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Open Thread: The Iowapocalypse, Trump’s State of the Union, Impeachment, whatever

As usual, there’s A LOT going on.

So enjoy this open thread. No trolls.

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Ohlmann
Ohlmann
8 months ago

Apart from it being a shitshow, I didn’t understand much about what happened in Iowa.

Moggie
Moggie
8 months ago

“How can the Democrats expect to run the country, when they can’t even run a caucus?”

Better get used to hearing that, because I suspect we’ll be hearing it a lot.

Moggie
Moggie
8 months ago

I’d like to see cancer issue a statement distancing itself from Rush Limbaugh.

Naglfar
Naglfar
8 months ago

I’m not going to watch the SOTU. I have watched it in previous years, but at this point I just don’t want to suffer through it.

Ooglyboggles
Ooglyboggles
8 months ago

The app is literally from a place called “Shadow Inc.”

This hecking timeline

Diego Duarte
Diego Duarte
8 months ago

@Moggie

I’d like to see cancer issue a statement distancing itself from Rush Limbaugh.

Only if it decides to hang out with Trump, Miller and McConnell.

@Ooglyboggles

This hecking timeline

I still blame DiCaprio for this whole shitshow. He was never meant to win the Oscar. The collective power of the internet and his insistence on breaking the laws of physics became the butterfly effect that set this whole fiasco in motion.

Snowberry
Snowberry
8 months ago

@Diego Duarte:
I blame Stanislaw Petrov. Russia was supposed to respond to an apparent nuclear attack by the US in 1983, the US was supposed to respond to the response with an actual nuclear attack, and humanity was supposed to perish in the resulting nuclear war. But Petrov was like “Wait, what if it’s a mistake?” and it was all averted.

Ever since then, God or destiny or human nature or something has been trying to get human extinction back on track, but keeps screwing it up because the keys to destruction all end up being incompetent buffoons. This is why the timeline is effed-up and we can’t either perish and not have to worry about anything anymore *or* have nice things.

…Well, as long as somebody is going to present an absurdist take, I might as well throw in a gallows humor take.

moregeekthan
moregeekthan
8 months ago

@Diego Duarte

The Leopoint Paradox?

Moggie
Moggie
8 months ago

@Snowberry, so it’s like the Final Destination movies, but on a global scale?

Surplus to Requirements, Observer of the Vast Blight-Wing Enstupidation
Surplus to Requirements, Observer of the Vast Blight-Wing Enstupidation
8 months ago
Diego Duarte
Diego Duarte
8 months ago

@moregeekthan

The Leopoint Paradox?

That’s a pretty cool name for it! I’m gonna start using that from now on.

In other related news, it seems they are trying to give the win to Buttigieg (or at least delay the results until the NH primary) so as to not make Sanders look too good early on or Biden look too bad.

The passiveness of Americans will never fail to impress me…

rv97
rv97
8 months ago

Been hanging around a gaming Discord server more because I don’t feel woke enough to be in more woke places bar this one, and sometimes even here as well. I just happen to like the community here and I trust this place more than most or any other news source (they need to release news to make a living even if it’s something totally bullshit or harmful like what the BBC has done as of recent; David here at least asks for donations while making all his work public and visible to everyone. I find fewer and fewer sources out there that aren’t explicitly non-profits doing the same thing, like sadly a podcast service that can only be streamed online or requires a subscription to be listened to offline without a guarantee that such podcasts even stay available for offline or even online listening – more on this later).

On said Discord (it’s for an indie game that’s currently in early access), some of its members seem to really hate communism and socialism. A few of them wished there were a viable alternative but said that capitalism won’t go and something else about as fucked up as capitalism will take its place. They claim that the human nature factor makes realizing communism an impossibility (i.e. Stalin, Mao, North Korea, Cuba). I just think capitalism commodifies too much stuff to hell, like culture and necessities. Personally too, I hate the world of business – it’s like a religion without all the fancy stuff, it’s grown-up bullshit (as someone who was made to grow up too fast, it’s not something I enjoy) and it’s pretty dull as well as exploitative.

The Discord isn’t exactly a woke place but its moderators do their best to ban racists on sight at least (not many can be online at once so trolls on occasion can stick around while the few moderators are asleep), and one of the devs called out an impersonator on their forum for homophobia – I’d argue it’s relatively more woke compared to most gaming spaces, but I have been in even more woke spaces in the past; I just decided to leave them too because I got envious of members there and because of personal issues that I think would cause me trouble if I ever elaborated on them there. Otherwise player numbers have also stagnated from this game primarily for gameplay reasons, and the most active people on there are those who are generally among the more loyal towards the game.

I simply prefer this game because I hate the poor excuses for money gouging and worker exploitation that larger players in the games industry have. Activision are forcing their developers to make a new Call of Duty a game so often that like half of the games online end up being dead – I once tried playing Advanced Warfare on the PS4 while I was in the US at one time, no one played it online. As for Battlefield, it’s a little better maybe, but Electronic Arts are known for their greed and for their sins against smaller developers. Gamers are complaining about the “woke” nature of Battlefield V, but I find that a non-issue – I simply don’t like the Battlefield franchise because I would prefer to not have to buy maps in addition to it being effectively Electronic Arts intellectual property. I’ve only played Call of Duty so far without paying Activision directly (i.e. used copies or promotions for free titles) – I’ve played Battlefield 3 on the PS3 (it was a gift intended for my brother but he doesn’t really play games) and spent a little bit of money on EA’s subscription gaming service for 4. Overall, the gaming industry’s a piece of shit and is symptomatic of the shitty attitude that Americans have with market fundamentalism – it’s their second God.

I could rant more about subscription and/or streaming services at a later time – it’s all capitalism’s filthy plot to ensure something can only exist if it makes something money.

As to why I’m even into gaming, well, I generally hate reality and want to be involved in another.

rv97
rv97
8 months ago

@Diego Duarte

This whole world’s very fascist. White supremacists are just unnecessarily paranoid – their ancestors already did their work.

I just feel like giving up because it seems like there’s nothing we can do. Unfortunately, succumbing to it would only mean I die much sooner than I should, and likely brutally too.

Jackson Ayres
Jackson Ayres
8 months ago

The optics of the chaos at the caucus are awful, especially since Pete’s campaign donated to the company behind the app, and announced victory at 0% reporting. Not to mention, caucuses are just plain anti-democratic anyway. I look forward to the NH primary.

It’ll be a lot harder for the Dems to fuck that up.

Viscaria
Viscaria
8 months ago

“How can the Democrats expect to run the country, when they can’t even run a caucus?”

I heard that today. In friggin’ Canada. From a stranger. In a work setting.

Amtep
Amtep
8 months ago

The anthropic fancy: in timelines where we destroyed ourselves, there’s no one left to observe the result. Therefore, we will always find ourselves in a timeline where we didn’t destroy ourselves, no matter how unlikely.

That’s why we always seem to be on the precipice of disaster.

Kalish
Kalish
8 months ago

@Jackson Ayres

NH Primary is looking more and more likely to be a Sanders win, the problem with it is that it’s just as unrepresentative as Iowa demographically, particularly in terms of the Democratic Party’s voter base. Discussion of FiveThirtyEight’s live blog did talk about what primary should be held first, New York was brought up as a possible candidate. The issue is that, legally speaking, NH must be the first primary [Iowa doesn’t count ‘cos it’s a caucus], so any attempt by the Democratic Party to either move Iowa back and/or put something ahead of NH, will run into fierce resistance from each. Iowa has a lot to lose if it loses its current position, same for NH [nvm the legal issues]. Much as people might like to change the nomination structure with regards to Iowa it’s much easier said than done.

Snowberry
Snowberry
8 months ago

I was originally thinking of this idea more along the lines of what @Amtep said (assuming you’re responding at least partially to me and not entirely to Diego Duarte), and explicitly posted it that way a couple weeks ago. But this time around I meant it closer to @Moggie’s interpretation of it because it’s darkly funny that way.

Ann K
Ann K
8 months ago

How can a person live in a developed country in the twenty-first century, and never have any experience of malfunctioning software?

Naglfar
Naglfar
8 months ago

I’m mostly worried about the way Fox News et al are going to report on Iowa. They’re a major news network that millions watch and I can guarantee their spin won’t be favorable.

Weird (and tired of trumplings) Eddie
Weird (and tired of trumplings) Eddie
8 months ago

@ Amy K:

How can a person live in a developed country in the twenty-first century, and never have any experience of malfunctioning software?

Anyone living in a developed country is fortunate to have experienced FUNCTIONING software. I feel the entire technology has “updated” itself into a state where none of it ever works.

Moggie
Moggie
8 months ago

@Naglfar:

I’m mostly worried about the way Fox News et al are going to report on Iowa. They’re a major news network that millions watch and I can guarantee their spin won’t be favorable.

The only question is whether they emphasise incompetence or conspiracy theories. (Both of Trump’s large adult sons have tweeted conspiracy theories about the affair, so Fox might favour that angle).

@Jackson Ayres:

It’ll be a lot harder for the Dems to fuck that up.

Come on, have faith! I’m confident they’ll find a way!

Snowberry
Snowberry
8 months ago

@Naglfar: I just checked. The Fox News online site at least appears to be mostly fair, with the only bad takes I’ve seen being a piece devoted to Ben Shapiro’s opinion (he basically takes this a sign that the “Blue Wave” has fizzled out and Trump is practically guaranteed reelection) and another which takes the rumor that the DNC is trying to sabotage Bernie Sanders as a realistic possibility for what’s happening. But aside from that they’re pretty neutral… not that this stops the comments sections from being all “Dems are pathetic losers who couldn’t organize a bake sale”.

Naglfar
Naglfar
8 months ago

@Weird Eddie

Anyone living in a developed country is fortunate to have experienced FUNCTIONING software. I feel the entire technology has “updated” itself into a state where none of it ever works.

This is why I think Ray Kurzweil and others predicting the singularity in the next few decades are wrong. The singularity would be much more likely to encounter a fatal error and crash on startup, or get stuck in an endless loop.

@Moggie

I’m confident they’ll find a way!

‘Murican ingenuity! If we can win so many Darwin Awards, we can figure out how to deep-six the NH primaries.

@Snowberry
The useful thing about Ben Shapiro is, most of the time if you assume the exact opposite of whatever he says, you’ll get the truth.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
8 months ago

This may be of use to some peeps.

comment image

Jackson Ayres
Jackson Ayres
8 months ago

@Kalish

It’d be great if a more diverse state voted first, but with the general antipathy the people in power have towards changes to the structures that put them in power, I doubt it’s going to happen any time soon.

Hopefully some good will come out of this and all states will at least shift to using ballots instead of the ridiculous caucus system.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
8 months ago

@ naglfar

Ooh, etymology nerd-dom; thanks!

When I grew up in Yorkshire people still used the thee and thou convention; with slightly different pronunciation. But we sort of had singular they in common use. You could be addressed that way too. As in “Ee, tha’s a right clarty-head” (“You are a bit daft”)

Specialffrog
Specialffrog
8 months ago

comment image

Naglfar
Naglfar
8 months ago

@Kalish
I’m sickened. Make no mistake, I knew Trump would give it to someone awful, but it still feels like a punch to the gut and dishonors those who actually deserved that medal.

@Specialffrog
Several states are planning to have smartphone-based voting, and all I can think of is how this is a fraudster’s dream come true. Which, in the current climate, could be a feature, not a bug…

Snowberry
Snowberry
8 months ago

…It appears the rumormongers are changing their minds. Seeing how Joe Biden is doing poorly so far, they’ve decided that the chaos in Iowa was meant to sabotage Biden, not Sanders.

Big Titty Demon
Big Titty Demon
8 months ago

I’m sleeping through the SotU so I don’t blow a gasket and die a premature death. “So unfortunate! Aneurysms at her age!?” People would speculate, and it’s never wise to fuel gossip.

But I completely agree with the xkcd comic, working in that field. Down to the blockchain and everything.

If anyone has annoying relatives that are gloating and spewing the “Democrats couldn’t organize a bake sale” line, feel free to remind them the 2012 Iowa Republican caucus called for Romney for a whole two weeks before correcting to call for Santorum, so the Democrats are, by my calculations, 14x better than Republicans by Republican measures. It is remarkably effective at shutting down said annoying relatives.

Paireon
Paireon
8 months ago

Welp, that was a shitshow; probably still is. Too bad Rush’s medal won’t be of any use to him when he’s dead, so I can at least take comfort in that.

@Big Titty Demon – Huh, I don’t have that many right-wingers among my friends and relatives (and even those that are, relatively speaking, would probably vote Dem if they were American – I’m Canadian), but that’s actually a great point to make.

Snowberry
Snowberry
8 months ago

Let’s just say that if the SoTU speech had been a promise to rain hell on anyone not a white middle class to wealthy conservative, the only difference would have been tone. And there was applause on the Republican side, and at least a few walkouts on the Democratic side.

This is what the far-right truly wants, and what little remains of the moderate right is willing to tolerate for the sake of unity.

Definitely not Steve
Definitely not Steve
8 months ago

This is off-topic, but I’m curious what kind of input y’all can give me. (Content notice: mild discussion of mental illness)

I just moved halfway across the country to work at what is sort of my dream job at this stage in my career. I’ve been here a couple of weeks so far and it seems great, I like my coworkers, the job is fun, and they’re paying me alright.

But I’m a bit worried about myself. I don’t know anyone in this city except my coworkers, I’m not in contact with any of my previous social support groups, and I’m bad at making friends at the best of times. I also haven’t been in the best mental place in the last year, and I don’t quite know how my brain is going to react to the stress and change. I think my mental health has improved overall since the move, but I also have moments of feeling very tense and overwhelmed.

Anyone else here done a solo move as an adult? How did you cope? Any suggestions to meet people and rebuild a social support network, or for coping with mental health issues during a major stressful life event like this?

Catalpa
Catalpa
8 months ago

@Definitely Not Steve

What are your interests and hobbies? Seek out other people who are into the same or similar things. Check out Meetup for starters, libraries are often good community hubs as well. Facebook might have some groups in your area too. It really depends on what you enjoy.

Personally, I really enjoy tabletop roleplaying games, and joining a dungeons and dragons table is essentially a “instant friends- just add pizza” deal. I’ve moved pretty frequently and most of my friend groups have been made via this method. If you like TTRPGs or TCGs, check out your local nerd shop.

Activism might be a good option too, like a chapter of Food Not Bombs or other such group. Do you have a specific cause that’s close to your heart? See what options there are in your area. If you’ve got a progressive government representative, then going to their office or home page might give you some leads on this route.

Or maybe a hiking group or a book club or something else is more your speed. Depending on how big of a city you’re in, there should be a couple options that you can find.

I find that having something to focus on really helps grease the wheels of socialising, and finding something that meets regularly (weekly, monthly) is a good way to get out of the house and ward off the depression funk.

Kat, ambassador of the feminist government in exile
Kat, ambassador of the feminist government in exile
8 months ago

I wish I could just put the video here, but I am stumped by the technology. That said, click the link to see Nancy P. do it to it. (And like Sergeant Schultz of Hogan’s Heroes, Mike Pence sees nothing, knows nothing.)

https://youtu.be/LPlvYeEfceU

Ohlmann
Ohlmann
8 months ago

@Definitively not Steve : I changed city as a young adult, but because I absolutely, completely, desesperately needed to get away from family and acquaintances.

Social networking took time (but I love being alone), and as Catalpa said, finding clubs (or more serious organizations) for your hobbies will help. Joining the first one will probably be an extremely tense moment, but it get better. That being said, dropping a club as soon as you see the people in it aren’t to your liking is a good practice.

@Weird Eddie : as a software engineer, I don’t have much problem with malfunctioning software, mostly out of two principle : A – Keep it simple and B – if it’s made by a big corporation and isn’t a game, it’s probably shitty. A lot of problems are made by softwares who try too much to guess what I want, and even more by bloated softwares made because their engineers need to justify their employement. (windows, JIRA, Gmail, I look at you)

That being said, using software for things like caucus and elections who are easy enough to do by hand is complete madness to me. And having a private company do softwares used for public decisions like that indeed is complete madness.

occasional reader
occasional reader
8 months ago

Far-right party Rassemblement National (RN) (ex Front National (FN)), which was (and maybe still is) gouzigouzi lovelove with russians moguls and, probably, government, is now sued by one of the russian companies which have lend it money (in fact, a company which have repurchase the loan), because of the non repayment of the loan. For no less than 9,4 millions of Euros.
Am i authorized to go Mwahaha ! on that ?

Ohlmann
Ohlmann
8 months ago

@occasional reader : yes, but sadly the ex-UMP have gone full nazi, so it’s little consolation 🙁

Paul
Paul
8 months ago

Hello everyone, French lurker here.
There is something I don’t understand: why the Iowa caucus is a democrat failure?
As far as I know, caucus are extremely inefficient and a proof of how the American democracy is a failed democracy. So it’s not a surprised a caucus ended in utter chaos. But I don’t get why the democrats should be the one to blame. Don’t the republicans also use caucus? And the presidential elections too?

Full Metal Ox
8 months ago
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
8 months ago

Giving Limbaugh the Medal of Honor…JFC. Everything Trump does is retributive. He’s doing it to crap all over the previous recipients, the civil rights heroes who actually earned theirs through bravery and selflessness. The message this sends is loud and clear:

1) Lazy toxic garbage white men get medals just for existing. Everybody else has to be extraordinary.

2) The Medal of Honor is no big deal. Trump and the right hate prestige, because the left won’t give it to them, so their response is to degrade the institutions and the awards till they’re no longer worth venerating.

3) Ha ha liberals, now you get to feel the same way we felt when we watched undeserving black people getting honored.

4) Screw achievement. The only thing that matters is loyalty. Limbaugh has been indispensible in spreading RW propaganda and keeping Trump’s base stoked and enraged.

It’s the same psychology that led MAGAs to vote for Trump. They couldn’t stop a black man from becoming president, but they can take away the dignity of the office by elevating Apricot Pepe to the same position immediately afterwards. It reassures them that even the worst white man is still equal to the best black man. If even a vulgar, sleazy idiot can attain the presidency, they reason, then how impressive can Obama’s achievement really be?

numerobis
numerobis
8 months ago

Definitely not Steve: I’m in a similar boat! I’ve moved solo often, but this time (a year ago) was the first time in a bad mental state.

What’s working for me is to make a gmail calendar of social things (eg go to the gym MWF) and then, well, computer says go. Who am I to disagree?

Recent transplants are people also in the same boat, so they’re the easiest to befriend.

Paireon
Paireon
8 months ago

@Ohlmann – Well, they did rename themselves “Les Républicains”, so it’s not that surprising they ended up turning out like their transatlantic namesake..

rv97
rv97
8 months ago

@Buttercup Q. Skullpants

They deserved it from “keeping the faith” and “preventing society from being degenerate”. This goes beyond race.

Naglfar
Naglfar
8 months ago

@Buttercup
The one that scares me the most is the fourth one. It seems particularly fascistic to prioritize loyalty over actual accomplishment.

Diego Duarte
Diego Duarte
8 months ago

@Buttercup

That makes a lot of sense, but I think we ought to play the same game. I would encourage the next president (hopefully Warren or Sanders) to give Obama the Medal of Honor. It would piss soooooo many of them off.

And on top of that, I would encourage them to courtpack the Supreme Court, and nominate Obama as the next Justice. Now THAT would give a lot of them the aneurysms we’ve been hoping for.

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