[Discussion] discussions & debates videos

videos with subject matter more suited to d&d than everything else. to be discussed and / or debated, with offshot threads if discussion on a particular video or subject warrants it.

Trophy Husband wrote:

Pretty much. For doing the right thing, knowing it will put your career in jeopardy, since this particular cable news channel doesn't allow its talent to report anything resembling anti-right sentiment for fear of alienating its viewers.
See qaraq's post above.

I did look at qaraq's post. And in that WaPo article was a bit about Hannity's viewers also losing their collective sh*t over the him pulling his unconditional support for Moore which linked to another article that included all the nasty comments Fox News viewers (or Russian bots) had tweeted about Hannity giving Moore 24 hours to explain the "inconsistencies" of his story. Crazy conservatives are going to crazy.

Smith's job isn't in any danger. He pulls ratings that are similar to other mid-afternoon news programs.

And Smith serves an important function at Fox News. Because of him Fox can claim that they're not entirely a right-wing propaganda channel. And, more importantly, Smith plays the role of "liberal media" that all the old people watching him at 3PM can rage at while not actually turning the channel to CNN or MSNBC.

I thought Sarah Silverman did a great job addressing her friend Louis CK did.

I love this, but man America is so weird right now.

That video made me happy and sad at the same time.

BTW, nearly all of the Saoirse Ronan hosted SNL was fantastic. Only the final sketch was a bit sketchy.

Was this the Aer Lingus one? My sister works for the airline, Senior Cabin Staff, and it didn't go down well at all. I felt that Ronan could actually have turned the joke around on an American audience by showing how silly the stereotype is but instead she steered into it. We all still thinks she's a national treasure so we're not upset more disappointed.

The whole dog thing was weird, I have to say.

Axon wrote:

Was this the Aer Lingus one? My sister works for the airline, Senior Cabin Staff, and it didn't go down well at all. I felt that Ronan could actually have turned the joke around on an American audience by showing how silly the stereotype is but instead she steered into it. We all still thinks she's a national treasure so we're not upset more disappointed.

The whole dog thing was weird, I have to say.

Yeah, that's the one. It was on a whole different level from the rest of the show. Ronan did some great bits, from the goofy little song about how to pronounce her name (yeah, an obvious bit, but it played well), the Welcome to Hell song, the crazy girlfriend in the K-mart sketch, and a brief part in the bachelor auction.

There were a couple of second-tier bits, too. "Floribama Shore" wasn't great, but she was okay in it, and the classroom one suffered a bit from trying to cram everyone in there. The Aer Lingus one was just awful though. And yeah, what the hell with the dogs?

This is a long one, but in it Tim Snyder talks about 20 of his lessons from "On Tyranny," so you don't have to go out and buy the book. But you should anyway. At least, if you want to help return the US to a Constitutional Republic if not an actual Democracy.

Great book, and it's brief and to the point.

Trump's Opioid Plan Largely Skips Prevention. Sad.

How the slogan "America First" is a con.

The first "con" doesn't make any sense. While it's true that America First does try to use foreign policy (trade barriers) to influence domestic policy, that's nothing new - Presidents have been doing that since the country was founded, and in fact the Tariff Act of 1789 was the first legislation under the new Constitution. And while you might disagree with Trump's domestic policy, his administration definitely has one, is implementing it, and America First is part of it.

The second "con" isn't a con at all. It's extraordinarily beneficial to Americans (and everyone else) for the United States to stop being an international bully. To the extent that Trump pursues that policy, the world will be a much better place. Unfortunately, and contrary to Snyder, he doesn't seem very keen on implementing it. For example, we're raising troop levels in Afghanistan once again.

The actual con of "America First" is a lot simpler: trade barriers benefit small groups at the expense of everyone else. An obvious and immediate example is the solar panel tariffs and how they hurt solar panel installation companies and renewable energy projects in order to benefit a couple of companies that are failing to compete on the international market. When Snyder says that there is no policy, he's wrong. The policy is to damage trade in order to make money for politically-connected companies, and it's the kind of thing that can cause world-wide depressions. Imagine what would happen to the American economy today if we had a sudden 65% drop in foreign trade.

Aetius wrote:

The first "con" doesn't make any sense. While it's true that America First does try to use foreign policy (trade barriers) to influence domestic policy, that's nothing new - Presidents have been doing that since the country was founded, and in fact the Tariff Act of 1789 was the first legislation under the new Constitution. And while you might disagree with Trump's domestic policy, his administration definitely has one, is implementing it, and America First is part of it.

The second "con" isn't a con at all. It's extraordinarily beneficial to Americans (and everyone else) for the United States to stop being an international bully. To the extent that Trump pursues that policy, the world will be a much better place. Unfortunately, and contrary to Snyder, he doesn't seem very keen on implementing it. For example, we're raising troop levels in Afghanistan once again.

The actual con of "America First" is a lot simpler: trade barriers benefit small groups at the expense of everyone else. An obvious and immediate example is the solar panel tariffs and how they hurt solar panel installation companies and renewable energy projects in order to benefit a couple of companies that are failing to compete on the international market. When Snyder says that there is no policy, he's wrong. The policy is to damage trade in order to make money for politically-connected companies, and it's the kind of thing that can cause world-wide depressions. Imagine what would happen to the American economy today if we had a sudden 65% drop in foreign trade.

Did we watch the same video? The first two "cons" are that "America First" isn't a real policy, it's an idea, and it barely functions as foreign policy, but it used as it it were a full both foreign and domestic policy.

wordsmythe wrote:

Did we watch the same video? The first two "cons" are that "America First" isn't a real policy, it's an idea, and it barely functions as foreign policy, but it used as it it were a full both foreign and domestic policy.

And I'm refuting Snyder's argument that America First isn't a policy by pointing out that not only is it a real policy, it's not even new - and it's extraordinarily dangerous for the economic health of the country. It was the policy of the Federalists, the Whigs, and later the Republicans in the 19th century, as well as both parties at times in the early 20th century (Hoover and FDR, primarily). It focuses on raising tariffs to restrict trade, focusing federal revenue on "internal improvements" (funneling money to favored people and corporations), and a belligerent foreign stance.

The effects of the policy are easy to see. I already mentioned the solar panel tariff, so you can add the accompanying tariff on washers. Trump's withdrawals from the Paris Accords and the TPP were also facets of this policy. He's threatened to withdraw from KORUS, our free trade agreement with South Korea.

In short, Trump's policy is entirely focused on economics, for better or worse. Trump has pointed out that the United States spends a lot of money defending other rich countries, and that needs to stop - which is the one facet of his policy that actually makes sense, though he hasn't really done anything to fix the problem. For example, South Korea's economy is 36 times larger than North Korea's - why do they need U.S. troops for defense?

This policy has both domestic and foreign effects, and the parallel to the 19th century has been noticed elsewhere. Snyder is unhappy because Trump seems to more-or-less ignore domestic entitlement spending, which is true but doesn't indicate the absence of a policy, but rather a policy of maintaining the domestic status quo. Trump's only domestic policy that is significantly different from past presidents is his more aggressive persecution of immigrants, and sadly that isn't new either - but it *is* a policy.

In short, because Snyder doesn't seem to put any weight on economics, he doesn't see the effects - or the dangers - of Trump's policies.

Obligatory current events video. (NSFW)