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[US Foreign Policy] Arrest an American? Well America can detain Americans too!

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Posts

  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    Some leaders just are evil incarnate. Trump, Putin, Xi Jinping. They all want power for themselves, not their country. They try to divide their country, not strengthen it, because it weakens their opponents.

    I used to think most people were trying the best they could do even if they think differently than me. But the world leaders right now are a sorry lot.

    monikerRingoGnome-InterruptusGennenalyse RuebenbrynhrtmnYoutube
  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Mayabird wrote: »
    Putin's goal seems to be self aggrandizement personally and externally, nihilistic spite. Russia is rotting from the inside. Nothing the Russian government has been doing even pretends to be promoting the welfare of the country; all they care about is sowing chaos around the world to laugh as it all burns around them. It's the internet troll ethos taken to an entire country; try to make other people suffer more than themselves. He seizes the wealth for himself and lives in palaces but makes no plans for the future after his death. If his boot crushes the throat of the second to last person on Earth, then he wins.

    I think that's a little hyperbolic. Russia is advancing a fairly clear self-interested agenda. Tear down the international alliances and norms that oppose their interest in regional dominance. They are pushing a nationalistic agenda hard at home too.

    That the country has massive domestic problems is a big reason for this, not an oversight. This is the kind of thing you see frequently in countries having those kind of issues.

    You are correct though that no one seems to be planning for post-Putin Russia. It's gonna be a nasty transition once he dies imo.

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  • nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Putin has for some time made efforts to cast the USSR in a favorable light. He's also embraced the orthodox church, capitalism, Russia's international allies and pals, biker gangs, and more. He seems to pick pretty well anything where Russia has shown strength.

    Though I can't say I've heard him talk about the tzars, now that I think about it. I'm sure he's talked up Russia's imperial past at some point though.

    on what planet has Putin embraced capitalism?

  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    edited January 8
    Putin is not a nihilist. He's a Russian patriot, a nationalist really, with authoritarian and violent tendencies and not a vast amount of imagination beyond that. He likes to fight, and use violent solutions.

    He is not uncommon in this, in being an ex-KGB man who went into politics post the USSR's collapse he is far from unusual, he just did the best of that set and has successfully clung to power due to ruthless internal policies.

    The group he is part of largely dominates the politics and economy of the country and has very little problem with Putin's policies as they mostly share his interests and sentiments. He has strong support from oligarchs, the military, and the politicians that are left with influence in Russia. He's also got strong support from conservative Russia, because they're largely patriotic, nationalists really, with authoritarian and violent tendencies.

    There is a trend of making out Putin as being this super-monster of the Slavic east, he isn't. He is a pretty standard strongman dictator type, but Russia is a significant player and he just also apparently seems to have got a few over Europe and the US, so his profile is higher.

    Solar on
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  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Some leaders just are evil incarnate. Trump, Putin, Xi Jinping. They all want power for themselves, not their country. They try to divide their country, not strengthen it, because it weakens their opponents.

    I used to think most people were trying the best they could do even if they think differently than me. But the world leaders right now are a sorry lot.

    This is ridiculous. Putin is very very clearly interested in the image and prestige and power of his country. That's one of the prime motivators of his international policy.

    SolarNSDFRandFencingsaxAridholDouglasDanger
  • ElldrenElldren Is a woman dammit I'm a good person yes it's trueRegistered User regular
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Putin has for some time made efforts to cast the USSR in a favorable light. He's also embraced the orthodox church, capitalism, Russia's international allies and pals, biker gangs, and more. He seems to pick pretty well anything where Russia has shown strength.

    Though I can't say I've heard him talk about the tzars, now that I think about it. I'm sure he's talked up Russia's imperial past at some point though.

    on what planet has Putin embraced capitalism?

    Earth

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  • Metzger MeisterMetzger Meister Registered User regular
    Vladimir Putin doesn't give a shit about Russia or her people unless they can stick a few more rubles in his pocket. That's quite literally his entire want, folks, power and money, that's it. Not some glorious new dawn of a strong and united Russia. The dude is probably one of the wealthiest people on Earth and he didn't get that way from clever investment strategies.

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  • hippofanthippofant ティンク Registered User regular
    edited January 8
    This seems to be an utterly pointless psychic experiment in which we attempt to determine whether Putin just wants Russia to be powerful so he can get rich off it, or whether Putin figures he deserves to be rich after making Russia powerful.

    I'm gonna come out and say right now that no matter how many more pages this continues for, there won't be any agreement reached in this thread. Because it's not possible to present any evidence based on Putin's psyche. And pointless, since it doesn't change our understanding of Putin or foreign relations in any way to say that he wants A more than B or B more than A when all his actions are aimed at achieving A and/or B.

    hippofant on
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  • So It GoesSo It Goes We keep moving...Registered User, Moderator mod
    We're also a bit off topic. Bring it back to US foreign policy please.

  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    From a US foreign policy standpoint a lack of understanding the motivations of those set against them seems to be quite relevant to recent policy failures.

    Obama regularly urged Russia and Iran to cease backing Assad for example, and I don't know why. That seems like urging the sun not to rise: they never would cease their backing unless forced to do so. So why urge it? I guess it could have been simply rhetoric.

  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    edited January 8
    .

    Gaddez on
    Richy wrote: »
    But I think the resistance I’m getting more has to do with “rawr! Loklar said it! Rage!” than anything else.

    No, it has to do with the fact that you're done nothing but throw lies, blatant flasehoods, and downright dumb statements at us so far.
  • HenroidHenroid Radio Demon Internet HellRegistered User regular
    What the actual fuck? The ACLU just brought this to my attention via Twitter; the Senate is voting on a bill tonight to penalize people who boycott Israel.
    The Senate is trying to sneak through a bill TONIGHT that encourages states to penalize people who boycott Israel. It's up to us to remind senators: Your priorities should be a full and functioning government, not attacking our First Amendment rights.

    Centrism is just the cowardly way to be a bigot w/o being explicit about it.
    American politics isn't 4D chess, it's just if you give a shit about other people or not.
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  • CaedwyrCaedwyr Registered User regular
    This also happened recently:

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/trump-administration-snubs-european-diplomats-1.4969833
    cbc wrote:
    U.S. President Donald Trump's administration has lowered the status of the European Union's diplomats in Washington without notifying Brussels, EU officials said on Tuesday.

    The change in protocol for a close U.S. ally means the bloc's Washington-based diplomats are less likely to be invited to high-profile events and have a lower importance than under former former president Barack Obama.

    The snub, first reported by German broadcaster Deutsche Welle, was illustrated at the Dec. 5 funeral of another former U.S. president, George H.W. Bush, when Europe's envoy was among the last diplomats to be called to pay respects, one EU official said.

    "We understand that there was a recent change in the way the diplomatic precedence list is implemented by the United States' protocol," a spokesperson for European Commission, the bloc's executive, told a briefing, declining to give more details.

    "We are currently discussing with the relevant services in the administration possible implications for the EU delegation in Washington."

    Two other EU diplomats confirmed the downgrade, with one saying it was unlikely the bloc would retaliate given its desire for good relations.

    ...

    This isn't a huge deal, but it is another area where the next responsible American government is going to have a lot of work to do to rebuild ties with former allies and trading partners once the current government changes.

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  • Commander ZoomCommander Zoom Registered User regular
    Caedwyr wrote: »
    This also happened recently:

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/trump-administration-snubs-european-diplomats-1.4969833
    cbc wrote:
    U.S. President Donald Trump's administration has lowered the status of the European Union's diplomats in Washington without notifying Brussels, EU officials said on Tuesday.

    The change in protocol for a close U.S. ally means the bloc's Washington-based diplomats are less likely to be invited to high-profile events and have a lower importance than under former former president Barack Obama.

    The snub, first reported by German broadcaster Deutsche Welle, was illustrated at the Dec. 5 funeral of another former U.S. president, George H.W. Bush, when Europe's envoy was among the last diplomats to be called to pay respects, one EU official said.

    "We understand that there was a recent change in the way the diplomatic precedence list is implemented by the United States' protocol," a spokesperson for European Commission, the bloc's executive, told a briefing, declining to give more details.

    "We are currently discussing with the relevant services in the administration possible implications for the EU delegation in Washington."

    Two other EU diplomats confirmed the downgrade, with one saying it was unlikely the bloc would retaliate given its desire for good relations.

    ...

    This isn't a huge deal, but it is another area where the next responsible American government is going to have a lot of work to do to rebuild ties with former allies and trading partners once the current government changes.

    And there's really no way to assure anyone that it won't all happen again in another (multiple of 4) years. The world's remaining superpower (for now...) is diagnosed bipolar.

    CelestialBadgerBucketmanBullheadMayabirdMoridin889SmrtnikkimeYoutube
  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    Richy wrote: »
    But I think the resistance I’m getting more has to do with “rawr! Loklar said it! Rage!” than anything else.

    No, it has to do with the fact that you're done nothing but throw lies, blatant flasehoods, and downright dumb statements at us so far.
  • DoodmannDoodmann Registered User regular
    edited January 8
    Gaddez wrote: »
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    Evangelical apocalyptic death cult.

    I realize it sounds like a conspiracy theory but this is slowly becoming the main reason.

    Doodmann on
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  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    The right likes Israel's right because they wish they could treat their minorities like that.

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  • Santa ClaustrophobiaSanta Claustrophobia Ho Ho Ho Disconnecting from Xbox LIVERegistered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    Back to the second coming thing.

  • Commander ZoomCommander Zoom Registered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    Combination of, IMO:
    Close ties with the strong Jewish community in the US
    Lots of lingering guilt about the Holocaust, which has become "the" genocide against which all others are measured, and which makes any discussion of Israeli policy re Palestine extremely difficult
    Evangelicals wanting prophecy to be fulfilled so the world will end :bigfrown:

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  • JayKaosJayKaos Registered User regular
    Israel's also very useful as a lever to exert direct western influence on the balance of power in the region, and if it were to go away or become less of a significant military power there could potentially be a lot larger power struggles between the assorted larger powers in the area - or, worse yet (from the point of view of the neocon foreign policy types), fewer struggles and enough stability in the area to resist western intelligence meddling in their local politics.

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  • PhillisherePhillishere Registered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    Combination of, IMO:
    Close ties with the strong Jewish community in the US
    Lots of lingering guilt about the Holocaust, which has become "the" genocide against which all others are measured, and which makes any discussion of Israeli policy re Palestine extremely difficult
    Evangelicals wanting prophecy to be fulfilled so the world will end :bigfrown:

    Also, Israel's role as "America's aircraft carrier" in the Middle East. The two Gulf wars weakened Washington's ability to police Israel's bad actions, accordingly, because the U.S. relies so much on Israeli intelligence and background support.

    JayKaosCommander ZoomGennenalyse RuebenKraintElldren
  • hippofanthippofant ティンク Registered User regular
    JayKaos wrote: »
    Israel's also very useful as a lever to exert direct western influence on the balance of power in the region, and if it were to go away or become less of a significant military power there could potentially be a lot larger power struggles between the assorted larger powers in the area - or, worse yet (from the point of view of the neocon foreign policy types), fewer struggles and enough stability in the area to resist western intelligence meddling in their local politics.
    Gaddez wrote: »
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    Combination of, IMO:
    Close ties with the strong Jewish community in the US
    Lots of lingering guilt about the Holocaust, which has become "the" genocide against which all others are measured, and which makes any discussion of Israeli policy re Palestine extremely difficult
    Evangelicals wanting prophecy to be fulfilled so the world will end :bigfrown:

    Also, Israel's role as "America's aircraft carrier" in the Middle East. The two Gulf wars weakened Washington's ability to police Israel's bad actions, accordingly, because the U.S. relies so much on Israeli intelligence and background support.

    Does this really matter to the US Congress though? It seems like this might drive State or DoD, but not so much Senators, at least not alone.

  • PhillisherePhillishere Registered User regular
    hippofant wrote: »
    JayKaos wrote: »
    Israel's also very useful as a lever to exert direct western influence on the balance of power in the region, and if it were to go away or become less of a significant military power there could potentially be a lot larger power struggles between the assorted larger powers in the area - or, worse yet (from the point of view of the neocon foreign policy types), fewer struggles and enough stability in the area to resist western intelligence meddling in their local politics.
    Gaddez wrote: »
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    Combination of, IMO:
    Close ties with the strong Jewish community in the US
    Lots of lingering guilt about the Holocaust, which has become "the" genocide against which all others are measured, and which makes any discussion of Israeli policy re Palestine extremely difficult
    Evangelicals wanting prophecy to be fulfilled so the world will end :bigfrown:

    Also, Israel's role as "America's aircraft carrier" in the Middle East. The two Gulf wars weakened Washington's ability to police Israel's bad actions, accordingly, because the U.S. relies so much on Israeli intelligence and background support.

    Does this really matter to the US Congress though? It seems like this might drive State or DoD, but not so much Senators, at least not alone.

    Congress has a long history of being deferential to what the DoD wants. This is especially true of members who have committee assignments with defense or intelligence briefs and like being part of the "team."

    JayKaosshrykeGnome-InterruptusMoridin889
  • JepheryJephery Registered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    Combination of, IMO:
    Close ties with the strong Jewish community in the US
    Lots of lingering guilt about the Holocaust, which has become "the" genocide against which all others are measured, and which makes any discussion of Israeli policy re Palestine extremely difficult
    Evangelicals wanting prophecy to be fulfilled so the world will end :bigfrown:

    Also, Israel's role as "America's aircraft carrier" in the Middle East. The two Gulf wars weakened Washington's ability to police Israel's bad actions, accordingly, because the U.S. relies so much on Israeli intelligence and background support.

    I would add that the 2016 election has shown that having state actors as close friends is very useful for domestic politics as well.

    }
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  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Caedwyr wrote: »
    This also happened recently:

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/trump-administration-snubs-european-diplomats-1.4969833
    cbc wrote:
    U.S. President Donald Trump's administration has lowered the status of the European Union's diplomats in Washington without notifying Brussels, EU officials said on Tuesday.

    The change in protocol for a close U.S. ally means the bloc's Washington-based diplomats are less likely to be invited to high-profile events and have a lower importance than under former former president Barack Obama.

    The snub, first reported by German broadcaster Deutsche Welle, was illustrated at the Dec. 5 funeral of another former U.S. president, George H.W. Bush, when Europe's envoy was among the last diplomats to be called to pay respects, one EU official said.

    "We understand that there was a recent change in the way the diplomatic precedence list is implemented by the United States' protocol," a spokesperson for European Commission, the bloc's executive, told a briefing, declining to give more details.

    "We are currently discussing with the relevant services in the administration possible implications for the EU delegation in Washington."

    Two other EU diplomats confirmed the downgrade, with one saying it was unlikely the bloc would retaliate given its desire for good relations.

    ...

    This isn't a huge deal, but it is another area where the next responsible American government is going to have a lot of work to do to rebuild ties with former allies and trading partners once the current government changes.

    Isn't this getting blocked? I thought Dems in the Senate were slowwalking and filibustering everything till the government reopens.

    monikerGnome-InterruptusFencingsaxKristmas Kthulhu
  • CaedwyrCaedwyr Registered User regular
    This isn't something legislative as far as I can tell, but more something that has already been happening and is entirely protocol and internal departmental policy-based.

  • KaputaKaputa Registered User regular
    Henroid wrote: »
    What the actual fuck? The ACLU just brought this to my attention via Twitter; the Senate is voting on a bill tonight to penalize people who boycott Israel.
    The Senate is trying to sneak through a bill TONIGHT that encourages states to penalize people who boycott Israel. It's up to us to remind senators: Your priorities should be a full and functioning government, not attacking our First Amendment rights.
    Seems obviously unconstitutional in addition to being otherwise terrible. Senator Gillibrand pushed a federal version of this some time ago too, but backed off in the face of opposition. If this passes (seems unlikely, I think?) it might be the most repressive government action against freedom of speech in my lifetime.

  • MargaretThatcherMargaretThatcher Registered User regular
    Feinstein joined with Bernie to oppose it, so I'm not sure that it will be able to get the 60 vote threshold.

  • Mild ConfusionMild Confusion Smash All Things Registered User regular
    Yesterday, Shumer said he's blocking all Senate legislation until the shutdown ends. Including this Israel bill.

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  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Gaddez wrote: »
    I really wish I understood what the fascination with israel was; The us is so protective of it and so subservient to it's leadership that I'd almost go so far as to say the US is vassalized.

    A sustained propaganda operation and lobbying campaign by various interests combined with close links between the Israeli government and the US government at every level (both defence and political). And the charge of antisemitism serving as a powerful cudgel to beat down anyone trying to even veer slightly from orthodoxy.

    Like, AIPAC sponsors a trip to Israel for all congresspeople that basically everyone goes on. Think of the depth of the ties that implies and the ability it gives them to reshape US-Israeli policy. There's like a mini-scandal that some new members of Congress are planning to skip it this time and go visit Palestine themselves instead.

    I think an interesting and useful thing to listen to can be this:
    https://crooked.com/podcast/us-policy-towards-israel/

    It's a Pod Save The World episode from mid-December with:
    Tommy Vietor (National Security Spokesman under Obama among other things, host of the podcast)
    Ben Rhodes (various foreign policy related things with Obama including the Cuba deal, currently lobbying or something for foreign policy in DC)
    Dan Shapiro (advisor to Obama on Middle-East issues, former Ambassador to Israel)
    talking about US-Israeli policy.

    And what to really listen for is what are the base unstated assumptions at work here. What's the default position. And it's incredibly pro-Israel. The way they talk about various issues and the pushback against Israel always starts with these certain assumptions. Or the way they talk about things like the AIPAC trip, ignoring the propaganda factor involved and how it's basically pumped directly into basically every single member of Congress. And these are the people who were complaining about The Blob (basically the think-tank-based DC consensus on foreign policy that is largely funded and captured by foreign interests). These are the guys who will bitch about what a pain Netanyahu was. But they can't break out of the consensus structure of US policy towards Israel.

    Rhodes is the only one who comes close to calling the other 2 on their shit and he frankly seems like he's trying to diplomatically tiptoe around the whole thing because he knows if he hits it head on they will blow up on him.

    It's a really frustrating listen but I think it's really illuminating as to the kind of entrenched structural hold that Israel has on US policy.

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  • MorganVMorganV Registered User regular
    In news shocking noone, the response by Turkey to Bolton's (paraphrased) "Erdogan will be required to protect our Kurdish allies in Syria" has been met with a resounding "LOL. No.".

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/trumps-shift-on-syria-leaves-allies-scrambling/2019/01/07/5e80f2a6-12df-11e9-ab79-30cd4f7926f2_story.html?utm_term=.07e94b6d3d4d

  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    Solar wrote: »
    From a US foreign policy standpoint a lack of understanding the motivations of those set against them seems to be quite relevant to recent policy failures.

    Obama regularly urged Russia and Iran to cease backing Assad for example, and I don't know why. That seems like urging the sun not to rise: they never would cease their backing unless forced to do so. So why urge it? I guess it could have been simply rhetoric.

    Rhetoric and signalling. “This is a thing that i want” is a good way to get negotiations ongoing.

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    Gnome-Interruptus
  • MortiousMortious The Nightmare Begins Move to New ZealandRegistered User regular
    Elki wrote: »
    Viskod wrote: »
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Viskod wrote: »
    The problem here is where he got this particular talking point.

    It had to be in conversation with Putin. Private conversation that is not on the Presidents schedule.

    Looking at Trump's insane ramblings and deducing a private meeting took place with Putin certainly requires... imagination.

    Not really. He exactly and specifically parroted a propaganda talking point that is just now working its way through the Russian government.

    It’s not hard to imagine the President having phone calls with Putin and the White House not keeping a record of it, because he’s already had multiple phone calls with Putin where the White House kept no record of it and the only way we know is because the Russian government announced Putin’s call with the President first leaving the White House to go “oh yeah, that did happen.”

    I will be making skeptical noises, like Tycho, because that's not really the old Soviet/new Russian defense of the invasion of Afghanistan. The Soviets would have, of course, described the people they're fighting as terrorists, but beyond that they would not describe the conflict in the terms Trump is using. The Soviets and Russian defenders of Soviets would tell you that the Soviet army was sent to Afghanistan at the request of that country's legitimate government (and never you mind about the bloody details of that request), and that it was legitimate intervention in support of that government.

    Now, this story about Afghan terrorists attacking the USSR, and the USSR responding by going to Afghanistan to fight? That makes that war entirely about the USSR, and acknowledges it as a conflict based on Soviet self-interest. Trump casts the fight as one between Soviets and Afghans, while Soviets would always cast themselves as the defenders of Afghanistan, and Afghans, against the bandits and paid American insurgents that want to undermine the Afghan government and tear Afghanistan apart.

    Trump's sentence is what comes out of an ignorant American person who wanted to defend the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, but also knows nothing about it except that it happened and went badly. He might as well have talked about the tragic fall of the Moscow Twin Towers.

    That's an interesting parallel to US's involvement in Afghanistan.

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  • DhalphirDhalphir don't you open that trapdoor you're a fool if you dareRegistered User regular

    And there's really no way to assure anyone that it won't all happen again in another (multiple of 4) years. The world's remaining superpower (for now...) is diagnosed bipolar.

    The only real reason this keeps happening is voter turnout, which is caused by non compulsory voting.

    Make voting compulsory and you fix the bipolar nature overnight, because suddenly it's not enough for Republicans to rile up 30% of the country, they need to appeal to a wider audience.

    When voting is non-compulsory, a motivated minority voter base is enough to win. When its compulsory, you need more.

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  • JepheryJephery Registered User regular
    edited January 9
    Dhalphir wrote: »

    And there's really no way to assure anyone that it won't all happen again in another (multiple of 4) years. The world's remaining superpower (for now...) is diagnosed bipolar.

    The only real reason this keeps happening is voter turnout, which is caused by non compulsory voting.

    Make voting compulsory and you fix the bipolar nature overnight, because suddenly it's not enough for Republicans to rile up 30% of the country, they need to appeal to a wider audience.

    When voting is non-compulsory, a motivated minority voter base is enough to win. When its compulsory, you need more.

    Compulsory voting doesn't always work. Disaffected voters might protest vote at the polling booth instead of just staying home. See: Australia, which still manages to have shitty right wing governments with compulsory voting.

    Still probably a good idea though.

    Jephery on
    }
    "Orkses never lose a battle. If we win we win, if we die we die fightin so it don't count. If we runs for it we don't die neither, cos we can come back for annuver go, see!".
    RchanenFencingsaxGennenalyse RuebenshrykeCelestialBadgerMayabirdkime
  • MorganVMorganV Registered User regular
    Jephery wrote: »
    Dhalphir wrote: »

    And there's really no way to assure anyone that it won't all happen again in another (multiple of 4) years. The world's remaining superpower (for now...) is diagnosed bipolar.

    The only real reason this keeps happening is voter turnout, which is caused by non compulsory voting.

    Make voting compulsory and you fix the bipolar nature overnight, because suddenly it's not enough for Republicans to rile up 30% of the country, they need to appeal to a wider audience.

    When voting is non-compulsory, a motivated minority voter base is enough to win. When its compulsory, you need more.

    Compulsory voting doesn't always work. Disaffected voters might protest vote at the polling booth instead of just staying home. See: Australia, which still manages to have shitty right wing governments with compulsory voting.

    Still probably a good idea though.

    While yes, we do get shitty right wing governments, those shitty right wing governments are tempered into moderation by the compulsory voting. Because they know, even with their shitty right wing policy goals, there's only so far they can push things before those protest votes become votes against.

    It's not the removal of conservatism from the public discourse, that compulsory voting defeats. It's the extremism of that conservatism that is tempered. I reckon a full half of our current conservative party would run as blue dog Democrats in the US, because the Republicans are too far to the right for them.

    And that's what @Dhalphir is referring to. You can't win with 30% of the electorate. So that means you either lose, or you moderate. Either is fine by me.

    DhalphirelectricitylikesmeEvermourn
  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    This is getting far away from foreign policy.

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    Commander ZoomGnome-InterruptusBullheadSleep
  • ArbitraryDescriptorArbitraryDescriptor Registered User regular
    edited January 9
    The US has effectively downgraded the diplomatic status of the EU representative.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-46798861

    Having read the article, I'm still not entirely sure what that means. Is this a functional thing or just passive aggressive dickery?

    ArbitraryDescriptor on
  • daveNYCdaveNYC Why universe hate Waspinator? Registered User regular
    US to expel every last Iranian boot from Syria - Pompeo

    Basically there won't be any reconstruction aid for Assad until Iran and it's proxies leave. Given the reliability of the current US government, I can't possibly see how Assad could say no.

  • Santa ClaustrophobiaSanta Claustrophobia Ho Ho Ho Disconnecting from Xbox LIVERegistered User regular
    daveNYC wrote: »
    US to expel every last Iranian boot from Syria - Pompeo

    Basically there won't be any reconstruction aid for Assad until Iran and it's proxies leave. Given the reliability of the current US government, I can't possibly see how Assad could say no.

    'Our assistance has been secured to those goalposts over there. When you reach them, you will have what you need.'

    ArbitraryDescriptorBlackDragon480Gnome-InterruptusTicaldfjamRchanenCouscousElldrenGennenalyse RuebenSkeith
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