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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

OTP November 2012 - Moneypoll! The Pundits vs. The Election-Data Nerds

Come next Tuesday night, we’ll get a resolution (let’s hope) to a great ongoing battle of 2012: not just the Presidential election between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, but the one between the pundits trying to analyze that race with their guts and a new breed of statistics gurus trying to forecast it with data.

In Election 2012 as seen by the pundits–political journalists on the trail, commentators in cable-news studios–the campaign is a jump ball. There’s a slight lead for Mitt Romney in national polls and slight leads for Barack Obama in swing-state polls, and no good way of predicting next Tuesday’s outcome beyond flipping a coin. ...

Bonus link: Esquire - The Enemies of Nate Silver

Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 31, 2012 at 11:42 PM | 11298 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mr president, off-topic, politics, sabermetrics, usa

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   10701. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 29, 2012 at 12:37 PM (#4312371)
OK I missed the seance one - that has to be a joke.

THAT WAS NO JOKE, MISTER!! THAT SEANCE WAS DONE BY ME PERSONALLY!!
   10702. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 29, 2012 at 12:46 PM (#4312382)
Boy, Conservapedia is really going full-bore with their right-wing anti-science campaign. Current headlines:

10 Questions for Evolutionists
Evolutionists, are you ready for a network of churches about to be unleashed upon Darwinism and atheism?


British evolutionists, 4am GMT 11/27/12. Remember this time/date

Our young solar system

2013: A BAD year for evolutionary belief

The 5 strategies to collapse Darwinism

13 recent grim events for Darwinism

Evolutionism is crumbling

Unreasonableness of young earth deniers

And it just keeps going. Surely there's at least a bit more to conservative thought than hating science, isn't there?

Edit: OK, here's a not-Creationist article that has some pertinence to BBTF:

Atheism and sports performance
Besides lacking the aforementioned benefits that religion bestows on athletes, atheists have higher rates of depression and suicide than the religious (see: Atheism and mental health and Atheism and depression and Atheism and suicide). This suggests that atheism is a detriment to sports performance.
   10703. The District Attorney Posted: November 29, 2012 at 12:46 PM (#4312383)
I've read his major books but don't follow his blog, but hasn't he come out with some of that Angry Old Man #### more than a few times before?
Well, he has some unique ideas, but they're on both sides (or sometimes no side). It very much surprised me that he might endorse a straight partisan as the only honest man in Washington.

The complete back and forth was:
In re Republicans wanting aq map for economic policy-- seems to me Grover Norquist is giving directions more than offering a map. Or maybe I just don't understand the analogy?
That's not economic policy; that's tax policy. Totally different. And God bless Grover Norquist; he's the only guy in Washington who is standing up for YOU and against the lobbyists.
So it'd be a little weird if James were shooting down an objection to Norquist in one sentence, and then being sarcastic against Norquist in the next sentence. But it certainly is possible. We'll see if he responds to the commenter who did in fact inform him that the guy is a lobbyist.
   10704. spike Posted: November 29, 2012 at 12:51 PM (#4312389)
"In 2010, the NOAA was caught reporting hilariously inaccurate temperatures in some localities in an apparent attempt to report higher average temperatures. We're not talking about slight massaging of the data -- the NOAA reported temperatures of 430 degrees Fahrenheit in northern Lake Michigan.

The more we dig into this shadowy, quasi-military organization, the more we're frightened. We'll have a full report in the days ahead."

Really, just exemplary work here.
   10705. Bitter Mouse Posted: November 29, 2012 at 12:54 PM (#4312391)
I totally agree this stuff is completely priceless but there is some fish/barrel action happening here. I mean there are some loony sites on the left as well.

That said I admit to laughing.
   10706. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 29, 2012 at 12:57 PM (#4312395)
That's not economic policy; that's tax policy. Totally different. And God bless Grover Norquist; he's the only guy in Washington who is standing up for YOU and against the lobbyists.


So it'd be a little weird if James were shooting down an objection to Norquist in one sentence, and then being sarcastic against Norquist in the next sentence. But it certainly is possible. We'll see if he responds to the commenter who did in fact inform him that the guy is a lobbyist.

But how can anyone possibly recognize Grover Norquist's name and not realize that he's perhaps the most successful Washington lobbyist in the past 20 years?

If I had to compare James to someone from another field whose politics seem to drift further and further rightward with each passing year, it'd be P.J. O'Rourke, but at least O'Rourke has a certain amount of self-awareness and humor embedded in his rantings.
   10707. DA Baracus Posted: November 29, 2012 at 12:57 PM (#4312396)
I mean there are some loony sites on the left as well.


And those are just as fun to laugh at unless you're an ignorant partisan.
   10708. The Chronicles of Reddick Posted: November 29, 2012 at 12:58 PM (#4312398)
Hostess Executive bonuses


Well at least they have been consistent in their decision making.
   10709. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:06 PM (#4312409)
CoB, I need a link for this please:

On his show Wednesday night, Fox News host Bill O’Reilly accused American Atheists president David Silverman of being a “fascists” who wanted to banish Christmas from the United States...
   10710. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:08 PM (#4312411)
It seems that some on the right are just retreating deeper into their own bubble reality...

What's scary is that at some point people will actually begin to ACT upon their beliefs (by beliefs I don't mean their political philosophy per se, I mean their belief that black helicopters are spying on them, that there has been a foreign sponsored coup de tat or that one is imminent, that there really is a "war" on Christmas, etc.)
   10711. spike Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:08 PM (#4312412)
I mean there are some loony sites on the left as well.

I can't think of anything that rivals conservapedia. Or unskewedpolls/Barackofraudo for that matter.
   10712. The John Wetland Memorial Death (CoB) Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:10 PM (#4312415)
CoB, I need a link for this please:


Link, with video.
   10713. spike Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:10 PM (#4312416)
   10714. rr Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:11 PM (#4312418)
I read the James/Norquist comment as James being sarcastic, due to the "God Bless" phrasing. ISTM that is James were praising Norquist for real, he would go with different rhetoric. But I didn't see the whole context; I don't follow James on-line.
   10715. zenbitz Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:13 PM (#4312421)
I admit to being vaguely curious about what was going to be "bad for Darwinism". It turns out it's just "more evangelical christians".
Well, I can't even refute that. Boring.

Although it would solve the GOPs demographics problem.
   10716. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:24 PM (#4312434)
I mean there are some loony sites on the left as well.


And those are just as fun to laugh at unless you're an ignorant partisan.

There probably are such sites, but their messages don't get incorporated into mainstream liberal thinking to remotely the same degree that the mouthbreathing right wing sites get echoed among the "mainstream" of the Republican base.
   10717. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:30 PM (#4312442)
that there really is a "war" on Christmas, etc.


To quote something I once read on another site, there was a war on Christmas but now it's over. Santa won.
   10718. The District Attorney Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:30 PM (#4312444)
I suppose "That's not economic policy; that's tax policy. Totally different." could be sarcastic too. :) Really not sure.

The point in the article that was originally being responded to boils down to:
There are two kinds of people. There are people who, when they need to go somewhere that they have not gone before, want to look at a map and carry a map with them, and want to fix the key elements of the map in their minds before they get in the car, and then there are people who want directions, want to know where and when to turn left and how far it is and what landmarks to look for along the way...

Part of our political mess is caused by the fact that the Republican Party is directions-oriented with regard to social policy, but map-oriented with regard to economic issues, whereas the Democratic Party is map-based with regard to social issues, but directions-dependent in the economic area.
   10719. just plain joe Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:33 PM (#4312446)
If I had to compare James to someone from another field whose politics seem to drift further and further rightward with each passing year, it'd be P.J. O'Rourke, but at least O'Rourke has a certain amount of self-awareness and humor embedded in his rantings.


I haven't read any of O'Rourke's stuff in years but if he is drifting further to the right then he is likely off of the scale by now. IIRC he was always at least somewhat to the right, even 20+ years ago.
   10720. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:34 PM (#4312448)
From Conservapedia:

On the other hand, Scripture is clear that God supernaturally created the earth and the universe in four consecutive, normal-length days and that the universe is relatively young.5 Thus, if the observational evidence for exoplanets is sound, which I believe it is (see box), creationists will differ with secular scientists about how and when they formed, not whether they exist.


"four consecutive normal-length days"
yes, crystal clear

" and that the universe is relatively young" yes crystal clear-

1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.


how long was the universe in existence before there was light? How long was there light before God separated light from dark?

Yes "crystal clear"
Dear God, these people are so stupid it hurts.
   10721. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:39 PM (#4312451)

To quote something I once read on another site, there was a war on Christmas but now it's over. Santa won.


I always thought that one of the funniest 'War on Christmas' episodes was when Field Marshall O'Reilly, of the 1st Infantry Christmas Defense Division - was found to be selling only Holiday ornaments on his website...

   10722. Steve Treder Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:42 PM (#4312454)
There are two kinds of people. There are people who, when they need to go somewhere that they have not gone before, want to look at a map and carry a map with them, and want to fix the key elements of the map in their minds before they get in the car, and then there are people who want directions, want to know where and when to turn left and how far it is and what landmarks to look for along the way...

Part of our political mess is caused by the fact that the Republican Party is directions-oriented with regard to social policy, but map-oriented with regard to economic issues, whereas the Democratic Party is map-based with regard to social issues, but directions-dependent in the economic area.


What?
   10723. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:43 PM (#4312455)
if christmas is called off please don't tell my wife. it's the only time i still get homemade candy.

divinity.................yum
   10724. Jack Keefe Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:46 PM (#4312462)
Let me explane this for you guys. A democrat is like a girl you know how we do not like to fite in wars and we are concouis of our Dress Al. And so we ask for Directions when it comes to a Fork in that National Rode. But a REpiblican is not so eager to get into a Chat. He will hem and haw and look at the map and rap his GOPS on the dash bord and end up in Kentucky. Is this so Hard to understand. It explanes Jim Bunting Al.
   10725. BDC Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:48 PM (#4312463)
it's the only time i still get homemade candy

So that's what your generation is calling it these days :)
   10726. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 01:51 PM (#4312467)
did you guys enjoy this article already? (wading through pre-thanksgiving messages)

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/20/john-metz-dennys-obamacare-surcharge-_n_2146735.html?1353420071
   10727. JuanGone..except1game Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:01 PM (#4312477)
Republicans are just being exposed to an uncomfortable level during this Fiscal Cliff debate. All of the loud and boisterous talk of cutting spending is now being replaced by whining to get Democrats to jump first. Similar to their bs'ing about the polls during the election, Republicans desire for "deficit reduction" was nothing but a feint to our stupid press to use as a weapon against Obama. If they aren't willing to put forward a plan for entitlement reform, they need to just go away for a few years and come back when they know what they want instead of what they don't (the answer is anything Obama wants). We are witnessing a broken party that isn't fit to lead a WNBA team.
   10728. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:06 PM (#4312486)
juan

the ire should be directed at the house republicans. they are the ones calling the shots because the speaker has about 60 individuals who are going to kick and scream no matter what is presented.
   10729. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:10 PM (#4312489)
did you guys enjoy this article already? (wading through pre-thanksgiving messages)

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/20/john-metz-dennys-obamacare-surcharge-_n_2146735.html?1353420071


The original article doesn't have what I think was Metz's original statement -- he was going to add the 5% surcharge and cut hours... in effect, pocketing the surcharge while alternately ensuring his workforce would be comprised of ineligible employees, thus avoiding the penalty of not including health coverage (without going back to look at the law... I think the initial requirement is 100 or more full-time employees, which slides to 50 in 2014 or 2016).

Regardless, employers are free to offer their opinions as anyone else... but one thing that always tickles me is when they're surprised by the backlash. Freedom of speech doesn't include freedom from private transaction repercussions.... FWIW - I no longer will order from Papa Johns - not that I ever thought it was great pizza to begin with, but it was better than other chains and delivery was quick. I now stick to mom & pop/local places.

   10730. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:17 PM (#4312497)
We are witnessing a broken party that isn't fit to lead a WNBA team.
HEY! I take my daughter to see those games. No can dunk, but good fundamentals.
   10731. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:17 PM (#4312498)
juan

the ire should be directed at the house republicans. they are the ones calling the shots because the speaker has about 60 individuals who are going to kick and scream no matter what is presented.


This is true - the Senate has actually already passed a bill that extends the rates for all income up to $250k... it's done and ready to go.

Boehner has even had a rather surprising defection.... OK congressman Tom Cole - most definitely a known-quantity conservative - recently said that the House ought to just pass the Senate bill and move on to the rest.

This wasn't a swing district moderate - this was from a Congressman with undeniable conservative bona fides... He's not a 'tea partier' (to the best of my knowledge, he's not a part of the TP caucus) - but he's actually one of the House conservative Republicans that I disagree with on about everything, but not want to kick him in the balls afterwards (just to be clear, that's not just because of this recent statement... I just think he's an honest broker that generally eschews bomb-throwing... we just disagree on everything regarding government policy).
   10732. Jim Wisinski Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:18 PM (#4312502)
Wisconsin GOP: 200,000 fraudulent voters


You'd think that the GOP would have been able to win Wisconsin if they managed to get that many fraudulent votes.
   10733. Langer Monk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:21 PM (#4312505)
John Schnatter, otherwise known as Papa, explained that he was selectively quoted, and actually is fine with the ACA. I thought it was interesting it took until 2 weeks after the election when the original article saying they were raising prices was in August sometime, and so on and so forth. By all means, stick to local places, but if we're to take Mr. 'Papa' at his word, he's on board.

Mr. Keefe on the other hand, I think has discovered the truth of the matter. The reason so many Republicans are found in the rural parts of the country? They're lost.
   10734. DA Baracus Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:21 PM (#4312506)
HEY! I take my daughter to see those games. No can dunk, but good fundamentals.


Women, youth and good fundamentals. I think that only validates the point.
   10735. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:24 PM (#4312512)
zonk

tom cole is being clever in that he suspects the dems who are united about raising taxes on the rich are 'not' united on anything else and that if the gop gives on that one thing they can steamroll a fractured dem caucus on everything else or at minimum win the public relations battle

i think he's right
   10736. spike Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:26 PM (#4312516)
I no longer will order from Papa Johns

The fallout from the post election CEO foot-stamping has been just delicious. Watching Papa John "but,but,but....." about what he really meant regarding Obamacare as well as Metz getting slapped down by Denny's national CEO particularly so.
   10737. Steve Treder Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:27 PM (#4312517)
Republicans are just being exposed to an uncomfortable level during this Fiscal Cliff debate. All of the loud and boisterous talk of cutting spending is now being replaced by whining to get Democrats to jump first. Similar to their bs'ing about the polls during the election, Republicans desire for "deficit reduction" was nothing but a feint to our stupid press to use as a weapon against Obama. If they aren't willing to put forward a plan for entitlement reform, they need to just go away for a few years and come back when they know what they want instead of what they don't (the answer is anything Obama wants). We are witnessing a broken party that isn't fit to lead a WNBA team.

Indeed, and moreover the negotiating leverage is entirely on the side of the Democrats (here's hoping Obama understands that). The Democrats can far more easily just sit back and wait for the Republicans to make some meaningful concessions, because doing nothing and sailing right off the "cliff" in the 1st of January will be more harmful to the GOP.
   10738. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:28 PM (#4312520)
zonk/spike

if you want to know why companies have pr folks this is why. execs say things that can harm the business. and the damage can take a 'long' time to repair
   10739. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:29 PM (#4312522)
i would just caution folks that in any negotiation smug is not a good mindset

just saying.......
   10740. spike Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:38 PM (#4312533)
if you want to know why companies have pr folks this is why. execs say things that can harm the business. and the damage can take a 'long' time to repair

Well sure - but listening to the CEO of Taylor guitars talk about what needs to be done to sustain ebony granted, much closer to my outlook on things than those other two bums, he comes off as a guy who wants to sell things and make money, but understands that the best way to do that involves thinking beyond the moment. Metz/Shnatter just sound like FYIGM sore losers.
   10741. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:41 PM (#4312540)
zonk

tom cole is being clever in that he suspects the dems who are united about raising taxes on the rich are 'not' united on anything else and that if the gop gives on that one thing they can steamroll a fractured dem caucus on everything else or at minimum win the public relations battle

i think he's right


I don't know - to me, it looks like a bit of role reversal from the debate that led to the sequestration deal to begin with.

The Democrats have actually seemed to holding firm - the WH has essentially taken entitlements off the tables... That might well change once the rates are dealt with and there's still the triggered spending cuts - at that point, it might become a constituency battle.

However, with Critz losing, a few other rural (NC mostly) Dems going down -- there just aren't a whole lot of Democrats left representing older areas where SS/Med/Med are death knells.... though, the progressives in the party would certainly pitch a fit (I would probably, too - depending on what the changes are).

I have serious doubts any Democrat would break ranks on education... so - energy spending? Maybe. Social programs? Probably. However, we'd most certainly be looking at cuts far, far lower than 10% -- assuming what usually happens, happens and DoD is taken off the table -- it's just awfully hard to find spending cuts that amount to much anywhere else. Not saying there isn't a lot of money to "not spent" - just that we'd be talking about a bunch of smaller piecemeal cuts and I would assume larger programs like TANF, Pell, etc aren't going away, much less get big cuts.

If it were up to me -

1) I do think entitlements should be excluded from the current discussion. Doesn't mean I don't think that they need to be addressed, just that it's wrong to mix them in with income tax revenue, discretionary spending, and the deficit/debt. Entitlements do not add to debt/deficit, they finance it via intra-governmental borrowing. Unless someone has a cockamamie idea to 'solve' the debt problem by simply ripping up entitlement IOU bonds, cutting SS/Medicare won't do a dime's bit of good regarding the budget deficit or the national debt... they're separate accounts.

2) I would take up the GOP on the idea of tax reform... Don't recall if I've voiced it here, but I do argue with plenty of my progressive friends that tax reform is a good and proper thing. Tax reform, though - is not a one-shot deal. It's like trimming your hedges - you can't expect to do it once and be done... Historically, ever since the inception of the IRC -- we've had substantial tax reform every 25-30 years. We're due. It's entirely necessary and proper to trim back the deduction hedges that have grown over the years - even if only because it makes budget planning easier.... Everyone gets a haircut in such circumstances, though -- and yes, that does include 'broadening the tax base'. Our effective rates have strayed too far from our topline rates. It's time to replay 1986 - with both sides manning up and telling their constituencies "sorry folks, this is the right thing to do and we're gonna do it." That said -- good tax reform takes lots of time. It's not something you can accomplish (at least, accomplish well) in a few weeks with a lame duck congress.... Let Geithner play the Bakker role from 1986, Ryan can play Rostenkowski (which means Ryan needs to bend ideologically, as Rosty did in '86), and there are plenty of Senators who would make fine Bill Bradleys... Angus King, for one.

3) Address entitlements last... Social Security is NOT a pressing need to address this year or next. Medicare needs attention quicker, but PPACA brought a whole host of changes to health care generally... I'd prefer to see that all play out rather than working off of projections that are probably off the mark.

EDIT: Just to be clear on item 2/something I neglected -- good tax reform ALSO has to be generally be done from a revenue neutral perspective... it gets too messy when the ideological divide about spending/revenue enters the mix.... the goal of good tax reform is adjust rates, brackets, and deductions such that you end up with a simpler system that has the broadest 'fairness' to get the same revenue back.
   10742. Gotham Dave Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:43 PM (#4312545)
There are two kinds of people. There are people who, when they need to go somewhere that they have not gone before, want to look at a map and carry a map with them, and want to fix the key elements of the map in their minds before they get in the car, and then there are people who want directions, want to know where and when to turn left and how far it is and what landmarks to look for along the way...

Part of our political mess is caused by the fact that the Republican Party is directions-oriented with regard to social policy, but map-oriented with regard to economic issues, whereas the Democratic Party is map-based with regard to social issues, but directions-dependent in the economic area.

This is vapid. It’s one of those things that “sounds right”, and seems like a deep and descriptive metaphor, until you realize it’s just stupid pithy nonsense based on outdated Watergate-era ideas of our political parties. It’s actually extremely O’Rourke in that regard; since that’s what James was likely going for, I guess he should be commended.
   10743. spike Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:45 PM (#4312551)
I would take up the GOP on the idea of tax reform.

One man's tax reform is another's tax increase. Addressing any of the numerous ways income is shielded from the appropriate level of taxation is almost certain to be a de facto tax hike on somebody, and will be treated as such politically. I agree with you, though.
   10744. Downtown Bookie Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:45 PM (#4312554)
From Conservapedia:


On the other hand, Scripture is clear that God supernaturally created the earth and the universe in four consecutive, normal-length days and that the universe is relatively young.5 Thus, if the observational evidence for exoplanets is sound, which I believe it is (see box), creationists will differ with secular scientists about how and when they formed, not whether they exist.

"four consecutive normal-length days"
yes, crystal clear

" and that the universe is relatively young" yes crystal clear-

1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.


how long was the universe in existence before there was light? How long was there light before God separated light from dark?

Yes "crystal clear"

Dear God, these people are so stupid it hurts.


Thank you.

I can't tell you how many times I've citied the above passage and posed the same questions, to both believers and non-beleivers, all in futile attempts to demonstrate to people that the Bible, even taken literally, does not say what they think it says.

As silly as it may sound, it actually does my heart good to know that there's at least one other person out there who has actually taken the time to read the words and think about what the words actually say.

DB
   10745. spike Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:46 PM (#4312559)
There are two kinds of people

Those who think the world can be broken down into two kinds of people and everybody else.
   10746. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:50 PM (#4312565)
by the way, i sat in on a seminar at an actuarial conference (yes, i need to get out more) and they had a compelling presentation by experts that barring some serious action the aca as it stands would be unsustainable by 2020.

this was not some politically based hatchet job. just a bunch of numbers crunchers in the healthcare industry pointing out the new this and the new that and that with everything in its current state the money just would not be there.

the good thing is that the tweaks needed are being discussed like raising the age for entitlements, etc
   10747. GregD Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:51 PM (#4312566)
The interesting thing to me is that the Republicans in the House should, by my lights, put the Pres on the defensive by putting forward a plausible but painful set of cuts and then making him squirm. Instead they are yelling for the refs. I guess he eventually will suggest cuts but then he'll have a chance to win that PR war too.

I suspect Harveys is right that a terrible package of cuts could get Dem sign off if the tax increases passed through. Probably easily.

Either the caucus is so divided that Boehner can't present anything at all or the cuts they want are so politically unpalatable that they don't want to be associated with them.

On negotiating I would definitely bet on McConnell over all of them but he has little voice. Boehner probably would be a good negotiator if he had power but he's so busy look backward for long knives that he doesn't have room to negotiate. I assume Ryan or Cantor will just have to take over soon enough. Though probably they'll let Boehner eat this ####-pie and then knife him afterwards
   10748. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:52 PM (#4312567)
They also unfairly tarnish Michele Bachmann as a liar, when anybody who follows her already understands that many of her statements aren't meant to be truthful in the first place -- she simply says what she feels.

That sentence alone should be sent in for a Pulitzer.


Not necessary; I feel that that sentence has already won three Pulitzers, in 2011, 2010, and 1971.
   10749. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:56 PM (#4312575)
by the way, i sat in on a seminar at an actuarial conference (yes, i need to get out more) and they had a compelling presentation by experts that barring some serious action the aca as it stands would be unsustainable by 2020.


All part of the plan, comrade.
   10750. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:56 PM (#4312576)
greg

i wrote a while back that the biggest impediment to a deal was whether the speaker wanted to keep his job or not. if he was willing to sacrifice being speaker he has enough members in safe seats who are willing to deal that he could get a deal done and ignore the 60 odd noisemakers

but then he loses his job as speaker

   10751. Gotham Dave Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:57 PM (#4312578)
the good thing is that the tweaks needed are being discussed like raising the age for entitlements, etc
Assuming that Obamacare IS unsustainable, why would it be a good thing to take 65-70 year olds and put them into the Obamacare system instead of leaving them in Medicare, which we at least know works, and at lower costs than private insurance for people of the same age and health.

Do you have a link to a summary of their findings? I’d be very interested in seeing it. Did they assume that the growth in health care costs over the 1990-2010 period would continue indefinitely? Because that was already a questionable assertion before the passage of Obamacare; even more so afterwards.

Although, Roberts basically kicking 10 million people out of the system for no reason (with the help of right wing governors) might completely throw off the whole cost-control aspect of Obamacare, I’m not really sure. It’s a very delicate ecosystem (which is why it’s a dumb idea at heart, just better than nothing).
   10752. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:57 PM (#4312579)
I would take up the GOP on the idea of tax reform.

One man's tax reform is another's tax increase. Addressing any of the numerous ways income is shielded from the appropriate level of taxation is almost certain to be a de facto tax hike on somebody, and will be treated as such politically. I agree with you, though.


It absolutely would and should be...

A couple of excellent pieces I'd recommend -

One is this excellent column in Tax Analysts -- "The Liberal Case for Tax Reform".... it's from a few years ago, when Obama floated the idea of a big tax reform in a SOTU, which went over like a lead balloon. Even today, there's still a liberal misconception about the 1986 tax reform bill -- the complaint mainly about the collapsing of 12-15-whatever brackets to 5 and the fact that it ended up 'broadening the tax base'... but ultimately - as the effective tax rates show, the 1986 reform did what is supposedly the liberal preference... the lower quintiles ended up paying lower effective rates, with only the top quintile paying more (and even that scaled upwards within that quintile). It was the very essence of "progressive taxation". sure, sure - there are outliers everywhere... but good policy on such broad things like tax reform, which hits everyone has to follow the 80-20 rule... You can try to minimize the 20% corner cases, but the primary thrust has to be cold, objective, 'greater good'.

The other is the book Showndown at Gucci Gulch - which documents the 1986 reform process and is actually a pretty good read, despite the relatively dry subject mattter.
   10753. Bitter Mouse Posted: November 29, 2012 at 02:59 PM (#4312585)
The thing with the negotiation right now is the GOP does not want to commit to anything. Obama has said what he wants on the tax side very clearly. The GOP will not say what they want on the spending side. So basically they want Obama to negiotiate with himself and/or pick apart his plan without having any more details than Romney put forth during the campaign.

Obama, smartly, because he does have more leverage in these negotiations, is not playing along. The GOP has to put something solid forth or off the cliff we go and according to the polls the public is ready to blame the GOP for it.

The GOP is in a terrible position, but too damn bad. They need to figure their own way out so they can actually help govern the nation. They have majority in the house and with that comes responsibility. Put your big boy pants on and figure something out.
   10754. GregD Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:04 PM (#4312588)
greg

i wrote a while back that the biggest impediment to a deal was whether the speaker wanted to keep his job or not. if he was willing to sacrifice being speaker he has enough members in safe seats who are willing to deal that he could get a deal done and ignore the 60 odd noisemakers

but then he loses his job as speaker
I agree with this in principle Harveys but the number of noisemakers must be bigger than 60, no? 60 people can't cost Boehner his job. If he has 120 people who will drop him as speaker for making a deal, then yes he's stuck in your bind. And maybe that's the right number. Obviously if he gets a deal he likes from Obama he can get the 30 Republicans necessary to add to the likely Dem votes to pass something but obviously that's not sustainable. What I don't have a clear sense is how many of the House Reps really go in the noisemaker category. If it's 60, he should slit their throats. But if it's 100 or more...

   10755. spike Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:05 PM (#4312589)
The GOP is in a terrible position, but too damn bad.

And in recent years, after rejecting an offer that would have given them most of what they wanted. These guys need to figure out that copping a plea is a lot better than losing at trial and getting the book thrown at them.
   10756. Steve Treder Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:05 PM (#4312590)
Obama, smartly, because he does have more leverage in these negotiations, is not playing along. The GOP has to put something solid forth or off the cliff we go and according to the polls the public is ready to blame the GOP for it.

The GOP is in a terrible position, but too damn bad. They need to figure their own way out so they can actually help govern the nation. They have majority in the house and with that comes responsibility. Put your big boy pants on and figure something out.


Yes, as it would seem that the reason they were willing to agree to the "Fiscal Cliff" deal when they did is that they didn't expect Obama to win. Oops.
   10757. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:06 PM (#4312591)
by the way, i sat in on a seminar at an actuarial conference (yes, i need to get out more) and they had a compelling presentation by experts that barring some serious action the aca as it stands would be unsustainable by 2020.

this was not some politically based hatchet job. just a bunch of numbers crunchers in the healthcare industry pointing out the new this and the new that and that with everything in its current state the money just would not be there.

the good thing is that the tweaks needed are being discussed like raising the age for entitlements, etc


Just out of curiosity, was it the health care industry - or the health insurance industry?

I always believed that the "ultimate" health care solution required reform (and yes, from my big government liberal perspective, reform via laws) in three areas.

1) Insurance

2) Care Providers

3) 'Ancillary' providers (PhRMA/Medical Devices)

Only 1) got a significant trim in ACA... 2) got some changes, but not substantial. 3) also got some changes (well, the devices industry did), but again - not significant.

Someone who I think is actually worth listening to on this is Howard Dean -- Dean has been railing against the current industry's 'fee for service' architecture for a couple years now, and he's exactly right... The standard economic model of free enterprise simply does not work in health care. People do not make rational decisions about health care - and the industry/providers have frankly, abused that. They don't sell you 'wellness' -- they sell you treatment.... and in such a paradigm, why in the hell would you ever cure someone when you can instead, keep selling them treatments?

Another good one is Donald Berwick - the former head of CMS - who has also written and spoken extensively on this.

The industry needs some radical change... and that goes for more than just care itself -- for example, why should Medicare continue to pay for residency programs (which it does to the tune of about 9 billion annually)? In what other industry is the trade 'apprenticeship' a federally covered and paid for process? If you want to make the argument that it's a "public service" -- then great, single payer/NHS here we come... otherwise, it's a 9 billion dollar sop.
   10758. Gotham Dave Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:09 PM (#4312596)
I’d be fine with Obamacare falling apart in 2020 if that’s what it takes for people to realize we need a true nationalized system.
   10759. Steve Treder Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:11 PM (#4312600)
I’d be fine with Obamacare falling apart in 2020 if that’s what it takes for people to realize we need a true nationalized system.

Sign me up too.
   10760. GregD Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:12 PM (#4312601)
Older friends who are doctors say the problem is finance...in the 70s a doctor was doing well, often better than lawyers and as well as bankers. That's no longer true, not because doctors are doing so badly but because bankers are making so much money. So doctors panic to try to maximize, but there isn't enough to be squeezed to catch up. So perversely they make more money but feel worse off and resentful and are highly primed to resist, understandably, any effort that seems to squeeze them. Even if it meant saner hours and better working conditions.

Anecdotally friends in nicer buildings than ours say that all the doctors and lawyers are old; people in their 30s and 40s who are buying into nice but not Russian mogul co-ops almost have to be bankers. The old people in my building were teachers; now they're doctors and lawyers. That speaks to NYC's transformation, yes, but also to the way doctors feel their status has dropped.
   10761. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:22 PM (#4312609)
Older friends who are doctors say the problem is finance...in the 70s a doctor was doing well, often better than lawyers and as well as bankers. That's no longer true, not because doctors are doing so badly but because bankers are making so much money. So doctors panic to try to maximize, but there isn't enough to be squeezed to catch up. So perversely they make more money but feel worse off and resentful and are highly primed to resist, understandably, any effort that seems to squeeze them. Even if it meant saner hours and better working conditions.

Anecdotally friends in nicer buildings than ours say that all the doctors and lawyers are old; people in their 30s and 40s who are buying into nice but not Russian mogul co-ops almost have to be bankers. The old people in my building were teachers; now they're doctors and lawyers. That speaks to NYC's transformation, yes, but also to the way doctors feel their status has dropped.


FWIW...

In the area of practitioners/physicians -- this is something that I think can be traced back to Medicare. When it comes to doctors - it depends on whether the physician in question is a specialist or a general practitioner. Family docs are notoriously under-compensated by Medicare, while specialists are over-compensated - which, together with Medicare's "code it properly and we'll pay the reimbursement" means that hospitals in particular have gotten really good at learning how to 'maximize revenue'... not provide good care, not fulfill the whole philosophical purpose behind the very practice itself -- but 'maximize revenue'.

A friend of mine recently interviewed at several facilities (he's a transplant surgeon) and he said it was amazing how the interviews went just like other friends we have who work in the financial services industry... Forget boards, forget research, forget degrees or proficiency -- the most prominent question was "So what kind of business can you bring to our network?"

Everything kept coming back to generating revenue.

The health care industry is in trouble because it's most important members and gatekeepers -- the general practitioner -- have been relegated to what amounts to entry-level clerks, while the folks in the boardrooms have found out that you can make good coin doing 20 stent implants in a single day, regardless of whether only 10 of them were actually good medical ideas.

EDIT: And just to add -- the problem extends to education and how its financed, the way that the industry DOES pay its 'apprentices' (and leans on them as low-cost care providers), etc
   10762. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:28 PM (#4312612)
Older friends who are doctors say the problem is finance...in the 70s a doctor was doing well, often better than lawyers and as well as bankers. That's no longer true, not because doctors are doing so badly but because bankers are making so much money. So doctors panic to try to maximize, but there isn't enough to be squeezed to catch up.


My brother and sister are physicians on the east coast. They don't gripe about stuff like this because that isn't really their nature, but I can understand the point GregD is making from a more utilitarian perspective. Being able to prolong lives and heal the injured is an inherently valuable skill in any economic system you can imagine.

Remember the old thought experiment - the world is about to be wiped out by an asteroid/nuclear blast/army of zombie Biebers and you can save a fixed number of individuals in your awesome underground bunker until things settle down topside. Based solely on occupation, make your "draft picks" as to whom you'll need to help you re-establish society once you can return to the surface.

Almost anyone would pick a physician first, and if you're getting really serious and specific, you'd probably want a general surgeon, a diagnostic specialist, and maybe one or two other clinical specialists as well. Then some engineers, maybe a blacksmith, a basic scientist or three in different disciplines, someone with a good military background, and so on. How far down that list would you have to go until you decided to include a banker or lawyer? Their contributions to the world as it currently exists have no intrinsic value, they simply exploit an artificial system for their own benefit and that of the people who hire them. The world's best lawyer has about as much intrinsic value as the world's best juggler. Hell, at least the juggler can juggle anywhere with similar value, a lawyer's skills are limited to the systems and languages he understands.

Of course on the other side of the equation, medicine shouldn't be practiced to maximize profit at the exclusion of prolonging lives for those in need. That shouldn't be what medical practice is about.
   10763. Dr. Vaux Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:37 PM (#4312617)
To quote something I once read on another site, there was a war on Christmas but now it's over. Santa won.


Tell that to my music teacher friends who are scrambling to plan "winter" concerts. Christmas used to be our favorite time of year.

I'm all for respecting various cultures, but the fact of the matter is that the majority is the majority, and in this case, the vast majority celebrates Christmas. It's ridiculous to prevent them from doing so. We certainly wouldn't require anyone to participate who didn't want to. But that's not good enough anymore, even though the vast majority thinks it ought to be.

I'm out of step with society at large on certain cultural issues, and I don't expect any special accommodation. I'm a big boy; I can take it. I don't like the music they play in restaurants? Well, I understand that most people do, and few people would want them to play the kind I'd like to hear. The same goes for what' s on television, the way I choose to eat and dress, etc. How could someone be offended by the fact that 99% of the kids and teachers in the school want to have a Christmas concert? You don't want to participate, you don't have to. What the hell is the problem?
   10764. McCoy Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:37 PM (#4312618)
Their contributions to the world as it currently exists have no intrinsic value, they simply exploit an artificial system for their own benefit and that of the people who hire them. The world's best lawyer has about as much intrinsic value as the world's best juggler.

That isn't really true. As the world currently exists they provide tremendous value. Throw us back into the stone ages or worse and they would have no value. Lawyers and bankers helped get the world into the modern world. Laws and an excellent monetary system is what got us out of living in ####.
   10765. BrianBrianson Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:41 PM (#4312620)
That isn't really true. As the world currently exists they provide tremendous value. Throw us back into the stone ages or worse and they would have no value. Lawyers and bankers helped get the world into the modern world. Laws and an excellent monetary system is what got us out of living in ####.


Somebody is a lawyer or a banker. (Almost certainly a lawyer, because bankers do have some value).
   10766. McCoy Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:42 PM (#4312622)
I'm neither.
   10767. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:47 PM (#4312627)
If we get overrun by zombie Biebers -- my first draft picks are random teen girls to use as human shields so I can make my escape.
   10768. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 03:56 PM (#4312630)
That isn't really true. As the world currently exists they provide tremendous value. Throw us back into the stone ages or worse and they would have no value. Lawyers and bankers helped get the world into the modern world. Laws and an excellent monetary system is what got us out of living in ####.


...though - let's just say that if we're about to get wiped out by zombie biebers, we're not getting hurled back to the stone ages. I might want a respected judge or two around, but I think I'd say to the lawyers and bankers "Thanks for all the fish, we'll take it from here" -- nothing against lawyers or bankers, but if we end up regressing as a society, we'll just mint ourselves some more.
   10769. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:01 PM (#4312635)
Tell that to my music teacher friends who are scrambling to plan "winter" concerts.


Yes, what a horrible trial that must be.
   10770. Dr. Vaux Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:08 PM (#4312638)
It's harder than you think. There are not a lot of good songs about winter that don't mention Christmas.

Also, the kids want to sing Christmas songs. Because they, you know, celebrate Christmas and like Christmas songs. It's hard enough to motivate kids as it is without the artificial restraint of keeping them from doing what they want to be doing when there's no good reason for them not to do it.
   10771. McCoy Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:12 PM (#4312641)
...though - let's just say that if we're about to get wiped out by zombie biebers, we're not getting hurled back to the stone ages. I might want a respected judge or two around, but I think I'd say to the lawyers and bankers "Thanks for all the fish, we'll take it from here" -- nothing against lawyers or bankers, but if we end up regressing as a society, we'll just mint ourselves some more.

You'll have to define "wiped out" then. If we're down to a couple hundred thousand human beings spread out throughout the entire globe with billions of zombie biebers occupying the built up areas we most certainly are going to be be hurled back to the stone age. Then when the nuclear reactors melt down we won't be able to go near formerly inhabited built up areas for hundreds and hundreds of years thus keeping us in the stone age for a long time.
   10772. Bitter Mouse Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:15 PM (#4312646)
How could someone be offended by the fact that 99% of the kids and teachers in the school want to have a Christmas concert? You don't want to participate, you don't have to. What the hell is the problem?


Well to start with it is not 99%. and even so at what percent should we acknowledge that there is more to the US and winter celebrations than Christmas? Is 20% enough? How about 35%? 51%?

You see basic respect for cultural diversity does not diminish the dominant culture. In fact it shows it is secure enough, self confident enough to know it is dominant and can make room for others. In fact that is in microcosm one of the thigns that is great about the US, we make room, we are a melting pot.

And the idea that it is the offended that are soley driving this change is I think silly. For example Muslims, Jews, Hindus and Atheists (and others, including some Christians) all shop and many would rather be told Happy Holidays than Merry Christmas (not necessarily offended, but feel more welcomed), and not being stupid many merhcants and others know this and act accordingly lest those customers take their money down the street to SecularMart.

The fact that some folks are threatened by the whole thing, are so insecure that despite their cultural dominance they need to hear in every reference their cultural signals, well it is a little sad.

EDIT: For the record every winter concert I have ever been to has included plenty of overtly Christian songs celebrating Christmas.
   10773. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:20 PM (#4312650)
If we're down to a couple hundred thousand human beings spread out throughout the entire globe with billions of zombie biebers occupying the built up areas we most certainly are going to be be hurled back to the stone age.


How ironic - Bieber outbreak paves the way for the return of rock music.
   10774. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:24 PM (#4312655)
Well to start with it is not 99%. and even so at what percent should we acknowledge that there is more to the US and winter celebrations than Christmas? Is 20% enough? How about 35%? 51%?


20% isn't enough. 35% might be, but I'll wager it's nowhere close to 35%.

edit: I'll further wager there are more people offended by Halloween and/or Valentines Day than are by Christmas, but schools and other government institutions have no trouble celebrating and promoting the former.
   10775. JuanGone..except1game Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:27 PM (#4312661)
If we get overrun by zombie Biebers -- my first draft picks are random teen girls to use as human shields so I can make my escape.


Our only hope is that they are Walking Dead-like slow Walkers instead of the I Am Legend running kind. As you said, there are probably enough teenage girls and Twilight-liking older women willing to sacrifice themselves before they start rounding up middle age men. On another Zombie related note, just saw the trailer for World War Z. Man, that looks bad. I'd love to know what drugs my re-animated corpse would take to learn to scale a wall like an ant.
   10776. Dr. Vaux Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:28 PM (#4312663)
I agree with your basic point, Bitter Mouse, but this isn't a matter of feeling threatened. I don't feel the slightest bit threatened. I know that I can do whatever I want on my own time, and nobody can stop me. It's a matter of what the kids themselves want, and their parents.

But institutionally, I think that the issue should be handled situationally, not with a one-size-fits-all solution. The fact is, the percentage of students at a lot of public schools that are Christian isn't even 99%, it's 100%. I'm thinking about fly-over country here, which does indeed have a lot of people in it. In large cities, that percentage might creep down as far as 80%, though that's still the vast majority (and in some inner cities, it probably comes close to being what it is in Nebraska; there aren't a lot of Jews or Muslims in Capitol Heights or Forrestville). There might be a handful of public schools that have a majority of non-Christian students in New York City or Dearborn. And you know what? In those schools, then by all means, don't have a Christmas concert, have a winter concert. Or, much better, sing songs associated with all the various traditions represented in the group, whatever they are. That would be the way to welcome all cultures--not by shutting down any and all cultures. Atheism doesn't count, because it doesn't have attendant cultural traditions, so there isn't any inclusion or exclusion that can be done, except for singing secular winter songs, which we're going to do anyway. So "Walking in a Winter Wonderland" can be the atheist song if they want to look at it that way. And if you want to not sing the song, again, you don't have to sing it. The idea of a melting pot is inclusion, not exclusion. Neither I nor any of my friends object to including anything. It's exclusion that gets us up in arms.

And in many U.S. jurisdictions, you will not hear Christmas songs at public school winter concerts. That's not just songs that mention Jesus, it's songs that mention the word Christmas, or Santa, or elves, or anything.

Miserlou: In my girlfriend's school, she's not allowed to do Halloween songs, either.
   10777. spike Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:29 PM (#4312665)
Is anyone seriously advocating not using the word "Christmas" at all? The Happy Holidays greeting is hardly going to cancel out the hundreds of times consumers are going to see the word Christmas in any store they go into.
   10778. Tilden Katz Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:32 PM (#4312668)
A big issue I have with the soldiers in the War on Christmas army is that many (but certainly not all) of them also crusaded against the "Ground Zero Mosque".
   10779. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:33 PM (#4312670)
And in many U.S. jurisdictions, you will not hear Christmas songs at public school winter concerts.


Last year my daughter's 4th grade class put on "A Charlie Brown Holiday" play for the Holiday pageant. I was hoping the holiday would be Independence Day so we could shoot off fireworks.
   10780. GregD Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:36 PM (#4312671)
My family practices this radical idea: When our kids are at public school, we assume their songs will either be seasonal-only or will include a melting pot mishmash so that everybody has to answer questions they can't answer about holidays they know nothing about.

And then...wait for it...on Sundays our kids go to church and there they hear songs about Jesus not just at Christmas but all through the year. What an invention.

   10781. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:37 PM (#4312672)
On another Zombie related note, just saw the trailer for World War Z. Man, that looks bad. I'd love to know what drugs my re-animated corpse would take to learn to scale a wall like an ant.


I'm so upset about that trailer. The book was so ####### good, and I had hopes they'd treat with the faux-documentary style it deserves.
The zombies are average walkers in the book. That's what makes the Yonkers story so harrowing.

Or have the kids get in groups by cultural tradition and sing songs associated with their various traditions. That would be the way to welcome all cultures--not by shutting down any and all cultures.


You're suggesting segregating the kids by cultural tradition and THAT'S going to help welcome kids in?!
How about exposing ALL of the kids to as many different cultures as possible.
If you have 70% Christian, and 5% Jewish, 5% Hindu, 5% Muslim, and 15% non-religious, then portion out the songs that way.
   10782. Dr. Vaux Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:43 PM (#4312676)
will include a melting pot mishmash


That's what I advocate.

You're suggesting segregating the kids by cultural tradition and THAT'S going to help welcome kids in?!
How about exposing ALL of the kids to as many different cultures as possible.
If you have 70% Christian, and 5% Jewish, 5% Hindu, 5% Muslim, and 15% non-religious, then portion out the songs that way.


Yes, you'll see that I changed it, because I was originally picturing more-or-less equally sized groups, but that would almost never be the case, and different sized groups might make some thin-skinned person uncomfortable.
   10783. Steve Treder Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:45 PM (#4312677)
In my girlfriend's school, she's not allowed to do Halloween songs, either.

Wait, there are Halloween songs?
   10784. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:47 PM (#4312678)
Wait, there are Halloween songs?


Monster Mash
   10785. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:47 PM (#4312679)
Yes, you'll see that I changed it,


Burned by the edit!
   10786. Steve Treder Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:47 PM (#4312680)
OK, name another one.
   10787. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4312682)
Witchy Woman?
   10788. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4312683)
greg

if the speaker cuts a deal that includes taxes he will get it passed in the house but then lose his job by june of 2013

he has already heard that threat from several channels (tea party leadership, grover, etc) there is the obvious tea party base and then enough others to join that the speaker knows this is no hollow threat

and cantor is a devious pr8ck so he's no help to the speaker. guys like cantor are useful but clearly out for themselves. ryan is staying on the down low because of the election and trying to decide if he should position himself for 2016. voting for a tax increase would kill that idea.

so if the tax increases pass the folks here should acknowledge the speaker placing country before his vanity. for what's that worth.

it really is the single biggest barrier. i cannot help it that nobody is talking about it.
   10789. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4312684)
I’d be fine with Obamacare falling apart in 2020 if that’s what it takes for people to realize we need a true nationalized system.

Me, three.
There are lots of things I don't like about Obamacare: it really does feel like a sop to the insurance industry, having open negotiations on C-SPAN (as BHO promised) could have done a lot of good, etc. BUT if it turns out to have been the first step to a real national health care system, then I will retroactively be all for it.
   10790. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4312685)
Don't fear the Reaper?
   10791. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4312686)
Werewolves of London
   10792. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:50 PM (#4312688)
My grade school was definitely a minority Christian, and I wasn't in New York City or Dearborn.

Look, if your friends are put out by not being allowed to sell Jesus to other people's children, maybe they should find a private school to teach in. Most Xmas music sucks anyway.
   10793. Randy Jones Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:51 PM (#4312689)
   10794. zonk Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:52 PM (#4312690)
You'll have to define "wiped out" then. If we're down to a couple hundred thousand human beings spread out throughout the entire globe with billions of zombie biebers occupying the built up areas we most certainly are going to be be hurled back to the stone age. Then when the nuclear reactors melt down we won't be able to go near formerly inhabited built up areas for hundreds and hundreds of years thus keeping us in the stone age for a long time.


But - we're not going to need a complex system of laws - nor, are we going to need financiers... at least, not for a good long while. I'd just bring along a couple of books on the subjects - I won't have need of any practitioners, at least, not in our lifespans and probably not in our kids' lifespans.

Thinking it through -- here would be my top 10 draft picks...

1) Military/security
Here, I'd probably want someone like a smart, seasoned NCO rather than an officer - a veteran marine drill instructor would probably be about perfect... someone who knows basic tactics and strategy, but also knows how to drill, teach, and lead. Safety in the case of a Bieber apocalypse means security is my first and foremost concern. I need someone that has a good recognition of terrain, how to use it, how to properly use forces, train them, etc

2) Physician
I'll take a GP first and foremost... yes - would be nice to have a surgeon, but let's face it -- in a zombie apocalypse, we're going to be performing a lot more amputations than anything else. I imagine a GP could handle something like an appendectomy. We're simply not going to be performing any open-heart surgeries or such.

3) Farmer
Preferably, one who dealt with both crops and livestock, on the offchance we can get some pigs, chickens or cattle... If said farmer was also a hunter and knew how to butcher livestock, so much the better. In fact - if it cost a 2nd rounder rather than a 3rd rounder to get such a 'premium' farmer, I'd spend my second pick on this and move physician to the third round.

4) Mechanic
We're still going to have machines around, and so long as the equipment holds up - I'm going to need someone to keep it in repair. I'll spend this pick this high to ensure that I get a really, really good one who knows not just the "by the book" instructions, but can make do with spare parts

5) Chemist
Preferably, one in the pharmaceutical area and one familiar as familiar with organic chemistry as with synthetics... someone who can make use of the plant life we'll still have available to us and synthesize everything from drugs to weaponized chemicals.

6) Mechanical engineer
To use with my mechanic in the hopes I can get a moderate amount of industry restarted -- even if it's just some simple security and quality of life things in our little enclave

7) Naturalist
Whether tree-hugging hippy, survivorman-type, or whatever -- someone who can say "don't eat that" or "that's going to attack, let's back away slowly".

8) Teacher
I'm going to need a scribe to collect knowledge and also to pass along the education from my skilled picks above - as I think it's bad assumption that my farmer or mechanic is going to be any good at passing on his or her knowledge. I want someone versed in cataloging that knowledge, developing a curriculum based on it, and able to devise a system or program to pass it down.

9) Judge
I'm going to need someone that can fairly adjudicate disputes, someone trusted and fair.

10) <strike>Mila Kunis</strike>
Because let's face it - we're gonna have to repopulate the species and it's my team, so I get to pick the one who gets to repopulate with me.

EDIT: On second thought, I guess Mila Kunis is pushing 30... so I suppose I'm gonna want to go younger... I'll take Kate Upton... she's 20... child-bearing frame... so
   10795. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:54 PM (#4312693)
zonk

you need someone knowledgeable about electrical/electronics
   10796. McCoy Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:55 PM (#4312694)
Our only hope is that they are Walking Dead-like slow Walkers instead of the I Am Legend running kind.

You mean 28 Days Later kind. I Am Legend kind weren't zombies.
   10797. Tilden Katz Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:57 PM (#4312696)
Monster Mash


That's a Valentine's Day song.
   10798. McCoy Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:57 PM (#4312698)

I'm so upset about that trailer. The book was so ####### good, and I had hopes they'd treat with the faux-documentary style it deserves.
The zombies are average walkers in the book. That's what makes the Yonkers story so harrowing


I really struggled with that book. I wanted to like it a lot but found it rather dull and unrealistic for a book that supposedly was going for a realistic take on a zombie outbreak.
   10799. Steve Treder Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:58 PM (#4312699)
flip
   10800. Steve Treder Posted: November 29, 2012 at 04:58 PM (#4312700)
flip
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