Questions you want answered (P&C Edition)

MattDaddy wrote:
Edwin wrote:
The only thing I saw on my Facebook wall mentioning all this was this image and this link.

IMAGE(https://sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/s480x480/292472_4124241621108_431002131_n.jpg)

The fast food chain has no stance. A guy who happens to be the CEO of the company does.

Not the right thread for this, but despite not having a stance, said company has donated millions of dollars in support of said CEO's stance, yearly.


The conflict has generated plenty of trouble, like Prohibition, solicitation laws, and most importantly the War on Drugs; however, I think the only cultural attribute that is nearly universal to Americans is the fairly high level societal tolerance of all sides.

Not really. We've got a strong history of *in*tolerance. The "societal tolerance" you speak of is an artifact of the 70's and later, and as you can see, half the country wants it back to the way it was. That tolerance in no way preceded the 20th century; and it took around 45 or 50 years just to get to the successes of the mid-60's.

Live and let live in the first half of the country's history applied only to those who looked and prayed and lived like "us". The others were usually treated pretty harshly; Americans have been notoriously slow to adopt social change; we were among the last countries to abolish slavery, remember, and maintained Apartheid until a decade shy of the 200th anniversary of the founding.

Food for thought.

My wife is a staunch (I'd even say rabid) Republican and a Mormon. As such, it's not terribly surprising that she's practically Mitt Romney's #1 fan. All this makes it very surprising that our marriage is working so well (me being a pink lefto commie/hippy bleeding heart liberal, according to her world view).

Yesterday she brought up that Obama is banning servicemen and -women from voting early in something, and that this is an obvious ploy to reduce the Republican vote, as all the military will vote en masse for Romney. On the surface, this argument seems to hold some water, and it seems almost the exact same thing, except on the other side of the political divide, as the Voter ID kerfuffle that has been discussed previously on (in?) these hallowed forums.

My question is, how much of that is true? I hate to say it, but when it comes to politics she blindly follows the party line, refusing to even consider anything that opposes it. Weirdly, she's pretty liberal when it comes to social issues (e.g. she has no problem with gay marriage), but as soon as anything comes up that smacks of bipartisanism she turns into a battle-hungry valkyrie ready to brain someone with a large battle hammer. This makes it terribly hard to believe everything she says when it comes to Romney or Obama or almost anything else political.

I've seen an article mentioned on Romney's facebook page (she follows him, naturally, so I get the joy of seeing all his articles as and when she 'likes' them), but that hardly seems a neutral source, so I turn to the GWJer hivemind on both sides of the political fence for clarification!

Rallick wrote:
Yesterday she brought up that Obama is banning servicemen and -women from voting early in something, and that this is an obvious ploy to reduce the Republican vote, as all the military will vote en masse for Romney. On the surface, this argument seems to hold some water, and it seems almost the exact same thing, except on the other side of the political divide, as the Voter ID kerfuffle that has been discussed previously on (in?) these hallowed forums.

My question is, how much of that is true?

I think almost none of it--I'll track down what I was reading about that the other day.

edit: here you go--
http://www.snopes.com/politics/ballo...

Contrary to what has been reported about this issue by a number of sources, however, the plaintiffs do not seek to "restrict military voting" in Ohio in any way. Their lawsuit does not ask the court to eliminate or curtail the extended voting period (or any other aspect of balloting) currently afforded to military voters; it asks the court to restore the early voting deadline for non-military voters to match that of military voters, the condition that had existed prior to the recent change in Ohio's laws:

tl;dr as I understand it: Ohio shortened the early voting period for everyone but the military, the Obama administration is suing to have one single deadline for everyone including the military.

Thanks, Cheesepavillion. I forgot about Snopes!

After some googling, it appears that the military vote generally tracks with the civilian one over time. For example, in 2008, exit polls put Bush at 54% of the military vote - hardly an "en masse" vote for him.

In the 90's, the anecdotal wisdom was that the officers voted Republican while the troops and non-coms trended Democratic. I'd say that moved more to the right until Bush, and then moved a bit back to the left during his term. Not sure where it is now, but if you guess around 50% you'll be in the right ballpark.

Robear wrote:
After some googling, it appears that the military vote generally tracks with the civilian one over time. For example, in 2008, exit polls put Bush at 54% of the military vote - hardly an "en masse" vote for him.

In the 90's, the anecdotal wisdom was that the officers voted Republican while the troops and non-coms trended Democratic. I'd say that moved more to the right until Bush, and then moved a bit back to the left during his term. Not sure where it is now, but if you guess around 50% you'll be in the right ballpark.

Really? My anecdotal evidence always swung the other way. Curious if you're drawing this from particular anecdotal evidence or just a general impression.


eally? My anecdotal evidence always swung the other way. Curious if you're drawing this from particular anecdotal evidence or just a general impression.

One is based on my own five years or so of direct contracting for the US Air Force Special Ops guys. This was a frequent topic of conversation among the non-coms I generally worked directly with. The other is conversations with my brother, whose career in the Army has taken him to the rank of Colonel, and who asserts that since the mid-90s, a career as an officer in the Army is severely hindered, if not impossible, without at least exhibiting severely Fundamentalist opinions. He himself went from completely non-observant partier to Assemblies of God during his career, and it's quite clear that his personal belief came well after he began the practice.

That's why I referred to it as anecdotal.

Robear wrote:

eally? My anecdotal evidence always swung the other way. Curious if you're drawing this from particular anecdotal evidence or just a general impression.

One is based on my own five years or so of direct contracting for the US Air Force Special Ops guys. This was a frequent topic of conversation among the non-coms I generally worked directly with. The other is conversations with my brother, whose career in the Army has taken him to the rank of Colonel, and who asserts that since the mid-90s, a career as an officer in the Army is severely hindered, if not impossible, without at least exhibiting severely Fundamentalist opinions. He himself went from completely non-observant partier to Assemblies of God during his career, and it's quite clear that his personal belief came well after he began the practice.

That's why I referred to it as anecdotal.

Interesting. That's the kicker about anecdotal evidence, of course.

Rallick wrote:
My question is, how much of that is true?

Military Times did a survey in 2010 that found that in recent year the number of troops that self-identified as Republicans dropped substantially while the number of troops identifying as "independents" nearly doubled.

An exclusive survey of some 1,800 active-duty troops shows the percentage of self-identified Republicans has decreased by one-third since 2004, from 60 percent to 41 percent, while the percentage of self-identified independents has nearly doubled to 32 percent during the same period.

These career-oriented officers and mid-grade and senior enlisted members are still far more conservative than liberal, but they are less likely today to identify with the GOP, the survey shows.

Much of the shift appears to have occurred only very recently, with the percentage of troops identifying themselves as Republican dropping nine percentage points from 2008 to 2009 and the percentage of those calling themselves independents increasing 10 points over the same period.

Back in 2004, a survey of West Point cadets and found that:

61% of the cadets who responded were Republicans, 12% were Democrats and the rest were independent. Almost half of the cadets said that "there was pressure to identify with a particular party as a West Point cadet." While Republican cadets tended to minimize this pressure, other cadets disagreed. Two-thirds of non-Republicans affirmed its existence, as did four-fifths of the small minority who identified themselves as Democrats (in a confidential survey)

That same LA Times article presented a brief rundown of political affiliation within the officer's corp:

As late as 1976, 55% of the higher ranks (majors and above) continued to identify as independents.

Vietnam marked a decisive change. With leading Democrats challenging the Cold War consensus, party politics began to threaten key military interests, and many officers began abandoning their detached stance. With the political rise of Ronald Reagan, the top rank of the officer corps moved from 33% Republican in 1976 to 53% in 1984. By 1996, 67% of the senior officer corps were Republicans, and only 7% were Democrats — the basic pattern continued through 2004.


Interesting. That's the kicker about anecdotal evidence, of course.

It's also quite true that the experience a soldier has in SOF organizations is totally different from that of a logistics guy in the DC suburbs. My brother started out in a LID, then was transformed to Armor (seriously), and throughout it all specialized in training operations here and abroad. So the culture he's in is plausibly different from specialties that don't get out of the office much.

CheezePavilion wrote:
Rallick wrote:
Yesterday she brought up that Obama is banning servicemen and -women from voting early in something, and that this is an obvious ploy to reduce the Republican vote, as all the military will vote en masse for Romney. On the surface, this argument seems to hold some water, and it seems almost the exact same thing, except on the other side of the political divide, as the Voter ID kerfuffle that has been discussed previously on (in?) these hallowed forums.

My question is, how much of that is true?

I think almost none of it--I'll track down what I was reading about that the other day.

edit: here you go--
http://www.snopes.com/politics/ballo...

Contrary to what has been reported about this issue by a number of sources, however, the plaintiffs do not seek to "restrict military voting" in Ohio in any way. Their lawsuit does not ask the court to eliminate or curtail the extended voting period (or any other aspect of balloting) currently afforded to military voters; it asks the court to restore the early voting deadline for non-military voters to match that of military voters, the condition that had existed prior to the recent change in Ohio's laws:

tl;dr as I understand it: Ohio shortened the early voting period for everyone but the military, the Obama administration is suing to have one single deadline for everyone including the military.

A bit more on this:
Veterans: Romney Lying About Obama Suit’s Effect On Military Voters

Robear wrote:

The conflict has generated plenty of trouble, like Prohibition, solicitation laws, and most importantly the War on Drugs; however, I think the only cultural attribute that is nearly universal to Americans is the fairly high level societal tolerance of all sides.

Not really. We've got a strong history of *in*tolerance.

Racial intolerance, yes. Intolerance of sex? Pleasure? Debauchery? Vice? Much less so. Even psychotic episodes like Prohibition haven't stopped a large portion of American society from willfully and cheerfully ignoring the prudes and their attempts to legislate morality. I mean, how do you think the drug trade got so big?

That tolerance in no way preceded the 20th century; and it took around 45 or 50 years just to get to the successes of the mid-60's.

The first law against prostitution ("nightwalking") in Massachusetts was enacted in 1699. A man named John Watts was quoted in 1760 as saying New York was "the worst School for Youth of any of his Majesty's Dominions, Ignorance, Vanity, Dress, and Dissipation, being the reigning Characteristics of their insipid Lives." In 1776, Lieutenant Isaac Bangs complained that half of his troops frequented the brothels in New York. In the 1850's Broadway was notorious for its thriving prostitution business, and by the end of the Civil War New York had over 600 brothels. In 1850 San Francisco had 537 registered saloons in a city of 36,000 people - there were literally only a handful other businesses in operation. One of Seattle's major madams contributed large amounts of money to help establish Seattle's school system. A black madam in San Francisco successfully filed suit in 1866 to desegregate public streetcars.

Americans have always had a strong streak of vice, and this tendency is one of the driving forces behind our increasing societal tolerance even as right-leaning moralizers attempted to reverse that trend via government.

I spent my civic holiday watching the Apocalypse: The Second World War marathon on NatGeo (Canada) yesterday. Catching up on the bits I missed on YouTube today, I noticed that the narrator's lines about the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem inspecting Waffen-SS and meeting with Hitler are cut mid-sentence in some broadcasts. The footage of al-Husseini remains though, in silence.

Here's an American narrator (not the version I saw) with the full narration (time-linked for your viewing convenience):

And here's the version with the narrator I saw on NatGeo Canada, but the references to the Grand Mufti removed:

Many of the other uploads of that episode on YouTube I found were also missing the lines.

I assume there were all sorts of little changes made here and there between the translation from French to English, and for broadcast in Europe, the US, and Canada. But this change seemed especially conspicuous and pernicious.

Anyone with a better grasp of history/Arab-Western relations/American-Israeli relations/cable television have an idea what's behind that?


Americans have always had a strong streak of vice, and this tendency is one of the driving forces behind our increasing societal tolerance even as right-leaning moralizers attempted to reverse that trend via government.

So a tolerant society passes strict laws condemning behaviors, and that just shows how tolerant they are, because some of them keep doing the things that the laws prohibit?

By this token, a society is tolerant whether or not it passes laws restricting behavior. I'd say that misses the point; if the US were truly tolerant, we wouldn't have had the Blue Laws and similar prohibitions in the first place. The War on Drugs would never have started up, and the social conservatives would the cranky fringe, easily outnumbered by swingers and legal recreational addicts.

Besides, you've just defined even hardcore social conservatives as "tolerant", because they often violate the rules they recommend to others. I dunno, Aetius, I don't think that reasoning works. Just because the Soviet Union had a thriving black market doesn't mean they were capitalists, for example. Just because there was a peace movement in the 1960's and during other wars does not mean we can say that the US is a pacifist nation.

Do you see my point here?

Question: why is P&C largely regarded as liberal by...well, by pretty much everyone? I don't see very many traditionally liberal ideas being espoused. Few people here are statist, most feverishly defend personal freedoms (speech and religion specifically), arguing flatly against any type of censorship or religious favoritism. I would claim this is actually a libertarian leaning board, with goman's economic theories standing out as possibly more leftist.

Seth wrote:
Question: why is P&C largely regarded as liberal by...well, by pretty much everyone? I don't see very many traditionally liberal ideas being espoused. Few people here are statist, most feverishly defend personal freedoms (speech and religion specifically), arguing flatly against any type of censorship or religious favoritism. I would claim this is actually a libertarian leaning board, with goman's economic theories standing out as possibly more leftist.

Because if you're not with us, you're against us.

Seth wrote:
Question: why is P&C largely regarded as liberal by...well, by pretty much everyone? I don't see very many traditionally liberal ideas being espoused. Few people here are statist, most feverishly defend personal freedoms (speech and religion specifically), arguing flatly against any type of censorship or religious favoritism. I would claim this is actually a libertarian leaning board, with goman's economic theories standing out as possibly more leftist.

As can be seen in the conservatives thread, even those goodjers who self-identify as conservative republicans tend to be to the left of the public image of conservatives in this country. I think that gwj tends to be pretty moderate in it's political leanings, but a lot of people still cling to the liberal/conservative dichotomy out of... I don't know. Habit?

I'm a fairly far-left socialist myself, and while I don't feel alone or isolated in p&c, there are only a few others that I seem to consistently agree with and I definitely feel outnumbered by the libertarians and conservatives sometimes.

ruhk wrote:
Seth wrote:
Question: why is P&C largely regarded as liberal by...well, by pretty much everyone? I don't see very many traditionally liberal ideas being espoused. Few people here are statist, most feverishly defend personal freedoms (speech and religion specifically), arguing flatly against any type of censorship or religious favoritism. I would claim this is actually a libertarian leaning board, with goman's economic theories standing out as possibly more leftist.

As can be seen in the conservatives thread, even those goodjers who self-identify as conservative republicans tend to be to the left of the public image of conservatives in this country. I think that gwj tends to be pretty moderate in it's political leanings, but a lot of people still cling to the liberal/conservative dichotomy out of... I don't know. Habit?

I'm a fairly far-left socialist myself, and while I don't feel alone or isolated in p&c, there are only a few others that I seem to consistently agree with and I definitely feel outnumbered by the libertarians and conservatives sometimes. :P

I'd also submit that being conservative doesn't imply being Republican these days. A lot of people who identify as conservative have stated that the Republican party has moved past them, while the party-system still implies that !Republican == liberal and !Democrat == conservative. I can't speak for anyone here, but the reflex action for many people I know(read: family members) is that, 'less conservative than Republican me is liberal.'

The preception is that military votes trend republican and the poor trend towards the dems. That is why you saw the Republicans do what they did. (who knows what the real truth is)

I live in Ohio and I remember the argument before when the dems were in control was there was a lot of crooked voting going on with the early voting system. (vote buys, fake votes, voting mulitiple times ect) I do find it rather poor form for my party to get angry over preceived voter fraud and thus limit early voting, but not for a group it considers to be in favor of them. Yet another reason for me to be blah about politics....

It's interesting that you raise Ohio in the context of Democratic vote fraud, as there's good evidence that that entire state vote was manipulated in 2004, to favor Bush... Nothing is simple.

Seth wrote:
Question: why is P&C largely regarded as liberal by...well, by pretty much everyone?

Because.....nm. Goodbye P&C.

MattDaddy wrote:
Seth wrote:
Question: why is P&C largely regarded as liberal by...well, by pretty much everyone?

Because.....nm. Goodbye P&C.

Again?

Well, see you in a couple months! Cheers!

MattDaddy wrote:
Seth wrote:
Question: why is P&C largely regarded as liberal by...well, by pretty much everyone?

Because.....nm. Goodbye P&C.

There was just a thread where a sizable portion, if not the majority, of the regular posters in this subforum said they considered themselves to be conservative. At the end of that thread people were accusing Paleocon of bashing conservatives. His username is Paleocon for god's sake.

The economic framework I try to espouse is not leftist. It is Keynesian to the core and heterodox but not leftist, like say Marxism, left wing anarchism, or Socialism.

If you call full employment to be leftist than the US government is leftist. The congress made sure than full employment is the national platform for the Federal Reserve.

http://www.federalreserve.gov/faqs/a...

Conducting the nation's monetary policy by influencing money and credit conditions in the economy in pursuit of full employment and stable prices.

Robear wrote:
It's interesting that you raise Ohio in the context of Democratic vote fraud, as there's good evidence that that entire state vote was manipulated in 2004, to favor Bush... Nothing is simple.

What do they say in nascar....If you aint cheating you aint trying...

Yeah I heard that too, I had a dem who is in my family swear up and down the thing switched her vote on her that year. Who knows who is actually telling the truth on all that. I can say in Ohio the last few elections have been rather dirty. Folks going around stealing signs, attacks against homes, ect. (and from both sides) I gave up trying to put up a sign in my yard the last pres election. The folks next door would walk into my yard and take it down. After the 3rd time I got new signs I just gave up.

Sorry, goman, I did not intend to mischaracterize. Your posts are over my head a lot of the time.

Seth wrote:
Sorry, goman, I did not intend to mischaracterize. Your posts are over my head a lot of the time. :)

I don't think it is over your head but upside down to what you are used to.

Things like why are interest rates are so low yet our deficits are so high is anti-intuitive to the mainstream framework but intuitive and expected in mine.

goman, I thought you were post-Keynesian.

Minarchist wrote:
goman, I thought you were post-Keynesian.

Is there such a thing as a hipster-economist?