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August 10, 2019

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What I, at least, am getting at is that more folks in the west are gonna start voting (D).

Works for me.

just wait till he blows up the G7!

so much winning.

If you had in January of 2018 invested in an index fund that closely tracked the DJIA, as of today, you would have made pretty much NOTHING.

If you attribute such things to Rump, as many of his fans do, you can say he got you one really good year, a year and a half of volatility with no net gain, and who the hell knows what from here on out.

I guess it will have to go back to being Obama's fault if things go south.

If you had in January of 2018 invested in an index fund that closely tracked the DJIA, as of today, you would have made pretty much NOTHING.

If you attribute such things to Rump, as many of his fans do...

Actually, I don't think his "fans" do. The folks who regard him as a useful idiot do, sure. But his fans generally don't have much involvement in the stock market. They are far more invested in how their immediate economy, their pay and their expenses, is doing.

plus, they're dumb as hell.

Breitbart top headline "Trump Orders U.S. Companies to Look for Alternatives"

haven't found a comment yet saying anything like "hey wait, the govt can't tell companies what to do! that's socialism!"

If what you guys are getting at is that folks in the west are gonna start voting (D), then I have nothing but applause.

Not just gonna start. In 2016, the West produced 98 Clinton EC votes, the NE urban corridor 104. (Projections for reapportionment after 2020 currently show a net transfer of four EC votes from the NE urban corridor to the West.) Seven of the Democrats' 14 state government trifectas are western states. Absent the two Mountain West wins for US Senate seats in 2018 we wouldn't have a chance of winning control of the Senate in 2020. (I personally believe that unless we win two more western seats, we can't win Senate control -- my contributions will be made accordingly.) Also in 2018, picked up 12 more US House seats. One of those was from deep-red Utah. Arizona's congressional delegation is now Democratic majority, by one.

By a lot of numbers, the West has become a near-peer to the NE urban corridor for the party, at the same time that so much of the Midwest has slipped away.

They are far more invested in how their immediate economy, their pay and their expenses, is doing.

Probably half the people I know who support Trump claim to do so because the economy is great and, specifically, "the markets are roaring!". And, they make enough money that they are probably speaking from their personal interest.

All kinds of people support Trump, for a variety of reasons.

Markets go up and down, and that ebb and flow is quite often due to, as Marty puts it, "exogenous" forces. I don't expect the POTUS, or any one person, or probably any single bunch of people, to make things go one way or the other in any consistent or sustained way.

What makes me shake my head in sheer dumbfoundedness is the spectacle of the POTUS acting like a pissy junior high school kid on his phone, going off at random every time something bugs him, without any capacity for self-discipline or apparent concern for the possible downsides of his actions.

Junior high school kid is probably generous, he demonstrates the personal character and maturity of, literally, a three year old.

Nobody in a position to counter Trump's childishness and petty vindictiveness appears to have the will to do it. No-one in his family, none of his close advisors, not the Congress. The performance of the courts is at best spotty.

He's just running around like a spoiled child, breaking stuff.

It is, really, an exercise in stunning institutional incompetence. Among other things, for sure, but that as well.

We are not equipped to deal with somebody who simply does not give a shit. I guess the sainted founders assumed nobody with such obvious and profound deficiencies would ever be elected to a position of such significant responsibility.

It's a serious gap.

Meanwhile, my House Rep (Moulton) has dropped out of the race for POTUS. Which is good.

He didn't make the cut for the debates, and apparently he's been going down to a local joint where they were broadcasting the debates on the big TV, grabbing a mike, and arguing with the candidates who were in the debates there. I.e., debating them by arguing with the TV. In public.

So, not a good look.

Lotta serious gaps going on.

But his fans generally don't have much involvement in the stock market.

Aside from what russell already covered, regardless of their involvement, it's a very popular talking point. Even people without a pot to piss in and who support the moron will crow about the stock market (at least when it's doing well, even if it's just for a day).

What makes me shake my head in sheer dumbfoundedness is the spectacle of the POTUS acting like a pissy junior high school kid on his phone, going off at random every time something bugs him, without any capacity for self-discipline or apparent concern for the possible downsides of his actions.

I think you're being a little hard on pissy junior high schooler's. And the B part is how easily and publicly he is played by the worst dictators on the planet. Sapient, no need to demand I vote Democratic. I already hear that all the time.

I personally believe that unless we win two more western seats, we can't win Senate control -- my contributions will be made accordingly.

Perhaps Bullock can be persuaded to go after Montana's Senate seat. (He's the only Democrat with a viable shot at getting it.) That would, with Colorado and Arizona, give a reasonable shot at gaining 3. Which would leave some margin for error elsewhere.

I guess the sainted founders assumed nobody with such obvious and profound deficiencies would ever be elected to a position of such significant responsibility.

The Constitution and three branches of government were intended to minimize the damage any one person or group of people could do. Which, at times, has met with a lot less than complete success long before Trump.

In 2016, the West produced 98 Clinton EC votes

a lot depends on what 'west' means.

there are 230 EC votes west of the Mississippi, 308 to the east. but if we just count coastal and mountain west (leave off the plains states and obviously-not-west LA and MN), there are 128.

that's not a lot of room for growth - 30.

the NE urban corridor 104

not sure why you're restricting to just that area. "west" vs "north east" leave off a huge chunk of the country.

PA and OH are swing states, so are MI, NC and FL. and those alone are 98 EC votes.

I'm rethinking my opposition to human sacrifice.

This made me laugh out loud.

haven't found a comment yet saying anything like "hey wait, the govt can't tell companies what to do! that's socialism!"

This too.

Sapient, no need to demand I vote Democratic. I already hear that all the time.

Since this would be the only way to actually help dispose of the man you quite rightly despise, along with his craven enablers, it's still rather hard to see why you refuse to, at least during the current electoral cycle.

it's still rather hard to see why you refuse to, at least during the current electoral cycle.

I seem to recall that you voted Liberal Democrat (is that the correct name?) because you couldn't pull the trigger for Labor. If you didn't have the 3rd choice, would you have voted for Boris or Comrade Jeremy?

I could vote Libertarian or just not pull the trigger for either side, and that would be a form of voting. I've given up trying to please the pro and anti-Trumpers.

I could vote Libertarian or just not pull the trigger for either side, and that would be a form of voting.

Sure, but a less effective one than actually voting for a viable Trump opponent.

I've given up trying to please the pro and anti-Trumpers.

That wouldn't be the only reason to vote for a viable Trump opponent. Without mind-reading, it looks as though there's an identity thing going on here, whereby you would feel you weren't be true to who you were if you voted for a Democrat.

I imagine what GftNC is curious about is why you don't want Trump out of office badly enough that you would vote for a Democrat, even a hypothetical Democrat that wasn't too much of a "socialist." I don't think it's a question of why you don't want to please someone else.

...a lot depends on what 'west' means.

When I use it, I mean the Census Bureau's 13-state western region. Fundamentally, the Great Plains are a very effective dividing line. When I say NE urban corridor, I mean the 12 states from Maine to Virginia.

in reality, no President is going to be able to foist the evil socialism on the pure virginal US. Congress would always kill that.

but there's a roughly zero percent chance that the Dems are going to nominate anyone who is as fundamentally unfit for the job as Trump. even the least-qualified among them is still level-headed and not likely to start bragging about how bangable their daughters are.

so, say it's Trump vs Biden - the choice is an old-school center-left white guy vs Trump's ever-increasing insanity. that would be too much?

When I say NE urban corridor, I mean the 12 states from Maine to Virginia.

ok

but what about all the rest of the country?

i just don't see how the west, which is already giving ~3/4 of its votes to the Dems, is going to start being more important than the south or the upper-midwest, which have a lot more votes and seats available. not in the short term, anyway - maybe in 100 years or something, when the east coast is underwater...

That wouldn't be the only reason to vote for a viable Trump opponent. Without mind-reading, it looks as though there's an identity thing going on here, whereby you would feel you weren't be true to who you were if you voted for a Democrat.

I voted for Lloyd Bensten several times. I gave Bill White 2K--the most I've ever given a politician. I support our Mayor, Sylvester Turner. I will vote against Republican Tony Buzbee for mayor.

I am generally not warm to the Dem's moving to the left. To Cleek's point downthread, if it's Biden and Trump head-to-head, and if I vote for president, my vote will be Biden.

"and not likely to start bragging about how bangable their daughters are."

That's not banging, per se.

It's a form of banging, so no harm.

The guy p will shoot dead in the middle of Fifth Avenue (now on the verge of being renamed Barack Obama Avenue along a renowned stretch) before all of this is over (oh, there is much more to come) probably voted for p, and would again no matter if p shot him dead in the middle of Fifth Avenue.

It's a form of something, but I can't think what.

We have the secret ballot.

Too bad for this guy, we didn't have the secret interference with a foul ball:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vq8G81oOHhY

To Cleek's point downthread, if it's Biden and Trump head-to-head, and if I vote for president, my vote will be Biden.

This anti-Trumper is pleased to read this.

"if it's Biden and Trump head-to-head, and if I vote for president, my vote will be Biden."

Well, alright then!

That was me. Stupid browser!

Wait. Whaddaya mean by that second "if"?

If you had in January of 2018 invested in an index fund that closely tracked the DJIA, as of today, you would have made pretty much NOTHING.

True, but if you start the day after the election, you'd be up 2500 or thereabouts. I'm not implying causation, but you can pick any number of starting points and get significantly different answers to the same questions.

Whaddaya mean by that second "if"?

I have to see how JB holds up during the campaign and how left he goes in the primaries and things like that. He's terribly gaffe prone and often fact-challenged, but that's even more the case for DT. I'm not committing. I'm open to a centrist.

This anti-Trumper is pleased to read this.

Excellent. I'm not down with Warren or Bernie; however, totally unrelated, Warren taught Oil & Gas Law at the University of Houston Law Center while I was a student there. "Oil & Gas" is/was part of the Texas bar exam so I signed up for her course--twice, actually--but could never get past the third lecture because the material was so damn boring, which when you consider that law school itself is the most boring 3 year slog anyone could ever put themselves through, that's saying something. She was a nice person, not all that outgoing, but pleasant and well-liked. It's been interesting following her career.

While I'm tripping down memory lane politically, for those of you who follow the Green Party, the Green Party candidate in 2004 was David Cobb. David was a U of H law grad and he worked for me as a young lawyer before going into politics. Nice guy. Rode a big motorcycle.

Michael,

I am curious as to how you think the shift to the West you expect of the Democrats' power center will affect the party.

Sorry, late back to this. hsh @04.22 had it right. McKinney, to answer your question, at the moment my voting intentions would be entirely to do with Brexit: I intend to vote Lib Dem because they are unequivocally for stopping it, which I assume would mean another referendum. If we had a candidate as disastrous as Trump, I would vote for whomever (even Corbyn) looked in with a chance to defeat him. Corbyn is pretty appalling, but even he could not do the kind of damage to us that Trump is doing to America.

And doing to the world.

GftNC, cosign.

I'm not implying causation, but you can pick any number of starting points and get significantly different answers to the same questions.

Sure. I did mention a really good first year. But I don't subscribe to short-term causation in the economy and policy, or even a strong correlation between stock indices and the economy in the shorter term. I'm purposely using the framing of Trump supporters who do, at least when it's convenient for them.

...but what about all the rest of the country?

Exactly.

Twenty years ago you read things about the Republicans becoming a regional party, and the writers all meant the Old Confederacy plus a few of the border states. As it turns out, they have steadily become dominant in the Midwest as well. At the same time, the eastern and western wings of the Democratic Party have become stronger in those regions.

I would advance the hypotheses that (a) the eastern and western Democratic messages have some important differences, and (b) neither of them resonate sufficiently in the Midwest or the South. I haven't got any answers; if the east and west Dem messages don't resonate in the middle of the country, I don't know what third message will that the east and west wings can tolerate.

Tangentially, I find it fascinating that over at LGM during the past year there is a growing acceptance in the commentariate that there is no such message, and that partition/secession discussions are not immediately booed down.

I am curious as to how you think the shift to the West you expect of the Democrats' power center will affect the party.

To be blunt, at some point, schism. I don't believe one wing where "black women are the backbone of the party" and another wing where African-Americans are not the most important minority group can reconcile forever. Where one wing's environmental concerns start with federal land management policy and the other wing doesn't. Where one wing's primary urban concern is rebuilding smashed urban cores and failed infrastructure and the other wing's concern is unmanageable urban growth.

Yep, lunatic fringe. Occasionally the lunatics are right. Unlike Mr. Thullen, who does rants so much better than I can ever dream of, I think a peaceful partition can be done.

Twenty years ago you read things about the Republicans becoming a regional party, and the writers all meant the Old Confederacy plus a few of the border states. As it turns out, they have steadily become dominant in the Midwest as well.

I wonder. I think at the moment the GOP is a marriage of convenience with two major, at heart quite different, strains. One is, indeed, the devotees of the Lost Cause, primarily** in the South and border states. Heavy on nostalgia; light on a grip on how that lost time actually was to live in for people like them -- because, of course, very few people were actually rich enough to live the life they fondly imagine.

The other main strain, especially strong in the mountain West, is not reactionary/conservative so much as libertarian. Carefully compartmentalized to avoid facing the reality of just how dependent they actually are on the government.

I think that the Midwest represents a third strain. An increasingly marginalized one in the party overall. Call it, for lack of a better term, the remnants of Main Street Republicanism. It does not, to me, appear to be anywhere near as dominant in its region as the others. And thus far more susceptible to course corrections, ticket splitting, etc.

** Because of how much people move around in this country, someone who is culturally and ideologically of one area may well turn up far away and in quite different surroundings. (And feeling much put upon as a result. No matter what the individual's views.)

Yep, lunatic fringe. Occasionally the lunatics are right. Unlike Mr. Thullen, who does rants so much better than I can ever dream of, I think a peaceful partition can be done.

Pretty much nobody knows what you're on about most of the time.

I know you've worked with legislatures, so I try to pay attention, but this is insane.

I don't believe one wing where "black women are the backbone of the party" and another wing where African-Americans are not the most important minority group can reconcile forever.

What are you even talking about here? I'm sure that in the West, Hispanics are the dominant minority group. I don't know what the numbers are in the East, but Hispanic population is pretty high here too. Still, the entire country has to deal with the legacy of slavery. I mean, you don't think the people who moved West had black people in mind when they did so? Or maybe you're saying that it's okay that Oregon was founded as a white supremacy state?

Again, I've tried to pay attention to what you're getting at, but maybe what you're getting at is something you don't want to say explicitly? Because you're not saying anything in a way that people can get on board with some kind of policy or even "vision" (ugly word, sorry).

there's a roughly zero percent chance that the Dems are going to nominate anyone who is as fundamentally unfit for the job as Trump

President Ham Sandwich works for me. Even President Waffle Underpants.

if it's Biden and Trump head-to-head, and if I vote for president, my vote will be Biden

Thank you sir!

Wait. Whaddaya mean by that second "if"?

Dude, take the win and ask no questions.

I don't know what third message will that the east and west wings can tolerate.

The midwest probably has the longest and deepest pro-labor traditions of any region in the US.

"Pay working people more" might have an appeal.

Again, I've tried to pay attention to what you're getting at, but maybe what you're getting at is something you don't want to say explicitly? Because you're not saying anything in a way that people can get on board with some kind of policy or even "vision" (ugly word, sorry).

I know I'm not explaining the West vs non-West minority thing well, possibly because I'm totally screwed up in my thinking about it. As an old white guy, it's certainly questionable as to whether I'm entitled to an opinion. It's not high on my list of important differences, but it concerns me.

I appreciate your calling me on it.

The midwest probably has the longest and deepest pro-labor traditions of any region in the US... "Pay working people more" might have an appeal.

It's a possibility. Higher minimum wages (all opposed by local Republicans) have done well in initiative states generally, regardless of red/blue (off the top of my head in recent years, Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, and Nebraska). Pretty consistently 60-40 in favor in all of those states. Also from memory, most commonly $12/hr, phased in, plus future inflation.

Pretty much nobody knows what you're on about most of the time.

I have to say, Michael Cain, I completely disagree with this. And as for your remark "As an old white guy, it's certainly questionable as to whether I'm entitled to an opinion., I don't think it's questionable at all. It's clear from my bouts in the past with McKinney about the issue of White Male Privilege that he has a problem with the concept, but the same seems to me not to apply to you at all. And, in my opinion (sic), nobody should feel that they don't have a right to an opinion.

And while I'm here, a question for McKinney if he's still around. I can understand your personal determination not to vote for Sanders under any circumstances, but not your determination ditto for Warren, given that you seem not to have character objections to her. From Europe (if I may be so bold) she seems not to be so very left wing (unlike Corbyn, say, to give a benchmark for the purposes of this discussion), so I would be very interested to hear your specific objections to her as POTUS, if she faced Trump in the election.

I appreciate your calling me on it.

I appreciate your being so gracious about it. And, yes, you are entitled to an opinion, and because I think you're a person of good will who wants to solve problems, your comment indicated that a problem exists that needs to be solved. I think it's exactly the kind of thing, though, that we need to explore more deeply on a discussion forum where nobody gets hurt.

Brexit, and whatever other movements are out there to split countries apart into smaller, more politically and demographically homogeneous entities, seem to inspire a lot of wrongheaded nationalism, and probably won't really work that ways. It's true that the West has different concerns in many ways: there is less water, more tribal lands, and possibly many other differences that, as someone from the mid-Atlantic, I ignore. The federalist system seems to work fairly well to address those issues. In fact, the electoral college gives outsized representation to many western states, so the states can deal with these issues on the state level, and I don't see much resistance to acquiescing to state preferences at the federal level. Maybe I'm missing something.

Anyway, my apologies for being grumpy, but it seems like schism (either of the country or the Democratic party) is a radical way to deal with something that hasn't even occurred to most people to be a problem. I think your articulation of such a remedy demands a more extensive description of the problem.

Thanks.

Higher minimum wages (all opposed by local Republicans) have done well in initiative states generally, regardless of red/blue (off the top of my head in recent years, Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, and Nebraska).

Maine too, although not 60-40.

Brexit, and whatever other movements are out there to split countries apart into smaller, more politically and demographically homogeneous entities, seem to inspire a lot of wrongheaded nationalism, and probably won't really work that ways.

Agreed. And with the rest of sapient's 09.10 too, pretty much.

Brexit, and whatever other movements are out there to split countries apart into smaller, more politically and demographically homogeneous entities, seem to inspire a lot of wrongheaded nationalism, and probably won't really work that ways.

It seems to me that those advocating for a split have tightly limited objectives. They generally want to split a polity where they are a minority** just enough to give one where their views are a majority. But no further -- tough on those who are in the minority in the new polity.

A federal type solution has one overwhelming facet: those involved have to be willing to tolerate a great deal of variation in view. I may feel that, for example, arranged marriages (arranged, not forced) are a terrible idea. But I have to let others, who are fine with them to use them.

(Not a hypothetical example, by the way. I have a coworker who had met her husband perhaps 5 times total before the wedding. They may have bent the rules to the extend of holding hands once when they met at Trader Joe's. But certainly nothing so intimate as a hug! Yet several years on, they seem quite happy.)

Not saying you have to tolerate things that do harm, real objective harm. But stuff that is merely different, and that you wouldn't want for yourself? Or that just offend your sensibilities? "Different strokes" and all that.

** or a numerical majority, but without political power.

Higher minimum wages (all opposed by local Republicans) have done well in initiative states generally, regardless of red/blue (off the top of my head in recent years, Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, and Nebraska).

An interesting question might be: What would it take (politically; I understand the legislative process) for those states which do not currently provide for initiative, which are a majority, to start doing so? Maybe someone familiar with the history of initiative legislation can help.

It seems to me that those advocating for a split have tightly limited objectives. They generally want to split a polity where they are a minority** just enough to give one where their views are a majority. But no further -- tough on those who are in the minority in the new polity.

An interesting perspective, and intuitively sounds correct.
I’ll have to think around this.

Actually Corbyn isn't the far left boogeyman, that people tend to portray him as - that is if one bothers to take a look at his policies:

https://yougov.co.uk/topics/politics/articles-reports/2019/01/09/eurotrack-corbyns-policies-popular-europe-and-uk

I don't like Corbyn either because Brexit, but his policies a lot of mainstream appeal.

FWIW, I was calling him far left for the purposes of my discussion with McKinney. He's not exactly far left in historical European terms, just by today's standards. And I do actually think he'd be a pretty disastrous PM, partly because he's an ideologue, and a not very bright one at that, but not so bad that I wouldn't vote for him if the alternative was a Trump-type.

Actually Corbyn isn't the far left boogeyman, that people tend to portray him as

How far left or far right someone is depends on a couple of things. One is a comparison with other politicians in the same place. For example, I would be totally unsurprised to discover that thete are countries where Senator Warren's views would mark her as an unexceptional center-right politician. But for the US, she's definitely on the left. So to argue that Corbyn isn't far left, you have to compare him to other UK politicians. (Today, as GftNC notes.)

The other factor is the views of the person looking. In my experience, very few people consider their own views extreme. I know lots of self-described liberals, but damn few radical liberals. Similarly, even people who I would call quite reactionary usually describe themselves as something like "sensible conservatives" -- nothing extreme. In both cases, politicians who they agree with obviously don't qualify as extreme either.

Who's a boogeyman is a seperate discussion. 😉

You have a point there, wj.

Just so you know, I describe myself as handsome and charming. So, for example, I don't consider Bernie Sanders to be slovenly or abrasive in the least.

--TP

https://news.yahoo.com/trump-tells-republicans-may-begin-162457862.html?.tsrc=daily_mail&uh_test=1_04

The raison etre of the tax slashing and inflating the deficit.

Vermin.

i think that's the "he only wants to be a one-term President" proposal we've all been waiting for.

Reverse Robin Hood 2020

Corbyn's foreign-policy views are extreme - he has a history of supporting any notionally leftist "freedom fighters", howsoever murderous.

They want every fucking dime.

Actually Corbyn isn't the far left boogeyman, that people tend to portray him as - that is if one bothers to take a look at his policies:

Maybe, maybe not. In my mind he is beyond doubt an anti-Semite. To hell with him.

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