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Has U.S. Democracy Been Trumped? Bernie Sanders wants to know who owns America?

#16641 User is offline   cherdano 

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Posted 2020-October-28, 16:48

View Postbarmar, on 2020-October-28, 11:14, said:

The US Constitution trumps state constitutions when there's a conflict.


But there is no such conflict in this case. What are you talking about?
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#16642 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-October-28, 17:59

For the wish they all could be Mongolian files

Mongolia

Population: 3.3 million
GNP/capita: US$ 3,780
Covid cases to-date per million population: 103
Covid deaths to-date: 0
Covid deaths to-date per million population: 0
Miles of border shared with China: 2,880

United States

Population: 331 million
GNP/capita: US$ 65,760
Covid cases to-date per million population: 26,888
Covid deaths to-date: 227,000
Covid deaths to-date per million population: 686
Miles of border shared with China: 0
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#16643 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-October-28, 18:17

Nate Silver at 8 PM today said:

After a surprisingly sluggish weekend for polling, the floodgates have opened, with a mix of high-quality polls, low-quality polls and pretty much everything in between. And although there are some outliers in both directions, they tell a fairly consistent story, overall: A steady race nationally, perhaps with some gains for Joe Biden in the Midwest.

Quote

On average, Biden leads by 9 percentage points using a simple average of post-debate national polls, which matches his 9 point lead in our fancy-schmancy official FiveThirtyEight national average.

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Something else to note: Although there’s been a slight decline in Biden’s national polls since the debate, a majority of state polls show his position improving. To be more precise, Biden has gained 0.7 percentage points in the average state poll since the debate, while he’s lost 0.5 points in the average national poll. That brings the national and state polls into better alignment after a period where national polls suggested that Biden led by 10 to 11 points but state polls were more consistent with a lead of about 9 points instead.


https://fivethirtyei..._cid=538twitter
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#16644 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2020-October-28, 18:20

View Posty66, on 2020-October-28, 17:59, said:

For the wish they all could be Mongolian files

Mongolia

Population: 3.3 million
GNP/capita: US$ 3,780
Covid cases to-date per million population: 103
Covid deaths to-date: 0
Covid deaths to-date per million population: 0
Miles of border shared with China: 2,880
Population density: 2.07/km2

United States

Population: 331 million
GNP/capita: US$ 65,760
Covid cases to-date per million population: 26,888
Covid deaths to-date: 227,000
Covid deaths to-date per million population: 686
Miles of border shared with China: 0
Population density: 33.6/km2

(-: Zel :-)

Happy New Year everyone!
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#16645 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2020-October-28, 18:59

We have heard so often about the concept of dodgy Donald running the country like a business and listening to the Kushner recordings strikes me as an absolutely clear example of what would be described in a corporate environment as a blame culture, which is very strongly linked with failing businesses. Perhaps this is an insight as to one reason why so many of the Trump businesses have performed so poorly. In any case, whether you support the idea of running a country this way or not, I would hope that almost everyone would think that a blame culture at the heart of that was not a great idea. Four more years of that? Please not!
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#16646 User is offline   PeterAlan 

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Posted 2020-October-28, 20:07

View Postbarmar, on 2020-October-28, 11:14, said:

The US Constitution trumps state constitutions when there's a conflict.

I'm neither American nor a lawyer, but I found this New York Times op-ed interesting:

New York Times 28 October 2020; by Akhil Reed Amar, Vikram David Amar and Neal Kumar Katyal said:

The Supreme Court Should Not Muck Around in State Election Laws

Just as they did in the infamous Bush v. Gore litigation in 2000, Republican lawyers are trying to get the Supreme Court to undermine state court rulings protecting voting rights under state law. Their theory? That state courts, by relying in part on state constitutions, are wrongly exercising power that belongs to state legislatures.

This idea that state constitutions are irrelevant, and that all that matters is what state legislatures say, is preposterous. Yet recent events suggest this wrongheaded theory may have some traction among the justices.

And this theory has huge consequences. It would mean that many of the decisions you are reading about, where state judges are applying state constitutions to protect the right to vote (say, by finding that ballots postmarked by Election Day will be counted, or that onerous witness requirements will be relaxed because of Covid-19) would now be fair game for the Supreme Court to reverse — even though these decisions are interpretations of state law by state courts.

So far, partisan attempts to involve the federal judiciary have failed, and rightly so. Early last week, the Supreme Court rejected an effort by Pennsylvania Republicans to overturn a Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision that votes postmarked by Election Day but received a few days later must be counted. The court deadlocked 4-4, letting the state court decision stand, with Chief Justice John Roberts joining the court’s three Democratic appointees in voting to leave undisturbed what the state court had done.

Now the Republican challengers are trying to bring the case back before the court, hoping to win support from its newest member, Amy Coney Barrett. We may see a similar push to overturn a second Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling issued last Friday, also protecting state voters’ rights — this time to have their votes counted notwithstanding technical signature glitches in mail-in or absentee ballots.

Federal courts have no business interfering in state-law matters. As the three of us wrote back in 2000, the effort of several justices to hijack state law in Bush v. Gore was a disgrace. These justices asserted that the “Florida Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Florida election laws impermissibly distorted them beyond what a fair reading required.” Of course, “fair reading” meant how these justices read state law, not how Florida’s expert judges saw the matter.

No Supreme Court case before 2000 ever tried this maneuver to upend a decision by a state court on state law, and in Bush v. Gore itself, only three justices, led by the chief justice at the time, William Rehnquist, claimed that the federal Constitution made them the ultimate word on the meaning of state election codes.

Until this week, only Justice Clarence Thomas, writing for himself, had ever invoked any aspect of Bush v. Gore as good law. But on Monday evening, ominously, Justice Brett Kavanaugh repeatedly endorsed Rehnquist’s Bush v. Gore concurrence, claiming that the Supreme Court should feel free to second-guess state court interpretations of state election law whenever presidential elections are at issue.

“The text of the Constitution requires federal courts to ensure that state courts do not rewrite state election laws,” he wrote in a footnote to a decision in which the court refused, 5-3, to extend Wisconsin’s deadline for receiving absentee ballots to six days after the election.

In fact, this part of Bush v. Gore has already been squarely rejected by a landmark 2015 case, Arizona Legislature v. Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission. Writing for the court in one of her greatest opinions, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg — who had emphatically dissented in Bush v. Gore — made clear that when Article I of the federal Constitution empowers the “legislature” of each state to regulate various aspects of congressional elections, the word “legislature” means the lawmaking process set up by a state’s constitution: Nothing in the federal Constitution, she said, “instructs, nor has this court ever held, that a state legislature” may regulate “federal elections in defiance of the provisions of the state’s constitution.”

The same rules for Article I also apply to Article II, which uses virtually identical language. It too empowers each state “legislature”— this time, to regulate the manner of picking presidential electors — but it does not empower a state “legislature” to ignore the state constitution creating that legislature, or the state supreme court that authoritatively interprets that state constitution.

Thus, when a state court construes a state election statute to align it with a state constitution’s right-to-vote principles, that state court is doing exactly what the federal Constitution and binding federal precedent authorize.

Justice Kavanaugh and the three other justices who wanted to jump into the Pennsylvania postmark dispute missed all this — a particularly striking lapse for jurists who say they are guided by the letter and spirit of the Constitution and by the basic rules of well-settled precedents. Indeed, just last year, the court, in a major opinion by Chief Justice Roberts, and joined by all the other dissenters in the Arizona Legislature case, and by Justice Kavanaugh, cited that case and squarely relied on its key holding.

Allowing federal courts to muck around with state election laws is dangerous and destabilizing. States generally set uniform rules for federal and state elections; giving federal courts latitude to topple state rules, but only for federal elections, eviscerates in-state uniformity.

Does it really make sense that your ballot in Pennsylvania will count for state elections but not the presidency — or federal House or Senate races, for that matter — because it arrives on Nov. 5?

Even if state constitutions do not apply of their own force to presidential ballots, these constitutions apply because state legislatures have chosen to incorporate them by reference into comprehensive state election codes regulating all elections in the state — local, state, congressional and presidential. Likewise, state legislatures have knowingly deputized state courts to oversee all these elections to ensure conformity with state constitutions.

The federal Constitution is emphatically clear and so is federal precedent. Any potential Supreme Court ruling to the contrary, especially any ruling with a partisan alignment, would be a disaster for the court and the country.

One Bush v. Gore is enough.


Akhil Reed Amar is a professor at Yale Law School. Vikram David Amar is dean of the University of Illinois College of Law. Neal Kumar Katyal, a former acting solicitor general of the United States during the Obama administration, is a professor at Georgetown Law School.

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#16647 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-October-28, 21:28

Population density, not decisive leadership, explains why Mongolia has been more successful than the U.S. at managing the pandemic? Perhaps not.

Ulaanbaatar, capital of Mongolia

Population per km2 vs US: 307 vs 33.6
Covid cases to-date per million population vs US: = 235* vs 26,888
Covid deaths to-date per million population vs US: = 0 vs 696

* This is a conservative estimate. It assumes all Mongolia cases occurred in Ulaanbaatar which accounts for 44% of Mongolia's population.
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#16648 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2020-October-29, 02:31

View Posty66, on 2020-October-28, 21:28, said:

Population density, not decisive leadership, explains why Mongolia has been more successful than the U.S. at managing the pandemic? Perhaps not.

Well we could compare international travel to and from the country if you like. It was illustrative of the point that you are comparing countries with quite different challenges. Comparing with Western Europe makes much more sense and shows much more clearly how the American response has cost a significant number of lives.
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#16649 User is offline   Trinidad 

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Posted 2020-October-29, 03:19

View PostZelandakh, on 2020-October-28, 16:30, said:


In 2013, a group of Dutch ethical hackers had gotten access to a large database with passwords. This included some of Donald Trump's accounts. When they saw what his password was, they got access to his Twitter account. They notified the US authorities immediately.
A few days before the 2016 election, they tried to get in again. It didn't work. That was the good news. It didn't, however, take a lot of effort to figure out that Trump had changed his Twitter account name. They tried again, using the password from 2013. They got in without trouble. The password was "yourefired". Again, they notified the authorities.
Link to NRC (in Dutch)

A few weeks ago, one of them just tried if he could get in again. The good news was that now the password had been changed. The bad news was that he got in anyway after a few guesses. The password was: "maga2020!". No other verification required.
(Link to NRC)

Rik
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#16650 User is offline   helene_t 

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Posted 2020-October-29, 03:50

View Posty66, on 2020-October-28, 21:28, said:

Population density, not decisive leadership, explains why Mongolia has been more successful than the U.S. at managing the pandemic? Perhaps not.

Ulaanbaatar, capital of Mongolia

Population per km2 vs US: 307 vs 33.6
Covid cases to-date per million population vs US: = 235* vs 26,888
Covid deaths to-date per million population vs US: = 0 vs 696

* This is a conservative estimate. It assumes all Mongolia cases occurred in Ulaanbaatar which accounts for 44% of Mongolia's population.

Sorry but this is silly. Ulaanbaatar has low population density compared to other cities. 307/km2 is less than some countries such as Netherlands and Bangladesh. It is certainly a lot less than New York.
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#16651 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-October-29, 07:35

View Posthelene_t, on 2020-October-29, 03:50, said:

Sorry but this is silly. Ulaanbaatar has low population density compared to other cities. 307/km2 is less than some countries such as Netherlands and Bangladesh. It is certainly a lot less than New York.

I agree completely that population density does not explain Mongolia's success. This was someone else's point.
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#16652 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-October-29, 09:51

Sarah Frier at Bloomberg said:

On Wednesday, Republican senators laid into the chief executive officers of Facebook Inc., Twitter Inc. and Google for anti-conservative bias. They asked pointed questions like: How many of the employees and content moderators are liberal versus conservative? And how many high-profile posts from Democrats have they removed, versus posts from Republicans? (They don't keep data on either question, the CEOs said.)

Senate Democrats criticized their colleagues for bullying the companies, saying the hearing was a transparent effort to pressure the online platforms to make calls favorable to President Donald Trump days before the critical election. They had a point. However, for months, the Democrats have been pressuring companies, too. They’ve repeatedly said the platforms aren’t doing enough to correct misinformation about voting.

Whatever happens during the U.S. election next week, the political party that loses the presidency is likely to lay the blame at least partly at the feet of the country’s social media giants—either for doing too much or not doing enough. That means scenes like Wednesday’s hearing battering the tech CEOs will remain a favored political pastime for the foreseeable future.

This state of our politics is, in part, the companies’ fault. For years, executives have argued that their websites and apps were neutral platforms. But they always had an algorithmic bias toward content that sparked an emotional response, spreading those posts farther and faster. That amplified more extreme views and exacerbated arguments and division online. Now that the companies are finally reckoning with their societal impact, the fixes can look superficial and even random. That’s in large part because the companies haven't fundamentally altered their algorithms—they’re reacting to and moderating content after it’s already up.

There’s plenty to criticize about social media content moderation—it's often applied inconsistently, and even unfairly and untransparently. But the reason for that isn't a conspiracy to silence certain users. (Indeed, claims of anti-conservative bias tend to go viral on these same platforms.) Rather, the culprit is the companies' own focus on getting bigger and driving engagement, rather than cleaning up messes.

Eventually new artificial intelligence systems could effectively tamp down on hate speech and viral misinformation. But right now, the computers aren’t smart enough to understand all the contours of human discourse. So Facebook, Google’s YouTube and Twitter are compensating by building election resource hubs, where they’ll give verified information. And they're adopting dramatic policies—like no political ads at all on Twitter, and a link to verified information on every Facebook post about voting—so that companies don’t have to make decisions one-by-one on billions of posts.

These changes have come piecemeal, over the course of hundreds of incremental announcements, because of consistent pressure from regulators and other third-party critics. The companies are so powerful, hosting so much of our election-related discourse, that tiny tweaks to their policies can have massive ripple effects. Wednesday’s hearing showed that the politicians have learned this pattern, and know the fastest way to get the companies’ attention to a problem: a loud critique.

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#16653 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-October-29, 13:48

Zanny Minton Beddoes, Editor-In-Chief at The Economist said:

THE COUNTRY that elected Donald Trump in 2016 was unhappy and divided. The country he is asking to re-elect him is more unhappy and more divided. After almost four years of his leadership, politics is even angrier than it was and partisanship even less constrained. Daily life is consumed by a pandemic that has registered almost 230,000 deaths amid bickering, buck-passing and lies. Much of that is Mr Trump’s doing, and his victory on November 3rd would endorse it all.

Joe Biden is not a miracle cure for what ails America. But he is a good man who would restore steadiness and civility to the White House. He is equipped to begin the long, difficult task of putting a fractured country back together again. That is why, if we had a vote, it would go to Joe.

King Donald

Mr Trump has fallen short less in his role as the head of America’s government than as the head of state. He and his administration can claim their share of political wins and losses, just like administrations before them. But as the guardian of America’s values, the conscience of the nation and America’s voice in the world, he has dismally failed to measure up to the task.

Without covid-19, Mr Trump’s policies could well have won him a second term (see first Briefing). His record at home includes tax cuts, deregulation and the appointment of benchloads of conservative judges. Before the pandemic, wages among the poorest quarter of workers were growing by 4.7% a year. Small-business confidence was near a 30-year peak. By restricting immigration, he gave his voters what they wanted. Abroad, his disruptive approach has brought some welcome change (see second Briefing). America has hammered Islamic State and brokered peace deals between Israel and a trio of Muslim countries. Some allies in NATO are at last spending more on defence. China’s government knows that the White House now recognises it as a formidable adversary.

This tally contains plenty to object to. The tax cuts were regressive. Some of the deregulation was harmful, especially to the environment. The attempt at health-care reform has been a debacle. Immigration officials cruelly separated migrant children from their parents and limits on new entrants will drain America’s vitality. On the hard problems—on North Korea and Iran, and on bringing peace to the Middle East—Mr Trump has fared no better than the Washington establishment he loves to ridicule.

However, our bigger dispute with Mr Trump is over something more fundamental. In the past four years he has repeatedly desecrated the values, principles and practices that made America a haven for its own people and a beacon to the world. Those who accuse Mr Biden of the same or worse should stop and think. Those who breezily dismiss Mr Trump’s bullying and lies as so much tweeting are ignoring the harm he has wrought.

It starts with America’s democratic culture. Tribal politics predated Mr Trump. The host of “The Apprentice” exploited it to take himself from the green room to the White House. Yet, whereas most recent presidents have seen toxic partisanship as bad for America, Mr Trump made it central to his office. He has never sought to represent the majority of Americans who did not vote for him. Faced by an outpouring of peaceful protest after the killing of George Floyd, his instinct was not to heal, but to depict it as an orgy of looting and left-wing violence—part of a pattern of stoking racial tension. Today, 40% of the electorate believes the other side is not just misguided, but evil.

The most head-spinning feature of the Trump presidency is his contempt for the truth. All politicians prevaricate, but his administration has given America “alternative facts”. Nothing Mr Trump says can be believed—including his claims that Mr Biden is corrupt. His cheerleaders in the Republican Party feel obliged to defend him regardless, as they did in an impeachment that, bar one vote, went along party lines.

Partisanship and lying undermine norms and institutions. That may sound fussy—Trump voters, after all, like his willingness to offend. But America’s system of checks and balances suffers. This president calls for his opponents to be locked up; he uses the Department of Justice to conduct vendettas; he commutes the sentences of supporters convicted of serious crimes; he gives his family plum jobs in the White House; and he offers foreign governments protection in exchange for dirt on a rival. When a president casts doubt on the integrity of an election just because it might help him win, he undermines the democracy he has sworn to defend.

Partisanship and lying also undermine policy. Look at covid-19. Mr Trump had a chance to unite his country around a well organised response—and win re-election on the back of it, as other leaders have. Instead he saw Democratic governors as rivals or scapegoats. He muzzled and belittled America’s world-class institutions, such as the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. As so often, he sneered at science, including over masks. And, unable to see beyond his own re-election, he has continued to misrepresent the evident truth about the epidemic and its consequences. America has many of the world’s best scientists. It also has one of world’s highest covid-19 fatality rates.

Mr Trump has treated America’s allies with the same small-mindedness. Alliances magnify America’s influence in the world. The closest ones were forged during wars and, once unmade, cannot easily be put back together in peacetime. When countries that have fought alongside America look on his leadership, they struggle to recognise the place they admire.

That matters. Americans are liable both to over- and to underestimate the influence they have in the world. American military power alone cannot transform foreign countries, as the long wars in Afghanistan and Iraq proved. Yet American ideals really do serve as an example to other democracies, and to people who live in states that persecute their citizens. Mr Trump thinks ideals are for suckers. The governments of China and Russia have always seen American rhetoric about freedom as cynical cover for the belief that might is right. Tragically, under Mr Trump their suspicions have been confirmed.

Four more years of a historically bad president like Mr Trump would deepen all these harms—and more. In 2016 American voters did not know whom they were getting. Now they do. They would be voting for division and lying. They would be endorsing the trampling of norms and the shrinking of national institutions into personal fiefs. They would be ushering in climate change that threatens not only distant lands but Florida, California and America’s heartlands. They would be signalling that the champion of freedom and democracy for all should be just another big country throwing its weight around. Re-election would put a democratic seal on all the harm Mr Trump has done.

President Joe

The bar to Mr Biden being an improvement is therefore not high. He clears it easily. Much of what the left wing of the Democratic Party disliked about him in the primaries—that he is a centrist, an institutionalist, a consensus-builder—makes him an anti-Trump well-suited to repair some of the damage of the past four years. Mr Biden will not be able to end the bitter animosity that has been mounting for decades in America. But he could begin to lay down a path towards reconciliation.

Although his policies are to the left of previous administrations’, he is no revolutionary. His pledge to “build back better” would be worth $2trn-3trn, part of a boost to annual spending of about 3% of GDP. His tax rises on firms and the wealthy would be significant, but not punitive. He would seek to rebuild America’s decrepit infrastructure, give more to health and education and allow more immigration. His climate-change policy would invest in research and job-boosting technology. He is a competent administrator and a believer in process. He listens to expert advice, even when it is inconvenient. He is a multilateralist: less confrontational than Mr Trump, but more purposeful.

Wavering Republicans worry that Mr Biden, old and weak, would be a Trojan horse for the hard left. It is true that his party’s radical wing is stirring, but he and Kamala Harris, his vice-presidential pick, have both shown in the campaign that they can keep it in check. Ordinarily, voters might be advised to constrain the left by ensuring that the Senate remained in Republican hands. Not this time. A big win for the Democrats there would add to the preponderance of moderate centrists over radicals in Congress by bringing in senators like Steve Bullock in Montana or Barbara Bollier in Kansas. You would not see a lurch to the left from either of them.

A resounding Democratic victory would also benefit the Republicans. That is because a close contest would tempt them into divisive, racially polarising tactics, a dead end in a country that is growing more diverse. As anti-Trump Republicans argue, Trumpism is morally bankrupt (see Lexington). Their party needs a renaissance. Mr Trump must be soundly rejected.

In this election America faces a fateful choice. At stake is the nature of its democracy. One path leads to a fractious, personalised rule, dominated by a head of state who scorns decency and truth. The other leads to something better—something truer to what this newspaper sees as the values that originally made America an inspiration around the world.

In his first term, Mr Trump has been a destructive president. He would start his second affirmed in all his worst instincts. Mr Biden is his antithesis. Were he to be elected, success would not be guaranteed—how could it be? But he would enter the White House with the promise of the most precious gift that democracies can bestow: renewal.

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#16654 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2020-October-29, 16:08

This will not be a deep comment.

DT says we have turned a corner. With he Dow falling and the covid cases rising, this reminded me of my first time in Philadelphia. I had a great day at the museums, I had a great dinner, then I went out for a walk. At some point I looked around, said uh oh, and did an about face. I had turned the wrong corner.
Surely people across the country have similar thoughts. Turning a corner is good only if you have chosen the right corner and the correct way to turn.

Anyway, we are going to be seeing how this corner turn has worked out. Could I just stay ion bed until next Wednesday or Thursday?
Ken
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#16655 User is offline   cherdano 

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Posted 2020-October-30, 05:00

View Posthelene_t, on 2020-October-29, 03:50, said:

Sorry but this is silly. Ulaanbaatar has low population density compared to other cities. 307/km2 is less than some countries such as Netherlands and Bangladesh. It is certainly a lot less than New York.

Population density actually explains the quickness of spread of covid-19 to a non-trivial extent, more than I would have guessed - if you measure it properly. You need to measure "how many persons live near a random person", not "how many persons live near a random pin on the map". That's because covid-19 spreads from person to person, not from pins on the map to persons!
(Scotland has very low population density, but most live in the central belt between Edinburgh and Glasgow, and for us of course it does not matter that the Highlands are extremely sparsely populated.)

http://www.bristol.a...on-density.html
https://arxiv.org/pdf/2005.01167.pdf
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#16656 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-October-30, 12:54

I concede Z's point that Mongolia is not a fair comparison, not because it's less densely populated than the U.S., but because its culture, interactions with the outside world and its government are so different.

Still, I hope the U.S. and other countries in the West can learn from what Mongolia and other countries in East Asia got right.

The conclusions for policy makers in the second paper cherdano linked are a good place to start:

Quote

This study attempts to robustly control one demographic variable, population density, so that relative differences in the spread of COVID-19 between countries can be compared. By highlighting where and when this factor has contributed to the spread of COVID-19, we believe this study can contribute to the discussion about which epidemic control measures are suitable for which countries. In general, shielding immunocompromised people living at relatively high density, for example the elderly in care facilities, should be essential. Other control measures exist over different time-scales. For example, in the short-term highly internationally connected countries such as the UK and USA should limit travel. However, in the long-term these two countries, as well as others across the West, should discuss democratically how to respond to new and emerging infectious diseases rapidly while preserving individual rights. As the prospect of a second wave of COVID-19 is likely, both the short and long term, however, are now and soon.

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#16657 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2020-October-30, 20:08

Matt Yglesias said:

We need to some day try to swim back to the idea that partisan politics is a contest about who will run the government and what will they do with that power, not just a referendum on diffuse cultural trends with tenuous connections to policy.

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#16658 User is offline   akwoo 

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Posted 2020-October-30, 20:44

The dangerous trend in American politics is that party realignment makes Republicans the rural party and Democrats the urban party.

You might think this is about cultural trends with tenuous connections to policy, but there's a lot of connected policy. In particular, it means that, broadly speaking, Republicans will want to tax services and subsidize goods, while Democrats will want the reverse, because the part of the economy that produces goods is mostly rural and exurban (recalling that most manufacturing has moved out to the exurbs for cheaper land), while the part of the economy that produces services is mostly urban and suburban.

The problem is that when politics is about interests rather than ideas and when, for geographic reasons, people don't have much contact with those who disagree, we degenerate first into war by other means, than into war.
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#16659 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2020-October-30, 23:00

View Postakwoo, on 2020-October-30, 20:44, said:

Republicans will want to tax services and subsidize goods, while Democrats will want the reverse,

Why not take the popular parts of both sides' ideas, taxing services and the rich while leaving goods more or less alone?
(-: Zel :-)

Happy New Year everyone!
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#16660 User is offline   akwoo 

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Posted 2020-October-31, 01:42

View PostZelandakh, on 2020-October-30, 23:00, said:

Why not take the popular parts of both sides' ideas, taxing services and the rich while leaving goods more or less alone?


Because, broadly speaking, that's not enough tax money.

The GDP per capita of Mississippi is less than half that of New York.

If Mississippians demand that they have the same job opportunities as people in New York and their children have the same educational and life opportunities as the children of New York, that would require a massive wealth transfer. A truly populist Republican Party would make that demand.

EDIT: There is about a third of my county that would genuinely be better off if Pol Pot was in charge.
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