Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

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CorruptUser
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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Dec 29, 2014 5:00 am UTC

Mambrino wrote:
elasto wrote:
morriswalters wrote:Any particular reason why you think this would be true? Experts are experts in their fields, not experts in governing. And random picks from the general population would pick up all the random chaff that exists in society, need I explain what that might mean?


Couldn't you make the same argument against juries? They aren't experts in the law after all...

The point is that, like with the court system, yes, if the whole caboodle were appointed at random (judge and lawyers as well as the jury) then some real oddball verdicts could end up getting made, but my proposal would only have jury+experts be one-third of government - not all of it. You'd still have the Senate made up of professional politicians and the President capable of wielding his veto pen.

The idea is that each of these bodies bring different strengths to the legislative process: If the professional politicians get too blatantly self-serving hopefully the cross-party, moderate jury will speak for the 99% - and the experts will weigh in on their areas of expertise via channeling consensus-based, peer-reviewed evidence.

No it wouldn't be perfect; Corruption and incompetence would still abound. But it might work better than now is all.


I'd like to like this idea, but then again, reading this forum I've got an impression the US court system does not work very well. But on the other hand, legislative process is a different thing than a court of law, and the important thing anyway would be what kind of role these juries would have (the final accept / decline vote? proposing legislature for discussion? the process of drafting their contents? what kind of role in the said process...?). It certainly could remove the campaign financing part of possible sources of political corruption, but it could introduce others.

EDIT. This seems only tangentially related to the actual piece of news at hand. Should we have a Serious Business thread about this?


While there is a lot of room for improvement, overall the courts do work. You only read about the times they fail because 'system works, things improving, people happy' doesn't sell newspapers. It's impossible to make a perfect system, and fixing some problems often creates worse ones.

elasto
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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby elasto » Mon Dec 29, 2014 7:39 am UTC

Mambrino wrote:But on the other hand, legislative process is a different thing than a court of law, and the important thing anyway would be what kind of role these juries would have (the final accept / decline vote? proposing legislature for discussion? the process of drafting their contents? what kind of role in the said process...?).

Well, this idea was off the top of my head and so I haven't thought it through or anything, but at first glance I would have said that this body should be a straight swap for The House.

My understanding of the US system is limited but isn't it the case that The House and Senate pass legislation - and when they come to an agreement then it gets passed to the President for a final yay or nay? I don't see an obvious reason to change that process.

It certainly could remove the campaign financing part of possible sources of political corruption, but it could introduce others.

Corruption could definitely be reduced via a twin strategy of forbidding threats/bribes while in office (an equivalent to 'Jury Tampering laws' with severe criminal sanctions) and a large pension on leaving office to compensate for being forbidden from receiving an industry position for life (to prevent a time-delayed 'quid-pro-quo' bribe).

New headaches would include, for example, who the heck gets to choose which fields and which expert representatives of said fields get to sit in the new chamber..?

EDIT. This seems only tangentially related to the actual piece of news at hand. Should we have a Serious Business thread about this?

Go ahead and make it if you wish - but I'm not sure I'd have much more to contribute and the idea is so far from being realizable that it's somewhat pointless to speculate - but then again that sums up most threads really ^^

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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Dec 29, 2014 12:07 pm UTC

Mambrino wrote:
elasto wrote:
morriswalters wrote:Any particular reason why you think this would be true? Experts are experts in their fields, not experts in governing. And random picks from the general population would pick up all the random chaff that exists in society, need I explain what that might mean?


Couldn't you make the same argument against juries? They aren't experts in the law after all...

The point is that, like with the court system, yes, if the whole caboodle were appointed at random (judge and lawyers as well as the jury) then some real oddball verdicts could end up getting made, but my proposal would only have jury+experts be one-third of government - not all of it. You'd still have the Senate made up of professional politicians and the President capable of wielding his veto pen.

The idea is that each of these bodies bring different strengths to the legislative process: If the professional politicians get too blatantly self-serving hopefully the cross-party, moderate jury will speak for the 99% - and the experts will weigh in on their areas of expertise via channeling consensus-based, peer-reviewed evidence.

No it wouldn't be perfect; Corruption and incompetence would still abound. But it might work better than now is all.


I'd like to like this idea, but then again, reading this forum I've got an impression the US court system does not work very well. But on the other hand, legislative process is a different thing than a court of law, and the important thing anyway would be what kind of role these juries would have (the final accept / decline vote? proposing legislature for discussion? the process of drafting their contents? what kind of role in the said process...?). It certainly could remove the campaign financing part of possible sources of political corruption, but it could introduce others.

EDIT. This seems only tangentially related to the actual piece of news at hand. Should we have a Serious Business thread about this?


It works better than many systems...but there are significant issues. I do agree that discussing them at length would probably go wildly off topic, though, and a SB thread would likely be more appropriate.

sardia wrote:We did get random nobodys to run for office, and they even won. They called themselves the Tea Party. No thanks, I don't want more.


I do not consider the Tea Party to be a random sampling of nobodies. If they are, dear god, are we in trouble. Nah, they're basically third stringer republican sorts who managed to gain power due to public disenchantment. An interesting political development, perhaps, but they're not necessarily representative of the nation as a whole. Hell, Palin's definitely in their camp, and I suspect she helped torpedo McCain's chances.

To bring this back to ambassadorships, yeah...if you're going to argue that random folks should fill it, then a lottery does indeed make more sense than political benefactors, because the former is actually random. I'm not convinced that randomness is a great virtue here, because ambassadors to a country are single people, and a randomly selected individual may not represent America as a whole well. This problem is reduced if you are talking about a large body, of course. A couple hundred should suffice to get a decent sampling.

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sardia
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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby sardia » Mon Dec 29, 2014 1:59 pm UTC

Why random lottery? Why not apply the merit system we use for our bureaucracy?

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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby morriswalters » Mon Dec 29, 2014 3:45 pm UTC

I can see Ambassador Joe the barkeep at a Diplomatic reception. Juggling bottles for the amusement of the host government.

Tyndmyr
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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Dec 29, 2014 7:59 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Why random lottery? Why not apply the merit system we use for our bureaucracy?


Because after extensive experience with the latter, I trust the former more.

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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby addams » Tue Dec 30, 2014 1:43 am UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
sardia wrote:Why random lottery? Why not apply the merit system we use for our bureaucracy?


Because after extensive experience with the latter, I trust the former more.

This is only a mental exercise.
Exercise is good for us.

Again; It can be a combo deal.
Successful completion of The Test should be Required for any person to be in The Lottery.

Additional Testing and Performance Reviews will take place for Working Congress and Senate Members.
The persons with good working performance from Congress and Senate will go into the Executive Lottery.

The Lottery will choose Congress every 2 years.
The Lottery will choose the Senate every 6 years.
The Lottery will choose the Executive from the ranks of Qualified Congress and Senate every 4 years.

When a serving member dies or chooses to Not serve their Time, The Lottery will run, again.

I think career politicians like John McCain would Hate the idea.
That makes the idea more Charming to me.

It would cure many of our current problems.
Like the Secrecy Thing!

It would be a Good Job for a cluster of people.
The Job would enrichen the lives of those fortunate enough to serve.

It would also be a very Hard Job; Like University.
People constantly demanding you do a lot of reading, answering question, showing up to meetings and briefings on time with your notes.
Someone would have the Right to demand to Know all sorts of odd things, all the fucking time. Then there is all the Peer Pressure to Perform.

It should be, Just Like a good University.
When done right it's a Hard Job.

I Know!
People will Cheat to get those Jobs.
Like they do Now; Only not as Bad.

How would you effect the Lottery?
oh, Who the Hell knows??

I've seen people take the Elevator Ride to the Top of the List.
One time I stood and watched in mute wonder.

That system was not very important.
Like in Politics, when my friend got on the elevator, so did I.

What a privilege That was!
I'm not being sarcastic.
It was Great!
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Lucrece
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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby Lucrece » Thu Jan 01, 2015 8:08 am UTC

An ambassador is no less an important PR figure than a President is. Both are there to look pretty and present the proper image with some administrative perks, but it does make a difference whether the one you have is good or not. The underlings can only do so much in the face of incompetence.

It's also important to not discount the impact of throwing good parties; many multimillion dollar deals are made in parties, and contacts are heavily made through proper catering and posturing. People are superficial. A technically competent diplomat is of little use if he's got no charm, especially in countries who function through the will of a few wealthy men who spend on personal whims and ego.
Belial wrote:That's charming, Nancy, but all I hear when you talk is a bunch of yippy dog sounds.

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Djehutynakht
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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby Djehutynakht » Sat Jan 03, 2015 3:14 am UTC

morriswalters wrote:I can see Ambassador Joe the barkeep at a Diplomatic reception. Juggling bottles for the amusement of the host government.


"Ambassador Joe The Barkeep, I now present you to His Royal Highness, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia...."

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addams
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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby addams » Sat Jan 03, 2015 3:47 am UTC

Djehutynakht wrote:
morriswalters wrote:I can see Ambassador Joe the barkeep at a Diplomatic reception. Juggling bottles for the amusement of the host government.


"Ambassador Joe The Barkeep, I now present you to His Royal Highness, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia...."

Or; The King of Jordan.

That's where class distinctions really start to show.
Have you seen that guy?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abdullah_II_of_Jordan

No! I have not seen him.
Not in person.

On the Screen,
I've seen him.
https://www.google.com/search?q=Abdulla ... B640%3B370
The man seems pleasant.

He is not all yucks and giggles.
He rules during difficult times.

The King of Jordan was attempting to get a message to The People of the US.
I wonder if the message ever got through. (2010-11 maybe.)

The things a person learns.
The King is a Star Trek fan.
http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Abdullah_bin_al-Hussein

That is not the message he was trying to get though.
What was it?

This is not it. It is The King on TV.
http://thedailyshow.cc.com/videos/cvyse ... rdan-pt--2

It occurs to me, we don't need ambassadors.
Not the way we did, once upon a time.

We needed someone to go to Jordan, then tell Washington DC what kind of a man this King of Jordan is.
The King of Jordan can tell us what kind of man he is, himself.

He seems steady.
What do you think?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Djehutynakht
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Re: Obama appoints Soap-Opera producer as Ambassador

Postby Djehutynakht » Sat Jan 03, 2015 5:56 am UTC

addams wrote:It occurs to me, we don't need ambassadors.
Not the way we did, once upon a time.

We needed someone to go to Jordan, then tell Washington DC what kind of a man this King of Jordan is.
The King of Jordan can tell us what kind of man he is, himself.



That's basically the kind of thinking that the Kingdom of Bhutan has. They don't do ambassadors.

Although I think that it is useful for a country, especially with global reaches, to set up offices in all of the other countries in order to work with that country's government on everyday business and get in contact with them when necessary.

A whole lot less awkward than the President of the US having to call up the Prime Minister of the UK and going "Damn! I don't have his number saved in my phone! I only have the last guy's. Anyone have the new PM's cell phone number? What's his Skype account?"


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