US General Elections 2020

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Mon Jul 01, 2024 11:41 am

{{ I think unfortunately US democracy is fundamentally flawed, I am not sure I'd even go so far as to call it a true democracy. Central to all democracies is the idea that Justice is blind, that's why the statue of Justice is blindfolded. The US allows politicians to choose judges that are ideologically and politically aligned with them - we have seen the result of this in the judgements passed down by the largely Trump influenced Supreme Court- the judges are deciding politics and law, and the judges are put in place to do so by politicians. It cannot therefore be a functioning democracy, its justice is biased to the appointee. There is no fairness, no impartiality, just partisanship in the law. Courts decide the law, not elected representatives of the people who can simply be overruled by the unelected courts.
We also know how Trump views such appointments, as favours granted by Trump that he expects total loyalty as payback for, and if it's not given he will set his cult of followers and his right wing press lackeys to destroy them.
Given this I don't believe the checks and balances put on a President will apply to Trump, and if the Court does decide a President is immune for life from prosecution for crimes committed in office, then it's an open field for Trump to do what he wants in his second term.

As for Ukraine, they are screwed, Trump is a Putin appeaser. Now whilst I've said for a long time (oddly for the only time in my life in agreement with Nigel Farage) that we helped cause the situation in Ukraine, in that we gave Putin all the excuses he needed to sell a particular narrative about Ukraine and NATO expansion to his people to justify an illegal invasion and war. Putin fundamentally believes Gorbachev betrayed Russia when he gave independence to former Soviet States, and Putin wants them back. If he is not stopped in Ukraine, he will not stop there. And if Trump doesn't back Ukraine it will only reinforce the view of Russia (and China) that the West doesn't actually have the stomach or guts to defend what they believe in but would rather appease and cosy up to dictators than confront them.
And as for Palestine - we saw with his previous actions in deciding to recognise Jerusalem as the Israeli capital alone, breaking the fundamental idea behind a two state solution. He will sell Palestinians out, Israel will have free reign to continue and no doubt  complete their genocide of Palestine and Palestine as an entity will no longer physically exist, it will be all occupied by Jewish settlements, and those Palestinians not dead yet will be driven from their land to exile.
This of course will almost certainly cause Hamas, Hezbollah, the Houthis, probably Lebanon, Iran, and possibly even Egypt and Saudi (who while their governments would maybe go along with the US, their people are another matter) to respond. America will back Israel of course in such a conforntaion, and if America is itself attacked all of NATO gets dragged in, just we did in Afghanistan and the illegal war in Iraq. To our, and their detriment.

What awaits is potential global disaster. Or peace, as in no war for the US or NATO, but free reign to dictators and tyrants to murder and invade as they please.

As for American democracy, I think it died long ago, it's just taken a while to get to its final death throes, and a 2nd Trump term might be the nail in its coffin.

But it's not just America, France is on the verge of putting a party into power that was formed by a Nazi and a French Nazi appeaser and sympathiser. France is always volatile, its people always ready to take to the streets in protest and confrontation, and if France does elect the far right to government the sporadic rioting we have seen already in the country will only deepen and worsen.

As to trans rights- they were thrown under a bus long ago to feed the machine of the rights Culture War, with clowns like Rowling constantly misrepresenting the law and feeding the narrative that trans is inherently a dangerous thing to society in and of itself.
I think gay rights are harder o get rid of as its been embedded for a long time now, but give them time, wait for the arguments about God, family and morality (America is fundamentally still a bunch of Puritans and is in my view a religious state, like many Muslim countries where technically there is freedom of religion, but in practise there is only 1 state religion promoted by the state (can anyone imagine America electing anyone President who refused to say 'God Bless America' because they dont believe in a God? I can't). }}

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Post by halfwise Mon Jul 01, 2024 3:29 pm

"One thing I am curious about, given the low quality and huge turnover of Trump's first presidential cabinet/administration I wonder what kinds of people he can persuade to serve with him the second time round..."

It's quite easy, he'll select based on loyalty alone rather then expertise. For Trump anyone who has enough background to tell him he's wrong about something is a mistake.

"As for American democracy, I think it died long ago, it's just taken a while to get to its final death throes, and a 2nd Trump term might be the nail in its coffin."

You're judging based on recent history. During the gilded age US politics (especially on the local level) was incredibly corrupt. The country dug it's way out that hole and probably will again, but it takes a generation or more.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Mon Jul 01, 2024 3:36 pm

{{ Given the Supreme Court just judged, along entirely political lines, that Trump is partially immune to any prosecutions for actions taken in office- obviously need to see the details- but on the surface that for me is goodnight America.


edit add- Writing the court's opinion, Chief Justice John Roberts says: "The nature of Presidential power entitles a former President to absolute immunity from criminal prosecution for official acts taken as president."

The real devil will be in what they say constitutes an 'official act' versus an 'unofficial one' }}

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Post by malickfan Mon Jul 01, 2024 4:29 pm

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/ng-interactive/2024/jul/01/supreme-court-decision-trump-immunity-ruling

So erm...can anyone clarify what exactly is an 'official act'...if say Trump was re-elected and went full dictator ordering arrests of political rivals would he now be immune from prosecution?


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Post by halfwise Mon Jul 01, 2024 4:34 pm

It's a truly sticky issue. One one side there's a very real danger of presidents being prosecuted once out of office for purely political reasons, on the other side there's the danger of presidents being able to do whatever the hell they want. I think the second one is more dangerous.

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Post by halfwise Mon Jul 01, 2024 4:41 pm

The court analyzed four categories of conduct contained in Trump's indictment: his discussions with Justice Department officials following the 2020 election, his alleged pressure on then-Vice President Mike Pence to block certification of Biden's election win, his alleged role in assembling fake pro-Trump electors and his conduct related to the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.

The court found Trump was absolutely immune for conversations with Justice Department officials but returned the case to lower courts to determine whether Trump has immunity for the other three categories.

It's interesting they are letting the lower courts decide on his immunity for the more consequential actions.

His lawyer argued that a president is immune unless impeached and then found guilty by congress. I haven't seen reference to this yet in the decision. But as we've seen recently the impeachment process is strongly political, so it's a very weak plank if that becomes standard.

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Post by malickfan Mon Jul 01, 2024 4:47 pm

I know very little about American culture or how your political system works, but I can't help but wonder if the American hard right realise how much Trump and some of their policies have damaged the USA's image on the international stage...or do they simply not care?

If Trump gets into power and inacts everything they want him to do, what is the end goal after his 4 years are up? Burning American diplomacy and the status quo to the ground for what? So they can make more money and cling onto power longer? What are they afraid of? The United States demographics are changing whether they like it or not, white conservative christians will become a minority eventually..surely comprimising and trying to appeal to other groups is a better idea than screaming into the void and clinging onto the past?

Do they really believe America's international partners will stand by and view a descent into isolation/fascism with neutral eyes? Do they actually care at all about the effect it could have on international trade/diplomacy? If say Trump does pull out of Nato and reaches out to Putin how is he expecting Poland etc to react?

More immediately, how are they planning to reach out to the hundreds of millions of Americans who don't vote Republican or consider themselves christian?

Gay/trans rights, access to medically necessary abortion, green energy, seperation of religion and politics, commitement to Nato and international alliances, minimum wage raising in line with inflation, paid maternity leave etc are all legal or at least widely supported/talked about policies across much of Europe, but are things I could see Trump's next administration moving against if he is re-elected.

I dunno I'm kinda rambling along here, but interesting and scary times even as a outsider looking in.


Last edited by malickfan on Mon Jul 01, 2024 4:50 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Mon Jul 01, 2024 4:48 pm

{{ According to the BBC Halfy they threw that last argument out-}}

"Transforming the political process of impeachment into a necessary step in the enforcement of criminal law finds little support in the text of the Constitution or the structure of the nation’s government," they wrote.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Mon Jul 01, 2024 4:52 pm

{{ Malick the potential fallout from a second Trump term is truly terrifying in its potential given the state of play in the world right now. And I dont think Americans in general give a seconds thought to the rest of the world, most of the time I suspect Americans dont think the rest of the world exists. }}

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Post by malickfan Mon Jul 01, 2024 5:02 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{ Malick the potential fallout from a second Trump term is truly terrifying in its potential given the state of play in the world right now. And I dont think Americans in general give a seconds thought to the rest of the world, most of the time I suspect Americans dont think the rest of the world exists. }}

Is it bad for me to say that although I utterly despise Trump and everything he stands for with every fibre of my being...there's a part of me that almost wants to see him win just to see to how bad the fallout truly is (assuming WW3 dosen't break out that is), perhaps a better America can rise from the ashes.

Honestly a little worried a second civil war could break out in the near future.

Its ironic, Trump is all about projecting a tough guy image of 'America First' and 'MAGA' but isolating America on the world stage will do anything but improve their economy or international standing, he's not only a narsistic dangerous racist with a messiah complex...he's an utter moron and clueless on internation/political relations. I can only hope whoever forms his second cabinet holds some sense and can hold his worst impulses in check (this the man who suggested nuking hurricanes and bleaching your insides as a cure for Covid).

American politics seems far more interesting than ours in the UK, and by interesting I also mean terrifying...I sometimes miss being happily ignorant of World events and politics.

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Post by halfwise Mon Jul 01, 2024 5:15 pm

The vast majority of those who support Trump honestly think that other countries respect America more with him in charge. They think this because they like his tough guy image and feel that's more important than mental and moral idiocy (which somehow they don't detect in him). They see no point in reaching out to gays or in fact liberals of any kind which they don't consider to be "real americans".

I'm glad the Supreme Court rejected the impeachment requirement. That would be hopeless.


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Post by malickfan Tue Jul 02, 2024 3:56 pm

https://www.salon.com/2024/07/02/day-two-of-donald-dictatorship/

Bit of a nightmare scenario...but parts honestly don't seem too far fetched to me, America could be walking into a christo-facist hellscape.

Not sure what the MAGA's end game is, assuming Trump and co seize power and install themselves as Dictators, do they expect the Military to along will the idea of occupying American cities, imprisoning former presidents, deporting millions and possibly invading Mexico? Are they expecting the millions of armed Liberal Americans, US allies to sit idly by whilst the country tears itself apart and possibly cancels the 2028 election? Massive trade wars and tariffs and curtailing immigration will tank the economy and isolate America completely on the world stage, do they expect the tens of millions young Liberal Americans to sit by and do nothing whilst their LGBT friends are imprisonsed and demonised? And do they not realise that Trump will eventually target them too?

It seems to me they think once Trump is in power and intalls himself as Emperor the rest of the country and world will meekly stand by and go along with it. Do they assume the United States will continue to be a White conservative christian state forever more as the rest of the western world trends ever more atheist?

Kinda rambling here but I'm more than a little terrfied for America.

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Post by halfwise Tue Jul 02, 2024 5:07 pm

I think that article is way overdone. Trump's main accomplishments are in stopping doing things, and in talk that erodes people's trust in the very institutions that keep the country running. Other than talk he's not very active. I'm mainly worried about his replacing a civil service which has long had non partisanship drilled into them with those that are blindly loyal to him instead.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Tue Jul 02, 2024 5:38 pm

{{Worry is, even if Trump doesn't turn dictator, someone eventually will as the law lets them do it.

Take McDonald's for example, one of America's biggest companies. A US Macdonald's worker gets zero paid holidays. A UK McDonald's worker, doing exactly the same job, gets 28 days paid holiday per year. So why does the country where McDonald's is based treat its workers worse? Because they can. There is no US law mandating paid leave for workers, companies don't have to do it, so they take advantage of the lack of law and treat their workers badly and unfairly as a result.

It's a classic example of why you need regulations. Without them, someone, somewhere will eventually take advantage of the fact they can treat people this way as the law won't stop them.
This will be true of the Supreme Court ruling, at some point, sometime, someone will take advantage. It always happens. Especially in America, where being the top, being the 'best, being the wealthiest, being the most powerful, being utterly self-serving is all that counts, and community, self-sacrifice for wider society, public service and duty are not all valued or seen as good.}}

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Post by malickfan Thu Jul 04, 2024 5:19 pm

Sounds like Biden is determined to stay in the race.

Neutral

Something I've been wondering about, assuming Trump gets elected...as a convicted Felon wouldn't alot of countries automatically bar him from entry?

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Post by malickfan Sun Jul 14, 2024 3:01 am

Apparent Assasination attempt on Trump:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/cd1d31jeyzlo

If it wasn't already likely I'd say this has now locked in the election for Trump.

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Post by halfwise Sun Jul 14, 2024 1:31 pm

Things are already locked in for perhaps 90% of voters. The other 10% are basing their decisions on policy and competence, to which an assassination attempt has no relevance.

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Post by malickfan Mon Jul 15, 2024 3:53 pm

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/cz5rpdrxevro

A Florida judge has just dismissed the Justice Department's classified documents case against Donald Trump in a huge victory for the former president just days after a gunman attempted to assassinate him.

Judge Aileen Cannon has granted Trump's motion to dismiss the federal case on the basis that the Justice Department's appointment of Special Prosecutor Jack Smith violates the Appointments Clause of the US Constitution.

Trump pleaded not guilty to several charges in the case over his handling of classified documents, including wilful retention of national defence information.

Dozens of classified files were found in Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, including in a shower and storage room, after Trump left the White House in 2021.

"The Court is convinced that Special Counsel’s Smith’s prosecution of this action breaches two structural cornerstones of our constitutional scheme—the role of Congress in the appointment of constitutional officers, and the role of Congress in authorizing expenditures by law,” Cannon concluded in her 93-page order.

The former president faced 40 felony counts over his alleged mishandling of classified documents.

Judge Cannon said in her ruling that this decisions applies to this case and not a second one overseen by Mr Smith over alleged efforts to overturn the 2020 election.

The Trump-appointed Florida judge had recently indefinitely postponed the federal classified documents trial, saying there were significant questions over trial evidence.

Mr Smith will now be able to appeal Monday's ruling and ask for a new judge to be assigned to the case.

He has yet to publicly commented on Judge Cannon's ruling.

Can someone explain to me how the fuck and why the fuck Trump is able to get away with this? He was caught red handed with dozens of fucking secret documents stashed in his bathroom, he is clearly and undeniably guilty as shit and yet looks able to get away with it yet again.

America calls itself the greatest country in the world and a shining beacon of democracy but as an outsider looking in, based on recent evidence I can't agree in the slightest, what happened to 'No one is above the law?'.

Even if the appeals are sucessful and a new judge appointed it will take months for this case to go through the courts, Trump looks likely to win the election and I'm assuming he'll then try and pardon himself of any crimes (if that even legal/possible under the constitution?).


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I think what comes out of a pig's rear end is more akin to what Peejers has given us-Azriel 20/9/2014
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Post by malickfan Mon Jul 15, 2024 4:01 pm

US General Elections 2020 - Page 23 GR0h2Z6bwAAdxrh?format=jpg&name=900x900

Not sure how accurate this is, but saw this linked online?

Assuming this is true and Trump has the legal ability to do some of this...is any of this actually possible on a federal level?

Baring in mind the recent Supreme Coirt rulings will Trump have more freedom to do what he wants on a federal level in his second term? What exactly is the deal with executive orders?


Could individual states ignore a federal ban on gay marriage, abortion etc?


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Post by halfwise Mon Jul 15, 2024 4:42 pm

Much of what happened is possible because of the last item on that list: the president has the power to appoint federal judges.

Believe it or not this can be connected to Kurt Godel, who discovered the famous mathematical incompleteness theorem which is related to self referential systems.  In 1939 under threat of being conscripted into the Nazi army and enticed by his friendship with Einstein who had by then settled at the Princeton Institute for Advanced Study, Godel applied to become a US citizen.  The day before the "citizenship test" he was studying the constitution and discovered that Presidents could appoint judges who might in turn adjudicate impeachment proceedings.  He recognized this as a fatal flaw due to its self referential nature and became extremely agitated.  His friends implored him to ignore it for the time being and were barely able to restrain him from pointing it out to the judge who was swearing in new citizens. One must wonder what the reaction of the judge would be when confronted with a distraught mathematician railing agains the logical flaws in the constitution in broken english right before being sworn in.

80 years later we see how right he was.  Others had noted the flaw of course, but it had never had any impact until now.  Many may believe that the system was stacked against Trump and he is being rightfully protected by his choice of judges, but what would they think if it was the other party?

The argument in the Federalist Papers is that since the president is only elected for 4 years and appointments must be made with the consent of the senate, the power of appointment is greatly limited compared to what was then the norm in Great Britain.  GB has since amended the procedure to have less political interference than the US, and no doubt Godel would approve.

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Post by halfwise Mon Jul 15, 2024 4:52 pm

to answer the other questions, the limits of the Executive Order are still unclear.  The entirety of both the Korean and Vietnam wars were conducted by executive order plus congressional approval for funds since congress never declared war.  The limits of presidential power has always been a sore point with congress, but since they must deliberate and vote on EVERYTHING the president can often do an end run around them, especially if popular opinion swings to his side.

Lincoln originally freed the slaves during the civil war as a military maneuver; the amendment to the constitution came years after his death.


Last edited by halfwise on Mon Jul 15, 2024 4:55 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Post by azriel Mon Jul 15, 2024 4:52 pm

What I find so utterly two faced is, whenever a shooting is carried out, say, someone goes nuts in a shopping mall, the cops rain in and first chance they get the baddie is shot dead, not wounded, shot dead which I can understand especially if people have lost their lives due to said nutter, But, afterwards you get condemnation of the nutter and mumbles of how gun crime will not be tolerated etc yet, first thing police do is whip out a 100 guns and shoot to kill, why not shoot to wound ? It just emphasizes that its ok. Unless Im totally wrong ? I dont know, I feel it breeds more violence, it causes retaliation. They are making a hero out of Trump but theres a mother broken hearted in this ( maybe ? ) Did she know what her sn intended ? I can assume not unless she is as daring as him.
"" Biden delivered a televised address from the Oval Office in the White House on Sunday.
"There is no place in America for this kind of violence, for any violence ever. Period. No exceptions. We can't allow this violence to be normalized," he said. "The political rhetoric in this country has gotten very heated. It's time to cool it down."" And this is how I feel confused. On one hand no violence yet on the other "Oh shoot the fucker !"

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Post by halfwise Mon Jul 15, 2024 4:58 pm

Orwell is a retired policeman and weighed in on this years ago.  Police are taught to shoot to stop the threat immediately.  Shooting to wound is an exacting requirement that can lead to the shooter killing more before being brought down.  Cops are trained to aim for the center of the body which has the greatest odds of success; this makes it very likely to result in death.

Many of the unarmed are shot because it looks like they may have been pulling out a gun.  Cops face deathly danger each day; they are not inclined to take risks.  Always move slowly when confronted by armed men; we can't all be Doc Holliday.  In a largely unarmed society like most of Europe it therefore makes sense for police to be unarmed to avoid misjudgements and shootings. America unfortunately has too many guns floating around.  Police will shoot if there's sufficient suspicion they are being drawn upon.

As for the Trump shooter, he was far from those who had to take him down. They couldn't afford to aim for his wrist or shoulder; they aimed for the best target. He had already killed one and nearly killed Trump before they got him.

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Post by azriel Wed Jul 17, 2024 7:58 pm

Ive had time to think things through and Im agreeing with you Halfy. If you dont want to get shot dont pull a gun. I see your right about aiming to wound, it would be more exact and difficult especially if the shooter is moving and moving fast. Its a shame the kid was only 20, its a shame for the mother and its a shame people have this mentality. Its also a shame for the innocent who were shot in this. At times it looks like such a screwed up world. If we want police to protect us we dont want them coming to harm, they are often brave enough as it is

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Post by malickfan Sun Jul 21, 2024 7:39 pm

Joe Biden has officially withdrawn his candidancy for the 2024 election.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/c1e5xpdzkd8o

He's endorsed Kamala Harris on twitter.

So what happens now? Is Harris the automatic front runner? Or do the Democrats unite behind a brand new candidate? It seems to me that Harris isn't very popular and a very low profile Vice President so far, apparently she seems to be polling slightly worse than Biden in polls...

If she is the nominee the Democrats need to pick a Vice president candiate that offers a good contrast-probably a younger White male from one of the swing states.

The question remains would America elect a woman as president?


I don't know much about Us presidential history, but is the latest a candidate has withdrawn their candidancy? IIRC Lyndon B Johnson did similar in 1968?

Any thoughts?

My gut feeling so far is that Trump will win the election.


Last edited by malickfan on Sun Jul 21, 2024 7:57 pm; edited 3 times in total

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