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RI Democrat

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RI Democrat last won the day on November 14 2009

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About RI Democrat

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  1. The simple fact that this does not involve the aftermath of a war with North Korea, 13 million people losing health insurance, a dissolving social safety net, and blue states forced to increase taxes or cut services makes it feel somewhat optimistic, all things considered.
  2. senator mitt Romney?

    Maybe, though I think the reaction was partly to his awkward phrasing - "binders full of women" as if the women were literally inside binders. I remember one of the popular memes was of Patrick Swazye from Dirty Dancing, with the caption, "Nobody puts Baby in a binder."
  3. senator mitt Romney?

    I'm not sure that was too big a deal outside of a brief flurry of internet memes. Of course, for me the highlight of that campaign was Biden exclaiming in response to Paul Ryan's BS, "This is a bunch of stuff!"
  4. :sigh: I'm sympathetic to democratic socialism, but I have zero time for leftists who want to romanticize people like Maduro or Che Guevara. That goes in the same category as Trump's mealy-mouthed response to the racist lunatics in Charlottesville as far as I'm concerned.
  5. Hamon left the Socialist Party? I didn't know that. Where the Socialists are still in power, is that based on elections that predate the rise of Macron and En Marche? If so, are they expected to retain power in the next elections?
  6. Austrian Election 2017 Poll

    Hmm. I guess I'd vote Green, though it sounds like their conduct during their first term in parliament was a bit...odd: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Greens_–_The_Green_Alternative#Federal_level I don't know a whole lot about NEOS. If they are "market liberals" then I'd prefer they not be part of the government. Though my priority would be "anybody but the FPÖ."
  7. German Election 2017 Poll

    I'd vote Green and hope for a Red-Red-Green coalition, or maybe Red-Green with confidence and supply from Die Linke (who do sound a little "out there" on a couple things). I prefer Schulz to Merkel.
  8. "Jacindamania" in New Zealand

    Update: Apparently NZ has in fact allowed 1 or 2 overhang seats in recent elections. Though I recall ending up with something like 10-12 overhang seats whenever I tried to make a New Zealand scenario for K4E.
  9. senator mitt Romney?

    Romney was never a clear favorite once the campaign really got under way. Aside from the hiccup after the first debate, I was mostly confident that Obama would win throughout the last 4-5 months of that election.
  10. Dammit, France - political chaos with lunatics in the highest offices is America's thing, not yours.
  11. "Jacindamania" in New Zealand

    Well, it could be that the customer base for these games extends fairly far beyond those of us who post here and create scenarios, and that they are mostly American, Canadian, and British users who are happy just to play the "official" scenarios and/or make their own small changes through the built-in editors. I don't know anything about what kind of budget 270soft has and if it is the sole source of income for Anthony and whoever else is involved, but if we represent a small niche within their broader market, catering to our interests may not be especially cost-effective or profitable. (Dammit, now you've got me implicitly defending modern capitalism.)
  12. "Jacindamania" in New Zealand

    New Zealand's election this weekend is looking surprisingly competitive after a long period of National dominating in the polls: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/sep/19/new-zealands-general-election-all-you-need-to-know This seems like it might be a fun scenario, but I'm not sure how to tackle it in terms of the engine. New Zealand has MMP, but even the K4E engine wouldn't necessarily provide a very accurate representation because there is a hard cap of 120 seats in NZ, i.e. there are no overhang seats. Also, I seem to recall from attempting NZ scenarios on K4E in the past that there are sometimes small parties that run much stronger in just a handful of electorates, e.g. wherever Winston Peters used to have his seat, and replicating this with the math of how primary/secondary votes in K4E work can be difficult. On the other hand, simply doing it in PMI and creating an Excel sheet to convert percentages to seats wouldn't necessarily work either, because voters do actually cast two separate votes - one for a party and one for a local MP - and there is sometimes a significant difference between the two totals. I'd probably have to write a more complex Excel formula that would derive the party vote from the constituency vote without simply replicating the numbers from the constituency vote (e.g. maybe make the Greens run 3-4% ahead of their constituency totals in the party vote). Thoughts?
  13. Religious Protection Laws/ LGBT anti-discrimination Laws

    I have a question - were the bakers involved in these cases refusing to bake the cakes for same-sex weddings at all, or were they just refusing to write (for example) "Congratulations Rob and Juan" in the frosting? I actually do think government should make as much room for "conscientious objection" as possible, including both religious and non-religious reasons. I wouldn't want an atheist baker to be forced to bake cakes that say "Jesus saves," or a politically conservative baker to be forced to bake cakes that say "Hillary Clinton for President." I can see why drawing the line at simply baking the cake could be problematic, though, because there are all kinds of commercial exchanges in today's society that could result in somebody doing something that the seller disagrees with. What happens when an arts-and-crafts store refuses to sell posterboard to somebody with a "Make America Great Again" hat because they're concerned that the person intends to make a pro-Trump sign with it? So it's not always an easy or uncomplicated question to figure out what's a reasonable form of conscientious objection. I do think that the Obama administration's contraceptive mandate was an overreach, however, because there the link is a little more direct, insofar as the employer ends up paying for a portion of the employee's health care.
  14. Politicians you've met

    I suppose there's a small chance that Sheldon Whitehouse might still recognize me if we crossed paths - I did a lot of volunteering for him in the early stages of his first Senate campaign, so I was there when it was just him, a handful of paid staffers, and a rotating cast of maybe 15-20 volunteers. He's a very down-to-earth, unpretentious person, and cracked a joke one day about the apparent contradiction when I walked in with a box full of donuts while wearing a "Rhode Island for Health Care" t-shirt. Other politicians I've briefly met / shaken hands with - John Kerry (during the primary for '04), David Cicilline, Jack Reed, and a few members of RI's state legislature. As far as seeing speeches goes, I actually got to attend a couple days of the 2004 Boston DNC - in a nutshell, Rhode Island's current state treasurer Seth Magaziner was, at the time, president of the Democrats club where I was in school and his dad used to be Bill Clinton's health care guru, so he had a bunch of unused tickets that he gave away to people. It was fun, though I was a little surprised at how much the attendees talk through the whole thing, almost like if you were at a sports event.
  15. Rumor: Kasich/Hickenlooper Independent Ticket?

    I agree in theory, but the first-past-the-post system would probably still result in Democrats or Republicans winning most of the time, and the smaller parties' impact would be small compared to their level of popular support and would sometimes be limited to playing "spoiler." Look at 2000, where a majority of Americans voted for left-of-center candidates and we ended up with George W. Bush as President. What, realistically, is the "next step" for the Green Party, for example? Getting all the way up to, say, 8%? Or 11? Or 15%? Perhaps that's enough to pick off a few seats in highly progressive House districts in and around NYC, Los Angeles, Chicago, the Bay Area, and maybe Seattle and Portland on a good day. Meanwhile, purple-state Senate races and House swing districts would tip en masse to the Republicans unless there's something similar happening on the right. I'm not sure that a system where control of the Senate is decided by the fact that the Constitution Party decided to run for a Pennsylvania Senate seat while the Greens decided to sit out Michigan is any more functional or small-d democratic than what we already have.