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  1. 1. Would you vote a third party?

    • Yes
      91
    • No
      119
    • Maybe
      77
  2. 2. Are you content with the results of the election?

    • Yes
      49
    • No
      120
    • Indifferent
      47


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On 11/25/2019 at 4:30 AM, XRay said:

Not every Republican is like that. There are still people like Susan Collins on the right, and maybe Mitt Romney, Marco Rubio, and Jeb Bush if they count? They seem more moderate.

I wouldn't be so sure of that. The large majority of Republicans weren't willing to cross the aisle, or collaborate at all during the Obama years. And they've gone all in on Trump, a candidate on who controversial amongst the republicans themselves, and not well-liked either.

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At this point it's probably best to just agree to disagree. You believe that it's possible to compromise with Republicans to pass legislation. I don't believe that's the case unless you include additional tax cuts the rich or something to fuck the non-rich because that's what they've been about since Reagan. I believe it's best to just remove them and put the conversation on things like getting money out of politics, removing the filibuster so that votes can happen more frequently and removing all partisan gerrymandering as well as putting the pressure on politicians to hold them accountable for what they campaigned on.

Some folks say that the Republican party has basically become the "Undemocratic party" and I can see that, specially when the politicians and right-wing pundits smugly respond with "We're a Republic" like a Republic and Representative Democracy are mutually exclusive concepts. Ah it would wonderful if we got out of this 2-party system.

Edited by Dr. Tarrasque

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The large majority of elected Republicans are cravens doing what they think they need to do to get elected again, and are more opportunistic than ideological in their posturing.

Which is to say the way to make them 'compromise' is to win elections in states and districts that make them feel like they won't get reelected again, unless they move closer to the Democrats. (Some are hardline ideologues who will never come around regardless. Most aren't; and the ones that are don't have the numbers to put up any real opposition if they lose the opportunists.)  

However,  its being overly generous to say "most Republicans are willing to cross the aisle."

They'll do it. But they won't do it willingly. You have to force their hand.

You have to put the fear of getting electorally wiped out into them. 
 

Edited by Shoblongoo

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On 11/23/2019 at 3:26 AM, Tediz64 said:

Okay so I got to like 7:30 and couldn't continue. Within the first few seconds I knew this video was gonna be bad cause he said "white people shit" when referring to content around games, anime, and so forth. Like since when did white people own that content and those hobbies? Plus this video seems very much like the intended audience is just for one group. A group I'm not part of. Needless to say, I understand that to a certain extent this video covers some legit info that is real but the way the info is presented is very off putting and narrow in scope. I get your good intentions about sharing the video. But now I'm stuck on that fact that some dude out there think white people own those hobbies and interests. Which bothers me greatly. So I kinda wanna end this part of the discussion while still have more composure.

It's a joke, fella. He later calls anime and video games mainstream. Don't tune out just because you didn't like a joke early on.

The video is made for anyone. The key points are:

  • People who generally feel socially isolated and disillusioned with the world are more likely to be swayed by ideas that propose explanations/solutions for their problems
  • Communities for niche or hobby interests (video games, anime, etc) have significant populations of said people
  • Alt-right groups deliberately target those communities for recruitment by first gaining trust ("they're nice to me") of those disillusioned people, and then finding ways to push them further into alt-right camp and away from their usual communities.

The end result is that a community gets co-opted by white supremacists, with some members chased out, and the remaining members radicalized. Ironically, many of the problems these disillusioned people face have left-aligned solutions that stand up much better to scrutiny compared to the alt-right (video's example being that the left blames capitalism, while the alt-right blame Jews), and it's likely they could have shifted left.

On 11/23/2019 at 3:26 AM, Tediz64 said:

Suffice to say, I know my type and that I'm easily susceptible to being indoctrinated into a cult. I took a test once. It was kinda funny. But I got a few people who keep me in check so I'm safe.

Part of the threat is that the strategy used by these groups involves isolating you from the people who would keep you in check.

On 11/24/2019 at 1:22 AM, eclipse said:

And Pokemon is the worst if you're PETA, BUT that might fall under the robot category.  Oh, and some of the really religious people, but again, robots.

Hypocrisy is a form of lying, so PETA falls into the goddamn liar camp

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18 minutes ago, Johann said:

The video is made for anyone. The key points are:

  • People who generally feel socially isolated and disillusioned with the world are more likely to be swayed by ideas that propose explanations/solutions for their problems
  • Communities for niche or hobby interests (video games, anime, etc) have significant populations of said people
  • Alt-right groups deliberately target those communities for recruitment by first gaining trust ("they're nice to me") of those disillusioned people, and then finding ways to push them further into alt-right camp and away from their usual communities.

Part of the threat is that the strategy used by these groups involves isolating you from the people who would keep you in check.

What's weird to me is that I fit the socially isolated stereotype very well, and the communities I do slot into are hardly fertile ground for racists and other unsavoury types. Some of them commonly run out the racists, or just ban them. 

Now that I think about it, I'm worried of what will happen to the folk scene when the trash starts attending.

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1 minute ago, Excellen Browning said:

What's weird to me is that I fit the socially isolated stereotype very well, and the communities I do slot into are hardly fertile ground for racists and other unsavoury types. Some of them commonly run out the racists, or just ban them. 

Now that I think about it, I'm worried of what will happen to the folk scene when the trash starts attending.

Effective moderation keeps the overt racists away, yeah. I figure they can still potentially get through the cracks by adhering to the rules (nothing overt, such as by using dogwhistles) or by influencing people outside of mod vision (PMs, links that aren't overt).

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4chan's a good example. It's always been full of degenerate racists, but they were left-leaning degenerate racists for a long while. A site with virtually no moderation and complete anonymity.

For the last 6ish years, it's been a breeding ground for literal neo Nazis. And that's after they tried to contain it(In /pol/) and took steps to stamp it out(Which led to 8chan).

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17 hours ago, Johann said:
  • Communities for niche or hobby interests (video games, anime, etc) have significant populations of said people
  • Alt-right groups deliberately target those communities for recruitment by first gaining trust ("they're nice to me") of those disillusioned people, and then finding ways to push them further into alt-right camp and away from their usual communities.

Sadly the opposing side often makes it very easy for those groups to try this whole recruiting scheme. Its not hard to find the ''sjw'' fringe overreact at something and get combative about it. Right Wing channels then stockpile footage from this minority and say ''See! Do you see! Gaming is under attack! Go GamerGate!'' 

Then the more mainstream channels and sources not being on the side of the alt right gets used as an excuse for the alt right to go ''See! Do you see! Those gosh darn sjw's CORRUPTED the main stream media! Gaming is under attack! Go Gamergate!''

And by all accounts that strategy seems to have been rather successful. From what I understand a lot of channels that started out positively covering Gamergate and railing against the ''corrupt'' gaming press are now deep into the Trump rabbit hole, now positively covering Trump and railing against the ''corrupt'' regular press. This radicalization could have taken place within their audience too. 

And we see the trick getting repeated pretty regularly. I believe ''animegate'' and ''comicsgate'' already happened though I don't think either really got off the ground. It might also be happening with Star Wars. The admiral pinkhair subplot was kinda poorly written and not long after I see tons of channels going ''See! Do you SEE! Those gosh darn sjw came for Star wars! Star wars is under attack!'' 

The Youtube algorithm really isn't helping. I remember watching one video about Star Wars leaks and then suddenly my recommended feed gets bombarded with videos that have titles such as ''George Lucas BETRAYED!''  ''Starwars BOWS down to PURITANS! Rey is a MARRY SUE!''.

 

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19 hours ago, Slumber said:

4chan's a good example. It's always been full of degenerate racists, but they were left-leaning degenerate racists for a long while. A site with virtually no moderation and complete anonymity.

For the last 6ish years, it's been a breeding ground for literal neo Nazis. And that's after they tried to contain it(In /pol/) and took steps to stamp it out(Which led to 8chan).

So I know @eclipse is going to gut me over the suggestion that there may actually be something in the Patriot Act worth salvaging...but here me out...

Remember that thing we were doing after 9/11 where we had entire buildings full of NSA agents going onto jihadist websites. Monitoring their forum boards. Taking particularly egrigious statements to FISA court, and using them to obtain search warrants and set-up sting operations and compile terror watchlists?

...thats what we should be doing right now with 4chan and Stormfront and the like...

I'm less bothered that that whole surveillance apparatus exists.

And more bothered that we created it in fit of post-9/11 paranoia, used it just to go after the Muslims, then in retrospect decided it was a thing we shouldn't be doing + never used it again to go after--you know--the actual primary terror threat facing the homeland. 

 

Edited by Shoblongoo

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47 minutes ago, Shoblongoo said:

So I know @eclipse is going to gut me over the suggestion that there may actually be something in the Patriot Act worth salvaging...but here me out...

Remember that thing we were doing after 9/11 where we had entire buildings full of NSA agents going onto jihadist websites. Monitoring their forum boards. Taking particularly egrigious statements to FISA court, and using them to obtain search warrants and set-up sting operations and compile terror watchlists?

...thats what we should be doing right now with 4chan and Stormfront and the like...

I'm less bothered that that whole surveillance apparatus exists.

And more bothered that we created it in fit of post-9/11 paranoia, used it just to go after the Muslims, then in retrospect decided it was a thing we shouldn't be doing + never used it again to go after--you know--the actual primary terror threat facing the homeland. 

 

While it would be practical to use the Patriot Act against White Nationalists on paper, it would realistically come with worse results than you'd expect depending on when it's used. Let's say it's used under Trump or with the next president...

A. Under Trump it wouldn't really work out, while Wray testified that most domestic terrorism in the country is currently perpetrated by White Nationalists, the FBI currently views other extremists as bigger threats even though their own data points to White Nationalists being the more common and actual threat. These are still Trump's people even though they dislike that he's not as racist as they wish he were and the FBI's bias is clear.

B. Execute it under the next Democratic President and that's more ammo for right-wing media to push White Nationalist bullshit onto the mainstream. "This is the next step in the Socialist White Genocide agenda, they claim authoritarian power to monitor just white people. We're being persecuted in our own land!". Sure, it's just more propaganda like they do today but it makes it easier for them to convince white folks that should have no worry because that's just it: the politics of fear work. You'd be opening the path for more of them to get in office and a more malicious Donald Trump if the Electoral College isn't gone.

 

Edited by Dr. Tarrasque

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"Policing of memes" or "banned memes" would become the next buzzword. While I think you can generally get away with whatever invasion of privacy you'd like when it comes to the internet, if government intelligence agencies were public about doing this, people'd get way more mad about it than they do with google mining and selling our search histories. If intelligence agencies did keep an eye on radical forums and message boards but did so in secrecy (and I imagine they already do, at least with any person they've been tipped off about through official channels) then it's probably fine until a Snowden outs the whole process to the public and sells the film rights to his story.

But yeah I have no idea how to combat the memes you see online that express a half-truth but frame it in a way that blames one person or party. They're memes, not dissertations, there's no use critiquing them and you have to imagine the poster probably cares less than you do if you feel an urge to respond. When these appear on a generic forum or a friend's discord or twitter feed I'd let it pass without comment.

Edited by Glennstavos

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1 hour ago, Dr. Tarrasque said:

B. Execute it under the next Democratic President and that's more ammo for right-wing media to push White Nationalist bullshit onto the mainstream.  This is the next step in the Socialist White Genocide agenda, they claim authoritarian power to monitor just white people

 

29 minutes ago, Glennstavos said:

"Policing of memes" or "banned memes" would become the next buzzword. 

But yeah I have no idea how to combat the memes you see online that express a half-truth but frame it in a way that blames one person or party.


I really don't think we should be making decisions about what government should and should not be doing based on how we think Nazis and right-wing talkshow hosts are going to react to it + efforts to make sure we don't give them cause for complaint.

I mean apply that standard to any hot-button issue--guns, immigration, healthcare, education--and try getting any sense of workable policy going within the constraints of we can only do things that aren't going to be propagandized by the extreme right and used as ammunition + buzzwords to radicalize more wingnuts. 

The problem with that approach quickly becomes self-evident. 
____

Do everything they don't want you to do. Let them cry about it.

And if those cries start to sound like terroristic threats, throw the book at them. 


 

Edited by Shoblongoo

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2 hours ago, Shoblongoo said:

So I know @eclipse is going to gut me over the suggestion that there may actually be something in the Patriot Act worth salvaging...but here me out...

Remember that thing we were doing after 9/11 where we had entire buildings full of NSA agents going onto jihadist websites. Monitoring their forum boards. Taking particularly egrigious statements to FISA court, and using them to obtain search warrants and set-up sting operations and compile terror watchlists?

...thats what we should be doing right now with 4chan and Stormfront and the like...

I'm less bothered that that whole surveillance apparatus exists.

And more bothered that we created it in fit of post-9/11 paranoia, used it just to go after the Muslims, then in retrospect decided it was a thing we shouldn't be doing + never used it again to go after--you know--the actual primary terror threat facing the homeland. 

 

Consider yourself gutted.  😛

Ahem. . .the thing about power is that it can and will be misused eventually.  Do you think Trump would aim the surveillance at those elements that are supporting him?  Or would he use it to sniff out his opposition?

As for the extremism, we can sort-of thank Google for that, too.  Maybe not directly, but I'm a firm believer that search results shouldn't be tailored to the person.  Dissent should be very much in sight and mind, not hidden on page 3 of the search results.

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I'm all for starting to seriously prosecute the extreme/alt right, but I still think the Patriot Act should be repealed or seriously curtailed. Much of it has to do with institutional unwillingness, not with the law.

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Kamala Harris is out:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/sen-kamala-d-harris-drops-out-of-presidential-race/2019/12/03/5ea01f3e-15f7-11ea-9110-3b34ce1d92b1_story.html?fbclid=IwAR3VrUNOyOfRRkDvxAJ48quem2EEELpN3Jberx1C9Ib6tNgLBnIfVWlagOk

For a moment in that first debate, she looked like she might actually be a top tier contender. 

Gabbard cleaned her clock in debate #2, and it was all downhill from there. 

Major upset for a campaign that had so much hype behind it.

And not a whole lot of support for her to be picked up by other candidates now that she's out. But for what its worth: Kamala WAS hated by The Leftists rallying behind Warren/Sanders, and fighting with Buttigeig/Biden for the centrists.

So with her supporters now searching again for other candidates to get behind: thats probably gonna be a slight bump for Buttieig and Biden. 

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Earlier today I saw a tweet ranting about the School Lunch Debt issue and they referenced the fact that we serve food to folks in prison. Then I wondered, "what would be the solution that conservatives like Ben Shapiro would propose if they read this tweet?"

Now I'm wondering if thinking that they would probably look to cut food for inmates is me being too hard on conservatives or if that's the reality we live in.

On the flip side, here's the Impeachment report

Edited by Dr. Tarrasque

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Honestly I was a bit annoyed when Harris announced her run for the presidency. We just elected her, and I wasn't looking to share

29 minutes ago, Dr. Tarrasque said:

Earlier today I saw a tweet ranting about the School Lunch Debt issue and they referenced the fact that we serve food to folks in prison. Then I wondered, "what would be the solution that conservatives like Ben Shapiro would propose if they read this tweet?"

Now I'm wondering if thinking that they would probably look to cut food for inmates is me being too hard on conservatives or if that's the reality we live in.

I'd much sooner expect conservatives to suggest cutting school lunches like they would any other education cuts. But what even is there to argue? Should we not serve food to prisoners -  expecting food to be brought to them exclusively by visitors like in ancient times? Folks like Ben Shapiro (who by far right standards is an extremely influential and well-groomed speaker) would not touch such an inflammatory moral question. He looks for easy targets. Obvious hypocracies. Twistable half-truths. Anything to help you "own the libs" in 140 characters or less.

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3 hours ago, Dr. Tarrasque said:

Earlier today I saw a tweet ranting about the School Lunch Debt issue and they referenced the fact that we serve food to folks in prison.

I think school lunches should be paid for with taxes, and we definitely need to stop serving shitty school lunches throughout the country. We are investing into our future here. While I am lucky that Sacramento serves pretty good school lunches (we serve some pretty good shit here, and we got some new entries I have not seen before; I remember a lot of us were rushing to the cafeteria so we can get all the good stuff before it sold out), school lunches are not exactly something students elsewhere in the country look forward to, and my time mingling in New York made it pretty clear to me that school lunches are not so amazing everywhere. Bland and uninteresting seems to be the norm for most people I meet when they tell me about their experience with school lunches.

3 hours ago, Dr. Tarrasque said:

Earlier today I saw a tweet ranting about the School Lunch Debt issue and they referenced the fact that we serve food to folks in prison. Then I wondered, "what would be the solution that conservatives like Ben Shapiro would propose if they read this tweet?"

Now I'm wondering if thinking that they would probably look to cut food for inmates is me being too hard on conservatives or if that's the reality we live in.

I think we already serve prisoners the cheapest food possible, and if conservatives really want to make prison life worse, they should probably stop privatizing the prison system, revert all of it back to government control, and then simply slash prison spending on anything not concerned with preventing prison escape. Reverting it back to government control technically makes the government bigger, but it also helps make sure that no one is spending more on prisons out of the goodness of their heart. Just because corporations are driven mostly by profit does not mean they are completely heartless.

Edited by XRay

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2 hours ago, XRay said:

school lunches are not exactly something students elsewhere in the country look forward to, and my time mingling in New York made it pretty clear to me that school lunches are not so amazing everywhere. Bland and uninteresting seems to be the norm for most people I meet when they tell me about their experience with school lunches.

I can vouch for that. There was literally one source of Pizza that I've hated in all my years of living in New York and it was from school lunch.

2 hours ago, XRay said:

I think we already serve prisoners the cheapest food possible, and if conservatives really want to make prison life worse, they should probably stop privatizing the prison system, revert all of it back to government control, and then simply slash prison spending on anything not concerned with preventing prison escape. Reverting it back to government control technically makes the government bigger, but it also helps make sure that no one is spending more on prisons out of the goodness of their heart. Just because corporations are driven mostly by profit does not mean they are completely heartless.

I'm sorry, what?

Yes, if you get rid of privatized prisons AND slash prison spending relative to what is currently spent today with privatized prisons, you'll make prison life worse. I'll give you that one. However...

1. Conservatives, at least the politicians anyway, will without a doubt be the biggest obstacle of doing away with privatized prisons. Doesn't seem like something their base would push for, specially because as you said, it would make the government bigger and the conservative will easily rally in support of their politicians on this because Fox News will tell them to.

2. The evidence suggests that privatized prisons aren't really saving money. Saving money is what private prisons pitched but they don't really do that.

3. Yeah... no. Private prison corporations aren't any nicer than big names of today facing backlash for underpaying their employees. The co-founder of CCA literally said you just sell prisons like Hamburgers, Cars or Real Estate. There's a study that suggests that private prisons punish inmates more than regular prisons and that's probably due to their incentive to profit off of that because they'll make more money the longer they keep people around and in some cases, a private prison will fine the state government if said prison actually isn't keeping enough people locked up to meet a quota. Really, it's all setup to keep people in jail as long as possible to maintain/increase profit.

As is, keeping private prisons around might as well be the effort to make prison life worse depending on which developed country you ask but it's not the case here in the US because that's our terrible norm and it's stuff a lot of people don't even know.

Edited by Dr. Tarrasque

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2 minutes ago, Dr. Tarrasque said:

I'm sorry, what?

It is to prevent the unlikely scenario that a charity would do a hostile takeover of a prison company.

If the government has control over the prison system, charities cannot just buyout a company and give prisoners a better quality of life.

5 minutes ago, Dr. Tarrasque said:

2. The evidence suggests that privatized prisons aren't really saving money. Saving money is what private prisons pitched but they don't really do that.

That is kind of the point. I think Republicans voters are self centered enough that they would prefer less taxes devoted to maintaining prisons for a slight increase in the size of government.

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33 minutes ago, XRay said:

It is to prevent the unlikely scenario that a charity would do a hostile takeover of a prison company.

If the government has control over the prison system, charities cannot just buyout a company and give prisoners a better quality of life.

In what world are any charities buying out corporations?

Most people don't know a thing about prisons or the prison system, or don't care, which is part of why private prisons get away with so much.

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50 minutes ago, Johann said:

In what world are any charities buying out corporations?

A world nicer than ours. I do not think it is beyond possibility even in our world though. Bill Gates' charity donated a lot of money helping fight malaria for example. If another rich person like him or Elon Musk decided that helping prisoners would be a good cause that greatly benefits humanity, I think they would do it.

50 minutes ago, Johann said:

Most people don't know a thing about prisons or the prison system, or don't care, which is part of why private prisons get away with so much.

I think people do know how bad prisons can get. We just do not prioritize making prisons better. It is one thing to rally behind justice reforms and get nonviolent and low risk inmates out of prisons who do not deserve the harshness, but it is another thing to get people as a whole to agree to make prisons a better places for all the inmates.

Edited by XRay

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"Why make it more comfortable for them?   If they're in prison, they deserve to be punished!"

IMO it'll take a major shift in thinking before the government makes prisons a better place.  I know other parts of the world see it differently, but they're not the ones running the US prison system.

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8 hours ago, Dr. Tarrasque said:

Earlier today I saw a tweet ranting about the School Lunch Debt issue and they referenced the fact that we serve food to folks in prison. Then I wondered, "what would be the solution that conservatives like Ben Shapiro would propose if they read this tweet?"

Now I'm wondering if thinking that they would probably look to cut food for inmates is me being too hard on conservatives or if that's the reality we live in.

On the flip side, here's the Impeachment report

What's being spent on feeding inmates is insanely low, to my knowledge. Well less than $0.50 per inmate per day, depending on the prison you're in.

Meanwhile, in the normal world, living off $1 per day is about as low as you can possibly go without definitely not making your caloric intake. 

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3 hours ago, eclipse said:

"Why make it more comfortable for them?   If they're in prison, they deserve to be punished!"

IMO it'll take a major shift in thinking before the government makes prisons a better place.  I know other parts of the world see it differently, but they're not the ones running the US prison system.

That is pretty common and that is where I stand now. I like the idea of releasing non violent criminals, as often times it is drug related. I think equating drugs to really horrible shit like rape, theft, and murder is totally out of proportion and unreasonable. However, I do not think the the country should devote resources to make prisons better, we just need to keep people who do not belong there out.

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