Thursday, July 14, 2016

Handicapping D. Trump's Friday pick... and more election rambling...

LATE NEWS - it seems all media have agreed that D Trump will announce Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his running mate.  The following is still an appraisal of the factors DT must have (or should have) taken into account.  Whether or not picking Pence is a wise move on Trump's part has little to do with whether Pence will help get more voters to support the ticket (he won't.) What simmers below is which group has "deep leverage" with Pence -- the Murdochian party masters or Trump himself. If it is the former, then Pence is likely to betray Trump, either before the election... if they are losing badly... or after, if (GF!) they win.

As a writer of thrillers and sci fi, I would envision DT asking his finalists "are you willing to tell me something embarrassingly scandalous that I could then hold over you, to guarantee your good behavior?" (Or go into the next room for pictures.)  Do you find that "sensationalist"? Really? Knowing how eager Pence was, for the pick... and how determined Trump is, to avoid betrayal? ....


Back to the main posting.


=========

First... here's your run-down on those chosen to speak at the GOP convention in Cleveland, including SIX people named "Trump."  An entire evening will be devoted to Benghazi, despite there having been ten much worse terrorism lapses (one of them giga) under President GW Bush. (Can you name them? Ah, what a difference constant drum-beating can do, for memory!) And there will be an entire evening devoted to the sexual misadventures of Bill Clinton! Ah, like Donald can preach. 

So much for policy emphasis and the high road.

Okay but on to the Veep Derby. So the news reports that Trump has narrowed the field to Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, with the bookies surging on Pence.  I earlier used Gingrich as a strawman for comparison against Trump's highly unusual set of needs. Gingrich was the felow who fit every important category, including the vital one of not being likely to betray Trump before the election, or to serve as "impeachment bait" after.

Christie also fits, but DT knows that Christie will not do him a scintilla's good on the campaign.  Pence and Sessions are wholly-owned shills of Rupert Murdoch useless politically but above-all, sure to betray Trump at first chance, before or after the election. Guaranteed. Though Pence is a master-flatterer...


Following up on Gingrich. He has strong positives from DT's point of view, and a couple even from yours! Yes, Newt upped culture war in his time... OTOH he supports space and writes sci fi! 

And Newt paused in culture war for one year to be the only GOP congressional leader since 1980 to actually negotiate in good faith with a DP president, getting some real bills passed. Sure, the Hastert/DeLay (both now convicted criminals) +Boehner/Ryan cabal punished Gingrich severely for daring to actually try to govern a bit.  But that gives him a grudge... which in turn makes him potentially attractive to Trump!  It means Newt won't be tempted - when the election goes sour - to betray Donald. Or to help impeach him if (GF!) they win.

Finally, lest we forget, Gingrich's Contract With America was one of the most brilliant maneuvers in US politics in living memory. I keep urging the Dems to do something like it!  Moreover, the "Contract" was only 2/3 hypocrisy and theater.  The other 1/3 was at least sincere stuff, if not my top priorities. (And Newt's participation in the banishing of the House's Office of Technology Assessment - in my mind - consigns him to a special place for traitors. Still, at least he's not uniformly a useless, dogmatic traitor. Give him that.)

If DT chooses NG you can bet Gingrich will flounce a new Contract on us, reprising his glory days!  A pity because the dems then won't use the tactic... and I deeply believe they should.

No, Newt fits every single check box for Trump... except obsolete ones like "ticket balancing".  Which is why I am betting Trump'll swing in another direction altogether!  Longshot: a regular female GOP governor, one firmly in Roger Ailes' and Rupert Murdoch's pocket. Or else... sigh... the master-flatterer Pence. Why? Alas for The Donald. Because I do not think he thinks things through.


== Perspective! ==

Renowned UC Berkeley cognition professor George Lakoff suggests that the deep down difference between progressives and conservatives has little to do with so-called “left vs right” - not when open and fair markets do vastly better under democrats and they even do more deregulating. Instead, he offers evidence that the difference can be understood in terms of of moral worldviews that are encapsulated in two very different common forms of family life: The Nurturant Parent family (progressive) and the Strict Father family (conservative). See Lakoff's book: Don't Think of an Elephant: Know Your Values and Frame the Debate.

I have my own hypotheses having to do with a streak of Romanticism that runs through portions of American life and psych back to the Confederacy and beyond.  And recent advances in brain science also seem to apply. Still, as usual, Lakoff’s insights are worth reading. Even if you disagree, you’ll blink several times and go huh!

== HC and BS ==

22 years of Clinton bashing-and-accusations and the most relentless scrutiny -- amounting to $100 million dollars plus -- ever focused on a couple - including when G.W. Bush focused every resource he could apply as president, seeking to finding a smoking-gun, even diverting agents from anti-terror duties, during the 6 months before 9/11. And after all that?  Dis is all dey got? See: Republicans' Benghazi goose chase comes up empty. If you were scrutinized and accused for 22 years by screamers spending $100 million dollars+, who came up with zero actionable evidence - nada, nothing, zip - might you demand the bastards either put up or shut up?

Here’s the growing list of big-name Republicans supporting Hillary Clinton. It includes Richard Armitage, Henry Paulson, Brent Scowcroft, former George W. Bush administration officials who have announced that they are supporting Hillary Clinton in 2016. Many prominent businessfolk are endorsing Hillary Clinton.Take Jim Cicconi, the senior executive vice president at AT&T. He served in both the Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations and donated $10,000 last year to Jeb Bush's Right to Rise superPAC. But he says he's voting for Hillary Clinton in November.”  Cicconi says: "Hillary Clinton is experienced, qualified, and will make a fine President. The alternative, I fear, would set our Nation on a very dark path."

Alas this will do little good. It will convince many Bernites that HC is selling them out.  When in fact what it reflects is not just disgust with Donald Trump but a rising realization among smart businessforlk that 30 years of GOP mythologies like Supply Side “Economics” are threatening to kill the (middle class) goose that lays their golden eggs. The smartest – the tech billionaires and Warren Buffett – have known this for ages and are almost all (excepting some libertarians) democrats.  For fellows like Cicconi to wise-up took a shock. A slap across the face called Donald.  Interesting article.

And no, Bernie fans, all it means is that people can see there are no “sides” to a sinking lifeboat. Smart business types are realizing what Joe Kennedy did, when he “betrayed” the other moguls and supported FDR: “I’d rather sacrifice half my wealth to help raise the middle class than lose all of it and maybe my life, to revolution.”

Bernie Sanders just pointed the way to what he’ll be doing, till the November election… stumping for democratic candidates for Congress and even state offices, using his star power to draw young folks into political engagement and action, in some ways even more essential than the presidency, since today’s Congress is the most lazy and worthless in the last century. This is how Bernites can change the nation and world - and learn skills for their next rounds.  

I've long held that disappointed Sandersites can change the world by concentrating on Congressional races. Opportunities abound. 

Example? 

Dems used to run hopelessly lefty cases against my own local congressman, the notorious dogmatist, feudalist and cheater Darrell Issa (49th CA Congressional District). What a dumb idea. Most GOP reps are from districts whose voters are inherently at least a bit conservative. So Dems should in such districts run not a Santa Monica liberal but a DNC-style moderate who likes science, believes in equal rights and climate change and limiting money in politics... but maybe is a bit stronger on defense and free enterprise than a lefty might like!  BFD. Go for the win.

Have a look at this guy running against Issa now! Central casting could not have done better. Doug Applegate: A retired Marine colonel and prosecutor... who also pledges to work for "good-paying jobs, affordable college, and fighting for the middle class." ... also "gender pay and healthcare equality.... End Wall Street’s bribery of Congress...a fully integrated renewable energy program... supporting the 2013 bipartisan immigration bill, and ending the Hastert rule...Americans have the right to sustainable farming and the right to know what's in the water and GMO food we eat..."

And you'd sniff at such a fellow because he's a former member of the U.S. officer corps? The 3rd best-educated clade in American life? Grow up! All we need is forty of these folks and Paul Ryan can go boohoo.  The nation's business will be done again.

And sure, then yell and argue with this fellow over your differences. Watch. He'll yell back and argue... and buy a round and negotiate with you.  Like a grownup.


Be grownups too. The republic needs them, desperately.  So do the planet and our grandchildren. And hopes.

65 comments:

Berial said...

"So Dems should in such districts run not a Santa Monica liberal but a DNC-style moderate who likes science, believes in equal rights and climate change and limiting money in politics... but maybe is a bit stronger on defense and free enterprise than a lefty might like! BFD. Go for the win."

Sadly 'moderate' won't work in the red states. The only officials that get elected in my state have to be further to the 'right' than the guy that got elected last time. I'm not sure what the voters are hoping to achieve, but you can only go one direction, politically, for so long before things go horribly wrong, and things have been horrible in my state for...I was going to say 'a while', but when I think about it, I'm not sure it was ever NOT horrible in my lifetime. (Think 'Heart of Dixie'.)

Alfred Differ said...

Wouldn't a candidate just to the left of a standing official be more likely to capture votes to the left and split votes to the right with that official?

Jumper said...

A warped view with grains of truth on Daddy Trump:
http://www.villagevoice.com/news/heres-donny-dystrumpia-takes-hold-at-the-republican-national-convention-8850118

donzelion said...

@Dr. Brin - Glad to know you're following your local election. In the 27th District where I live, Judy Chu will face the same attorney she defeated 60/40 or worse in the last two elections. She's an 'insider' - the sort of steady hand who gets things done. Pragmatism fits neatly for the first Asian majority district in California.

Growing up in San Diego, I remember it being far less competitive: safe zones for Republicans in 80% of the city and extended suburbs.

The 49th in particular is rough: strong racist history (Vista was once a heartland for the White Aryan Resistance), vast military base (usually weighs heavy right, esp. for civilian supporters), hard right wealthy bastion (Del Mar), and inland communities. Add in large migrant worker camps (buried in those inland areas, I hadn't even known they existed until doing a Del Mar balloon chase with a friend) - the wealthy folks loves them some illegal immigrant slaves, and the poor voting folks hates them some illegal immigrants and don't want to see them leave the camps.

Against Applegate, Issa is the richest member of Congress. Ouch.

Keys to your district are (1) just how many Latinos actually register and vote (realistically, it won't be all that many, though it will be more than before), and (2) whether the students in the local colleges (UCSD, CSU San Marcos) turn out to vote. Sanders could help with the latter. Good luck fighting the good fight.

Anonymous said...

So it is in fact Mike Pence. A Yes Man to the core, but his loyalty will be to Party, not Herr Drumpf. His ultimate loyalty is likely to the people who paid (or will pay) handsomely to get Herr Drumpf to select him.

-AtomicZeppelinMan

Deuxglass said...

All the better! Choosing a real hardcore Republican like Pence means that he will not get the votes from those close to the center and who are disappointed with the Democrats. This increases the chance of Clinton winning.

Deuxglass said...

Donzelion, (from the last thread)

I was hoping to pull you into a discussion of Chapter 28 of the TPP treaty so I dangled some bait before your eyes. Several years ago one of my friends was one of the top men at the Chambre de Commerce Internationale based here in Paris. The ICC runs the International Court of Arbitration which is one of the most-used arbitration organizations in international disputes between companies. I had plenty of time to pick his brain about arbitration practices and I did. That doesn't make me an expert but I do have some notions.

Chapter 28 is really just standard arbitration procedure and there is nothing new. It is a time-tested process and it works but I would like to concentrate on Article 28.7: Establishment of a Panel. It would be nice to only have panel members who possess iron-hard integrity but they are few and far between. In a company vs company it probably wouldn’t matter too much because the companies will cancel each other out when it comes to influencing a panel member so let’s leave that be. However I don’t think you should treat a company vs government dispute the same as you do a company vs company one. The stakes are usually higher and farther-reaching. National sovereignty is involved and if the country is a democracy, then the “will of the people” component is also present. To me this makes government vs company arbitration a case apart and special measures should be taken to make sure that a company cannot capture a panel member or two and thereby obtain the result it wants.

So let’s help the panelists remain honest in these cases. We know how companies capture key people and they do it legally by hiring legislators to become lobbyists, hiring away key government officials from departments they used to run, giving absurd talking fees, setting up a PAC for them if they decide to run for office and a few others. There are ways to stop this revolving door and although it seems impossible to do this in Washington, it just might be possible to stop the same travesty from happening in the TPP treaty.

donzelion, I want solicit your help. Make believe that I am legislator A, an honest and upright fellow who wants the treaty but is worried about big business capturing the process and making it their creature. I hire you to advise me (on a pro bono basis please) on ways to keep this happening. Put on your lawyer hat, put aside your personal feelings and tell me what should be added or changed in the treaty to reduce as far a possible the chances of corporate capture. What needs to be done?

Deuxglass said...

A word about what happened in Nice last night.

Four or five times I have walked along “La Promenade des Anglais” and eaten in the elegant caf├ęs along its length with my family. We have watched fireworks at the city of Antibes next door. I chaperoned my daughter and three of her friends to a concert at the Bataclan in Paris. Five months before 9/11 I had dinner at the restaurant at the top of the World Trade Center with my wife and children. When things like this happen to places you have known intimately with people you love it becomes personal, very personal.

LarryHart said...

Dr Brin in the main post:

Instead, he offers evidence that the difference can be understood in terms of of moral worldviews that are encapsulated in two very different common forms of family life: The Nurturant Parent family (progressive) and the Strict Father family (conservative).


I'd be tempted to say that progressives were raised in Smallville, while conservatives were taught a different lesson as their parents lay shot and bleeding in a Gotham alleyway--that the world only makes sense if you force it to.

Except I'd have to be careful about that. First of all, it gets the urban/rural thing exactly backwards. But more importantly, in the graphic novel from which that quote came, Superman was the authoritarian and Batman, if he wasn't himself a hippie, worked side by side with one (Green Arrow).

LarryHart said...

Dr Brin in the main post:

Bernie Sanders just pointed the way to what he’ll be doing, till the November election… stumping for democratic candidates for Congress and even state offices, using his star power to draw young folks into political engagement and action, in some ways even more essential than the presidency, since today’s Congress is the most lazy and worthless in the last century.


Yes, exactly! The presidency matters largely in terms of whether he/she will likely sign or veto bills sent by the particular congress. And in who she/he will nominate to fill court vacancies (including, but not limited to, the US Supreme Court). In this sense, Hillary will be little (if at all) different from Bernie.

In order to get anything meaningful done, especially from the point of view of a Bernie supporter, it is much more important that we have a Democratic congress. Failing the House, at least a Democratic Senate would confirm Hillary's court nominations.

LarryHart said...

Berial:

you can only go one direction, politically, for so long before things go horribly wrong,


Way, way back in the 1980s, I used to wonder how much longer conservatives could keep blaming election losses on the need to move even further to the right than they already were.

Sadly, I still don't have an answer to that question.

donzelion said...

Hi Deuxglass - well, three long posts yesterday is a start of a conversation. ;-) A worthy one. I've found few who care enough about this subject to actually look and think, rather than to judge first.

"What should be added or changed in the treaty to reduce as far a possible the chances of corporate capture. What needs to be done?"

First, understand what sort of corporate capture you're worried about, as that alleviates the threat significantly.

Consider the US-Canada drug patent disputes:

Company A, in Country X, patented and distributes a drug called "Wonder Drug."
Company B, in Country Y, wants to sell a generic version of Wonder Drug, but can't do so while patent protections persist in Country Y. So Company B attacks the patents on the drug, trying to get the patents declared invalid because the drug "doesn't do what it was supposed to do."
Company B wins in Country Y, the patents are invalidated, and Company B goes on to sell a generic competitor (they don't care that they were arguing on Monday that Wonder Drug doesn't work, on Tuesday they'll happily peddle it once the patents are gone)

OK, so say a panel of judges are appointed, and two of them are pharmaceutical attorneys. Capture! They can't be trusted! Maybe...

Now you might want a specialist who was familiar with the industry. When a drug company puts a drug on the market, there are a large number of steps - and a specialist will be familiar with which ones mean "they're just looking into the safety of this drug" and which mean "they're planning to sell it in bad faith."

But say both of the judges on the panel are corporate stooges, fully captured, and inherently bad men who rule against Country Y. Both take a bribe from Company X. They make their decision, and its a bad one (and every decision is a "bad one" - from one party's perspective).

People go berserk. "How dare these judges question our patent system?!?! How dare they force us to buy Wonder Drug at inflated prices!?! My Aunt Peggy needs Wonder Drug, and now she can't afford it through the national insurance carrier!!!"

Now in that case, people have options.

They can change the national insurance program to pay the full price.
They can amend their patent laws to include new grounds for disallowing a patent (e.g., "The thing must be novel, innovative, and work as represented") - but doing so will kill other industries also involved with patents in Country Y (many complex discoveries never work precisely as represented, unless linked with other patented machines) - a "win" in this case for the public will prompt a massive flow of tech talent and money to the South.

But the "bribe from Company X" gives them another measure to discredit the claim: "Those judges have private, closed bank accounts, and I think they took a bribe! This decision is invalid!"

If that's the case, then either the judges open their bank accounts and PROVE they're impartial, or the whole thing goes nowhere and the entire enterprise was a big waste of time. Company X will be PISSED - Company Y will market Wonder Drug, and the judges will never practice again.

donzelion said...

@Deuxglass - the TLDR version of what I just wrote:

"Make believe that I am legislator A...What needs to be done?"

Monitor the hearings, and invite the public to actually monitor them, and the judges themselves. Demand transparency from the judges. Scream when you see evidence of impropriety, and complain when you see opacity in the judge's personal accounts. Do so even years after a claim, as that can invalidate previous judgments. Hold people accountable. And encourage others to do the same.

Laurent Weppe said...

I'm going to derail the thread, but...

Apparently there's a coup happening in Turkey right now.

Berial said...

LarryHart

"Way, way back in the 1980s, I used to wonder how much longer conservatives could keep blaming election losses on the need to move even further to the right than they already were."

I have been wondering that same thing since around 1998.

Laurent Weppe
"Apparently there's a coup happening in Turkey right now."

I came to say the same.

A.F. Rey said...

That New York Times article you linked to is already out-of-date.

Tim Tebow is apparently not going to speak. In fact, the first he heard about it was when he read about it Thursday morning.

http://ftw.usatoday.com/2016/07/tim-tebow-not-speaking-republican-national-convention-instagram-video

Gives you some idea how Trump would run the country (GF). :)

LarryHart said...

Radio host Norman Goldman just asked rhetorically who's hand you'd prefer to have on the tiller of the ship of state during a crisis like what's going on in Turkey--Hillary or Trump?

donzelion said...

re Turkey -
"An announcer read a statement on the orders of the military that accused the government of eroding the democratic and secular rule of law."

Intriguing. If this was Gulenists, as some have been positing, I wouldn't have expected that mantra, used in previous coups in Turkey.

An intriguing suggestion: watch the Wikipedia pages on the Gulenists and the Justice & Development Party:

https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=G%C3%BClen_movement&action=info
https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Justice_and_Development_Party_(Turkey)&action=info

You'll see a coup supporter edit it, a coup opponent re-edit it, and both sides will try to identify the IP addresses and locate their adversary as the text bounces back and forth. This is NOT transparency per se, but it is as much a struggle as Twitter and video uploads.

donzelion said...

Obama, Hillary or Trump on Turkey:

Turkey is the most critical member for America in all anti-Daesh activity. Turkey is a NATO alliance member, and much of that is coordinated directly and through chains of command erected through NATO that took decades to build.

Trump has suggested weakening NATO, suggested that other states should build their own nukes rather than relying on America's nuclear umbrella (he was singling out Japan and S. Korea, but Turkey is certainly capable of doing so as well). I'm quite happy they don't have nukes now.

Obama is a diametrical opposite: a builder, cautious in the extreme. Trump builds towers with borrowed money, Obama builds communities which are stuck with people whether you like 'em or not, and have to be empowered to do what they want to do with minimal intrusion.

Hillary, at State Department, was actually somewhat in between Trump and Obama in foreign policy, but instinctively recognizes the need for old alliances (and respecting those old alliances domestically enabled her to beat Bernie Sanders - not her emotional appeal or charisma). She wanted to go after Assad as soon as Assad started using chemical weapons against civilians (kudos to her for that).

Obama called for Congressional action (which he anticipated he wouldn't get), then when it wasn't forthcoming, deferred aggressive military retaliation until other pieces could be put in place (which took months). Perhaps as a result of that "slow pace" Daesh had a chance to take power. But since magic missiles don't exist in real life, perhaps cautious prudence was the right call: certainly avoiding dead American troops (esp. after Libya).

donzelion said...

From a policy standpoint:

Trump has had 2-4 bankruptcies. Whether legal or not, HE BREAKS HIS PROMISES. That same inconsistency would have to apply to every other treaty: America's power and prestige in the world is tied closely to the fact that other people believe we will keep our promises. NATO members planning anything involving Turkey will need stability to see why and how much to invest - if they don't trust the president, they'll "support" a U.S. action with a token demonstration of support but without any real substance (e.g., send 10-20 military observers to Afghanistan/Iraq, when battalions are necessary to restore order). In essence, an untrusted American president gets Americans killed, and gets missions accomplished at a higher cost in our own lives and treasure than what could be possible under a trusted American president.

On the other hand, a populist president can make lots of great public appearances which raise moral and make Americans feel good about the price they're paying. They can send condolence letters to widows and family members. Trump can grab a bullhorn, arrange a photo op, and at least for FoxNews, that's all they'd need to look "strong" (of course, dead troops speak less glamorously until memorials and movies are built to put words in their mouths...).

locumranch said...



Martial law in France, EU dissolution, Civil War in Turkey & the West teeters on the edge of Semantic Collapse because words do not mean what we wish they mean.

Now, I love diversity in the same way I love conflict & hot sauce: It adds zip & vitality to life's socioeconomic banquet when used sparingly; it acts as 'Spice' when added to life's repetitive homogeneity; yet it may also render any meal toxic & inedible when used in excess.

Unfortunately, our progressive idealist talking heads have not learned this lesson of moderation. Instead, they spew the official narrative of excess, arguing that 'more is better if some is good', in the dulcet tones of Orwellian 'double think':

"Diversity is our Strength," they say, "Diversity is our Strength", even though (quite literally) diversity equals divisiveness equals disunity equals weakness as compared & contrasted with the Roman Fasces which argues that 'Strength comes from (both) Unity' and 'the Many acting as One'.

Perhaps out of fear of 'fasces' (aka 'fascism'), or possibly out of a desire to render their populace disunified, weak & easily ruled, our talking heads argue (in essence) that 'Disunity & Weakness are Strength', and the social cataclysms that we see now are the end result of an Identity Politics that emphasises difference, distinction & social fragmentation instead of unity & conformity.

If Turkey falls, so does NATO & the EU.


Best

LarryHart said...

@locumranch, does it ever occur to you how rich you would be if you had bet against every one of your predictions of doom over the years?

Dave Werth said...

Regarding Turkey, I'm no student of Turkish history but my impression it that Ataturk set up a secular government when modern Turkey was set up and the military has always been a strong supporter of secular government. Erdogan has been moving in the direction of a less secular government and maybe the military decided he's going to far. I'm sure it's not nearly that simple but I pray it doesn't devolve into a big mess in the end.

Regarding the Investor-State Dispute Settlement provisions of trade agreements to me they give up too much sovereignty. I think the disputes should be negotiated between the governments involved directly rather than allowing a third party to intervene.

Paul451 said...

Re: TPP

David,
IMO, the secrecy of the negotiation is a sufficient reason that it should be opposed. (up to and including requiring Congressmen to go into a locked room in the basement with a maximum of one assistant/advisor, just to be able to read the text, unable to bring in outside reference material or to take notes).

Even if I agreed with its every word, he method of its creation is more dangerous than any positive or negative in the treaty itself.

If you don't punish them, how will they learn not to do it again next time?

Donzelion,
"But the "bribe from Company X" gives them another measure to discredit the claim: "Those judges have private, closed bank accounts, and I think they took a bribe! This decision is invalid!" If that's the case, then either the judges open their bank accounts and PROVE they're impartial, or the whole thing goes nowhere"

That's incredibly naive. If the decision of the external arbitration system is binding, the nation whose laws were usurped has the choice of accepting the decision or withdrawing from the treaty. That's it. Believing the tribunal to be corrupt gives that nation no power to overrule the arbitration, or to demand access to bank accounts of the tribunalists.

"Demand transparency from the judges."

The time for that was during the negotiation of the treaty text.

Because if the treaty structure doesn't contain a mechanism to enforce such transparency, there's no subsequent way for a signatory nation to add it. Their choice is "accept the decision" or "leave the treaty".

Paul451 said...

From the last post:

Alfred,
Re: Orbital Mirrors Against Climate Change.
"the most likely commercial buyer will be the insurance industry."

There's no such entity as an "industry", it's just a term of convenience. There's no mechanism to enforce paid membership in the orbital mirror scheme, nor a mechanism to exclude non-members from benefiting from the scheme. And since there's no corporate altruism, free-riders will prevent any such scheme from ever being seriously discussed.

(Even amongst nation-states, arguments over who should pay and how much would likely delay or potentially prevent a scheme like orbital mirrors, even if we were otherwise on an "war footing".)

"Real income per person is climbing at about 4.8% when one includes all humans on the planet. That means in about 15 years, the average person will either have twice the income they do now or be able to buy about twice as much if their nominal incomes don't increase."

The former highlighted part is total economic activity, correct for price inflation, divided per capita. It says nothing about the experience of "the average person".

As an example: The US is enormously richer than it was in the 60's and '70s. Yet the real income of "the average person" has barely moved. If the US instead had the same approximate distribution of income as in those eras, "the average person" today would be enormously richer, and the nation would be... extraordinary.

Paul451 said...

Re: Turkey.

Not related to the current crisis, but I've said before that it's a deep shame the Turkish government didn't use the Syrian/ISIS conflict to negotiate a free-state settlement with pro-democracy Kurdish rebels in northern Syria, northern Iraq and SE Turkey. It would solve a long-term thorn in their side, during a time when the Turks could pretty much demand any terms of settlement they wanted (oil/mineral royalties, etc).

Instead they've played games with ISIS to try to undermine the Kurds, undermining their own security in the process by giving Russia justification for anti-Turkish movements. Rather than secure their southern border, they've weakened it.

donzelion said...

@Locum - "If Turkey falls, so does NATO & the EU."

Hardly. The EU didn't do much about the last Turkish coup, and persisted just fine. NATO has witnessed 4-5 coups in Turkey (depending on how one counts coup, to tickle our Iroquois-citing friend), and keeps on trucking along, meeting, talking - precisely what it's supposed to do: ensure a reliable system is in place in the event of an attack, explore any threats to that system, address them, and chat chat chat away.

If Turkey's democratically elected government falls, it's a setback for democratic aspirations, and for people convinced social media has the power to BUILD governments (rather than just protest them). We'll have 2-3 million more Syrian refugees to worry about, and there may be a lot more civilian deaths in fighting. But the EU and NATO will endure. Folks aren't as flimsy as you project.

donzelion said...

@Paul - re my claim that it's possible to hold judges (and arbitrators) accountable -

"That's incredibly naive."
Perhaps, but it's essentially how judicial functions always operate. Yes, there are problems. Most of the time, they get resolved. If you're aware of some cases involving corrupt arbitration processes though, I'd love to explore that once I know the facts.


"If the decision of the external arbitration system is binding, the nation whose laws were usurped-"
No nation's laws were ever "usurped." The treaty is also law. In America, it's part of the supreme law of the land (like anything else passing in Congress).

In almost any constitutional rights question, when one side wins, the other loses, the loser asserts that "the court has usurped the power of the people to make law!" Which in fact, is what courts exist to do: to usurp (or restrain) that power, and make sure that one law doesn't require jettisoning other laws.

"the choice of accepting the decision or withdrawing from the treaty."
Legislators have many options beyond that. E.g., the Canada v. Eli Lilly action, Canadians can reject a negative outcome that finds they violated their own patent laws to advantage a generic seller by simply changing their patent laws. Thing is, they'd be reluctant to do that because it would kill every technology industry based in Canada, and drive that cadre of skilled professionals South.

They can also renegotiate the drug prices with Eli Lilly. As a major customer, they have incredible power to negotiate far better prices than Americans will experience.

They can legislate a new law that bans prices above X for this class of drugs (prompting a new round of litigation). Then they can legislate a new law that bans pharmacists from charging more than X for this class of drugs. Then they can legislate...actually, there's an endless number of options for what they can do in response to a loss.

They can also withdraw from NAFTA. If they really wanted to.

But here's what changes: if Canada goes to bat for Teva Pharmaceuticals with all these rules to protect one pharm against another, Canadians have to decide - "why is this one company getting such special treatment? Don't my political leaders have other things to do than look after the interests of one company?"

Me: "Demand transparency from the judges." Paul: "The time for that was during the negotiation of the treaty text."
LOL, preferably during treaty negotiations, the negotiators would ensure world peace, prosperity, and happiness too, and verify that nobody but an angel acts as judges - but sadly, they've left these tasks to us to address. We're better positioned to do that with the TPP than without it. Not much better, and not enough, but it's still an improvement. And if anyone sees an actual problem, as opposed to a hypothetical one, then we can try to fix that as well.

Zepp Jamieson said...

Turkish government forces appear to control Istanbul, but Ankara is silent, which is disturbing.
And the driver of the horrid crime in Nice apparently was apolitical, areligious, and deeply asocial. Most of his "arsenal" turned out to be toys. It is a frightening reminder that "lone wolf" misfits can pose a great danger to any public gathering.
Trumppence: now the name of a defunct copper coin out of British history, perhaps with a face value of a hafarthing. Eliza Doolittle may have used them to make change for a penny whilst selling flowers. Or just throw them contemptuously at street urchins.
Rumours swirl that as late as midnight Trump was frantically trying to find away to back out of the Pence deal, having belatedly realized that the flaky and disagreeable governor would not help him much with the fundies, and would definitely hurt him with everyone else. It's a sign of the respective organization of both campaigns that Clinton had oppo research tweets and handouts before Trump or Pence could update their pages.
Watch OUTSIDE next weeks' convention. Both sides came heavily armed, and security forces are very nervous. I'm glad I'm 2,000 miles away from Cleveland.

donzelion said...

re TPP - Clinton, Sanders, and Trump each oppose it, but for opposite reasons.

Clinton: opposes, mainly because she's worried about the investor-state dispute settlements (as is Deuxglass), suggests an appellate process, much like Europeans who have commenced their own Trans-Atlantic negotiation with America. There are pros and cons to an appellate procedure (mostly delay: companies can raise frivolous claims at the lower level to harass legislators, and delay implementation of laws until those claims get resolved).

Trump: because he works magic, he can magically get a better deal that will make us all better off. And if he gets it wrong, he'll just declare bankruptcy, and it won't even be wrong anymore. And Obama is weak while he is strong. And Hillary couldn't even satisfy Bill sexually, so obviously he's better (I suppose Trump believes he could satisfy Bill sexually?).

Sanders: opposes, because all these deals are bad for workers. There's a point to that - but against that point, there's a bigger cost. By opposing the TPP, he's either (1) endorsing the status quo, or (2) removing possible resolutions to the status quo short of an actual revolution.

Obama is the only politician who seems to get that. We must work with what exists - like it or not - and try to make it better. One problem with what exists is opacity: we can try to rectify that at one level, and see if that's enough. If it isn't, then we address opacity at other levels. We should not destroy the structure to try to make a better one, as that will likely make things worse.

Paul451 said...

Donzelion,
"Me: "Demand transparency from the judges." Paul: "The time for that was during the negotiation of the treaty text."
LOL, preferably during treaty negotiations, the negotiators would ensure world peace, prosperity, and happiness too"


C'mon, don't be an ass. There's no mechanism in the treaty to allow a defendant-nation to demand transparency from the tribunalists, nor a mechanism to add a mechanism.

The time to debate such things was during the creation of the treaty.

Paul451 said...

Clinton VP pick?

People are floating Elizabeth Warren, but IMO that's just because they wish Warren had run instead of Sanders. There's no upside for Clinton or Warren.

The safe pick is apparently Tim Kaine (former Governor of Virginia). Dem insider, practised, loyal, safe with progressive donors, may help secure Virginia.

More "exciting" is Cory Booker. Popular with younger supporters, politically clean, and helps get out the black vote. But does Clinton need help with minority voters, when running against Trump?

More interesting is former Rear Adm. James Stavridis. He would be a great choice if the Clinton campaign decided that to focus their run against Trump around the idea of "Trusted Professionals" vs "Loud-mouth Idiots". And given that Mike Pence has a reputation as not-too-bright, it would be amusing to put him on stage in the VP debate(s) against the dean of the Law and Diplomacy at a university specialising in international affairs. However, Stavridis' speaking style doesn't work for politics. I don't know whether he could be trained to sound more Presidential. General Wesley Clark is a more polished speaker, but apparently Stavridis is currently being vetted by the Dems, while Clark is on the outer.

(One of the early names that was thrown around was Charlie Crist. Former Republican turned Democrat specifically because we didn't like what the Republican party had turned into. Could be an interesting choice to send out into the dark purple states, on a campaign of "I Did, You Can, Leave The Republican Party". But I don't see him mentioned much any more.)

donzelion said...

@Zepp - "It's a sign of the respective organization of both campaigns that Clinton had oppo research tweets and handouts before Trump or Pence could update their pages."

I'd argued the "here are Bush's 10 'Benghazis' - to Hillary's one" line for years, but was shocked to see several different lefty groups start retweeting/Facebook sharing it a few days ago "auto-magically." (I noted Dr. Brin made a reference to it in a recent post and/or comment as well.)

They're testing whether attacking Pence on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act will help bring the Cruz voters back to Trump - or whether another line is more promising. Fundies v. Funders. That sort of thing.

The best attack - as I see it: just how big the pasties should be at any Trump-branded strip clubs in Indiana? Now that there's a Christian in the ticket, will he stop the full-nude practices at Trump clubs in other states, or is that no longer a problem for family values as long as it only happens in gambling halls?

locumranch said...



Silly boys, my predictions have been excellent: On this site alone, I've been predicting the balkanisation of the EU, the Trump candidacy, the collapse of NATO, and civil war in Turkey & France for over a year.

Traditionally, NATO excuses itself when fellow NATO members shake fists at each (as in the historical case of Greece & Turkey). And, Donzelion is partially correct when he says that NATO doesn't care too much about the Turkey coup, assuming that the new government remains favourable to Western interests. However, Donzelion has not yet considered the effect of the Turkey coup on EU immigration -- Just watch & learn as MILLIONS of refugees, many of them Turkish, pour into the EU through newly porous borders demanding sanctuary.

Anyone willing take odds that the new Turkish government seeks alliance with the Russian Federation against their common Kurdish enemy?

Finally, a few other predictions:

(1) Lakoff is correct to identify the pending presidential contest between Trump & Clinton as a contest between a Stern Father figure (replete w/bad hair) & a Domineering Mother figure (resplendent in RBF). You should also expect Trump to perform better & better as the EU goes to hell, especially if global instability can't be fixed with a nice sweater & herbal tea.

(2) Brexit will be followed by Nexit, Grexit, Spexit, Pexit (?) & most of the old Slavic Block when Germany demands that they take-in their fair share of the Turkish refugees and (perhaps) provide troops to deter Russia's advance in the Ukraine; and, finally,

(3) Civil War in France, followed (most likely) by a plague of Frogs fleeing the same.


Best
____
Over 36 dead & THOUSANDS injured in Kashmir today: Anyone notice?

Robert said...

Wrong once more.

The coup failed. Even the Opposition went against it.

Turkey is in bad shape because Erdogan is going to go even more nuts than before, but he's not about to work with Russia. And I doubt he's going to be upset at the U.S. seeing the U.S. specifically was stating "we don't know what's going on" so in short we weren't meddling with an ally. Or backing one side over the other.

Rob H.

donzelion said...

@Robert - latest reports suggest it seems to be failing, but let's withhold judgment. Even if one action fails, it's not at all unlikely for other actions to have meaning that we just won't understand.

@Locum - on the whole, NATO is quietly "hostile" to coups. Coup planners previously needed to spout strong desires to maintain NATO to build domestic support from key constituents - hundreds of thousands of Turks who depend for their livelihoods on U.S. bases in Turkey, and any government (democratic or autocratic) that threatened that income stream would immediately draw wrath from a wide swath.

Immigration/refugee status was very much on my mind (though Syrian - in previous coups in Turkey, worker immigration was larger than refugee flows - and those largely went to West Germany, where they remain). Millions of immigrants are already there, working in Europe. And Europe still has labor shortages in low-end retail/service industries (though again, that's not quite what it appears to be).

But the Kurds are the point you're most in error about: Russians backed the Kurdish Worker's Party (PKK) in Turkey against the government during the Cold War. Once that war ended, the PKK became less effective. The Kurds aren't exactly Russia's "mutual enemy" (their interests are opposed in Syria right now, but then Kurdish groups have been opposed to everyone, especially each other, at different times - nobody with any sense regards them as a 'mutual enemy' given their intrinsically fractious arrangements).

This has been my region of study, work, marriage for more than a couple decades, into which I've invested most of my adult life. I will not pretend to have a crystal ball to know what is happening in Turkey, but will watch closely. But I can say that I've considered a great deal...

Zepp Jamieson said...

"They're testing whether attacking Pence on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act will help bring the Cruz voters back to Trump - or whether another line is more promising. Fundies v. Funders. That sort of thing."

Fundies versus Funders is already a full-blown civil war in the GOP. I'm sure the Clinton people will poke it with a stick, just to keep both sides riled, but what they really want to do right now is destroy Trump's small moderate base. There's a lot of people who listen to his remarks on abortion, gay rights, and fighting the banks and corporations, and putting the gawd-struck authoritarian Pence on the ticket just undermined that. How anyone can be goofy enough to think Trump is fighting for the common man against Wall Street is beyond me, but then, a lot of leftists and progressives in 1932 voted for Hitler because his party had "socialist" in its name. (It's why Trump often takes both sides of a position or policy, too; the credulous sorts accept the ones they like and disregard the blatant contradictions.)
But this one is third-rail stuff, and he'll have trouble establshing himself as a secular, or a social liberal of any sort.

Deuxglass said...

Donzelion,

In a state vs company dispute the way to keep the panel members and the judges honest would be to remove the incentive to become corrupt. I propose that in Chapter 28, Article 7 a new clause be inserted saying this:

“In an arbitration between a company and a state, none of the actors can work for nor receive compensation in whatever form from either the company or the government for a period not less than five years.”

This would remove the ability of the company or the government to reward the panel member or the judge and make it easier for them to remain honest and impartial. Remove the legal ways of corruption of the actors and what is left are only illegal methods which are much more dangerous for them and if caught would land them in jail.

I think you could slip in this clause and it would be hard for legislators to vote against it. It doesn’t affect them directly and voting for it would gain him some anti-corruption credentials which would be useful in the next election. Do you have any suggestions?

Deuxglass said...

donzelion,

The wording could be better but I think you get the gist of what I want this clause to do. It would remove the principal way a company or a government could reward a panel member or judge for voting the “right way”. It would cut out the revolving door. The clause should be expanded to include things such as speaker fees and so forth and will require some discussion but what I want is to make it easy for panel members and judges to remain honest buy reducing temptation.

Duncan Cairncross said...

"I propose that in Chapter 28, Article 7 a new clause be inserted saying this:"

THAT is one of the MAJOR things WRONG with the TPP

You can't!!!
One the treaty had been agreed in secret NO CHANGES were permitted - NONE AT ALL

There is not even any mechanism by which it can be changed!

Parliament (and Congress) has only two options - Accept or Reject

Deuxglass said...

Duncan,

Treaties between countries are usually negotiated in secret but in democracies their ratification comes from open debate in their respective parliaments or congresses. This clause can be tacked on as an amendment to the treaty. If the US goes for this small additional clause, I think Canada, Australia and New Zealand would follow. The countries who do ratify the treaty with this amendment would be a part of the trade deal. The remaining countries would be under pressure to ratify it because if they don't then they would be outside of a trade deal that would benefit them more than it would benefit the US. They would be rejecting a lucrative freebie.

If all the participants ratify the treaty with this amendment then it becomes part of the treaty. It would take some coordination behind the scenes but it can be done. I suspect that Sanders negotiated with Clinton over the TPP in exchange for his enthusiastic support included something close to this but I may be wrong.

Duncan, as a New Zealander, do you think your parliament would go for a clause like this one?

LarryHart said...

locumranch:

Silly boys, my predictions have been excellent: On this site alone, I've been predicting the balkanisation of the EU, the Trump candidacy, the collapse of NATO, and civil war in Turkey & France for over a year.


So you're one for five. Or two for five depending on just what counts as balkanization.

You remind me of my younger self. I predicted the Great Recession, but it took 30 years for that prediction to come true. I also predicted hyperinflation of the US dollar, but I've come to accept the error of my ways there.



Just watch & learn as MILLIONS of refugees, many of them Turkish, pour into the EU through newly porous borders demanding sanctuary.

Anyone willing take odds that the new Turkish government seeks alliance with the Russian Federation against their common Kurdish enemy?


Fair enough if you will "watch and learn" if that doesn't happen, instead of doubling down and insisting it will happen at any moment (or that it already must have happened).


Finally, a few other predictions:

(1) Lakoff is correct to identify the pending presidential contest between Trump & Clinton as a contest between a Stern Father figure (replete w/bad hair) & a Domineering Mother figure (resplendent in RBF). You should also expect Trump to perform better & better as the EU goes to hell, especially if global instability can't be fixed with a nice sweater & herbal tea.

(2) Brexit will be followed by Nexit, Grexit, Spexit, Pexit (?) & most of the old Slavic Block when Germany demands that they take-in their fair share of the Turkish refugees and (perhaps) provide troops to deter Russia's advance in the Ukraine; and, finally,

(3) Civil War in France, followed (most likely) by a plague of Frogs fleeing the same.


1) isn't really a prediction. 2) and 3), I'd take the bet against.

Over 36 dead & THOUSANDS injured in Kashmir today: Anyone notice?


I'm sure they did.

Deuxglass said...

LarryHart,

Locum just sees himself as a reincarnation of Nostradamus. I no longer read him.

LarryHart said...

Zepp Jamieson:

Rumours swirl that as late as midnight Trump was frantically trying to find away to back out of the Pence deal, having belatedly realized that the flaky and disagreeable governor would not help him much with the fundies, and would definitely hurt him with everyone else.


A caller to WCPT (Chicago's Progressive Talk) Radio yesterday made that exact point. "Why is Trump choosing Pence, when he's already got the fundamentalists, rather than try to peel off independents and disgruntled Bernie supporters?". The thought on the radio was that he's nervous about losing the fundamentalists, not being sufficiently anti-abortion and anti-gay for their tastes.

LarryHart said...

BTW, I wouldn't have believed it, but I'm feeling just a bit sorry for poor Chris Christie. I mean, it couldn't have happened to a nicer guy, and I'm not wishing he hadn't been so humiliated, but one still has to cringe in sympathetic embarrassment.

Zepp Jamieson said...

" I've been predicting the balkanisation of the EU, the Trump candidacy, the collapse of NATO, and civil war in Turkey & France for over a year."

Greece may leave simply on the grounds that they've nothing left to lose, but the chaos and economic impact in the UK is going to be a lesson and a warning to other, more solvent countries. The UK may Balkanise before the EU does.
By March, most political observers had concluded that yes, the Republican base was crazy enough to nominate Trump. Hillary is far from an ideal candidate, but at least she's sane. She didn't, for example, call for a 'world war' because some maniac drove his truck through a crowd in France. NATO is in no danger of collapsing any time soon, particularly since Russia under Putin isn't a lot different from the USSR under Khrushchev. Turkey may have a civil war at some point, but this coup wasn't it. However, I won't rule it out a year or three down the road. France: not a chance. In fact, I would say the French are about as united as they ever get (a bit like herding cats) right now.

Zepp Jamieson said...

Larry Hart, quoting: "Why is Trump choosing Pence, when he's already got the fundamentalists, rather than try to peel off independents and disgruntled Bernie supporters?".
Trump already had problems with the fundies, and that's exacerbated by the fact that a lot of fundies are giving up on politics. The more pragmatic ones realize they don't have the votes, but there's a growing realisation in Jesusland that religion and politics really don't mix. Politics is the art of the possible, and religion is immutable truths, and when they blend, they corrupt the very nature of each other. They found themselves being lectured on amassing political power by pretending Jesus was a gun-toting Objectivist, and it didn't go over. They got tired of allies who wanted to screw the poor and despoil nature. So, more and more, they're sitting the national politics out, and keeping work at a grassroots level.

donzelion said...

@Deuxglass - bear in mind, the TPP, much like GATT and the WTO, is an experiment. For GATT and the WTO (and the IMF and the WB), the experiment was: "Is it possible to use trade and financial ties to prevent World War III?" It's been 'working' so far - for the purpose it was intended to serve.

For this round of the experiment, the question is, "Can we use the tools that worked to prevent WW III to also expand the beneficiaries of trade to a broader public?" The current system isn't very good at that - it empowers well-placed elites within countries to enrich themselves, while offering very little to ordinary people. So let's amend it. In that sort of a process, the question is typically put, "What are the real problems we see today in the trade regime that cause these outcomes?"

If widespread corruption among arbitrators was evident, then yes, this would be a priority. However, if it's merely hypothetical (and it really is), then it's less important a negotiating priority than say, "25 years v. 15 years for patent protection" or other measures that respond to direct, real world problems.

If the hypothetical capture you suggest ever occurred, it's easy for countries to handle it: "We passed a law that bars ever participating in any arbitral process unless the arbitrators agree to X Code of Conduct." If a voluntary code doesn't work, then we can pass laws that compel compliance. Do bear in mind that the rule you're proposing is significantly more extensive than what we require of our judges, who hear matters that touch on public policy every day - so why the special concern for arbitrators? Particularly when they're (a) not a judge, (b) not serving on a consistent basis unless they prove each time and at all times their impartiality, and (c) not yet charged with the sorts of capture you worry about?

donzelion said...

@Deuxglass/Duncan - you're both underestimating the range of options left open to Congress or Parliament for what to do with the TPP if it is adopted. But the arguments you raise were also raised against GATT/WTO and every other trade agreement, "Oh no, we're bound to something that hurts us occasionally!" In reality, that never happens. A legislator can concoct all sorts of laws, so long as they don't violate other laws. There's ample flexibility.

Think of it like an engineer: "Oh no, we're stuck with the law of gravity! We can't build buildings more than 10 stories or gravity will bring it down!" No engineer ever approached a problem thinking that way. Instead, they look at the materials they have, the environment, and all the related factors, and then try to solve a set of problems. "Can this building, in this location, with these materials, be more than 10 stories?"

The idea of this treaty is to set a "gravitic force" making it expensive for countries to protect their own domestic elites vis-a-vis foreign traders. It's about fairness: "we should not discriminate, and ordinarily we do not, but sometimes, that foreign business just bugs us, so let's screw them, and since they're not even local, our own population will think we're heroes and robin hood for doing so." In that framework, insiders get wealthy, less because of productivity or innovation than because of close ties to power brokers.

donzelion said...

re Locum & Nostradamus (a very good metaphor, Deuxglass) -
(a) a broken clock is right twice a day.
(b) A Farmers Almanac is right more often than it's wrong, but is seldom a useful tool in meteorology.
(c) A Ptolemaic model of celestial movements properly predicts how 99% of the objects we see in the sky will move each year - but it tells us nothing about astronomy.

I do "watch" - but the problem with prophetic impositions is that it is seldom the case that you can "learn" from a prophet - other than to entrust yourself to them and their judgment, which is anti-rational and authoritarian. Indeed, that's the problem of all revelation: we are not to use our independent reasoning, but to do as they say despite our reasoning.

But all that said, Locum is "right" in his prediction that there will be millions of refugees from that region. Because it's not a prediction at all: it's already reality.

LarryHart said...

@donzelion,

I don't think most sane liberals are concerned with a government screwing a particular corporation, so much as with a particular corporation screwing the community (pollution in particular). If company X located in city Y turns out to be despoiling the environment, and the city makes it illegal to do so, that's not an attempt to favor a competing company, but the fear is that TPP would make it impossible to protect themselves.

Deuxglass said...

donzelion,

I am going to have think a bit about what are saying. You brought up a couple of new aspects. I have to mull them over.

donzelion said...

@Zepp - "Greece may leave [the EU] simply on the grounds that they've nothing left to lose, but the chaos and economic impact in the UK is going to be a lesson and a warning to other, more solvent countries. The UK may Balkanise before the EU does."

Possibly, but I wouldn't expect that. I'm not sure what the UK will do with Brexit after the referendum either. It's possible they will convene a committee to study the matter more thoroughly, and start withdrawal as soon as the details are worked out (in say, 20 years or so).

But you're right re Scotland, which voted against UKexit largely because it would be required to start afresh with the EU. When the chips are down, Scots can be quite pragmatic - there were costs they wanted to calculate before making a decision.

And I wonder the extent to which the Scottish decisionmaking influenced Northern England, where there's long been a bit of rivalry with somewhat more prosperous Scotland (on a region-by-region basis). I wonder to what extent Northern Englanders would prefer to see the Scots actually leave (if they were asked about it): 5%? 10%? 30%? "Brexit?! Sure, it'll get rid of them bloody Scots and their impositions on us! What with their educated airs, lording it over us!"

Parochial thinking tends to be monolithic and manichean: all outsiders are threats, not partners or opportunities - all government expenses are waste, not investment - all the world is 'friend or foe' - all conduct either vice or virtue - and while Londoners and urbanites are compelled to acknowledge greater complexity, those regions have been hit hard by England's declining manufacturing base.

Jumper said...

My thought is that it's not the voters who will determine this, it's the non-voters. Which is a misnomer, as I mean the ones who are registered but don't normally ever vote. The infrequent voter. They tend to turn out for presidential elections only. This dismays me somewhat, as I judge their civics educations deficit. But be that as it may.
As has been recognized, anger is the soupe du jour for motivating the fringe vote. Now fear is in play. Soupe de demain. Who knows if that will move the lazy voter?

LarryHart said...

@Jumper,

I wonder if the opposite is the case--that the "non-voters" who will determine the election are the ones who are too disgusted with both candidates to vote at all.

Paul451 said...

Deuxglass,
"Treaties between countries are usually negotiated in secret but in democracies their ratification comes from open debate in their respective parliaments or congresses."

Congressmen had to go down to a secure room in the basement (literally), surrender all electronic devices. They were only allowed to bring a single assistant or advisor. And any notes they made in the room had to be surrendered or destroyed before they were allowed to leave.

Open debate?

The only reason we know anything about what was in the TPP was because it leaked.

As I said above, the very process of the creation of this treaty should be sufficient reason to object to it. It doesn't matter what is in the treaty text, the process itself must be punished.

LarryHart,
"I'm feeling just a bit sorry for poor Chris Christie. I mean, it couldn't have happened to a nicer guy, and I'm not wishing he hadn't been so humiliated, but one still has to cringe in sympathetic embarrassment."

He's apparently deep inside the Trump campaign and is considered a key advisor. He'll likely receive a major cabinet position under a Trump presidency.

Anyway, science post, hurrah, hurrah.

Jumper said...

LarryHart, indeed they exist in large numbers. Bear in mind it's also an excuse for the lazy. Most nonvoters have some excuse or another they proffer to their acquaintances who might have a stronger sense of collective action.

David Burns said...

Lakoff's analysis links neuroscience, metaphor and political persuasion through the idea of a frame. If an ad or discussion activates the right frame in the listener, the message will persuade because the metaphor works at a level below conscious thought. Pretty interesting.

My problem with this is, what's up with the libertarians? We don't seem well attuned to either the strict parent or nurturant parent metaphors for the state. Maybe the abusive parent?

Zepp Jamieson said...

donzelion:
I got curious to see how the northern counties of England went, and checked for Northumbria and Cumberland, the two big (by area) shires that make up nearly 1/5th of England. They both voted to Leave, although weakly, with most of the support coming in the midcounties and out toward Southhampton.

LarryHart said...

@David Burns,

Libertarians seem to think they have no parents. They were wolflings who uplifted themselves to civilization.

Duncan Cairncross said...

Re The TPP

It was negotiated in secret and there is NO mechanism for changing it

Even a sensible and popular change would NOT get through,
We have 12 countries - if there is a 90% chance that a modification will be accepted by each country then the overall chance of acceptance is 28%

In practice it would be less than that - in a lot of governments a small group of disaffected legislators can stall things for years

Jerry Emanuelson said...

@ David Burns

The way that Johnson and Weld re-frame the Lakoff metaphor in their main current advertisement on YouTube is that conventional government treats their citizens like livestock, while libertarian government would treat its citizens like family.

The "livestock" metaphor is pretty close to how a lot of people believe they are being treated by all large organizations now, including government.

Robert said...

And we have the evolutionary fossil record to prove we Uplifted ourselves, Larry! We don't need an Absent Alien Parent Figure when simple evolution and social sciences can explain how we reached the stars.... ;)

Rob H.

donzelion said...

@Zepp - yeah, not as strong Brexiteers as Midlands by 10% or so, but my curiosity is psychological, not geographical. And it may well be that there's more anti-Scottish resentment in Midlands tHan in north England where they've dealt directly with Scots for a long time.

donzelion said...

@Duncan - trade deals are always negotiated in secret. Which is intriguing: attempts at public negotiations always seem to fail.

It's not necessary to amend a treaty to achieve the goals Deuxglass and you seek. Indeed, sometimes it's better done by non-treaty efforts of motivated, concerned people. If you try and fail, them it clarifies defects for the next round.

But first, decide if you like and wish to keep the status quo for another 20 years. I suspetct protesters in Seattle who challenged the WTO didn't realize their efforts preserved the very thing they abhor by preventing efforts to fix the problems.