24 votes

Democratic Debate #2 Thread (Night 2)

welcome to debate #2, night 2. with night one out of the way, and the expectations set by our first night of candidates, we turn to a much more diverse, much more ideologically separated group of candidates ranging from asian-american technocrat andrew yang to moderate-progressives african-americans in booker and harris, and from berniecrat-type tulsi gabbard to solidly moderate joe biden. it seems likely that we'll see more fireworks today than we did last night, especially given CNN's adversarial lines of questioning in the first night. as always, here are all the details you'd ever need, and probably then some:

i recommend you sort by newest first (or order posted) instead of the default since this thread will likely be semi-active and covering a live event.

How to Watch:

The debate each night will start at 8 p.m. ET and last two hours.
TV broadcast: CNN
Free online stream: CNN.com, CNN apps
Additional coverage: CBS News, NBC News

CNN's stream is here.

The Candidates:

The second Democratic presidential debate: July 30-31, 2019

~ Night 1 (Tuesday, July 30): Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, author Marianne Williamson, former Maryland Rep. John Delaney, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan, and Montana Gov. Steve Bullock. ~
Night 2 (Wednesday, July 31): Former Vice President Joe Biden, California Sen. Kamala Harris, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, former HUD Secretary Julián Castro, business leader Andrew Yang, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, and Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet.

The Rules:

A candidate "who consistently interrupts" on Tuesday and Wednesday nights will be penalized by having his or her time reduced.
Campaign representatives have also been told there will be no "lightning round"-type questions requiring a show of hands or one word responses.
The debate will be moderated by Dana Bash, Don Lemon and Jake Tapper. Each of the 10 candidates each night will be allowed to make brief opening and closing statements, the network said.

The Analysis:

NPR has 5 questions for this debate:

  1. Will there be any distinctions drawn between Sanders and Warren?
  2. Will some of the air be taken out of Sanders' sails because Biden isn't onstage?
  3. How is race raised?
  4. Who breaks out?
  5. Without hand-raising, will we get answers that are as clear?

other pre-debate analysis pieces that may be pertinent to you:

Aftermath of Night One:

Expectations for Night Two:

109 comments

  1. [6]
    reese
    Link
    Speaking to healthcare, last time I used my employer-based insurance, I had to pay $800 so a doctor could provide me with no definitive answer regarding a worsening fleet of symptoms I continue to...

    Speaking to healthcare, last time I used my employer-based insurance, I had to pay $800 so a doctor could provide me with no definitive answer regarding a worsening fleet of symptoms I continue to experience. Obviously I have to seek a second opinion soon, but what will that cost? Any talking point that centers around retaining employer-based insurance can kiss my ass. That's great for health insurance companies—not people.

    20 votes
    1. [4]
      Amarok
      Link Parent
      The last time I used it, I had a ten pound lipoma removed from my left shoulder/back area. It was 18cm x 24cm x 10cm. It was also causing me shoulder pain and swelling up whenever I did a lot of...

      The last time I used it, I had a ten pound lipoma removed from my left shoulder/back area. It was 18cm x 24cm x 10cm. It was also causing me shoulder pain and swelling up whenever I did a lot of work with my arms up past my shoulders. They tried to tell me it was a 'cosmetic issue' and deny treatment. Obamacare's preventative treatment clause put that denial to rest. By then it was pressing on my spine and every doctor I saw said it had to go, and now.

      The best part was that I had to be copied in on every transaction between the hospital (which did a truly exemplary job removing it) and the insurance companies. This exchange lasted for three fucking years before the hospital finally got paid. They spent far more on the bullshit paperwork than they did on the surgery, which took less than an hour and a mere two followup visits.

      17 votes
      1. [3]
        mike10010100
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        I am still dealing with the fact that my insurance keeps denying me required testing on my foot, which is causing me issues even today, and I have relatively good insurance! The discussion of "how...

        I am still dealing with the fact that my insurance keeps denying me required testing on my foot, which is causing me issues even today, and I have relatively good insurance!

        The discussion of "how could you rip people's healthcare away from them" is a line of argument from someone who has absolutely no idea how real people interact with the healthcare industry.

        EDIT: I literally just got finished with the orthopedic appointment I scheduled today, and every single person in the office was so frustrated and apologetic, stating that insurance across the board is getting less and less willing to pay out and more and more expensive, making the jobs of doctors and their support staff more and more difficult.

        The fact that some people's solution to this is "well the private healthcare industry isn't that bad" makes me infuriated. CNN and its moderators who clearly don't know how real people interact with insurance should be ashamed of using such a blatantly disingenuous argument in their questions.

        The whole thing is a sham, and at this point I'm standing fully behind the candidates who want to completely abolish the private healthcare system, if for no other reason than the for-profit system does absolutely nothing that it's supposed to do.

        10 votes
        1. [2]
          Amarok
          Link Parent
          My own preference is for the government to offer a platinum plan for $0 and let people opt-in to that plan, or not, as they choose. That plan will clean the cruft out of the market in a big damn...

          My own preference is for the government to offer a platinum plan for $0 and let people opt-in to that plan, or not, as they choose. That plan will clean the cruft out of the market in a big damn hurry. The other plans that survive will probably build on the government plan, or offer new health coverage that the government isn't offering yet. Who knows what those plans will look like in fifty years with new medical tech? If there's a marketplace, at least plans can evolve without having to go through the government first. I think that's important to preserve.

          However, if the current industry wishes to continue fighting and refusing to change, I'm willing to see the private health insurance industry end by fiat because they are obstructing and essentially committing capital crimes in the process. I have no sympathy for them and their gruesomely perverted market segment when other countries are managing their health care on socialist principles just fine. We know it can work that way.

          4 votes
          1. mike10010100
            Link Parent
            But the thing is that insurance only works when enough people buy in. If you have most people being driven towards the $0 "platinum plan" that covers nearly everything, then other plans will...

            But the thing is that insurance only works when enough people buy in. If you have most people being driven towards the $0 "platinum plan" that covers nearly everything, then other plans will simply be too expensive for anyone except the ultra-rich to buy into. And who does that benefit except the ultra-rich? Where is the incentive to bring this new coverage into the public option?

            1 vote
    2. spit-evil-olive-tips
      Link Parent
      I have what I thought was good, employer-provided insurance. I had a minor hospital stay about a year ago, the hospital was in-network but the ER in the exact same building was not. I had to pay...

      I have what I thought was good, employer-provided insurance. I had a minor hospital stay about a year ago, the hospital was in-network but the ER in the exact same building was not. I had to pay ~$1500 out-of-pocket for those few hours in the ER.

      8 votes
  2. [15]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. [14]
      AnthonyB
      Link Parent
      Does anyone know why we still have crowds during nationally televised debates? Moderators are constantly trying to keep them in check with the applauses, politicians clearly play to the room, and...

      Does anyone know why we still have crowds during nationally televised debates? Moderators are constantly trying to keep them in check with the applauses, politicians clearly play to the room, and the crowd response could sway the viewers at home. Are they just a relic of tradition? Or is it some form of transparency where networks can rely on the hundreds in attendance to somehow prove that everything was broadcast without editing or some other form of manipulation?

      8 votes
      1. [13]
        alyaza
        Link Parent
        probably tradition or some equally asinine reason.

        probably tradition or some equally asinine reason.

        2 votes
        1. [8]
          Amarok
          Link Parent
          I think the debates were in better hands when they were being run by the league of women voters. Those days are long gone now. I'd like to see a long-form debate, with five minutes to answer, a...

          I think the debates were in better hands when they were being run by the league of women voters. Those days are long gone now.

          I'd like to see a long-form debate, with five minutes to answer, a panel of 20 fact checkers holding everyone's feet to the fire in real time, run by a panel of celebs from both sides of the aisle (please get Jon Stewart and Penn Jillette in there). Set them up with no audience, seated in comfy chairs in a semicircle. Dig deep enough to find out who knows their shit and who is just spouting platitudes. I don't expect the political parties to ever allow something like that to happen, though. It'll shatter their narratives.

          13 votes
          1. [7]
            acdw
            Link Parent
            100% this -- I remember thinking last night that I really wish someone would hold a debate that was like, a whole afternoon, with free-ranging discussion that naturally drifted from one topic to...

            100% this -- I remember thinking last night that I really wish someone would hold a debate that was like, a whole afternoon, with free-ranging discussion that naturally drifted from one topic to another. It could be live-streamed nowadays.

            Of course, someone like Joe Rogan would be the one who'd do it, and I think that's a bad idea. And few candidates would want to participate. But it's my pie in the sky dream.

            3 votes
            1. [6]
              Amarok
              Link Parent
              I'd have Joe hanging around doing pre/post interviews. He'd be far better at making that chit chat interesting than trying to wrangle a debate panel. :P

              I'd have Joe hanging around doing pre/post interviews. He'd be far better at making that chit chat interesting than trying to wrangle a debate panel. :P

              2 votes
              1. [5]
                acdw
                Link Parent
                Yeah maybe -- to be honest, I haven't listened to Rogan, but I've heard enough about his non-challenging of far-right politicians/provacateurs that I'm not super interested in hearing what he has...

                Yeah maybe -- to be honest, I haven't listened to Rogan, but I've heard enough about his non-challenging of far-right politicians/provacateurs that I'm not super interested in hearing what he has to say.

                3 votes
                1. [4]
                  Amarok
                  Link Parent
                  Joe doesn't have much of a dog in politics. He'll interview anyone, about anything, and not give a fuck in the slightest. Hell, half of his podcasts are just jock humor and talking about random...

                  Joe doesn't have much of a dog in politics. He'll interview anyone, about anything, and not give a fuck in the slightest. Hell, half of his podcasts are just jock humor and talking about random bullshit for hours on end - they are kinda fun depending on who the guests are. I've seen people describe him as alt-right just because he's had a handful of alt-right nutjobs on his podcast. There's not much you can do about people who leap to snap judgements like that. Most of his guests (over 1300 shows now) aren't political at all. He spends more time on UFOs than politics.

                  2 votes
                  1. [3]
                    acdw
                    Link Parent
                    Thanks for the reply. I'm glad to know that it's not quite so insane as I've heard on the internet. (Is anything quite so insane?)

                    Thanks for the reply. I'm glad to know that it's not quite so insane as I've
                    heard on the internet.

                    (Is anything quite so insane?)

                    2 votes
                    1. [2]
                      Amarok
                      Link Parent
                      I can relate. I'd picked up the whiff that he was alt-right somewhere on reddit and was kinda avoiding him, until Sturgill Simpson landed on his podcast. I wasn't going to pass up on Sturgill just...

                      I can relate. I'd picked up the whiff that he was alt-right somewhere on reddit and was kinda avoiding him, until Sturgill Simpson landed on his podcast. I wasn't going to pass up on Sturgill just because it was Rogan. Then I watched a couple more, and it's just some guy (who isn't a genius, or an idiot) and his friends interviewing whoever for a couple hours.

                      Lately they've been more into looking things up and fact checking, Joe's learning the value of calling bullshit and following evidence (something he was poor at in the pre-800 block of shows). Heck, Ben Shapiro didn't have a good time on there, Joe roasted his ass over some of his more conservative views regarding gender issues and really ruffled the right's feathers - to which Joe just laughs when it comes up. I enjoyed that immensely. Anyone giving people shit over their gender or sexual preference is a piss poor libertarian.

                      It's just a silly, exceptionally long talk show, everything else is projecting. He does boast an audience in the tens of millions somehow. It's not that different to Howard Stern back in the day.

                      3 votes
                      1. acdw
                        Link Parent
                        This sounds much better. Thanks for the clarification! Maybe I should check out an episode or two -- I do like me some Sturgill Simpson.

                        Joe's learning the value of calling bullshit and following evidence

                        This sounds much better. Thanks for the clarification! Maybe I should check
                        out an episode or two -- I do like me some Sturgill Simpson.

                        1 vote
        2. [4]
          NaraVara
          Link Parent
          Tickets are $1,000 per seat. Also, the candidates themselves feed on energy from a crowd. It’s a bit dispiriting for everyone involved to be in a sterile and empty studio. Same reason sitcoms are...

          Tickets are $1,000 per seat.

          Also, the candidates themselves feed on energy from a crowd. It’s a bit dispiriting for everyone involved to be in a sterile and empty studio. Same reason sitcoms are often filmed before a love studio audience.

          5 votes
          1. [4]
            Comment deleted by author
            Link Parent
            1. [3]
              NaraVara
              Link Parent
              The thing would have been a performance anyway. Politics has been a performance act since long before TV or radio were even things. You can’t divorce it from the more theatrical elements of...

              There is honestly a lot that is wrong with the current structure of it, including the crowd, which turns the whole thing into a performance, the seconds-long opportunities to explain policy that would affect millions of Americans, and so on.

              The thing would have been a performance anyway. Politics has been a performance act since long before TV or radio were even things. You can’t divorce it from the more theatrical elements of rhetoric and public speaking. Even the Lincoln-Douglass debates these are based on were intended to raise publicity and mug for a crowd.

              The not having much time to actually talk about stuff is a consequence of there being 20 people on the stage more than the audience. And the general vapidity of the questioning is due to the vapidity of the political press/debate moderators. The crowd doesn’t have much to do with it.

              It’s not as if most viewers could even follow a “serious policy discussion” if it happened anyway. That’s not what presidential campaigns are about. They’re about signaling genera statements of goals and values. Policy discussions are for the nerds to deal with once in office.

              3 votes
              1. [3]
                Comment deleted by author
                Link Parent
                1. [2]
                  NaraVara
                  (edited )
                  Link Parent
                  Again though, the root cause there isn't that there is a crowd at the debate it's that cable TV news isn't wired to go deep into policy discussion. And even then, a debate stage with 10 people on...

                  But these were still actual policy debates, they would speak for hours and hours about the ins and outs of the issues. They were social events, people would get together and talk and drink and eat during them, but it was still serious discussion that was being had. I suppose I would be fine with the theatrical elements if the practical aspect of policy discussion was preserved; I just think the former is associated with the deterioration of the latter. Neil Postman discusses this in depth in Amusing Ourselves to Death, assuming you haven't checked it out I would recommend it, it's certainly informed my opinion on the issue.

                  Again though, the root cause there isn't that there is a crowd at the debate it's that cable TV news isn't wired to go deep into policy discussion. And even then, a debate stage with 10 people on it doesn't really permit having a deep discussion anyway. You'd be there for hours and people would go to sleep halfway through. I go to "serious" panels in academic settings often enough and even those are pretty objectively shit at actually addressing any subject matter past a surface level. Unless you're a complete naif on the topic you will get nothing out of them.

                  The fact is, on mass media you're never going to have "real policy discussion." That's not what cable news or twitter is for and the vast majority of the mass-media audience literally lacks the background knowledge or intellectual capacity to understand real policy discussion if it was actually happening. What most people think is "real command of the issues" when they watch TV is seeing Hillary Clinton drop bits of trivia like knowing this or that diplomat's name. Even the "serious" stuff is theater for people who like the aesthetics of "serious policy analysis."

                  I disagree, I think people need to know what policies are going to be implemented by the politicians they're voting for.

                  If people were capable of making these judgements for themselves then they wouldn't need to be voting for politicians to implement them. We could just institute direct democracy and staff positions by lottery instead. The whole point of hiring professional legislators and policy makers to do the policy is because we have an understanding that those professionals have better judgement and have a better grasp of the policy details than John Q Public does. It's like expecting a doctor to explain the exact mechanism and biology behind a treatment plan being given to a patient. Who cares? All the patient needs to know is what they should expect and what they need to do. Everything else is literally just trivia that might satisfy your curiosity but won't make a dime's worth of difference to outcomes.

                  And honestly, command of deep policy details has a lot less to do with being a good President than raw charisma and values do. The policy details themselves are going to get worked out through political horse-trading and sausage making, so any firm commitments being made early in a campaign debate are basically just twaddle. At best they can signal the candidate's general values and beliefs about how things ought to work, but political theater does that more effectively and is accessible to more people anyhow.

                  The Presidency is a managerial position. The best managers aren't necessarily the smartest people in the room. Their most valuable skill-set is being able to articulate a clear strategic vision and keep a group of people focused on achieving it. They don't need to be nerds, they just need to be able to identify who are the right nerds for the jobs and get them pointed in the right direction. Wisdom and charisma factor into that a lot more than straight intelligence.

                  2 votes
                  1. [2]
                    Comment deleted by author
                    Link Parent
                    1. NaraVara
                      Link Parent
                      At this point I don't think it's profit incentive as much as it is monopoly power and the insularity of our political and media elites. Here's a fairly definitive political science text on how...

                      Agreed, although if you eliminated profit incentives it'd be interesting to see what television would look like then.

                      At this point I don't think it's profit incentive as much as it is monopoly power and the insularity of our political and media elites.

                      People at the Lincoln-Douglass debates were there for hours and hours. They even took breaks in the middle of the discussion for lunch. This existed in the past and it could exist now, it's not fundamental human nature that no one is able to pay attention to serious policy discussion for several hours.

                      Here's a fairly definitive political science text on how public opinion and policy decisions are actually shaped. People at the Lincoln-Douglass debates were turbo-nerds who had the time to not have to work and just hang out listening to two guys drone on for hours. The only reason it was ever viable was because summaries got written up in the newspapers that people could skim. But even then people weren't making decisions based on their own deep understandings of policy, they were just referring to the judgement of the handful of people they knew in their communities who might be smart enough to have an informed opinion.

                      This is still what they do, except those opinion-guideposts are now cable news pundits and the whole system of maintaining a public sphere for discourse is fucked. But again, this is due to the hijacking of the organs of information by media monopolies. It has nothing to do with there being crowds at debates, and there was never a mythical time when people were keenly aware of the minutiae of economic and social policies.

                      2 votes
  3. alyaza
    Link
    for those of you keeping track, that heckler was screaming "THREE MILLION DEPORTATIONS!" at biden.

    for those of you keeping track, that heckler was screaming "THREE MILLION DEPORTATIONS!" at biden.

    13 votes
  4. [36]
    spit-evil-olive-tips
    Link
    Opening statements (which the last debate didn't have) gave Yang a nice boost by allowing him to lay out his case for UBI.

    Opening statements (which the last debate didn't have) gave Yang a nice boost by allowing him to lay out his case for UBI.

    12 votes
    1. [35]
      mike10010100
      Link Parent
      And yet he hasn't answered any questions about how he's going to prevent a situation that the alt-right and white nationalists are claiming will lead to a "virtual border wall" by pricing...

      And yet he hasn't answered any questions about how he's going to prevent a situation that the alt-right and white nationalists are claiming will lead to a "virtual border wall" by pricing non-citizens out of being able to live in the US.

      Also his online presence feels very forced to me. Every time I see someone talk about how amazing he is, I see other comments of theirs talking about how great Joe Rogan is or spouting Ben Shapiro talking points. It doesn't feel like a progressive supporting a progressive candidate.

      6 votes
      1. [2]
        NaraVara
        Link Parent
        Anyone who appeals to extremely online NEETs is going to have this problem. Yang has it, Sanders has/had it, and before him it was Ron Paul. And the phenomenon predates the internet. Before Ron...

        Also his online presence feels very forced to me. Every time I see someone talk about how amazing he is, I see other comments of theirs talking about how great Joe Rogan is or spouting Ben Shapiro talking points. It doesn't feel like a progressive supporting a progressive candidate.

        Anyone who appeals to extremely online NEETs is going to have this problem. Yang has it, Sanders has/had it, and before him it was Ron Paul. And the phenomenon predates the internet. Before Ron Paul, you had a subculture of irony poisoned, socially disaffected dudes who were super into Lyndon LaRouche (and kinda Ralph Nader).

        It's an undercurrent in American political culture. What's really interesting about Yang is that it's the first time the object of fixation isn't a curmudgeonly old White dude who likes to yell a lot. But in other ways, Yang is a prototypical example of the types of young men who used to follow these old curmudgeons around so maybe we've just moved on to cutting out the middle-man.

        The actual values/ideological orientation seems to be some sort of South Park libertarianism and doesn't fit neatly into the major political coalitions. I think their main defining characteristic is their inability to resolve a few basic impulses within themselves.

        They tend to not like socially constructed rules in general and want to be free of obligations, so they don't really get along with more traditional social conservatives. But they also are really uncomfortable with uncertainty, so they like clearly defined hierarchies and having everyone/thing being neatly categorized, so they don't like liberals or leftists much either.

        They also can't resolve their economic views because on a basic level they don't really want to do work (see the thing about having rules and obligations). Where they shake out depends. If they think the thing making them work is taxes, they resent taxation and become libertarians so they can keep their property and not have anyone tell them what to do with it. On the other hand, if they feel the thing making them work is lack of resources, you get people who either want UBI or indulge in fantasies of fully-automated, luxury, gay, space communism which will come around the moment everyone signs a pledge to not like capitalism.

        On a purely emotional level, I think these are dudes who feel a deep sense that they lack control in their lives and find living under overlapping bureaucracies to be kind of stultifying. But they don't actually have a clear idea about what the root cause is or how to make it better, so they go from one totalizing ideology to the next to make sense of this feeling and end up with some mish-mash of half-baked explanations for why they feel this sense of anomie. They never really figure out how to make peace with it or develop some coherent logic around it, though, so they just perpetually exist in a state of cognitive dissonance and get angry about their inability to resolve it.

        6 votes
        1. mike10010100
          Link Parent
          This. Yang is a figure created due to the runaway far-right leaving a vacuum of people who both need social hierarchy to understand their place in the world, but don't want anything to do with the...

          This. Yang is a figure created due to the runaway far-right leaving a vacuum of people who both need social hierarchy to understand their place in the world, but don't want anything to do with the social aspects of the far-right.

          They want socialism without socialism. They want their capitalism and the structure it props up, but don't like the consequences.

          On a purely emotional level, I think these are dudes who feel a deep sense that they lack control in their lives and find living under overlapping bureaucracies to be kind of stultifying. But they don't actually have a clear idea about what the root cause is or how to make it better, so they go from one totalizing ideology to the next to make sense of this feeling and end up with some mish-mash of half-baked explanations for why they feel this sense of anomie. They never really figure out how to make peace with it or develop some coherent logic around it, though, so they just perpetually exist in a state of cognitive dissonance and get angry about their inability to resolve it.

          And this is precisely why they are the perfect targets for white nationalists to hop on, especially if they can get a policy in place that will help them drive out immigrants and non-citizens (read non-white people).

          5 votes
      2. [30]
        Comment deleted by author
        Link Parent
        1. [3]
          mike10010100
          Link Parent
          Because unless he has a response to this, he's only helping enable white nationalists. Ignoring the fact that white nationalists love a candidate is how we got Trump. White nationalists are like...

          Because unless he has a response to this, he's only helping enable white nationalists. Ignoring the fact that white nationalists love a candidate is how we got Trump.

          White nationalists are like cats. If they're hanging around it's probably because you're feeding them.

          7 votes
          1. [2]
            monarda
            Link Parent
            Feral cats also flock to poison sausages.

            Feral cats also flock to poison sausages.

            1. mike10010100
              Link Parent
              That would in fact be a response that fixes the issue, something which Yang has not given.

              That would in fact be a response that fixes the issue, something which Yang has not given.

        2. [26]
          dubteedub
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          Yang's UBI is not a progressive policy. It is paid for by increasing sales tax and an elimination of other social welfare programs....

          Yang's UBI is not a progressive policy. It is paid for by increasing sales tax and an elimination of other social welfare programs.

          And Yang proposes to pay for UBI by implementing a value-added tax, or VAT, of 10% on goods and services a company produces. “Because our economy is so vast, this would generate between $700 and $800 billion in revenue,” he said on Reddit in 2018. Indeed, Eric Toder of the Washington, D.C.-based Tax Policy Center told CNBC Make It in 2018 that such a VAT in the United States could raise anywhere from $500 billion to $1 trillion, depending on how broadly the tax is applied.

          https://www.cnbc.com/2019/06/27/free-cash-handouts-what-is-universal-basic-income-or-ubi.html

          Unlike existing welfare programs that are bound by means testing and tax status, and restricted in use, UBI could offer Americans of all income levels cash assistance. “Our welfare programs are designed to be difficult. They’re not designed for the recipients top of mind,” Yang said in an interview with Mother Jones. “The truth is we just need to get more money into people’s hands and that’s what will improve people’s lives.”

          But to receive UBI, citizens would have to choose between the $1,000 or any existing welfare benefits—potentially including Social Security, disability insurance, food stamps, and housing assistance. And it’s unclear whether Yang’s UBI would be worth that trade-off for many low-income families, instead leaving the program as a boost to middle- and upper-income people. Yang’s press secretary, Madalin Sammons, could not provide a “full list of programs…but health care is definitely not considered part of someone’s current benefits when talking about the Freedom Dividend.”

          https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2019/04/what-andrew-yangs-universal-basic-income-would-actually-look-like/

          As it stands, Yang's version of UBI would just be putting money in the hands of the middle class and wealthy elites, at the expense of the poor.

          3 votes
          1. [25]
            Amarok
            (edited )
            Link Parent
            This is factually incorrect, as Yang's Freedom Dividend is actually a collection of several tax policies, including a carbon tax, financial transaction tax, and treating capital gains as ordinary...

            This is factually incorrect, as Yang's Freedom Dividend is actually a collection of several tax policies, including a carbon tax, financial transaction tax, and treating capital gains as ordinary income. Any article that mentions just the VAT simply hasn't done their homework and has missed the big picture completely. The VAT itself will not be a flat tax, it will be tailored to avoid commodities as Yang has said in every interview about it.

            Most of his opponents are happy to focus on the VAT alone and pretend it's a flat VAT implementation. They attack a straw man and pretend their halfassed analysis is the real one.

            Furthermore, as Yang has said, social security is not included, you get that with the Freedom Dividend, so it's a $1000/mo raise for everyone on social security right now. Honestly, if the people analyzing his policies can't even get the basic elements of it that are posted on his website correct, why listen to anything these hack outlets have to say about it?

            These are the real numbers. It's the most progressive tax policy anyone has ever proposed in the USA. A full 87% of American households come out ahead of where they are now under this tax scheme. Almost all of the increased tax burden lands squarely on the top 1% of earners.

            Yang’s plan would grow the federal deficit substantially, but it would also produce a more egalitarian income distribution that would lift tens of millions out of poverty — even accounting for potentially lower economic growth. It demonstrates the importance of considering fiscal policies together: while the VAT and benefit reductions would be regressive on their own, the combination with progressive revenue sources and generous universal payments makes the plan highly progressive overall.

            12 votes
            1. [19]
              NaraVara
              Link Parent
              It seems like they're trying to talk about a watered down version of a Social Dividend, but trying to implement it in a way that doesn't involve nationalizing broad swathes of the economy. Whether...

              It seems like they're trying to talk about a watered down version of a Social Dividend, but trying to implement it in a way that doesn't involve nationalizing broad swathes of the economy.

              Whether that's a bug or a feature for you comes down to whether you believe in collective control/ownership as good or bad and how you feel about persistent income inequality.

              Either way the idea is a DOA. If you're on the left it's bad because it doesn't actually do anything about inequality and might actually make it worse. If you're on the right it's bad because you hate paying taxes. You could get a similar result by adopting a Social Dividend, and at least then you'd get Leftists behind you.

              3 votes
              1. [17]
                Amarok
                Link Parent
                That's exactly what it is. Trying to build that into the american economic system is crunchy business. He's using Alaska's 38 year old model for their permanent fund, which is also the oldest and...

                That's exactly what it is. Trying to build that into the american economic system is crunchy business. He's using Alaska's 38 year old model for their permanent fund, which is also the oldest and longest-running version of a UBI that has existed anywhere. The numbers are all there to prove it works, has beneficial effects over the long term raising outcomes for everyone, and is universally popular.

                Yang is replacing oil with automation as the funding source, and applying it to the entire country rather than a single small state population.

                bad because it doesn't actually do anything about inequality

                You'll have to walk me through that line of thinking sometime. America's current welfare system is built to keep people locked into poverty - when you make more money, they reduce your benefits accordingly, which dis-incentivizes work. This model provides an effective escape hatch from those broken welfare programs and eliminates their administration overhead while doing it. It perfectly aligns the incentive structures to make people want to work, and stops penalizing them when they do. That seems like a big win to me.

                Even Friedman said the only reason he was in favor of UBI/NIT was to use it to replace the existing welfare systems with something that actually works.

                7 votes
                1. [11]
                  NaraVara
                  Link Parent
                  Welfare isn't really an anti-inequality measure and it's barely an anti-poverty measure, it's an anti-starvation measure. There are structural problems with how we implement it here, but UBI...

                  You'll have to walk me through that line of thinking sometime. America's current welfare system is built to keep people locked into poverty - when you make more money, they reduce your benefits accordingly, which dis-incentivizes work.

                  Welfare isn't really an anti-inequality measure and it's barely an anti-poverty measure, it's an anti-starvation measure. There are structural problems with how we implement it here, but UBI doesn't really fix most of them and the real issue with inequality is that a handful of absurdly rich people are permitted to exercise dramatically outsized influence on our economic, social, and political lives.

                  Poverty is an associated outcome of this, but it's a separate issue. Allowing there to continue being absurdly wealthy people who can exercise such absurd amounts of power with no democratic accountability ensures inequality will continue and perpetuate itself.

                  Moreover, a $1,000 defined benefit isn't nearly enough to actually meet anyone's basic needs and it is very likely to just drive up inflation. This is a good benefit for students and #VanLife types but it does not really help you if you have severe medical debt (or are overloaded with debts of any kind) or help you achieve any sort of long-term savings or capital accumulation.

                  And the fact that you'd need to keep re-upping it through legislative action rather than pegging it to some kind of CPI all but guarantees that the real value of the benefit will asymptotically approach nothing over time.

                  3 votes
                  1. [8]
                    Amarok
                    Link Parent
                    I think you're looking at this from a privileged position. If you are at the US poverty line, or living paycheck to paycheck, this nearly doubles your yearly disposable income. It also gets the...

                    I think you're looking at this from a privileged position. If you are at the US poverty line, or living paycheck to paycheck, this nearly doubles your yearly disposable income. It also gets the apparatus of state welfare off of your back - no more hassles, meetings, state sponsored spying attempting to deny your benefits. No more being unable to volunteer or take small wage jobs because they will not gain you one single cent and could lose you money instead.

                    I completely agree that this is not a solution to inequality. That's not the point of this policy. It is a welfare policy aimed at reducing poverty, nothing more. It's sole purpose is to help people who are stuck living paycheck to paycheck on low skill jobs (soon to be automated away in the tens of millions) and people on social security. This is currently over 40% of all Americans (that's over one hundred and forty million people).

                    The fact that it is cash, rather than peanut butter, means it can be used to help solve any problem that person is facing regardless of what it is - repairs, food, tuition, etc. Keep in mind that in any given family unit, this is $2000 per month at least (for the adults). It starts to add up fast when you look at it as households rather than individuals. I'd expect this policy to drive up co-habitation and I never see anyone talk about that aspect of it.

                    Yang is fond of mentioning that it's not meant to be enough to live on. If this were a $5k/month policy, it would eliminate work. The $12k/year is enough to help you live, but not enough that you don't have to work. It's maintaining and improving the incentives to work, not letting people check out of the economy and lay around all day playing video games. When combined with social security, it is enough to support retirees at around $25k/year.

                    I also agree that it should be tied to other measurements rather than a flat rate which will lose effectiveness over time. I'm willing to let that pass just to get the experiment into play and see what the real outcomes are, but I'd like to see that revisited in the future and pegged properly. I'm hardly going to boycott the proposal just because it doesn't start out with that provision, though. You've got to start somewhere.

                    I'd be willing to be that just like in Alaska, it'll be universally popular, and politicians who oppose it after implementation won't be politicians for long, no matter what party or district they represent. In some ways, it's a bell that can't be unrung once it's a reality. I expect it'll be tinkered with and revisited on occasion, probably to do exactly what you suggest. That's par for the course on government policy.

                    As for the medial and student debt, you'll be glad to know Yang has solutions for those problems that aren't related to his UBI proposal. He's in favor of medicare for all and loan forgiveness, just like the rest of the field. His freedom dividend does not exist in a vacuum.

                    7 votes
                    1. [7]
                      NaraVara
                      (edited )
                      Link Parent
                      Fixing all of those is literally easier than inventing a functioning UBI scheme and getting it implemented. And I have a bridge to sell you if you think the forces of welfare reform that put the...

                      I think you're looking at this from a privileged position. If you are at the US poverty line, or living paycheck to paycheck, this nearly doubles your yearly disposable income. It also gets the apparatus of state welfare off of your back - no more hassles, meetings, state sponsored spying attempting to deny your benefits. No more being unable to volunteer or take small wage jobs because they will not gain you one single cent and could lose you money instead.

                      Fixing all of those is literally easier than inventing a functioning UBI scheme and getting it implemented. And I have a bridge to sell you if you think the forces of welfare reform that put the nanny state into welfare policy in the '90s wouldn't do the same thing to any UBI scheme you care to create. It's simply not durable in this form in the face of political opposition.

                      Contrast to Social Security and Medicare. Cutting those means killing grandma. Therefore, it's the third rail of American politics. The stakes are real and the stakes are high so people are highly motivated to defend these benefits. If you consciously make your UBI benefit too low for people to actually rely on it, then it's not a locus for political action and it will get chipped away by GOP ratfucking the way they chipped away at the various welfare programs until they turned into the bureaucratic messes they are now. And the same way they chipped away at the VA. The stakes are too low to expect anyone to defend it and all the costs of destroying it fall on politically disempowered people, unlike Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security which are aimed squarely at the middle class.

                      But Yang's stated goals are all mutually contradictory. You can't have the stakes be high enough to be politically popular without making the benefit big enough to create a disincentive to work. And if it's a disincentive to work, you're increasing cash flow while reducing economic output, which means inflation will eat away at the value of the benefit over time. In other words, if it's gonna be popular politically it'll be bad for the economy. And if it's good for the economy it'll be politically neutral which means its value will eventually atrophy away.

                      I completely agree that this is not a solution to inequality. That's not the point of this policy. It is a welfare policy aimed at reducing poverty, nothing more.

                      Yang consistently talks about this as an answer to the eventual automation of the economy. If that's the case, this falls far short.

                      I'd expect this policy to drive up co-habitation and I never see anyone talk about that aspect of it.

                      That sounds like a bug, not a feature. That's a recipe for keeping abused spouses afraid to leave their abusers and for neglectful caretakers to under-provide elder-care for their ailing parents rather than putting them in hospice.

                      Yang is fond of mentioning that it's not meant to be enough to live on. . . .
                      I'm willing to let that pass just to get the experiment into play

                      Again, a bug. If you have multiple kids and a medical issue that prevents you from being able to have steady work, it's actively making your life harder. As for "letting it pass to get the experiment into play" this is the real position of privilege where you're going to be removing welfare programs, which are already woefully inadequate, in favor of an even weaker safety net that has no guarantee of remaining politically viable over the long term.

                      I'd be willing to be that just like in Alaska, it'll be universally popular, and politicians who oppose it after implementation won't be politicians for long

                      a.) The Alaska permanent fund is financed by profits from oil money, not taxes. It's a lot easier to sell politically when it's already state money.

                      b.) Alaska is kind of a mess because so much of their politics revolves around using the permanent fund as a bribe to keep citizens quiet as Republicans gut all public spending. This has actually impoverished them further over the long term. A perfect example is how they literally about to destroy the University of Alaska system and plow all the money into a paltry increase in the social dividend to make up for it. College students are a minority and old people who already got theirs are happy to pocket the money.

                      If you believe in the concept of a Second Bill of Rights, as any good Democrat ought to, then Yang's UBI proposal is functionally loading the gun that Republicans will use to shoot it in the head, along with any concept of government as an agent for achieving collective action.

                      2 votes
                      1. [5]
                        Amarok
                        Link Parent
                        Seems to me you can use that excuse to avoid implementing any policy you like. If you want to sell me that bridge, you'll need a better pitch, I'm not buying it. I think UBI will become another...

                        It's simply not durable in this form in the face of political opposition.

                        Seems to me you can use that excuse to avoid implementing any policy you like. If you want to sell me that bridge, you'll need a better pitch, I'm not buying it. I think UBI will become another one of those third rails the instant it's implemented.

                        The GOP will always chip away at everything, that's what their corporate backers pay them to do. Thanks for agreeing with me though that the current programs are a 'ratfuck' and could use an overhaul, that's my primary interest in this particular issue.

                        There will always be political dog fighting. There's no version of UBI that could be passed and be somehow perfect and/or untouchable by the opposition party. They'll strike it down just because the 'blue team' got a win, and they want to take it away. That's all the reason they've ever needed. The policy could be a post-it note with the letters 'FU' on it, and they'll try to overturn it just because of the note's color.

                        That sounds like a bug, not a feature.

                        I agree, that's why I brought it up. I'd like to see that aspect talked about and addressed more. I've never seen anyone ask Yang that question. :P I don't think cohabitation needs to be a bad thing (as opposed to living alone in a shack, not good for mental health)... but I would like to see research on this stuff, if it's out there.

                        you're going to be removing welfare programs, which are already woefully inadequate

                        Yes, and that's why it's opt-in only. If your current welfare works, you keep it. Programs that provide choice usually come across as a plus for me. Programs that can phase-in slowly, as people decide to switch, on their own time, are usually better than programs that torch existing systems wholesale in favor of new ones that might not work or may need adjustment. We all know that no plan works the way it was intended, especially at this level of complexity. I expect Yang to have cost overruns, he's being quite optimistic about the job/revenue generation paying for about $800Bn of the cost.

                        If you have multiple kids and a medical issue that prevents you from being able to have steady work, it's actively making your life harder.

                        Now you're in la-la land and I'm starting to wonder if you're trolling me. If you have multiple kids, the ones 18+ are getting $1k a month and off your back somewhat because of that. If you have a medical issue, Yang's covering your health care for free in total, and still giving you and your spouse $1k a month for sitting there with your health issue. He'll even help send your disabled ass to college. In no way does any of this make anyone's life 'harder.'

                        It's a lot easier to sell politically when it's already state money.

                        I'll grant you that one. Try this: The USA is the only first world economy without a VAT, and that lack of a VAT is exactly why corporations can dodge taxes so easily here and not elsewhere. The point of the VAT is to have a tax corporations can't escape. Sells it for me (an anti-tax libertarian) just fine, YMMV.

                        Alaska is kind of a mess

                        I'll take your word for it since I'm not an Alaskan.

                        It seems like your entire argument is a variation on 'gubmint bad, this is why we can't have nice things'. I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. /shrug

                        5 votes
                        1. [3]
                          NaraVara
                          Link Parent
                          I mean, I explained to you the exact economic reasons why it will be counterproductive, the political science reasons why it's inherently more brittle than other forms of social insurance, and...

                          Seems to me you can use that excuse to avoid implementing any policy you like. If you want to sell me that bridge, you'll need a better pitch, I'm not buying it. I think UBI will become another one of those third rails the instant it's implemented.

                          I mean, I explained to you the exact economic reasons why it will be counterproductive, the political science reasons why it's inherently more brittle than other forms of social insurance, and even provided an example from Alaska of exactly how it will be leveraged to wreck any idea of government being committed to furthering social good. But if you jumped from that to claiming I was saying 'gubmint bad, this is why we can't have nice things' it really sounds like you didn't bother to read my comment at all.

                          2 votes
                          1. [2]
                            Amarok
                            Link Parent
                            Well, my sole objection is your assumption that what plays out in Alaska is inevitable anywhere this sort of thing is tried. That's just nuts. :P

                            Well, my sole objection is your assumption that what plays out in Alaska is inevitable anywhere this sort of thing is tried. That's just nuts. :P

                            1. mike10010100
                              (edited )
                              Link Parent
                              I mean when Alaska is one of two examples the Yang Gang points to when talking about the successes of UBI, it's pretty important to discuss the fallout of these supposedly "working" systems. I...

                              I mean when Alaska is one of two examples the Yang Gang points to when talking about the successes of UBI, it's pretty important to discuss the fallout of these supposedly "working" systems.

                              I mean, hell, I just read through most of Yang's policy page and the number of times Alaska is mentioned is ridiculous.

                        2. mike10010100
                          Link Parent
                          I mean that's simply not true. Some policies are more durable than others. If you have a multi-faceted plan like UBI, which requires a carbon tax, a capital gains tax, a VAT, and several other...

                          Seems to me you can use that excuse to avoid implementing any policy you like.

                          I mean that's simply not true. Some policies are more durable than others. If you have a multi-faceted plan like UBI, which requires a carbon tax, a capital gains tax, a VAT, and several other forms of taxation to fund it and not have inflation go through the roof, as Yang claims, you leave open 5+ avenues of attack for getting rid of the program.

                          If you have "single payer" or "medicare for all", that is a binary choice, a single avenue of attack. it is paid in by all people equally, through a single avenue, a single tax, and a single mechanism. You either have single payer, or you don't. You can't defund parts of it and then sit back and watch it all come unraveled.

                          Thanks for agreeing with me though that the current programs are a 'ratfuck' and could use an overhaul, that's my primary interest in this particular issue.

                          Yeah but nobody here is saying otherwise, so I don't understand why you had to chalk that up as a rhetorical win on your part, except maybe to signal to the Yang Gang that you got off a zinger.

                          I don't think cohabitation needs to be a bad thing (as opposed to living alone in a shack, not good for mental health)... but I would like to see research on this stuff, if it's out there.

                          In a world where there are more empty houses than homeless people, it's ridiculous that low-income people should be without housing, nonetheless forced into cohabitating.

                          Yes, and that's why it's opt-in only. If your current welfare works, you keep it.

                          Ok, folks of the Yang Gang keep saying this, but how exactly would that work? It's not like everyone on welfare has the time, knowledge, or will to add up all their benefits, assign a dollar value to them, and then objectively choose one or the other. Many people will make a bad choice and many people will be worse off if they are not given guidance.

                          If you have multiple kids, the ones 18+ are getting $1k a month and off your back somewhat because of that.

                          Lol you immediately jumped to kids over 18. That's a ridiculous assumption:

                          I'm a working single mother of 2 children, 1.5 and 5, and I suddenly have a major medical issue. $1000 a month is not enough for food, clothing, diapers, etc. even with free healthcare.

                          The USA is the only first world economy without a VAT, and that lack of a VAT is exactly why corporations can dodge taxes so easily here and not elsewhere.

                          VAT is a regressive tax system that only benefits the rich.

                          I'll take your word for it since I'm not an Alaskan.

                          I mean when Yang himself repeatedly cites the successes of Alaska for a lot of his policy page, I think it's important to consider if Alaska is actually a nice place to live after this stuff has been implemented.

                          It seems like your entire argument is a variation on 'gubmint bad, this is why we can't have nice things'. I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. /shrug

                          It seems like your entire argument is hand-waving and "gotcha" quips while disingenuously summarizing other people's arguments.

                      2. mike10010100
                        Link Parent
                        Thank god there's someone else out there that is willing to actually pick apart this mess of a policy. Yang seems to be throwing nearly everything at the wall to see what sticks, and his...

                        Thank god there's someone else out there that is willing to actually pick apart this mess of a policy. Yang seems to be throwing nearly everything at the wall to see what sticks, and his interviews show that he's not really able to answer deep questions about the mechanics of his bills, and instead switches subjects to point at various other not-quite-equivalent programs.

                        He feels like a Capitalist trying to implement socialist policies without actually resorting to socialism. He comes off as a Capitalists' wet dream.

                        Also, Alaska and a random Native American community are the only two places they can point to that have even remotely successfully implemented such a program, and the differences between that as a local/state program created via oil profits (as you pointed out) and this in a location like New York City are so vastly different that the comparison is almost pointless.

                        3 votes
                  2. [2]
                    Amarok
                    Link Parent
                    Thought you might like this: https://old.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/djpf40/iama_presidential_candidate_andrew_yang_ama/f470r3q/ Seems it's going to be pegged to CPI after all.

                    Thought you might like this: https://old.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/djpf40/iama_presidential_candidate_andrew_yang_ama/f470r3q/

                    Seems it's going to be pegged to CPI after all.

                    1. NaraVara
                      Link Parent
                      That’s not really enough to go on for something like this. The problem is, the money being out there will naturally bid up the prices of anything with inelastic supply. So even if it’s pegged to...

                      That’s not really enough to go on for something like this. The problem is, the money being out there will naturally bid up the prices of anything with inelastic supply. So even if it’s pegged to CPI (and I assume it would be CPI-W), is not necessarily scaling with the basket of goods people actually need. In other words, stuff people can’t trade off or do without ends up getting more and more expensive, but inflation metrics don’t keep up if food and other commodity prices drop to average it out. It all depends on the weighting, and we become at risk of that weighting becoming a political football.

                      To address the thing Yang wants, you need to decommoditize the basic necessities like healthcare and housing and education. UBI can work as a supplement after that, but it can’t be a good enough substitute.

                2. [5]
                  dubteedub
                  Link Parent
                  Yeah thats not true. A majority of Americans oppose UBI of $1000 / month. https://thehill.com/hilltv/what-americas-thinking/435278-poll-most-voters-oppose-a-universal-basic-income-programs

                  and is universally popular.

                  Yeah thats not true. A majority of Americans oppose UBI of $1000 / month.

                  A new poll shows that most Americans aren't fully onboard with the idea of a universal basic income for all adults.

                  A majority of registered voters, 57 percent, contacted by the Hill-HarrisX poll said that they were opposed to the idea of giving Americans $1,000 per month. Forty-three percent supported it. That number was similar to a 2018 Gallup poll which found that proposals to provide universal basic incomes (UBI) were supported by 48 percent of the adults who were surveyed.

                  https://thehill.com/hilltv/what-americas-thinking/435278-poll-most-voters-oppose-a-universal-basic-income-programs

                  2 votes
                  1. [3]
                    Amarok
                    (edited )
                    Link Parent
                    Thanks for quoting me out of context. I said Alaskans view their state dividend as universally popular. At no point did I ever say that Americans view UBI as universally popular. I did say in a...

                    Thanks for quoting me out of context.

                    I said Alaskans view their state dividend as universally popular. At no point did I ever say that Americans view UBI as universally popular. I did say in a comment down below that if America gets a UBI, after a year or two, I expect most Americans to see it the same way the Alaskans do, and for it to be universally popular.

                    Right now, though, for most Americans, UBI is a complete 'what the fuck are you talking about' idea that they will react to with suspicion.

                    3 votes
                    1. [2]
                      dubteedub
                      (edited )
                      Link Parent
                      It seemed pretty clear to me that the argument you were making is that UBI is proven and broadly popular as a whole, not just in the one example of Alaska. I do think bringing up Alaska is in no...

                      It seemed pretty clear to me that the argument you were making is that UBI is proven and broadly popular as a whole, not just in the one example of Alaska.

                      The numbers are all there to prove it works, has beneficial effects over the long term raising outcomes for everyone, and is universally popular.

                      I do think bringing up Alaska is in no way comparable to UBI and more of a distraction than anything.

                      Alaska pays out just over $1000 to its residents through the program, annually. Its obviously not a universal basic income or anywhere close to it.

                      Not to mention, that the Alaska program is a mess. The state is no longer ranking in oil dollars and is facing a hole in the state's budget after it eliminated the state's income tax. The state has reduced its payouts through program and is dipping into the fund pay for government operating expenses.

                      http://inthesetimes.com/article/21544/alaska-universal-basic-income-dividend-taxes-permanent-fund

                      1 vote
                      1. mike10010100
                        Link Parent
                        And this is a perfect example of how UBI will dry up because there are multiple avenues of attack against it. Eliminate even one of the proposed sources of taxation in Yang's plan and UBI goes up...

                        And this is a perfect example of how UBI will dry up because there are multiple avenues of attack against it. Eliminate even one of the proposed sources of taxation in Yang's plan and UBI goes up in flames.

                        1 vote
                  2. Sahasrahla
                    Link Parent
                    I'm surprised the level of support is that high. Whether or not you support UBI you have to admit it sounds like a crazy idea at first and probably most people, if they've heard of it at all, have...

                    I'm surprised the level of support is that high. Whether or not you support UBI you have to admit it sounds like a crazy idea at first and probably most people, if they've heard of it at all, have only heard of it recently. It's being pushed more into the conversation now thanks to Yang but he's a 1–2% polling candidate in a field of ~20 who barely had any national exposure until last night. It's also interesting to note the demographic breakdowns: a majority of support from those under 50 years of age and an even split for households with income under $75K. I don't know if a UBI will ever be implemented on a large scale (in the US or elsewhere) but it's an idea that will probably be talked about a lot more in the coming years.

                    1 vote
              2. mike10010100
                Link Parent
                This exactly. It's a Capitalist's version of trying to implement socialism. The only thing it ends up doing is passing money up to the top, who already own the bulk of the infrastructure that the...

                This exactly. It's a Capitalist's version of trying to implement socialism. The only thing it ends up doing is passing money up to the top, who already own the bulk of the infrastructure that the $1000 a month will go towards paying.

                3 votes
            2. [3]
              dubteedub
              Link Parent
              The first thing that Andrew Yang's own website on UBI says it that it is paid for by a 10% VAT tax and that current recipients of various welfare programs would have to give that up to receive...

              The first thing that Andrew Yang's own website on UBI says it that it is paid for by a 10% VAT tax and that current recipients of various welfare programs would have to give that up to receive UBI.

              It would be easier than you might think. Andrew proposes funding the Freedom Dividend by consolidating some welfare programs and implementing a Value-Added Tax (VAT) of 10%. Current welfare and social program beneficiaries would be given a choice between their current benefits or $1,000 cash unconditionally – most would prefer cash with no restriction.

              A Value-Added Tax (VAT) is a tax on the production of goods or services a business produces. It is a fair tax and it makes it much harder for large corporations, who are experts at hiding profits and income, to avoid paying their fair share.

              https://www.yang2020.com/what-is-freedom-dividend-faq/

              In fact the top sources for where he says we will be getting funding for UBI on his own web page says it is from defunding our social welfare programs, some pie in the sky notion that UBI will save billions by reversing the effects of the need for emergency rooms / homelessness / incarceration, and VAT.

              The VAT itself will not be a flat tax, it will be tailored to avoid commodities as Yang has said in every interview about it. Most of his opponents are happy to focus on the VAT alone and pretend it's a flat VAT implementation. They attack a straw man and pretend their halfassed analysis is the real one.

              He says that exactly nowhere on his actual website. I am referring to his policy page on his website on UBI / Freedom Dividend linked above.

              In fact, he says he thinks rich people will pay more because of VAT and says again, the program is paid for by VAT.

              Why would you give the Freedom Dividend to the rich? By giving everyone the Freedom Dividend, the stigma for accepting cash transfers from the government disappears. Additionally, it removes the incentive for anyone to remain within certain income brackets to receive benefits. If it’s paid for by a Value-Added Tax as in Andrew’s plan, a wealthy person will likely pay more into the system than he or she gets out of it.

              When talking about inflation, again he talks about VAT.

              Wouldn’t that cause rampant inflation? It is likely that some companies will increase their prices in response to people having more buying power, and a VAT would also increase prices marginally. However, there will still be competition between firms that will keep prices in check. Over time, technology will continue to decrease the prices of most goods where it is allowed to do so (e.g., clothing, media, consumer electronics, etc.). The main inflation we currently experience is in sectors where automation has not been applied due to government regulation or inapplicability – primarily housing, education, and healthcare. The real issue isn’t the Freedom Dividend, it’s whether technology and automation will be allowed to reduce prices in different sectors.

              You would think if this program is designed to not target poor people or was not a flat tax tailored to avoid certain communities, he would say that somewhere on his website outlining the policy.

              So please tell me where I am "factually incorrect" if that is from his own website?

              Furthermore, as Yang has said, social security is not included, you get that with the Freedom Dividend, so it's a $1000/mo raise for everyone on social security right now.

              Great, but that only applies to the elderly that can qualify for social security. It also ignores the fact that it would take away or make people choose between UBI and food stamps, disability, housing assistance, and a full array of other social welfare and assistance programs.

              Yang's Freedom Dividend is actually a collection of several tax policies, including a carbon tax, financial transaction tax, and treating capital gains as ordinary income.

              That is mentioned very briefly and very vaguely as the last source for funding for the Freedom Dividend and is the least sourced of all the figures he provides. He just says that amount of money will "make up the remaining balance required to cover the cost of this program."

              Honestly, if the people analyzing his policies can't even get the basic elements of it that are posted on his website correct

              Hmm.

              3 votes
              1. [2]
                Amarok
                Link Parent
                You made me curious about this regressive aspect of the VAT, so I did some digging. The entire EU uses VAT, and they make plenty of exceptions to the rates depending on the services and products....

                You made me curious about this regressive aspect of the VAT, so I did some digging. The entire EU uses VAT, and they make plenty of exceptions to the rates depending on the services and products. I found Investopedia's breakdown of how VATs operate to be interesting as well. The mechanics are tied to every step in production, which means it's going to hit manufacturers who are gleefully dodging our taxes like a net they can't escape. Sounds like exactly the tax fix America needs. I also like some of the possibilities for refund structures. Those would allow the poor to avoid paying so much as a nickel in VAT.

                It seems that the VAT is as progressive, or regressive, as you want to make it. Arguments that it is one or the other are just hot air unless you look at the specific implementation. Everyone calling out Yang as proposing a regressive tax is doing just that - slinging complete bullshit. You can hear it right from him.

                I suppose he might have mentioned it's a progressive VAT on his website, but since almost the entire developed world uses that style of VAT, perhaps he just assumed we'd all be smart enough to know that - his mistake. Perhaps someone should tell his staff to update the website to clear up that confusion. I certainly didn't know that.

                pie in the sky notion that UBI will save billions by reversing the effects of the need for emergency rooms / homelessness / incarceration

                This I fully agree with, and it's why I expect his programs to have cost overruns. Frankly, I'm not worried about that. We just gave two trillion dollars in tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans under Trump. I'm happy to take that all back and skip the VAT completely. I'm past caring where we find the money.

                It also ignores the fact that it would take away or make people choose between UBI and food stamps, disability, housing assistance, and a full array of other social welfare and assistance programs.

                I like how you make it sound like the plan is intended to obliterate all other forms of welfare overnight, really helps your straw man. Perhaps you should look up the details of which programs are affected. It's only cash and cash-like programs at present. It doesn't include housing assistance for example. It has no impact on state welfare. This is far from an all or nothing choice. Perhaps that's why it's entirely opt-in, so people can make the right choice for their own circumstances while the programs come online, and year over year as their circumstances change.

                I'm sure we'd all like to read Yang's bill, but politicians don't propose bills while they are still running for office. I've linked you to a thorough analysis. It's good enough for me, and you're not even moving my needle with your arguments here. I guess it's time to agree to disagree.

                1 vote
                1. dubteedub
                  (edited )
                  Link Parent
                  Right. Andrew Yang's website does not make any mention of this and certainly does not explain what, if any, kinds of goods or services would be exempt from his proposed VAT. The second paragraph...

                  The entire EU uses VAT, and they make plenty of exceptions to the rates depending on the services and products.

                  Right.

                  Andrew Yang's website does not make any mention of this and certainly does not explain what, if any, kinds of goods or services would be exempt from his proposed VAT.

                  I found Investopedia's breakdown of how VATs operate to be interesting as well.

                  The second paragraph of that page says this:

                  Critics charge that a VAT is essentially a regressive tax that places an increased economic strain on lower-income taxpayers, and also adds bureaucratic burdens for businesses."

                  And they have a whole section on how a VAT specifically harms lower income consumers:

                  Con: Higher Prices—Especially for Low-Income Consumers

                  Critics also note that consumers typically wind up paying higher prices with a VAT. While the VAT theoretically spreads the tax burden on the added value of a good as it moves through the supply chain, from raw material to final product, in practice the increased costs are typically passed along to the consumer.

                  Even so, better-off consumers could ultimately benefit if a VAT replaced the income tax: As with other flat taxes, a VAT's impact would be felt less by the wealthy and shouldered more heavily by the poor, who spend a larger percentage of their take-home pay on necessities. In short, lower-income consumers would pay a much higher proportion of their earnings in taxes with a VAT system, critics, including the Tax Policy Center, charge. That could be mitigated to some extent if the government excluded certain necessary household goods or foodstuffs from the VAT, or provided rebates or credits to low-income citizens to offset the tax's effects.

                  Back to your comment.

                  I also like some of the possibilities for refund structures.

                  This is irrelevant as the article in your link is not anywhere near what Yang is proposing, the first paragraph suggests a 40% VAT. You keep saying that I am debating a strawman when I am looking at his actual policy proposal on his website. As this is his literal signature item, I think it should be fair to judge this program on how he explains it.

                  I like how you make it sound like the plan is intended to obliterate all other forms of welfare overnight, really helps your straw man.

                  I saw that because his website makes it clear that gutting social welfare programs is a primary means of funding the Freedom Dividend other than VAT. It is literally listed as the first item on his website on how the program would be funded.

                  How would we pay for the Freedom Dividend?

                  1. Current spending. We currently spend between $500 and $600 billion a year on welfare programs, food stamps, disability and the like. This reduces the cost of the Freedom Dividend because people already receiving benefits would have a choice but would be ineligible to receive the full $1,000 in addition to current benefits.

                  https://www.yang2020.com/what-is-freedom-dividend-faq/

                  I gotta say it is incredibly frustrating that you accused me of not reading his website and judging Yang's proposal on a strawman, then when I refer to his website, you ignore that and bring up a bunch of other links and examples that have nothing to do with what Yang has proposed.

            3. [2]
              mike10010100
              Link Parent
              Forgive me if I don't exactly believe a medium article by a "UBI Center" organization that seems to only exist to support Yang and has only 4 posts, by an author who seems to, again, only post...

              Forgive me if I don't exactly believe a medium article by a "UBI Center" organization that seems to only exist to support Yang and has only 4 posts, by an author who seems to, again, only post about Yang.

              At the end of the day, you end up funneling more money from the lowest rungs of society directly into the pockets of the 1%. So unless you have a strategy that essentially nullifies this income in the 1%, which capital gains taxes won't really cover, you've essentially just given the 1% a relative boost while total cost of basic goods and services like housing, transportation, and food go up because they can.

              2 votes
              1. Amarok
                Link Parent
                That article is fully sourced, links to other studies, and explains its methodology in detail. If that's not enough, here's a breakdown of UBI policy that was endorsed by a thousand economists...

                That article is fully sourced, links to other studies, and explains its methodology in detail. If that's not enough, here's a breakdown of UBI policy that was endorsed by a thousand economists from back in '68 when this measure passed the US House, twice. It's over two hundred pages of detailed discussion on the effects of these policies, carried out by subject matter experts from both sides of the political aisle.

                6 votes
      3. [3]
        Amarok
        Link Parent
        First I'm hearing about this. Do you have a link to articles or opinion pieces that are discussing this? I'd like to read more. I'd be willing to bet Yang has addressed it somewhere and it's just...

        First I'm hearing about this. Do you have a link to articles or opinion pieces that are discussing this? I'd like to read more. I'd be willing to bet Yang has addressed it somewhere and it's just been lost in the shuffle.

        3 votes
        1. [2]
          mike10010100
          Link Parent
          Sure! https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2019/04/andrew-yang-4chan-alt-right/ https://www.thedailybeast.com/yang-gang-season
          2 votes
          1. Amarok
            (edited )
            Link Parent
            Thanks! I'll digest those and see if I can find him answering those concerns, maybe link you to an interview if there is an answer. Edit: Well, this is rather a mess. You'll forgive me if I...

            Thanks! I'll digest those and see if I can find him answering those concerns, maybe link you to an interview if there is an answer.


            Edit: Well, this is rather a mess. You'll forgive me if I couldn't give less of a damn about /pol/ or various alt-right nutjobs playing their meme games, or that they like Yang. It's a small, loud, crazy group of people, nothing important, just as annoying and irrelevant as the alt-left. I try to stay away from both extremes. I have enough crazy in my life already. :P

            The point raised though is rather interesting. The idea (if I'm getting my head around this right) is that Yang's Freedom Dividend is going to lead to inflation and price increases. Before long, these increases in the cost of living will make it impossible for illegal immigrants to be able to live and work in America without also receiving the freedom dividend to make up the difference. Therefore, this policy is somehow better than a border wall, because it'll force illegals out of the country by putting them at a permanent economic disadvantage. Therefore, Yang beats Trump on the border. Am I following this train of thought correctly? I don't want to be tackling a straw man here.

            This strikes me as batshit crazy talk (about what I'd expect from /pol/) but let's walk through it anyway.

            Let's start with the mistaken idea that UBI leads to inflation. There are no studies that prove this, and there are many which prove it has no effect, or at best, a tiny, negligible effect. I'll link you to this article on commondreams that itself summarizes and links to some of those studies.

            I picked the common dreams article because it's a good, solid overview of this policy aimed at the UK primarily, rather than the US, and it's from 2017 so it predates this particular political cycle and Andrew Yang. It isn't tainted by partisanship. You'll note that they make the case that UBI raises demand along with supply and this offsets the inflation, keeping prices stable.

            One could make the argument that the VAT being proposed to fund Yang's proposal will in fact make things harder for immigrants by raising prices, and if this is a flat VAT of 10%, it would be true - though I question if the 10% is enough to make all of our immigrants pack up and run for home, that seems a bit like wishful thinking. However, if this VAT targets luxury goods rather than commodity goods, as Yang repeatedly says it will, that argument will also fall flat, as illegal immigrants aren't buying much luxury with their low wage jobs.

            I could call this done right here, but let's continue anyway and see what Yang's border and immigration policies have to say about this stuff. Maybe that's why alt-right loons like him so much.

            Yang only has four immigration policies listed (rather light for him). I need to warn you about his overly mobile-friendly website - scroll down, there's more to these policies than the handwavy landing page. I think a lot of people visiting Yang's site miss that and it's kinda crappy design. :P

            The first is a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants. This does not deport the eleven million who are already here, instead it turns them into citizens. Not much help for the alt-right there. Next up is his support for the DREAM act which, if you're unfamiliar, is summarized on wikipedia. Again, not much help for the alt-right here, helping minors become citizens. Then we have Yang's plan to entice high-skill individuals to remain in the US. In any sane world this would be a bi-partisan supported shoe-in, but since it means more immigrants I expect the alt-right won't like this one either.

            Last is his policy on southern border security which at last seems like something the alt-right might like. Yang is in favor of investing in and bumping up border security significantly, including a surveillance wall rather than a real one. I expect the alt-right will be all over this one, as it's stronger than you typically see from democrats. Just don't tell them Yang wants them to all register their guns, apply for 3 tiers of firearms licenses, and pass background checks to own them. Then they might shoot him. :P

            As for Yang's campaign actively engaging /pol/ and other alt-right forums - that I totally believe. It's exactly the kind of strategy his campaign uses. It's hardly a coincidence that there were two clips of Yang on reddit's front /all page yesterday, I'm sure they engineered that as well. Yang's 4th wall break in his closing statement came from this reddit comment on his AMA from last week. His campaign staff is right there saying they'd use it.

            Whoever is managing Yang's internet strategy is playing these various online groups like a damn fiddle. They aren't sending him to interviews like Ben Carlson, Dave Rubin, and Joe Rogan out of the blue. They are trying to energize the libertarians for Yang, and they've been successful. The libertarians will carry that message to the rest of the conservatives. My first exposure to Yang was after searching him and looking for long interviews, which lead me to Dave Rubin (who I'd never seen before then) with the two hour time tag. That's what I like - in depth conversations, especially with 'the opposition party.

            So, I honestly don't see what the fuss is about, this is qanon-level hokum. If I'm missing something, help me follow the logic here. Yang is no friend of conservatives or alt-right white supremacists. He's merely playing them as useful idiots, like any savvy politician.

            I should add, I would love to see someone ask him this question directly and put him on the spot about it. I don't get to see Yang squirm very often, it'd be glorious. Might even catch him in a gaffe.

            3 votes
  5. Amarok
    (edited )
    Link
    I enjoyed that debate much more than last night, though I was missing Bernie and Liz. Yang did far better than I was expecting, surprised he tied literally every answer he could back to his UBI...

    I enjoyed that debate much more than last night, though I was missing Bernie and Liz. Yang did far better than I was expecting, surprised he tied literally every answer he could back to his UBI proposal. That slam about the debates being reality tv while hitting the media back over his tie was excellent. If you're wondering why the crowd was cheering him more than you might expect, remember this is Detroit and his non-profit venture for america did a lot of good work in that city, so he had a home field advantage (and the yang gang was pressing it hard, they organized for that crowd).

    I liked Jay Inslee and Tulsi Gabbard as well. Honestly, the democrats should be proud of their first crop of candidates this early in the game. It's a pretty awesome team they fielded, far better than the republican's clown circus that brought us Trump.

    Edit: Apparently the traffic surge knocked yang2020.com offline for a little while. Too early to declare a winner? You realize he now has collected all the geo-interest data he needs to know where to send the yang gang to organize. Clever monkeys in his campaign corner.

    12 votes
  6. [7]
    reese
    Link
    Paraphrasing Yang, "Immigrants are being scapegoated for issues they have nothing to do with in our economy."

    Paraphrasing Yang, "Immigrants are being scapegoated for issues they have nothing to do with in our economy."

    11 votes
    1. [3]
      eladnarra
      Link Parent
      He paired that with a personal "exceptional immigrant" story, though. I appreciate not being demonized for issues in this country, but I dislike that many things said in my favor make it feel like...

      He paired that with a personal "exceptional immigrant" story, though. I appreciate not being demonized for issues in this country, but I dislike that many things said in my favor make it feel like I have to be a PhD graduate with 20 patents, win a gold medal at the Olympics, and give millions to charity. Most of us immigrants are just normal people.

      7 votes
      1. [2]
        reese
        Link Parent
        I completely agree. Most people in general are just normal people. IMO, Yang's argument needs to shift to potential. It could be nuanced, like, why was his father able to fulfill his potential in...

        I completely agree.

        Most people in general are just normal people. IMO, Yang's argument needs to shift to potential. It could be nuanced, like, why was his father able to fulfill his potential in the first place? Every person, as in every atomic unit of our society, has potential. It should be our responsibility to each other to ensure that everyone has opportunities to fulfill their potential, because it improves our collective living conditions. For many people, maybe that potential just amounts to exercising some empathy and charity in their day-to-day interactions, or just some healthy habits. This is where we cross into Marianne Williamson territory, and of course I think she's batshit insane, but she's a respectable human being. Yang could lean on her push for self-discovery and self-knowledge.

        3 votes
        1. Amarok
          Link Parent
          I agree with this. I also think you're going to see a lot more of that from Andrew once the debate stage clears up. His strategy seems to be pretty simple. He's hanging back, answering his...

          I agree with this. I also think you're going to see a lot more of that from Andrew once the debate stage clears up.

          His strategy seems to be pretty simple. He's hanging back, answering his questions, and tying everything to his UBI proposal to get everyone's attention in the clown car early debates. Quality and quickness over quantity. He can do this because he expects and has been saying for six months that he'll be around for every single debate, and his numbers are on track to make that happen, especially after last night.

          He has more than one hundred and twenty policy positions on his website. He's hardly a one trick pony, that's just the game he's playing right now. He isn't talking about the rest of his ideas yet. He's saving them so he can spring them on everyone in the later debates when he'll have more talking time to explain them. I expect he'll start de-emphasizing UBI and switch to his other galaxy of talking points - which you will only see if you watch some of his 1-3 hour interviews.

          Basically, he's leaning on the ropes during these first two rounds and letting the other candidates tear each other down. That's why he doesn't attack - he deftly dodged CNN's attempt to get him to attack Kamala, the look on her face was priceless when he passed on that and still managed to answer the question. Did you see him getting the fist-pumps out of Biden every time he redirected away from CNN's bait and stuck to policy? Andrew is the only guy on that stage still making friends of the other candidates.

          He's a snake in the grass, don't let him fool you. That's part of what attracted me to his campaign. When he's one of eight, then one of five, then one of three people on the stage, he'll change his game to the one we see in his long form interviews. If he manages to win the nom, he'll change it again into the style that's winning over conservatives in those interviews.

          1 vote
    2. [3]
      spit-evil-olive-tips
      Link Parent
      I also really liked Booker talking about how the "Immigrants with PhDs go to the head of the line" plays into a Republican talking point.

      I also really liked Booker talking about how the "Immigrants with PhDs go to the head of the line" plays into a Republican talking point.

      6 votes
      1. [2]
        Amarok
        Link Parent
        One of Yang's policies is to grant green cards to anyone who comes to America and gets a degree. He has a similar policy for those on work visas as long as they keep their noses clean....

        One of Yang's policies is to grant green cards to anyone who comes to America and gets a degree. He has a similar policy for those on work visas as long as they keep their noses clean. Incentivizing people to stay here and work/build, rather than going back home.

        3 votes
        1. BuckeyeSundae
          Link Parent
          Ah, but anything republicans might agree with is a republican talking point! Unacceptable! The phrase "republican talking point" might as well be a republican talking point at this point. I'm over it.

          Ah, but anything republicans might agree with is a republican talking point! Unacceptable!

          The phrase "republican talking point" might as well be a republican talking point at this point. I'm over it.

          1 vote
  7. [2]
    reese
    Link
    I'm watching the debate on this particular night just on the off-chance that Harris slaps Biden's brilliant white dentures right out of his goddamn mouth. That is the only reason. I honestly do...

    I'm watching the debate on this particular night just on the off-chance that Harris slaps Biden's brilliant white dentures right out of his goddamn mouth. That is the only reason. I honestly do think Harris will verbally assault Biden until he considers assuming the fetal position, and that her poll numbers will rise as a result just like last time. But, hey, I'm fine with being wrong, although I would be forever emotionally disturbed if Harris and Biden teamed up like Warren and Sanders did last night. I mean, I could picture Warren and Sanders as my adoptive grandparents. But Harris and Biden? I just don't think they could ever truly love each other.

    9 votes
    1. spit-evil-olive-tips
      Link Parent
      Today is definitely Gang Up On Biden Night, and Harris will be leading the charge.

      Today is definitely Gang Up On Biden Night, and Harris will be leading the charge.

      6 votes
  8. [2]
    gpl
    Link
    I feel like Booker is making points that are important to make (“we are playing into Republican talking points. Decriminalization isn't legalization and it would just be a civil offense handled in...

    I feel like Booker is making points that are important to make (“we are playing into Republican talking points. Decriminalization isn't legalization and it would just be a civil offense handled in civil court “ etc) but he isn’t making it forcefully enough to be memorable. But it’s nice that there is some awareness of the fact that they shouldn’t eat each other alive to appease Republicans who will turn around and call them socialists anyway.

    7 votes
    1. spit-evil-olive-tips
      Link Parent
      Booker is really going after Biden and it's amazing. Biden's attempts to punch back are not landing at all.

      Booker is really going after Biden and it's amazing. Biden's attempts to punch back are not landing at all.

      3 votes
  9. [2]
    alyaza
    Link
    the debate has not even started, and biden's already doing things that are pretty irritating and condescending as shit: Joe Biden greeted Sen. Kamala Harris (an adult woman) by saying "Go easy on...

    the debate has not even started, and biden's already doing things that are pretty irritating and condescending as shit:

    Joe Biden greeted Sen. Kamala Harris (an adult woman) by saying "Go easy on me, kid."

    6 votes
    1. spit-evil-olive-tips
      Link Parent
      I heard him saying something but didn't catch what it was. I guess I shouldn't be surprised anymore by anything Uncle Joe does. He probably offered Tulsi Gabbard a shoulder massage in the green room.

      I heard him saying something but didn't catch what it was. I guess I shouldn't be surprised anymore by anything Uncle Joe does.

      He probably offered Tulsi Gabbard a shoulder massage in the green room.

      2 votes
  10. [3]
    alyaza
    Link
    for the record, that disruption was apparently people wanting de blasio to fire that dude who killed eric garner?--i have no idea why they interrupted booker to do that, though.

    for the record, that disruption was apparently people wanting de blasio to fire that dude who killed eric garner?--i have no idea why they interrupted booker to do that, though.

    6 votes
    1. alyaza
      Link Parent
      and now we've circled all the way to the garner issue, which is now being addressed on the debate stage. congrats, protesters!

      and now we've circled all the way to the garner issue, which is now being addressed on the debate stage. congrats, protesters!

      3 votes
  11. [4]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. [3]
      Amarok
      Link Parent
      After the flood, tornado, wildfire, or hurricane levels your house, that'll sound like sensible policy.

      After the flood, tornado, wildfire, or hurricane levels your house, that'll sound like sensible policy.

      4 votes
      1. [3]
        Comment deleted by author
        Link Parent
        1. [2]
          Amarok
          Link Parent
          I didn't mind the too late comment because it's scientifically accurate. We are already too late to avoid a lot of the damage. Anyone living in the southern or western or even midwestern USA is in...

          I didn't mind the too late comment because it's scientifically accurate. We are already too late to avoid a lot of the damage. Anyone living in the southern or western or even midwestern USA is in for a rough time, as is anyone living on the coast - any coast, anywhere. We're going to see trillions in damages before this chapter of human history plays out. I like to see someone with the courage to acknowledge that reality even if it's a bit grim. I very much liked Jay Inslee's passion for the issue as well, scored him lots of points with me.

          7 votes
          1. Loire
            Link Parent
            Considering the average person talks about climate change as if it's the end of life, "It's Too Late" gives of the wrong impression. Yes it's too late to stay below 1.5°, but that doesn't mean...

            Considering the average person talks about climate change as if it's the end of life, "It's Too Late" gives of the wrong impression.

            Yes it's too late to stay below 1.5°, but that doesn't mean it's too late to make the changes to stay below 2.0, 2.5 etc. We need to start making the transition now and the word's "it's too late" incite feelings of "Why do anything at all?"

            3 votes
  12. nic
    Link
    Biden fumbles closing statement at 2nd Democratic debate Predictably, the domains Joe3030.com and Joe30330.com were purchased, and interested parties were redirected to the campaign of South Bend,...

    Biden fumbles closing statement at 2nd Democratic debate

    Predictably, the domains Joe3030.com and Joe30330.com were purchased, and interested parties were redirected to the campaign of South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

    The latter URL was later redirected to JoshforAmerica.com, the “first Gen Z’er to declare candidacy for this office.”

    6 votes
  13. spit-evil-olive-tips
    Link
    Biden and Bennet going all-in on repeating Republican talking points about universal healthcare costing eleventy gajillion dollars.

    Biden and Bennet going all-in on repeating Republican talking points about universal healthcare costing eleventy gajillion dollars.

    5 votes
  14. [2]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. Amarok
      Link Parent
      Liberal media outlets are not Yang's friend. He gets attacked there far more than he does on Fox news (and NBC absolutely hates him). There's been a reluctance to talk about his UBI proposal...

      Liberal media outlets are not Yang's friend. He gets attacked there far more than he does on Fox news (and NBC absolutely hates him). There's been a reluctance to talk about his UBI proposal because every time someone tries to pick it apart Yang kicks their ass with numbers and studies and a solid history lesson. If the question is disingenuously phrased he'll bring that up and attack right back, too - and he's good at it. Asking him that question is a total softball he can knock out of the park in his sleep at this point. Lately, it seems the major news outlets don't want to let him talk about it. They'd rather hit him on foreign policy, which is one of his weaker areas.

      5 votes
  15. [3]
    suspended
    Link
    After tonight, when are the next debates scheduled for?

    After tonight, when are the next debates scheduled for?

    4 votes
    1. [2]
      alyaza
      Link Parent
      next debates aren't until september 12th and 13th (if necessary), so it'll be a bit.

      next debates aren't until september 12th and 13th (if necessary), so it'll be a bit.

      7 votes
      1. Amarok
        Link Parent
        The polling requirements go up as well. I think it's four qualifying polls from four states that are all 2% or higher. The individual donor requirements also double and require donors from...

        The polling requirements go up as well. I think it's four qualifying polls from four states that are all 2% or higher. The individual donor requirements also double and require donors from multiple states. It's going to cut the field in half - and mostly, the ones going away will be the annoying, distracting centrists/blue dogs. All the real progressives are doing quite well.

        4 votes
  16. [3]
    RapidEyeMovement
    Link
    This is frustrating, I missed the debates and cannot find a link online, CNN does not have them on their app for re-streaming at least as far as I can tell. Does anyone have link so I can watch...

    This is frustrating, I missed the debates and cannot find a link online, CNN does not have them on their app for re-streaming at least as far as I can tell.

    Does anyone have link so I can watch the debates?

    4 votes
    1. AnthonyB
      Link Parent
      This has been the case for me for both debates. Apparently, you can watch through CNN's streaming app if you have a cable provider login, which, frankly, is absurd. We shouldn't have to pay to see...

      This has been the case for me for both debates. Apparently, you can watch through CNN's streaming app if you have a cable provider login, which, frankly, is absurd. We shouldn't have to pay to see this.

      5 votes
    2. KapteinB
      Link Parent
      Looks like none of the big publishers have uploaded it to YouTube yet, but there are a few small channels I've never heard of that have uploaded it.

      Looks like none of the big publishers have uploaded it to YouTube yet, but there are a few small channels I've never heard of that have uploaded it.

  17. alyaza
    Link
    aaaaaaaaaand de blasio opens with biden saying nothing will fundamentally change and harris not wanting to change the system! i suspect that that portends fireworks.

    aaaaaaaaaand de blasio opens with biden saying nothing will fundamentally change and harris not wanting to change the system! i suspect that that portends fireworks.

    3 votes
  18. alyaza
    Link
    this healthcare debate feels so, so much less robust and invested than last night's, which is somewhat inevitable because of how the lots were (some of the less animated candidates are involved...

    this healthcare debate feels so, so much less robust and invested than last night's, which is somewhat inevitable because of how the lots were (some of the less animated candidates are involved here) but also because half the people here simply cannot message for shit on this issue.

    3 votes
  19. reese
    Link
    Gillibrand: "The first thing I'm going to do when I'm President is clorox the oval office."

    Gillibrand: "The first thing I'm going to do when I'm President is clorox the oval office."

    3 votes
  20. alyaza
    Link
    booker bringing up voter suppression is pretty novel--and of course, he hit the important black female vote in democratic primaries in doing so, which is a good idea. CNN clearly isn't going to...

    booker bringing up voter suppression is pretty novel--and of course, he hit the important black female vote in democratic primaries in doing so, which is a good idea. CNN clearly isn't going to ask a question on that issue, so it pays to distinguish yourself on that where possible.

    3 votes
  21. alyaza
    Link
    there are some really weird coalitions on healthcare: we had a constellation of de blasio, gabbard, harris, and gillibrand pointing out biden's issues on healthcare in that whole discussion even...

    there are some really weird coalitions on healthcare: we had a constellation of de blasio, gabbard, harris, and gillibrand pointing out biden's issues on healthcare in that whole discussion even though those people share like no other policy positions.

    2 votes
  22. [10]
    spit-evil-olive-tips
    Link
    Biden is running really hard for a 3rd term of Obama. Pretty much his entire answer to the "what did you about the deportations?" question was a list of good things Obama did.

    Biden is running really hard for a 3rd term of Obama. Pretty much his entire answer to the "what did you about the deportations?" question was a list of good things Obama did.

    2 votes
    1. alyaza
      Link Parent
      he also completely dodged answering de blasio or booker which... dude. they're correct! you can't dodge that shit forever!

      he also completely dodged answering de blasio or booker which... dude. they're correct! you can't dodge that shit forever!

      2 votes
    2. [8]
      OxidadoGuillermez
      Link Parent
      sign me up

      a 3rd term of Obama

      sign me up

      1. [7]
        alyaza
        Link Parent
        see, on one hand obama wasn't a bad president (at least socially and to some extent economically–things like his foreign policy are another story) but on the other hand, he wasn't a bad president...

        see, on one hand obama wasn't a bad president (at least socially and to some extent economically–things like his foreign policy are another story) but on the other hand, he wasn't a bad president because of the context in which his administration served. obama was good for a country coming out of the worst economic collapse and financial crisis since the great depression, and was good for a country coming around to the integration of the LGBT community and still reeling from the issues of racism. he would probably not be good for now, though, because his message of HOPE and reconciliation of racial and financial divide has been thoroughly dismantled, his progressive chops have been slowly whittled away by the sands of time and the realities of politics, and because the realities of the future we're staring at demand a lot more than he was willing or would be able to honestly offer. obama was in essence--and should have been--a building block president, but that building block after him never happened, and so while channeling his ideas and energy for a third term is good and all, it's at this point really not something that i can foresee ever being able to truly solve the problems of the world we now face. his time was good, but his time is also the past, and lingering in the legacy of that past is just not going to be enough.

        4 votes
        1. [6]
          OxidadoGuillermez
          Link Parent
          Unless progressives can win a national election in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and the upper Midwest, the new progressivism is going to be defeated by Trump's hand yet again. Things like health plans and...

          Unless progressives can win a national election in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and the upper Midwest, the new progressivism is going to be defeated by Trump's hand yet again.

          Things like health plans and such probably play well there.

          All of this outrage olympics and identity griefing doesn't as much. I mean, let's just remember that despite all of this rehashing of racial grievances and such, Biden is still killing it with black people.

          1 vote
          1. [5]
            alyaza
            Link Parent
            there's not really a reason to suggest that they wouldn't be able to other than the false notion that "moderation" automatically means bipartisan voters; biden and sanders, as useless as polling...

            Unless progressives can win a national election in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and the upper Midwest, the new progressivism is going to be defeated by Trump's hand yet again.

            there's not really a reason to suggest that they wouldn't be able to other than the false notion that "moderation" automatically means bipartisan voters; biden and sanders, as useless as polling is this far out, poll close to equally in almost every poll, and there's a similar parallel with warren and the more moderate harris and buttigieg. donald also has very, very tiny margins in those states, mostly contingent on lower than usual minority turnout that seem unlikely to replicate themselves and very good margins with whites that have been eroded badly through his presidency. i accordingly come down on the line of thinking that anyone worth their salt will win in 2020. it's much more of a donald problem to preserve those margins than a democrat one to erode them.

            (also, democrats don't need ohio to win the presidency, at this point, and even a centrist candidate is probably not going to win the state again on account of demographic changes that are making the state whiter, less educated, and smaller on the whole.)

            4 votes
            1. [4]
              OxidadoGuillermez
              Link Parent
              Polling at this point is basically meaningless. A bit tautological. I'll say the reverse. Nominate Biden or one of the moderates, and the dems win easily. Nomate Warren or Sanders and Trump kills it.

              Polling at this point is basically meaningless.

              i accordingly come down on the line of thinking that anyone worth their salt will win in 2020.

              A bit tautological.

              I'll say the reverse. Nominate Biden or one of the moderates, and the dems win easily. Nomate Warren or Sanders and Trump kills it.

              1. [3]
                alyaza
                (edited )
                Link Parent
                i did say that, yes. but you can draw certain things from it in the broader sense although its predictive value is meaningless: i reiterate the fact that biden and sanders poll equally despite...

                Polling at this point is basically meaningless.

                i did say that, yes. but you can draw certain things from it in the broader sense although its predictive value is meaningless: i reiterate the fact that biden and sanders poll equally despite stark ideological differences and harris and buttigieg poll equally with warren despite clear ideological differences suggests that there is not a huge difference between the perceptions of those people at this point among the general electorate, and accordingly there's no reason to think that any of the five would be especially favored over the others except maybe biden to a small extent, but not meaningfully moreso than sanders and not much moreso than warren, harris, or buttigieg?

                A bit tautological.

                i don't see what's particularly tautological about the take "anybody worth their salt will win in 2020 because it's far more a matter of donald preserving margins than democrats eroding them, and his margins sucked and show no signs of improving". i'm pretty sure you could run hillary again and she'd win at this point.

                1 vote
                1. [2]
                  OxidadoGuillermez
                  Link Parent
                  Because if someone doesn't win in 2020, they're clearly not worth their salt. That was the tautological bit.

                  anybody worth their salt will win in 2020

                  Because if someone doesn't win in 2020, they're clearly not worth their salt. That was the tautological bit.

                  1. alyaza
                    Link Parent
                    you're reading it as an electoral prediction and not as "these candidates aren't literal nobodies and aren't total garbage", but i worded that ambiguously so i can see why you did. my position...

                    you're reading it as an electoral prediction and not as "these candidates aren't literal nobodies and aren't total garbage", but i worded that ambiguously so i can see why you did. my position remains that any candidate who is not a gigantic tire-fire of a person will beat donald barring a significant shift in the status quo, not because of anything they do necessarily, but simply because donald's path to victory in 2016 was exceptionally narrow and i just don't see him pulling that off again given his (and the republican party's) erosion with every demographic of white voters and the likelihood of high minority turnout.

  23. [5]
    BuckeyeSundae
    Link
    I have rarely heard anything as stupid as de Blasio's closing statement, where he said, "We need to be willing to tell people proudly we're going to tax the hell out of the rich. And then, right...

    I have rarely heard anything as stupid as de Blasio's closing statement, where he said, "We need to be willing to tell people proudly we're going to tax the hell out of the rich. And then, right on queue, Trump will call us a socialist. No, Mr. Trump, you're the socialist. Socialism for the rich."

    It's like he's the spitting image of a liberal who doesn't know what they're talking about and is just there to bait other candidates into taking stupid positions that won't play well in the general.

    2 votes
    1. [2]
      alyaza
      Link Parent
      "socialism for the rich" as a political trope in general is just an incredibly stupid line, and i feel like nobody who has seriously workshopped a line like that when they're not going to give...

      "socialism for the rich" as a political trope in general is just an incredibly stupid line, and i feel like nobody who has seriously workshopped a line like that when they're not going to give followup details would ever phrase it that way because you really can't make it not sound stupid otherwise. like, sanders flirts with something like that in his stump speeches, but he usually also actually goes into detail with what he means when he does because the line itself is just... not that good. de blasio apparently did not get that memo.

      3 votes
      1. BuckeyeSundae
        Link Parent
        Yeah I think people would be sympathetic with arguments that talk about the use of the federal government to subsidize the rich at the cost of the poor. But... that's not socialism. Maybe it's...

        Yeah I think people would be sympathetic with arguments that talk about the use of the federal government to subsidize the rich at the cost of the poor. But... that's not socialism. Maybe it's revolution in the sense that there's a class-based upheaval, but the nature of the wealth distribution shift we're living through is that it's happening within existing institutions not through an ad hoc extralegal system.

        1 vote
    2. [2]
      OxidadoGuillermez
      Link Parent
      Remember, what playing well in the general means is that it has to play well in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and the upper midwest. Based on that logic there are a lot of Democratic proposals that probably...

      Remember, what playing well in the general means is that it has to play well in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and the upper midwest. Based on that logic there are a lot of Democratic proposals that probably aren't gonna play too well. Everyone is going to have to shift toward the center as the general nears or else the Dems are going to go down hard.

      1 vote
      1. BuckeyeSundae
        Link Parent
        I think there's a big difference between "this is what I believe" not playing well with the general election, which is fair, and "this is what some random dude baited me into saying on a debate...

        I think there's a big difference between "this is what I believe" not playing well with the general election, which is fair, and "this is what some random dude baited me into saying on a debate stage that I don't actually think; I got caught up in the moment." De Blasio feels like he's there to get people into that second category, which is decidedly counterproductive for dems.

        1 vote
  24. [2]
    FatherGlucose
    Link
    I don't know if she reneged or renounced certain policies since then, but I wouldn't call Tulsi a berniecrat, although that's the impression I think she's aiming for.

    I don't know if she reneged or renounced certain policies since then, but I wouldn't call Tulsi a berniecrat, although that's the impression I think she's aiming for.

    1 vote
    1. alyaza
      Link Parent
      it's more convenient to just label her one since she really cozied up to the progressive/bernie wing of the democratic party, even though her actual policies are all over the place and you can...

      it's more convenient to just label her one since she really cozied up to the progressive/bernie wing of the democratic party, even though her actual policies are all over the place and you can make a pretty good case for her basically just being a right-wing reactionary in a nominally progressive skinsuit.

      3 votes
  25. alyaza
    Link
    that tailed off badly after the first hour. i would tentatively say that my rankings are something like: castro = booker > maybe biden? maybe inslee? > everybody else. almost nobody stood out here...

    that tailed off badly after the first hour. i would tentatively say that my rankings are something like: castro = booker > maybe biden? maybe inslee? > everybody else. almost nobody stood out here and i don't think this is going to move the margins at all. in the long term, that's a win for biden but also probably one for warren and sanders.

    1 vote