extend this everywhere: in states with SYG laws, you only need to go with the first three rules to use deadly force. Here's how all this looks in the Model Penal Code:

Quote from: Model Penal Code Section 3.04
(b) The use of deadly force is not justifiable under this Section unless the actor believes that such force is necessary to protect himself against death, serious bodily harm, kidnapping, or sexual intercourse compelled by force or threat; nor is it justifiable if:
        (i) the actor, with the purpose of causing death or serious bodily harm, provoked the use of force against himself in the same encounter (Initial Aggressor Rule)
        (ii) the actor knows that he can avoid the necessity of using such force with complete safety by retreating or by surrendering possession of a thing to a person...or by complying with a demand...except that: (Duty to retreat)
                         (1) the actor is not obliged to retreat from his dwelling or place of work unless he was the initial aggressor.... (Castle Doctrine)
92  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Autogolpe in Venezuela: The Last Vestige of Democracy Ends on: March 31, 2017, 06:38:47 pm
Overdrammatic title.  They will vote Maduro out in 2018 if the election is anything close to fair.

 They have not yet held an unfair election.  Not to say they won't.
...Seriously?! Shocked That is so far from reality I can't even get snarky about it...

Yes they are so good at rigging elections that the ruling party got decimated in the legislative elections in 2015 and Chavez himself lost a constitutional refendum.  Venezuela has held free elections since 1998, period, all international observers have agreed.

The fact that the regime has now essentially nullified the 2015 results by removing all of the legislature's power is a big sign that they're now unwilling to accept any concession of power and that they are likely to do the same in the future. If they weren't willing to give up legislative power today, what would make them likely to give up presidential power tomorrow?
93  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: The Iron Throne, the V ASOIAF Game (Sign Up - Rules Thread) (Turn Open) on: March 30, 2017, 05:24:14 pm
Very personal, actually, but I'll survive.  *snip*

I hope everything's alright! Sad

Thank you! But no, it really isn't.

Turn is up, but it's very simple on the "crisis" for each player given the current circumstances (hope you won't mind). I do have a proposal, since I think I went overboard by having Lysa Arryn kill herself after learning about Baelish's death. Lysa would be an interesting factor to be playable, and in that sense I was wondering whether X would be interested in playing as Lysa (which I believe is the case) and whether people would complain about this retcon.

I'll wait until tomorrow night for responses and then edit either Royce or Lysa into the turn.

I say you make it a botched suicide attempt. That would make early reports of her death and Yohn's powergrab attempt at leadership make sense while reinforcing the instability and psychological issues we've come to know and love from Lysa. If you want to go extreme with it, have it leave a mark so her crazy inside can be matched by a crazy outside.

Nah, the Vale Lords would probably just ignore/depose her then Sad  Plus it'd rob the Vale of it's most competent commander which hardly seems fair.

If they didn't already, when she married LF? No way. Especially Yohn; no way he'd disrespect Jon Arryn's memory and sully his honor by trying to keep power after he found out Lysa was still alive (and still held his liegelord).
Presumably that would be retconed too as I only asked Swedge to do it b/c I believed Lysa was dead.  Nice try, but it's pretty obvious what your real agenda is Roll Eyes

Also I'm not gonna switch if it's under the conditions Dereich described because...well...I'm not stupid Tongue  It'd really be a shame too because I had some really fun ideas about what Lysa might do in this situation that could've made the game a lot less predictable and even more fun for everyone than it already is Sad

My real agenda is to make a better story that makes sense in the universe, as it always is. Lysa is emotional, dramatic, and utterly devoted to Petyr Bailish. Her at very least attempting a showy suicide attempt after his death makes much more sense than her taking sudden, violent death in stride. She found his body, stabbed and bloody for gods sake. I think it would be OOC any other way.
94  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: The Iron Throne, the V ASOIAF Game (Sign Up - Rules Thread) (Turn Open) on: March 30, 2017, 04:24:58 pm
Very personal, actually, but I'll survive.  *snip*

I hope everything's alright! Sad

Thank you! But no, it really isn't.

Turn is up, but it's very simple on the "crisis" for each player given the current circumstances (hope you won't mind). I do have a proposal, since I think I went overboard by having Lysa Arryn kill herself after learning about Baelish's death. Lysa would be an interesting factor to be playable, and in that sense I was wondering whether X would be interested in playing as Lysa (which I believe is the case) and whether people would complain about this retcon.

I'll wait until tomorrow night for responses and then edit either Royce or Lysa into the turn.

I say you make it a botched suicide attempt. That would make early reports of her death and Yohn's powergrab attempt at leadership make sense while reinforcing the instability and psychological issues we've come to know and love from Lysa. If you want to go extreme with it, have it leave a mark so her crazy inside can be matched by a crazy outside.

Nah, the Vale Lords would probably just ignore/depose her then Sad  Plus it'd rob the Vale of it's most competent commander which hardly seems fair.

If they didn't already, when she married LF? No way. Especially Yohn; no way he'd disrespect Jon Arryn's memory and sully his honor by trying to keep power after he found out Lysa was still alive (and still held his liegelord).
95  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: The Iron Throne, the V ASOIAF Game (Sign Up - Rules Thread) (Turn Open) on: March 30, 2017, 04:04:44 pm
Very personal, actually, but I'll survive.  *snip*

I hope everything's alright! Sad

Thank you! But no, it really isn't.

Turn is up, but it's very simple on the "crisis" for each player given the current circumstances (hope you won't mind). I do have a proposal, since I think I went overboard by having Lysa Arryn kill herself after learning about Baelish's death. Lysa would be an interesting factor to be playable, and in that sense I was wondering whether X would be interested in playing as Lysa (which I believe is the case) and whether people would complain about this retcon.

I'll wait until tomorrow night for responses and then edit either Royce or Lysa into the turn.

I say you make it a botched suicide attempt. That would make early reports of her death and Yohn's powergrab attempt at leadership make sense while reinforcing the instability and psychological issues we've come to know and love from Lysa. If you want to go extreme with it, have it leave a mark so her crazy inside can be matched by a crazy outside.
96  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: The Iron Throne: South on: March 30, 2017, 03:18:49 pm
Every knight in the Seven Kingdoms swears an oath to the Mother to defend the innocent and to the Maid to protect women. As leader of a good many men who live by this pledge and a person who has taken it himself, I cannot stand by as people who should be nowhere near battle are held captive by a barbarian horde.

I offer to pay the ransom of every noble woman and child held in King's Landing as well as that of any Reachman. Regardless of their beliefs or affiliations, I offer the hospitality of the Reach and the safety of the King's Peace to all those unfortunate souls displaced by the Dothraki menace so long as they are willing to act honorably.

Randyll Tarly
97  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Candidate Declaration Thread on: March 29, 2017, 12:05:30 am
I am running for a seat in the House of Representatives.
98  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Primus Inter Pares - December 2006 General Election on: March 28, 2017, 06:02:37 pm
Will Labour/Conservatives still get a malus/bonus with these numbers?
99  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Primus Inter Pares - December 2006 General Election on: March 28, 2017, 10:46:04 am
It's finally time to go back to the Tories.
100  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Justice Department to withhold grants from sanctuary cities on: March 27, 2017, 03:42:44 pm
I typically hate the term 'common sense policy' but I don't think it has ever made sense for cities to blatantly break federal law and expect to receive funding regardless. Good move by the administration. Sanctuary cities are wrong.

It's not an issue of "breaking the law"; the federal government doesn't have the authority to make the local administrations act. Its an issue of cooperation: ICE conducts its Federal immigration duties separately and states/cities choose to spend their time and money helping ICE or not. Sanctuary cities can't stop the federal government from acting within their limits, but they can choose the extent of cooperation they want their own agencies to have with federal authorities.

And the popularity of the move is kind of beside the point; if its unconstitutional it doesn't matter how popular it is, the courts are going to strike it down.
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