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Member since: Fri Dec 19, 2003, 02:20 AM
Number of posts: 28,978

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So you think everything is fine. That the principles you endorse dropping mean...?

It's clear the reference we are pointing to in this thread are collectively, the principles of social democracy that FRD spelled out and that Bernie is campaigning for.

As I read it, you think that the embodiment of the left, the principles of the left that we are talking about is a "frozen-in-amber model of what the Olds remember from their halcyon day" and that we should "adapt to the times".

Is that accurate?

A Dozen Reasons Sanders Voters Are Justifiably Angry at the Media Right Now

This is an outstanding breakdown of events going against the Clinton Machine narrative:
A Dozen Reasons Sanders Voters Are Justifiably Angry at the Media Right Now
By Seth Abramson

there's an incredible amount of anger being directed toward the media by the roughly half of the Democratic Party that supports Bernie Sanders.

Clinton supporters and many self-professed "neutral" journalists sagely inform the rest of us that this anger is little more than sour grapes or denial-stage grief; it's the numbers that matter -- they say -- and if only Sanders supporters cared about hard data in the same way that Clinton supporters and (say) "neutral" bloggers for The Washington Post do, or even the editors at The New York Times, everyone would just calm down and accept the incipient inevitability of the ugliest and least substantive general-election campaign in the history of the United States: Donald Trump versus Hillary Clinton.

The thing is, I'm a hard-data guy myself. Always have been. And so are many of the Sanders supporters I know and interact with daily. What's actually making them angry right now is not that Hillary Clinton yesterday termed Bernie Sanders "the latest flavor of the month" on union issues -- when Sanders had already been a pro-union progressive for a decade by the time Hillary eased herself out of being a proud Goldwater Republican in the late 1960s -- nor is it that the candidate they support faces a truly monumental task in trying to become the Democratic candidate for President.

What Sanders supporters are angry about is hard data.

And not just any hard data, but hard data supplied by irrefutably objective sources and challenged as to its validity by absolutely no one.

Hard data so objective and undeniably accurate that its absence in public discussion of the presidential election is not just puzzling or downright bizarre but absolutely infuriating.

Here are a dozen pieces of hard data that Sanders supporters are particularly exercised about right now, primarily because most Sanders supporters believe Donald Trump to be a clear and present danger to the nation, and therefore can't imagine why Democrats remain unable to have an honest conversation about who could -- or will -- be in a position to stop him....

#HIcaucus feed has some good stuff...


Curious about the way MSNBC just started covering Sanders?

After months of total blackout, suddenly they are making him the center of their coverage.


But actually he isn't "the center of their coverage" now that I think about it; the thing that is occupying most of the airtime is the terror attack in Belgium.

Terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terrorist, terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terrorist, terror, be afraid, terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terrorist, terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terrorist, aaaaaannnnnd, we'll be back in just a moment for more coverage of today's elections in Hawaii, Alaska and Washington. Stay tuned.

Still too early to call in Washington. Turnout looks good.

Terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terrorist, terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terrorist, terror, be afraid, terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terrorist, terror, terror, be afraid, terror, terrorist, aaaaaannnnnd, we'll be back in just a moment for more coverage of today's elections in Hawaii, Alaska and Washington. Stay tuned.

And so on and so on.

Given MSNBC's track record during this election, I'm jaded enough to guess the background burble is intended to make us think Hillary is going to keep is safe (can't count the number of times I've heard that expression there today), but the fact is the only thing related to Hillary I'm getting out of the coverage is how much worse the terrorism problem will become if her neocon Middle East agenda is allowed to become official policy of the Democratic party and the Presidency.

What's My Mutt?

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) – Apps have become a part of everyday life for most people and also their four-legged friends.

There are apps for just about everything, including those that track your dog’s health and wellness, monitor their training and even provide games.

Before the dawn of smartphones, apps and other websites, the only way to get the most accurate answer to what breeds make up a mutt was through expensive DNA testing.

Now, Little Rock veterinarian and mother of two, Dr. Lauren Schluterman has created an app called "What's My Mutt?" to determine what breeds could make up your adult mixed breed dog. ...


I'm looking forward to trying this with our 2current fur babies and a photos of a late great little friend.

From the Arizona Secretary of State Election page

How does an independent voter receive a ballot for the Primary Election?

An independent voter on the early voter list will receive a post card in the mail asking for the voter to choose which party ballot the voter wishes to receive for the Primary Election. If the independent voter goes to the polls on Election Day the voter will be given the option to choose a party ballot at that time.

This is the source of the problem.

ETA: The voters following this advice are being turned away.

Accidental? No. It is policy.

See if you can figure out why.


Would it be possible to try something in GDP?

There are some of us who are extremely partisan and will let anything go if the violation is on "our" side but there are also those of us who are very willing to police our own side when they step over the line that causes disruption.

Would it be possible to, just within the GDP forum, give the person who starts the thread the ability to hide posts within the thread? We've tended towards a system where trusting collective assessments of disinterested members is the foundation of policing. Why not try ownership as a motivation for running a clean thread?

Sure, it can be abused, no question about that. But it's possible that the abusers who take anything contrary as a reason to hide other's input will soon find themselves either talking to an echo chamber or talking to themselves. I'd hope that those who seek to and are able to find the proper balance will be required to step outside of their comfort zone and give a harder look at the merits of the oppositional arguments that are initially irritating.

What is there to lose?

Why won't Hillary supporters discuss the actual issues of the campaign?

We have a very real problem with the general population's lack of control over government policy. That is a demonstrable fact and it impacts every facet of our lives.
Why won't you address problem in an honest and forthright manner? If you approve of the way the system is currently structured, explain why it's good.
If you think Hillary is going to change it, explain how she does that in light of her funding sources.

This is what Bernie's Campaign is all about, so if there is any part of you that wants unity it is an issue that will have to be dealt with.

APRIL 18, 2014
Is America an Oligarchy?
From the Dept. of Academics Confirming Something You Already Suspected comes a new study concluding that rich people and organizations representing business interests have a powerful grip on U.S. government policy. After examining differences in public opinion across income groups on a wide variety of issues, the political scientists Martin Gilens, of Princeton, and Benjamin Page, of Northwestern, found that the preferences of rich people had a much bigger impact on subsequent policy decisions than the views of middle-income and poor Americans. Indeed, the opinions of lower-income groups, and the interest groups that represent them, appear to have little or no independent impact on policy....

The original study:

From the Sept 2014 journal "Perspectives on Politics"

Testing Theories of American Politics: Elites, Interest Groups, and Average Citizens
Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page

Each of four theoretical traditions in the study of American politics—which can be characterized as theories of Majoritarian Electoral Democracy, Economic-Elite Domination, and two types of interest-group pluralism, Majoritarian Pluralism and Biased Pluralism—offers different predictions about which sets of actors have how much influence over public policy: average citizens; economic elites; and organized interest groups, mass-based or business-oriented.
A great deal of empirical research speaks to the policy influence of one or another set of actors, but until recently it has not been possible to test these contrasting theoretical predictions against each other within a single statistical model. We report on an effort to do so, using a unique data set that includes measures of the key variables for 1,779 policy issues.
Multivariate analysis indicates that economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy, while average citizens and mass-based interest groups have little or no independent influence. The results provide substantial support for theories of Economic-Elite Domination and for theories of Biased Pluralism, but not for theories of Majoritarian Electoral Democracy or Majoritarian Pluralism.

The last paragraph of their findings:

Despite the seemingly strong empirical support in previous studies for theories of majoritarian democracy, our analyses suggest that majorities of the American public actually have little influence over the policies our government adopts. Americans do enjoy many features central to democratic governance, such as regular elections, freedom of speech and association, and a wide-spread (if still contested) franchise. But we believe that if policymaking is dominated by powerful business organizations and a small number of affluent Americans, then America’s claims to being a democratic society are seriously threatened.

"...America’s claims to being a democratic society are seriously threatened."

I don't know if we will get another chance to change things if we wait for them to further consolidate their power. I especially believe that Hillary's court appointees will not be inclined to limit the power of money.

Tag: Wealth Inequality

From Dan Ariely's blog:

Wealth Inequality in Motion.

I recently came across this video that some talented person made of a study I conducted on wealth inequality a few years back with Mike Norton. It does a great job covering the main findings regarding the differences between what Americans think the distribution of wealth is (somewhat even), what they would prefer (more even than socialist Sweden), and how wealth is actually distributed (the bottom 40% of Americans possessing less than 0.3% of total wealth, the top 20% possessing 84%). The graphs, and a longer explanation, are also available here.

The only thing I wish he emphasized a little more is how similar the results were for Democrats and Republicans, which I found very hopeful. Even with all the ideological polarization in Washington, the moment we ask the question of ideal wealth distribution in a general and less self-interested way, we seem to be a country that cares a lot about each other.

Building a Better America—One Wealth Quintile at a Time

by Michael I. Norton and Dan Ariely


Disagreements about the optimal level of wealth inequality underlie policy debates ranging from taxation to welfare. We attempt to insert the desires of "regular" Americans into these debates, by asking a nationally representative online panel to estimate the current distribution of wealth in the United States and to "build a better America" by constructing distributions with their ideal level of inequality. First, respondents dramatically underestimated the current level of wealth inequality. Second, respondents constructed ideal wealth distributions that were far more equitable than even their erroneously low estimates of the actual distribution. Most important from a policy perspective, we observed a surprising level of consensus: All demographic groups—even those not usually associated with wealth redistribution such as Republicans and the wealthy—desired a more equal distribution of wealth than the status quo.

Go to this link to download the original paper:

Can Hillary defeat Kasich?

His star is rising and I don't think she would be able to defeat him.

I think Bernie would completely trash him.
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