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Old 2008-04-30, 23:14   Link #401
Ermes Marana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Because Hillary is a candidate, not in office. Does GWB look like he cares about the polls at all? Heck no. Did he care about the polls when he was originally running for president? Sure did. Of course they would - they're trying to appeal to as many people as possible when they're candidates. Even if your approval ratings drop to all-time lows, the public can't impeach you.

Which is exactly what I said. GWB doesn't care about the polls and refuses to change even when running the country into the ground because he believes in the neocon manifesto.

I get the feeling that Obama also believes in what he says. He comes across as a sincere person, and I think that even if the things he believes in became unpopular he would still try to do them.


Hillary Clinton on the other hand, does not believe. She is not sincere. She will support the war when it is popular, but bash it when it becomes unpopular. She would support universal health care if it is popular, but forget about it if it becomes unpopular.

I think that, right now, that is a good thing. I want a president who does not have their own manifesto. I want a president who will switch positions if their old one becomes unpopular.

I want a vain, selfish president who will steal other people's ideas and call them their own, and abandon their old ideas.

I'm sick of having a president who believes in some ideal, and goes for it regardless of the cost or popularity even while it is failing.
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Old 2008-04-30, 23:27   Link #402
Reckoner
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Unless you were intending to use the term "terrorist" for its shock value...
Well it's not like Ku Klux Klan or Al Quaeda level things I'm talking about, but is still terrorism.

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Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
As for the video, I don't see what the problem is. Whoever put it together did a very good job, but their intended message is very clear. If you don't mind my asking, what's your ethnicity?
I'm a bit of a mutt, mostly Mexican/Russian/German, but half my family is Jewish (the Russian side) and I got a tinge of Arabic roots from the other side.

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Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Regarding campaign donations and other forms of corporate goodwill, nobody makes a big deal over it because it's seemingly been going on forever. And do you honestly expect any politicians to take a stand against it? Why would they - it makes their task of fundraising a heck of a lot easier. Who wants to hit up thousands/millions of people for donations when you can just make friends with the CEOs of a few companies, wine and dine them at your ranch (sorry, expensive house), and be set?
I guess this is the chief failure of government in history through and through. I don't think a problem like this can ever be fixed then.


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Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
What's the point of calling him an America hater, then? "Because it's true"? Why not examine what he's saying, where he's coming from, and understand the issues he's raising and his frustration with the system? If you do that and still reach the conclusion that this man just hates America and that's it, then I'd be very interested in reading your thoughts on many of the points and issues he raises to see how you reached that conclusion.
I call him an American hater to show that Obama is affiliated with an American hater, a president affiliated with an American hater is bad news to me. I can go read more on this guy if I want, but I don't think I'd find anything better than all this radical nonsense he's already spewed. He's talked about the government allowing the black man to be kept down by law all this time (Which is more linked to politicians wanting to save face than actually wanting to keep the black man down), he's also said that our terrorism in the world came back to us on 9-11. America's actions in the cold war era and on were more or less sketchy at times, but the man makes it seem like we had it coming, as if we deserved it. He damns America, and he damns the white man.

My conclusion on this man is that he is very angry and confused with society, so he channels this into an outrageous aggression to a point where his thoughts are pretty much anti-American. I realize what you're saying, there is most likely a why to what he thinks, but that's like justifying a killer because he was abused as a child.


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Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
That they didn't show the whole sermon is a good point. If you took even three sentences out of this post to you, would you say that it was giving a clear picture of my thoughts and ideas? People are very quick to judge, but nobody wants to sit down and judge it fairly by putting it all in context. I haven't seen the entire thing in context, myself; perhaps he is rightfully earning those condemnations. I'm not going to be overly judgemental or self-righteous and make that call without seeing the whole thing and even hearing some explanations first, though.
You make it seem like this is something very complicated, this isn't the bombing of Hiroshima here. The Reverend Wright incident has seemed very straight forward to someone like me, I pretty much understood what he said.

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Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Your bias has shown through what that middle sentence, though. You have clearly made up your mind, and I don't think that any of us can persuade you to think about it differently. I'll just state that on my end, even though Obama will likely get my vote (if he receives the Democratic nomination), I have not bought into the demonizations of Hillary and I am not at war with the Republican party enough to blankly say that I'd never vote for McCain. I am anti-politician as far as politicians these days have been behaving.
I'm open to change in my opinion, I just haven't seen anything that I would agree with regarding Obama. If you talked to me 3-5 months ago I would've actually defended Obama, but certain things that I learned about him have changed my view completely. At this moment of my life I don't particularly like either political party too much, my main problem with Mccain is his wish to continue the Bush administration's policy in Iraq, but otherwise I wouldn't mind voting for him over Hilary (There is also a factor of economy that I think Hilary might be able to curve our recession).
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Old 2008-05-01, 00:16   Link #403
Ledgem
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Originally Posted by Ermes Marana View Post
Which is exactly what I said. GWB doesn't care about the polls and refuses to change even when running the country into the ground because he believes in the neocon manifesto.

...

Hillary Clinton on the other hand, does not believe. She is not sincere. She will support the war when it is popular, but bash it when it becomes unpopular. She would support universal health care if it is popular, but forget about it if it becomes unpopular.
You missed my point. Hillary may seem to be paying attention to the polls now, but it's a totally different story once they're in office. She's paying attention to the polls now, but right now, more than ever, she needs the support of the people. Of course she's going to be watching the polls. If she's voted into office, will the concerns still matter to her?

For your and my sake, I hope so. Don't fool yourself into thinking that what she says and does now, as a presidential candidate, will be the same things that she does as a president. Unfortunately, our current president has proven that it doesn't always work that way, as I'm sure that numerous other presidents before him have as well.



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Originally Posted by Reckoner View Post
Well it's not like Ku Klux Klan or Al Quaeda level things I'm talking about, but is still terrorism.
Yes, it was terrorism. Property was damaged, but no lives were lost. It seems that many members of the weathermen are free in society, and even being productive (there's a university professor, an activist, a bar owner... according to a PBS website, I believe it was, only one of the crew is in jail on a life sentence, and that's because after the weathermen broke up he joined a more radical group and did some pretty bad things). Surely you realize that the term "terrorist" today provides a very different image than what these people were doing. It isn't right, but it pales in comparison to the terrorist activities that were undertaken by the other two names that I mentioned. And comparing it to the terrorism that we see today... forget it. It almost makes the weathermen look like "good guys" in comparison. Almost. I also forgot to mention in my earlier post, but the site you linked to is "stoptheaclu.com" - they believe that the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) does more harm than good for America. The ACLU isn't always the most wonderful organization in the world, but being against an organization that seeks to maintain civil liberties... I'm not so sure about that site.

It doesn't matter, either way. Obama wasn't a member of the weathermen, and he wasn't supporting them from behind the scenes. As far as I know, Obama hasn't gone out to say that he really supported the actions of bombing infrastructure. Once again people seem to be expecting him to denounce and sever ties with people whom they deem to be a threat. I wouldn't do the same, myself, and thus I find it unreasonable to expect Obama to "or else he'd be a bad president."

Quote:
I guess this is the chief failure of government in history through and through. I don't think a problem like this can ever be fixed then.
Suppose there were a certain candidate who didn't like the way that the field of politics had become. Suppose this candidate really was more in-tune with the regular people and less with the politicians, the corporate CEOs, and the rich elite. Maybe then...

Quote:
I call him an American hater to show that Obama is affiliated with an American hater, a president affiliated with an American hater is bad news to me. I can go read more on this guy if I want, but I don't think I'd find anything better than all this radical nonsense he's already spewed. He's talked about the government allowing the black man to be kept down by law all this time (Which is more linked to politicians wanting to save face than actually wanting to keep the black man down), he's also said that our terrorism in the world came back to us on 9-11. America's actions in the cold war era and on were more or less sketchy at times, but the man makes it seem like we had it coming, as if we deserved it. He damns America, and he damns the white man.

My conclusion on this man is that he is very angry and confused with society, so he channels this into an outrageous aggression to a point where his thoughts are pretty much anti-American. I realize what you're saying, there is most likely a why to what he thinks, but that's like justifying a killer because he was abused as a child.
You've stated your ethnicity, and none of it is black. You mentioned that you are partly Jewish, so perhaps you've heard the same stories of persecution of unjustified hatred that I did growing up. I'm guessing that you've never been to a place where anti-semitism is still going strong, though - ever seen graffiti showing a star of David hanging on a scaffold, or been treated differently by the police? I have, and while I didn't experience long-term exposure to it and can't claim that it suddenly gives me a full understanding of the black experience in America, I know that the differences exist. Most likely, you and I, despite not being "white" (culturally speaking) have a light-enough skin tone that we receive what has been termed "white privilege" by society.

I've mentioned it on these forums before, but there was a very interesting documentary performed by CBS which examined this. They took two men, both roughly the same age, both programmers, both glasses-wearing, both single, both friends, and then followed their experiences separately. One was African American, the other was Caucasian. They went through a number of scenarios with hidden cameras, and the differences in treatment were astounding. The same shopkeeper who eagerly approached the Caucasian and offered friendly banter completely ignored the African American man; while walking out late at night, the police stopped the African American man randomly but ignored the Caucasian man; the African American man was told that all apartments were filled just moments after the Caucasian man had been told that there were plenty of vacancies... and so on. The reporting was done in what could be called an area of the South, but as a "final test" they returned to New York city and had both men hail a cab. Even though the African American man was a few feet in front of the Caucasian man, the cab drove right past him and stopped in front of the Caucasian. If I were treated that way and noticed that I was being singled out and treated worse than other people I'd be pretty upset, too.

The idea that the reverand is an America hater just seems off to me. He was in the military for six years voluntarily (longer than Cheney or Bush), which doesn't necessarily mean that he doesn't hate America, but certainly seems like an activity that someone who hates the country would avoid. His statements reflect a lot of frustrations with the way that the system is working.

A killer's childhood abuse doesn't clear him of the crimes he has committed, but it sheds light on why he did what he did. Instead of calling him "evil" you realize that he is psychologically unwell. I believe a similar view can arise here: the reverand is not an America hater, but someone who is very frustrated with the way things are going. Whether you agree or disagree with his views, realize why he says what he does rather than just branding him with incendiary terms. This requires more than just understanding the words that he's saying - you need to understand his background, and the experiences that he faces day to day as an African American man.

Edit in: I just went to the stoptheaclu.org site (where stoptheaclu.com is derived from), and I don't like them. First tip-off: they have an image of the American flag with a Cross on their main site. First indication that they're a bunch of uber-Christians who want to push Christianity on all of us, and damn us for being different. Second indication: the guy who founded the site specialized in Bible studies. Third: the "offenses" that they've suffered because of the ACLU include things like fighting to allow abortion, "threats to take God out of the Pledge of Allegiance and our money," fighting for homosexual marriage, "defending terrorists at Guantanamo Bay" (oh noes, they're terrorists, they're not allowed to have the freedoms that America is based on)... it doesn't discredit the site you linked to, but I'm not a fan of organizations like those at all.
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Last edited by Ledgem; 2008-05-01 at 00:27.
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Old 2008-05-01, 01:08   Link #404
bayoab
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ermes Marana View Post
Why is it considered a bad thing that a politician cares about the polls? In other words, they care what the people want them to do (for selfish reasons of course).
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ermes Marana View Post
I think that, right now, that is a good thing. I want a president who does not have their own manifesto. I want a president who will switch positions if their old one becomes unpopular.
The reason it is bad thing is because following the publics' will is very dangerous. Rarely does the general public know what is good for them. They will blindly follow the will of the masses.

Remember how the masses wanted to invade Iraq?

There are two different things here. One is knowing to admit when you are actually wrong. The other is switching sides just to stay popular. The former is the quality a president needs.
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Old 2008-05-01, 01:18   Link #405
Reckoner
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Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
I also forgot to mention in my earlier post, but the site you linked to is "stoptheaclu.com" - they believe that the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) does more harm than good for America. The ACLU isn't always the most wonderful organization in the world, but being against an organization that seeks to maintain civil liberties... I'm not so sure about that site.
Yea, meh, I just googled and that site came up was just trying to find a source of information about the supposed terrorist dealings. Now that you bring it up, I don't really like that site either. Like you said though, yea we shouldn't just connect it to Obama so easily, it only increases my skepticism of him as more and more things are brought up about him. If he manages to stay out of anymore of these kinds of issues, I'll gladly look the other way for him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
You've stated your ethnicity, and none of it is black. You mentioned that you are partly Jewish, so perhaps you've heard the same stories of persecution of unjustified hatred that I did growing up. I'm guessing that you've never been to a place where anti-semitism is still going strong, though - ever seen graffiti showing a star of David hanging on a scaffold, or been treated differently by the police? I have, and while I didn't experience long-term exposure to it and can't claim that it suddenly gives me a full understanding of the black experience in America, I know that the differences exist. Most likely, you and I, despite not being "white" (culturally speaking) have a light-enough skin tone that we receive what has been termed "white privilege" by society.
I'm not blind to racism, I've seen plenty, but most of its subtle. The racism I experience actually doesn't come from my Jewish heritage as not many people will even guess that I'm Jewish, since I am agnostic I never talk about Judiasim. I have seen that type of graffiti when I was in Germany though. Yet since I have a very German last name, Heinze, I've been taunted by being called a Nazi. Germans are often attacked like this today because of .. ahem... some atrocious acts in the past 100 years. Even at an EU meeting regarding representation Poland sneered that it wasn't fair as they would have like 50 million more people if Germany didn't kill them all, this of course left Germany up in arms.

I would often wonder if teaching about racism actually induces experiences like what you described with the white and black guy. Like would a person naturally hate black people if you never said anything about people hating them for their skin color? Subconsciously it puts a message in people's heads that other races are weird? Well anyways before I get OT, yeah, racism is still very prevalent.

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Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
A killer's childhood abuse doesn't clear him of the crimes he has committed, but it sheds light on why he did what he did. Instead of calling him "evil" you realize that he is psychologically unwell. I believe a similar view can arise here: the reverand is not an America hater, but someone who is very frustrated with the way things are going. Whether you agree or disagree with his views, realize why he says what he does rather than just branding him with incendiary terms. This requires more than just understanding the words that he's saying - you need to understand his background, and the experiences that he faces day to day as an African American man.
As I stated in my last post, I do understand what you're saying. This man is just the misbegotten child of the bad handling of government affairs. The whole problem just stems back to his association with Obama in my eyes. I just don't want to take the possibility of having an uber leftist radical wing nut alienating our government and stalling it for the next 4 years so that it would reach a point that I would've actually preferred Bush.. As long as Obama doesn't have any more mysterious relationships pop up during his campaign, I'll let the situation down and I'll give him an attempt to persuade me to his side. For now, I'll watch him with a careful and skeptical eye.

P.S. It has been entertaining to converse with you Ledgem, in a good way .
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Old 2008-05-07, 00:43   Link #406
Ledgem
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Surprised nobody mentioned this yet. It would seem that Clinton beat Obama in Indiana (but it was very, very close; 51% for Clinton and 49% for Obama), and Obama beat Clinton in North Carolina (56% to 42% - Yahoo's math seems to be off). It was nice to see that Obama is focusing on the big picture, as he made a remark that "This primary season may not be over, but when it is, we will have to remember who we are as Democrats ... because we all agree that at this defining moment in history — a moment when we're facing two wars, an economy in turmoil, a planet in peril — we can't afford to give John McCain the chance to serve out George Bush's third term."

It's been rather interesting, as it seems that Obama and Clinton have, for better or for worse, been getting nearly all of the political press coverage. You can find coverage on McCain, but even on "big issue" topics he seems to barely get a mention.

Aside from that issue, does anyone want to discuss the debates over suspending the tax on gas? I was initially inclined to agree with Obama that a temporary suspension won't really do too much and is also a temporary fix that won't solve a larger issue, but I was really miffed when I read something that a Clinton aid said regarding it. I can't find the article anymore, but a section of it mentioned how some hundred+ economists, including four Nobel Prize winners (they have that for economics?) had signed a statement which said that suspending the gas tax wouldn't do anything and was a bad idea. When a Clinton aid was pressed to respond to whether they had found any economists to support their stance that a temporary suspension would be a good thing, she said something along the lines of 'we're not hunting for economists to support us, we're doing what's best for the people.' I appreciate that last bit, but how is ignoring the advice of experts doing what's best for the people? It's been said before, but a president isn't expected to know everything on their own. That's what their aids and other experts are for. If they had a slew of economists who could say that it was a good idea and had some solid proof to back it, then I'd say that's great. As it stands, it seems like they're just doing what they want and hoping that things go the way that they hope. Bad leadership.
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Old 2008-05-07, 00:48   Link #407
Spectacular_Insanity
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Clinton beat Obama in Indiana? OMFG, that's where I live!! I am very afraid. Damn Hoosiers.

And I'm still not sure who the heck I'm gonna vote for. However, one thing is for certain: I pray to God Obama gets the Democratic spot. I don't even want to consider the remote chance that Clinton gets elected as President. In all honesty, the thought scares me to death. I know I'd defnitely vote Obama if given the choice, but I still want to know more about McCain. The lack of press coverage for the Republicans annoys me. In order to make an informed decision, I gotta know both sides, but how can I know both sides when the media doesnt cover one half? Looking up everything on the internet can only go so far.
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Old 2008-05-07, 01:02   Link #408
Reckoner
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Surprised nobody mentioned this yet. It would seem that Clinton beat Obama in Indiana (but it was very, very close; 51% for Clinton and 49% for Obama), and Obama beat Clinton in North Carolina (56% to 42% - Yahoo's math seems to be off). It was nice to see that Obama is focusing on the big picture, as he made a remark that "This primary season may not be over, but when it is, we will have to remember who we are as Democrats ... because we all agree that at this defining moment in history — a moment when we're facing two wars, an economy in turmoil, a planet in peril — we can't afford to give John McCain the chance to serve out George Bush's third term."
<snip>
Aside from that issue, does anyone want to discuss the debates over suspending the tax on gas? <snip>
I would've brought it up, but the democrats are going to lose again in my opinion so meh. If Obama wins, the Wright controversy is going to screw him over, with back stabs by Hilary Clinton sadly enough. And if Hilary wins, she isn't going to get the black vote as they are going to feel betrayed. But hey, at least the race is entertaining.

The economy thing is an iffy issue for me because I know that the economy was good under Bill and I am inclined to think that Hilary would be good with economics, so I would think tax cuts would do good. On the other hand with these economists saying otherwise, I am at a loss. But hey, economists have definitely been wrong in the past....
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Old 2008-05-07, 02:17   Link #409
Vexx
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Suspending the gas tax will simply have the following effects:
1) Interstate and state roads maintenance will go into the red or go undone.
2) The basic price will rise in response to extra demand.
3) This saves about $4/tank. Great bribe, you two wankers ... O.o

Of course, people are waving the ANWR drill flag again (10yrs lag before about two years of fuel).

Barak is right - reducing demand through improvements to infrastructure and efficiencies in use will save a LOT more and reduce fuel dependency.
Hell, walking around and trout-whacking people who don't turn off their engines while waiting in line for gas will save an amazing amount of fuel.
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Old 2008-05-07, 02:22   Link #410
Anh_Minh
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Sounds like an interesting part-time job.

(Also, if we suspended our gas tax, the price would be immediately cut in two! So stop whining about your gas prices, you damn yanks.)
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Old 2008-05-07, 03:05   Link #411
Irenicus
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Originally Posted by Anh_Minh View Post
(Also, if we suspended our gas tax, the price would be immediately cut in two! So stop whining about your gas prices, you damn yanks.)
Can't blame us. The West Coast is a historic case of public policy failure. The suburbs grow and grow, and the government didn't even try to set up a decent "alternative." So what can anyone do but drive? It's not like there's a tube to downtown LA for anyone to use.

Trust me, I held on to my Radical Green Leftist ideals for quite a while, but I gave up when it's clear I'm either driving myself or somebody else will do it for me all the time.

So, like, if we get your kind of tax, America's going to see a Revolution. No sir, we won't take it any other way. Give me my gas or give me death

Of course, that doesn't excuse the oversized monsters some people seem to like.
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Old 2008-05-07, 03:07   Link #412
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I think Americans are stupendously unaware of the price of gasoline anywhere else on the planet (or the infrastructure those gas taxes support in other countries).
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Old 2008-05-07, 04:25   Link #413
bayoab
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Surprised nobody mentioned this yet. It would seem that Clinton beat Obama in Indiana (but it was very, very close; 51% for Clinton and 49% for Obama), and Obama beat Clinton in North Carolina (56% to 42% - Yahoo's math seems to be off).
Yahoo's math is right. North Carolina allows you to vote "No preference" or something like that. There were 1% who voted that way and the rest is lost in rounding.

Quote:
Aside from that issue, does anyone want to discuss the debates over suspending the tax on gas? I was initially inclined to agree with Obama that a temporary suspension won't really do too much and is also a temporary fix that won't solve a larger issue, but I was really miffed when I read something that a Clinton aid said regarding it.
If you want some interesting reading, go run a google search about the gas tax repeal that happened in Illinois back in 2000. I'm pretty sure Obama is basically speaking from that experience where the big losers were the people and the big winners were the oil companies. (Oil companies made 3.5 cents more for every 4 cents consumers saved. Millions of dollars for repairs lost.)

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Originally Posted by Reckoner View Post
The economy thing is an iffy issue for me because I know that the economy was good under Bill and I am inclined to think that Hilary would be good with economics, so I would think tax cuts would do good.
Part of what made Bill's policies work was luck from entering the dot com boom and the huge growth in the technology sector.

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Originally Posted by Spectacular_Insanity View Post
Clinton beat Obama in Indiana? OMFG, that's where I live!! I am very afraid. Damn Hoosiers.
This wasn't exactly unexpected. Despite what the Clinton campaign has been trying to spin all day, she was ahead in the IN polls for months now. The only time she was 15 points behind was right near super tuesday.

The real interesting part is, why did Lake County wait so long for releasing results. It seemed like they wanted the eyes of the country on them like the old political trick where you hold the cards in the big cities till the last moment.

What is getting really scary is the split in the democratic party is getting larger and larger, but everyone seems to dismiss it. The number of voters who voted for Clinton, but will vote for McCain if she loses has increased to nearly 1/3rd. The scariest part is the opinions of some of these people. The fark threads were pasting some of the stuff they were saying. They are absolutely convinced everything involving positives for Obama is a conspiracy and many of the negative stories for Clinton to hit the mass media are 'fake information leaked by Obama operatives'.

And for a random link fun, here is Keith Olbermann's description of the Clinton's guidelines for who counts. It is absolutely hilarious to hear what basically Clinton has said what matters.

And for random fact check fun, I believe it was Clinton's campaign manager claimed that Clinton was winning in Florida over McCain. Actual polling holds that the two are statistically tied.
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Old 2008-05-07, 06:02   Link #414
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Clinton's campaign is essentially dead.

Slate covers why pretty well

Choice snippets:

Quote:
Obama comes up big in North Carolina, and Clinton merely ekes out a win (as of 11 p.m. ET) in Indiana, the combination of which all but ends Clinton's shot at the nomination. Her chances drop 8.4 points to 4.2 percent.
Quote:
For the past few weeks, Hillary Clinton's candidacy has rested on two possibilities: 1) winning the popular vote and 2) convincing superdelegates that Obama cannot win certain types of voters. [...] Today, Obama exploded both arguments.
Quote:
So, right now her shot at the nomination rests on one thing: Obama messing up big time. Barring this possibility—which certainly is a possibility, but it's out of Clinton's control—she has no arguments left. She may have the most experience; she may still be the best fighter for the middle class; she may be the stronger general election candidate against John McCain. But that's not enough to persuade superdelegates to vote against the candidate who won the pledged-delegate count and the popular vote.

In her speech tonight, Clinton pledged to stay in the race. The question is, why?
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Old 2008-05-07, 12:30   Link #415
Ledgem
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Originally Posted by Anh_Minh View Post
(Also, if we suspended our gas tax, the price would be immediately cut in two! So stop whining about your gas prices, you damn yanks.)
It's true that the price of gas is much more expensive in Europe - I remember seeing gas prices in Poland and Holland. Aside from being impressed that Europeans actually used a crossed-out "Pb" to show that the fuel was unleaded (Pb is the "symbol" for Lead on the periodic table), the prices were much higher.

Then again, we easily drove from the Russian border to near the German border in Poland. As for Holland, we were bicycling around there It's mostly flat land and they have bike lanes on their highways, it was totally amazing. Really neat to be able to hop on a bike in one city, go through some countryside (we just missed the tulip season, unfortunately), and then enter another city and bike around there. Can you do that in the US? I wish we could! Heck, I looked over the statistics on the new Tesla Roadster - it has a range of about 225 miles on a single charge. Great for regular drives and perhaps the East Coast (where a commute for me might be 80 miles per day), but that probably wouldn't even get me from Los Angeles to San Diego without worrying about running out of charge (distance between LA and SD is ~125 miles). The distances are greater, which makes setting up transport systems pretty difficult.

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Originally Posted by bayoab View Post
If you want some interesting reading, go run a google search about the gas tax repeal that happened in Illinois back in 2000. I'm pretty sure Obama is basically speaking from that experience where the big losers were the people and the big winners were the oil companies. (Oil companies made 3.5 cents more for every 4 cents consumers saved. Millions of dollars for repairs lost.)
That was another point that I read about and found to be rather significant; thanks for mentioning it.
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Old 2008-05-07, 13:35   Link #416
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Originally Posted by Aya Reiko View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slate
In her speech tonight, Clinton pledged to stay in the race. The question is, why?
Just to give some possibilities since the article doesn't:

MSNBC suggested should she would drop out on 5/20, the Oregon/Kentucky primary. That is the day Obama is expected to wrap things up delegate wise. She would get her last hurrah in winning Kentucky and walk away "on top". Meanwhile Obama would win Oregon, get the majority of pledged delegates, and continue momentum.

This above theory is likely reality because Clinton is likely going to take WV and KY, whether or not she is in the race. Montana, Puerto Rico and South Dakota are toss ups and everyone expects Obama to run away in Oregon.

Before yesterday, the Huffington post was suggesting the so called "nuclear option." I would assume this is off the table now, but who knows. However, unless a shocker happens before Oregon, she cannot get the majority of pledged delegates (with or without Florida and Michigan).
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Old 2008-05-07, 13:47   Link #417
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Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
Suspending the gas tax will simply have the following effects:
1) Interstate and state roads maintenance will go into the red or go undone.
2) The basic price will rise in response to extra demand.
3) This saves about $4/tank. Great bribe, you two wankers ... O.o

Of course, people are waving the ANWR drill flag again (10yrs lag before about two years of fuel).

Barak is right - reducing demand through improvements to infrastructure and efficiencies in use will save a LOT more and reduce fuel dependency.
Hell, walking around and trout-whacking people who don't turn off their engines while waiting in line for gas will save an amazing amount of fuel.
Personally i think the suspending the gas is stupid idea myself but in Clinton, she is only for it if the government instead charge the oil and gas company for the tax. So the tax is essentially switch form the commuter to the oil companies paying.
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Old 2008-05-07, 13:58   Link #418
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Aye... and then the oil companies (being responsible to their shareholders) will pass these additional costs (corporate taxes) along to the consumer in the form of higher prices.

Basically, the idea is a political sham. (see bayoab's Illinois example).
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Old 2008-05-07, 17:27   Link #419
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I'm surprised that the Democratic primaries have even been getting so much attention for the last two months. Anyone decent at math should have been able to figure out that Clinton had practically no chance of winning after Obama won 11 straight primaries and caucuses after Super Tuesday. Those wins were bigger than anything Clinton has been pulled off, with wins of 20-30% margins in many states, including Virginia which will be important in the general election.

It's also interesting to look out how some of the primary and caucus results are reported. Often a candidate will be deemed the winner of a state by just winning the popular vote when it's the delegates they receive that really matter.

Most recently Guam was reported as a win for Obama when in fact the two candidates split the four delegates 2-2.

In Texas, Clinton won the popular vote but because that state allocates one third of its delegates based off of a separate caucus Obama ended up winning 5 more delegates than her in that state overall.

Clinton arguably didn't win a single state in January. The New Hampshire primary was so close that they tied in delegates (9-9). Clinton again won the popular vote in Nevada but because that state (and many other states I believe) allocate delegates to each county Obama received one more delegate than her (13-12). Michigan and Florida of course had their delegates stripped for voting before February 5th. So before Super Tuesday the results were actually three wins for Obama and one tie.
It's like in the general election in November. It doesn't really matter who wins the popular vote, just who receives more than half of the electoral college votes. Gore won the popular vote by half a million votes but who ended up becoming President? Yeah, not him.

It should also be noted that despite Obama's unfair "wins" and many caucus wins (where one vote counts a lot more), he is still beating Clinton in the overall popular vote, even with Michigan and Florida factored in. It will be very good for Obama if he can keep up his lead in the popular vote so that the Michigan and Florida delegates can actually be seated at the convention, as Florida at least will again be very important in the general election.
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Old 2008-05-07, 18:04   Link #420
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Originally Posted by Autumn Demon View Post
I'm surprised that the Democratic primaries have even been getting so much attention for the last two months. Anyone decent at math should have been able to figure out that Clinton had practically no chance of winning after Obama won 11 straight primaries and caucuses after Super Tuesday. Those wins were bigger than anything Clinton has been pulled off, with wins of 20-30% margins in many states, including Virginia which will be important in the general election.
The majority of those states are going to be non-factors.

1. small electoral votes
2. they are firmly Red States. Obama may win those states in primary but he won't win them in the General Election.
3. Name a big state that Obama won?
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