US Presidential Election 2012

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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Eldorion on Wed Jan 11, 2012 4:28 pm

The "let's move to Canada" chorus is already gaining strength, although the really sad thing is that next to people like Santorum, Romney doesn't seem that bad. But that's just a factor of how terribly skewed the American political system is. Neutral
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Eldorion on Fri Jan 13, 2012 4:23 am

Somehow or another, this thread always seems to come back to how batshit-crazy Ron Paul is. Laughing He has a few reasonable ideas and so many supporters (especially young people) that I keep forgetting that he is perhaps the most bizarre of all the Republican candidates. The latest on Paul is his old "newsletter", which is chock-full of the far-right, racist, conspiracy theorist mentality of the militia movement from the 1990s. It's remarkable primarily because so many people take Ron Paul seriously these days. Speaking of the man himself, he now says:

"These were sentences that were put in – I think it was a total of about eight or ten sentences, and it was bad stuff." But, "it wasn't a reflection of my views at all, so it got in the letter, I think it was terrible, it was tragic."

Fortunately for everyone else, we can peruse choice selections from the newsletter on Twitter and also full-page scans at this blog. Needless to say, there's a bit more than eight or ten sentences, and even if Ron Paul wasn't aware of this, he should be condemned for allowing such things to go out under his name. I've included a few of the "best" quotes here. All highlights are mine.

Racism!

A lady I know recently saw a black couple in the supermarket with a cute little girl, three years old or so. My friend waved to the tiny child, who scowled, stuck out her tongue, and said (somewhat tautologically): "I hate you, white honkey." And her parents were indulgent. Is any white child taught to hate in this way? I've never heard of it. If a white child made such a remark to a black woman, the parents would stop it with a reprimand or a spank. But this is normal, and in fact benign, compared to much of the anti-white ideology in the thoroughly racist black community.
(Full page scan.)

Sex education!

A rally at a high school in Galveston, Texas, organized by the students, protested the policy of passing out condoms at school. The 18-year old student who led the rally correctly called this a "moral issue." The student pointed out that sex between minors under 17 is still a felony. Another speaker told the principal, "If you give kids condoms, you are [guilty of] a sex crime on a child." A similar stupidity is having governments pass out needles and syringes to addicts on the street.
(Full page scan.)

Xenophobia!

Black Helicopters? Are foreign troops being stationed on American soil? In a manner of speaking. There may not be any black helicophers flying around representing the U.N., but foreign troops have been drilling in various states for more than a year, and many people are rightly up in arms about it.

If this patriotic young American [a U.S. soldier whose unit was part of a U.N. coalition] refuses to wear the U.N. uniform, he will be court marshaled. Vigilance to fight for American sovereignty is needed as never before.
(Full page scan.)

Homophobia!

Those who don't commit sodomy, who don't get a blood transfusion, and who don't swap needles, are virtually assured of not getting AIDS unless they are deliberately infected by a malicious gay, as was Kimberly Bergalis. Note: more and more patients ask if they physician and dentist are married and have children.
(Full page scan.)

That's all for now, but there are loads more at https://twitter.com/#!/rp_newsletter
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by David H on Fri Jan 13, 2012 7:28 am

The wonderful thing about the American two party system is it gives the nut-cases a forum to expose their shortcomings to the whole world BEFORE we give them a vote in congress or a shot at the presidency. The parliamentary system gives them the vote first! Shocked
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Fri Jan 13, 2012 10:52 am

"it gives the nut-cases a forum to expose their shortcomings to the whole world BEFORE we give them a vote in congress or a shot at the presidency"- David

Maybe, but mysteriously it doesn't seem to stop people voting for them anyway!

Eldo- any one of those statements would cause a UK politician their career- no question- it would be over.

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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by David H on Fri Jan 13, 2012 3:57 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:
Maybe, but mysteriously it doesn't seem to stop people voting for them anyway!

Fair enough. I didn't say the system perfect. It just gives us a little more time to prepare for the particular flavor of lunacy that is to come.

Eldo- any one of those statements would cause a UK politician their career- no question- it would be over.

You couldn't find a sitting MP who's a bit loony, and going back 20 years find an equally inflammatory quote somewhere?

In this case Ron Paul doesn't have a chance of getting nominated, let alone winning the presidential election. Right now the Republican party knows that they don't have a real contender for the presidency, so they're letting all of their fringe constituencies have a little more voice. They'll try to rein things in for the 2016 election.
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Fri Jan 13, 2012 4:55 pm

"You couldn't find a sitting MP who's a bit loony, and going back 20 years find an equally inflammatory quote somewhere? "- David

Plenty who are loony I reckon (more so in the House of Lords!) but few you could find openly racist or homophopic attacks attached to- maybe if you raked back far enough- but the UK tabloids are pretty good at doing that.
The latest 'race row' here was over a labour front bencher, Diane Abbott who in the wake of the conviction of two men for the murder of a black lad many years ago (it was an embarresing investigation for the cops they ballsed up year after year- but they eventually got someone for it)- she tweeted in a conversation about how whit epoliticians and media speak of black people that it had been 'typical white divide and conquer tactics'- she just hung onto her job. Racism either way from our politicians is just not accepted.
In this particular case I think the calls for her head were over the top- but it shows how hard it is in the UK for a politician to say anything which could be construed as rascist or homophobic.

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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Eldorion on Fri Jan 13, 2012 6:11 pm

David H wrote:In this case Ron Paul doesn't have a chance of getting nominated, let alone winning the presidential election. Right now the Republican party knows that they don't have a real contender for the presidency, so they're letting all of their fringe constituencies have a little more voice. They'll try to rein things in for the 2016 election.

Certainly true; that's why we saw Bachmann, Perry, Cain, etc. rise and fall so quickly. But what I find strange about Paul is that he has run for President before and has been in the present race for some time yet he is seeing his popularity hold steady if not increase. All parties have their fringes but those fringes are supposed to be weeded out by primaries.

Unfortunately, I think that a lot of people took the GOP's success in 2010 as a mandate for them, conveniently ignoring the fact that the opposition party almost always has success in mid-term elections. However, I too doubt that any of the GOP candidates could win the general election. I hope that you're right and the pendulum will start to swing the other way by 2016. Maybe Huntsman will have more support by then. Razz
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Eldorion on Mon Jan 16, 2012 8:01 am

Well, speaking of Huntsman, apparently he's ready to drop out. I can't say I'm surprised. He had a decent showing in New Hampshire but that state's Republicans are unusually moderate. Huntsman barely registered in the Iowa caucuses and is/was on track to do the same in South Carolina next week. He's endorsing Mitt Romney now, who I don't care for anywhere near as much as Huntsman but who is looking like the least bad GOP candidate at the moment.

BBC has more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-16570884
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Eldorion on Mon Jan 16, 2012 8:05 am

Also, Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart are starting up a fake Presidential campaign similar to 2008. This time the main focus is drawing attention to the rampant corruption inherent in the system of Political Action Committees (PACs) and "Super PACs". Without getting into the "drama" of Colbert's own PAC over the past several months, I'll just skip to the attack ad on Mitt Romney that they just released. Laughing



The best part is that this is actually getting television airplay in some places. Very Happy
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Orwell on Mon Jan 16, 2012 11:24 am

That's nearly funny -- and by Americans too! Shocked

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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by David H on Mon Jan 16, 2012 3:24 pm

Orwell wrote:That's nearly funny -- and by Americans too! Shocked

We're definitely handicapped by not having a parliament in which to polish our comedy routines. Embarassed
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Jan 17, 2012 3:38 am

In the middle of the latest Republican debate. On foreign policy Ron Paul was th eonly one who wasn't a raving loon and the audience nearly booed him into silence for it. Rolling Eyes
There seems to me to be a massive, and I mean really, really massive, gap between the rhetoric on foreign policy and what is actually possible- most of what was said would start a war world in about 5 minutes.

They are onto gun laws now- seems completely mad from my point of view the entire basis- hearing politicians say the people should have guns just seems mad. And why would you need an assualt weapon exactly to go hunting? Armoured bears?

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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by David H on Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:00 am

Yeah, this is the time when the both parties set up straw men to attack. We're supposed to be simultaneously terrified of the straw men and impressed by their bravery for attacking it. The fact that most of the issues have reasonable solutions through compromise, or are completely fabricated in the first place, is totally irrelevant. It's purely about how much emotional punch they carry. It's like a sheepdog barking. They're trying to herd the independent voters into one pen or the other without scattering their own flock. [there's no yawning emoticon]

The gun issue has some very reasonable compromises, but whenever somebody makes a reasonable suggestion, both the Left and the Right start screaming bloody murder that this is a slippery slope towards everybody/nobody carrying guns. Both sides actually love this issue because it polarizes their base constituencies.

I'm a farmer. For me, guns are just tools. The gun control debate seems as silly to me as arguing over knife control. Of course we don't need assault weapons (we used to have such a ban). Of course a person who 30 years ago made a false unemployment claim (a felony) but has no other criminal history should be allowed to own a hunting shotgun (he can't under current federal law). Of course a city that has an issue with armed gang activity should be able to enforce aggressive controls. Of course a one-size-fits-all solution won't work for a country that spans from Alaska to Florida and Hawaii to Maine.Banghead

But if a pack of dogs had torn the throats out several of your sheep, or you had an beloved old dog/horse/cat/rabbit that was dying and in pain, or a car had badly injured a deer or coyote and it was slowly dying on the side of the road, what tool would you choose? For me, a gun is the most civilized choice available.
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Jan 17, 2012 9:37 am

No, no- guns as a necessary tool no problem with David. Its the notion everyone has a right to have a gun and polticians encouraging them too that seems mad. I grew up around farms and guns are a needed tool- but thats my point really- they are tools- dangerous tools and like any dangeorus tool they are best left in the hands of those trained to use them properly and who have a genuine need to use them. There are lots of jobs require equipment you need training in and which can be dangerous and you wouldn't expect just anyone to be allowed to use them with no training or supervision so why with something as obviously dangerous as guns?
But letting your population just go and buy them seems mad and I cannot fathom the reasons why people should have the right to have an assualt weapon. They are not for hunting or a farm tool they are for assualting things with! (which President was responsible for changing the law to let them in?)

"Of course a city that has an issue with armed gang activity should be able to enforce aggressive controls."- David

I supsect in the US, as the cat is well and truly out the bag and has been shagging for years, that might be the case David. In the UK gun laws are very tight, postivel draconian in comparison to the US. Outside of a farm or a gun range I have never seen another firearm. The police here, in every survey conducted, always say noway do they want to be armed. The reason for this is very simple, if they arm themselves the criminals will arm themselves, you get a war of escalation. As it stands right now if your a UK criminal and you commit a crime with a gun (you dont even need to draw it, just have it) and you get caught its a way bigger sentence you are looking at, so for the most part most crimes are committed without any firearms involved.
And if a firearm is involved there are rapid force teams of specialised cops whose only job is to train and use guns- rather than some poor cop who might never have had to fire his gun before being put on the spot. It also protects your average cop from being accused of being trigger happy or whatever by defence lawyers.

Hunting is a tricker one for me. In the modern world I don't believe its right. Hunting to eat or cloth yourself is perfectly fine but there is no need to hunt to do either of those things now. Culling of deer etc is also necessary- but that should be carried out by people whose job it is to cull deer and who ensure the animal dies quickly and as painlessly as possible, not peppered by some amatuer and left to slowly die.
Modern hunting is just about the pleasure and power in killing another living thing it seems to me- and I don't think thats something to be encouraged. Killing for need is one thing, doing so for pleasure is quite another I think.

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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by David H on Tue Jan 17, 2012 4:48 pm

You see, you and I are already well on our way to a reasonable compromise, but that wouldn't serve the purposes of those who need a straw man for political purposes,
Pettytyrant101 wrote: (which President was responsible for changing the law to let them in?)
The ban was put in under Clinton and allowed to expire under Bush, but it mostly played out in Congress. Unfortunately by forcing the ban through without broad general support, the anti-gun lobby gave the appearance of truth to the fear that "they're trying to take away everybody's guns". The backlash, carefully guided by the National Rifle Association, helped give us Bush and Cheney for the next 8 years. Evil or Very Mad


Hunting is a tricker one for me. In the modern world I don't believe its right. Hunting to eat or cloth yourself is perfectly fine but there is no need to hunt to do either of those things now. Culling of deer etc is also necessary- but that should be carried out by people whose job it is to cull deer and who ensure the animal dies quickly and as painlessly as possible, not peppered by some amatuer and left to slowly die.
Modern hunting is just about the pleasure and power in killing another living thing it seems to me- and I don't think thats something to be encouraged. Killing for need is one thing, doing so for pleasure is quite another I think.

This is where I find points of disagreement. Many of your points make good sense near the urban parts of our country, but not so much in many parts of rural America. And unfortunately your language is laced with ethical judgements, which is the kind of passion that the politicians prey on. This is how they drive wedges between urban and rural populations.

Although I don't hunt, I grew up in a community where 9 year olds brought their hunting rifles to school because they were going hunting with their dad and uncles after school. The hunters I know are very professional, and many would support some kind of competency licensing to keep the idiots you're talking about out of the woods (if only for their own safety).

There are many families around here where the majority of their meat comes from hunting, yet I don't feel that means I don't live "in the modern world", does it?

As for ethical arguments, I'm actually of the opinion that meat raised and fattened in inhumane feedlots is much harder to justify than game meat that's been hunted from a healthy natural population.

But I really don't want to be a spokesman for the hunting lobby. My point is just that issue is complex enough here that it deserves a fair discussion.
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Jan 17, 2012 5:11 pm

My wording was poor David- we actually agree on hunting I think- I didnt mean to imply that hunting for food or clothing was just a thing of the past- I was indeed thinking in more urban terms (most gun violence in the UK seems to be in cities) where I don't think there is any excuse for people to go out shooting at the weekend- that is no different to me than the hunters of Empire times that decimated wildlife- just for fun as it were.
If you are eating or using the skins I have no problem with that- we used to shoot rabbits for food with 2.2 rifles in the scouts when we went camping and I also grew up in a rural area, only lived in a city once and then for a only a couple of years. But there has to be proper control, to safeguard wild populations etc.
My fear of amatuers is the thought of a free for all on guns here- the thought of a bunch of drunk neds taking to the hills with guns shooting stuff for a laugh fills me with horror- but from what you say there is at least proper organisation of hunting in America rather than kids and anyone who fancies just taking to hills to shoot at stuff. (Although with guns seemingly so available how is it prevented?)
But in modern Scotland at least there really is no hunting except on the big estates and their clientele are nearly always Americans and Japanese, its illegal to hunt with a gun here off of a licened estate-thats why we have game keepers- they are licened to do the culling that is necessary etc. You can fish (although most rivers are permit only) but you cant shoot anything unless you are fully licened to do so and in Scotland you wouln't get a licence unless you can show exactly why you have to shoot anything. The only sort of gun available to the public are air guns- and they are about to banned too. You can own a gun for a variety of reasons- including sporting but the checks are stringent and ongoing- you have to regularly justify why you still need to have one and they do psychological checks too.

I also agree about many modern techniques for raising animals for food. But thats a whole other gripe.

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Post by leelee on Tue Jan 17, 2012 8:16 pm

The gun issue has always worried me. Until about the seventires, eighties in Canada the thought was horrifying. Every farmer, all my uncles, had a gun to put a wounded and hurt animal to sleep but rarely used them. Still, the amount of killings on farms by angry men or women, drinking usually or youth fighting and then grabbing the gun and shooting was frightening.
But in those decades, with the amount of U.S. content growing in our country on telivision, guns started to seem the romantic thing to get, and all sorts of foolish youths would get them and form their gangs and get killed. And with the relaxing of the attitude toward gangs it seemed easier for organized crime to come and stay in our country. We went from a people who did not lock their doors to a people frightened and with locks and some buying guns of their own. It has been a sickening thing in my mind. One Christmas here, in this sleepy almost village, we don't even have a single escalator in any store and none higher than four floors so as not to disturb the beauty of the scenery, well we had just gone downstairs(we had an upstairs and a downstairs living room) and were celebrating when we heard a popping sound. I came upstairs and our double window had been shot through and the side window of our car. Only minutes before we were all assembled there in the living room. We were very shaken but when we phoned the police they said they might not even get to it because others had phoned before us. And a little teenage girl from a family restaurant was shot at several times on her way home from work, some teens had seen her and decided to kill her for fun. She made it but think of her life ever after. I hate the thought of having guns on ones house. I understand the reasons for it but to my mind it usually invites tragedy. And more guns and then more tragedy.
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by leelee on Tue Jan 17, 2012 8:24 pm

Eldorion wrote:It's interesting that you bring up John McCain. I have respect for him for what he went through but I dislike his track record as a politician. If we were having this conversation back in 2000 I wouldn't be saying this, because he took a decent, reasonable stance on the matters of the day, even if I wouldn't have fully agreed with him. But during the 2008 election he became much more extreme in his views and he radically changed a lot of his positions so as to appear more strongly "Republican". While I have nothing against John McCain as a person, I think he sold out a lot of his beliefs and he drifted too far to the right for me to be able to consider him a reasonable choice in a presidential election. His about-face on the matter of torture, where he opposed measures that would have ended the use of torture by organizations like the CIA, was particularly disturbing to me.

I think this was partially because the Republican Party has a major problem in that both its politicians and the right-leaning media outlets (like Fox News or numerous talk radio hosts) are fond of slinging the accusation RINO, which stands for Republican In Name Only. This is used to refer to any Republican politician who does not embrace the views of the more extreme neo-conservative wing of the party that rapidly gained power in the 1980s and '90s, and more recently to those who don't agree with Tea Party-esque positions.

The strength and venom of the RINO accusation has led to an ideological self-regulation of the Republican Party which shuts down and excludes moderate members of the party and forces everyone farther to the right. Look no further than Jon Huntsman, an experience politician and diplomat with reasoned, intelligent views who was ignored by his party in favor of a parade of extremists like Michelle Bachmann and Herman Cain, who seemed to be competing with each other to see who could make the most bizarre and poorly-thought-out promises. It's no surprise that Huntsman began revising some of his "RINO-esque" views, such as his support of science.

I'm not saying that I like the Democrats either (I'm still wishing we had a real left-wing party in the U.S.), but I don't think they systematically ostracize members who don't toe a certain ideological line.


Good point Eldo, still in my mind there are so many lies and deceivers in each party I could never, if I were an American vote for a party's complete beleifs and such, it would be a terrible thing to live with. I very much like some of your democrats and I know and corresponded with some of them and many Republicans, all whom I respected as well, but others, I would not walk across the street to shake their hands, I just would not because I feel strongly they are merely players with their own personal agenda, period.
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Orwell on Wed Jan 18, 2012 5:34 am

Politicians? Liars and deceivers? You are kidding, aren't you, leelee? One must not joke about important things you know. If God's Nation fails us, what chance does the Rest of The world have? That Mitch Romney has a nice face - honest somehow... I could trust a man like him.

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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by David H on Wed Jan 18, 2012 8:31 am

leelee wrote:
But in those decades, with the amount of U.S. content growing in our country on telivision, guns started to seem the romantic thing to get, and all sorts of foolish youths would get them and form their gangs and get killed. And with the relaxing of the attitude toward gangs it seemed easier for organized crime to come and stay in our country.

Leelee, I hope things get better for you. I still live in a community where we never lock the doors, and I hate living where it's necessary. I also apologize for those 70's TV shows. They were coming out of the civil rights unrest of the time, but that's no excuse for sharing our problems with the world (same with gangsta rap for that matter Embarassed )

From what I've seen over the years, gangs usually come into an area more for the drug money than for romance. It's a horrible fact that the U.S.A. is the largest, richest recreational drug market in the world, and Canada and Mexico become perfect staging areas for drug production and trafficking. With that comes money, organized crime, gangs, and lots of guns.

It's a terrible situation with no simple solution, no matter what any politician may tell you.

[Let's see, Big...Bad...Serious....yep, I'm in the right forum.]
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Orwell on Wed Jan 18, 2012 10:44 am

My goodness - you've wandered far away from the "Safe" (Tolkien) threads, David! Suspect Take care... a step like this can lead you to all sorts of unexpected places... Nod

I myself was a serious Hobbit lover to begin with, but look at me now! Shocked ...

Mmm... Most Popular Male!

It's not all bad then. Very Happy

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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Wed Jan 18, 2012 11:38 am

The Internet goes ever on and on
Down from the router where it began.
Now where has that url gone,
And I must find it, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager fingers,
Until it joins some dodgy site
Where many people and swingers meet
And wither then? I'll delete my history tonight!

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Pettytyrant101
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Eldorion on Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:55 pm

Brilliant! lol!
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Eldorion
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Orwell on Wed Jan 18, 2012 9:28 pm

What's it got to do with the Presidential Race though? Suspect Misplaced brilliance if you ask me... Rolling Eyes

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From "The True Tale of the Un-magical Coal Scuttle."
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Re: US Presidential Election 2012

Post by Eldorion on Wed Jan 18, 2012 9:51 pm

My guess is he was responding to your comment to David about the dangers of the BBS forum. Wink
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