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Fragile Bird

US Politics: Free Trade, Freer Trade, and Nuclear War

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4 hours ago, lokisnow said:

was the Syrian chemical weapon viagra? Because it seems like it has given every right winger in America a permanent erection that will not go away. sad!

John Bolton, what a fantastic first day on the job he's had!  I bet his warmongering stiffy is still saluting his big chance to impress the boss.

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1 hour ago, Squab said:

 Also pick up Thomas Sowell's classic, Basic Economics. Probably a few here that would enjoy both these.

Yeah, I don't think I'll be takin' any economics lessons from that clown Thomas Sowell. You know the guy that did some real shoddy empirical analysis about the Reagan tax cuts.

In fact, I wrote about way back when. Here:

And why do libertarians always presume to lecture others about economics? Hmm. You mean the same people that were ranted about the gold standard a few years back? Or the ones that were inflationista fear mongering a few years back? And how about Hayek's disastrous deflationary advice back in the 1930s?

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28 minutes ago, Mudguard said:

Raj Rajaratnam and the judge and jury that convicted the billionaire hedge fund manager for conspiracy and securities fraud and sentenced him to 11 years in prison must also not been aware of how the system works.  The injustice!

You mean Martin Shkreli?  Naw, he's wasn't rich enough plus his arrogance around buying the drug patents then jacking up the price while smirking about it turned the public against him.   He got what he deserved. 

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Cohen's shady as fuck and I just don't see him flipping.  Will be interesting to see how this plays out. Only the best people, the best, best people. 

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12 minutes ago, LongRider said:

John Bolton, what a fantastic first day on the job he's had!  I bet his warmongering stiffy is still saluting his big chance to impress the boss.

Great, now I am picturing the moustache waggling suggestively. Thanks for that picture.

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Posted (edited)

Why Robert Mueller Handed Off the Michael Cohen Raid

The special counsel might be insulating his investigation against his own potential firing

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/04/why-robert-mueller-handed-off-the-michael-cohen-raid.html

Quote

 

The Post is reporting that the subject of the Cohen warrant was an investigation into possible bank fraud, wire fraud, and campaign finance violations, possibly related to a hush money contract with adult film performer Stormy Daniels. Mueller probably could have made a claim that Cohen already fell under his jurisdiction, which is to investigate Russian election interference, links between the Trump campaign and Russia, and “any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation.” But it has been reported that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein made the call to involve the U.S. attorney, and perhaps Rosenstein made a strategic calculation about Trump, or they agreed together. It seems, though, that both men know they need to spread Mueller’s work around as a hedge against his firing, and maybe even to try to deter Trump from firing him.


 

 

Edited by Martell Spy

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Posted (edited)

I hope it's clear that when i refer to female lawyers as witches to be feared that I mean it entirely playfully, however inartfully.  Well, after posting that the other day I saw this article.  I think that I must have subconsciously absorbed some of these tropes without letting it develop into malice.  

Not sure how many people saw Roger Cohen's article yesterday either (forgive me if the fast-moving thread already has it).  But it's an NYT piece on the state of Hungary and Poland and their journey from USSR to newly-developing democracies that started to look like they might be here to stay before these recent lurches towards authoritarian nationalism.  Lots of parallels to the US.  My god, what did George Soros ever do to become the figure of myth that he is in all right wing communities around the globe?  

Yascha Mounk has more on Hungary here, and it's depressing.  

ETA:  I wrote "Hungary and Turkey" when I meant "Hungary and Poland" and have corrected that.  But the slip is somewhat understandable as Turkey is up there too with all this shit.

Edited by Triskele

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1 hour ago, Mudguard said:

Raj Rajaratnam and the judge and jury that convicted the billionaire hedge fund manager for conspiracy and securities fraud and sentenced him to 11 years in prison must also not been aware of how the system works.  The injustice!

When a rich person causes another rich person to suffer, the rules of the game change. The only sin a rich person can really commit is to cause another rich person to suffer a loss. So, yes rich people will be tried and convicted of crimes, when the victim is another rich person.

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38 minutes ago, Martell Spy said:

Great, now I am picturing the moustache waggling suggestively. Thanks for that picture.

Remember that classic scene from Dr. Strangelove of Slim Pickens riding the bomb down to start WWIII?  Well just replace Pickens with Bolton's mustache and I think that's the right visual. 

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2 minutes ago, LongRider said:

Remember that classic scene from Dr. Strangelove of Slim Pickens riding the bomb down to start WWIII?  Well just replace Pickens with Bolton's mustache and I think that's the right visual. 

 

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58 minutes ago, Pony Queen Jace said:

 

Nope.

Just add mustache.  

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5 minutes ago, LongRider said:

Nope.

Just add mustache.  

I actually think that Steve Buscemmi would do a pretty good Bolton with an appropriately fake looking mustache.

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6 minutes ago, Pony Queen Jace said:

I actually think that Steve Buscemmi would do a pretty good Bolton with an appropriately fake looking mustache.

He looks good in a chipper too.

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3 hours ago, Mudguard said:

Raj Rajaratnam and the judge and jury that convicted the billionaire hedge fund manager for conspiracy and securities fraud and sentenced him to 11 years in prison must also not been aware of how the system works.  The injustice!

Even actually official Oligarchies from the classical world recognized that you had to throw one to the mob every so often so they think they’re in control somehow. Didn’t make them not oligarchies. 

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11 minutes ago, Darth Richard II said:

Armageddon is worse than all things and I hate it and I  hate you for posting that clip and I hate all life/

 

How are you guys?

Man, that movie's a guilty pleasure. I can actually have fun with some of the earlier Bay films, they've all the subtlety and insight of a pepper shaker but they're well shot and he used to pull in good actors to work with.

I'm trying to think back on it and I feel like 'The Island' (which was a lil' fun with the fish out of water from McGregor and whatsherface) was the last one that wasn't an alternative lobotomy. I want to say it came out in 06? And I'm pretty sure the Transformers movie came out in 07.

I saw that once. It uh, it was not guilty fun like Armageddon.

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On 4/5/2018 at 10:52 AM, Tywin et al. said:

Don’t take this the wrong way, but is there any point in getting a graduate degree in political science if you aren’t interested in being a professor? I really don’t recall too many people having graduate degrees other than the people who got masters in political management. Everyone else either had law degrees or masters in public policy, and most just had undergraduate degrees. Personally I’d rather go to law school or get a masters in public policy or journalism, though I am still open to polis ci if there’s a purpose for it.

Well, first of all, deciding what type of "professor" one is varies considerably in and of itself between the research and teaching responsibilities.  Second, sure, there are plenty of avenues to use a poly sci degree beyond academia.  However - and this is a big however - almost all have to do with research and/or data analysis.  Any top-30 (or even top 50) program is going to give you training and skills within your first three years in the program that you can apply to a wide variety of employment opportunities.  Really, that limit is up to you.  

I've had four close friends that have left my program in the past two years for non-academic jobs.  Their current employers are Rand, YouGov, Gallup, and some health care provider in Texas I can't quite recall.  The latter two, btw, didn't even finish the program, albeit they were ABD ("all but dissertation," meaning all that's left in requirements is to write/defend the diss).  One could aim for think tanks, consulting firms, polling firms, or even the data-driven sites that emerged in recent years; but, the credentials that will get your foot in the door is the ability to properly design studies and use/interpret/apply data.

Now, if what your career goal is is being a campaign operative, which is what I think you're referring to, then no, I probably wouldn't advise poly sci.  Political management is basically just a concentration of poly sci that is more relevant, and maybe you could just get an MA in that.  Public policy isn't going to help unless you're aiming for a think tank or a job in government.  Law school is probably the best avenue, but really that's only due to networking - if you can get into a top-flight program you're far more likely to make connections you won't in the other fields mentioned.  Frankly, the most successful political operatives I personally know simply worked their way up straight out of undergrad, and I don't think any graduate program is as valuable as real world experience.

Quote

Just look at recent scandals and compare how the parties reacted.  Spitzer got ran out of office while Vitter was not only able to stay in office, but almost won election for a higher office (I rank being governor above being a senator). The bases don’t behave the same, and Democrats are happy to eat their own. Republicans, OTOH, will excuse any bad behavior away because they care about power more than anything else.

I think Bill Clinton's presidency is a pretty glaring counter-example to this, especially considering it'd be comparing apples to apples, or presidents to presidents.

On 4/5/2018 at 0:24 PM, Kalbear said:

I'm not sure what you mean by 'physiological' - did you mean psychological?

No, I meant physiological, although sure I guess I should have said physiological/psychological.  Much of these research are derived from the apparent physiological differences between liberals and conservatives - including one of the studies you linked in this post:

Quote

We hypothesized that body odour disgust sensitivity (BODS) might be associated with authoritarianism, as chemo-signalling is a primitive system for regulating interpersonal contact and disease avoidance, which are key features also in authoritarianism. We used well-validated scales for measuring BODS, authoritarianism and related constructs.

See other examples here, here, and here.

Quote

As to little to no external validity, well, the reason I take them with such consistency is because they produce such consistent results across the board. They continue to be well-reproduced across a number of psychological and sociological disciplines, and result in predictive experiments that are not associated with it. As an example, the experiment that shows that the more disgusted by things you are, the more likely you are to be conservative - based on smell. Or the new one about how you can make someone less conservative simply by making them fear less. When you have a hypothesis that can be repeatedly tested in different ways and it still holds up, it becomes a pretty strong, scientifically based viewpoint. 

You're not referring to external validity here, you're referring to reliability.  They are often confused but are two entirely, and importantly, different concepts.  Reliability refers to replicability, or consistency, in results across multiple studies.  No argument this research has demonstrated reliability.  But enjoying reliability does not mean a study (or group of studies) has validity, or specifically external validity in this case.  The key word in external validity is generalizability.  Are the findings durable when they're taken out of the lab and into the world?  This is a particular weakness for social science experiments that are done in the lab rather out in the field (conversely, field experiments are weak on internal validity while lab experiments are comparatively strong because the researcher has near-total control to isolate the treatment or causal effects, but that's neither here nor there).

And without external validity, this research cannot answer the paramount question to any political study -- so what?  So conservatives tend to be stimulated by fear, disgust, and joy compared to liberals.  How does this affect campaigns, voting, elections, or any type of political behavior for that matter?  Or, even, does it affect voting and elections - or is it's effect negated when taking other variables into account such as socialization, candidate characteristics/platforms, socioeconomic factors, etc?  We can't even begin to answer these questions until those that tend to be conservative because of fear/disgust/whatever are tested by receiving outside stimuli (e.g. an electoral context).  Until then, the practical applications of these studies are entirely speculative and ultimately meaningless.

On 4/5/2018 at 2:17 PM, Rippounet said:

Psstt... Hey, dude...

Ya got any more of that research?

It's the good stuff.

There's tons of stuff on rally round the flag effect.  Just google scholar that shit.  But, I did mean to link this post-9/11 study on civil liberties vs. security that I always teach in American Govt 101 courses.  I thought it was particularly germane to this discussion; from the abstract:

Quote

Liberals are less willing to trade off civil liberties than moderates or conservatives, but liberals converge toward the position taken by conservatives when their sense of the threat of terrorism is high.

 

9 hours ago, Maithanet said:

If Scott can unseat Nelson, there's more or less no path to the Senate for Democrats.  So that's just one more seat to worry about, and in a very expensive state no less. 

Well, I don't think it's really one more seat to worry about - been worried about it for quite awhile because, as you said, Scott's been expected to run for months now.  And as @Fez mentioned, I don't even think it ranks in the top 5 of Dem Senate seats I'm most worried about.  On the expense part, I'm not much for predictions, but one I will make is Nelson v Scott will be the most expensive congressional race in history by the end of this cycle.

6 hours ago, Kalbear said:

We talk a lot about what Democrats should do; this is a pdf on the populist idea of the Democratic party, and it firmly believes the biggest thing to do is simply go and register more poor people. 

I am absolutely shocked a report commissioned by Justice Democrats finds Democrats shouldn't pivot to the center.

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Some time ago, maybe about last September, we had a bit of a back-and-forth intra-non-Republican, on the right approach going forward on health care.  

So i'm biased in that former congressman Waxman argues, more or less, the point Kalbear and (I think) Shryke and I were making back then that the case for single-payer as a destination was strong but the case for single-payer as a litmus test was weak. 

The key takeaway is that the Republicans have gifted us an advantage in that they actively, demonstrably, have tried to take health insurance away from people, whereas Obamacare clearly gave it to millions.  The debate on the left should just be how many millions more to give it to or how to give it to them, and contrast that to the right who wants to take away.  

One of the things that was big snag in this debate last September or circa thereabouts was the issue of whether or not the goal was unassailable to the point of it being the alpha and omega of the debate or whether other considerations like the journey needed to be...considered.  I argued for the latter, and i still think that argument holds water.  

If Waxman's piece updates the debate in any meaningful way it's in whether it turns this into a litmus test (although I think that's why this was getting going back in 09/2017...because this was clearly happening).  

Let me know if any of you are swayed, one way or the other, by the column. 

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12 minutes ago, Triskele said:

Some time ago, maybe about last September, we had a bit of a back-and-forth intra-non-Republican, on the right approach going forward on health care.  

So i'm biased in that former congressman Waxman argues, more or less, the point Kalbear and (I think) Shryke and I were making back then that the case for single-payer as a destination was strong but the case for single-payer as a litmus test was weak. 

The key takeaway is that the Republicans have gifted us an advantage in that they actively, demonstrably, have tried to take health insurance away from people, whereas Obamacare clearly gave it to millions.  The debate on the left should just be how many millions more to give it to or how to give it to them, and contrast that to the right who wants to take away.  

One of the things that was big snag in this debate last September or circa thereabouts was the issue of whether or not the goal was unassailable to the point of it being the alpha and omega of the debate or whether other considerations like the journey needed to be...considered.  I argued for the latter, and i still think that argument holds water.  

If Waxman's piece updates the debate in any meaningful way it's in whether it turns this into a litmus test (although I think that's why this was getting going back in 09/2017...because this was clearly happening).  

Let me know if any of you are swayed, one way or the other, by the column. 

I don't read to inform my opinion, in case it might be changed.

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