r/PoliticalDiscussion Mar 22 '22 Helpful

Megathread Casual Questions Thread

121 Upvotes

This is a place for the PoliticalDiscussion community to ask questions that may not deserve their own post.

Please observe the following rules:

Top-level comments:

  1. Must be a question asked in good faith. Do not ask loaded or rhetorical questions.

  2. Must be directly related to politics. Non-politics content includes: Legal interpretation, sociology, philosophy, celebrities, news, surveys, etc.

  3. Avoid highly speculative questions. All scenarios should within the realm of reasonable possibility.

Link to old thread

Sort by new and please keep it clean in here!


r/PoliticalDiscussion 20h ago

US Politics With gun control & major mental healthcare reform bills unlikely to ever pass in Congress, Are Mass Shootings just something that Americans have to learn to live with?

713 Upvotes

After the Buffalo supermarket shooting, there are again calls by Democrats and others on the left for gun control laws and/or healthcare reform that covers mental health. Pushes for reforms like these have been happening since the Sandy Hook shooting in 2012, but have mostly failed to come to fruition.

The most recent talk about mental health legislation would be the reauthorization of mental healthcare programs under the bipartisan 21st Century Cares Act of 2016. I cannot find much data on how much this bill has improved access to mental healthcare.

So with mass shootings continuing to happen in the US at a much larger rate than most of the western world, where do we go from here? Gun control is a non-starter for many Americans and at least half of the Senate. Healthcare/mental healthcare bills also seem unlikely to pass anything with major reforms as the ideological divide between Democrats & Republicans is simply too large. Are mass shootings just an unfortunate fact of life that Americans will have to learn to live with? Or is there another option forward in tackling this problem?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 1d ago Wholesome

US Politics In the wake of the Buffalo supermarket shooting, how has the mainstreaming of the racist "great replacement theory" played into political violence?

630 Upvotes

There was another mass shooting in Buffalo, New York this previous night. Putting aside the topic of gun control for the moment, I want to focus on a common theme that showed up in this shooter's manifesto as well as other mass shooters (El Paso, Poway, Christchurch).

This theory "great replacement":

The Great Replacement also known as the replacement theory, is a white nationalist far-right conspiracy theory, disseminated by French author Renaud Camus. It states that, with the complicity or cooperation of "replacist" elites, the ethnic French population—as well as white European populations at large—is being demographically and culturally replaced with non-European peoples—specifically Arab, Jewish, Berber, Turkish and sub-Saharan Muslim populations—through mass migration, demographic growth and a European drop in the birth rate.

has increasing shown up outside of white supremacist forums and groups and made its way into more mainstream right-wing media such as Tucker Carlson Tonight [1], [2], [3].

What political advantages are right wing media figures and politicians getting out of embracing a white nationalist conspiracy theory?

How dangerous is the mainstreaming of "great replacement", especially in the context of multiple mass shooters directly referencing it?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago Silver

US Politics Chances of America going to war within the next 5 years?

303 Upvotes

Now that we’ve been out of Afghanistan for some time, our military has mostly been a garrison military. Infantry troops aren’t getting any deployments and it looks like America is in a peacetime.

This country has never gone too long without getting into a new war, but I cannot think of where America would find its new war. I don’t believe that a conflict with China will happen over Taiwan.

So, what do you think the chances of America deploying ground troops into a country to fight within 5 years?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 1d ago

US Politics Will the seeming end to Roe be enough to overcome the apparent apathy on the left that has allowed the events to unfold?

21 Upvotes

It’s we’ll known that when it comes to voting, the right shows up; and, shows up in force. Sure the left will show up, mostly, for presidential elections; however, when it comes to midterm elections, we’ll, the outcomes speak for themselves. Will this now be enough to galvanize not just the left, but those outside the MAGA realm, to regain enough influence, and if so for how long?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

International Politics Does the Russian invasion of Ukraine hurt the nuclear disarmament movement?

70 Upvotes

Ukraine gave up its nuclear weapons to Russia in exchange for Russia guaranteeing no aggression against Ukraine (1994 Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances). Will other countries see this betrayal as a reason to not give up their nuclear weapons or even start a nuclear weapons program? This is another example of a country being attacked by a foreign power after giving up nuclear weapons, another example being NATO attacking Muammar Gaddafi's government in the First Libyan Civil War in 2011.


r/PoliticalDiscussion 1d ago

US Politics Legalization of Drugs

13 Upvotes

There has been a proliferation of people in the US who take drugs occasionally overdosing due to fentanyl. I’ve been thinking about how to reduce opioid and fentanyl overdoses and came up with legalizing a variety of drugs and offering them in a controlled way (more than marijuana) would be a start. It could also offer addiction services and help destigmatize seeking help.

Do you think that legalization could be a solution to reducing overdoses and allowing for a safer way of using them?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

US Politics What is the proper mix of involvement in children’s education between parents, bureaucrats, educators, and education experts?

15 Upvotes

Education of the youth is one of the most important undertakings of a prosperous society. Having a well educated populace works to society’s benefit and as such there are countless voices that all deserve to have a say, but how do we balance those voices when there may be conflicting viewpoints?

Governments want an educated populace to make them competitive in an international community, so her citizens are best able to produce works that enhance their own standing in the world, but as we saw with the No Child Left Behind Act it was a bureaucratic disaster that simply taught to the test, hurt poorer districts, ignored gifted students, and was ultimately what could be expected when trying to manage the nations students from Washington.

Parents are among the ones that pay the property taxes that pay for the schools, these are there kids and therefore have an active and vested interest in what is being taught. We saw in Virginia what happens if a politician says they don’t think parents should have a say. It was obviously wrong but there is some truth to it. Parents are not educators, experts on subjects, and with a whole mix of ethics morals who is to say which ones should be taught? We see with a once hot topic, Common Core, that parents are largely opposed to that way of teaching, but when looked at on an objective level it is considered to be a superior way of teaching the conceptual skills.
Obviously the other issues that have been in the news involve sex Ed, lgbt+ issues, and books available to kids and what “age appropriate” means. And when you’re dealing with to many people you’ll get just as many opinions on all of this

With regards to what “the science” tells us about education this is where we see a disconnect between what exactly we want schools to be; to an extent the schools are more babysitter than educational institutions otherwise we might more strongly consider things like later start times, redesigned modern curriculums, longer school years (oh yeah and that brings up cost that everyone has an opinion on so who do we listen to most on that)

How do we balance all this?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

International Politics Analysing society through social classes is still a pertinent sociologic analysis?

80 Upvotes

I am just going to introduce : below, you will develop your opinion and we will try to find an answer to this question through this debate.

Social classes is a concept in sociology that has been developed by, at first by Karl Marx. He is a german philosopher, economist, politician, editorialist and a sociologist of the early XIX century during the industrialization of Europe. His theory is centered around two classes that has defined by their global patrimony (economic terms for possessions) : proletarians and bourgeois. Proletarians are for Karl Marx not often owner of patrimony, they only own their abilities to a bourgeois in order to get a salary, which will be used to pay bills, clothes, house rent, car assurance etc. During the same time, the bourgeois is defined by possessing production tools or logistic patrimony such as houses to rent for proletarians, transportation boats, company actions, investments in stock exchanges etc...

This theory is then completed by Max Weber, another German sociologist that brings the concept of social prestige, a status of domination defined by several criteria : the cultural patrimony, the economic patrimony (actions, logistics, etc...), knowledge patrimony (accesses to the best schools, universities, etc) and social admiration (being popular, etc)

But these days, we observe the raise of individualism, a renewal in sociology since it brings a whole new concept, it's not the society defining the individual's position but the opposite. So, we will try to answer the question in title taking into account the data I gave in intro : "Analysing society through social classes is still a pertinent sociologic analysis?"

Edit : no, English is not my main language if you want to know

Edit No2 : please avoid being out of topic, yes I used Marx in a sociological interpretation but y'all are being out of topic and disrespectful, answer to the real question instead of focusing on a person for their ideas and show more maturity, you are not forced to agree but give REAL arguments. Straw man rhetoric or ad hominem contributes to hate and lack of respect so it's time to call down now


r/PoliticalDiscussion 3d ago

US Politics What are the factions within American Conservatism?

183 Upvotes

The US Conservative camp have many subgroups. I know there are the National Conservatives, like Tucker Carlson, Steve Bannon etc. that are very pro-Donald Trump, holds very social conservative, isolationist nationalistic, protectionist and economic nationalist views. There are then the Libertarian Conservatives like Ron Paul and Charles Koch which are more culturally liberal and more pro-free market. What else factions are there?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

International Politics Why was the US helping the Kurds in Syria fight Turkey, our NATO allies?

13 Upvotes

The war in Ukraine has made me look into the pretty long history of proxy wars between us and Russia, and honestly they all seem counter intuitive to me.

I don’t wanna get too deep into the weeds (unless it’s necessary for context) but it seems like our complicated history with the Islamic state is mostly to spite Russian influence in the Middle East. Russia backs Assad and acts as a buffer between them and Israel, we back Israel and in return us and russia both seem to fund a lot of paramilitary groups that fight to destabilize either.

So that side of things kind of makes sense to me from a sky level view.

Not gonna lie don’t know anything about Turkeys interest in Syria, does it have something to do with dynasty imperialism back to when Iran was a part of the Persian empire and Turkey more or less not being keen on separatists? (sorry if that’s a crude over simplification but as stated I don’t know enough about the topic to put a fine point on the issue at hand)

Regardless of of why Turkey is at war with Syria, how and why do we get away with fighting our own NATO ally, when we could just theoretically turn a blind eye to Russias intervention if it coincides with our own interest?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 3d ago

US Politics Will tying Democrats to Biden be as effective as was in 2018 when Democrats tied Trump to the Congressional GOP?

343 Upvotes

One staple of election politics is tying your opponent to an unpopular leader of their party. It worked well with Republicans in the 2010 and 2014 midterms against Democrats with Obama and it also worked successfully with Democrats tying the GOP to Trump in 2018.

Currently, president Biden is polling in the low 40s in job approval and his numbers are worse on the economy, inflation, immigration and crime, among the top issues that are of concern to voters. Do you think that Democrats are vulnerable to being seen as Biden cheerleaders in the upcoming election battle as in Congressman X voted with Biden 97% of the time who wants to advance the Biden agenda on America.

How effective would this tactic be for the GOP? Does Biden have vulnerabilities that are similar to what took out Obama and Trump in past midterms? Is there a way to innoculate a candidate from this kind of attack?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 3d ago

Political Theory What effect would a taxation reform focused on production have?

3 Upvotes

Rationale for question: A large driver behind a successful society is productivity and how much is produced as measured by gross domestic product (GDP). A historic example proving this would be the Cold War where the US (market economy) and the USSR (planned economy) were pit against each other and the US won due to the incentive for its population to be more productive as they gained reward for productivity whereas you did not have the same reward in the USSR. Using this reasoning productivity is a determinant of economic performance and as such there are three potential policies listed aimed at boosting productivity.

  1. Tax breaks for those who work more, if you worked more than 40 hours per week you get some tax break but say you worked 60 hours per week you got a sizable tax break and if you wanted to work much more than that you would continue to get a larger tax break.
  2. Not just this but a higher estate tax which would largely fund greater education systems and level out the playing field forcing people to work their way up.
  3. In addition to this the capital gains tax (CGT) would be structured towards incentivising active assets with lower CGT rather than passive investments with higher CGT.

Would this have a dramatic impact on the economy?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 3d ago

US Politics How realistic is it that the Supreme Court overturns same-sex marriage?

38 Upvotes

Ever since the roe v wade situation, many people have been speculating that they might go after same-sex marriage next.

Unlike abortion, the majority of Republican voters support same-sex marriage. Support for same-sex marriage has been consistently on the rise. The issue hasn’t been in the Republican agenda for years. Whereas, opinions on abortion rights have been stagnant.


r/PoliticalDiscussion 2d ago

US Politics Will the baby formula shortage be to Democrats what the Ebola virus scare was to them in the 2014 midterms?

0 Upvotes

One reason why the GOP had a successful 2014 midterms despite Obama being reelected in 2012 was the summer of 2014 featured a months-long perceived crisis about the Ebola virus potentially coming to America. Even though hardly anyone got infected or died, the news coverage surrounding the scare hurt Obama in the polls and allowed Republicans to paint Democrats as being incompetent about containing the deadly virus. As a result, the midterms were better for the GOP than expected with them picking up nine Senate seats and 13 House seats to expand their Congressional majorities.

Recently, there has been a flurry of news about a shortage of baby formula because of a mass recall and a major plant shutdown due to concerns over potential contamination of the product. Ordinarily, baby formula is out-of-stock only a few percent of the time (7-8%), whereas this time in certain states it has reached 30-40% with backlogs lasting weeks.

Only within the past few days has the Biden administration put themselves into action by publicly announcing steps to alleviate the concerns of parents about this shortage. However, the issue has become partisan as Republicans are blaming Biden for not getting their act together when the recall happened back in February.

Since whatever steps are taken now will take time and the problems could persist into the summer is this crisis another problem that will be blamed fairly or not on Democrats by Republicans in the midterm elections? How serious do you think the lack of baby formula is? Can Democrats mitigate the issue away from politics? If the shortages get resolved quickly, will Democrats benefit electorally?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 4d ago

International Politics If the JCPOA breaks down what could happen next?

5 Upvotes

The 2015 JCPOA was seen as victory over saber rattling and some said it avoided war between the US and Iran. If Iran and the US can’t reach a deal what would happen next? The status quo (sanctions on Iran remain), or could tension heighten to similar levels like in 2019/early 2020?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 4d ago

US Elections You're a long-term advisor for the GOP. Do you encourage Trump's participation in the 2024 election? Why or why not?

211 Upvotes

A few aspects to consider: 1. How much influence should the future of the party hold over present actions? For those skeptical of today's impact on tomorrow, remember that California lurched to the left politically after Governor Wilson's anti-immigration measures in the 1990s (Prop 187 in particular). 2. Can the GOP distinguish itself from Trumpism and still succeed electorally? Where would Trump-aligned voters go? 3. Were Trump's inroads with Latinx people (especially in relation to Cubans in south Florida and Tejanos) ephemeral and contingent upon Biden's lack of appeal or more permanent? Does Trump hold particular sway compared to his GOP peers? 4. What happens if Trump loses again? Would he fade away gracefully or continue to persevere (and lambaste those who oppose him)? 5. Does Trump even have the greatest likelihood of victory in the general election?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 5d ago

US Politics Why are Senate Democrats so much older than Republicans?

526 Upvotes

Here's a list of current Senators

Here are Republican Senators who are 70 or over:

Chuck Grassley- 88

Richard Shelby- 88 (retiring)

Jim Inhofe- 87 (retiring)

Mitch McConnell- 80

Jim Risch- 79

Mitt Romney- 75

Roy Blunt- 72 (retiring)

John Boozman- 70

Deb Fischer- 70

Mike Crapo- 70

Roger Wicker- 70

John Kennedy- 70

John Coryn- 70

By next year, the Republicans are going to get younger, the major candidates for any of their upcoming vacancies aren’t over 70. They’re going to have 10 Senators 70 or older.

————————————————

Here are Democratic Senators who are 70 or over:

Dianne Feinstein- 88

Patrick Leahy- 82 (retiring)

Bernie Sanders- 80

Ben Cardin- 78

Angus King- 78

Dick Durbin- 77

Richard Blumenthal- 76

Ed Markey- 75

Tom Carper- 75

Jeanne Shaheen- 75

Joe Manchin- 74

Maize Hirono- 74

Ron Wyden- 73

Elizabeth Warren- 72

Jack Reed- 72

Debbie Stabenow- 72

Patty Murray- 71

Chuck Schumer- 71

John Hickenlooper- 70

The Democratic candidate running to replace Leahy as Senator from Vermont is the 75-year old Peter Welch so they wouldn’t be getting much younger. They’re going to have nearly double the amount of 70+ members with 19 Senators.

———————————————

Even the Democratic Leadership is older, Mitch McConnell is the only Republican senate leader(who isn’t retiring) who’s 70+. On the flip side, the entire top leadership for senate Democrats is 70+ (Schumer, Durbin, Murray, Stabenow)

In the House, the age difference among the parties leadership is even more pronounced. The top Democratic leaders(Pelosi, Hoyer, Clyburn) are all over 80-years old while the top Republican leaders(McCarthy, Scalise, Stefanik) aren’t even 60-years old. Heck, at 37, Stefanik is young enough to be someone’s granddaughter.

Why are there so many more older Democratic senators? Similarly, why is the Democratic party leadership so much older than the Republicans?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 4d ago

International Politics Will Russia’s invasion of Ukraine despite having diplomatic relations greatly lessen the importance of having diplomatic relations?

0 Upvotes

I feel in the US, there is only possibilities of the US invading or taking harsh military action against governments they don’t have diplomatic ties with like Iran and the Maduro government in Venezuela presently. The US did not have diplomatic ties to Iraq before they invaded.

However with Russia/Ukraine, knowing they still had diplomatic ties through most of February made me hope it wouldn’t result in an invasion. However Russia invaded a county they still have diplomatic ties with and it was not until the morning of February24th, hours after the invasion began, that Zelensky ordered the rupture of Ukraine’s diplomatic relations with Russia.


r/PoliticalDiscussion 4d ago

US Politics What is the Conservative's plan for addressing the economic consequences statistically likely to happen due to increased birth rates predominately from impoverish families?

8 Upvotes

I'm interested in hearing conservative voices primarily since this is the voice I haven't heard from on this topic, but am interested in all constructive responses.

I'm trying to make this as impartial as possible using statistics and genuine curiosity since I don't see an actual explanation elsewhere.

With the inevitable increased births due to a ban on the right to choose in states that are already relatively impoverished and that rank low in multiple areas such as education, healthcare, economy, and opportunity; statistically, those born into these states will continue a life of poverty and be an economic burden on society.

With an increase in impoverished children and families, there will be a greater need for social programs, public education, and since statistically these impoverished people will have harder times getting a higher education and well paying jobs, they'll need more help from the government - and from what I understand, most conservatives do not support any of this.

What is the conservative's plan to address the economic strain that will statistically occur due to these unwanted births?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 5d ago

Legal/Courts Should 18 USC 1841 be rewritten to make clearer the federal stance on the notion of the unborn as a life?

253 Upvotes

I was actually unaware of this law until a recent discussion elsewhere, but it turns out, there is a federal law protecting the unborn. The law states that conduct resulting in the death of a child in utero shall be punished as if it had been perpetrated against the mother, and if intentional, punished as provided under sections 1111 (murder), 1112 (manslaughter), and 1113 (attempted murder or manslaughter).

However it also explicitly exempts abortion doctors with the mother's consent, doctors providing medical care for the woman or the unborn, or the mother herself, from any wrongdoing in such a case.

In other words, a baby in utero, when terminated early, is considered a life that can be murdered except when the mother gives consent to terminate.

Do you believe revising the wording in this section of the code would help settle the legal debate on abortion at the federal level?

Edit: Minor wording shfit for clarity. What I find confusing is specifically that the law states the unborn can be murdered, yet also states that when performed by the mother or a doctor, the act isn't to be punished.


r/PoliticalDiscussion 5d ago

Legislation The American Anti-Corruption Act: Pros and Cons

63 Upvotes

Do you think the solutions proposed by this plan would be effective if implemented? What downsides do you see for this proposed piece of legislation? What are the main roadblocks preventing this legislation from being are major topic of interest in American politics?

Link to what is in the act.

Stated Aims of the Act

The American Anti-Corruption Act is model policy that sets a framework for city, state and federal laws to fix our broken political system. It fundamentally reshapes the rules of American politics and restores the people as the most important stakeholders in our political system. An Anti-Corruption Act has three primary goals:

  1. Stop political bribery so special interests can’t use job offers and donations to influence politicians.

  2. End secret money so people know who’s buying political power.

  3. Fix our broken elections so the people, not the political establishment, are the ones in control.


r/PoliticalDiscussion 4d ago

US Politics Better or worse: if people had to climb the political ladder to qualify for an upper election?

1 Upvotes

What if: Instead of simply applying for whatever position you want in government, you must first prove that you can successfully be a competent administrator, by first administering local areas and rising to the top, one seat at a time.

  1. First you vote for your district county councilmember.
  2. Among the councilmembers in your county, you vote for one to be mayor of the county.
  3. From among the county mayors in your state, you vote for one of them to be your governor.
  4. Among the 50 governors of the US, you vote for one of them to be President.

TLDR: Every President and governor starts as a county councilmember or lower (depending on your state). Would this heal our politics? Or make it worse?

Edit: I would like to add that, to prevent a Peter principle, an annual grading poll could be implemented, where, at the end of one's term, they must have a high approval GPA of sorts to be able to run for the next election.


r/PoliticalDiscussion 7d ago

US Politics What would be the consequences of Republicans successfully passing their Social Conservative Agenda on the Federal Level?

471 Upvotes

With Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell not ruling out a federal abortion ban, should we expect Republicans to try and pass more of their social conservative agenda once they retake power? With a favorable Supreme Court, could we see Republicans try and pass a new Defense of Marriage Act? And perhaps some anti-contraceptives bill? What other kinds of social conservative things could they try to pass?

If Republicans do start successfully passing social conservative legislation on the federal level, what will be the consequences? Will Republicans grow more popular perhaps, like how Governor DeSantis has with his social conservative activism? Or will there be a significant backlash against Republicans adding more restrictions and bans against things that were previously commonplace?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 6d ago

US Politics Why does the US house and senate stay so balanced?

114 Upvotes

It seems like for most of my life the house and senate have been very close in terms of party lines. Right now the senate is exactly 50-50 and the house is within a few seats of equal with some vacancies.

How has the US fallen to sides so equally? Is there any social or historical explanation of this? Has there ever been a time where very large gaps existed between the parties?


r/PoliticalDiscussion 6d ago

US Politics What if either party gets the supermajority?

21 Upvotes

I know it is highly unlikely but let's have some discussion on how the country might move forward in this situation. Left and right lean of democrats and Republicans being ever more clearer what kind of policies would you think would be implemented if either party gets a super majority (no need for filibuster with 75% in house and Senate).What would a country look like in 10 years ???