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Everything posted by TimG

  1. http://www.canadianconsultingengineer.com/companies-people/governments-can-cancel-contracts-without-huge-penalties/1003320601/ Common law interpretation requires that the government place the intent to cancel specific contracts in legislation. It can't pass legislation that has the indirect effect of cancelling contracts and argue later that it should not have to pay compensation.
  2. The US electoral system balances individual rights with states rights. The EC system gives each state 2 votes in addition to their allotment based on population. I can't see any reason to change this because electoral systems are supposed to balance different objectives. i.e. do why you think a president elected with a large majority in only New England and the West Coast but no where else would be more legitimate than a president with support across the country?
  3. But that is largely due to the insane over-reaction caused by nuclear phobes: http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/01/fukushima-residents-exposed-far-less-radiation-thought
  4. There are maybe 30 ridings with less that 80K. So what? The vast majority of the population is living in ridings of comparable size. The constitution is filled with historical crap that is much worse than the over representation of smaller provinces representing less that 10% of the population. It is not worth worrying about.
  5. Not sure what you are talking about. The districts are about as balanced as they can be given the irregular population distribution in the country. It is not reasonable for ridings to cross provincial boundaries nor are physically large ridings desirable so some variation in riding size is perfectly acceptable. If you look at this page http://www.elections.ca/content.aspx?section=res&dir=cir/list&document=index&lang=e you will see that the vast majority of Canadians live in ridings >80K but < 120K. I see no issue.
  6. Gerrymandered ridings don't have straight lines for their boundaries. Most ridings in Canada have straight lines or a natural geographical feature as their boundaries. I think that is fairly good evidence that no gerrymandering is at work. Here is an example from Texas where the urban ridings are quite clearly gerrymandered: Now contrast that with the Vancouver riding map:
  7. http://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/richmond-townhouse-strata-meetings-revert-back-to-chinese-language-only-amid-human-rights-dispute
  8. Those words don't mean what you think it means. Nothing in Obama's background would have made him a better candidate than Clinton in 2008. He won because he was black. If anything that would be called "black privilege".
  9. And this makes him qualified for managing an organization with a trillion dollar budget? Sorry. It does not. Running a billion dollar company is certainly a better qualification. Obama was white he would be indistinguishable from Clinton and would never have gotten the nomination. So you can say he got his position because of his skin colour. Trump, OTOH, could have been elected with his anti-immigration platform no matter what his race. BTW: a degree from Harvard is perhaps the best example of "wealth privilege" that you could find. The only reason so much status is conferred on Americans who graduate from ivy league schools is that status is what the wealthy need to protect their privilege for the children. If Americans wanted to do something about social mobility and "wealth privilege" (the real issue) they could start by changing their attitude toward graduates of schools whose main claim to fame is it costs huge sums of money to attend.
  10. People come here who do not speak English. That is a fact of life. The only question is how to deal with it. Telling a strata corp to use only English even if the majority of residents speak another language is a violation of their free speech rights. The only reasonable requirement that the government should impose is that English has to be one of the languages used and that all documentation with legal significance must be available in English. Whether that is accomplished with the use of translators or by using English from the start is up to the strata council.
  11. That word does not think what you think it means. The EC is set up the way the founders thought it should be because the founders believed that state representation matters. That has nothing to with "gerrymandering". To all of the people whinging about the EC: why aren't you complaining about the senate too?
  12. So? That is irrelevant. The system in the US balances individual and state representation. States all have an equal number of senators and two extra electoral college votes. This means that if someone wants to be elected president they have to appeal that extends beyond the heavily populated urban states.
  13. So what did Obama do to qualify for president? Community organizer? Oh right. He's was a black man with good public speaking skills. BTW there is no "white privilege" - only "wealth privilege" . Obama and Trump are both "privileged".
  14. Trump has clearly violated the spirit of the emoluments clause in the US constitution. Trump is trying to argue the letter of the law by saying that 'fair-value exchange does not constitute a gift' The ultimate interpretation of that clause is unknown but I think it is pretty clear that congress has grounds to impeach should they be so inclined: http://time.com/4658633/impeach-donald-trump-congress/ IMO, as long as Trump does what congress wants he will stay. If he tries to bully congress or if the dems retake control he is gone.
  15. Preferential ballot is not PR and I am not that opposed to it. It does not change my point: PMs are disposed in Australia by MPs which gives MPs a lot of power. Canada party constitutions prohibit this and that is why PMs have so much power. If we want to fix that we force parties to change their constitutions ti allow MPs to depose PMs as was originally intended. BTW: Australia has preferential ballots because the vote on the right was split and a conservative PM thought it would improve their chances. Not unlike the Liberal machinations here.
  16. Well that is an artifact of the Canadian system where we have allowed parties to control the process. In the UK and Australia MPs have the ability to dispose a sitting PM. We need to bring that back to Canada. Legally entrenching the power of parties is the opposite of where we want to go.
  17. The major parties have to appeal to the large moderate middle. If they piss off those moderates they lose power. This is the way it should be. Under PR these moderate parties can't govern with making payoffs to fringe parties that represent small portions of the electorate.
  18. Except "tyranny of the 40%" is an "alternative fact" because there is always some overlap between major parties. i.e. the Liberals adopt a number of policies which Conservatives like and vise versa. Governments want to get re-elected and that is not going to happen if they piss off the majority of the population. Under PR the parliamentary dynamics mean small minorities can hold the government hostage unless they get a payoff. Government by blackmail is not good government.
  19. Vote "parking" as you call it is called compromise. Something that you seem to think would happen in a world of perpetual minority governments. Why is this bad? The reason I don't like PR is because the compromise occurs after the election and is usually designed to justify the existence of minority parties rather than what is good for the country as a whole. The fact is that governing a diverse country requires a government that can make unpopular decisions from time to time. Regular elections are more than sufficient to provide a check on this power because no government likes to lose power.
  20. Again - a false premise: you are assuming that every voter is a rabid partisan who can only be represented by the party they voted for on election day. Most voters are more fluid than that and will find that all parties represent their interest some of the time. So it is simply false to say that 59% of the voters got zero say. 100% of voters had their say on election day because they voted. In the next election all parties will want those votes and will keep them in mind when they make policy decisions. Your view that governing is a cake that can be sliced up and handed out as spoils is also very problematic. It is this kind of thinking is what makes PR so bad because it leads to parties like Green party with 5% of the vote thinking they are entitled to demand concessions that 95% of population does not want. Governing means looking out for interests of the country as a whole.
  21. You are assuming that parties should be the center of the political system and the outcome should be judged by the effect on party standings. That is a false assumption. In 1993 we had 270 or so races to elect MPs. In each one of those races their could be only one winner and the winner had a plurality of votes. No one is getting "screwed".
  22. FPTP favors individuals at its core. Parties are not essential to the system and we could do what the NWT does and choose the PM after the election with a free vote among all MPs. Any sort of PR makes parties an essential part of the system and gives fringe parties too much of a say in governance which why the voter gets screwed under PR. Some forms of PR use party lists which takes all control away from the voter since people high on the list can never be voted out unless the party support collapses entirely.
  23. That is your opinion. It is not fact. Many people disagree with your opinion and think the worth of an electoral system is measured with other criteria such as local representation or the whether elections can trigger political housecleaning.
  24. Give the system a chance to work. The courts can and should strike down unconstitutional orders.
  25. Do you think that every person with moral objections to abortion votes for an anti-abortion candidate? If they do will you denigrate them as hypocrites? Voting requires prioritization and it is unreasonable for you to expect that everyone else shares your priorities. When it comes Trump's "racist policies" a voter could reasonably gamble that the courts would prevent him from acting which would make Trump a safer vote than Hillary who promised to enact policies that many people find unacceptable. IOW, Trump was a reasonable choice for people who had fundamental objections to Clinton's policies. The fact that he is a despicable individual does not make it an irrational choice - especially if one believes that the checks and balances built into the US system actually work.
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