The Winner Takes It All - Dana Winner
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Ulvaeus denies the song is about his and Fältskog's divorce, saying the basis of the song \"is the experience of a divorce, but it's fiction. There wasn't a winner or a loser in our case. A lot of people think it's straight out of reality, but it's not\". American critic Chuck Klosterman, who says \"The Winner Takes It All\" is \"[the only] pop song that examines the self-aware guilt one feels when talking to a person who has humanely obliterated your heart\" finds Ulvaeus' denial hard to believe in light of the original title.
Fältskog has also repeatedly stated that though \"The Winner Takes It All\" is her favorite ABBA song and that it has an excellent set of lyrics, the story is not that of her and Ulvaeus: there were no winners in their divorce, especially as children were involved. Ulvaeus also wrote the lyrics for Fältskog's 1979 live number 'I'm Still Alive'.
Figure 7. Simulated evolution of the plastic network. 1000 input patterns were applied for 2 s each. Two local subsystems, consisting of two excitatory units and one inhibitory unit each, are coupled via all-to-all excitatory connections, while inhibitory feedback is provided only locally. The first three rows show the populations of the first group, where the first two rows correspond to the two excitatory populations, and the third row shows the activation of the inhibitory population. The last three rows show the activations of the second group. The left panel shows the first 20 s after initialization (before learning), while the right panel shows the network activity during the last 20 s (after learning). Solid blue and orange lines correspond to the firing rate of the respective population, whereby the highlighted segments (orange) mark the winner among the four excitatory populations. The input given to the individual units is plotted as a dotted black or solid magenta line, where the highlighted segments (magenta) correspond to the strongest signal among the four. Thus, the network operates correctly if magenta and orange lines are aligned (the one population that receives the strongest input wins the competition), while misaligned lines (the population receiving the strongest input does not win the competition) indicate incorrect operation. Initially, the network frequently selects the wrong winning unit and even starts oscillating for some input patterns (around 18 s). After training (right), the network converges to a stable state with only the winning unit active for different input patterns.
Citation: Binas J, Rutishauser U, Indiveri G and Pfeiffer M (2014) Learning and stabilization of winner-take-all dynamics through interacting excitatory and inhibitory plasticity. Front. Comput. Neurosci. 8:68. doi: 10.3389/fncom.2014.00068
Although the electoral college system has delivered uncontested results in 46 out of 50 presidential elections since it assumed its present constitutional form in 1804, it has been the subject of persistent criticism and frequent proposals for reform. Reform advocates cite several problems with the current system, including a close or multi-candidate election can result in no electoral college majority, leading to a contingent election in Congress; the current system can result in the election of a President and Vice President who received a majority of electoral votes, but fewer popular votes, than their opponents; the formula for assignment of electoral votes is claimed to provide an unfair advantage for less populous states and does not account for population changes between censuses; and the winner-take-all system used by most states does not recognize the proportional strength of the losing major party, minor party, and independent candidates. On the other hand, defenders assert that the electoral college system is an integral and vital component of federalism, that it has a 92% record of non-controversial results, and that it promotes an ideologically and geographically broad two-party system. They maintain that repair of the electoral college system, rather than abolition, would eliminate any perceived defects while retaining its overall strengths.
Proponents of presidential election reform generally advocate either completely eliminating the electoral college system, replacing it with direct popular election, or repairing perceived defects in the existing system. The direct election alternative would replace the electoral college with a single, nationwide count of popular votes. That is, the candidates winning a plurality of votes would be elected; most proposals provide for a runoff election if no candidates received a minimum of 40% of the popular vote. Electoral college reform proposals include (1) the district plan, awarding each state's two at-large electoral votes to the statewide popular vote winners, and one electoral vote to the winning candidates in each congressional district; (2) the proportional plan, awarding electoral votes in states in direct proportion to the popular vote gained in the state by each candidate; and (3) the automatic plan, awarding all of each state's electoral votes directly on a winner-take-all basis to the statewide vote winners. Major reforms of the system can be effected only by constitutional amendment, a process that requires two-thirds approval by both houses of Congress, followed by ratification by three-fourths (38) of the states, usually within a period of seven years. This report will be updated as events warrant. For further information, please consult CRS Report RL32611, The Electoral College: How It Works in Contemporary Presidential Elections, by [author name scrubbed], and CRS Report RL32612, The Electoral College: Reform Proposals in the 108th Congress, by [author name scrubbed].
While it is generally recognized that small states possess an arithmetical advantage in the electoral college, some observers hold that, conversely, the most populous (large) states enjoy a \"voting power\" advantage, because they control the largest blocs of electoral votes. For example, voters in more populous states are better able to influence a larger bloc of electoral votes than those in less populous ones, because of the winner-take-all method of allocating electoral votes. Thus, to use the previously cited examples, a voter in Wyoming in 2000 could influence only three electoral votes, whereas a voter in California could influence 54 electoral votes in the same presidential election. According to this argument, known as the \"voting power\" theory, the electoral college system actually provides an advantage to the six most populous states (California, 55 electoral votes; Texas, 34 electoral votes; New York, 31 electoral votes; Florida, 27 electoral votes; and Pennsylvania and Illinois, 21 electoral votes each) and disadvantages all other states and the District of Columbia.31
Presently, 48 states and the District of Columbia (Maine and Nebraska are the exceptions, having adopted the district system) have adopted the winner-take-all method of allocating electors. Under this method, the slate of electors, representing the presidential and vice presidential ticket that wins a plurality of votes in a state is elected on election day in November, and later meets in mid-December as the electoral college to cast all of the state's electoral ballots for the winning presidential and vice presidential candidates.35
The district plan preserves the electoral college method of electing the President and Vice President, with each state choosing a number of electors equal to the combined total of its Senate and House of Representatives delegations. It would, however, eliminate the present general ticket or winner-take-all procedure of allotting a state's entire electoral vote to the presidential and vice presidential candidates winning the statewide vote. Instead, one elector would be chosen by the voters for each congressional district, while an additional two, representing the two \"senatorial\" electors allocated to each state regardless of population, would be chosen by the voters at large. This plan, which could be adopted by any state, under its power to appoint electors in Article II, Section 1, clause 2 of the Constitution, is currently used by Maine83 and Nebraska, as noted earlier in this report.84 Under the district plan, the presidential and vice presidential candidates winning a simple majority of the electoral votes would be elected.
An example of how the district system would operate in one state of average population, Missouri, with 11 electoral votes, as compared with the winner-take-all or general ticket system, follows.86 In 2000, under the existing general ticket system, Republican candidates Bush and Cheney won a majority of popular votes in Missouri, and were awarded all 11 of its electoral votes, while Democratic candidates Gore and Lieberman received none. Under the district system, Bush and Cheney would have received a total of eight electoral votes in Missouri in the 2000 election: one for each of the six congressional districts where they received a plurality of popular votes, and two for having won the statewide popular vote. Gore and Lieberman would have won three electoral votes, one for the three congressional districts where they received a popular vote majority.87
Proponents of the district plan assert that it would more accurately reflect the popular vote results for presidential and vice presidential candidates than the present electoral college method. Moreover, proponents note, by preserving the electoral college, the district plan would not deprive small or sparsely populated states of certain advantages under the present system. That is, each state would still be allocated at least three electoral votes, correlating to its two Senators and its one Representative, regardless of the size of the state's population. The also maintain that in states dominated by one political party, the district plan might also provide an incentive for greater voter participation and an invigoration of the two-party system in presidential elections because it might be possible for the less dominant political party's candidates to carry certain congressional districts.88 Finally, proponents argue that the district plan reflects political diversity within different regions of states, while still providing a two-vote bonus for statewide vote winners. 59ce067264