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Posts posted by Fez

  1. 7 hours ago, Slurktan said:

    I've had the opposite experience.  Granted I've only done up to level 20 but Barb is the least fun of all the classes for me.  Running a straight wolf shift druid is much, much better than the barb at this point. And that's not even that good.

    Dunno. Personal opinions and all that. I'm only up to 15 on Barb now, but I'm having a blast. If I pop rallying cry at the right moment I can have basically unlimited uptime on whirldwind if there's enough enemies around; it's very satisfying.

  2. 23 minutes ago, DMC said:

    Hm.  Trying to think about the implications here.  I'd think it'd only give them one more seat - going from one to two - in Alabama.  But it may help them in the Louisiana cases if SCOTUS remains consistent.  May even help them in North Carolina.  I guess we'll see.

    The big thing will be whether this gets applied to the Florida case going to trial this summer. But even without that, I think it gives them anywhere from +1 to +4 (AL, LA, NC, and GA- there was a similar case in GA that was put on hold pending the outcome of the AL case).

  3. Well I just played through the prologue again lol, this time as a barbarian. And I think I finally found my class. The attacks just feels so impactful and smooth. Time to finally start playing through the game!

  4. 31 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

    Per an NPR Report just blasted the SCOTUS has upheld the VRA regarding racial gerrymandering in an a Alabama case.  5-4 Roberts writing for the Majority.



    A major shock. Looks Kavanaugh was the other conservative in the majority. This is going to net Democrats an extra couple seats in the House.

  5. 51 minutes ago, DMC said:

    Dunno I'd go that far.  All they'd be blocking are messaging bills the leadership wants to pass.  Which, of course is performative and not actual governance either.  If this was happening under unified government it'd be a different story. 

    Some of those messaging bills can be legit tough votes for Democrats. Some can even end up as law, like the DC criminal code recission. Biden didn't actually threaten a veto on the gas stove bill in his disapproval message.

  6. 57 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

    Is the “Freedom Caucus” attempting some performative bullshit in the HoR?  I see Boebert and Gaetz all caps typing “WE HOLD THE FLOOR” on twitter.


    It's what I was posting about yesterday, with the failed rule vote. They seem to be threatening to keep doing that. Which, if they succeed, is more than performative. It means that House Republican Leadership will not be able to hold any votes on anything else, without either caving to the HFC or cutting a deal with Democrats (which is very unlikely for many reasons, for anything short of ending a shutdown).

  7. Decided to be part of the gaming zeitgiest for the first time in a while and picked this up too. I've gone through the prologue as both a rogue (melee) and sorcerer (ice) and I can't decide between them which I want to stick with. 

  8. 1 hour ago, Tywin et al. said:

    I really haven't been following this topic because it's so weird sounding. Why did this become such a big issue?

    Do you mean the HFC actions or the underlying bill around gas stoves?

    With gas stoves, there was another report a few months back finding that they're a significant source of indoor air pollution. And relatedly, New York passed a law banning stoves for new homes built starting in 2025; as part of their effort to shift the state more toward renewable energy. As a result, as with every change no matter how big or small, conservatives took this as a foundational attack on their way of life and it became yet another huge culture war fight.

    With the HFC, they're a bunch of whiny loudmouths who are pissed that McCarthy managed to bypass them on the debt ceiling and are acting out. But they aren't trying to remove him (yet, at least) because there is no one else who can win a Speaker vote right now. So instead they forced the first floor vote failure on a rule since 2002.

  9. Things are getting spicy in the House. Republicans planned to pass a resolution barring the administration from implementing new regulations on gas stoves (just a meaningless messaging bill since the senate will probably never vote on it). But in the floor vote on the rule to allow debate, most of the HFC voted 'no' in protest of the debt limit bill. And since all Democrats voted 'no' since its a dumb bill (and the minority party almost always votes no rules no matter what), the vote is currently failing 207-219.

    The vote hasn't been closed yet (after 50 minutes), so maybe something gets worked out. But if this isn't a one-off, the House is now ungovernable without Democratic support.

  10. 13 minutes ago, DaveSumm said:

    But I don’t understand what the paradox actually is. Yes, it’s extremely probable life exists on other planets. But I don’t understand the logic leap from there to “and also they probably have figured out interstellar communication / travel by now”. Everything we know about physics tells us the light speed limit is absolute, at best you can bend things a a bit using EXTRAORDINARY amounts of energy, and even then there’s no getting round the relativistic problems involved (any travellers would have to live with the fact that their species will move on many centuries in the time it takes to get anywhere).

    I'm no expert. But my understanding we already have some decent theoretical models for warp drives, and if we don't wipe ourselves out maybe we get to test them out eventually. An alien species that was more peaceful than ours, and with a bit more advanced energy production, could probably test them at roughly our current level of technology. Maybe none of them actually work in practice, but to me it seems like the paradox is still fully in place.

  11. On 5/24/2023 at 10:03 AM, Fez said:

    Yesterday I moved everything I had in the stock market to cash in preparation for a debt ceiling-related crash. Fortunately, the tax implications of that will be pretty minor for me. If I'm wrong, I'll sheepishly buy some new index funds in a couple weeks. And if I'm right, at least I'll be able to "buy the dip" while the economic chaos unfolds.

    Happy to sheepishly be wrong and I have bought some new investments instead. And in the case of my Roth IRA, I literally just rebought some of my old positions that I had previously been happy with. All in all, since it had such minor tax implications, it actually was a decent opportunity to rebalance my portfolio anyway, and I think things really were dicey a couple weeks ago, I have no regrets.

  12. 7 minutes ago, DMC said:

    We know what the minority leader, Hakeem Jeffries, said about it this morning:

    As for citing ATRA as a precedent, that's misleading.  Of course most Dems were against extending the Bush tax cuts in perpetuity.  The obvious precedent to cite would by the 2011 Budget Control Act - in there were 95 yeas and nays among House Dems.

    It's not misleading, it was a big bill that Obama negotiated and wanted passed, and House Dems were against it. As for the BCA, 95 still means a majority of them opposed it. Unfortunately, House Report 112-190 which allowed for consideration of the BCA passed the rules committee in an unrecorded vote, so I've no idea if the House Dems in the rules committee voted against bringing it to the floor. But again, didn't matter since they had no power to block it anyway.

  13. 43 minutes ago, Ormond said:

    Is there any indication that because of this the particular Democratic members on this particular committee would retaliate by not voting for this bill? Have they threatened this? Has their past behavior in other situations shown they are likely to do this? If not, then this just seems like an irrational grimdark fantasy fear. 

    In a similar situation, with a Democratic president negotiating with a Republican house we got the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012. In that floor vote, only 17 House Democrats voted for the bill, while 171 voted against it. McGovern is the only House Dem on the rules committee now who was in the House in the time and he was in the 171. Democratic votes weren't needed in committee since Republican leadership was still strong enough that they could ensure that only their allies filled the Republican seats on the committee.

    It is different this time, in that Democratic votes will actually be needed, both on the floor and in the committee. But there is precedent for the House Democrats to near fully reject a deal that their president negotiated with House Republicans. We don't know yet how House Dems are going to come down on this bill.

  14. 2 hours ago, DMC said:

    LOL.  I imagine Norman and Roy will vote against it for position taking.  Maybe Massie too.  But that's about it.  If McCarthy didn't think it'd get through the Rules Committee he wouldn't have made the deal.

    Right, and if those 3 voted against and the House Dems on the committee voted against it, that's be a 7-6 vote to block the bill from hitting the floor. House Dems weren't involved in these negotiations and one thing that isn't McCarthy's job is whipping Democratic votes. But if the House Dems feel that the White House has given up too much, things can get complicated fast.

  15. It's a question of whether the bill can even get to the floor though. I believe there are enough HFC members on the rules committee to block it, unless the Dems there vote for it. And if their votes become necessary they may demand negotiations to make the bill more palatable to the House Dems. Which there isn't really time for.

  16. 3 hours ago, Werthead said:

    Bungie is rebooting Marathon?!?!? A deep cut. Also, this looks nothing like OG Marathon and is a PVP lootershooter, but okay. Some of the marketing speak about this is pure horseshit.

    This is a very weird one. It looks nothing like the old game, as you said, and its not like the old game was some huge IP that will help boost sales by getting slapped on something new. Probably no one under age 35 has even heard of it, and even among those old enough it was not an enormous seller. All just feels very odd.

  17. Yesterday I moved everything I had in the stock market to cash in preparation for a debt ceiling-related crash. Fortunately, the tax implications of that will be pretty minor for me. If I'm wrong, I'll sheepishly buy some new index funds in a couple weeks. And if I'm right, at least I'll be able to "buy the dip" while the economic chaos unfolds.

  18. As I said many times last year, Democrats should've at least tried to fix this issue while they had the House. They could've put up a reconciliation bill in the lame duck to just raise/eliminate the debt ceiling and at least force Manchin/Sinema to vote against it on the floor. 

    Instead, they did literally nothing and now here we are. It was literally the most predictable thing imaginable.

  19. 8 hours ago, DMC said:

    I suspect Bronny will only play this coming year at USC then declare for the draft this time next year.

    Is Bronny actually good enough to make an NBA roster without the promise of his dad coming over? (Legit question, I dunno). Because if not, I don't see why he'd be in such a rush to just play in his dad's shadow and then get cut as soon as his dad retires.

    As for the Lakers, its hard to imagine them getting much better than this any time soon. Even if they manage to get another big star, it'll mean trading all their depth away again. And Lebron+AD+3rd guy is not enough to win a title I don't think. I don't think Lebron goes to another team though, hanging out in LA and having easy access to USC's home games is too big an incentive to stay. Which means he's probably not getting another title, unless he's still playing 4+ years from now getting 10ish minutes off the bench while some next generation of LA superstars is leading the team.

  20. 9 minutes ago, Werthead said:

    Rome I had "fantasy Egypt" as a faction and Rome II had "actual Greek-influenced Egypt" as a setting, and both were pretty interesting (the inherent lunacy of the former aside). I'm not sure you can extrapolate either out to be a full game though.

    RPS has some details: https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/total-wars-next-stop-is-ancient-egypt-with-total-war-pharaoh

    Basically it's Bronze Age-era Egypt (with 4 factions, unclear on the differences between them yet), alongside the Canaanites (2 factions) and Hittites (2 factions also). And the map will extend up to Anatolia.

    Based on the faction names, and what might make sense in terms of having at least one recognizable name in the marketing, I suspect the game is set right after the death of Ramesses II' successor, Merneptah. And there was in fact a civil war then. So 1203 BC.

  21. 12 hours ago, IlyaP said:


    What? A tedious, hours-long dungeon? Do they not understand that people have lives, and that a dungeon that outstays its welcome becomes *work*? 

    Why, Pathfinder, why?


    12 hours ago, Arakasi said:

    I’m almost at that part of the game so I’m curious how that will be for me. Then again I just did this fight on Laughing Caves (with Vavakia Vanguard and Balor and an asssasin and succubus) and killed them in two turns with my MC so I am guessing it won’t be that hard.

    To be clear, I'm talking about the end of Kingmaker. Owlcat seemed to have learned their lesson for Wrath and the final dungeon there isn't nearly as bad. Wrath's is still tough (turns out giving enemies the 'ascendent element' mythic ability and letting them cast 3 spells per turn can cause them to really carve you up), but isn't a slog. Whereas Kingmaker's is both tough and a slog, and (spoilers)


    most of your party members can unavoidably die if you didn't complete their personal quests properly.


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