Author Topic: who are you voting for?  (Read 2314 times)

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Online ParkingPlaces

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #29 on: January 27, 2012, 11:48:22 AM »
Realistically, who in congress would work with Ron Paul? He would want to cut things like pork barrel spending via attachments to bills. Every congressman wants that to continue. It's how they get re-elected.

Look at how ineffective Obama has been in getting his middle of the road ideas into law. Practically zero. How do you think a rebel like Paul would do?

Homeland Security at the state level? Do you really want to go through TSA style checkpoints every time you cross a state line. The Bush administration overreaction to 9/11 (and the Obama administration's complicity) has already moved us closer to Soviet Russia in free travel and asking the states to provide their own security would make it even worse. Pretty soon we would have iron curtains along every red state border and the country would be just plain ugly. In every sense of the world.

FDA? I like the part that someone is making sure meat packers and chicken pluckers and beet canners and milk makers can't get away with adulterating their products or using dangerous chemicals or peeing in our mayonnaise. But whatever turns you on. At the state level, bribes would be rampant and cronyism would dictate what was and was not included in your bag or organic cheetos. And what red state would trust blue state inspectors, and visa versa. Ugly.

He would be ineffective, and if he did succeed at eliminating or stateifying (I just made up a word I think) federal functions, I'm pretty sure things would still suck, just worse and in new ways. And right now this country isn't in the mood for that.

He's against abortion. I understand. There are good reasons to feel that way. But the religious take that stand mostly because they think every unborn child will join their specific church and toss money in the collection basket each week. In any case, the right wants the kid born and then it's on its own. Because its born a sinner, and at that point there is nothing we can do. Save your life then f**k you isn't very sentimental. But then, Ron Paul isn't either. So at least he's consistent.
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Online screwtape

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #30 on: January 27, 2012, 12:06:52 PM »
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Offline MadBunny

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #31 on: January 27, 2012, 01:07:05 PM »
Very nice breakdowns on some of the problems with a Ron Paul Presidency.
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Offline Frank

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #32 on: January 27, 2012, 01:24:10 PM »

He wants them eliminated so they can be provided and ran at a state level. He is looking at weak federal government and a strong state government. With all the things the federal government has done, I think this is indeed a good thing.


Why should people in one state have things provided for them that people in another can't? Your're all Americans aren't you. Why should the state you're in define what benefits you get?

Ron Paul on election night 2008. I doubt 2012 will be any different. President? Never gonna happen.
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Offline Frank

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #33 on: January 27, 2012, 01:31:45 PM »
a little article on big government.
http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/175494/tomgram%3A_christian_parenti%2C_big_storms_require_big_government/

It's amazes me how there are people who think that modern, highly populated, technologically advanced, nations can somehow function with "small government".
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Offline Backspace

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #34 on: January 27, 2012, 02:45:13 PM »
I'll vote Obama. 'Nuff said on that.

Here's another humorous theme on smaller government[1]

Quote
This morning, I was awakened by my alarm clock powered by electricity generated by my local public power cooperative regulated by the US Department of Energy.  I then took a shower in the clean water provided by my Municipal Water Utility.  After that, I turned on the TV to one of the FCC-regulated channels to see what the National Weather Service of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration determined the weather was going to be like, using satellites designed, built and launched by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.  I watched this while eating my breakfast of US Department of Agriculture-inspected food and taking vitamins determined as safe by the Food and Drug Administration.  At the appropriate time, as regulated by Congress and kept accurate by the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the US Naval Observatory, I get into my National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)-approved automobile and set out to work on the roads built and maintained by local, state, and federal Departments of Transportation (DOT). On the way, I stop to purchase additional fuel of an appropriate quality determined by the Environmental Protection Agency, using legal tender issued by the Federal Reserve Bank. On the way out the door, I deposit any mail to be sent out via the Congressionally-regulated US Postal Service, and drop off my kids at our local government-owned and Department of Education-mandated public school. After work, I drive my NHTSA-approved car back home on the DOT maintained roads, to the house which has not burned down in my absence because of state and local building codes and Fire Marshall inspections, and which has not been plundered of its valuables thanks to the local Police Department. I then log-on to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Administration-developed Internet, and post on conservative blogs and forums about how our government is a horrible, socialist tyrant that can't do anything right and needs to stay the hell out of my life.
 1. I don't recall where I got this from, but if someone recognizes it, I'll credit the source
« Last Edit: January 27, 2012, 02:48:39 PM by Backspace »
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Offline Chronos

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #35 on: January 27, 2012, 03:37:14 PM »
1st year in office He will shrink 1 Trillion dollars off the debt.

hold that thought.

I sometimes get into arguments with my family about politics because most of them think that anything that emanates from a Republican's mouth is golden. If it sounds like it is balancing the budget, they like it, but they don't really understand how things work. Just yesterday I had to explain inflation vs deflation to my mother. She had been so trained to hate inflation that the suggestion by Bernanke that the Federal Reserve should aim for some inflation sounded stupid. She was born just before the Great Depression started, so she was too young to know what caused it or how it was resolved, but living through the 1970s inflation gave her bad memories.


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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #36 on: January 27, 2012, 03:44:27 PM »
Why should people in one state have things provided for them that people in another can't? Your're all Americans aren't you. Why should the state you're in define what benefits you get?

If you live in the liberal north east or west coast, you should.  All those right wing controlled states are the ones suckling off the government teat, as it were, paid for by liberals.

http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2004/09/red_states_feed.html  (a little old)
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/03/10/the-federal-aid-jackpot-s_n_492411.html#s73091&title=10_Mississippi
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2012/jan/26/blog-posting/red-state-socialism-graphic-says-gop-leaning-state/

which leads to one of my all time favorite websites:  http://fuckthesouth.com/
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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #37 on: January 27, 2012, 03:46:42 PM »
... but they don't really understand how things work.

I truly believe this is the root of all evil. 

Grey's Law: Sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice.
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Offline Truth OT

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #38 on: January 27, 2012, 06:08:22 PM »
Hate that Huntsman dropped out. I thought given the crop of candidates available, he would be head and shoulders the best choice followed by Ron Paul and then in a tie at a distant 3rd both Obama and Romney.

Offline Truth OT

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #39 on: January 27, 2012, 06:14:45 PM »
a little article on big government.
http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/175494/tomgram%3A_christian_parenti%2C_big_storms_require_big_government/

It's amazes me how there are people who think that modern, highly populated, technologically advanced, nations can somehow function with "small government".

I wonder if the term "small government" is but a buzzword that is now a misnomer for centralized control. Small gov't advocates are happy with and in favor of the services and benefits government provides but at the same time hold the belief that there are areas the government is involved in that would be better served on a local or even a private level. 

Offline pingnak

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #40 on: January 27, 2012, 06:23:32 PM »
The 'Small Government' the right-wingers want is a THEOCRATIC DICTATORSHIP.

Just, you know, 'God' and his 'interpreters' in charge.  Isn't that small enough for you?

Offline Azdgari

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #41 on: January 27, 2012, 06:43:49 PM »
Hate that Huntsman dropped out. I thought given the crop of candidates available, he would be head and shoulders the best choice ...

From everything I've seen, within the Republican party, he was.  Thus, he had to go.
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Offline MadBunny

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #42 on: January 27, 2012, 08:29:24 PM »
The 'Small Government' the right-wingers want is a THEOCRATIC DICTATORSHIP.

Just, you know, 'God' and his 'interpreters' in charge.  Isn't that small enough for you?

Actually... no. 

I don't think they 'really' want a theocracy, sure religion factors heavily into their mindset, but their policies outside of that almost always point towards a Plutocratic system, which doesn't really tend towards the constraints imposed by religious doctrine.  If I had to find a historical parallel I'd probably point at ancient Rome's Plutocratic Republic, which had the representation for the wealthy, and the religion for the masses.



It's trending that way, no question.  Ask anybody what the most powerful voice is and they'll tell you that at the root of power in this country is money.  If you want access to power, you need money.  Know why I think the OWS was ignore while the TP was gasm'ed all over?  Money.  OWS don't have a lot of it, but the TP does.

Representation of the wealthy, by and for the wealthy.  Certainly nobody in the seats of any of our three branches could be considered 'average' in terms of wealth, even the poorest is probably a millionaire.

The thing about it is, everybody likes to pretend that they're the ones on top or that they may one day be in that position of being rich and powerful.  Better not tax the rich, because if *I* were rich, I'd sure hate that.  I see no reason to pay for welfare because *I* always worked hard, no reason why *they* can't do the same.  It's the zombie apocalypse fantasy.  Everybody thinks they'll be Woody Harrelson with the shotgun and the cowboy hat, and not the entire rest of the earth that was nommed on.



Sure I can understand the desire, it's a guy thing pure and simple.  But seriously, screwing yourself, your kids and the rest of the country over for what amounts to pure fantasy is just stupid on every level.[1]
 

So yes, the Conservatives want to pretend they'll be on top of the pile, that they'll be remembered and rewarded for their hardwork and given a place to stand on Mt. Rich Olympus.  Truthfully, they probably wouldn't even want to live in the kind of world they're working towards, with no rules, no regulations and whatever the Christian version of religious Fatwa is, ruling their lives.
 1.  On a side note, why would women vote to put themselves metaphorically in the position of the girl in that picture?  GOP politics do not favor women right now.
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Offline Chronos

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #43 on: January 27, 2012, 08:42:03 PM »
Grey's Law: Sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice.

I hadn't heard that one before, but it makes a lot of sense.  Interesting cross-reference, too ...



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Offline Frank

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #44 on: January 27, 2012, 08:47:37 PM »
a little article on big government.
http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/175494/tomgram%3A_christian_parenti%2C_big_storms_require_big_government/

It's amazes me how there are people who think that modern, highly populated, technologically advanced, nations can somehow function with "small government".

I wonder if the term "small government" is but a buzzword that is now a misnomer for centralized control. Small gov't advocates are happy with and in favor of the services and benefits government provides but at the same time hold the belief that there are areas the government is involved in that would be better served on a local or even a private level.

All you get when you do this kind of thing is fragmentation, duplication of effort, dropping of standards, uneveness of delivery, and a drive to the cheapest bid.
Do you remember those old pictures of oil derricks a few yards apart? They were all sucking oil out of the same oil field. Everyone fighting over the same patch. Duplication of effort over a single resource.
The fact of the matter is that modern civilisations require proper planning. Not everything can be left to market forces in the hope that it will just "work out".
This is the 21st century not the 19th. Government is in our lives whether we like it or not. The days of the rugged individual carving out his empire by hook or by crook are gone. There are just too many of us. Co-operation is the name of the game if we wish to get anywhere.
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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #45 on: January 27, 2012, 08:50:16 PM »
On a side note, why would women vote to put themselves metaphorically in the position of the girl in that picture?  GOP politics do not favor women right now.
 
Altered quote to grab and bold footnote....


......because when it comes to Eat The Rich, the mob will hopefully be satiated by the time they notice her..........

I must say it is very hard not to be cynical about her "real" love interest.........


Elsewhere

I know my levellers position has been well announced by past passionate post, but truly, is there a single person on the forum here that reckons the graphic disparity shown in MB's graph is defensible as a good thing for society, for country, for 99% of humanity?

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all edits are for spelling or grammar unless specified otherwise

Offline pingnak

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #46 on: January 27, 2012, 09:21:33 PM »
Well, it's not like the '1%' go out of their way to do anything about profiting like that.

Everything is set up so it happens automatically.

No matter how many 'little people' lose their retirements, homes, etc., the folks in the 1% get the 'correct' investment advice, while the commoners only have 'WE BUY GOLD' and 'BUY GOLD' quality investments available.  Just as they got the 'BUY OIL FUTURES' ads in 2008, and were left holding the bag.  BTW, who here actually believes that owning a piece of paper that says "You own gold", means that you actually own gold?  The 1% gets the limited strike shares that PAY dividends, that YOU can't buy.  The 99% get the shares that are nothing more than trading cards. 

You know, like when oil prices spike, prices at the pump spike geometrically, and oil companies record world-record-all-time profits, rather than the same profits you'd expect them to have, if they passed on the cost alone. 

It's just how everything was carefully planned and set up over the decades.

Like how we pay trillions in our taxes, and go to war, and spill blood, and kill our soldiers to support 'cheap' oil for the world.  Because politicians have been CONvinced that only oil can make anything work.  Because all the lobbyists have to do is wave the short-term, horrible economic effects of changing anything, but then they are never doing anything about remediating the long-term dependence on imported petroleum (and exported debt), which is doing vast economic and social damage to our nation.

Because even the whisper of 'Peak Oil' from a politician's lips is doom-saying, market-crashing SIN!  Now leave the market ALONE to crash ITS SELF!

Not that exporting every kind of industrial production that they can helps anyone in the '99%', forcing us to import more and more of everything else.  Maybe the 1% can go live in China, once they've fully exported our American standard of living to China, and we've imported China's standard of living from 1947, in exchange.  I hear they have plenty of implantable organs to keep old people going over there.  China is way ahead of America, and they harvest their '99%'. 

At least that will stop the 'problem' of 'illegals' coming to America!  Make Mexico look like a paradise.  (Yes, yes, bits of Mexico are VERY nice.)  I bet Mexico puts up a wall, and guards it with heavily armed regular troops.

Offline pingnak

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #47 on: January 27, 2012, 09:26:20 PM »
Actually... no. 

I don't think they 'really' want a theocracy, sure religion factors heavily into their mindset, but their policies outside of that almost always point towards a Plutocratic system, which doesn't really tend towards the constraints imposed by religious doctrine.  If I had to find a historical parallel I'd probably point at ancient Rome's Plutocratic Republic, which had the representation for the wealthy, and the religion for the masses.

... which became a dictatorship.

"Hail Caesar!"
"Sieg Heil!"

All the same template.


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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #48 on: January 27, 2012, 09:38:47 PM »
Actually... no. 

I don't think they 'really' want a theocracy, sure religion factors heavily into their mindset, but their policies outside of that almost always point towards a Plutocratic system, which doesn't really tend towards the constraints imposed by religious doctrine.  If I had to find a historical parallel I'd probably point at ancient Rome's Plutocratic Republic, which had the representation for the wealthy, and the religion for the masses.

... which became a dictatorship.

"Hail Caesar!"
"Sieg Heil!"

All the same template.

pingnak, what the hell?  You have to have the most screwed up world view.  Is everyone out to screw you?
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #49 on: January 27, 2012, 09:53:17 PM »
Are you suggesting that Rome and Germany didn't turn into dictatorships, jtp?
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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #50 on: January 27, 2012, 10:30:09 PM »
Any society with over 20,000 people is too big to function. Most all societies are trying to do things they way they've always been done (where they are already dysfunctional in many ways) and all efforts to improve the social structure seem only to introduce new dysfunctions.

The people with actual power (presumably the rich and politically connected, but I'm not allowed to know) control enough of the lawmakers and enough of the law enforcers to get what they want. The rest of us get the dregs.

This can not be fixed. There is far too much division amongst the population to find consensus. Some societies succumb to dictators who have only one talent: making things worse. A good person who could, by force, make any given country a better place is, by default, too nice to be a dictator.

We will probably continue to evolve, dysfunctionally, suffering various social maladies, each seeming really important today until new ones crop up that become really important tomorrow. This band-aid approach to fixing things will ignore all the unhealed wounds and ugly scars and as the various societies in the world limp along. Each generation will have this same conversation, and will seem new and enlightening, and millions of individuals will all be pretty sure they have all the answers. But since most look at only a tiny slice of the whole picture, none of their answers would work even if given a chance to try them out, so that part is of little importance.

Each society seems to limp along until it forgets where it put its crutches, then it disappears, either in a poof or slowly, and some force of history brings something new, often in ways that produce much suffering. It's icky for awhile, then it's barely tolerable for awhile, then everybody thinks they live in a great country, then the downhill slide begins, and eventually things start over once again.

We didn't used to have countries. We had regions led by this king or that, or by the church or by tyrants or all three. Countries are pretty new, historically. So we are early on in our various experiments to do it right. Sadly, capitalism came along at around the same time, give or take a few hundred years, and we had to adjust to that as well. And we quit dying so often because of medicine and slightly more civilized behavior, so there are more of us. And then we forgot all the basics like how to mend a fence or save a sick cow as each of us developed questionable expertise in only one or two areas. Then we realized how important entertainment is and added that to the mix so that we could escape a lot and laugh or cry. And we all pretended to know what was wrong. And now here we are.

As you go to vote for whoever, that is the context in which you will be casting your ballot.

Enjoy.
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Offline pingnak

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #51 on: January 27, 2012, 11:08:53 PM »
Besides, a country doesn't have to become a dictatorship to become 'hell on earth' for everyone (except the ones at the top).  It just makes 'hell on earth' easier to attain.

And I agree with ParkingPlaces.

I would rather found a cellular society.  Small city-states formed on a variety of templates, generally self sufficient, but trading for some things that they can't produce locally.  Not 'low tech', like the Amish.  I mean, seriously as high technology as it can go.  If Greater Los Angeles wants to do a space launch, let 'em.

Ultimately the 'end-game' for Earth (and start of next game) is space colonization.  How do you figure out how to colonize in such a way that you don't have to re-supply the colony continuously, and it can grow and spread on its own?

So what MINIMAL seed of humans can produce everything necessary to reproduce their technological society, and launch into space?

What MINIMAL seed of industry/food/etc. will establish a SUCCESSFUL colony?

There are 'earthship' homes, but built on imported, manufactured goods and trash/junk.

Sustainable construction would be establishing a community that can make its own water, food, steel, concrete (or sintered glass construction), wire, machine parts, etc., and successfully produce ANOTHER community.  Pass the 'recursion test'.  A self-replicating organism.  It should make EVERYTHING it needs.  Vehicles.  Electronics.  Chemicals.  Batteries.  Communications.  Power.  Communicate with other communities to share the inventions and successful models/designs.  As well as MORE tools to MAKE tools.

There are fundamental limitations.  Every location won't have 'everything'.  But strong recycling and building everything modular would help keep the horrific waste we see in our modern industrial, DISPOSABLE society down.  So any truck could be cannibalized to fix any other truck, or train, or boat.  And the 'standard' parts could be taken apart and repaired, down to the component level.  Or picked apart for usable components and thrown into the forge to start over.  TV monitor borked?  There's a PART to fix it, rather than chucking the whole thing onto the e-waste pile.

Such a community wouldn't even care that there was a 'global economic recession'.  They'd have their own local problems, and their own internal economy, and their own social evolution to worry about.  You wouldn't lose your welding or machine shop job in such a place because a multinational bought up a company in Thailand and 'outsourced'.  That's not how the LOCAL economy works.  You've got job security because there's always welding and machining to be DONE, fixing and building everything for your own damned selves.

A coastal city-state might, for instance, build a ship, and establish a colony overseas.  Naturally coordinating for rights to the real estate and permits, etc.  On an island.  In an under-developed nation.  Get established, train, educate the locals (if any), build more colonies.  I'd probably head for antarctica and/or other 'uninhabitable' spaces that would test the 'spaceworthiness' of the colony.  Maybe straight underwater (cue up 'Bioshock' music).

And if the shit hit the fan, well they'd be able to put up their OWN fortifications and make their OWN weapons.  See if the zombies can take a self sustaining city fortress.  Or radioactive refugees.  Or the 'road warrior' raiders.  What's left of the regular military could probably take one down, assuming air support.  But no common rabble would.  And someone who WANTED such a city state would want it INTACT, if at all possible, unless they were religious fucktards who wanted to 'cleanse the world' of these sites.  Food, industry, trade, etc. are key resources to hold and extend an empire.  You want the equipment and resources.  You NEED the people who know how to run it. 

In other words, if anarchy reigns, the world automatically becomes feudal warlords, assuming there's nothing else to fall back on.  So at least make sure the technology, medicine, sustainable food production, science, history, etc. survive the new dark age, and are FULLY capable of expanding... to reboot the world.


Offline MadBunny

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #52 on: January 27, 2012, 11:51:06 PM »
That was ... interesting.

I guess sure if you have the resources to build an self sufficient arcology,[1] there may be benefits to it.
 1.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arcology
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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #53 on: January 28, 2012, 07:04:03 AM »
Grover Norquist wants to impeach Obama in his second term ...

Impeach Obama?

Quote
NJ What if the Democrats still have control? What’s your scenario then?

NORQUIST Obama can sit there and let all the tax [cuts] lapse, and then the Republicans will have enough votes in the Senate in 2014 to impeach. The last year, he’s gone into this huddle where he does everything by executive order. He’s made no effort to work with Congress.

John 14:2 :: In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

Offline Quesi

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #54 on: January 28, 2012, 11:53:56 AM »
If you don’t want them cut so badly, then I recommend start spending your money on that national debt that is going to remove all of that and more because we can’t pay our debt off and is going to make USA bankrupt and a third-world country eventually.


I'm curious, Death Over Life.

Can you tell me what the defining features of a third world country are?

I know that you didn’t ask me, and I am new to these forums.  But may I offer up my personal experiences with what you call “the defining features of a third world country?” 

It lacks a strong infrastructure.  There is little or no public investment in roads, bridges, fresh water reservoirs, pipes to distribute fresh water, garbage disposal, sewage systems, electrical systems, internet, etc.  These systems either do not exist, or they are in a state of decay or they serve only the rich. 

There is no government oversight to ensure safety in the workplace.  Available laborers are abundant and disposable.  Construction workers on high scaffoldings are not provided with safety harnesses.  Assembly workers exposed to toxic chemicals are not provided with masks or even appropriate ventilation.  Farm workers are exposed to dangerous pesticides, which also enter the food chain because there is no oversight of things like food safety.  Children enter the workforce at a young age, and earn a fraction of an adult salary.  There may be laws on the books against child labor, but no there is no oversight to enforce those laws. 

Public schools may exist, but there aren’t enough seats.  Transportation from rural areas to public schools is non existent, so rural children don’t go to school and rural communities are overwhelmingly illiterate.  Health care is available to the wealthy.  Public health laws requiring vaccines are non-existent or not enforceable, and huge percentages of young children born into poverty die each year.  More than are recorded, because there is no effective system to record births and deaths.  Children are born at home, die at home, and are buried in the back yard, or wrapped in homespun cloth and dumped in the river.  And no public records document either their births or their deaths.

Every single Republican candidate is proposing policies that would continue to whittle away at these systems and services, and the very infrastructure that we all depend upon without even thinking about. 

I live in an NYC outer borough, and my Republican Mayor has certainly “cut waste” in government.  The effects aren’t huge, yet.  In my neighborhood, garbage is not collected as frequently, and it piles up on the streets.  Last year when we had a big snow storm, I was trapped for four days because a huge percentage of sanitation workers had just been laid off, and supervisors had been demoted, and there was not enough infrastructure within the department of sanitation to plow the streets in the outer boroughs.  My daughter rides a school bus with a driver who has no contract.  She has had 6 drivers since September, and each new driver creates his/her own schedule, meaning pick up and drop off change as much as half an hour with each new driver.  Firehouses have been closed.  Potholes in my neighborhood have grown wider and deeper.  Street lights have burnt out and not been replaced.  Senior centers that provided free lunches for low-income elderly have been closed.  Free afterschool programs that benefited working parents have been closed.  Library hours have been reduced, and many branches no longer purchase books.  It is not the third world yet.  But if Republicans get their way, it could be in a generation or two.   

I agree that in the US we need to pay down the debt.  But not at the expense of the infrastructure and services and systems that separate us from “the third world.”  I agree that we need to cut waste in government, but we do not need to cut systems that provide us with the infrastructure and safety that we need to survive and thrive.  All of this fear of “BIG GOVERNMENT” is bullshit. The super-rich don’t need the infrastructure and services, and the corporations don’t care about worker and consumer safety as much as they care about profits.

I’m voting for Obama again.  With less enthusiasm than I did the first time.  But I am terrified by the other options. 
« Last Edit: January 28, 2012, 12:31:13 PM by Quesi »

Offline Truth OT

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #55 on: January 28, 2012, 01:58:40 PM »
a little article on big government.
http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/175494/tomgram%3A_christian_parenti%2C_big_storms_require_big_government/

It's amazes me how there are people who think that modern, highly populated, technologically advanced, nations can somehow function with "small government".

I wonder if the term "small government" is but a buzzword that is now a misnomer for centralized control. Small gov't advocates are happy with and in favor of the services and benefits government provides but at the same time hold the belief that there are areas the government is involved in that would be better served on a local or even a private level.

All you get when you do this kind of thing is fragmentation, duplication of effort, dropping of standards, uneveness of delivery, and a drive to the cheapest bid.
Do you remember those old pictures of oil derricks a few yards apart? They were all sucking oil out of the same oil field. Everyone fighting over the same patch. Duplication of effort over a single resource.
The fact of the matter is that modern civilisations require proper planning. Not everything can be left to market forces in the hope that it will just "work out".
This is the 21st century not the 19th. Government is in our lives whether we like it or not. The days of the rugged individual carving out his empire by hook or by crook are gone. There are just too many of us. Co-operation is the name of the game if we wish to get anywhere.

100% cooperation is an impossibility. As another poster indicated, the larger a population becomes, the less efficient and impractical centralization of power is. Fragmentation is not something we should automatically look on as if it is somehow innately negative. It can and does have positive aspects. Where some standards may drop off (and this is not a necessity as we're not dealing in a world of zero-sum gains), others may increase and progress for the better creating a model to be imitated and improved upon by others that see those positive results.
As you stated, this is not the 19th century. The world is more complex, hell the individual and his needs are more complex and having a centralized government entrusted with the task of trying to meets the needs of a diverse population con sisting of nearly 100 million folks get very political, is mulled down by burocratic red tape, and in many ways is terribly inefficient and no longer effective. Regionalization of government is something that should be more strongly considered. Leaving everything to the states involves perhaps too many divisions to consider us as one country, but with 7 to 10 regional governing bodies governed themselves by a national government would better meet the needs and demands of the respective populus(es) each regional government serves.   

Offline Frank

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #56 on: January 28, 2012, 02:03:31 PM »

I live in an NYC outer borough, and my Republican Mayor has certainly “cut waste” in government.  The effects aren’t huge, yet.  In my neighborhood, garbage is not collected as frequently, and it piles up on the streets.  Last year when we had a big snow storm, I was trapped for four days because a huge percentage of sanitation workers had just been laid off, and supervisors had been demoted, and there was not enough infrastructure within the department of sanitation to plow the streets in the outer boroughs.  My daughter rides a school bus with a driver who has no contract.  She has had 6 drivers since September, and each new driver creates his/her own schedule, meaning pick up and drop off change as much as half an hour with each new driver.  Firehouses have been closed.  Potholes in my neighborhood have grown wider and deeper.  Street lights have burnt out and not been replaced.  Senior centers that provided free lunches for low-income elderly have been closed.  Free afterschool programs that benefited working parents have been closed.  Library hours have been reduced, and many branches no longer purchase books.  It is not the third world yet.  But if Republicans get their way, it could be in a generation or two.   
 

I live in the UK and on a national scale under the present conservative government (just as greedy as American conservative but without all the religious claptrap) the above is exactly what is happening here. They've hacked at public spending like it's going out of style. Yet all we have to show for it in miniscule growth. 0.9% for all of last year and this year won't be any better. Benefits have been cut for the poorest in society, including the disabled. Unemployment is 2.6 million. 8.6% the highest since the last conservative government. National debt has exceeded a trillion pounds, the highest it has ever been. The crime rate has gone up as police budgets have been cut and police officers laid off. 100,000's of public sector workers have been fired in the ridiculous hope that the private sector would miraculously expand to absord the surplus workers. Unfortunately it hasn't worked and unemployment has continued to rise. The only firms that are recruiting are supermarket and fast food chains. Low pay, low skill, and mostly part time. You can't support a family on the wages they pay. Because everyone is scared of losing their jobs people have ceased to spend money. Many famous retail chains that used to populate the high streets have gone bust. Yet they take no blame for all this misery at all. The eurozone, the world economy, the previous government, even bad weather. It's everyones fault except theirs.

The fact is that conservative governments are a poison to civilised societies. All the do is get into pointless wars that the sons of the poor fight for them. They pander to the wealthy at the expense of everyone else and inflict misery and poverty on those least able to defend themselves until eventually even the dumbest electorate throw them out for a more civilised government. The problem is it takes so long to put right the destruction they caused that people forget how bad they were and because things haven't improved quickly enough, which is usually caused by conservative obstructionist attitudes, they get re-elected and start the whole process off again. It just drives me nuts.

Stick with Obama. He may not be perfect but compared to the bunch of avaricious, foaming at the mouth, tax cuts for the rich, lunatics the republicans are fielding, he's a political visionary.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2012, 02:08:12 PM by Frank »
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Offline Nick

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Re: who are you voting for?
« Reply #57 on: January 28, 2012, 02:22:04 PM »
If you don’t want them cut so badly, then I recommend start spending your money on that national debt that is going to remove all of that and more because we can’t pay our debt off and is going to make USA bankrupt and a third-world country eventually.


I'm curious, Death Over Life.

Can you tell me what the defining features of a third world country are?

I know that you didn’t ask me, and I am new to these forums.  But may I offer up my personal experiences with what you call “the defining features of a third world country?” 

It lacks a strong infrastructure.  There is little or no public investment in roads, bridges, fresh water reservoirs, pipes to distribute fresh water, garbage disposal, sewage systems, electrical systems, internet, etc.  These systems either do not exist, or they are in a state of decay or they serve only the rich. 

There is no government oversight to ensure safety in the workplace.  Available laborers are abundant and disposable.  Construction workers on high scaffoldings are not provided with safety harnesses.  Assembly workers exposed to toxic chemicals are not provided with masks or even appropriate ventilation.  Farm workers are exposed to dangerous pesticides, which also enter the food chain because there is no oversight of things like food safety.  Children enter the workforce at a young age, and earn a fraction of an adult salary.  There may be laws on the books against child labor, but no there is no oversight to enforce those laws. 

Public schools may exist, but there aren’t enough seats.  Transportation from rural areas to public schools is non existent, so rural children don’t go to school and rural communities are overwhelmingly illiterate.  Health care is available to the wealthy.  Public health laws requiring vaccines are non-existent or not enforceable, and huge percentages of young children born into poverty die each year.  More than are recorded, because there is no effective system to record births and deaths.  Children are born at home, die at home, and are buried in the back yard, or wrapped in homespun cloth and dumped in the river.  And no public records document either their births or their deaths.

Every single Republican candidate is proposing policies that would continue to whittle away at these systems and services, and the very infrastructure that we all depend upon without even thinking about. 

I live in an NYC outer borough, and my Republican Mayor has certainly “cut waste” in government.  The effects aren’t huge, yet.  In my neighborhood, garbage is not collected as frequently, and it piles up on the streets.  Last year when we had a big snow storm, I was trapped for four days because a huge percentage of sanitation workers had just been laid off, and supervisors had been demoted, and there was not enough infrastructure within the department of sanitation to plow the streets in the outer boroughs.  My daughter rides a school bus with a driver who has no contract.  She has had 6 drivers since September, and each new driver creates his/her own schedule, meaning pick up and drop off change as much as half an hour with each new driver.  Firehouses have been closed.  Potholes in my neighborhood have grown wider and deeper.  Street lights have burnt out and not been replaced.  Senior centers that provided free lunches for low-income elderly have been closed.  Free afterschool programs that benefited working parents have been closed.  Library hours have been reduced, and many branches no longer purchase books.  It is not the third world yet.  But if Republicans get their way, it could be in a generation or two.   

I agree that in the US we need to pay down the debt.  But not at the expense of the infrastructure and services and systems that separate us from “the third world.”  I agree that we need to cut waste in government, but we do not need to cut systems that provide us with the infrastructure and safety that we need to survive and thrive.  All of this fear of “BIG GOVERNMENT” is bullshit. The super-rich don’t need the infrastructure and services, and the corporations don’t care about worker and consumer safety as much as they care about profits.

I’m voting for Obama again.  With less enthusiasm than I did the first time.  But I am terrified by the other options.
Its called American Exceptionalism.  Seems to be working well in your neighborhood.  I saw where Romney has more money than the last eight presidents put together and then doubled.  I'm sure if he gets elected he will come to the recue.
Yo, put that in your pipe and smoke it.  Quit ragging on my Lord.

Tide goes in, tide goes out !!!