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Thread: Election Methodologies Discussion WARNING: HERE BE DRAGONS!!!

  1. #11
    Publisher Gamerprinter's Avatar
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    Post I find politics too political

    OK, I voted today, and for whom, well that's my business, however...

    I'm all for online voting, by popular vote only and complete elimination of the electoral college. I still believe we need political professionals like senators and representatives to ply congressional muck to respond to their constituents, but shouldn't have overriding power to the popular vote.

    With hacking, is there a possibility of fraud, sure but money is exchanged fairly securely online. The level of voting fraud is far less than the joke of local voting laws which allow for all kinds of manipulation, every state, often even every county within a state has its own method and requirements for voting - such that corruption is fairly easy.

    By applying the popular vote, the big enemy (in my eyes), lobby groups would have far less power, since the real vote comes from individuals not the "college".

    Oh, don't get me started on what's wrong with American politics - I don't want to go there!

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  2. #12
      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gamerprinter View Post
    I still believe we need political professionals like senators and representatives to ply congressional muck to respond to their constituents, but shouldn't have overriding power to the popular vote.
    I don't want to take your comments at any more than face value hence the underlined part, but I believe 100% opposite in that professional and politician are two words that should be far from ever associated with each other. I am a firm believer in term limits, and for me, the fewer, the better. They should get in, do their job, and get out and go home and get a job.

    To me, career politicians are part of the problem with the power of lobby groups. Granted, term limits will not totally destroy this power, but if a person has no chance of being reelected, suddenly lobby/PAC campaign donations are much less of an issue. I think so many people who enter politics do so in good faith and end up being corrupted by the system to maintain power or social status they have manage to aquire.
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  3. #13
    Publisher Gamerprinter's Avatar
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    Post I agree

    When I said, "political pros", I did not mean career politicians, rather people spending at least a limited term in the full time job of politicking. I could see it as a way of community service that many people from many backgrounds could serve in these positions.

    Still, someone with some familiarity and interest in the matters at hand. I'm still refering to such as "them" as in "not me".

    I'm all for the democratic process in our government. I couldn't do it, I'd have to be a dictator to participate, I'm not good with "committees". I've some experience in a board of directors for an Art organization - I don't play well with other committee members. Its not for me...

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    Last edited by Gamerprinter; 11-04-2008 at 11:17 PM.
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  4. #14
      CC_JAR is offline
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    I would honestly like to see congress open up and have open votes online where any american legal to vote, could vote on issues that congress goes through.

    that way, the ordinary people have even more of a say in what they feel is important, they can vote their opinion on whichever topics they feel influenced by.

  5. #15
      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gamerprinter View Post
    I'm all for the democratic process in our government. I couldn't do it, I'd have to be a dictator to participate, I'm not good with "committees". I've some experience in a board of directors for an Art organization - I don't play well with other committee members. Its not for me...

    Heh... I have that disease. Every report card it got in schools had a failing mark beside "Plays well with others"!
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  6. #16
      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by CC_JAR View Post
    I would honestly like to see congress open up and have open votes online where any american legal to vote, could vote on issues that congress goes through.

    that way, the ordinary people have even more of a say in what they feel is important, they can vote their opinion on whichever topics they feel influenced by.

    Errrr, I believe that to be a good idea in concept, but a horrible idea in implementation. The problem is that bills are not just as simple as "Raise taxes on the rich", "cut taxes for everyone", etc. Pretty much every bill comes up with like: "cut taxes on everyone, but every forth person gets a tax increase, and every 9th person gets shot". Likewise, how many people would vote no to the financial bailout package because they percieve it as a way to save "rich" bankers. Granted, I did not support the bailout package, but it had no basis in either political affiliation, nor with class hatred against millionaires. Frankly, I want the government to have less hand in my pockets and life, not more.

    Political adds a such a crock... "my opponent voted no for bill xyz", however, no one explains that the person voted no to the bill that would save the endangered doodo bird from extinction because it would cost 20000 people their jobs. It's kind of like asking someone if they would be willing to be shot in the foot for $1000. Very few people would willingly let themselves be shot, but many would for money.

    On the same note, the ignorance of many people to vote one way or another based nothing more than liking how a candidate looks or who their parents voted for or what they say they want to do without looking at exactly what they have done in the past is frightening. To be honest, in my adult life, I have never voted FOR any one particular person for President, I have always had to vote against another. For me, it has always been the lesser of two evils, I have held my nose as I marked tbe ballot.

    I find it disheartning to see things like the Tonight Show's Jaywalking where Leno walks around asking various people questions and just how ignorant the people are. It's just sad that people who have no idea about history, economics, taxation, etc could in good conciense vote.

    Please note, none of what I say should be taken in an inflamitory way. I truely am sad to see people vote for a particular candidate without knowing and understanding what the candidate stands for regardless of political affiliation. I would much rather those people, Republican and Democrats just stay home. Or better yet, look beyond the hype and your parents preferences and investigate the issues, ALL the issues and make an informed vote on things that will help your town, county, state, country, and not just as those that you percieve will help yourself. To understand what I mean by that, let's go back to my gun arguement. How many people would take $10000 if it meant someone ELSE, whom you do not know, had to be shot in the foot? Suddenly, when it's not you, people tend to become a lot more willing to let someone else get the shaft.
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  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gamerprinter View Post
    OK, I voted today, and for whom, well that's my business, however...

    I'm all for online voting, by popular vote only and complete elimination of the electoral college. I still believe we need political professionals like senators and representatives to ply congressional muck to respond to their constituents, but shouldn't have overriding power to the popular vote.

    With hacking, is there a possibility of fraud, sure but money is exchanged fairly securely online. The level of voting fraud is far less than the joke of local voting laws which allow for all kinds of manipulation, every state, often even every county within a state has its own method and requirements for voting - such that corruption is fairly easy.

    By applying the popular vote, the big enemy (in my eyes), lobby groups would have far less power, since the real vote comes from individuals not the "college".

    Oh, don't get me started on what's wrong with American politics - I don't want to go there!

    GP

    I disagree that the Electoral College should be eliminated. It serves an important function, one of which is to ensure that the many do not trample the rights and beliefs of the few. One of the key successes of America is allowing the majority to have its way only after compromising with the minority in order to ensure that both are as satisfied as possible. The Electoral College enshrines this into the process of choosing a President by ensuring that smaller/more rural/low-population states still have some power--i.e. they are garaunteed 3 Electoral Votes, no matter how small their population, by virtue of having 2 Senators and a Representative in Congress, and no matter what happens to their population, they won't lose those 3 votes.

    Conversely, however, I believe that Election procedures, laws, and rules ought to be standardized across the nation. However, this shouldn't be done at the Federal Level, but at the State level. This, for example, is how UPCs and Seat Belt Laws became ubiquitous: not by Federal mandate, but by States banding together and agreeing as one to adopt these standards. It's hard to get the individual States to agree, but it can and should be done, IMO.

    Further, I think part of this standardization of the Electoral College process should involve Electoral Vote apportionment. The 2 Senate-based Electors should be pledged to the overall State winner and the remaining Electors in each State should roughly match the net popular vote in that State (This means that a State with only 3 Electors will have all three pledged to the overall winner in that State, but a large State like California with 50+ Electors would have a number of their Electors split between the two main Candidates).

    I also think another major problem with American Politics is that we remain a 2 Party System. This ensures that only the most extreme views on either side are the ones nominated by each party: the only way to get Nominated by your Party is to pander to the basest and most reactionary elements at the fringe of your party. (That Obama was able to shift his campaign back somewhat toward the Center, where politically the vast majority of Americans lie, was likely a Herculean feat, and necessary for his final victory.)

    I disagree, also that the Electoral College has anything to do with the power of lobbyists (though I agree with Joe that Term Limits on Senators and Representatives could help--especially Term Limits with Senators, who are less beholden to the voting public at large, being elected for 6 years at a time, and therefore more susceptible to the temptations and evils of wealthy lobbyists).

    Unfortunately, I don't know a good solution to Lobbying, at the moment, since anything that wiped away the power of large corporate lobbyists would also eliminate the influence of groups of actual concerned citizens, constituents, and voters who had organized to get their opinion known by their Congresspersons. And finding something that would pass the muster of respecting Freedom of Speech would have to be delicately crafted. Unfortunately, our system is currently designed such that it is in our Congress' economic self interest not to craft any such legislation that would eliminate the power and influence of corporate lobbyists.
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  8. #18
      CC_JAR is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfrazierjr View Post
    Errrr, I believe that to be a good idea in concept, but a horrible idea in implementation. The problem is that bills are not just as simple as "Raise taxes on the rich", "cut taxes for everyone", etc. Pretty much every bill comes up with like: "cut taxes on everyone, but every forth person gets a tax increase, and every 9th person gets shot". Likewise, how many people would vote no to the financial bailout package because they percieve it as a way to save "rich" bankers. Granted, I did not support the bailout package, but it had no basis in either political affiliation, nor with class hatred against millionaires. Frankly, I want the government to have less hand in my pockets and life, not more.

    Political adds a such a crock... "my opponent voted no for bill xyz", however, no one explains that the person voted no to the bill that would save the endangered doodo bird from extinction because it would cost 20000 people their jobs. It's kind of like asking someone if they would be willing to be shot in the foot for $1000. Very few people would willingly let themselves be shot, but many would for money.

    On the same note, the ignorance of many people to vote one way or another based nothing more than liking how a candidate looks or who their parents voted for or what they say they want to do without looking at exactly what they have done in the past is frightening. To be honest, in my adult life, I have never voted FOR any one particular person for President, I have always had to vote against another. For me, it has always been the lesser of two evils, I have held my nose as I marked tbe ballot.

    I find it disheartning to see things like the Tonight Show's Jaywalking where Leno walks around asking various people questions and just how ignorant the people are. It's just sad that people who have no idea about history, economics, taxation, etc could in good conciense vote.

    Please note, none of what I say should be taken in an inflamitory way. I truely am sad to see people vote for a particular candidate without knowing and understanding what the candidate stands for regardless of political affiliation. I would much rather those people, Republican and Democrats just stay home. Or better yet, look beyond the hype and your parents preferences and investigate the issues, ALL the issues and make an informed vote on things that will help your town, county, state, country, and not just as those that you percieve will help yourself. To understand what I mean by that, let's go back to my gun arguement. How many people would take $10000 if it meant someone ELSE, whom you do not know, had to be shot in the foot? Suddenly, when it's not you, people tend to become a lot more willing to let someone else get the shaft.
    I'm not sure, but you may have misinterpreted what I was trying to say.
    Now true, I believe most people should research anyone/thing they are voting for, or not vote if they have no idea (and are just going on preference).
    But what I was trying to say was that anyone that felt the urge to vote on bills that pass through congress, could have their say about it, rather than just calling/writing our senators like it is now.

    And when it comes to media.. my views on that may be a little extreme (heh, yeah little) But I would like it, if the media would either shut down for the 3-4 months before elections, or just keep their opinions out of it.
    There is too much 'telling us what we do/n't want to hear, and too little telling us where they stand, and what they'll really do in office'.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by CC_JAR View Post
    I'm not sure, but you may have misinterpreted what I was trying to say.
    Now true, I believe most people should research anyone/thing they are voting for, or not vote if they have no idea (and are just going on preference).
    But what I was trying to say was that anyone that felt the urge to vote on bills that pass through congress, could have their say about it, rather than just calling/writing our senators like it is now.

    And when it comes to media.. my views on that may be a little extreme (heh, yeah little) But I would like it, if the media would either shut down for the 3-4 months before elections, or just keep their opinions out of it.
    There is too much 'telling us what we do/n't want to hear, and too little telling us where they stand, and what they'll really do in office'.

    If the Media shut down during the 3-4 months before elections, how would we research anyone/thing before voting on it? The media is the means by which information is disseminated. (Opinion masquerading as Media Journalism is a different problem, and one that is probably intractable.)

    Furthermore, if the Media shut down during the 3-4 months of an election, how would we be able to tell when those who are running for office are lying to us? The fact-checking alone is an invaluable service.

    The democratic process breaks down completely with a free and independent news source.

    Instead, I think, at least in America, Americans should seek out a variety of news sources, to ensure that they are getting at the facts, and not just reading Opinion Masquerading as Journalism.

    [Edit] In your last sentence, it sounds like your problem is the depth and breadth (or lack thereof) of the Candidates' campaigns, statements, and campaign promises. Again, this has little to do with the Media. Ideally, an independent news media only reports what the Candidates are saying. Without a national news media, a candidate can go to one place and make one fatuous promise or statement, and then to another and make a completely different, even contradictory statement, allowing him/her to be elected on a fractured foundation built on lies and/or intentional deceit. We wouldn't hear a word of what they'd "really do in office" if we didn't have a national news media that had the ability to fact check the candidates and call them out when they are being deceitful. (I believe this is largely what brought down McCain's campaign--as you say too little talking about policies and specific plans, and too much... well... I'll let you decide what there was too much of.)

    Generally, that's why we have the Debates (which are disseminated via the Media)... it's a forum that forces the candidates to talk about the issues and debate specific policies.
    Last edited by Karro; 11-05-2008 at 11:42 AM.
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  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karro View Post
    If the Media shut down during the 3-4 months before elections, how would we research anyone/thing before voting on it? The media is the means by which information is disseminated. (Opinion masquerading as Media Journalism is a different problem, and one that is probably intractable.)

    Furthermore, if the Media shut down during the 3-4 months of an election, how would we be able to tell when those who are running for office are lying to us? The fact-checking alone is an invaluable service.

    The democratic process breaks down completely with a free and independent news source.

    Instead, I think, at least in America, Americans should seek out a variety of news sources, to ensure that they are getting at the facts, and not just reading Opinion Masquerading as Journalism.

    [Edit] In your last sentence, it sounds like your problem is the depth and breadth (or lack thereof) of the Candidates' campaigns, statements, and campaign promises. Again, this has little to do with the Media. Ideally, an independent news media only reports what the Candidates are saying. Without a national news media, a candidate can go to one place and make one fatuous promise or statement, and then to another and make a completely different, even contradictory statement, allowing him/her to be elected on a fractured foundation built on lies and/or intentional deceit. We wouldn't hear a word of what they'd "really do in office" if we didn't have a national news media that had the ability to fact check the candidates and call them out when they are being deceitful. (I believe this is largely what brought down McCain's campaign--as you say too little talking about policies and specific plans, and too much... well... I'll let you decide what there was too much of.)

    Generally, that's why we have the Debates (which are disseminated via the Media)... it's a forum that forces the candidates to talk about the issues and debate specific policies.
    Ok, I was being a little over-exaggerative there.. more truthfully of what I'ld like/ what I meant is,

    The media's affiliations should have nothing to do with how they cover the candidates and the topics they cover.

    If you noticed in this election, everytime they talked to/about Obama, they held him up on a pedestal (oh god, it's so historic, the first black prresident! ...or possibly female vp..) and everytime they talked to/about McCain they would grill him on all the tough questions!

    Where were those tough questions for Obama!? I watched the debates, neither candidate ever gave a clear answer to any question asked!
    Last edited by jfrazierjr; 11-05-2008 at 11:59 AM. Reason: Removing possible inflamitory deformation remark....

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