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Why is Warren lying or not lying about being fired for being pregnant such a big deal?

contrast with this

Why is Trump's omission of an explicit mention of Jews from the holocaust memorial a big deal?

or this

Why is Trump releasing or not of his taxes such a big deal?

Anything that can be done about the obvious and routine political bias on this site?

  • 3
    Please elaborate on how the questions are "same". The second one is about the US president, and does a good job at providing context. The first one is about someone I haven't heard till today, and does very little to provide context. – yannis Oct 8 at 15:25
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    Also the second one reeks of HNQ voting. A major flaw of HNQ is that the majority of people it attracts can only upvote (downvoting requires 125 rep points). – yannis Oct 8 at 15:27
  • @yannis What's HNQ voting? – K Dog Oct 8 at 15:28
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    Sorry, Hot Network Questions. The list of questions from around the network in the sidebar. People reaching our shores from that list usually have 101 rep points (1 starting rep + 100 rep from the association bonus). – yannis Oct 8 at 15:28
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    The third question is about a presidential candidate promising to do something that has been routinely done by presidential candidates and then not doing it. That doesn't seem "the same" as changing the way leaving a job is described. Culturally in the US it seems common (at least to me as an international audience) to jump before being pushed in leaving a job. – Jontia Oct 8 at 15:41
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    @yannis Elizabeth Warren is a prominent US Senator and front-runner to be nominated as the presidential candidate to a major American party. If you're very ignorant about American politics, please be very careful about moderating posts on American politics. – lazarusL Oct 8 at 17:47
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    @laz My point was that a question about Trump would also attract people not necessarily interested in US politics. Which could be one factor - of many - for the difference in voting between the two questions. – yannis Oct 8 at 18:05
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    @yannis Elizabeth Warren is the 2nd place in the Democratic primary race and is on track to pass Joe Biden soon. So yes, she's a notable person. – Sam I am Oct 8 at 18:36
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    @SamIam Notable to those following US politics, sure. To the rest of us, I doubt it. – yannis Oct 8 at 18:39
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    @yannis: Warren has been in EU news every now and then for a decade now. She's notable for anyone who has been following the clusterfuck of a crisis that was 2008 -- or her earlier work on bankruptcy for those who had an interest in that. – Denis de Bernardy Oct 8 at 20:01
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    Not the point @DenisdeBernardy. Still an order of magnitude less recognizable than Trump. Of course she's notable, but not the "same" as this discussion claims. People will flock around almost any Trump question on the site. That's only natural and it might play a partial role in the discrepancies in voting patterns K Dog highlights. – yannis Oct 8 at 20:08
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    This discussion is trying to compare apples to oranges is what I'm saying... The only similarities are superficial. – yannis Oct 8 at 20:10
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    @yannis: By the "Warren is an order of magnitude less recognizable than Trump" yardstick, there's maybe a dozen or two people in the world who are noteworthy and recognizable. And noteworthy senior EU officials like Barnier or Weyand would certainly not make it into that list. – Denis de Bernardy Oct 8 at 20:20
  • @DenisdeBernardy Sure. Trump's the outlier, no argument there. But the discussion is specifically comparing questions about Trump to a question not about Trump. Apples and oranges... – yannis Oct 8 at 20:36
  • @SamIam According to the prediction markets she has a 2.2x greater chance of winning than Biden. 48% to 21% She's also leading in the polling averages. Joe Biden may be surviving in the polls so far on name recognition but that doesn't make him the frontrunner anymore. – Benjamin Oct 8 at 23:26
7

There's not much of a case for political bias here. Consider this question about Elizabeth Warren and the first Trump question (I voted to close the second). Now let's compare to your question

Why is it such a big deal that Candidate/Senator Warren may have lied about being fired for being pregnant?

The other questions contain quotes and expand on the question. They provide context and go out of their way to examine the issue. You offer a single link without... anything. It doesn't look like a good faith effort and was closed as such.

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    No, one of the other questions doesn't provide any real context, the one on Trump's taxes. In fact, I just cut and pasted the text and changed the name and the object. – K Dog Oct 8 at 18:46
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    True, I had too many tabs open and confused it with another one. I tend to agree with yannis that the second one looks like it's popular because it's HNQ. I voted to close it since it is rather open ended – Machavity Oct 8 at 18:49
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    @Machavity: Note the edit history of the question, too. The initial one didn't include the link to any source to explain what it was about. – Denis de Bernardy Oct 8 at 19:54
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    @KDog Is your intent then really to ask the question in good faith because you want to know the answer, or because you're trying to test the reaction of users on this site? Most questions come from observing something in the world and formulating a question about it, not copy/pasting an existing question to apply it to someone else. – Zach Lipton Oct 8 at 21:57
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    @ZachLipton it sounds like his intent was to ask a question in format which the site's users found acceptable when that format was used in another similar question. – grovkin Oct 10 at 2:50
5

To my reading the main difference is that the specific issue behind the Elizabeth Warren question is trivial whereas the two Trump question relate to important global and national political issues.

The Warren question has a perfectly reasonable answer, which highlights why it is a poor question.

It is a "big deal" because many people consider it undesirable to have leaders who lie. Lying is generally considered to be morally wrong, and makes government accountability difficult to achieve. Lying frequently about relatively trivial things is considered by many to be an indicator that someone will lie about more significant things later.

This answer is utterly generic and could be pasted into any question about any politician lying about any issue.

The Warren question is about an incident that happened decades ago. One which is routinely 'hidden', in that few workers wish to tell prospective employers they were fired from their previous job. And few employers would care to advertise they routinely sack people for being pregnant no matter how common the practice was at the time.

The first Trump question is about a speech on Holocaust memorial day and why it didn't directly mention the Jewish people. It is not about lying, it was current and well documented and I am struggling to find any point of commonality between the two questions.

The second Trump question is about lying, at least tangentially. If by lying you mean not following up on a promise made on the campaign trail. It is about a recent and indeed ongoing issue where Trump has not followed the US political convention of releasing his tax returns. And then by extension touches on his retention of business interests another convention he has ignored. The answers are all specific to this behaviour and discuss the serious dangers of conflicts of interest inherent in being able to influence your own financial position while President and not releasing the information that would allow the public to see if you had done so.

The generic 'lying is bad' answer would have no place on either question. That lying is bad is obvious and the answers on the Trump questions provide insight into the national and international repercussion of the specific behaviour highlighted.

There is no national or international flavour that can be added to the Warren question. Anyone reading the Warren story will decide on their own which version of events they believe and there is no alternative analysis or deeper meaning to present about these events, which makes it a poor question.

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    The reason you haven't heard of the Warren story yet might be because it "broke" less than 24 hours ago. – Sam I am Oct 8 at 19:20
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    @SamIam: It was more like 30h ago, actually. But you'd never have heard about it except in Conservative and some Bernie circles until earlier today. – Denis de Bernardy Oct 8 at 19:57
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    @SamIam I don't believe I said anything about hearing or not hearing about the story. Its level of circulation doesn't have any bearing on how good/interesting the question is. – Jontia Oct 8 at 20:28
  • Does anyone want to explain their down votes? If there's something wrong with my analysis of the three questions, or why that leads to downvotes/closure I'm always happy to improve my understanding. – Jontia Oct 9 at 7:44
4

I cannot speak for the 3 users who voted to delete your question, but it I came across that question in the flag queue, I might have deleted it too. If not that, I would have certainly closed it.

Simply put. Your question looks like a push question.

And yes, we use our human judgment to determine whether or not a question is a push question. There's really not a good way to make that determination without using judgement.

When I look at the Second and Third question, I get the vibe that they're asking because they really want to know why each of the issues is a big deal

With your question, What I see is "Hey look at this thing Elizabeth Warren did!"

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    I would kindly ask that you point to something objective. This Potter Stewart explanation just compounds the perception, and here the reality, that the site has double standards. – K Dog Oct 8 at 18:40
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    @KDog What would you say the double-standard is? – Sam I am Oct 8 at 19:10
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    I'd also like to note that, given OP's previous accusations of liberal bias (and this comment), I can't shake the feeling that he asked the question knowing it would get closed and give him an excuse to post this meta question. Which would mean it wasn't asked in good faith and should have been closed regardless of anything else. I can't prove that, of course, but OP can try and prove he was asking in good faith. – F1Krazy Oct 8 at 19:38
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    Eh, let's not get into conspiracy theory territory @F1Krazy. – yannis Oct 8 at 20:16
4

You didn't even try. Your question is a transparent effort to sling mud at a candidate. The other questions are slightly more subtle efforts to sling mud at a candidate. You can bring attention to whatever facts or interpretations you want to on stack exchange, but the more controversial they are, the more subtle and objective you have to be. You made no effort to appear impartial at a time when you should have made extra effort to appear impartial.

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    You are not answering this meta question. He claims that he cut and pasted a question about Trump and substituted Warren's name and a fact patterns which is applicable to Warren. If it's a similar question, I would agree that it should have received a similar reaction. – grovkin Oct 10 at 2:54
  • @grovkin I claimed it's not that similar. I voted to close question he copied from, but I think they are a little different. Lying is unambiguously a bad thing, releasing your tax returns is a morally neutral thing. I don't release my tax returns and no one cares I lie and people care. They're significantly different. Both are attempts to embarrass a candidate, but I can give the tax one significantly more benefit of the doubt. – lazarusL Oct 10 at 13:32
  • @grovkin while I think the tax returns question could have been presented better, the release of tax returns is common in US political contests and extra context while helpful isn't necessary to understand or even answer the question. Though that context can improve both Q and A. That is not the case for a candidate's 1971 job history. – Jontia Oct 10 at 22:00
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    @Jontia the question wasn't about her job history. It was about her blatant lie. She made 2 direct self-contradicting statements on tape during two different campaign seasons. Because there is tape of those two statements and she was using this job-history story to make a political point, it goes the question of whether she can be believed on anything she says. Which makes it similar to the question of whether Trump, who broke the promise to release his tax returns during the campaign, can be believed when he makes political statements. – grovkin Oct 10 at 22:05
  • @grovkin and that specific issue needs more detail and a better formatted question than one about a common political convention. Because it is a point specific to one person's personal history and their statements about it. Whether both issues lead to similar discussions on integrity has no bearing on the framing needed to present them. – Jontia Oct 10 at 22:19
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    @Jontia in case of Warren the issues is exclusively her trustworthiness because, as you said, he 1970's job history is irrelevant. So it's not part of the framing. It's the question itself. But the questions are not so far apart as to receive such widely different response. – grovkin Oct 10 at 22:28
  • @grovkin but how can you answer a question about her trustworthiness without details of the issue? Which were not present in the question? – Jontia Oct 11 at 5:17
  • Let's take a couple of more recent examples by way of demonstrating employment ending issues. Steve Bannon and James Comey. Resigned or fired? – Jontia Oct 11 at 6:06
  • Sorry, Comey one is clear cut. I was thinking of John Bolton. – Jontia Oct 11 at 6:28

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