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barryhollander

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Stanford: To boost turnout, make election day a national holiday

I sympathize with the idea, but as far as I know there's no data to suggest it would help. Instead, just make voting mandatory, like Australia.

In reality, low-turnout elections tend to help the Republican candidate while high-turnout elections tend to help the Democratic candidate, so I'm fairly certain the GOP is not going to go out of its way to support anything like this. Lip service, of course, but it'd be against the party's best interest to support more people actually voting.

posted @ Friday, November 21, 2014 - 15:24

5 questions, answers on 'net neutrality'

@TeeWee: This is what happens when you let partisan hackery take over your brain. It's a complicated subject, but essentially do you want cable/internet companies to take over complete control and set rates for streaming services or not? Odds are, if we see a "fast lane" surcharge this will decrease innovation. It'll be hard for startups to be treated equally on the Internet, in terms of speed of delivery. Plus we'll spend a hell of a lot more for Netflix and related services, if net neutrality goes away, and in the U.S. we already pay far more than other countries in terms of Internet access.

In fairness to Verizon, AT&T, Time-Warner, Charter, etc., they do see Netflix taking up a huge portion of the bandwidth. But if ya love your cable/Internet/phone companies, by all means side with them against the net neutrality folks who want all content treated the same.

Smarter political folks than me suggest Obama made a mistake by speaking out. Lots of people will take their partisan cues from this (if Obama is fer it, I'm agin it). Case in point, Sen. Ted Cruz who, in an amazing example of apples-oranges comparison, called it Obamacare for the Internet. I'm not sure Cruz even knows what the Internet is.

posted @ Sunday, November 16, 2014 - 16:57

Auburn’s No. 1 rushing offense poses a challenge for a recently exposed UGA defense

@ponsoldt: Yeah, one analyst I read today figured this for a scorefest and predicted UGA would have one or two more big plays that resulted in a win. UGA is only a 2.5-point favorite, so maybe it'll be 65-62.5.

posted @ Thursday, November 13, 2014 - 17:16

Sen. Isakson to formally announce re-election bid

Be interesting to see if he gets a challenge from the right for the nomination. I can't imagine it being wise, or successful, but ya never know. It's not like there's a lot of room to his right.

posted @ Wednesday, November 12, 2014 - 16:30

Stanford: 'Herding' was problem with 2014 election polling

Not to get too argumentative, but the polls did correctly predict the GOP takeover of the U.S. Senate correctly, they just (in most cases) overestimated how close some of the individual state races would be. As a hardcore polling nerd I'm not gonna get too far into the methodological weeds on a post here, but Obama's lousy approval ratings were the best single predictor of how poorly the Democratic candidates did.

posted @ Tuesday, November 11, 2014 - 13:30

Shooting of dog by off-duty Oconee deputy leads to controversy

@Auntylib: Wow, I completely missed that connection.

posted @ Friday, November 7, 2014 - 13:04

UGA police: Student threatened mass violence on campus with assault rifle

The right to be forgotten does not apply in the U.S., though I'm fairly certain all of my old girlfriends insist on their right to forget me. In the case of Arias, the Internet is forever. Plus he's not a minor, so it's difficult to be "forgotten" by the system. His best bet is to somehow negotiate it down to from a felony to a misdemeanor so a stupid social media post doesn't ruin his life.

posted @ Tuesday, November 4, 2014 - 14:05

UGA police: Student threatened mass violence on campus with assault rifle

I'm impressed by how quickly and efficiently the police handled this incident. As to what happens to Arias, assuming no actual weapons were found in his apartment or car, odds are the charges will either be reduced or the sentence moderated to reflect a stupid 19-year-old prank. If there's evidence it was more than a stupid social media prank, then all bets are off.

posted @ Tuesday, November 4, 2014 - 08:59

Perdue wants to bring a CEO's perspective to the Senate

In the Senate you're one of 100, and a junior one of 100. It's not at all like being a CEO. There are a lot of reasons to vote for Perdue, but this ain't one of them. It's the friggin legislative branch, not executive.

posted @ Monday, November 3, 2014 - 14:10

Early votes exceed 15 million — but who benefits?

Early voting probably washes out, as many of those who bother to vote early are likely voters anyway on election day. Some analyses suggest there may be a Dem vote or two more than usual, but not enough to affect the outcome of even a close race like, say, Nunn vs Perdue.

posted @ Saturday, November 1, 2014 - 11:04

Perdue campaigns in "New Direction" away from Athens

@snarkydude: The city/county may vote Democratic, but I assume there are some Republican votes here. Over 4,000 voted in the Perdue/Kingston runoff and while some of 'em may have been Democrats slumming in a runoff, odds are most were not.

It's not like he has to worry about "losing" Clarke County, like a prez candidate will avoid states, due to the electoral college, that are not worth the effort. As Athens is one of the bigger cities in Georgia, you'd think he would at least swing by once to ensure the faithful turn out, such as they are, because he'll want all those votes come Tuesday regardless of where they come from.

Smart money is on a runoff, and in the last five statewide runoffs the GOP candidate has won.

posted @ Friday, October 31, 2014 - 16:17

In ethics probe, Broun says consultant volunteered for campaign work

I've always been a fan of the Sgt. Schultz defense: "I see nothing. Nothing." Well played, Rep. Broun. Well played indeed.

posted @ Friday, October 31, 2014 - 16:06

Lions rally to beat Falcons 22-21 in London

Bah. The real football game over there this weekend was ManU vs Chelsea. And even better, ManU came back to tie it against a much stronger Chelsea.

posted @ Sunday, October 26, 2014 - 16:13

Athens officials to consider fines for bad downtown parking

I've long wondered about the brainiacs who couldn't read "compact" on those parking spaces and forced us into the next lane to get by, sometimes dangerously so. Glad to see something is going to be done. Any I've never had a problem parking downtown. There are decks everywhere. I get that some folks are baffled by the idea of a deck. Or electricity. Otherwise, not a problem.

posted @ Saturday, October 25, 2014 - 12:34

AT&T U-Verse TV customers report receiving emergency message from White House

Followed by black helicopters?

posted @ Friday, October 24, 2014 - 11:55

Poll: Nunn ahead in Senate race, governor’s race tied

If it's a statistical tie, the hed shouldn't say Nunn is ahead. This is a robo-poll, so consume at your own risk. Nate Silver, the guru of this stuff, gave InsiderAdvantage a "D" for its efforts: http://fivethirtyeight.com/interactives/pollster-ratings/

A "gold standard" poll will be released late Thursday or Friday by the AJC, one in which humans call survey respondents both on landline and cell phones. That'll tell us more about the races.

posted @ Thursday, October 23, 2014 - 12:50

Knox: Athens traffic light photo-enforcement flawed

I think, John, the ACC is instead trying to bring back disco dancing at that intersection.

posted @ Thursday, October 16, 2014 - 13:48

Michelle Nunn visits Athens, says Perdue trying to “change the subject”

Actually, while Nunn is gettling lots of money, including outside-the-state money, Perdue is getting more "secret" money that can't be identified. But that's not really important. A new poll this week had Nunn ahead three percentage points and the same poll, using the same skewed methodology, had Perdue ahead one percentage point earlier in the month. Whether that's real movement or a statistical blip, I'd go with the latter. Both results are within the margin of error and movement in a robo-poll from one time to another doesn't mean all that much.

Still, it's an interesting race and depending on turnout, could keep us up election night to see the result -- which may be a runoff.

posted @ Thursday, October 16, 2014 - 07:59

The Editor's Desk: Getting into the weeds on Nov. 4 election

Endorsements don't mean all that much. Just ask Kingston, who lined up endorsements from just about every previously elected Republican on the planet. And he still lost the GOP runoff to Perdue. Given almost no one takes Broun seriously in the first place, I can't imagine him helping much and his support might even toss a coat of kook paint on whoever he endorses.

Deal looks to be a solid win against Carter, but Perdue-Nunn will be a reason to stay up election night and watch (well, that and some other interesting states). I'd bet straight up on Perdue, but give me good odds, or points, and I'd take Nunn.

posted @ Friday, October 10, 2014 - 08:25

The Editor's Desk: How election season could ruin the holidays in Georgia

Ruin? Bah. Nothing says the holidays like more electioneering. Oddly, there's a Nunn political ad just below this box (for me, at this moment). Cha-ching cha-ching.

posted @ Thursday, October 9, 2014 - 08:04

Supreme Court denies gay marriage appeals

@mpd0.59: If I were a Democrat I'd be a bit disappointed I can't use this in the elections to hammer the GOP. If I were a Republican I'd be relieved to focus on Obama, etc. Palin, et al., will continue to play to the base and keep it energized with the usual stuff, as well as trying to correctly recall the address of The White House.

(funny ... she said 1400 Pennsylvania Avenue in a speech, her usual mangling of facts, but give her credit for a funny tweet later that essentially said, "So that's why my Christmas cards keep coming back." Clever)

posted @ Monday, October 6, 2014 - 16:13

Georgia ranked in Top 5 for charitable giving

Yes, these numbers are heavily skewed by church giving. It'd be interesting to see them excluding religious donations, but the IRS forms don't break it out that way.

posted @ Monday, October 6, 2014 - 15:13

Supreme Court denies gay marriage appeals

@The Oracle of the Athens Banner Herald: God, like SCOTUS, will probably pass. But yeah, I can see a few corners need to be tucked in, like attorney fees. I tried to read the decision in a hurry between gigs, got quickly lost, put it on my list of things to read. I suspect someone at the ABH is reading it, making phone calls, pulling together a story -- all while working on something already assigned.

posted @ Monday, October 6, 2014 - 14:15

Supreme Court denies gay marriage appeals

@The Oracle of the Athens Banner Herald: For those who love to read legal decisions, you can find the conclusion of the Five points parking saga here: http://bit.ly/1xhQ2cK

As to the U.S. Supreme Court non-decision, this really helps Republicans as it kinda takes off the table for this election cycle gay marriage -- an issue that was hurting the GOP among, especially, young voters.

posted @ Monday, October 6, 2014 - 12:16

Officials: About 80 being monitored in Texas for Ebola

@theold33: I didn't call anyone a wingnut, I just said I hoped the wingnuts who gave us the misinformation of the 1980s about AIDS don't do the same about Ebola. But you do make a good point about what's the opposite of wingnut. Moonbat. Yeah, that works for me.

posted @ Thursday, October 2, 2014 - 15:42

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