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8 hours ago, TheAuthority said:

If you like political comedy/satire in the mould of the Daily Show Jon Stewart era, then the undoubted new Queen is Samantha Bee. Her show is called "Full Frontal" and is the best written show out there.

It's good. I like it. Sometimes it sounds like she's reading too quickly off a teleprompter but it's probably my hearing that's just slow.

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2 hours ago, LondonLax said:

Apparently the justification for cutting meals on wheels for the elderly and school dinners in poverty stricken schools is essentially that the programs are not directly making the government any money. 

http://www.scarymommy.com/trump-budget-director-cut-programs-feeding-kids-and-elderly/

 

That meme has REALLY taken off in the last few days. Everyone I know on FB is sharing and raging at it. **** hardcore Dickensian shit there.

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11 minutes ago, HanoiVillan said:

To be honest, I'm fine with Trump taking as much time off as he wants. 

Maybe I should take this back.

My initial feeling was that he's probably doing less damage golfing with his mates, but possibly he's just making corrupt 'deals' with no supervision from the grown-ups, so it might not be any better. 

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3 hours ago, Awol said:

No they are perfectly rational political actors and labeling them as stupid, idiots, deplorable etc is itself, stupid.

Trumpers watched their wages stagnate, their communities crumble and their jobs disappear over decades.

As the economy has changed they've been left behind - how do 45 year old unskilled or medium skilled workers reinvent themselves as software engineers and join the tech' sector?

Meanwhile the liberal (US definition) types keep telling them everything is just fine and dandy, when for many Trumpers it's demonstrably not.

Then someone comes along, speaks directly to their problems and says he can fix them. Sure it's not true but what do they have to lose? False hope is better than no hope and as long as mainstream US politics continues to demonizes those voters the problem gets bigger not smaller.

Sadly - like our own political class - they are in the pocket of vested interests in a big cozy circle jerk and keep getting richer.

The solutions are difficult, complex and nowhere in sight, but the first step of solving of a problem is recognizing that there is one.

Which is exactly the explanation I've heard the economist Mark Blyth outline many times.

The Left these days offer no solutions and just seem to spend their time minting their tribal shibboleths of fear and loathing.

As Blyth also says, the bottom third have been abandoned by all parties and no more so than the Democrats and the British Labour Party.

 

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There was a pretty good documentry on the Aus equivalent of the BBC other night called 'The price of the American dream'. It looks at the huge increase in numbers of 'working poor' in the US since 2008. People are easily able to get jobs at the moment and the economy is growing rapidly, companies are making big profits, but the fast majority of those new jobs are low paid, part time with no benifits. People work 2-3 jobs doing 70-80 hours a week but still only make $1-2k per month and cant afford to save a deposit to rent a place, a lot of them are actually living in tent cities or short term accomodation shelters.

Watching these peoples lives you can see why they were desperate for a radical change and Clinton would not have provided it. 

Trump was promising to be that radical shake up of the system. Even if these people didnt agree with everything Trump stood for it was enough to get a significant chunk of voters to vote for the radical change candidate over the status quo. A lot of them have very little to lose anyway.      

http://www.abc.net.au/4corners/stories/2017/03/13/4633037.htm

Edit: I suspect it will be region blocked but you can watch the full thing here:

 http://iview.abc.net.au/programs/four-corners/NC1704H006S00

Edited by LondonLax
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9 minutes ago, MakemineVanilla said:

...the bottom third have been abandoned by all parties and no more so than the Democrats and the British Labour Party.

... then people are shocked or outraged when they vote for something outside the so called mainstream.

On the bright side at least they are still expressing their discontent through the system and not taking more drastic action, which shows how much democracy is hard wired into the collective western mind.

Part of the problem (imo) is how much faith people have in politicians to actually fix stuff. They are generally no more intelligent, well informed or public spirited than half the posters on here, often less so.

I think they'll be bypassed more and more in the future as technology and collective action at the societal level drive solutions from below. The battle will then become them trying to maintain a monopoly on power and decision making - they're not in it for the £70k per annum. 

 

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4 hours ago, Awol said:

No they are perfectly rational political actors and labeling them as stupid, idiots, deplorable etc is itself, stupid.

Trumpers watched their wages stagnate, their communities crumble and their jobs disappear over decades.

As the economy has changed they've been left behind - how do 45 year old unskilled or medium skilled workers reinvent themselves as software engineers and join the tech' sector?

Meanwhile the liberal (US definition) types keep telling them everything is just fine and dandy, when for many Trumpers it's demonstrably not.

Then someone comes along, speaks directly to their problems and says he can fix them. Sure it's not true but what do they have to lose? False hope is better than no hope and as long as mainstream US politics continues to demonizes those voters the problem gets bigger not smaller.

Sadly - like our own political class - they are in the pocket of vested interests in a big cozy circle jerk and keep getting richer.

The solutions are difficult, complex and nowhere in sight, but the first step of solving of a problem is recognizing that there is one.

Good post, but incredibly simplistic and only accurate for a portion of Trump voters.

I'll get back to it later when I have more time.

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7 hours ago, Awol said:

No they are perfectly rational political actors and labeling them as stupid, idiots, deplorable etc is itself, stupid.

Trumpers watched their wages stagnate, their communities crumble and their jobs disappear over decades.

As the economy has changed they've been left behind - how do 45 year old unskilled or medium skilled workers reinvent themselves as software engineers and join the tech' sector?

Meanwhile the liberal (US definition) types keep telling them everything is just fine and dandy, when for many Trumpers it's demonstrably not.

Then someone comes along, speaks directly to their problems and says he can fix them. Sure it's not true but what do they have to lose? False hope is better than no hope and as long as mainstream US politics continues to demonizes those voters the problem gets bigger not smaller.

Sadly - like our own political class - they are in the pocket of vested interests in a big cozy circle jerk and keep getting richer.

The solutions are difficult, complex and nowhere in sight, but the first step of solving of a problem is recognizing that there is one.

This is a fair post, and there are some (quite a few really) bits that ring true, but it's a bit 'white focused'. An awful lot of the American electorate are non-white, and this analysis doesn't do anything to explain their motivations or voting behaviours IMO. 

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2 minutes ago, HanoiVillan said:

This is a fair post, and there are some (quite a few really) bits that ring true, but it's a bit 'white focused'. An awful lot of the American electorate are non-white, and this analysis doesn't do anything to explain their motivations or voting behaviours IMO. 

Why don't you think so?
Many non-white people live in manufacturing decimated regions with poor employment opportunities and even lower standards of educational strategy. 
Couple that with high costs of healthcare (Obamacare didn't really do enough) and a general feeling that a black president didn't fight for ethnic communities and there's a good chance you'll see either apathetic voting or voters not polling honestly.

Remember, Hillary wasn't mentioned and arguably as a political leader she was more divisive for the voters than Trump. She definitely caused people to stay away from the ballot box.

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16 minutes ago, HanoiVillan said:

This is a fair post, and there are some (quite a few really) bits that ring true, but it's a bit 'white focused'. An awful lot of the American electorate are non-white, and this analysis doesn't do anything to explain their motivations or voting behaviours IMO. 

Interesting. Could you explain why you think it's white focused? It wasn't intended to be and I can't see where you're getting that from. 

I agree with Stefan that it's not the whole picture, but I suspect it's a decent chunk of it.

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22 minutes ago, Awol said:

Interesting. Could you explain why you think it's white focused? It wasn't intended to be and I can't see where you're getting that from. 

I agree with Stefan that it's not the whole picture, but I suspect it's a decent chunk of it.

Sorry, I feel like it sounded like a harsh criticism, that wasn't how it was intended. 

I just feel that the whole 'formerly industrial towns in rust belt states voted for Trump' thing clearly does explain a large amount of the voting behaviour of that particular group. But generally speaking minority voters are poorer than white voters and on average earn less and have less-skilled jobs. Yet their voting pattern remains the same, of consistently supporting Democrats, and shows no sign of significant change. There are also more of these voters than there are of truly working-class whites. 

I just feel that you can't understand American politics through a purely class-based frame. 'Race + class' is better. 

All that being said, I'm rereading your original post and maybe I'm not really answering the point you were making. 

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15 hours ago, Awol said:

No they are perfectly rational political actors and labeling them as stupid, idiots, deplorable etc is itself, stupid.

Trumpers watched their wages stagnate, their communities crumble and their jobs disappear over decades.

As the economy has changed they've been left behind - how do 45 year old unskilled or medium skilled workers reinvent themselves as software engineers and join the tech' sector?

Meanwhile the liberal (US definition) types keep telling them everything is just fine and dandy, when for many Trumpers it's demonstrably not.

Then someone comes along, speaks directly to their problems and says he can fix them. Sure it's not true but what do they have to lose? False hope is better than no hope and as long as mainstream US politics continues to demonizes those voters the problem gets bigger not smaller.

Sadly - like our own political class - they are in the pocket of vested interests in a big cozy circle jerk and keep getting richer.

The solutions are difficult, complex and nowhere in sight, but the first step of solving of a problem is recognizing that there is one.

I'm back to this now.

15 hours ago, Awol said:

No they are perfectly rational political actors and labeling them as stupid, idiots, deplorable etc is itself, stupid.

I think this is where you and I differ. I agree with most of your post, when it comes to a specific set of Trump voters. Trump voters you'd argue won him the election. The rust belt. And everything you've said there is pretty on point. Hillary wasn't a good candidate. She didn't stand for change. She stood for 4/8 more years of much of the same. In hindsight with all the mayhem that's happening now, that would be for the best IMO.

Certain Trump voters voted for him simply because he had an R next to his name. I think this camp are stupid. They criticised Obama for 8 years, happily married, raised 2 kids, yet champion Trump as a bastion of Christian hope; 5 kids, 3 wives. That mental disconnect makes them idiots IMO.

Certain Trump voters went for him because of his views on Muslims/Mexicans. I wouldn't class these as stupid. They liked him for this, not because of this.

Certain Trump voters went for him because he 'tells it how it is'. Again, these are undeniably stupid because he objectively does NOT tell it how it is. He lies. A lot. A hell of a lot. I guess, 'tell it like it is' stood for 'he says what I'm thinking and I'm fed up of not being able to say it'. He was the politically incorrect candidate. Yet he's unbelievably thin-skinned, attacking anybody dares criticise him. Yet he's meant to be anti-PC. Voters, meet mental disconnect. Stupid.

Now I'm off point and I wanted to get back to this.

15 hours ago, Awol said:

No they are perfectly rational political actors and labeling them as stupid, idiots, deplorable etc is itself, stupid.

I do not believe they are rational. As I said, I fully agree with parts of your post, especially this.

15 hours ago, Awol said:

Then someone comes along, speaks directly to their problems and says he can fix them. Sure it's not true but what do they have to lose? False hope is better than no hope and as long as mainstream US politics continues to demonizes those voters the problem gets bigger not smaller.

But is it rational to believe he is the man to fix their issues? A known liar, a known conman? All he has done is lie and deflect and accuse and lie some more. I sympathise with the people as described by you. I do, I can't imagine how it must feel to have a job for 45 years then wake up suddenly and be unskilled, nowhere to go, nothing to do. But to think that Trump is the man to change all of that; that isn't rational.

And as time goes on and he goes back on his promises to this group specifically; because they didn't vote for him to kick out Muslims or Mexicans; these people who need to catch a break need to start admitting their mistake and I genuinely hope the D candidate next time does a better job of standing up for them so they aren't given false hope yet again, and betrayed. Because we're talking life and death with this demographic. Healthcare, money, food.

I'd love to see Al Franken given a go. A genuinely funny, caring, non-establishment dem. My fear is it'll be a Schumer or a Pelosi and we're back to 2016 all over again.

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President Trump's daughter Ivanka to get White House office

Quote

President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump is to have an office in the White House, her lawyer says.

The 35-year-old will have security clearance and access to classified information.

But she will not have an official title or salary when she works in the West Wing - the hub of US executive power.

Ms Trump's role will be to serve as Donald Trump's "eyes and ears" while providing broad-ranging advice, her attorney told Politico.

...more on link

 

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