l33tminion: (AMERICA!)
Sam ([personal profile] l33tminion) wrote2016-11-05 12:28 am
Entry tags:

2016 Ballot Thoughts

Election day is only days away.

President: I thought Hillary Clinton was a good candidate for President in 2008 (though I slightly favored Obama), and I think she's an even better candidate in 2016. She's certainly the best candidate on the ballot, and that holds even if I don't restrict it to candidates with a chance of winning. And I really hope she wins this one. I've heard some people suggest that Trump as President would be different from Trump as candidate, but people also said he'd be different in the general election and, well, not so much. I really don't want Erica's first experience of American politics to involve news about the conditions in the camps for mass deportations, or the new Guantanamos. I don't want to have to explain to Erica why the sorts of things that Trump said in the course of this campaign are not normal things for the President to be saying. To say nothing of the things that might go wrong with the US military in the hands of someone who may well think things like "not using nuclear weapons" are just so much political correctness.

Representative (MA-7): Michael Capuano is running unopposed, and I'm a big fan. Notably, he does a really good job of communicating with his constituents, with a weekly newsletter that (among other things) details each of his major votes, including his position and reasoning.

MA Senate (Second Middlesex): Patricia Jehlen, running unopposed.

MA Representative (27th Middlesex): Probably voting for Denise Provost, the incumbent. Though I do like Aaron James' focus on electoral reform.

Middlesex County Sheriff: Peter Koutoujian, running unopposed.

MA Question 1: Would allow a slots parlor to be built in a very specific location. The ballot measure has been promoted by a developer who owns that specific location. Voting no, out of a weak opposition to more gambling and a strong opposition to ballot measures intended to enrich any one particular person.

MA Question 2: Would expand caps on charter schools and move some control from local governments to the state. I'm opposed, I agree with the reasoning of Boston's mayor as to why this is a bad move even for those that, like Walsh, favor charter school expansion.

MA Question 3: Would prohibit confining some animals in cages that prevent the animal from lying down, standing up, fully extending its limbs, or turning around freely in Massachusetts, and would prohibit meat and eggs from animals kept in such conditions from being sold in the state. I'm most conflicted about this one, but I think I'm ultimately opposed. It's definitely a measure where the downsides are highest for the least fortunate. And it's not exactly clear how the state could enforce restrictions on how animals are raised outside of the state.

MA Question 4: Would legalize and tax marijuana. I'm in favor, mainly because the current state of drug policy is so far from reasonable from a harm-minimization standpoint that anything in the direction of repeal seems favorable. Yes, there are a lot of details in this ballot measure. But Massachusetts doesn't afford any particular status to ballot measures relative to other legislation, so the legislature can still amend it if necessary.

Somerville Question 5: Would allow the city to raise property taxes to pay for the construction of a new high school. Overall, rebuilding instead of renovating does seem like a good idea given the age of the building involved and the cost projections for each option. If this measure failed, the city would probably rebuild the high school anyways (the school losing its accreditation would be a disaster, and evidently that's a risk if the building is not renovated or replaced), but that would come at the expense of other priorities. I'm in favor of this one because I think it's likely better for the city overall.

[identity profile] xiphias.livejournal.com 2016-11-05 09:05 pm (UTC)(link)
I'm voting mostly the same way as you. The one I feel deeply strongly about is, of course, the Presidential race, in which we have three inexperienced people who stand for policies that would be bad for our country, and one hugely competent person who stands for things which would be, generally speaking and with some exceptions, but in general, good for the country. It's not really a hard choice.

Question 1, I'm disgusted it even got on the ballot. Yeah. A guy is trying to make all of us make him richer at the expense of a town.

Question 2, I'm, on the whole, against, but I understand why other people wouldn't. Massachusetts has protections in place that keep charter schools from being the unmitigated disasters they are in the rest of the country, so I'm not as virulently against them as I would be in any other state, but I'm still against this bill.

Question 3, I'm for, but understand your reasoning, too.

And Question 4, there has never been a reason for pot to be illegal in the first place.

[identity profile] mindstalk.livejournal.com 2016-11-06 11:42 pm (UTC)(link)
1: my libertarian side might approve expanding gambling in general, but I decided this one stank.

2: voted yes, vague ideas of choice and expansion and MA trying to do charters right. Conflicted.

3: voted no, worrying about food costs hitting the poor. Conflicted.

4: yes, no conflict.