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With 6 weeks to go till Iowa don’t write off a Trump upset – politicalbetting.com

SystemSystem Posts: 11,014
edited December 2023 in General
imageWith 6 weeks to go till Iowa don’t write off a Trump upset – politicalbetting.com

In recent times first big event in the White House race has been the Iowa Caucuses where GOP voters in the state become the first to have a say on the party nominees. The Democrats won’t be making their Iowa choice for a month or so.

Read the full story here

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  • Options
    ClippPClippP Posts: 1,684
    No commments yet?
  • Options
    ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,181
    edited December 2023
    What is there to say that we haven't said already?

    Also, to somewhat contradict myself, Trump barely scraped second in Iowa in 2016 and that didn't stop him. Moreover, the delegates aren't 'winner takes all' so unless he really crashes it won't hurt him significantly.

    I don't think we should read too much into any results there.
  • Options
    ydoethur said:

    What is there to say that we haven't said already?

    Also, to somewhat contradict myself, Trump barely scraped second in Iowa in 2016 and that didn't stop him. Moreover, the delegates aren't 'winner takes all' so unless he really crashes it won't hurt him significantly.

    I don't think we should read too much into any results there.

    The delegates aren't really the thing though, are they? It's the narrative- Trump is a WINNER, Trump is INEVITABLE- that would take a knock. And without that, he's just another blowhard with legal problems.

    Probably won't happen, natch, but the possibility of Trump being upset is a bright thought on a dismal day.
  • Options
    ydoethur said:

    What is there to say that we haven't said already?

    Also, to somewhat contradict myself, Trump barely scraped second in Iowa in 2016 and that didn't stop him. Moreover, the delegates aren't 'winner takes all' so unless he really crashes it won't hurt him significantly.

    I don't think we should read too much into any results there.

    2016 was a very different contest though. Trump was an underdog and the Trump cult was still in its infancy. More GOP leaders were willing to go on the record in opposing him.

    As someone this time round who is building an air of inevitability, anything that looks to run contrary to that may really turn this into a contest.
  • Options
    darkagedarkage Posts: 4,796
    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.
  • Options
    bondegezoubondegezou Posts: 7,586
    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?
  • Options
    PhilPhil Posts: 1,936
    edited December 2023
    As an aside, it’s absolutely hilarious that Elon Musk built an entire LLM based AI to counter the perceived wokeness of OpenAI’s ChatGPT & it’s turned out to as woke as it is possible to be:

    Exhibit A:


    Exhibit B:


    Exhibit C:
    https://x.com/edzitron/status/1733341212831269348?s=20

    Alt-right seething incoming...

    (It is possible that Grok’s default “rebellious” mode is riffing on the alt-rightish nature of it’s interlocutors in these exchanges - it has access to the user’s Xitter feed - & is feeding them responses that are designed to wind them up. That might be an even funnier outcome though.)
  • Options
    Re: Rwanda.
    When the cost of the scheme hits £350 million, will it be announced on the side of a bus?
  • Options
    darkagedarkage Posts: 4,796
    edited December 2023

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    This is civilizational decline. They would be better off quitting the ECHR (or just ignoring it) than turning out absurd initiatives like this.
  • Options
    nico679nico679 Posts: 4,772

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    Yes that’s the case . It’s utterly absurd.
  • Options
    For maximum LOL and political fury, not to mention work for lawyers, how about Trump wins the popular vote next year but loses the electoral vote.

    A Dem President you say ?

    But wait, this then comes into play:

    The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact (NPVIC) is an agreement among a group of U.S. states and the District of Columbia to award all their electoral votes to whichever presidential ticket wins the overall popular vote in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The compact is designed to ensure that the candidate who receives the most votes nationwide is elected president, and it would come into effect only when it would guarantee that outcome.[2][3] Introduced in 2006, as of August 2023 it has been adopted by sixteen states and the District of Columbia. These jurisdictions have 205 electoral votes, which is 38% of the Electoral College and 76% of the 270 votes needed to give the compact legal force.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Popular_Vote_Interstate_Compact#Mechanism

    The amount of mind changing on how elections should be decided would be hilarious.
  • Options
    darkage said:

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    This is civilizational decline. They would be better off quitting the ECHR (or just ignoring it) than turning out absurd initiatives like this.
    Except as the Supreme Court ruling made clear, it is not membership of the ECHR that is the primary issue as far as legality is concerned.
  • Options
    malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 41,843
    FPT


    Taz said:

    » show previous quotes
    Good Morning Malc, I hope all is well with you and your family up in your lovely part of Scotland.

    The WAGS of PB may make an interesting reality TV show. Perhaps, on a par, with the Real Housewives of New Jersey. Perhaps OGH should look into it.

    Morning Taz, yes almost recovered from our covid , I had extra bonus of root canal this week but looking forward to xmas. Hope you and family all well.
    Politically Scotland is like Shameless or Benidorm just now. Hard to believe so many 3 legged no users could be assembled and running a country ( into the ground).
  • Options

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
  • Options
    bondegezoubondegezou Posts: 7,586
    https://www.texasmonthly.com/news-politics/texas-historical-commission-book-removal/

    Texas removes books about slavery from old plantation gift shop.
  • Options
    malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 41,843

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    Yes and yanks stop playing silly political beggars re sending ammo etc.
  • Options
    algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 10,505

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    There is a really difficult question around which you articulate here. Suddenly is is wrong for the UK government by law to declare a 'fact' -in this case that Rwanda is safe. But when we say it, either legally or informally, of Germany or Switzerland etc it has never generated heat.

    There is already provision for 'safe' countries. Sec 80AA of the Nationality Act 2002.

    SFAICS there is a continuing general power and duty on government to keep all the safe countries under review. Making Rwanda an exception will be in the top 10 of the 200 best legal objections to the bill if it becomes law.

    There is no doubt if it got that far (it won't) that the SC would say that
    the government have a duty to continually review it, and that such a review can be reviewed by the courts. Not least because the SC has already said Rwanda isn't safe.

    The nightmare of this wicked bill is only just beginning.
  • Options

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
  • Options
    LeonLeon Posts: 46,994
    edited December 2023
    Fpt for @Peter_the_Punter

    “One of the scariest fifteen minutes of my life was when I consulted Dr Google after peeing red. It listed fifteen possible causes, fourteen of which you definitely didn't want it to be.

    The fifteenth suggested I may have eaten a lot of beetroot.”

    lol

    I’ve been there also. In an even more ludicrous way

    It all got sorted when a local Thai lady pharmacist looked at me and said “it come out orange?” And I sheepishly replied “yes it come out orange” and then she chuckled and gave me a pill which fixed everything up so it no longer come out orange
  • Options
    kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,162
    Praying for it with every fibre of my being.
  • Options
    dixiedeandixiedean Posts: 27,952
    Leon said:

    Fpt for @Peter_the_Punter

    “One of the scariest fifteen minutes of my life was when I consulted Dr Google after peeing red. It listed fifteen possible causes, fourteen of which you definitely didn't want it to be.

    The fifteenth suggested I may have eaten a lot of beetroot.”

    lol

    I’ve been there also. In an even more ludicrous way

    It all got sorted when a local Thai lady pharmacist looked at me and said “it come out orange?” And I sheepishly replied “yes it come out orange” and then she chuckled and gave me a pill which fixed everything up so it no longer come out orange

    Can you do apples and mangoes too?
  • Options

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    If there's a coup d’état in the UK, the courts will do whatever they're tol...

    Oh, you mean a a coup d’état in Rwanda.

    But yes. The whole thing is utterly bonkers, the the government are so far down the rabbit hole that they can't turn back.

    Wonder when the point of no return was? With hindsight, it wasn't the Supreme Court decision, it was quite a bit earlier. When Sunak took over and didn't nix the project on day one maybe?
  • Options
    viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,698
    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    I'm trying to read one of his books ("Black Mass: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Mass:_Apocalyptic_Religion_and_the_Death_of_Utopia ). Crikey, it's a difficult read. I agree with most of what he says, but he flits from era to subject to subject to era back and forth so quickly it's very difficult to read him. He badly needs somebody else to write for him
  • Options
    TimSTimS Posts: 9,554

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    There’s a tenacious belief out there in the Russian ability to grind out military victories against the odds, which is based on WW2. The asymmetrical fights in Chechnya, Georgia and Syria weren’t against the odds. As always there’s a grain of truth, but a lot of mythology and wishful thinking. But likewise with the belief Russia is always on the brink of complete collapse. That’s based almost entirely on 1989-93.

    1812 doesn’t apply here as that was about Russian geostrategic depth. Not relevant to this or other recent wars.
  • Options
    kyf_100kyf_100 Posts: 3,939
    Phil said:

    As an aside, it’s absolutely hilarious that Elon Musk built an entire LLM based AI to counter the perceived wokeness of OpenAI’s ChatGPT & it’s turned out to as woke as it is possible to be:

    Exhibit A:


    Exhibit B:


    Exhibit C:
    https://x.com/edzitron/status/1733341212831269348?s=20

    Alt-right seething incoming...

    (It is possible that Grok’s default “rebellious” mode is riffing on the alt-rightish nature of it’s interlocutors in these exchanges - it has access to the user’s Xitter feed - & is feeding them responses that are designed to wind them up. That might be an even funnier outcome though.)

    Considering LLMs are really just probability generators, if you assume 50% of people answer yes to that question and 50% no, a truly uncensored LLM would say "yes" 50% of the time when prompted in that way. If not prompted to give a single word answer, it would give you a more nuanced take with both sides of the debate.

    The problem comes when "alignment" happens, when one side of the argument is deliberately suppressed to be in keeping with one side of the argument, which its programmers happen to agree with. You see this with OpenAI, but it's also been going on with Google search for years, suppressing some political views and promoting others.
  • Options
    carnforthcarnforth Posts: 3,183

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    If there's a coup d’état in the UK, the courts will do whatever they're tol...

    Oh, you mean a a coup d’état in Rwanda.

    But yes. The whole thing is utterly bonkers, the the government are so far down the rabbit hole that they can't turn back.

    Wonder when the point of no return was? With hindsight, it wasn't the Supreme Court decision, it was quite a bit earlier. When Sunak took over and didn't nix the project on day one maybe?
    You have to wonder whether Sunak would quite like to see Rwanda pull out.
  • Options
    kyf_100 said:

    Phil said:

    As an aside, it’s absolutely hilarious that Elon Musk built an entire LLM based AI to counter the perceived wokeness of OpenAI’s ChatGPT & it’s turned out to as woke as it is possible to be:

    Exhibit A:


    Exhibit B:


    Exhibit C:
    https://x.com/edzitron/status/1733341212831269348?s=20

    Alt-right seething incoming...

    (It is possible that Grok’s default “rebellious” mode is riffing on the alt-rightish nature of it’s interlocutors in these exchanges - it has access to the user’s Xitter feed - & is feeding them responses that are designed to wind them up. That might be an even funnier outcome though.)

    Considering LLMs are really just probability generators, if you assume 50% of people answer yes to that question and 50% no, a truly uncensored LLM would say "yes" 50% of the time when prompted in that way. If not prompted to give a single word answer, it would give you a more nuanced take with both sides of the debate.

    The problem comes when "alignment" happens, when one side of the argument is deliberately suppressed to be in keeping with one side of the argument, which its programmers happen to agree with. You see this with OpenAI, but it's also been going on with Google search for years, suppressing some political views and promoting others.
    Classically, the problem was that Google search would tune itself to give you results based on what you had clicked on in the past. Twix favoured tweets that garnered a lot of reaction, even if that reaction was unfavourable, so it favoured right-wing views, not the left. This would also be exploited by Russian trolls.
  • Options
    kyf_100 said:

    Phil said:

    As an aside, it’s absolutely hilarious that Elon Musk built an entire LLM based AI to counter the perceived wokeness of OpenAI’s ChatGPT & it’s turned out to as woke as it is possible to be:

    Exhibit A:


    Exhibit B:


    Exhibit C:
    https://x.com/edzitron/status/1733341212831269348?s=20

    Alt-right seething incoming...

    (It is possible that Grok’s default “rebellious” mode is riffing on the alt-rightish nature of it’s interlocutors in these exchanges - it has access to the user’s Xitter feed - & is feeding them responses that are designed to wind them up. That might be an even funnier outcome though.)

    Considering LLMs are really just probability generators, if you assume 50% of people answer yes to that question and 50% no, a truly uncensored LLM would say "yes" 50% of the time when prompted in that way. If not prompted to give a single word answer, it would give you a more nuanced take with both sides of the debate.

    The problem comes when "alignment" happens, when one side of the argument is deliberately suppressed to be in keeping with one side of the argument, which its programmers happen to agree with. You see this with OpenAI, but it's also been going on with Google search for years, suppressing some political views and promoting others.
    It's like Family Fortunes- "74 percent of our survey said..." combined with First Past The Post, so the most popular answer on the internet becomes the answer.

    Which must be infuriating if your world view is that the silent majority are much more right wing than the consensus.
  • Options
    viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,698

    https://www.texasmonthly.com/news-politics/texas-historical-commission-book-removal/

    Texas removes books about slavery from old plantation gift shop.

    After a brief read of the link (thank you by the way), it appears that they removed the books because the books were not positive enough about slavery.

    Texas.
  • Options
    kle4kle4 Posts: 91,717
    Nah, I am still writing off an Iowa upset.
  • Options
    carnforth said:

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    If there's a coup d’état in the UK, the courts will do whatever they're tol...

    Oh, you mean a a coup d’état in Rwanda.

    But yes. The whole thing is utterly bonkers, the the government are so far down the rabbit hole that they can't turn back.

    Wonder when the point of no return was? With hindsight, it wasn't the Supreme Court decision, it was quite a bit earlier. When Sunak took over and didn't nix the project on day one maybe?
    You have to wonder whether Sunak would quite like to see Rwanda pull out.
    It would certainly be a convenient way of disposing of an embarrasingly bad policy.

  • Options
    darkagedarkage Posts: 4,796
    viewcode said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    I'm trying to read one of his books ("Black Mass: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Mass:_Apocalyptic_Religion_and_the_Death_of_Utopia ). Crikey, it's a difficult read. I agree with most of what he says, but he flits from era to subject to subject to era back and forth so quickly it's very difficult to read him. He badly needs somebody else to write for him
    He is at his best when he is writing about contemporary politics and culture, providing unwanted and provocative explanations in a polemical way. Straw Dogs is probably the best example of this. But I would still say he was at his peak before that in the late 1990s when writing about how the emerging economic system was flawed and prone to catastrophic failure, False Dawn being the best work. I've read most of his other books but agree that sometimes they lack structure.
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    .
    TimS said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    There’s a tenacious belief out there in the Russian ability to grind out military victories against the odds, which is based on WW2. The asymmetrical fights in Chechnya, Georgia and Syria weren’t against the odds. As always there’s a grain of truth, but a lot of mythology and wishful thinking. But likewise with the belief Russia is always on the brink of complete collapse. That’s based almost entirely on 1989-93.

    1812 doesn’t apply here as that was about Russian geostrategic depth. Not relevant to this or other recent wars.
    There is, though, a genuine question of whether Ukraine runs out of ammunition in the next few months.
    If the Congressional Republicans refuse to authorise further aid spending, that is quite likely.
  • Options
    viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,698
    kyf_100 said:

    Phil said:

    As an aside, it’s absolutely hilarious that Elon Musk built an entire LLM based AI to counter the perceived wokeness of OpenAI’s ChatGPT & it’s turned out to as woke as it is possible to be:

    Exhibit A:


    Exhibit B:


    Exhibit C:
    https://x.com/edzitron/status/1733341212831269348?s=20

    Alt-right seething incoming...

    (It is possible that Grok’s default “rebellious” mode is riffing on the alt-rightish nature of it’s interlocutors in these exchanges - it has access to the user’s Xitter feed - & is feeding them responses that are designed to wind them up. That might be an even funnier outcome though.)

    Considering LLMs are really just probability generators, if you assume 50% of people answer yes to that question and 50% no, a truly uncensored LLM would say "yes" 50% of the time when prompted in that way. If not prompted to give a single word answer, it would give you a more nuanced take with both sides of the debate.

    The problem comes when "alignment" happens, when one side of the argument is deliberately suppressed to be in keeping with one side of the argument, which its programmers happen to agree with. You see this with OpenAI, but it's also been going on with Google search for years, suppressing some political views and promoting others.
    It's not a random probability generator. IIUC, large language models work by predicting the n+1th word after the nth word, given a very large training set. Leaving aside the improbability of an exact 50/50 split, by forcing into a yes/no binary choice, you'd have to go with the 50.00000001% versus the 49.99999999%, instead of flopping between the two.

    To your second point, is "alignment" really a thing? People infer motive to LLM outputs, but there is no ghost in the machine, it's just a big Chinese room. It just summarises what it's been given.


  • Options

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
  • Options
    OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 31,960

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    edited December 2023
    carnforth said:

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    If there's a coup d’état in the UK, the courts will do whatever they're tol...

    Oh, you mean a a coup d’état in Rwanda.

    But yes. The whole thing is utterly bonkers, the the government are so far down the rabbit hole that they can't turn back.

    Wonder when the point of no return was? With hindsight, it wasn't the Supreme Court decision, it was quite a bit earlier. When Sunak took over and didn't nix the project on day one maybe?
    You have to wonder whether Sunak would quite like to see Rwanda pull out.
    They'll probably want another couple of hundred million first.

    In a way it's quite like the corporate world Sunak used to inhabit, with oversize signing bonuses and golden parachutes.
  • Options

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
  • Options
    kyf_100kyf_100 Posts: 3,939
    edited December 2023
    viewcode said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Phil said:

    As an aside, it’s absolutely hilarious that Elon Musk built an entire LLM based AI to counter the perceived wokeness of OpenAI’s ChatGPT & it’s turned out to as woke as it is possible to be:

    Exhibit A:


    Exhibit B:


    Exhibit C:
    https://x.com/edzitron/status/1733341212831269348?s=20

    Alt-right seething incoming...

    (It is possible that Grok’s default “rebellious” mode is riffing on the alt-rightish nature of it’s interlocutors in these exchanges - it has access to the user’s Xitter feed - & is feeding them responses that are designed to wind them up. That might be an even funnier outcome though.)

    Considering LLMs are really just probability generators, if you assume 50% of people answer yes to that question and 50% no, a truly uncensored LLM would say "yes" 50% of the time when prompted in that way. If not prompted to give a single word answer, it would give you a more nuanced take with both sides of the debate.

    The problem comes when "alignment" happens, when one side of the argument is deliberately suppressed to be in keeping with one side of the argument, which its programmers happen to agree with. You see this with OpenAI, but it's also been going on with Google search for years, suppressing some political views and promoting others.
    It's not a random probability generator. IIUC, large language models work by predicting the n+1th word after the nth word, given a very large training set. Leaving aside the improbability of an exact 50/50 split, by forcing into a yes/no binary choice, you'd have to go with the 50.00000001% versus the 49.99999999%, instead of flopping between the two.

    To your second point, is "alignment" really a thing? People infer motive to LLM outputs, but there is no ghost in the machine, it's just a big Chinese room. It just summarises what it's been given.


    Nope.

    I do understand how LLMs work, and yes it's slightly more complicated than "advanced autocomplete" but it's perfectly possible for it to give a "no" then a "yes" based on training data if prompted in the way described above.

    And YES alignment is a huge thing.

    Famously, in the early days, it would give you the unaligned answer to whatever you prompted it. Then they added alignment, which made it ethically refuse certain requests. They rolled that back after a number of prominent critics complained, but it's still very much there.

    About to head out for lunch with friends, but if you're interested in the topic, google it or go to the subreddits, especially the LocalLLaMA where there are reams of people dedicated to producing their own uncensored models.

    Once you've used an uncensored model the difference between the uncensored output and the aligned output is as clear as night and day.

    Edit: Added a link for you on the importance of unaligned/uncensored models - https://erichartford.com/uncensored-models
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    viewcode said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Phil said:

    As an aside, it’s absolutely hilarious that Elon Musk built an entire LLM based AI to counter the perceived wokeness of OpenAI’s ChatGPT & it’s turned out to as woke as it is possible to be:

    Exhibit A:


    Exhibit B:


    Exhibit C:
    https://x.com/edzitron/status/1733341212831269348?s=20

    Alt-right seething incoming...

    (It is possible that Grok’s default “rebellious” mode is riffing on the alt-rightish nature of it’s interlocutors in these exchanges - it has access to the user’s Xitter feed - & is feeding them responses that are designed to wind them up. That might be an even funnier outcome though.)

    Considering LLMs are really just probability generators, if you assume 50% of people answer yes to that question and 50% no, a truly uncensored LLM would say "yes" 50% of the time when prompted in that way. If not prompted to give a single word answer, it would give you a more nuanced take with both sides of the debate.

    The problem comes when "alignment" happens, when one side of the argument is deliberately suppressed to be in keeping with one side of the argument, which its programmers happen to agree with. You see this with OpenAI, but it's also been going on with Google search for years, suppressing some political views and promoting others.
    It's not a random probability generator. IIUC, large language models work by predicting the n+1th word after the nth word, given a very large training set. Leaving aside the improbability of an exact 50/50 split, by forcing into a yes/no binary choice, you'd have to go with the 50.00000001% versus the 49.99999999%, instead of flopping between the two.

    To your second point, is "alignment" really a thing? People infer motive to LLM outputs, but there is no ghost in the machine, it's just a big Chinese room. It just summarises what it's been given.

    Which is the collective id of humanity, as expressed in our online musings.

    Put that way, it's still quite alarming.
  • Options
    OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 31,960

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    I know that, you know that, but that’s not received wisdom in Russia. Some parts of Russia, anyway.
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    It's bullshit, of course.
    But imperial mindsets are quite resilient in the face of fact.
  • Options
    ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,181

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    Never stopped them obsessing over Crimea...
  • Options
    Peter_the_PunterPeter_the_Punter Posts: 13,293
    edited December 2023

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    I know that, you know that, but that’s not received wisdom in Russia. Some parts of Russia, anyway.
    Not sure how many Babushkas are going to tolerate their sons dying for some far away and disputed bit of the empire.

    Propaganda can only do so much.
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    edited December 2023
    School complaints about bullying Ofsted inspectors soar to ‘ridiculous’ levels in England
    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2023/dec/09/complaints-about-bullying-ofsted-inspectors-soar-in-schools-in-england
    ...But education consultants told the Observer this number may rise further, because they are receiving an unprecedented number of approaches from distressed heads unhappy with the behaviour of an inspector.

    They say these complaints are falling on deaf ears, with Ofsted failing to investigate poor conduct fully. The Observer has seen standard response letters to a number of schools, which say that Ofsted will accept no additional evidence or witness statements or enter into any discussion with the school about an inspector’s conduct. They add that concerns will be passed on to the inspector’s regional manager and the outcome cannot be discussed with the school..
  • Options
    ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,181
    Nigelb said:

    School complaints about bullying Ofsted inspectors soar to ‘ridiculous’ levels in England
    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2023/dec/09/complaints-about-bullying-ofsted-inspectors-soar-in-schools-in-england

    What's ridiculous is not the level of complaints - that's inevitable given their lax training and recruitment procedures - but that they have no actual way of dealing with them.

    They epitomise why Knight was wrong and you can't just go with self-evaluation.
  • Options
    IanB2IanB2 Posts: 47,253
    Henry Hill (of ConHome): Focusing on the troubled Rwanda scheme is the closest Sunak has got to answering an impossible question: how do you campaign on being tough on immigration when your record says the opposite? I suspect that next year he will learn the hard truth: you can’t.
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    .
    ydoethur said:

    Nigelb said:

    School complaints about bullying Ofsted inspectors soar to ‘ridiculous’ levels in England
    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2023/dec/09/complaints-about-bullying-ofsted-inspectors-soar-in-schools-in-england

    What's ridiculous is not the level of complaints - that's inevitable given their lax training and recruitment procedures - but that they have no actual way of dealing with them.

    They epitomise why Knight was wrong and you can't just go with self-evaluation.
    Indeed

    The 'ridiculous' comment was a direct quote about the situation, rather than a description of the actual numbers.

    Headline sense compression.
  • Options
    kamskikamski Posts: 4,234

    For maximum LOL and political fury, not to mention work for lawyers, how about Trump wins the popular vote next year but loses the electoral vote.

    A Dem President you say ?

    But wait, this then comes into play:

    The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact (NPVIC) is an agreement among a group of U.S. states and the District of Columbia to award all their electoral votes to whichever presidential ticket wins the overall popular vote in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The compact is designed to ensure that the candidate who receives the most votes nationwide is elected president, and it would come into effect only when it would guarantee that outcome.[2][3] Introduced in 2006, as of August 2023 it has been adopted by sixteen states and the District of Columbia. These jurisdictions have 205 electoral votes, which is 38% of the Electoral College and 76% of the 270 votes needed to give the compact legal force.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Popular_Vote_Interstate_Compact#Mechanism

    The amount of mind changing on how elections should be decided would be hilarious.

    Why would come into play? They don't have enough states for it to come into effect.
  • Options
    HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 116,980
    Trump looks near certain to win Iowa and the early primaries at this point.

    Whether he gets derailed later likely depends on the outcome of his court cases
  • Options
    HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 116,980
    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    .
    ydoethur said:

    Nigelb said:

    School complaints about bullying Ofsted inspectors soar to ‘ridiculous’ levels in England
    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2023/dec/09/complaints-about-bullying-ofsted-inspectors-soar-in-schools-in-england

    What's ridiculous is not the level of complaints - that's inevitable given their lax training and recruitment procedures - but that they have no actual way of dealing with them.

    They epitomise why Knight was wrong and you can't just go with self-evaluation.
    The sheer institutional arrogance and dishonesty is not entirely dissimilar from that at the Post Office.

    ..The Observer revealed last weekend that inspectors were accusing Ofsted of misleading Perry’s inquest by claiming that “reducing stress” was a “core value” when training inspectors. The coroner said in her summing up that they had been unable to provide any evidence of this beyond a two-minute reference on a slide alongside other points. She also described Ofsted’s claims that inspections could be paused if a head was showing signs of severe stress as “mythical”...
  • Options
    ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,181
    Nigelb said:

    .

    ydoethur said:

    Nigelb said:

    School complaints about bullying Ofsted inspectors soar to ‘ridiculous’ levels in England
    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2023/dec/09/complaints-about-bullying-ofsted-inspectors-soar-in-schools-in-england

    What's ridiculous is not the level of complaints - that's inevitable given their lax training and recruitment procedures - but that they have no actual way of dealing with them.

    They epitomise why Knight was wrong and you can't just go with self-evaluation.
    The sheer institutional arrogance and dishonesty is not entirely dissimilar from that at the Post Office.

    ..The Observer revealed last weekend that inspectors were accusing Ofsted of misleading Perry’s inquest by claiming that “reducing stress” was a “core value” when training inspectors. The coroner said in her summing up that they had been unable to provide any evidence of this beyond a two-minute reference on a slide alongside other points. She also described Ofsted’s claims that inspections could be paused if a head was showing signs of severe stress as “mythical”...
    They don't train inspectors. Haven't done since before Covid.

    That's one of the many problems there.
  • Options
    NYT (via Seattle Times) - Finding a Santos successor is proving no simple task for Republicans

    If New York Republicans had hoped to quickly and cleanly turn the page on the embarrassing saga of George Santos, the week since his expulsion from Congress has not exactly gone as planned.

    While party leaders hunkered down in the Long Island suburbs to game out the critical special election to replace him, it emerged that one of their top candidates for the nomination, Mazi Melesa Pilip, was not technically a Republican at all, but a registered Democrat.

    Another Republican who had entered the race earlier this year was convicted of taking part in the Capitol riot Jan. 6, 2021.

    Word leaked that party officials were interviewing a more serious contender: a former state assemblyman known to have potentially damaging ties to Santos through a bizarre business proposition that one person involved said resembled the classic email scheme with a Nigerian prince.

    And records were unearthed in news reports showing that another front-runner, Mike Sapraicone, had not only been sued for suppressing evidence in a murder case as a New York City police officer but also later made political contributions totaling $40,000 to an unexpected recipient: the race’s Democratic nominee, Tom Suozzi.

    The torrent of revelations washed away the message of order and unity that top Republicans sought to project in the wake of Santos’ hurricane. And suspicions that many of the unsavory disclosures about the candidates had been seeded in the press by rival Republican camps left some fretting that the party was playing straight into Democrats’ hands. . . .

    Joseph Cairo, the Nassau County Republican chair leading the selection process, views Santos as a stain on his personal record. He said he would likely only select a candidate already well known to the party and has also retained outside help from research firms to identify major vulnerabilities before making the nomination. . . .

  • Options
    algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 10,505

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    If there's a coup d’état in the UK, the courts will do whatever they're tol...

    Oh, you mean a a coup d’état in Rwanda.

    But yes. The whole thing is utterly bonkers, the the government are so far down the rabbit hole that they can't turn back.

    Wonder when the point of no return was? With hindsight, it wasn't the Supreme Court decision, it was quite a bit earlier. When Sunak took over and didn't nix the project on day one maybe?
    He had to choose between easing the path to Rwanda or easing the track to Manchester. Got it wrong.
  • Options
    ydoethur said:

    Nigelb said:

    School complaints about bullying Ofsted inspectors soar to ‘ridiculous’ levels in England
    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2023/dec/09/complaints-about-bullying-ofsted-inspectors-soar-in-schools-in-england

    What's ridiculous is not the level of complaints - that's inevitable given their lax training and recruitment procedures - but that they have no actual way of dealing with them.

    They epitomise why Knight was wrong and you can't just go with self-evaluation.
    But why would they need a process for when inspections go wrong?

    The whole point of the Ofsted model is that it's judgements are so infallible that Solomon went to them for tips on tricky cases.
  • Options
    FishingFishing Posts: 4,561
    edited December 2023

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    It may or may not be inaccurate - if you reach far enough back into history you can justify almost anything.

    But historical possession is completely irrelevant. What matters is the views of the people who currently live there. Otherwise we'd get about 50 or so countries back.

    The only exception to that is if people have been forcibly expelled within living memory - they have a right of return once it's safe. Sorry Israel.
  • Options
    IanB2IanB2 Posts: 47,253
    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    They could probably get jobs with Post Office Ltd.
  • Options
    Fishing said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    It may or may not be inaccurate - if you reach far enough back into history you can justify almost anything.

    But historical possession is completely irrelevant. What matters is the views of the people who currently live there. Otherwise we'd get about 50 or so countries back.

    The only exception to that is if people have been forcibly expelled within living memory - they have a right of return once it's safe. Sorry Israel.
    So the Germans forcibly expelled from modern-day Poland and Russia have the right of return?
  • Options
    stodgestodge Posts: 12,841
    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    I'm not opposed to this - even if you are expecting it, it must be a pretty sharp jolt to go from being an MP to being a citizen. Those who had trades and skills before becoming MPs may be at an advantage but those for whom politics has been all they know it will be a shock.

    I know it's not the same but jockeys have the JETS (Jockey Employment Training Scheme) into which all jockeys pay a sub and which provides help for those jockeys contemplating retirement and those who are forced to retire through injury. Calling it PETS may be asking for trouble but not everyone will move into the City or even find work as a translator (sorry, @NickPalmer).
  • Options
    williamglennwilliamglenn Posts: 48,052
    Fishing said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    It may or may not be inaccurate - if you reach far enough back into history you can justify almost anything.

    But historical possession is completely irrelevant. What matters is the views of the people who currently live there. Otherwise we'd get about 50 or so countries back.

    The only exception to that is if people have been forcibly expelled within living memory - they have a right of return once it's safe. Sorry Israel.
    Should Germans have a right to return en masse to Kaliningrad?
  • Options
    TimSTimS Posts: 9,554

    Fishing said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    It may or may not be inaccurate - if you reach far enough back into history you can justify almost anything.

    But historical possession is completely irrelevant. What matters is the views of the people who currently live there. Otherwise we'd get about 50 or so countries back.

    The only exception to that is if people have been forcibly expelled within living memory - they have a right of return once it's safe. Sorry Israel.
    So the Germans forcibly expelled from modern-day Poland and Russia have the right of return?
    Well, they do to Poland. Single market, free movement etc.
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    edited December 2023

    Fishing said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    It may or may not be inaccurate - if you reach far enough back into history you can justify almost anything.

    But historical possession is completely irrelevant. What matters is the views of the people who currently live there. Otherwise we'd get about 50 or so countries back.

    The only exception to that is if people have been forcibly expelled within living memory - they have a right of return once it's safe. Sorry Israel.
    So the Germans forcibly expelled from modern-day Poland and Russia have the right of return?
    (West) Germany* and Poland settled their disputes amicably in the aftermath of WWII.
    In view of the extraordinarily tangled history of that part of Europe, both states took a pragmatic and farsighted view.

    *The GDR didn't have much choice in the matter.

    And no one is queueing up to demand the right to return to Russia.
  • Options
    kamskikamski Posts: 4,234

    Fishing said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    It may or may not be inaccurate - if you reach far enough back into history you can justify almost anything.

    But historical possession is completely irrelevant. What matters is the views of the people who currently live there. Otherwise we'd get about 50 or so countries back.

    The only exception to that is if people have been forcibly expelled within living memory - they have a right of return once it's safe. Sorry Israel.
    So the Germans forcibly expelled from modern-day Poland and Russia have the right of return?
    Germans certainly have the right to move to Poland or Czechia, but they won't be given any property they, or more likely their grandparents, might have once owned there.
  • Options
    stodge said:

    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    I'm not opposed to this - even if you are expecting it, it must be a pretty sharp jolt to go from being an MP to being a citizen. Those who had trades and skills before becoming MPs may be at an advantage but those for whom politics has been all they know it will be a shock.

    I know it's not the same but jockeys have the JETS (Jockey Employment Training Scheme) into which all jockeys pay a sub and which provides help for those jockeys contemplating retirement and those who are forced to retire through injury. Calling it PETS may be asking for trouble but not everyone will move into the City or even find work as a translator (sorry, @NickPalmer).
    Almost certainly the right thing to do; it's what all good employers should do for innocent ex-employees.

    But the optics are terrible. Maybe political parties should be funding it?
  • Options
    MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,319
    viewcode said:

    https://www.texasmonthly.com/news-politics/texas-historical-commission-book-removal/

    Texas removes books about slavery from old plantation gift shop.

    After a brief read of the link (thank you by the way), it appears that they removed the books because the books were not positive enough about slavery.

    Texas.
    The reason that Texas has that funky bit in its state constitution, to split into multiple states, was slavery.

    The South was convinced that the North would try and create dozens of anti-slavery states, densely populated with immigrants. Think New England. This would rapidly give the North an unassailable lead in the Senate as well as the House.

    There was a map showing 100 states by 1900 going the rounds.

    The Texas thing was an attempt to build in a protection for the slave holders.
  • Options
    stodge said:

    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    I'm not opposed to this - even if you are expecting it, it must be a pretty sharp jolt to go from being an MP to being a citizen. Those who had trades and skills before becoming MPs may be at an advantage but those for whom politics has been all they know it will be a shock.

    I know it's not the same but jockeys have the JETS (Jockey Employment Training Scheme) into which all jockeys pay a sub and which provides help for those jockeys contemplating retirement and those who are forced to retire through injury. Calling it PETS may be asking for trouble but not everyone will move into the City or even find work as a translator (sorry, @NickPalmer).
    Just imagined I saw the following future appeal on my pretend TV screen . . . delivered by PB's own NPxMP:

    "In the wake of the last election, hundreds of former British Members of Parliament are struggling to cope with suddenly losing their jobs, incomes, offices, perks and other important benefits for themselves, their families and political backers.

    Now it the time to reach into you hearts, and your bank balances, so that these now-poor unfortunates may once again experience the joys and rewards they and theirs have come to depend upon for their spiritual and (especially) material needs. . . ."

  • Options
    MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,319
    kamski said:

    Fishing said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    It may or may not be inaccurate - if you reach far enough back into history you can justify almost anything.

    But historical possession is completely irrelevant. What matters is the views of the people who currently live there. Otherwise we'd get about 50 or so countries back.

    The only exception to that is if people have been forcibly expelled within living memory - they have a right of return once it's safe. Sorry Israel.
    So the Germans forcibly expelled from modern-day Poland and Russia have the right of return?
    Germans certainly have the right to move to Poland or Czechia, but they won't be given any property they, or more likely their grandparents, might have once owned there.
    It actually depends. A relative got some Polish land back, because he refused the fraction of a percent “compensation” that the Polish communist government offered.
  • Options
    stodgestodge Posts: 12,841

    stodge said:

    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    I'm not opposed to this - even if you are expecting it, it must be a pretty sharp jolt to go from being an MP to being a citizen. Those who had trades and skills before becoming MPs may be at an advantage but those for whom politics has been all they know it will be a shock.

    I know it's not the same but jockeys have the JETS (Jockey Employment Training Scheme) into which all jockeys pay a sub and which provides help for those jockeys contemplating retirement and those who are forced to retire through injury. Calling it PETS may be asking for trouble but not everyone will move into the City or even find work as a translator (sorry, @NickPalmer).
    Almost certainly the right thing to do; it's what all good employers should do for innocent ex-employees.

    But the optics are terrible. Maybe political parties should be funding it?
    Yes or MPs themselves through paying in to a scheme. To clarify, I would initially restrict it to an MP losing their seat at a General Election irrespective of time served.
  • Options
    viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,698

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    Joe Biden is older than Israel.
    Joe Biden is older than God.
  • Options
    Politico.com - GOP lawmaker: Ousted aides targeted my daughter for OnlyFans account

    Rep. Brandon Williams, who represents a battleground seat, says his altercation stemmed from a threat to expose his daughter.

    A Republican member of Congress is alleging that a former top aide spearheaded a “vindictive” threat to expose his daughter’s OnlyFans account.

    Rep. Brandon Williams (R-N.Y.) told POLITICO that his former chief of staff and former legislative director attempted to retaliate against him using his 27-year old daughter’s account on OnlyFans, a popular forum for people to charge for access to sexually explicit content.

    According to Williams, the two former staffers, Michael Gordon and Ryan Sweeney, threatened to expose his daughter after Williams fired them. . . .

    Gordon was “trying to exert some leverage over me,” Williams said, “and I just simply won’t allow that to happen.”

    Williams, a first-term member in a battleground seat, won his race year by one percentage point. He is one of House Democrats’ top targets to unseat in 2024.

    Gordon said that “the allegations Congressman Williams has levied against me are categorically false” and declined to comment further. Sweeney said the “congressman’s allegations are completely false.”

    The confrontation with Gordon, which Sweeney filmed, began causing political trouble for Williams soon after its release last week. On the day before indicted former Rep. George Santos was expelled from Congress for a litany of alleged criminal misdeeds — a move that Williams and other New York Republicans led the charge for — Santos called for a House Ethics Committee investigation of Williams because of his behavior in the video.

    Williams is seen confronting Gordon outside the party, pointing his finger at Gordon and vowing that if “you f–k with my family, I’ll end every relationship you have.” In response to that on-camera threat, Gordon denied any knowledge of the unspecified allegations at issue.

    Williams said that the clash stemmed from a pressure campaign that began after his decision to give Gordon 30 days to find new employment. The ousted aide responded by contacting a GOP campaign consultant close to the lawmaker. . . Before going through with the firing, Gordon said, the lawmaker should think about the potential embarrassment his family would experience if TMZ found out about his daughter’s OnlyFans account. . . .

    After Sweeney recorded the lawmaker during their argument outside the holiday party, Williams said the former aide delivered a personal jab at the lawmaker: “Hey, f–k you! Guess what, bitch? All I have to do is pay $7 to watch your daughter shove her phone up her p—y!” . . .

    SSI - As political slogans go, even more memorable than "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too"?
  • Options
    DavidLDavidL Posts: 51,194

    darkage said:

    If this Government bill declaring Rwanda is safe goes through, and then say there’s a coup d’état, the country is plunged into a genocidal civil war… What happens? UK courts have to continue saying Rwanda is safe?

    This is civilizational decline. They would be better off quitting the ECHR (or just ignoring it) than turning out absurd initiatives like this.
    Except as the Supreme Court ruling made clear, it is not membership of the ECHR that is the primary issue as far as legality is concerned.
    Correct. It is the fact that the UK is not only a signatory to the UN Convention on Refugees but has effectively made it a part of our domestic law.

    As I have argued before there is a good case for saying that the UN Convention is no longer fit for purpose but having that rewritten to match modern contingencies is a massive project. Doing it unilaterally could well imperil our Security Council seat.
  • Options
    Andy_JSAndy_JS Posts: 26,530
    Germany's main government coalition party is averaging about 14.6% in the opinion polls.

    https://www.wahlrecht.de/umfragen/
  • Options
    MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,319
    stodge said:

    stodge said:

    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    I'm not opposed to this - even if you are expecting it, it must be a pretty sharp jolt to go from being an MP to being a citizen. Those who had trades and skills before becoming MPs may be at an advantage but those for whom politics has been all they know it will be a shock.

    I know it's not the same but jockeys have the JETS (Jockey Employment Training Scheme) into which all jockeys pay a sub and which provides help for those jockeys contemplating retirement and those who are forced to retire through injury. Calling it PETS may be asking for trouble but not everyone will move into the City or even find work as a translator (sorry, @NickPalmer).
    Almost certainly the right thing to do; it's what all good employers should do for innocent ex-employees.

    But the optics are terrible. Maybe political parties should be funding it?
    Yes or MPs themselves through paying in to a scheme. To clarify, I would initially restrict it to an MP losing their seat at a General Election irrespective of time served.
    Many good quality employers give CV writing help, recruitment help and other stuff, for people they’ve made redundant.
  • Options
    DavidLDavidL Posts: 51,194

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    But surely not as questionable as me spending the first 50 years of my life calling chicken and garlic butter Chicken Keyev, not Kiev. I mean, can we not rely on anything anymore?
  • Options
    DavidLDavidL Posts: 51,194
    Andy_JS said:

    Germany's main government coalition party is averaging about 14.6% in the opinion polls.

    https://www.wahlrecht.de/umfragen/

    In fairness their record, especially in economics, makes Sunak look like Marcus Aurelius.
  • Options
    LeonLeon Posts: 46,994
    Well it had to be XXXXXX didn’t it?

    A worthy Masterchef winner
  • Options
    DavidLDavidL Posts: 51,194
    IanB2 said:

    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    They could probably get jobs with Post Office Ltd.
    I am not sure even MPs have had adequate training in duplicity for that.
  • Options
    JosiasJessopJosiasJessop Posts: 38,937
    viewcode said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    Joe Biden is older than Israel.
    Joe Biden is older than God.
    But God doesn't exist. Does that mean Joe Biden doesn't exist, or Joe Biden is the God that doesn't exist?
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    DavidL said:

    Andy_JS said:

    Germany's main government coalition party is averaging about 14.6% in the opinion polls.

    https://www.wahlrecht.de/umfragen/

    In fairness their record, especially in economics, makes Sunak look like Marcus Aurelius.
    Gives you some appreciation of how the U.S. managed to trigger the Great Depression.
    Impressive that we're still able to make similar policy mistakes.
  • Options
    viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,698

    viewcode said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    Joe Biden is older than Israel.
    Joe Biden is older than God.
    But God doesn't exist. Does that mean Joe Biden doesn't exist, or Joe Biden is the God that doesn't exist?
    Silly person. Joe Biden is not God. He's older, for a start. :)
  • Options
    Sean_FSean_F Posts: 35,800

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    The Nazis did a lot to ensure that Soviet citizens were willing to fight to the bitter end, by murdering them, raping them, starving their POW's, and using them as slave labour. The Ukrainians pose no threat to the average Russian.
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    DavidL said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    But surely not as questionable as me spending the first 50 years of my life calling chicken and garlic butter Chicken Keyev, not Kiev. I mean, can we not rely on anything anymore?
    Ah, but it was (probably) an invention of the Russian empire, so Kiev still makes sense in this particular context.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicken_Kiev
  • Options
    HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 116,980
    Andy_JS said:

    Germany's main government coalition party is averaging about 14.6% in the opinion polls.

    https://www.wahlrecht.de/umfragen/

    They ousted the main conservative party after 16 years in power at a Federal election just 2 years ago.

    Does not bode that well for Starmer, albeit most likely on current polls it would be another CDU and SPD coalition given the AfD remain beyond the pale in Germany despite polling over 20% in most polls
  • Options
    OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 31,960
    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    I wondered earlier why the scheme was being reviewed and brought up to date now!
  • Options
    HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 116,980

    stodge said:

    stodge said:

    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    I'm not opposed to this - even if you are expecting it, it must be a pretty sharp jolt to go from being an MP to being a citizen. Those who had trades and skills before becoming MPs may be at an advantage but those for whom politics has been all they know it will be a shock.

    I know it's not the same but jockeys have the JETS (Jockey Employment Training Scheme) into which all jockeys pay a sub and which provides help for those jockeys contemplating retirement and those who are forced to retire through injury. Calling it PETS may be asking for trouble but not everyone will move into the City or even find work as a translator (sorry, @NickPalmer).
    Almost certainly the right thing to do; it's what all good employers should do for innocent ex-employees.

    But the optics are terrible. Maybe political parties should be funding it?
    Yes or MPs themselves through paying in to a scheme. To clarify, I would initially restrict it to an MP losing their seat at a General Election irrespective of time served.
    Many good quality employers give CV writing help, recruitment help and other stuff, for people they’ve made redundant.
    And of course it would be taxpayers who have chosen to make them redundant anyway by voting them out
  • Options
    BurgessianBurgessian Posts: 2,430
    Polling evidence that UK voters are warming to Europe which they see as more important even for defence than the US.

    This is understandable given the threat of a Trump return.

    But I do wonder how many folk understand the dangers of populism further developing in Europe and causing the complete paralysis of the EU? Orban may only be the start of this. The game-changer would surely be President le Pen or the collapse of consensual politics in Germany. And the way the economy is going in Germany - and the threat to its manufacturing sector - who knows how that could go?

    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2023/dec/09/uk-voters-want-closer-relationship-with-eu-in-significant-shift-since-brexit
  • Options
    kamski said:

    For maximum LOL and political fury, not to mention work for lawyers, how about Trump wins the popular vote next year but loses the electoral vote.

    A Dem President you say ?

    But wait, this then comes into play:

    The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact (NPVIC) is an agreement among a group of U.S. states and the District of Columbia to award all their electoral votes to whichever presidential ticket wins the overall popular vote in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The compact is designed to ensure that the candidate who receives the most votes nationwide is elected president, and it would come into effect only when it would guarantee that outcome.[2][3] Introduced in 2006, as of August 2023 it has been adopted by sixteen states and the District of Columbia. These jurisdictions have 205 electoral votes, which is 38% of the Electoral College and 76% of the 270 votes needed to give the compact legal force.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Popular_Vote_Interstate_Compact#Mechanism

    The amount of mind changing on how elections should be decided would be hilarious.

    Why would come into play? They don't have enough states for it to come into effect.
    Not legally - though I imagine lawyers would get involved.

    But it would morally.

    That would be the LOL part as states which have loudly declared that the national vote should be the deciding factor now change their mind. And vice versa.

    And what would happen if GOP states adopted the convention after the result but before the electoral votes had been counted - so giving enough states for it to come into effect ?

    Who knows but lots of sound and fury and lawyers getting richer.
  • Options
    kamskikamski Posts: 4,234
    Andy_JS said:

    Germany's main government coalition party is averaging about 14.6% in the opinion polls.

    https://www.wahlrecht.de/umfragen/

    Similar to where they were for much of the previous parliament when they were junior coalition partners.
  • Options
    StillWatersStillWaters Posts: 7,014
    HYUFD said:

    'MPs who lose their seat at the next general election are set to get taxpayer-funded help with finding a new job, the BBC can reveal.

    Under a proposed "career transition" scheme, they could receive free advice with tasks such as writing a CV from a designated career coach..One academic survey of those leaving Parliament after the 2010 election found almost half of those aged under 65, who responded, took at least three months to find a new job, with one in 10 taking a full year.

    Although half were earning more than they had done in Parliament, 40% earned less and 10% the same as their MPs' salary.'
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67629470

    That sounds like the sort of package a lot of firms provide as part of a redundancy offer. It’s not that expensive and doesn’t seem unreasonable

  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    UK voters want closer relationship with EU in ‘significant’ shift since Brexit
    Major study finds public see ties with Europe as more important than links with US and many ‘exhausted’ by ‘toxic’ debate
    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2023/dec/09/uk-voters-want-closer-relationship-with-eu-in-significant-shift-since-brexit
  • Options
    DavidLDavidL Posts: 51,194
    Good piece from Mark Sumner about how rapidly and effectively drones are changing warfare in the Ukraine, with even early generations of drones already as obsolete as the equipment they slaughter: https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2023/12/8/2210504/-Ukraine-Update-It-s-the-drones-That-s-the-problem?pm_campaign=front_page&pm_source=top_news_slot_5&pm_medium=web

    "Now look along the right-hand column and see what left them dead or damaged on the battlefield. On this single day, at least 45 large pieces of mobile equipment were immobilized by drones that probably maxed out in price at around $1,000."

    Whilst ammunition, specifically 155mm shells, remain key you frankly have to wonder how much our somewhat dilapidated kit would be worth if tested in battle.

    We do need to be alert to this. The consensus, which I have shared, is that the Russian army is being destroyed in Ukraine and will not be a threat in the foreseeable. But, just maybe, they will develop an army that makes ours look like they are still using muskets.
  • Options
    DavidLDavidL Posts: 51,194
    Nigelb said:

    DavidL said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    But surely not as questionable as me spending the first 50 years of my life calling chicken and garlic butter Chicken Keyev, not Kiev. I mean, can we not rely on anything anymore?
    Ah, but it was (probably) an invention of the Russian empire, so Kiev still makes sense in this particular context.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicken_Kiev
    I suppose we do the same with Madras curry.
  • Options
    TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 40,005
    edited December 2023

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Those are pretty good examples of grim shit thrown at Russians (as opposed to the military prowess of Russian regimes).

    Anyway, at least we’re now spared Pollyanesque bulletins about tank losses, Putin’s health and the likelihood of Prigozhin having him hanging from a lamp post. Good times.
  • Options
    kamskikamski Posts: 4,234

    kamski said:

    For maximum LOL and political fury, not to mention work for lawyers, how about Trump wins the popular vote next year but loses the electoral vote.

    A Dem President you say ?

    But wait, this then comes into play:

    The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact (NPVIC) is an agreement among a group of U.S. states and the District of Columbia to award all their electoral votes to whichever presidential ticket wins the overall popular vote in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The compact is designed to ensure that the candidate who receives the most votes nationwide is elected president, and it would come into effect only when it would guarantee that outcome.[2][3] Introduced in 2006, as of August 2023 it has been adopted by sixteen states and the District of Columbia. These jurisdictions have 205 electoral votes, which is 38% of the Electoral College and 76% of the 270 votes needed to give the compact legal force.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Popular_Vote_Interstate_Compact#Mechanism

    The amount of mind changing on how elections should be decided would be hilarious.

    Why would come into play? They don't have enough states for it to come into effect.
    Not legally - though I imagine lawyers would get involved.

    But it would morally.

    That would be the LOL part as states which have loudly declared that the national vote should be the deciding factor now change their mind. And vice versa.

    And what would happen if GOP states adopted the convention after the result but before the electoral votes had been counted - so giving enough states for it to come into effect ?

    Who knows but lots of sound and fury and lawyers getting richer.
    Why would they change their minds, assuming their opinion isn't going to actually retroactively change who wins the election?

    I think the electoral college system is very stupid, and should be replaced by just saying the winner is the person who gets most votes. My opinion won't change if the current system has the fortunate result of keeping Trump out this time.
    Sympathy for disgruntled Trump voters will be somewhat tempered by the fact that Trump was the beneficiary in 2016.

    Trump himself of course did change his mind on the electoral college, bitterly complaining about how unfair and undemocratic it was in 2012 (before the election) when it looked like Obama might lose the national vote but win in the electoral college.
  • Options
    TazTaz Posts: 11,120
    viewcode said:

    viewcode said:

    darkage said:

    For those who like his work, this is a good podcast with John Gray. The questioner really probes in to his beliefs in quite an uncomfortable way but in doing so reveals a lot.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3l9phu3XTJw

    There are a lot of 'unthinkable' things happening yet again. The west are getting exhausted with supporting Ukraine. Trump may well be on the way back. If you never get caught up with the idea that the world is getting better, you can never be disappointed when things go wrong. In the end John Gray is just peddling boring common sense.

    It’s noticeable that the situation in Gaza has pushed the Ukraine war down a notch on the front pages. I just hope that the Russians run out of enthusiasm before the Ukrainians run out of ammunition.
    I suspect it’s more about who has the greatest dogged tolerance for whatever grim shit is thrown at you. Russians have a pretty impressive track record in this area.
    Do they ?

    Afghanistan
    World War 1
    Russo-Japanese
    Crimean

    Does Russian military prowess consist of more than retreating into the depths of their country and waiting for winter ?
    Any Nation will dig deep when it is defending its own territory.

    When invading others, serious advantages are more necessary.
    Trouble is, Russia considers Ukraine its ‘historic’ territory. Kyiv/Kiev and all that.
    That's highly questionable, and certainly historically inaccurate. Ukraine is older than Russia.
    Joe Biden is older than Israel.
    Joe Biden is older than God.
    But God doesn't exist. Does that mean Joe Biden doesn't exist, or Joe Biden is the God that doesn't exist?
    Silly person. Joe Biden is not God. He's older, for a start. :)
    “I hear Glenn Hoddle’s found God”
    “That’s one hell of a pass”
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,476
    DavidL said:

    Good piece from Mark Sumner about how rapidly and effectively drones are changing warfare in the Ukraine, with even early generations of drones already as obsolete as the equipment they slaughter: https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2023/12/8/2210504/-Ukraine-Update-It-s-the-drones-That-s-the-problem?pm_campaign=front_page&pm_source=top_news_slot_5&pm_medium=web

    "Now look along the right-hand column and see what left them dead or damaged on the battlefield. On this single day, at least 45 large pieces of mobile equipment were immobilized by drones that probably maxed out in price at around $1,000."

    Whilst ammunition, specifically 155mm shells, remain key you frankly have to wonder how much our somewhat dilapidated kit would be worth if tested in battle.

    We do need to be alert to this. The consensus, which I have shared, is that the Russian army is being destroyed in Ukraine and will not be a threat in the foreseeable. But, just maybe, they will develop an army that makes ours look like they are still using muskets.

    More than that.
    The combat is increasingly developing into drone on drone warfare.

    At some point, a more technically proficient adversary will develop combat swarms. Which will need to operate free of human intervention for greatest effectiveness.
    The next slippery slope.
This discussion has been closed.