Chaircat Meow

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About Chaircat Meow

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    70% wrong 30% right
  • Birthday 08/18/1989

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  1. Peter Hitchens posted a very negative review of Dunkirk. By the sounds of things I'll probably agree with Hitchens if I ever see it (although I don't plan to because I don't like WW2 films that much). That being said, I did quite like Interstellar and principally because of the spectacle/atmosphere: I did not think much of the plot or the father/daughter dynamic. The main actor was also an awful mumbler.
  2. poll

    Sometimes I amaze even myself, but I thought that was quite good. Granted, my expectations are at rock-bottom, so it doesn't take much for D&D to impress me. Most of the scenes were good, the battle at the end was great (two sand-snakes down!) and I actually thought Kit and Emilia upped their game this week. Missaworm was a pathetic waste of time, of course, but other than that the episode was pretty engaging.
  3. I think that made sense when Hamilton was alive, certainly. However, I think once you have railways and begin to open up the west American industrial expansion likely did not depend on sheltering behind tariffs all that much. Free trade with Europe might have been better for the south. Didn't they have a lot of success in preserving their position anyway though? I didn't mean that: I meant that the north might be poorer in the alternative timeline than it was in ours, not that it would be poorer than the south.
  4. Yeah. Although I wonder what the average income was in the mid-west in the 1860s, and around the lakes? Also, having an unequal distribution of income is, per se, no barrier to industrialisation. If the USA did split in two Americans would have to spend more on defence, yes, although they spent very little until WWI anyway (I don't know how much the Great White Fleet cost). As I understand it, a plantation economy won't find industrialisation easy because such an economy will probably have low rates of urbanisation, and lack a big enough mass consumer base (slaves will be too poor to buy lots of stuff). There is also the issue of allowing slaves to hang around machinery. Population growth might be an issue as well. All this being said though, my question is why does the fact an independent south would not industrialise quickly matter? In OTL the south did not turn into an industrial powerhouse quickly either. The industry of the USA in the gilded age and beyond was in the North-East or around the Lakes, right? After the war and reconstruction the south ended up with primitive sharecropping arrangements which led to lower agricultural output.
  5. I'm not American, so please forgive my ignorance, but it is not the case that in OTL the south was much poorer than the north until the middle of the Twentieth-Century anyway? So win or lose the south is going to be behind the north in terms of industry and per capita income. And lots of poorer countries have started to catch up with the developed western nations, in certain respects, over the last thirty years or more, so the south could do the same. Actually, is it not possible that the south could have looked similar in terms of wealth sixty years or so after a successful secession, while the north could look worse? The north favoured high tariffs to protect its industries against European competition while the south wanted low tariffs to make its exports of raw materials and imports of manufactures more economic. So freer trade between the south and Europe (especially the UK) might have been the result of a confederate victory, while the union would suffer because the US single market would not be as large as it is in OTL.
  6. He was an Anglican but became an atheist, after too much time perusing the Koran apparently. He was also a very strident neo-con, and wrote a book called neo-conservatism why we need it when he was about 25. Good thing he's grown out of that! I think his current work is excellent, but it will be interesting to see what you make of the book.
  7. Ah. I'm really impressed with you these days. Anyway, Murray is certainly extreme if you identify with the liberal mainstream. I heard some of his interview with Harris a while ago and found it quite interesting. Fundamentally Harris and Murray have very different positions though. Murray thinks religion is an essential part of the human experience and believes Europe is in danger because of the decline of Christianity. Harris, presumably, thinks we are better off without all religion.
  8. Have you read the book?
  9. Dunno. But I think Stannis is going to win a battle outside of Winterfell, against the Freys, and then develop a ruse to get into Winterfell itself and wipe out the rest of the Boltons. GrrM has done a lot of setup for this. So he'll look pretty good after that.
  10. Hardly. However, once he wins the Battle of the Ice and takes Winterfell through a cunning ruse in book six you may get to talk credibly about him being the best.
  11. The popular view in Europe in 1861 was that the breakup of the USA was a done deal and that the Union would fail to reconquer the South. So although Britain and France may have liked the idea of a weakened USA they didn't think they had to do anything to bring it about. Of course, if the US had refused to hand over the diplomats I guess that could have led to war anyway.
  12. I used to contribute to these threads but they're quite pointless. GrrM, quite rightly, subordinates military logic to the needs of the plot and of the characters. Picking apart every plan or engagement to determine who is best is therefore fruitless. Just a point about Tywin though. It seems to me that Tywin knows he's potentially up against all of westeros when he mobilises for war in GoT. Some readers will not get this impression, and will believe his response is purely about the insult done to the Lannisters by Catelyn's abduction of Tyrion. If this is not the case though, we have to assess Tywin's decisions in GoT on the basis of how likely they were to allow him to defeat the Stark-Tully-Arryn alliance and the Baratheon brothers: a near impossible task given Tywin has only one kingdom at his disposal. Given the situation Tywin's chances of success were very low. However, GrrM tries to show him playing a bad hand very well. He attacks the Tullys quickly, before reinforcements can arrive from the Starks and Arryns, and tries to build up a bank of hostages to intimidate those houses into inaction (Ned, Edmure, Hoster ...). As he knows the Baratheons are mustering to the south, and the Arryns have not yet mobilised he tries to draw Robb into a decisive battle as quickly as possible. Of course, this goes very wrong, but delaying might leave the Barethons and the Arryns time to make their own moves, and then he'll have too many enemies in the field at once, and will have to give up the siege of Riverrun.
  13. It was OK. I have pretty low expectations nowadays, so it has gotten easier for the show to impress me. I enjoyed the Arya scene because of David Bradley but the whole thing felt very false because we have not seen Arya grow to be that powerful. Cersei and Jaime were alright but the show is poor at the kind of dialogue they had, so it fell a bit flat. I liked the poo montage (it felt like something George would do), although I don't know why Oldtown had to be so disgusting. All the maesters look to be wearing dirty, urine coloured bedclothes. The Winterfell scenes were also poor. They were ruined by bad/forced dialogue between Jon and Sansa and the fan service that is Lady Mormont. Jon Snow just comes across as thick and I can't figure out what is supposed to be going on with Sansa. Brienne and Pod are pointless and should have been cut. The Hound and the brotherhood were good and I'm interested to see where that story goes. Euron has improved since last season and I think the alliance with Cersei is a good idea (although I expect Euron allies with someone else in the books). Dany's homecoming was rubbish though. It did not make much sense that Dragonstone was deserted, and tramping into an abandoned castle with the mother of all deadpan expressions isn't what Dany's arrival in westeros really ought to be like, if you ask me. 5/10
  14. Is there any indication as to what year it is set in? Is it going to be modern or will it still be 19th/ early 20th century? I don't get the argument (made by Lord Varys) that a CSA couldn't survive or would inevitably be reabsorbed by the north. The Union failing to reconquer the south and then tolerating its existence afterwards might not be the likeliest outcome of the 1861 war but it's surely not an impossibility. Also, the south was not actually backwards in economic terms in the 1860s. It was only so if we compare it to the northern states, Britain, Holland, Denmark or France. In global terms it was reasonably wealthy. Anyway, I will not be watching this as I have had it up to the eyeballs with D&D.
  15. This strategy is only going to pay off because so many Labour supporters are morons. What sense does it make to say we don't care about policemen or fireman?