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November 22, 2014, 10:27:23 pm
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News: Don't forget to get your 2013 Gubernatorial Endorsements and Predictions in!

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1  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Rush Limbaugh threatens DCCC with defamation lawsuit on: November 12, 2014, 09:27:02 pm

Perhaps they should replace them with his quotes on drug-related crimes instead.
2  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: It's early but looking at the Lichtman test on: November 12, 2014, 02:48:10 am
I dispute the fact that Hillary doesn't have charisma. Sure, she can't give the rousing speeches that Obama gave or "feel your pain" like Bill.
But she has a powerful brand of her own and during the last phase of the 2008 primary she showed huge improvement as a candidate. Not to mention that she is certainly more charismatic and inspiring than the current bunch of Republican frontrunners, or the historic nature of her candidacy and possible election.

As for ISIS and Ebola, the latter is already forgotten while the former seems to be on the run and I predict that it will eventually be defeated in the coming months.

Hillary does not have Kennedy/Regan/Obama level Charisma, which is how I've always read the last key.

And while ISIS arguably doesn't count as a Major  Foreign-Policy Failure yet, between ISIS, Syria, Libya, and Ukraine, there's a good chance of something blowing up in Obama's face between now and then. (Heck, does having Russia steal Crimea count?)

3  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: If Republican Controlled States Allocate Electoral Votes Differently on: November 12, 2014, 02:42:43 am
If the GOP tried this the start of an illegitimate administration would be a trainwreck from the start.

By 2016 we'll have had 16 consecutive years of trainwrecks. I doubt anyone will notice the difference.
4  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obama saves net neutrality, orders broadband be classified as vital service on: November 11, 2014, 12:11:22 am
I know that's an economic heuristic device, but does it actually apply?

What is the common-resource being depleted?

I'm not an internet expert or an engineer so I have to defer to experts on this subject.  When I've heard them speak, they all seem to be in favor of net neutrality.  They all seem to think fiber optic improvements, opening up new areas of spectrum and various other technological developments will continue to keep pace.

Apparently bandwidth is being depleted, and that's why companies are interested in throttling and priority.

Net neutrality probably is in our best interest, but its benefits are not a license to ignore its drawbacks. For example, raising income for lower class Americans is probably in our best interest, but ignoring the draw backs of min wage has caused needless economic neglect for millions of unskilled workers.

Bandwidth is not being "depleted". Entrenched monopolies are declining to upgrade last mile infrastructure because they're focused on the (very) short-term, and are likewise refusing to properly maintain or upgrade their connections with other Tier One providers in an attempt to kill Netflix and similar video streaming services. All so the ISPs who are also content providers can attempt to keep their dying business model of grossly overcharging for video no one wants to watch alive a little longer.
5  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Will the GOP try to steal 2016 like they did 2000? on: November 11, 2014, 12:00:13 am
People who believe 2000 (and 1960 for that matter) were stolen are almost as stupid, and even more annoying, than 911 truthers.

I've always thought the election should have gone to the House. (Where Bush would have won.) Florida's votes were clearly in dispute, and thanks to its... less than stellar electoral system, that dispute wasn't going to get cleanly resolved.
6  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: So what happened in Colorado? on: November 05, 2014, 03:20:18 pm
Does anyone have insight into what happened with the political coalitions in Colorado? Again, just looking at the bellwethers, one would think Udall lost by just a point.

I haven't been very politically active the last two years (work has been busy), but the handful of committed fracking opponents I'm friends with felt that they'd been thrown under the bus by the state Democratic party. They were so angry when I spoke with them a few weeks ago, that if they voted, they voted Green, not D.
7  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: 2014 Post-Mortem: How did the Democrats screw this up so badly? on: November 05, 2014, 03:09:43 pm
The Democrats are led by a man who has governed like a moderate Republican for six years.

The Republicans didn't run a slew of bigoted nutjobs for office.

And the economy still sucks for many people.
8  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What happens now? on: November 05, 2014, 03:06:56 pm
Nothing. Obama can use the power of an executive order, but I think it would be best for the Democrats long term interests to just wait out the next two years until President Clinton and the Democratic Senate (I know I have been a dick tonight, but I know that the Republican Majority doesn't survive 2016...) can finish off the job.

I'd advise Obama to give up on immigration reform and just keep stalling GOP attempts to repeal Obamacare. At the end of the day, his legacy will be healthcare and he should fight hard to keep that victory instead of bowing to moderate heroism.

But if he does let them repeal Obamacare, Democrats can run for the next 2-4 (or more) election cycles pointing to every flaw in the health care system and claim "that only exists because the Republicans repealed Obamacare!" (But why would they do that? It's a Republican, pro-corporate plan. Get rid of Obamacare and you're giving the chances of a real national health care system a huge boost!)
9  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Jeb "more likely" to run, say his son. on: October 27, 2014, 09:16:19 am
George P Bush, who is running for Texas land commissioner, told ABC on Sunday his father was “still assessing” a presidential bid, but suggested it was more likely that he would seek the White House this time. The ex-governor declined to run for president in 2012, despite encouragement from Republicans.

“I think it’s more than likely that he’s giving this a serious thought and moving …and moving forward,” said the younger Bush.

Asked if that meant it was “more than likely that he’ll run”, Bush said: “That he’ll run. If you had asked me a few years back … I would have said it was less likely.”
10  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Traitor Snowden enjoying the high life in Putin's Russia on: October 16, 2014, 02:17:43 pm
I love the partisan splits created on this.......

I'm ambivalent about Snowden, but I do think he should go back to the US and get a plea bargain.

Why is Snowden's testimony needed? And why a plea bargain? The heads of the NSA and CIA have publicly admitted lying to Congress. Throwing them in jail should be a slam dunk, without any testimony from Snowden.
11  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Traitor Snowden enjoying the high life in Putin's Russia on: October 16, 2014, 02:14:51 pm
What else do you think he should do ?

Play Russian Roulette all day ?

I would prefer that he return to the United States, answer for his crimes, and be executed for treason.

Maybe he should volunteer to do that after the US prosecutes its torturers and war criminals, starting with George W. Bush.
12  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Carly Fiorina is running for what? on: October 16, 2014, 02:07:38 pm
A person whose only political experience was losing (by no means narrowly) a statewide race in a strongly Republican year, and who's got lots of baggage from her previous career?

Seems like a perfect candidate for national office.

A perfect match for Mitt Romeny at least. (They both exemplify some of the more destructive and least effective aspects of capitalism at its worst.)
13  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: Are there any candidates who are “wackos, weirdos and witches”? Senate 2014 on: September 15, 2014, 03:48:06 pm
Steve Daines - sitting Representative in the US House from Montana, and current Senate candidate. He's a fundamentalist and bible literalist who believes that evolution is a fraud and that the Earth is only 6000 years old. He's cunning enough to know that his more extreme views won't play well with a lot of voters who otherwise support his politics, so his lunacy is mostly off the public record (or at least off the internet - I'm sort of curious what a really thorough newpaper search might dig up) but sometimes it leaks out:

While he is likely to win the MT Senate race, if a clip of him spouting off his Creationist BS surfaces before November, Amanda Curtis will have a decent shot. (Otherwise she's pretty clearly toast.)
14  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: DNC response to Rand Paul's op-ed on: September 02, 2014, 02:59:06 pm
Not surprising. The Democrats have been adopting Bush policies over the entire Obama administration, why not adopt the tactics?

The great difference: President Obama reacts cautiously to real dangers to America -- like ISIS. Dubya reacted rashly to fabricated dangers to America.

ISIS is about as much of a "threat to America" as Saddam Hussein was.

I see this as Rand Paul once again hitting that centrist, populist chord that everyone else in the 2016 elections will likely miss. (Save for maybe Elizabeth Warren on the economy.) Whether he can ride that to the nomination or the presidency, even if he avoids his other problems (including a tendency to put his foot in his mouth), I don't know.
15  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: Predict winner/margin for Montana: Steve Daines vs Amanda Curtis on: August 19, 2014, 04:47:33 pm
Amanda Curtis has balls of steel for going against Daines as a freshman state Rep, and with only 3 months to campaign no less. I have enormous respect for her, but barring an Akin-esque gaffe on Daine's part I don't see her winning, though I do believe it will be closer than current polling because of the Libertarian vote.

Daines 50%
Curtis 45%
Roots (L) 5%

Between his personal wealth and deep religious nuttery, it's entirely possible that Daines will stick his foot in his mouth. Barring that, I don't see how she wins. I think you're on the right track for vote spread though.
16  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Rick Perry indicted on abuse of power on: August 18, 2014, 06:30:39 pm
I don't live in Texas, so I have my own filter. Texas has some strange politics.

Elected officials have no right to interfere in the judicial process for partisan ends. A state governor may use pardons and commutations as permitted by the State constitution, but that is as far as it goes. The governor cannot fire a judge or diminish his pay (which is a constructive firing) for political purposes.

An indictment has been made, and that does not itself imply guilt -- just that a case for prosecution exists. That is all.

It's good to see that someone gets it. I keep seeing this really, really nasty meme that it's okay to blatantly break the law if you're doing to to "punish" a wrong-doer (alleged or otherwise). Does anyone think that what Perry did would have been just dandy if he'd done it because the person he was targeting was hispanic? Or gay? Or Muslim? The ends DO NOT justify the means - if a civilization start ignoring its own laws because it think that is true, then its doomed.
17  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Rick Perry indicted on abuse of power on: August 18, 2014, 06:23:13 pm
I don't believe this one will be particularly harmful. The belief that the following prosecutor should resign after her arrest for drunk driving does not seem controversial.

I'll take you one further: this will end up helping Perry. What he did isn't just uncontroversial, it'll be applauded, especially by Republican primary voters. Perry can legitimately claim to be unfairly targeted by liberals for the kind of executive behavior they like. And it all would have gone completely unnoticed but for this indictment. This is the DA's oops.

And then he can grow a handlebar mustache, start wearing a Lone Star armband, and start talking about his struggle against the corrupt establishment. But which minority group will he blame for all America's problems?
18  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Rand Paul flees from Mexican immigrant on: August 06, 2014, 07:14:26 pm
If Rand was escaping potential embarrassment caused by King then perhaps he shouldn't associate with him in the first place?

This. Why is he fleeing from a man he's willing to eat lunch with?
19  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: SCOTUS on: June 30, 2014, 11:17:24 am
This is the best ruling the Supreme Court could have made.  For one, it allows families to retain freedom of religion even in the workplace.  It also doesn't force/allow other companies to do the same as Hobby Lobby.  It's about time the conservatives win a Supreme Court ruling.

You shouldn't be able to force your religion on your employees.

Companies should not be forced to abandon their religious beliefs in favor of "women's rights." This does not trounce on women's rights.  Rather, it protects the rights of the unborn.  Unborn babies are living human beings and should be given the EXACT same rights as those living outside the womb.  The good news for liberals and the country is that it doesn't make the Hobby Lobby ruling a broad law.

The idea that companies can have religious beliefs is ludicrously offensive and an insult to the very idea of law.
20  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Is Hillary getting overexposed? on: June 25, 2014, 06:39:04 pm
I think so.

It comes with benefits and drawbacks.

There is less room for plausible Democratic candidates to get attention.

But she is seen as a partisan figure, a senator turned cabinet member rather than an Eisenhower. That's problematic in a general election.

And her unforced errors might have the O'Malleys and Bidens of the world thinking they have a shot.

Agreed. Partisan figures are NEVER elected President. Nearly every President ever elected has an Eisenhower-esque background and it really unique circumstances for someone who has held a political office before to be elected President.
Really unique circumstances.... such as an opposition candidate who has the choice between publicly calling for a rejection of everything since the Renaissance, or being burned at the stake by a faction of their own party?
21  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Will there be a Kurd nation in the next 5 years? on: June 25, 2014, 06:27:20 pm
It's dangerous to start talking about partition at this point. Any talk of dividing the Middle East among ethnic lines more than they already are is dangerous.

Our priority in the region, even though this isn't really your question, is maintaining a unified Iraq and continuing pressure on regimes in the region to promote human rights and democracy. We have to secure Iraq as a multiethnic, rule of law democracy. Our hasty withdrawal from the country led to a decline in stability.

A Kurdish nation would set a very dangerous precedent. It would signal that the world no longer has interest in protecting multiethnic nations and building peace in the Middle East. It would encourage ethnic secession movements across the region and light a new fire that threatens global security.

Just like its far too late to stuff the nuclear genie back in the bottle, its far too late to stop people talking about partitioning Iraq. Ethnic secission movements are a very real thing - look at the Scottish Independence Referendum coming up this fall. Personally, I think smaller nations are a good thing - the failure modes of small to mid-sized governments, while bad, have a hard time reaching the mind-numbingly catastrophic levels that those of large and very large government can reach.
22  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Sarah Palin is thinking about a 3rd Party candidacy in 2016. on: June 25, 2014, 06:22:43 pm
Even Republicans and Hillary-haters should root for a Bush-Clinton-Palin race. Imagine that debate. Too amazing to resist. If you are not rooting for it, shame on you.

I'm rooting for it. I can think of nothing else that would so clearly drive home to so many how much of a fraud the "democratic" nature of American government is.
23  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Christie on how he'd treat legal marijuana states: "Not Well" on: June 22, 2014, 09:00:18 am
Typical right-wing hypocrite - talks 'states rights' when he wants to legalize sports betting, but not a peep when he wants to badmouth pot legalization. Thankfully, the ongoing scandals likely mean he's done as a potential president.
24  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / US Attorney for NJ likely to file charges against Christie's associates. on: June 19, 2014, 05:33:24 pm

Short version: close Christie associates are virtually certain to be indicted, and scenting blood in the water, the sharks (in the form of U.S. Attorney for New Jersey, Paul Fishman) are circling.

Even if Gov. Christie escapes without charges, will this doom his presidential ambitions? (And is it fair to say that if it happens, a federal indictment ends his campaign before it even taxis onto the runway?)
25  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: ISIS/ISIL make major gains in Iraq on: June 16, 2014, 02:08:53 pm
Unfortunately, ISIS appears to have mastered "Pillage, then burn."
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