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About dmc515

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  1. U.S. Politics: From Russia, With Love

    Meh. From the text of the order it is more signaling than anything - demonstrating to a certain constituency that he wants to review common core standards (which, on its face, is entirely reasonable). There's very little Devos can do - she's limited by the ESSA, which is repeatedly mentioned in the order in a "oh yeah, we gotta abide by this" way. As many EOs are, it's more a statement of intentions than having any real affect on policy. On the courts discussion - the Obama chickens are coming home to roost with Trump. This is the new SOP - if you're a political activist and you don't like something, you go judge shopping. That's what the GOP did with basically all aspects of the ACA, the DREAM Act, and even his attempt to extend overtime pay. What's good for the goose... I will say anyone claiming judges are basing their decisions on the "law" are entirely naive. The judges aren't in some hyperbaric chamber that come out to make purely legal decisions. Judges are liberal, moderate, conservative, and everything in between. Political activists and interest groups know which ones to target accordingly to impose an injunction. Is this how our system is supposed to work? No, and it's a real concern that a single judge increasingly grinds policy to a halt. But that's the ass backwards world we live in these days.
  2. Is Revolution The Only Viable Solution?

    Fair enough. I tend to agree in theory - hope springs eternal!
  3. Is Revolution The Only Viable Solution?

    To be fair, same goes for the idea of each or any state adopting a multi-member PR system for their apportioned MCs. If only because (and there are tons of other reasons) this engenders multiparty systems, and virtually every sitting member of statehouses has every interest to continue perpetuating a two party system.
  4. Is Revolution The Only Viable Solution?

    Not sure the point of all your links was, but like the one above. Despite all the extant research demonstrating gerrymandering does not cause polarization, my students still don't seem to buy it because that's what they heard on TV/blogs. Maybe they'll buy it if I show em a RCP article? While it may be simple, it's far from easy or realistic.
  5. Is Revolution The Only Viable Solution?

    The etymology of gerrymandering is when Elbridge Gerry - a founding father that attended the Constitutional Convention - signed a redistricting plan as Massachusetts governor in 1812 that included a district shaped like a salamander to benefit his party. So yeah, while gerrymandering may be a corruption of the democratic process, it's one that's been around for a good while - without any (sane) calls for revolution. A non-revolutionary solution has been to establish independent redistricting commissions, most notably in Arizona but since also in California, Washington, and Idaho. While it's still early, whether this leads to more equitable/fair redistricting is still an open question - I've yet to see any empirical research on the matter.
  6. U.S. Politics: From Russia, With Love

    But that goes both ways. If the criticism has always been Obama was (qualitatively) using EOs to advance policy priorities with flagrant disregard for Madison's separation of powers, then that is the crux of the Trump boast as well, right? Otherwise he's just bragging about issuing the most ineffectual orders - like expanding eligibility for the defense meritorious service medal - in his first 100 days.
  7. Is Revolution The Only Viable Solution?

    Not exactly clear what you mean, but the proposed interstate pact cited above solves the problem of the popular vote winner not winning the electoral vote. That's all it proposes to fix.
  8. Is Revolution The Only Viable Solution?

    State pledge laws have been ruled constitutional by SCOTUS, enforcing penalties has not. The question is moot though. Faithless electors have never had an effect on the result a presidential contest with the arguable exception of 1876 which basically a tie. This is because electors are a reward for state party officials and the overwhelming majority of the time they will vote with the candidate of their party. Trump was a rather unique case because he upset the basic tenets of even Republicans and there were still only, what, 7 faithless electors?
  9. Is Revolution The Only Viable Solution?

    Faithless electors are only in states that still legally allow them. 30 states and DC require electors to vote for the pledged - and this would be part and parcel of the interstate pact. What other problems would it create?
  10. Is Revolution The Only Viable Solution?

    No, you wouldn't at all. States have the right to allocate EC votes however the like - see Maine and Nebraska.
  11. Is Revolution The Only Viable Solution?

    I know we've had this argument before, but reforming the EC through an interstate pact to ensure the PV winner clears 270 is a far more plausible and easier to understand solution than raising the members of the House to the levels necessary in order for it to have an effect on the EC. Moreover, it is viewed as normatively desirable more universally - I and many colleagues have reservations about a thousand-plus member legislature.
  12. You seem to be talking out of both sides. My only point was the use of chemical weapons is a valid aspect for an argument towards regime change. YOU are the one that conflated that with apparent justification for Dubya's actions, which I of course disagree with. Indeed.
  13. Yep. Bush I approached the situation as a realist. Dubya at once both wanted to avenge Saddam's attempts to kill his father and prove he was more enlightened, tougher, or whatever went on in his mind IRT to daddy issues by adopting the neocon's movement that ludicrously thought they could democratize the Middle East by force. This clip of outgoing SecDef Cheney explaining why going in to Baghdad has always been one of my favorites.
  14. Let's go slow: Saddam's use of chemical weapons is a valid argument in support of regime change. Saddam's use of chemical weapons is not a sufficient justification for regime change, let alone the requisite investment in American and Iraqi blood and treasure it took to do so.
  15. In retrospect, obviously not much politically. Used it there to make a point. At the time, as a senior in high school, it actually did have much personal "good." He can certainly speak for himself, but I do not think that was at all what Kal was saying. I have no disagreement with anything said here whatsoever. It also is irrelevant to the original point. All Kal was trying to point out was Trump's recent hypocrisy on chemical weapons. You then made it a pissing contest on who is most against chemical weapons, or US' actions against Saddam with that dastardly "unilateralism" sprinkled in, it's not clear to me. Which has culminated in this post which frankly reminds me of an undergrad trying the bestest to get an A.