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12-09-2011, 03:26 PM   #1
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"Don't Occupy Me Bro," the DNC

I wonder if Tampa will take steps to block Occupy or Tea Party rallies during the Republican Convention

QuoteQuote:
On Oct. 27, the Charlotte city manager released a draft ordinance that makes camping on public property a "public nuisance" and would prohibit "noxious substances," padlocks and other camping equipment that city officials fear could impede traffic and create public safety issues.
Democratic National Convention Host Charlotte Proposes Law Aimed At Banning Occupy Encampments

I feel like this is related...
QuoteQuote:
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama has met with a small number of donors at a Washington fundraiser to benefit his re-election bid.

Democratic Party officials say about 20 people attended the fundraiser at The Jefferson hotel in downtown Washington. Tickets cost $35,800 a person, with the money going to the Obama Victory Fund, a joint fundraising account by the Democratic Party and Obama’s re-election campaign.
Obama Raises Money For Re-election Bid - From the Wires - Salon.com

Dinner with Obama costs about the same as the median personal income but he is supposed to represent the 99%?

12-09-2011, 03:33 PM   #2
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I don't think the Dems are eager for a rerun of '68 Chicago
12-09-2011, 04:02 PM   #3
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the news story aside, I just want to say that is a great thread title. I got a good chuckle from it.
12-09-2011, 07:43 PM   #4
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Didn't we already go through this with NYC and the "Free Speech Zones" in 2004 and Minneapolis in 2008?

12-09-2011, 11:00 PM   #5
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The only way I'd ever vote for Barack Obama is if he took second chair and ran as potential vice president to Hillary Clinton. I'd take him to get her in the first chair but otherwise he's got about as much chance of being elected rat catcher by me as he does being elected to his current office again. Didn't vote for him the first time, and since certainly he hasn't given me any reason to revise my earlier impression of him. Neither party has me particularly enthusiastic about the next election. The choices are looking grim at best.
12-11-2011, 08:15 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by mikemike Quote
Dinner with Obama costs about the same as the median personal income but he is supposed to represent the 99%?
Who said the individuals attending the dinner were not 99%'ers? Doesn't say anywhere in the story that the attendees were 1%'ers
12-12-2011, 07:47 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by cardinal43 Quote
Who said the individuals attending the dinner were not 99%'ers? Doesn't say anywhere in the story that the attendees were 1%'ers
It doesn't have to say, even someone on the cusp of the 1% would have to spend 1/10 of their annual gross income (before taxes) to have an audience with the president. Events like this where the politician has a small audience that he can lay out his real plans and tell these rich people not to worry about the populist rhetoric he will be spewing for the next year are exactly what the OWS folks were rallying against under the "money in politics" banner.
12-12-2011, 08:04 AM   #8
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This is standard fare for both parties. Ten years ago, I remember paying $1,000 to have drinks, and appetizers with the governor. The rules need to be changed.

By the way, no you would not have to be a 1%er to attend. You could represent a nonprofit or an informal group who got together and bundled the admission.

12-16-2011, 08:56 AM   #9
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You know of course that the American (and Canadian ) governments are both designed so that the 99% have no say in policy, and that the person elected is usually the one who convinces the wealthy, and the big corporations that they can keep the people from revolting as they continue to take higher and higher percentages of the American GNP. Canada tried a system where parties actually received money for their percentage of the popular vote. That way party of the people could finanace a political campaign based on their percentage of popular support. The first thing the Conservatives did when they got into power was cancel it. Simple fact, you can't win an election without money. The only way to get money is to suck up to people who have it. So why would you be surprised Obama has to suck up to the rich? He definitely won't get re-electd sucking up to the middle class or poor. They are totally swayed by all those attack ads and blah blah blah, the epitome of the American system. Democracy in America is just another ruse to fool the poor into thinking they have a say while the rich do what they've always done. Blaming this on Obama is insanity. The whole system sucks.
12-16-2011, 09:04 AM   #10
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yeah Norm
The conservatives killed the popular vote money to ensure their position. the libs are broke and need the dough, the NDP finally got enough seats to get some real dough. the conservatives are about as anti democracy as any gov't out there. Reform along the lines of seats based on % of pop vote is the best solution but it will never happen. Why would a gov't guarantee they will never have a majority again and therefore have to work with others and perhaps pay attention to the electorate
12-16-2011, 09:29 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
yeah Norm
The conservatives killed the popular vote money to ensure their position. the libs are broke and need the dough, the NDP finally got enough seats to get some real dough. the conservatives are about as anti democracy as any gov't out there. Reform along the lines of seats based on % of pop vote is the best solution but it will never happen. Why would a gov't guarantee they will never have a majority again and therefore have to work with others and perhaps pay attention to the electorate
The US (and I'm sure this applies to Canada to some degree) system is designed to balance the needs and concerns of urban and rural constituencies. Any nationwide system which is based purely on popular vote severely disenfranchises rural people and even people who live in smaller urban areas because the strategy for winning becomes based on campaigning city-by-city in the biggest cities (NYC, LA, Chicago, Dallas, Philly, Houston, Washington, Atlanta) and virtually ignoring smaller cities or rural areas. There are weaknesses to the current system where you end up with battleground states getting the focus of attention, but at least there you usually have states that have a decent mix of urban/rural emerge as the battleground states.

Same thing with the way we do these presidential primaries state-by-state with states like Iowa and New Hampshire being first. Some people question why they get to go first since they don't represent the country well, but they don't have much voice on the national stage any other time and the fact that they are relatively small media markets make it viable for a candidate that has limited fund raising ability to compete and gain some momentum.
12-16-2011, 09:52 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by mikemike Quote
The US (and I'm sure this applies to Canada to some degree) system is designed to balance the needs and concerns of urban and rural constituencies. Any nationwide system which is based purely on popular vote severely disenfranchises rural people and even people who live in smaller urban areas because the strategy for winning becomes based on campaigning city-by-city in the biggest cities (NYC, LA, Chicago, Dallas, Philly, Houston, Washington, Atlanta) and virtually ignoring smaller cities or rural areas. There are weaknesses to the current system where you end up with battleground states getting the focus of attention, but at least there you usually have states that have a decent mix of urban/rural emerge as the battleground states.

Same thing with the way we do these presidential primaries state-by-state with states like Iowa and New Hampshire being first. Some people question why they get to go first since they don't represent the country well, but they don't have much voice on the national stage any other time and the fact that they are relatively small media markets make it viable for a candidate that has limited fund raising ability to compete and gain some momentum.
Our system is more complex than that as we have to appease Quebec, who wield disproportionate power. A proportional vote better represents the will of the people. the way the seats in the house split now you can have a majority gov't that represents well less than the majority of voters. Proportion Representation stops that. It also means the current gov't would lose seats and power so it won't happen
We have a 3 (+) party system and the Pm is just the head of his party, not elected separately, the upper house is not elected at all and gov't tend to stack it with their own when they are in power. The current Gov't fought elections on reforming that but once they stacked a majority in the Senate they stopped talking about reform
Last election the conservative party took 39.62% of the popular vote but won 53.9% of the seats. Effectively 60% of us did not vote for this government and it's policies, but they have the power now to implement whatever they wish for the next 4 years
The traditional Opposition(the Liberals) was wiped out getting 11.09% of the seats but they had 18.91% of the vote. The huge surprise was the Labour (NDP) Party took 30.63% of the popular vote and got 33% of the seats. usually they have 18% of the vote and 10% or less of the seats. The GReen part won their first seat ever (.1% of the seats) and had 3.91% of the vote
The Bloq Quebecois (essentially a separatist Federal party there's an oxymoron for you) were destroyed and only got 4 seats 1.3% of the total on 6.91% of the vote
the lack of representation for your vote is the big flaw with the current setup. Typically the only reform comes in redrawing the ridings to be more favorable for the ruling party in the next election
12-16-2011, 09:54 AM   #13
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I watched something the other night on TV (I forget the program & who was talking) that pointed out that actually, it's not even the 1% that makes up most of the campaign money... it is more like a few hundred families. And businesses of course.

Politicians spend a heck of a lot of their time raising money. In a sense that's their main purpose: pile up enough cash to deter rivals, to survive a tough election, to have job security. The legistlating and governing is almost a side issue (at least for some, especially in Congress)...

The old idea that a charity doesn't really want to fix the problem, as then their purpose (and money) would dry up applies to politicians also. The more controversy, the more heated the arguments, the more likely they are to tap big money from interested parties. In this sense, the system is actually stacked up against resolving many issues - the longer they remain alive, the longer the money pipeline is open.

I might even suggest that certain issues, especially cultural ones, until lately, have been mainly polarizing and money grubbing issues for the parties. When a bunch of Republican governors actually started to implement these there was a huge backlash. They'd have been better off - politically speaking - NOT implementing these, and then running on the idea that NOW they could, if only they had your money and vote.

Spending one's 'political capital' in this sense entails actually enacting some platform item. Historically, there is a heavy political price to doing so, but thankfully every now and then someone manages to do so.
12-16-2011, 02:07 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
Last election the conservative party took 39.62% of the popular vote but won 53.9% of the seats. Effectively 60% of us did not vote for this government and it's policies, but they have the power now to implement whatever they wish for the next 4 years
The same thing could happen in the US... The democratic party has a very urban platform and base so they will often have the situation where their popular vote outstrips their representation because in certain ways, 1 vote from Wyoming (the least populous state) gets you 4 times the representation in Washington DC as 1 vote from California (the most populous state). You even see this split at the state level where you have an urban population like NYC sometimes at odds with a rural population like Upstate New York. To a certain degree once a city is large enough they are able to get de facto home rule from the rest of the state so that helps maintain a balance of power too.
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