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Fried Chicken
Jan 9, 2011

Don't fry me, I'm no chicken!


Real OP forthcoming, but it isn't done yet and I want to get this up in case it isn't finished before I leave town for a funeral. I'm trying to make it more "actual state of the US" with sources and less "list of recent bullshit"



Happy 4th of July!

Fried Chicken fucked around with this message at Jul 3, 2014 around 03:29

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Fried Chicken
Jan 9, 2011

Don't fry me, I'm no chicken!


Bourbon
Everclear
New Castle
Gin
Hennessy
Absinthe
Zima
Isake

Drink Recommendations

Vavrek
Mar 2, 2013

I like your style hombre, but this is no laughing matter. Assault on a police officer. Theft of police property. Illegal possession of a firearm. FIVE counts of attempted murder. That comes to... 29 dollars and 40 cents. Cash, cheque, or credit card?

Could you ... just leave the OP as it is? I assume stuff is happening in this country, but I'm not sure how you can top that as an opener.

Lord_Ventnor
Mar 30, 2010

The Worldwide Deadly Gangster Communist President


That is certainly... something.

Anyway, how 'bout that Supreme Court? Those sure were some rulings that's made everyone angry.

Hieronymous Alloy
Jan 30, 2009


Why?! Why?! Why must you refuse to accept that Dr. Hieronymous Alloy's Genetically Enhanced Cream Corn Is Superior to the Leading Brand on the Market ?!!!


Vavrek posted:

Could you ... just leave the OP as it is? I assume stuff is happening in this country, but I'm not sure how you can top that as an opener.

It's perfect as is. I have only one meager response:

quote:

Why aren't there any knock-knock jokes about America?


Because freedom rings.

Jagchosis
Apr 21, 2013

Our prices, I hope, aren't too low!


State of U.S. politics.

Lord_Ventnor posted:

That is certainly... something.

Anyway, how 'bout that Supreme Court? Those sure were some rulings that's made everyone angry.
Yeah, gently caress the Supreme Court for reversing the Federal Circuit 9-0

ReidRansom
Oct 25, 2004


Of course we won't actually know if Tim Howard can save us until we elect him president in 2016.

hobbesmaster
Jan 28, 2008

We are Legion, a terminal of the Geth.


Can't speak for other states but around here you need a perfect game to get elected senator. Letting three goals in isn't going to count for much.

Discendo Vox
Mar 21, 2013

my gimmick is telling everyone to be more civil and it's officially OLD AS FUCK

Hey, what did I say? cite your source for that magnificent patriot.

Aurubin
Mar 17, 2011

A smug, enlightened bastard

BREAKING: House GOP reveals plan to fight global climate change

Prosopagnosiac
May 19, 2007

What the fuck?


Cross posting from the general chat thread:

So I think we all remember Brian Boyko and Dr Lessig's Mayday PAC and their laughable goal of raising 5 million by July 4th to get money out of politics. Well today the good professor did an AMA on Reddit with one Jack Abramoff.

http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/commen...f_here_we_both/

Looks like Abramoff has seen the error of his ways and wants to "change the system man".

....Or the far more likely case that dude knows a mark when he sees one and wants to get a piece of that sweet $2.7 million they've raised in Internet donations and has no other options due to his total lack of credibility among people who can identify their rear end from a hole in the ground.

Fried Chicken
Jan 9, 2011

Don't fry me, I'm no chicken!


Prosopagnosiac posted:

Cross posting from the general chat thread:

So I think we all remember Brian Boyko and Dr Lessig's Mayday PAC and their laughable goal of raising 5 million by July 4th to get money out of politics. Well today the good professor did an AMA on Reddit with one Jack Abramoff.

http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/commen...f_here_we_both/

Looks like Abramoff has seen the error of his ways and wants to "change the system man".

....Or the far more likely case that dude knows a mark when he sees one and wants to get a piece of that sweet $2.7 million they've raised in Internet donations and has no other options due to his total lack of credibility among people who can identify their rear end from a hole in the ground.

Abramoff has been working on lobbying reform for years before this came along

Hey Girl
Sep 24, 2004


Prosopagnosiac posted:

Cross posting from the general chat thread:

So I think we all remember Brian Boyko and Dr Lessig's Mayday PAC and their laughable goal of raising 5 million by July 4th to get money out of politics. Well today the good professor did an AMA on Reddit with one Jack Abramoff.

http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/commen...f_here_we_both/

Looks like Abramoff has seen the error of his ways and wants to "change the system man".

....Or the far more likely case that dude knows a mark when he sees one and wants to get a piece of that sweet $2.7 million they've raised in Internet donations and has no other options due to his total lack of credibility among people who can identify their rear end from a hole in the ground.

Since he got out of jail he's been pretty consistently working against corruption and moneyed lobbying in Washington.

Swan Oat
Oct 9, 2012

And he did not FREE JONATHAN POLLARD

... for his heart had been hardened.

OP is perfect, but, if you are going to change anything maybe link to the chat thread so this one doesn't get derailed by boozechat/foodchat/what have you.

Chat thread: http://forums.somethingawful.com/sh...hreadid=3646703

Prosopagnosiac
May 19, 2007

What the fuck?


Fried Chicken posted:

Abramoff has been working on lobbying reform for years before this came along

Really? I'd love to see a link to that. Because he was seriously one of the worst examples of it during his tenure in the profession.

dilbertschalter
Jan 12, 2010


Prosopagnosiac posted:

Really? I'd love to see a link to that. Because he was seriously one of the worst examples of it during his tenure in the profession.

Well, his autobiography focused on that very topic. Whether he's "truly" reformed or not is anyone's guess (becoming an anti-lobbying activist is a good way to attract attention and money), but it certainly isn't something that he thought of yesterday.

Magres
Jul 14, 2011

Bring me some men who are stout-hearted men.

Fried Chicken posted:

Real OP forthcoming, but it isn't done yet and I want to get this up in case it isn't finished before I leave town for a funeral. I'm trying to make have succeeded perfectly at making it more "actual state of the US" with sources and less "list of recent bullshit"



Happy 4th of July!

Never change this

AATREK CURES KIDS
Jul 11, 2010

I'm helping!



I just noticed he has the correct number of stripes. Voting 5, drinking Evan Williams.

Alkydere
Jun 7, 2010
Capitol: A building or complex of buildings in which any legislature meets.
Capital: A city designated as a legislative seat by the government or some other authority, often the city in which the government is located; otherwise the most important city within a country or a subdivision of it.

AATREK CURES KIDS posted:

I just noticed he has the correct number of stripes. Voting 5, drinking Evan Williams.

Yeah, I wanted to mock him for that but then I counted.

He doesn't have the right number of stars but chest hairs support only so high of a resolution.

Wolfsheim
Dec 23, 2003

Home of the
"FIGHTING CHOMSKYS"


Happy Fourth of July and new thread, everybody! I will be drinking High Life tallboys this weekend to celebrate.

Kinda wish the Hobby Lobby ruling didn't happen this week, I know it was practically inevitable but it really pushed that "Blackwater threatens to literally execute some US official in Iraq for questioning them" story out of the spotlight. PMCs are fascinating to me and reading the accounts of what they managed to get away with is one of those situations where it's so incredibly unbelievable that if you tried to stick it in a movie audiences would complain that it was too unrealistic.

Zombie Samurai
Jun 14, 2003
I EAT SHITTY CANDY THAT TASTES LIKE CRAYONS

Wolfsheim posted:

PMCs are fascinating to me and reading the accounts of what they managed to get away with is one of those situations where it's so incredibly unbelievable that if you tried to stick it in a movie audiences would complain that it was too unrealistic.

PMCs are fascinating to me as well because I have literally no idea why they exist in the US or why we have dealings with them. I have a hard time believing that with as much money as we spend on defense that we need to hire wildcard mercenaries to shore up our forces. And it's not like it helps our PR in any way whatsoever, with all the shady and despicable things that have come out about them. I don't even understand what kind of legal area they operate from.

Does anyone have even a lukewarm view of PMCs? The media has only ever portrayed them as degenerate psychopaths, and the general public has never been given a reason to doubt that.

ReidRansom
Oct 25, 2004


Aside from blatant defense contract grifting, I've never quite understood it either. You can do the job cheaper per head with uniformed military and you get (theoretically) better accountability and versatility as a bonus. I mean, maybe we legit don't have the numbers and doing it properly would have required a draft which no one would have supported. But we've scaled back our overseas adventures and still continue to use them, so I don't loving know.

Wolfsheim posted:

Happy Fourth of July and new thread, everybody! I will be drinking High Life tallboys this weekend to celebrate.


I know we all love America and hate our livers, and there's nothing more American than combining the two by drinking cheap pisswater, but Low Life? Come on, man. At least spring for Lone Star.

ReidRansom fucked around with this message at Jul 3, 2014 around 06:14

Axetrain
Sep 14, 2007

Cutting me off at every turn

Stocking up on some Sam Adams variety cases while they are on sale for 10$ this weekend. Not the greatest beer but not bad by any stretch of the imagination and as all hell. A good way to pass time while this country sinks into a dystopian ruin .

Mayor Dave
Feb 20, 2009


Happy Fourth to everyone, and may I post a link that proves that sometimes good things happen despite everything being utter poo poo?

The Day We Set the Colorado River Free:

quote:

It's been more than 50 years since the Colorado River regularly reached the sea. But this spring, the U.S. and Mexico let the water storm through its natural delta for a grand experiment in ecological restoration.

...

Yet this miraculous flood—deemed so important to relations between the two countries that it had elicited a morning of speechifying by everyone from the governor of Baja (“There are 260 rivers that cross international boundaries, and this is the first such event in the history of the earth”) to the U.S. deputy secretary of the interior (“In retrospect, it seems so obvious that neighbors should take care of one another”)—had taken 15 years of lobbying to bring to fruition.

For years the idea went nowhere. Mexico and the U.S. were battling over Mexico’s water supply, and by 2006 litigation was the preferred mode of communication. It took an earthquake to shake everyone into action. On Easter Sunday 2010, a 7.2-magnitude temblor destroyed much of Mexico’s canal system. The U.S. agreed to store some of Mexico’s water in Lake Mead on an emergency basis until Mexico could use it, and relations began to thaw. In November 2012, Minute 319, the latest amendment to the 1944 Water Treaty between the two countries, was signed. It allows Mexico, which has no large reservoirs of its own, to store future surplus water in Lake Mead in exchange for agreeing to share the burden of any future shortages. The U.S. agreed to invest in improvements to Mexico’s irrigation network, and part of the water saved from that was devoted to delta restoration. Mexico’s National Farmers Confederation objected to what it saw as a water grab by the U.S., and California’s Imperial Irrigation District and Los Angeles squabbled over each other’s role in the agreement, but their voices were drowned out by the deal’s environmental component, which made it a crowd-pleaser in both countries. As Pitt put it, “How could you not fix this problem? It’s so obvious. And it gets people on an emotional level. It’s just not right. Especially at the bottom of something as grand as the Colorado River.”

And with that, Gate 11 creaked open, a frothing mass of whitewater spilled out of the dam, and everybody went wild. Jennifer and Peter raised their fists in the air. Cameras clicked. Two drones whirred overhead. A sheet of water rushed over the marsh, simmering with escaping air bubbles, and licked our feet. Champagne corks popped. Jennifer doused Osvel. Osvel doused Francisco Zamora, director of the Sonoran Institute, who cried, “¡Hay agua!” And we all watched as a tendril nosed its way down the channel, hesitated in a pool, seemingly uncertain, then appeared to make up its mind as it spilled over the lip and ran downstream. If the water could make it 50 miles, it would reach the Laguna Grande restoration site, where tens of thousands of seedlings had been planted by Pronatura and the Sonoran Institute.

...

Around the campfire, we discussed what it would take to get San Luis its river permanently. “I wish social memory was longer than it is,” Sam said, strumming absently. “Are people still going to be inspired in three years when there’s not much to show from this?” With Sam’s backing, Fred’s consulting firm had developed a concept design for the delta restoration projects that used high-tech gates and levees to capture much more of the water than the dirt channels dug in the current sites, but it had not been implemented. “There will be a lot of excuses not to go further,” he said. “But the opportunity is huge. It’ll be something to watch.”

Yes it will. Here’s the short version: In ten to twenty years, unless the drought breaks in a big way or everybody in Los Angeles starts recycling their own pee, Lake Mead will run dry, and the Southwest will have to pack up its playthings and move in with its relatives back east.

Here’s the longer version: Each year, according to the Law of the River, the century-old pillar of legal documents governing the allocation of the Colorado, Lake Mead must distribute 1.5 million acre-feet (MAF) of water to Mexico, 4.4 to California, 2.8 to Arizona, and 0.3 to Nevada. It loses another 0.6 MAF to evaporation. But the reservoir receives 1.2 MAF—four Las Vegases—less than it distributes. Currently, Mead has just 12 MAF left.

Really, really bad math? Well, yes, but the original math was done during a particularly wet period in the early 20th century, when there seemed to be more than enough water to go around for the sparsely populated Southwest. Even as the Sunbelt boomed in the 1980s and 1990s, Mead’s managers avoided paying the piper, thanks to a series of wet El Niño years.

The piper came calling in 2000, when the worst drought in 1,200 years settled onto the Southwest. Worse, research into the deep archaeological record revealed that the wet decades of the 20th century were the anomaly and the dry years of the 21st were closer to the norm. Since 2001, Mead has been dropping 13 to 14 feet each year. It is now below 1,100 feet, with a 120-foot-high white bathtub ring to show just how far it has fallen.

When Mead hits 1,075 feet, which should be in either 2016 or 2017, automatic rationing begins. Farmers in Arizona will begin to be cut off. At 1,050 feet, which looms for 2020, Vegas loses its current water intake, Arizona’s farmers go under, and Hoover Dam stops being able to generate hydroelectric power. “All of those agricultural districts receive federally subsidized power,” Peter Culp had pointed out to me as we’d watched water pour out of Morelos Dam. “Suddenly, you have the ag districts trying to buy power on the market at five times the price.” When the reservoir drops to 1,000 feet, somewhere around 2025, Phoenix is toast, Vegas loses its new intake, and farming becomes impossible in great swaths of the Southwest. “In the meantime,” according to Culp, “you’ve got a bunch of banks and bond markets saying, You know, that Vegas-Phoenix real estate market doesn't look like such a great investment. The last time they concluded that, it tanked the world economy.” Which is why Culp suspects emergency measures would kick in before then. “There’s no way you can let Mead hit 1,000. It would be so horribly stupid.”

Slowing Mead’s downfall would require suspending the Law of the River, which dictates that Southern California will remain unscathed as its neighbors collapse—something Culp finds unlikely. “It’s not credible that Arizona and Vegas would be entirely cut off before California is affected. Can you imagine the feds standing by and allowing that to happen?” Instead, picture a wildly unpopular federal water czar declaring a state of emergency and parceling out Southern California’s water to keep Phoenix and Vegas on an IV drip. Picture the mother of all lawsuits creeping across the Mojave dunes.

That’s the doomsday scenario. And who doesn’t love the clarifying tonic of impending doom? Y2K. Peak oil. Now the coming megadrought. Dry riverbeds and white bathtub rings seize headlines. Sam wishes there was less focus on scare stories and more on smart water solutions—ways to shepherd the West through its day of reckoning to a green future of thriving cities, hyper-efficient agriculture, and a Colorado delta teeming with life. It turns out that, even at the lower-flow levels projected for the Colorado, we have enough water to do all those things, if—and this is a big if, an if as vast as a Sonoran Desert horizon—we get smart. Really smart. Children of Dune smart.

For example, while Phoenix uses 165 gallons of water per person per day, Tucson uses just 128. One difference? Phoenix still favors a lush-lawn look, whereas Tucson embraced its desert identity decades ago. Lawns out, cactuses in. All new homes are required to have gray-water systems that reuse water for irrigation. The city offers rebates for low-flush toilets and rain collectors. And 10 percent of the city’s water is reclaimed from the sewer system, treated, and used for irrigation.

That still can’t touch Vegas, where every drop of water that goes down a drain or toilet is treated and pumped back into Lake Mead. (Vegas really does drink its own pee.) The only water lost is what’s used for irrigation, and even that has plunged since the city banned new front lawns and began paying people to replace existing ones with desert vegetation. Water use in Vegas has dropped by a third. Los Angeles is also now paying people $2 per square foot to remove their lawns.

Every city in the Southwest will need to get aboard the Vegas bandwagon. And they can. Australia already has. Cities there, which have been dealing with crippling aridity longer than we have, use just over half the water per person of their American counterparts. If Southern California alone were to adopt Australian rules concerning outdoor watering and low-flow fixtures, it would save 1.3 MAF of water per year—more than Lake Mead’s deficit.

TL;DR - America and Mexico agree to try ecological restoration by allowing the Colorado to flow once more.

My Imaginary GF
Jul 16, 2005

TERRORISM IN ONE PERCEPTION, RESTORING SECURING IN ANOTHER. IT'S BOTH TO ME.


Prosopagnosiac posted:

Cross posting from the general chat thread:

http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/commen...f_here_we_both/

Looks like Abramoff has seen the error of his ways and wants to "change the system man".

I lost my draft reply with sources and specific examples when the last thread closed; to summarize, the impact of Citizen's United (CU) within the system dynamics of campaign finance is to eliminate a barrier which disproportionately benefited Republicans / rewarded petitions for regulatory exemption, as demonstrated through public records.

Seriously: Abramoff views CU as a systemic threat to the status que in policy development. You can give unlimited sums directly to candidates, enough so that the candidate's campaign need not develop networks beyond you. You're a billionaire and you can do direct spends. Why pay Abramoff a fee?

FECI's contribution limits made it so that you'd need to hire Abramoff to deliver votes on policy; his job is to maximize the reward from a petition while minimizing associated costs. Now, it is the mere perception of liquidity which bends the will of policy. This is a very good thing.

In the data, you'll start recognizing common names used on disclosure forms. Cursory research and journal/university dataset subscription access provide means to establish funding records of associations. Individuals can be tagged and matched to these association in several layers. In addition, tax records from broadcast and media disclosure provide proxy through which one may estimate the source, objective, and target of spending. When rates accurately researched, one can figure out how much which paid for what when where and how.

In simple: Past contribution history predicts future contributions. Associative layers modify the source, reason, and result/impact/policy produced of contributions.

There are several small networks which can be observed within inter- and intra-layer links. The statistical analysis indicates a very strong probability for the correlation between contributions made prior to policy change sponsored/cosponsored being non-random.

The historical impact of FECI has been to increase the size of central party bureaucracy. In addition, advocacy organizations were funded to provide various legitimizations for regulatory exemption. As various studies have discussed, the return on investment for lobbying is between $300:$1 and $400:$1, depending on the industry, supporting the thesis which Piketty has been developing in that the rate of change within past wealth is an accurate predictor of future wealth, i.e. the rich naturally get richer and the poor...less so. Individuals who invest through means accessed depending upon determination generate greater future wealth. Past contributions predict future wealth status; the more one falls out of the regulatory purview of state bureaucracies, the greater the increases in their rates of wealth generation, instances of associative links, and prestige class of associative layers. One example I immediately recall is: Country Club->Union League->City Club->McArthur Foundation Board->[Bureaucratic advisory title]. When one compares other records, a strong non-random correlation is observed between board membership and other board member and or organization contribution / political expenditures.

As the FEC provided regulatory disclosure, one striking trend which emerges is the difference between instances of a name occuring in disclosed donations and instances/quantity of advertisement spending for titled political adverts. Now, I'm not besmirching anyone by saying there are different interpretations of the legality of grey contributions; how does one classify statistically signifcant non-random reduction in broadcast rates for specific party organizations on which may be predicted by associative donations to interest groups/political parties by a PID and individual distance from ownership/stake/board of said broadcaster?

What Citizen's United has done is remove the bullshit, which makes spending on non-exemptory issues more likely to occur. For example,

http://m.newyorker.com/reporting/20...currentPage=all

Self-interest, yes; before, with the dataset built from the 1,000 wealthiest individuals in America, 1970 and 2010, one can narrow their examination of political contributions to a comprehensible field, versus ~250,000 significant records otherwise; the >%97 of spending is associated with the 1,000 wealthiest datasets anyways.

Gonna post while I got it and continue with a second.

DarkCrawler
Apr 6, 2009


Zombie Samurai posted:

PMCs are fascinating to me as well because I have literally no idea why they exist in the US or why we have dealings with them. I have a hard time believing that with as much money as we spend on defense that we need to hire wildcard mercenaries to shore up our forces. And it's not like it helps our PR in any way whatsoever, with all the shady and despicable things that have come out about them. I don't even understand what kind of legal area they operate from.

Does anyone have even a lukewarm view of PMCs? The media has only ever portrayed them as degenerate psychopaths, and the general public has never been given a reason to doubt that.

The fact that PMC's are legal in the first place already baffles me.

dinoputz
Jun 26, 2005

IRONKNUCKLE PERMABANNED! READ HERE

Fried Chicken posted:

Bourbon
Everclear
New Castle
Gin
Hennessy
Absinthe
Zima
Isake

Drink Recommendations

Given recent news (let alone the World Cup), that I should probably be ipecac.

My Imaginary GF
Jul 16, 2005

TERRORISM IN ONE PERCEPTION, RESTORING SECURING IN ANOTHER. IT'S BOTH TO ME.


My Imaginary GF posted:



the >%97 of spending is associated with the 1,000 wealthiest datasets anyways.

Gonna post while I got it and continue with a second.

So. Nixon and Johnson, with the private planes and briefcases of cash. Congress realizes it had delegated too much power to the President and that FDR's Supreme Juarices tended to side with the Unitary Executive over our Congress. Now, I'm a big fan of FDR and what he was trying to do. However. There is a reason that there can only be one FDR.

Time: FDR was President long enough to build a network where his initial power, as demonstrated by getting others to do what you want, built to a point where, due to the checks and balances of our government, his presidency was able to last long enough whereby he saw increases in his executive powers from having his supreme court appointments. The balance the court provides is to err on the side of their nominators; in recent times, we can see a clear trend for the court, post-Bush II, to rule on the side of limiting executive authority. This is due to the long-term impact of FDR's Presidency on the court and Johnson's being in the right place, at the right time, with the right court composition, to advance the causes of egalitarianism through federal programs. Kennedy was independently wealthy; Johnson was truly poor, and established his power through personap relations. The delegation of responsibility for various power bases, i.e. Chicago asking how many ballot boxes to lose in the river, allowed cohesive messaging at the state-level, and for the President to focus on legislative policy. The same processes occur in the Nixon administration.

However, with the court reaffirming Johnson's executive power, Nixon came into office with an honest mindset. He was correct: When the President does something, that makes it legal. Otherwise, how can one justify the legalities of Bush II's administration? Hell, just last afternoon it was leaked that we've had 120 combat troops deployed in Somalia since 2007, without direct public Congressional authorization. Wiretaps, surveillance, drones: they're legal under the authority of the Executive Branch. You can kill an American citizen convicted in trial by absentia, so long as they aren't (yet, may get interesting cases in the future/Syrian issue tangent) on American soil.

Now, I'm only most familiar with the system dynamics of Midwestern politics, 2004-2012. In states which pass term limits, political power is concentrated in the hands of a very small group, if group at all. Politicians hate risk. Everyone hates risk; so why risk your job when you go for your interview with the boss to discuss plans and be afforded 20-years of job security, in exchange for party loyalty? If you play the internals right, you'll go from House to Member, from Senate to Senator. And the job's not hard, its drat fun at time, and the stress of elections can be minimized with algorithmic precision. All you need to do is vote if ever asked. You don't have to; you can talk about it. And if it comes to ever being told, you vote if you value your career.

Now, this internal system doesn't allow for much bipartisanship. And you'll see in the record, the impact of contributions post-limits versus the real rate of occurance/expenditure versus airtime received, that those with a sincerely held economic interest play by the rules of taute societe. With such a high ROI, exponential growth in wealth occurs for the donative class; this growth is only checked by inflation, life's true flat tax on lenders and redistribution of wealth to borrowers, death, creation of an institutional foundation and its backbone infrastructure, and/or a combination of the above. In sum, the richest find means to redirect state authority to themselves if provided enough time.

Now, in Abramoff's system, the Speaker yields authority by being the central organizer and distributor for the RNC/DNC. In the dynamics of contributions flow, limits serve as a breaker curcuit. Yes, billionaires are as lazy as you, too. People are people; we naturally go the paths of least resistance, with determination required for those less travelled. A Pritzker invites you to meet the family, and our country's history is made. A Koch joins you at lunch and calls up a Cargill, and soon enough you're a thousand miles away and running for Senate as a reformed extremist.

This has all been done before; however, limits on contributions when spending has quantifiable impact upon votes, messaging, time, future regional wages, federal dollars returned to district, voter participation/feeling of engagement, etc. Limits + Will = Way. Usually through state infrastructure/other middlemen; it truly is a coincidence when one state's county party gets a 40k contribution and then sends out 5 checks. Truly, multiplied by number of counties in state if you so generously wish. CU eliminated that need. Now its direct to/for the candidate/position, wire the money to a local market broadcaster (whose controlling interest you just so happen to own) @ standard rate, charge opposition rate for higher demand, recoup between 130% - 230% of initial expenditure, modified by correlative strenth and class of associations within the state of expenditure. Don't think Murdochs spend so much in politics for nothing.

With CU? No need. Just air the commercial and write off the cost, although without IRS/FCC-sanctioned modification in broadcast rates. Seriously, if you want a beneficial policy change, engeneer an increase in tax which would have impact solely on political broadcasts carried over public airwaves regulated and liscenced by your state.

My point is, CU makes politicians loyal to patrons for issues, rather than centralized party institutions for ideology. This individual loyalty has, in our nation's past, allowed the passage of some of our most progressive and egalitarian legislation; its a direct path upward within the branches, and is how FDR/LBJ got into wielding their authority.

whitey delenda est
Sep 14, 2008

Oh pirates yes they rob I
Sold I to the merchant ships



Mayor Dave posted:

Happy Fourth to everyone, and may I post a link that proves that sometimes good things happen despite everything being utter poo poo?

The Day We Set the Colorado River Free:


TL;DR - America and Mexico agree to try ecological restoration by allowing the Colorado to flow once more.

This is really great, I remember cruising on Lake mead in 2011 and being seriously disturbed by how empty it was, and 120 feet of bathtub is WAY more than there was three years ago.

It made a big impact on my choice of master's degree. Go go water stewardship!

moebius2778
May 3, 2013


My Imaginary GF posted:

My point is, CU makes politicians loyal to patrons for issues, rather than centralized party institutions for ideology. This individual loyalty has, in our nation's past, allowed the passage of some of our most progressive and egalitarian legislation; its a direct path upward within the branches, and is how FDR/LBJ got into wielding their authority.

Some questions:

1) The obvious question would seem to be: who are the centralized party institutions loyal to? And if they are not loyal to the patrons of the party, why not? How does loyalty transfer when it is processed through multiple organizations?

2) I don't see how you've shown that the individual loyalty has "allowed the passage of some of our most progressive and egalitarian legislation". You've shown that such legislation passed while such individual loyalty existed, but I'm not convinced that such loyalty was either necessary or sufficient to pass the legislation. Was it necessary, and if so, why? Was it sufficient, and if so, why?

My Imaginary GF
Jul 16, 2005

TERRORISM IN ONE PERCEPTION, RESTORING SECURING IN ANOTHER. IT'S BOTH TO ME.


moebius2778 posted:

Some questions:

1) The obvious question would seem to be: who are the centralized party institutions loyal to? And if they are not loyal to the patrons of the party, why not? How does loyalty transfer when it is processed through multiple organizations?

2) I don't see how you've shown that the individual loyalty has "allowed the passage of some of our most progressive and egalitarian legislation". You've shown that such legislation passed while such individual loyalty existed, but I'm not convinced that such loyalty was either necessary or sufficient to pass the legislation. Was it necessary, and if so, why? Was it sufficient, and if so, why?

1) Apologies for not better communicating the construct. From what I've seen, thenselves. It all depends on the state and well organized a movement is. Fearful respect is what I have for Speaker Pelosi.

About to pass out, will try to better communicate later. If you're asking specific indivisuals, take this to PM.

Jarmak
Jan 24, 2005

aka Snake13

Zombie Samurai posted:

PMCs are fascinating to me as well because I have literally no idea why they exist in the US or why we have dealings with them. I have a hard time believing that with as much money as we spend on defense that we need to hire wildcard mercenaries to shore up our forces. And it's not like it helps our PR in any way whatsoever, with all the shady and despicable things that have come out about them. I don't even understand what kind of legal area they operate from.

Does anyone have even a lukewarm view of PMCs? The media has only ever portrayed them as degenerate psychopaths, and the general public has never been given a reason to doubt that.

I don't have any hard figures at the moment to show it, but from my personal experiances like 99% of what PMCs do is run support services like chow halls and laundry and provide facility security (like no poo poo just security guards). There's some jobs which are far more dangerous which is where you see companies hiring up former special operations guys whom get given a dangerous job and jack poo poo for oversight (moving the mail around in country is an example, though I've never heard of those guys causing any incidents) but thats a small small minority of PMC activity.

As to why? I don't know if it turns out to be true by I know the theory at least is that it takes a lot of money and time to train up new soldiers, even more so when you stand up new battalions and larger units, and it takes even longer to get rid of them when you don't need them anymore. The idea is that a temporary need is easier/cheaper to fill with a contractor because you don't have to pay to develop and maintain the organizational support or personal, and you can just contract them for exactly as long as you need them.

This really should be the case, but with the corrupt as poo poo contracting practices I wouldn't be the slightest bit surprised if it doesn't end up that way at all.

LowellDND
Jun 4, 2012

Went insane, got no brain

Jarmak posted:

I don't have any hard figures at the moment to show it, but from my personal experiances like 99% of what PMCs do is run support services like chow halls and laundry and provide facility security (like no poo poo just security guards). There's some jobs which are far more dangerous which is where you see companies hiring up former special operations guys whom get given a dangerous job and jack poo poo for oversight (moving the mail around in country is an example, though I've never heard of those guys causing any incidents) but thats a small small minority of PMC activity.

As to why? I don't know if it turns out to be true by I know the theory at least is that it takes a lot of money and time to train up new soldiers, even more so when you stand up new battalions and larger units, and it takes even longer to get rid of them when you don't need them anymore. The idea is that a temporary need is easier/cheaper to fill with a contractor because you don't have to pay to develop and maintain the organizational support or personal, and you can just contract them for exactly as long as you need them.

This really should be the case, but with the corrupt as poo poo contracting practices I wouldn't be the slightest bit surprised if it doesn't end up that way at all.

I also speculate that it allows you to run a quieter war. 10 soldiers die in Iraq, thats news, but a few mercenaries dying, thats just business.

Fried Chicken
Jan 9, 2011

Don't fry me, I'm no chicken!


DarkCrawler posted:

The fact that PMC's are legal in the first place already baffles me.

They aren't. The Anti Pinkerton Act was passed in 1893, as has been routinely upheld in saying it includes mercenaries and the government can't use them. The clearest was probably the 5th circuit court's ruling in 1978 saying it covered mercenaries and quasi-military forces. Bush just came up with a legal fig leaf that Blackwater totally isn't a mercenary company, they just fight for money, and claimed that let them ignore the law.

Fulchrum
Apr 16, 2013


LowellDND posted:

I also speculate that it allows you to run a quieter war. 10 soldiers die in Iraq, thats news, but a few mercenaries dying, thats just business.

THousands of soldiers died in Iraq, it never once made the news.

Pope Guilty
Nov 6, 2006

The human animal is a beautiful and terrible creature, capable of limitless compassion and unfathomable cruelty.

Can't mercenaries pretty much just be killed if they're caught on a battlefield?

Femur
Jan 10, 2004
I REALLY NEED TO SHUT THE FUCK UP


Officers don't want dead men on their records, plus it sucks over there in Iraq, the locals hate you. and just stare at you, afraid to move and give you a reason to shoot(in their perspective).

And there are amputees everywhere, wtf, what human wants to stay there? It's not your money is it?

This already went in the win column for you.

vv Just saying, only people who can't understand the misery of war can fail to see why it's not healthy for the mind to be there; especially when you can pay some already broken ones.

Femur fucked around with this message at Jul 3, 2014 around 11:51

Fried Chicken
Jan 9, 2011

Don't fry me, I'm no chicken!


Femur posted:

Officers don't want dead men on their records, plus it sucks over, they hate you. and just stare at you, afraid to move and give you a reason to shoot(in their perspective).

And there are amputees everywhere, wtf, what human wants to stay there? It's not your money is it?

This already went in the win column for you.

This is wonderfully incoherent. I think the "Hilary has a head injury" rebuttal from last thread had more logical flow

Shlomo Palestein
Apr 16, 2003



Fried Chicken posted:

They aren't. The Anti Pinkerton Act was passed in 1893, as has been routinely upheld in saying it includes mercenaries and the government can't use them. The clearest was probably the 5th circuit court's ruling in 1978 saying it covered mercenaries and quasi-military forces. Bush just came up with a legal fig leaf that Blackwater totally isn't a mercenary company, they just fight for money, and claimed that let them ignore the law.

The most baffling thing about the last decade and a half to me has been this whole "This is obviously not [THING], it's just [THE VERY DEFINITION OF THING]" legal tactic that somehow works 99% of the time.

"Honey, I wasn't cheating on you! I just stuck my dick in that waitress until I achieved coitus. Totally different thing. Don't you see how you overreact? Yes, this is somehow your fault now."

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Jarmak
Jan 24, 2005

aka Snake13

You guys seems to not really understand how PMCs are utilized at all, they aren't mercs that are sent out to do the job soldiers are. The most offensive operations they ever did was acting as body guards for VIPs working for/with the state department (what blackwater was doing when it caused all its trouble).

LowellDND posted:

I also speculate that it allows you to run a quieter war. 10 soldiers die in Iraq, thats news, but a few mercenaries dying, thats just business.

Yes that makes sense seeing as there was almost 4,500 US troop deaths in Iraq compared to 225 US PMC deaths.

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