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Slashdot Asks: Whom Do You Want To Ask About 2012's U.S. Elections?

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the only-365-more-shopping-days dept.

Government 343

For the next year, it will be hard to escape the political season already in full swing in the U.S., as candidates aim for the American presidency (and many other elected positions). There will be plenty of soundbites and choreographed photo-ops to go around. Candidates will read speeches from TelePrompters, and staffers will mail out policy statements calculated to inspire political fealty to one candidate or another — finding unscripted answers from most of the candidates is going to be tough. Slashdot interviews, by contrast, give you the chance to do something that interviews in more conventional media usually don't: the chance to ask the questions you'd actually like to have answered, and to see the whole answer as provided. But there's a hitch: we need to know which candidates or other figures we should attempt to track down for a Slashdot interview. So please help narrow the field, by suggesting (with as much contact information as possible, as well as your reasoning) the people you'd like to hear from. It doesn't need to be one of the candidates, either: if you know of a pollster, a campaign technical advisor, an economist (or even a politicians's webmaster, say) who should be on our list, make the case in the comments below. And if you represent or are affiliated with a particular campaign, that's fine — but please say so. We'll do our best to find a number of your favorites in the year to come.

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Al Franken (5, Interesting)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977434)

I hate to be cynical and say that it doesn't really matter, since no politician is ever going to give you an honest or useful answer anyway (any written response won't even written by them, just some staffer, you know). But I will suggest one of the VERY few politicians at the top who actually seems to give a modicum of a shit about freedom, the little guy, and all that jazz. From his well-known editorial [huffingtonpost.com] on why he supports net neutrality to his fight against contractors and for regulation of the financial industry, Al Franken seems to be one of the few people in Washington interested in something more than just padding his pocket.

I would be particularly interested to hear more on the Net Neutrality issue, since he seems to be one of the only politicians, Republican or Democrat, actively supporting it.

Yes, he is a little batshit from time to time and prone to saying some crazy shit. But in his defense, they did a LOT of coke on SNL back in the day. He's lost a few brain cells. Poor Chevy Chase is MUCH worse.

Re:Al Franken (1)

Saishuuheiki (1657565) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977558)

I would second this, but for the reason that I believe he is one of the few politicians that actually seem to follow what's going on in the world of computers and software

Re:Al Franken (5, Funny)

fortapocalypse (1231686) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977580)

Why? Because he's good enough, smart enough, and doggone it, people like him.

Re:Al Franken (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977588)

Ron Paul tells it like it is period, no lies, no bullshit. Heed his warning now while we still have a chance at the thing not becoming much worse than it already may be... into a bigger disaster.

Re:Al Franken (4, Informative)

tbannist (230135) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977808)

I've always found Ron Paul tells it like he thinks it should be based on his theories. Personally, I've always found his theories don't match up well with reality.

Re:Al Franken (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977820)

Ah yes, Ron Paul; the fellow who wants to shut down any federal agency not involved in killing foreigners. Education, science funding, medical care, environmental protection? Screw 'em, all we need is to be able to kill people. THAT makes for a great country: one built on the corpses of its enemies, real or imagined.

Re:Al Franken (1)

LateArthurDent (1403947) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977980)

Ah yes, Ron Paul; the fellow who wants to shut down any federal agency not involved in killing foreigners. Education, science funding, medical care, environmental protection? Screw 'em, all we need is to be able to kill people. THAT makes for a great country: one built on the corpses of its enemies, real or imagined.

You do realize you're talking about the guy who voted against the war in Iraq and has been consistently saying we need to bring troops home and stop having overseas military bases in places that don't want us there, right?

He wants us to have defensive capabilities, but he wants to cut down on the military budget by quite a lot as well. Which I personally think is a really bad idea along with most of the other stuff he wants cut. That said, I do respect the man a hell of a lot. He knows he can't possibly win with his severely non-mainstream views. That doesn't prevent him from saying what he believes. Attack Ron Paul's proposals on their merits all you want, but you can't attack his honesty. He truly cares more about being honest than he does about winning, and that makes him a rare breed of politician, one that we truly need more of.

Rand Paul (1)

gd2shoe (747932) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977916)

Ron Paul is nuts. Every time I want to like him, he goes and says something untrue, inane, or just plain insane.

I would much rather hear from Rand Paul, who has been somewhat in the shadows through all this. Some have suggested that he'll be his fathers successor. Me, I don't know. I really haven't heard enough from him. Thus, it would be great to interview him here. Maybe, just maybe, he'll wind up being the "Paul" I can like.

Re:Al Franken (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977688)

Sad as it may be, Al Franken has very little real influence on policy, and unless he toes the party line, he will never acquire any. Yeah, he will go through all the motions, but he will accomplish little while looking good to the voters. If you want to get the straight dope, you need to talk to a mafia chieftain or anybody else way up high in the contraband business. All the rest are just mannequins. Good luck!

Re:Al Franken (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977854)

Perhaps, but at least Franken was funny at one time.

Re:Al Franken (0)

nharmon (97591) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977898)

Ahh yes, Senator Franken's brilliant editorial on why allowing mobile carriers the ability to block certain types of network traffic will cause Comcast to block Netflix from its subscribers.

Is Analingus the new Cunnilingus? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977440)

It happened when I was 19, a guy I met a guy in my College library took to his dorm and turned me around having pulled pants down. I figured he wanted to eat me doggystyle, when he stuck his tongue up my anus...

7 years later and more than 30 partners of all shades; half of whom have performed analingus on me, has me thinking its perhaps the new cunnilingus and 10 years time it will be part of foreplay.

PS: I return the favour.

Your thoughts.

Re:Is Analingus the new Cunnilingus? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977468)

What the fuck?

Re:Is Analingus the new Cunnilingus? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977706)

Leakage from /b/. It's what happens when alternate universes get too close to each other.

Distilled Pessimism Squeezed into a Post (3, Insightful)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977444)

There will be plenty of soundbites and choreographed photo-ops to go around. Candidates will read speeches from TelePrompters, and staffers will mail out policy statements calculated to inspire political fealty to one candidate or another — finding unscripted answers from most of the candidates is going to be tough. Slashdot interviews, by contrast, give you the chance to do something that interviews in more conventional media usually don't: the chance to ask the questions you'd actually like to have answered, and to see the whole answer as provided.

Oh they won't have teleprompters for a Slashdot interview? So what? Every single candidate or person working for a candidate are going to do the following:

  1. Assess Slashdot's core demographic (young white males with liberal leanings).
  2. Go to their "cheat sheets" and select the well tailored response to each topic at the appropriate slot of the political scale to garner the maximum number of votes from said demographic.
  3. Read questions, refuse those that cannot be filled with square peg or easily deflected.
  4. Spend a tiny amount of time reframing each question as the first part of the response until it is a seamless transition to the copy/paste of their advisers' maximized stock spiel or merely deflect it (hey, this isn't a debate you just have to bob and weave out of one round).

This isn't my first rodeo. Seriously, watch a candidate's speech in BFE one-horse-town North Texas one day and then their speech in yuppie concrete jungle Manhattan the next day. They will skirt issues and spew half truths that are almost (but not quite, it's an art) in direct conflict with their message at another locality. How do you maximize votes? Why settle for those localized maxima with the same speech in two different demographics when a massive overhaul will win you the campaign? Why do you think they have teams of speech writers? If you campaigned on one consistent platform through the country, you're dead in the water. The only way to win is to lie by omission or worse.

Oh and if you think that a webmaster of a politician is going to be allowed to answer questions in regard to that politician's campaign, you can forget it. A person with a STEM background interfacing in a Q&A for someone's campaign?! Are you daft? No no no no, nobody is going to allow that. The phrase "talking points" was made for a reason. Can you imagine that conversation? "Hey, I know I designed your website for your campaign, now I'm going on a news site to represent your campaign to potentially anybody -- I mean if I really fuck up this could be on Colbert or something. Wish me luck!"

Re:Distilled Pessimism Squeezed into a Post (2)

khallow (566160) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977554)

This isn't my first rodeo. Seriously, watch a candidate's speech in BFE one-horse-town North Texas one day and then their speech in yuppie concrete jungle Manhattan the next day.

And there you go The solution to the problem you present. Don't treat the Slashdot version in complete isolation, but rather see how it meshes with the rest of the speeches that the candidate gives.

Re:Distilled Pessimism Squeezed into a Post (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977822)

And there you go The solution to the problem you present. Don't treat the Slashdot version in complete isolation, but rather see how it meshes with the rest of the speeches that the candidate gives.

Right and at the end of the day, every politician is giving some version of the patronizing message to each demographic! Slashdot will be no different!

Mod parent up. (1)

khasim (1285) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977746)

With almost all politicians (except the ones YOU like, of course) the "message" is the message. Asking questions is useless unless you're gathering material for The Daily Show or Colbert.

No matter how uninformed a candidate is, the fans will still be fans.

It isn't about picking the best candidate based upon your criteria.
It's about using your flexible criteria to justify the politician / party that you've already emotionally decided upon.

Re:Mod parent up. (3, Interesting)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977886)

I think you make a good point. Therefore, I suggest we interview Jon Stewart and/or Stephen Colbert.

Daily Show (1)

gd2shoe (747932) | more than 2 years ago | (#37978046)

That's not a bad idea, actually. If we can impress upon Jon some of the things that matter to us, it could shape his future interviews with candidates (or choosing guests, for that matter). He can't make them answer, but he has a talent of making them face the issue.

Re:Distilled Pessimism Squeezed into a Post (2)

tbannist (230135) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977948)

Interestingly, Canada's current Prime Minister campaigned with a single speech which he repeated verbatim (down to the times at which he took a sip of water during the speak) every time he gave it. He gave the exact same speech twice a day every day for over a month (and won).

Another interesting thing that happened in the recent Ontario election, was one of the provincial engineering institutes sent a request to each party for an explanation of their policies on power generation. One party chose not to answer at all, one party sent a feel good message that amounted to "we like power and we'll figure out when we win the election", and the third party sent a detailed break down of things that they had planned for the next four years. Sometimes, a smaller venue will get good and relevant information from a political campaign.

To all candidates (1, Troll)

kimvette (919543) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977450)

I'd ask this of all/any candidates:

Why do you disagree with Ron Paul's approach of restricting government's role to what is proscribed by our legal framework (the Constitution), and why do you insist on violating the Constitution when a remedy exists in the form of constitutional amendments?

Re:To all candidates (3, Insightful)

ConceptJunkie (24823) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977682)

I think Ron Paul's answer would be a little dull. ;-)

The thing is you can ask this but I can predict what the answer will entail.

Basically, it will all boil down to the fact that we "need" government to do these things because otherwise terrible (but generally vague) things will happen. The government is responsible for providing for the general welfare and all these things it does directly benefit the general welfare, QED.

Do you want your schools to fall behind in the technology arms race, or to turn out graduates who lack sufficient self-esteem? Do you want people living out in the street and starving while Senators feast on suckling pigs and roast immigrants? Do you want evil corporations using their mind-control rays or poisoning your pets with nuclear waste and crooked accounting? Do you want terrorists sneaking in your house and stealing your healthcare? Do you want Iran nuking your right to bear arms and freedom of speech? Or evil Wall Streeters selling your children to drug lords to pay for their SUVs that run on stem-cells?

Of course, it doesn't matter that in each case the government is either addressing the wrong problem, or addressing the right problem but completely failing to do anything to make it better. The important thing is that We Do Something (TM)! If the problem isn't getting better than we need to do something faster, harder and with more money.

Re:To all candidates (5, Insightful)

ZamesC (611197) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977824)

1) Because the Constitution is not nearly as restrictive as Ron Paul would have us believe. It does enumerate a number of specific powers, but adds "To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers" which allows for much latitude to what is allowed to do.

2a) because there is no violation.
2b) because requiring an amendment (which requires several years at a minimum to pass) for the normal day-to-day actions of the Congress, which so gridlock the national government, as to force to destruction. (IOW, Why do you hate America?)
 

proscribe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37978070)

"Proscribe" means "to condemn or forbid as harmful or unlawful : prohibit". Ron Paul doesn't want to restrict government's role to what is forbidden by the constitution. That's the other guys.

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/proscribe

Ask Diebold (5, Funny)

Etz Haim (856183) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977454)

Need to explain? ;)

Slashdot Should Interview... (2)

jmd (14060) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977464)

Chris Hedges.

Ron Paul (3, Interesting)

Daniel_is_Legnd (1447519) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977470)

I don't think he given fair representation by either side of the media and is simply labeled as radical and crazy.

Re:Ron Paul (1)

kimvette (919543) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977494)

. . . when his only fault is believing the Constitution means what it says and says what it means. He is the only candidate so far who considers our legal framework to be more valuable than toilet paper.

Re:Ron Paul (4, Informative)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977508)

In all fairness, that's because he is radical and crazy.

Which is not necessarily a bad thing, when compared to "arrogant and stupid" or "two-faced and disappointing"

Re:Ron Paul (1)

Daniel_is_Legnd (1447519) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977520)

Good point. Maybe what the system needs is some radical and crazy.

Re:Ron Paul (0)

kimvette (919543) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977556)

In all fairness, that's because he is radical and crazy.

If by "radical and crazy" you mean believing the Constitution means what it says and restricting government's role to that which is proscribed by the Constitutional, then you're right.

But then, when you live in an insane world and you yourself are sane, it means you are insane, if the working (as opposed to dictionary) definition "sane" is "the status quo"

Re:Ron Paul (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977742)

But then, when you live in an insane world and you yourself are sane, it means you are insane, if the working (as opposed to dictionary) definition "sane" is "the status quo"

That's crazy talk, man.

Re:Ron Paul (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977676)

He may be radical to the status quo, but he's anything but crazy. I served in the Army for over 8 years, and have had opportunity to talk to several CIA analysts, and have heard many station chiefs basically echoing everything Ron Paul says about foreign policy, all that in addition to my first hand experience of how this shit we're doing doesn't work and coming to the same conclusions. As far as monetary policy, it's anything but crazy. Google/ Read Hayek's "Use of knowledge in society" http://www.econlib.org/library/Essays/hykKnw1.html (it's short and easily read) as well as "A free market monetary system" http://mises.org/daily/3204. Ron Paul is far from crazy, and once you start to learn more, you'll find it's the other way around.

Re:Ron Paul (1)

Kethinov (636034) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977562)

That's because he is radical. I don't think he's crazy, but the man makes most of the rest of the Republican party look liberal by comparison. Nobody's going to vote for him for the same reason no one will vote for Dennis Kucinich. Too far from the center.

Re:Ron Paul (1)

wstrucke (876891) | more than 2 years ago | (#37978104)

Personally I don't consider his polling at 12% in the early states as "nobody". He's only far from center because of how insane our contemporary center is. I suspect we could use a little more respect for the Constitution and a little more respect for our individual rights as human beings.

Re:Ron Paul (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977592)

If we already understand Paul and know why his ideas make sense, then why do we need to interview him? Let's interview someone that we struggle to comprehend, like everyone else.

Re:Ron Paul (1)

BlackSheep121 (2498470) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977636)

I second this. The guy is pretty much the only candidate who won't throw you a rehearsed, BS party line, and makes more sense than anybody else I've heard so far.

Re:Ron Paul (1)

Dare nMc (468959) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977996)

They may not be the same rehearsed Republican/Democratic lines, but all I have ever heard from him is well rehearsed lines. Everything I have heard from him is very black and white, and is completely closed to any compromise, argument, logic or additional information. He already knows all he needs to know and is proud of it. If you like the current republican gridlock where nothing gets done, because no one is willing to compromise, then choose Ron Paul for prez, he will not compromise and being out of line with the other parties, nothing will get changed.

Re:Ron Paul (1)

GungaDan (195739) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977664)

Ron Paul does not want to start a war with Iran for no good reason, therefore he is unelectable.

RMS (2)

SIR_Taco (467460) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977502)

Yes... RMS.... just for 'shits-and-giggles'

Re:RMS (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977570)

And ESR

And Penn Gillette (Jillete?) WTF it is spelled.

Someone from 2014 (0)

Tawnos (1030370) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977510)

Slashdot has a time travel machine, as evidenced by the way some posts seem to come from the distant past to reappear in the present. So let's use that and ask the people in 2014 what the elected candidate did to determine if it's worth having them.

an economist (2)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977516)

an economist

An economist you say?

How about Ben Jones
http://thehousingbubbleblog.com/ [thehousingbubbleblog.com]

An how about Tyler Durden (A pseudonym, duh, but I think it would be hilarious to see the ZH response to our questions)
http://www.zerohedge.com/ [zerohedge.com]

Last but not least, George Ure, who is about 20% genius, 60% eh, and 20% nuts?
http://urbansurvival.com/week.htm [urbansurvival.com]

Re:an economist (1)

codeAlDente (1643257) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977732)

Tyler Durden was also my first thought. Most of the Tylers are thoroughly anonymous, so alleged contributor Daniel Ivandjiiski would be a good place to start looking IRL.

Robocalls (1)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977522)

Why do politicians always write in exemptions for themselves when it comes to legislation banning telemarketing? Do any of you twits realize how annoying incessant Robocalls are?

Re:Robocalls (1)

characterZer0 (138196) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977604)

Do any of you twits realize how annoying incessant Robocalls are?

Of course they don't. They have their staff and help screen calls. Why don't you do that?

Romney (1)

moorster (2093072) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977524)

Since Mitt is the most likely candidate from the right I would love to hear from him (and I think he's great).

Re:Romney (2)

SteveFoerster (136027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977826)

Well, Romney's still the most likely to get the Republican nomination, maybe. But whether he's "from the right" depends on which way the flip is flopping.

Re:Romney (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977832)

Why?

Since he started his campaign, he has shown that he's just like the rest of them - BS'es, flip-flops, and says whatever he thinks the people listening want to hear. It's a complete waste of time to listen to those lying assholes.

What's the fucking point? We might as well vote for these people based on their hair and what party they represent. So, if you're a Republican and think Mitt has the best hair then vote for him. The way our system works, it's probably a more valid reason than voting based on the bullshit that comes out of their mouths.

Re:Romney (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977834)

Why is he great? Because he things universal healthcare is an awesome thing (for HIS state), but is also a terrible idea (for the country) at the same time? He's the definition of a two-faced politician. Same as the rest.

Who. Not whom. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977536)

You can't just use "whom" whenever you want to sound smart. Sometimes, like in the case of the article title, "who" is the correct word.

Re:Who. Not whom. (0)

mclaincausey (777353) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977586)

Don't know why this is down voted. I know we're not supposed to carp on grammar but this is a valid point.

Re:Who. Not whom. (1)

HarrySquatter (1698416) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977658)

It's not downvoted. AC posts start at 0.

Re:Who. Not whom. (0)

residieu (577863) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977744)

No. Whom is correct.

Whom do you want to ask about 2012 elections?

The subject is you.

The verb is want to ask

The object is whom

about 2012 elections is a supporting prepositional phrase

Who is always a subject, Whom is always an object (except here, when you're talking about the word itself)

Re:Who. Not whom. (1)

grub (11606) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977750)


You don't like that classic rock band The Whom?

Re:Who. Not whom. (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977782)

I do believe 'whom' is correct in this usage. Rephrase it as You Do Want to Ask Whom, and you can see it is the direct object, so use the objective form: whom.

The Web (2)

jimwelch (309748) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977542)

A web site like CMS matrix (use to be) where there is a table of *ALL* issues and responses that I can compare against each other and "my views"

Re:The Web (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977620)

+1

We need a database of issues/responses and voting record for every public official so a score can be created... (i.e. ratemycongresscritter.com).

William Shatner (1)

fortapocalypse (1231686) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977548)

The man knows all and sees all and sh*t my Dad says ran too short.

Andrew Tanenbaum (5, Informative)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977582)

Not only does Andrew Tanenbaum have a good handle on polls and vote-projection [electoral-vote.com] , but his nerd credentials are excellent [minix3.org] .

Re:Andrew Tanenbaum (3, Insightful)

Gerald (9696) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977784)

Seconded. His analysis running up to 2008 was spot-on.

2nd Amendment (1)

Bardwick (696376) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977584)

Why was it written? Any (all) candidate(s).

Come to /. to see who WON'T be the next president! (4, Insightful)

identity0 (77976) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977596)

Given Slashdot's predilections, it is certain that the ones Slashdot likes the most will be the least likely to get elected.

So, come join us on Slashdot to see who WON'T be the next president!

Let us whine together about how awful and broken the system is!
Let us propose reforms to the election system that will never be implemented!
Let us ask obscure technical questions of candidates to the highest office in the land!

Yes, I have been here during elections before.

In b4 Ron Paul

Re:Come to /. to see who WON'T be the next preside (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977778)

Does this mean an iPad will be elected president?

Andrew Tanenbaum (minix & electoral-vote.com) (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977606)

Andrew Tanenbaum, of minix fame and the "votemaster" of electoral-vote.com poll tracking and political meta-commentary (or is it meta-political commentary).

Now that corporations are people... (1)

VIPERsssss (907375) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977610)

Ask GE what is the ROI for a member of congress?

Re:Now that corporations are people... (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977868)

Somewhat seriously, find the top 10 political donors, they will be the ones who decide what happens anyway regardless of who wins, and ask them what they have decided for us?

Ron Paul? (4, Insightful)

Charliemopps (1157495) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977630)

Ron Paul... duh... and I'm pretty sure he'll do it to. I think his answers to slashdot questions would be very interesting indeed. I doubt any other candidate would come near this site with a 1000ft pole.

Re:Ron Paul? (1)

BiggoronSword (1135013) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977988)

I think we need a more in depth explanation of his position on net neutrality, 1st amendment rights and how they will be protected on the internet while maintaining a free market.

Rebecca Mercury (5, Interesting)

cheros (223479) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977632)

Why not ask Rebecca Mercuri [wikimedia.org] ? She is a voting expert, and if indications are correct, the last couple of voting exercises were not exactly as clean as they were supposed to have been.

You can ask politicians whatever you want, I would suggest you become more interested in assuring that your vote actually goes where it is supposed to go.

Ask the askers.. (4, Insightful)

jasno (124830) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977638)

Get a journalist from a major network and ask them why the fuck they let politicians off the hook when they give non-answers to direct questions in interviews and debates.

Re:Ask the askers.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977978)

They bend over and avoid those awkward questions so that they continue to be allowed to be "invited" into press briefings. Otherwise they get the wall of "They're too busy to talk to you, right now". Yeah, politicians are so accountable.
BTW, this applies to my politicians here (Ireland) as much as those in the US.
I suspect this might be covered in journalism 101.

Re:Ask the askers.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37978056)

We're supposed to notice that. When an assho...politician gives a non-answer or a denial (like when this Republican Teabagger douche said that he didn't hold the economy hostage during the debt ceiling talks), I just remember - the asshole is avoiding the question because he's a chicken shit liar.

I used to keep track, but it ended up that they all ended up in the bullshitter, asshole, cocksucking motherfucker column.

And we are really to blame after all. It's WE THE PEOPLE who don't say "hey Your Honorable Lying Cocksucker, Answer the fucking question!" No. We sit on our collective fat asses and allow ourselves to get sidetracked by non-issues or small issues while our Congress is hijacked by the elite - which they're part of.

Are we going to get tax increases along with some austerity - like what the MAJORITY of America wants? Fuck no! I guarantee you if it actually starts getting pushed, Congress will pull some turd out of their rich fat asses (Look! Abortion rights!) to distract US THE PEOPLE from our country being looted and run into the ground.

And fuck the goddamn retards who get suckered by that shit - I'm looking at you Teabaggers and abortion fanatics.

Mickey Mouse (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977660)

I hear he gets a lot of write-ins, what are his stances?

"Whom" isn't a word (-1, Offtopic)

istartedi (132515) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977694)

"Whom" isn't a word. Quit using it. LOL.

Re:"Whom" isn't a word (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977836)

http://lmgtfy.com/?q=define:whom

real debates (2)

cinnamon colbert (732724) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977704)

The debates, an hour or two in total length, are the only time the citizenry get to question the candidates directly Yet the time alloted to people to ask questions is so short, no intelligent question can be asked. further, the audience is discouraged from reacting, and the questioner cannot interrupt when the candidates don't answer the question I would like to see one 3-4 hour debate per week, where it is almost open mike - people get three minutes to talk, and they can harangue the candidates, interrupt them, ask serious questions etc would need tape delay to remove the ***k words, and editing to take out the tedium, but we might get something worth watching

Re:real debates (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977896)

That would be 3-4 tedious hours of "legalize weed" "9-11 conspiracy" "can we pass an amendment to remove the separation of church and state"

Barack Obama (2)

Raul654 (453029) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977720)

Obama's rhetoric on civil liberties during the 2008 campaign was spot on. Given how horrible his actual civil liberties track record has been - "Obama has proved a disaster not just for specific civil liberties but the civil liberties cause in the United States" is how Jonathan Turley described him in a recent LA Times opo-ed [jonathanturley.org] - I'd like to hear him or one of his spokespeople try to defend his record on this matter.

Re:Barack Obama (1)

asylumx (881307) | more than 2 years ago | (#37978024)

I wondered about that too. He's back off so much from what everyone who voted for him thought he stood for. Not that I'm going to go vote for his opponents (who stand for the opposite), but I'm certainly less enthused about voting.

So, Seconded.

Re:Barack Obama (1)

StillNeedMoreCoffee (123989) | more than 2 years ago | (#37978026)

Given that the civil liberties you speak about really comes from the legislative branch of Government and not the Executive (as laid out in the Constitution), and given that Republican's absolute disdain for Obama and their totally, historically unprecedented use of tactics in the Senate to stop any governance or legislation. I think we can give Obama a pass on this. You should define what you think Obama could do given the intransigence and morally and ethically reprehensible behavior towards their sworn elected duties as the representatives of the people given the job of running the government for the people.

NOT elections (4, Informative)

rcamans (252182) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977740)

Elections are where free people can choose who they want in public office.
In America, the government, corporations, institutions, organizations, and political parties choose what rich stupid b*stard gets to be put in front of you to get "voted" into office.
You do not have a choice. Whatever party you vote in, you will still get scr*wed by a lying, cheating, bribed b*stard. You get the same sh*t. Just different public "statements, promises, and claims"
If we were electing someone to represent our interests in government, they would be representing our interests. Instead, they are representing the interests of lobbyists, PACs, special interest groups, corporations, institutions, and the rich and famous in general.
Is it in our interest to have Obama spend 200,000,000+ on a flight vacation to Hawaii while joblessness is above 9%? I do not think so. How many jobs has Obama created? 1, for Michelle's brother, the basketball coach in Oregon.
Tell me again how anyone, Democrat or republican, got anything they voted for.
Liar.

How about.... (2)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977760)

we ask all of them, when they will put America first instead of their pocket book? And that needs to be asked of all of them, including O.

"For the next year, it will be hard to escape..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977774)

Exactly. And you're suggesting we should further that. See a problem there?

How about we keep this a site with news for nerds instead of getting swept up into pointless politics and bickering?

an old fogey (1)

obarthelemy (160321) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977814)

Retired politicians/pundits/... with no stakes in the game anymore are by far the most entertaining and interesting. Plus they want to get rid of stuff they've had on their chest for a while, ie all the lies and stupidities they've ha to spout to please their electoral bases.

Michael Kinsley (1)

codeAlDente (1643257) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977830)

has geek/pol cred.

Too many laws, too many lawyers (1)

HellYeahAutomaton (815542) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977856)

In software development we have a concept of refactoring: "a disciplined technique for restructuring an existing body of code, altering its internal structure without changing its external behavior".

How do the candidates feel about refactoring all of our laws, rules, and regulations for simplicity?

Ask the policy setters (1)

alexo (9335) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977866)

Mitch Bainwol and Chris Dodd.

Current non-politician involved in government (1)

poity (465672) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977882)

Everyone holds bias, but someone who isn't dependent on votes in the near future would be less bound by his/her desire to maintain public image while still possessing the insider experience to give us an insightful appraisal.

Perhaps former officials of the US Cabinet.

Huh!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977884)

What are you talking about??? Obama's 2008 campaign never ended!

Nobody (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977888)

Eradicate the ruling class. The "two party" system is a joke. Democracy in the US is dead and has been for some time.

To whom will I direct my comments (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37977928)

To whom will I direct my comments? I'd like to ask someone who has a grasp of the English language.

ask my sig (1)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977938)

ask my signature and watch the response right there.

Nate Silver (1)

alvinrod (889928) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977962)

Nate Silver, the man behind fivethirtyeight.com [nytimes.com] He does analysis on multiple topics and has been pretty accurate historically. The questions that he can answer can probably be a lot more geeky than those that could be asked of others, and are also the types of questions that are less likely to get bullshit responses. I also think he's the type of person who would probably be willing to answer Slashdot questions so there's that to be said as well.

Re:Nate Silver (1)

CambodiaSam (1153015) | more than 2 years ago | (#37978006)

Please mod up. I followed Nate's analysis of the 2008 election and was amazed to see him nail the results to within a few electoral votes.

Re:Nate Silver (1)

bigsexyjoe (581721) | more than 2 years ago | (#37978062)

I agree! We need real statistical analysis. Not more opinions.

Go Big, ask for the President .... (1)

OldHawk777 (19923) | more than 2 years ago | (#37977984)

My questions:

1. Can the Education Department produce and maintain a BS-free "Open Course Content" (Open eBooks, Open teaching materials, randomized test content ...) curriculum for grades K...12 that are comparable to any extremely highly ranked private school? No don't force the states to use the curriculum, eventually state education budget cuts will require the Open and Free curriculum to reduce education cost. Yes, education infrastructure will still be failing nationally, but some bills the states should pay. Yes, keep gods out of the "Public" classrooms, appropriately the gods must be kept at home and at private places of worship to protect The USA Constitutional right of all citizens.

2. Why has the Presidential Medal of Freedom never been awarded to great North American Citizens like RHStallman (GNU...OSS), PZimmermann (PGP), NNegroponte (OLPC) ...?

Re:Go Big, ask for the President .... (1)

Viewsonic (584922) | more than 2 years ago | (#37978064)

Why would you want to compare anything to a private school? Statistically, grade wise, they are actually doing worse by a tiny margin over public schools.

Libertarians (1)

deblau (68023) | more than 2 years ago | (#37978034)

If anyone is interested, I can get someone on the Libertarian National Committee (LNC [lp.org] ) or the Libertarian National Campaign Committee (LNCC [lncc.org] ) to answer questions. The Libertarian Party is the largest third and fastest growing party in the US (as confirmed by Wikipedia!) and I know that many ./ers tend to lean small-L libertarian.

Disclaimer: I am the Region 2 alternate member of the LNC, and Chair of the Massachusetts Libertarian Party [lpmass.org] .

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