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Old 24th July 2011, 03:45 PM   #1
amused
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Bury Gerry - American Voters Are Cowards

US congressional districts come up for re-election every two years. In every one of those elections, the incumbent is generally 'safe' in 85% of all the seats because of gerrymandering. The lines are drawn to give the incumbent a safe margin for one political party or the other. So, if the lines enclose 55% of the people who always vote straight party, the other 45% are automatically disenfranchised from their own government. Taxation without representation in its ugliest form, because it's a system pretending to be something that it is not.

But it's really even more evil than that. Because the politicians can fool that 55% into voting on party lines by appealing to emotional hot button issues, that 55% is also disenfranchised from true representation. Which frees our US congressmen to take contributions from multi-national companies/organizations and work to enrich themselves and the foreign lobby while ignoring the people in the district they were elected to represent.

According to the US Constitution:

Quote:
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.
Selling influence to multi-national interests to anyone else except us, in our own congress, is adhering to our enemies, and hence, treason. Our US congressmen are getting away with this because of gerrymandered districts. I think we should require the boundaries of all US congressional districts to be drawn such that the length of the perimeter is the smallest distance possible. The end result would be a pattern of interlocking hexagons, much like a beehive. Our representatives in the US congress would then be tightly linked to the district that they represent, and each of us would have a true voice in our own government.

It's way past time to Bury Gerry. The only reason that this system stays in place is because most American voters are cowards.

Last edited by amused; 24th July 2011 at 04:21 PM.
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Old 24th July 2011, 05:04 PM   #2
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amused, your title on this forum is "Critical Thinker".

Can you show us, with reputable citations, which parts of your post indicate critical thinking?
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Old 24th July 2011, 06:58 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
amused, your title on this forum is "Critical Thinker".

Not that I know this for certain, but I strongly suspect that “Critical Thinker” is just one of the standard, default titles, that each user gets based on how many posts he has made, unless he has requested and received a “custom title”. That this title appears under Amused's name doesn't mean that Amused is claiming anything; it only means that Amused has not received a custom title, and that based on the number of posts he has made, this forum is assigning him “Critical Thinker” by default.

I believe your title, “Illuminator” is similarly a default title. When you had 341 posts, your title surely read “Critical Thinker”, and when/if Amused reaches 4,494 posts, unless he requests and receives a custom title before then, his title will read “Illuminator”.

Mine is a “custom title”, which I requested and was granted.

Last edited by Bob Blaylock; 24th July 2011 at 07:07 PM. Reason: A man without a forklift is nothing. May the Forks be with you.
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Old 24th July 2011, 07:22 PM   #4
theprestige
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Originally Posted by Bob Blaylock View Post
Not that I know this for certain, but I strongly suspect that “Critical Thinker” is just one of the standard, default titles, that each user gets based on how many posts he has made, unless he has requested and received a “custom title”. That this title appears under Amused's name doesn't mean that Amused is claiming anything; it only means that Amused has not received a custom title, and that based on the number of posts he has made, this forum is assigning him “Critical Thinker” by default.

I believe your title, “Illuminator” is similarly a default title. When you had 341 posts, your title surely read “Critical Thinker”, and when/if Amused reaches 4,494 posts, unless he requests and receives a custom title before then, his title will read “Illuminator”.

Mine is a “custom title”, which I requested and was granted.
I know "Critical Thinker" is a default title. Hence my question for amused. Is any part of his post the result of critical thinking, or is it just a title he earned by posting a lot of nothing at all?

If someone were to complain that my posts illuminate nothing, I'd remind them that my title was not actually indicative of the quality of my arguments. Will our "critical thinker" do the same?
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Old 24th July 2011, 07:49 PM   #5
Bob Blaylock
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I know "Critical Thinker" is a default title. Hence my question for amused. Is any part of his post the result of critical thinking, or is it just a title he earned by posting a lot of nothing at all?

If someone were to complain that my posts illuminate nothing, I'd remind them that my title was not actually indicative of the quality of my arguments. Will our "critical thinker" do the same?

I don't see why he should. You haven't even pretended to address anything that he actually has said. Alas, neither have I. So far, nobody has posted any response in this thread which is in any way relevant to the OP, and to which it would make any sense for him to reply.
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Old 24th July 2011, 07:53 PM   #6
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Alas, I don't actually have much to say in response to the actual topic of this thread, but in the interest of trying to avoid completely derailing it, I'll say this:

I agree with the OP about gerrymandering. It is a corruption of the system by which we elect people to Congress.

I disagree with the use of the word “treason”. The Constitution rather strictly defines this term, and I think it is a rather absurd stretch of the Constitutional definition to apply it to gerrymandering.
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Old 25th July 2011, 10:28 AM   #7
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Bob - Okay, maybe 'treason' is a stretch. At the time they wrote the constitution the young nation's citizens were mostly immigrants and the framers were rightfully concerned about divided loyalties. But now, in an age of multi-national corporations that have 'personhood', we've come full circle and that concern still applies. Our representatives in our government are obligated to represent us. Nobody else, especially companies with non-US investments. I think that tightly drawn US congressional districts that are blind to voting patterns would force our representatives to actually represent us.

To "Illuminator" - <SNIP>

Edited by Locknar:  Edited, breach of rule 9.

Last edited by Locknar; 25th July 2011 at 05:59 PM.
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Old 25th July 2011, 02:00 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by amused View Post
The only reason that this system stays in place is because most American voters are cowards.
I don't entirely disagree with your central point about eliminating gerrymandering, but this particular sentence is nonsense. You could certainly argue that the reason the system of gerrymandering stays in place is because of cowardice on the part of American politicians, who prefer safe districts. But why place the blame on the voters?
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Old 25th July 2011, 02:39 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Bob Blaylock View Post
I don't see why he should. You haven't even pretended to address anything that he actually has said.
Actually, I asked for citations that supported his claims. Others seem to consider the truth of amused's claims to be self-evident. I, for one, remain skeptical. Several statements of fact are made, but no supporting evidence is presented. If the claims arise from critical thinking, can we be shown the critical thinking from which they arose?

I think I have directly addressed what he actually said, though apparently I obfuscated my point. So much for being an illumintator!
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Old 25th July 2011, 02:39 PM   #10
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One could argue that Gerrymandering is required in many cases in order to sustain minority representation in Congress. And if the end of Gerrymandering led to less minority-power or representation in govt., this would violate the Civil Rights Act of 1963.
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Old 25th July 2011, 03:35 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by amused View Post
US congressional districts come up for re-election every two years. In every one of those elections, the incumbent is generally 'safe' in 85% of all the seats because of gerrymandering. ...

Yer funny.
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Old 25th July 2011, 11:45 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Dayan81 View Post
One could argue that Gerrymandering is required in many cases in order to sustain minority representation in Congress. And if the end of Gerrymandering led to less minority-power or representation in govt., this would violate the Civil Rights Act of 1963.

Well, yes, one could argue that, but one who did would be an idiot and a racist.
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Old 26th July 2011, 12:28 AM   #13
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That is actually one of the persistant problems with gerrymandering: It's one of the edge cases.
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Old 26th July 2011, 02:49 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Brainster View Post
I don't entirely disagree with your central point about eliminating gerrymandering, but this particular sentence is nonsense. You could certainly argue that the reason the system of gerrymandering stays in place is because of cowardice on the part of American politicians, who prefer safe districts. But why place the blame on the voters?
Because voters get the government that they are willing tolerate. It's not just cowardice, it's also laziness. It's OUR government, they serve US. It's not some system imposed from above with no recourse.

Last edited by amused; 26th July 2011 at 04:16 AM.
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Old 26th July 2011, 03:14 AM   #15
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This is mostly a state and not federal matter. The Fed's originaly had little say in how states elected representatives.

I'm in favor of eliminating all districts and voting several representative in a state or large fraction of a state as at-large representatives.

The problem is that my political interests are not all based on geography. So if my state has 49% of voters are one-issue voters, but evenly distributed geographically, then it is likely this 49% will have no representation at all. If all the states representatives were voted at-large - then they should get proportional representation. It's clear which is more democratic. Forcing interested voters to co-locate to get any representation seems ridiculous.

I also think we should get rid of the "winner take all" for electoral college votes (2 states have proportional electoral college rep). Actually it's not clear why we can't just elect the presidents directly.

Last edited by stevea; 26th July 2011 at 03:16 AM.
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Old 4th September 2019, 09:59 AM   #16
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I wasn't sure where to put this so I'll put it here despite this thread being from about 8 years ago. I couldn't find one specifically on North Carolina, but it appears the state court has slapped down their revised map.

Quote:
"Partisan intent predominated over all other redistricting criteria resulting in extreme partisan gerrymandered legislative maps," the judges wrote. "The effect of these carefully crafted partisan maps is that, in all but the most unusual election scenarios, the Republican Party will control a majority of both chambers of the General Assembly. In other words, the court finds that in many election environments, it is the carefully crafted maps, and not the will of the voters, that dictate the election outcomes in a significant number of legislative districts and, ultimately, the majority control of the General Assembly."
The court gave them two weeks to take another crack at it. I think we'll be seeing this happen to both sides.

The judges kind of changed the game here too, from that same link:

Quote:
The judges also imposed rules on a new round of redistricting. The new mapmaking must start from scratch, all map-drawing must occur at public hearings with computer screens visible to everyone and any consultants hired by lawmakers must be approved by the court.
Here's to hoping it all gets sorted out properly. Though I doubt it, the GOP is going to do everything they can to keep fair maps from going through in these states.
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Old 4th September 2019, 10:30 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Bob Blaylock View Post
Well, yes, one could argue that, but one who did would be an idiot and a racist.
No, you're wrong on this. Districts have to be specifically (and often oddly) shaped in order to create districts in which a group which is a minority at the state level can still form a majority at the district level. Any minimum-boundary solution would largely eliminate such districts.
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Old 4th September 2019, 10:34 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by stevea View Post
The problem is that my political interests are not all based on geography. So if my state has 49% of voters are one-issue voters, but evenly distributed geographically, then it is likely this 49% will have no representation at all. If all the states representatives were voted at-large - then they should get proportional representation. It's clear which is more democratic.
That's not clear at all. State-wide representation may produce more democratic results on issues that do not have geographic dependency, but for essentially the same reason they will produce less democratic results on issues that do have geographic dependency.
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Old 4th September 2019, 10:35 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by amused View Post
Because voters get the government that they are willing tolerate. It's not just cowardice, it's also laziness. It's OUR government, they serve US. It's not some system imposed from above with no recourse.
Victim-blaming and breathlessly naïve nonsense.
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Old 4th September 2019, 10:37 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
No, you're wrong on this. Districts have to be specifically (and often oddly) shaped in order to create districts in which a group which is a minority at the state level can still form a majority at the district level. Any minimum-boundary solution would largely eliminate such districts.
I don't think he'll reply, he hasn't been around since 2014.
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Old 4th September 2019, 10:50 AM   #21
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My contributions to this thread did not age well at all.
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