2016 US Presidential Election

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby PeteP » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:10 am UTC

That last thing: Apparently. you only need one chamber not both, the number comes from only counting where they have both. Also they don't seem to have less chambers than before: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2016/11/11/1595712/-Despite-harrowing-election-Democrats-make-net-legislative-gain-picking-up-4-chambers-to-GOP-s-3

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Zamfir » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:47 am UTC

@Lucrece, you talk about lazy democrats, and people who twitter but don't vote.

There's clearly a group who sometimes vote democratic and sometimes doesn't vote. But does that group have much overlap with self-described democrats who proselytise on Facebook?

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 4:30 pm UTC

sardia wrote:If we are guilty of ignoring rural America, where are the Republicans on this issue? It's pretty convenient of them to never fight for them. Are rural poor counting anti immigration as help?


The Republican establishment also traditionally ignored them. I mean, sure, Republicans have had more support among rural folks in general, but they've largely taken it for granted. They haven't really tried to fix things. That's why establishment candidates took it in the face during the Republican primary. Trump at least made a *lot* of noises about bringing back jobs to them. He probably can't, in practice. But at least he addressed them and their concerns directly and often. That's step 1, and it's a step nobody else really made.

sardia wrote:http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/wha ... nts-makes/
Here's the thing, if Hillary was 2 percent better, she would have won easily. And that makes me wonder, where do the single issue second amendment voters live? Assuming they live in swing States, The Democrats could keep the same coalition, but co-opt the old NRA group that existed before the grass roots took it over.

It's not a very safe coalition, but it's better than tearing apart the coalition that Democrats spent years cultivating. Are there other groups that are liberal save for single issue? Abortion? Farmers?


Well, Libertarians are probably your definitive "like guns, but also like many liberal issues" people. Either those registered, or those kind of trending that way on issues. You probably can't ever convince the religious right, not without compromising literally everything that makes you not them. But eking a coupla percentage points out of the middle might matter quite a bit. Not just for president, but for close senate/congress races.

The Great Hippo wrote:I still don't think I get the obsession with the right to bare arms; it seems like a lot of passion poured into what -- to me -- appears to be just a fun hobby. Maybe it's an identity thing? It's weird (for me) to think of guns as an integral part of one's identity -- even to the point of becoming identity politics? But while I don't understand why guns are so deeply important, I can at least understand why you assessed it as being of greater importance than Trump's presidency -- because however terrible he is, you're confident that the system is capable of holding back the brunt of that terrible. Is that a fair summary?


It's a lot of things. I mean, sure, any hobby can be passionate. Hardcore car guys, or larpers, or whatever can get seriously, seriously into their passion, and have vehement disagreements over things you or I wouldn't even realize are things to disagree over. It's crazy. The difference with the gun lobby is mostly that this passion has been organized. A bill gets proposed, and almost instantly, millions of people are alerted of it, and they have a focus for internet rage or what have you. Most fandoms don't have that. Without that organization, guns wouldn't be *nearly* so relevant to national politics. That's probably the biggest thing.

But, it's also other stuff. For many people, it's a symbol of the power the government has relative to the power they have. This is a pretty common view of rights, and plenty of people have similar views on others. I mean, if I heard a country was squashing independent newspapers, and handling the press through a government agency, it'd strongly inform my views on that government and it's relationship with it's citizens. Gun rights are viewed exactly the same way.

Now, as someone who *does* view gun rights as very important...I didn't see it as a strong reason to vote for Trump. At least, not strong enough to budge me out of "they're both bad candidates, I'm voting third party". Part of this is that Trump had low credibility. Yeah, he'd talk a good game for guns, but how can I be sure that will translate into what he does? He has a long record of empty promises, why should I have confidence in this one? So, while it's an extremely significant issue for me, and I *have* voted for candidates on the basis of it, it wasn't compelling here. Credibility matters.

Sableagle wrote:
hollow wrote:My choice was "vote in support of people I'll never meet" or "vote in support of myself".
So you wouldn't give 50p to save a child in Africa from being blinded by an infection, then?


Many people don't. In practice, people are aware in a distant sort of way that many in Africa are disadvantaged, and trivial amounts of money can make a big difference. Lots of charities put that message out there all the time. Yet, we still prioritize a great many things over the well being of those folks. We may not explicitly think of it as "buy a cooler TV or save hundreds of people from being blind", and we probably have some measure of sympathy for those in crappy situations, but we do buy the first thing, and opt not to give money to the second. In practice, we all prioritize ourselves and our interests, and by a huge factor.

sardia wrote:
Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote:Hey, remember when I warned about all of this, explained exactly what was happening, explained what needed to be done to stop it, and you all told me to shut the fuck up and be a good sycophantic minority for your limousine liberal asses?

Remember when I said that the electoral college makes tiny margins look like land slides? You're reading too much from the results.

Think of the Bush years, how did you feel then? That's what it's like now.


Yeah, we're 1% of the popular vote or a more favorable election map away from everyone talking about how Trump was doomed all along as we prepare for President Clinton. Hindsight is making some people on the right overconfident, I think. Yes, Trump doing as well as he did, despite, yknow, being Trump is something to draw lessons from.

But on the other hand, it was a narrow race, and that's largely because Trump was still the public's pick in the primary. There are lessons to be learned there as well. Yeah, having put much more effort into appealing to working class, rural folks is part of it...but if Republicans are content to look happily on that, and not actually look for areas of improvement, they risk getting blindsided themselves in the future. Overconfidence is a danger both sides routinely run into.

sardia wrote:http://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2016/11/13/501600013/for-clues-to-trumps-national-security-policy-look-to-his-advisers
Save for his pet issue on trade and manufacturing workers, Trump's adminstration is shaping to be very familiar Republican orthodoxy.

I think Trump can get away with this. The deficits aren't ok the public mind anymore, even before GOP took control. And with up to 1 trillion to be spent on infrastructure, the swing voters may not care that Trump is giving away the farm to the rich. At least, not until later, when all the money has already been spent and taxes not collected.


I agree. Public's tired of deficit talk. It's boring. Maybe a certain level of discussion of it is practical, but every deficit conversation is pretty similar. And in practice, the Republicans have always been bad at actually not spending anyways, regardless of promises.

I suppose that if Trump really embraces the infrastructure thing, one might be able to draw parallels to FDR, even. I wonder if that's intentional.

hollow wrote:I'd support restrictions of gun ownership for people with mental issues under two conditions. The first would be actual, solid definitions of which issues should result in restricted rights. The second would be some sort of actual path a restricted person could take to restore their rights. Far too many people, on all sides, resort to a vague message of "restricting mentally ill from acquiring firearms", with little more given. Then many on the left use this as a cover to push more, while many on the right use it as a cover to do nothing.


We essentially have that(albeit with little standardization, and many states reporting incompletely, regardless of republican or democrat). I'd be wary of broadening it, because in practice, right now, most mentally ill patients do not pose a greater risk than average to the population at large. I feel like any time you're taking rights away from a class of people, there should be a certain degree of required justification, and I think people are too quick to dismiss the mentally ill. Sure, among mass shooters, they have outsize representation, and maybe analyzing that for commonalities in diagnosis or the like is warranted, but right now, I'm not sure we can accurately predict that anyways.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby sardia » Mon Nov 14, 2016 4:54 pm UTC

One, where do libertarians live, and are there enough of them? (Eg if they are 2% of the population in a swing state, but Democrats increase their votes from 25% to 75%, we get a swing state back. ) The only state that comes to mind is new Hampshire, or one of those small new England states.

There's a lot of possible options, but many political and emotional barriers. Maybe desperation will let the Democrats open up to one of these groups. But we are probably going to keep going after middle class whites while eroding/outgrowing GOP support in the southern states, aka Florida. That's the future, a far away distant future. Need more data before we know how fast Democrats can grow.

Trump could and should embrace infrastructure. Will he? I don't know. (90% of some infrastructure, 50% of it being over 1 trillion$. )

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:14 pm UTC

Infrastructure should've been our main focus with the 2008 bailouts. Screw the banks and investors; one of the biggest problems with the housing crises was that we had hundreds of thousands of construction workers out of a job, so that was the perfect time to hire hundreds of thousands of construction workers to fix our crumbling infrastructure, which in turn would've stablized a large part of the economy and in turn help the banks and investors...

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:28 pm UTC

sardia wrote:One, where do libertarians live, and are there enough of them? (Eg if they are 2% of the population in a swing state, but Democrats increase their votes from 25% to 75%, we get a swing state back. ) The only state that comes to mind is new Hampshire, or one of those small new England states.

There's a lot of possible options, but many political and emotional barriers. Maybe desperation will let the Democrats open up to one of these groups. But we are probably going to keep going after middle class whites while eroding/outgrowing GOP support in the southern states, aka Florida. That's the future, a far away distant future. Need more data before we know how fast Democrats can grow.

Trump could and should embrace infrastructure. Will he? I don't know. (90% of some infrastructure, 50% of it being over 1 trillion$. )


We're scattered. The whole "everyone move to New Hampshire" plan really didn't work out. Yeah, they might have a higher concentration, but still...you're probably looking at maybe a couple percent in most states. That's big, though. 2% higher break for Clinton, and we'd be seeing an equally big electoral vote swing for her. What looks like a blowout rests on surprisingly few votes.

Alternative solutions include prompting a better turnout. Trump didn't win because of who he attracted so much as who Clinton didn't. Democrat turnout being closer to Obama levels would have also done the trick.

I agree that Unions are not a sufficient tack to get working class folks' votes. For the most part, the Unions are already Democrat, so there's little gain to be had there. For another, they're increasingly lacking relevance as US manufacturing jobs fade. Union opinions matter very little to the Walmart cashier or the like. Additionally, Unions mostly only represent those who are currently employed, not those who are not. The latter are the ones with a problem in need of some help.

Another strategy is simply focus. Where you spend to put messages. Where you work on ground game. Yeah, you're always going to reach more people in the cities, but it's the same people every time. I've heard a rumor that Clinton's team devoted to rural outreach was one dude in Brooklyn. Can't confirm it's factual, and it seems like in practice, not everything would be organized that way, but I do think that looking at how rural outreach happens might be a valid thing to consider.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby EdgarJPublius » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:35 pm UTC

sardia wrote:One, where do libertarians live, and are there enough of them? (Eg if they are 2% of the population in a swing state, but Democrats increase their votes from 25% to 75%, we get a swing state back. ) The only state that comes to mind is new Hampshire, or one of those small new England states.

There's a lot of possible options, but many political and emotional barriers. Maybe desperation will let the Democrats open up to one of these groups. But we are probably going to keep going after middle class whites while eroding/outgrowing GOP support in the southern states, aka Florida. That's the future, a far away distant future. Need more data before we know how fast Democrats can grow.

Trump could and should embrace infrastructure. Will he? I don't know. (90% of some infrastructure, 50% of it being over 1 trillion$. )


Well, there's the Free State Project that just earlier this year reached their 20,000 pledge threshold to trigger all the signatories moving to New Hampshire. But they've only got about 2,000 or so living there now (not counting libertarians who already lived in New Hampshire and didn't sign the pledge) Time will tell how that works out for them.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:36 pm UTC

I'm sure they'll move there immediately after everyone who promised to move to Canada follows through.

Political movement promises don't seem to work out in the modern era.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby sardia » Mon Nov 14, 2016 6:08 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:I'm sure they'll move there immediately after everyone who promised to move to Canada follows through.

Political movement promises don't seem to work out in the modern era.

Agreed, nobody ever moves that wasn't planning on it for other reasons.

The focus option is the easiest, but it feels so risky to Democrats in 2020. In addition, we know it doesn't really work in mid terms. We can win the presidency, but without Congress, voters will just get frustrated and blindly lash out again.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 6:27 pm UTC

Yeah, midterms are just a dead loss to Democrats with their current base. The reliable base of Republicans ends up being a huge factor there. It's going to be hard to take back congress/senate without *some* base broadening.

I mean, 2018 probably isn't going to take back either house, I think. This far out, things could change, of course, but the Senate seats up for re-election include 23 Democrats, 2 independents that are basically Democrats, and 8 Republicans. If I were a Democratic senator in say, Pennsylvania or West Virginia, up for re-election in 2018, I'd be sweating right about now.

The bright spot of light is that republicans probably can't get a supermajority, but even a larger majority would make it harder to block legislation.

But, strategically speaking, always having rough midterms hurts. So, *some* base broadening probably has to happen.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby elasto » Mon Nov 14, 2016 6:50 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Infrastructure should've been our main focus with the 2008 bailouts. Screw the banks and investors; one of the biggest problems with the housing crises was that we had hundreds of thousands of construction workers out of a job, so that was the perfect time to hire hundreds of thousands of construction workers to fix our crumbling infrastructure, which in turn would've stablized a large part of the economy and in turn help the banks and investors...

It's pretty standard economic theory that government spending should be counter-cyclical, so there were many of us advocating it was the perfect time for big government projects - not least because, in the UK and presumably the US too, government borrowing rates could not be cheaper. Capital was scared sh*tless and desperate to park in safe places.

If the UK had engaged in a massive infrastructure exercise - new houses, schools and hospitals etc. - providing jobs, affordable housing and raising quality of life - who knows, maybe efforts to demonise immigrants as the source of all evil would never have taken off and Brexit never have occurred...

Yes, big infrastructure projects take a generation to provide a return on investment, but it's projected to be 2040 before the UK's overall debt level returns even to 2008's, so we're already at a place where long term efforts to grow our economy is the best strategy to dealing with the mess and not simply the least painful.

If Trump engages in a massive infrastructure spend then good for you, I'm jealous. Our government is still seemingly reluctant to abandon the politics of austerity :(
Last edited by elasto on Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:14 pm UTC, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Thesh » Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:11 pm UTC

I don't think Trump will get that much infrastructure spending. He has to get his bill through Congress, and if they don't cut taxes AND reduce the deficit, I think too many will fear they will get primaried. Cutting taxes and reducing the deficit was their number one goal for years, and they had been saying that they haven't been able to do that because of Obama and the Dems. Well, here we go. The filibuster can be nuked, and they can get their tax cuts on the rich, but I do not see them enacting spending increases for anything unless half goes to the military, and there are twice as many spending cuts on welfare, medicare, medicaid, green energy, government agencies, etc. and the immediate and long term economic harm from that will far outweigh the good of the infrastructure spending.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:21 pm UTC

Thesh wrote:I don't think Trump will get that much infrastructure spending. He has to get his bill through Congress, and if they don't cut taxes AND reduce the deficit, I think too many will fear they will get primaried. Cutting taxes and reducing the deficit was their number one goal for years, and they had been saying that they haven't been able to do that because of Obama and the Dems. Well, here we go. The filibuster can be nuked, and they can get their tax cuts on the rich, but I do not see them enacting spending increases for anything unless half goes to the military, and there are twice as many spending cuts on welfare, medicare, medicaid, green energy, government agencies, etc. and the immediate and long term economic harm from that will far outweigh the good of the infrastructure spending.


I didn't hear much deficit talk in the election, though. That may be old news. I mean, it isn't really rational to talk about Trump having a mandate, given that he didn't even get the popular, but given the election, there's going to be a narrative that people want the things Trump promised. I think it might sway at least some Republicans.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Lucrece » Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:42 pm UTC

Zamfir wrote:@Lucrece, you talk about lazy democrats, and people who twitter but don't vote.

There's clearly a group who sometimes vote democratic and sometimes doesn't vote. But does that group have much overlap with self-described democrats who proselytise on Facebook?



I can only give you my impression since I volunteer as a poll clerk for every election and manage my precinct in South Miami, Florida. Allegedly a bastion of liberal values.

Yet every time I work the damn polls, not only is the vote abysmal, with usually less than 300-400 votes per 1300+ person assigned precinct (and I've worked several, they shift you around), but the demoghraphics I see for those who turn up to vote are the same: Mostly older middle aged or senior people, many of whom vote for what their family members or church leader told them to vote for. I can't even as an election worker tell these people to retain a judge or leave the vote blank if they don't know who is what and what they stand for, especially judges (some people have even confessed to me at the voting booth they don't like the name of a particular judge).

But the one demographic I rarely see show up at the polls is young adults. Particularly for local and state elections.

I suspect much of the proselytizing is mere social posturing to gain bonus points in their social circle. Essentially, to look good. To stand up for the popular opinion on social issues and gain progressive cred, but very few of them sacrifice time or money to what they proselytize for.

The more elections I work for, and this is my 6th year working for them, the more attractive Australia's mandatory voting looks.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:58 pm UTC

Older people do indeed have much higher voting rates in general, and younger folks do use social media a great deal more, so one would expect a great degree of correlation, albeit probably not any causative relationship. You'd need a fairly specific study to determine if posting memes makes someone less likely to vote. Possible, I suppose, like how creating lists acts as a placebo for getting things done for some people. I don't know if it's been actually done, however.

I believe "virtue signaling" is the modern day catchphrase for the social media kerfluffle. Like, there's a safety pin meme going around. Something about standing up for safety for disadvantaged demographics. Apparently the deal with this fad is that you wear a safety pin, and thus there's a discreet way for people to know that you'll help them out. I have seen a large number of social media selfies with them. I've seen zero in real life. The actual benefit of this thing seems doubtful. I mean, even if people were wearing them in the real world, I'm not sure how this results in anything practical. What's the actual use case here. Somebody's getting beat up, which you don't notice, but the person being beat up, clearly undistracted by this, sees your safety pin, cries out, and you charge to the rescue with the power of privilege or something?

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby morriswalters » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:05 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Infrastructure should've been our main focus with the 2008 bailouts. Screw the banks and investors; one of the biggest problems with the housing crises was that we had hundreds of thousands of construction workers out of a job, so that was the perfect time to hire hundreds of thousands of construction workers to fix our crumbling infrastructure, which in turn would've stablized a large part of the economy and in turn help the banks and investors...
Trite and not even ?possible?. All infrastructure doesn't belong to the Federal Government. The jobs didn't always exist where the infrastructure was. Everybody isn't a steel worker, the trades consist of a lot of different skill sets, not all applicable to repairing infrastructure. Need many roofers or landscapers on the highways? Not to mention that it wouldn't have helped the support businesses that depend on the housing industry to survive. And letting the banking system collapse wasn't an option was it?
Tyndmyr wrote: I mean, it isn't really rational to talk about Trump having a mandate, given that he didn't even get the popular, but given the election, there's going to be a narrative that people want the things Trump promised.
He spit in the Republicans Party's face and made them crawl to him. He beat Hillary and the so called Elites, despite being the worst candidate in my memory. I call that a mandate.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby elasto » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:07 pm UTC

Lucrece: Could that be because younger folk more often postal vote?

Having said that, your experience doesn't surprise me in that I think it's true across the Western world that older folk vote in much larger numbers than young folk.

Showed up with the Brexit vote too: The young were passionately against leaving the EU but didn't turn out in the same numbers as old folk who'd swallowed two decades of propaganda invented entirely to sell newspapers.

[Edit: Tyndmyr said it much better than I did]

Also reinforces my belief that the public should be let nowhere near job appointments. Joe Bloggs voting on who should be judge or police chief makes as much sense to me as him voting on who should be head surgeon in a hospital.

That's the whole point of a representative democracy: You vote for people who have the time and expertise to make informed, wise decisions; Forcing the public to make technical decisions like that is an abrogation of their responsibility.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Mambrino » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:15 pm UTC


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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Lucrece » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:17 pm UTC

elasto wrote:Lucrece: Could that be because younger folk more often postal vote?

Having said that, your experience doesn't surprise me in that I think it's true across the Western world that older folk vote in much larger numbers than young folk.

Showed up with the Brexit vote too: The young were passionately against leaving the EU but didn't turn out in the same numbers as old folk who'd swallowed two decades of propaganda invented entirely to sell newspapers.

[Edit: Tyndmyr said it much better than I did]

Also reinforces my belief that the public should be let nowhere near job appointments. Joe Bloggs voting on who should be judge or police chief makes as much sense to me as him voting on who should be head surgeon in a hospital.

That's the whole point of a representative democracy: You vote for people who have the time and expertise to make informed, wise decisions; Forcing the public to make technical decisions like that is an abrogation of their responsibility.



I tell young people that voting via absentee ballot is much worse. Those get counted last and when you mail them you get no guarantee that they were received by the appropriate people let alone handled correctly.

Moreover, if there are errors with your ballot, your ballot is simply discarded, whereas at the physical precinct the machine will signal you an error and you will be immediately given a new ballot.

There is simply no substitute for showing up at the precinct. The machines have both digital and physical records and now there are physical sign in's where you use either your driver's license or some other government ID and it's swiped into the new technology to check you in alongside with a confirmed signature.

Once those machines close the day of the poll not only is there a digital record, but the record tapes are printed from the very machine and posted outside the precinct to get all the information you need (ballot candidates/amendments, how many people voted for each, etc) and the people who ran the precinct sign their work and assume responsibility.

I tell them it's pretty much like calling your financial aid office at the university. It's a waste of time. You need to physically show up and bother people to get shit done properly. Never trust bureaucrats to be as good advocates for your interests as you are.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby elasto » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:28 pm UTC

In which case, it's even more of a crime that the US doesn't have a public holiday for elections.

One day the technology will exist for everyone to vote remotely without risk of fraud, but that day is surely a long way off. And when it occurs, though participation rates will rise, there's little guarantee than voters will be any more informed. In fact, with the bar lowered maybe the electorate will be less well informed on average...

I'd be genuinely interested in studies along the lines Tyndmyr mentioned - eg. a questionnaire that asks how often you participate in political discussions online and whether you vote. Though the 'virtue signalling effect' might be a real problem: If someone virtue signals by posting memes they're probably going to virtue signal in the questionnaire and say they vote when they don't also...

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby gmalivuk » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:30 pm UTC

Not only is the safety pin thing probably ineffective, it's already been co-opted by alt-right fucks encouraging each other to show nationalistic solidarity or whatever (which isn't susprising given how both vague and publicized the pin thing has been).
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:36 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:Not only is the safety pin thing probably ineffective, it's already been co-opted by alt-right fucks encouraging each other to show nationalistic solidarity or whatever (which isn't susprising given how both vague and publicized the pin thing has been).


Well, security is obviously not going to be a thing in such a scheme. Anyone can wear one, and it's public, so if wearing one DID do something, nothing stops anyone else from donning one. Or claiming it means whatever. It seems to be a mess all round.

Such things leave me with a suspicion that it's more about the people "helping" than those purportedly being helped.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Xeio » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:39 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
Yeah, midterms are just a dead loss to Democrats with their current base. The reliable base of Republicans ends up being a huge factor there. It's going to be hard to take back congress/senate without *some* base broadening.

I mean, 2018 probably isn't going to take back either house, I think. This far out, things could change, of course, but the Senate seats up for re-election include 23 Democrats, 2 independents that are basically Democrats, and 8 Republicans. If I were a Democratic senator in say, Pennsylvania or West Virginia, up for re-election in 2018, I'd be sweating right about now.

The bright spot of light is that republicans probably can't get a supermajority, but even a larger majority would make it harder to block legislation.

But, strategically speaking, always having rough midterms hurts. So, *some* base broadening probably has to happen.
This is how I don't understand what progressives are/were thinking. I don't see how Democrats grow the base without moving to the right on at least some issues, and progresives were already complaining that Clinton was somehow a Republican (and she isn't even close).

Granted, it's not even accurate to say Dems have the smaller base with Clinton winning the popular vote (close to 700k vote lead now for Clinton), but it doesn't mean anything right now with the way they're distributed geographically.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Yakk » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:41 pm UTC

Clinton got 500,000 more votes than Obama in Texas.

That'll matter ... in 20 years.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:50 pm UTC

Clinton was sort of moderate. Not really a Republican, but far more centrist than say, Bernie. That said, she didn't really have great cross-aisle appeal. For one thing, that's really hard to actually get with the modern levels of partisanship. For another, third party voters didn't particularly like her. Well, her *or* Trump is the rational reading of people voting more strongly for third party candidates. Johnson this year is little different from Johnson four years ago, the only real explanation is that people were less enthused about the main candidates, not that third parties did anything particularly well.

Pulling from that bucket is helpful. Pulling from the straight up Republican bucket is also helpful, but it's a lot harder. You probably can't reach the evangelicals. Or the tea partiers. Both of those overlapping segments are people who have much less overlap with the Democratic party. You've gotta target other ones.

Here's a coupla other potentials, if the fairly small Libertarian faction does not appeal:
1. Big Business. Republicans have traditionally represented this, but it's gotten a *lot* fuzzier. PACs and the like are getting much more even, and candidates like Clinton have significant pull with them already. You can go more this way. It'd have roughly zero appeal for the greens, and in actual votes, it might not be strong, but it will have dollars. Dollars are useful.
2. Defense. Another traditionally republican area that has widespread appeal. And, in practice, Democrat leadership bombs stuff too. So, actual differences in actions might be relatively small. Just need to vocally support bombing far off places a lot more. That and throw some dollars at military budgets. Just gotta visually out-hawk the Republicans.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Mambrino » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:58 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:2. Defense. Another traditionally republican area that has widespread appeal. And, in practice, Democrat leadership bombs stuff too. So, actual differences in actions might be relatively small. Just need to vocally support bombing far off places a lot more. That and throw some dollars at military budgets. Just gotta visually out-hawk the Republicans.


However, wasn't Clinton already out-hawking the Trump in this election.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:01 pm UTC

Eh, these are platform issues. They change slowly, and a single candidate with unusual views probably won't alter the legacy of an entire party. Republicans still are the hawks in public perception.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Yablo » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:01 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:There's a cost to using words like "rapist" to describe Mexican immigrants, or discussing in detail your plan to 'deal' with the wives of terrorists (His words: "I'll let you use your imagination"). At the very least, can you understand why an American Muslim might be scared of the man who's on record for claiming thousands of them were cheering after 9-11? Can you understand why the man you voted for -- the man who, rather than talking about working with Muslims, claims they need to turn the terrorists in, and talks about executing any of them even related to a terrorist -- terrifies the holy fuck out of a Muslim?

I can definitely understand that fear. While I don't claim that fear is baseless, I do believe it's a little exaggerated and unnecessary. Even with both houses of Congress holding a Republican majority, there's absolutely no way Trump could force such extreme measures. Sure, if he's so inclined, he could pressure things in a negative direction for Muslims, but I sincerely doubt he could cause the sort of situation and culture those fears are based on.

And if so, can you understand how his election can be seen as a validation -- even a vindication -- of some of the most disgusting anti-Islamic hysteria our country has to offer?

Can I understand how it can be seen that way? Yeah, I suppose so, but this election was about far more than that. The few people who voted for Trump only because they truly belong in Hillary's basket of deplorables aren't enough to give that perception validity.

Attacks on Muslim people by Trump supporters aren't on your head. But Trump's transparently clear Islamophobia -- his misogyny, his racism, his xenophobia -- is. You voted for a man who talked about murdering the wives and children of terrorists like it was just something you had to do. You voted for a man who talked about "grabbing" women "by the pussy". You voted for a man who described Mexican immigrants as rapists; a man very likely guilty of sexual assault; a man who clearly does not have a Christian bone in his body (if you think Trump has Christian values, I weep for the end of Christian values).

I voted for a man who recognizes that many of the very real threats to our national security and well-being are coming from Islamic nations and across our southern border. I voted for a man recognizes that a large number of people in this country illegally are guilty of violent and horrible crimes. I voted for a man who promised to remove those violent criminals from my country so they can't threaten my fellow Americans any longer. I voted for a man who may not be a saint or even have strong Christian values, but who is still much closer to Christian than Hillary.

I'm not asking you to throw yourself on your sword, here; I'm going to just presume you're a good husband, father, and Christian. But the man you voted for is the sort of man no good husband, father, or Christian should ever look up to. You can describe how his policies coincide with your own concerns until you're blue in the face -- but can you tell me this is a man who represents you? A man you admire? If so, why shouldn't I be afraid of you? You support a man who no reasonably informed, reasonably moral person would leave alone in the same room with a pretty teenage girl. That's more than a little scary.

I can tell you that as of his inauguration, he'll be a man who represents me, but no, I don't admire him. I didn't vote for him because I admire him, and I can't think of an American politician since Reagan I do admire. I can also tell you that I have absolutely zero respect for Hillary Clinton. Ever since she was the First Lady, everything about her has rubbed me the wrong way.

The reason Trump's election is so surreal to me is because, to me, it's a collapse of even the pretense of American values. If this man can be president, then values don't seem to much matter anymore -- American, Christian, or otherwise.

I don't agree. Trump may be an asshole, and he may not be the sort of man I want my son to grow up to be, but I believe he is a far better American than Hillary. I believe he has our nation's best interests closer to his heart than Hillary does to hers. They may both be self-serving, but Trump wouldn't sell out his country quite like Hillary has shown she will.

And yeah, you might not be responsible for the violence, but you and everyone else who voted for Trump are definitely responsible for the continuing disintegration of those values. And that disintegration has a cost.

But you're probably not one of the people who's going to have to pay it.

I see hard work for an honest living to be at the core of American values, and everything the Democratic party has stood for in recent years runs contrary to that. I see values disintegrating as well, but I think we see different values disintegrating. Ultimately, time will tell whether the U.S. has made a good choice, and if it turns out we haven't, I'll admit it and accept responsibility for the small part I played.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Dark567 » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:03 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote: Pulling from the straight up Republican bucket is also helpful, but it's a lot harder. You probably can't reach the evangelicals. Or the tea partiers. Both of those overlapping segments are people who have much less overlap with the Democratic party. You've gotta target other ones.

Here's a coupla other potentials, if the fairly small Libertarian faction does not appeal:
1. Big Business. Republicans have traditionally represented this, but it's gotten a *lot* fuzzier. PACs and the like are getting much more even, and candidates like Clinton have significant pull with them already. You can go more this way. It'd have roughly zero appeal for the greens, and in actual votes, it might not be strong, but it will have dollars. Dollars are useful.

Honestly, I think all these groups shouldn't be completely out of reach. Right now going forward I would trust Clinton to balance the budget more than Trump(Tea party) and Hillary is way more of a Christian traditionally than Trump is.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby KnightExemplar » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:05 pm UTC

Dark567 wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote: Pulling from the straight up Republican bucket is also helpful, but it's a lot harder. You probably can't reach the evangelicals. Or the tea partiers. Both of those overlapping segments are people who have much less overlap with the Democratic party. You've gotta target other ones.

Here's a coupla other potentials, if the fairly small Libertarian faction does not appeal:
1. Big Business. Republicans have traditionally represented this, but it's gotten a *lot* fuzzier. PACs and the like are getting much more even, and candidates like Clinton have significant pull with them already. You can go more this way. It'd have roughly zero appeal for the greens, and in actual votes, it might not be strong, but it will have dollars. Dollars are useful.

Honestly, I think all these groups shouldn't be completely out of reach. Right now going forward I would trust Clinton to balance the budget more than Trump(Tea party) and Hillary is way more of a Christian traditionally than Trump is.


You are severely underestimating the importance of abortion and gay marriage as issues to the Religious Right.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:07 pm UTC

Dark567 wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote: Pulling from the straight up Republican bucket is also helpful, but it's a lot harder. You probably can't reach the evangelicals. Or the tea partiers. Both of those overlapping segments are people who have much less overlap with the Democratic party. You've gotta target other ones.

Here's a coupla other potentials, if the fairly small Libertarian faction does not appeal:
1. Big Business. Republicans have traditionally represented this, but it's gotten a *lot* fuzzier. PACs and the like are getting much more even, and candidates like Clinton have significant pull with them already. You can go more this way. It'd have roughly zero appeal for the greens, and in actual votes, it might not be strong, but it will have dollars. Dollars are useful.

Honestly, I think all these groups shouldn't be completely out of reach. Right now going forward I would trust Clinton to balance the budget more than Trump(Tea party) and Hillary is way more of a Christian traditionally than Trump is.


It's not so much merely being religious yourself, as it is catering to religious issues.

If you want to attempt to roll back gay marriage and abortion, then yeah, maybe you can appeal to the religious right.

I don't think you can do that without blowing up the whole party, though. At some point, you have to stop and ask exactly what's worth giving up to preserve what, and if you're giving up those things, you have to ask what exactly the Democrats are fighting for after all.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby elasto » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:24 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:I voted for a man who may not be a saint or even have strong Christian values, but who is still much closer to Christian than Hillary.

What Christian values does he hold? I thought the Christians were pretty sensitive to sexual sins, for example. Trump has had several wives and been unfaithful to them, as well as revelling in molesting women and deliberately walking in on naked teenage girls etc. Clinton by contrast has never had an accusation of being unfaithful to her husband.

Both arguably commit sins of avarice (though not even Christians believe in the virtue of poverty any more) but only Trump openly wallows in his pride and vanity, treating them as a virtue. Clinton at least talks up the virtue of humility. He is also much more bloodthirsty - talking of punishing the innocent relatives of terrorists etc. Trump would fit right into the old testament but not so much the new.

The only one I can think of is the abortion issue, but (a) that's hardly settled theology - many Christians don't equate early abortion with murder and (b) it's not his real belief anyway. Prior to his election run he was pro-choice.

(On gay marriage, Clinton voted against it whereas Trump is not against it even now as President-elect, so that's a bit of a score draw at best.)

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby PeteP » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:33 pm UTC

http://www.newsweek.com/myths-cost-democrats-presidential-election-521044 Found the oppo stuff on sanders in point two interesting, anyone know anything about the nuclear waste thing?

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby freezeblade » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:36 pm UTC

Lucrece wrote:I tell young people that voting via absentee ballot is much worse. Those get counted last and when you mail them you get no guarantee that they were received by the appropriate people let alone handled correctly.

Moreover, if there are errors with your ballot, your ballot is simply discarded, whereas at the physical precinct the machine will signal you an error and you will be immediately given a new ballot.

There is simply no substitute for showing up at the precinct. The machines have both digital and physical records and now there are physical sign in's where you use either your driver's license or some other government ID and it's swiped into the new technology to check you in alongside with a confirmed signature.

Once those machines close the day of the poll not only is there a digital record, but the record tapes are printed from the very machine and posted outside the precinct to get all the information you need (ballot candidates/amendments, how many people voted for each, etc) and the people who ran the precinct sign their work and assume responsibility.


Many districts, including my own, which is within a very urban area, less than a mile from downtown Oakland city center, do not have polling places. Mail in only. I have a sneaking suspicion this is more likely in formerly more democratic-leaning areas (urban/immigrant), due to redistricting by the republicans last go around, matching with gerrymandering.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:40 pm UTC

elasto wrote:(On gay marriage, Clinton voted against it whereas Trump is not against it even now as President-elect, so that's a bit of a score draw at best.)


Again, on platform issues, it's as much about the platform as the specific candidate. Even with neither candidate really making a thing out of gay rights, it can be assumed that anyone against them largely voted Republican. This is in part due to inertia, partially due to effects like any given SC justice appointed tending to match partisan viewpoints,

The fact that abortion isn't "settled theology", whatever that is, is irrelevant. It's an issue that's important to that block of voters. Telling them that it's not settled theology will do exactly nothing. To capture them into your base, you have to make a major effort to change your party image, by appealing to them significantly more than the party they are already with. Getting people to change parties is difficult. You've got to overcome existing common knowledge, partisanship, etc. Sometimes, it takes generations. In the times where it doesn't, it only really happens when one party is pretty much ignoring those people to begin with.

To capture religious folks, you would have to be obviously much *more* in line with their values than the Republican party is. It is difficult to imagine a Democrat party that is willing to do so on that range of issues, and honestly, there probably shouldn't be a competition to see who can more rabidly condemn those things. Strategically and ethically, it sounds awful. I don't believe they can mount an effective appeal to that subset at all.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby Xeio » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:48 pm UTC

PeteP wrote:
http://www.newsweek.com/myths-cost-democrats-presidential-election-521044 Found the oppo stuff on sanders in point two interesting, anyone know anything about the nuclear waste thing?
Damn, Eichenwald has been amazing this campaign season.

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby elasto » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:56 pm UTC

Tyndmyr: But that's not what Yablo said. They said that Trump as a person was closer to being a Christian than Hillary. Hence my genuine query as to why they thought that.

(Others may of course feel that the Republican party has values that are closer to Christian ones than the Democratic party but that's only from doing a whole lot of cherry-picking and deciding that some 'sins' are 'worse' than others on very spurious grounds. eg. where did 'it's easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven' go exactly?)

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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Nov 14, 2016 10:10 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:I can definitely understand that fear. While I don't claim that fear is baseless, I do believe it's a little exaggerated and unnecessary. Even with both houses of Congress holding a Republican majority, there's absolutely no way Trump could force such extreme measures. Sure, if he's so inclined, he could pressure things in a negative direction for Muslims, but I sincerely doubt he could cause the sort of situation and culture those fears are based on.
I'm not talking about the fear of Trump; rather, I'm talking about the fear of people supporting Trump despite what he says. Values matter. Voting leaders with terrible values into office validate those values. It doesn't matter if everyone voted for Trump despite his terrible values; that's not the message voting for Trump sends.
Yablo wrote:I voted for a man recognizes that a large number of people in this country illegally are guilty of violent and horrible crimes.
That just isn't true. I realize it's a great sound-byte, but the reality is that it's way more complicated than that. There is no clear correlation between violence and illegal immigrants (in fact, the clearest correlations we have go in the opposite direction).
Yablo wrote: I voted for a man who may not be a saint or even have strong Christian values, but who is still much closer to Christian than Hillary.
How on earth can you argue that a thrice-divorced serial womanizer probably guilty of sexual abuse (and definitely guilty of peeking in on underage girls; abusing his authority to do so) is even Christian? Do you seriously think he's ever even read the Bible? I'd wager real money Hillary has.

Like, I'm not even arguing that you should have voted for Hillary, here -- I'm just arguing that you shouldn't have voted for Trump. I can't understand how anyone who thinks Christian values are important can look at this person and say "Yep, that's definitely somebody who's got some semblance of a Christian nature to him".

I mean, seriously -- this is the guy pastors warn people about. The second Moses stepped out of sight, Trump is the guy who started trying to sell everyone on the golden calf. He's a serial liar, adulterer, and charlatan. He changes his views based on political expediency; he has no convictions. He's cruel, vindictive, petty, and an obvious narcissist. He's the Christian choice? This is the candidate Jesus would support?

I don't get it.
Yablo wrote:I see hard work for an honest living to be at the core of American values, and everything the Democratic party has stood for in recent years runs contrary to that. I see values disintegrating as well, but I think we see different values disintegrating. Ultimately, time will tell whether the U.S. has made a good choice, and if it turns out we haven't, I'll admit it and accept responsibility for the small part I played.
Fair enough; there really isn't anything else I can genuinely ask of you or anyone else.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby commodorejohn » Mon Nov 14, 2016 10:10 pm UTC

elasto wrote:
Yablo wrote:I voted for a man who may not be a saint or even have strong Christian values, but who is still much closer to Christian than Hillary.

What Christian values does he hold? I thought the Christians were pretty sensitive to sexual sins, for example. Trump has had several wives and been unfaithful to them, as well as revelling in molesting women and deliberately walking in on naked teenage girls etc. Clinton by contrast has never had an accusation of being unfaithful to her husband.

Both arguably commit sins of avarice (though not even Christians believe in the virtue of poverty any more) but only Trump openly wallows in his pride and vanity, treating them as a virtue. Clinton at least talks up the virtue of humility. He is also much more bloodthirsty - talking of punishing the innocent relatives of terrorists etc. Trump would fit right into the old testament but not so much the new.

The only one I can think of is the abortion issue, but (a) that's hardly settled theology - many Christians don't equate early abortion with murder and (b) it's not his real belief anyway. Prior to his election run he was pro-choice.

(On gay marriage, Clinton voted against it whereas Trump is not against it even now as President-elect, so that's a bit of a score draw at best.)

Moreover, the man outright said that he doesn't need God because his own actions are sufficient to redeem any of his wrongdoings. That's straight-up the exact inverse of the entire premise of Christianity.
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Re: 2016 US Presidential Election

Postby sardia » Mon Nov 14, 2016 10:10 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
Dark567 wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote: Pulling from the straight up Republican bucket is also helpful, but it's a lot harder. You probably can't reach the evangelicals. Or the tea partiers. Both of those overlapping segments are people who have much less overlap with the Democratic party. You've gotta target other ones.

Here's a coupla other potentials, if the fairly small Libertarian faction does not appeal:
1. Big Business. Republicans have traditionally represented this, but it's gotten a *lot* fuzzier. PACs and the like are getting much more even, and candidates like Clinton have significant pull with them already. You can go more this way. It'd have roughly zero appeal for the greens, and in actual votes, it might not be strong, but it will have dollars. Dollars are useful.

Honestly, I think all these groups shouldn't be completely out of reach. Right now going forward I would trust Clinton to balance the budget more than Trump(Tea party) and Hillary is way more of a Christian traditionally than Trump is.


It's not so much merely being religious yourself, as it is catering to religious issues.

If you want to attempt to roll back gay marriage and abortion, then yeah, maybe you can appeal to the religious right.

I don't think you can do that without blowing up the whole party, though. At some point, you have to stop and ask exactly what's worth giving up to preserve what, and if you're giving up those things, you have to ask what exactly the Democrats are fighting for after all.

Tyndmyr, you're asking Democrats to shut out for a decade until we out breed Republicans. That's a tall order, and it gets harder with voter suppression/obstacles being passed by GOP legislation.

I think the best near term case is Trump Fucks up. Or if we are lucky, people realize what they're asking of the US government isn't practical. We aren't willing to heavily subsidize skilled uneducated whites to a thriving life. We can stop poverty, but we can't bring back the boomer age.


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