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piechartking

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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Georgia
Home country: US
Current location: Taiwan
Member since: Tue Oct 16, 2012, 11:22 PM
Number of posts: 339

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Great Article in The Atlantic - a sobering assessment of the state of US Politics.

HOW AMERICAN POLITICS WENT INSANE - Jonathan Rauch, The Atlantic

*SNIP*

Trump, however, didn’t cause the chaos. The chaos caused Trump. What we are seeing is not a temporary spasm of chaos but a chaos syndrome.

Chaos syndrome is a chronic decline in the political system’s capacity for self-organization. It begins with the weakening of the institutions and brokers—political parties, career politicians, and congressional leaders and committees—that have historically held politicians accountable to one another and prevented everyone in the system from pursuing naked self-interest all the time. As these intermediaries’ influence fades, politicians, activists, and voters all become more individualistic and unaccountable. The system atomizes. Chaos becomes the new normal—both in campaigns and in the government itself.

Our intricate, informal system of political intermediation, which took many decades to build, did not commit suicide or die of old age; we reformed it to death. For decades, well-meaning political reformers have attacked intermediaries as corrupt, undemocratic, unnecessary, or (usually) all of the above. Americans have been busy demonizing and disempowering political professionals and parties, which is like spending decades abusing and attacking your own immune system. Eventually, you will get sick.

The disorder has other causes, too: developments such as ideological polarization, the rise of social media, and the radicalization of the Republican base. But chaos syndrome compounds the effects of those developments, by impeding the task of organizing to counteract them. Insurgencies in presidential races and on Capitol Hill are nothing new, and they are not necessarily bad, as long as the governing process can accommodate them. Years before the Senate had to cope with Ted Cruz, it had to cope with Jesse Helms. The difference is that Cruz shut down the government, which Helms could not have done had he even imagined trying.

Like many disorders, chaos syndrome is self-reinforcing. It causes governmental dysfunction, which fuels public anger, which incites political disruption, which causes yet more governmental dysfunction. Reversing the spiral will require understanding it. Consider, then, the etiology of a political disease: the immune system that defended the body politic for two centuries; the gradual dismantling of that immune system; the emergence of pathogens capable of exploiting the new vulnerability; the symptoms of the disorder; and, finally, its prognosis and treatment.

*SNIP*

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2016/07/how-american-politics-went-insane/485570/

Trump looks ridiculous on CNN right now handing out boxes of Capri-Sun

"Helping out" in Louisiana. Thanks, Trump.

Here's the deal with Trump's "Racial Outreach"

It's not for "the blacks", as he would say....it's entirely focused on making whites, preferably college-educated ones, take a second look at him, convince themselves that he's OK to vote for (which is what they REALLY want to do in their hearts) since he "clearly" is no longer a racist.

It explains why he reaches out to African-Americans by giving a speech nowhere near where African-Americans actually live. It explains why his message was so misaligned with what African-Americans actually want to hear. The audience was not black people.

The audience is white people who are, against their will, voting for Hillary or not voting. It's totally to give them the mental excuse to go back to the Republican party.

It's a craven and disgusting, cynical strategy, but don't underestimate the appeal to those white voters who only need the flimsiest of justifications to come running back to the Republican Party.

We need to fight this.

***Monmouth University Poll: Clinton 50, Trump 37***

Trump has dropped 6, Clinton has jumped 5 for an 11-point swing in her favor. Last poll, before the conventions, was Clinton 45, Trump 43.

With only 3% of likely voters undecided, Clinton has hit the 50% mark.

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/08/poll-clinton-leads-by-13-points-among-likely-voters-226790?cmpid=sf
Posted by piechartking | Mon Aug 8, 2016, 01:25 PM (8 replies)

Be On the Lookout for Swiftboating on this issue "We ARE/AREN'T going to raise taxes"

Right-wingers have been making a, not a big deal, deal out of this video. I think she is saying "We aren't going to raise taxes on the middle class" but they are taking advantage of the fact that the enunciation is not clear-cut.

Trump/Pence have already cut an ad on this. Whatever, probably going to turn out to be nothing, but please let's not let this one get into Swiftboating territory or fucking Dukakis ride-along in the , tank shall we?


Bye Bye New Hampshire ***New WBUR Poll Clinton 47, Trump 32***

http://www.wbur.org/politicker/2016/08/04/clinton-over-trump-new-hampshire-poll

Oh, and just for good measure, Kelly Ayotte down 10% in the Senate Race.
Posted by piechartking | Thu Aug 4, 2016, 07:04 AM (7 replies)

Wish we could wake Nate Silver up...

...and make him enter in these new MI, Fox, PA and Reuters polls into the 538 calculator. I'd love to see that Now-cast in the 90%s!!!
Posted by piechartking | Thu Aug 4, 2016, 01:23 AM (5 replies)

Huckabee on Fox touting some dangerous shit right now

Essentially, says Trump will be just fine as President, because he won't have twitter and he'll have advisors. This is the most dangerous falsehood that a person can propogate, because we all saw with W how dangerous it can be when the President lacks foundational knowledge about the issues.

It's fucking common sense: if you don't understand the basics of an issue, how do you discern which of your advisors is giving the right advice? People who just blindly say, "Oh yeah, he'll have a good cabinet" really should contemplate the fact that the decision-maker must still have a thorough understanding of the issues.

If the poll numbers go down for Trump, how long before...

...he just folds his arms, pouts and gives up? And what would that look like?

To be honest, I was quite a stubborn petulant kid (and maybe my wife would say not a lot has changed as an adult). I could totally see me, in my younger days, when I knew I was going to lose or not reach my goal, go out and actively sabotage the task.

After all, if I'm the one who fucks it up, then I can just say "Hey, I never wanted it anyway."

I can't wait to see what that looks like in the context of a Presidential campaign going down in flames.
Posted by piechartking | Wed Aug 3, 2016, 10:07 AM (3 replies)

Fox News - $400 million to Iran in January story - any legs?

My conservative bro-in-law is ranting and raving about this story. Apparently, it first appeared in the WSJ, but it looks just that the US settled an old claim, paid the first payment, and around the same time, some detainees came home. Doesn't seem to be evidence that the two events are related.

Does anyone know anything else about this? Don't want another fucking Benghazi or more email bullshit.
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