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April 17, 2014, 04:37:52 am
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News: Don't forget to get your 2013 Gubernatorial Endorsements and Predictions in!

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1  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: How would you react to a Thune or Portman VP pick in 2016? on: April 10, 2014, 02:47:12 pm
At least they're not crazies.
2  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Questions for 2012 Romney supporters on: April 10, 2014, 02:46:26 pm
Yes/Yes. Enthusiastically.
3  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Jeb Bush Outlines His Campaign Strategy on: April 06, 2014, 08:22:55 pm
Bush as the nominee could very well lead me to leave the GOP.

And he might be one of the few who could lead me to stay in it. Tongue
4  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Opposite Party Presidential Candidates You'd Consider Voting For on: April 06, 2014, 12:01:45 pm
I chalk it up to an unfortunate mixture things that really worked against Perry. Up against Hillary, the Republicans need to nominate someone with gravitas. Perry actually has "presence." I know it's shallow, but it matters subconsciously to a lot of voters. And I'm not gonna support someone who just can't win by virtue of who they are. Neither of Jindal or Paul will ever be president.
5  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Opposite Party Presidential Candidates You'd Consider Voting For on: April 06, 2014, 10:56:54 am
Romney>Martinez>Christie>Bush>Perry>Ryan>Clinton>Biden>Walker>Santorum>Jindal>Paul>Cruz
6  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Do you think most homosexuals are gay by choice on: April 03, 2014, 06:27:03 pm
Lol. People probably aren't "born" gay, but there's no reason to believe it's a "choice". (Apologies for the PR-style scare quotes)

That's a good summation of my thoughts, too.

I mean, at the end of the day, it is a preference. What makes it any different from, say, someone's taste for broccoli? Obviously human society has made it so that "sexuality" is far more important than broccoli, but I don't think either preference is innate. Nature wouldn't hold sexuality up on a pedestal.

That being said, "choice" might not be the best word, either. It's interesting.

Oh, yes it would and does in any creature that uses sexual reproduction. 

The real answer to me is that sexual orientation is complicated.  There's some genetics, some experience, some hormonal and developmental aspects.  But, there's very little conscious choice by an individual. 

I disagree. The functionality of a penis and the mechanics of reproduction don't necessarily go hand-in-hand with attraction. I mean, aren't humans some of the only animals that get pleasure out of sex? Does "attraction" really matter in the natural world? Or is it just about doin' the dirty to make babies, regardless of an imagined "orientation?" I don't know.  I definitely don't think it's as simple as "deciding" to be gay.

Either way, you're definitely right when you say it's complex. It's for that reason that I don't feel confident making an authoritative statement on the matter. I do sometimes think it's convenient to say we are born gay or straight (is there really a way to know that?), but it's not really something that should matter. Even if it's a "choice" (by some strange perversion of the word), there's nothing inherently criminal about being gay. Societies that value freedom and equality shouldn't care why someone is the way they are; they should treat everyone with respect.
7  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Do you think most homosexuals are gay by choice on: April 03, 2014, 05:42:10 pm
Lol. People probably aren't "born" gay, but there's no reason to believe it's a "choice". (Apologies for the PR-style scare quotes)

That's a good summation of my thoughts, too.

I mean, at the end of the day, it is a preference. What makes it any different from, say, someone's taste for broccoli? Obviously human society has made it so that "sexuality" is far more important than broccoli, but I don't think either preference is innate. Nature wouldn't hold sexuality up on a pedestal.

That being said, "choice" might not be the best word, either. It's interesting.
8  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: Is anybody interested in having geopolitical/strategy games? on: April 02, 2014, 03:38:36 pm
I'll be following this with interest. It sounds cool. Best of luck, guys. Smiley
9  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: RISK Domination X: Finished!! on: April 02, 2014, 01:33:44 am
Hey, that's awesome!


Thanks for your hard work on this, Joe. It must be a pretty big commitment, but honestly, it was a ton of fun to play. Shout out to the other generals, too. Scheming with Tmth and Marokai at the beginning was pretty great. Tongue
10  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Department of Federal Elections: Homelycooking, SoFE on: April 01, 2014, 05:31:11 pm
I don't think it's accurate to say that fairer elections would not be interesting; we've never had one. Imagine you've got the leaders of a party thinking they've got control of their members only to see the final results of an election and be blown away. There's less incentive to follow the party line which means parties actually need to work to make people feel included and well-represented. Plus, ensuing witch hunts could be hilarious.
11  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: RISK Domination X: Round 14 (Hagrid) on: April 01, 2014, 01:32:43 pm
Well, I think this is it.

23 on Oklahoma

Attack Oklahoma to Arkansas to Tennessee to Kentucky to Ohio to Pennsylvania to New York to Connecticut to Rhode Island to Massachusetts to Vermont to New Hampshire to Maine. Do or die.

End game (I hope). Tongue
12  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: RISK Domination X: Round 13 (Hagrid) on: March 31, 2014, 07:22:14 pm
Actually, thanks for doing that. Because I lied... Tongue Please move one army from Kansas to Missouri.

(Unless that's dishonest, because I did say Oklahoma before. In that case, move from Kansas to Oklahoma.)
13  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: So I guess Pokémon are a hipster thing now... on: March 31, 2014, 06:44:25 pm
Lecturing me on the finer points of "hipster vs. scene kid" and "fashion forward" is a pretty spectacular example of missing the point, Hagrid.

If your point was that I'm also a basement-dweller by virtue of being here, I don't deny it. But I like to think being here and discussing issues is a bit more relevant than dressing up as Goku.

And my post was not for you specifically... more of a "service to the forum." Tongue I know hipsters... they don't go to events where people also dress up as Ash Ketchum.

That's... still not my point.

I know both hipsters and people who go to those sorts of events, and, well...
1) there actually is kinda some overlap
2) but the stereotypical con-goer, at least in the public imagination, doesn't really look like the people in those pictures
3) but your stereotypical hipster is a lot closer to that, or at least to the more colorful examples as many of the people in those pics seem pretty normal and un-distinctive to me
4) but of course the universe of people who are con-goers, as well as the universe of hipsters (of course, how do you define "hipster" anyway?), are far wider than the stereotypes and it's obviously quite wrong to just try and identify them based on appearance alone
5) the biggest point: this whole "real hipsters are all uber-fashionistas and if your pants aren't skinny enough you get kicked out of the club" thing, as well as "people who go to cons are basement dwellers who don't have any REAL FRIENDS" is not merely false, but lazy and ugly stereotyping that I really didn't expect from you.  

I hope you begin to get the picture.

So basically it's he-said-she-said and me being "so wrong" is just as self-assured as my own statement. We're both professing to have the authority to define "hipster," so I don't get why you're so angry. My comment about basement-dwelling was kind of uncalled for, but I sort of jumped the gun with it because off of here, "cons" and anime are a running joke with me and my sister; I take on the "old curmudgeon" role.

It's interesting, though, because you say being a hipster is about more than how one looks. To me, "hipsterism" is basically a fashion style; anyone  can go to the coffee shop or play a guitar, but that's not what makes someone like my dad a hipster. If we're just judging people by how they look (as we are from the original pictures), I think it's fair to talk about whether or not these particular people are hipsters. You say I'm defining who can and cannot be part of the "club," but my narrow definition is just as assuming as you and BRTD's insistence that all these people are hipsters. All of us are generalizing, so I'm not gonna sit here and take criticism for engaging in the thread. I don't think these are hipsters and I don't think Pokémon is a "hipster" thing... to me, it's not at all surprising that these are the types of people going to a Pokémon exhibition. Dunno why we're getting so sensitive.
14  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Department of Federal Elections: Homelycooking, SoFE on: March 31, 2014, 06:03:40 pm
There would need to be a system where the SoFE and Deputy SoEA give every voter a unique password to a secure voting site. I don't think it's good to just PM the votes to the SoEA.

It would be a lot of work, and I'm not even sure if such a system exists. We'd also have to run numerous trials to make sure the process is secure. I think it's a worthwhile pursuit.

The pettiness in this game isn't helped by the fact that you can see who everyone votes for and know how the election is going before the votes are counted. In a perfect world, our voting system would be a lot different. If there's a way to improve things, we should look into it.
15  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: RISK Domination X: Round 13 (Hagrid) on: March 31, 2014, 05:49:52 pm
Wow, the dice really keep conspiring against Hagrid. But it's over now anyway.

Should I be embarrassed over how long it's taken? Tongue Vosem has put up an unbelievable fight.
16  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: RISK Domination X: Round 13 (Hagrid) on: March 31, 2014, 05:48:22 pm
Okay. Colorado to Kansas. Nebraska to Missouri. If either fails, use Oklahoma.

In terms of refortifying and ending my turn... Make whichever move will put the most armies back in Oklahoma.

I don't know if that's clear. This is sort of a weird one to try and finish in a turn. If anything's unclear or if a scenario arises for which I haven't really covered, either use your discretion or stop so I can clarify. Thanks, Joe. Smiley
17  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: RISK Domination X: Round 13 (Hagrid) on: March 31, 2014, 04:00:53 pm
Okay. I think it's better for me to do it this way...

16 on Oregon

Attack Oregon to California to Arizona to New Mexico to Oklahoma. Await further orders.
18  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: So I guess Pokémon are a hipster thing now... on: March 31, 2014, 03:41:44 pm
Fair enough... I would still call them scene kids and say that you are short on real hipsters, but getting into it apparently hasn't made me many friends. Tongue Or all of us are letting a few trees define the forest and this is really just what young people as a collective look like.
19  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: So I guess Pokémon are a hipster thing now... on: March 31, 2014, 03:30:37 pm
Lecturing me on the finer points of "hipster vs. scene kid" and "fashion forward" is a pretty spectacular example of missing the point, Hagrid.

If your point was that I'm also a basement-dweller by virtue of being here, I don't deny it. But I like to think being here and discussing issues is a bit more relevant than dressing up as Goku.

And my post was not for you specifically... more of a "service to the forum." Tongue I know hipsters... they don't go to events where people also dress up as Ash Ketchum.
20  Forum Community / Election and History Games / Re: RISK Domination X: Round 13 (Vosem) on: March 31, 2014, 03:24:53 pm
Ooh, interesting. Does he let me have my Southeast bonus and keep New York strong, or does he dilute his forces to put a dent in my reinforcements next turn?

I'm not particularly unhappy with either option. Tongue
21  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: So I guess Pokémon are a hipster thing now... on: March 31, 2014, 03:16:09 pm
Also, I wouldn't say these people are hipsters... at least not in the "coffee shop" type of sense. These are the basement dwellers who go on Omegle dressed as Japanese anime fairies to talk with their "con" friends over the internet because they don't have any real ones.

This statement is so wrong in so many ways it's kind of perversely beautiful.

I have a large contingent of people who look exactly like these people come to my parents' house every year during Anime North. I'm sorry that you think I'm wrong, but I'm not.

There's a difference between this...



and this...





The first is an authentic hipster. The second is a scene kid stuck in the middle. These are the types of people who go to conventions. They look a bit hipstery, sure, but there are differences. The bold colours, slightly-baggier-than-hipster pants, and hoodies give it away.

This guy, for example, looks like he could be a traditional coffee-shop hipster because of his beanie and cardigan, but the clothes are much too loose fitting to be particularly fashion-forward. He's an animaniac:




The only folks I see in the original post that might be real hipsters are these guys:

22  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Is America safer and more powerful than it was four or five years ago? on: March 31, 2014, 02:46:57 pm
It's hard to measure. In a shallow, short-term way, I'd say America is"institutionally" safer because Obama bolstered and strengthened many of Bush's national security and surveillance programs.

Then again, American debt could throw the United States into complete turmoil on all fronts if international powerbrokers turn to a new reserve currency. I think it's far off, but we're certainly closer to that scenario than we were five years ago. If the floor falls out from under the dollar, "safety" and "defense" will be the last thing on anybody's minds... unless we're talking about martial law, of course.

In terms of soft power, I'd also say that the United States is a bit weaker. Under Bush, there was no question where the US stood on the world stage. America had a clear raison d'ętre, and I think that clarity helped put a stopper on "international chaos." Would Putin have advanced into Crimea under the watch of an American president who's not a flake? Would the Arab spring have turned out so poorly? The US certainly wouldn't be pandering to Iran...

So I guess I'd put it like this (and it will sound so hackish, forgive me Tongue): Where America is safer, it's largely thanks to Bush. Where we're weaker, it's largely thanks to Obama (but I'll give Bush a lot of credit for US debt).
23  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: So I guess Pokémon are a hipster thing now... on: March 31, 2014, 02:15:51 pm
Also, I wouldn't say these people are hipsters... at least not in the "coffee shop" type of sense. These are the basement dwellers who go on Omegle dressed as Japanese anime fairies to talk with their "con" friends over the internet because they don't have any real ones.
24  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: So I guess Pokémon are a hipster thing now... on: March 31, 2014, 01:15:14 pm
Lol, this one is hilarious:

25  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: So I guess Pokémon are a hipster thing now... on: March 31, 2014, 01:10:19 pm
Call me when the other 500+ Pokémon are included too.

Ew.
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