Gongol.com > Archive > 2005 > April 2005
"The State governments may be regarded as constituent and essential parts of the federal government; whilst the latter is nowise essential to the operation or organization of the former." - James Madison (Federalist Paper No. 45)
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Gongol.com Archives: April 2005
Brian Gongol

Aviation News (4.25.2005)
Britain Starts Investigation of Postal-Vote Fraud
Cat's out of the bag, though, with 15% of the population holding mail ballots for the upcoming general election

News (4.25.2005)
New Pope Praises "Progress in Dialogue Between Muslims and Christians"

Socialism Doesn't Work (4.25.2005)
Putin: Breakup of USSR was "Greatest Geopolitical Catastrophe" of 20th Century
But also says he thinks Russia today needs more freedom and more democracy

The American Way (4.25.2005)
Slovakia Thinks of Itself as More Western than Western Europe
Especially in the markets

Aviation News (4.25.2005)
Airbus Plans First Test Flight of Mega-Jumbo A380 for Wednesday

Business and Finance (4.25.2005)
Bangladesh's Central Bank Trying to Figure Out How to Regulate Islamic Banking
A challenge shared with US regulators

Business and Finance (4.25.2005)
China Offering Loans to Philippines for Infrastructure Development
Students of international capital flows ought to be interested: American dollars flow to China in return for consumer goods; those dollars turn around and get invested in a former US colony by China's Communist government

Weather and Disasters (4.25.2005)
Newspaper Reports Derailed Japanese Train Had to Have Been Going 70 MPH to Jump Tracks
At least 50 people killed. Train was speeding to make up for lost time due to previous delay.

News (4.25.2005)
Egypt Tells Israel No Help With Middle East Peace Until a Palestinian State Shows Up

News (4.25.2005)
Peculiar Treatment of Opposition Leader by Iran's State-Run Propaganda/News Agency

Socialism Doesn't Work (4.25.2005)
North Korea Celebrates Army Anniversary With Threat to "Reunify" Korean Peninsula

News (4.25.2005)
World Press Response to Japan/China Spat

The United States of America (4.25.2005)
Supermajority Rules: Usually a Bad Choice
The problem with supermajority votes (like what's tying up the Senate over judicial nominations) is that they give disproportionate weight to the will -- not the rights, but the will -- of the minority. When a majority vote is required, votes have parity -- every "aye" is equal in weight to every "nay." But when a supermajority is required, every "nay" is worth up to 1.5 "ayes." If 100 votes are to be cast (as in the Senate), the "nays" can impose their will on the majority with anything over 40 votes, against anything under 60 in favor. Thus, at the margin, every "nay" is worth 60/40ths of an "aye," or 1.5 "ayes." That's not "one man, one vote." Unfortunately, the whole judicial nomination thing is going off the deep end into politics; Senator Frist should remember the No Religious Test clause of the Constitution (Article VI).
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Gongol.com -- posted 4.2005