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Old 2008-02-09, 01:26   Link #161
bayoab
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Some more head to head polls came out today and the results are well explained. Link here (CNN)

It is still McCain and Clinton in a statistical dead heat and Obama over McCain just barely.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sazelyt View Post
Those polls, if I remember correctly, generally assume +/-4 points deviation from the actual results. Considering the difference between Clinton and Obama, that is a significant margin of error.
That would be correct. Sampling 600 likely voters has a +/-4% margin of error. However, the ~10% that belonged to Edwards before he dropped out did not distribute itself between the two candidates instantly. This is why the running averages are farther off than the actual polls. The places where Edwards was polling lower resulted in much more accurate results.

Just for reference, I compared the results on CNN to those on Pollster using both the average and where the dots where.
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Old 2008-02-10, 06:29   Link #162
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It looks like Obama won the states holding caucuses and primaries yesterday. Though Hillary Clinton still has the lead when it comes to delegates.

For the Republicans, that crazy Huckabee has won.

Personally, even though I live in Ireland, I support Hillary Clinton and I hope she gets the nomination!
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Old 2008-02-10, 14:07   Link #163
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Frankly, the Republicans need such a serious time-out after the last seven years that I'd probably vote for an ashtray if the Dems ran one. (and I used to be registered as a Repub O.o).

If you can't improve the pool (of either party) then all you can do is cycle them through as quickly as possible to minimize the damage.
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Old 2008-02-10, 14:17   Link #164
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I have to ask something, the Republican wants lower taxes however they are going to increase the military spending (could have misheard about this). So how is that going to work?

Kind of off topic but I heard Hilary's speech on live few minutes ago, and well she just said that the US made the internet, which it seems to me is kinda of ignorant statement coming from a someone running for presidential nominees and a Yale graduate.
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Old 2008-02-10, 14:44   Link #165
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
Frankly, the Republicans need such a serious time-out after the last seven years that I'd probably vote for an ashtray if the Dems ran one. (and I used to be registered as a Repub O.o).

If you can't improve the pool (of either party) then all you can do is cycle them through as quickly as possible to minimize the damage.
Loathe as I am to vote for folks on the moonbat-pandering side, I have to agree that the party-rotation accomplishes some good.

The prospect of a Democratic party president combined with a Democratic party majority in congress scares the stuffing out of me, though--right now especially (May our Supreme Court justices feel no need to retire or die in the next four to eight years regardless of who's elected). The same could be said for an all Republican party lineup, but surprisingly enough these last several years the most dastardly things to come out of congress were bi-partisan efforts.

All this is why I'm a fan of those who don't toe the party line (in a sincere fashion, not in a "let's hold hands and have a tea party with the Kennedys" fashion like McCain). The sort that stand for their values regardless of the way the party winds blow. Zell Miller on the left, Ron Paul on the right. Huckabee is far more impressive in this area than most, though not perfect (He seems to have moments of "speak before analyzing" disease).

I don't see much hope in party-rotation this time around, though. McCain and Hillary? They're each the worst of both worlds. Assuming McCain makes it to the front, a part of me hopes Hillary is elected (assuming that her health care plan can't get enough support in congress, as is likely), and that the ensuing chaos causes the sane people in the Republican party to either split or take the party back. Heck, I think a Hillary presidency could make the sane people on the Democrat side wake up! (Similar as McCain is to Hillary Clinton, I just don't see the same reaction in response to what would likely be a less controversial, if near-equally undesirable presidency.)

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Originally Posted by Terrestrial Dream View Post
I have to ask something, the Republican wants lower taxes however they are going to increase the military spending (could have misheard about this). So how is that going to work?
It's SUPPOSED to work by cutting unnecessary spending from other areas. That almost never happens, though. (See also: The Reagan years. Thank you, congress of the 1980s!)

The other side of the coin, though, is that more money in consumers' hands almost always results in economic stimulus... The result of which is more money for revenue... The result of which is congress seeing room to take more money in taxes... The result of which is the economy being depressed... The result of which is taxes being cut to put more money in consumers' hands to stimulate the economy... Wash, rinse, repeat. Congressmen are apparently not historians.
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Old 2008-02-10, 15:16   Link #166
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Terrestrial Dream View Post
I have to ask something, the Republican wants lower taxes however they are going to increase the military spending (could have misheard about this). So how is that going to work?
Here's how it works: it gets them elected, people forget they said it, and then taxes are either raised or government debt increases massively.

I thought a very interesting statistic that you don't see published very often is how the campaigns are managed, monetarily. You hear about how there are millions of dollars involved, but how are the finances being managed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by (H)elix1 (231155) from slashdot.org
Looks like people contributed a lot of money. The finances are worth mentioning for all the major Republican candidates. One of the things that surprised me as I drilled down [opensecrets.org] into the numbers, is for all of the candidates, most of the funding was done at the individual level rather than PAC money. I was not expecting that.

Romney, Mitt
Q4 raised: $26,928,433
Q4 spent: $33,713,503
Total raised: $88,499,686
Total spent: $86,068,239
Cash: $2,431,447
Debt: $35,350,000

McCain, John
Q4 raised: $9,714,246
Q4 spent: $10,254,446
Total raised: $41,102,178
Total spent: $38,153,750
Cash: $2,948,428
Debt: $4,516,030

Paul, Ron
Q4 raised: $19,873,329
Q4 spent: $17,478,711
Total raised: $28,101,264
Total spent: $20,262,084
Cash: $7,839,421
Debt: $0

Huckabee, Mike
Q4 raised: $6,637,063
Q4 spent: $5,391,918
Total raised: $8,986,532
Total spent: $7,090,087
Cash: $1,896,446
Debt: $97,676

By way of comparison, Giuliani, who recently dropped out of the race...

Total Receipts: $60,929,240
Total Spent: $48,152,428
Cash on Hand: $12,776,812
Debts: $1,166,509

Wow... just wow... That sort of spending puts drunken sailors to shame.
In case you missed it, the original site shows those figures with a miniature bar graph, and also shows the Democratic numbers.. I know that campaign spending isn't necessarily indicative of how they'll be trying to determine spending when they're in office, but I was thoroughly depressed to see that only Ron Paul had a debt of $0 while other candidates had wracked up even millions in debt.

Quote:
Kind of off topic but I heard Hilary's speech on live few minutes ago, and well she just said that the US made the internet, which it seems to me is kinda of ignorant statement coming from a someone running for presidential nominees and a Yale graduate.
Maybe I'm ignorant as well, but how is that false? The internet concept originally started out as a military project, and was later applied to other areas. The internet as it is today was made by people all over the globe, of course, but if you're discussing the origins of the internet then I don't see how she was wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kyuusai
a part of me hopes Hillary is elected (assuming that her health care plan can't get enough support in congress, as is likely)
It can't be - you're against universal healthcare? Either that or Clinton has changed her stance on healthcare. Looks like I have another reason to clash with you - what do you have against universal healthcare?
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Old 2008-02-10, 16:08   Link #167
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Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
It can't be - you're against universal healthcare? Either that or Clinton has changed her stance on healthcare. Looks like I have another reason to clash with you - what do you have against universal healthcare?
"Universal healthcare" is a horrible term. It makes it sound like some one opposing a "universal healthcare" plan wants people to go without healthcare.

Nonsense.

I just happen to believe that the current proposals will just further institutionalize the abuse and create new layers of inefficiency. The last time parts of Hillary's pet health care plans passed (when she was First Lady), much of the medical industry went through a brief crisis, and the after-effects have persisted in the form of an acceleration of the skyrocketing health care and insurance costs.

Obama's plan isn't much better. The Republican candidates? Well, none of them have a real plan, but sitting on things is better than blowing them up.

Fortunately, the president doesn't directly institute laws. Not that I expect Congress to do a better job.

That's all I'll say here. If you want to resurrect the health-care thread (I think it just died rather than getting locked), I can go into detail, but that thread tends to go around in circles.
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Old 2008-02-10, 16:57   Link #168
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kyuusai View Post
"Universal healthcare" is a horrible term. It makes it sound like some one opposing a "universal healthcare" plan wants people to go without healthcare.
Agreed, but people get afraid when they hear "socialized healthcare." I guess it brings up images of Communism to them, even though our police force and fire department are socialized as well. I don't hear anyone complaining about that, and I dare say that having paid-for fire and police services would probably be disastrous.
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Old 2008-02-10, 20:50   Link #169
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Agreed, but people get afraid when they hear "socialized healthcare." I guess it brings up images of Communism to them, even though our police force and fire department are socialized as well. I don't hear anyone complaining about that, and I dare say that having paid-for fire and police services would probably be disastrous.
Socialism and communism work quite well as layers over capitalist markets. I'd add insurance itself to the list.

These services manage to keep working well, though, by being independent and autonomous while being subject to checks and balances as well as being competitive (even with the permanency of local services, politicians are swayed by voters and the possibility of people moving away).

These universal healthcare proposals reduce the ability for all of these adaptive, corrective elements to work. The same could be said for much of health care related laws in the past few decades (especially the plan the Clinton administration backed in the 90s).

Health care and health insurance is beyond the ability of the normal person to pay for (we already have welfare to handle the rest--another positive example of socialism on top of capitalism if it's done right) because costs have risen due to abuse of the system at multiple levels, in a cyclical fashion. The answer is not to siphon money from somewhere else to pay for it or to force people to buy insurance, because that does nothing to stop the cycle--it just compounds the problem. The real answer starts with stopping the abuse through creating even-handed checks and balances and restoring appropriate competition to the insurance market.

There are a myriad of other issues causing problems and several other necessary elements to a solution, but those are some of the most important objections to universal healthcare plans.
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Old 2008-02-10, 22:01   Link #170
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South Park said it best:

"It's always between a giant douche and a turd sandwich."

It was true last year, it'll be true this year. It was probably true for all of the elections before that, but we didn't have round-the-clock paparazzi to exploit every single moment of every candidates lives for us before 2004 or so.
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Old 2008-02-10, 22:01   Link #171
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Just so you know, Mitt Romney dropped out the the running recently. Something about unifying the Republican party or something.

Too bad, he was my favorite candidate. I guess I'll vote for Obama instead. Complete opposite, but I like him.
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Old 2008-02-10, 22:07   Link #172
Quzor
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I'll probably vote for either Obama or McCain, and if it's between those two, I'll let the candidates decide for me via debates.
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Old 2008-02-11, 01:23   Link #173
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Originally Posted by Kyuusai View Post
The answer is not to siphon money from somewhere else to pay for it or to force people to buy insurance, because that does nothing to stop the cycle--it just compounds the problem. The real answer starts with stopping the abuse through creating even-handed checks and balances and restoring appropriate competition to the insurance market.
While I agree with what you're saying, health insurance companies are a rather curious concept. Perhaps you've heard this discussion before - when it comes down to a person's health, they're willing to pay everything that they have. For that reason you can't treat a person's health as you would any other commodity under capitalistic principles. This isn't comparable to car insurance, or any other form of insurance, really. People want the best treatment that they can receive.

Hospitals are guilty of boosting prices, too, but at least they're in the actual business of providing service. Where does the health insurance company come into play? They're an entity that exists between the patient and the hospital. What are they there for? Like any other company, they're there to make a profit. That seems a bit problematic and out of place.

Let me tell you of a wonderful concept that I heard from someone in Canada. From what I understood, his particular health insurance was managed by his city, or perhaps his province. If the insurance company made a profit of any sort, the money was returned to the public fund. I'm not suggesting that this system would be superior to ours in every way, but it just seems to make sense. The government exists for the people, doesn't it? The health of the population should be part of its concern. What other corporate entity besides one of the government will exist not to turn a profit but to serve the people?
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Old 2008-02-11, 01:52   Link #174
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Originally Posted by Kyuusai View Post
I just happen to believe that the current proposals will just further institutionalize the abuse and create new layers of inefficiency. The last time parts of Hillary's pet health care plans passed (when she was First Lady), much of the medical industry went through a brief crisis, and the after-effects have persisted in the form of an acceleration of the skyrocketing health care and insurance costs.
I hope you realize that Bill Clinton wasn't able to focus on it and he basically tossed the health care plans away as he had more important issues to deal with. The health care plan was never really put into full motion with focus on it.
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Old 2008-02-11, 01:56   Link #175
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Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Hospitals are guilty of boosting prices, too, but at least they're in the actual business of providing service. Where does the health insurance company come into play? They're an entity that exists between the patient and the hospital. What are they there for? Like any other company, they're there to make a profit. That seems a bit problematic and out of place.
I agree with everything your post said, save this one sentence. While I don't necessarily disagree with the point the sentence makes, there are some problems inherent in the idea of a hospital being in the "business of providing service." For example:

Recently, which is to say a few months ago, I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis/Crohn's Disease. Both fall under the category of IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease). Essentially, certain foods cause an excessive build-up of acid in my large intestine, which causes extreme discomfort. The initial symptoms of these diseases--debilitating stomach cramps, bloody stool and urine, headaches, loss of apatite--landed me in the emergency room. Following an onslaught of tests (MRI, CATScan, several blood draws), I was diagnosed with Enteritis, a more mild and less damaging form of Colitis. The doctor said he wasn't sure which it was, and though they could do the test to find out, he felt it best to hope it was the less severe of the two, and save me some money. Despite my disagreement, I was discharged with that diagnosis. One week later, I was back in the hospital with the same symptoms. Now, I had to have all of the same tests again, plus new tests (colonoscopy, cystoscopy), plus the test to determine which of the two diseases it was (the one I wanted the first time). I ended up spending more than double what I could have initially spent, because the doctor didn't want to do a test, which he ended up having to do anyway. Following a conversation with a lawyer, I was advised that a lawsuit would be fruitless, since the doctor was only acting in what he thought were my best interests, and the colitis might have developed following his original diagnosis, which might have been correct.

So, the hospitals are in the business of providing service, yes. But they are also in the business of making profit. The hospitals make profit because the health insurance companies make profit. It's a circle: insurance rates increase, the hospital can afford to charge more for procedures because they can recover more from the insurance companies due to higher rates, the insurance companies raise their rates to inflate profit, etc. In this sense, the hospitals are just as guilty as the insurance companies of being there solely for profit. Unfortunately, in the highly capitalized system under which we function, profit margins are the most important thing, because greater profits equal greater pay, which people seem to think stimulates the economy (by the way, it doesn't).
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Old 2008-02-11, 02:07   Link #176
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
While I agree with what you're saying, health insurance companies are a rather curious concept. Perhaps you've heard this discussion before - when it comes down to a person's health, they're willing to pay everything that they have. For that reason you can't treat a person's health as you would any other commodity under capitalistic principles. This isn't comparable to car insurance, or any other form of insurance, really. People want the best treatment that they can receive.

Hospitals are guilty of boosting prices, too, but at least they're in the actual business of providing service. Where does the health insurance company come into play? They're an entity that exists between the patient and the hospital. What are they there for? Like any other company, they're there to make a profit. That seems a bit problematic and out of place.

Let me tell you of a wonderful concept that I heard from someone in Canada. From what I understood, his particular health insurance was managed by his city, or perhaps his province. If the insurance company made a profit of any sort, the money was returned to the public fund. I'm not suggesting that this system would be superior to ours in every way, but it just seems to make sense. The government exists for the people, doesn't it? The health of the population should be part of its concern. What other corporate entity besides one of the government will exist not to turn a profit but to serve the people?
Such sorts of organizations do exist in the US, along with non-profit organizations that operate much like commercial insurance companies (reinvesting "profits" to increase their cash base). They are not as common as they were (thanks to more government regulations in recent history), but they are/were there, and didn't have to be government run! When one proved inefficient or served poorly, people could take their money elsewhere (not an option when the government system is the only one in town--not that this describes Hillary's plan).

Not that I have a problem with for-profit companies: Turning a profit isn't evil, as long as they're providing a proper service. The market can help correct those that don't, and some appropriate regulation can protect people from getting bitten in the interim.

Instead, we've had regulations that have ended up favoring the largest insurance companies and reduced competition between them.

Not that insurance companies are the only problem. Insurance companies are also victims in this cycle, passing the buck to the patients who eventually find themselves unable to afford it any more.
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Old 2008-02-12, 19:45   Link #177
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Today is voting day in the Potomac(sp?) States (Virigina, D.C. and Maryland), and as of right now, MSNBC and CNN has projected Obama as the winner in Virigina right now and Huckbee and McCann is in a tight war right now, plus the polls is about to or close in D.C. and Maryland.

So by the ending of the night, Obama could be in the overall lead in Delegrates and Super-delegrates if he wins those states heading to the big ones on the 4th with Texas, Wisc, and Ohio. For the GOP, McCann is looking for the knock-out blow against Huckbee and getting ready for real fight(he will have a chance and maybe win against Clinton but will lose against Obama).

EDIT: Obama is destorying her in VA. 62% to 37%

EDIT: Obama has sweep all three states tonight, that makes it 7 straight states that he has won and now he is in the lead with Delegrates, and Clinton is now doing a "Rudy" for Ohio and Texas
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Old 2008-02-12, 20:41   Link #178
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Alright, the capital region. I'm from alexandria Va just outside the district. Surprised how well Obama did in VA. Northern Va,Richmond and Hampton Roads were strongly for him. He's also doing well in those middle of nowhere places between those major areas. I think it may be do to the college towns, lotsa colleges in the middle part of the state. More Cliinton towards the mountains though.

GOP side, McCain is doing well in the affluent Richmond Newport News and Northern VA regions, Roanoke and the Mountains are Huckabee country

Holy hell, they got some crazy ice storm over there now though.
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Old 2008-02-13, 02:36   Link #179
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Poor Hilary. Looks like she is gonna lose the whole thing
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Old 2008-02-13, 13:24   Link #180
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Still discussing that election thingy? You read it here, and certainly not first: McCain will get the job.

Why? It's not the parties' political stances. It's not even about the candidates' personal political stances. If you care about that, congratulations, you've just proven that you're in the minority. It's all about who's perceived as more GAR, and thus it's McCain.
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