IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » USA Politics
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Reply
Old 1st October 2021, 11:51 AM   #41
ahhell
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,800
Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Two Extremes don't exist?
Not if you are at one of those extremes. I'll leave it to Yak to figure out who in this conversation is actually trying to figure something out and actually explain the problem and who is name calling.

Last edited by ahhell; 1st October 2021 at 11:52 AM.
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 11:52 AM   #42
dudalb
Penultimate Amazing
 
dudalb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Sacramento
Posts: 53,035
Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
In no particular order...

1. Electoral college
2. Two senators per state
3. Gerrymandering
4. Senate filibuster
5. Robust anti-democracy movement
6. Robust fact-free bubble
7. Composition of Supreme Court
8. A system and a constitution that effectively comprise a suicide pact
9. A non trivial demographic of ignorant, bigoted, largely evangelical, generally unhinged crackpots, strong overlap with #5
Though I think the electorial college needs to either go or be adjusted, I don't think the Constituion is a suicide pact and am very skeptical that #2 is a problem. The whole idea is to give smaller states some means to protect themselves from being trampeled over by the larger states. And I do not like the idea of a overwhelmngly powerful central goverment that can reduce the states to just administrative conveiences...a trend that seems to be gaining power among "progressives".
And a lot of what you describe, though I agree they are serious problems, are going to tough to fix. You can't fix things like 6,5 and 9 by law.\
__________________
Pacifism is a shifty doctrine under which a man accepts the benefits of the social group without being willing to pay - and claims a halo for his dishonesty.

Robert Heinlein.

Last edited by dudalb; 1st October 2021 at 11:54 AM.
dudalb is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 11:53 AM   #43
dudalb
Penultimate Amazing
 
dudalb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Sacramento
Posts: 53,035
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
Not if you are at one of those extremes.
Of course we have to define extremes.
One of the problems is people here seem to see only the extremes on the left or the right, according to their political beliefs.
__________________
Pacifism is a shifty doctrine under which a man accepts the benefits of the social group without being willing to pay - and claims a halo for his dishonesty.

Robert Heinlein.
dudalb is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 11:54 AM   #44
JoeMorgue
Self Employed
Remittance Man
 
JoeMorgue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 35,556
The tactic of one side moving further to the extreme and demanding to "meet in the middle" only to move further to the extreme and again demanding to "meet in the middle" as a way to move the scale to their side is well established enough.
__________________
"When enough people make false promises, words stop meaning anything. Then there are no more answers, only better and better lies." - Jon Snow

"Every lie we tell incurs a debt to the truth. Sooner or later, that debt is paid." - Valery Legasov
JoeMorgue is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 12:11 PM   #45
lobosrul5
Master Poster
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 2,552
Originally Posted by Cosmic Yak View Post
I'm starting this thread because of what I'm reading on this forum about the US political landscape, and the reactions I've had when trying to discuss it.
I have been roundly insulted and attacked by the Democrats on this forum, and also kicked out of the Trump Conspiracy thread, twice, and had most of my posts removed from there by the mods.
The reason for this seems to be that, as a non-American, I simply don't understand the situation well enough to be able to make any kind of comment or contribution.
OK. Fair enough.
What I'm going to ask then, is that the Americans on this forum help me with this. Educate me. Please explain the horrible mess you're making of your country.
I'd like this to proceed in baby steps, if you don't mind, so I know I've got my head round the first part before moving on any further.
If that's acceptable, then I'd like to begin:
Right now, it seems to me that the Republicans think the Democrats are evil communist baby-eaters who hate America and Christianity.
On the other side, the Democrats think the Republicans are "barking, frothing at the mouth, swivel-eyed loons who simply want to crush anyone who fails to worship their chosen leader": irrational, racist rednecks, incapable of reason or compromise.
Each side hates the other with a passion. Each side thinks the other is evil, and represents the worst of humanity.
I do not recall this being a feature of earlier American politics. Thinking back to Bush Sr, Clinton, Reagan and Carter, I don't remember the debate being cast in these terms.
So, here's my question: has it always been like this? Have you guys always hated each other this much?
No I don't think that way about all republicans. Just the ones who are racist, irrational, and incapable of compromise etc. Which is the overwhelming percentage of Trumpers, ie people who actually like the guy rather than some people who just always vote R no matter what.

I'll give you some examples of things I've seen and heard from family in rural East Texas:

A cousin saying: "We ought to just hang that ****** in the white house", when Obama was president. This said at a large gathering with children present, no eyes were batted.

My uncle bitching and moaning about all the lazy ******* on welfare. Never ******* mind that he was on Medicaid at the time (thats free healthcare for impoverished people, not Medicare which is for everyone over 65 which he was not at the time).

Another cousin saying he'll just execute anyone he sees kneeling at a football game, if you hate this country you don't deserve to live.. this is a guy with a confederate flag bumper sticker on his truck.

Maybe you can kinda understand why I don't see both sides as equally bad or flip sides of the same coin etc?

ETA: oh and when the following news story broke, I heard an actual discussion that there is no way they would've done it had that ****** not deserved it. That happened one county over from us https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_James_Byrd_Jr.

Last edited by lobosrul5; 1st October 2021 at 01:01 PM.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 12:19 PM   #46
JoeMorgue
Self Employed
Remittance Man
 
JoeMorgue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 35,556
This is why there's been a concentrated effort to make sure the language is muddied so unpopular opinion and wrong opinion sound like the same thing.

The Wrong have made it so "No these are the facts" and "No I'm right simply because I say so" have the same optics.

We have to see through it.
__________________
"When enough people make false promises, words stop meaning anything. Then there are no more answers, only better and better lies." - Jon Snow

"Every lie we tell incurs a debt to the truth. Sooner or later, that debt is paid." - Valery Legasov
JoeMorgue is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 12:27 PM   #47
Venom
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 5,241
Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Two Extremes don't exist?
The Radical Right has been mainstream for at least two decades.

I can't find the Radical Left, which is surprising given how much I hear about it from Fox and Friends and the IDW people. Maybe they exist at some level in college campuses and run for office on fringe platforms, but that's always occurred on both sides. Maybe Mike Gravel who said 9/11 was an inside job? You don't often see guys like him on the big stage.
Venom is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 12:31 PM   #48
ahhell
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,800
Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Of course we have to define extremes.
One of the problems is people here seem to see only the extremes on the left or the right, according to their political beliefs.
There's a couple of cognitive biases that play into that. I forget the name of them but we have trouble seeing distinctions among the out group and see the distinctions within our in group in high relief. Makes it easy to go, "All blank think blank" and "Well sure some folks think blank but its only a small minority so quit nut picking my crazy uncle!"
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 12:32 PM   #49
JoeMorgue
Self Employed
Remittance Man
 
JoeMorgue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 35,556
Originally Posted by Venom View Post
The Radical Right has been mainstream for at least two decades.

I can't find the Radical Left, which is surprising given how much I hear about it from Fox and Friends and the IDW people. Maybe they exist at some level in college campuses and run for office on fringe platforms, but that's always occurred on both sides. Maybe Mike Gravel who said 9/11 was an inside job? You don't often see guys like him on the big stage.
It's more false "But no for some reason both sides have to be the same, they just have to be!" nonsense.

That's why the mythology of the "Oh if you don't say both sides are exactly the same that just means you're just biased" nonsense requires us to treat the President of the United States ordering a violent mob to storm the Capital and a C-list Liberal Comedian making a bad joke on Twitter to be the same thing.

Again I'm reminded of how many religious discussion I've had where there's just one annoying troll in it who spends the entire discussion trying to get atheist to admit that Dawkins is "an atheist fundamentalist."
__________________
"When enough people make false promises, words stop meaning anything. Then there are no more answers, only better and better lies." - Jon Snow

"Every lie we tell incurs a debt to the truth. Sooner or later, that debt is paid." - Valery Legasov
JoeMorgue is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 12:36 PM   #50
ahhell
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,800
Originally Posted by Venom View Post
The Radical Right has been mainstream for at least two decades.

I can't find the Radical Left, which is surprising given how much I hear about it from Fox and Friends and the IDW people. Maybe they exist at some level in college campuses and run for office on fringe platforms, but that's always occurred on both sides. Maybe Mike Gravel who said 9/11 was an inside job? You don't often see guys like him on the big stage.
What's the line, if you don't know who the radical leftist is then its probably you?

We are deciding to vote on bills with a larger price tag than anything in US snice world war 2 with a group of congress folks who don't think they are big enough, but you don't see where the radical left is? The notion that the US is founded on evil and still institutionally evil(racism), is common talk these days, no radical left though, just reasonable discourse.

Not to mention, if its mainstream, its no longer radical, which is really what happened to the radical left. The weathermen all became college professors.

Last edited by ahhell; 1st October 2021 at 12:48 PM.
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 12:46 PM   #51
lobosrul5
Master Poster
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 2,552
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
What's the line, if you don't know who the radical leftist is then its probably you?

We are deciding to vote on bills with a larger price tag than anything in US snice world war 2 with a group of congress folks who don't think they are big enough, but you don't see where the radical left is? The notion that the US is founded on evil and still institutionally evil(racism), is common talk these days, no radical left though, just reasonable discourse.

Not to mention, if its mainstream, its no longer radical, which is really what happened to the radical left. The weathermen all became college professors.
Trump signed into law in 4 consecutive years the largest budget ever at the time. Was he radically left wing at the time?

Last edited by lobosrul5; 1st October 2021 at 12:48 PM.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 12:50 PM   #52
ahhell
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,800
Originally Posted by lobosrul5 View Post
Trump signed into law in 4 consecutive years the largest budget ever at the time. Was he radically left wing at the time?
Just shows you how far to the left we've moved. Seriously, we now just accept modern monetary theory as reality.
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 12:59 PM   #53
lobosrul5
Master Poster
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 2,552
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
Just shows you how far to the left we've moved. Seriously, we now just accept modern monetary theory as reality.
Yes, when nearly the whole world... well the western world anyways... accepts a concept as mainstream it is no longer radical.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 01:08 PM   #54
Pacal
Graduate Poster
 
Pacal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,273
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
What's the line, if you don't know who the radical leftist is then its probably you?

We are deciding to vote on bills with a larger price tag than anything in US snice world war 2 with a group of congress folks who don't think they are big enough, but you don't see where the radical left is? The notion that the US is founded on evil and still institutionally evil(racism), is common talk these days, no radical left though, just reasonable discourse.

Not to mention, if its mainstream, its no longer radical, which is really what happened to the radical left. The weathermen all became college professors.
Hilarious. What some Americans think is "radical left" never ceases to amuse.
Pacal is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 01:10 PM   #55
JoeMorgue
Self Employed
Remittance Man
 
JoeMorgue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 35,556
I've avoided the whole "Hardy har there is no Left is America" thing because I think it sort is besides the point (and it will quickly become the entire argument) but there is a massive lack of perspective in America of how most politics plays out.
__________________
"When enough people make false promises, words stop meaning anything. Then there are no more answers, only better and better lies." - Jon Snow

"Every lie we tell incurs a debt to the truth. Sooner or later, that debt is paid." - Valery Legasov
JoeMorgue is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 01:19 PM   #56
lobosrul5
Master Poster
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 2,552
Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
I've avoided the whole "Hardy har there is no Left is America" thing because I think it sort is besides the point (and it will quickly become the entire argument) but there is a massive lack of perspective in America of how most politics plays out.
I could kinda see "the squad" as being representative of the far left*. They are 4 of 220 D reps. OTOH 175 (the large majority) of R reps are far right, as evidenced by their refusal to even investigate the Jan 6 attack.

Most far left people aren't even democrats... they are anarchists or actual communists. And they are maybe 1 or 2% of the total population. The far right feels right at home in the GOP, because they are the majority of the GOP. Thats a rather important difference.

Last edited by lobosrul5; 1st October 2021 at 01:34 PM.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 01:30 PM   #57
ahhell
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,800
And now we're at the there is not left in the US because Euro parties are so much more left. The reality is that left and right in the US does not map clearly to left and right in Europe. Most right parties Europe are nationalist and economically socialist or at least fine with expansive social welfare states in a way that doesn't really exist in the US. Until recently, we didn't have anything like that in the US.

Despite what many of you think, American conservative were not fascists until Trump. There was no Nationalism plus socialism in the US the way that is relatively common in Europe. We had nationalism plus economic liberalism.

There is also a great deal of ignorance in the US about how pretty much any other nation runs things.
The US may be the only country in the world that primaries for instance. In that way, we are much more democratic than any parliamentary system. Most places, the party chooses candidates. We actually elect the candidates openly.

Last edited by ahhell; 1st October 2021 at 01:35 PM.
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 01:36 PM   #58
JoeMorgue
Self Employed
Remittance Man
 
JoeMorgue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 35,556
Despite how much we've been butting heads I'll readily agree with you that we get to hung up on comparison between the US and European political scales. I've always been annoyed by arguments that treat the political spectrum like the electromagnetic spectrum, like it's something that actually exists in nature.

That all being said where we disagree is that actual facts exist that can declare one political side wrong even outside of comparing it to another.

The American Right is wrong because it is wrong, provably and objectively. Not because of falls here on this scale or doesn't match up to this scale.
__________________
"When enough people make false promises, words stop meaning anything. Then there are no more answers, only better and better lies." - Jon Snow

"Every lie we tell incurs a debt to the truth. Sooner or later, that debt is paid." - Valery Legasov
JoeMorgue is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 01:41 PM   #59
lobosrul5
Master Poster
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 2,552
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
And now we're at the there is not left in the US because Euro parties are so much more left. The reality is that left and right in the US does not map clearly to left and right in Europe. Most right parties Europe are nationalist and economically socialist or at least fine with expansive social welfare states in a way that doesn't really exist in the US. Until recently, we didn't have anything like that in the US.

Despite what many of you think, American conservative were not fascists until Trump. There was no Nationalism plus socialism in the US the way that is relatively common in Europe. We had nationalism plus economic liberalism.

There is also a great deal of ignorance in the US about how pretty much any other nation runs things.
The US may be the only country in the world that primaries for instance. In that way, we are much more democratic than any parliamentary system. Most places, the party chooses candidates. We actually elect the candidates openly.
Oh geez what a can of worms bringing up the primary system is. As I'm a resident in one of the last states to hold a presidential primary I've never had a say in it. Its always been over.

How much of the primary system is even codified in law? Are the parties required to conduct them or is it their choosing? Not all minor parties hold primaries BTW. Then theres super delegates (and yeah I know which party does 'em).

A quick google search shows that yes several other countries do have them but with different rules than we have.

ETA: As I recall one or the other major parties (I can't remember which honestly) was threatening to just ignore a states primary if they moved the date up. So, I can only conclude its the parties that are the ultimate arbitrator on how they select their candidate for POTUS. Even if the elections are held officialy, by each state.

Last edited by lobosrul5; 1st October 2021 at 01:46 PM.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 01:59 PM   #60
ahhell
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,800
Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Despite how much we've been butting heads I'll readily agree with you that we get to hung up on comparison between the US and European political scales. I've always been annoyed by arguments that treat the political spectrum like the electromagnetic spectrum, like it's something that actually exists in nature.

That all being said where we disagree is that actual facts exist that can declare one political side wrong even outside of comparing it to another.

The American Right is wrong because it is wrong, provably and objectively. Not because of falls here on this scale or doesn't match up to this scale.
I disagree with your certainty and your assumption that they all agree. You must assume that because you said they are wrong.

They also can't be wrong on all things. You can not be right about all things and you can't know what you are wrong about, neither can they.

If nothing else, the right is generally more correct in there understanding of what the left believes than the left is about the right. I was about to say they are more right about economics but, that's a very small subset of right. Don't get me wrong, the 40 percent of America that voted for Trump was wrong, I just don't think they are all wrong about everything, I also know they don't all agree about everything and some of them only voted for Trump because they dislike Dems and lefties so much. Which is the reason a lot of folks voted for Biden, it certainly isn't because he inspired them with his charisma, soring rhetoric, and clear plan for the US.
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 02:01 PM   #61
Blank
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 108
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
Most places, the party chooses candidates. We actually elect the candidates openly.
Having been a part of party politics I'd point out that the way the party chooses these candidates is usually by giving every party member a chance to vote among willing candidates from the party. The ones with most votes, go to the ballot.. Although this usually translates to "take whoever happens to volunteer" - especially in low level local elections.

Just because it isn't called a primary doesn't make it any less democratic.
Blank is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 02:05 PM   #62
ahhell
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,800
Originally Posted by lobosrul5 View Post
Oh geez what a can of worms bringing up the primary system is. As I'm a resident in one of the last states to hold a presidential primary I've never had a say in it. Its always been over.

How much of the primary system is even codified in law? Are the parties required to conduct them or is it their choosing? Not all minor parties hold primaries BTW. Then theres super delegates (and yeah I know which party does 'em).

A quick google search shows that yes several other countries do have them but with different rules than we have.

ETA: As I recall one or the other major parties (I can't remember which honestly) was threatening to just ignore a states primary if they moved the date up. So, I can only conclude its the parties that are the ultimate arbitrator on how they select their candidate for POTUS. Even if the elections are held officialy, by each state.
Its a bit of both. The legal bit is required on account the primaries being run by the states rather than the parties. I'm all for getting rid of them, we wouldn't have had Trump but for the primaries. Smoke filled back rooms is the way to go. When I lived in Seattle, WA had a primary and a caucus, only the caucus actually counted, how ****** up is that? Several states have passed laws requiring open primaries, anyone can vote for a party's candidate regardless of party they are registered in. Most of the party's sued to stop that. So its clearly church and state, er party and state, being involved. Keep in mind, having to register in party to vote in an actual state run election is pretty ****** up. I suspect that surprises most foreigners. The state really shouldn't have any interest or knowledge of what party I'm in.

Edit to add, I originally read last states to hold a primary, I thought you meant one of the last states to switch to a primary. Somewhat confusing.

Last edited by ahhell; 1st October 2021 at 02:12 PM.
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 02:10 PM   #63
ahhell
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,800
Originally Posted by Blank View Post
Having been a part of party politics I'd point out that the way the party chooses these candidates is usually by giving every party member a chance to vote among willing candidates from the party. The ones with most votes, go to the ballot.. Although this usually translates to "take whoever happens to volunteer" - especially in low level local elections.

Just because it isn't called a primary doesn't make it any less democratic.
I would say its certainly less open. But take a Parliamentary system. Locals vote for their MP, typically with the understanding that if I vote for Party X's MP s/he will vote for the guy everyone expects will be party X's prime minister. Very few places have anything like a direct election of the head of state, chief executive, and commander and chief. We have the electoral college, most parliamentary systems have the election of parliament followed by Parliament electing or doing whatever magick they do to form a government. I really don't think most Americans understand how indirect that is in most places.

Side note, those folks in the UK and other places where this applies, are the local councils elected locally or appointed by more central authorities?

Last edited by ahhell; 1st October 2021 at 02:11 PM.
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 02:21 PM   #64
ahhell
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,800
My suggested reforms to US politics that I think would really mitigate the current animous.

Get rid of primaries, or just make it clear its an internal party thing and not some official government thing.

Massively increase the size of the house, that way it would be more proportional. Something along the lines of 1 rep per 150k of population or such.

Set the SCOTUS at 9 justices with 18 year terms with a new appointment every 2 years. Thus every president get 2 per term. If one dies or retires early, that president gets a to appoint someone for the remainder of that term. There's no way one president could change the court for 40 years.

Break up the big states. That would make the senate more proportional and representative. It would somewhat paradoxically give the big states more power.

Redistricting should be done on as non partisan a basis as possible. I think california's recent changes are a good model but someone could probably come up with an app that would do a better and less biased job than politicians. Regardless, needs to be out of the Pols hands.

Last edited by ahhell; 1st October 2021 at 02:23 PM.
ahhell is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 02:40 PM   #65
lobosrul5
Master Poster
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 2,552
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
Its a bit of both. The legal bit is required on account the primaries being run by the states rather than the parties. I'm all for getting rid of them, we wouldn't have had Trump but for the primaries. Smoke filled back rooms is the way to go. When I lived in Seattle, WA had a primary and a caucus, only the caucus actually counted, how ****** up is that? Several states have passed laws requiring open primaries, anyone can vote for a party's candidate regardless of party they are registered in. Most of the party's sued to stop that. So its clearly church and state, er party and state, being involved. Keep in mind, having to register in party to vote in an actual state run election is pretty ****** up. I suspect that surprises most foreigners. The state really shouldn't have any interest or knowledge of what party I'm in.

Edit to add, I originally read last states to hold a primary, I thought you meant one of the last states to switch to a primary. Somewhat confusing.
Yes, to be clear we hold our primary in June. The presidential primary has always been over by then, and voting is meaningless. Of course I still get a meaningful vote for other candidates.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 02:46 PM   #66
lobosrul5
Master Poster
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 2,552
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
My suggested reforms to US politics that I think would really mitigate the current animous.

Get rid of primaries, or just make it clear its an internal party thing and not some official government thing.
I'd rather a federal law just did something sensible, like setting the rules, and when they occur etc. Although that is kinda codifying the two major parties as official. Smaller parties may not even be able to afford primaries. But, just making it clear: this is the parties selection process not this weird kinda party/kinda state thing would be an improvement.

Quote:
Massively increase the size of the house, that way it would be more proportional. Something along the lines of 1 rep per 150k of population or such.
Yes but for a different reason. I think we don't get enough access to our reps just because of how big the district is. In other words just too many people for the rep to care about your correspondence. 150k would be a vast improvement.

Quote:
Set the SCOTUS at 9 justices with 18 year terms with a new appointment every 2 years. Thus every president get 2 per term. If one dies or retires early, that president gets a to appoint someone for the remainder of that term. There's no way one president could change the court for 40 years.
SCOTUS selection should be apolitical and this shouldn't be necessary. But in the real world your plan is better than the status quo.

Quote:
Break up the big states. That would make the senate more proportional and representative. It would somewhat paradoxically give the big states more power.
Makes tons of sense, but impossible to do in a non-partisan manner as far I can tell.

Quote:
Redistricting should be done on as non partisan a basis as possible. I think california's recent changes are a good model but someone could probably come up with an app that would do a better and less biased job than politicians. Regardless, needs to be out of the Pols hands.
Yes.
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 02:48 PM   #67
Blank
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 108
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
Very few places have anything like a direct election of the head of state, chief executive, and commander and chief. We have the electoral college, most parliamentary systems have the election of parliament followed by Parliament electing or doing whatever magick they do to form a government. I really don't think most Americans understand how indirect that is in most places.
The magick they usually do is negotiate and compromise and find equal goals with other parties to form a government that can actually function. Parliamentary countries rarely get a supermajority from just one party, so they need to get other parties to support as well.

The job of forming the government is first given to the election winning party (biggest party) if it fails then the second biggest etc.. down the line, if all fail, it re-election time. It's not all that indirect, party leaders are at the same time candidates for the prime minister position.

Primaries in a country where there is no need to gather up a delegation to keep all the States equally represented just don't make that much sense - direct voting is more efficient. Comparing the systems is apples and oranges though and both can be democratic.

Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
Side note, those folks in the UK and other places where this applies, are the local councils elected locally or appointed by more central authorities?
Not in UK, but local councils are elected locally here. Elected is a bit of a overstatement here since usually the voting activity in local elections is only around 55% or so of eligible voters voting..

Last edited by Blank; 1st October 2021 at 02:57 PM.
Blank is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 02:53 PM   #68
Lurch
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Ottawa
Posts: 1,842
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
What's the line, if you don't know who the radical leftist is then its probably you?

We are deciding to vote on bills with a larger price tag than anything in US snice world war 2 with a group of congress folks who don't think they are big enough, but you don't see where the radical left is? The notion that the US is founded on evil and still institutionally evil(racism), is common talk these days, no radical left though, just reasonable discourse.

Not to mention, if its mainstream, its no longer radical, which is really what happened to the radical left. The weathermen all became college professors.
Maybe the price tag seems high now because it's the pound of cure needed for the lack of the ounce of prevention. Over the past few decades the rich and corporations have seen their tax burden decrease, and military spending has remained utterly obscene. Now that infrastructure is really crumbling, the chicken's are coming home to roost. And anyway, it's an *investment* in bettering the lot of most citizens, in the form of jobs and money moving 5hrough the economy. Unlike Dump's burden of handing yet more wealth to the fat cats that didn't get put back into circulation in the real economy.

Those fixated on the dollar figure are not seeing the big picture.
Lurch is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 03:00 PM   #69
Lurch
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Ottawa
Posts: 1,842
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
I disagree with your certainty and your assumption that they all agree. You must assume that because you said they are wrong.

They also can't be wrong on all things. You can not be right about all things and you can't know what you are wrong about, neither can they.

If nothing else, the right is generally more correct in there understanding of what the left believes than the left is about the right. I was about to say they are more right about economics but, that's a very small subset of right. Don't get me wrong, the 40 percent of America that voted for Trump was wrong, I just don't think they are all wrong about everything, I also know they don't all agree about everything and some of them only voted for Trump because they dislike Dems and lefties so much. Which is the reason a lot of folks voted for Biden, it certainly isn't because he inspired them with his charisma, soring rhetoric, and clear plan for the US.
Indeed. A rutabaga would have been a saner choice for prez than that sack of rotting yams.
Lurch is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 04:58 PM   #70
Pacal
Graduate Poster
 
Pacal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,273
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
If nothing else, the right is generally more correct in there understanding of what the left believes than the left is about the right.
Comic gold.
Pacal is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 1st October 2021, 05:01 PM   #71
Beelzebuddy
Philosopher
 
Beelzebuddy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 8,380
Originally Posted by Pacal View Post
Comic gold.
He's got a point. For roughly the last four years every time I've thought "no, they can't possibly be that stupid and petty," I was wrong in my understanding.
Beelzebuddy is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd October 2021, 01:56 AM   #72
Cosmic Yak
Illuminator
 
Cosmic Yak's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Where there's never a road broader than the back of your hand.
Posts: 4,673
Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Despite how much we've been butting heads I'll readily agree with you that we get to hung up on comparison between the US and European political scales. I've always been annoyed by arguments that treat the political spectrum like the electromagnetic spectrum, like it's something that actually exists in nature.

That all being said where we disagree is that actual facts exist that can declare one political side wrong even outside of comparing it to another.

The American Right is wrong because it is wrong, provably and objectively. Not because of falls here on this scale or doesn't match up to this scale.
This is actually what I was going to ask as my next question.
In the UK, there is a spectrum of belief within the main political parties.
In the Conservatives, there are, naturally, still too many racist, sexist, Little England dinosaurs- but there are also plenty of MPs, party members and voters who are not racist, and who generally are more progressive. Labour is similar: there are communists in the Labour party, and among its supporters, but there are also a lot of more centrist members & supporters. Then there's Brexit: Labour tore itself apart over Brexit, and there were deep divisions in the Conservative party as well. More recently, there have been serious divisions within the parties over the response to Covid.
Is it similar in the US? Are all Republicans racist, religiously fundamentalist , frothing-at-the-mouth loons, or are there more measured and, for want of a better word, progressive Republicans?
Among the Democrats: well, we know that some of the founders of BLM are self-proclaimed Marxists, and there are ties between the two groups. I find it hard to believe that all Democrats are communists, as claimed by the Republicans, but is it fair to say that some members & supporters are more left-wing than others?
From what I've seen in the debate, before this thread and in it, there seems to be an assumption that both groups are homogenous, all believing the same thing, with no significant variation in stance. How accurate is that depiction?
__________________
Fortuna Faveat Fatuis
Cosmic Yak is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd October 2021, 02:02 AM   #73
Cosmic Yak
Illuminator
 
Cosmic Yak's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Where there's never a road broader than the back of your hand.
Posts: 4,673
Originally Posted by Warp12 View Post
This seems like a very objective and completely unbiased viewpoint.
It is a shame that, thus far in this thread, we have only heard from the Democrat side.
The picture that is being painted is, to my mind, a rather simplistic 'good guys/bad guys' one, in which the Republicans have made themselves ever more politically unscrupulous, more racist, more religiously fundamentalist, more dishonest and less tolerant, all on their own. Meanwhile, the Democrats have been reduced to helpless handwringing on the sidelines, despite being pure and decent.
I would like to hear from people in the Republican camp, to get an idea of how this narrative is viewed from the other side.
I'm not saying the Democrat narrative isn't true, but- to use the old cliché- there are two sides to every story.
__________________
Fortuna Faveat Fatuis
Cosmic Yak is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd October 2021, 02:05 AM   #74
The Great Zaganza
Maledictorian
 
The Great Zaganza's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 16,088
Historically, senators in general, and Republican Senators in particular, have made a big deal about being beholden to their States first, and to their Party a distant second.
And right until the 2016 election you could see significant differences between the GOP candidates for President.

After Trump, all of this is gone: if you are not vocally pro-Trump you better keep quiet.
__________________
“You can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.”
-Anne Lamott
The Great Zaganza is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd October 2021, 04:32 AM   #75
Crazy Chainsaw
Philosopher
 
Crazy Chainsaw's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 5,816
Originally Posted by Cosmic Yak View Post
In the other thread, I said several times that the Democrats were out of touch with rural voters. I was howled down.
This article seems to say pretty much the same thing, adding that rural populations are equally as out of touch with urban citizens. Curious.
I'm not suggesting solutions, despite what you might think. I'm trying to understand how this situation has spiralled so out of control that neither side considers the other to be human. (No, I'm not exaggerating: I've seen these statements, from both sides, on this very forum).
Would you consider this state of affairs to be recent, or has it always existed?
Rual Republicans are Darwinian Capitalist, only the strong Survive,
Urban Voters are Social Reformers government exists to aid and better the Life of the Citizens.
Rual People see government as the enemy Urban Voters see government as an ally to improve life.
Crazy Chainsaw is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd October 2021, 05:57 AM   #76
Carrot Flower King
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Northumberland, UK
Posts: 1,702
Originally Posted by ahhell View Post
I would say its certainly less open. But take a Parliamentary system. Locals vote for their MP, typically with the understanding that if I vote for Party X's MP s/he will vote for the guy everyone expects will be party X's prime minister. Very few places have anything like a direct election of the head of state, chief executive, and commander and chief. We have the electoral college, most parliamentary systems have the election of parliament followed by Parliament electing or doing whatever magick they do to form a government. I really don't think most Americans understand how indirect that is in most places.

Side note, those folks in the UK and other places where this applies, are the local councils elected locally or appointed by more central authorities?
Local councils are locally elected. That said, our parish council has not held elections in 18 years that I know of - they "co-opted" a couple of new members to join the resident clique, but that was it.

However, turn out tends to be low (30-40%) and the purse strings are heavily controlled by central government, who also write the rules about what local authorities can actually do.
Carrot Flower King is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd October 2021, 06:12 AM   #77
Crazy Chainsaw
Philosopher
 
Crazy Chainsaw's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 5,816
Originally Posted by Cosmic Yak View Post
It is a shame that, thus far in this thread, we have only heard from the Democrat side.
The picture that is being painted is, to my mind, a rather simplistic 'good guys/bad guys' one, in which the Republicans have made themselves ever more politically unscrupulous, more racist, more religiously fundamentalist, more dishonest and less tolerant, all on their own. Meanwhile, the Democrats have been reduced to helpless handwringing on the sidelines, despite being pure and decent.
I would like to hear from people in the Republican camp, to get an idea of how this narrative is viewed from the other side.
I'm not saying the Democrat narrative isn't true, but- to use the old cliché- there are two sides to every story.
Do you believe in the Laws of Physics as described By Sir Issac Newton, James Clark Maxwell, Albert Einstein, and Steven Hawkins?
Because Republicans Don't.
Crazy Chainsaw is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd October 2021, 06:44 AM   #78
The Great Zaganza
Maledictorian
 
The Great Zaganza's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 16,088
Originally Posted by Crazy Chainsaw View Post
Rual Republicans are Darwinian Capitalist, only the strong Survive,
Urban Voters are Social Reformers government exists to aid and better the Life of the Citizens.
Rual People see government as the enemy Urban Voters see government as an ally to improve life.
Rubbish.
Rural Republicans love their Medicare and farm subsidies. They love that their elected sheriffs keep undesirables out of their towns. They complain that hospitals are so far away, and that insurance coverage is so poor.
They are socialists without realizing it.
__________________
“You can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.”
-Anne Lamott
The Great Zaganza is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd October 2021, 06:57 AM   #79
JoeMorgue
Self Employed
Remittance Man
 
JoeMorgue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 35,556
90% of people bypass the whole socialist-libertarian scale and land on the Y axis "Selective Selfish Personal Advantage-ism"

Again being "pure" to some textbook Polysci 101 definition of this or that political philosophy is super important to exactly 0 people on a street level. It's only a factor in political discourse.
__________________
"When enough people make false promises, words stop meaning anything. Then there are no more answers, only better and better lies." - Jon Snow

"Every lie we tell incurs a debt to the truth. Sooner or later, that debt is paid." - Valery Legasov
JoeMorgue is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd October 2021, 07:21 AM   #80
Cosmic Yak
Illuminator
 
Cosmic Yak's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Where there's never a road broader than the back of your hand.
Posts: 4,673
Originally Posted by Crazy Chainsaw View Post
Do you believe in the Laws of Physics as described By Sir Issac Newton, James Clark Maxwell, Albert Einstein, and Steven Hawkins?
Because Republicans Don't.
I am looking for education and information.
I am not looking to be a foil for your political grandstanding.
If you have a point to make, please make it, with citations, as per the norms of reasoned debate. Thank you.
__________________
Fortuna Faveat Fatuis
Cosmic Yak is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » USA Politics

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:39 PM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.