Trump presidency

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CorruptUser
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Sep 25, 2018 6:43 pm UTC

But there likely is a conspiracy by the Democrats to delay the nomination process, even if the accusations are true.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Sep 25, 2018 6:50 pm UTC

Well, of course. Democrats want delay either way. But that's a motive that doesn't explain all the allegations away, unless someone's got additional evidence of someone orchestrating that.

If the allegations are true, then Kav's a bad candidate. Republicans ought to find a better one. At that point, any "conspiracy" on the part of democrats to stop him is beside the point.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby commodorejohn » Tue Sep 25, 2018 6:56 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:But there likely is a conspiracy by the Democrats to delay the nomination process, even if the accusations are true.

This is some twisted logic. If the accusations are true (or, hell, if they merely seem credible from the information currently available,) then delaying a move forward isn't a "conspiracy," it's the normal, correct thing to do.

Now, if you want to accuse them of actual conspiracy to torpedo the nomination by means of false accusations and rumor-mongering, that would at least be a logical, coherent thing to say, although one might reasonably ask what evidence leads you to that conclusion. But suggesting that these accusations are credible and in the same breath implying that there's something nefarious about delaying the process based on them is just nonsense.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby asoban » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:04 pm UTC

Politicans would never make a mountain out of a molehill to accomplish their goals. /s

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby commodorejohn » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:08 pm UTC

Sure they would. But: that ain't a freaking molehill. Those are some serious gorram charges that (absent a really good reason to discount them out-of-hand) demand serious investigation.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Euphonium » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:08 pm UTC

commodorejohn wrote:But suggesting that these accusations are credible and in the same breath implying that there's something nefarious about delaying the process based on them is just nonsense.


Not if you think rape is OK or not a big deal.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:11 pm UTC

asoban wrote:Politicans would never make a mountain out of a molehill to accomplish their goals. /s


Certainly. However, if these allegations are true, they're fairly serious. Would you agree that, if true, they ought to disqualify from someone from a supreme court slot?

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby sardia » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:13 pm UTC

Euphonium wrote:
commodorejohn wrote:But suggesting that these accusations are credible and in the same breath implying that there's something nefarious about delaying the process based on them is just nonsense.


Not if you think rape is OK or not a big deal.

When you say rape, you make all those drunken white frat boys sound bad. It's easier to call the drunken women sluts and the boys being boys. And now you're in the alt right.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby eran_rathan » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:18 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:But there likely is a conspiracy by the Democrats to delay the nomination process, even if the accusations are true.


that, right there, is why you are a terrible human being.

"Oh, this guy probably attempted to rape a 15 year old, but its cool, because the Other Guys are trying to stop him from getting one of the most powerful jobs on the planet. Totally not fair to that guy."
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:21 pm UTC

eran_rathan wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:But there likely is a conspiracy by the Democrats to delay the nomination process, even if the accusations are true.


that, right there, is why you are a terrible human being.

"Oh, this guy probably attempted to rape a 15 year old, but its cool, because the Other Guys are trying to stop him from getting one of the most powerful jobs on the planet. Totally not fair to that guy."


Uh... what? I'm saying the conspiracy probably exists. I'm not saying the accusations are false. Like I said earlier, at this point I'm more heavily in the "Brett's probably a molester" camp and shouldn't be on the SCOTUS.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby SDK » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:26 pm UTC

His issue is in how you apparently define "conspiracy".
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Yablo » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:27 pm UTC

sardia wrote: you prefer Roy Moore levels of evidence? I'm guessing Cosby went way past the limit. I'm actually curious of your rankings of sexual misconduct cases among famous people. Is Al Franken a slam dunk case, but Justice Thomas's case total bullshit?

That's a little unnecessary. I do think Justice Thomas's case was at least mostly bullshit, and I don't believe Anita Hill is particularly credible. The Al Franken case is a little different. He shouldn't have done what he did, but he's always been a comedian. Sometimes people go too far for a joke.

Sableagle wrote:If an accusation has to be "95% likely true" before you accept it, do you ignore ten 94% credible accusations or note that 1 - (0.0610) is 99.99999999999939533824% and conclude that GREAT STINKING PILES OF EVIDENCE, BATMAN! Something happened!

I never gave any probabilities, but since you've assigned numbers to me ... No. You don't ignore any credible accusations regardless of probability, but you also don't accept them or give them added (and undue) credibility based solely on the number of other accusations.

SDK wrote:Don't want to pile on you too hard here, but do you have any examples of cases where multiple false accusations were piled on the same innocent person? I spent some time just now trying to find even one such case, but came up empty.

Well, I suppose citing the Salem Witch Trials, Spanish Inquisition, and McCarthy Hearings might be a little outdated. The McMartin Preschool trial is a bit iffy as well since most of the accusers were young children.

There was a 2017 article in the Journal of Forensic Psychology that found "approximately 5% of the allegations of rape [from 2006 to 2010, according to the FBI] were deemed false or baseless. That was at least five times higher than for most other offence types." I don't have any evidence to back up the feeling, but it seems easy enough to see how partisan politics and the funding of a major political party might increase that factor further.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:39 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Uh... what? I'm saying the conspiracy probably exists. I'm not saying the accusations are false. Like I said earlier, at this point I'm more heavily in the "Brett's probably a molester" camp and shouldn't be on the SCOTUS.


Perhaps, but that's a fairly loose usage of the word conspiracy. I think some degree of secretiveness is implied, and I think it's fairly obvious that the democrats aren't overly fond of republican justices. It's not really a conspiracy if it's people publicly doing exactly what you'd expect them to do.

And in any case, it's not the sort of conspiracy that would be necessary to explain the allegations as non-independent events. Pretty much orthagonal. Democrats are gonna oppose the republican candidate either way, so the fact that they are doesn't impinge credibility or prove/disprove anything.

Yablo wrote:I never gave any probabilities, but since you've assigned numbers to me ... No. You don't ignore any credible accusations regardless of probability, but you also don't accept them or give them added (and undue) credibility based solely on the number of other accusations.


Alright, I've been trying to avoid numbers in illustrating the principle at play here, but perhaps an example might help? Actual numbers unimportant, only the relationship between them matters.

If an event has a 20% chance of happening, sure, you're in the right to assume, without evidence, that it didn't(perhaps a five sided die rolled in a box, if one wishes to consider that instead of less savory possibilities). You'll be right 80% of the time, so it's the safe bet. But if you roll two dice, why, now the odds of one of those dice coming up 5 is 36%.

So long as the odds of each event are independent of the rest, more data points give you a better idea of the probable outcome. If there are a hundred dice in the box, I'll bet that one of them rolled a five, and will almost certainly be correct. It isn't proof, merely statistics, but statistics can be quite good.

This is still true, even if not quite so clean in terms of math if an event is only partially independent. Sure, one can argue that allegations are more likely to be revealed following an original accusation, but unless follow-on accusations are particularly likely to be false, then the combination of two still provides you with more data than either allegation alone would.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby SDK » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:43 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:Well, I suppose citing the Salem Witch Trials, Spanish Inquisition, and McCarthy Hearings might be a little outdated. The McMartin Preschool trial is a bit iffy as well since most of the accusers were young children.

Yeah, that one I did find, but it seemed that someone was leading the children to that conclusion rather than having them come forward themselves. Either way, like you said, not a great proof that this can even happen with adults in sexual assault cases.

Yablo wrote:There was a 2017 article in the Journal of Forensic Psychology that found "approximately 5% of the allegations of rape [from 2006 to 2010, according to the FBI] were deemed false or baseless. That was at least five times higher than for most other offence types." I don't have any evidence to back up the feeling, but it seems easy enough to see how partisan politics and the funding of a major political party might increase that factor further.

Seems very risky. No matter how evil you think the Democratic party might be, their supporters would not put up with that if it was found they were paying people to come up with false allegations. And what's the gain here? They have an outside chance of maybe, possibly delaying the SC candidate? It's more likely than not that the SC spot is going to a conservative either way. Why would they risk alienating their entire base of voters?
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Dauric » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:43 pm UTC

I think the question that could be of the most interest at the hearing isn't going to be direct queries about sexual molestation, but about excessive alcohol use. To my understanding at any rate both accusers have said Kavanaugh was drunk during both episodes, which raises the question of whether he's been 'blackout drunk', and under those circumstances gets sexually aggressive with no clear recollection of the events later.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Yablo » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:49 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:If an event has a 20% chance of happening, sure, you're in the right to assume, without evidence, that it didn't(perhaps a five sided die rolled in a box, if one wishes to consider that instead of less savory possibilities). You'll be right 80% of the time, so it's the safe bet. But if you roll two dice, why, now the odds of one of those dice coming up 5 is 36%.

So long as the odds of each event are independent of the rest, more data points give you a better idea of the probable outcome. If there are a hundred dice in the box, I'll bet that one of them rolled a five, and will almost certainly be correct. It isn't proof, merely statistics, but statistics can be quite good.

You're right that more dice (or accusations, if we assume all accusations have the same likelihood) will increase the chance that one or some hit the target numbers (or turn out to be true). I'm not arguing that point. I'm arguing that increasing the number of dice or accusations has no effect whatsoever on the individual result of any given die roll or accusation.

The accusations should be considered as a whole, yes, but not before they are considered individually. If there are 10 accusations, and we say "Ten! He must be guilty!," we're unfairly judging him. If, however, we look at them individually, we might see that only 1 is credible. In that case, yes, he's still guilty, but only guilty of the 1; not the 10.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:56 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:You're right that more dice (or accusations, if we assume all accusations have the same likelihood) will increase the chance that one or some hit the target numbers (or turn out to be true). I'm not arguing that point. I'm arguing that increasing the number of dice or accusations has no effect whatsoever on the individual result of any given die roll or accusation.

The accusations should be considered as a whole, yes, but not before they are considered individually. If there are 10 accusations, and we say "Ten! He must be guilty!," we're unfairly judging him. If, however, we look at them individually, we might see that only 1 is credible. In that case, yes, he's still guilty, but only guilty of the 1; not the 10.


That is fair, though a particularly credible accusation(s) would make one someone more likely to give credence to even somewhat less credible cases. Criminal acts are not distributed randomly throughout the populace. Many crimes are clustered onto relatively few repeat offenders. In short, if I know a person has committed a given criminal act before, I will be more inclined to believe that they may have done so again.

How much more depends on type of crime. In general, this effect should be stronger with crimes with high recidivism rates.

So, while Ford's particular case is still lacking on hard evidence, the existence of more credible claims coming afterward actually strengthens her case.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby idonno » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:57 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:If an event has a 20% chance of happening, sure, you're in the right to assume, without evidence, that it didn't(perhaps a five sided die rolled in a box, if one wishes to consider that instead of less savory possibilities). You'll be right 80% of the time, so it's the safe bet. But if you roll two dice, why, now the odds of one of those dice coming up 5 is 36%.

So long as the odds of each event are independent of the rest, more data points give you a better idea of the probable outcome. If there are a hundred dice in the box, I'll bet that one of them rolled a five, and will almost certainly be correct. It isn't proof, merely statistics, but statistics can be quite good.

You're right that more dice (or accusations, if we assume all accusations have the same likelihood) will increase the chance that one or some hit the target numbers (or turn out to be true). I'm not arguing that point. I'm arguing that increasing the number of dice or accusations has no effect whatsoever on the individual result of any given die roll or accusation.

The accusations should be considered as a whole, yes, but not before they are considered individually. If there are 10 accusations, and we say "Ten! He must be guilty!," we're unfairly judging him. If, however, we look at them individually, we might see that only 1 is credible. In that case, yes, he's still guilty, but only guilty of the 1; not the 10.


Except a pattern of behavior increases the probability of an individual instance of that behavior being true and an increase in accusations increases the probability of there being a pattern of behavior.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Yablo » Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:01 pm UTC

SDK wrote:Seems very risky. No matter how evil you think the Democratic party might be, their supporters would not put up with that if it was found they were paying people to come up with false allegations. And what's the gain here? They have an outside chance of maybe, possibly delaying the SC candidate? It's more likely than not that the SC spot is going to a conservative either way. Why would they risk alienating their entire base of voters?

I may be a Republican, but I don't think the Democratic party is evil. Nor do I think the Republican party is necessarily significantly more good. I agree Democrats in general wouldn't stand for that sort of thing any more than Republicans would. My point was more that a major political party with a strong enough motivation (like keeping an opposing ideology from gaining a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court) might be a little more enthusiastic about turning up anything and everything they can spin regardless of credibility.
idonno wrote:Except a pattern of behavior increases the probability of an individual instance of that behavior being true and an increase in accusations increases the probability of there being a pattern of behavior.

Which is why I don't discount the value of taking them as a group. I still think they need to be independently assessed first before taken as a whole though. Ten very credible accusations should carry at least as much weight as one hundred accusations of which eight or nine are truly credible.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby SDK » Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:40 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:I may be a Republican, but I don't think the Democratic party is evil. Nor do I think the Republican party is necessarily significantly more good. I agree Democrats in general wouldn't stand for that sort of thing any more than Republicans would. My point was more that a major political party with a strong enough motivation (like keeping an opposing ideology from gaining a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court) might be a little more enthusiastic about turning up anything and everything they can spin regardless of credibility.

Okay, so I think this is you agreeing that it's unlikely the Democratic party is paying the accusers, at least.

If they're not paying for it, I'm a little confused how you think they might be orchestrating this thing, though. You say they might be "a little more enthusiastic about turning up anything and everything they can spin regardless of credibility". What does that look like in real life here? I'm having trouble envisioning a hired investigator who could "turn up" with people that are willing to come forward with false accusations. Did this hypothetical investigator start cold calling old classmates with the hopes that one of them might tell a story if they're prodded about Kavanaugh enough?
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby sardia » Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:41 pm UTC

yablo,
What's wrong with the Anita Hill case? It's a close analog, with arguably stronger evidence of male revenge after being denied sex.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Yablo » Tue Sep 25, 2018 10:05 pm UTC

SDK wrote:If they're not paying for it, I'm a little confused how you think they might be orchestrating this thing, though. You say they might be "a little more enthusiastic about turning up anything and everything they can spin regardless of credibility". What does that look like in real life here? I'm having trouble envisioning a hired investigator who could "turn up" with people that are willing to come forward with false accusations. Did this hypothetical investigator start cold calling old classmates with the hopes that one of them might tell a story if they're prodded about Kavanaugh enough?

I was referring to this article in the Washington Examiner as an example; specifically this quote from ABC journalist Lauren Pearle: "I would really appreciate any leads on Kavanaugh. Hopefully, the truth will emerge.*” She's looking for leads which I would expect a journalist to do, but her phrasing comes off like she's already decided he's guilty. It sounds like she and some of the others quoted are trying to get any story they can to come out, true or not, to support Dr. Ford because they just know she's telling the truth.

Granted, those are a journalist and a couple alumni of Dr. Ford's school rather than Democratic lawmakers, but most national news outlets these days don't do much to hide their liberal and Democratic biases.

sardia wrote:yablo,
What's wrong with the Anita Hill case? It's a close analog, with arguably stronger evidence of male revenge after being denied sex.

There are several things that have made me question Anita Hill's credibility. Her story just never really seemed to hold together. For example:
  • She followed him from the Department of Education to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission despite her allegations.
  • She tried to make her accusations under cover of anonymity both from the public and Thomas.
  • On at least two occasions, she refused to be interviewed by the FBI regarding her accusations.
  • A dozen or so women who had worked with Thomas testified to his character while only Hill and a few "witnesses" who were later discredited testified against it.
  • In the nearly 30 years since the alleged incident, on one else (that I know of) has ever made a similar accusation of Thomas.

* Emphasis mine.

ETA: Hill also was proven to have lied when she said she never called Thomas after she stopped working for him while her phone records show she did many times.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Euphonium » Tue Sep 25, 2018 10:16 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:I was referring to this article in the Washington Examiner


For the record, this is the point at which it became apparent that there's no need to take you seriously.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby MartianInvader » Wed Sep 26, 2018 2:28 am UTC

Euphonium wrote:
Yablo wrote:I was referring to this article in the Washington Examiner


For the record, this is the point at which it became apparent that there's no need to take you seriously.

That's much harsher than necessary. I'd simply say that claiming that looking for truth implies a liberal bias? It doesn't sound like a critique of the left to many of us.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby sardia » Wed Sep 26, 2018 3:08 am UTC

Did we skip over Kavanaugh's credibility issues during his denials? Example
1. Instead of saying he didn't rape her at the party, which is hard to prove, he went with "I don't drink, I don't fuck, and I was never there".
Why would he make such absolute claims that are easily questioned especially when his yearbook and his associates imply that he's just short of an alcoholic frat boy? https://twitter.com/NateSilver538/statu ... 2631233536
How well sourced is his drinking problem? And will this be a sticking point during the hearing? Or is this solely going to rely on he said she said?

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby addams » Wed Sep 26, 2018 3:45 am UTC

Kavanaugh is Not the kind of man we need at the top.
Trump is Not the kind of man we need at the top.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby commodorejohn » Wed Sep 26, 2018 3:57 am UTC

sardia wrote:And will this be a sticking point during the hearing?

Don't worry, Chuck Grassley is going to limit questions to five minutes apiece so they should hardly even have time to get to that!

What an absolute farce.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby SDK » Wed Sep 26, 2018 1:53 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:I was referring to this article in the Washington Examiner as an example; specifically this quote from ABC journalist Lauren Pearle: "I would really appreciate any leads on Kavanaugh. Hopefully, the truth will emerge.*” She's looking for leads which I would expect a journalist to do, but her phrasing comes off like she's already decided he's guilty. It sounds like she and some of the others quoted are trying to get any story they can to come out, true or not, to support Dr. Ford because they just know she's telling the truth.

Granted, those are a journalist and a couple alumni of Dr. Ford's school rather than Democratic lawmakers, but most national news outlets these days don't do much to hide their liberal and Democratic biases.

Okay, that makes some sense. I can see why you'd think that, and I also have no doubt that many partisan Democrats would run with an accusation of sexual assault in an attempt to discredit a conservative judge headed for the Supreme Court.

What I don't get is why that, in itself, should make the accusation less likely to be true? I certainly would not expect a journalist to start grilling an alleged victim in any deeper way. Apart from confirming that their story could be true (for example, confirming that they did go to the same school), I don't see what else that journalist should be doing. Every sexual assault accusation could be false, but you brought up the numbers yourself - it's very likely that they're true, and I think that holds in these cases too, partisan politics or not.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Tyndmyr » Wed Sep 26, 2018 2:07 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:I was referring to this article in the Washington Examiner as an example; specifically this quote from ABC journalist Lauren Pearle: "I would really appreciate any leads on Kavanaugh. Hopefully, the truth will emerge.*” She's looking for leads which I would expect a journalist to do, but her phrasing comes off like she's already decided he's guilty. It sounds like she and some of the others quoted are trying to get any story they can to come out, true or not, to support Dr. Ford because they just know she's telling the truth.

Granted, those are a journalist and a couple alumni of Dr. Ford's school rather than Democratic lawmakers, but most national news outlets these days don't do much to hide their liberal and Democratic biases.


That's likely. A lot of reporters are definitely biased one way or the other. But there's a large leap to launching a false accusation because a reporter has a bit of bias. I would imagine that any connection would be fairly weak. Plus, overtly biased reporters cover all sorts of things, so it probably doesn't represent a delta vs any other time.

sardia wrote:Did we skip over Kavanaugh's credibility issues during his denials? Example
1. Instead of saying he didn't rape her at the party, which is hard to prove, he went with "I don't drink, I don't fuck, and I was never there".
Why would he make such absolute claims that are easily questioned especially when his yearbook and his associates imply that he's just short of an alcoholic frat boy? https://twitter.com/NateSilver538/statu ... 2631233536
How well sourced is his drinking problem? And will this be a sticking point during the hearing? Or is this solely going to rely on he said she said?


That's a good point. Significant alcohol problems, if they still exist, ought to be reason for concern entirely by themselves, even apart from the other accusations.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Sableagle » Wed Sep 26, 2018 2:52 pm UTC

How hard would it be to find out how much he drinks now?

In reading down that Twitter thread, I found a "what he should have said" thing with a rather peculiar paragraph:
Over half of my law clerks have been women. These women have been some of the brightest and hardest working clerks I have ever had.
Unless he's had one heck of a lot of clerks that weren't law clerks, that's hardly a ringing endorsement, is it? Over half of his law clerks have been some of the brightest clerks he's ever had.

I consider myself one of the brightest 2.5 billion men on the planet ... and that's actually more of an endorsement of myself than "he should have made" of those clerks.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby SecondTalon » Wed Sep 26, 2018 2:57 pm UTC

Nah, that's just a "I'm not racist, I have several black friends" statement.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby natraj » Wed Sep 26, 2018 3:37 pm UTC

the third woman has gone public with her statement.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby asoban » Wed Sep 26, 2018 4:31 pm UTC

After reading Swetnick's statement, I'm moving Ford to be a supporting statement towards that. Ford has issues with non-specificity and such which are helpfully moved along by Swetnick. Assuming for a moment that she is able to produce the witnesses that she mentions, I'm not sure that Kavanaugh's current defense is going to hold up. He's going to have to introduce more witnesses of his own, including but not limited to Judge. Given how I read him, I think he might be able to come up with them. Kavanaugh's not sunk yet, but assuming that Swetnick comes through, I think he's got some serious leaks.

So what would it take for Kavanaugh to beat this? I think that at this point he needs more witnesses on his side. He also needs for Swetnick to not come through with the witnesses that she says she has. If both sides provide witnesses, then it's probably a coin flip.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby sardia » Wed Sep 26, 2018 4:34 pm UTC

asoban wrote:After reading Swetnick's statement, I'm moving Ford to be a supporting statement towards that. Ford has issues with non-specificity and such which are helpfully moved along by Swetnick. Assuming for a moment that she is able to produce the witnesses that she mentions, I'm not sure that Kavanaugh's current defense is going to hold up. He's going to have to introduce more witnesses of his own, including but not limited to Judge. Given how I read him, I think he might be able to come up with them. Kavanaugh's not sunk yet, but assuming that Swetnick comes through, I think he's got some serious leaks.

So what would it take for Kavanaugh to beat this? I think that at this point he needs more witnesses on his side. He also needs for Swetnick to not come through with the witnesses that she says she has. If both sides provide witnesses, then it's probably a coin flip.

Decline to give any more testimony besides he said she said. Then Rush the confirmation with a Friday vote into Tuesday full confirmation. Hope the independent voters forget and hope the base remembers.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby asoban » Wed Sep 26, 2018 4:45 pm UTC

If Swetnick comes through with witnesses, it's not he said she said anymore. If they don't get Swetnick and her witnesses up to the Senate to give evidence before they vote, then it will be a horrid miscarriage of justice and I'll be with the lynch mob that says he shouldn't be on the court. (That said, if the Senate gives them time and Swetnick and co don't show up that would be problematic for the accusations.)

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Yablo » Wed Sep 26, 2018 4:56 pm UTC

Euphonium wrote:For the record, this is the point at which it became apparent that there's no need to take you seriously.

Also for the record, this is the point at which it became apparent you aren't particularly interested in civil discussion, and so there's no need to take you seriously either.

sardia wrote:Did we skip over Kavanaugh's credibility issues during his denials? Example
1. Instead of saying he didn't rape her at the party, which is hard to prove, he went with "I don't drink, I don't fuck, and I was never there".
Why would he make such absolute claims that are easily questioned especially when his yearbook and his associates imply that he's just short of an alcoholic frat boy? https://twitter.com/NateSilver538/statu ... 2631233536
How well sourced is his drinking problem? And will this be a sticking point during the hearing? Or is this solely going to rely on he said she said?

These are valid, relevant, and important questions. I would like to see evidence fall squarely on one side or the other, and preferably (for the benefit of all involved) for that evidence to clear him. I doubt anything that comes out in the next day or two will be enough to draw many people away from the direction they are currently leaning, though.

addams wrote:Kavanaugh is Not the kind of man we need at the top.
Trump is Not the kind of man we need at the top.

To your first point, I'm not completely convinced either way at the moment. To your second point, I wholeheartedly and respectfully disagree.

SDK wrote:Okay, that makes some sense. I can see why you'd think that, and I also have no doubt that many partisan Democrats would run with an accusation of sexual assault in an attempt to discredit a conservative judge headed for the Supreme Court.

What I don't get is why that, in itself, should make the accusation less likely to be true? I certainly would not expect a journalist to start grilling an alleged victim in any deeper way. Apart from confirming that their story could be true (for example, confirming that they did go to the same school), I don't see what else that journalist should be doing. Every sexual assault accusation could be false, but you brought up the numbers yourself - it's very likely that they're true, and I think that holds in these cases too, partisan politics or not.

I wasn't presenting that as support for the idea any given accusation would be less likely to be true. It was mostly support for my impression that some on the left care more about getting any possible accusations out, true or not. If their efforts draw out true and credible accusations, that can only be good, but I'm not convinced that justice is the only goal.

SecondTalon wrote:Nah, that's just a "I'm not racist, I have several black friends" statement.

Pretty much, yeah. It doesn't necessarily mean it's untrue, and he may have meant it to be a stronger endorsement than it ended up being, but either way, it's virtually meaningless.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Sableagle » Wed Sep 26, 2018 5:12 pm UTC

natraj wrote:the third woman has gone public with her statement.

"Articles by this author" link at the bottom of that:
Here’s what’s happening in Trump’s America:

Palo Alto University professor Christine Blasey Ford is scheduled to testify Thursday morning about her sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. But before Ford and Kavanaugh utter one word in that hearing, Republicans have already set a schedule that put Kavanaugh on course to be confirmed to the Supreme Court by early next week.

Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) has scheduled a vote on Kavanaugh in the Judiciary Committee Friday at 9:30 a.m.

Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has warned senators they should stay in town over the weekend to vote, ending the debate on Kavanaugh’s nomination. This would allow for the full Senate to vote on his nomination by early next week.

Democrats are pointing to these moves by the GOP as evidence it is not taking Thursday’s testimony seriously and its members have already made up their minds to vote to confirm Kavanaugh.


"Let's just vote him in already," eh? That or "Let's vote him in before anyone else makes any statements." Either way, that seems like "Fuck whether it's true or not! Get him in the SC!"

Also in that article there's a line about the all-male Republicans of the Judiciary Committee getting a female counsel from a Special Victims Unit who has experience with sexual assault cases to question Ford rather than doing it themselves. I'd call that surprisingly decent of them and proof they're collectively better people than Brett('s alleged to be). To some, it's a sign they're not taking their responsibilities seriously? More likely it's a sign they're wise enough not to set themselves up to look like Evil Kirk.

Spoiler for Evil Kirk Is Evil and so's Billy:
Spoiler:
http://trekkiefeminist.tumblr.com/post/86238288477/tos-1x4-the-enemy-within

For the purposes of this review, I won’t be referring to the two sides as “Good Kirk” and “Evil Kirk”, since I don’t think that’d be totally accurate (more on that later).

Instead, meet “Dry Kirk”:
And “Sweaty Kirk”:

The next scene is truly disturbing, as Sweaty Kirk - actually I’m cool calling him Evil Kirk at this point - attempts to rape Janice Rand. When she lets him into her quarters, she of course doesn’t know it’s not normal Kirk.

Kirk: You’re too beautiful to ignore. Too much woman. We’ve both been pretending too long. (grabs her) Stop pretending. Let’s stop pretending. Come here, Janice. Don’t fight me. Don’t fight me, Janice. (kisses her)

Rand: Captain!

Kirk: Just a minute, Janice. Just a minute!


Kirk forces Janice to the ground and she scratches his face and runs for the door, with Kirk trying to grab her from behind. She sees a crewman in the corridor and shouts for him to get Mr. Spock. Evil Kirk flees.

So here’s the scene that mainly explains why I don’t think “Good Kirk” is accurate. When Dry Kirk hears he’s accused of attacking Rand, he totally disbelieves it and goes to Sickbay to question her. And Spock and McCoy let him, even though it’s totally inappropriate. Not believing her is bad enough, but when the crewman, Fisher, corroborates her story, Kirk gets angry at him.

Grace Lee Whitney does a fabulous job acting in this second really disturbing scene where Rand is clearly traumatized and conflicted.

Rand: Yeoman. I was in my room. It wasn’t me.

Rand: Sir, Fisher saw you, too.

Kirk: Fisher saw?

Rand: If it hadn’t been. I can understand. I don’t want to get you into trouble. I wouldn’t have even mentioned it!

Kirk: It wasn’t me!

Fisher: It was you, sir.

Kirk: Do you know what you’re saying?

Fisher: Yes, I know what I’m saying.


Spock is the one who realizes there’s an impostor aboard, but he doesn’t say anything until he’s sent Janice back to her quarters, because that seems smart to just send her home without even someone to be close by if she needs help.

At this point we know: Sweaty Kirk = violent, drunkard, rapist; Dry Kirk = self-centred, kind of a jerk.

Spock’s comment says leaders aren’t allowed to show weakness, and it plays into a damaging narrative that “real men” don’t show “weakness” (often meaning not allowed to express normal emotion or admit they need help, as Dry Kirk clearly does).

The other really problematic thing this episode says is the dark side of Kirk is the side that keeps him strong, that helps him make decisions, that gets him respect - that makes him a good masculine leader. From this point in the episode, Dry Kirk gets more and more indecisive (he’s supposed to be figuring out how to rescue the others left on the quickly freezing planet) and it’s made clear both sides need to be reintegrated to be a good leader.

It’s a disturbing message, because you just showed that same dark side trying to rape his female subordinate, and the side that’s supposedly more moral being more concerned about himself than her after she’s attacked.

A bit later, after Sweaty Kirk is captured and they’re trying to figure out how to reintegrate the two, Spock expostulates more on this idea that the negative side is necessary. In his comments, it’s also implied that the traits we’ve seen in Sweaty Kirk (including his desire to rape, which Spock refers to as “lust”) - that Kirk’s “negative side traits” are natural for human men.

Spock: We have here an unusual opportunity to appraise the human mind, or to examine, in Earth terms, the roles of good and evil in a man. His negative side, which you call hostility, lust, violence, and his positive side, which Earth people express as compassion, love, tenderness…and what is it that makes one man an exceptional leader? We see indications that it’s his negative side which makes him strong, that his evil side, if you will, properly controlled and disciplined, is vital to his strength. Your negative side removed from you, the power of command begins to elude you.

"Just a minute?" "Just a second! Shut up." from Higher Learning {Trigger warning for the fact it's a rape scene.}
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0708463/trivia

Grace Lee Whitney was very unhappy about the last scene of this episode, in which Spock asks Yeoman Rand, if "the impostor had some very interesting qualities, wouldn't you say, yeoman?". In her autobiography, she wrote: "I can't imagine any more cruel and insensitive comment a man (or Vulcan) could make to a woman who has just been through a sexual assault! But then, some men really do think that women want to be raped. So the writer of the script (ostensibly Richard Matheson - although the line could have been added by Gene Roddenberry or an assistant scribe) gives us a leering Mr. Spock who suggests that Yeoman Rand enjoyed being raped and found the evil Kirk attractive!" Despite this, Whitney enjoyed this episode. "I love "The Enemy Within" because it gave me a chance to really react and act with Bill Shatner. I love it! I loved the whole concept of him breaking into two characters because that really was what Kirk and Rand were about. There were two sides of Kirk and two sides of Rand. Rand was there to be of service to him but she was also in love with him. But she knew she mustn't go over-go the boundaries."

According to Grace Lee Whitney, while shooting the scene when a distraught, tearful Janice Rand accuses Captain Kirk of trying to rape her, William Shatner slapped her across the face to get her to register the proper emotion. As they shot the rape scene days earlier, Whitney couldn't get into the same emotion successfully, and it was Shatner's "solution" to the problem.

Leo Penn praised Shatner's performance. "William Shatner's a very good actor and gave a very good performance... I had a good time on that show."


So next time you see some slimeball calling someone "a weak beta male" in the YouTube comments for speaking out against sexual assault, you know where he got the idea that any man who doesn't rape his female subordinates is weak, indecisive and unfit for leadership positions, and that "real men" have a good time watching that sort of stuff (in a fictional setting).

"Real men" give me the creeping heebie-jeebies.


yablo wrote:I would like to see evidence fall squarely on one side or the other, and preferably (for the benefit of all involved) for that evidence to clear him.

I wasn't presenting that as support for the idea any given accusation would be less likely to be true. It was mostly support for my impression that some on the left care more about getting any possible accusations out, true or not.
So, for the benefit of all involved, you'd like evidence that dismissing accusations of sexual assault at parties and calling women liars when they say they were attacked is a good and just course of action in this particular case and that nobody should believe Ford if she makes any further claims about having been attacked or threatened or followed home or surveilled, and also that if anyone to the left of Tom Tancredo and Virgil Goode says someone to the right of wherever they are on the spectrum is attacking someone they're just stirring shit for political reasons and whatever they're saying, like pretty much the whole Police Misbehaviour Thread, can be ignored?

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Diemo » Wed Sep 26, 2018 5:15 pm UTC

Yablo wrote: specifically this quote from ABC journalist Lauren Pearle: "I would really appreciate any leads on Kavanaugh. Hopefully, the truth will emerge.*” She's looking for leads which I would expect a journalist to do, but her phrasing comes off like she's already decided he's guilty. It sounds like she and some of the others quoted are trying to get any story they can to come out, true or not, to support Dr. Ford because they just know she's telling the truth.


Saying that you hope the truth will emerge is the opposite of deciding that he is already guilty, it is saying that there is not enough evidence to decide that he is guilty or innocent and you hope that more evidence (which could go either way) will emerge to clear up the matter. I find it pretty telling that you think someone calling for the truth has decided that Kavanaugh is already guilty - could it be because you already think he is guilty and therefore the truth will not exonerate him?

It was mostly support for my impression that some on the left care more about getting any possible accusations out, true or not. If their efforts draw out true and credible accusations, that can only be good, but I'm not convinced that justice is the only goal.


Your impression is completely wrong. In general, people currently on the left care about the truth, while people on the right currently don't*. Stop projecting.

*I have plenty of evidence that people on the right intrinsically don't care about the truth - from McConnell in the US to Orban in Hungary to the Brexit vote in Britain, the right has lied and lied and lied, yet still get elected. I have less evidence that people on the left care about the truth - however fake news is a right wing phenomena - there is very little fake news on the left in comparison to the right. So this is weak evidence that the left cares about the truth.
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Re: Trump presidency

Postby sardia » Wed Sep 26, 2018 5:24 pm UTC

If we were to bet on McConnell's game plan, is he hoping to force kavanaugh through, or hoping they vote him down? I'm thinking take Mitch at his word: he wants kavanaugh in scotus. 75% chance. 20% this is a ploy to end the circus with a new conservative judge. 5% wildcard.

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Re: Trump presidency

Postby Tyndmyr » Wed Sep 26, 2018 5:42 pm UTC

Yablo wrote:
addams wrote:Kavanaugh is Not the kind of man we need at the top.
Trump is Not the kind of man we need at the top.

To your first point, I'm not completely convinced either way at the moment. To your second point, I wholeheartedly and respectfully disagree.


Well, I think we're all mostly in agreement that at this point, Kav needs some allegations to be investigated to be a reasonable nominee. If found innocent, cool. If the republicans want to bet on him being clean vs finding another nominee, well, that's a strategic question. At a minimum, I think they'd be well served by casting about for someone else, but hey. Not my call.

I'm more interested in your apparent support of Trump. What makes Trump, in your opinion, the sort of man we need?


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