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About thr33

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    Politics (left-wing economically ; centrist socially ; right-wing on immigration ; non-interventionist), Math & Statistics, Economics, Basketball, Golf
  1. Intelligence of Presidents

    Intelligence is a tricky concept. It is my understanding that cognitive scientists probably have operational definitions (and I presume that the techniques/metrics used in evaluating past presidents are standard fare for the field), though I probably would characterize brilliance differently. Coming from a background in theoretical math/stats, the most clever individuals seem to be those who are adept in problem solving. Not necessarily in the rote, but in the ability to think outside the box, and produce concise, elegant solutions, that "ordinary" experts in their field would not be able to in a lifetime or more. I'm not quite sure if there are many (any?) examples in our history of presidents who have demonstrated that kind of exceptional ability, but from skimming, the "Openness to Experience" criterion seems to be the closest fit. As a secondary characteristic, although it certainly has less luster, I think I would weight heavily an individual's ability to make difficult decisions. In scenarios of extraordinary leverage, if a president consistently makes the correct decisions in retrospect that kind of tenacity is something I'd value a ton. To some extent a president can't control the incidence of crises (particularly foreign policy emergencies or economic crashes), but I'm inclined to believe that the more intelligent presidents historically have not only responded properly to these situations come to a head (and in the case of the most brilliant presidents, even if, and perhaps *especially if* the stakes and payoff aren't immediately evident, or evident for some years or decades after his/her tenure).
  2. Youngest Forum Users

    Neat. I'm a huge data nerd, so in addition to the economic/trade duties, would be fun working with the census and the NWS.
  3. Should there be something beyond peacekeeping for nuclear arms/disarmament?
  4. Perhaps income inequality and/or basic income? Maybe something on open/free/fair elections.
  5. 2020 Election update

    Two questions: (1) Would you consider adding Kasich (default off) as a candidate for the Dem primary? He hasn't outright stated the possibility, but he has really attacked the direction of the GOP, and questioned whether he or people like him has a place in the party anymore. (2) Considering how Bannon is pumping up the rhetoric of primarying establishment republicans in midterms, do you think it would be worth it to add a populist challenger to primary Trump? Maybe even Bannon himself (though I imagine he'd probably put his support behind Cruz or Cotton instead, with Tulsi, who he's been a fan of as well, being a long shot), since he's been doing more speaking roles campaigning (for Moore, and particularly at major GOP grassroots events recently)? (Thanks for all you do on these scenarios BTW. For many of the elections your commission has covered so far, I might not have the requisite knowledge but I've enjoyed playing them/reading up.)
  6. Youngest Forum Users

    Fair enough. It does seem a lot of how presidents are judged historically is based on outside events (foreign policy and market growth/recessions). Decision making in a tense time has a lot of value. That rings somewhat of a bell. I'd support any measures that would reduce party strength.
  7. Recent Presidential Approval Poll

    I'm uncertain how to answer this poll. When it asks which presidents do we approve of, should we answer on the basis of how successful they were at implementing their agendas based on how much we degree ideologically? Or evaluate from a nonpartisan perspective how well they achieved their agendas (whether or not we agree)? Though I do suppose success is also relative.
  8. 2020 Candidate abilities poll

    I'm not sure that I'd call Lenin unfortunate (at least to the same degree as Hitler), but fair enough. Do these candidates win almost all the time in the games (unless you really, really mess up)?
  9. 2020 Candidate abilities poll

    So far, which major candidates have gotten 5s in the key categories (charisma, leadership, stamina, etc)? From what I can tell of the engine and scenario makers, a 5 is a true stand out, so I'm assuming they're very far between.
  10. Youngest Forum Users

    That's fair, and seems a lot like the approach for which someone like Ben Franklin would advocate. Would you try and focus on a landmark piece of legislation during your administration? Or would you try and enact pragmatic changes/reform where possible?
  11. Youngest Forum Users

    If we eliminated the twelfth amendment and the filibuster, and reduced the roles of the presidency, it would be very interesting to see what kind of parties would form here. Could see: People's Party (right-wing populists): ~15% Conservatives (rest of the republicans and the DLC dems): ~35% Social Dems: ~35% Greens: ~10% Minor Parties: ~5% (probably not enough to achieve representation) Could make for a fun custom scenario series in Congress Infinity tbh. Would have to look at key votes most likely to categorize Members of Congress.
  12. Youngest Forum Users

    I think that's fair, and it might even be worth it to appoint outright members of the other party (beyond a token individual). Particularly on the issues that don't comprise the biggest elements of a president's platform, I think the cabinet presents an opportunity for bipartisanship. It allows constructive dialogue in areas the president isn't as passionate about, and when it does come to the plank he/she was elected on, the president can point to his/her willingness to compromise with the other side on issues to garner support (or to at least get cloture to prevent filibusters).
  13. Youngest Forum Users

    I don't disagree that either (1) the composition of the population has changed (2) the nature of weapons have changed - both in manners the authors of the Constitution likely did not predict. As you noted however, there really is no practical means of amending the document. There actually has been a movement (both for and against, there are a lot of signs) in my current home state to push for a NY Constitutional Convention. Interestingly enough, on the federal level, we're approaching the threshold whereby, from my understanding, a convention would be called (2/3 I think?). If states do try and use that provision of Article V (which I don't believe has been used before, since all amendments have passed via Congress), major changes would be possible. Of course, conservatives are much closer to reaching the threshold to convene, so I can't imagine a modernized 2A would be a part of the discussions.
  14. Youngest Forum Users

    I have never fired or so much as handled a firearm in my life, so it is hard for me to relate to ownership, but I guess the argument comes from several camps: • Hobbyists/hunters for sport - I haven't been hunting, so I'm not quite sure if there is any practical utility to so-called assault weapons. From my understanding though, some of the elements of firearms for which there is a desire to regulate - namely types of ammunition, sizes of magazines, and customization (particularly grips) - would have an an adverse impact. Since this is a group hunting/collecting not out of survival, but for entertainment/leisure purposes, I can understand limiting access. • Home security types - Do assault weapons make a particular individual safer by the numbers? Or does legalization make it more likely that would-be home invaders would be able to access them than if they were illegal and only available by back channels? I'm sure there is some data, but I think it's dangerous to view things by averages/as an aggregate. • Those arguing Constitutionality - This is a bit more difficult for me to eschew. A lot of people use the Constitution as a guise to justify their interests - which may be in conflict with the standard moral code/practical usage of the day - but there are a lot of firm believers. The document has kept things relatively stable, so I'm wary to cast judgment (though I can understand Overton Window arguments, and as a matter of fact, moving the Overton Window is the principal tenet of my strategic voting). • Anarchist/'when-the-****-hits-the-fan' people - This I can get to some extent. At some point, it's likely that current institutions will collapse. Is this likely to happen anytime soon? Probably not. But this is a legitimate black swan event, and if people are preparing for the worst, even if it's at odds with the direction of society, I understand their point The Vegas stuff recently was another reminder to the dangers of access to weapons. From what I can tell, all of the guy's weapons were obtained legally, as were the modification elements. At the same time, I think there is a pretty likely floor to the likelihood of these events occurring. We may not be there, but shooting rampages, domestic terrorism and the like will always happen with some propensity.
  15. Youngest Forum Users

    I think that kind of describes me on environment/climate change to some extent. I used to be a bit of a hardliner, but now I'm more indifferent in the short term, and while I would prefer green solutions, the impact on labor is my top concern. So when looking at projects and regulations, my first question is about job creation/displacement. The other issue I've moved right on is 2a. I've lived in one of NY/CA all of my life and for most of my life was a proponent of a national gun ban. Now, I appreciate it as a civil liberty, and think my position was unreasonable. I don't own a gun and might not ever, but I appreciate the reasons for ownership. I've was already left on most economic issues, and have moved further left for the most part. I have become more of a skeptic on union leadership, but I still support the concept and goals of organized labor. I would probably support nationalizion of banks and the health care industry, while years ago I was satisfied with heavy regulation.