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The General 'Murican Politics Thread

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Since the old thread was from all the way back to before Romney got his ass beat and it's become incredibly inconvenient to comb through (I've even had it crash my browser a couple times when searching in it), how about a new thread to celebrate Biff Tannen finally being elected president?

 

back-to-the-future-2-biff-tannens-pleasu

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15 minutes ago, Conquering Storm's Servant said:

'K, but at the risk of sounding stupid...who the fuck is Biff Tannen?

He's the main villain of the Back to the Future series. In Part 2 of the films, his future self alters the timeline so his younger counterpart is rich, has control of the entire town of the main character Marty McFly, Hill Valley, has bought out the Hill Valley police, and has turned the town into a rotten, polluted, crime infested trashhole. Said incarnation of the character is supposedly based on Trump.

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It's because Biff's character was inspired by Donald Trump and considering that he's president it seems like the film predicted everybody's worst fear for the country. 

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4 minutes ago, Dejimon11 said:

It's because Biff's character was inspired by Donald Trump and considering that he's president it seems like the film predicted everybody's worst fear for the country. 

So should we expect Republican deathsquads going around in pickup trucks gunning down minorities and gays to enforce their conservative evil will? Or America being turned into a hellish dystopia where only the super elite conservatives rule?

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I suppose that the old thread had become rather cumbersome. I approve of the title change, too!

Every cabinet and government decision coming out of Trump Tower fills me with some fresh new feeling of dread and foreboding:

We have a Labor Secretary who doesn't seem to believe in radical new ideas like worker sick leave, has a history of objectifying women when he ran the Carl's Jr. restaurant chain (just like his new boss), loves Ayn Rand novels (eurgh), and will most assuredly come down on the side of management in the restaurant industry's ongoing wage battles.
We have an Education Secretary who doesn't believe in public schooling (Brits: Not posh private schools), and believes wholeheartedly in de/unregulated "free market" Charter Schools, potentially ignorant or dismissive of at least one study indicating that Charters only work in cities (due to high population densities), and even then only when there is strong oversight and regulation.
We have a Housing & Urban Development (HUD) Secretary with zero experience in housing or urban planning (Didn't he turn down the post of Health Secretary last month because he didn't feel qualified for the role?), who doesn't believe in anti-segregation housing laws, and who also seems to believe in the conservative myth that everyone in poverty could raise themselves out of it, if only they would work harder and pull themselves up by their bootstraps.
We have a Health Secretary who wants to make it harder to sue doctors for medical malpractice, exempt doctors from anti-trust laws when dealing with health insurers, try to prevent companies from offering overly generous health insurance plans (up go my damn premiums!), and open the door to having people on medicare and VA healthcare (who often have little/no spare money) use Health Savings Accounts to pay for their own healthcare.
We have a Treasury Secretary who is a former Goldman Sachs banker (a firm which Trump once claimed would use a President Clinton as its puppet), whose time as head of failed subprime lender OneWest (formerly IndyMac) was marked by highly dubious home foreclosure practices which ignored proper review and due process.
We have a new Small Business Administration head who... hell, could actually be pretty good in that role, shockingly. I don't know anything about her beyond the handful of snippets on her background that all the news sites ran upon her nomination for the role. She remains a hopeful question mark, but given the rest of the picks made thus far, I'm not brimming over with optimism.
We have a new Attorney General whose anti-marijuana views defy established medical science, economics and the overwhelming will of the people.
We have a new EPA chief who has actually sued the EPA on countless occasions (including, get this, for being sued too much), is a fervent supporter of fossil fuels (his campaigns have received hefty donations from the industry), and is a climate change denier.
We have a new Pentagon Head who, despite being a consummate warrior's warrior, has little to no experience leading large bureaucracies, and who did not retire long enough ago to permit his obtaining the post without a special waiver from (IIRC) congress.
We have a new presidential National Security Adviser who believes that the US has been engaged in a new world war against Islam for several years, has a deeply ignorant or malicious vendetta against Iran, and doesn't tolerate any dissent or criticism from those beneath him. IIRC, he also was too recently in the military to simply get the post without that special waiver.

The large numbers of generals being drafted into top civilian positions is a huge worry to me too, because when you pack your tool box with hammers, everything starts to look like a nail, and the tool box starts to look like a Junta Box. NPR had a piece on this subject, it's a pretty interesting little read:

Quote

"[While] I like and respect General Mattis a great deal, the House of Representatives would have to perform a full review, including hearings by the Armed Services Committee, if it were to consider overriding the statutory prohibition on recent military officers serving as the Secretary of Defense."

 

TL;DR: Trump and Pence's decisions are deeply worrying.

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18 hours ago, Patticus said:

I suppose that the old thread had become rather cumbersome. I approve of the title change, too!

Every cabinet and government decision coming out of Trump Tower fills me with some fresh new feeling of dread and foreboding:

We have a Labor Secretary who doesn't seem to believe in radical new ideas like worker sick leave, has a history of objectifying women when he ran the Carl's Jr. restaurant chain (just like his new boss), loves Ayn Rand novels (eurgh), and will most assuredly come down on the side of management in the restaurant industry's ongoing wage battles.
We have an Education Secretary who doesn't believe in public schooling (Brits: Not posh private schools), and believes wholeheartedly in de/unregulated "free market" Charter Schools, potentially ignorant or dismissive of at least one study indicating that Charters only work in cities (due to high population densities), and even then only when there is strong oversight and regulation.
We have a Housing & Urban Development (HUD) Secretary with zero experience in housing or urban planning (Didn't he turn down the post of Health Secretary last month because he didn't feel qualified for the role?), who doesn't believe in anti-segregation housing laws, and who also seems to believe in the conservative myth that everyone in poverty could raise themselves out of it, if only they would work harder and pull themselves up by their bootstraps.
We have a Health Secretary who wants to make it harder to sue doctors for medical malpractice, exempt doctors from anti-trust laws when dealing with health insurers, try to prevent companies from offering overly generous health insurance plans (up go my damn premiums!), and open the door to having people on medicare and VA healthcare (who often have little/no spare money) use Health Savings Accounts to pay for their own healthcare.
We have a Treasury Secretary who is a former Goldman Sachs banker (a firm which Trump once claimed would use a President Clinton as its puppet), whose time as head of failed subprime lender OneWest (formerly IndyMac) was marked by highly dubious home foreclosure practices which ignored proper review and due process.
We have a new Small Business Administration head who... hell, could actually be pretty good in that role, shockingly. I don't know anything about her beyond the handful of snippets on her background that all the news sites ran upon her nomination for the role. She remains a hopeful question mark, but given the rest of the picks made thus far, I'm not brimming over with optimism.
We have a new Attorney General whose anti-marijuana views defy established medical science, economics and the overwhelming will of the people.
We have a new EPA chief who has actually sued the EPA on countless occasions (including, get this, for being sued too much), is a fervent supporter of fossil fuels (his campaigns have received hefty donations from the industry), and is a climate change denier.
We have a new Pentagon Head who, despite being a consummate warrior's warrior, has little to no experience leading large bureaucracies, and who did not retire long enough ago to permit his obtaining the post without a special waiver from (IIRC) congress.
We have a new presidential National Security Adviser who believes that the US has been engaged in a new world war against Islam for several years, has a deeply ignorant or malicious vendetta against Iran, and doesn't tolerate any dissent or criticism from those beneath him. IIRC, he also was too recently in the military to simply get the post without that special waiver.

The large numbers of generals being drafted into top civilian positions is a huge worry to me too, because when you pack your tool box with hammers, everything starts to look like a nail, and the tool box starts to look like a Junta Box. NPR had a piece on this subject, it's a pretty interesting little read:

 

TL;DR: Trump and Pence's decisions are deeply worrying.

The future American Empire of Trump is upon us. Minorities will be purged, women will only be objects and sex toys while forced to endure legalized rape and stay in the kitchen brainwashing, LGBT will be slaves and torture targets, we will be breathing toxic smoke while the elite live in domes with the only fresh air in the world, the only schooling will be of Christian zealotry and neoconservative prejudice, stupidity and anti-intellectualism will be treated as something to strive for to keep the masses fat, stupid and ignorantly happy of their own situation, the elite will dominate all and everyone beneath kept in slavery while controlled to believe otherwise, and America will declare war to pacify and turn the world into the American Empire in the name of "democracy", but in reality is only for the sake of the elite few's power.

Heil Executive Chairman Fuhrer Comrade Trump...except he'll just be the figurehead while his extreme right allies are the true power.

 

At least, I'm hoping this isn't the case.

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We just have to hope that the inevitable voter suppression efforts these next 2-4 years won't be too powerful. It is more important than ever for anybody of Democratic leaning to turn out, to compensate for the millions who are likely to find themselves purged from the rolls or otherwise no longer eligible to vote.

If it goes too far though, maybe it's time to revisit the 1860s and make the divorce between red and blue official. I'd like to see how long the red states last when they're not sucking the wealth out of the blue ones, all while preaching about how great self-sufficiency and fiscal responsibility are.

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5 hours ago, Noelgilvie said:

If it goes too far though, maybe it's time to revisit the 1860s and make the divorce between red and blue official. I'd like to see how long the red states last when they're not sucking the wealth out of the blue ones, all while preaching about how great self-sufficiency and fiscal responsibility are.

I found a good WashPo article on the matter:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/12/04/democrats-can-look-forward-to-the-coming-republican-era-being-a-disaster-for-republican-voters/?tid=pm_business_pop&utm_term=.6a690c96400c#comments

In short, its actually the blue states that are most likely to benefit from a Trump presidency, since their state governments are more likely to pass laws to compensate for federal shortcomings (and some are indeed doing that in anticipation-- for example, MA and some other states already have hotlines established for safely reporting hate crime) or turn a blind eye/give a slap on the wrist to things the federal government claims are crimes but which they don't feel really deserve that label (like marijuana use in moderation or abortion), most of them get less than a dollar back per federal tax dollar spent anyway, and they're amongst the richest states in the country with many of their denizens not needing stuff like welfare anyway (assuming the state governments don't come up with substitutes).

In other words, we don't really need to go 1860 to see just how the red states do without blue state wealth or aid. Trump's government will do a fine job demonstrating that for us.

Another good WashPo article:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2016/12/09/no-people-really-arent-turning-away-from-democracy/?utm_term=.b1921a9b9006

In short, authoritarianism is rising slightly amongst young people, but ultimately, most young people support democracy and so long as we're vigilant, authoritarianism will not destroy democracy. It is certainly threatening to democracy-- populism tends to get ugly when it gets power, and we are dealing with a party with a precedent of voter suppression, but this can be fought and American democracy isn't likely to go quietly into the night.

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7 hours ago, Noelgilvie said:

If it goes too far though, maybe it's time to revisit the 1860s and make the divorce between red and blue official. I'd like to see how long the red states last when they're not sucking the wealth out of the blue ones, all while preaching about how great self-sufficiency and fiscal responsibility are.

It seems incredibly unlikely that that would happen, but then again, if history teaches us anything, it's that situations have a habit of changing dramatically, in ways previously thought unthinkable: The idea of WW1 would have been laughed out of Dodge even as late as mid-1914, the Russian Revolution was inconceivable a handful of years earlier, the German ascendance under Hitler would have been considered fairy-tale fiction in 1925, slavery ending was not something your average 1850s chap would have found a realistic prospect for the near term, etc.

The divorce, if it happens, will not be pretty. With nukes on the line, it would probably be best to flee somewhere remote or neutral.

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1 minute ago, CD Sanic said:

Been meaning to ask this, what's so important about the 2018 midterms?

Its when a lot of important Senate and House of Representative elections take place-- and hence, when the Democrats have a chance to flip a lot of seats in their favor and gain a majority that has a better chance of countering Trump. Unfortunately, there's worries about gerrymandering and voter suppression that will happen in the meantime that will dash this effort.

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6 hours ago, Mad Convoy said:

Its when a lot of important Senate and House of Representative elections take place-- and hence, when the Democrats have a chance to flip a lot of seats in their favor and gain a majority that has a better chance of countering Trump. Unfortunately, there's worries about gerrymandering and voter suppression that will happen in the meantime that will dash this effort.

Only two senate seats are considered potential Democrat flips, while the Democrats will be defending something like 25 seats of their own. It's not going to be fun, and only a serious economic downturn will open up more opportunities for them. More important are the gubernatorial (governor) races that will be taking place, and maybe the congressional races, where the Democrats actually have better odds.

Edit:

Such a far cry from this:

wp8GtRy.png

 

Build the swamp! Build the swamp!

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1 hour ago, Patticus said:

Only two senate seats are considered potential Democrat flips, while the Democrats will be defending something like 25 seats of their own. It's not going to be fun, and only a serious economic downturn will open up more opportunities for them. More important are the gubernatorial (governor) races that will be taking place, and maybe the congressional races, where the Democrats actually have better odds.

Is that a good thing?

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12 hours ago, SenEDtor Missile said:

The future American Empire of Trump is upon us. Minorities will be purged, women will only be objects and sex toys while forced to endure legalized rape and stay in the kitchen brainwashing, LGBT will be slaves and torture targets, we will be breathing toxic smoke while the elite live in domes with the only fresh air in the world, the only schooling will be of Christian zealotry and neoconservative prejudice, stupidity and anti-intellectualism will be treated as something to strive for to keep the masses fat, stupid and ignorantly happy of their own situation, the elite will dominate all and everyone beneath kept in slavery while controlled to believe otherwise, and America will declare war to pacify and turn the world into the American Empire in the name of "democracy", but in reality is only for the sake of the elite few's power.

Heil Executive Chairman Fuhrer Comrade Trump...except he'll just be the figurehead while his extreme right allies are the true power.

 

At least, I'm hoping this isn't the case.

That is an awesome way to start a second Civil War, which interestingly enough was about controling other human beings as property (masquerading as "State's Rights). Would just go to show that part of our country really hasn't learned its lesson.

Legislation can only do so much before people have had enough and start to take things in their own hands, but given the rising population of minorities, the aging of our more bigoted population, and surprisingly enough our system of government, it would take a lot to reach that point.

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Man, people are still white knighting and defending trumps actions. Apparently he wasn't specifically attacking that disabled person, he does those gestures with anyone he disagrees with, and says retard to anyone, so it wasn't personal. Jesus Christ a lot of these "fence" people that didn't vote for either seem to always, I mean ALWAYS find bullshit ways to go "well I mean" when Trumps bs is called out. Him being a immature whiner on Twitter? Him verbally attacking and disgracing that soldiers mother? Him being disrespectful to vets on occasions like with that Purple Heart shit? His pussy grabbing fiasco? Seriously I don't see why they didn't vote for him seeing as how they write off much of the bullshit, (but not for Hilary I should add) or keep their glass half full.

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8 hours ago, Patticus said:

The divorce, if it happens, will not be pretty. With nukes on the line, it would probably be best to flee somewhere remote or neutral.

Oh, I was referring more to things like Calexit getting off the ground.

If the GOP wants to monopolize power in America, let them. And by America, I mean what's left after all the blue states say "screw this" and leave.

There's no point in remaining part of a political unit when it becomes apparent your needs are dismissed. Frankly the status quo is largely to the benefit of red states: a gerrymandered House, a small state-favoring Senate, a small-state favoring Electoral College, etc.

6 hours ago, CD Sanic said:

Is that a good thing?

Yes.

If the Democrats have control of state legislatures after 2020, they get to redistrict House seats in most states. This presents an opportunity to make them competitive again; currently, many House seats favor Republicans because the GOP redrew them after 2010.

It's important for Democrats to win both 2018 and 2020 to have solid majorities at the state and federal level.

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/pwa/?tid=sm_tw#https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/obama-orders-review-of-russian-hacking-during-presidential-campaign/2016/12/09/31d6b300-be2a-11e6-94ac-3d324840106c_story.html

Remember when I said we should look on the bright side in the last thread? Forget what I said. I'm done playing the nice guy. I lost all empathy and goodwill towards any Trump voter. I don't fucking CARE why you voted for him. Congratulations, komrade! Now we basically have to PRAY we even have a 2018 midterm at all if we make it far enough.

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I'm sorry if this is a stupid question, but why would we not have the 2018 mid-terms? Even a tyrant needs to rubber stamp his regime's "legitimacy" at regular intervals...

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Spoiler

Can someone honestly tell me if the right wing have any redeeming traits left at this point? Day in and day out I get bombarded with things showing how utterly awful and hypocritical they are, and all this business with Trump is only making me think more and more that the right wing in it's current state is basically a rabid dog without a leash. It legitimately baffles me how they can think they're saving America and democracy when to me they seem to be willing to let America and the ideals of democracy burn for the sake of appeasing their own fragile ego.

 

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And lo, the swamp did grow larger each day, until it consumed the entirety of the capital, which became fetid and rotten with its corruption.

Quote

Tillerson has close ties with Vladimir Putin; the two men have been associates since Tillerson represented Exxon’s interests in Russia during Boris Yeltsin's premiership. John Hamre, the president and CEO of the Center for Strategic and International Studies(for which Tillerson is a board member), states that Tillerson "has had more interactive time with Vladimir Putin than probably any other American with the exception of Henry Kissinger."

In 2011, on behalf of ExxonMobil, Tillerson signed an agreement with Russia for drilling in the Arctic that could be valued up to $300 billion. Although the company began drilling in the Kara Sea in summer 2014, sanctions against Russia during the Ukranian crisis brought the project to a halt in September of that year.

In 2013, Tillerson was awarded the Order of Friendship by Putin.

tumblr_inline_nl6eqsxDIb1sqf2ij.gif

There is no way that this choice wasn't Putin's own.

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2 hours ago, Patticus said:

And lo, the swamp did grow larger each day, until it consumed the entirety of the capital, which became fetid and rotten with its corruption.

tumblr_inline_nl6eqsxDIb1sqf2ij.gif

There is no way that this choice wasn't Putin's own.

Should we expect Trump and his cabinet to sell America to Russia in exchange for a lifetime supply of money? And what do their followers make of this? Reality or "They are white Christian Conservative Americans who are clearly patriots, and this is liberal propaganda!"?

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