1756: "I'm With Her"

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Weeks » Tue Nov 08, 2016 12:33 am UTC

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby gd1 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 12:34 am UTC

xtifr wrote:Ok, so several people have asked why Randall would post this. I think it's pretty obvious. A lot of people believe this is the MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION WE'VE SEEN IN DECADES. (People on both sides, I might note.) Randall is making it pretty clear that he believes this election is important, and wants people to know that he supports Hillary because he thinks that's an important thing to do.

"But it might drive off some of his fans!..."

I'm sure he is aware of that. MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION IN DECADES! Some sacrifices are worth it. Apparently, he thinks this is one.

"No one cares what he thinks!"

Then why are you complaining about his comic? Obviously, some people do. Some might even be influenced by his open statement of support. (That's clearly what he's hoping.) And even if they aren't, well, at least he can say he tried. One thing is for certain: any claim that "nobody intelligent would support Hillary" is now busted, because Randall is clearly intelligent and he supports Hillary.

"I don't live in the US, and I don't wanna hear about it!"

Tough! MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION IN DECADES! Randall's gotta live here, even if you don't.

"But Crooked Hillary!"

Obviously Randall does not believe those claims.

"He should support a third party!"

If he wanted to support a third party, he would. MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION IN DECADES!

Note that this post is not supporting (or opposing) Randall's position or endorsing (or condemning) Hillary or anything like that. I'm just pointing out that there are very obvious reasons why Randall did this.


If Trump wins... what will his Wednesday comic look like? I think it would be funny.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Velo Steve » Tue Nov 08, 2016 12:44 am UTC

azule wrote:...
Velo Steve wrote:I will vote, and I will respect the presidency even if I don't agree with the winner.

Which means you'll vote for Hillary. We know what Trump said about accepting the outcome.
...

Poor assumption. If I had to believe and act exactly the same as the person I vote for I would probably never vote at all.

As a California voter, I know that there is essentially zero chance of changing the fact that all of our electors will go to Clinton. Thus, it's not a Trump/Clinton choice for me as it would be if I lived in a swing state. I'll try to pick a write-in candidate whose small but non-zero vote count makes even one person in the big parties take notice. Yes, that's also pretty much a zero chance of making a difference. I admit it, but no harm done.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby ucim » Tue Nov 08, 2016 12:49 am UTC

bondsbw wrote:A state isn't an ideology. It is a geographic location.
It's not just a geographic location. Yes, I oversimplified to illustrate, but a state is a self-contained political unit with its own jurisdiction, laws, budgets, taxes, elected representatives, and "ability for its citizens to do stuff". They are all subject to the Federal government, but they are still independent entities. If you live in Oregon, you can {fill in}. Fifty feet across the border into Idaho, you cannot (legally) do that. Further, each state has two senators in Congress, independent of size.

States are a thing.

bondsbw wrote:Candidates spend almost all their energy in swing states, often making promises that only benefit the residents of those states. It matters.
Fair point. But it will always be true that candidates spend their energy where it matters - where there are minds to change.

bondsbw wrote:Advantage? The only states that gain an advantage...
I was talking about advantage to the governance of the nation. There are clear divides in the (cool!) cartogram you showed. States act as a proxy for that, despite the broadness of the brush. The present system acts to ensure that even the least populous states still have influence in the direction the nation goes.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby omgryebread » Tue Nov 08, 2016 12:54 am UTC

somitomi wrote:How about people more or less uninvolved in the issue (as much as such is possible in this case) complaining about missing their prescribed dose of entertainment?
A "prescribed dose" is the amount of medicine that a doctor has told a patient they need to take for some valid medical reason. As much as I think entertainment is important for mental health, I don't think any MD has prescribed 3 updates of xkcd a week to be taken every other weekday.

One of the interesting things about modern entertainment is the changed relationship between creator and consumer. Part of that is a (at least simulated) deeper connection between the two. We start to feel as if the creators are creating for us, as opposed to creating for a paycheck or for a TV network or for themselves. But of course, that's not true. In fact, perhaps more than ever, content is not created for the consumer. After all, xkcd is free and provided without advertising. Without a financial reason to attract an audience, the comic is presumably mostly for Randall's own pleasure.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that there's no particular right to have a Monday xkcd update. Randall seems to clearly feel that getting this message up is more important than relaying a joke about dinosaurs, and I'm inclined to agree. No, it's not important to everyone, since there are non-Americans, but I don't think I can complain about [url="https://xkcd.com/1144/"]this comic[/url] just because I don't know HTML and can't understand it.

omgryebread wrote:A comic about romance, sarcasm, math and language is exactly the place to talk about this election...

...
Wow. I didn't expect such a spectacular counterpoint, and... well, it is compelling. I have the feeling that anything can be said to be about romance, sarcasm, math and language, if you look at it hard enough to find the right details, but your arguments don't seem forced. I still think this is little more than a simple campaign poster hung on a wall without any background (like this for example).[/quote]Thanks. You're right that everything can be about xkcd's chosen topics if you work hard enough, but the webcomic has certainly stretched outside those. I think most people would associate it with computers and science pretty quickly.

On a more... thematic level, xkcd has had some themes that fit right in with weighing in on this election. Lots of the comics touch on themes of gender equality or just fairness in general. xkcd has had a consistent disdain for both anti-intellectualism, which Trump displays an unprecedented amount of, and against the sort of "too good for either option" attitude that probably prevents a fair amount of his readers from voting for Hillary.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby cupric » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:01 am UTC

Velo Steve wrote:
azule wrote:...
Velo Steve wrote:I will vote, and I will respect the presidency even if I don't agree with the winner.

Which means you'll vote for Hillary. We know what Trump said about accepting the outcome.
...

Poor assumption. If I had to believe and act exactly the same as the person I vote for I would probably never vote at all.

As a California voter, I know that there is essentially zero chance of changing the fact that all of our electors will go to Clinton. Thus, it's not a Trump/Clinton choice for me as it would be if I lived in a swing state. I'll try to pick a write-in candidate whose small but non-zero vote count makes even one person in the big parties take notice. Yes, that's also pretty much a zero chance of making a difference. I admit it, but no harm done.


Same here: in California, I can vote "no" to both Trump and Clinton without the fear that I will be indirectly helping the candidate that I consider more dangerous.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:06 am UTC

Velo Steve: I like your way of thinking and am glad to hear someone besides me thinking that way.

Unrelated to that: I've been brewing an analogy in my head for a while to explain my feelings about this election, but since I generally don't engage in places that frequently discuss topical political things, I haven't had anywhere to share it. Now that the inevitable shitstorm is brewing in this thread, I might as well share it here.

If you ask me what kind of sandwich I'd like, just an open-ended question like that, I'll probably tell you something like a turkey italiano with sharp white cheddar and crumbled roquefort on focaccia. But you know, if you don't have all of that stuff, one or the other meat or cheese is fine, in any combination; or just something kinda similar to that, it can be like ciabatta instead of focaccia, the exact details don't matter that much, just anything generally like that sounds pretty good to me.

But you know, I don't expect such sandwiches to really be generally available at your generic lunch counter or cafeteria that caters to the general public, so I'm not terribly disappointed when I can't get one. I didn't expect to. Just, you know, if you asked me what I wanted, that's what I'd say, but I understand that not everything can cater[1] to my exact whims and that's fine. I'm OK to settle for something moderately healthy and tasty and call it a meal without complaint.

This year, there was very nearly a decent ham and mild cheddar on sliced whole wheat sandwich on the menu, and you know what, while that's not still exactly exciting to me, that would have been a satisfying enough sandwich that I could have enjoyed without any real complaint, and it would have actually been a little change of pace from the usual fare we get around here.

Instead, the closest thing we get is the day-old kinda-stale baloney (not even bologna) and American "cheese" (process cheese food) on bleached white bread sandwich that's been the staple in this cafeteria for ages. And while I'm not exactly happy to eat such a sandwich, y'know, it's edible, it's not gonna kill me, it tastes like food, and it's what I'm used to being able to get here, so whatever, that's lunch as usual, disappointing as that is.

But now, there are these people here at lunch shouting incessantly about how can I possibly stand to eat such a stale sandwich with the most boring fake ingredients ever, how am I not completely sick of that. Instead, they're offering me something fresh and steaming hot, with ingredients unlike any sandwich I've ever eaten: it's a mix of human, dog, and rat feces between two slices of dried cow patty. And yeah, technically, that's a lot fresher than the stale baloney, and unlike any sandwich I've ever eaten before. That's all true. It's also true that the baloney alternative is stale and made of fake unhealthy untasty bland boring generic ingredients.

But you know what? All that, technically true as it might be, still doesn't make the shit-on-shit sandwich a more appealing alternative. I'm sad that plain ham and mild cheddar was the most exciting prospect we've seen here in a while and we couldn't even get that over stale baloney, but no fucking way am I eating three kinds of shit on shit with a side of shit instead.

[1]Apparently that wordfilters to "show a basic level of decency and respect". I guess people in the mobile foodservice industry can't discuss their business around these parts?
Last edited by Pfhorrest on Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:27 am UTC, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby azule » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:17 am UTC

drifting wrote:
Yakk wrote:Stargazer71, there is an active voter suppression system in the USA.

If you are in a poor and democratic leaning section of a republican state, it may be much harder to vote.

You are on the rolls and turned away? You are told by someone outside a lie about what forms of ID are required? There is a 7 hour line? Someone with a gun is asking everyone who they are voting for?


It's actually quite interesting to see the US election turning into the sort of thing you see in Egypt or Zimbabwe. Almost karmic.

The most interesting outcome would be for Clinton to win the electoral vote and Trump to win the popular vote. Then we'll see if the US is any different to some of the countries they feel they need to keep interfering with.
You don't know American politics very well (why should you). There's no karmic retribution since that would just be American history repeating itself. Change is not inherent. It has nothing to do with American imperialism or whatever you're getting at.

Quizatzhaderac wrote:I would have preferred a comic showing how each of the characters was voting and why.

Spoiler:
Cueball: I'm voting for Clinton, not because I like her, but because <huge rant about 2 party system and electoral systems>

Barret guy: I'm voting for <fantasy or sci-fi character> because <ontological argument implying he doesn't believe Clinton, Trump, Johnson, or Stein are real>

Hairbun: I'm voting for the candidate that reads more.

Ponytail: I'm voting to protect our right to build death rays.

Science girl: One subject shows distinctively more self-control than the other.

Cueball 2: Johnson, because I love both social and economic freedom as much as I love fencing and chair surfing.

Whitehat guy: Unfortunately, Trump because campaign finance and <emails rant>.

Blackhat guy: Both, several times, under false identities. Voting in camouflage in strongly democratic districts, and in drag in strongly republicans districts. I'm hoping some good solid evidence of voter fraud on both sides will start a civil war.
That's cute. Works well enough. You could do one of those XKCD Slightly Worse comics and I'd like it. But, I've already said that this election doesn't deserve a joke treatment. So Randall's comic was the right way to go.

HelloMail wrote:If people are voting for either candidate, I would love to have a discussion with you. I promise, I won't bite, but everywhere I look, I can't seem to find organic conversations or discussions, which leads me to seeing only one perspective. I'd like to see the other.

I honestly wish I would never have known who Randall was going to vote for. If he had put it in his blag, I would have been much better with it. In a blog, it feels like he's expressing his feelings and wants to let people know. In a comic, it feels like he's using his influence/wide spread audience to influence others to vote, just because it's the XKCD guy, rather than reasons. It feels manipulative, and I feel a little deceived.

I understand that. But he's not a feelingless machine. He knows the importance of this election and how bad it might get with the wrong guy in office. He's still the same guy who made some of your favorite comics. In 4 years you might get your guy in office then it'll be back to just pure GLR LOVE.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby cupric » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:31 am UTC

xtifr wrote:Randall is making it pretty clear that he believes this election is important, and wants people to know that he supports Hillary because he thinks that's an important thing to do.


That's the core of my frustration at today's comic, actually.

This election is a serious event, Randall is a serious person (about things that matter), but "I'm With Her" is about the most un-serious thing I can imagine him posting, short of maybe "Make America Great Again".

Actually, "Make America Great Again" would make an infinitely more effective comic, because it would be exactly the kind of morbid humor that he does so well, while subtly pointing out the seriousness of the situation.

Both slogans reflect everything that is stupid, shallow, petty, and ignorant in American politics. The attitudes that they reflect neatly sum up how we got into this mess in the first place. Anyone repeating them with a straight face should consider whether they are part of the problem.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Netreker0 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:35 am UTC

radidoo200 wrote:Really? You could have used your power to promote a 3rd party (any third party!) making a push to actually change this broken 2-party system. And instead you give us a boring endorsement for the usual lesser of two evils? Sad, sad, sad.


Or he could be endorsing who he sincerely thinks is the best option. Personally, I don't think that's Hillary. I'm pretty libertarian, so you can probably guess that I disagree with both her and Trump on a lot of stuff. But my feeling is that Randall is more straight up liberal, and I can respect that he might believe that Hillary's views most closely coincide with his own.

I am pretty strongly in favor of making third parties more viable in this country, whether through reforms of our electoral system, or simply changing a lot of hearts and minds (because, let's face it, half the reason third parties aren't viable is because people think they're not viable, which circles around in a positive feedback loop of causality.) And I would absolutely love it if more celebrities and more content creators would use their clout to lobby for third parties. However, I don't think it's fair to ask someone to support a third party candidate regardless of whether he likes that actual candidate, purely for the sake of supporting third parties in the abstract.

I'm not with her, Randall, but I'm with you voicing your position without talking down to the other side. Also for posting resources to help others make their own voices count. I checked the first link and it's paid for by the DNC, but the information there is good and it will help you figure out how to vote regardless of who you vote for.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Flumble » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:39 am UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:Here's the plan:

On Wednesday we start a "Dutch national elections 2018" thread. I suspect many of us just like politics because it's a subject one can argue about endlessly without the transparent arbitrariness of sports.

That might actually not be that bad of an idea. :lol: Do note that I don't actively visit the SRSBSNS forum though.
2017 dutch Second Chamber Election ...or perhaps General or House of Representatives. It's in March already and the only mentions of it are when a politician does something unusual apparently "to secure their position/votes for the upcoming election"!


J L wrote:Striking a blow for multiparty systems: In Germany, we've been having a rather stable 5-6 party system for the last couple of decades. Recently, it has been fragmenting a bit, but it's still overseeable. And it works reasonably well. There's an electoral threshold of 5% of the popular vote a party has to reach in order to be taken "seriously", and as for outright fascist parties: well, you're not allowed to have those. Right-wing populists, sure, but you can't run a party the Federal Constitutional Court finds to be inherently unconstitutional. I know this collides with US interpretation of free speech, but we had our experiences with parties advocating and executing mass murder, so no. As a a result, about 60-80% of our parties tend to consist of grown-up politicians you can more or less entrust with running a country, even if you hate them, and no matter which coalition. And you can happily vote your conscience instead of the lesser of evils, and find yourself somewhat represented. Of course it's still frustrating as hell, but that's probably democracy.

Vouching for this too. In the Netherlands we've had a multi-party setup since time immemorial (with proportional representation since 1919) with a poisson distribution of votes to different parties, resulting in about ~10 parties with at least one seat but a majority coalition* of 2-4 parties.
One advantage is that you (may) start out voting for whichever party you like most and after the election the largest parties will have to negotiate and compromise to get a majority rule —the voter doesn't have to select a prepackaged deal. The parallel disadvantage is that you don't know if and what positions your favourite party will give up to get that majority rule.

*no idea how widespread this tradition is, but here the largest parties form a coalition and cabinet after the election and before their term starts. They negotiate a set of policies or a basis or whatchamacallit and vote for eachother's (key) proposals during their whole term, rather than parties having to find a majority for every single proposal.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Thesh » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:43 am UTC

ucim wrote:
Thesh wrote:I think you are missing the point even more now, so I'm not sure I can explain it to you.
Perhaps. If you're trying to calculate the absolute minimum needed to win, and then considering everything else "wasted", well, I think that's an interesting exercise, but it misuses the word. Suppose you do do that, and there is one more vote than was needed. Which one was it? If there's no answer, then "wasted" is the wrong word.

(Is this the political version of the axiom of choice?)

Jose


What if it was only one group of voters, would that make a difference to you? Why? The outcome is exactly the same - some voters have more of an impact than others, and thus we don't have equal representation. If some people's votes are more likely to affect the outcome than others, then not only do we not have "one person one vote", and those voters who have more of an impact become the focus of the candidates while the rest get ignored (we just make it worse by drawing nice geographical boundaries for the candidates to focus on). It is completely irrelevant whether you can identify specific individuals - from an academic perspective, the problem is the same.

This is not something inherent to voting, in fact, we have basically taken the worst voting system and made it even worse by introducing the electoral college. FPTP has a minimum wasted vote of 50%, approval voting and ranked voting both have a minimum of zero (they are all the same in the worst case as in the worse case Approval and Ranked voting devolve to FPTP - this is a problem with all single-winner voting methods I know of - but I suspect that ranked voting has the lowest wasted vote on average).
Last edited by Thesh on Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:54 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby xtifr » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:52 am UTC

cupric wrote:Both slogans reflect everything that is stupid, shallow, petty, and ignorant in American politics. The attitudes that they reflect neatly sum up how we got into this mess in the first place. Anyone repeating them with a straight face should consider whether they are part of the problem.


Obviously, he doesn't agree with you. And for the record, neither do I. I don't see anything stupid, shallow, petty, or ignorant about saying "I support this candidate". Especially in a cartoon whose whole point was to say "I support this candidate." The fact that her slogan perfectly expressed what Randall was trying to convey looks like gravy to me.

In fact, if you want my opinion (and I'm sure you don't), I would say that the sort of ginned-up outrage that makes someone claim a simple statement of support for a candidate is some sort of horrible offense is what's actually wrong with this country. Everything is a source of outrage!

But if ya gotta rage, ya gotta rage. Just don't be surprised when I come to my own conclusions about who is part of the problem.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Netreker0 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:59 am UTC

HelloMail wrote: It feels manipulative, and I feel a little deceived.


I respect your right to feel however you want, and to voice those feelings. I don't believe your feelings reflect reality, but that can often be the case for most of us.

How is it manipulative? How is it deceptive?

If this were a case of Randall posting a seemingly normal comic, but in fact it includes a joke or some fact that is carefully crafted to move the needle of audience opinion on some issue without us realizing it (which some have accused Randall of doing on other comics, but which you clearly haven't noticed or cared enough to comment previously), then I would agree it was manipulative. But it's not. It's the author expressing his opinion in a comic that makes it clear that it's about him expressing his opinion.

Are there people out there who are so apathetic and fickle that they'll have no opinion until the XKCD expresses his own? Probably. Will this comic change their minds and win some votes for Hillary. Maybe. But if you consider this manipulative, if you consider it deceitful, then it's deceitful and manipulative any time anybody with any influence at all expresses their opinion on any issue. A professor praising a candidate within earshot of his former students is being manipulative. A parent telling his adult child why he likes Gary Johnson is being manipulative.

Heck, there's the argument to be made that you are being manipulative, with such obvious appeals to emotion and conspicuous hand-wringing as this:
My stomach fell to the pit of my stomach after seeing this comic. I held Randall at such a high regard (I still do) with the creativity, the type of humor I enjoyed, the challenges, etc. The whole XKCD experience is just wonderful, but this puts a huge burden on it.

For what purpose this manipulation, I do not know--but isn't that the hallmark of manipulation done well?

Is this comic a bit annoying, particularly to people hoping for a real comic? Sure. Is Randall taking the unnecessary risk that he'll alienate part of his audience? Probably. Is it manipulative and deceptive? Only if you set the bar for what is "manipulative and deceptive" so low as to be meaningless.

I'm sorry for being so pedantic, but it really irks me when people stretch language to such a point that it no longer means anything.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:10 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:But you know what? All that, technically true as it might be, still doesn't make the shit-on-shit sandwich a more appealing alternative. I'm sad that plain ham and mild cheddar was the most exciting prospect we've seen here in a while and we couldn't even get that over stale baloney, but no fucking way am I eating three kinds of shit on shit with a side of shit instead.
There seem to have been a number of good food analogies this election. I was a bit harsher on Clinton in one I posted on Facebook in response to this quote:
In 2008, David Sedaris wrote:To put them in perspective, I think of being on an airplane. The flight attendant comes down the aisle with her food cart and, eventually, parks it beside my seat. “Can I interest you in the chicken?” she asks. “Or would you prefer the platter of shit with bits of broken glass in it?”

To be undecided in this election is to pause for a moment and then ask how the chicken is cooked.

It's not cooked, and will quite possibly make you violently ill, but it's technically edible and won't *literally* tear apart your insides. And if you ask for something else, such as the plate of rotten lettuce or the bucket of shit without glass in it, then the rest of the passengers will vote and you'll have one of the first two choices anyway.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby jeanrenaud » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:13 am UTC

I think that this comic is boring, but this is not a reason to "dump" somebody. 99.9% of the time, his comics are OK.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Weeks » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:18 am UTC

I imagine Randall is just completely heartbroken about people dumping him over his comic
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Netreker0 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:23 am UTC

xtifr wrote:
cupric wrote:Both slogans reflect everything that is stupid, shallow, petty, and ignorant in American politics. The attitudes that they reflect neatly sum up how we got into this mess in the first place. Anyone repeating them with a straight face should consider whether they are part of the problem.


Obviously, he doesn't agree with you. And for the record, neither do I. I don't see anything stupid, shallow, petty, or ignorant about saying "I support this candidate". Especially in a cartoon whose whole point was to say "I support this candidate." The fact that her slogan perfectly expressed what Randall was trying to convey looks like gravy to me.


I agree with you Xtifr. There are numerous things about Trump, Clinton, their campaigns, and large subsets of their supporters that are absolutely stupid, shallow, petty, and ignorant. But slogans are by their nature shallow and meaningless. Whether it's "Make America Great Again," "Hope and Change," or "Real Plans for Real People," a slogan isn't meant to express detailed, concrete policy goals in fewer characters than a tweet. (And frankly, anyone who looks to a slogan expecting to see those things is probably part of the stupid, shallow, petty, and ignorant problem.)

Cupric, as for your problem with "I'm with Her," all I can ask is: seriously? It's a nice button sized way to express your candidate preference, in the tradition of "I Like Ike" and "Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too." It doesn't purport to articulate any policies or aspirations, it doesn't contain anything that even pretends to be a persuasive argument. It just gives people a way to express their decision and to stand by it.

In fact, if you want my opinion (and I'm sure you don't), I would say that the sort of ginned-up outrage that makes someone claim a simple statement of support for a candidate is some sort of horrible offense is what's actually wrong with this country. Everything is a source of outrage!


Xtifr, I think you're probably being a bit too hard on Cupric here. If you look below the surface, I think the stuff he's mad about is stuff we should all be legitimately mad about. It's ridiculous that Trump can blatantly lie in a debate about making statements he hasn't even bothered to delete from twitter, and many of his followers don't notice the lie (even thought they probably read that tweet when it came out.) It's ridiculous that Hillary can constantly avoid saying anything more meaningful than a vague sound byte when confronted about her e-mail scandal.

Yes, the fact that it was slogans of all things that served as the straw that broke the proverbial camel's back is utterly laughable. But I don't blame Cupric for having a lot of pent up rage.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Netreker0 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:29 am UTC

Velo Steve wrote:
azule wrote:...
Velo Steve wrote:I will vote, and I will respect the presidency even if I don't agree with the winner.

Which means you'll vote for Hillary. We know what Trump said about accepting the outcome.
...

Poor assumption. If I had to believe and act exactly the same as the person I vote for I would probably never vote at all.

As a California voter, I know that there is essentially zero chance of changing the fact that all of our electors will go to Clinton. Thus, it's not a Trump/Clinton choice for me as it would be if I lived in a swing state. I'll try to pick a write-in candidate whose small but non-zero vote count makes even one person in the big parties take notice. Yes, that's also pretty much a zero chance of making a difference. I admit it, but no harm done.


That's not entirely true. Federal matching funding is available to third parties that receive more than 5% of the national presidential vote. The money isn't huge, but it's not nothing. More importantly, the grant is a stamp of legitimacy, and for some people, that might be just enough to convince them to take a more proactive role in supporting a third party, and maybe that will be the first step in things changing.

No, you're probably not going to vote your candidate into office if he or she isn't one of the big two. But your chances of making a difference might be greater than you realize.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby ucim » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:32 am UTC

Thesh wrote:What if it was only one group of voters, would that make a difference to you? Why? The outcome is exactly the same - some voters have more of an impact than others, and thus we don't have equal representation...
I think this is more of an indictment of FPTP than anything else. There are other voting systems that assign "extra" votes to other candidates when there are multiple representatives to be elected. I'm not quite sure what you mean by "if it were only one group of voters" though. You also seem to count a vote "wasted" if it isn't cast for a winning candidate. I'm not sure that's a good characterization.

In choosing voting methods, you could use the "fewest 'wasted' votes" method, but I'm not sure that's really a good method. And we'd have to agree on whether the result should be the one most people want, the one most people can put up with, the one most kinds of people are in favor of, or the one fewest people loathe. They could all be different people, and some voting methods favor one, other methods favor another.

And in the specific case of the US, we are not a monolithic country with arbitrary subdivisions. We are a collection of autonomous states, and states are a thing. Whether states should be a thing is a separate question, but one that bears on this, because if they should, then they need to be accounted for, and if not, that's a very big change to governance.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby HelloMail » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:33 am UTC

azule wrote:
HelloMail wrote:If people are voting for either candidate, I would love to have a discussion with you. I promise, I won't bite, but everywhere I look, I can't seem to find organic conversations or discussions, which leads me to seeing only one perspective. I'd like to see the other.

I honestly wish I would never have known who Randall was going to vote for. If he had put it in his blag, I would have been much better with it. In a blog, it feels like he's expressing his feelings and wants to let people know. In a comic, it feels like he's using his influence/wide spread audience to influence others to vote, just because it's the XKCD guy, rather than reasons. It feels manipulative, and I feel a little deceived.


I understand that. But he's not a feelingless machine. He knows the importance of this election and how bad it might get with the wrong guy in office. He's still the same guy who made some of your favorite comics. In 4 years you might get your guy in office then it'll be back to just pure GLR LOVE.


I have no problem with the importance of the election, or even that he voiced his opinion, it's simply how he did that I have a bit of a disagreement with. I don't have any particular person I am rooting for. Even if he had said 'Make America Great Again', I would still feel the same way.



Netreker0 wrote:
HelloMail wrote: It feels manipulative, and I feel a little deceived.


I respect your right to feel however you want, and to voice those feelings. I don't believe your feelings reflect reality, but that can often be the case for most of us.

How is it manipulative? How is it deceptive?

If this were a case of Randall posting a seemingly normal comic, but in fact it includes a joke or some fact that is carefully crafted to move the needle of audience opinion on some issue without us realizing it (which some have accused Randall of doing on other comics, but which you clearly haven't noticed or cared enough to comment previously), then I would agree it was manipulative. But it's not. It's the author expressing his opinion in a comic that makes it clear that it's about him expressing his opinion.

Are there people out there who are so apathetic and fickle that they'll have no opinion until the XKCD expresses his own? Probably. Will this comic change their minds and win some votes for Hillary. Maybe. But if you consider this manipulative, if you consider it deceitful, then it's deceitful and manipulative any time anybody with any influence at all expresses their opinion on any issue. A professor praising a candidate within earshot of his former students is being manipulative. A parent telling his adult child why he likes Gary Johnson is being manipulative.

Heck, there's the argument to be made that you are being manipulative, with such obvious appeals to emotion and conspicuous hand-wringing as this:
My stomach fell to the pit of my stomach after seeing this comic. I held Randall at such a high regard (I still do) with the creativity, the type of humor I enjoyed, the challenges, etc. The whole XKCD experience is just wonderful, but this puts a huge burden on it.

For what purpose this manipulation, I do not know--but isn't that the hallmark of manipulation done well?

Is this comic a bit annoying, particularly to people hoping for a real comic? Sure. Is Randall taking the unnecessary risk that he'll alienate part of his audience? Probably. Is it manipulative and deceptive? Only if you set the bar for what is "manipulative and deceptive" so low as to be meaningless.

I'm sorry for being so pedantic, but it really irks me when people stretch language to such a point that it no longer means anything.


I had no intention in trying to being manipulative, I apologize if that's how it came out, I was simply expressing how everything felt. I'm not going to change anyone's mind, just putting my grain of salt. English isn't my first language, so I may be over-emphasizing things I shouldn't. My goal is trying to make things clear.

I feel it's manipulative because instead of stating 'I think we should vote for Hillary' or 'I am voting for Hillary', he's taking a piece of canon and he's making it into a political agenda. In your example of the Professor, it's one thing for the Professor to have a chat with his students, to even confront them, to suggest books, etc. I have no problem with that. I do have an issue when the professor is making it an assignment. In this case, I kind of view his comic strips as a book. There's great jokes, interesting information, great story, great development. A page is then ripped out of "The Hobbit" and an add is placed there to vote for X senator. That's what I'm not a big fan of.

Is my opinion colored? Yes. Will it pass? Probably. I just don't want to have to think 'is there an agenda?'. This may just be because of what seems to be the rampant manipulation, and I'm afraid to fall into a trap here where I don't expect it to. In no way am I saying that Randall is manipulating or being deceitful, I am just expressing my initial feeling towards the comic. This just seems out of character. Last time, Randall suggested Obama in his Blag. I did not once think that was manipulative, because of how he did it. It was through the blag, it's non canonical. I have no problem with Randall sharing his opinion, but it kind of kills the flow of the comics. Just my 2 cents. I apologize if I irked you further (I'm also sorry I irked you to begin with). I will try and be more careful of my wording in the future.

Netreker0 wrote:If this were a case of Randall posting a seemingly normal comic, but in fact it includes a joke or some fact that is carefully crafted to move the needle of audience opinion on some issue without us realizing it (which some have accused Randall of doing on other comics, but which you clearly haven't noticed or cared enough to comment previously)


I'm not doubting you at all, I'm simply curious, do you have any examples of these? This is completely out of the scope of the topic, just wondering.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby cupric » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:40 am UTC

xtifr wrote:In fact, if you want my opinion (and I'm sure you don't), I would say that the sort of ginned-up outrage that makes someone claim a simple statement of support for a candidate is some sort of horrible offense is what's actually wrong with this country. Everything is a source of outrage!


I assure you, I do want your opinion and my outrage is anything but ginned-up.

You can tell me that my motivations or opinions are wrong, but you don't get to tell me what my motivations and opinions are.

xtifr wrote:But if ya gotta rage, ya gotta rage. Just don't be surprised when I come to my own conclusions about who is part of the problem.


Actually, rage isn't quite the right word. Panic is probably closer.

And what I'm panicked about is otherwise sane people who can see what Trump is, but appear blind to what Hillary is.

I don't begrudge Randall or anyone else who sees Trump as the greater threat, but I hope you will recognize -- if not now then sometime later -- how grave the situation will be with Hillary as president. There is no happy ending here, no matter who wins. This is the closest that I have seen to a real life Kang vs. Kodos situation in my lifetime.

And I don't think I'm overstating the case. The United States is more conflicted than at any time since the Civil War. I don't know how well we can weather an arrogant, angry, lying, and borderline incompetent president, but assuming either the Republican or Democratic candidate wins on Tuesday, we're going to get just that.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Stargazer71 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:41 am UTC

cupric wrote:Both slogans reflect everything that is stupid, shallow, petty, and ignorant in American politics. The attitudes that they reflect neatly sum up how we got into this mess in the first place. Anyone repeating them with a straight face should consider whether they are part of the problem.


Maybe you just haven't seen as many presidential elections as I have, but that's pretty typical. I have never seen a campaign slogan that was truly insightful. I mean seriously, just look at 2012's slogans. "Forward"? "Believe in America"? Phfft...

The best you can hope for is something catchy. "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too" remains catchy a century and a half later, despite being utterly meaningless.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Sheikh al-Majaneen » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:44 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:Campaigning or voting for a third-party presidential candidate to protest the two-party system seems akin to refusing to tip to protest the sub-minimum wage for waitstaff: It won't do anything to bring about the change you claim to want, and in the meantime hurts people or causes you claim to care about.

Also, voting for Clinton isn't necessarily strategic of lesser-evil voting, even for people who have serious problems with her. Of the four presidential candidates on my ballot, I strongly believe Clinton would make the best POTUS. I stand by my primary-season belief that Sanders would have been a better option, but Sanders isn't running any more, and I strongly disagree with a lot of the positions of the only other candidate with any political experience, so I wasn't about to vote for him in any case.

The problem with this is the assumption that a vote for Clinton or Trump will bring about the change I claim I want. I mean, either would (theoretically) bring about some changes I want--for example, immigration restriction from the Right, and actually taking climate change seriously on the left. But what of people who are disgusted by further imperialism and stupid wars and regime changes that are either poorly-executed or executed exactly to bring about maximum local chaos? Do you vote for the chaotic orange clown, or the woman who actually engaged in these things?

What about people who are honestly concerned that HRC will attempt to bring about a no-fly zone over Syria even if Russia refuses to cooperate, leading to Russian jets being shot down, which leads to nuclear war? Nobody actually wants nuclear war, but when the option is to appear cowardly, what happens then? When Turkey shot down the Russian jet last year, we managed to pretend that the jet's black box was corrupted and all take a step back from that mathematical precipice. But if these things start to happen as a matter of national policy rather than brinksmanship or whatever, is that an option?

Social progress is a great thing, sure, but in the face of existential threats, what meaning is to be found there?

That veered off the path some but it's a decent start with why I'm...anxious about the idea of her as president. Third-party-wise, obviously none are going to win, but I would certainly prefer if some libertarian ideals informed how we exercise our imperial power, and I don't mean to support Pinochet-like regimes. But that would have to wait until 2020 assuming the LP reached 5% and can actually get decent funding next time around.

Any arguments I might have against Trump as president don't really belong here because it's more an argument to have with family (I am the odd one out). And this isn't my blog and this post dragged on long enough I suppose. But yeah, this is why I'm drinking tonight and watching Friends reruns on Netflix.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby goblinm » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:52 am UTC

Registered to say that I am glad that Randall made this comic.

This election has been a terrible trial for this country, and I fear that the division will only be exacerbated by Nov. 9th. The fact that Randall's comic, which in any other election would be a simple endorsement of minor note, has sparked such furious debate and controversy has demonstrated that point. Scott Adams has endorsed Trump, but I will continue to enjoy Dilbert comics.

This country should strive to learn how to discuss and debate again. It seems to me that politics in this country have developed to the point where our points are hypergolic (I want to coin this term to describe the current political climate)- that is, when mingled with a supporter of the opposing side, it automatically results in an explosion, destroying calm discussion and debate. I would even say that the common political memes are designed by the originating party to be hypergolic. Even if you believe that the opposing side is being more of a bad actor, strive to find a common ground for discussion and avoid incendiary arguments language.

Randall has demonstrated to all of us through calm and positive messaging his preferred candidate. If we are to debate the details of the election (I would argue that this is a poor forum to do so), I would say we should try to honor the intent of Randall's message, and at least try to respect each other.

This goes for real life too.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby omgryebread » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:00 am UTC

Can someone explain to me the appeal behind either third party candidate? Seriously. I'm not voting for Hillary over them because she's more likely to win (I live in MD.) I'm voting for her because both Jill Stein and Gary Johnson are stunningly unqualified.

Jill Stein has no political experience. She has been vague as to whether she supports vaccines (and she certainly supports allowing people to send vaccinated children to schools), and she expressed concern about Wi-Fi. Her Vice Presidential pick is an outrageous conspiracy theorist. He believes that Israel killed three of its own teenage citizens as a false flag attack. He believes that war crimes in Syria are the fault of the U.S. and that the Assad regime is legitimate (despite the unmonitored election held during a civil war). He supports the Russian-backed uprising in Ukraine, and believes that the the Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 was a false flag operation. He's also suggested that the November 2015 attacks in Paris and the Chibok kidnappings in Nigeria were false flags. The green party platform mentions Syria exactly once, in a brief mention of Kurds.


You think Gary Johnson is the one to help American democracy? Well do you think money in politics is a problem? Because Gary Johnson doesn't, he supports the Citizens United decision. His health care solution is... the free market. Their only replacement to The Affordable Care Act will be purchasing insurance across state lines. He believes in global climate change... but doesn't want to do anything to stop it. (Free market!) But wait. Maybe you just believe in the libertarian ideal that people should be allowed to do as they wish? Like say, wear a burqa? Nah, Johnson supports banning burqas.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Thesh » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:09 am UTC

ucim wrote:
Thesh wrote:What if it was only one group of voters, would that make a difference to you? Why? The outcome is exactly the same - some voters have more of an impact than others, and thus we don't have equal representation...
I think this is more of an indictment of FPTP than anything else.


If it was just FPTP, the wasted vote would be closer to 50% in 2012; that's the source at the state level, but the electoral college amplifies that.

ucim wrote:There are other voting systems that assign "extra" votes to other candidates when there are multiple representatives to be elected. I'm not quite sure what you mean by "if it were only one group of voters" though. You also seem to count a vote "wasted" if it isn't cast for a winning candidate. I'm not sure that's a good characterization.


That's not how I count it, that's how the term is defined - and that's what STV does, it minimizes wasted votes by assigning excess votes to lower ranked candidates, and reassigning votes for candidates that lose.

ucim wrote:In choosing voting methods, you could use the "fewest 'wasted' votes" method, but I'm not sure that's really a good method. And we'd have to agree on whether the result should be the one most people want, the one most people can put up with, the one most kinds of people are in favor of, or the one fewest people loathe. They could all be different people, and some voting methods favor one, other methods favor another.


Honestly, the biggest decision is not the best voting system from an academic standpoint, it's the technical details of each system such as implementation and usability. There are three big ones:

Instant Runoff Voting (last place candidate is eliminated and their votes given to the next ranked candidate until no candidates remain)
Condorcet Voting (the candidate who defeats every other candidate in a head to head is a winner - there isn't always a Condorcet loser)
Approval Voting (just like FPTP, except you can vote for multiple candidates, every vote for every candidate is added up, and the candidate with the highest total wins)

Other than the conceptual details, they all tend to do the same thing: elect the median candidate (some research suggests approval and Condorcet tend to elect the same candidate), who gets the broadest support. Approval voting is the simplest, and can be simply implemented. IRV is also pretty simple to implement, but you have to count every single vote together at a national level, and the ballots are a bit more troublesome (either to design or to count or both) because you have to be able to rank candidates - Condorcet only does head-to-head comparisons, so polling stations only have to report the pairwise comparisons, not every ballot (even with 20 candidates, you only need 190 numbers reported at every polling station).

ucim wrote:And in the specific case of the US, we are not a monolithic country with arbitrary subdivisions. We are a collection of autonomous states, and states are a thing. Whether states should be a thing is a separate question, but one that bears on this, because if they should, then they need to be accounted for, and if not, that's a very big change to governance.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Liri » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:17 am UTC

That cartogram from 2004 is pretty sweet. I could pick out my county fairly easily.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Sheikh al-Majaneen » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:21 am UTC

omgryebread wrote:Can someone explain to me the appeal behind either third party candidate? Seriously. I'm not voting for Hillary over them because she's more likely to win (I live in MD.) I'm voting for her because both Jill Stein and Gary Johnson are stunningly unqualified.

Jill Stein has no political experience. She has been vague as to whether she supports vaccines (and she certainly supports allowing people to send vaccinated children to schools), and she expressed concern about Wi-Fi. Her Vice Presidential pick is an outrageous conspiracy theorist. He believes that Israel killed three of its own teenage citizens as a false flag attack. He believes that war crimes in Syria are the fault of the U.S. and that the Assad regime is legitimate (despite the unmonitored election held during a civil war). He supports the Russian-backed uprising in Ukraine, and believes that the the Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 was a false flag operation. He's also suggested that the November 2015 attacks in Paris and the Chibok kidnappings in Nigeria were false flags. The green party platform mentions Syria exactly once, in a brief mention of Kurds.


You think Gary Johnson is the one to help American democracy? Well do you think money in politics is a problem? Because Gary Johnson doesn't, he supports the Citizens United decision. His health care solution is... the free market. Their only replacement to The Affordable Care Act will be purchasing insurance across state lines. He believes in global climate change... but doesn't want to do anything to stop it. (Free market!) But wait. Maybe you just believe in the libertarian ideal that people should be allowed to do as they wish? Like say, wear a burqa? Nah, Johnson supports banning burqas.

I'll give it a try for GJ. Can't really do the same for Jill Stein though. The Green Party has fallen far since the days of Ralph Nader.

From what I can tell, most libertarians (which is something I used to consider myself) aren't really pro-Gary Johnson. A lot preferred the more obnoxious Austin Peterson or the more eloquent and intelligent, but...troubled John McAfee (yes, the antivirus guy who was a person of interest in Costa Rica over a neighbor's murder) over him, but GJ has actual executive experience as governor of New Mexico, and experience running as president in 2012.

No libertarian actually expects him to win. Supposedly he refused to even accept the nomination unless Bill Weld was offered the VP slot; bizarrely, last week Weld essentially endorsed HRC over GJ on live TV. The hope for people voting for GJ is for the libertarians to break the 5% mark. At this point the libertarian party's campaign funds in 2020 are doubled because the federal government will match donated funds one-to-one.

Even in 2020 the LP won't win. Hopefully though some positions popular within the LP will influence platforms significantly though, like what Bernie Sanders did this year.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Netreker0 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:29 am UTC

HelloMail wrote:I had no intention in trying to being manipulative, I apologize if that's how it came out,


Don't worry, it didn't really come out that way. I was simply trying to decipher definition of "manipulative," and showing that it seemed to be so expansive that it would also apply to your own post, in order to show that your definition was perhaps a bit too expansive.

I feel it's manipulative because instead of stating 'I think we should vote for Hillary' or 'I am voting for Hillary', he's taking a piece of canon and he's making it into a political agenda. In your example of the Professor, it's one thing for the Professor to have a chat with his students, to even confront them, to suggest books, etc. I have no problem with that. I do have an issue when the professor is making it an assignment.

Thanks, I think I understand your reasoning a bit better. I disagree with it. Actually, I think it's flawed to the point of absurdity. But like I said, we're all entitled to our feelings, even if those feelings aren't really rational sometimes. Lord knows mine aren't.

I'm not sure the term "canon" really applies to xkcd. There are some strips that sort of form a series (Future Paleontology/Future Archaelogy, for example. There are some characters whose, well, characteristics are revealed through consistent behavior across numerous strips.

In this case, I kind of view his comic strips as a book. There's great jokes, interesting information, great story, great development. A page is then ripped out of "The Hobbit" and an add is placed there to vote for X senator. That's what I'm not a big fan of.


It's understandable that you find it incongruous or jarring. I kind of agree. But again, this does not equal manipulative. For one thing, the word manipulative generally implies intent. I suppose I could conceive of some hypothetical circumstances where someone is unintentionally acting manipulative or deceitful, but in general to call some action manipulative or deceptive is to say that the guy performing that action is deliberately crafting that action to be manipulative or deceptive.

In no way am I saying that Randall is manipulating or being deceitful, I am just expressing my initial feeling towards the comic.

I get that, and I respect that. I just felt I had to point out that it was a bit irrational to feel that way and that I don't think anything Randall did was a legitimate reason to feel that way.

I'm not doubting you at all, I'm simply curious, do you have any examples of these? This is completely out of the scope of the topic, just wondering.


The most recent example is when Randall posted his giant timeline of global average temperature changes over time. I don't consider it political because Randall has always been pro-scientific thinking and anti-idiocy, but some people saw it as political because Randall's observations clearly benefit one position of the climate change debate (full disclosure, I favor that position), and that position is more closely associated with one political party (full disclosure, I don't particularly favor that party). The fact that Randall takes a pro-scientific-method position on most things, coupled with the fact that Randall is clear about his liberal leanings and many conservatives tend to use really bad science to argue their positions on evolution and climate change, means that these comics often summon the conspiracy theory trolls.

And if you go off XKCD forums and look other places where the comic is relinked and discussed, you'll see much more of this sort of response. (Which is why I try really hard not to read those discussions when I stumble upon them.)

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Covane » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:45 am UTC

omgryebread wrote:Can someone explain to me the appeal behind either third party candidate? Seriously. I'm not voting for Hillary over them because she's more likely to win (I live in MD.) I'm voting for her because both Jill Stein and Gary Johnson are stunningly unqualified.


the myth of qualification needs to be thrown out

no one is qualified to be president. I mean that in practical contemporary terms and in abstract. No one since Eisenhower has been professionally qualified to run the country, and I don't know if any human being has ever been abstractly qualified to hold that amount of power. Maybe Feynman, Oppenheimer, et al.


anyone rattling sabers at Russia isn't fit to hold the power of nukes, that's for sure.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby KrytenKoro » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:01 am UTC

HelloMail wrote:On one end, I kind of hoped there would have been no endorsements. Now when I read comics, I'll think 'this person voted for Hillary', which, as much as I hate admitting it, will color my opinion of future (and probably past) comics. I'm in no way a Trump supporter, but I'm also not a Hillary supporter. Randall can vote for whomever he likes, I have no problem with that, it's just the way he did it. There is also a part of me who kind of feels let down by the endorsement of Hillary.


...it's an explicitly pro-science webcomic. How could you possibly think Randall would ever be voting for any of the other three, explicitly anti-science candidates?

Like, seriously, everyone who's "oh so shocked" -- even putting aside Randall's obvious social justice leanings for a second, were you all really of the idea that he was fond of anti-science conspiracy theorists?
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby omgryebread » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:30 am UTC

Covane wrote:anyone rattling sabers at Russia isn't fit to hold the power of nukes, that's for sure.
Yeah, I mean giving up sections of Eastern European countries to tyrants has always been a solid foreign policy.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Netreker0 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:30 am UTC

omgryebread wrote:You think Gary Johnson is the one to help American democracy? Well do you think money in politics is a problem? Because Gary Johnson doesn't, he supports the Citizens United decision.


I won't speak to whether Gary Johnson thinks money in politics is a problem, because I have no clue. I will speak to the validity of your logic, because it's lacking. Citizens United was decided based on Constitutional law. On that basis, it was correctly decided. That might be why Johnson supports the choice. From a practical standpoint, Citizens United struck down a law that had a noble goal, and may even have been designed to serve a legitimate government interest. However, it also infringed upon a rather important right, and raised a complex question of how many rights people retain when they pool resources and act as a corporation, rather than as individuals.

If you ignore a few centuries of Constitutional jurisprudence, then you can look purely at whether the good the law does outweighs the costs and the risks of abuse. By that metric, I wish Citizens had gone the other way, but I can absolutely respect that Johnson (or anybody) who sincerely worries about money in politics might look at the same facts and decide that the costs and risks were too high.

By your logic, if I oppose the PATRIOT Act, I must therefore support terrorism. If I oppose how the sex offenders' registry is implemented, I must therefore support child molesters. If I oppose quota based affirmative action, I must therefore hate minorities. For the record, I don't particularly like terrorism, or child molesters, and I belong to a minority, but I think that that PATRIOT Act can, and has, been abused to expand police power far beyond the scope of fighting terrorism. I think that the way the sex offenders' registry is run is arbitrary and capricious (i.e.,same punishment for an 18 year old sleeping with his 17 year old girlfriend during the two months one is a minor and one is not) and violates due process by imposing new punishments ex post facto (a guy is convicted, sentenced, and years later a new amendment to the law imposes punishments that weren't even on the books when you were convicted.) As for affirmative action, I worry that it's now doing more harm than good. It was probably necessary back in the day to stop racial discrimination that was overt, blatant, and popularly supported by those controlling the hiring and admissions committees. Today, I'm sure discrimination still exists, but through a Darwinian process of natural selection, it's become subtle, hidden behind pretexts, and generally hard to prove and prosecute. It gives the racists an excuse to be racist, and it emboldens white nationalists to the point that they got their candidate the GOP presidential nomination. I would much rather limit the law to one that requires a degree of transparency and reporting--compelling certain businesses to release aggregate hiring statistics to the public--and letting the public decide what sort of business they want to support. It's not a perfect solution, and I don't pretend it is, but I think it'll be better than the current one.

That's actually one version of the libertarian philosophy--government has a lot of potential to do good, but in the rush to do good, we need to be very careful about how we increase government's power or decrease our own liberties. We have to consider whether a proposed law is the least restrictive means to achieve our goal, whether the immediate costs and unintended consequences are too high, whether the law is too vague and grants powers that could be potentially abused, and whether that goal is even best achieved through government, and not the free market or NGOs.

He believes in global climate change... but doesn't want to do anything to stop it.


That's a rather vague, general statement lacking any particularity. I wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't think the Constitution allows us any effective way to stop it, (Commerce Clause, she's a real witch.) Or if he simply disagrees with all of the specific plans that have been proposed to deal with the problem, either because he thinks they won't work or because he thinks the costs are too high.

Or maybe, like me, he believes that the free market won't provide a solution soon enough, and that government action is necessary, but any attempt to act unilaterally will fail (because no other countries stand with us) and put us at an economic and military disadvantage (because other countries don't have their hands tied.)


Maybe you just believe in the libertarian ideal that people should be allowed to do as they wish? Like say, wear a burqa? Nah, Johnson supports banning burqas.


Yeah, Gary Johnson falls short of following his libertarian principles on a few issues due to some irrational, emotional opinion on the topic, or because sticking to his principles would be too costly. So instead of voting for somebody who has principles that agree with mine the most, but fails to live up to them, I should vote for a candidate who adheres 100% to a set of principles that match mine far less? Oh wait, that's not even an option, because Clinton also isn't ideologically consistent all the time (maybe because she's the master of political accommodation, maybe because she grew up conservative and became more liberal later in lie), and neither is Trump (maybe because he can't really decide what his principles are, maybe because he's friggin' nuts.)

So to recap, you're telling us that because a candidate only imperfectly follows principles we agree with, we should instead vote for a candidate who imperfectly follows an entirely different set of principles... in order to, what, punish him? That reasoning is irrational, and stupid. Yeah, I think Johnson's position on burqas is abhorrent, if that's actually his position. So instead I should vote for Trump, who might not want to ban burqas, but instead wants to ban all the people who might wear burqas from immigrating to our country?

And for the record, while I found Gary Johnson to be very personable and likable on TV, I think he's a terrible candidate. "What's an Aleppo?" Enough said. If I thought he had a chance of winning, I would probably have a much harder time deciding who to vote for. As it stands, I'm casting my vote for the libertarian party to hit that 5%. I'm voting so that, maybe, hopefully, a decade or two down the line, we can do more than constantly choose between big government in the board room and big government in the bedroom.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Netreker0 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:32 am UTC

omgryebread wrote:
Covane wrote:anyone rattling sabers at Russia isn't fit to hold the power of nukes, that's for sure.
Yeah, I mean giving up sections of Eastern European countries to tyrants has always been a solid foreign policy.


And a false dilemma fallacy, what a surprise. There's a tremendous space between being a Neville Chamberlain and being a Kim Jong Un. I would like a President who is somewhere in that space, preferably fairly far from either extreme.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Netreker0 » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:34 am UTC

Sheikh al-Majaneen wrote:
From what I can tell, most libertarians (which is something I used to consider myself) aren't really pro-Gary Johnson. A lot preferred the more obnoxious Austin Peterson or the more eloquent and intelligent, but...troubled John McAfee (yes, the antivirus guy who was a person of interest in Costa Rica over a neighbor's murder) over him, but GJ has actual executive experience as governor of New Mexico, and experience running as president in 2012.


I'm kind of relieved I'm not the only one. One of the frustrating things of being a libertarian that the Libertarian Party isn't 100% consistent with everyone self-described libertarian's views, and beyond that the most successful libertarian politicians haven't been the most consistent with the Party either (might explain their success, though.)

But you know, the same can be said about the Democrats for certain, and even for the ones monolithic, and comparatively ideological pure, GOP.

For whatever reason, a disproportionate number of libertarians tend to be abrasive assholes, myself included. The guys like Rand Paul and Gary Johnson, who actually are people-people and adept politicians, tend to be the least ideologically pure libertarians.
Last edited by Netreker0 on Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:42 am UTC, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby azule » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:39 am UTC

PeteP wrote:There, there everything will be fine, just let people who are living in reality make the decision.

Hahaha. Better than anything I was going to write... lol.

cupric wrote:I made an account specifically to comment.

There, I quoted you differently. I didn't quite figure you meant that you didn't have an account as opposed to making a second account to espouse your political opinions. I thought the second thing.

Sorting Algorithm wrote:If it has to be a political comic, I'd much prefer to see "Regardless of who your voting for, get out and vote" message.
I'd rather see a 90% voter turnout with my candidate losing, than a 60% turnout where my candidate wins.

That's just dumb. You can want both a good turnout (democracy!) and your candidate to win. It's reasonable. We don't need a civics lesson that results in a bad outcome for the country. :(

gd1 wrote:If Trump wins... what will his Wednesday comic look like? I think it would be funny.

I hope he does two comics, one real result, one alternate result.

Velo Steve wrote:As a California voter, I know that there is essentially zero chance of changing the fact that all of our electors will go to Clinton. Thus, it's not a Trump/Clinton choice for me as it would be if I lived in a swing state. I'll try to pick a write-in candidate whose small but non-zero vote count makes even one person in the big parties take notice. Yes, that's also pretty much a zero chance of making a difference. I admit it, but no harm done.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby efkeykey » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:42 am UTC

Sad. I like funny xkcd comics which are full of sarcasm, math and language jokes. I have fun with infographics and charts. I empathize sad comics. I enjoy specials like "Click and Drag" or "Time". Of course there are a lot of xkcd comics I don't like or don't understand or sometimes both, but I don't feel disgusted by them. This comic on the other has made me login on this forum and express my opinion that I don't like blatant in-your-face agitation. Some social commentary? Some Trump teasing? I would be ok or even like it. This is just dull.

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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby omgryebread » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:56 am UTC

Netreker0 wrote:
omgryebread wrote:You think Gary Johnson is the one to help American democracy? Well do you think money in politics is a problem? Because Gary Johnson doesn't, he supports the Citizens United decision.


I won't speak to whether Gary Johnson thinks money in politics is a problem, because I have no clue.
Ignoring the other positions you talked about, its pretty easy to find Johnson on campaign finance.

In a January 2001 interview with Playboy Magazine, Governor Johnson stated that he opposed campaign contribution limits. "The problem isn't large contributions. The problem is that we don't know who contributed. If you limit contributions from an individual to, say, $1000, then I think just the opposite occurs. Then you have politicians beholden to way too many people." In 2010, Johnson said he favored unlimited contributions by corporations as well.
Source: Club for Growth 2012 Presidential White Paper #9: Johnson , Jul 21, 2011


He also opposes public financing of campaigns (including the Libertarian Party if they were to reach 5%.)


That's a rather vague, general statement lacking any particularity. I wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't think the Constitution allows us any effective way to stop it, (Commerce Clause, she's a real witch.) Or if he simply disagrees with all of the specific plans that have been proposed to deal with the problem, either because he thinks they won't work or because he thinks the costs are too high.

Or maybe, like me, he believes that the free market won't provide a solution soon enough, and that government action is necessary, but any attempt to act unilaterally will fail (because no other countries stand with us) and put us at an economic and military disadvantage (because other countries don't have their hands tied.)
I don't particularly understand how you could think something is a problem, but not try to find a solution. The free market is not "not providing a solution soon enough" it's actively working against finding a solution.


So to recap, you're telling us that because a candidate only imperfectly follows principles we agree with, we should instead vote for a candidate who imperfectly follows an entirely different set of principles... in order to, what, punish him?
I'm not telling you to vote for anyone. I'm just saying that if Clinton and Trump are terrible candidates, (Trump is, and I'm willing to concede that there are legitimate arguments against Clinton), then I don't understand how people can think that Johnson or Stein are good candidates. You answered my question a bit. I don't agree with your decision to vote for Johnson, but your rationale makes sense.

Netreker0 wrote:And a false dilemma fallacy, what a surprise. There's a tremendous space between being a Neville Chamberlain and being a Kim Jong Un. I would like a President who is somewhere in that space, preferably fairly far from either extreme.
If you think Clinton's fairly modest proposals on Syria and Russia are like Kim Jong-un's, that's outlandish and offensive to both the people suffering from the human rights violations at the hands of Russia and its allies, and to the people Kim oppresses and openly threatens with nuclear attack. And if you don't see a parallel between giving up the Sudetenland and giving up Crimea, I don't know what to say.
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Re: 1756: "I'm With Her"

Postby Thesh » Tue Nov 08, 2016 5:02 am UTC

omgryebread wrote:
In a January 2001 interview with Playboy Magazine, Governor Johnson stated that he opposed campaign contribution limits. "The problem isn't large contributions. The problem is that we don't know who contributed. If you limit contributions from an individual to, say, $1000, then I think just the opposite occurs. Then you have politicians beholden to way too many people." In 2010, Johnson said he favored unlimited contributions by corporations as well.
Source: Club for Growth 2012 Presidential White Paper #9: Johnson , Jul 21, 2011


I don't get it. So the worst case scenario, according to Johnson, is that we ban contributions and the politicians are beholden to the entire population, while the best case is they are to act as a proxy for one single aristocrat?

Gary Johnson is an odd person.
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