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Monday, June 02, 2014

OTP - June 2014: Iraq war costs U.S. more than $2 trillion: study

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. war in Iraq has cost $1.7 trillion with an additional $490 billion in benefits owed to war veterans, expenses that could grow to more than $6 trillion over the next four decades counting interest, a study released on Thursday said.

The war has killed at least 134,000 Iraqi civilians and may have contributed to the deaths of as many as four times that number, according to the Costs of War Project by the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University.

When security forces, insurgents, journalists and humanitarian workers were included, the war’s death toll rose to an estimated 176,000 to 189,000, the study said.

Bitter Mouse Posted: June 02, 2014 at 07:48 AM | 4613 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: otp, politics, stupid ideas

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   3601. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 19, 2014 at 04:38 PM (#4730907)
Flip
   3602. GregD Posted: June 19, 2014 at 04:47 PM (#4730933)
When Capitalism runs amok and becomes plutocracy it becomes ripe for nonsense like communism. One of many reasons we need to get income inequality under control, and why under the threat of Communism the US and others tempered their Capitalism to the benefit of the worker.
You sound like Teddy Roosevelt or one of those other Reds!
   3603. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 19, 2014 at 04:57 PM (#4730944)
Diem was a Catholic in a country that was overwhelmingly Buddhist, and he about as much chance of surviving in the long run without western military crutches as an ice cream cone in the Sahara. Eisenhower himself admitted that in a free election in 1954, Ho Chi Minh would have been the winner. The North Vietnamese quickly established a Stalinist state after the partition, with "land reform" and mass evacuation, but there was never any credible nationalist force that had any chance at all of succeeding without a permanent American occupation.

So? Syngman Rhee had no chance of succeeding without permanent American military support. But, we gave that support, and he succeeded. The result 50 years later being an immensely prosperous and democratic South Korea.

I don't see why that model couldn't have worked in South Vietnam.

When the will of the people will lead to a Stalinist state, you ignore the will of the people.
   3604. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 19, 2014 at 04:58 PM (#4730945)
Diem was a real nationalist


In his own peculiar way I suppose so, when the French were there he wanted more "autonomy" when the Japanese were there he was negotiating with them to become their puppet leader of an "Independent" Vietnam (You know like "Manchukou" in China) but alas the war went south against Japan...

and as for the Montagnards and other ethnic minorities supporting him???? No and then hell no, he was all for putting the government boot on ethnic minorities....

Basically he got the top job because he was the only one in the South's initial government who could make the claim that he wasn't an ex-colonial collaborator without having a bolt of lightning instantly strike him dead.

OTOH he seems to have come by his anti-communism honestly and not opportunistically, I guess that's what you're picking up on, but Diem as some great nationalist leader? He was the Vietnamese version of al-Maliki.

   3605. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:02 PM (#4730950)
I have no need to make up a bogeyman of "civilizational war" where none exists.

Neither do I, but I do have a need to see things clearly and speak truths.
   3606. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:05 PM (#4730953)
Neither do I, but I do have a need to see things clearly and speak truths.


It must be hard living in cowering fear every day of your life. Sad and pathetic, but hard.
   3607. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:08 PM (#4730960)
When Capitalism runs amok and becomes plutocracy it becomes ripe for nonsense like communism.

You didn't have capitalism in Vietnam you had feudalism, and communist propaganda is and has always been very appealing to landless feudal serfs.

The "Communists" in Vietnam only turned Stalinist after we (the US) ditched them (because of France) and they turned to the Soviets who sent them money, weapons and "advisers."

20/20 hindsight, 1945 when Ho declared an independent Vietnam we should have recognized it and told France to #### off. After China fell to Communism the Vietnamese (Under the Viet Nimh) would have been as firmly in our corner as any western capitalist country. From 1945 onward our Vietnamese policy was one mistake compounding another in a seemingly endless series.
   3608. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:09 PM (#4730961)
Prosecutors believe Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a potential 2016 Republican candidate for president, was at the center of a nationwide “criminal scheme” to illegally coordinate fundraising with outside conservative groups, according to previously secret court documents released Thursday.

The attack ads write themselves.

I'm afraid the Unhappy Rodent's joy will be short-lived on this one. While the material he excerpted makes it sounds like charges against Walker are coming soon, the fact is that the politically-motivated investigation that included him & others has already been thrown out by a federal judge. Prosecutors included the document about their "beliefs" as part of their appeal of that ruling. However, there is talk that those same prosecutors face more legal jeopardy than Walker. More than one court has rejected their theory - you can't claim an unconstitutional interpretation as justification for investigating someone. Some folks might be disbarred before this is over.
   3609. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:09 PM (#4730963)
and as for the Montagnards and other ethnic minorities supporting him???? No and then hell no, he was all for putting the government boot on ethnic minorities....

I said the minorities opposed Ho (who wanted to kill them and drive them from the country, not just oppress them) and supported the French and Americans. Never said they liked Diem.

But, those minorities could have been a useful, anti-Communist, force in an American backed South. They provided some of the best local troops, and were particularly successful working with our Special Forces.
   3610. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:11 PM (#4730970)
It must be hard living in cowering fear every day of your life. Sad and pathetic, but hard.

I spend my whole life in soft areas in Target Zone 1 and never give terrorism a second thought. You're the one hiding out in the swamps.
   3611. Joe Kehoskie Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:15 PM (#4730974)
However, there is talk that those same prosecutors face more legal jeopardy than Walker.

The article I read today talked about "John Doe prosecutors." I had never heard of such a thing. Why would a prosecutor be granted John Doe status, and how common is it?
   3612. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:17 PM (#4730978)
I spend my whole life in soft areas in Target Zone 1 and never give terrorism a second thought. You're the one hiding out in the swamps.


Careful. There might be an airplane flying overhead. We should murder a million people just in case.
   3613. BDC Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:20 PM (#4730979)
I spend my whole life in soft areas in Target Zone 1 and never give terrorism a second thought

I wouldn't say I'm afraid, but I would say that my chances of getting shot by one of these domestic Open Carry bozos are vastly greater than my being targeted by the apocalyptic forces of my supposed civilizational enemies.
   3614. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:20 PM (#4730980)
So? Syngman Rhee had no chance of succeeding without permanent American military support.


Rhee was a long term opponent of the Japanese and was associated with/ the head of a provisional government in exile for over 30 years before becoming head of South Korea, Diem OTOH collaborated with French Colonial Authorities during most of that same time frame.

Kim Il-sung by contrast was no Ho Chi Minh who'd fought the French and later the Japanese, he was a Soviet soldier of Korean descent who was handpicked by Stalin and whose regime embarked on the most Orwellian Cult of Personality scheme the world has ever seen initially to hide the fact that he had absolutely zero "nationalist" credibility and later to invent such nationalist credibility out of whole cloth.

Post WWII, Diem could never ever have won a free election versus Ho, Rhee almost certainly would have beaten Kim (Whom no one in Korea had ever heard of until the day Stalin decided that Kim would be the Nork Communist party boss)
   3615. Joe Kehoskie Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:23 PM (#4730981)
I wouldn't say I'm afraid, but I would say that my chances of getting shot by one of these domestic Open Carry bozos are vastly greater than my being targeted by the apocalyptic forces of my supposed civilizational enemies.

Are those bozos currently mowing people down, with the generally anti-gun news media inexplicably not covering it?
   3616. GregD Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:24 PM (#4730983)
The article I read today talked about "John Doe prosecutors." I had never heard of such a thing. Why would a prosecutor be granted John Doe status, and how common is it?
I never heard of it until today either so am probably wrong, but from the Milwaukee newspaper's FAQ it looks like it is a John Doe investigation, not John Doe prosecutors. The prosecutors are known. What a John Doe investigation is according to the newspaper is one where prosecutors can compel testimony and document turnover as they try to determine who if anyone committed a crime. So it starts without a target, I guess? And can be done in secret? And is a rarity nationally but has been in Wisconsin law for more than a century?

I'll defer to anyone with actual knowledge.

If Walker isn't indicted--and it sounds like he won't be at this point but who knows when a special prosecutor is involved--then I agree that this blows over. No one can understand campaign coordination law; most people will assume it is legal. It'll be a minor nick. If he is indicted, though, then he ain't running for president. Cause donors will not back someone who has a trial over his head when there are other candidates to back.
   3617. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:27 PM (#4730987)
The article I read today talked about "John Doe prosecutors." I had never heard of such a thing. Why would a prosecutor be granted John Doe status, and how common is it?


The "prosecutors" haven't been granted such "status"

Wisconsin has a legal mechanism called a "John Doe Proceeding" where after a criminal complaint is filed (by a DA- OR a private citizen) a "John Doe Proceeding" Judge is empowered to issue subpoenas to investigate the complaint- it actually seem very analogous to a Federal Grand Jury Investigation (with similar secrecy rules)- but Wisconsin calls it a John Doe Proceeding
   3618. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:30 PM (#4730989)
I wouldn't say I'm afraid, but I would say that my chances of getting shot by one of these domestic Open Carry bozos are vastly greater than my being targeted by the apocalyptic forces of my supposed civilizational enemies.


I'd likely say the same thing, except neither I nor anyone I know has been shot by any of those open carry bozos, but not that long ago a very large building fell on my office, and some people I know were in that building.
   3619. GregD Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:37 PM (#4730993)
   3620. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: June 19, 2014 at 05:46 PM (#4731003)
I wouldn't say I'm afraid, but I would say that my chances of getting shot by one of these domestic Open Carry bozos are vastly greater than my being targeted by the apocalyptic forces of my supposed civilizational enemies.


Well, yeah. But you're in Texas; you might as well just paint a target on your face.
   3621. zenbitz Posted: June 19, 2014 at 06:12 PM (#4731020)
The Kims were/are all batshit insane. All of Korea would be the same Stalinist hell-hole.


Sure but now the situation on the ground (no permanent war with Eurasia/South Korea) is different. Maybe them winning the war changes everything. It's all just speculation -- that's my point. Like arguing how WWII ends if there's no Dunkirk.

You can extend the argument to ask what if Chiang Kai-Shek had simply consolidated his power in the south of China, rather than losing the best part of his army in a failed attempt to reconquer the north. You might have seen a permanent partition of China, with the south experiencing their capitalist miracle 40 years sooner.


Maybe Chaing in control of all of China turns into a worse butcher than Mao!
   3622. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 19, 2014 at 06:29 PM (#4731040)
Diem was a Catholic in a country that was overwhelmingly Buddhist, and he about as much chance of surviving in the long run without western military crutches as an ice cream cone in the Sahara. Eisenhower himself admitted that in a free election in 1954, Ho Chi Minh would have been the winner. The North Vietnamese quickly established a Stalinist state after the partition, with "land reform" and mass evacuation, but there was never any credible nationalist force that had any chance at all of succeeding without a permanent American occupation.

So? Syngman Rhee had no chance of succeeding without permanent American military support. But, we gave that support, and he succeeded. The result 50 years later being an immensely prosperous and democratic South Korea.


First, Kim Il Sung was no Ho Chi Minh when it came to popular support among the population. That analogy is a total fail. EDIT: coke to Johnny

Second, the terrain of Korea is a wee bit less conducive to guerrilla warfare and/or invading armies than the jungle paths of Vietnam. You're not seriously suggesting that we should have kept pouring more money into that rathole, or are you thinking that South Vietnam would've turned out like South Korea if only Congress hadn't run out on them, or whatever "stab in the back" meme you want to peddle?
   3623. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 19, 2014 at 06:30 PM (#4731041)
Maybe Chaing in control of all of China turns into a worse butcher than Mao!


We pretty much know what Chiang would do as leader, from both Pre-WWII and later in Taiwan, yes he could be extremely brutal towards those actively opposing him, but you wouldn't have seen a "Great Leap Forward" or Cultural Revolution phase
   3624. Joe Kehoskie Posted: June 19, 2014 at 06:34 PM (#4731044)
Thanks for #3616 and #3617. The article didn't do a good job of making that clear. I don't think the article even named the prosecutors, which gave the phrase "John Doe prosecutors" an implied but apparently incorrect meaning.
   3625. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 19, 2014 at 06:42 PM (#4731055)
Maybe Chaing in control of all of China turns into a worse butcher than Mao!


We pretty much know what Chiang would do as leader, from both Pre-WWII and later in Taiwan, yes he could be extremely brutal towards those actively opposing him, but you wouldn't have seen a "Great Leap Forward" or Cultural Revolution phase

Or the bitter fruit of that "Great Leap Forward", a man-made famine that surpassed even Stalin's in the Ukraine. But that doesn't mean there was any serious way of preventing the Communists from overrunning the country, in spite of all that "Who lost China?" rhetoric out of Joe McCarthy and Nixon.
   3626. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 19, 2014 at 06:58 PM (#4731068)
Or the bitter fruit of that "Great Leap Forward", a man-made famine that surpassed even Stalin's in the Ukraine. But that doesn't mean there was any serious way of preventing the Communists from overrunning the country, in spite of all that "Who lost China?" rhetoric out of Joe McCarthy and Nixon.

There was a way until Chiang threw away all his good divisions trying to invade Mao's strong-hold in the north. Mao likely didn't have the military strength to conquer the whole country if Chiang played it safe.

Much like the Greeks in Turkey in 1919, Chiang had all he could reasonably hold, but he rolled the dice on the big win, and got trounced.
   3627. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 19, 2014 at 07:02 PM (#4731072)
Second, the terrain of Korea is a wee bit less conducive to guerrilla warfare and/or invading armies than the jungle paths of Vietnam. You're not seriously suggesting that we should have kept pouring more money into that rathole, or are you thinking that South Vietnam would've turned out like South Korea if only Congress hadn't run out on them, or whatever "stab in the back" meme you want to peddle?

We were positing an alternative geography where Vietnam was more isolated from infiltration, a la Malaysia.

In that situation, I do believe the South could have survived, with a much lower level of US support. i.e we never get the escalation to 500,000 US troops, but stop at Special Forces and advisors.
   3628. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 19, 2014 at 07:17 PM (#4731086)
In Senate Battleground States, Obama Ratings Lag:
In the key battleground states that will decide control of the Senate this November, President Obama's approval numbers are lower than they are nationally . . . That's the key finding in a new poll, conducted by Democrat Stan Greenberg of Democracy Corps and Republican Whit Ayres of Resurgent Republic, that sampled likely voters for NPR.

In the 12 states with competitive Senate races this fall, only 38 percent of likely voters said they approved of the way the president is handling his job. An index of all national polls shows the president's approval rating about 4 percentage points higher nationwide.

That's a tough environment for Senate Democrats.
   3629. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 19, 2014 at 07:22 PM (#4731090)
Second, the terrain of Korea is a wee bit less conducive to guerrilla warfare and/or invading armies than the jungle paths of Vietnam. You're not seriously suggesting that we should have kept pouring more money into that rathole, or are you thinking that South Vietnam would've turned out like South Korea if only Congress hadn't run out on them, or whatever "stab in the back" meme you want to peddle?

We were positing an alternative geography where Vietnam was more isolated from infiltration, a la Malaysia.


I'll admit that would make for a nice wargame or movie. Not sure what it means in real life, unless you know about some dramatic new breakthrough on the SuperGlue front.
   3630. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 19, 2014 at 07:27 PM (#4731095)
Or the bitter fruit of that "Great Leap Forward", a man-made famine that surpassed even Stalin's in the Ukraine. But that doesn't mean there was any serious way of preventing the Communists from overrunning the country, in spite of all that "Who lost China?" rhetoric out of Joe McCarthy and Nixon.

There was a way until Chiang threw away all his good divisions trying to invade Mao's strong-hold in the north. Mao likely didn't have the military strength to conquer the whole country if Chiang played it safe.


And if Chiang hadn't blown it one way, he would've blown it in another. Time was not on his side, Mao had far more popular support in the countryside,** and in spite of the China Lobby's fervent wishes, no American president from either party was going to give him the amount of military support he would've needed to hold out in the long run.

**Communism always seems a lot more appealing in its campaign brochures.
   3631. zenbitz Posted: June 19, 2014 at 09:31 PM (#4731151)
I don't really think I am getting my point accross, but maybe it's too subtle.

The issue is not CKS vs. MTT in an all-china-strongman evil off. This issue is that world dynamics at this level are a complex non-equilibrium phenomenon. One in which you can never repeat a trial. The N is always 1.

Stuff like the Great Leap Forward and NK going full Nork are pretty rare events. One does not really have any data on how probable they are. Did Mao plan his life on how he was going to murder 50M (or whatever, a big number) people? He did not. He had some (insane, evil, totally misguided, megalomaniacal... whatever) reason for doing what he did. If the post-WWII China civil war doesn't work out the same way - or if Chiang wins or whatever - I don't think there is enough prior information to determine even the spectrum of possibilities, let alone their probabilities.

Exactly the same:
Gore beats Bush. Does 9/11 still happen? I think most people would say "Probably" - they would assume they are independent events. But they are not totally independent. Maybe some CIA report gets a twice-over instead of a once-over. Maybe some key person gets his visa denied or whatever. I am not saying this is likely, I am saying I can't even estimate the probability. And it's about 10,000 times worse for the follow actions - Patriot Act, Invasion of Iraq etc.

Similarly Obama's (or even Bush(es) foreign policy. Was the Surge bad? Seems bad! But we'll never know if it was better than nothing. Ditto the pull out, Ditto Putin. We are just blioviating - mostly just echoing our cognitive biases.
   3632. bobm Posted: June 19, 2014 at 09:41 PM (#4731159)
In International Developmental Economics (my grad school area of specialization) we discussed often when some Less Developed Countries did well after WWII and others did not.

I said that I'd never heard of Buranda anyway, and I didn't know why we were bothering with an official visit from this tin-pot little African country. Sir Humphrey Appleby and Bernard Woolley went visibly pale. I looked at their faces, frozen in horror.

‘Minister,' said Humphrey, ‘I beg you not to refer to it as a tin-pot African country. It is an LDC.'

LDC is a new one on me. It seems that Buranda is what used to be called an Underdeveloped Country. However, this term has apparently become offensive, so then they were called Developing Countries. This term apparently was patronising. Then they became Less Developed Countries - or LDC, for short.

Sir Humphrey tells me that I must be clear on my African terminology, or else I could do irreparable damage.

It seems, in a nutshell, that the term Less Developed Countries is not yet causing offence to anyone. When it does, we are immediately ready to replace the term LDC with HRRC. This is short for Human Resource-Rich Countries. In other words, they are grossly overpopulated and begging for money. However, Buranda is not an HRRC. Nor is it one of the ‘Haves' or ‘Have-not' nations - apparently we no longer use those terms either, we talk about the North/South dialogue instead. In fact it seems that Buranda is a ‘will have' nation, if there were such a term, and if it were not to cause offence to our Afro-Asian, or Third-World, or Non-Aligned-Nation brothers.

‘Buranda will have a huge amount of oil in a couple of years from now,' confided Sir Humphrey.

‘Oh I see,' I said. ‘So it's not a TPLAC at all.'

Sir Humphrey was baffled. It gave me pleasure to baffle him for once. ‘TPLAC?' he enquired carefully.

‘Tin-Pot Little African Country,' I explained.


Yes, Minister - "The Official Visit"
   3633. Joe Kehoskie Posted: June 19, 2014 at 10:35 PM (#4731181)

Remember when Brian Schweitzer was a favorite around here? His recent comments probably put an end to his 2016 campaign before it even started. If a right-winger said those sorts of things, the media would have gone nuts today.
   3634. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 19, 2014 at 10:50 PM (#4731186)
The National Journal's Charlie Cook on the mid-term outlook, and, brace yourselves, it's not good news for Obama or Democrats:
. . . it appears that the political environment, national economy, and issue agenda are unlikely to change significantly before November. At this point, this election is what it is, and it will be fought on terrain pretty much like what we see today. Because midterm elections are more a referendum on the White House occupant than anything else, President Obama's 44 percent approval/51 percent disapproval ratings in the Gallup Poll for both April and May are deeply troubling for Democrats. Obama's Gallup approval numbers have risen 3 points since last fall, when they hit 41 percent with the disastrous launch of HealthCare.gov. That improvement now seems to have leveled off, however, and his ratings are still in a bad place. They are comparable to his numbers just before the 2010 election, when Democrats lost 63 House and six Senate seats.
. . .
Still another problem that seems to be growing for Democrats is the general perception—whether someone agrees or disagrees with this administration on policy—that Obama officials lack competence. That on simple matters of execution—be it handling the economy, the launch of HealthCare.gov, the general administration of the ACA, or problems with the Veterans Administration—they seem like the gang that can't shoot straight. The steady erosion of confidence in the Obama administration further limits Democrats' ability to bounce back from negative events.

There was a point when voters hit the mute button and stopped listening to George H.W. Bush and then to his son George W. Bush. We now seem to have reached that point with Obama. Voters have thrown up their hands and lost hope that things will get any better.

Seems like he doesn't think things will bet better for Obama, although he doesn't appear to have ruled out things getting worse.
   3635. steagles Posted: June 19, 2014 at 10:56 PM (#4731191)
Gore beats Bush. Does 9/11 still happen? I think most people would say "Probably" - they would assume they are independent events. But they are not totally independent. Maybe some CIA report gets a twice-over instead of a once-over. Maybe some key person gets his visa denied or whatever. I am not saying this is likely, I am saying I can't even estimate the probability. And it's about 10,000 times worse for the follow actions - Patriot Act, Invasion of Iraq etc.
that depends on whether james woods had al gore's phone number.

Woods took a flight from Boston to Los Angeles one week before the World Trade Center attacks. The only other people in first class with him were four men "of Middle Eastern appearance" who acted very strangely. During the entire cross-country flight none of them had anything to eat or drink, nor did they read or sleep. They only sat upright in their seats, occasionally conversing with each other in low tones. Woods mentioned what he had noticed to a flight attendant, "who shrugged it off." Arriving in Los Angeles, Woods told airport authorities, but they "seemed unwilling to become involved."

   3636. Howie Menckel Posted: June 19, 2014 at 11:24 PM (#4731201)

Hasn't Charlie Cook had some notable "bad beats" in terms of election forecasts of late?

that would seem to be relevant...
   3637. GregD Posted: June 19, 2014 at 11:34 PM (#4731209)
Remember when Brian Schweitzer was a favorite around here? His recent comments probably put an end to his 2016 campaign before it even started. If a right-winger said those sorts of things, the media would have gone nuts today.
I agree that Schweitzer landed the rare self-inflicted knockout punch. (Even Rick Perry's "oops" came in response to a question.) He wasn't my favorite, but I agree that this eliminates him. The Cantor comment is terrible; the comparison of Feinstein to a streetwalker is political poison.

My only addition to your comment is that it isn't big news less because of a media blackout than because no one outside inner circles knows who he is. And now they never will...and he's got nobody to blame for that but himself.
   3638. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 20, 2014 at 12:00 AM (#4731219)
Remember when Brian Schweitzer was a favorite around here? His recent comments probably put an end to his 2016 campaign before it even started.

That may be why Schweitzer is now "deeply sorry":
“I recently made a number of stupid and insensitive remarks to a reporter from the National Journal. I am deeply sorry and sincerely apologize for my carelessness and disregard,” the Democrat posted to his Facebook page Thursday afternoon.

However, Schweitzer may still take a stab at 2016 - he really wanted to run - and there is no cure for Potomac Fever. It probably doesn't end well for him.
   3639. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 12:05 AM (#4731224)
Wisconsin has a legal mechanism called a "John Doe Proceeding" where after a criminal complaint is filed (by a DA- OR a private citizen) a "John Doe Proceeding" Judge is empowered to issue subpoenas to investigate the complaint- it actually seem very analogous to a Federal Grand Jury Investigation (with similar secrecy rules)- but Wisconsin calls it a John Doe Proceeding


This is well summarized. What's funny about WI criminal law, since WI has this 'John Doe' (a grand jury without a jury) proceeding, grand juries are almost never used in the traditional federal grand jury sense. Nearly all felony indictments are issued as a result of an Preliminary Hearing (aka Probable Cause hearing) and then the Information is filed, if a judge/commissioner finds probable cause that a felony was committed by the defendant. I've done many Prelim. hearings in WI, never involved in a John Doe.

John Doe investigations are typically used to investigate allegations of government abuse, often shootings involving police officers, in an effort to compel testimony and determine any wrongdoing. Personally I think this John Doe is (as the Plaintiff states in his suit against the prosecutors) a political speech raid. I can't possibly remark on this objectively. It stinks, its Stasi light. I hope these prosectors are hammered for this.


Wisconsin likes recall elections (I'm pretty sure they lead the country in staging these all time)
They like John Doe investigations, and for those who follow rules of evidence, WI only very recently adopted the Daubert/Kumho expert testimony admissibility standard. The old standard was ridiculously low.
   3640. Random Transaction Generator Posted: June 20, 2014 at 12:47 AM (#4731236)
I spend my whole life in soft areas in Target Zone 1 and never give terrorism a second thought.


As a Canadian, it took me a few seconds to figure out that you weren't talking about some pillow/bedding section in a superstore.
   3641. Lassus Posted: June 20, 2014 at 06:20 AM (#4731267)
Hasn't Charlie Cook had some notable "bad beats" in terms of election forecasts of late?
That would seem to be relevant...


Not to Clapper.


As a Canadian, it took me a few seconds to figure out that you weren't talking about some pillow/bedding section in a superstore.

This is where I often imagine SBB touting his manifestos.
   3642. BDC Posted: June 20, 2014 at 07:50 AM (#4731277)
I've written off 2014 and now my interest shifts to seeing whether Stalking Squirrel can hold his early lead in the Republican primary polls.
   3643. simon bedford Posted: June 20, 2014 at 07:52 AM (#4731278)
hilarious is this thread, kevin pipes in about us intervention having "no role"in a dozen countries where the states were directly involved in for decades ,,, are you seriously trying to undersell the us involvement in the philliapines or somalia? do you know your history? why are you trying to make it appear that unrest , be it muslim or other, appears out of a vacuum? after all SBBs nonsense your post was among the most nose stretching i have seen, and to restate my point, the middle class muslims of the middle east will NEVER support us backed programs for this region UNTIL the states stops supporting the egyptian military rule, the saudi royal family , the emir of kuwait and other assorted tim pot dictators, what this has to do with whatever else you babbling about i dont know, the history of THIS region is the issue that was being discussed,
   3644. Lassus Posted: June 20, 2014 at 08:04 AM (#4731286)
Allow me to troll Ray with some news regarding the amount of money spent on pets!

You're welcome.
   3645. Joey B. has reignited his October #Natitude Posted: June 20, 2014 at 08:11 AM (#4731290)
The red diaper doper babies must be scared shitless of Walker if they're already working this hard to try to take him down this early in the game.
   3646. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 20, 2014 at 08:24 AM (#4731296)
The red diaper doper babies must be scared shitless of Walker if they're already working this hard to try to take him down this early in the game.

Yeah, we want to move him into a full time job of wiping the brown stains off your diaper.
   3647. Lassus Posted: June 20, 2014 at 08:37 AM (#4731303)
I know it's an advanced concept that's difficult to grasp, but fear is not always a primary motivator in everyone's actions.
   3648. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 20, 2014 at 08:46 AM (#4731310)
scared shitless of Walker


I have zero idea* if I qualify as a "red diaper doper baby" but I have no worry about Walker. HRC (or Generic Dem if you prefer to not coronate her just yet) will beat Generic GOP Candidate in 2016, absent really odd occurrence. So I am much more afraid of odd occurrences than of any given candidate.

There are a few reasons for my optimism. First demographics continue their steady march in the right direction. More minorities enter the voting rolls, more young (dem) voters age into, and more GOP voters die out of, voting age. Absent any other factor 2016 gets harder for the GOP nationally. Plus there won't be a black guy on the top of the ballot, and that is worth a percent or so. You need some special circumstances and a great candidate to beat that head wind.

Plus the Tea Party nuts will still be fresh of their very good 2014. They will know they have history on their side and will demand crazy levels of conservative fealty. In order to win the GOP primaries candidates are going to have to go WAY right, and that will make tacking back very difficult. Not impossible, but hard. Especially since many TP folks would rather be pure than win, and so will have little tolerance for apostasy.

So while I watch in amusment as star GOP gov #1 (CC) and #2 (SW) face legal issues I am not very afraid of either.

* It has been explained what it is, but honestly I don't rememebr, except maybe something about the 60s (and before) and communism? Whatever Joey B is a Loon.
   3649. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:03 AM (#4731315)
Schewizer has nothing to apologize for. Political life in America has become a humorless slog. Ick.
   3650. GregD Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:06 AM (#4731318)
Good Vox piece on the Walker investigation

This is the kind of thing that Vox does well. Newspaper articles that start with the news can make it peculiarly hard to figure out what's happening. Vox's piece lays out the steps in chronological order. The overall suggestion is that Walker will make it out okay, since the prosecutors need permission to go to the next stage of the investigation and don't seem likely to get it. The piece also raises doubts about whether it truly was technically coordinated campaign activity. And if a judge dismisses the idea of a restriction on coordinated campaign activity--as the last judge did--then it will be irrelevant.


The red diaper doper babies must be scared shitless of Walker if they're already working this hard to try to take him down this early in the game.

I don't think it's a secret that Wisconsin Dems have been trying to take him out for years because of the damage they believe he is doing to the state both in terms of policy and in terms of destroying the customs in the state of cross-partisan deal-making. I don't think Walker is the target of a big national hunt--and in fact there's zero evidence of that--since I think Dems nationally think of him as literally generic Republican. That may well make him better than the specific Republican candidates, but he's easy enough to replace on their bench if he goes down, which I don't think he will. Christie was always seen differently by national Dems since he's got strengths that no other obvious R has as well as weaknesses that no other obvious R has.
   3651. Lassus Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:11 AM (#4731320)
* It has been explained what it is, but honestly I don't rememebr, except maybe something about the 60s (and before) and communism? Whatever Joey B is a Loon.

Children of actual card-carrying Communists from the 60s. My girlfriend happens to be one, but I imagine they are pretty rare and I doubt Joey has ever met one.
   3652. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:20 AM (#4731325)
more young (dem) voters age into, and more GOP voters die out of, voting age.

Young voters seem to be turning against the Democrats. Their inability to find jobs seems to be having an impact. Not everyone is as happy as we are in Mom's basement.
   3653. Ron J2 Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:32 AM (#4731330)
You can extend the argument to ask what if Chiang Kai-Shek had simply consolidated his power in the south of China


Couldn't happen. The man was a military incompetent whose commanders were both corrupt and incompetent. He loses just as quickly unless there's massive external support -- and that wasn't happening.
   3654. GregD Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:33 AM (#4731332)
Young voters seem to be turning against the Democrats.
This seems true among the very youngest eligible voters. At minimum they are not enthusiastic about Democrats. At maximum they may flip to Republicans. Whether it continues for the kids now 15-17 will be interesting to see and important down the road.

But I don't think the causality is right. The people sad about being in the basement should be people 24-30 or something, and they are still Democrats.

I think it's part of the incredibly contextual way people learn politics. People who started paying attention post-2010 (and in reality very few people now 18 started paying attention before then) see a presidency that looks disappointing to them and don't recall the Bush administration so don't compare it to that. There may be flaws with seeing it that way, but it's natural on human terms, and fits prior generations (where you can see incredibly specific divisions among people who reach their late teens (so in that era not yet voters) in the heyday of the New Deal vs those who were 5-6 years younger and so learn politics in the fighting of 1937-41.

One way of seeing it is through two competing theories of the last 12 years:
1) Democrats have inherent advantages based on the growth of Latinos and Asians and the disaffection of educated people for the Republicans appeal to religious doctrine on social issues

or

2) Republicans had and maybe still have inherent advantages. Rove was right. But what happened is that Bush II nuked the party's image irretrievably among a sizable cohort.

If #1 is right, then the Republicans have to change or count on people to change.

If #2 is right, it's good news and bad news for Republicans. The good news is that they probably don't have to change substantially. The bad news is there's a cohort baked into the political system that they'll never get back until they die. The question will be how big that cohort is.
   3655. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:33 AM (#4731333)
Young voters seem to be turning against the Democrats. Their inability to find jobs seems to be having an impact. Not everyone is as happy as we are in Mom's basement.


And by "turning against" you mean still in favor of dems, but by a less lopsided manner, right?

EDIT: Or kind of what GregD said, except he said it better and with more words.
   3656. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:35 AM (#4731334)
I don't think it's a secret that Wisconsin Dems have been trying to take him out for years because of the damage they believe he is doing to the state both in terms of policy and in terms of destroying the customs in the state of cross-partisan deal-making. I don't think Walker is the target of a big national hunt--and in fact there's zero evidence of that--since I think Dems nationally think of him as literally generic Republican. That may well make him better than the specific Republican candidates, but he's easy enough to replace on their bench if he goes down, which I don't think he will. Christie was always seen differently by national Dems since he's got strengths that no other obvious R has as well as weaknesses that no other obvious R has.


I agree with this. There's a national interest in keeping an eye on Walker so to speak by the left, but the local WI Dems. are the ones that loathe Walker with the heat of a thousand suns. To the extent the national left was actively involved in events related to Walker, was during the recall election.

I go back a few pages when I said Walker is the devil to the WI left because he stuck his finger in the eye of the public unions (minus police and fire) and survived a recall election, winning by a wider margin than in his previous election. There's desperation to defeat him this fall
and basically every stop has been pulled in an effort to defeat him. I would've though they would have a better candidate than Mary Burke. The only state/local WI pol. I recall having a segment of the public hate more than Walker, was the guy Walker replaced as Milw. Co. Executive in 2002 (the disgraced late Tom Ament).
   3657. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:40 AM (#4731336)
Remember when Brian Schweitzer was a favorite around here?


no.
   3658. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:42 AM (#4731337)
And by "turning against" you mean still in favor of dems, but by a less lopsided manner, right?

Hence the word "turning" as opposed to "have turned".

People naturally trend more conservative as they age. Democrats have had an advantage among young voters forever, because young people are naive, and the liberal brainwashing that goes on in most colleges and many high schools.
   3659. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:46 AM (#4731339)
The Cantor comment is terrible


I'm, as anti-white southerner as you can be.... or so I thought, but I gotta admit Schweitzer out did me there...


the Feinstein thing, well yeah, many/most pols ARE prostitutes, but using streetwalker imagery when talking about a female pol? Why don't you leave that type of crap to slime like Rushbo and the late Fred Phelps
   3660. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:49 AM (#4731342)
Wisconsin likes recall elections


Recall elections are a bad idea, recall elections when you have an electorate as polarized as the current one are a really bad idea.
   3661. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:50 AM (#4731344)
Whatever Joey B is a Loon.


I'm pretty sure that if you ran a scrub of all of the Lunatic's posts in the OTP threads, they'd coincide near universally with frustrating Nats loss. He only trolls by this way when he has a lot of pent up anger and wants to fight. He's adorable in a rabid dog sort of way.
   3662. Greg K Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:51 AM (#4731345)
Recall elections are a bad idea, recall elections when you have an electorate as polarized as the current one are a really bad idea.

There isn't the equivalent of a non-confidence vote in American politics right? I guess there couldn't be if the executive is not part of the legislative branch.
   3663. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:53 AM (#4731348)
There isn't the equivalent of a non-confidence vote in American politics right? I guess there couldn't be if the executive is not part of the legislative branch.

Correct. The speaker/majority leader of an legislative branch would be subject to being voted out mid-term, by the members (e.g. Boehner or Reid could be toppled today by their parties), but that doesn't apply to executives.
   3664. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:55 AM (#4731349)
Democrats have had an advantage among young voters forever, because young people are naive, and the liberal brainwashing that goes on in most colleges and many high schools.


It's true, I had to wait until I moved to Mississippi to learn the real truth about the War of Northern Aggression.
   3665. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 20, 2014 at 09:56 AM (#4731351)
People naturally trend more conservative as they age. Democrats have had an advantage among young voters forever, because young people are naive, and the liberal brainwashing that goes on in most colleges and many high schools.


I am reasonably sure this is a myth that is not true (which is redundant I guess), or certainly not as true as it is often stated. During the Reagan years, for example, young voters favored St. Ronnie (and his party). My understanding - from an analysis a while back - is that cohorts tend to be fairly stable in their preference. But of course cohorts age and change their participation patterns, which you have to account for in your analysis.
   3666. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:02 AM (#4731356)
That may well make him better than the specific Republican candidates, but he's easy enough to replace on their bench if he goes down, which I don't think he will. Christie was always seen differently by national Dems since he's got strengths that no other obvious R has as well as weaknesses that no other obvious R has.


Many Dems/Lefties see* Christie as someone whom a non-wingnut could plausibly hold their nose and vote for- that's why Christie scares them more than any other plausible GOP 2016 candidate- absent a "back swan" event** they (lefties) really have a hard time seeing a GOP POTUS after the 2016 election.


*Obviously many on the left are not real good as determining who is or is not acceptable to the non-rabidly partisan among us, of course those on the far right have the same tunnel vision (different tunnel of course).

** At this point the only "black swan" event the lefties are worried about is a full fledged recession between now and 11/2016- the right has gone so far into boy who cried wolf territory that stuff that should really nuke him would fall on deaf ears outside the echo chamber.
   3667. GregD Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:04 AM (#4731361)
People naturally trend more conservative as they age. Democrats have had an advantage among young voters forever, because young people are naive, and the liberal brainwashing that goes on in most colleges and many high schools.
As a question of political affiliation, this has been disproved. It is possible that liberal Dems become moderate Dems over time, or moderate Reps become conservative Reps. But for most people political affiliation becomes set in the first years they begin paying attention (shaped as far as we can tell by a mix of their parents' beliefs and the particular political narratives of that moment) and then are very sticky over time. People participate at different rates at different ages, and new demographics enter in, but you can see amazing continuity in voting patterns among cohorts over time.

Thus you get the seeming oddity that the very youngest voters are more conservative than the voters 5-7 years older than them, which would make no sense if aging led to conservatism.

But instead political identity is highly shaped by personal experience in one's mid to late teens. So people who came of age between 2004 and 2009 are firmly Democratic. People who came of age between 2010 and today seem likely to be more conservative. Whether that means they split or that they are actually pro-R, time will tell.
   3668. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:06 AM (#4731363)
that's why Christie scares them more than any other plausible GOP 2016 candidate


For most lefties you are correct. I am firmly of the opinion he has zero chance nationally because his "package"* won't play across the nation. I am in a minority though, and with the Bridge scandal it may be a moot point.

* Heh. Politics, personality, and honestly his weight.
   3669. GregD Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:06 AM (#4731364)
Here's a Pew study on the age cohort-voting pattern

Ed to add: The Pew study focuses on who was president when one turned 18 but other work has focused on particular political alignments or narratives to capture the way people who turned 18 in 1933 voted quite distinctly from people who turned 18 in 1939.
   3670. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:10 AM (#4731366)
It is possible that liberal Dems become moderate Dems over time


Personally I have been essentially more liberal over time. Well sort of. I am still a huge believer in capitalism and the importance of corporations and so on, but in today's political environment corporations have too much power, and so I have gone left in reaction to that, not from any major change (well there have been some changes I admit) in political philosophy.

But I do suspect most people moderate a bit as they age in terms of philosophy.
   3671. GregD Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:12 AM (#4731367)
For most lefties you are correct. I am firmly of the opinion he has zero chance nationally because his "package"* won't play across the nation. I am in a minority though, and with the Bridge scandal it may be a moot point.
I myself was less scared because I was confident he could not survive an R primary under any circumstances. In a general election, paired against a Democrat, Christie would still be able to carry all the R states by default, and it would have been interesting to see if he could reach the voters who have voted D in the last pres elections but will vote R in state ones, especially suburbanites. Now we'll never know!
   3672. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:19 AM (#4731373)
Looking at 538... It looks like the % of people who think their OWN congressman deserves re-election has dipped to an all time low (all time being 1992 to date when Gallup started asking that question- the previous low was right around 1993)... I think we may see an unusually high number of incumbents(both parties) get tossed this fall.
   3673. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:24 AM (#4731375)
I am firmly of the opinion he has zero chance nationally because his "package"* won't play across the nation.


I'm firmly of the opinion that he's a "regional" candidate whose campaign was gonna go over like a lead balloon in most GOP Primary states even without Bridgegate or whatever they're calling it. His personality was/is really going to turn off folks in Dixie and the Midwest, and on top of that the stuff that makes lefties see him as plausibly electable will drive many GOP primary voters to vote against him.
   3674. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:31 AM (#4731383)
that's why Christie scares them more than any other plausible GOP 2016 candidate

The only GOP candidate that scares me is one that would go by the name of "Double Dip Recession". Christie and Walker are about as electable on a national level as H. Ross Perot. I'd love to see Walker have his head handed to him either in court or in November, but either way he's strictly a white suburban Milwaukee phenomenon.
   3675. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:31 AM (#4731384)

My recollection from looking at it is that age cohorts are usually pretty stable- but there are shifts sometimes

1: People born in 1954-1958 voted for Carter in 1976- by 1984 that cohort had shifted R (This is what the YCs of the world are desperately hoping will happen with the youngsters who voted for Obama 2008/2012)

2: There seems to have been a [smaller] shift where people born 1920ish, life long Dems, voted against Obama...

3: Polling data is extremely sparse but there was almost certainly a partisan shift within age cohorts after 1928...


   3676. GregD Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:44 AM (#4731392)
Those are good points and raise the question of what to do about the massive regional party realignment of the 1970s-1990s with conservative Democrats in the South becoming Republicans and moderate Republicans in the NE and Midwest suburbs becoming Democrats.

Is that a one-time phenomena that restored US politics to its normal ideological sorting that had been disrupted by the peculiar alliance between Jim Crow southern Democrats and lefty northern urban Democrats? If so, it can't tell us much about the future since there's nearly perfect ideological sorting now.

Or is it something that somehow will repeat itself as parties shift and new divisive issues emerge?

I think the first, since we are now back where US history was throughout the 19th century--hardened political parties based on real ideological differences--and I think that's where democracies tend to settle absent outside forces. But if that's not true, then you would expect generational cohorts to flip around on partisan lines. (It is notable though that the flip wasn't ideological; most white southern Democrats despised the term liberal in the 1940s and 1950s because it was associated with desegregation (even as they backed Social Security at record levels.) Similarly few northeastern Republicans thought of themselves as conservatives--note their abandonment of Goldwater. So even those two big cohorts didn't switch their ideologies but switched their partisan alignments to fit their steady ideologies. I think.)
   3677. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:51 AM (#4731396)
Is that a one-time phenomena that restored US politics to its normal ideological sorting that had been disrupted by the peculiar alliance between Jim Crow southern Democrats and lefty northern urban Democrats? If so, it can't tell us much about the future since there's nearly perfect ideological sorting now.

Or is it something that somehow will repeat itself as parties shift and new divisive issues emerge?


I think it is more one time than not. Slavery, the civil war and race (esp. African Americans) are fairly unique as issues in the US. The Native American "issues" (history) is the only other ting of similar depth and breadth and it has not had nearly the same level of political saliency.

Of course there will be future shifts and realignments, but I don't see any in the near future with the same impact now that the ideological sorting is largely done.
   3678. Lassus Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:52 AM (#4731397)
People naturally trend more conservative as they age.

In an incredibly useful and convincing sample size of one, this would be exactly the opposite of what happened to my father. Grew up on a farm, taught gym for 35 years, a Nixon/Ford/Reagan guy during that era. At this point, at 73, he's completely in the tank for Hillary Clinton.
   3679. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:53 AM (#4731400)
Of course there will be future shifts and realignments, but I don't see any in the near future with the same impact now that the ideological sorting is largely done.

The big question is to what extent people will sort upon ethnic and racial lines as the white majority shrinks.

Will Hispanics split among conservatives and liberals or will the Democratic party become minority dominated, causing whites to shift rightward.
   3680. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:55 AM (#4731403)
People naturally trend more conservative as they age.


In an incredibly useful and convincing sample size of one, this would be exactly the opposite of what happened to my father. Grew up on a farm, taught gym for 35 years, a real Nixon/Ford/Reagan guy during that era. At this point, at 73, he's completely in the tank for Hillary Clinton.

And Hillary Rodham grew up as a Goldwater Republican.
   3681. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:57 AM (#4731406)
Are we really going to have the argument that individual cases refute statements about averages?

My Mom was was pro-Kennedy at 16, and registered Democrat. She has since never voted for a Democrat for President, but is still registered as a Democrat.
   3682. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 20, 2014 at 10:59 AM (#4731408)
Will Hispanics split among conservatives and liberals or will the Democratic party become minority dominated, causing whites to shift rightward.


Or will the GOP be forced to readjust and/or a third party rise up to fill the void? Because your two options assume two major and roughly equal parties, which is not a natural law or anything. The GOP could founder for several election cycles in a row quite easily. It might not I admit, but it certainly could.
   3683. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:00 AM (#4731409)
I was a total "Nixon's the One" guy in '68.

Of course, I was also 8 years old ...
   3684. GregD Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:00 AM (#4731410)
Those are good questions, snapper. Though I don't know that the "or" is controlling. It's possible for it to be an "and" or a "neither" in your second sentence, right? They're related variables but not totally interdependent.

The other question is whether substantial numbers of Latinos call themselves white--already happening--and whether that has an impact on their voting habits (impossible to say.)

I would also say it depends on the parties. Can a national Republican run on a platform of defusing social issues, still as the more-conservative candidate but one who just says this is where we are on gay marriage and realistically this is where we are on abortion, and I'm committed to stopping future movement but I'm not running a revanchist campaign.

A candidate who could do that would probably win back big chunks of the NE and MW suburbanites they've chased out of the party over the last 20 years since those people are mostly economic moderates if not economic conservatives. But they aren't going to get more socially conservative over time, especially on gay marriage. So the R campaign can't wait for them to drift their way; if it wants them it'll have to drift to them.

Whether it's possible for a Republican to do that is hard for me to say. I wouldn't bank on it.
   3685. GregD Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:03 AM (#4731416)
I was a total "Nixon's the One" guy in '68.
I was like the only kid in my school who was pro-Reagan in 1984.
   3686. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:12 AM (#4731429)
In '72 I sort of pulled for the American Independent Party candidate, god help me ... not that I had a clue what he stood for. IIRC, I liked the photo of him in an ad that appeared in Parade, or maybe Family Weekly. Even named my cat after him.

I'd be shocked if my mother didn't vote for McGovern. AFAIK, she was a yellow-dog Democrat all her life (in marked contrast to my father, apparently, who I'm told voted for Goldwater in '64 & wanted to get a gun in preparation for the coming race war; just as well, I guess, that he was never around anyway & died right before I turned 8).
   3687. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:15 AM (#4731431)
I'd love to see Walker have his head handed to him either in court or in November, but either way he's strictly a white suburban Milwaukee phenomenon


The same Scott Walker who defeated a black Democrat in Milwaukee County with 57% of the vote in the 2008 County Exec election? Again, he was the first R to win anything in Milwaukee Co. in decades.
For Gov. he cleaned up obviously in suburban areas (70+% in Waukesha Co, Ozaukee, etc.) but he really outperformed in liberal counties, and leaning red, yet competitive Fox River Valley (Appleton-Green Bay-Oshkosh-Fond du Lac. He nearly beat Barrett in LaCrosse Co. which shouldn't be close for a (D).
Admittedly in the Gov. race he's at 38-40% in Milw. Co., and he still somehow manages to pull in 30%+ in Dane Co (Madison) which is shocking to me. Your garden variety (R) in WI is typically in the 20%s, maybe low 30s in Milw.

Nationally, no idea? I'd bey the field over him easily. Though handicappers have pretty crappy records opining on these things.
   3688. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:16 AM (#4731432)
Are we really going to have the argument that individual cases refute statements about averages?

No, but wake me when you discover any predictive formula for younger voters that won't change over the course of years. There are way too many changing factors that can affect both choice and turnout.
   3689. Lassus Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:20 AM (#4731434)
Are we really going to have the argument that individual cases refute statements about averages?

Please adjust your sarcasm meter regarding the sample size intro to my anecdote.
   3690. bunyon Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:22 AM (#4731436)
Has it ever been the case that, 2+ years out from an election with no incumbent running that anyone had a clue who the nominees would be?

I guess it's especially unusual in that the VP isn't running. It happened with Cheney but I can't think of another example where a two-term incumbent was in office and the VP wasn't (clearly) running.

I'm just saying the nominees probably depend somewhat on what happens in 2014.
   3691. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:24 AM (#4731438)
I'd love to see Walker have his head handed to him either in court or in November, but either way he's strictly a white suburban Milwaukee phenomenon

The same Scott Walker who defeated a black Democrat in Milwaukee County with 57% of the vote in the 2008 County Exec election? Again, he was the first R to win anything in Milwaukee Co. in decades.


Milwaukee County is 2/3 white, and its airwaves are dominated by right wing talk shows that are dedicated to turning out the conservative vote. The surrounding suburbs are literally the whitest in the entire country.

For Gov. he cleaned up obviously in suburban areas (70+% in Waukesha Co, Ozaukee, etc.) but he really outperformed in liberal counties, and leaning red, yet competitive Fox River Valley (Appleton-Green Bay-Oshkosh-Fond du Lac. He nearly beat Barrett in LaCrosse Co. which shouldn't be close for a (D).
Admittedly in the Gov. race he's at 38-40% in Milw. Co., and he still somehow manages to pull in 30%+ in Dane Co (Madison) which is shocking to me. Your garden variety (R) in WI is typically in the 20%s, maybe low 30s in Milw.


If you want to see 2010 and a controversial recall election as any sort of harbinger of Walker's staying power on the national level, be my guest, but remember that George McGovern was twice elected as Senator from South Dakota. I knew more than a few Democrats in 1972 who thought that this sort of local popularity might extend nationally, and you know the rest of the story.
   3692. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:27 AM (#4731439)
I guess it's especially unusual in that the VP isn't running. It happened with Cheney but I can't think of another example where a two-term incumbent was in office and the VP wasn't (clearly) running.


Biden might run. But I am on record as thinking he can't win, even if HRC doesn't run. I love him, but no.
   3693. GregD Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:30 AM (#4731444)
Has it ever been the case that, 2+ years out from an election with no incumbent running that anyone had a clue who the nominees would be?

Well I would say it goes like from summer of 2 years before:
2012--Romney the first names you would list though not a shoo-in
2008 D--Hillary would be the first name you'd list
2008 R--At that time McCain looked strong. He collapsed in 2007 which generated the surprise narrative.
2004 D--It is a good question about the state of play in 2002--I doubt Kerry would have been among the top 2-3 names
2000 D--Gore well established
2000 R--Bush II well known as the frontrunner by 98
1996 R--Dole a pretty easy guess
1992 D--No one except a true inside baseball person would have pegged Clinton 2 years earlier
1988 R--easy for GHWB
1988 D--I don't think Dukakis would have been pegged easily
1984 D--easy to name Mondale
1980 R--easy to name Reagan
1976 D--Carter was a surprise
1972 D--I think McGovern would have gotten mentions but Muskie would have been #1 I think.
1968 R--Nixon was known to be the guy by 66, amazingly enough
1968 D--Humphrey was easy
1964 R--Goldwater was a surprise. Rocky would have been the default name
1960 D--JFK had lots of momentum but would he have been the #1 name Dems said in 58?
1960 R--easy
1956 D-easy


There have been a couple of surprises--and there have been some no-surprise nominees who had surprisingly bumpy roads--but mostly I think the batting average of conventional wisdom is pretty good.

I would group the hard ones as:
1) true surprises that reflected a changing party--Goldwater in 64, Carter in 76
2) surprises that emerged because obvious frontrunners refused to run--Cuomo in 88 and 92, Hillary in 04.


#1 is possible in 2012 if Rand Paul takes over the R party, though I wouldn't bet on it. There's no similar divide on the Dem side.

#2 is possible if Hillary didn't run.

Assuming that Jeb and Romney don't run, I would say 2016 R looks as wide open as any nomination since the 92 Dems. now if the Rs could only get Buffett to do a Perot and self-fund a third-party campaign, they'd be in great shape!

   3694. bunyon Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:37 AM (#4731449)
Thanks, GregD. Nice list. It looks like current (or last) VP from a party was the clear favorite in 2000, 1988, 1984, 1968, 1960. 1956 was a previous nominee - perhaps Romney again?

A few other "obvious" nominees were a nominated running mate in an earlier cycle. The collapse of Palin opens things pretty wide for R 2016. Wither Paul Ryan? Edwards blew it. Lieberman vanished. Huh. Recent VPs and VP nominees have been a pretty lousy bunch from an electability perspective.

Cheney, Lieberman, Edwards, Palin, Biden, Ryan are all the names for VP since 2000. None of them have ever been a clear favorite for the next nomination. That seems unusual.
   3695. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:45 AM (#4731454)
Or will the GOP be forced to readjust and/or a third party rise up to fill the void? Because your two options assume two major and roughly equal parties, which is not a natural law or anything. The GOP could founder for several election cycles in a row quite easily. It might not I admit, but it certainly could.

Our voting system really, really encourages two parties, and the dynamic of trying to win elections encourages them to shift their positions to be roughly equal. Extended single party dominance has only happened after truly seismic events (Civil War, Depression/WW2 combo)

The GOP could continue to get trashed in Presidential elections, but if it is still holding at least one house in Congress, and a large number of Governorships and State Legislatures, it can't really be said to be foundering, like the late 19th century Dems, or the mid 20th century GOP.
   3696. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:48 AM (#4731460)
Those are good questions, snapper. Though I don't know that the "or" is controlling. It's possible for it to be an "and" or a "neither" in your second sentence, right? They're related variables but not totally interdependent.

The other question is whether substantial numbers of Latinos call themselves white--already happening--and whether that has an impact on their voting habits (impossible to say.)

I would also say it depends on the parties. Can a national Republican run on a platform of defusing social issues, still as the more-conservative candidate but one who just says this is where we are on gay marriage and realistically this is where we are on abortion, and I'm committed to stopping future movement but I'm not running a revanchist campaign.

A candidate who could do that would probably win back big chunks of the NE and MW suburbanites they've chased out of the party over the last 20 years since those people are mostly economic moderates if not economic conservatives. But they aren't going to get more socially conservative over time, especially on gay marriage. So the R campaign can't wait for them to drift their way; if it wants them it'll have to drift to them.

Whether it's possible for a Republican to do that is hard for me to say. I wouldn't bank on it.


Agree, there are plenty of and/ors in there.
   3697. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 20, 2014 at 11:57 AM (#4731465)
At this point, at 73, he's completely in the tank for Hillary Clinton.


That's not moving left. That's staying the same. HRC is the closest thing politically to Nixon/Ford/Reagan as you'll get in 2014 candidates. Thoroughly establishmentarian, consensus centrist, hawkish FP. She's basically Maggie Thatcher for the US. Politically. Obviously the party-line talking points are going to chafe at that, but if you look at what she argues and where her policies tend to land on the spectrum - Nixon/Ford/Reagan is pretty close.
   3698. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 20, 2014 at 12:05 PM (#4731469)
HRC is the closest thing politically to Nixon/Ford/Reagan as you'll get in 2014 candidates.


Except for a few culture war issues (abortion, gay marriage) this is 100% correct.
   3699. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 20, 2014 at 12:06 PM (#4731472)
That's not moving left. That's staying the same. HRC is the closest thing politically to Nixon/Ford/Reagan as you'll get in 2014 candidates. Thoroughly establishmentarian, consensus centrist, hawkish FP. She's basically Maggie Thatcher for the US. Politically. Obviously the party-line talking points are going to chafe at that, but if you look at what she argues and where her policies tend to land on the spectrum - Nixon/Ford/Reagan is pretty close.

That's one way of thinking.

The better way of thinking is that she's Hollow Woman, who has been reduced to having literally no core poltical beliefs. There isn't a thing she says publicly that isn't entirely focus-tested and opportunist, nothing politically that she stands for or personifies in the public mind. So she doesn't resemble Maggie Thatcher in the least.

She also gained political favor and influence by (a) occupying an anachronistic and derivative office and (b) allowing her powerful husband to treat her like a doormat, which lends an air of pathos to her reputation and persona.
   3700. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 20, 2014 at 12:11 PM (#4731478)
The GOP could continue to get trashed in Presidential elections, but if it is still holding at least one house in Congress, and a large number of Governorships and State Legislatures, it can't really be said to be foundering, like the late 19th century Dems, or the mid 20th century GOP.


That's clearly the state of play for the current decade or so. The GOP can't seem to find a lever to compete in national elections (POTUS) and the electoral college doesn't look to be their friend in 2016. But they can win a #### ton of House seats from rural districts, and they control the 'red states' obviously. Owning the House while punting the presidency, with the Senate up for grabs depending on any given midterm's map, isn't a governing strategy, but then again the GOP hasn't seemed particularly interested in governing of late. More so in preventing governance.

And of course, there's the old standby in the GOP/Teaper weeds of a state led Constitutional Convention to end-around that whole "losing national elections" problem.
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