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About Lyly

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    Political Guru
  • Birthday 08/21/1991

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    Colonial & Early US History, Political Geography, Cartography.
  1. North Korea war

    DPRK seems to be officially signalling its intent to normalize relations, using nuclear capabilities as a bargaining chip. https://www.businesstimes.com.sg/government-economy/kim-jong-un-wants-to-sign-peace-treaty-with-trump-report
  2. North Korea war

    Good point. I don't think Japan would actually risk war, but the threat of North Korea is a damn good excuse to get those amendments wiped away.
  3. North Korea war

    I still don't believe a renewed war will break out on the Korean peninsula - hostilities, perhaps, but not outright war. I would bet any hostilities would be largely limited to naval and air skirmishes. Any war worth fighting in Korea would require the cooperation of the Republic of Korea, and they simply will not accept war with China - to the extent that I even think South Korea would try to avoid outright dominating the North in any such military conflict. I know that RoK and the US just renewed the war-time command agreement, but I also really just don't see how the US could seriously force South Korea to engage if the government really were against it. If South Korea and/or the US took a position of air supremacy over North Korea (which RoK alone could do in a matter of days), that only puts China in the position of making a choice between intervening or folding - and folding out-and-out to American dominance in Korea is also not an option for China. I think war would very quickly have the Republic of Korea and the People's Republic of China meeting in private to resolve the balance if the United States won't. The US might not like something like that, but the South Korean people just might make any Korean President who reached such a deal a literal national hero. It's not like South Korea is ever going communist at this point - neither China nor North Korea are communist now anyway. Real military conflict involving North Korea in any context would quite simply be disastrous for everyone involved, except perhaps China itself. ((minor edits have been added))
  4. Is nobody going to bring up gun control?

    This is kind of the point I was trying to avoid, but it's summed up in the Communist Manifesto. I understand you feel that communism is "dead in the water", but I don't feel that way. In essence, I favor making democracy real by eliminating the possibility or even incentive within the economic system for 1) wealth-hoarding, 2) the formation of classes, and 3) ecological destruction. That argument has gone round and round for over 200 years and I don't think it would benefit this forum to go over it again. It may seem fatalistic, but I don't know what else to offer you. Capitalism is not a game, it's life and death - not just for us, but for this planet (and god forbid we expand to other planets while still operating under this system). To adapt a quote Rosa Luxembourg who herself used a similar line to sum up her own points about 100 years ago, we are faced with a choice of socialism or death.
  5. Is nobody going to bring up gun control?

    I mean, I would have to disagree with you, but I'm sure you knew that already. I would say we are very much within a capitalist system still and your 'corporatism' is not any different from capitalism, just one of the stages. It's an expression of one of the inherent contradictions. That is, that capitalism, by encouraging competition in the marketplace naturally produces monopolies out of whatever most successfully dominated the market, yet monopolies are inherently counter to the need within the market for competition. Even ignoring a bunch of other theoretical crap like the concept of diminishing profits as capital matures, a monopoly, unchallenged, will almost always atrophy the market. This is why I also disagree with folks on the more libertarian side of things who argue for a kind of 'reset' button by breaking up the big corporations or whatever - the cycle is going to produce the same result by its own nature.
  6. General Historical Scenarios Update

    When I'm looking for historical images on google, I often find the "similar to this" link to be helpful. Sometimes it's just another rabbithole you don't want to be in, but sometimes it is a rabbithole of everything you were looking for. Google is really a mixed bag...
  7. Is nobody going to bring up gun control?

    I am absolutely in agreement that greater gun control is a necessary political goal in the US now (I feel I should get that out of the way first), but I think an even bigger issue is the failure in American popular discourse to address deeper problems that are catalyzed through gun violence, but which exist even without guns. It's interesting that you are coming from a British perspective on this, because it's been the British example that I feel I've learned a lot from. Specifically, it is my understanding that the same antagonisms that characterize violence of all sorts here in the US are present in some way or another in much of the UK - and in this case I'm talking about fatal stabbings that have been rising steadily for years. No guns = no gun deaths is a simple equation, for sure. But it's not removing the violence, the reason or purpose of violence, and it's not resolving the totality of the underlying social issues (which I know we all have divergent views about). In my view, those issues stem from the way society has organized itself since the Industrial Revolution and the advent of capitalist motivations over the prior medieval and other existing ways of life that have since been more and more wiped away. (quick edit - also to say, I don't want to make these examples equivalent: obviously gun-wielders are capable of producing more deaths than knife-wielders, and that is quite a big part of the argument all to itself, and that's fair) I don't really want to start a big argument about socialism versus capitalism, but I do want to emphasize that society has changed in ways that we are still working to understand and I think this is an expression of that.
  8. Is nobody going to bring up gun control?

    American capitalism since the 1970s has also been characterized by a more marked income disparity and centralization of wealth combined with Democratic and Republican consensus disfavoring the more "social democratic" social structure - in short, the rise of what people call neoliberalism. But my point is that the average person's ability to sustain their livelihoods has come under more and more threats since that time and I do agree that that puts a strain on people as individuals and as a society. I don't think it's completely summed up in the idea of 'mental health', but it's a hell of a big feature of life nowadays. For a short spurt after the end of World War Two and the point at which the global market was healthy again, being (white) working class in the United States really did translate into more and more benefits within the system - those benefits today are diminishing and life is more "hopeless", we'll say, for many people who could have expected better in previous decades. To me, that speaks a lot to why you see white men being the mass shooters so often - it's precisely the population that has lost the most ground relative to everyone else in the same class (whether capitalist or worker).
  9. Presidential Ranker Excel

    Teddy Roosevelt being ranked so highly for my list is kind of surprising, especially because I personally resent the level of Roosevelt fandom typical among these kinds of discussions. Even so, he made 4th, and right after his younger cousin at that. Obama is ranked pretty highly relative to what I would expect. I do believe that by popular American standards, Obama is going to be viewed very positively, but I don't have a lot of praise for anyone who has been President, Obama included. Ford is higher than I expected as well, even though I do admittedly have a softer spot for him than most people. The Bushes being quite so low kind of surprises me as well. I probably just need to do more research on everyone to hand-pick all the values, but overall, I am happy to have something of a list.
  10. Presidential Ranker Excel

    Here's what came out of the equation for me. I don't totally agree with it and I am surprised by some of the results, but I always have difficulty rating the Presidents from my political perspective, so it was an interesting exercise. I didn't modify the formula too heavily, but I tried to de-emphasize the areas I didn't know as much about, like judicial appointments, so they would impact the rating less. #1 Lincoln #2 Washington #3 FDR - large jump below top three- #4 Roosevelt, Th. #5 Eisenhower #6 LBJ #7 Obama #8 Jefferson #9 JFK #10 Madison #11 Monroe #12 Polk #13 Adams, J #14 Clinton #15 Ford #16 McKinley #17 Cleveland (Both Cleveland terms were next to each other in ranking, so I merged him) #18 Truman #19 Reagan #20 Taft #21 Wilson #22 Van Buren - negative ratings below this line - #23 Garfield #24 Harrison, B #25 Grant #26 Nixon #27 Adams, JQ #28 Coolidge #29 Jackson #30 Hayes #31 Arthur #32 Bush, GHW #33 Carter #34 Taylor #35 Bush, GW #36 Fillmore #37 Harrison, WH #38 Tyler #39 Hoover #40 Trump -another large jump to the bottom four- #41 Harding #42 Pierce #43 Johnson, A #44 Buchanan
  11. Trump tariff poll

    Maybe so, it's hard for me to determine. I meant it in the sense of signalling that your suspicions seem to be correct - Trump can unilaterally renegotiate tariffs. I'm not a legal expert and this act has been modified a few dozen times and has amendments out the wazoo, but it seems to point in the direction that Congress handed over negotiating powers to the Executive Branch in the beginning of the 20th century and that trend has only been reinforced over the decades. I'm sure there are a dozen other items of legislation, executive orders, and treaties that add layers to the cake. Here's the most relevant text from the act itself: the President, whenever he finds as a fact that any existing duties or other import restrictions of the United States or any foreign country are unduly burdening and restricting the foreign trade of the United States and that the purpose above declared will be promoted by the means hereinafter specified, is authorized from time to time to proclaim such modifications of existing duties and other import restrictions, or such additional import restrictions, or such continuance, and for such minimum periods, of existing customs or excise treatment of any article covered by foreign trade agreements, as are required or appropriate to carry out any foreign trade agreement that the President has entered into hereunder. Given that SOME amount of tariff probably exists already on steel and aluminum, however modest, that would presumably put power in the hands of the Executive branch to make new relevant policy. That said, there's a lot of restrictions and limitations on the power as stipulated, but they also all have time-relevant clauses, so they may not be relevant any more. Trump is also known to be a person who presents bald-faced lies as fact and then when he has his way will work around whatever the legalese says, even if it means he doesn't get what he first mentioned at all, so it is entirely possible this Act does not allow him to do what he claims it does, but as we saw with Andrew Jackson - it's a matter of stopping him, not letting him. Further relevant links: https://ustr.gov/about-us/policy-offices/press-office/press-releases/2018/february/trump-administration-sends-annual http://money.cnn.com/2018/02/12/news/economy/trump-trade-reciprocal-tax/index.html
  12. Is nobody going to bring up gun control?

    Something.. something... "works on paper"
  13. Is nobody going to bring up gun control?

    The first two proposals don't change any of the actual issues - they're just things that liberals say to make themselves appear to have good ideas and a commitment to gun control. Bumper stocks are not necessary for mass shootings or for even emulating the style of shooting they enable (it can be done without them), and raising the age is common sense enough, I suppose, but people well into their latter 20s have conducted school shootings in the past decade, so that won't be stopping anything. "Increase background checks" is a mostly empty statement without policy specifics.
  14. Trump tariff poll

    Here's the answer: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reciprocal_Tariff_Act
  15. Westeros - WIP

    I had the initiative not long ago to produce this scenario for fun and as a learning exercise. It is still an early work in progress and the main problem right now is balancing. I haven't worked on it too much recently, but I did play around with it today and thought it would be fun to share. The scenario is a very loose interpretation of the world and doesn't represent any particular point in the plot of the story. Combat skills have been translated to spin power. Electoral College votes are based on estimated population proportions/densities I found on the internet. It's just for fun, but I tried to have it make sense. If anyone does play, let me know how it goes and feel free to make suggestions or critiques. Or edit it to your own liking, I don't care. - - - - Westeros - 2000.rar