GOP in jail

State Senator Tyson Larson - itching for 18 yr-olds to serve in Unicam
State Senator Tyson Larson – itching for 18 yr-olds to serve in Unicam

Is there a mob of 18 year olds with torches and pitchforks outside the Capitol in Lincoln who are demanding to serve in the Legislature?

Better question:

Is there greater than 1% of Nebraska 18 year-olds who can NAME their State Senator?

(OK, doing quick poll…and…)
No! There is not.

We are aware that we put age limits on everything all the time, right?

The “well, if we can send them to war…” argument doesn’t even work here because, guess what? The Unicameral won’t be sending them off to Syria. The Congress — which has age restrictions — and the President — which has an age restriction — will.

Look, 18 year olds don’t vote. They have no real life experiences on which to base anything, and therefore, don’t have lots to contribute. And this is speaking as a former 18 year old. And I’m fairly sure I thought I knew everything at that age.

So first, Legislature, decide that you think 18 year olds are old enough to have a beer. THEN you can consider whether they should decide on raising your taxes.

(And once again, THIS is the kind of stuff that drives the average voter crazy. WHY are we talking about this???)


Fort n’ Nino

Congressman Jeff Fortenberry was on CNN the other day talking about his friendship with his hunting buddy, Justice Antonin Scalia. (Fort did not refer to him as “Nino”, so no word on just how close they were.)

He talks about Justice Scalia’s humor and thoughtfulness, as well as this thoughts on the politics that surfaced immediately upon notice of his death. And about hunting in the shadow of Chimney Rock.

See CNN’s short Fort report, here:


Tonight there’s gonna be a jailbreak

Are you familiar with the “Prisoner’s Dilemma”?

Essentially, it is

A paradox in decision analysis in which two individuals acting in their own best interest pursue a course of action that does not result in the ideal outcome. The typical prisoner’s dilemma is set up in such a way that both parties choose to protect themselves at the expense of the other participant. As a result of following a purely logical thought process to help oneself, both participants find themselves in a worse state than if they had cooperated with each other in the decision-making process.

Here’s the scenario…

Two accomplices are locked in separate cells. Each is offered three choices by the police: (1) if both confess to the charges, both will be jailed for five years, (2) if only one confesses, he will be freed but the non-confessor will be jailed for ten years, or (3) if neither confesses, both will be tried for a minor offense and will be jailed for one year. If both know that the other will not be selfish and will take the collective interest into consideration, neither will confess and serve one year in jail.

(Lots more can be found at the Wikipedia entry.)

Why bring this up?
Keep it in mind as the GOP Primary continues, and consider Donald Trump as the jailor and the rest of the field as the prisoners.

Trump is getting anywhere from 30-40% of the vote. But many polls show that (right now, anyway) 60% are against him.

The best scenario for the non-Trump field would be to have all of them quit, except for one, who would then in theory go on to beat Trump.

But…EACH of them feels that THEY are that one candidate who will go on to beat Trump…if only the rest would drop out.

In the mean time, Trump continues to roll along.

Now the difference in this game is that the candidates CAN communicate. And in theory, they could go all Survivor and form an alliance to defeat Trump. And one of them gets Veep, and one Treasury, etc. etc.

But no one, right now anyway, sees that happening, because they ALL want the number one spot. None are willing to drop. Heck, there’s a USAToday poll today that says Kasich would have the best shot against Hillary. But does anyone think he’s going to dominate on Super Tuesday?

This is a situation that Donald Trump must have considered long ago, when he dove into the race. It most likely factors into who he attacks (Bush and Cruz, but not Rubio, Kasich or Carson).

Can anyone overcome it?
I haven’t seen a good breakdown of the Primary votes and how Trump getting around 30% per state (with proportional and winner-take-all situations) would do it for him. (If you have it, email it to me, or reference it in a comment.)

But one would think that until it’s a mano a mano in the GOP, Trump must be favored to take it all.

To be continued.



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  1. Henry Robert says:

    How many adults can name their state senator? How many have real life “experience” that qualifies them to be competent to hold office? I would have the same answers as you sweeper.

    On the other hand, how much of a difference does 3 years make?

    I say pass is it and let the people vote on the change. The people who get out and give a damn about having their voice heard in government.

  2. Sparkles says:

    Politico just penned the first, in what is certain to be a coming flood, of obituaries for the GOP.
    It’s title:
    Trump is Trampling Over the GOP’s Corpse

      • Sparkles says:

        Says the man who just asked we read a column about why blatant obstruction by Republicans is a good thing, penned by the former editor-in-chief of Human Events and columnist for Glenn Beck’s The Blaze.

        You know, Reagan’s staff used to hide his copy of Human Events from him, because it’s filled with whackjob nonsense. Nonsense that the Demented One would occasionally regurgitate in public, scaring the bejesus out of everyone within earshot.

        I’m assuming I don’t have detail the shortcomings of a Glenn Beck product.

      • Harsanyi’s a libertarian. I can understand why you’d hate him, since your whole agenda seems to be anti-freedom.

        If you can cite some “whack job nonsense” Harsanyi’s responsible for, I’m all ears.

        Meanwhile, anyone who proclaims the Imminent Death of the GOP based on the results of two primaries is almost as moonbatty as your good self.

      • repenting lawyer says:

        ProfGH, NR was said to be Bob Bork’s favorite publication, and Rosen’s obit for him in that publication was very favorable and quite bitter about “Borking.”

    • Henry Robert says:

      I would my money on Kintner. Never underestimate him with a baseball bat. THen again 18 year old Ronnie might have moves.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Good point Sweeper. What’s even more curious, without naming names here, is a 20 something who has zero career experience and lives with his parents, running for legislature. I’m not sure how anyone could, in good faith, claim to be qualified to vote on decisions they know absolutely nothing about.

  4. repenting lawyer says:

    Sweeper, I was a political junky at 18, though I could not then vote. I think folks with other interests were probably healthier, and from what I know of the Unicameral at the time, 1959, a number of teenagers might have been an improvement.

  5. YR says:

    I knew more about political candidates stances my freshman year of high school than most adults. It was frustrating that I couldn’t vote, but they could simply because of our age difference, yet they didn’t even know what they were voting for!

    If an 28 year old can enlist to serve in the military, they’re old enough to serve in the unicam. And if we want to talk about drinking age, hell I would support letting them have a legal beer!

    And hey, legislative pay is about the same as the summer ranch hand gig.

  6. anon 10;32 says:

    I can see drinking at 21, under that is massacre on the roads. The arguments against younger office holders are on the arbitrary side considering what I see of present officeholders. I would think Krist and Ernie would want them all to be lawyers from comments they have made. !8 years is old enough to be a senator, doesn’t look like brain surgery from what I have seen. Exempting and raising taxes is just a yes or

  7. Macdaddy says:

    State Senator Ernie Chambers. How much damage could an 18 year old legislator do that the voters haven’t already done to themselves?

  8. No more Academic worms says:

    I think there should be no more Academic types in the legislature. We do not need another Shumacher who is like Gérard Depardieu on Flakka.

    Could you imagine if bird nerd got in office? We would have to consider science and facts (boring). Having 18 year olds would be much more fun.

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