Politics Post - Evan McMullin

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glass shelf
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by glass shelf » Wed Oct 26, 2016 12:33 pm

I know an Evan McMullin supporter who is bsc enough to have made that meme. I'm not sure she's got the tech skills, but she's certainly got
the right mix of mormon worldview, love of the end of times rhetoric, and self-delusion to have expressed the sentiment.

I have never heard a single person mention Evan McMullin where I live who isn't 1) Mormon or 2) way, way, way into politics. Group 1 is like, "we can't vote for Trump, and we won't vote for Clinton, so hey let's pick a Mormon unknown with no chance of victory." Group 2 is like, "What the heck (imagine the full-octane word here because these people are nevermos) is up with Mormons? Why are they voting for this guy and who the crud is he?!?!?"

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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by Zadok » Sat Oct 29, 2016 9:31 pm

If Evan wins Utah, which I believe is doubtful, he will have accomplished 2 things. First he'll have won a total of 6 electoral votes, and second, he will be able to watch either Trump or Clinton win the election as if he never existed.
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by moksha » Sun Oct 30, 2016 12:52 am

McMullin's Utah electors would just throw their votes to Trump in the Electoral College roll call if it looked close after Texas cast its votes for Trump.
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achilles
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by achilles » Sun Oct 30, 2016 8:51 am

shadow wrote:Just read that Tribune article. His parents divorced and his mom later married another woman. With respect to his view on same-sex marriage, he says that his mother's relationship "didn't change [his] view on the issue in any way." While his position is basically to respect the law of the land, which I guess is better than some, what a cold position to take publicly with respect to his mom. And, I can't help but believe that the only reason he feels that way is because of his mormon beliefs.
What if he actually accepts her marriage but can't say so for political reasons? The way things have been going in American politics, that could be a possibility.
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achilles
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by achilles » Sun Oct 30, 2016 8:53 am

moksha wrote:McMullin's Utah electors would just throw their votes to Trump in the Electoral College roll call if it looked close after Texas cast its votes for Trump.
I'm Achilles, and I approve this message.
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by moksha » Mon Oct 31, 2016 9:59 pm

Prominent white nationalist William Johnson, an ardent supporter of Donald Trump’s campaign who was previously listed as a California delegate to the Republican National Convention has a robocall to many Utah voters hoping to trigger the Mormon hate-reflex against Evan McMullin by mentioning homosexuality.

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2 ... s-gay.html
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by oliver_denom » Tue Nov 01, 2016 3:47 am

As a partisan democrat who supported Clinton in the primaries, I couldn't agree more. I think every republican should vote McMullen.
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by Silver Girl » Tue Nov 01, 2016 5:04 am

I've been primarily a Democrat almost all of my adult life - I grew up in a strong Republican household (not even LDS - imagine that!), but the Nixon/Watergate thing violated my trust terribly. I vote mixed ballots every election, because I know some state and local leaders who do a great job and are Republican, and I am not in favor of voting in the lesser candidate simply due to a label.

BUT - even though we can't do write-ins where I live, after the last few days I sort of wish McMullin would skew the results. We need a cooling off period - which that probably wouldn't give us, but it might buy some time. The acrimony and craziness of the campaign months has done nothing but harm the country, and we still know very little about what various candidates would do if elected.

I know nothing about McMullin - but at least he isn't on television every day inciting misplaced anger and making claims that he will put his opponent in prison (the Executive Branch can't do that - anyone who thinks that way doesn't know enough about government to run the country). And at least he's not been repeatedly accused of violating national security, with yet another possible (or maybe not possible) issue dangling over his head.

The two-party system needs to be nuked, big time. The electoral system needs to be overhauled. I am so fed up with this campaign season, and I am genuinely concerned about what could happen after the election - no matter what the results.

Sorry to unload here. Wait - no I am not sorry. If you want to flame me, go ahead. Bring it on.

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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by Deepthinker » Tue Nov 01, 2016 7:05 am

Silver Girl wrote:The two-party system needs to be nuked, big time. The electoral system needs to be overhauled. I am so fed up with this campaign season, and I am genuinely concerned about what could happen after the election - no matter what the results.
I feel the same way, which is why I've tried to avoid politics this year. I need the Colbert Report back, it was my therapy. Its just not the same with him doing the Late Show.

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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by oliver_denom » Tue Nov 01, 2016 9:10 am

Deepthinker wrote:
Silver Girl wrote:The two-party system needs to be nuked, big time. The electoral system needs to be overhauled. I am so fed up with this campaign season, and I am genuinely concerned about what could happen after the election - no matter what the results.
I feel the same way, which is why I've tried to avoid politics this year. I need the Colbert Report back, it was my therapy. Its just not the same with him doing the Late Show.
The primary difficulty with reforming the two party system is that the constitution places control of elections within each individual state. What this means is that without a constitutional amendment creating a central election authority, fifty states essentially means 50 different electoral systems. But the problem goes deeper than that. The only way to really foster a multi party system is to create a mechanism to allow proportional representation, meaning something that isn't winner take all. As the sociologist Maurice Duverger discovered, winner take all systems inherently lean toward two parties because they strongly encourage the creation of large coalitions. In other words, if I know that 30% of the vote will get me nothing, then I am incentivized to make a coalition with a smaller party in order to reach 50%. This is essentially what the Democratic and Republican parties are, coalitions of five different ideologies mashed into two big groups. Democrats are comprised of center-left and socialist parties, while the Republicans are split between center-right, theocratic, and libertarian parties. Given a proportional system of representation, these groups would likely split up and run on their own specific platforms. If the U.S. were a parliamentary type system, then if the Greens got 15% of the vote then they'd get 15% of the seats in parliament. If the Libertarians got 20%, then they'd get 20% of the seats in parliament. But what happens in parliamentary systems after an election is very similar to what happens in the U.S. before an election. The parties dicker with one another until they can form a majority.

So why is this a problem in the United States? To put it simply, we don't have a parliament. In addition to a constitutional amendment nationalizing the election system, we would also need an amendment that changes representation in congress and the presidency. House representatives are determined by state population with a minimum of one per state. While it's reasonable to proportionally select representatives in states like California who have 53 delegates, the same cannot be said for states that have far fewer. No matter how you slice it, Montana is still going to have just one seat. The problem also carries over to the Senate where each state is only allowed two Senators. Each Senate election is for one seat, and there's no way to divide that among multiple parties. In each of these cases, the natural pressures on the participants is to build coalitions not go off and form their own niche party. To get around this, a federal commission would need to separate representation from states and then divide them up based on national vote results. If we did this, then it may be that smaller parties could be strong enough to compete for the presidency separately, but it's unlikely. You'd more than likely still end up with two major coalition party candidates, one on the left and one on the right.

But don't lament. If you think about it this way, then would you rather vote for a party and then have that party make a decision on who they will align with, or would you rather make that decision yourself? There's a reason why American third parties are not major powers, it's because their policies and platforms only speak to a niche group of Americans. If they really represented a majority of interests, then they'd be one of the major party coalitions and not a perpetual also ran. And if they did every try to broaden their appeal, then they'd be forced to moderate their positions, partner with other smaller groups and further dilute their platform. But in doing this, they'd become indistinguishable from what we already have.

This is why I take criticisms against the two party system to actually be a criticism against the choices provided by the parties. To that, I can only recommend one thing, become active in primaries and party politics. Help make the parties better and more representative of what you want. The way the current system works, only the most partisan voters decide to come and vote in their primary. Only a minority of voters chooses theses candidates, and if more people would participate, then we'd get better people at the top of our tickets.
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by Silver Girl » Tue Nov 01, 2016 10:28 am

oliver_denom wrote: This is why I take criticisms against the two party system to actually be a criticism against the choices provided by the parties. To that, I can only recommend one thing, become active in primaries and party politics. Help make the parties better and more representative of what you want. The way the current system works, only the most partisan voters decide to come and vote in their primary. Only a minority of voters chooses theses candidates, and if more people would participate, then we'd get better people at the top of our tickets.
I agree with you that my issues are with the candidates who are put on the ballot. I did not mean to suggest that adding more parties will fix the problem - from what we have experienced, the political parties become machines - the coalitions you refer to.

Remember back when candidates were not nominated until the conventions? Something has happened since that era to make conventions a rubber stamp process rather than one in which the representatives of various areas voted, and sometimes voted again (there were more than 100 ballots at one convention in the 1920s) and eventually had a nominee. I grew up watching the conventions on TV - it was interesting and exciting. Yes, deals were brokered, but what we have now are publicity and/or power machines that put people on the ballot without the average person really understanding what is going on, in some cases. We have at least one candidate whose momentum has been built on his strategy of generating anger.

For the record, I have indeed been active in politics - I've caucused, I've helped campaign, and I've been a delegate at the county level. That latter experience is where I realized that those who go on to the state and national levels are heavily bullied by the party machines, and I didn't want to deal with that. In my career I was a governmental liaison (job title) and in my private life, I was an activist (but at different times to avoid conflicts of interest).

The system is broken at many levels. This is sad.
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by LSOF » Tue Nov 01, 2016 11:10 am

Nobody else cares about McMullin --- he's not even on the ballot in my state.
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by Corsair » Tue Nov 01, 2016 11:57 am

I have a non-LDS friend who refers to him as "Egghead McUtah" This pretty quickly encapsulates how most people feel about his candidacy.

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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by oliver_denom » Tue Nov 01, 2016 12:52 pm

Corsair wrote:I have a non-LDS friend who refers to him as "Egghead McUtah" This pretty quickly encapsulates how most people feel about his candidacy.
He's got two very important qualifications:

1) He's Mormon
2) He isn't Trump or Clinton
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by Deepthinker » Tue Nov 01, 2016 4:28 pm

oliver_denom wrote:
Deepthinker wrote:
Silver Girl wrote:The two-party system needs to be nuked, big time. The electoral system needs to be overhauled. I am so fed up with this campaign season, and I am genuinely concerned about what could happen after the election - no matter what the results.
I feel the same way, which is why I've tried to avoid politics this year. I need the Colbert Report back, it was my therapy. Its just not the same with him doing the Late Show.
The primary difficulty with reforming the two party system is that the constitution places control of elections within each individual state. What this means is that without a constitutional amendment creating a central election authority, fifty states essentially means 50 different electoral systems. But the problem goes deeper than that. The only way to really foster a multi party system is to create a mechanism to allow proportional representation, meaning something that isn't winner take all. As the sociologist Maurice Duverger discovered, winner take all systems inherently lean toward two parties because they strongly encourage the creation of large coalitions. In other words, if I know that 30% of the vote will get me nothing, then I am incentivized to make a coalition with a smaller party in order to reach 50%. This is essentially what the Democratic and Republican parties are, coalitions of five different ideologies mashed into two big groups. Democrats are comprised of center-left and socialist parties, while the Republicans are split between center-right, theocratic, and libertarian parties. Given a proportional system of representation, these groups would likely split up and run on their own specific platforms. If the U.S. were a parliamentary type system, then if the Greens got 15% of the vote then they'd get 15% of the seats in parliament. If the Libertarians got 20%, then they'd get 20% of the seats in parliament. But what happens in parliamentary systems after an election is very similar to what happens in the U.S. before an election. The parties dicker with one another until they can form a majority.

So why is this a problem in the United States? To put it simply, we don't have a parliament. In addition to a constitutional amendment nationalizing the election system, we would also need an amendment that changes representation in congress and the presidency. House representatives are determined by state population with a minimum of one per state. While it's reasonable to proportionally select representatives in states like California who have 53 delegates, the same cannot be said for states that have far fewer. No matter how you slice it, Montana is still going to have just one seat. The problem also carries over to the Senate where each state is only allowed two Senators. Each Senate election is for one seat, and there's no way to divide that among multiple parties. In each of these cases, the natural pressures on the participants is to build coalitions not go off and form their own niche party. To get around this, a federal commission would need to separate representation from states and then divide them up based on national vote results. If we did this, then it may be that smaller parties could be strong enough to compete for the presidency separately, but it's unlikely. You'd more than likely still end up with two major coalition party candidates, one on the left and one on the right.

But don't lament. If you think about it this way, then would you rather vote for a party and then have that party make a decision on who they will align with, or would you rather make that decision yourself? There's a reason why American third parties are not major powers, it's because their policies and platforms only speak to a niche group of Americans. If they really represented a majority of interests, then they'd be one of the major party coalitions and not a perpetual also ran. And if they did every try to broaden their appeal, then they'd be forced to moderate their positions, partner with other smaller groups and further dilute their platform. But in doing this, they'd become indistinguishable from what we already have.

This is why I take criticisms against the two party system to actually be a criticism against the choices provided by the parties. To that, I can only recommend one thing, become active in primaries and party politics. Help make the parties better and more representative of what you want. The way the current system works, only the most partisan voters decide to come and vote in their primary. Only a minority of voters chooses theses candidates, and if more people would participate, then we'd get better people at the top of our tickets.
I don’t see that as the primary difficulty in reforming the two party system, that it is not nationally controlled. For me, it is an issue of how people are trained to think, to vote for their party no matter what, and that we have a party system that perpetuates this thinking. The two major candidates we have for president have changed that thinking somewhat during this election year (perhaps only temporarily), and I think it is why we are seeing more popularity in other candidates like Evan McMullin.

I’m actually very involved in studying the issues, the candidates, and in voting. I just get frustrated with the things the media is covering this year that is very focused on personal issues with the candidates and not the issues of the country. I get that those stories sell more, that there are some big issues personally with the candidates that should be addressed. It’s frustrating that this is taking the center stage. I also am frustrated with the party system that we’re currently stuck with.

The way the election system is set up for a two party system makes it difficult to reform. Any reform that is done typically benefits the two parties that are in power, since they get to decide what that reform entails. You mentioned that the current winner take all election system favors two parties. The system was created that way in 1824 with partisanship in mind in the first place. It wasn’t done for the voters.

It is as though the Republican and Democrat parties are institutions that must survive at all cost. The entrenchment of many partisans that think this way are the problem. I kinda see the party system as a bad form of tribalism.

Just look at the latest polls. Trump is only 6 points behind Clinton, which means people are still generally voting for their party, regardless of their nominee. I heard one lady on the news justify voting for Trump because she thinks he will somehow do something about abortion and implement some kind of abortion control law. She even admitted that she abhors what Trump was recorded saying about his sexual assault tactics on women.

I don’t think creating more parties is the solution either. Perhaps we should move away from even having political parties. Then the proportional representation you’re talking about would be irrelevant. Everyone is independent. Each state still has two Senators they elect, and they would have the same proportioned Congressional seats as they do now that they would elect. Senate and Congressional leaders would be voted upon by the Senate and Congress for their respective leader.

Partisan politicians tend to become servants of their party’s institution, not the people; many times they can’t speak their mind if it’s outside the party line without some kind of retribution from their party leaders. They also become servants of their big donors, and again not the people that elect them. These two loyalties stifle good ideas from coming forward. Of course, money and financing is a huge problem for any other party to make gains, which is why the two parties with the most power have the largest coffers. That’s definitely a big hurdle to change the system.

With only two dominant parties, all the one side has to convince the voters about is that they are not as bad as the other side. So, the focus is on the “bad” of the other side, rather than their own ideas for good. It’s easier to convince people to vote for them this way, since in some ways they are voting against the other party.

With our current party system I think there is little diversity of thought, not enough competition for coming up with good ideas, and all the information that makes up the truth about issues is silenced by the polarization of opinion of the two major parties. Real solutions to our problems are difficult to come up with and actually implement.

Politicians should be able to be independent and do their best to represent the people who elected them. They shouldn’t have to stick to the groupthink party line. This is needed in order to foster competition for good ideas. Each politician would need to innovate, not just rely on their “royal” last name, and be forced to gain a reputation on their own. The two parties that are currently in power don’t want this to happen, nor do the massive amounts of partisan voters they have want this.

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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by oliver_denom » Tue Nov 01, 2016 4:44 pm

Deepthinker wrote:I don’t think creating more parties is the solution either. Perhaps we should move away from even having political parties. Then the proportional representation you’re talking about would be irrelevant. Everyone is independent. Each state still has two Senators they elect, and they would have the same proportioned Congressional seats as they do now that they would elect. Senate and Congressional leaders would be voted upon by the Senate and Congress for their respective leader.
This would be the easier hurdle to jump over. States could require ballots at least to appear without a party identification. The problem beyond removing party identification would be that it's impossible to outlaw political parties without amending the first amendment which guarantees freedom of speech, assembly, and right of association. You'd need to make a special case amendment to exempt political parties, which could be difficult. If you outlawed political parties, I wonder which powers would step into the vacuum. My guess is that we would devolve into some sort of democratic corporatism.

I think it's easy to gloss over the divisions which existed before the 1824 election because the political culture was limited to a very homogeneous electorate, white male land owners, and still held onto the myth that political leaders were disinterested in power. As we see with Mormonism, just because politicians acted as if they didn't want power, doesn't mean that they didn't want power. 1824 was important because it was the first election where we saw nearly universal white male suffrage. Parties developed in part because the electorate was more diversified. I agree that our politics are messy and that they can be corrupt and greedy, but I would also argue that these instincts exist whether we have political parties or not. If they were to go away, then new organizations would step in that may or may not be an improvement. The best argument I can make for this is that the system has worked thus far in the fact that we're still here, governed under the same document as 1789.
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by 2bizE » Tue Nov 01, 2016 10:15 pm

Having Evan M. get any serious voting numbers means utah voters are easily swayed politically. A nobody even to Mormons will get the mormon vote. It is because Romney's stance on anyone but Trump and his personal vendetta against him. Mormons are lemurs who can't think for themselves in so many ways.
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by moksha » Wed Nov 02, 2016 1:00 am

Somethings are so obvious you miss them at first, but author Stephen King picked up on it:

https://twitter.com/stephenking/status/ ... 3368464388

Image
Imagine Trump without his Cthulhu disguise.
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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by Deepthinker » Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:11 am

oliver_denom wrote: This would be the easier hurdle to jump over. States could require ballots at least to appear without a party identification. The problem beyond removing party identification would be that it's impossible to outlaw political parties without amending the first amendment which guarantees freedom of speech, assembly, and right of association. You'd need to make a special case amendment to exempt political parties, which could be difficult. If you outlawed political parties, I wonder which powers would step into the vacuum. My guess is that we would devolve into some sort of democratic corporatism.
The hard part would be to change the thinking of many partisans who vote for their party no matter what. Also, it would mean that those that have so much power in the Republican and Democrat parties would need to give up that power. No State would be able to dissolve all the parties without this happening first. I don’t see anyone wanting to give up their power, nor do I see partisan voters giving up their party easily.

Yes, if it ever did happen, alliances would probably still form. I’m just frustrated with the party mentality and I don’t’ know how else we reduce it.
oliver_denom wrote: I think it's easy to gloss over the divisions which existed before the 1824 election because the political culture was limited to a very homogeneous electorate, white male land owners, and still held onto the myth that political leaders were disinterested in power. As we see with Mormonism, just because politicians acted as if they didn't want power, doesn't mean that they didn't want power. 1824 was important because it was the first election where we saw nearly universal white male suffrage. Parties developed in part because the electorate was more diversified. I agree that our politics are messy and that they can be corrupt and greedy, but I would also argue that these instincts exist whether we have political parties or not. If they were to go away, then new organizations would step in that may or may not be an improvement. The best argument I can make for this is that the system has worked thus far in the fact that we're still here, governed under the same document as 1789.
For sure there were divisions prior to 1824, but what happened in 1824 was the turning point that led to the two major parties we have today.
The problem is that it is working less and less. There is little compromise today. One party can shut down the government if they don’t get their way. Filibustering is becoming the common tactic.

These two parties have way too much power and control. They control the message. All the facts about an issue are not discussed or addressed. Many are misconstrued, they’re reinterpreted, and they’re made to fit the message of one side or the other. Not in all cases, but too often.

So many people just vote for their “team” no matter what. Look at the polls now, Trump is now within the margin of error to basically be considered tied with Clinton. They’ve “forgiven” Trump in favor of voting against the enemy party.

Yes, we’re still here, but that’s a low bar to meet that doesn’t really consider where we are as a country now and where we seem to be headed.
Just to be clear, I’m not promoting Evan McMullin. I think what has happened with him in Utah demonstrates the overall frustration with the party system, although now that is shifting back somewhat because of the “we can’t let the other side win” mentality.

OK, its election day now, so I’m headed to shrug my shoulders and cast my vote.

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Re: Politics Post - Evan McMullin

Post by SeeNoEvil » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:12 pm

Corsair wrote:I do not know the origin of this image, but I assure you that I did not photoshop it up. This appeared in a Facebook group I ran across and I am skeptical that McMullin would actually say this. But I am confident that some of this proponents would attribute this to him in a "knowing", LDS way.

Image
Oh Good Grief!!! IF ... I was still in UT working at where I was in a 99.9% all mormon environment I know I would be at my desk right right now biting my tongue and turning blue listening to crap like this. I am sooooooooo glad I don't live there anymore!
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