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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Books, Films, Food and Culture » What's Scott Walker up to? (Page 1)

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Author Topic: What's Scott Walker up to?
Elison R. Salazar
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Heard you liked UW, here's some less UW's.

Quoted from SA:

quote:

Declaring the university system needs to get out from "under the thumb" of state government, Walker said he wants to give the Board of Regents more authority to contract for services and construct buildings without following state rules and processes that other state agencies must. His plan, if approved by the Legislature, would be coupled with a reduction in state aid of nearly 13%. He likened the proposal to the budget cuts that were paired with Act 10, the 2011 law that all but eliminated collective bargaining for most public workers.

Walker, who disclosed Tuesday he had set up a political committee for a potential presidential run, made his UW System announcement as he promoted a separate plan at the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce to provide $220 million in tax-backed bonds to help fund a new arena for the Milwaukee Bucks.

Under Walker's plan, UW schools would continue to operate for two more years under a tuition freeze that has been in place since 2013. That means they would have to cut their programs to account for the dropped funding.

The UW System would have more predictability from year to year to plan for how much state revenue to expect with a block grant and increases tied to inflation, said Walker, who has one son enrolled at UW-Madison and another at Marquette University. Walker attended Marquette but did not earn a degree.

UW System officials welcomed the plan to give them more autonomy — something they have long sought — but warned the cuts would mean fundamental changes in how they operate the system's 26 campuses. "This is going to mean layoffs in all of my schools and colleges," said UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank, calling the reduction likely the largest cut in the system's history.

Walker will formally introduce his plan Feb. 3 as part of the state budget he wants the Republican-controlled Legislature to pass. The state faces a shortfall of $928 million through mid-2017, and lawmakers will spend the next several months working off Walker's plan to balance the budget.

The UW System received $1.18 billion in state taxpayer money for the current fiscal year — less than what it received in 2010-'11. Walker's plan would cut that amount for next year by $150 million, or 12.7%. The $150 million cut would continue for the second year of the budget as well. State tax money makes up about 19% of the UW System's budget, according to the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau. Tuition, federal aid, grants, donations and other payments bring the system's total annual funding to more than $6 billion.

After 2017, the Board of Regents would have the authority to set whatever tuition it saw fit for UW System schools. However, between now and then lawmakers would be free to pass legislation that would extend the tuition freeze or limit the size of increases.

Walker's plan would eliminate state laws governing the UW System. One such law provides faculty with tenure, which protects them from dismissal. Another provides for shared governance, which allows professors and students to have a role in how universities are run. Such matters would be left for the Board of Regents to decide — a better arrangement, said Rep. John Nygren (R-Marinette), co-chairman of the Joint Finance Committee. "Who do we want making those decisions? Legislators who have different perspectives or people in the day-to-day operation of the university?" Nygren said.

Follow up:

quote:

"In the future, by not having the limitation of things like shared governance, they might be able to make savings just by asking faculty and staff to consider teaching one more class a semester," Walker told reporters at the Madison hotel.


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TomDavidson
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Walker is "up to" privatizing as much education as he can, even state colleges.
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Parkour
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Republicans are pretty much just taking the entire state and selling it off to the highest bribers piece by piece.

It works. Well I don't mean it works in the sense that it doesn't ruin the state a whole bunch and collapse important things like higher education. I mean it works in that it secures their powerbase for the future and buys them the next more gerrymandered election.

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kmbboots
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Selling Wisconsin.
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Hobbes
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I'm not sure how much is privatizing, and how much is the old, small government trick of cutting budgets, "empowering" managers, and then making them do the dirty work. i.e. You give the managers power to fire employees or reduce salary, tell them they have less money, and then let them take the blame for actually firing people or cutting pay. It's been done to local government for years: the new twist is just that it's the university.

Hobbes [Smile]

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Elison R. Salazar
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Starve the Beast tactics. Its a part of the wider Republican strategy of defunding or working to sabotage government to make it incapable of doing its job, and then running against government as being "unable to accomplish anything that the Glorious Private Sector can do for cheaper/better/faster".
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Samprimary
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http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2015/02/19/scott_walker_2016_presidential_hopeful_s_tax_cuts_leave_wisconsin_unable.html

How true is all of this

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TomDavidson
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Completely.
*grumble*
Sam, you have no idea how much of a disaster Wisconsin state government is right now.

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Samprimary
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like literally every separate element of that story is true, there's no individual component where, like, it's not as bad as it looks
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TomDavidson
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Nope. All true.
And that's even the optimistic projection of our debt, using the debt calculations that Walker made fun of when Doyle used them to show a surplus under his term, and which Walker said represented a disingenuous attempt to hide future liabilities. Walker's office started using Doyle's debt calculations almost immediately after taking office, because they look better.

*wry laugh*

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Samprimary
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So I guess they're also all hobknobbing up there alongside the dudes who come up with all the absolutely most disproven supply side econonomics stuff. like i think the literal laffer curve laffer might be up there these days.

are you guys trying to become a conservative economic policy dystopia faster than kansas or

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TomDavidson
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We are truly a model for ALEC policy at this point.
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Lyrhawn
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Is there a good article out there that articulates the situation in Wisconsin right now?

I'd love to read more.

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Samprimary
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the literal laffer curve laffer guy IS out there. OH MY GOD

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/20/opinion/paul-krugman-cranking-up-for-2016.html

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Samprimary
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"So what does it say about the current state of the G.O.P. that discussion of economic policy is now monopolized by people who have been wrong about everything, have learned nothing from the experience, and can’t even get their numbers straight?"

i want to lambast him for the hyperbole but at the same time we all read the ryan plan right

we all remember what happens every time the gop begrudgingly allows us to see their alternative economic plans

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Jon Boy
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I have a super-conservative cousin who hopes that Walker will be the next GOP presidential candidate. I really, really don't get the conservative mindset these days.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Jon Boy:
I really, really don't get the conservative mindset these days.

Think of it this way.

The people running the show in american conservatism right now (and its recent ultra-creepy populist bents like the tea party) are a natural byproduct of the fact that the GOP has a perverse incentive and they benefit when government becomes dysfunctional. They can literally break government to prove that government doesn't work. They have responded to that incentive.

The end result is a party that fails at everything and prevents government, as much as they possibly can, from doing things that would work instead. They're even supposed to be the we're-good-at-war party, and they suck worse at war than we even really understand yet. Conservatives suck at war so bad that it's straight up embarrassing. If they suck at war, it doesn't bode well for how good they can manage things that are not in their generally hawkish purview.

I keep wanting to check my language here or try to back up and be more charitable but it's essentially true and I'm not finding much reason to doubt how I am describing this even in a concerted effort to analyze this from a nonprogressive standpoint. If you think I'm overstating this, all you have to do is grimly recall the two times that they barely stopped themselves from literally defaulting on the national debt. They have an incentive to ensure that government does not work, and it has become principally vital to the future of the party that they not let non-conservatives prove that government works when they run things, (this is why stopping Obamacare is so vital to their future) so they try to keep government from working.

Because the issue of "does this actually work in the real world?" is essentially irrelevant to these incentives, they have a hideous wonk gap and have seeded their entire structure so that the political kingmakers can demand obsequience to broken economic theory.

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Jon Boy
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I understand intellectually why the Republican Party has come to work that way. I actually used to vote Republican very consistently, but my views have swung from moderately conservative to fairly liberal over the last several years because I'm just not buying it anymore. I just don't get why so many Americans still are.
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Elison R. Salazar
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My conservative friend seems to also honestly believe that Obama shouldn't support measures he agrees with because then "It becomes a partisan issue and won't get done."
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TomDavidson
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To be fair, Obama probably could get all of Fox News solidly on the side of a minimum living wage if he came out against it. [Smile]
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Lyrhawn
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I honestly think he should try it. Switch to the GOP side on a few issues and let Senate Dems block it when it comes up for a vote.

Just to see what they do.

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Samprimary
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accuse him of flip-flopping
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Stone_Wolf_
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I don't trust politicians. Kinda makes voting impossible.
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Rakeesh
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It really, really doesn't.
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Elison R. Salazar
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quote:
Originally posted by Stone_Wolf_:
I don't trust politicians. Kinda makes voting impossible.

Supreme Court nominations.
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Stone_Wolf_
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
It really, really doesn't.

Not on initiatives & stuff...sure. Maybe even local folk, but I honestly believe that from about state Senate up our officials are either corrupt, incompetent or outnumbered.
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Rakeesh
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This is going to be snarky, but it's because I am frustrated at hearing that refrain so often-it's not personal: why are they outnumbered? All the corrupt money of which there is tons goes to buying votes. All you do by not voting is make the piece of sovereignty you own free, instead of needing a contribution to campaign with.
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Stone_Wolf_
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For one, I'm in California, so my vote for Pres doesn't either way. Either my vote literally doesn't count if I vote Republican, or if for Democrat, I can just stay home.

Would I even be able to vote in primaries as a Lib.? I thought only people registered to Dem or Rep can vote in their respective primaries?

Honestly the few times I tried to vote I got confused, bored & disinterested very quickly. [Dont Know]

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Rakeesh
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It varies from state to state, who can vote in which primaries. There are local and state elections as well where one voice carries more weight. It's not supposed to be easy, deciding how your sovereignty will go to choosing the way the country goes.
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Stone_Wolf_
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Maybe I'm just lazy. Seriously. I try and care...but I just can't seem to pull it off.
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Lyrhawn
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In Michigan you don't register for any party. You just vote in whichever primary you want to but you can't vote in both.

I admit, as political as I am, I don't pay as much attention to local politics as I should.

But I can't imagine not voting. It'd take a pretty serious calamity to keep me from going to vote.

Because no matter how cynical I get, no matter how broken I think the system is, or corrupt, or oligarchal, it's still my vote, and if I give in to apathy, they've taken my last bit of civic power.

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kmbboots
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quote:
Originally posted by Stone_Wolf_:
Maybe I'm just lazy. Seriously. I try and care...but I just can't seem to pull it off.

Well, we get the government we deserve.
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Stone_Wolf_
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So my (and those like me) by lack of voting...are what, ruining the country, and those who vote (even the people who just vote party lines) are what exactly?

If I just vote randomly am I "good" again. Or does merely showing up the pole the trick?

Not losing my stuff...more to come.

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Rakeesh
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You're reading a great deal into that statement that isn't there, SW. No one suggested ruining the country or particularly that party line voters are virtuous for voting the party line. The question that showing up at the polls does something is strange, since no one said anything like that either.

All that has been argued is that there is something important in voting-even in our flawed and corrupt system, yes-and that to complain that the choices are bad and dishonest when you consciously make a choice not to participate (which by the way is probably one of the biggest choices voters make that makes corruption so effective) makes no sense.

As for getting the government you deserve, you specifically well by making your own voice mute and therefore allowing your piece of the California voice to be bought and sold for free, by giving up just because it's 'boring', yes, even if your one vote wouldn't change anything you've still gotten the government you deserve.

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Elison R. Salazar
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I always vote, because the gov't WILL track who DOESN'T vote in case they complain about gov't policy so that they can shut your mouth. "Hey, you didn't vote, so why are you complaining about what we do?"

I know this because Jean Cretien (when he was Justice minister) wrote my mom a letter saying to this effect (She doesn't vote).

It was awesome, I wish we still had that letter.

(In case it isn't clear I 100% support this policy).

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Stone_Wolf_
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Oh sure...-I- deserve whatever I get...as I refrain...

But if all those people like me showed up and voted (only that) would it change anything?

We would have more of a right to complain sure, but would it ACTUALLY help?

If your choices are between a schitte sandwich and a schitte taco, picking one doesn't change the fact that you have poop in your mouth.

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Rakeesh
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Of course it would result in a change. Given that there is massive dissatisfaction with both parties, very low voter turnout, and that what turnout there is often powered by partisan voters...well, that's a lot of dissatisfied votes never brought to the table.

The corruption involved in politics is in big part funneled to political campaigns. Those campaigns can thus continue a two party dialogue in the contest for the voters who show up. And so there is a turd donkey or a turd elephant.

Of course if everyone showed up it would make a difference. The policy makers don't show up in Washington or Sacramento or Tallahhassee by magic-they have to get votes.

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Stone_Wolf_
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But even with 100% at the polls you still end up with a turd.

Eventually more changes would come...like a third party or such...but said the only change being more people show up...

More people voting for a bad (purposely undermined with pork) doesn't make it a better idea.

Low voter turn out seems like a consequence not a causality.

How many congresspeople read the patriot act before signing it into law? I heard it was none.

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Dogbreath
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One of the biggest ways to change things is in the primaries - where turnout is shockingly low. (In my state, last time I checked, it was around ~30%) About a month and a half before every primary (and again before every election) I look up everyone who is running on the local FOX news site, copy their bios into a word document, and spend the next few weeks researching each person and marking who I'm going to vote for. Then when I send my absentee ballot in (I always vote Republican in the primaries, since almost all the state government ends up being Republican in the election) I have a very good idea of exactly who I'm voting for and why.

The thing is, there have been several times in the primaries where someone winning or losing comes down to a few votes - and this includes when my friend got nominated and later elected as State Treasurer. My vote absolutely does matter, and I think if everyone were to take a few hours every year to really look into who they were voting for and why, we could drastically change America's political landscape.

The biggest myth out there is that your vote doesn't matter, and that you can't do anything to change the status quo. And frankly, it's what's allowed our two party system to degrade to the level of corruption and incompetence we have today. Voting may be boring, but it's an absolutely vital duty of a citizen of a free country, if they want that country to remain free.

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Stone_Wolf_
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Also...I don't complain about the government much anymore. 100% of my family's income is signed by Uncle Sam. Medical too. I'd rather my beloved wife wasn't disabled, or that disability didn't use monkeys for the vetting process, but all in all I have nothing to complain about.

Heck, because of Obama my private school loan is zero dollars a month...and (assuming no change) will be paid off by the government including intrest after twentyfive years.

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Samprimary
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If everyone in America voted there would pretty much be no Republican Party and we could have universal health care in under five years. No jokes.
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Stone_Wolf_
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I guess I'm just not seeing it...can someone please run the scenario?

For the sake of discussion, let's say an aggressive ad campaign gets poll numbers up to 85%. Same politicians, same props, but more people show up...

Go!

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Dogbreath
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Well, first off I think if you got informed primary voters up to 85%, it would be highly unlikely that you *would* have the same politicians.
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Stone_Wolf_
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Not informed anything...talking about us lazy bastards who would like to vote but have almost no faith in the system, and have very little gumption when it comes to politics.

I think that my choice to not make an uninformed vote is better than people who just guess or blindly follow party lines.

Is becoming an informed voter an even better choice? Yes, but when your holding on by the seat of your pants, you don't tend to raise your hand.

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Stone_Wolf_
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To clarify, I have my hands more than full of responsibility at the moment with my family situation. Not throwing a pity party, I'm just saying that my time is limited to the extent of to doing one chore means ten others go undone. Like while I write this, I'm not sorting laundry.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Stone_Wolf_:
I guess I'm just not seeing it...can someone please run the scenario?

If voting is now a compulsory practice in effect and substantial blocks to voting availability for limited income and innercity populations are removed and we effectively make it so that people under the age of 35 and across all socioeconomic lines have the same voting representation as people over the age of 65, liberal candidates now win overwhelmingly across most of the country. The GOP becomes a marginal and regional party at best, and probably by most people's estimates dissolves in a relatively short timeframe.

The only demographic that really floats american conservatism is white people born in the 1940's and earlier. As time goes on, the country is experiencing a massive shift to liberal ideology. But people vote far less reliably or often when they are young. Demographics that solidly vote Democratic Party are also logistically and institutionally prevented from voting, often times through concerted efforts to prevent as many of them from voting as possible (see: voter ID laws, innercity poll station availability management, etc).

If every citizen voted in the next election, the democrats would have a substantial majority in both houses of congress, most governorships. If gerrymandering were also abolished to remove unrepresentative district safety and vote marginalization in national and state elections, democratic gains in the house would be even more substantial and the conservatives would lose most state legislatures immediately.

In fact most demographic data today suggests we have reached a point where even if you kept the current voting trends but just removed gerrymandering, the democrats would have a majority in the house.

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Stone_Wolf_
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Interesting. I did not know that. Thank you for sharing that, makes perfect sense to me. Serious question does it apply to me personally? Is California under populated with liberal votes which I'm not even sure I qualify under entirely?

How important is it that -I- vote?

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TomDavidson
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You should not vote.
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Stone_Wolf_
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Always the bright point of my day Tom. [Smile]
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Rakeesh
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I'm not sure why voluntarily giving up your stake in the system without a struggle is better than at least using it to have some influence that means you have, well, some influence as well as some responsibility. In fact I'm sure it's not, though that is only my opinion. I'll also note that you're sending some mixed signals here. If it is laziness (your own repeated characterization) that keeps you from the polls, how can you then claim it's a stance worth defending because participating is worse? I mean, sometimes you're saying you don't participate because you're lazy or it's boring and other times it's because it's hopeless and meaningless anyway. I think to be authentic you would have to pick one. Note also I'm not only talking about the present, which is very hectic and busy for you, but also the past, which according to you has been the same in terms of voting.

Others have said it, but I don't understand at all how you can suggest that vastly increasing the pool of voters would somehow result in the same situation. I mean, do all of those people who don't vote believe similar things as to the small minority that do vote? Why would that be? you clearly don't share beliefs with those who vote right now-otherwise you would be voting, if you were of like minds, wouldn't you?

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