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Thread: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

  1. #1
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, Cub Shoot 2 Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Treasure Diver Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Slack Man Champion, Japanese Baseball Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Super Mario Mushroom Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Fish Kill Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, KF 9000 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
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    Default US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    I just voted for more Democrats for federal and statewide offices on today's ballot than I have in the preceding 35 years.

    Should be an interesting evening.
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

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  2. #2

    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Some kind of election-day spreadsheet to watch.

    And this.


    Quote Originally Posted by Trump
    The contrast in this election could not be more clear. Republicans produce jobs. Democrats produce mobs. You've heard that. You've seen it. You've seen it. You've seen it. Antifa. They the helmet off and they take the arm bands and you see these little arms, you see these little arms. And then you see the clubs in their hands.
    You know, they're tough guys, right? Where are the bikers for Trump? Where are the police? Where are the military? Where are the ICE? Where are the border patrol? No. No. We've taken a lot. We've taken a lot, folks. But, you see these guys, you take off their helmet, their black helmet, their black outfit with the pads.
    What is Right, and What is Wrong, by the law, by the law?
    What is Right and what is Wrong by the law?
    What is Right, and what is Wrong?
    A short sword, and a long,
    A weak arm and a strong, for to draw, for to draw
    A weak arm and a strong, for to draw.

    Ye Jacobites by name, lend an ear, lend an ear,
    Ye Jacobites by name, lend an ear,
    Ye Jacobites by name,
    Your faults I will proclaim,
    Your doctrines I must blame, you shall hear, you shall hear
    Your doctrines I must blame, you shall hear.

    Last edited by Montmorency; 11-07-2018 at 01:27.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    People will say the blue wave broke, but this election has more toss ups going down to the last precinct in a long time. This was supposed to be a disastrous year for Dems, the blue wave was really a rally to staunch the blood loss. Once 2020 census hits, many of state legislatures that have flipped blue will reverse the Republican gerrymandering holding back the House.
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    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, Cub Shoot 2 Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Treasure Diver Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Slack Man Champion, Japanese Baseball Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Super Mario Mushroom Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Fish Kill Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, KF 9000 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Heard O'Reilly talking on Beck's radio show this morning.

    O'Reilly's take was that suburbia, particularly women, were voting against Trump the person and not so much against the policies/economic situation -- which is why the state-wide races were less problematic to GOP's results.


    Mainstream Media is already talking about House subpoena powers -- because nothing is more important than constant conflict. I am sure it will make for good political bloodsport.


    Sad.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    FiveThirtyEight last night bottled it - their system at one point showed 39% chance of Democratic House. They retooled it after complaints.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    First note: Turnout was massive, and while we can only estimate yet it looks like above 50% of registered voters (~220 million give or take 10?), and not much lower among all eligible voters according to ElectProject.

    The average turnout since Nixon during midterms has hovered around 40%, hitting a modern low in 2014.


    Quote Originally Posted by Seamus Fermanagh View Post
    Heard O'Reilly talking on Beck's radio show this morning.

    O'Reilly's take was that suburbia, particularly women, were voting against Trump the person and not so much against the policies/economic situation -- which is why the state-wide races were less problematic to GOP's results.


    Mainstream Media is already talking about House subpoena powers -- because nothing is more important than constant conflict. I am sure it will make for good political bloodsport.


    Sad.
    I don't think O'Reilly and Beck (lol) have a credible interpretation. The reality looks more like Trump drumming up a Red counter-wave in Republican turnout, closing margins to the point that structural barriers showed their advantage to the Republican side.

    W-What? What did you think the election was about? Retaking the House, and the size of the House surge. Taking the House isn't about "sending a message" to Trump, it's about concretely blocking and investigating him. Politics has real-world effects, it's not mere symbolic posturing!

    If you don't like constant conflict, then you should be glad Democrats achieved the bare minimum necessary to "hold Trump accountable". (Keep reading for my response to ACIN)

    Quote Originally Posted by a completely inoffensive name View Post
    People will say the blue wave broke, but this election has more toss ups going down to the last precinct in a long time. This was supposed to be a disastrous year for Dems, the blue wave was really a rally to staunch the blood loss. Once 2020 census hits, many of state legislatures that have flipped blue will reverse the Republican gerrymandering holding back the House.
    ACIN, I'm not going to dig into all the numbers but from a preliminary glance at key battleground states we can see that there was a wave in absolute terms. The answer to the mediocre relative performance does not seem to come down to a late fumble in turnout. For example, Georgia saw over 55% turnout and Florida over 60% - pretty good even for a presidential election (based on denominator of registered voters; the figures when accounting for all eligible voters fall by 3-4% and 8% respectively). When you and others chide Democrats not to focus on structural hurdles like gerrymandering and voter suppression, you contend instead that they somehow gin up unprecedented and overwhelming surges in turnout on the regular. In that case, the story goes, the structural hurdles can be rendered obsolete. There's a hint of something sound here, but it indulges in a certain fallacious premise that is after all very common in discussions of the Democratic Party: that only the Democrats have agency.

    The thing is, Republicans can try to surge their turnout too! Dems seemed to underperform their polling in many Senate races, to my unsystematic eye. If I have that right it is less likely because turnout fumbled in the end than because Trump's racist agitprop was extremely and distressingly successful. Shit dude, he was working harder in the weeks leading up to the midterms than in all his term so far, holding multiple "rallies" a day throughout the country. *sigh*

    So unless the strategy is genuinely 'somehow generate overwhelming Democratic turnout all the time while hoping Republicans stay passive', dismantling structural impediments is just as important. As usually turns out to be the case in such dilemmas, "why not both?" If one can eliminate their opponent's entire projected surplus vote through disenfranchisement, less than abnormal turnout will not do much good. The narrow elections in Georgia and Florida - go to your aggregator of choice and take another look at those numbers - were very likely won by Republicans in a way that would evoke international censure if it happened in, say, Nigeria. Similar events unfolded when North Dakota basically refused to let reservation Native Americans vote, but the margin was large enough that it at least was not dispositive.


    For the readers, a little recap of the results:
    (Terminology note, when I use "narrow" I usually mean around 1% margin, and when I use "close", I usually mean 3 or 4% margin)


    House: Democrats pulled off the bare minimum and retook the House. The final distribution when all seats are called will be 229-206 for Dems. Many seats were won with close margins, and many contested GOP-held seats were saved by close margins as well. I saw probably 10 GOP victories by 1% or less, that if flipped would have at last manifested that "Blue Wave". There were some interesting matches, such as the defeat of Russophile Dana Rohrabacher in California. The Democrats took 1 + 2 out of 4 congressional districts in Iowa, and nearly took the 4th (seat of crypto-Nazi Steve King).

    Senate: Some key probabilities I noted beforehand (off FiveThirtyEight) were Nevada (tie); Arizona (+1D); North Dakota (+5R); Tennessee (+6R); Texas (+5R); Missouri (+2D); Indiana (+3D); WV (+7D); PA (+7D); Florida (+3D); MIssissippi (+1R); MT (+8D).

    The Senate races were one of the worst possible outcomes for Democrats, with 3 net seats lost. Solidly defeated in the defending territory of North Dakota, Missouri, Indiana, and Tennessee, reviled former governor of Florida Rick Scott defeated the Dem incumbent for Senate by a margin of less than half a percentage point, in one of the more bitter outcomes. Due to a split vote between two Republicans, a Dem was (only) narrowly defeated in a Mississippi special election. Beto O'Rourke became one of the nationally most-captivating contenders, against Ted Cruz in Texas; he came quite close. Beto will be back for more national politics soon enough it's safe to assume. Capping off the rout, a narrow race in Arizona ultimately went for the Republicans. Final results not in, but it seems Montana's seat will stay Democratic. The only pickup was Nevada.

    Governors: Some key probabilities I noted beforehand (off FiveThirtyEight) were Florida (+4D); Wisconisin (+2D); Georgia (+1R); Nevada (+1R); Ohio (+1D); CT (+5D); Iowa (+2D); Kansas (+1.5R); Alaska (+4R); Oklahoma & South Dakota +7R.

    Actually not bad overall, but two of the most infuriating shortfalls of the election occurred in Georgia and Florida. In Florida Mr. '#1 with racists' won by <1% against an aggressive and capable black candidate. In Georgia, another aggressive and capable black candidate lost by 2% to the Republican Secretary of State running for governor, who was overseeing his own election and deciding who would and would not get to vote (hint: hundreds of thousands of probable Dem voters would not get to vote). It would take another post to summarize all the irregularities and malfeasance that transpired under this man's remit; I'll tag in ACIN to handle that.

    The rest of the bad is that close races were lost in South Dakota, Ohio, and Iowa, and the Republicans took Alaska from the Independent incumbent (who suspended his campaign at the last minute and endorsed the Dem candidate). Still, picking up 7 governorships while preserving your holdings is a good showing. At least the despised Repubican incumbent of Wisconsin, Scott Walker, was finally ousted (albeit narrowly).

    State Legislatures: Democrats controlled 32/99. According to Ballotpedia, they picked up 6 and lost 1. :yawn:


    Ballot Initiatives: Florida just restored voting rights to over a million felons. Suppress that. Michigan, Missouri, and Colorado approved non-partisan redistricting committees. Several states expanded Medicaid and raised minimum wages.


    Unless the Democratic Party enters Berserker mode soon, this is a fragile platform from which to prosecute a 2020 campaign...


    Alright, horse race over, time to get back to work*. Expect Mueller news shortly.

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    Last edited by Montmorency; 11-07-2018 at 20:37.
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    Senior Member Senior Member Yeti Sports 1.5 Champion, Snowboard Slalom Champion, Monkey Jump Champion, Mosquito Kill Champion Csargo's Avatar
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by a completely inoffensive name View Post
    People will say the blue wave broke, but this election has more toss ups going down to the last precinct in a long time. This was supposed to be a disastrous year for Dems, the blue wave was really a rally to staunch the blood loss. Once 2020 census hits, many of state legislatures that have flipped blue will reverse the Republican gerrymandering holding back the House.
    There were a few ballot measures in a couple of states about having a independent committee drawing districts. Seems like the most obvious solution, outside of having some sort of computer program drawing districts, which I would think could be a possibility.

    Monty beat me. Sad days.
    Last edited by Csargo; 11-07-2018 at 21:00.
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    Iron Fist Senior Member Husar's Avatar
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    A 50% turnout is just sad for a country that believes itself to be the best democracy in the world.
    It doesn't help that it was even more sad in past elections.


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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Husar View Post
    A 50% turnout is just sad for a country that believes itself to be the best democracy in the world.
    It doesn't help that it was even more sad in past elections.
    lol

    Low baseline turnout in America is definitely tied to the general state of society and politics rather than tactical decisions by cycle; if GOP tactics surged turnout by even 2% for their candidates though, that's enough to blunt the effects of a blue wave, because overall turnout is depressed compared to other countries. The lesson again is that the Democratic Party needs a concrete, intelligible, and long-term national agenda that includes explicitly disempowering Republicans. Momentum has to build toward the presidential election, not deflate. Let's aim for over 70% turnout for 2020, 60% 2022, etc. The worst thing would be if underwhelming results today discouraged turnout later.

    Just to be clear, the results were not bad, they were 'mixed' - the problem is we need better than mixed at this juncture, especially with 2020 in mind.

    Some bits of good news I didn't mention:

    New York Senate is finally under Democratic control, which has almost never happened in modern history.
    There are two more "socialists" in Congress (Rashida Tlaib and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez).
    Many socialists won local races throughout the country.
    Many useful ballot initiatives were passed throughout the country (that I didn't list above).
    Last edited by Montmorency; 11-07-2018 at 23:22.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    ACIN, I'm not going to dig into all the numbers but from a preliminary glance at key battleground states we can see that there was a wave in absolute terms. The answer to the mediocre relative performance does not seem to come down to a late fumble in turnout. For example, Georgia saw over 55% turnout and Florida over 60% - pretty good even for a presidential election (based on denominator of registered voters; the figures when accounting for all eligible voters fall by 3-4% and 8% respectively). When you and others chide Democrats not to focus on structural hurdles like gerrymandering and voter suppression, you contend instead that they somehow gin up unprecedented and overwhelming surges in turnout on the regular. In that case, the story goes, the structural hurdles can be rendered obsolete. There's a hint of something sound here, but it indulges in a certain fallacious premise that is after all very common in discussions of the Democratic Party: that only the Democrats have agency.
    Well, the idea is that certain structural obstacles can only be dismantled through wave elections. Also, depending on how smart gerrymandered districts are structured many of the districts are planned out as only slightly advantageous to the GOP, just enough to secure a solid 3-5 point lead. What this does is maximize the number of districts a party can rig in their favor by not stacking on too few. This also means wave elections with large turnout can easily hop those hurdles and force the opposition to spend everywhere and spread itself thin to prevent a sweep of districts typically solid red.

    You are right that ultimately there is another variable, which is the Republican energy. But you are basing this on hindsight. Typically when one side is energized, there is a reciprocated lethargy for the opposition such as when 2012 saw Obama still win by a very comfortable margin despite 4 years of GOP death panel momentum up to that point. Chalk this round to the consistent abnormality of Trumpian politics.

    The thing is, Republicans can try to surge their turnout too! Dems seemed to underperform their polling in many Senate races, to my unsystematic eye. If I have that right it is less likely because turnout fumbled in the end than because Trump's racist agitprop was extremely and distressingly successful. Shit dude, he was working harder in the weeks leading up to the midterms than in all his term so far, holding multiple "rallies" a day throughout the country. *sigh*
    We will need to wait for the full statistical breakdown. Many states had much higher turnout than normal (oddly enough California was lower than normal at 37% turnout). But whether there is more avenues to expand the voting base next time remains to be seen. Let's keep in mind that Georgia has been considered 'ruby red' only until the last few years. The closeness of the elections were due to the stolen votes by the Secretary of State and Florida is...Florida.

    So unless the strategy is genuinely 'somehow generate overwhelming Democratic turnout all the time while hoping Republicans stay passive', dismantling structural impediments is just as important. As usually turns out to be the case in such dilemmas, "why not both?" If one can eliminate their opponent's entire projected surplus vote through disenfranchisement, less than abnormal turnout will not do much good. The narrow elections in Georgia and Florida - go to your aggregator of choice and take another look at those numbers - were very likely won by Republicans in a way that would evoke international censure if it happened in, say, Nigeria. Similar events unfolded when North Dakota basically refused to let reservation Native Americans vote, but the margin was large enough that it at least was not dispositive.
    I think we can bet that Republicans will not be staying passive for 2020, but unlike the Obama years, Democratic turnout this year evolved in the opposite direction of Republicans. Local candidates that gave a fresh face energized grassroots democratic efforts which fed off each other with no real guidance from the DNC. Trumpists show up when leader Trump shows up like in panhandle Florida and don't when doesn't like in California.

    House: Democrats pulled off the bare minimum and retook the House. The final distribution when all seats are called will be 229-206 for Dems. Many seats were won with close margins, and many contested GOP-held seats were saved by close margins as well. I saw probably 10 GOP victories by 1% or less, that if flipped would have at last manifested that "Blue Wave". There were some interesting matches, such as the defeat of Russophile Dana Rohrabacher in California. The Democrats took 1 + 2 out of 4 congressional districts in Iowa, and nearly took the 4th (seat of crypto-Nazi Steve King).

    Senate: Some key probabilities I noted beforehand (off FiveThirtyEight) were Nevada (tie); Arizona (+1D); North Dakota (+5R); Tennessee (+6R); Texas (+5R); Missouri (+2D); Indiana (+3D); WV (+7D); PA (+7D); Florida (+3D); MIssissippi (+1R); MT (+8D).

    The Senate races were one of the worst possible outcomes for Democrats, with 3 net seats lost. Solidly defeated in the defending territory of North Dakota, Missouri, Indiana, and Tennessee, reviled former governor of Florida Rick Scott defeated the Dem incumbent for Senate by a margin of less than half a percentage point, in one of the more bitter outcomes. Due to a split vote between two Republicans, a Dem was (only) narrowly defeated in a Mississippi special election. Beto O'Rourke became one of the nationally most-captivating contenders, against Ted Cruz in Texas; he came quite close. Beto will be back for more national politics soon enough it's safe to assume. Capping off the rout, a narrow race in Arizona ultimately went for the Republicans. Final results not in, but it seems Montana's seat will stay Democratic. The only pickup was Nevada.

    Governors: Some key probabilities I noted beforehand (off FiveThirtyEight) were Florida (+4D); Wisconisin (+2D); Georgia (+1R); Nevada (+1R); Ohio (+1D); CT (+5D); Iowa (+2D); Kansas (+1.5R); Alaska (+4R); Oklahoma & South Dakota +7R.

    Actually not bad overall, but two of the most infuriating shortfalls of the election occurred in Georgia and Florida. In Florida Mr. '#1 with racists' won by <1% against an aggressive and capable black candidate. In Georgia, another aggressive and capable black candidate lost by 2% to the Republican Secretary of State running for governor, who was overseeing his own election and deciding who would and would not get to vote (hint: hundreds of thousands of probable Dem voters would not get to vote). It would take another post to summarize all the irregularities and malfeasance that transpired under this man's remit; I'll tag in ACIN to handle that.

    The rest of the bad is that close races were lost in South Dakota, Ohio, and Iowa, and the Republicans took Alaska from the Independent incumbent (who suspended his campaign at the last minute and endorsed the Dem candidate). Still, picking up 7 governorships while preserving your holdings is a good showing. At least the despised Repubican incumbent of Wisconsin, Scott Walker, was finally ousted (albeit narrowly).

    State Legislatures: Democrats controlled 32/99. According to Ballotpedia, they picked up 6 and lost 1. :yawn:


    Ballot Initiatives: Florida just restored voting rights to over a million felons. Suppress that. Michigan, Missouri, and Colorado approved non-partisan redistricting committees. Several states expanded Medicaid and raised minimum wages.
    People put too much emphasis on the Senate. The Senate is structured to be a GOP stronghold. Guaranteed dominance for the few dozen rural states leave them to focus their energy on 5 or so states for control of the chamber.
    Also, the loss Dems experienced was a consistent loss of moderate Dems in Trump country, while Dems did pickup a spot in the increasingly blue Nevada. This year just ended up being structurally bad since the increasing polarization of the country is turning more and more states into solid red/blue camps. The division is real and I don't see how Dems even thought they could hold on in those regions when the idea of a Democrat now evokes hostility to Trumpists.

    Those state legislatures/governorships are the big win. Dems now have trifectas in three more states and each state which elected a Dem governor will be immune to outright GOP gerrymandering in 2021.

    Unless the Democratic Party enters Berserker mode soon, this is a fragile platform from which to prosecute a 2020 campaign...
    The party is too weak to evoke this energy, I think we both realize this by now. Listening to Trump and Pelosi back to back is a world of difference. The leadership is too old, too removed from the ground to understand how the future needs to play out.
    Grassroots movements are emerging and are showing their potential in races like Georgia, Florida, and Texas. Beto single handily carried an extra 2-3 Texas districts to flip even if his own run did not succeed. While at the end of the day a win is better than promise, it's good news that we now see a viable means to effectively fighting than simply spitballing among each other and relying on the DNC's internal structure to adapt and innovate. They are just as slow to react as the RNC in the 2016 primaries.
    Last edited by a completely inoffensive name; 11-08-2018 at 06:48.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    lol

    Low baseline turnout in America is definitely tied to the general state of society and politics rather than tactical decisions by cycle; if GOP tactics surged turnout by even 2% for their candidates though, that's enough to blunt the effects of a blue wave, because overall turnout is depressed compared to other countries. The lesson again is that the Democratic Party needs a concrete, intelligible, and long-term national agenda that includes explicitly disempowering Republicans. Momentum has to build toward the presidential election, not deflate. Let's aim for over 70% turnout for 2020, 60% 2022, etc. The worst thing would be if underwhelming results today discouraged turnout later.

    Just to be clear, the results were not bad, they were 'mixed' - the problem is we need better than mixed at this juncture, especially with 2020 in mind.

    Some bits of good news I didn't mention:

    New York Senate is finally under Democratic control, which has almost never happened in modern history.
    There are two more "socialists" in Congress (Rashida Tlaib and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez).
    Many socialists won local races throughout the country.
    Many useful ballot initiatives were passed throughout the country (that I didn't list above).
    No one ever said the battle for America's soul was going to be easy. Even an outright sweep of both chambers and the executive in 2020 would not settle this. We are in the beginnings of Act 3 of what could be a full 5 part Shakespearean tragedy. This election has seen the first native-Americans, bisexuals, and socialists elected to the House ever. This country also sends to its capitol Neo-Nazi's and authoritarian sycophants. It is truly becoming a battleground of humanity in all of its forms. We simultaneously frighten and inspire ourselves to a degree that will carry both sides forward for decades to come.
    Last edited by a completely inoffensive name; 11-08-2018 at 07:28.
    In all these papers we see a love of honest work, an aversion to shams, a caution in the enunciation of conclusions, a distrust of rash generalizations and speculations based on uncertain premises. He was never anxious to add one more guess on doubtful matters in the hope of hitting the truth, or what might pass as such for a time, but was always ready to take infinite pains in the most careful testing of every theory. With these qualities was united a modesty which forbade the pushing of his own claims and desired no reputation except the unsought tribute of competent judges.

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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by a completely inoffensive name View Post
    No one ever said the battle for America's soul was going to be easy. Even an outright sweep of both chambers and the executive in 2020 would not settle this. We are in the beginnings of Act 3 of what could be a full 5 part Shakespearean tragedy. This election has seen the first native-Americans, bisexuals, and socialists elected to the House ever. This country also sends to its capitol Neo-Nazi's and authoritarian sycophants. It is truly becoming a battleground of humanity in all of its forms. We simultaneously frighten and inspire ourselves to a degree that will carry both sides forward for decades to come.
    We are seeing the massive downside of a written constitution: the inability to alter as reality alters. The Senate is hilariously imbalanced regarding the "one person, one vote" but of course every state only gets the same number of Senators and the Senate is the senior chamber. Things would be better if the House was the senior chamber since they represent more closely the people (at least the numbers of people). But this highly unlikely to change since why would the "loosers" in a rebalance vote to reduce their power? Because they are there for the people?

    If things can not gently move to a new stable state, they tend to do so in a more violent jolt. Perhaps the "solution" would be a rebalancing of the states vs Federal power to help paper over the disagreements.

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    Iron Fist Senior Member Husar's Avatar
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    lol

    Low baseline turnout in America is definitely tied to the general state of society and politics rather than tactical decisions by cycle; if GOP tactics surged turnout by even 2% for their candidates though, that's enough to blunt the effects of a blue wave, because overall turnout is depressed compared to other countries. The lesson again is that the Democratic Party needs a concrete, intelligible, and long-term national agenda that includes explicitly disempowering Republicans. Momentum has to build toward the presidential election, not deflate. Let's aim for over 70% turnout for 2020, 60% 2022, etc. The worst thing would be if underwhelming results today discouraged turnout later.
    I'm not sure why you bring up tactics. My suggestions to begin with would simply be:

    1) Automatic voter registration. People need to be sent invites to come and vote, not required to register in places that open once a month on workdays.
    2) The elections should be held on Sundays, not on workdays. Maybe even declare the day a public holiday, forcing most businesses to close (in that case you may leave it on a Tuesday if you want).

    Once you solved that, you can look at gerrymandering and all the other oligarchic traits of the system that remain.
    Your biggest problem though, appears to be that many do not want any of these changes for ideological and selfish reasons.
    Last edited by Husar; 11-08-2018 at 15:29.


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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by rory_20_uk View Post
    We are seeing the massive downside of a written constitution: the inability to alter as reality alters. The Senate is hilariously imbalanced regarding the "one person, one vote" but of course every state only gets the same number of Senators and the Senate is the senior chamber. Things would be better if the House was the senior chamber since they represent more closely the people (at least the numbers of people). But this highly unlikely to change since why would the "loosers" in a rebalance vote to reduce their power? Because they are there for the people?

    If things can not gently move to a new stable state, they tend to do so in a more violent jolt. Perhaps the "solution" would be a rebalancing of the states vs Federal power to help paper over the disagreements.

    When written, the Constitution called for a bicameral legislature with divided powers -- neither was supposed to be "senior" per se. Congress collectively was allocated to declare war. The Senate got 'advice and consent' over treaties and appointments and sits in judgment during an impeachment, but the HOUSE got the power, to impeach and ALL budget/funding bills must originate in the House. The House was directly elected by the people of their districts, whereas the Senators were selected by their state governments. None of these federal representatives were supposed to spend more than 2/3 of their time at the Capitol, and were supposed to be regularly in touch and beholden to their constituencies (the persons of their district or the government of their states respectively). The Presidency was to administer the laws established by Congress, head up national defenses as funded by Congress, and conduct foreign relations.


    Obviously, in practice, it doesn't really function like that at all anymore, and never worked quite like it had been blue-printed. Though written to constrain the powers of the federal government, particularly the executive, the House has abrogated the development of a budget to the executive; Senators are directly elected state wide and for longer terms than the governors of the states they represent and can, effectively, operate almost independently of increasingly redundant state governments (subject to the practical needs/connections needed to secure re-election), and Congress as a whole has largely turned over War decisions to the executive aside from pro forma votes to 'authorize' the military actions already being taken by the Executive. Direct taxation via the 16th further marginalizes state government since they do not fund the federal government via apportionment anymore.

    Power is concentrating in the hands of the Senate (who have costly elections, but only stand one year in six) and the executive -- which always seek to acquire power. The house is too busy fundraising for re-election to make much time for governance.

    But changes have been made to the written document and have had a sweeping impact.

    I would venture to say that one amendment more -- the removal of the electoral college in favor of either a popular vote or a Federal district by district vote across -- would see the USA as a proper social democracy in no more than 3 Presidential election cycles.

    I don't see us getting around to a fuller revision of things to reflect what is really out there -- abolition of state government in favor of regional administrative districts that reflect population centers and do not adhere to silly impracticalities like according 2 Senators to Montana (Population 1.1M) and 2 Senators to California (Population 39.6M); federal districts assigned an appropriate number of representatives elected from that district; laws proposed by subject matter experts working for the executive by requiring the advice and consent of the representatives, etc.

    We are too enamored of tradition to rationalize our government structure to reflect its practice.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Did not expect that last sentence to be spoken by you Seamus. Have you joined Monty's camp of radical restructuring?
    In all these papers we see a love of honest work, an aversion to shams, a caution in the enunciation of conclusions, a distrust of rash generalizations and speculations based on uncertain premises. He was never anxious to add one more guess on doubtful matters in the hope of hitting the truth, or what might pass as such for a time, but was always ready to take infinite pains in the most careful testing of every theory. With these qualities was united a modesty which forbade the pushing of his own claims and desired no reputation except the unsought tribute of competent judges.

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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by ACIN
    You are right that ultimately there is another variable, which is the Republican energy. But you are basing this on hindsight. Typically when one side is energized, there is a reciprocated lethargy for the opposition such as when 2012 saw Obama still win by a very comfortable margin despite 4 years of GOP death panel momentum up to that point. Chalk this round to the consistent abnormality of Trumpian politics.
    The trouble is in the lesson:

    For the Democrats, the lesson is build turnout by mobilizing grassroots with direct participation, uplifting candidates, and promises of "dignity", economic security, and a more just balance of power.

    For Republicans, the lesson is to embrace Blood and Soil rhetoric, and a death struggle against the liberal menace.

    This orientation will be intensified, orthogonally to how I believe the progressive shift should be intensified on the Dems' part, precisely because it's what the base is drawn to, and if it's successful Republicans will adopt it and if they adopt it they will be hemmed into that choice (Weberian dialectic again).

    Just another indication that what comes after Trump will be worse.

    (The other day I read a piece by an oblivious liberal type on how Americans don't take politics that seriously as evidenced by the way common folk still treat each other civilly in everyday interactions. What, are 5% of us supposed to be continually engaged in running street battles between partisans for it to be a true schism? 10%? Even 1% would be halfway to failed statehood... minds stuck on a permanent Zeno treadmill.)

    People put too much emphasis on the Senate. The Senate is structured to be a GOP stronghold. Guaranteed dominance for the few dozen rural states leave them to focus their energy on 5 or so states for control of the chamber.
    Also, the loss Dems experienced was a consistent loss of moderate Dems in Trump country, while Dems did pickup a spot in the increasingly blue Nevada. This year just ended up being structurally bad since the increasing polarization of the country is turning more and more states into solid red/blue camps. The division is real and I don't see how Dems even thought they could hold on in those regions when the idea of a Democrat now evokes hostility to Trumpists.
    No one ever said the battle for America's soul was going to be easy. Even an outright sweep of both chambers and the executive in 2020 would not settle this. We are in the beginnings of Act 3 of what could be a full 5 part Shakespearean tragedy. This election has seen the first native-Americans, bisexuals, and socialists elected to the House ever. This country also sends to its capitol Neo-Nazi's and authoritarian sycophants. It is truly becoming a battleground of humanity in all of its forms. We simultaneously frighten and inspire ourselves to a degree that will carry both sides forward for decades to come.
    While the Senate defeats, particularly in Texas and Florida, were some of the most painful of the election, I agree that they were flesh wounds. Beto will "rise again". The governor-race defeats in Florida and (I'm just going to write off) Georgia are mor consequential.

    IIRC even in the 18th century the basis for representation in the Senate was considered a suboptimal arrangement (compromise). The Framers would certainly shit if they saw the Wyoming-California disparity. I don't have a lot of good takes on solutions here. I would definitely like something comprehensive (as in all things) and sweeping to be debated rather than more narrow technical adjustments.

    Weirdly enough, Montana is more Democratic than West Virginia at this point (I'm not referring to just the Senate race). As I have argued elsewhere the "Obama-Trump" phenomenon is oversubscribed relative to its real nature and scope, but West Virginia as a whole state could be personified as an archetypical Obama-Trump voter, they've dumped the Democratic Party so harshly. I fear their capacity to accept even a Sanders trying to sell them the economic intervention they want, if their cultural and racial anxieties are not simultaneously assuaged.

    As we saw evinced in many of the ballot propositions (though resource extraction companies lobbied rather successfully on their own turf), Republicans like many Democratic policies, but they hate the Democratic Party and embrace the Republican Party's worldview and symbolic politics.

    But here's the deal: almost every state can be turned, given time. Is there a single state in the union that hasn't in the past 30 years sent a single Democrat to the Senate, or to the state capital? There are NOT more than 25 states that can be expected to reliably seat Republican senators. 10 years ago there were nearly 60 Dem senators. Plus you can't gerrymander the Senate (unless for some reason you want to repeal the 17th Amendment ).

    The left needs insistent counterpropaganda just to negate the saturation of far-right ideology and thinking, not even to persuade but to desaturate. Mere exposure could have a dramatic effect in enabling independent thought. Since the Republican advantage here is in their wealthy patrons, how do we out-billionaire the right, even as we (justifiably) break with billionaire patronage? And what about MSNBC and CNN, which would struggle to be suitably informational even if they were government-owned and run by activists? They have a stultifying effect on viewers that arguably only helps enable the Fox LMOE silo...


    Grassroots movements are emerging and are showing their potential in races like Georgia, Florida, and Texas. Beto single handily carried an extra 2-3 Texas districts to flip even if his own run did not succeed. While at the end of the day a win is better than promise, it's good news that we now see a viable means to effectively fighting than simply spitballing among each other and relying on the DNC's internal structure to adapt and innovate. They are just as slow to react as the RNC in the 2016 primaries.
    One positive indicator during the midterms was the especially elevated turnout of the "youth". Millennials aren't so young anymore, but if their turnout could be boosted above 50% that would guarantee long-term Democratic majorities in most of the country right quick.

    A negative indicator is that millennial Republicans are especially horrid, 4chan demolitionists in the meat. Boomer Republicans have convictions and instincts (bad ones); their younger counterparts have a conscious Sith Lord mission. You will be hard-pressed to find worse people than young college-educated Republicans. Bork Republicans in the 1980s became dominant Republicans under Obama; Bannon Republicans will become dominant by the end of the coming decade I expect. I guess my point is, what the caucus loses in numbers as Boomers decline, they will gain in fervor and unity.



    By the way, have you had a chance to read the discussion between HG Wells and Stalin I linked for you in the other thread? It's surprisingly evergreen in its essence.

    Husar: I know, I was just trying to relate the effects of turnout to this specific election.
    Last edited by Montmorency; 11-08-2018 at 20:10.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by a completely inoffensive name View Post
    Did not expect that last sentence to be spoken by you Seamus. Have you joined Monty's camp of radical restructuring?
    I too am enamored of tradition. I'd scrag the 16-18th ammendments and push power back to the states.

    But it will not happen. A more or less Euro-style social democracy will happen.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Seamus Fermanagh View Post
    I too am enamored of tradition. I'd scrag the 16-18th ammendments and push power back to the states.

    But it will not happen. A more or less Euro-style social democracy will happen.
    Since America is so exceptional, let's be ambitious and envision Europe becoming an American-style socialist democracy. If not us, then who?

    18th Amendment repealed already.

    16th Amendment repeal: what are the benefits? What good comes from disempowering the federal government (empowering state governments is not even a corollary)? If we're gonna cancel all federal debt, I would prefer it to be in the process of shattering plutocracy and increasing federal intervention.

    17th Amendment repeal: it's rare that I find a document that in so few words demolishes a notion in so many ways.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by rory_20_uk View Post
    We are seeing the massive downside of a written constitution: the inability to alter as reality alters. The Senate is hilariously imbalanced regarding the "one person, one vote" but of course every state only gets the same number of Senators and the Senate is the senior chamber. Things would be better if the House was the senior chamber since they represent more closely the people (at least the numbers of people). But this highly unlikely to change since why would the "loosers" in a rebalance vote to reduce their power? Because they are there for the people?

    If things can not gently move to a new stable state, they tend to do so in a more violent jolt. Perhaps the "solution" would be a rebalancing of the states vs Federal power to help paper over the disagreements.

    I don't see the connection to written vs unwritten Constitutions. If you are suggesting that changing the rules on the fly would be more stable does not jive with what we are seeing in the house and senate. Many of the "unwritten" rules have been discarded, and has only contributed to more instability, more polarization. In fact much of our government is precisely the opposite of how you portray it. Only the basic structure is written down, the rest are social norms.

    Society itself cannot agree on what we should be, whether the previous system was written down or not makes no difference.
    In all these papers we see a love of honest work, an aversion to shams, a caution in the enunciation of conclusions, a distrust of rash generalizations and speculations based on uncertain premises. He was never anxious to add one more guess on doubtful matters in the hope of hitting the truth, or what might pass as such for a time, but was always ready to take infinite pains in the most careful testing of every theory. With these qualities was united a modesty which forbade the pushing of his own claims and desired no reputation except the unsought tribute of competent judges.

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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by a completely inoffensive name View Post
    I don't see the connection to written vs unwritten Constitutions. If you are suggesting that changing the rules on the fly would be more stable does not jive with what we are seeing in the house and senate. Many of the "unwritten" rules have been discarded, and has only contributed to more instability, more polarization. In fact much of our government is precisely the opposite of how you portray it. Only the basic structure is written down, the rest are social norms.

    Society itself cannot agree on what we should be, whether the previous system was written down or not makes no difference.
    So you've got the worst of both worlds - a rigid basic structure that in essence can't be altered and all the "fixes" not which can be bulldozed. I don't think that suddenly changing things is a good idea or even possible given the existing frameworks.

    In times where things are homogeneous this can be easily overlooked, but now when the need for strong processes is more clear than ever (with the popular vote and the elected officials diverging ever wider) the ability to change the core appears to be absent.

    So, given all that is in place, the only realistic solution would be for the Federal government to try to do better on less tasks and leave the states themselves to focus on aspects that are not agreed on - the 2nd amendment (and Supreme Court interpretation aside), it might well be that some states would ban guns and others would not. Clearly pretending everyone is exactly the same is working less and less well.

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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    ACIN, about California's turnout: if you include all eligible voters, turnout wasn't even 30% turnout. Going by 7.3 million votes so far in the governor's race (7.2 million for House), 25.6 million eligible voters, and 18 to 19 million registered (where you got 37% I gather). Even less turnout in the Senate race (25% turnout of eligible). Is this what happens when you're known as the state of surplus voters? It's crazy that Florida could cast more votes (8.2 million) than California with hardly half the population. I raise an eyebrow at the people who are confident a meta-gerrymandered sexpartite California could reliably deliver 12 Dem Senators.



    In updates on the election, votes are still being counted in several congressional districts.

    Arizona Senate race still tallying, but it looks like the Democrat will win this one after all. If so, only a 2-seat gain by Republicans.

    Dem Stacey Abrams in Georgia governor race refuses to concede the election and is demanding a recount. ACIN, seriously, do a review of the shadiness in the Georgia election, up to and including the hundreds of missing (hidden) voting machines and the apparent thousands of early votes that were not tallied for some reason.

    Florida counts/recounts are ongoing and the gap in the Senate race is just 0.2% (0.4% in the governor race).

    The skin-of-the-teeth nearness of a real national Dem sweep should only galvanize us all to try harder. Remember that the overall popular vote surge for Dems is at least that of the historic Republican surges of 1994 and 2010.


    Quote Originally Posted by rory_20_uk View Post
    So you've got the worst of both worlds - a rigid basic structure that in essence can't be altered and all the "fixes" not which can be bulldozed. I don't think that suddenly changing things is a good idea or even possible given the existing frameworks.

    In times where things are homogeneous this can be easily overlooked, but now when the need for strong processes is more clear than ever (with the popular vote and the elected officials diverging ever wider) the ability to change the core appears to be absent.

    So, given all that is in place, the only realistic solution would be for the Federal government to try to do better on less tasks and leave the states themselves to focus on aspects that are not agreed on - the 2nd amendment (and Supreme Court interpretation aside), it might well be that some states would ban guns and others would not. Clearly pretending everyone is exactly the same is working less and less well.

    Devolving to the states would leave most of America indicating like a Third-World country.
    Last edited by Montmorency; 11-09-2018 at 13:53.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by rory_20_uk View Post
    So you've got the worst of both worlds - a rigid basic structure that in essence can't be altered and all the "fixes" not which can be bulldozed. I don't think that suddenly changing things is a good idea or even possible given the existing frameworks.

    In times where things are homogeneous this can be easily overlooked, but now when the need for strong processes is more clear than ever (with the popular vote and the elected officials diverging ever wider) the ability to change the core appears to be absent.

    So, given all that is in place, the only realistic solution would be for the Federal government to try to do better on less tasks and leave the states themselves to focus on aspects that are not agreed on - the 2nd amendment (and Supreme Court interpretation aside), it might well be that some states would ban guns and others would not. Clearly pretending everyone is exactly the same is working less and less well.

    What we're seeing in the US, and UK for that matter, is the limits of democracy. We're used to an establishment that sets out reasonable choices before the electorate for them to choose from. We now have batshit insane and openly corrupt ideas being actively pursued, and an electorate that disregards objective truth in favour of their deliverer of rhetoric of choice. Some time in the C19 there was a famous case where a state legislature voted to set pi to 3.2. The state senate dismissed that, saying that "mathematical truth is not in the remit of government". Nowadays, such is the abuse of democratic ideals, that kind of crap and more would be directly passed by the electorate.

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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    Devolving to the states would leave most of America indicating like a Third-World country.
    That is a shame. This is increasingly why countries think that on balance perhaps the Chinese model works better - when you've got a problem with over a million people, you can just lock them all up without trial. Simple!

    An enemy that wishes to die for their country is the best sort to face - you both have the same aim in mind.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by rory_20_uk View Post
    That is a shame. This is increasingly why countries think that on balance perhaps the Chinese model works better - when you've got a problem with over a million people, you can just lock them all up without trial. Simple!

    Everyone wants the whole plate.

    I'm currently reading this alternate history novel of the early Roman Empire in which the Romans underwent an industrial revolution and Jesus is a terrorist mastermind.

    The author is one of those Liberals and expressed annoyance that people wrote to her adoring all the nice material aspects of Roman industrial and political domination, while ignoring negative aspects like torture and repression of dissidents and free speech.

    I think we should avoid relying on circular logic about the integrity of the "cause"/"revolution"/"will of the people" to oppress people who may not be on board. The logical conclusion is some version of Pol Pot's Cambodia or Robespierre's France, where "he who protests is an enemy; he who opposes is a corpse." That always devolves back into violent anarchy or low-authoritarian capture. We have to break that old story to have any hope for the future.

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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by rory_20_uk View Post
    So you've got the worst of both worlds - a rigid basic structure that in essence can't be altered and all the "fixes" not which can be bulldozed. I don't think that suddenly changing things is a good idea or even possible given the existing frameworks.

    In times where things are homogeneous this can be easily overlooked, but now when the need for strong processes is more clear than ever (with the popular vote and the elected officials diverging ever wider) the ability to change the core appears to be absent.

    So, given all that is in place, the only realistic solution would be for the Federal government to try to do better on less tasks and leave the states themselves to focus on aspects that are not agreed on - the 2nd amendment (and Supreme Court interpretation aside), it might well be that some states would ban guns and others would not. Clearly pretending everyone is exactly the same is working less and less well.

    Has the British model shown any better promise? Brexit is jeopardizing everything to the point where an independent Scotland and a unified Ireland is not out of the question if May ends up delivering a hard Brexit with hard borders.
    Where is this flexibility on the part of Parliament to adapt to the country as it lives today?

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    ACIN, about California's turnout: if you include all eligible voters, turnout wasn't even 30% turnout. Going by 7.3 million votes so far in the governor's race (7.2 million for House), 25.6 million eligible voters, and 18 to 19 million registered (where you got 37% I gather). Even less turnout in the Senate race (25% turnout of eligible). Is this what happens when you're known as the state of surplus voters? It's crazy that Florida could cast more votes (8.2 million) than California with hardly half the population. I raise an eyebrow at the people who are confident a meta-gerrymandered sexpartite California could reliably deliver 12 Dem Senators.



    In updates on the election, votes are still being counted in several congressional districts.

    Arizona Senate race still tallying, but it looks like the Democrat will win this one after all. If so, only a 2-seat gain by Republicans.

    Dem Stacey Abrams in Georgia governor race refuses to concede the election and is demanding a recount. ACIN, seriously, do a review of the shadiness in the Georgia election, up to and including the hundreds of missing (hidden) voting machines and the apparent thousands of early votes that were not tallied for some reason.

    Florida counts/recounts are ongoing and the gap in the Senate race is just 0.2% (0.4% in the governor race).

    The skin-of-the-teeth nearness of a real national Dem sweep should only galvanize us all to try harder. Remember that the overall popular vote surge for Dems is at least that of the historic Republican surges of 1994 and 2010.
    I agree with everything you are saying here. Hope I haven't given the opposite impression.

    6 California's would give 9 Dems and 3 Reps just FYI.
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by a completely inoffensive name View Post
    Has the British model shown any better promise? Brexit is jeopardizing everything to the point where an independent Scotland and a unified Ireland is not out of the question if May ends up delivering a hard Brexit with hard borders.
    Where is this flexibility on the part of Parliament to adapt to the country as it lives today?
    The institutions exist that can provide flexibility: an elected House that legislates, and an appointed House that scrutinises. The problem is the fanatical belief in the infallibility of the elected House, and the idiots currently ruling the roost in the elected House (of all parties). The Lords have repeatedly pointed out the holes in the Brexit arguments provided by the Commons. Unfortunately both main p;arties in the Commons want Brexit.

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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by Pannonian View Post
    The institutions exist that can provide flexibility: an elected House that legislates, and an appointed House that scrutinises. The problem is the fanatical belief in the infallibility of the elected House, and the idiots currently ruling the roost in the elected House (of all parties). The Lords have repeatedly pointed out the holes in the Brexit arguments provided by the Commons. Unfortunately both main p;arties in the Commons want Brexit.
    So it sounds like your unwritten Constitution has failed as well.
    In all these papers we see a love of honest work, an aversion to shams, a caution in the enunciation of conclusions, a distrust of rash generalizations and speculations based on uncertain premises. He was never anxious to add one more guess on doubtful matters in the hope of hitting the truth, or what might pass as such for a time, but was always ready to take infinite pains in the most careful testing of every theory. With these qualities was united a modesty which forbade the pushing of his own claims and desired no reputation except the unsought tribute of competent judges.

  28. #28
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by a completely inoffensive name View Post
    So it sounds like your unwritten Constitution has failed as well.
    It takes less work to put it right. The Common actually listening to the Lords would be something that is doable in the immediate future. The Commons not threatening the Lords with dissolution whenever the latter disagreed with the former would be another step immediately doable. Just replace the idiots heading the Labour party with someone marginally effective in opposition (hello Stella Creasy, Yvette Cooper, etc.), and most of the current worst abuses of the British system would work itself out. It's taking the active collaboration of both main parties, in a system where there's supposed to be a permanent opposition, to override existing checks and balances. An equivalent in US terms would be Republicans and Democrats actively collaborating to bring something about which every scientist in the land says is a catastrophically bad idea. If you live in a democracy, and the largest parties work together to be stupid, there's not much you can do.

  29. #29
    Darkside Medic Senior Member rory_20_uk's Avatar
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    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by a completely inoffensive name View Post
    Has the British model shown any better promise? Brexit is jeopardizing everything to the point where an independent Scotland and a unified Ireland is not out of the question if May ends up delivering a hard Brexit with hard borders.
    Where is this flexibility on the part of Parliament to adapt to the country as it lives today?
    This was a plebiscite. So this is one time that Brexit has absolutely no relevance whatsoever. It was a decision by the PM to hold it and not one that the country expected to get since the EU seems to get on best when the people are sidelined.

    I personally prefer the German model to what we have in the UK - I think that the UK model is better than that in the USA - but you set thebar very low.

    An enemy that wishes to die for their country is the best sort to face - you both have the same aim in mind.
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    "If you can't trust the local kleptocrat whom you installed by force and prop up with billions of annual dollars, who can you trust?" Lemur
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  30. #30

    Default Re: US "Mid-term" Elections 2018

    Quote Originally Posted by a completely inoffensive name View Post
    I agree with everything you are saying here. Hope I haven't given the opposite impression.

    6 California's would give 9 Dems and 3 Reps just FYI.
    I was speaking more to the thread than you, except where I named you.

    Bro, how do California place fewer votes than Florida with twice the population size? That's shameful my dude.
    Vitiate Man.

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