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May 22, 2015, 09:34:52 am
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1  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Cisneros: Castro only option for Hillary on: May 17, 2015, 02:35:26 pm
I don't see why he'd be a bad choice. For President? Yes. But for VP? He'd be fine.

He doesn't really need to be "ready for primetime". There's nothing to indicate he's some Palin-in-waiting.
2  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Labour Party leadership election 2015 on: May 17, 2015, 05:27:28 am
If the Labour Party elects a guy called Tristram as leader they should disband immediately.


e: Suggesting we refer to withdrawals as "a reverse Farage".

It appears Chukka was caught posting on some 1%-er social network asking where in London he could go to avoid "the trash" and whatnot.
3  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Hillary backs Tubman on $20 on: May 17, 2015, 05:20:08 am
Oh, we're not actually going to do this, are we? And if we are we're going to put Eleanor Roosevelt on it, right?

Please, explain your opposition to this.

It's just so... different. And the mockup they used was just... bad. All just too weird.

Oh we're not actually going to do this are we? And if we are we're going to put Eleanor Roosevelt on it, right?

I'm surprised your preferred option isn't to put the queen on our money and rejoin the British commonwealth

This would be preferable, yes.
4  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Mohamed Morsi sentenced to death by Egyptian court on: May 16, 2015, 09:12:54 pm
I can't actually believe this. Have they really done this? From whatever perspective you look at this from, it makes no sense whatsoever?

Honestly, I first have to ask, have they rehabilitated Mubarak over there? Does the government no longer consider him to have been a dictator and autocrat? If not, then why on earth would breaking out of a jail- as the 2011 Revolution was underway- in which one was put for political reasons by the authoritarian regime, constitute any sort of crime? It's like a person in West Germany, after the war, being tried for escaping from a concentration camp.

Also, how does "breaking out of prison" manage to merit the death penalty? I mean, yes, if they had convicted him of killing some people this would make sense. Apparently he's already been given 20 years for "ordering the arrest and torture of protesters". By what logic does "escaping from prison", regardless of circumstance, somehow merit execution while torture doesn't? And all this while Mubarak is already half-free?

As a political move it makes the least sense of all. You overthrow a person who won your country's first free and fair election in history with just over half the vote.  Yes, he was a nasty Islamist who, "deep state" or not, did a rather slapdash job of running the country, while trying to exempt himself from the confines of the law. But then you then re-ban his political party, re-imprison their leaders, and, when you run, struggle to get people to vote for you so badly that you have to leave the polls open for three days to attain a level of turnout that is just barely respectable. One might take this a sign that you probably have something of a legitimacy problem with a non-negligible segment of the population and ought to avoid inflaming tensions. But instead you have him sentenced to death. Hopefully the Grand Mufti does the right thing and blocks the sentence- I'd have no problem with Morsi staying behind bars for decades, because he'd actually deserve it.

I find it ironic that the Egyptians raised hell over having Hosni Mubarak as their president and ultimately wound up with the Egyptian version of Than Shwe.

Although that might be a bit harsh.

The problem is that the Egyptians managed to give themselves a truly awful in the 2012 runoff- Mubarak's last PM, Shafik or Morsi. Neither one of those was going to end well- Shafik basically ran on a platform of "Mubarak with less corruption and more military", which is essentially what they ended up getting with El Sisi.
5  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of Juggalos on: May 15, 2015, 09:12:16 am
And BRTD's latest for the worst?
6  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Breaking News: New forum is up and running - sign up now! on: May 15, 2015, 09:05:58 am
Haha, this is an elegant solution. As long as BRTD won't start making polls on here about what happens there (which would be my greatest concern).

I am not quite getting what this forum will be exactly but I am curious to find out so link me up by all means.

And this is already happening. But I want to take a look myself.
7  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: California High-Speed Rail Thread on: May 15, 2015, 08:47:11 am
Funny how he doesn't throw in land acquisition costs.
8  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Labour Party leadership election 2015 on: May 15, 2015, 08:33:16 am
I don't think I need to say anything...


9  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Hillary backs Tubman on $20 on: May 15, 2015, 08:18:48 am
Oh we're not actually going to do this are we? And if we are we're going to put Eleanor Roosevelt on it, right?
10  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Trump donated more than $100,000 to Clinton Foundation on: May 15, 2015, 12:19:33 am
What a comic yet fairly valid premise for a scandal.
11  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obama blasts Warren on TPP on: May 15, 2015, 12:13:39 am
So the President is now depending on the Republicans to implement his legislative agenda?  What bizzaro world have we walked into?
12  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Coup in Burundi on: May 14, 2015, 10:34:51 pm
Hopefully Nkurunziza takes the anvil-sized hint.
13  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Will being reamed over fast track push Warren to run for president? on: May 14, 2015, 10:23:40 pm
Do you want this to happen, Beet?
14  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Primary Election Polls / Re: NH-Bloomberg/St. Anselm U: Clinton cruises, Republican field chaotic on: May 14, 2015, 03:02:18 pm
Embarrassing for Biden
15  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Bush is skipping the Iowa Straw Poll. on: May 14, 2015, 02:54:01 pm
Now why do they have to drag the good Jon Huntsman's name through the mud like that?
16  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Jeb Bush Would've Authorized Iraq War Even in Hindsight on: May 14, 2015, 02:47:27 pm
Do you people seriously think he could have suceeded trying to run away from it?
17  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: UK Liberal Democrat leadership election, 2015 on: May 14, 2015, 12:38:59 pm
Theoretically not a bad idea (the 'LibDem' label is clearly tainted), but there is the small matter of the continuity Liberal Party.

Entryism?
18  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Coup in Burundi on: May 13, 2015, 09:21:10 pm
This is an interesting trend we've seen across Africa in the past year, of popular opposition sucessfully preventing leaders from removing term limits. First Burkina Faso, then the DRC, now Burundi. Strangely enough it's the DRC that seems to have achieved this most peacefully.

Either way one hopes this ends without too much violence and that Burundi (which I think is at the actual bottom of most GDP per capita tables these days) manages to move ahead without Nkuruziza staying on anyway or the military imposing some "roadmap" that "postpones" next month's elections for another year. The best plausible outcome at this point is that the coup fails bUT he gets the message...

One could tie this into a broader trend of anti-incumbency and throw in Nigeria and other places but that might be reaching. Either way it's not one I see happening in Ethiopia (elections are in 10 days and no one seems to care anymore), but am desperately hoping can happen in Ghana next year when the elections are held.
19  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: UK General Discussion: Cameron 2.0 on: May 13, 2015, 04:16:09 pm
THE GRAUNIAD BRAVELY EXPOSES ROYAL MEDDLING

OUT OF CONTROL PRINCE OF WALES DISCOVERED TO HAVE USED INFLUENCE TO BADGER BLAIR ABOUT BADGERS, HELICOPTER DEFECTS, CONDITIONS OF THE TROOPS, SCHOOLCHILDRENS' NUTRITION, AND SPREAD OF TUBERCULOSIS.

PRINCE SURE TO FALL BACK INTO LINE WITH CONVENTION OF GIVING ADVICE AND WARNINGS AFTER INAPPROPRIATE AND MALICIOUS INTERVENTION REVEALED BY PLUCKY JOUNALISM.

...
20  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: NBC News: ISI knew where bin Laden was hiding on: May 13, 2015, 11:33:17 am
Indeed. As we speak, the ISI Rangers has essentially taken over Karachi.
21  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: UK General Discussion: Cameron 2.0 on: May 11, 2015, 08:20:32 pm
I hope Kwesi Kwarteng gets some sort of job- supposed he's amongst those tipped for Pensions. Supposedly he is related to an "uncle" of mine, although sometimes I feel like half of Ghana is related to his family one way or another.

Either way, there are still three Ghanaian Tory MPs, while a woman named Priti Patel is in a position where she can gain Maddy's disgust. This is why I like the Tories (or one reason why).
22  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: UK General Discussion: Cameron 2.0 on: May 11, 2015, 04:02:39 pm
* hold a free vote on repealing the fox hunting ban.

This is still on the agenda? I appreciate this.
23  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: What should Labour do to win back Scotland? on: May 11, 2015, 03:52:57 pm
Merge with LD and Conservatives into the Scottish Unionist Party. Or, at least, agree with the other two to run only one Unionist candidate in each constituency.

I was thinking about this, and even with my ignorance I admit this may prove a daft idea, but I was thinking that something like this might be a plausible idea. The SNP strikes me as a party that uses progressive rhetoric but is in practice essentially catch-all nationalist, while making all sorts of populist pledges that appeal to people regardless of their views on independence.

A Scottish-based rival to the SNP (let's call it the "Federalist Party") might then attack the SNP on two fronts- they would espouse a "unionist nationalism" along the lines of the former Unionists (there are all sorts of sectarian issues I am glossing over completely here, I know), mixing that with assertions of being the true representative of the "Scottish liberal (maybe that word is tainted nowadays) tradition". As the name suggests, they'd advocate federal constitutional reform. The other approach would be to accuse the SNP of making empty promises and leading Scotland down the path to fiscal ruin, etc; that while they rail against austerity, their bid for full fiscal autonomy would necessitate far more severe austerity or complete insolvency. This they could do with the credibility of a "Scottish voice" that the SNP's critics have not enjoyed.

It would be a centrist catch-all party, yes, and while would initially draw the bulk of its base from the Lib Dems and the Tories, yes. They would probably need entirely new faces, but they would need to take (back) 1/3 of the SNP's support- this would the "traditionalists" who might have once voted for the Unionists and former Lib Dem voters. A "non-aggression pact" with Labour in their old safe seats in the central Lowlands might be a good idea.

Again, I don't know if this is even a good idea, much less its plausibility. But if they were able to simply get a share equal to what the Lib Dems and Tories did in 2010 they'd have 35%. This could be a terrible idea, yes, but I'd like to know why. Also, I'd like to know why the Lib Dems did so well in the northwest Highlands.
24  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obama blasts Warren on TPP on: May 11, 2015, 01:08:41 pm
Are you calling me a "new Cold Warrior"? Because I support improving our relations with countries in Southeast Asia? Anyway...

The worst effects of the deal will be felt outside of the United States. But I'm not about to deny non-US citizens standing; I think it's self-evident that their well-being deserves consideration. Moreover, the deal's distributional effects within the United States remain murky at best. I'm not interested in economic growth if it makes people who are already doing poorly even worse off.

It would appear, as mentioned before, those who stand to make the greatest gains are the poorest nations participating in the treaty, meaning it would have an equalising effect on the global income distribution. Again I have to assume you are deriving your concerns about the welfare of people overseas for reasons different from what I’ve seen given to justify such thought.

A particularly inane article I read in the Grauniad (they’re really quite bad, actually- the amount of sheer nonsense in it, as a proportion of its content, is far greater than in any other “respectable publication”, which it supposedly is) told a sad story of underpaid and overworked workers in a Nike factory in Indonesia, and how these sorts of conditions would spread rapidly under the TPP. At no point was it asked why people were willing to voluntarily submit to such exploitation. I won’t even mention the article about NAFTA that blamed it for both illegal immigration and job losses in the United States while completely glossing over the maquiladoras.

As for its effects on income distribution, it has to be said that, assuming that its overall impact on the American economy is, as you say, minimal, then whatever adverse effect it would have on people would likewise be minimal. It would also be countered by, yes, an appreciable positive gain for a few at the top, but a modest gain in net welfare for the population at large. Whatever effect it has on income distribution in the United States, it would be marginal relative to its overall impact.

Also, as someone who cares about the political prospects of the Democratic Party, I'm not happy about having a lame-duck president pushing a proposal that's clearly divisive for the Democratic coalition and unpopular among voters whom the party should be doing its best to win over. Even if I were entirely confident in the TPP's economic benefits, I would be concerned about the political effects of the agreement.

As someone who does not care in the least about the political prospects of the Democratic Party, I must say that I am pleased that the President is pursuing a policy that is overwhelmingly in the strategic interest of the United States and most likely in its immediate economic interests as well. To sound like a Lib Dem apologist, leadership demands putting the national interest ahead of political expediency.
25  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of David Cameron on: May 11, 2015, 09:47:20 am
Massive Freedom Fighter!

Opposes Equal Rights for Breeders = FF

...what?
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