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  1. #28561
    Extraordinary Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Mets View Post
    President Ted Cruz may want to make some radical changes in four years, but he'll also need Congress and the courts, and will likely face opposition from Democratic (or moderate Republicans) Governors, mayors, city councils, etc.
    I don't think the experience of the four hellish years of 45 justifies any takeaway to the effect of "the system works" or constitutional checks and balances and fetters work. Quite the contrary.

    Trump and his wrecking crew did severe and lasting damage, and unleashed outstanding cruelty to millions of people over the course of 4 years. To claim that a "President Ted Cruz" would be constrained by courts is to be deeply nave.

    Sure Trump did face opposition and resistance from blue states and the Dem-led House constrained his executive agenda from 2018 onwards but he still had vast control over the federal branch and through the Senate he transformed the judiciary and of course he put saboteurs in the USPS and other parts, and basically made ICE his personal goon squad.

    And we saw how he transformed the GOP into his own image to the point that it's not a political party but a criminal enterprise with delusions of grandeur with thuggishness across the GOP ecosystem.

  2. #28562
    Astonishing Member Kusanagi's Avatar
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    The thing about the BBC is they seemed to be holding Scotland and English results as the same, when they're completely different electoral systems. England's elections were FPTP while Scotland is based on proportional representation, meaning it's far far harder for one party to have a majority. The fact that the SNP came one seat short of a full majority was highlighted as some kind of failure, when doing so in a proportional representation system is incredible.

    Also the notion this result was a rejection of independence is just silly. The SNP may not have achieved a majority, but they weren't the only party standing for independence, the Scottish Greens did as well and combined with SNP have a comfortable majority.
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  3. #28563
    Extraordinary Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kusanagi View Post
    The thing about the BBC is they seemed to be holding Scotland and English results as the same, when they're completely different electoral systems. England's elections were FPTP while Scotland is based on proportional representation, meaning it's far far harder for one party to have a majority. The fact that the SNP came one seat short of a full majority was highlighted as some kind of failure, when doing so in a proportional representation system is incredible.

    Also the notion this result was a rejection of independence is just silly. The SNP may not have achieved a majority, but they weren't the only party standing for independence, the Scottish Greens did as well and combined with SNP have a comfortable majority.
    Exactly. The SNP are an impressive party in terms of putting forth a socially democratic inclusive and popular nationalism. Labour should be taking notes from them rather than trying to go back to Tony Blair which wouldn't be worth it, mostly because Boris Johnson is quite obviously Tony Blair's true heir-apparent far more than anyone in Labour can ever be. Boris Johnson's media and PR-friendly approach to politicking (which was quite new in the UK when Blair started it) the emphasis on Style over Substance is very much Tony 2: Electric Boogaloo. Whereas Keir Starmer goes about acting as if Blair was like Atlee or Wilson, lol.

    The Labour party made a terrible mistake when they supported Dubya's war-in-Iraq. Wilson punted Vietnam (thanks to enormous public pressure) and rather than emulate that Tony Blair chased after his Falklands high and the end result is that Labour discredited its moral authority completely. It's not an accident that the core of Anti-Corbyn were Blair-holdouts who backed UK's entry in Iraq. And now somehow people are turning to creeps like Blair, complete with his supervillain-mullet hairstyle for advice.

    I know Labour keep seeing Scotland and the Midland towns as their path back to Downing Street, but when you have a realignment and you are trying to go back to "factory settings" that's doing the opposite of accepting political reality.

  4. #28564
    Astonishing Member JackDaw's Avatar
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    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotla...itics-57034429

    Really not a big supporter of the BBC in general (apart from being a big fan of Radio 5) but all the coverage of the Scottish election results I’ve seen there seem balanced.

    I know how subjective these things can be...so I’ve posted the link to the most relevant BBC article so that anyone really interested can judge for themselves.

  5. #28565
    Astonishing Member JackDaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kusanagi View Post
    The thing about the BBC is they seemed to be holding Scotland and English results as the same, when they're completely different electoral systems. England's elections were FPTP while Scotland is based on proportional representation, meaning it's far far harder for one party to have a majority. The fact that the SNP came one seat short of a full majority was highlighted as some kind of failure, when doing so in a proportional representation system is incredible.

    Also the notion this result was a rejection of independence is just silly. The SNP may not have achieved a majority, but they weren't the only party standing for independence, the Scottish Greens did as well and combined with SNP have a comfortable majority.
    The Scottish system is actually a mix of first past the post and proportional representation. I don’t really think the BBC really do get that mixed up.

    I quote their main summary below so that anyone really interested can make their own judgment on that.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotla...itics-57034429

  6. #28566
    Ultimate Member Mister Mets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    I don't think the experience of the four hellish years of 45 justifies any takeaway to the effect of "the system works" or constitutional checks and balances and fetters work. Quite the contrary.

    Trump and his wrecking crew did severe and lasting damage, and unleashed outstanding cruelty to millions of people over the course of 4 years. To claim that a "President Ted Cruz" would be constrained by courts is to be deeply nave.

    Sure Trump did face opposition and resistance from blue states and the Dem-led House constrained his executive agenda from 2018 onwards but he still had vast control over the federal branch and through the Senate he transformed the judiciary and of course he put saboteurs in the USPS and other parts, and basically made ICE his personal goon squad.

    And we saw how he transformed the GOP into his own image to the point that it's not a political party but a criminal enterprise with delusions of grandeur with thuggishness across the GOP ecosystem.
    Trump couldn't even reverse an executive order on the DACA program. He was constrained in significant ways. Even the judges he put on the court would vote against him in big ways (mainly because he was in the wrong), especially with the election appeals.

    It is also worth considering that many of Trump's accomplishments are things any Republican president would want to do. Jeb Bush or John Kasich or Mitt Romney would want to have as many new district court justices as possible, and would work with Mitch McConnell towards that goal.
    Sincerely,
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  7. #28567
    Ultimate Member Gray Lensman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Mets View Post
    Trump couldn't even reverse an executive order on the DACA program. He was constrained in significant ways. Even the judges he put on the court would vote against him in big ways (mainly because he was in the wrong), especially with the election appeals.

    It is also worth considering that many of Trump's accomplishments are things any Republican president would want to do. Jeb Bush or John Kasich or Mitt Romney would want to have as many new district court justices as possible, and would work with Mitch McConnell towards that goal.
    We are watching the Republican party get more and more radical in real time. Its changed every from a reliable Republican voter to one who will never vote for one for any office at any level. The unofficial new motto of "Death to Democracy!" they have taken up makes me fearful of what the next GoP president will do - I'm afraid that the next time Republicans win full power in an election will be the last free election the country has.
    Dark does not mean deep.

  8. #28568
    CBR's Good Fairy Kieran_Frost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hellion View Post
    I know here in America we hear a lot about "unfair bias in the mainstream media." I'd struggle to find an example of such a thing here. But holy hell at the BBC (which I generally prefer to most American news outlets) reporting the election results in Scotland over the past two days. Every time it was announced that the Tories won a seat, it was a "resounding success" and every time they mentioned the SNP, which won significantly more seats, the coverage was along the lines of "SNP chances balanced on a knife's edge" or "independence has been rejected."
    The issue with Scotland's results is... complicated. The results means the SNP aren't going anywhere. But it wasn't the resounding proof of independence they needed to justify forcing a legal challenge to have a vote. For example the difference between constituency win vs overall vote:
    - they GAINED 1 more constituency, and was 1 shy of a majority BUT....
    - they only got 40.3% of the overall votes (despite how the specific points allocated constituencies), which is a share change of -1.4%.

    Meaning a 'in or out' vote would (probably) vote to remain, as when it's done on a yes/no rather than a 'highest percentage wins the point', the numbers don't support independence, on this particular election. Put another way, 49% backed pro-independence parties, but pro-independence parties were allocated 50.1% of the constituencies.
    "We are Shakespeare. We are Michelangelo. We are Tchaikovsky. We are Turing. We are Mercury. We are Wilde. We are Lincoln, Lorca, Leonardo da Vinci. We are Alexander the Great. We are Fredrick the Great. We are Rustin. We are Addams. We are Marsha! Marsha Marsha Marsha! We so generous, we DeGeneres. We are Ziggy Stardust hooked to the silver screen. Controversially we are Malcolm X. We are Plato. We are Aristotle. We are RuPaul, god dammit! And yes, we are Woolf."

  9. #28569
    CBR's Good Fairy Kieran_Frost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    I was gonna post about the UK. They apparently had their version of the "Midterms" and my understanding is that the Labour had a mixed night, with Keir Starmer suffering a major setback. Labour MPs on his left (in Wales and in Manchester) who formerly aligned themselves with Corbyn did far better than Starmer's own handpicked candidates it seems.
    I think it's, by and large, agreed they had a pretty shocking night actually. He sacked his deputy leader as a result in less than 24 hours; you don't do that if it's 'mixed'. "Generally" these elections, while not enough to unseat a leader, are often used by the people as a protest vote to show displeasure at a government. The fact that a (seemingly) unpopular government still took home the clear majority and held strong in places they should never get wins... is a great failing of the shadow opposition.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hellion View Post
    The population is either addicted to the Tory sleaze they've been force-fed for years or else a silent majority are unrepentant Tory voters. I say silent majority it seems for years now the Conservatives win each election but the people can't seem to find anybody that actually voted for them.
    The issue of the 'silent conservative' has been around since Cameron's time; when he shockingly won his second election by a big margin. Which is why so many of the election polls have been wrong since that time, enough are not being vocal in their support on social media, in polls, in interviews... and people mistake that for the true overall majority of views of the country. Which is simply not the case. Until we can figure out how to allow expression of political beliefs without attaching shame/judgement/hate to them, this will not go away (and so polling dating will remain unreliable).
    "We are Shakespeare. We are Michelangelo. We are Tchaikovsky. We are Turing. We are Mercury. We are Wilde. We are Lincoln, Lorca, Leonardo da Vinci. We are Alexander the Great. We are Fredrick the Great. We are Rustin. We are Addams. We are Marsha! Marsha Marsha Marsha! We so generous, we DeGeneres. We are Ziggy Stardust hooked to the silver screen. Controversially we are Malcolm X. We are Plato. We are Aristotle. We are RuPaul, god dammit! And yes, we are Woolf."

  10. #28570
    CBR's Good Fairy Kieran_Frost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JackDaw View Post
    Labour seems to have lost contact with the people it seeks to represent...its choice of candidate for the Hartlepool by-election is an illustration of that. (They picked an ardent remainer for a constituency that voted out by a very large majority.)
    Labour hasn't won an election since Tony Blair; and that's a riddle of why they've yet to solve. Gordon Brown, Ed Milband, Jeremy Corbyn and now Sir Starmer... are just not connecting to the people in the way they need to win elections.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Mets View Post
    To figure out if it's bias, there are some other potential relevant questions: What were the expectations? What were previous results in the same districts? What are normal results under similar circumstances?
    Ding ding ding ding.
    "We are Shakespeare. We are Michelangelo. We are Tchaikovsky. We are Turing. We are Mercury. We are Wilde. We are Lincoln, Lorca, Leonardo da Vinci. We are Alexander the Great. We are Fredrick the Great. We are Rustin. We are Addams. We are Marsha! Marsha Marsha Marsha! We so generous, we DeGeneres. We are Ziggy Stardust hooked to the silver screen. Controversially we are Malcolm X. We are Plato. We are Aristotle. We are RuPaul, god dammit! And yes, we are Woolf."

  11. #28571
    Ultimate Member Mister Mets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gray Lensman View Post
    We are watching the Republican party get more and more radical in real time. Its changed every from a reliable Republican voter to one who will never vote for one for any office at any level. The unofficial new motto of "Death to Democracy!" they have taken up makes me fearful of what the next GoP president will do - I'm afraid that the next time Republicans win full power in an election will be the last free election the country has.
    From my understanding, the context of the earlier discussion was more about policy on a traditional left-right spectrum (Should we raise the minimum wage? Should we have more environmental restrictions? When should employees have paid leave, and who should pay for it?) and why we see incremental changes.

    Concerns about adherence to democracy are meaningful, and can be more significant to an individual voter, but it's also a different topic.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kieran_Frost View Post
    Labour hasn't won an election since Tony Blair; and that's a riddle of why they've yet to solve. Gordon Brown, Ed Milband, Jeremy Corbyn and now Sir Starmer... are just not connecting to the people in the way they need to win elections.


    Ding ding ding ding.
    To be clear, I don't follow British politics closely enough to pretend to have a good answer on the question of whether the BBC was biased. I could figure potential questions, but not go much further than that.
    Sincerely,
    Thomas Mets

  12. #28572
    Extraordinary Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kieran_Frost View Post
    Labour hasn't won an election since Tony Blair; and that's a riddle of why they've yet to solve.
    Isn't the answer to the riddle the fact that Tony Blair led Labour into Iraq and cost them their moral foundation for all time and transformed them into a party of political hacks all the way top-to-bottom?

    Blair took Labour not just to the center but to the right, making some conservatives more moderate on issues of freedom of liberties and so on. That ended up making both parties indistinguishable. Labour was the party of decolonization, it was Atlee's government that granted independence to India and Pakistan. Harold Wilson kept UK out of Vietnam. And Tony Blair simply spat on that in chase of his Falklands high.

    Tony Blair shattered the party with Iraq and ended up compromising it the way JFK and LBJ compromised the Dems with Vietnam (not that Blair deserves to be in the same company, those guys had some ideals and talent, while Blair is just scum) That led to Nixon, Ford and then Reagan (with only Carter providing a brief and false dawn in that time).
    Last edited by Revolutionary_Jack; 05-09-2021 at 03:05 PM.

  13. #28573
    CBR's Good Fairy Kieran_Frost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    Isn't the answer to the riddle the fact that Tony Blair led Labour into Iraq and cost them their moral foundation for all time and transformed them into a party of political hacks all the way top-to-bottom?
    I think you're giving this waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much credit. The reason Corbyn didn't win either election had nothing to do with Tony Blair's involvement in Iraq. Firstly, Corbyn was the polar opposite in voting records on Iraq (and all conflicts, to my knowledge). That is not why he lost. The simple fact is most people have short memories, and once the offending leader has gone, don't hold much of a grudge. People don't remember. People don't care about old issues, but the issues of now.

    To put it simply, no, I don't think Blair and Iraq has anything to do with why Milband and Corbyn lost.

    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    Tony Blair shattered the party with Iraq and ended up compromising it the way JFK and LBJ compromised the Dems with Vietnam (not that Blair deserves to be in the same company, those guys had some ideals and talent, while Blair is just scum) That led to Nixon, Ford and then Reagan (with only Carter providing a brief and false dawn in that time).
    But before Blair the last Labour leader to win an election was what... during the 70s??
    Last edited by Kieran_Frost; 05-09-2021 at 03:28 PM.
    "We are Shakespeare. We are Michelangelo. We are Tchaikovsky. We are Turing. We are Mercury. We are Wilde. We are Lincoln, Lorca, Leonardo da Vinci. We are Alexander the Great. We are Fredrick the Great. We are Rustin. We are Addams. We are Marsha! Marsha Marsha Marsha! We so generous, we DeGeneres. We are Ziggy Stardust hooked to the silver screen. Controversially we are Malcolm X. We are Plato. We are Aristotle. We are RuPaul, god dammit! And yes, we are Woolf."

  14. #28574
    Extraordinary Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kieran_Frost View Post
    I think you're giving this waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much credit. The reason Corbyn didn't win either election had nothing to do with Tony Blair's involvement in Iraq.
    There's wide evidence that Corbyn was sabotaged by Blairite Labour members who supported the war in Iraq and whom Corbyn refused to remove in the spirit of "party unity" (https://www.middleeasteye.net/opinio...-defined-blair). So the Labour in-fighting which is what compromised Corbyn and now Starmer is down to the schisms in the party over Iraq. Iraq is the primary reason why Blair has not given an usuable consensual legacy for any of his successors.

    Firstly, Corbyn was the polar opposite in voting records on Iraq (and all conflicts, to my knowledge). That is not why he lost. The simple fact is most people have short memories, and once the offending leader has gone, don't hold much of a grudge. People don't remember. People don't care about old issues, but the issues of now.
    But new issues are obviously informed by old grudges, right? Any attempt to claim Labour as a party of moral integrity or opposition to imperialism will bring laughs after Iraq.

    But before Blair the last Labour leader to win an election was was... during the 70s??
    I said that the war in Iraq is the cause of Labour's woes since Blair, I didn't say it was responsible for their problems all the way from the 1970s. Tony Blair winning elections isn't something to be proud off in and of itself, nor does it constitute an achievement when all his actions did was tarnish the party and bring it to disrepute.

    Remember Boris Johnson is the politician who has far more in common with Blair than anyone else.

  15. #28575
    CBR's Good Fairy Kieran_Frost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    There's wide evidence that Corbyn was sabotaged by Blairite Labour members who supported the war in Iraq and whom Corbyn refused to remove in the spirit of "party unity" (https://www.middleeasteye.net/opinio...-defined-blair). So the Labour in-fighting which is what compromised Corbyn and now Starmer is down to the schisms in the party over Iraq. Iraq is the primary reason why Blair has not given an usuable consensual legacy for any of his successors.
    Starmer losing because of Iraq is like saying Corbyn lost because of Brexit. It's not the why. Not even close.

    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    But new issues are obviously informed by old grudges, right? Any attempt to claim Labour as a party of moral integrity or opposition to imperialism will bring laughs after Iraq.
    I just don't see it. People don't vote like this. They don't associate one leader with the votes of a leader 15 years ago, UNLESS that person is the direct protege of... and even then, it's a stretch to think that is THE turning of the tide when it comes to election wins and loses. YES, politicians love to chuck the 'sins of the father' in the face, to make a cheap shot, but it doesn't sway the people. It just doesn't. It's merely for the Westminster crowd. Iraq is not why Starmer lost. At all. Not remotely. I think if you poll'd the population and asked "how much was the Iraq war an influence on your vote this time" you'd be lucky to get 5% say "a lot".

    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    I said that the war in Iraq is the cause of Labour's woes since Blair, I didn't say it was responsible for their problems all the way from the 1970s. Tony Blair winning elections isn't something to be proud off in and of itself, nor does it constitute an achievement when all his actions did was tarnish the party and bring it to disrepute.
    I think, in the discussion about 'how can Labour win an election' looking to THE ONLY Labour leader to win an election in 50 years and ask "what did he do that others haven't?"... is fair game, no? And I'd say the only election wins in 50 years is something to be proud of, personally. I am NOT a Blairite by any means, but credit where credit's due. He won, others haven't. Let's at-least acknowledge the wins as just that.
    "We are Shakespeare. We are Michelangelo. We are Tchaikovsky. We are Turing. We are Mercury. We are Wilde. We are Lincoln, Lorca, Leonardo da Vinci. We are Alexander the Great. We are Fredrick the Great. We are Rustin. We are Addams. We are Marsha! Marsha Marsha Marsha! We so generous, we DeGeneres. We are Ziggy Stardust hooked to the silver screen. Controversially we are Malcolm X. We are Plato. We are Aristotle. We are RuPaul, god dammit! And yes, we are Woolf."

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