The Body Politic

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The Body Politic

Post  SurgePox on Fri Oct 12, 2012 1:45 am

I think with recent elections in the USA and many of us entering young adulthood a political discussion thread could prove a lively and interesting place for us to discuss views on politics, politicians, law, current events, and even our own philosophies. Feel free to expand the current Whatever thread discussion into this thread. It will allow people who are not interested to ignore it and those who are avid to discuss without pulling others into it unwittingly.

No hard rules but some pointers:
1. Read at your own peril! You may not agree with what someone has to say and if that bothers you avoid reading things here
2. Keep it civil
3. Don't share unless you are comfortable with have your opinions challenged, since it is almost inevitable someone will not share your view on an issue

We may have had a thread about this already but that was like 4 years ago and it's the thread that ended up becoming the whatever thread so this is valid.
Also if this thread is a dud it can get wiped.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  SnakeInABox on Fri Oct 12, 2012 1:46 am

Holy fuck I was just thinking of making a politics thread. On Surge, my love, you are one in a million

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  TheTJ on Fri Oct 12, 2012 1:50 am

Politicians in general tend to be awful people to run countries, but they're the only ones running for office. Being Republican or Democrat in America often boils down to "My team is better than yours" rather than a discussion of the issues.

Worst part is, anyone sane enough to help fix the system is also probably sane enough not to get involved in the first place.

Just some lines and opinions I'm regurgitating from an old cracked article thoughts I had.



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Re: The Body Politic

Post  SurgePox on Fri Oct 12, 2012 1:56 am

TheTJ wrote: Politicians in general tend to be awful people to run countries, but they're the only ones running for office. Being Republican or Democrat in America often boils down to "My team is better than yours" rather than a discussion of the issues.

Worst part is, anyone sane enough to help fix the system is also probably sane enough not to get involved in the first place.
Agree and disagree, i think your analysis is correct, completely. The people who run the country are very rarely fully interested in the true well being of the people they serve, or willing to explore nonpartisan options, ideas, or comparative political solutions. However I disagree with the notion that anyone can come along and "fix" things, what fixes a bad system is an informed public of people who understand their civic duty, and in the case of a system that fails the people it serves, that duty is to be more active than jsut casting votes ones every 4 years and trusting the guy you picked to be fully accountable. You have to be informed, educated, andable to be an influential citizen at the individual level, and a lot of us need to be this kind of citizen in order to fix our ills. Will this happen? Is this possible? I'd be crazy not to be somewhat skeptical.

But in short the way you solve shitty systems is informed, committed groups of individuals performing their civic duty and making good for their community. Sometimes but not always this is called revolution but revolution has bloody and extreme connotations and civic duty isn't necessarily that radical.

EDIT; In rereading your post, I realize that you didnt really necessarily imply that a sane individual need be only a single sane individual, so my point about public awareness and duty is somewhat moot. I still like it though.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Fedaykin on Fri Oct 12, 2012 2:45 am

Ohey Whatever Thread 2: Electric Bugaloo Razz

Used to be very interested in politics, but our current politicians lack charisma, bicker all the time and corruption is rampant, if you believe the newspapers. Luckily, there are two new parties forming, the Pirates(the German movement being their inspiration, but lack any sort of program) and Team Stronach for Austria(funded and run by 80-something yo Austro-Canadian billionaire Frank Stronach). Well, at least they bring something new to the table.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Doctor Shulk on Fri Oct 12, 2012 3:17 am

Meanwhile, in Australia: the Speaker of the House of Parliament sent thousands of rude text messages (including referring to vaginas as being like mussels, just generally being lewd and unpleasant). He resigned after the current government worked to keep him in parliament, while getting angry at the opposition for being sexist. Apparently, the Prime Minister doesn't like it that she is referred to as, well, she. :U

So Australian politics right now is pretty much a debate about gender and sexism (the opposition leader is a staunch Catholic, with strong religious beliefs. He has said some things in the past that have been taken badly, like saying abortion was the easy way out (in 1998, when he was Health Minister), but not in recent times. The prime minister, meanwhile, is an athiest). I'm not defending either of them but this is all incredibly silly and they're really picking stupid things to get upset over. The opposition has not made any really sexist comments recently and all the sexism has come from a radio broadcaster known for being 'shocking' and incredibly right wing, and the speaker of the house and his lovely analogies for vaginas.

So yeah, Australian politics is basically arguing over vaginas.

Edit: I never thought I'd use the word 'vagina' so many times in a single post. :U


Last edited by Doctor Shemp on Fri Oct 12, 2012 3:42 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Avalanche on Fri Oct 12, 2012 3:37 am

Yeah, European politics are currently too busy screwing each other over......Dutch politicians meanwhile are slowly killing the education system.

'Don't worry, the fine for those who study longer then 4 years is gone. Instead we'll completly change the studyfunding system to be twice as expensive for students and basically screw everyone who wants to live in a studentsapartment over. Have we mentioned we wanted Holland to become one of the biggest knowledge-economies in the world yet?'

Incredibly summarized, there are probably some nuances in there. Fuck it, I'm moving to Denmark.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Doctor Shulk on Fri Oct 12, 2012 3:44 am

King Avalanche wrote:Yeah, European politics are currently too busy screwing each other over......Dutch politicians meanwhile are slowly killing the education system.

'Don't worry, the fine for those who study longer then 4 years is gone. Instead we'll completly change the studyfunding system to be twice as expensive for students and basically screw everyone who wants to live in a studentsapartment over. Have we mentioned we wanted Holland to become one of the biggest knowledge-economies in the world yet?'

Incredibly summarized, there are probably some nuances in there. Fuck it, I'm moving to Denmark.

There...was a fine for people who study longer than 4 years?

What the fuck :U I would be screwed, as would anyone doing a long course, like Medicine, or a dual degree like Arts/Law :U

But yeah, that sounds pretty shit. Australian education is okay...as long as you live in Australia and can qualify to get government assistance (which you can, I believe, as long as you're a citizen or at least a permanent resident, I think. I have a debt waiting until I earn enough per annum to pay off).

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Doctor Shulk on Fri Oct 12, 2012 4:42 am



The Chaser did segments about politics last year, explained by cat videos on Youtube. Razz

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Raya on Fri Oct 12, 2012 2:18 pm

British politics is pretty boring. The public all know that election promises are all empty words, the politicians know the public know this, so campaigns basically boil down to "we're shit but less shit than the opposition." tbh I rarely vote as I don't believe in any of the parties. Labour bought in those absolutely stupid university top-up fees, pricing out loads of people from university, despite their campaign promise being 'Education Education Education'. Education for all, but only if you're rich! I only voted the Conservatives last time round because they were in 2nd place to the BNP, the British National Nazi Party, who I absolutely cannot stand and didn't want them to get into power.

Saying that, we sometimes do get glorious moments. This is John Prescott, who at the time was the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party and the Secretary of State:



His popularity actually went up after this. Think that would happen in the US? Razz

Saying that I've got a bit of an interest in US politics. It's a circus compared to the UK, and I'm really surprised at how passionate people get over it. It also has a knock-on effect on Europe, whether for good or bad. Which is why I really, really don't want the Republicans to get in this year. Aside from the fact their policies will dick over US citizens, it'll also wreck the economy, which in turn will wreck ours. And the Euro is already flapping around like a dying fish anyway, so...yeah.

At least China is doing okay out of all this.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  TheTJ on Fri Oct 12, 2012 2:29 pm

I disagree about the economy bit. In my eyes Republicans have traditionally been the sounder financial choice, while the Democrats have been the socially progressive party. Vote republican when times are tough and democrat in times of plenty.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  barda_ehmos on Fri Oct 12, 2012 3:04 pm

TheTJ wrote:I disagree about the economy bit. In my eyes Republicans have traditionally been the sounder financial choice, while the Democrats have been the socially progressive party. Vote republican when times are tough and democrat in times of plenty.
If the french people thinked like you ><

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  DRTJR on Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:16 pm

American Politics is a contest of the lesser of two evils. In my opinion the Republicans have the sounder fiscal and Foreign policies, and the third leg, Social policies, are a waste of time. Ergo I am a sound and constant supporter of the Republicans and could easily be described as a person in the "Far Right" of the party.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  TheTJ on Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:24 pm

Whoa, now, social policies are about half of all politics.*

Think of it this way, it's how the government treats it's people. It's still very important, it's just that the parties have different takes on it.

I'm not a huge fan of the Republican party's social policies around half the time, which is more often than with the Democratic party. Right now I do think the bigger issues are economic in nature though, so even if I did lean democratic in that area I'd still vote republican.

*Could be 100% wrong, talking out of A**

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Smashy B on Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:43 pm

TheTJ wrote:I'm not a huge fan of the Republican party's social policies around half the time, which is more often than with the Democratic party.
Seems to me you're more of a Libertarian than Republican or Democrat. That's basically what the party is; fiscally conservative and socially liberal. I wasn't just trying to be funny in the Whatever thread, but right now my vote is on Gary Johnson. He won't win, but I'd rather vote for a guy my views align more with than do the "lesser of two evils" thing. That, and I don't see anyone but Obama winning California in the electoral college.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  TheTJ on Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:47 pm

Well, my social views aren't all that liberal either, I just don't think a good chunk of it is any of the governments business.

I can see the appeal of the Libertarian party though.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  DRTJR on Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:50 pm

My opinion is as follows:
Social policies like abortion and gay marriage are on a national scale, non issues. and will be historically as important as the whiskey rebellion. such decisions should be solved at the state level.

Issues like education should be solved again at the state level with minimal federal control. because the problems that Nevada has are not the same as Florida or Alaska.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  SurgePox on Fri Oct 12, 2012 11:08 pm

drtjr wrote:the third leg, Social policies, are a waste of time.
I disagree, social policies are incredibly important, considering the entire goal of creating a state is collective protection, and the entire point of ruling it democratically is collective rule, issues that divide or affect a significant portion of people are inherently political. I do agree though that economic and foreign policy are very important, foreign policy in particular, an issue a lot of people our age don't consider since they don't quite understand the role in the world of the US or their country.
smashbro wrote:He won't win, but I'd rather vote for a guy my views align more with than do the "lesser of two evils" thing.
I am a big fan of this stance, and while I understand the pragmatic argument for trying to make the decision that affects who wins, the electoral college (in america) makes it somewhat of a moot point. Color the world exactly how you want it to look now, and start the momentum that ripples into the world you want in the future instead of settling and allowing things to stay as they are.

I really appreciate that people are participating and that we not only have a good mix of political ideologies but are getting to see politics in other countries as we wouldn't normally have the chance to. This has the potential to be a great thread!

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Minby_Aran on Sat Oct 13, 2012 8:51 am

I agree a lot with Smash with the Gary Johnson support. While I don't support all of his views, and think he's made a mistake making Marijuana legalization the major issue that he's running on, I still agree with his anti-war, pro-state's rights stance. Plus, like Smash, there's no way my state's voting for anyone other than Obama.

And on that, I really think State's rights should be a more important subject. I don't think the federal government should set every policy that the states need to follow.

And with that is why I can't support Romney. He isn't a real Republican. H's this new breed of crazy Republican. He doesn't believe in minimal government intervention and strong fiscal policy, he believes in pushing his views onto people at a National level, and his fiscal plan has been wishy-washy.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Raya on Sat Oct 13, 2012 12:17 pm

DRTJR wrote:In my opinion the Republicans have the sounder fiscal and Foreign policies

Bashing and threatening economically powerful countries, invading others and stirring up endless shit in the Middle East? Those are terrible policies. All it's doing is making America enemies and will disrupt the economy. Look at all the shit Obama was left to attempt to clean up.

Question for the Americans, something that's always confused me about US politics. How come states are allowed to choose their own laws? I've never really understood- they're all part of the same country, so why isn't there a flat set of laws that cover all of the US? It really doesn't make sense to me that you can do something legal in one state, step over the border into another part of the country and suddenly it's illegal. Is it that, as long as it doesn't violate the Constitution, a state can pass any law it wants? Does it cause issues with people from out of state not realising they're breaking the law?

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  barda_ehmos on Sat Oct 13, 2012 12:27 pm

yay, an ecologist who deal drugs, youhou.
In addition, she was a secretary of a mayor on Paris. xD

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  .. on Sat Oct 13, 2012 12:30 pm

Shit like that barely happens Raya.

States may have different laws in regards to weapons, driving, and medicine. But all of the day-to-day things won't be affected really. States having different laws barely affect people at all. At least, as far as I know.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Doctor Shulk on Sat Oct 13, 2012 4:10 pm

Division of power?

We've got that here, the Constitution sets out what the federal government makes laws on, the rest is given to states and local governments. Stops the federal government from having control of everything. But federal government makes laws on the really big things. Course, stuff like marriage laws comes down to the states.

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  .. on Sat Oct 13, 2012 4:39 pm

When people say that Marriage and Abortion shouldn't be up to the states because if it was that way then we'd probably still have slavery, or segregation.

I'm like, "Really? You are trying to compare that stuff with Slavery?"

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Re: The Body Politic

Post  Fedaykin on Sat Oct 13, 2012 5:13 pm

Raya wrote:Question for the Americans, something that's always confused me about US politics. How come states are allowed to choose their own laws? I've never really understood- they're all part of the same country, so why isn't there a flat set of laws that cover all of the US? It really doesn't make sense to me that you can do something legal in one state, step over the border into another part of the country and suddenly it's illegal. Is it that, as long as it doesn't violate the Constitution, a state can pass any law it wants? Does it cause issues with people from out of state not realising they're breaking the law?

I always thought, that it was this what the USA is all about: a bunch of different states united under a central goverment, some kind of federation. I'be heard, that various laws are different from state to state, but not sure about how much they really differ to each other. Like the death penalty. From what I know, every state handles it differently.

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