By using this site, you agree to our Privacy Policy and our Terms of Use. Close
the-pi-guy said:
CaptainExplosion said:

So we just let him get away with murder and genocide instead of the way we dealt with dictators back in WWII? You're saying we just sit back and let him eventually fuck over everyone else and accept that the world is a shithole?

The dictators in WWII didn't have nuclear weapons, and the ability to destroy the world with a few button presses.

Not to mention populations larger than every continent except Asia itself, or a larger population than the entire western world combined. Half of China’s states have larger populations than the UK. Even without China having nuclear weapons, the western world could not possibly muster an invasion force large enough to beat China on its own soil. They’d not only be facing the PLA and the People’s Armed Police, but hundreds of millions of civilians armed with whatever weapons they could lay their hands on. 



Around the Network
CaptainExplosion said:
SuaveSocialist said:

1. You do not.

You're saying we just sit back and let him eventually fuck over everyone else and accept that the world is a shithole?

If that's what I'm saying, feel free to quote me on it.



SuaveSocialist said:
CaptainExplosion said:

You're saying we just sit back and let him eventually fuck over everyone else and accept that the world is a shithole?

If that's what I'm saying, feel free to quote me on it.

Well basically that IS what you're saying because you told me we can't do anything to punish the cock sucker.



Then I suggest quoting me saying that and then respond to said quote directly.  

CaptainExplosion said:
SuaveSocialist said:

If that's what I'm saying, feel free to quote me on it.

Well basically that IS what you're saying



Bernie invites Elon Musk on the pod to talk income inequality, greed, innovation, political revolution, tweets, taxes, and California VS. Vermont cannabis... extremely well edited for effect :)



Around the Network

'Happy' anniversary of the worst attack on American democracy since the Civil War. May it never happen again, though I worry that Republicans have since only made it easier to overturn the next election legally...



Well 2021 is now over. How did it go? Well let's put it this way:

-70% of Americans characterize it as having been a bad year and half say it was the worst year of their lives. Most Americans say they're hopeful for their own futures, but pessimistic about the country's. Rural Americans, white people without college degrees, religious fundamentalists, and both Republicans and independents (the latter category now includes me) are the most pessimistic, and women are feeling more pessimistic than men.

-Just 22% of Americans want President Biden to run for re-election and a survey from last month found him losing to Donald Trump in a hypothetical rematch that's likely to become reality in 2024.

-On the positive side for President Biden, his polling average is the same as in November, so things appear to have finally stabilized for the president. Unfortunately, they've stabilized at a record 12.5 percentage points underwater.

Although the public disapproves of the White House's handling of a great many issues at this point (including even Covid-19; the administration's traditional strong suit), the president's main problem is clearly the accelerating cost of living in this country. The following excerpt from the poll in the current sample with results closest to Biden's average (12 points underwater) demonstrates as much in a way that's clearer than we usually see:

Spoiler!

Frustrations over the economy are the main culprit behind Biden’s flagging popularity as nearly every demographic declared it their No. 1 issue.

The economy was the top priority for men and women, every age cohort, Latino and white voters, and those with and without college educations. Black respondents, who named racism their chief priority, said the economy takes second place.

Sixty percent of the survey’s 1,895 respondents said they disapprove of Biden’s handling of the economy, marking a six-point decline in approval from September.

On personal economic issues, voters are even more likely to criticize the president. Some 72% disapprove of his handling of the price of everyday goods, while 66% disapprove of his efforts to help their wallets.

....

Some 84% of those surveyed said the prices they see for everyday goods are higher than they were a year ago, while just 19% report earning more income over the same period. And only 23% say they believe inflation is starting to come down or will begin to decline soon.

Workers wages have risen by an annualized 3% in the last year, which would be impressive in a normal year, but prices have risen by 6.8% over roughly the same period of time, easily overwhelming wage gains.  What's more, as you can see above, those wage gains have been had by only a small share of the population, whereas nearly everyone is paying higher prices. Personally, my pay is the same as it was a year ago. Anyway, that 6.8% jump is the single biggest hike in the cost of living this country's seen in 39 years. Americans clearly want more action to bring the cost of living under control. Modest gestures like releasing emergency oil reserves onto the market aren't cutting it. Personally, I'm for price controls. You know, reducing prices by, well, reducing prices rather than by other less intuitive, roundabout, less effective means that are market-oriented rather than consumer-oriented. In the old days when we had a more equitable wealth distribution and felt that it was a good thing, that would've been the government's answer to this type of situation, but now that business corporations have far more power and influence today than back then, as much has unfortunately become a politically unacceptable solution, as the mere suggestion strikes uncontrollable terror in the hearts of the ruling class. That and raising the material standard of living of the population by passing the Build Back Better Act and raising the minimum wage, stuff like that that Biden and the Democrats campaigned on but find themselves unable...or more honestly unwilling...to actually do.

According to the aforementioned CNBC/Change survey, 55% of Americans also now disapprove of the administration's handling of Covid-19 due to a recent increase in the share of the public who feels that the White House's response has been insufficient. However, whereas 24% now feel that way, a much larger 50%, in contrast, feel that the Biden Administration's Covid response has too restrictive, perhaps reflecting their greater concern about their ability to afford the cost of living. (Supply chain issues > defeating the relatively mild and nigh-undefeatable omicron strain I suspect is the dominant mindset there. It's my mindset at this point anyway.)



I have to say, all these stats really mean nothing right about now. Not sure why I would even care what Joe approval level is only one year in office. Trump first year was at 41% and he still mustered 70+ million votes. No one really even liked Joe but he got 80+ million. At the end of the day, most of these poll this early just means what it always means, if people can find someone to blame for their situation they will. Until its election season is when we will see how people actual mindsets are going, this early in the game is just noise.

Its like the last stat on handling Covid. No matter what you do, everything is either sugar or shit, nothing in between. You do nothing, they complain, you do something its not enough or its to much. Joe was never going to be the savior and if America really want Trump back in office well so be it but that day is long from now and I still doubt he will run. Only if he believe that enough people get into play that can totally seal the deal for him would he run but lets see how things shake out.



Jaicee said:

Well 2021 is now over. How did it go? Well let's put it this way:

-On the positive side for President Biden, his polling average is the same as in November, so things appear to have finally stabilized for the president. Unfortunately, they've stabilized at a record 12.5 percentage points underwater.

Workers wages have risen by an annualized 3% in the last year, which would be impressive in a normal year, but prices have risen by 6.8% over roughly the same period of time, easily overwhelming wage gains.  What's more, as you can see above, those wage gains have been had by only a small share of the population, whereas nearly everyone is paying higher prices. Personally, my pay is the same as it was a year ago. Anyway, that 6.8% jump is the single biggest hike in the cost of living this country's seen in 39 years. Americans clearly want more action to bring the cost of living under control. Modest gestures like releasing emergency oil reserves onto the market aren't cutting it. Personally, I'm for price controls. You know, reducing prices by, well, reducing prices rather than by other less intuitive, roundabout, less effective means that are market-oriented rather than consumer-oriented. In the old days when we had a more equitable wealth distribution and felt that it was a good thing, that would've been the government's answer to this type of situation, but now that business corporations have far more power and influence today than back then, as much has unfortunately become a politically unacceptable solution, as the mere suggestion strikes uncontrollable terror in the hearts of the ruling class. That and raising the material standard of living of the population by passing the Build Back Better Act and raising the minimum wage, stuff like that that Biden and the Democrats campaigned on but find themselves unable...or more honestly unwilling...to actually do.

According to the aforementioned CNBC/Change survey, 55% of Americans also now disapprove of the administration's handling of Covid-19 due to a recent increase in the share of the public who feels that the White House's response has been insufficient. However, whereas 24% now feel that way, a much larger 50%, in contrast, feel that the Biden Administration's Covid response has too restrictive, perhaps reflecting their greater concern about their ability to afford the cost of living. (Supply chain issues > defeating the relatively mild and nigh-undefeatable omicron strain I suspect is the dominant mindset there. It's my mindset at this point anyway.)

A couple notes:

First of all, when you say Biden's approval ratings have stabilized "at a record 12.5 percentage points underwater", what exactly is that record? He certainly has the worst approval differential of any American president currently in office (and coincidentally, the best), but it isn't the worst approval differential ever (Trump was at -17 at this point in his presidency). 

Second, I feel the sky-is-falling mentality in regards to inflation is a bit overblown. In 2020, we saw prices decrease due to a lack of demand. As a result, real earnings increased. The decrease in real earnings that we are seeing now is largely a reversion to the mean, not a plummeting in buying power when put in context.
-In 2020, there was a 4.9% increase in real average weekly earnings (December to December)
-In 2021, there was a 1.9% decrease in real average weekly earnings (November to November due to the December data having not yet released)

If you look at the historical trend from the last five or so years, you'll see that we tend to see real weekly earnings gains around 0-1%. 2020 was anomalous in how large of a gain there was due to contexts outside of the direct work environment, so as those contexts are being reversed, we should expect to see some degree of decline. As I said before, this does not represent a plummeting in buying power. If you look at the change over the last two years, you are left with an increase of 2.7% over two years, which is still well above average. 

Further, these gains are spread over virtually every sector of the economy, not a thin sliver as you state. There is little good data indicating that such trends actually exist. Surveys are great at demonstrating how people feelbut far less good at actually representing objective realities. This is demonstrated by the fact that 31% of Biden voters say they are earning more YOY compared to only 6% of Trump voters.

Third, I feel like I sound like a broken record, but I need to point out again that your widespread bitterness in regards to the failure of Democrats to pass BBB is understandable but largely misplaced. By what evidence are you truly asserting that Biden is unwilling to pass BBB? You know, his signature bill that he has been pushing for the last year.



Machiavellian said:

I have to say, all these stats really mean nothing right about now. Not sure why I would even care what Joe approval level is only one year in office. Trump first year was at 41% and he still mustered 70+ million votes. No one really even liked Joe but he got 80+ million. At the end of the day, most of these poll this early just means what it always means, if people can find someone to blame for their situation they will. Until its election season is when we will see how people actual mindsets are going, this early in the game is just noise.

Well...yes and no.

First of all, the presidential election is three years away, sure, but there are also midterm elections coming up in 10 months and the outcome tends to reflect the sitting president's job approval rating. The outcome of that, in turn, will shape what's possible...and not...for the rest of Biden's first, and probably last, term.

Secondly, yes, this probably is Biden's last term as president. I mean yeah, the presidential election is three years away, but I would point out that no sitting president who polled as badly as Biden is now during their first year in office won their next election. In fact, Donald Trump and Gerald Ford are the only two presidents so far who've had worse first years in office, and they were both defeated. They were also both Republicans, which makes Joe Biden the least popular Democratic president in the history of routine on the subject relative to this point in his tenure. Democrats who were faring better than him at the analogous point, like Jimmy Carter for example, went on to defeat. There's no historical precedent for someone in Biden's position getting re-elected is my point. I also just can't picture it happening in my mind. I mean the man can barely function as things are and will be 81 years old (almost 82, in fact) by election day. If for no reason other than that, I have a difficult time imagining America electing him to a second term.

Its like the last stat on handling Covid. No matter what you do, everything is either sugar or shit, nothing in between. You do nothing, they complain, you do something its not enough or its to much. Joe was never going to be the savior and if America really want Trump back in office well so be it but that day is long from now and I still doubt he will run. Only if he believe that enough people get into play that can totally seal the deal for him would he run but lets see how things shake out.

You're too much of an optimist. Trump needs to be elected president if only to evade his current, ongoing legal troubles. He has every motivation to run again, is telegraphing intent to run again, and polls in the lead for the Republican nomination by a margin of more than 50 percentage points consistently, which is just a tough temptation for any prospective candidate to ignore. He'll definitely run again, and what's more will almost certainly be the next Republican nominee. The only question in my mind is whether he'll be elected president again in 2024. Actually, scratch that: a second question in my mind is why I should care one way or the other.

Seriously, the prospects I hear named routinely as Democratic candidates for 2024 are President Biden, Vice President Harris, and Transportation Secretary Buttigieg, while the ones I routinely hear named as prospective candidates for the Republican nomination are obviously former President Trump, former Vice President Pence, and Florida Governor DeSantis. I have exactly zero interest in supporting any of those six candidates based on the performance of their respective duties so far, and can't help feeling like I'm probably far from alone in that sentiment. None of them are qualified.

Moreover, I find it downright depressing that the most likely 2024 scenario is factually just a rematch between Biden and Trump, who will both be in the neighborhood of 80 years old by then; by far the oldest candidates ever nominated by a major party for that position. And I mean who would be the alternative that progressives would support anyway? Let me guess: Bernie Sanders again, who will also be around 80 years old by that time? It's just like how the likely Democratic nominee for Governor of my state this year -- the only one I ever hear about running -- is Beto O'Rourke again. You see what I mean? It goes to show that, as with our movies, music, TV shows, video games, etc. etc., this country runs on nostalgia anymore. Both parties are clearly out of new candidates and out of ideas. If our choice in 2024 indeed winds up, as expected, to be a Biden vs. Trump rematch, the two dumbest, most dangerously incompetent people I've ever seen elected to the presidency, I think the very idea will yield exhaustion and exasperation from the public and an unusually large vote for third party, and possibly independent, candidates on the part of affluent, college educated, suburban voters (the people whom the Libertarians and the Greens appeal to) and an even higher rate of abstention than usual among working class voters (who, like me, are mostly "big government moderates", as I've been called; people who support increased public investment in the armed forces and police departments and also an expanded social safety net, and accordingly have no party that caters to their program in its entirety).

Anyway, on Covid, yeah, that's fair; you can't please everyone. I'm actually one of those people who's kind of with Biden on that specific issue. I felt during the summer he wasn't doing enough to combat the delta surge, but after he came out with the vaccine mandate, I felt more positively about his stance on Covid. Many liberals gripe that the current omicron surge shows he still ain't doing enough, but honestly I don't know what else he could possibly do that's within reason. He could lock the country down again and that would help slow the spread, but is that really reasonable? Or fair to the vast majority of us who are vaxxed already? Whatever. I don't think we even can beat omicron given its ability to evade basic vaccinations and I also don't care that much because of how much milder it is than earlier strains. It's a good thing in the long run that it's becoming the overwhelmingly dominant strain. That's how pandemics often end in the real world; they get more contagious by getting weaker because vaccines stop the more severe, deadlier strains, and we become able to live with them as a result. Liberals have to get over their idealistic ambition to eliminate every single Covid case in this country. It ain't gonna happen, clearly. Not by a long shot. Clearly more people than not are in Covid fatigue mode right now, including me. I'm part of that growing "vaxxed and done" camp you've been hearing about more lately. I feel that I've done my civic duty and cannot save other people from themselves and shouldn't be somehow expected to. That can't be the goal here.

Last edited by Jaicee - 6 days ago