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  1. #46
    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    @TopHatter @astralis

    This post would probably be a good point to split the thread and create '2018 Political Scene'.

    http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/sho...=1#post1033697

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    Quote Originally Posted by GVChamp View Post
    I am trying to avoid commenting on this thread, since it's now 2018, but not EVERYONE on the Left bought into the stupid Messiah complex. There were a lot of people who preferred and voted for Hillary Clinton, obviously thinking she was a better candidate than Obama. Given that HRC is kind of conventional, it's unlikely this group of people bought into the Obama-complex.
    No, clearly not. Which is exactly why I posted that link. There were actual skeptics, for awhile.

    DOR's claim was that NOBODY in the Democratic Party or on the Left used that phrase. It was all an invention of the Right.

    Getting back to the skeptics...
    I also recall an person-on-the-street interview with some African Americans in Detroit, back in 2008, I believe.
    One young lady was asked what she thought about Barack Obama as a possible black candidate for President.
    She didn't seem terribly impressed and responded rather dubiously "He's not really black".

    Of course, once the general campaign started, the hero worship machine cracked up to 11
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, than to take rank with those poor, timid spirits who know neither victory nor defeat ~ Theodore Roosevelt

  3. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ironduke View Post
    @TopHatter @astralis

    This post would probably be a good point to split the thread and create '2018 Political Scene'.

    http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/sho...=1#post1033697
    Good point.
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, than to take rank with those poor, timid spirits who know neither victory nor defeat ~ Theodore Roosevelt

  4. #49
    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopHatter View Post
    I also recall an person-on-the-street interview with some African Americans in Detroit, back in 2008, I believe.
    One young lady was asked what she thought about Barack Obama as a possible black candidate for President.
    She didn't seem terribly impressed and responded rather dubiously "He's not really black".
    I actually recall that same exact thing being said to me by a black co-worker. He also said he never believed a black man would be nominated, or win the election, and if he did, he'd supposed that a black president would get assassinated.

    An anecdote, for sure, but the conventional thinking was the Hillary would win the nomination, until it became apparent that she would not.

    The Obama-messiah complex was really more a matter of voters projecting that onto him, than what he projected onto them.
    Last edited by Ironduke; 18 Jan 18, at 22:17.

  5. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ironduke View Post
    I actually recall that same exact thing being said to me by a black co-worker. He also said he never believed a black man would be nominated, or win the election, and if he did, he'd be assassinated.

    An anecdote, for sure, but the conventional thinking was the Hillary would win the nomination, until it became apparent that she would not.
    Funny enough, my parents, both of whom are very much non-political but very very sharp and aware of current events nonetheless, gave me a couple of somewhat similar anecdotes as well:

    Once it became pretty clear he had things in the bag, my mother was very sadly but fairly certain, like your co-worker, that Obama would be assassinated.

    I also recall...I think it was in 2007, my father and I were visiting the various warships museums in Massachusetts, along with a friend of the family. The two of them came from IL and I flew up from FL.

    The three of us got to idly discussing the upcoming Presidential election and my father said "You know, I think the guy to watch will be Barack Obama"

    I of course had moved out of Illinois in 1998 and so had no idea who the local and state politicians were, no longer seeing the IL newspapers, evening news etc. So, my immediate reaction was "Who the hell is Barack Obama"? The name meant nothing to me until I finally dug his 2004 Keynote Speech from my memory banks.

    Just a year or so later, I marveled at my father's spot-on prediction, even more so because of his utter lack of interest in politics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ironduke View Post
    The Obama-messiah complex was really more a matter of voters projecting that onto him, than what he projected onto them.
    I think there's enough blame to go around: His supporters, the MSM & Hollywood and Obama himself.
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, than to take rank with those poor, timid spirits who know neither victory nor defeat ~ Theodore Roosevelt

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    Apple's big jobs announcement

    Apple's blockbuster announcement that it will repatriate almost all of its $250 billion in overseas cash, create 20,000 new U.S. jobs, open a new U.S. campus, and add $350 billion to the U.S. economy ends any serious debate about the new tax reform law.[Snip] Link
    ______



    So I need our economic/financial gurus to give me the lowdown on this Apple announcement. I'm naturally suspicious of these whiz-bang press releases and of course have utterly no faith in anything Trump claims credit for, so here are my questions.

    1. How much of this can be truly attributable to the 2017 Tax Reform Law?

    2. How much of this is a smoke-and-mirrors snowjob by Apple? Is it truly a big deal?

    3. How much of a real economic impact will this have on the U.S.?

    4. Is this a lasting change for Apple or just another feel-good PR stunt?

    5. Will this have any impact on the Midterms?
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, than to take rank with those poor, timid spirits who know neither victory nor defeat ~ Theodore Roosevelt

  7. #52
    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    I'm no financial guru (good grades in two 1000-level econ classes being the sum total of my economics education), but the $350 billion figure doesn't represent additional/increased spending, it includes everything spent, outlays of every sort (wages, R&D, capital spending, the Culligan water cooler, cafeteria services, the electricity bill, etc.)

  8. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopHatter View Post
    No, actually I don't. I remember what it was like in this country back then as well and I don't remember anything comparable to 2008-2009. My earliest Presidential campaign memories were Reagan vs Mondale and not even Reagan after his first term was worshipped like Obama was.
    I should have specified 'evangelical' rather then 'conservative'. It wasn't the same as Obama, but it is comparable. Bush made sure that when he talked to evangelical voters they knew all about 'Christ changing his life'. He was going to defend the family & the unborn etc. Unlike the lip service paid by Trump to this stuff, Bush went to a lot of trouble to make sure that the people who cared about it genuinely believed he was one of them.

    This wasn't as broadly aimed as Obama's 'messiah' thing, but it had the same basis - wildly over promise to people who desperately want to believe you. It took those people a term and a bit to realize they'd been had.


    So true, so very true. People don't really like how anything in life works. They want things in black and white, yes or no, with silver bullets to solve their problems.
    The other part of this I should have included is that the tendency to make opponents the incarnation of evil. In recent years that started with Republicans under Clinton (and transferred to Hilary). Dems took it up with gusto under Bush, GOPers ratcheted it a few notches under Obama (I remember someone on this board referring to him as 'the anti-Christ') and Dems have done the same again with Trump.

    Part of the desire to believe that Bush would bring his 'personal relationship with Christ' to the White House was the conviction that Clinton was evil. Part of the messianic belief on Obama was Bush=Hitler. Part of the willingness to overlook Trump's spectacular faults was 'Obama is the anti-Christ' (plus some Clinton hangover). Something similar may well happen with parts of the Dem base in 2020, especially if the morons pick Sanders or Warren (or anyone vaguely charismatic).

    Its an infantile reaction to a complex world - what I hate is the worst, what I love is the best. It is also 'the political is personal' - identity politics isn't just a phenomenon of minority ethnic groups, though you'll struggle to find a white person who accepts they are doing it.


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  9. #54
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopHatter View Post
    No, clearly not. Which is exactly why I posted that link. There were actual skeptics, for awhile.

    DOR's claim was that NOBODY in the Democratic Party or on the Left used that phrase. It was all an invention of the Right.

    Getting back to the skeptics...
    I also recall an person-on-the-street interview with some African Americans in Detroit, back in 2008, I believe.
    One young lady was asked what she thought about Barack Obama as a possible black candidate for President.
    She didn't seem terribly impressed and responded rather dubiously "He's not really black".

    Of course, once the general campaign started, the hero worship machine cracked up to 11
    What I actually said was,
    As for discontent among liberals with Obama, you’re going to have to find some kind of evidence for that. I didn’t see it then, and I don’t think anyone sees it now. astralis’ take is about right: The disappointment was because he wasn’t living up to the media’s leftist label. Like Bill Clinton, he’s a Democrat. And, over the last 20 years or so, that means dead center middle-of-the-road.

    You do remember the middle-of-the-road, don't you? That's the bit Bob Dole fought with Bill Clinton over back in 1996. After that, the GOP just gave up and lurched so far to the right as to be denouncing Eisenhower and Nixon.

    The main cause of disappointment, if there was any, was because the right wing built up Obama with flowery phrases like “The Anointed One,” or “The Chosen One.” No one in the Democratic Party, let alone on the left, ever used such phrases AFAIK. No, these were deliberate attempts to set him up to fail: make it impossible for Obama to live up to ridiculously inflated expectations, expectations created by the right wing.

    Then, when the national and global economy are slamming into the biggest brick wall in 75 years, work as hard as possible to undermine any efforts to alleviate the pain with insane tactics such as threatening to shut down the government. Sabotage the national government in a time of high crisis, for purely partisan reasons.

    (Of course, once that GOPer butt hits the Oval Office chair no one wants to hear, “So, how are you going to pay for that, big spender?”)
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  10. #55
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Apple’s billions

    Quote Originally Posted by TopHatter View Post
    Apple's big jobs announcement

    Apple's blockbuster announcement that it will repatriate almost all of its $250 billion in overseas cash, create 20,000 new U.S. jobs, open a new U.S. campus, and add $350 billion to the U.S. economy ends any serious debate about the new tax reform law.[Snip] Link
    ______



    So I need our economic/financial gurus to give me the lowdown on this Apple announcement. I'm naturally suspicious of these whiz-bang press releases and of course have utterly no faith in anything Trump claims credit for, so here are my questions.

    1. How much of this can be truly attributable to the 2017 Tax Reform Law?

    2. How much of this is a smoke-and-mirrors snowjob by Apple? Is it truly a big deal?

    3. How much of a real economic impact will this have on the U.S.?

    4. Is this a lasting change for Apple or just another feel-good PR stunt?

    5. Will this have any impact on the Midterms?

    Here's a first look.

    “The $900 billion tech giant announced a series of plans that were greeted with much fanfare by the White House: it will open a new campus (location undisclosed), hire 20,000 new employees over the next five years, and make a “direct contribution” of more than $350 billion to the U.S. economy in the same time frame by buying materials and making investments in American companies. Apple will also spend $55 billion in 2018 on its 9,000 domestic manufacturers and suppliers and is reportedly planning to give $2,500 bonuses to most of its lower-level employees.”
    —"How Apple’s $350 billion cash bonanza could predict Trump’s future," Vanity Fair https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2018...-trumps-future

    - - -

    “Apple is increasing the amount it plans to spend on data centers by $10 billion over the next five years,…”
    "Over $10 billion of Apple's expanded capital expenditures will be investments in data centers across the U.S.," Apple said in a statement on Wednesday.
    The word "expanded" shows the $10 billion will be on top of Apple's existing data center spending. In November Apple said it would spend about $16 billion in capital expenditures, including spending on data centers, in 2018. That number shows a roughly 7.5 percent increase year over year. It's not clear what percentage of Apple's capital expenditures in a given year go toward data centers.
    Apple has also been spending money to set up new data centers in Europe, and last year the company announced plans to build its first data center in China in partnership with a Chinese company.
    By way of comparison, Microsoft had $10.2 billion in capital expenditures in its 2017 fiscal year (which ended June 30, 2017), up nearly 15 percent.
    —"Apple will boost its spending on data centers by $10 billion over the next 5 years," CNBC, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/17/appl...0-billion.html

    - - -

    “In the wake of the tax-cut bill approved by Congress last month, Apple also announced plans to invest $30 billion in the US over the next five years, to create 20,000 new jobs, spend more with domestic manufacturers and other suppliers, and build a new campus. But it's not clear how much those numbers represented an increase from Apple’s previous plans, or how much of it will be funded by the repatriated cash.
    Apple, which declined to comment, also didn't specify how much money it will repatriate. The company had $252.3 billion in cash and "cash like" assets overseas, according to a filing with the Securities Exchange Commission last year. Under the new tax plan, Apple and other companies must pay taxes on foreign profits parked overseas. Companies aren't required to actually move those funds back to the US, but there's little reason for Apple to keep its cash abroad once it's paid the tax, says Edward Kleinbard of the University of Southern California Gould School of Law.”
    —"Why a $38 billion tax payment is a good deal for Apple," Wired, https://www.wired.com/story/why-a-do...eal-for-apple/

    So, what do we have?


    Start with the tax. Before the latest GOPer give-away, Apple would have spent $88.3 billion to repatriate $252.3 billion held overseas (35% tax). Well, not quite since it would be able to deduct any taxes paid to foreign governments.

    After the GOPer give-away, Apple would have to pay $37.8 billion (15%), less whatever it had paid overseas. So, the US Government starts off $50.5 billion (etc) better off . . . or, worse off, it you think Apple might have eventually repatriated the money anyway.

    So, did the US government just get a promise of $37.8 billion (etc), or did it lose a potential $50.5 billion?


    CapEx (which, of course is tax deductable!) in FY2017 was $10.2 billion. The new CapEx will be $26 billion. But, new investments plus current spending with domestic suppliers and manufacturers will be $55 billion, and CapEx is supposed to total $30 billion over five years.

    By the way, those $2,500 bonus might total $200 million for 80,000 employees.

    Hmm. Is there something I’m missing, or is this a lot of double-counting?
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  11. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by astralis View Post
    yes, yet another danger of legislative paralysis. people want that leader to break the paralysis and make things happen for them. this has already led to a stronger executive branch, coming at the expense of the legislative branch.

    there have been multiple judicial cases that have now been brought up regarding gerrymandering. the last time, the SC narrowly rejected it because the justices felt that there was no quantifiable way to determine what a fair map would be. however, the same tools that the GOP used for gerrymandering have now been used to present that quantifiable case.

    multiple lower courts have struck down gerrymandering, and with the appeals, the Supreme Court will now hear 4 cases this term. i don't think that it's an exaggeration to state that this will be some of the most crucial judicial decisions since the civil rights era.
    Thats a double edged sword, both parties use gerrymadering and its primary use is to preserve minority-magority districts. The SC's decsion could well end these racial feifdoms so critical to leftist politics.

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    z,

    Thats a double edged sword, both parties use gerrymadering and its primary use is to preserve minority-magority districts. The SC's decsion could well end these racial feifdoms so critical to leftist politics.
    it is, but 1.) i don't mind the trade if it gets rid of this pervasive abuse, 2.) it's a trade that hurts the GOP relatively worse. Dem voters are naturally concentrated in high-density cities already whereas GOP voters are diffuse. that makes Dems much more vulnerable to getting gerrymandered.
    There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

  13. #58
    Senior Contributor GVChamp's Avatar
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    I don't see the value in fighting Gerry-mandering and don't see what can possibly be quantified as a fair map.

    Yes, Dem voters are concentrated in high-density cities. Voters are also becoming more extreme. So if you have, say, 5 equal population counties as follows:


    -Urban: 200,000: 80% Dem, 20% Rep
    -Urban: 200,000: 80% Dem, 20% Rep
    -Suburban: 200,000: 52% Rep, 48% Dem
    -Suburban: 200,000: 55% Rep, 45% Dem
    -Rural: 200,000: 60% Rep, 40% Dem

    You are going to have a situation where Democrats win 654,000 votes to Reps 346,000 votes, and Dems will only win 2 seats. That's irrelevant, though, because the seats should be assigned to districts based on their common interests, not their partisan leanings.

    A more illustrative example would be to compare relatively equal-sized states. So take competitive North Carolina vs. safe seat Illinois. the Dems beats the Rep 54-40 in 2016. In the 2014 NC senate election, the Reps beat the Dems 48.8-47.3

    You might think you should average out the results between the two to determine the "correct" representation in the Senate, but that's entirely wrong, because the Senate seats are assigned to states, NOT to parties. It's not even an issue of small states vs. large states: NC and IL are pretty close in population. It's that NC has different interests than IL, and therefore NC was given 2 senate seats, and IL was given 2 senate seats.

    The metric used isn't right, and can't be right, so it shouldn't be used to fight Gerry-mandering.

    That's not to say Gerry-mandering is a good thing, but using this metric is just terrible. It's also hypocritical to talk about how we need a race-blind society and then use the redistricting process to segregate different ethnic groups into their own special quarters.
    "The great questions of the day will not be settled by means of speeches and majority decisions but by iron and blood"-Otto Von Bismarck

  14. #59
    Former Staff Senior Contributor Ironduke's Avatar
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    LOL. The man does not like sharks.

    http://www.intouchweekly.com/posts/s...terview-151788

    You could see the television from the little dining room table and he was watching Shark Week and he was watching a special about the U.S.S. something and it sank and it was like the worst shark attack in history. He is obsessed with sharks. Terrified of sharks. He was like, “I donate to all these charities and I would never donate to any charity that helps sharks. I hope all the sharks die.” He was like riveted. He was like obsessed. It’s so strange, I know.
    Last edited by Ironduke; 19 Jan 18, at 20:33.

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    Quote Originally Posted by astralis View Post

    BTW, on a larger note, this whole discussion of the executive showing leadership and doing big things is yet another demonstration of how broken the legislative branch is. the inability for Congress to do anything other than being deadlocked is causing both liberals and conservatives to demand more and more from the executive.

    this is not ideal for a Republic.
    This caught my attention as it relates directly to something I heard this morning. I always listen to my news radio on 740 so I can hear John Madden talk about sports. Smart guy. I can also get to listen to Willie Brown every Friday. Remember Willie Brown the former Speaker of the House for the California Legislature. Say what you want but the guy is quite astute when it comes to politics. When asked what is going to happen today and what could be done he was pretty blunt. He said the the Legislature should do their job and legislate rather than going to the WH for direction. That is what Willie did back in the days. He didn't go to the Governor as he felt he was his equal and he was responsible for the Legislature first and foremost.

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