o.m.
  • Member for 5 years, 6 months
  • Last seen this week
Why is the US still heavily relying on cash bails?
Accepted answer
119 votes

Bails are a big industry which lobbies legislators to protect their business model. It is traditional, and there is widespread belief in American Exceptionalism -- a refusal to consider that the US ...

View answer
What are the reasons for the rise in Euroscepticism over the last few years?
Accepted answer
113 votes

Taking Benefits for Granted The last time I was to Belgium, we didn't actually stop in Belgium. We drove right through from the Netherlands to France. I'm old enough to remember having to stop at ...

View answer
Is there a strong legal guarantee that the U.S. can give to another country that it won't attack them?
Accepted answer
110 votes

No such guarantee would be meaningful if the US administration and congress change their opinion. Whatever they write in law or sign, they can undo -- if not legally then in practice. The US had ...

View answer
Why are green parties so often opposed to nuclear power?
Accepted answer
102 votes

Burning fossil fuels has a negative impact on the environment. This impact is relatively well understood and predictable. Nuclear power may have a negative impact on the environment, both when the ...

View answer
How do totalitarian governments communicate fear while also sending the message that they are the best governments?
90 votes

Enemies These governments designate or invent internal enemies, not just external ones, to justify repressive measures and to rally the rest of the population around the regime. An external enemy can ...

View answer
If Boris Johnson were prosecuted and convicted of lying about Brexit, can that be used to cancel Brexit?
Accepted answer
80 votes

No. The referendum was legally not binding, it just caused a political situation which made the article 50 notification seem a political necessity. The UK could have stayed or left regardless of the ...

View answer
Can a country be only de jure sovereign ? (Such as Andorra)
Accepted answer
75 votes

In a way you are doing word games. International law has developed as customary law. There is no nature-given or God-given definition of sovereignty, it is merely a verbal shortcut to describe a whole ...

View answer
Why do proponents of guns oppose gun competency tests?
73 votes

Whenever there is a test, there is someone who will administer the test. And there is a long history of abuse of such tests, e.g. literacy tests to restrict the franchise. How do you stop Jim Crow ...

View answer
Why are members of the migrant caravan making a big deal out of it?
70 votes

Refugees and illegal migrants moving through central America and Mexico are exploited and abused by criminal gangs. Some members of the caravan thought that going together would provide some degree of ...

View answer
What is the reasoning behind nighttime restrictions during pandemic?
65 votes

The spread of the pandemic can be reduced by reducing contacts between infected and uninfected people. Since many infected are unaware of their infection, the goal is to reduce contacts between people ...

View answer
Why is the UK blaming the EU and what does the UK want?
Accepted answer
64 votes

From the EU27 viewpoint, the Brexiteers promised a unicorn and now expect the EU27 to deliver this impossible creature. The EU27 always said that it can't be done without breaking something, and that ...

View answer
Why don't countries like Japan just print more money?
64 votes

This modern theory is far from commonly accepted. One comment is that printing itself out of debt may be possible for country that is a global reserve currency, but only as long as it is a global ...

View answer
Why would the US President need briefings on UFOs?
63 votes

An UFO is an Unidentified Flying Object. Usually the name is not applied when somebody sees a light prop plane overhead and cannot recognize the specific model or registration letters, but what the ...

View answer
Are there really no countries that protect Freedom of Speech as the United States does?
63 votes

Of course no other country protects freedom of speech "as the United States do." They have their own rules which are not quite the same. Some give equivalent protections, some do not. There is a ...

View answer
Why does the U.S military use mercenaries?
63 votes

The US public opinion is highly sensitive to casualties among US troops. They are much less concerned about casualties to contractors, especially if they are not US citizens. At times the US ...

View answer
Why does Boris Johnson seek to renegotiate the Brexit deal with the EU?
Accepted answer
62 votes

Brexit recreated/uncovered problems which the EU membership of Ireland and the UK had allowed to recede. If there are no hard borders, then people and goods can travel from the rest of the UK to ...

View answer
Why has 20 years of US occupation not removed the Taliban in Afghanistan?
Accepted answer
60 votes

The Taliban are not just a drug-running organization, not even predominantly a drug-running organization. The US-led coalition invaded Afghanistan because the Afghan government at the time sheltered ...

View answer
Why do most countries have so many members of parliament?
59 votes

Subcommittees The real work isn't done in plenary session. It isn't even done in the subcommittees. It is done preparing for the subcommittees. One of the key tasks of most parliaments is to decide on ...

View answer
Why are masks a political topic in the US?
58 votes

Why are masks political? Because the handling of the pandemic has become a political issue. The President took a clear position. In a bipartisan, hyperpartisan climate, loyalists of the President must ...

View answer
Why don't the UK and EU agree to fish only in their territorial waters?
Accepted answer
55 votes

A bunch of issues: Under EU rules, there could be foreign-owned ships registered under the UK flag. UK fishermen sold their quotas in the 1990s, which was legal back then. These rights should not ...

View answer
Shouldn’t conservatives embrace universal basic income?
Accepted answer
55 votes

Forget about names, except for PR purposes. A clear-headed analyst looks that the net flow of money, now and in future entitlements. Call it "UBI" or "tax credit", call it "...

View answer
Can the FBI or the CIA keep things secret from the President?
Accepted answer
54 votes

Different questions here. The President is never told everything. The various agencies produce thousands of pages of reports each day. Briefers make the decision what the President needs to be told, ...

View answer
How do politicians scrutinize bills that are thousands of pages long?
53 votes

Teamwork and Staff No single representative reads all those pages, but the various committee members look at the parts which are their area of expertise. And then a representative on the Armed ...

View answer
Does/can the West manipulate Russian politics?
Accepted answer
53 votes

Your question is problematic because of the stated and unstated assumptions in it. Russia certainly complains about foreign meddling in their affairs. Various Western governments and government-...

View answer
Why does the US need to spy on its allies?
50 votes

Remember that there are degrees of "spying." What just about everybody does is to have their ambassadors send back confidential evaluations of leaders and policies. What many countries do ...

View answer
How would one justify public funding for non-STEM (or unprofitable) college majors to a non college educated taxpayer?
Accepted answer
50 votes

After one generation, you would have lots of engineers and lawyers and few, if any, teachers. After two generations, you would have neither engineers nor teachers. Our culture is more than just ...

View answer
Why does Germany have such a rather small defense budget?
48 votes

Absolute and relative amounts Germany has come much closer to the 2% goal due to the COVID crisis -- the GDP went down, the defense budget stayed the same, so the percentage went up. Similarly, good ...

View answer
Why did some places with a large population become states within a country when other places with smaller populations became countries of their own?
47 votes

History. India did consist of many more-or-less sovereign countries before the British came. When decolonization came around and the colonizers left, it split into India and Pakistan, and then ...

View answer
"Government transplant" been tried? At what scale, and what were the results?
47 votes

The pattern you describe is called colonization. Think of it. A place that is viewed as being "without proper government." Europeans come in, bring their laws and administration, in the hope that the ...

View answer
Why don't some governments trust people when they tell them they live at a particular address?
Accepted answer
46 votes

Having the wrong address in a government database could allow many types of fraud, from taxes to welfare. Imagine you tell the Austrians that you live in Slovakia, and the Slovaks that you live in ...

View answer
1
2 3 4 5
20