Comments

  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    The precise term would be a Confederacy, but that term (thanks to US history) has a bad rhyme to it.ssu

    It's not a confederacy either. It's entirely it's own beast, so let's just call it the union.
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    Yeah Frank. Why don't you go on and explain to me what the EU is. :rofl:
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    Well we accept Orban too but we're not silent about it.
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    Is there some reason you can't engage others like a normal person?frank

    You're a grown man. If you throw out comments like a five year old and subsequently whine about how I react to them I even have less of a reason to engage you normally. As is quite apparent, even in this thread, I take plenty of time to discuss things with people in a normal manner if they make at least a bit of an effort.
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    what was the sentence right after that in Manuel's post?
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    And in my opinion, the UK shouldn't be in that list with messed up representation in both the House of Commons and unelected House of Lords and no basically no ability to submit legislation.
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    Nothing useful to add as usual. Stick with your shtick to the Trump thread please.
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    A sweeping statement completely devoid of argumentation. Useless.

    Yes, it has all these separate governing bodies and all these fancy sounding internal organizations. How much influence does the average European have over any of this?

    Virtually nothing.
    Manuel

    I just explained how it is more representative than some EU states so virtually nothing is still more than most "democracies". So if your point is that modern democracies are not democratic enough then ok, but otherwise, this is simply not true relative to existing democratic countries.

    Did the EU function well in the 2009 crisis? What about the pandemic, did the member states help each other out?Manuel

    Compared to what? I can criticise Dutch society up and down all day and point out all its flaws but at the end of the day it's a hell of a lot better than 98% of the rest of the world in most areas that matter to me. And did member states help each other out? They do so on an ongoing basis through the exchange of information, technology, capital, goods, people etc. and specifically Italy enjoys low interest rates on its bonds thanks to the ESF giving it headroom to react to the pandemic. Italy could borrow money from the ESD and received money through the Recovery and Resilience Facility during the pandemic. Did the EU and other member states initially not react to calls for help from Italy? Certainly. Everybody was unprepared for the pandemic, Italy, the EU and every other member state. But that's not a consequence of the function of the EU but a result of the gross underestimation of the risks of a viral pandemic, which underestimation we've seen in almost every country that hadn't dealt with MERS and SARS.

    And Varoufakis has an axe to grind due to his role (or lack thereof really) in the Greek restructuring. Why take him so seriously? Greece and the other member states were collectively fucked by the banking industry, which claimed if Greece failed on its bonds it would cascade through Europe. Everybody feared that spectre and the resultant disintegration of the EU. Of course, Greece also got itself in that mess in the first place by window dressing its accounts through the use of off market swaps (courtesy of Goldman Sachs). Point is, it's not so black and white.

    Mody, I assume you mean Ashoka Mody, is in the long list of the "euro can't work" authors at a time when support for the euro among industries, people and politicians is at an all time high. So really, who cares what he thinks? He probably makes some fair criticisms, I have some of my own especially around the introduction of the EUR but let's not pretend

    At the end of the day, the EU functioned way better than the UK and the USA and worse than a few other countries.

    In short, the EU has a long way to go to become democratic.Manuel

    Yeah, not really, you overestimate the democratic credentials of EU member states.

    Flawed democracies in the EU:
    Belgium
    Bulgaria
    Croatia
    Cyprus
    Czech Republic
    Estonia
    France
    Greece
    Italy
    Latvia
    Lithuania
    Malta
    Portugal
    Slovakia
    Slovenia
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    Or that's a sign that you're incapable of expressing yourself clearly. I'm not sure what you think I fail to understand in your post. How do you think it even relates to the discussion about the perceived democratic deficit of the EU?
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    Plurality of parties usually means there's either no pressing issues to deal with or there's apathy about dealing with the issues at hand.frank

    Funny how all those Nordic European countries end up being so damn progressive, totally gripped by apathy...

    The EU is not the USA and it certainly isn't the USA at the time of the civil war.
  • What should the EU do when Trump wins the next election?
    Not that NATO is much better. I mean yes, the US is somewhat democratic, more than the EU now, I'd argue, but it doesn't matter, I mean they can just bombard you with propaganda and people go wild and want to go to war.Manuel

    This is a gross misconception. People just keep repeating each other that the EU is not democratic. It is, in fact, more democratic than some European states and it certainly is more democratic than the USA if only for the fact that there's a plurality of parties, meaning the representation of various different types of EU citizens is better guaranteed.

    Unlike the USA, the EU is less susceptible to lobbying influence as a result of the plurality as well and requires the approval of individual Member States depending on the subject. This requires successful lobbying efforts to connect with the EC, the EU Parliament and the relevant heads of state or ministers at the same time.

    Of course, part of what is often considered the democratic deficit results from the particular constitutional setup of the EU, which has two sources for democratic legitimacy. On the one hand the EU Parliament and on the other the European Council (not to be confused with the Council of Europe). The first directly represents EU citizens the second the people of individual member states. The second is an international treaty principle of equality among states and it's difficult to reconcile the two because obviously smaller countries are "overrepresented" in the European Council which can be a loggerheads with the overall will of all EU citizens. On the other hand, it is another check and balance on the exercise of power, more regularly requiring compromises.

    And while the Parliament only has a weak right to propose new legislation, which the EC can ignore provided it gives reason to do so, the fact is that in almost all democracies, the majority of legislative proposals are initiated by governments and often passed with little or no resistance (either due to governing coalitions enforcing party line voting or governing majorities in national parliaments). Additionally, for each new legislative proposal by the EC a new and separate coalition/compromise must be build to pass it. The EU Parliament exercises a lot of influence on legislative proposals.

    Meanwhile, voting in the European Council requires a qualified majority or sometimes unanimity.

    So when people complain about the democratic deficit of the EU, it usually reflects little knowledge of how the EU works and why. Which of course is also a problem because the EU should explain what it does much better than it does now.
  • Critical Race Theory, Whiteness, and Liberalism
    Wrong. https://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2017/science-genetics-reshaping-race-debate-21st-century/

    Edit:
    Ultimately, there is so much ambiguity between the races, and so much variation within them, that two people of European descent may be more genetically similar to an Asian person than they are to each other. — Harvard
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Yeah, not interested. You can find plenty on the internet.
  • Coronavirus
    Limiting movement and prohibiting gatherings constitute a stay at home order.AJJ

    No, they obviously don't. It's getting downright moronic now. Is closing down air traffic a stay at home order? Oops.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    But notice one thing: Both you and your countrymen as I and other Finns share this similar media environment with the Americans. Yet Dutch politics or Finnish politics aren't as polarized as US politics with houses of government being occupied (at least that I know, I could be wrong about Dutch politics, but do know how it's here).ssu

    ahahaha, it is definitely polarised and getting crazier by the year. We're lucky we have a lot of political parties which means the extremes don't have a lot of chance.

    Btw, have a look at this: https://mashable.com/video/facebook-leaker-frances-haugen-60-minutes
  • Coronavirus
    You're obviously not aware about my opinion on lockdowns and vaccines because your representation of it is wrong. I take issue with the falsehoods you proclaim in relation to lock downs and indeed submit my opinion is at least fact-based whereas yours is just "let me toss some articles out there that I agree with and not bother reading actual research intothe subject". That I'm smarter than you is obvious. You might consider that a reason to pay more attention to what I say.

    FYI, there's an important difference in saying people should get vaccines and mandating it and I think certain industries (healthcare, people working with the elderly) can be required to get a vaccine. You know, the type of vaccine mandates we've had for ages for various diseases. As to lock downs, I'm not in favour of stay at home orders but limiting movement (e.g. limiting traffic to and from hot spots) and prohibiting gatherings are definitely things I would support under circumstances where it's necessary to avoid an overload of the healthcare system.
  • Coronavirus
    So it appears you have to accept that according to their nature these models aren’t to be relied on.AJJ

    Second comment that just underlines you don't know what stochastic models are and what you can and can't do with it. The model is fine and you can rely on the results. This one specifically just happens to have a large range of probabilities, making it difficult to base decisions on. That says nothing about the reliability of the model itself.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    I already look forward to tell you I told you so.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    You don't think there's a fundamental difference between how information was searched for and reached us before Google and Facebook and now? We've got record numbers of people believing the worst things without any ability to even listen to opposing views.

    I've been on this and the old forum since 2003. Discourse has significantly changed here too. Before, it was only philosophy of religion that was shit. Nowadays it's politics too.

    Here's a short article just about targeted ads: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/nov/05/targeted-ads-fake-news-clickbait-surveillance-capitalism-data-mining-democracy

    I really invite you to read more about the information apocalypse, how deception unmoors us from reality and how it becomes increasingly difficult to tell reality from fake news How targeted distribution of information leads to information going "viral" in ways it didn't and couldn't before. Eg, how the Plandemic gets millions of views is caused by targeted video offerings not because people actually searched for it.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    You might want to read a bit about the information apocalypse to get an idea how far this goes and how insidious it works. The polarisation these politicians thrive one can only exist in a society that supports it. The most important factor in that is how people get information. In other words, I think you underestimate the effects of almost everything you look for being pre-screened by algorithms. Whether that's a book, trousers, news or movie to watch.
  • Coronavirus
    Remember?AJJ

    I do and that reply is silly as can be. You apparently don't understand how stochastic modelling works.
  • Coronavirus
    Yes, which is completely transparent isn't it? I've read the studies you shared because I don't care about articles that are already coloured by the bias of the newspaper providing them. Especially as a reply to actual studies that you dismissed as "guesswork".

    EDIT: Also, as far as Sunetra is concerned, her whole paper was "guessing" as well, trying to see what models could fit the data, which in no way shape or form was a rejection of Neil Ferguson's model. That merely resulted from presenting the results as a dichotomy and the press ran with that. In reality the model has a 95% confidence interval that anywhere between 0.71% to 56% of people were infected as of March 2020 in the UK.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    I'm listening to Schubert Fantasie for 4 hands now and it updated instantly. It's all classical music now. Much better than anime. But bloody fickle.
  • Coronavirus
    Dude, I read everything.

    Edit: why else do you think I noticed dead links and links to non-peer reviewed papers? Because I didn't read it?
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Already sounds more interesting than my current youtube feed.
  • Coronavirus
    Of course you are. You can't even muster the respect to actually read what's shared with you.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    It's not about the conspiracy theory per se. It's that if I look at a video of Mario Brothers, the next video suggested will be about Mario Brothers II and Mario Kart. Or if I look at a cute cat, I get another cat or perhaps a dog. etc. etc. It's the "targeted offering of information based on a persons behaviour" that I want to prohibit. So if I look at a cat the next video offered could be a documentary of war crimes in Vietnam in the 1960s instead another cat.
  • Coronavirus
    How have I lost an argument if there are several studies with conflicting conclusions? I've looked into why they conflicted and gave you my view based upon my reading of them, including the ones you shared. You can playfully call that "study wars", In consider that getting informed. I'm not the one so entrenched in his own opinion that I refuse to actually read the papers.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    You have to be very careful how to do this, because more censorship likely isn't the answer as likely many politicians aren't so inept as Trump, who hasn't been able to communicate so well as once off Twitter (as he of course has minimal leadership or organizational skills). It will likely just irritate people more.ssu

    How is this censorship? I'm just prohibiting Google from offering you another conspiracy theory video in Youtube just because you looked at one a second ago. You know, force people to get information how they did in the 90s.
  • Coronavirus
    What's tendentious is submitting papers and not reading or understanding them.
  • Coronavirus
    Are they?AJJ

    Yes. You're welcome to actually read the research and the caveats they offer if you don't believe me. This includes some of the stuff you shared by the way.

    If these orders entail those things you say are “definitely effective” then why aren’t they associated with reduced mortality?AJJ

    If you have a country that goes from "open" to stay at home orders, such a lock down will be effective as the gatherings and limited movement will be a consequence of the stay at home order. If you have a country that already prohibits gatherings and with a lot of working remotely prior to the stay at home order, that stay at home order is not going to really help. This has been the case in most European countries.

    That's why it's important to qualify what a "lock down" is.

    Moreover, even with that caveat there are still papers that find a positive effect following stay at home orders so I'd say there's no definitive effect established but that's enough for me to assume it won't have a major effect.
  • Coronavirus
    I dived in a few of the different papers to get a better understanding of the different conclusions. So what does the research tell me? Comparing different papers it seems to have a lot to do with "what is a lock down?" and what previous measures were taken in a particular country. Definitely effective are: flight bans, prohibiting gatherings and limiting movement.

    Not effective are: stay at home orders in and of themselves, unless they cause less gatherings and limit movement.

    Often, stay at home orders were last, while gatherings were already prohibited and commute movements at a much lower rate due to working remotely. Those countries that could support the latter and had a high voluntary uptake for working at home and who had prohibitions against gatherings in place saw little to no benefit for stay at home orders. So in that situation, stay at home orders were (close to) ineffective.

    To the extent stay at home orders were necessary to avoid gatherings and limiting movements, they were effective.

    Finally, some of the data was skewed due to protests against lock down measures, resulting in (super) spreading events.

    Anything in here you think you can agree with it?
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    If the US would be, as Kagan writes, "is heading into its greatest political and constitutional crisis since the Civil War", election technicalities aren't the answer. To do something about the polarization of politics is the problem. The political discourse is just spiraling out of control. It's like people are just waiting for the next clash to ensue. Who would want to join politics in this kind of political environment? Basically seeing part of the voting public as the problem won't help: it's a way to advance the polarization, encourage alienation and separation of the voting blocks. And naturally the right in the US has already for years has been on this path: the other side simply hasn't lousy policies, it's a mortal threat. And this drumbeat just continues.ssu

    I seriously think that large part of this problem can be solved by prohibiting any type of targeted advertisement, news, videos, links etc. and break the bubbles. I suspect that as a result most narratives will become more centrist, more "the average" etc. and people will be more readily confronted with opposing views, learn to deal with those views and talk about it with unlike minded individuals. You know, actually have a conversation with a neo-Marxist, paedophilic fascist or a right-wing, racist, dungeree-wearing-pitchfork-wielding, fascist only to find out those caricatures have nothing to do with who your fellow citizens are.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Pretty damning and in a way still missing the point. His solutions are still technocratic, a tweak here and there, but the problem seems now fundamental to me.
  • Coronavirus
    Probably had to do with my firewall settings at home because I managed to open the first now as well. It's also a trustworthy source so let's dive into that one shall we?

    So what your original link did is not understand the paper. It quotes the paper thinking it supports the conclusions that lockdowns don't work: "“[F]ull lockdowns and wide-spread COVID-19 testing were not associated with reductions in the number of critical cases or overall mortality.”

    But the same paper writes the following as well:

    There are important limitations with our data, including the fact that
    at or prior to May 1, 2020, many countries included in our dataset were
    not yet in the “plateau” or downslope phase of their individual epidemiologic
    curves, with border restrictions having been introduced only very
    recently. In the context of COVID-19, it is thought that public health
    interventions typically require from 2 to 3 weeks to affect outcomes,
    hence the impact of widespread border restrictions may not have yet
    been detected in our dataset. Additionally, the relative difference
    in the number of cases in neighboring countries is likely to have a significant
    impact on whether border closures are effective. Two countries
    with similar epidemiologic curves and effective social distancing policies
    may not see a major impact from border closures, whereas two countries
    with very disparate epidemiologic curves may be more likely to
    see a significant impact from travel restrictions. In the case of full lockdowns,
    such a government policy may only be effective in those countries
    where it can be easily implemented and enforced. For example, the
    United States has had challenges enforcing lockdowns, with citizens in
    several states publicly protesting public health measures to limit viral
    transmission, and encouraging open revolt.

    At the same time full lockdowns were significantly associated with increased patient recovery rates.

    Here's the same journal with a more recent paper specifically looking into the effectiveness of lock-downs.

    https://www.thelancet.com/journals/eclinm/article/PIIS2589-5370(21)00315-1/fulltext

    It's conclusion:

    Lockdowns are an effective way of reducing the reproduction number of COVID-19 and controlling the spread of disease in local communities. However, there is no consensus on when governments should take this action. Here, we found that communities, which implemented the lockdown at or prior to the inflection point (defined as 7 days before the date on which at least 5 cumulative cases were first reported in the community) experienced a slower rise in COVID-19 rates over the first 50 days and a lower cumulative count consistently across all time points during follow-up compared with counties that implemented lockdowns after the inflection point (Fig. 1). In our models, the timing of the lockdown at the county level explained nearly 50% of the total in COVID-19 case counts across US counties, highlighting the importance of early lockdown implementation in controlling the pandemic at the county level.
  • Coronavirus
    you know what's annoying? People who just randomly link shit because it agrees with their view without actually reading them. So I dived in the footnotes of your "research".

    First link, doesn't work.
    Second link isn't peer reviewed even after a year.
    Third link, doesn't work.
    4th link, not peer reviewed after a year.
    5th link, not peer reviewed after a year.
    6th link, doesn't work.
    7th link, not peer reviewed after a year.
    8th link, not peer reviewed after a year.

    I assume it doesn't get better and I have better things to do than follow all these rabbit holes.

    All the pre-prints are old so probably data at the beginning of the pandemic wasn't very good allowing for differing interpretations.

    If quarantaines work then obviously lock downs do too. It's really... Logical. If quarantaine of sick people works to avoid having a disease spread then effectively putting all family units in quarantaine works too. Lock downs were imposed during the plague as well.
  • Coronavirus
    Your inability to understand the research papers is noted as is your inability to share research papers that argue the opposite. I guess we're done?
  • Coronavirus
    I can say because the effects of lock downs in the Netherlands lead to reduced hospital admissions.

    At a glance the studies you’ve shared are models/guesswork.AJJ

    Wrong. Try actually reading what they did. They tried to make models that fit the available data, which data shows lock downs worked. Which is useful for future reference for policy decisions. And they build a counter factual scenario for Sweden using actual data from other countries. But the underlying data is real.

    Also note that you have not managed to submit information that's researched and peer reviewed. So my heuristic is to not spend time on reading it. Send a paper how lock downs don't work.
  • Coronavirus
    It’s also worth pointing out that infection numbers are a product how much testing you do. An alarming figure can be created out of thousands of people who test positive but who aren’t actually ill.AJJ

    Hospital admittance was and is real.