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2012 Election Thread

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I can't tell you how many people I know are voting for Romney just because he's on the Republican ticket. Same with Obama. It's sickening, really.

 

What's wrong with that? If you agree with the Republican party platform, it makes sense to support their presidential candidate regardless of who he is because you know that he'll adhere to it.

 

What's the alternative? Wavering until the last minute and then voting for the guy you'd like to have a beer with?

 

Except for the fact that the Republican party platform is virtually the same as the Democratic party platform. So in a sense you're voting for the same puppet president.

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I can't tell you how many people I know are voting for Romney just because he's on the Republican ticket. Same with Obama. It's sickening, really.

What's wrong with that? If you agree with the Republican party platform, it makes sense to support their presidential candidate regardless of who he is because you know that he'll adhere to it.

 

What's the alternative? Wavering until the last minute and then voting for the guy you'd like to have a beer with?

Except for the fact that the Republican party platform is virtually the same as the Democratic party platform. So in a sense you're voting for the same puppet president.

Aw come on now, they're a little different.

 

One group are social statists and the others are economic statists.

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The US government was not designed to have political parties.

The US government was designed when the priority had just been survival and transition from colony to independence, lending itself to a rather 'informal' style of political presence. As doubleplusgood as it was in the late 18th century, society has evolved (i.e.: the 20th century has brought political participation from being an elite characteristic to a mass phenomenon; while you can get a few thousand people to agree on a candidate's point of view rather than a party's (few thousand people, as in the 13332 people who elected George Washington in 1792), participation of a hundred million people needs a lot more structure, or you'll have a political landscape that would put 1991's Yugoslavia to shame).

 

EDIT: ...1792, not 1972. Though a Washington vs Nixon duel would have been awesome. "Forsooth, what do you mean there's a war near Siam?"

Edited by Arianna

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participation of a hundred million people needs a lot more structure

While I do agree, I'm not sure that necessitates political parties. I think that's where things like the electoral college come into play.

Electoral college - as in how voters are neatly subdivided into about sixty constituencies (that coincide with the states, mostly)? If so, yes and no: Wyoming and South Dakota, in which the voters are rather scarce, can make do without parties, but 13 million (*) voters in Colliefohnya? :P

 

(*) 2008 figure

Edited by Arianna

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Political parties are generally a good solution, but when you only have 2 parties you simply have to choose, and it promotes what is essentially taking the side of a party in every election. That way, there'll never be any change and independents that run have nearly no chance of getting anywhere. If you have more parties, the system is still not perfect, but at the very least it gives people a choice. I think it works just fine in the Dutch system, for example.

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I think the problem here goes a little further than the political system and actually roots itself in American society. Just consider this: In elementary school, I was told by a teacher that there are two political parties. She was genuinely surprised when I told her that Poland had at least ten.

 

Most people don't see any alternative to "Democrat" and "Republican".

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Why not scrap the electoral college, and have the citizens vote directly for president? Even first past the post is far far better.

Why should states with only a couple of million citizens be completely ignored? Your suggestion would make politicians COMPLETELY ignore those states. I'm trying to find a rational reason as to why this would be beneficial, but I can't really think of one. Perhaps you have a few ideas? The whole point of the electoral college is to make candidates actually do more than just camp out in NY or highly populated areas.

 

 

I think it'd be best to do away with political parties completely. The US government was not designed to have political parties. I think some of them even said that political parties would be death to the system.

 

I can't tell you how many people I know are voting for Romney just because he's on the Republican ticket. Same with Obama. It's sickening, really.

I would agree with this to an extent. However, I don't really see a realistic way of accomplishing this goal.

 

 

With all of this being stated, as a young adult who is semi-broke most of the time. I'm appalled with the way the country is run. I will vote for a candidate who actually proposes to do more than just make casual remarks about how our country's young workforce is getting screwed by these benevolent programs such as social security, medicare, and other entitlement programs. Ultimately, government should not be responsible for these programs. In my mind, they either need to be seriously revised OR eliminated completely. In my somewhat more rash days of youth (i.e. 6-7 years ago), I would've advocated an immediate change. I understand that this would be folly. With that being said, I'm still convinced that some serious changes need to happen. There are a few other issues that I find disturbing as well. The deficit is a real and urgent concern, yet do we see actual action? Nay. I'm, of course, aware of the potential impact of spending cuts, but these things need to be seriously considered.

 

So, with all of that being said, I would never vote for Obama. The country is not doing well, and he is making it worse.

 

On a side note, hi everybody. I was considering trying out an mmo such as guild wars. And I thought of sals. :cute: Most of you probably don't even remember me.

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Why not scrap the electoral college, and have the citizens vote directly for president? Even first past the post is far far better.

Why should states with only a couple of million citizens be completely ignored? Your suggestion would make politicians COMPLETELY ignore those states. I'm trying to find a rational reason as to why this would be beneficial, but I can't really think of one. Perhaps you have a few ideas? The whole point of the electoral college is to make candidates actually do more than just camp out in NY or highly populated areas.

 

Uuuuuhhh, you might want to mention the right person when quoting someone. I never said those words in particular, that was Error404. :cute:

 

(Also, hi! :P )

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Why not scrap the electoral college, and have the citizens vote directly for president? Even first past the post is far far better.

Why should states with only a couple of million citizens be completely ignored? Your suggestion would make politicians COMPLETELY ignore those states. I'm trying to find a rational reason as to why this would be beneficial, but I can't really think of one. Perhaps you have a few ideas? The whole point of the electoral college is to make candidates actually do more than just camp out in NY or highly populated areas.

 

Uuuuuhhh, you might want to mention the right person when quoting someone. I never said those words in particular, that was Error404. :cute:

 

(Also, hi! :P )

 

Ah, my bad. See, somehow it was telling me the quote tags were messed up. And I may have altered things. Sorry!

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Why not scrap the electoral college, and have the citizens vote directly for president? Even first past the post is far far better.

Why should states with only a couple of million citizens be completely ignored? Your suggestion would make politicians COMPLETELY ignore those states. I'm trying to find a rational reason as to why this would be beneficial, but I can't really think of one. Perhaps you have a few ideas? The whole point of the electoral college is to make candidates actually do more than just camp out in NY or highly populated areas.

 

Instead they just camp out in a handful of swing states. Candidates don't visit or spend money in around, what, ~40 states?

 

There are a couple obvious benefits to discarding the electoral college and moving to a direct popular vote.

 

1. The winner of the popular vote would always be elected President (currently it's possible to win the popular vote and lose the electoral college).

2. It would encourage turnout, since all individual votes would have the same value. As it stands, citizens in safe states like New York and Texas have less incentive to vote than those in swing states.

3. All states would be on an equal playing field, with proportionate say in the outcome of the election. Right now, rural states have far more per capita voting power.

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Why not scrap the electoral college, and have the citizens vote directly for president? Even first past the post is far far better.

Why should states with only a couple of million citizens be completely ignored? Your suggestion would make politicians COMPLETELY ignore those states. I'm trying to find a rational reason as to why this would be beneficial, but I can't really think of one. Perhaps you have a few ideas? The whole point of the electoral college is to make candidates actually do more than just camp out in NY or highly populated areas.

 

Instead they just camp out in a handful of swing states. Candidates don't visit or spend money in around, what, ~40 states?

 

There are a couple obvious benefits to discarding the electoral college and moving to a direct popular vote.

 

1. The winner of the popular vote would always be elected President (currently it's possible to win the popular vote and lose the electoral college).

2. It would encourage turnout, since all individual votes would have the same value. As it stands, citizens in safe states like New York and Texas have less incentive to vote than those in swing states.

3. All states would be on an equal playing field, with proportionate say in the outcome of the election. Right now, rural states have far more per capita voting power.

 

I will not deny your point at all. I would competely disagree with your third statement, however. The entire state of Kansas would not play a role in the election at all with that attitude. Our vote should be heard.

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1. The winner of the popular vote would always be elected President (currently it's possible to win the popular vote and lose the electoral college).

I'm torn between whether that'd be a benefit or a pitfall.

 

Better than having the Supreme Court decide.

 

I will not deny your point at all. I would competely disagree with your third statement, however. The entire state of Kansas would not play a role in the election at all with that attitude. Our vote should be heard.

 

Kansas is already irrelevant.

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And it would be even more 'irrelevant' if it were a popular vote, I'll bet.

 

Not really. It's hard to be less relevant than it is now. As of now, candidates don't visit Kansas and spend virtually no campaign money there.

 

2004 spending/visits: http://en.wikipedia....tion_(edit).png

 

2008: http://www.cnn.com/E...ap/ad.spending/ and http://elections.nyt...sing/index.html

 

In 2008, both candidates combined spent a total of $70k in ads there. Neither Obama nor McCain visited Kansas. (I'm making an example of Kansas because you brought it up, but this is obviously true for many other deep red or deep blue states which are taken for granted.)

 

It's hard to know for sure what would happen were we to move to a popular vote system. I think ad spending would be far more evenly distributed across the entire country, rather than concentrated in Ohio/Florida/Pennsylvania/Iowa/etc. Advertising outside of swing states would become worthwhile. Large cities would probably be the main target of ad campaigns, but that's already the case today. Presently Kansas is a guaranteed Republican win, so candidates ignore it, not caring about the margin of victory. With a simple popular vote, it would actually matter if Republicans won by 150k or 10k votes. There'd be more incentive to advertise in Wichita and Topeka and other major cities to get out the vote. I'm not saying that Kansas would be highly relevant in the general election, but I think it'd get more attention than it does now.

 

Populous states like New York/Texas/California/Illinois/etc. would benefit the most from increased focus. The states that would stand to lose the most political relevance would be the smaller swing states like New Mexico/Nevada/Iowa/New Hampshire, which are currently spoiled with disproportionate attention from candidates.

Edited by Common Sense

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Why not scrap the electoral college, and have the citizens vote directly for president? Even first past the post is far far better.

Why should states with only a couple of million citizens be completely ignored? Your suggestion would make politicians COMPLETELY ignore those states. I'm trying to find a rational reason as to why this would be beneficial, but I can't really think of one. Perhaps you have a few ideas? The whole point of the electoral college is to make candidates actually do more than just camp out in NY or highly populated areas.

The electoral college pretends that more people live where they don't, and less people live where they do. Bigger states are missing their votes, because of it - California is missing TEN votes. 1 vote in Vermont = 3 Texan Votes, 1 Wyoming Vote is 4 Californians.

 

Second of all, take a look at this: https://dl.dropbox.com/u/22408809/Other/graphs/USApresident.pdf

While this particular situation is unlikely, you shouldn't be surprised when the losers win when they're not supposed to. 3 times in American history (1876, 1888, 2000) have the president that had the popular vote lost, because of the electoral college. 3 errors / 55 elections = 5.5% failure rate. Given that this wouldn't even be accepted in competitive football - if somehow, by a fluke of the rules, every 20 games, the loser would win; then, I'm pretty sure, that having this apply to the USA president is a dangerously high percentage.

 

Anyway, back to your point. If the goal of the Electoral college is to protect the smaller states from the big states, it's failing. Here's a chart of the 2008 election:

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/22408809/Other/graphs/candidate.PNG

18 states received visits; only 2 of them were small states - Maine and New Hampshire. The area with the most smaller states (North-West) is missing, and interestingly, the biggest states - California, New York, Texas; are missing too. What the presidents are doing, is spending time in states where it's 50/50 - they just need a 1% majority, to win that state.

 

Furthermore, if you add together all the populations in the 10 major cities in America, you get 8% of the total population; and the 100 major cities in America gives you 19% of the total population. So, unless there is this mysterious city, that contains 50% of America's population, that isn't in the census: the idea that the president can just fly back and forth between New York, LA and Chicago is not feasible.

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Very interesting points. I must admit that I might've been a bit haste in my decision. I will have to think about this.

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To be fair, this election is going to be a pretty easy win for Obama - the Republican Party has been embarrassing itself at almost every chance this year. Add to that the "war on women" and "war on homosexuals" that the GOP is supposedly fighting (spoiler alert: Romney isn't going to start throwing gay people in jail, nor will he ban contraception) and Obama has done a good job of scaring the swing voters away from the Republicans.

Edited by theking1322

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To be fair, this election is going to be a pretty easy win for Obama - the Republican Party has been embarrassing itself at almost every chance this year. Add to that the "war on women" and "war on homosexuals" that the GOP is supposedly fighting (spoiler alert: Romney isn't going to start throwing gay people in jail, nor will he ban contraception) and Obama has done a good job of scaring the swing voters away from the Republicans.

Obama, or Obama's PAC's?

 

I get tired of him catching flack for everything anyone says against Republicans.

Well, if his personal Twitter (run by his campaign people no doubt, but still directly representing him) posts things like this: http://twitter.com/BarackObama/status/239772452002099200/photo/1, well that's pretty hard to blame on his PACs. The anti-Republican sentiment might not be his fault, but he sure is milking it.

 

Again, a lot of my posts seem like I have a special hatred for Obama (I don't, at least not for the man himself), but my anger is mainly triggered by (dumb) people who think he's some kind of messiah for women, poor people and homosexuals. Oh, and that we have to thank him for ending the war in Iraq. That one's my favorite.

 

It's playing to the base, sure, and it's no more sleazy than the Republicans' "War on Religion" line, but the difference between Democratic fiddlesticks and Republican fiddlesticks is that nobody (except a very small minority) takes Republican fiddlesticks seriously.

Edited by theking1322

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(spoiler alert: Romney isn't going to start throwing gay people in jail, nor will he ban contraception)
(will he decriminalise sex with ducks?)

 

The anti-Republican sentiment might not be his fault, but he sure is milking it.
Well, duh. :P Nobody's going to do anybody else any favours, at least voluntarily.

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Obama's taking questions on Reddit and wound up breaking the website.

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I really liked Condoleezza Rice's speech at the RNC. It was not too conservative in my opinion and focused a lot of foreign policy and education, two important subjects which are being downplayed this election.

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I'm more concerned with what Obama is doing with my money than with what Romney is doing with his.

As much as I hate Romney I have to agree.

I thought congress decided budgeting.

 

People sure do like to scapegoat the president. So much easier than to accept the fact that we've elected a bunch of crooks and idiots into congress and that it's our choice where our money goes, and that we're doing nothing but complaining and electing the same idiots over and over.

Congress does vote on budgeting but it is the president who proposes the budgets. Obama has fought the House Republicans on budget issues numerous times.

 

As the OWS protests have demonstrated last year, there's a very strong sentiment against wealthy corporate types among Americans (the notion that they were responsible for the economic meltdown). Obama is basically using that sentiment to discredit Romney, using his wealth to show that he can't be trusted and make him look corrupt. At the same time, however, Obama is taking tax dollars from those same Americans and using them to bomb other countries, etc... (you know this story already).

 

The irony here is unbelievable.

 

In fact, I'd argue that Obama is directly contributing to the death of the American dream. He's convincing his supporters that wealthy, successful people owe them something instead of encouraging them to pursue success themselves. I think OWS and the whole "let's tax all the corporations until they repay us" movement is evidence of this. At the same time he is using measures like healthcare reform and the contraception mandate to sell the idea that "the government is your friend and will defend you from the greedy private sector". I hate to sound like Alex Jones, but Obama is basically tricking people into supporting even bigger government than we already have. Not only does this threaten our constitutional rights even further, in the long term it will lead the economy into total ruin.

Actually you're both very wrong. Congress does have the power of the purse strings, but in reality that means that their EARMARKS specifically designate funding. Any funding without an earmark is allocated as the budget was originally written, giving the recipients discretion on how to spend in. That means, since the President is the chief executive, he has control via political influence and Executive Orders to direct how the federal bureaucracy acts and spends its money. So yes, Obama is spending your money--every bit as much as the Congress and Senate are. Moreso now that "earmarks" have been scapegoated.

 

(spoiler alert: Romney isn't going to start throwing gay people in jail, nor will he ban contraception)
(will he decriminalise sex with ducks?)

No, sorry, that's too pedo.

 

duckface-465x373.jpg

Edited by Bob-sama

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