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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:07 pm 
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"I am both perfectly willing and able to decide the best course of action based on the wants and needs of everybody." "No, I want to argue pointlessly and accomplish nothing." "You're hired!"


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:38 pm 
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The Electoral College was a mistake. Underpopulated areas full of wing-nuts shouldn't get to decide policy for a whole country.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:46 pm 
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0z79 wrote:
The Electoral College was a mistake. Underpopulated areas full of wing-nuts shouldn't get to decide policy for a whole country.

And what happens when those "Underpopulated areas full of wing-nuts" secede or revolt because we let the city folk decide everything for them? They can live without the cities, but the cities can't live without them. Ultimately the system was designed with the knowledge that what the people in urban areas would want would be wildly different than what those in rural areas would want, and so to prevent a "tyranny of the majority" the power between the two demographics was equalized.

Not that it matters either way. The system of democracy itself is designed to select the worst possible candidates. Regular people are too easily manipulated, the surest way to earn their vote is to be as corrupt as possible, lie at every opportunity and use money from special interests to buy advertisements. At least with monarchies there was a random chance that a good ruler would be born, with democracy you are guaranteed a corrupt one will be selected every time.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:56 pm 
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:52 am 
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sotanaht wrote:
0z79 wrote:
The Electoral College was a mistake. Underpopulated areas full of wing-nuts shouldn't get to decide policy for a whole country.

And what happens when those "Underpopulated areas full of wing-nuts" secede or revolt because we let the city folk decide everything for them? They can live without the cities, but the cities can't live without them. Ultimately the system was designed with the knowledge that what the people in urban areas would want would be wildly different than what those in rural areas would want, and so to prevent a "tyranny of the majority" the power between the two demographics was equalized.

Not that it matters either way. The system of democracy itself is designed to select the worst possible candidates. Regular people are too easily manipulated, the surest way to earn their vote is to be as corrupt as possible, lie at every opportunity and use money from special interests to buy advertisements. At least with monarchies there was a random chance that a good ruler would be born, with democracy you are guaranteed a corrupt one will be selected every time.


Well... the ORIGINAL design was mostly based around the concepts that

A) Individual States were very powerful, and would each insist on their own method of picking a President, which they expected to be treated equally with every other state...

and

B) We needed some sane method of reliably producing a fair and obvious result out of that, while minimizing the potential for state-sponsored lies and cheats.

and

C) Anyone trying to run an actual, coordinated, popular-majority, nationwide, direct democracy presidential campaign was insane at best, and a filthy dangerous evil demagogue at worst.

And most of those concerns are still perfectly valid today.

You think it's bad NOW, when Texas or California use Block Voting to cast all their electoral votes for one candidate?

How much worse would it be if someone said "ok, we're going to popular voting now"....

And Texas or California replied by saying "Voting is still a State Matter, handled by the Secretary of State, in accordance with Local Laws.... We're just required to file a popular vote total now, instead of an Electoral Vote total. Therefore, it remains the official policy of our state to continue Block Voting. Whichever Candidate gets a plurality in our state election for president, the Secretary of State will then inform Congress that, for purposes of State Vote Totals, EVERY LEGAL RESIDENT in the state is "reported" as having "voted" for the winner. Regardless of who they actually voted for, or whether they even showed up at the polls at all.

And that's just ONE of the many, many shenanigans and unintended consequences which would immediately crop up if we tried to switch to direct popular voting.

There's a good reason why every other major western democracy either doesn't have a direct vote for Head of Government as such, or else has a voting system for picking one which is much, much worse than ours currently is.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 8:34 am 
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sotanaht wrote:
0z79 wrote:
The Electoral College was a mistake. Underpopulated areas full of wing-nuts shouldn't get to decide policy for a whole country.

And what happens when those "Underpopulated areas full of wing-nuts" secede or revolt because we let the city folk decide everything for them?


You let them and then take bets on how long it takes to see them crawling back.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:18 am 
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I mean, when you think about it, Peter is everybody's *Landlord*. These habitats wouldn't exist without him and him alone, and he has no reason to actually SELL and of the "land" he created.

Him letting people "help run the city" is a completely unnecessary bone that he throws the most vocal of his tenants to make them feel important.

The "Dominion" is less government than it is an enormous company town. One presumes that to live there you need to sign contracts and rental agreements.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:21 pm 
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Restless Soul wrote:
sotanaht wrote:
0z79 wrote:
The Electoral College was a mistake. Underpopulated areas full of wing-nuts shouldn't get to decide policy for a whole country.

And what happens when those "Underpopulated areas full of wing-nuts" secede or revolt because we let the city folk decide everything for them?


You let them and then take bets on how long it takes to see them crawling back.


You ignored his second line, but to answer your question, when the mantle of our planet can be measured in the single digits on the Kelvin scale.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3cQNkIrg-Tk


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:26 pm 
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Restless Soul wrote:
You let them and then take bets on how long it takes to see them crawling back.

Hope you can remain sated on your opinions alone, cause without their food...


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:16 pm 
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evileeyore wrote:
Restless Soul wrote:
You let them and then take bets on how long it takes to see them crawling back.

Hope you can remain sated on your opinions alone, cause without their food...


I can grow my own, thank you.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 9:30 pm 
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Restless Soul wrote:
I can grow my own, thank you.

Got enough for your neighbors?


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 9:58 pm 
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And do you have enough to get through to harvest time?

Most major cities have three to five days of food . . . then it's Solyent Green and long pig.

--FreeFlier


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 3:26 am 
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That's all true, but to be fair the rural people who would be seceding are not the ones who feed the cities. The ones who feed the cities are the massive mega farms run by cold heartless corporations who are just fine with the way things are run already since it makes them so much profit.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 4:35 am 
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"It's all well and good to let the perfect man run the government, but what happens when the perfect man gets a stomachache?"

That's the normal point brought up here.

Sadly, when the perfect man is literally running the life support systems and fighting to keep you all alive from intergalactic intangible entities, what happens is probably "everyone dies horribly".

Given Petey HAS shown he intends to do the right thing for everyone, and has shown to be reasonable when there's a better way of doing things, AND tries to ask permission first if doing so would provide a voluntary denial in time, signing up to help really isn't a bad deal.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 5:20 am 
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evileeyore wrote:
Restless Soul wrote:
I can grow my own, thank you.

Got enough for your neighbors?


If all else fails, there's trade negotiations. Or I get murdered, which is also perfectly fine, least saves me the headache of listening to their screeching and incredibly rude offspring. Or we could skip right to the part where I get called some sort of a "liberal bleeding heart city snowflake" or something, and be done with it, because it has nothing to do with the issue at hand.

Actually it's weird, in this context, Petey would be "that guy in the city deciding everything for the country boys, so what when they get fed up or secede"? My answer would likely be "he gets saved by his powers of Plot Device", but who knows.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 6:04 am 
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Restless Soul wrote:
Or we could skip right to the part where I get called some sort of a "liberal bleeding heart city snowflake" or something...

No, no. You accept that murder is on the table, clearly you aren't a snowflake.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:40 am 
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Restless Soul wrote:
evileeyore wrote:
Restless Soul wrote:
I can grow my own, thank you.

Got enough for your neighbors?


If all else fails, there's trade negotiations. Or I get murdered, which is also perfectly fine, least saves me the headache of listening to their screeching and incredibly rude offspring. Or we could skip right to the part where I get called some sort of a "liberal bleeding heart city snowflake" or something, and be done with it, because it has nothing to do with the issue at hand.

Actually it's weird, in this context, Petey would be "that guy in the city deciding everything for the country boys, so what when they get fed up or secede"? My answer would likely be "he gets saved by his powers of Plot Device", but who knows.

In this context, Petey would be clearly in the "not a democracy" category. There's no room for a Tyranny of the Majority when the government is fully autocratic. He also personally operates all of the essential systems, from maintenance to food production, so if anyone were to try to "secede" the most valuable thing they could take with them would be a scientific mind.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 1:51 pm 
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Arcanestomper wrote:
That's all true, but to be fair the rural people who would be seceding are not the ones who feed the cities. The ones who feed the cities are the massive mega farms run by cold heartless corporations who are just fine with the way things are run already since it makes them so much profit.


The US department of agriculture reports that 90% of US agricultural production is by family farms.

The remaining 10% is not what feeds our cities (it is what produces much of the seed/feedstock used by the family farms, but that's a problem that can be dealt with much more easily than lack of farms).

Edited to add: You are not Monsanto's customer, nor is the grocery chain down the street from you, the family farms are Monsanto's customers. As a cold and heartless corporation, in the event of a rift between people who are their workers and their customers, and people they do not do business with at all, guess which way they'll go.

https://www.ers.usda.gov/publications/p ... ubid=86197

Family farms classified as SMALL are over half of production, and I've known a number of large farm owners, they still work the farm.

You will starve if you depend on the corporate owned farms, especially if their workers secede without them.

Your ignorance of where your food comes from does not make your claim that you can produce your own, or your belief that the agricultural states need the urban ones as much as the reverse case particularly credible.


Last edited by Doug Lampert on Wed Apr 17, 2019 2:17 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 1:51 pm 
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If anybody tried to secede, he'd probably just dump them on some inhabited planet or station where they could find their own way somewhere. Like I said, he *built* everything in his territory, he's under no obligation to let people stay on them. He does so because he doesn't WANT to keep everybody out.

Exiling the really annoying ones is a better alternative.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 2:20 pm 
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Doug Lampert wrote:
Arcanestomper wrote:
That's all true, but to be fair the rural people who would be seceding are not the ones who feed the cities. The ones who feed the cities are the massive mega farms run by cold heartless corporations who are just fine with the way things are run already since it makes them so much profit.


The US department of agriculture reports that 90% of US agricultural production is by family farms.

The remaining 10% is not what feeds our cities (it is what produces much of the feedstock used by the family farms, but that's a problem that can be dealt with much more easily than lack of farms).

https://www.ers.usda.gov/publications/p ... ubid=86197

Family farms classified as SMALL are over half of production, and I've known a number of large farm owners, they still work the farm.

You will starve if you depend on the corporate owned farms, especially if their workers secede without them.

Your ignorance of where your food comes from does not make your claim that you can produce your own, or your belief that the agricultural states need the urban ones as much as the reverse case particularly credible.

I think you misread the pie charts. Farms classified as "small" are about 22.6% of production by value. "Large Scale" family farms make up 45.2% by value. However, small scale farms take up 50.6% of the land operated, which means they are extremely inefficient, with Large-scale family farms producing about 5.85 times as much value per acre of land.

Of course, I have absolutely no idea how a "large scale family farm" is even a thing.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 2:34 pm 
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Doug Lampert wrote:
Your ignorance of where your food comes from does not make your claim that you can produce your own, or your belief that the agricultural states need the urban ones as much as the reverse case particularly credible.


If you ask an average urban/suburban resident where food comes from, there is a 50% chance the answer will be "the grocery store."

People also vastly underestimate what it takes to feed yourself. My family has a vegetable garden, a small apple orchard, a pair of lemon trees, chickens, ducks, cows, and pigs (we also have quite a few horses, but my aunt would kill me if I ate one of them). All of that merely supplements what we get from the local Walmart and I'm not sure we could reliably feed just 10 people solely with what we produce. I have a hard time believing a rooftop garden on an apartment complex or a half-acre suburban lawn will meet the needs of a family of four.

sotanaht wrote:
Of course, I have absolutely no idea how a "large scale family farm" is even a thing.


Large farms can be independently owned and operated, which would make them large family-owned farms.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 9:24 pm 
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Aratan wrote:
. . .
sotanaht wrote:
Of course, I have absolutely no idea how a "large scale family farm" is even a thing.
Large farms can be independently owned and operated, which would make them large family-owned farms.

I used to know a man who owned nearly two and a half sections and leased most of two more for a total of a bit more than four sections . . .

For those that don't know, a section is one square mile or 640 acres. In metric measure, that's approximately 258.9988110336 hectares.

Per section.

So Jack owned and operated about 1115 hectares as a family operation.


Oh, and food-processing plants such as canneries and freezer plants are almost always located near the place where the food is grown . . . the economic pressures ensure that. And the storage warehouse will be right next door, ideally on the same parcel . . . economic pressure again. (City land is far to costly for warehouses unless they have to be there . . . and the ones that do have to be there are made as small as possible, with great measures taken to deliver just-in-time.)

The people that work in the processing plant will be locals, however.

--FreeFlier


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 9:59 pm 
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My mother's side of the family used to all be farmers. I don't have the exact numbers, but my great uncle owns and still operates a huge wheat farm that goes for literally farther than you can see. Along with a dairy farm as a side operation. So yes, family farms are still a thing and can be quite large.

But my great uncle is the only farmer left and he's getting old. People are getting bought out by companies. My understanding, and I admit I have not researched this in depth, is that the big companies operate on a contract basis. They lease the seed and equipment to the small farms and then pay them some value for their crop at the end of the harvest. And the contracts are not in favor of the family farmers. So technically it's family farms growing the food, but they aren't the ones controlling production.

Anyway my point was that your individual farmer is not where the individual city dweller gets their food. There is a whole long supply chain through a variety of corporations that keeps things running. If the agricultural areas of the nation secede, then the corporations will continue to operate. And they will sell their goods where it is most profitable. Which is probably not grocery stores, but industrial applications or other countries, but grocery stores are on the balance sheet somewhere. Except now all their workers will be in much smaller less powerful countries that probably can't give them as much regulatory protection against unfair corporate contracts.

And they need those contracts because farmers produce far far more food than they need, but they don't produce the manufactured goods they need to keep their farms going. And in most cases don't produce the variety of foods either. So except for some tiny minority of survivalists who take self sufficiency to an extreme the farmers are dependent on trade too. Shoot when I was growing up we lived out in the middle of the boonies surrounded by cow and chicken farms and everyone still went to the grocery store.

Saying the farms can survive without the cities is just as narrow a view as saying the opposite. Sure farms grow their own food. But there's a reason cities exist, and it's not because they are parasites on the backs of the farmers. Cities are where things are manufactured. If suddenly trade gets cut off, then things will just get chaotic. I can't predict what would happen. The farmers would likely have a higher percentage of their population survive, but they would still suffer.

Which is beside the point, because if the rural areas do secede then the urban regions aren't going to just take that lying down and let the economic fallout hit by itself. There would be another civil war. And frankly the complexities of who would be seceding and who ends up with what parts of the army. And who gets the WMD stockpiles. And who can get international aid, or if the global community has been sent into a death spiral by the collapse of the United States, and many many other things are far beyond the scope of this discussion.

The end result is probably most of the cities being destroyed by rioting. The best farmland being bombed out wastelands, this is a war over agriculture after all so farms are targets, and millions dead on all sides. And that's being optimistic about no WMDs being deployed.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:25 pm 
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While many city dwellers are stupid enough to bomb the thing they're fighting for, it's unlikely to actually work . . . We couldn't make it work in WWII Germany.

As far as cities being where thing are manufactured . . . that is no longer true. Between the NIMBYs driving out manufacturing and the high costs of operating in cities, many manufacturing plants are now in rural or semi-rural locations.

No, the rural areas cannot do completely without cities, but they can hold out a lot longer than the cities can. Cities would have severe riots in days.

And the corporations might want to keep up business as usual, but it's unlikely they could. They would be unable to harvest, process or ship the food without a lot of rural people . . . who already hate the corporations.

Nobody would really win, but some would lose worse than others.

--FreeFlier


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:39 pm 
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I can't find statistics on manufacturing jobs broken down any further than the state level. Do you know where I can find data on rural manufacturing.

FreeFlier wrote:
Nobody would really win, but some would lose worse than others.


That's what I'm saying. Though frankly I feel this whole discussion is a little vague. It doesn't lay out any sort of basis for division other than rural and urban with no clarification for what that means. Where do small towns fall into this? Especially ones that aren't farming focused. Plus there seems to be an assumption that all rural dwellers will abandon the cities rather than things splitting up by region, which I think is far more likely.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2019 8:28 am 
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Where I am, the line seems to be around 50-60,000 people . . . smaller than that and they're rural, bigger than that and they're urban. (Though the line is fuzzy.)

The cities over that line run the rest of the state and the rest of the state hates them.


And people like that idiot Democrat that seems to think that the appropriate response is to nuke the rural areas into submission are not helping.

--FreeFlier


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