Democratic Primary 2020

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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby cmsellers » Wed Jul 31, 2019 12:53 am

What on earth makes you think I'm remotely OK with a mandatory military draft? That's even worse. Countries with universal peacetime conscription don't only waste a lot of money and they young people's time, they tend to have severe hazing issues. And that's in addition of the immorality of making people kill and die for their government.

I probably would have been one of those people who skipped the country during Vietnam so I didn't have to serve, but at the time, most countries in the world still had conscription. Delaney's program comes at a time when the world going in the other direction: nearly all developed and newly-industrialized countries which are also democracies have gotten rid of conscription and/or ceased to enforce it.

His plan would create three massive new bureaucracies, which means it would almost certainly be around for a long while, no matter how wasteful it is, and I can tell you now that it will be wasteful. It 1. takes unfree labor, 2. assigns it to short stints at semi-skilled work, and 3. creates government bureaucracies to supervise it, three things which are notoriously inefficient.

But as I see it, the bigger problem isn't the proposal itself, it's the proposal in context of other policies the US has already enacted. With Eritrea, we're one of two countries that taxes citizens on worldwide income no matter where they live, but unlike Eritrea, we have the clout to enforce it through tax treaties. We're passing more and more laws that govern the behavior of US citizens abroad. We started with child sex tourism, which is a goal everybody can get behind. Then we moved onto corruption, which is a goal everyone who hasn't had to do business in a third-world country can get behind. And now it's a bunch of increasingly problematic restrictions which are getting US citizens banned from everything from Swiss banks to crypto trading sites on the grounds that we're too much of a liability if the government came knocking.

Most third-world dictatorships with mandatory national service either don't let you renounce citizenship either at all, or until you've served your military service. The US already recently made it harder to renounce citizenship, charging a large fee and a massive "exit tax," the result of moral outrage over some Facebook investor who gave up US citizenship to avoid taxes.

In the absence of the global reach of the US, I'd probably only move abroad in response to conscription if I planned on having children. But in the context of the degree to which the US is controlling Americans abroad, the way the US is already unusually demanding in what it takes to expatriate, and the fact that countries with national service tend to make it even harder to expatriate, if the US as it is now instated national service, I'd make it my goal to get out of the US and out of US citizenship while it is still possible at all.
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby Crimson847 » Wed Jul 31, 2019 1:34 am

If the US goes fascist, Canada isn't exactly going to be a safe harbor. Maybe a powerful US rival like China or Russia, but your liberties will hardly be safer there. If big, intrusive government is your problem, where exactly are you going to run to get away from that if the US falls?
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby cmsellers » Wed Jul 31, 2019 2:00 am

I said I'd have gone to Canada in the seventies, to escape the draft, back when it had no extradition treaty with the US. Moving to Canada to escape the reach of the US in the 21st century strikes me as a pretty terrible idea, unless you have personal connections to Canada.

As things stand now, my first choice would be Peru. It's easy to get permanent residency, one of the quickest countries to get citizenship when you have permanent residency, and a nice place to live if you have work that you can do remotely.
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby Deathclaw_Puncher » Tue Nov 12, 2019 1:31 am

So, it appears that former Massachusetts Governor and Bain Capital exec Deval Patrick is running for president.
Because you know, after Michael Bloomberg the rich have dropped all subtlety.
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby Krashlia » Tue Nov 12, 2019 6:25 am

I don't care what it looks like anymore. I wanna see it happen.

I'M GOING TO SAY THE QUIET PART LOUD!

1571386343532m.jpg
1571386343532m.jpg (99.91 KiB) Viewed 1119 times
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby Deathclaw_Puncher » Mon Dec 02, 2019 1:06 am


Expect at least two more candidates to enter, as is tradition.
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby Krashlia » Mon Dec 02, 2019 9:42 am

Deathclaw_Puncher wrote:
Expect at least two more candidates to enter, as is tradition.


Scratches off another one in the "People in the way of Gabbard winning" book...
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby JamishT » Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:12 am

Oh, BTW, Kamala Harris is out of the race. She had trouble raising money, her staff was disorganized, and she thought Woke Twitter is more powerful than it really is so she kept changing positions and stuff. She has a good chance of being VP though, so I don't think she's going away completely.
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby Krashlia » Fri Dec 06, 2019 3:16 am

JamishT wrote:... and she thought Woke Twitter is more powerful than it really is...



Thats the real good news about the elections.
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby jbobsully11 » Sun Feb 16, 2020 3:58 pm

I just read this opinion piece on the NY Times website about how Michael Bloomberg is remarkably close to being a Democratic version of Trump for this election.

Some quotes:
Inside the Democratic Party, Bloomberg’s ascent would put a sharp brake on the two major post-Obama trends in liberalism: The Great Awokening on race and sex and culture, and the turn against technocracy in economic policymaking.

Yes, Bloomberg has adapted his policy views to better fit the current liberal consensus, and his views on social issues were liberal to begin with. But he has the record of a deficit and foreign policy hawk, the soul of a Wall Street centrist, and a history of racial and religious profiling and sexist misbehavior. More than any other contender, his nomination would pull the party back toward where it stood before the rise of Bernie Sanders and Black Lives Matter and #MeToo, and root liberalism once more in professional-class interests and a Washington-Wall Street mindmeld.

These are good reasons to assume that he cannot be the nominee, and excellent reasons for social progressives and socialists alike to want to beat him. The only way they will fail is if Bloomberg succeeds in casting himself as the unusual answer to an unusual incumbent — combining the Democratic fear of a Trump second term, his own reputation for effective management and the promise of spending his fortune to crush Trump into a more compelling electability pitch than the race’s other moderates.

But Democrats considering this sales pitch should be very clear on what a Bloomberg presidency would mean. Bloomberg does not have Trump’s flagrant vices (though some of his alleged behavior with women is pretty bad) or his bald disdain for norms and rules and legal niceties, and so a Bloomberg presidency will feel less institutionally threatening, less constitutionally perilous, than the ongoing wildness of the Trump era — in addition to delivering at least some of the policy changes that liberals and Democrats desire.

However, feelings can be deceiving. Trump’s authoritarian tendencies are naked on his Twitter feed, but Bloomberg’s imperial instincts, his indifference to limits on his power, are a conspicuous feature of his career. Trump jokes about running for a third term; Bloomberg actually managed it, bulldozing through the necessary legal changes. Trump tries to bully the F.B.I. and undermine civil liberties; Bloomberg ran New York as a miniature surveillance state. Trump has cowed the Republican Party with celebrity and bombast; Bloomberg has spent his political career buying organizations and politicians that might otherwise impede him. Trump blusters and bullies the press; Bloomberg literally owns a major media organization. Trump has Putin envy; Bloomberg hearts Xi Jinping.

People in the comment section seem to disagree. Any thoughts?
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby Pedgerow » Sun Feb 16, 2020 6:28 pm

I think that if you have two self-funded people with near-limitless wealth becoming President in a row, then the presidency is officially up for sale. Of course, maybe a catastrophic mockery of democracy like that is the only way to ultimately change the system in the long run. But if you want a rich guy, surely Bernie Sanders is rich? Plus he's actually popular!

In unrelated US election news, my friend from school who worked on Joe Sestak's campaign is now working on Amy Klobuchar's campaign. I know nothing of her policies, but it sure would be nice to have someone who won't potentially have to blow out 80 candles on a birthday cake during her presidency.
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby Absentia » Sun Feb 16, 2020 6:31 pm

I don't really have a problem with the centrist Wall Street ethos, but I agree that his "imperial instincts" are a major issue. He gets lambasted the most for stop-and-frisk, and rightly so, but that's only the most glaring example of his disrespect for civil liberties when he was running New York as a petty tyrant. He represents the worst of the old-school nanny state tendencies in Democrats, which have been largely discredited since Republicans spent most of the 80's and 90's kicking their asses in elections.

And for pity's sake, can we please not have this election come down to two seventy-something megalomaniac New Yorkers screaming at each other?
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby cmsellers » Mon Feb 17, 2020 6:32 pm

Yeah, I think Absentia basically nailed it. He presents himself as "socially liberal, fiscally conservative" pragmatist, but as with many such people, he's only socially liberal and fiscally conservative on issues that affect people in his circle. Gay rights and lower taxes? Totally on board. Ending corporate welfare or the drug war? Well now you've lost him.

And like Absentia said, he has nanny-state tendencies which go beyond the standard "socially liberal, fiscally conservative" person. He tried to ban giant sodas, and he ran an ad (it's thanks to Absentia that I know about it), casting himself as a Mary Poppins who can tame Americans' naughty impulses. Bloomberg has the soul of an authoritarian.



As for Klobuchar, I said and have continued to say that I think she's the most electable candidate in a general election. I don't like her policies. She tend towards centrism on cultural issues, even more so than Bloomberg, especially on questions like criminal justice. Whereas on economic issues, she's sort of an old-school Midwestern interventionist. Not an outright protectionist like Sherrod Brown, but she's definitely someone who thinks tarrifs are a tool we should be using more and we need more regulations to protect entrenched incumbents. Which, of course, is probably part of why she's so popular. She won't rock the boat on race, and promises the kinds of things that Obama-Trump voters like, but she's not proposing any expensive new social programs which will put Romney-Clinton voters off.

In terms of who I think would be the best president, of the candidates with a shot at winning the nomination (Sanders, Biden, Bloomberg, Buttigieg, Klobuchar, and Warren, in I'd say roughly that order of likelihood), Buttigieg is the least objectionable. He's a moderate, but one who is neither set in his ways like Biden and Klobuchar (especially on cultural issues) nor instinctively authoritarian like Bloomberg. However, there is far more space between me and Buttigieg on policy matters than him and Klobuchar, so it's not like I think she's going to be all that much worse.

I think Buttigieg is the kind of person who, like Obama, will consider all information carefully and try to make the right decision, but I think he's also the kind of person who will surround himself with liberal-but-not-too-liberal Democrats, and that that will severely limit the range of policy options he ends of considering. Not great, but probably the best I'm going to get.

If Klobuchar and Buttigieg both look viable on Super Tuesday, it's going to be a hard decision. I think Buttigieg would make the better president, but I think Klobuchar has a better chance of beating Trump. (I'd say it's maybe 50:50 with Buttigieg and 65% with Klobuchar.) And obviously, beating Trump is important, but if we have a bad Democratic president, Trump's GOP may come roaring back into power in 2024, especially considering that Trump's trade wars and tax policy appear to have damaged the economic growth he inherited from Obama without collapsing it, and his deregulation has paved the way for another bubbled, meaning there's a good chance it collapses on the watch of whoever follows him.
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby Absentia » Tue Feb 18, 2020 12:40 am

That's not from one of Bloomberg's ads. It's from an Inner Circle show, a bizarre NYC annual tradition featuring local political humor. The mayor traditionally makes a guest appearance, and Bloomberg liked to appear with the cast of various Broadway musicals.

I just learned all of this after seeing the tweet. Apparently, Rudy Giuliani and Ed Koch both performed in drag during their respective tenures. New York is weird, man.
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Re: Democratic Primary 2020

Postby cmsellers » Tue Feb 18, 2020 2:58 am

Or maybe...
New York is normal, and it's the rest of the country that's weird.

I mean, that's certainly how New Yorkers see it.
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