Snarky comments about the US election

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phantaskippy
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The Electoral College will put Trump in the White House.  To not do so would create calamity for our system.

 

The founding Fathers unwittingly betrayed their vision for the EC when they gave the power over the electors and how they work to the states.

States quickly abandoned the original idea for the current one we have, voters vote for president instead of electors, and the electors all go with the popular vote.

The original model is your district would come together and vote for one of you to go and join all the other elected voters, who would come together and hash out who should be president.

The system we have now gives the states more political clout in getting federal favor.  Once one state did it, the rest followed suit so they wouldn't be left out.

Right now the states that are swing states get the most attention from the federal government.  Because they are the ones that will determine if your party wins the presidency.

The new system does nothing to protect against demagogues.  Because the States, from the very beginning, were more interested in their own benefit then the welfare of the nation.  We talk about that today, that Americans are more interested in their ownbenefit then the health of our country, but that has always been the case.  It is a defining American characteristic.

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I'm not saying it will change results but it will be interesting to see how many actual go through with voting against Trump if any that are supposed to chose him.   To be honest I wish there was a reset and we had a new set of candidates.


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http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/texas-republican-elector-says-he-wont-cast-ballot-for-trump/ar-AAlaYBO?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=spartanntp

A story I just saw about a Texas Elector who will not be casting his vote for Trump.

The Electoral College will put Trump in the White House.  To not do so would create calamity for our system.

Straight Up horsefeathers Skippy. It would be our Republic carrying out the system as it was always intended to work.

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I've been seeing that referenced a lot between yesterday and today. 


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phantaskippy wrote:

The original model is your district would come together and vote for one of you to go and join all the other elected voters, who would come together and hash out who should be president.The system we have now gives the states more political clout in getting federal favor.  

States should have power. It's too large and diverse of a Country to let go of the model of many seperate and individual states united under a single (hopefully smaller) federal banner. Local governments can serve folks better (given that locals participate in said governments).

The problem with the EC currently is not the original model, it's that in the 1920's Congress decided to arbitrarily cap the number of seats in the House of Representitives, even though the Constitution states that the House should be reflective of the distribution of the populace. The population has grown exponentially since then, but the House has not, and in not doing so, fails miserably at it's initial job. This is reflected in the EC since the total points are directly tied to seats in the House. If the House doesn't accuratly reflect the population, the EC point distribution also cannot. Thats why there is such a major stink, because people are finally catching on.

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Just in case anyone is confused, there are two Texas electors in question. One resigned, and the other declared he would not vote for Trump. This is in addition to eight or so Democratic electors that have publically declared they're not voting for Clinton.

My favorite detail: Bill Clinton has declined comment on who he will vote for as a Democratic elector from New York.

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/12/electoral-college-rogues-trump-clinton-232195

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dpt wrote:

Democratic electors that have publically declared they're not voting for Clinton

Doesn't mean they are voting Trump either, though I am unfamiliar with these particular declares, so who knows. It would be so interesting to see unfaithful electors come out in force across the country and throw things for a loop. If Trump doesn't get the votes needed to clinch, it's gonna be interesting. Though I have it at a 0% chance of that ever happening.

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Foote wrote:
dpt wrote:
Democratic electors that have publically declared they're not voting for Clinton

 

Doesn't mean they are voting Trump either, though I am unfamiliar with these particular declares, so who knows.

They've specifically said they're not voting for either Clinton or Trump. They seem to be leaning towards Kasich as an acceptable Republican.

I would put the chances at very low, but nothing is ever 0%.

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Calamity would be thus:  The Electoral College results come 1 month before the inauguration.  That is one month for legal battles, public reaction and whoever they chose to form an entirely new cabinet.  Trying to form a cabinet that Republicans would vote for if the College chooses a Democrat would not be possible.  The government would be at war with itself.

If they chose another republican, forming a cabinet would be increadibly hard, as what Republican wants to join an administration that wasn't voted for by the people?

If they chose a third party candidate that gives one month for those parties to go from second rate operations with no real plan for winning into a political apparatus capable of filling a cabinet with good choices, while facing massive opposition from Republicans and little support from Democrats.

 

Net up if they don't choose Clinton, then they choose someone who won no states and miniscule amounts of the popular vote.  Clinton would not be likely to even accept winning like that.  She wouldn't want to be the face on that poop storm.  Heck, she isn't even trying to contest the election, she doesn't want to be a part of this mess.

If they go elsewhere, you would have massive international controversy and likely sanction, as we would go from violating only a decent number of our own criteria for free elections to violating the most basic ones.

There is no way that ends well.

 

Also, the Electoral college won't put anyone but Trump in, it would require more organization than the Electoral College is allowed.  and the States have time to replace or contest their own vote counts before they go to congress.

It just is not going to happen.

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phantaskippy wrote:

Trying to form a cabinet that Republicans would vote for if the College chooses a Democrat would not be possible.  The government would be at war with itself.

You know that, if no candidate gets the required number of votes in the Electoral College, the House then votes for the President and Vice President, ect.

Would it be a crazy time? Sure. It's never happened in the history of the Country. But the System was set up so that the door was open for this possibility.

I do not think it's in the relm of possibility that a candidate other than Trump would reach the 270 votes needed to win outright. However, there could be a slim chance of there being enough faithless electors around the country where no one reaches 270. That's the interesting scenario.

But I think we both agree that, for whatever reason, it's just not going to happen. My contention still, though, is that the Electors have a Constitutional duty to cast their vote faithlessly since Trump is unable to act as President in good faith and uphold the Constitution. It should happen. It won't though.

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The house would vote trump in if it got that far, and even getting that far would cause serious long-term problems.

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I'm pretty sure serious long term problems are inevitable. That would be true even if Clinton had won.

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Powerhound_2000 wrote:
Side note: This thread has lost its initial snarkiness. 

There is plenty that was done that I could snark about in this election (starting with snarking about how people were so afraid of someone who allegedly did certain things that they voted for someone who really did do those certain things and moving on from there), but the fact that I and other people still have to also suffer the negative consequences of that snark-worthy stuff we did not do or condone ourselves makes me feel more bitter than amused.

phantaskippy wrote:
Our technology is rocketing ahead right now, and we (the people as a whole) are woefully unprepared when it comes to leading a world with this new technology.

It's more the uneven deployment of technology that's the issue, IMHO. In particular lower class people are often the very last people to get to have beneficial new technological things (stuff like solar panels or energy-saving devices or easier access to information) but often the very first people to suffer the downsides of disruptive new technological things (stuff like automation).


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My side note was more of a hint to the mods to change the title at this point.   


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Powerhound_2000 wrote:

My side note was more of a hint to the mods to change the title at this point.  

I want to leave it. Kinda hoping that brings the snark back. wink

But thank you all for the civil and polite discourse. It really is greatly appreciated!


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Trump has 306 electoral votes coming his way, assuming no faithless electors.  So it would take 37 faithless electors (or recount changes, which I feel are unlikely, especially considering the timeframe) to change the result.  That's an astronomical number to try to hope for.  I'm sure we will get a record number, but not that many.

If that did happen, it's still pretty likely Trump would be voted in by Congress.  Their only other option would be to choose one of the Republican candidates who lost the primaries.  And that would clearly be against the will of their constituents and you can bet it would hurt their own chances of reelection.

Foote wrote:
The population has grown exponentially since then, but the House has not, and in not doing so, fails miserably at it's initial job. This is reflected in the EC since the total points are directly tied to seats in the House. If the House doesn't accuratly reflect the population, the EC point distribution also cannot. Thats why there is such a major stink, because people are finally catching on.

Representation isn't meant to be proportional.  It intentionally gives more power to smaller states.  This was done to appease said smaller states when forming the Union in the first place.


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Foote wrote:

The problem with the EC currently is not the original model, it's that in the 1920's Congress decided to arbitrarily cap the number of seats in the House of Representitives, even though the Constitution states that the House should be reflective of the distribution of the populace. The population has grown exponentially since then, but the House has not, and in not doing so, fails miserably at it's initial job. This is reflected in the EC since the total points are directly tied to seats in the House. If the House doesn't accuratly reflect the population, the EC point distribution also cannot. Thats why there is such a major stink, because people are finally catching on.

I wouldn't say that they decided to arbitrarily cap the number of seats.  I mean, yes, the number they chose was arbitrary.  But if they had not done so, we would currently have over 10,000 representatives.  University of Central Florida would have two representatives all to theirselves.

 

In the 200+ years since the Constitution was written, the United States has changed dramatically in both population size and distribution, and in information and communication technology.  Both these things dramatically alter the "ideal" balance of representation between a reasonable number of representatives and reasonable representation by those representatives.  The 435 reps total that Congress chose is almost certainly not the optimal number.  But the 1 rep per 30,000 people originally used is even more certainly wrong.


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Yeah, I'm OK with the limited number of Reps because sooner or later you run into sheer logistics issues. Can you imagine trying to get thousands of people to discuss and agree on anything? The problem with the House itself is more unfair gerrymandering, IMHO.

The Electoral College definitely has issues, though, since it's effectively a second layer of voting and one that doesn't even seem to be serving much of a useful purpose at the moment.

@Rabit: Part of the problem with being humorous is that we're basically running into Poe's Law as well, where anything satirical or parodic you could come up with starts being upstaged by actual reality. Or as I like to put it, "that moment when headlines by The Onion start being barely disguishable from real headlines."


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

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MindWanderer wrote:
Foote wrote:
The population has grown exponentially since then, but the House has not, and in not doing so, fails miserably at it's initial job. This is reflected in the EC since the total points are directly tied to seats in the House. If the House doesn't accuratly reflect the population, the EC point distribution also cannot. Thats why there is such a major stink, because people are finally catching on.

 

Representation isn't meant to be proportional.  It intentionally gives more power to smaller states.  This was done to appease said smaller states when forming the Union in the first place.

Representation is explicitly meant to be proportional. That is the entire point of the House of Reps. You are thinking of the Senate where each state has equal power regardles of population.

Arcanist Lupus wrote:

I wouldn't say that they decided to arbitrarily cap the number of seats.  I mean, yes, the number they chose was arbitrary.  But if they had not done so, we would currently have over 10,000 representatives.  University of Central Florida would have two representatives all to theirselves. 

Sure, I agree with you that thousands of representatives is unsreasonable. But the fact of the matter is that the EC was designed to be proportionally acurate portrayal of the populace and where they live. It's very far from being a faithful portrayal, and the cap is a major reason. The last census we had (which is used to redistribute the points under this cap), the point differences were very minor even in areas where populations had grown/lessened dramatically. That is not the way the thing was designed to work.

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@Foote

Perhaps you'd be interested in the Congressional Apportionment Amendment?


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That amendment wouldn't actually do anything, as the 435 cap would still be constitutional.


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Foote wrote:

 

MindWanderer wrote:
Foote wrote:
The population has grown exponentially since then, but the House has not, and in not doing so, fails miserably at it's initial job. This is reflected in the EC since the total points are directly tied to seats in the House. If the House doesn't accuratly reflect the population, the EC point distribution also cannot. Thats why there is such a major stink, because people are finally catching on. 

 

Representation isn't meant to be proportional.  It intentionally gives more power to smaller states.  This was done to appease said smaller states when forming the Union in the first place.

Representation is explicitly meant to be proportional. That is the entire point of the House of Reps. You are thinking of the Senate where each state has equal power regardles of population.

The number of electoral votes a state gets is equal to its total number of representatives--the House and the Senate.  Therefore, the smallest states (with one Congressional district) get nearly three times as many electoral votes per capita than the largest states.  That's part of the Great Compromise, and is, as I said, intentional.

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To say that electoral votes are not ment to be proportional though is misleading at best. I'm not taking about the Senate parts of the EC, I was only bringing up those that concerned the House.
http://www.thegreenpapers.com/Census10/FedRep.phtml?sort=Elec#table

I like numbers to visualize things. Here are the population and electoral stats from the last Census

 

 

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There are worse parts of the representation in the House: thanks to gerrymandering, states like Ohio voted >50% for Democratic reps last election, but their congressional delegations are >75% Republican.

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Trajector wrote:

There are worse parts of the representation in the House: thanks to gerrymandering, states like Ohio voted >50% for Democratic reps last election, but their congressional delegations are >75% Republican.

Gerrymandering is the direct result of FPTP voting systems. I'd rather not debate the flaws and merits of FPTP vs other voting methods, mostly because I lack enough knowledge of the alternatives to form a decent opinion. However, the fact that gerrymandering is not only enabled but encouraged in such a voting system does leave me pretty skeptical of it.

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If you haven't seen them, I strongly strongly recommend CGP Grey's Politics in the Animal Kingdom series. It explains the strengths and weaknesses of various systems of voting in an extremely digestible way.


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I'm going to agree that I feel gerrymandering is the real issue with our Representatives, as the lack of proportional allocation is not only understandable due to logistical barriers (seriously, can you imagine having thousands of people trying to successfully negotiate bills) but dwarfed by the fact that what Reps exist currently don't reflect the actual beliefs of the citizenry in question.

Even if we added more Reps per population point, I fear it would potentially do little to fix the lack of representation because the new regions would be just as subject to possible gerrymandering gaming as the existing ones. Conversely, if we fix the gerrymandering issues, I think the lack of raw numbers might not be such a huge setback in terms of representation.

TL;DR the possibility that my state is sending mostly the wrong party Reps compared to what the majority of the state populace actually believes feels like a bigger problem to me than arguably not sending enough Reps.


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It isn't just the voting system.  If you change the system but leave the gerrymandering the results will improve but not a whole lot.

What California has done with their redistricting seems to be working really well, and the less safe political envronment it is creating bodes well for building new leaders.

We'll see how Maine's experiment with ranked choice works out.  With California and Maine both trying new ideas, and California's looking good, there is hope that our system will grow out of what it has become right now.

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PeterCHayward wrote:

If you haven't seen them, I strongly strongly recommend CGP Grey's Politics in the Animal Kingdom series. It explains the strengths and weaknesses of various systems of voting in an extremely digestible way.

This was interesting. Thanks for the link.

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I used to strongly feel that fixing gerrymandering was the critical step towards better politics, but I later read an article that argued that the extreme partisanship in the US is actually the result of parity. When one party has a clear majority, then the opposition _has_ to work with someone in the major party to get anything done, and people in the majority from different divisions start to find it more possible to get people from the opposition to join them on some issues. At parity, though, both sides are incentivized to do nothing that would help the other side, ever.

 


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This is starting to approach dangerous territory! If you find yourself feeling the urge to post an angry reply, I recommend taking a breather, emailing the comment to yourself, and - if you still agree that it should be posted in 24 hours, posting it then.


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Yes, I'm afraid that Jeysie's post contravenes Rules Part 2 #3:

Quote:

3) Do not post things that are likely to start fights about politics, religion, etc.


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arenson9 wrote:

Yes, I'm afraid that Jeysie's post contravenes Rules Part 2 #3:

Quote:
3) Do not post things that are likely to start fights about politics, religion, etc.

 

 

For those who may be confused, the offending post has been unpublished. It wasn't necessarily so terribly awful, but it was over the line, and we'd rather nip these things in the bud.


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Does this apply?

Matchstickman wrote:

@arenson9Well played, well played.


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My post was not angry, it was an attempt to correct arenson9's factually incorrect post regards explaining the actual historical and current facts of the situation regards how the current extreme partisanship actually happened.

If being factually correct is not allowed on these forums, because simply posting facts is erroneously seen as "starting a fight" then I deeply regret posting here. Especially since I made a very good faith attempt to be fair and gracious despite having to report the facts, by bringing up areas where I was able to concede with the other side because it legitimately was simply a difference of opinion in those cases, yet have been censored anyway.

I don't appreciate being reprimanded and censored just for being calmly and politely factual, and don't feel welcome on a forum where such a thing occurs. Which is a shame because up until now I was really enjoying myself.


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Jeysie,

You framed the issues in an antagonistic way, specifically mentioning one party and basically saying they are the forces of darkness. Given this is not a politcal website and the owners prefer it to be friendly to everyone, this was probably considered too far. You were not as objective and non-confrontational as you believe you were in that post.


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I didn't see the post myself but I would talk with Arenson9 directly through PMs or with other moderators about it if you felt the post was censored unfairly.  


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Jeysie
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Never mind, I should just accept that everything I say is always wrong because I'm the one saying it, even when it doesn't make any sense to me that I did anything that deserved to be yelled at. I'm sorry I made you all upset with me and I'll just leave you all alone.


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

Resident Argent Adept and Biomancer fangirl, be forewarned.

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@pwatson1974: Look at the people who Trump has factually appointed to his cabinet positions. I literally, sincerely don't know how else people wanted me to categorize the situation.

It's just example n+1 in my attempts to socialize in life where I got yelled at when I don't understand how I said anything that was factually or morally wrong. So, yeah, I give up them.


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

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Jeysie,

You have not been yelled at. One post has been removed because it went further than this particular site (which isn't a politics site) allows. If you really don't understand why the post in question was considered over the line, it might be best to not post about politics as your ideas of acceptable discourse in that area and the mods' of this site don't align. Outside of politics, the site is still pretty welcoming.


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If you find yourself feeling the urge to post an angry reply, I recommend taking a breather, emailing the comment to yourself, and - if you still agree that it should be posted in 24 hours, posting it then.

This still applies!


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Hey, everyone!

I'm going to lock this thread, because I'm fairly certain nothing more productive is going to come out of it. We have a lot of people from all walks of life that frequent these forums, and I don't want the historically divisive issue of politics to make anyone feel unwelcome. As I've had a few people from both sides of the aisle contact me directly, saying they felt exactly so, I feel pretty confident that locking this thread is the best solution.

If anyone has further concerns, please contact me directly. You can do that either through a direct message on the forums or by sending me an email.


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