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Thread: Political/Cultural Chit-Chat

  1. #391
    How to fight poverty? David Brooks describes how Canada use a very flexible, community-based approach and have reduced poverty substantially by adjusting the approach in different communities, cities & provinces.

    According to recently released data, between 2015 and 2017, Canada reduced its official poverty rate by at least 20 percent. Roughly 825,000 Canadians were lifted out of poverty in those years, giving the country today its lowest poverty rate in history.How did it do it?The overall economy has been decent but not robust enough to explain these striking outcomes. Instead, one major factor is that Canadians have organized their communities differently. They adopted a specific methodology to fight poverty

  2. #392
    Venuezuela is a big mess. Guaido seems to have bungled things.

    Juan Guaidó may have international support, but within his own National Assembly his decision to declare himself President on January 23 came as a surprise. He has chosen not to bring the issue to a vote in the Assembly and rather position himself as a liberator who stands above the system within which he operates.
    In an attempt to re-mobilize, the opposition has been holding rallies throughout the country in the past few days, pointing to the blackouts and water shortages as yet another proof of Nicolás Maduro’s mismanagement of Venezuela, but the messaging seems to be either outdated or overdone as the public’s response is somewhat lackluster.

    Guaidó himself is said to be working on a plan to turn the military and get it to help forcibly remove Maduro and, even though he doesn’t speak of it publicly, keep the paramilitary groups from taking over in the ensuing vacuum of power.
    https://www.thedailybeast.com/juan-g...to-oust-maduro

    I certainly don't have the background on Venezuela to predict what will happen. The way the public backed Chavez - strengthened by GWB's attempt at a coup - makes me think this country is fundamentally dysfunctional.

  3. #393
    Maake,
    Thank you for passing along this article from David Brooks. Really good stuff.

  4. #394
    AOC's left wing populist message is having an impact. The GOP is helping elevate her stature: https://thehill.com/opinion/campaign...c-more-popular

    Trump's put-down of her as a bartender was impressively rebutted:

    "I'm proud to be a bartender. Ain't nothing wrong with that. There's nothing wrong with working retail, folding clothes for other people to buy. There is nothing wrong with preparing the food that your neighbors will eat. There is nothing wrong with driving the buses that take your family to work. There is nothing wrong with being a working person in the United States of America and there is everything dignified about it."
    Responding to criticism about the GND's lack of support in Congress, AOC says:

    “I’m not here to convince my colleagues. I’m here to go straight to the electorate.”
    She's too young to run for President... but she might be a valuable asset to flip blue-collar Trump voters. I'm pretty sure all the Sanders supporters who stayed home won't make that mistake again.

    Longer term, could AOC rise as a left wing populist, a bookend to what Trump did to the Republican party? Trump, Sanders, AOC put pressure on the 2-party system, that's for sure. We might be an ungovernable hodgepodge if we had a parliamentary system, but the pressure from the fringes is creating problems for both parties.


  5. #395
    Quote Originally Posted by Ma'ake View Post
    AOC's left wing populist message is having an impact. The GOP is helping elevate her stature: https://thehill.com/opinion/campaign...c-more-popular

    Trump's put-down of her as a bartender was impressively rebutted:



    Responding to criticism about the GND's lack of support in Congress, AOC says:



    She's too young to run for President... but she might be a valuable asset to flip blue-collar Trump voters. I'm pretty sure all the Sanders supporters who stayed home won't make that mistake again.

    Longer term, could AOC rise as a left wing populist, a bookend to what Trump did to the Republican party? Trump, Sanders, AOC put pressure on the 2-party system, that's for sure. We might be an ungovernable hodgepodge if we had a parliamentary system, but the pressure from the fringes is creating problems for both parties.

    The left's infatuation with AOC is as puzzling as the right's disdain for her. I said on UF.N that she is Trump-esque in that she struggles with the truth has truly outlandish and ridiculous ideas and acts boorishly.

    Seeing one side turn a blind eye to that while the other gets triggered has really helped me understand how people support Trump despite the glaringly obvious.

    Now, I said this about Trump and was dreadfully wrong, but I think her day in the sun will be short-lived. Working in Congress is about coalition and consensus building and do while she may continue to get elected in her extremely liberal NY district she is likely to quickly become a pariah.

    And all of this reminds me again, is this really the best we've got?


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  6. #396
    Quote Originally Posted by Rocker Ute View Post
    The left's infatuation with AOC is as puzzling as the right's disdain for her. I said on UF.N that she is Trump-esque in that she struggles with the truth has truly outlandish and ridiculous ideas and acts boorishly.

    Seeing one side turn a blind eye to that while the other gets triggered has really helped me understand how people support Trump despite the glaringly obvious.

    Now, I said this about Trump and was dreadfully wrong, but I think her day in the sun will be short-lived. Working in Congress is about coalition and consensus building and do while she may continue to get elected in her extremely liberal NY district she is likely to quickly become a pariah.

    And all of this reminds me again, is this really the best we've got?
    I don't think AOC is the best we've got, not by a long shot. She's just a kid, it's hard to know what she might become, but she has guts and the ability to really connect with a big & growing demographic. I think you're right there is symmetry with her connecting with the disaffected Left, as Trump resonates with his angry base that feels left behind. For many folks who don't care about parties and politicians in general, they could flip from Trump's vow to drain the swamp to AOC's vow to disrupt capitalism.

    For the short term, AOC may serve as a funnel to get her audience to vote for somebody like Harris, whom she makes look moderate. It's a fairly safe deal for an astute Dem nominee, as AOC's too young to be on the ticket.

    This is shaping up as an interesting election, as more Republicans stand up to Trump, making his flaws stand out, as they (seem to be) distancing themselves from him.

    If a moderate Dem catches fire, they could swoop in behind the far left rhetoric to take votes from Trump, and still get support from most of the far left, as there is unanimity in the need to vote Trump out.

    Is America ready for Mayor Pete? I have my doubts, but one poll indicates 70% of the public would vote for a gay president. The LDS church flipped their position on kids from gay marriage families. Change happens much quicker than a generation ago.

    EDIT - Mayor Pete was on the Meet the Press this morning, and LA's former colleague Hugh Hewitt said he "scares me" based on his potential and ability to hold the attention of an audience.
    Last edited by Ma'ake; 04-07-2019 at 08:29 AM.

  7. #397
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Political/Cultural Chit-Chat

    Quote Originally Posted by Ma'ake View Post
    Venuezuela is a big mess. Guaido seems to have bungled things.





    https://www.thedailybeast.com/juan-g...to-oust-maduro

    I certainly don't have the background on Venezuela to predict what will happen. The way the public backed Chavez - strengthened by GWB's attempt at a coup - makes me think this country is fundamentally dysfunctional.
    All I really know about Guaidó is that people who seem to know Venezuelan law say his rise to the position of interim president was 100% constitutional. His critics in the USA seem to be from the left. I’ve always wondered why the American left defaults to sympathy for leftist dictators and excuses their abuses. (I’ve also never understood why the right does the same thing with right-wing dictators abroad.)

    Regarding Bush, the NY Times reported that documents showed that the CIA knew of coup plans in 2002. That’s a long way from the Bush administration attempting a coup. I Googled this and it looks like the only voices alleging US involvement are from left-wing publications.
    Last edited by LA Ute; 04-07-2019 at 03:40 PM.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  8. #398
    Administrator U-Ute's Avatar
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    lol

  9. #399
    Administrator U-Ute's Avatar
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    I'm not sure the day will get any better than this today.

    twitter-nunes-yacht.png

  10. #400
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    The headline is over-wrought but he makes some solid points.

    The McCarthyite, Anti-Christian Campaign against Chick-fil-A

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/...=NRDaily-Smart

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  11. #401
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    I thought about putting this in the Civil War thread, but it seems to fit well here. Sean Wilentz is the Sidney and Ruth Lapidus Professor of the American Revolutionary Era at Princeton University, where he has taught since 1979. His primary research interests include U.S. social and political history in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

    The Electoral College Was Not a Pro-Slavery Ploy

    There is a lot wrong with how we choose the president. But the framers did not put it into the Constitution to protect the South.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/04/o...very-myth.html

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  12. #402
    Administrator U-Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I thought about putting this in the Civil War thread, but it seems to fit well here. Sean Wilentz is the Sidney and Ruth Lapidus Professor of the American Revolutionary Era at Princeton University, where he has taught since 1979. His primary research interests include U.S. social and political history in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

    The Electoral College Was Not a Pro-Slavery Ploy

    There is a lot wrong with how we choose the president. But the framers did not put it into the Constitution to protect the South.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/04/o...very-myth.html
    I've never even heard of this myth.

  13. #403
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I thought about putting this in the Civil War thread, but it seems to fit well here. Sean Wilentz is the Sidney and Ruth Lapidus Professor of the American Revolutionary Era at Princeton University, where he has taught since 1979. His primary research interests include U.S. social and political history in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

    The Electoral College Was Not a Pro-Slavery Ploy

    There is a lot wrong with how we choose the president. But the framers did not put it into the Constitution to protect the South.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/04/o...very-myth.html

    Didn't the NYTimes follow that up two days later with another op-ed from another historian arguing that the electoral college was a pro-slavery ploy? Historians.

  14. #404
    Administrator U-Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    The headline is over-wrought but he makes some solid points.

    The McCarthyite, Anti-Christian Campaign against Chick-fil-A

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/...=NRDaily-Smart
    This is the "cake for a gay wedding" all over again, but the characters are flipped.

    What is good for the goose is good for the gander.

  15. #405
    Quote Originally Posted by U-Ute View Post
    This is the "cake for a gay wedding" all over again, but the characters are flipped.
    I don't really see much symmetry.
    Last edited by U-Ute; 04-11-2019 at 11:49 AM.

  16. #406
    Quote Originally Posted by sancho View Post
    Didn't the NYTimes follow that up two days later with another op-ed from another historian arguing that the electoral college was a pro-slavery ploy? Historians.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/06/o...pgtype=Article

  17. #407
    I hope they open the op-ed section to a full on internal debate amongst history profs.

  18. #408
    Quote Originally Posted by sancho View Post
    I hope they open the op-ed section to a full on internal debate amongst history profs.

    We need a battle of the Princeton professors: Kevin Kruse v. Sean Wilentz

    It would be like the Battle of the Bastards. Maybe not as bloody.

  19. #409
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    It's one thing to say the Electoral College was installed primarily or solely to protect slavery. I think that claim carries a heavy burden of proof. It's another thing to say that pro-slavery delegates to the Constitutional Convention liked the idea because it accorded with their interests. In either case, that debate has nothing to do with whether the EC is a good idea now. I doubt it will produce the 3/4 of the states necessary to amend the Constitution and make us the United States of California and New York.

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  20. #410
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    It's one thing to say the Electoral College was installed primarily or solely to protect slavery. I think that claim carries a heavy burden of proof. It's another thing to say that pro-slavery delegates to the Constitutional Convention liked the idea because it accorded with their interests. In either case, that debate has nothing to do with whether the EC is a good idea now. I doubt it will produce the 3/4 of the states necessary to amend the Constitution and make us the United States of California and New York.

    You don't have to abolish it; you just have to get the states with the majority of the electoral votes to agree to vote for the popular vote winner. that could be doable.

    And you have the effect upside down: right now we are the United States of Florida, n.c., etc.

  21. #411
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by concerned View Post
    You don't have to abolish it; you just have to get the states with the majority of the electoral votes to agree to vote for the popular vote winner. that could be doable.

    And you have the effect upside down: right now we are the United States of Florida, n.c., etc.
    Do you really want to create a situation in which only progressive candidates will be elected POTUS?

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  22. #412
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    Do you really want to create a situation in which only progressive candidates will be elected POTUS?
    Isn't that what republicans did by electing Donald Trump?

  23. #413
    Sam the Sheepdog LA Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sancho View Post
    Isn't that what republicans did by electing Donald Trump?
    I don't understand.

    Anyway, I really abhor one-party government. It's bad in California, it's bad in Utah. It was bad during both Obama's and Trump's first 2 years. The best legislation results when there's opposition. E.g., Reagan's first 6 years (the Ron and Tip Show) and Clinton's last 6 years (the Bill and Newt Show).

    "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
    --Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    "Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold."
    --Yeats

    “True, we [lawyers] build no bridges. We raise no towers. We construct no engines. We paint no pictures - unless as amateurs for our own principal amusement. There is little of all that we do which the eye of man can see. But we smooth out difficulties; we relieve stress; we correct mistakes; we take up other men's burdens and by our efforts we make possible the peaceful life of men in a peaceful state.”

    --John W. Davis, founder of Davis Polk & Wardwell

  24. #414
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    I don't understand.

    Anyway, I really abhor one-party government. It's bad in California, it's bad in Utah. It was bad during both Obama's and Trump's first 2 years. The best legislation results when there's opposition. E.g., Reagan's first 6 years (the Ron and Tip Show) and Clinton's last 6 years (the Bill and Newt Show).
    I abhor parties in general. There's no way a party could represent me well enough for me to swear allegiance to it. Anyway, I think your fears relative to the EC are overblown. Politics and outcomes would largely be the same if we ditched it for a popular vote.

  25. #415
    And now for something completely different: Julian Assange's increasingly precarious status, holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London for going on 7 years.

    - Assange & Wikileaks are sounding all the alarms, claiming he's about to be evicted to certain arrest and extradition, the victim of a new Ecuadorian president.

    - Ecuador claims Assange has been undermining the Ecuadorian government.

    - There are rumors of Assange's "sex habits" on video, inside the embassy, now in the hands of cyber criminals.

    - Pamela Anderson is leading an uprising of Wikileaks/Assange fans, up in arms over his tenuous predicament.

    (Nice to have a low stakes drama to monitor.)

  26. #416
    Quote Originally Posted by sancho View Post
    Didn't the NYTimes follow that up two days later with another op-ed from another historian arguing that the electoral college was a pro-slavery ploy? Historians.
    The beauty of studying history.

  27. #417
    Quote Originally Posted by LA Ute View Post
    It's one thing to say the Electoral College was installed primarily or solely to protect slavery. I think that claim carries a heavy burden of proof. It's another thing to say that pro-slavery delegates to the Constitutional Convention liked the idea because it accorded with their interests. In either case, that debate has nothing to do with whether the EC is a good idea now. I doubt it will produce the 3/4 of the states necessary to amend the Constitution and make us the United States of California and New York.
    Instead you get an institution that protects white minority rights (small states having greater white majority populations).

  28. #418
    Quote Originally Posted by Irving Washington View Post
    The beauty of studying history.
    So many perspectives on "truth". I'll never forget the reaction from a guy at Calvary Baptist Church in SLC to the oft-cited "truth" heard in Utah that the Constitution was "divinely inspired".

    "Yeah, right. God told the framers that we were 3/5 of a person". (From my background I had never given the 3/5 compromise much thought - just a detail from the Constitutional Convention.)

  29. #419
    Interesting experience in Costa Rica: My son & I were at a nice Italian restaurant in San Jose, and a family sat next to us, with a local guide who communicated with them in English. The dad saw the gringo in me, it turns out they're from Israel. His two pre-teen daughters were absorbed in their tablets, "what can we do?" the dad asked me, with a smile.

    Anyway, the Israeli elections came up as a topic, and the dad explained "nothing will change", and said that was a big reason he takes his family traveling around the world (including Zion, "Bruce Canyon", etc.) The implicit message to his kids was "not everywhere is like where we live. People treat each other with respect and tolerance".

    Behind a paywall, but the NYT explains how rightwing populist governments like Hungary's can be both anti-Semetic and claim Israel as an ally, at the same time. It matches Netanyahu's explicit use of Arab Israelis as not just 2nd class citizens, but also a fundamental threat to the Jewish state.

    Israel’s allies before Mr. Netanyahu, after all, conditioned their support on the promise that the country would one day make peace, grant full rights to Palestinians within and without its borders and fully comply with international laws of war — that Israel would cease to be, as Mr. Judt called it, an anachronism.
    But Israel no longer has to change its nature because it is, thanks to the rise of right-wing populism and nationalism, no longer an anachronism. That is the great victory of Netanyahuism and it could endure for some time, regardless of what happens to Mr. Netanyahu.
    (I'll add link later - off to a volcano!)

  30. #420
    Administrator U-Ute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sancho View Post
    I don't really see much symmetry.

    If you view the airport as a private entity refusing to do business with another private entity (Chick-Fil-A) because they don't agree with them on matters of religious matters, then it becomes more clear.

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