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User Journal

Journal Journal: No more /. subscriptions? 2

I realized that I had not topped up my /. subscription in some time and went to do so. Saw this:

"Please Note: Buying or gifting of a new subscription is not available
at the moment. We apologize for the inconvenience. This downtime though
does not effect your current active subscription in any way. We will
keep you posted on the latest"

Any idea what's going on? Are they sticking to a pure ad model (all blocked anyhow, but I did like to subscribe as I like the ol' barn.)

User Journal

Journal Journal: Is Anyone Tracking Trump's Broken Promises? 34

Trump made a great deal of campaign promises, and he is already back-tracking on quite a few of them.

Raise criminal charges against Hillary Clinton? nah, maybe not

Repeal all of Obamacare, immediately? nope, not doing that either

Start deporting people on day one? nah, that can wait (note what the same article also says about the wall)

Can anyone name anything substantive he was planning that he hasn't already walked back? Should be an interesting "first 100 days", being as he's already been dropping things off his to-do list.
User Journal

Journal Journal: 97% in 2016 30

What was 97% in 2016? According to opensecrets.org, 97% of US House members who ran for re-election in 2016 won their re-election bid. While that seems high - and it is higher than 2014, 2012, or 2010 - it is not the highest we've seen since the 60's, and we've never seen less than 80% in that time frame.

This is of course while congress has approval ratings from US polls that is barely better than Ebola or ISIS.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Fuck Obamacare 13

Trump has been all over the map about the Affordable Care Act since he "won" the election, stating he'd like to keep the "popular" bits after meeting with Obama, then stating he'd organize a special session of Congress the day after he's inaugurated to repeal the whole thing. (He's apparently unaware Congress will already be in session, but, whatever.) If he chooses to keep the "popular" bits, the health insurance industry will crumble, for what it's worth, because they'll be forced to provide coverage for pre-existing conditions to people who refuse to pay a penny in premiums until they fall ill.

My view is nuanced on Obamacare, so I expect 99% of the replies to this post to miss the point completely, probably just focusing on the headline, but...

...this was entirely predictable. Obamacare was a really bad idea. I said so at the time. I stand by my comments. It was never feasible in the long term and it was politically the most inept attempt to introduce universal health care ever devised.

That it's going... is not to be celebrated, because it means suddenly a huge number of people will be unable to afford health care. That's bad. But simply blaming Republicans and Fascists for its removal is missing the greater picture: it was insanely unpopular. It was something Republicans were able to rally around to defeat Democrats. Think about that for a second: UH should be popular. It should have been a real concern by most of the country that they were going to lose it. When in 2012 Democrats wanted the Senior vote, they pointed out Paul Ryan planned to replace Medicare - UH for seniors - and were rewarded by a shift towards them. Nobody was able to stand up in 2016 and say "Hey guys, Trump will kill Obamacare, you don't want to lose that!" In fact, the opposite happened, Trump used Obamacare against Clinton.

Why did it fail? Because it sucked. It didn't control prices significantly enough that people noticed - in fact, most believed Obamacare was to blame for rising insurance costs. Most had insurance before, they had insurance afterwards, and the insurance afterwards was still going up in price way above inflation. It was the same system as they had before, but it was more expensive.

And those who didn't have insurance before, well, they resented it. Suddenly they were forced to pay for something they hadn't been required to have before, and most people don't have cancer or require an MRI, so they never saw any value in what they were forced to buy, despite the subsidies and so on.

The Democrats, if they ever get back into power, have to decide where they want to go with Universal Healthcare. But next time - if there is a next time - there's really only one option, and that's an income tax funded single payer system. If that's not politically possible thanks to Blue Dogs or whatever, then don't address the issue - it's a waste of time, and it'll result in Democrats being unable to address any other aspects of their agenda. But Single Payer is virtually the only healthcare system you can create that people would be frightened of losing. Which makes it politically the only choice worth pursuing. And in practical terms, it's also the only way to deliver truly universal healthcare.

RIP Obamacare. I'm sorry for the people who'll lose coverage, but I'm not going to blame the Republicans for getting rid of it.

Republicans

Journal Journal: $freaks++

Here comes yet another repeat of the drudgedot mantra:

don't dare ask for details when a good conspiracy is on the line

Relationship Change
sent by Slashdot Message System on Friday November 04, 2016 @12:05AM

JustNiz (692889) has made you their foe.

If you want to see the details of my one-and-only interaction with him - and witness the fury of his war on truth and logic - start with Shanen's JE . I didn't go in knowing that Mr Niz was the troll in question, but he certainly supported that identification of him as a troll by the time he gave up.

Waste my time? Yes, he did. Make me mad? No, he did not. We have a small army of similarly-aligned conservatives here, I see that narrative all the time.

Republicans

Journal Journal: Drudgedot Pride In Ignorance, Part 358 2

Start here . This was in reply to my comment (that oddly enough eventually ended with a +4 score in spite of being tagged "flamebait" and "troll" multiple times) on the bizzaro article from last week on Universal Basic Income. The comment I linked to comes from a very peculiar (even by drugdedot standards) slashdot conservative with the handle prof_robinson. Follow along (if you really want to) and watch him repeatedly confuse blogs with news, pull "facts" out of his ass (which I respond to with actual facts that show him to be full of shit), and sling all kinds of vitriol at me (while accusing me of the same for no particular reason).

I'd say hilarity ensues, but that phrase is overused here. Is he a sock puppet of someone else? I've seen this kind of behavior in others but groupthink can show that way around here so it is hard to say. He is a really recent account so it's really anyone's guess if it is fully legit or not.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Post election 12

Assuming we don't elect the fascist, both Democrats and Republicans are going to have to do some desperate soul searching this election.

Democrats are going to have to acknowledge that the race was, at one point, extremely close (at the time of writing, it isn't, but what's to say it won't again in the next three weeks.) They're going to have to recognize that this was, in large part, because whatever Clinton's professionalism and qualifications, and however unfair it might be that she's suffered a decades long smear campaign, even without the smears she was never a great candidate. She represents a centrism and a failure to push for substantive change that is anathema to a significant number of people in the US.

How bad is she? Trump's obvious fascism was not enough to make people vote for her. The entire election has just fallen because he's shown himself to be an unpresidential thug towards women. Not because he advocates violence against his opponents. Not because he has promised to abuse the power of the Presidency to punish and imprison political enemies and journalists. Not because he has promised to make it easier to punish those who criticize the rich and powerful. Not because he has scapegoated immigrants for the problems of Americans. Not because he has smeared as rapists, murderers, and terrorists, immigrants and members of minority religions. Not because he has enlisted and cultivated the support of foreign anti-American despots to his presidential campaign. And not because he's been blatant about it, proposing simplistic solutions to complex problems without details or fact based arguments to back them up.

No Presidential candidate in recent history has been so obviously opposed to the values America fought in WW-II to defend, and yet that candidate got close enough to the Democratic candidate to seriously threaten her chances of winning. The Democrats, by any reasonable measure, put up a terrible candidate.

Republicans are going to have to acknowledge that the experiment started in the early nineties (perhaps earlier) to discredit and illegitimatize Democratic Party Presidents has caused unbelievable damage to the country, and destroyed both parties in the process. From Rush Limbaugh's early beginnings as describing the Clinton Regime as an "occupation", to the scorched Earth treatment of the Obama Presidency by Republican legislators, the end result wasn't a stronger Republican party, but a party that lost control of itself enough to find itself under the control of the first Fascist major party presidential candidate in living memory.

That means Republicans will have to bite the bullet and work with Clinton if and when she gets into office. Both parties will need to find points of agreement, areas where ordinary people will benefit from action, from infrastructure to improvements in healthcare, That's not to suggest they should hide their differences, but the last eight years in particular have been completely ridiculous, with Republicans failing to support stimulus and infrastructure improvements they clearly have no problems with, simply because Obama might get credit.

If you want to get good, honest, respected people to stand for leadership of government, it's a good idea to make that government good, honest, and respected to begin with. It isn't.

Whether either side will do any of this is.... I'll be happy if they do, but it really requires both parties to understand what just happened, and to change direction. I'm not sure they can.

Republicans

Journal Journal: Repeal, repeal, repeal says the GOP 40

I'm pretty sure I predicted this months (if not longer) ago, but now some Trump supporters are working hard to build momentum for repealing the 19th amendment . They don't seem terribly concerned about the fact that they would have pretty well zero chance of pulling it off between now and election day, and any effort to do it after would be even more futile. I might be over-generalizing here but I doubt the 20 women in the senate or the 84 in the house would be enthusiastic about repealing their own right to vote, even if it prevented Hillary from becoming the first female president.
Republicans

Journal Journal: The Latest DrudgeDot Let-Down 2

Slashdot was energizing their base over a supposed anti-Clinton wikileaks dump to hit today and the truth ended up being there is no big dump for today (note that even foxnews said "October Surprise fails" in regards to this). Slashdot readers may be able to take solace, though, in that apparently fox news is rescheduling this year's election to maximize opportunity to bring in revenue:

information regarding the presidential election "every week for the next 10 weeks."

Which if my calendar is correct puts us at the week of December 13th.

User Journal

Journal Journal: What I think of you based on your politics 12

(0. You don't have the vote. Sit down, relax, and watch the fireworks I guess.)
1. You're voting for Trump because you agree with him or hate Clinton that much: You're probably a horrible person. You should definitely feel bad.
2. You're voting for Trump because you want to upend the establishment: I don't think you're very bright. Hey, I don't want to live in suburbia any more, but I'm not going to get out of it by committing a Federal felony and letting the FBI know. I'd rather bite my lip until an opportunity arises to move to somewhere better. There are worse things than "the establishment" (like a fascist government), just like there are worse things than "Suburbia".
3. You're voting for Clinton: Probably the best choice given the circumstances. Don't blame you.
4. You're voting for Johnson or Stein in a swing state: OK. Well, I respectfully disagree with your decision, I feel Trump really is that bad, but at least you're letting the politicians know you're not happy with them and what direction to go in.
5. You're voting for J or S in a solidly red or blue state: Cool.
6. You're not voting: what the f--- is wrong with you? Write yourself in if you have to, but vote.

Regardless of my feelings towards your decision, I love you all. I just think those of you who actively support Trump probably deserve a good kick in the sensitive places.

User Journal

Journal Journal: What the? Where am I? 5

I don't know if someone accidentally nuked the mod-ban list or what, but I checked the front page today and I see I have moderator points.

A whole five of them, but moderator points no less.

I can say that based on my own comments indeed I have been commenting somewhat less often on here, so that may have made a difference. I guess if the front page here was more tech and less conservative FUD I would be likely to comment more often again...
Republicans

Journal Journal: DrudgeDot Rides Again 26

We had some solid reality-stomping conservative nuttery on the front page here just yesterday, yet it only pulled in 590 comments (as of my writing this JE). I'm surprised there wasn't more circle-jerk action going on over that. While Trump doesn't exactly have hte slashdot base whipped up in a frenzy the way that had core fascists like Ron Paul routinely would, there is no doubt that the majority of slashdot commenters will happily parade to the polls to vote for Trump.

Reading through the comments, one commenter pointed out a pretty significant reason to doubt the survey entirely:

"The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) is a politically conservative non-profit association founded in 1943 to "fight socialized medicine and to fight the government takeover of medicine"

Which matches The wikipedia entry on the same group that orchestrated this "survey"

User Journal

Journal Journal: Establishment vs Establishment 1

The framing of the 2016 election is that this is the establishment vs the anti-establishment. Clinton represents Washington DC. Trump represents the masses.

This is bullshit.

There are two establishments at war here. One is the obvious one, the party elites. Clinton is more or less part of that, though not as much as people suppose. She's actually an outsider who's fought her way in. If you doubt this for a second, examine the first Clinton's presidential period of 1991 to 2001 (I'm counting the initial campaigns as much as the being in office), and notice the entire period was a war between the Clintons, a Republican establishment who despised them, and a Democratic establishment who didn't trust them and only rallied around the cause when the Republicans went over the top.

The second is the general group that's had power and had the government direct power in their favor for as long as the US has been in existence, primarily the rich, but with a white, male, protestant secondary base as a group to keep happy.

These are, to some extent, the same groups, but the second group no longer believes that the party elites can be trusted to keep bowing to their whims.

Hence the fact a third rate reality TV star whose business successes are built upon fraud and deceit is suddenly able to reach this level of electoral success. Trump is a prime example of someone government has always worked for, yet he's untainted by DC itself. His character doesn't matter. He's part of the underlying establishment, and not part of the elite, so he's the person they pick.

Journal Journal: Shouldn't need to say "I didn't care much for Gawker but..." 3

The fact you have to bend over backwards to disassociate yourself with Gawker before pointing out that Thiel's assault on it was a dangerous attack on free speech is a dangerous sign that we've already drifted a fairly long distance towards fascism.

And, FWIW, if Thiel had bankrolled Elton John's (far more legitimate) lawsuits against The Sun newspaper in the 1980s, and bankrupted Rupert Murdoch as a result, there'd have been a public outcry in Britain.

Democrats

Journal Journal: This is not helpful (Updated) 60

As the CEO of the American Baby Mulching Corporation, I usually avoid taking sides when it comes to National Politics. Privately, I would generally consider myself a Republican, but a corporation such as ours must be seen to be above the fray. In 2001, for example, we donated equally to the campaigns of both Mr George W Bush, and Mr Joseph Lieberman.

But it has become abundantly clear that this country is now facing a very real threat in the form of Donald Trump. Mr Trump has made a number of statements we at American Baby Mulching consider to be seriously worrying. Mr Trump has made many statements alienating our allies. Mr Trump has made it clear he considers the use of Nuclear Weapons a viable form of warfare. He has pitted Americans against one another with his extremist anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant positions, slandering hard working Mexicans and creating a climate of fear.

As a Republican, I would not normally be comfortable endorsing the Democratic candidate for President, but in this case I feel I must, and I believe it would be the right thing for our country. Sure, Mrs Clinton and I have our differences. I personally oppose her positions on taxation, and as the CEO of a major company that requires a steady supply of disposable babies, we obviously abhor her position on abortion.

But in my dealings with Mrs Clinton, I have always found her fair and reasonable. She understands the need for corporations such as ours to mulch babies, harvesting their essential nutrients for eventual supply to ammunition manufacturers. She understands that businesses like my own require flexibility when it comes to environmental regulation, that we would be unable to employ so many workers without a low minimum wage, and she understands the need for regulators to overlook the use of undocumented immigrants and prisoners to solve staffing shortfalls.

For these reasons, I will be casting my vote for Mrs Clinton this year and I urge you to do likewise.

Updated: I'm just going to ignore the discussion at this point. It was supposed to be a comment about how things like that former CIA directory's "endorsement" of Clinton, and Bloomberg's, etc, wasn't necessarily helping those of us who are having to hold our noses and vote for a giant leap right-ward by the "left wing" party in the US this November. You know, humor. As far as the comments section goes, I've never seen such bare faced idiocy in my entire life. No wonder Trump is, current slump aside, doing so well. He might even win.

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