Democrats & Liberals Archives

More Republican/Democratic Contrasts

Some say there is not much difference between Republicans and Democrats. In my previous post I demonstrated a big difference: Republicans are for self-interest while Democrats are for the common-interest. Yesterday’s news favored me with 2 incidents that further distinguish Republicans from Democrats.

The first incident occurred during President Bush's news conference with President Hu Jintao of China. Shortly after Bush talked about human rights, a lady named Wenyi Wang, who supports the spiritual group Falun Gong that is banned in China, shouted

"Stop the killing and the torture!."

She was immediately dragged away, and according to the Daily News:

"Secret Service spokesman Jim Mackin said she [Wang] had been charged with disorderly conduct and that a charge of intimidating or disrupting foreign officials also was being considered."

So our great Republican leader is considering making Wang a criminal because she was fighting for human rights - a principle supposedly advocated by him. Evidently, advocacy is part of the propaganda pitch and it may be left in the background when more practical business is to be accomplished.

Contrast this incident with what the Democrats did. The DNC convened a meeting in New Orleans. They chose New Orleans to highlight what needs to be done to make the city whole. Furthermore, many Democratic officials attending the meeting also picked up tools and helped clean up hurricane-ravaged homes. John Edwards had already been there for some time working to revive the city.

Republicans could not stand this. Here is what Tracey Schmitt, a Republican National Committee spokeswoman, said:

"While President Bush maintains an unwavering commitment to rebuilding the Gulf Coast, Democrats remain just as committed to political posturing for short-term gain."

While Republicans dish out propaganda, Democrats are highlighting a soar spot and trying to do whatever they can to improve the situation. Sure, they think what they are doing is politically beneficial. But unlike Republicans, Democrats are concerned with the "little people" who have no power.

Bush kowtowed to Hu because Hu has power and Wang is among the "little people." Democrats got to work for the "litle people" in New Orleans and authoritarian Republicans scoffed at them. What type of political leader do YOU prefer?

Posted by Paul Siegel at April 21, 2006 5:02 PM
Comments
Comment #142198

you are crazy. you mean to tell me when clinton was in office, secret service wouldnt drag away a protestor during an official state visit?

ANd guess what. China is a player in the world. like it or not. we HAVE to deal with them. just because we meet with them, doesnt mean that we condone everything the chinese do. In fact we disagree with alot of what red china does. That, my firend was the purpose of the state visit. to talk about key differences (trade deficits, unfair economic policies in china…etc).

It is amazing how clean the air smells when you pull your head out of your ass.

Posted by: b0mbay at April 21, 2006 6:03 PM
Comment #142200

oh - and at least bush didnt sell top secret satellite technology to a less than friendly government.

Chew on that one.

Posted by: b0mbay at April 21, 2006 6:07 PM
Comment #142201

“It is amazing how clean the air smells when you pull your head out of your ass.”

I’m glad you’ve made the realization… please, tell you friends.

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 6:09 PM
Comment #142202

should’ve been “tell your friends.”

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 6:10 PM
Comment #142203

“oh - and at least bush didnt sell top secret satellite technology to a less than friendly government.”

And Bush’s trade of nuclear technology to the Middle East is exactly… what?

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 6:14 PM
Comment #142204

““oh - and at least bush didnt sell top secret satellite technology to a less than friendly government.”

And Bush’s trade of nuclear technology to the Middle East is exactly… what?”


Sounds like we need a 3rd party - or at least a moderator.

Posted by: dawn at April 21, 2006 6:18 PM
Comment #142207

Sounds like we need two brand new parties…

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 6:26 PM
Comment #142209

hey tony. i know you are but what am I???

wow havent heard that debate tatic since i was in first grade.

amazing…

Ill tell you what. Paul’s blog has me fired up. The fumes from the self serving spin are making my eyes water…


“So our great Republican leader is considering making Wang a criminal because she was fighting for human rights…”

- you mean to tell me bush is at the police station right now, talking to officer Kelly, and pressing charges?
- or that bush had any actual direct involvment in this person’s arrest?
- or the fact that this same thing happens in every administration?
- or the fact that other countries would do the same thing to their protestors during official state visits.
- or the fact that the woman apologized and was released
- or does Bush really want to broker a deal with the chines to get a cut of the organ harvesting profits???


Paul - drop the shovel. nobody is buying it.

Posted by: b0mbay at April 21, 2006 6:31 PM
Comment #142210

“It is amazing how clean the air smells when you pull your head out of your ass.”

When you end a post with this statement - you expect what kind of response?

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 6:38 PM
Comment #142211

”- or the fact that the woman apologized and was released”

You forgot to mention that she was charged with a crime… hmmm, could that be considered making Hu a criminal. Naw. Surely not - especially since she was protesting the persecution of Christians in China.

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 6:41 PM
Comment #142219

bOmbay

China is not only a player in the world but is our chief rival for oil. In fact, China’s oil requirements are even higher than ours. Also, given that China holds a substantial portion of our foreign debt and maintains a large trade balance with us, it behooves us to treat with them, even thoughthey have a dismal record on human rights, forced abortions, genocide, etc.

Paul-

Once again, your sense of injustice outweighs the facts of the matter. The protester was wrong. She violated the law and should have been arrested and removed. I agree, her cause is just and her words needed to be said. But, she still broke the law and should be held accountable.

There is a feeling these days that if we protest in a “good” cause, we should not be held accountable. Where that comes from I don’t have a clue. I grew up during the Civil Rights era and one of the things that impressed me about Dr. King, Ralph Abernathy and others was that they were willing to acept the consequences of their actions. This added a moral force to what they were doing that ten thousand words of “just cause” avoidance could never do.

Posted by: John Back at April 21, 2006 6:59 PM
Comment #142221

“But, she still broke the law and should be held accountable.”

What law did she break? Just curious. Does the benefit of the law outweigh the need of her cause?

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 7:11 PM
Comment #142223

Well said John.

I suspect that Paul and others are really more concerned with criticizing our president/administration/republicans than in human rights.

Sorry Tony I call a spade a spade when I see it.

I know Paul looks all harmless and innocent - from his picture, and i am sure he is an affable man in person, but the way he spins things to serve his own agenda (and he certainly has one at that - just look at his website. It’s right out of a pinko leftist pamphlet) I think is reprehensible. Especially when relevant facts are disregarded, supporting examples are askew, and conclusions are disillusioned.

“Bush kowtowed to Hu because Hu has power and Wang is among the “little people.” Democrats got to work for the “little people” in New Orleans and authoritarian Republicans scoffed at them. What type of political leader do YOU prefer?”

Is this your conclusion Paul? Let me break it down for the slow thinkers…

Democrats = good republicans = bad.

GET REAL!!! I can name a bunch of no good corrupt demoncrats. I can probably formulate an argument that exemplifies this. And if was masterful at spinning this, I could probably have you all fooled too.

NOT ME BUDDY!

I’m watching you…

Posted by: b0mbay at April 21, 2006 7:17 PM
Comment #142230

“Sorry Tony I call a spade a spade when I see it.”

Say what? You’ll have to explain this one a bit better…

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 7:37 PM
Comment #142231

“GET REAL!!! I can name a bunch of no good corrupt demoncrats. I can probably formulate an argument that exemplifies this. And if was masterful at spinning this, I could probably have you all fooled too.”

Wow. You came up with this - and going on so little… I’m impressed. Do you care to add some facts or specifics - or do you soley work in conjecture?

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 7:39 PM
Comment #142232

you said:

“When you end a post with this statement - you expect what kind of response?”

I said:

“Sorry Tony I call a spade a spade when I see it.”

If I come off harsh, it is because I feel like paul is insulting my intelligence, and anyone else who reads this…


Posted by: b0mbay at April 21, 2006 7:40 PM
Comment #142236

The disorderly conduct charge is one that is a judgement call when applied. A police officer may or may not charge the individual, depending on how they act when confronted by the police, and depending on how serious the underlying act was. So raising one’s voice in protest, in my opinion, should not be considered disorderly conduct.
As far as intimidating a foreign official? I don’t know how intimidating this woman could be to the Chinese head of state. If that’s intimidation, then we or they are very sensitive, indeed.
The point that I’m making here is that vocal protests take place on nearly a daily basis. The difference was that it was embarassing to Bush.
No, Bush was not at the station pressing charges. But we all know how this works. The white house could ask for charges to be dropped. The Secret Service could have just led her away and detained her until the public speaking was over; then released her. There is really no reason to charge her with a crime, in this country, for what she did. Vocal opposition is a part of our freedom of speech and should be respected. She was not violent or threatening. Apparently she had no weapon, or we would have heard about it. The same thing goes for any past criminal record.
So let’s not make a criminal out of a woman who was simply exercising a right that we hold dear in this country.
It was wrong to arrest her and would be even more wrong if the charges stick. Unfortunately, since Bush came into office and began eroding our rights, it’s quite possible that they will.

Posted by: Cole at April 21, 2006 8:12 PM
Comment #142237

“If I come off harsh, it is because I feel like paul is insulting my intelligence, and anyone else who reads this…”

Well, first of all, never be personally offended by what someone writes, unless they write it specifically to you. Paul is posting what he feels, so take it for what it’s worth.

Also, I think I can see where Paul is coming from - but i see it a little differently. I think the Republicans are for what is best for them personally… it’s an individual thing. Look at tax cuts, the emphasis on religion in their politics, their adversion to social programs that they do not directly benefit from. Democrats, in my opinion, are interested in ideas that benefits the most people possible. Social programs, government sponsored fine arts, separation of church and state, increasing personal tax levels if it benefits society. (I’m opposed to the repeal of the capital gains tax. I own my own business, and pay myself mostly through distribution of profit… so not paying capital gains would save me $1000s each year. I fail to see the fairness in that.)

I also feel that many REPs/Conservatives lack empathy - the ability to feel for the situations for others. To me, that accounts for the main difference between the two parties and the reason I could never vote REP.

I do agree that both parties are corrupt and need to be cleaned out drastically - but again, it’s not a personal thing. You can comment all you want on corrupt DEMs, it will never cause me grief - other than the fact that you will probably be right… however, I would never consider that a statement against me.

Posted by: tony at April 21, 2006 8:16 PM
Comment #142248

“But, she still broke the law and should be held accountable.”

Yeah? When will it be Bush and Cheney’s turn??

Posted by: Tim Crow at April 21, 2006 9:30 PM
Comment #142250

“I also feel that many REPs/Conservatives lack empathy - the ability to feel for the situations for others. To me, that accounts for the main difference between the two parties and the reason I could never vote REP.”

Tony, well said. And I agree with your assessment, at least when it comes to national and international policy by the neocons. They pride themselves on their cruelty. Real macho.

Posted by: Tim Crow at April 21, 2006 9:36 PM
Comment #142268

China often releases some dissidents before high level meetings with the US. Not this time. One reason is because after Gitmo and Abu Gareb the US no longer has standing to discuss human rights. Sad indeed.
Also, would one of the right wingnuts please explain to me again just why it is OK for our president to kow tow to the dictator of a large,expansionist communist country but maintain a pointless embargo against a small ,near harmless communist country just south of us.

Posted by: BillS at April 21, 2006 11:46 PM
Comment #142271

BillS:

Follow the money.

Posted by: Tim Crow at April 22, 2006 12:01 AM
Comment #142274

First a factual correction: Wenyi Wang was not “immediately dragged away.” According to the Washington Post, it took a full three minutes before anyone reacted. While you could use this to argue that the White House/Secret Service weren’t being too heavy handed, to me it really speaks to the question of just how “intimidating” could she really have been if the response was that slow in coming.

Should she be charged? Well, its not as though her performance should have come as a surprise.

Posted by: adverbal at April 22, 2006 12:14 AM
Comment #142275

There is none so blind as those that have the partisan blinders on. If only they would take them off. Them maybe we could get rid of the incompetent idiots up in Washington and get folks in there that actually do have the good of the people at heart.
But then the major parties wouldn’t fare so good. That’s why they feed yaall the bullshit they do. They don’t want yaall to take the blinders off. Because of ya did, you’d find out that neither party is no different than the other. Then the whole bunch of them would be out of jobs.


John Back

There is a feeling these days that if we protest in a “good” cause, we should not be held accountable. Where that comes from I don’t have a clue. I grew up during the Civil Rights era and one of the things that impressed me about Dr. King, Ralph Abernathy and others was that they were willing to acept the consequences of their actions. This added a moral force to what they were doing that ten thousand words of “just cause” avoidance could never do.

Welcome to the Liberal way of thinking. Never take responsibility for what you do.
Your right Dr. King, Ralph Abernathy, and the rest never claimed they were being persecuted for their protest. Rosa Parks excepted her fine. Dr. King and Mr Abernathy spent time in jail for their actions. This is one reason why the civil rights movement was so successful. None complained about the consequences of their actions.
When your willing to accept the responsibility for what you do, your message will be heard by a whole heap more folks than if you whine about the consequences of your actions.

Posted by: Ron Brown at April 22, 2006 12:15 AM
Comment #142295

Ron and John, good points. But, they lived in a time when politicians feared the voters at election time. That is no longer true. No matter how bad things get, we reelect them back into office at the rate of 94 to 97%.

Protests today, even with moral force, are not likely to alter politicians from whatever path is most expedient and profitable in power or money for themselves or lies within their ideology of what they believe is best for them and theirs. With their incumbency rate, where’s the motivation to do the right thing for protesters with or without moral force. Mark my words, there will be no immigration bill that makes it out of conference committee this year. There’s an election and neither Dem’s nor Rep’s are going to stick their necks out doing what’s right in an election year if it will cost them power, money, or ideology.

We are however, if the May 1st demonstrations take place as currently planned to halt the nation, likely to see violence this time round, since the people can feel there is no leadership in government on this issue.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 22, 2006 2:27 AM
Comment #142298

When Bush was first running for office most people were saying there was little difference between the two parties and that it really didn’t matter whether Gore or Bush was in office. How wrong that was… It certainly seemed while Clinton was in office that he made a lot of concessions. Bush certainly seemed to be running as a moderate. 20 years ago Clinton would have been a Republican. I guess I just didn’t realize how far to the right this country has shifted in general.

I knew a fair amount of people who voted for Nader, if only to make a statement that they felt the Democratic party was too much of the same. I begged them to vote for Gore, but they really didn’t feel there was much of a difference. When the votes were cast and it was so close I argued they should add another month to the campaigns and have everyone vote again, but most of the people I talked to just wanted it over with.

We were apathetic, and we’ve paid the price. Bush was no moderate, and has run this country into the ground. It’s a crying shame. I only hope this doesn’t happen again.

Would anyone on these boards say there is not a serious difference between Republicans and Democrats??? We wouldn’t be here if we felt that way. I just hope its clear to “most people” who usually just don’t give a damn. I hope Bush is a watershed President, like Carter was for many Republicans, who will convince many voters to shift allegiance.

A good thing we have going for us is that you still don’t see many Republicans ready to admit Bush has made any mistakes at all. I hope that the majority of Americans recognize that for the pigheaded stupdity it is and choose not to forgive it. Too many people think of Bush as an anamoly. He’s not. He pressed the party line hard - and the hole we are in is where it leads.

Posted by: Max at April 22, 2006 3:15 AM
Comment #142305

Yes, Max, on many issues there is little to no difference between Congressional Democrats and Republicans. They both have majority power as their first and primary objective, the money to secure that majority as their second primary objective, bringing home the pork to their constituents to demonstrate love, their 3rd primary objective, and the nation’s health and future and the will of the majority of Americans falls dead last in this list. Which makes corruption by power and money pretty equal between them.

As for Kerry and Gore vs. Bush, no question some policies would have been very different, some even better perhaps, like education. But, many problems of the Bush adminstration would have persisted under Kerry or Gore to greater or lesser degrees, like growing the size of government, entitlements, and deficits as well as pork barrel spending, waste, fraud and abuse of the American tax payer’s money and borders which are not secure against terrorists.

Look, I am no genius, but, I was able, with my psychology degree and internet access to bits and pieces of Saddam Hussein’s personal history, and history of factions in Iraq, to come to a reasoned conclusion that invading Iraq was a HUGE mistake. I reasoned that Saddam was too paranoid to leave WMD lying around as predicate to invasion and dethroning his ass, I was able to reason that the factions in Iraq were held together only by iron hand of Saddam’s regime and civil war would be likely without the people of Iraq overthrowing him. And I was able to reason that invading Iraq would result in a civil struggle amongst its people that would become a quagmire for the U.S. by not finding a way to pull out with the dignity of victory.

I was wrong on that last point, as time proved. There was a window of opportunity to pull out with victory shortly after Saddam Hussein was captured. That window was short lived, and we didn’t take advantage of it, so here we are in a no-win situation waiting for decades for the people of Iraq to get their governance together, all the while feeding their dependence on us for the security and money for whatever fragile and unstable governance they can muster.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 22, 2006 5:28 AM
Comment #142309

Is there a difference?

Under Fire, Top Democrat Is Leaving Ethics Panel

( http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/22/washington/22mollohan.html?_r=1&oref=slogin )

Does anyone here support this oaf? I think he should be throw to the wolves immediately. The only thing that matters is that he is associated with such action. To me, he has offended his supporters and abused his office - and I could care less what a court of law finally determines.

To those who still defend and support Delay (as well as the many others) and continue to wait until the courts make their decision… THAT”S the difference between the parties. It’s not the leaders at the top, but what’s at the heart of each party that matters. I can only support leaders who adhere to our ideals - to those who faithfully represent us. The democrats oath is to each person’s ideals and how they fit into our group - NOT to the leaders at the top.

Posted by: tony at April 22, 2006 8:11 AM
Comment #142310

A business exists to make profits. When they do so it is called “success”. People join this as employees and executives and are paid according to their ability to produce more profits. There is nothing evil about it. I haven’t met anyone who wouldn’t want to be on the success side. You can then give more to causes you believe in.
Collectivists believe in looting this system and justifying it with phrases like “the common good”. This amounts to nothing less than stealing what others accomplish and forced contribution to things you don’t believe in.
This is the basic difference between fiscal conservatives and liberals.
If the forced removal of a protester had happened during a visit while Clintons were in office, it would be in my girlfriend Ann Coulter’s new book right now. This I have to admit.

Posted by: Kruser at April 22, 2006 8:17 AM
Comment #142317

“This amounts to nothing less than stealing what others accomplish and forced contribution to things you don’t believe in. “

As long as the people who succeed do so in ethical and deserving ways… sure. Who could agrue that people deserve the success they create. But, for example, Exxon’s exCEO made approx. $150k per day while incharge. Exxon is not a company he made or made successful. He took over and made money for the company and he was paid for it - but he was paid excessively. This is different than Lay & Shilling and others who take charge and loot and plunder, and the leave the mess and disasterous effects for others to clean up. Also, you have the rash of CEOs who plunder the company and continue to heap huge rewards while undermining their employees pension funds, health benefits and pay.

Can you please be specific when you say that “collectivists loot the system”?

Who are you referring to that define “the common good” in the way you’ve described it? “Forced contribution”?

You’ve tossed around a lot of conjecture and unsustantiated claims and accusations. Without specifics, it’s impossible to take what you say seriously.

Posted by: tony at April 22, 2006 9:30 AM
Comment #142319

It won’t be long before we ‘put the hurt’ to China because big industry has found other areas where things can be manufactured with even cheaper labor.
Rah Rah.

I never did understand why we didn’t go south to begin with - or - even to Africa.
Why China? It was a ‘sleeping giant’ and we woke it up.

Posted by: dawn at April 22, 2006 9:42 AM
Comment #142330

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 22, 2006 10:19 AM
Comment #142334

Ron Brown:

Welcome to the Liberal way of thinking. Never take responsibility for what you do.

Someone waltzed our country into an unnecessary war, given us humongous and record trade/budget deficits, given us an increasing number of hungry people who don’t have any medical coverage (even working people!)…and still has yet to take responsibility for ANYTHING! This administration’s motto is “PASS THE BUCK”…as long as the buck is coming their way to line their pockets.

No responsibility is taken for the common good, for the common people…

Oh, by the way, Bush is decidedly not a liberal…he’s not a true conservative, either…he’s just a sap who’s beholden to “them what brung him”…the worst kind of amoral person.

Posted by: Lynne at April 22, 2006 10:30 AM
Comment #142335

Lynne
That’s where your wrong Lynne, Bush is a liberal as Clinton, Carter, LBJ, or any other Democrat President you want to name.

Posted by: Ron Brown at April 22, 2006 10:40 AM
Comment #142339

WhatI have read here just further convinces me that blogging is about venting and can accomplish no other good. Bombay is clearly not willing to entertain ANY other perspective than his own and The same can probably be said for everyone on blogging on this story. Bombay just sticks out because he is so obviously an unthinking stick in the mud.

I’ve begun blogging much less now that I have realized this is mostly pointless. What are all trying to accomplish here anyway? …to convince ANYBODY who DOESN’T want to be convinced? Are we earning votes or supporters of any kind? I have fired immense amounts of evidence and analysis at people like Jack and d.a.n. only to be completely ignored or worse, got a response that was silly and clearly not about the argument or the issue at all.

GO out and convince those who are unsure among the people who would not get any sport out of this stuff. That is at least doing something that might be effective.

RGF

Posted by: RGF at April 22, 2006 11:31 AM
Comment #142345

You Dipdo’s Back Clinton all the way. It was Clinton who allowed Sadaam, Osama Bin Laden and Zarqwahi, North Korea and Iran to become what they are today. You are all in denial and Stupid. You deserve World War 3. All you think about is labels such as Conserative, Anti War. Republican, Democrat, Pro War. Anti abortion, Pro Abortion, Illegal Imigrants, Enviornmentalists And on and on. Your so freakin stupid. I got a Label for you!! INFIDEL!! Trumps all the others and you all wear it and I don’t care what you think or believe!! Print that on your freakin Blog. Do you think the terrorists on 911 ran up and down the aisles of those planes and asked who was Reublican or Democrat? I don’t think so. They were all INFIDELS and guess what? They still are you dipdoooooo’s


Posted by: Don at April 22, 2006 12:01 PM
Comment #142348

Ron Brown

You do not get to make up definitions as you go along.

American Heritage Dictionary
liberalism
a. A political theory founded on the natural goodness of humans and the autonomy of the indivdual and favoring civil and political liberties,government by law with the consent of the governed,and protection from arbtrary authority.

If you and others insist on labeling people at least be accurate.

Posted by: BillS at April 22, 2006 12:47 PM
Comment #142353

BillS
If that’s the case there aint a liberal politician in the world. None of them believe in the ‘natural goodness of humans’. Probably because there aint a good one among them.

Posted by: Ron Brown at April 22, 2006 1:08 PM
Comment #142354

RGF -

It’s good practice… and it’s organize your thoughts and ideas… and once in a while you learn something.

Don… ??? wtf?

Posted by: tony at April 22, 2006 1:09 PM
Comment #142358

Mr. Brown
Nonsense.

Posted by: BillS at April 22, 2006 1:33 PM
Comment #142363

David,

Yes, Max, on many issues there is little to no difference between Congressional Democrats and Republicans.

Here’s what I believe wouldn’t have happened if Gore had been president:

1. Possibly 9/11 (according to Clark)
2. Iraq war
3. Would’ve got Osama
4. Levees would’ve been fixed in New Orleans before Katrina
5. Social security would be saved by putting our surplus into a lockbox.
6. World peace ;-)

I know a lot of people will disagree. They will say that the Iraq war was inevitable, etc., but that’s just because they emotionally invested in the turkey we have now for president. I don’t think invading Iraq would have even crossed Gore’s mind.

The idea to invade Iraq comes from a neoconservative idea that Reagan proved dictatorships are easy to topple with a little force or resistance. It was a very naive, simplistic, and historically unAmerican lesson to draw, but that’s what they thought until they proved themselves wrong in Iraq.

Also, Bush spends money like there’s no tomorrow, in part, to shrink the size of the government. Neoconservatives believe the government should have hardly any role at all in this country. Now, I’m not saying that he purposefully bankrupt it. I don’t think he saw it going that far, but he was interested in shrinking it and if that meant flushing money down the toilet he wasn’t adverse to doing that philosophically.

Another difference is religion. The neoconservatives believe that organized religion can better perform a lot of the services the government does today. Put simply, they would give money to and bring religion into the government. This is also incredibly unAmerican.

Finally there is a culture of arrogance that is part and parcel of the new Republican party. They are frighteningly incapable of recognizing their own mistakes and learning from them. Talk to a Republican about, say, Katrina, and sometimes they will deny it was a bad thing the hurricane hit at all or that any damage in New Orleans whatsoever. We’re talking about a party so full of pride, and so paranoid that “the Dems” are out to get them that have a hard time acknowledging basic facts.

SO - There’s a big difference between Republicans and Democrats. I’m also interested in 3rd parties, but I could never vote for one, because bottom line that would be throwing my vote away and letting Republicans win. I am uncomfortable with candidates winning that a majority of voters actually don’t want in office. 3rd party candidates hurt this country. If there had been no Nader there would have been no Bush.

Posted by: Max at April 22, 2006 2:04 PM
Comment #142367

Max
You forgot to add real national healthcare reform including a drug benefit that makes sense.


Before we read a bunch of mindless,insulting attacks on Al Gore I wish to share something I found out about him.
I worked locally on his election campaign. There was an elderly couple that would show up every weekend,rain or shine, to volunteer. They would precinct walk,phone bank,whatever. Finally someone asked them why they were so devoted. Here is their tale.

Their only son was in the military. He was was horribly wounded in a helocoptor crash. Al and Tipper Gore met with them privately on a military base(sorry I can not recall the name). The Gores talked with them,prayed with them and grieved with them for about 45 minutes. There was no press there. No public announcements. Al Gore gave them his direct phone number to call if there was any problems they had with the V.A.Working for his campaign was there way of paying him back for his kindness and concern.


There. Now you guys can start your personel attacks on this great American. Shame on you.

Posted by: BillS at April 22, 2006 2:43 PM
Comment #142370

Ron Brown:

That’s where your wrong Lynne, Bush is a liberal as Clinton, Carter, LBJ, or any other Democrat President you want to name.

Bush may be spending money lavishly, but he’s no liberal…he’s overspending on “defense” and defense contractors and an unnecessary war…but he’s cutting back pollution controls, selling of federal land, allowing companies to profit by cutting federal timber, his economic policies are making an increased number of workers need food pantries, fewer people are covered by insurance (companies offering health insurance have plunged from 69% to 60% under his “watch”)…nope, Bush definitely is no liberal…and he’s not a “compassionate” conservative except where corporate welfare is concerned…

Bush has no sense of the common good…

Posted by: Lynne at April 22, 2006 3:15 PM
Comment #142371

Well, I sure got Republicans excited. Thanks for all the wonderful names you apply to me. And to liberals in general. What emotion! It really helps to get it off your chest, doesn’t it?

Bush is the guy that talks endlessly about spreading freedom and democracy. When he meets with Hu, he says nothing about discrimination and torture of Falun Gong members. Then he gets angry when Wang reminds him.

He is so angry that he is using a rarely applied law to put Wang in prison. Obviously, he feels that appeasing Hu is more important than sticking up for human rights.

You can rant about liberals all you want, but there is no excuse for Bush’s action.

Posted by: Paul Siegel at April 22, 2006 3:17 PM
Comment #142376

Oh my where to begin? First off for I won;t be attacking the man (mr. Gore) BUT I don’t belive Hero worship is very becoming.

On 9/11 there was years of planning there… that was going to happen regardless who was president.. armchair generaling isn’t going ot change that. Truth be told even with the botched attemptin 93 not much was really done.

iraq war.. prolly wouldn’t have happened, nor the Afgan war, nor any retailiation of the 9/11 attacks… maybe a cruise missle up a camel’s tail that’s about it.

U.B.L. ? I fail to agree that Gore would have got him, Clinton didn’t and if Gore prevented 9/11 why would he be after him then?

Katrina.. was a time bomb waiting to happen.. if you build below sea level its gonan happen someday. i still point a lot of blame to local and state goverements there.. also the ppl themselves have to take some responcibility.

SSI i’ll give you that, unless congress ate it

Health care.. if i wanted that i’d move to canada..so i can pay the taxes and wait in line


I don’t see a difference in reps and dems at all both belive their way is the right way, and both are not open to hearing the others arguemnts. Now we can each defend our parties in some partisian bickering or we can both accept it and try to improve matters.

To end on a humorous note after i read that post, the ditty from the south park movie popped into my head “What would brian boytanno (sp?) do?”

Posted by: RHancheck at April 22, 2006 3:46 PM
Comment #142381

EDITORS, PLEASE,

Above there is not the first hideously, outrageously abusive blog post with the name ‘Don’ under it. Could we please do something about it? Blogging here will never anything more than venting if such as above should become any more prevalent. Snide I can take, outright venemous and mindless generalized abusiveness should not be tolerated.

Please react appropriately to Don.

RGF

Posted by: RGF at April 22, 2006 5:25 PM
Comment #142382

max and david r. what was the clinton and gore hissyfit all about before the election? i think it hurt gore more than you realize.

Posted by: jim c at April 22, 2006 5:47 PM
Comment #142384

Ron Brown:

If that’s the case there aint a liberal politician in the world. None of them believe in the ‘natural goodness of humans’. Probably because there aint a good one among them

There have been studies done on root feelings of conservatives vs. liberals…conservatives see people as naturally “bad” and so they need coercion and the whip to get them doing anything; liberals see people as naturally “good” and so they see that people fall through the cracks and need some help…

Now, that obviously isn’t cut and dried…there are bad people and there are good people! But you can see that the mindset from which one legislates provides very different answers to the world’s, the country’s, and the people’s problems!!

Posted by: Lynne at April 22, 2006 5:55 PM
Comment #142386

“A press release from UC Berkeley announced that researchers, culling 50 years of data, had identified psychological patterns common to the minds of right-wingers. Their findings, published in the American Psychological Association’s Psychological Bulletin, listed these predictors of conservatism: fear, aggression, dogmatism, authoritarianism, tolerance of inequality, intolerance of ambiguity, resistance to change and lack of “integrative complexity” in thought and speech.

The release pushed further, noting that “disparate conservatives” such as Hitler, Mussolini, Ronald Reagan and Rush Limbaugh each preached a return to an idealized past and condoned inequality. “

I would have to add one more trait: fear…fear of change, fear of the future, fear of anything not known, fear of “the other”, fear of the unknown, fear that someone’s going to take what’s “theirs”…

Posted by: Lynne at April 22, 2006 5:59 PM
Comment #142392

Nice picture, Betty.

Sorry Paul,
There still does not seem like that much difference between the parties. Not over the long run. Sure, the current “In-Party” seems more corrupt (which may be true at the moment).
But it is by virtue of being the “In-Party”.

It should be crystal clear by now that the parties just take turns.

Regardless of who the “In-Party” or “Out-Party” is, government seems to have a knack for creating and exacerbating problems, and solving none.

You’d think we would be getting much, much better for over $2 trillion per year?

Posted by: d.a.n at April 22, 2006 7:36 PM
Comment #142393

Tony
The post was basic principals.
These debates to me are mostly paradigm based and facts are tweaked accordangly. There are some who give tidbits of revelation concerning interesting subjects giving value in scanning them. Most is repeated mantra where details just give reason to rave with entertainment value only.
For example, Ethics. It appears to me that in Washington vague finance laws are passed so who ever is in charge of the committee or is a prosecutor can make up violations to discredit others. Just have an IRS audit sometime. You are dead if he has a vendetta.

CIA officials and Generals from previous admins. can distort info at will. All that is left for me is to apply principle to laws being passed and judge issues without endless demagogue.
I don’t agree with all Bush has done except for freeing Iraq and getting Conservative judges on the Supreme Court. It was well worth my vote.

Posted by: kruser at April 22, 2006 7:52 PM
Comment #142396

RGF:

I hope you won’t become discouraged and bail on us. I, for one, apppreciate your contributions, along with Betty and Steve and Max, Tony, Adrienne, PH8X and others. Lynne, too. It helps to know you’re not alone in this mad world, don’t you think?

Tim

Posted by: Tim Crow at April 22, 2006 8:40 PM
Comment #142399

Since reconstruction the great social advances have come from the Democratic Party,usually when that party had control of the Whitehouse and Congress. Social Security,minimum wage,Wagner Act,the defeat of global fascism, Voting rights act,Civil rights act,the 40 hour work week,workplace safety regulations even womens suffrage came out of the Democratic Party.This is a partial list only. Basically the things that make this country a decent place to live for average people. To ignore this is to ignore history.One does so at their peril.
In fairness some Republicans joined them and the last great civil rights bill,the Americans with Disabilities Act was passed under a Republican administration(with a Dem. congress.)

The Dems have made mistakes of course,gone forward when they should have withdrawn,withdrawn when they should have gone forward,played their share of race cards,harbered an occasioal demagoge or crook.In other words they have acted as one might expect an organization of mere mortals to behave. But on balance the Democratic Party has served the needs of working Americans better than the Republicans . If you are a Democrat you have every right to be proud. The notion there is no difference between parties, when held under the light of history ,is shown to be in error.

Posted by: BillS at April 22, 2006 9:00 PM
Comment #142411

Rhancheck,

Let me address your points one by one (I’ll paraphrase).

1. 9.11 would have happened no matter who was president.

Bush got a memo saying the WTC would be attacked by terrorists using planes as bombs, but didn’t pay much attention to it.

Clinton met weekly about Al Queada with Clarke, his anti-terrorism security chief. Bush cancelled these meetings. Clarke thought Bush was doing such a poor job fighting terrorism he quit in protest. Clarke previously worked for Reagan and Bush Sr. before working for Clinton and then Dubya.

Makes you wonder if the attacks would have been presented if we had had a president who was more on the ball… It’s possible.

2. The Iraq war wouldn’t have happened if Gore had been president, but neither would we have liberated Afghanistan.

If Gore had been president and 9/11 still happened of course he would have liberated Afghanistan. That’s where the terrorists were. The difference is that he wouldn’t have left so quickly and would probably have successfully made Afghanistan into the example of democracy for the Arab world that Iraq was supposed to be.

Glad you admit the Iraq war wouldn’t have happened though. I count that as a pretty big difference - don’t you?

3. Gore wouldn’t have gotten Bin Laden. Clinton didn’t.

True, but Clinton tried. We heard about bombings that Clinton made to try and assasinate Bin Laden. He did this while being nailed to the cross by Republicans for his infedilities and while it was an extremely unpopular move. When is the last time we heard about Bush making an attempt to kill Bin Laden?


4. Katrina would have happened no matter who was in office.

No. The money to fix the levees was a included in the budget the year before. The project was dismissed so Bush could focus all his time and resources on Iraq, which we’ve already agreed Gore wouldn’t have done. The levees would have been fixed ergo no disaster. There are a lot of other points here too, for instance, Gore would not have dismantled FEMA, but I won’t go into those.

5. I agree with you social security would be fixed.

Great. I think that’s pretty huge.

6. I don’t want health care it would increase my taxes.

It most certainly would not increase your taxes. The reason your taxes are so high is from people coming into the hospital without any healthcare at all, which leads to you and I paying for their care. This is one reason why in “liberal MA” they are making it a law that everyone have healthcare.

7. Reps and Dems are the same. They both believe what they believe and won’t make any concessions.

I don’t believe this is true either. Clinton was a true moderate who ran on fixing the economy and co-opting some Republican issues. Bush gave lip service to doing the same, being a “compassionate conservative”, but the difference is he was lying.

If the last 6 years have not convinced you there’s a difference between the two parties what will???? You admit the war was a Republican thing and that it would have been nice to have a lockbox - aren’t differences like that enough to vote Democrat this time around?

Posted by: Max at April 22, 2006 10:44 PM
Comment #142412

historical references really don’t apply. John Kennedy was more conservative than George Bush wouldn’t you say? I think the biggest error is after a problem is rightly addressed such as segregation and civil rights, a party sees it as a reason to call every issue racial and get empathy votes. Real debate becomes fogged by this reverse bias. My memory is that the democrats took a hard left in the seventies.

Posted by: Kruser at April 22, 2006 10:46 PM
Comment #142413

Max and BillS: Thank you - for your Wisdom, Intelligence, and Participation. We need more like you in this once-great land.

Lynne: Beautiful! It is just what I have been saying for so long: Conservatism is a bankrupt philosophy which is driven by the Evil and embraced by the Ignorant. The more Intelligent a Conservative is, the more Evil they must be; the less Evil a Conservative is, the more Ignorant they will likely be. Here is the Mechanism, laid bare for all to see:

Some humans Fear that which they do not Understand. Their Fear leads them to Hatred. Hating, they Attack. These are the Ignorant Conservatives.

Some humans both Fear Change and Desire Power (including the Power afforded by great Wealth). They will do whatever they need to to “Win” this Power and Wealth. So they exploit the Ignorant as an army of Marching Morons to do their bidding. These are the Evil Conservatives.

Intelligent, but Evil Conservatives include the likes of Dick Cheney, Henry Kissinger, Richard Pearle, Robert Novak, Paul Wolfowitz, Etc.

Ignorant Conservatives include “Security Moms,” “NASCAR Dads,” Literal Fundamentalists, and the like; some notable Individuals among Ignorant Conservatives: Fred Phelps, Pat Robertson, Ronald Reagan, Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, Etc.

For many years, the Evil Conservatives have been intentionally dumbing-down the American Monkeymass through underfunding of Public Education, PBS, the NEA, etc. They have tried on two occasions (first under Ronald Reagan) to do away entirely with the Department Of Education. This is so they can use Taxpayer Dollars to fund “School Vouchers” - a code-phrase for a means to ensure Fundamentalist Religious Indoctrination instead of an actual Education. They have also sought control of the Media, and have had large successes in Talk Radio and with Fox “News.”

By these means, they have created a virtual army of largely Ignorant citizens who have been Scared Witless by Jingoism and Xenophobia into doing the bidding of their Masters. And who is the Master-In-Chief? At this time, it is Dick Cheney, working on behalf of the Dark Empire of Conservative abusers. Montgomery Burns has nothing on Tricky Dick!

The Republican Party is, at present, the greatest Domestic Enemy ever faced by a Constitutional United States. Conservatism Political Parties should be treated in the same way we treat Conservatism’s offshoots: the American Nazi Party, the Aryan Brotherhood, the White Aryan Resistance, and the Ku Klux Klan - we should infiltrate them via the FBI and monitor their activities closely for violations of the Constitution and Civil Rights Abuses.

Obviously, before that can be done, they must be removed from their present positions of power.

If they continue to engage in Election Rigging, I fear there is no hope but that which Thomas Jefferson offered when he advocated the periodic watering of the “Tree Of Liberty” with the blood of Patriots and Tyrants. If the Ballot Box can not be relied upon to protect the American Ideal, then perhaps it is time to go to the Bullet Box again, as we have twice done in this nation’s History.

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 22, 2006 10:47 PM
Comment #142414

I think due to public opinion at the time Al Gore would have invaded Iraq had he won Florida.

Posted by: Kruser at April 22, 2006 10:48 PM
Comment #142416

P.S.:

Link to Lynne’s Reference:
http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2003/07/22_politics.shtml

Fascinating Link - Read It Carefully:
http://www.worldpublicopinion.org/pipa/articles/international_security_bt/102.php?nid=&id=&pnt=102&lb=brusc

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 22, 2006 10:57 PM
Comment #142421

they do treat people like you. paranoid schizofrenics these days but you have to admit it first.

Posted by: FA STEPHENS at April 22, 2006 11:42 PM
Comment #142428

Tim,

Thanks. That’s heartening. I will continue to contribute.

Betty,

I completely understand the desparation you are obviously feeling. However, I cannot concur about going to the bullet box. If this nation is to be saved at all, it must be by the collective conscience of us all and not by violence. Otherwise we are only saving the status quo and replacing old tyrants and corrupt manipulators with new ones without any real positive change at all.

I beleive the answer is in education. The conservatives are attacking both higher education and the legal profession, basically because the truth hurts them. We must turn their own venom against them and demonstrate how and why they are doing these things. We must put our faith in the collective conscience of the people. Otherwise, nothing changes at all and we get more of the same.

RGF

Posted by: RGF at April 23, 2006 12:13 AM
Comment #142439

Max, Betty:

I consiter myself a moderate.. If someone like Liberman was wiling, he’d be great, I agree with his views on most things. Its posts like Betty’s that scare me, Yes I fear Libs (not dems, dems and repubs for the most part are moderate) that have those views, I mean sure be frustrated and agressive about the opposition party but geeze.. yes we had davy duke (he was a dem for a while also) but he didnt get far, the dems have robert byrd and he’s career Why would i spend my time on a party with so much hatemongering, nazis, KKK, may as well say they have the witches and boogyman too too. Talk like that won’t change anyone’s mind. If one lives in the past, they don’t have much of a future, love or hate it what’s done is done.. all both sides can do is plan for the future..

The only platform i can be totally sure of is “hate bush” well i guess hate all repubs, one doesn’t see much constructive going on, I mean break it down, all that is on this issue is bush is evil, repubs are evil, we are a bunch of fearmongering nazis, I see nothing of trying to want to make things better, the fringe elements do not win elections, they squeak the loudest though. If those fringe views were broadcast on television… would you honestly expect to gain popularity? But this being a blog.. it is for those who have strong views either way, the voice of reason isn’t all that loud out in WWW land.But calling for violence if things don’t go your way ?? Maybe there is more known more about nazi stormtroopers on the far far left than I realized, or is that republican guard tactics, vote turns out wrong and we’ll shoot you? Saddam had that pretty well perfected.

Posted by: RHancheck at April 23, 2006 1:48 AM
Comment #142441

Tim Crow wrote:

RGF:

I hope you won’t become discouraged and bail on us. I, for one, apppreciate your contributions, along with Betty and Steve and Max, Tony, Adrienne, PH8X and others. Lynne, too. It helps to know you’re not alone in this mad world, don’t you think?

Tim

Personally, it does indeed help me to know this, Tim. What’s really nice about that is the fact that though we’re located all over the country/world, we can comment and debate issues with each other on a daily basis. No doubt about it, that’s Progress for us Progressives!
And after a week of being three thousand miles away from my computer in order to spend time with my family, it was truly lovely to see I haven’t been forgotten here. So, thanks so much for kindly including me among that stellar list! Those, and a few others who were not mentioned (you know who you are) are folks I consider to be something of a “virtual family” of like-minded thinkers in Watchblog.

I too, hope that RGF will stick around, because I remember other intelligent and pertinent comments posted by him/her in the past, and I feel that they’re needed here. Of course, to do so, they’re going to have to try to ignore the flamebaiting of people like “Don”.
The way I see it is this: Such posters are not actually here to discuss anything — because they know that in any real debate their asses could be severely whupped — hence their mindlessly aggressive attacks. When people make it clear that they are only here to insult others, I believe they must be automatically ignored as a result.
Or, in other words: Never Feed A Troll!

tony:

I also feel that many REPs/Conservatives lack empathy - the ability to feel for the situations for others. To me, that accounts for the main difference between the two parties and the reason I could never vote REP.

I couldn’t agree more.
I have never, and will never vote for Control Freaks/Plutocrats.
(PS. to Lynne and Betty: that’s my quick n’ dirty summation of what I thought you were both describing in your posts! :^)

I do agree that both parties are corrupt and need to be cleaned out drastically - but again, it’s not a personal thing. You can comment all you want on corrupt DEMs, it will never cause me grief - other than the fact that you will probably be right… however, I would never consider that a statement against me.

Exactly — and naturally! Democrats and Liberals are first and foremost Individuals. We’re virtually incapable of being Lock-Steppers and Party Automatons the way the Republicans can so often be. Subsequently, corruption that is perpetrated by one who happens to be “our” Senatorial or Congressional Representative is not something the larger majority are likely to view as casting a dark shadow upon us.
Collectively however, we should all wish, and have the firm resolve, to take out our Trash in due course.
People on the Left have always known that Change can be Good — and that Change for the Better is Best. Therefore, I agree that corrupt politicans like Mollohan must be dumped as soon as possible.

Max, BillS, and Cole, excellent posts!
I enjoyed reading every one of them. Keep up the good work!

David,

You’re constantly saying that you see very little difference between Democrats and Republican Politicians, but I find myself curious to know if (in your opinion) you also see as little a difference between people who choose to designate themselves Republicans (Conservatives) or Democrats (Liberals)?
Other than the fact that we happen to vote within the current two party system, I have always been able to see extremely clear and very obvious differences between our viewpoints in a general sense, and our personal and individual sentiments in a much narrower one. To me, this divergence in our outlook(s) on life (and what is truly important in it), seem like Night and Day. Honestly.

Not to put you on the spot, but seeing as you mentioned your psychology degree, I really would be very interested to get your take on this topic.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 23, 2006 2:09 AM
Comment #142446

Well, here’s another predictable partisan entry by Paul. Followed, of course, by the predictable cut and paste answers by a gleeful club of ocmpassionate liberals calling for blood.

The issue: a formal state event which was disrupted by a protester who could have presented a physical danger to others instead of just being a liability to the diplomatic process.

Some of the proposed actions:

- Overthrow of the rule of law by violence, by Ms. Burke.
- Increase tax payer funding of avant-garde art programs, liberal op-ed television programing, by RGF.
- Reduce military spending and increase the already disproportionate wealth redistribution from the contributors to federal revenue to the users of tax revenue, by Lynne,
- Damage our diplomatic relations with China and establish normal diplomatic relations with Cuba, by BillS.
- Calls to banish all persons currently or formerly involved in politics and elect entirely, unexperienced persons, by Tony and d.a.n.
- Rally around the protester and ignore her incursion into a highly sensitive, top security area, by Cole and Paul.

Assorted samples of windowdressing:

- Standard demonization of republicans, i.e. unempathetic, locksteppers, automatons, control freaks/plutocrats, paranoid schizofrenics (sic), ignorant monkeymass, and the greatest domestic enemy;

- Assorted unsubstatiated claims that Republicans are either amoral, evil or stupid.

- Mischaracterizations of the inherent goodness of liberal and the intrinsic evil of conservative philosopy.

The evidence for this argument is a wildly partisan study and a out-of-context definition from the dictionary.

This is what passes for political debate?

Is anyone interested in examining the difficult issues that need to be worked out between the US and China?

How about discussing the history and significance of the movement in China that prompted the protest? Wouldn’t it increase everyone’s understanding of this isolated event to see it in the larger context of current cultural change in China?

No takers?

Posted by: goodkingned at April 23, 2006 3:59 AM
Comment #142459

I think this post (by “angry white man”) sums up the differences quite clearly. I think it was a simple attempt at baiting, but the level of hate so high and thought so low… it’s almost poetry. If it wasn’t for his previous posts, I would bet it was satire. Sadly, I think it comes from the heart.

——————

“So vote in that BITCH hillary and you get your beloved slick willie back and the world will be safe again and the camel kissers will stop killing and we can all be gay again. What a great idea I feel safer already just think no one will have to die because bill and hill will stop globel warming.besides who needs borders we can all learn to speak spanish and we all will be set free from the evil we now live under. Then we can raise taxes and surrender to the war on terror woooo that will be so kool just think how proud we could all be again.”

Posted by: tony at April 23, 2006 9:50 AM
Comment #142460

goodkingned -

In case you missed it - the above post flies in the face of your previous post. I’m not suggesting that all REPs are evil and stupid (I’ve never met one that could do two things at once —- :) ) However, I’ve not seen any REPs trying to correct the posts similar to “angry white man”. If you’re going to make claims that REPs are not what we say - you will need to break ranks with others in your party who prove you wrong. The point - I do think there are people in your party who act vile, evil, stupid… whatever, and others in your party seem to be OK with that. Guilt by association.

Posted by: tony at April 23, 2006 10:06 AM
Comment #142462

badkingned:

- Reduce military spending and increase the already disproportionate wealth redistribution from the contributors to federal revenue to the users of tax revenue, by Lynne

Our defense spending (including that on the so-called Iraq War, which is not part of the actual budget) has gone up at a rate higher than what is actually needed (brings back happy memories of spending on $400 toilet seats)…our defense spending is not getting its bang for the buck…we’ve spent and spent and spent…and we’re getting nowhere in a very sandy quagmire…meanwhile, defense spending is taking away safety nets from our sick, elderly, and especially our children…children will be adults…starving them, making them homeless, and letting them remain sick is akin to doing the same to the children in Iraq…children do remember…they turn into adults who remember what was done to them and why…and they answer.

There is no reason to take even more money out of the econmy by doing away with the estate tax totally, no is there reason to not tax oil companies when they are making record profits…to whom more is given, more is expected…or don’t you believe in Christianity???

The working class and middle class and especially the poor are falling progressively further and further behind…big earners are literally making their wage off the work of the lower class…

According to the report, the mean family before-tax income in 2004 fell to $70,700, from $72,364 in 2001, after taking into account inflation. The median family income, on the other hand, rose only 1.6 percent over the three-year period, to $43,200. By contrast, federal figures from 1995 through 1998 indicate that mean family incomes rose by 12.3 percent. In the pre-recession period from 1998 to 2001, mean incomes rose another 17.3 percent.

The difference between the median and the mean figures for income ($43,200 as compared to $70,700) reflects the concentration of income in the hands of the top income-earners. If the distribution of income above the median were similar to the distribution below the median (as in a normal or bell curve), then one would expect the mean and median calculations to be roughly equal. However, while the median figure indicates that half of US families have a before-tax income of less than $43,200, the large earnings by a relatively small section at the very top are enough to pull up the mean substantially.

Our country is in dire trouble morally and financially…

Posted by: Lynne at April 23, 2006 10:54 AM
Comment #142473

Here…read the entire article…it contrasts conservatives and liberals…I’m proud to be a liberal!!!

Researchers help define what makes a political conservative

By Kathleen Maclay, Media Relations 22 July 2003 (revised 7/25/03)

BERKELEY – Politically conservative agendas may range from supporting the Vietnam War to upholding traditional moral and religious values to opposing welfare. But are there consistent underlying motivations?

Four researchers who culled through 50 years of research literature about the psychology of conservatism report that at the core of political conservatism is the resistance to change and a tolerance for inequality, and that some of the common psychological factors linked to political conservatism include:

Fear and aggression

Dogmatism and intolerance of ambiguity

Uncertainty avoidance

Need for cognitive closure

Terror management
“From our perspective, these psychological factors are capable of contributing to the adoption of conservative ideological contents, either independently or in combination,” the researchers wrote in an article, “Political Conservatism as Motivated Social Cognition,” recently published in the American Psychological Association’s Psychological Bulletin.

Assistant Professor Jack Glaser of the University of California, Berkeley’s Goldman School of Public Policy and Visiting Professor Frank Sulloway of UC Berkeley joined lead author, Associate Professor John Jost of Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, and Professor Arie Kruglanski of the University of Maryland at College Park, to analyze the literature on conservatism.

The psychologists sought patterns among 88 samples, involving 22,818 participants, taken from journal articles, books and conference papers. The material originating from 12 countries included speeches and interviews given by politicians, opinions and verdicts rendered by judges, as well as experimental, field and survey studies.

Ten meta-analytic calculations performed on the material - which included various types of literature and approaches from different countries and groups - yielded consistent, common threads, Glaser said.

The avoidance of uncertainty, for example, as well as the striving for certainty, are particularly tied to one key dimension of conservative thought - the resistance to change or hanging onto the status quo, they said.

The terror management feature of conservatism can be seen in post-Sept. 11 America, where many people appear to shun and even punish outsiders and those who threaten the status of cherished world views, they wrote.

Concerns with fear and threat, likewise, can be linked to a second key dimension of conservatism - an endorsement of inequality, a view reflected in the Indian caste system, South African apartheid and the conservative, segregationist politics of the late Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-South S.C.).

Disparate conservatives share a resistance to change and acceptance of inequality, the authors said. Hitler, Mussolini, and former President Ronald Reagan were individuals, but all were right-wing conservatives because they preached a return to an idealized past and condoned inequality in some form. Talk host Rush Limbaugh can be described the same way, the authors commented in a published reply to the article.

This research marks the first synthesis of a vast amount of information about conservatism, and the result is an “elegant and unifying explanation” for political conservatism under the rubric of motivated social cognition, said Sulloway. That entails the tendency of people’s attitudinal preferences on policy matters to be explained by individual needs based on personality, social interests or existential needs.

The researchers’ analytical methods allowed them to determine the effects for each class of factors and revealed “more pluralistic and nuanced understanding of the source of conservatism,” Sulloway said.

While most people resist change, Glaser said, liberals appear to have a higher tolerance for change than conservatives do.

As for conservatives’ penchant for accepting inequality, he said, one contemporary example is liberals’ general endorsement of extending rights and liberties to disadvantaged minorities such as gays and lesbians, compared to conservatives’ opposing position.

The researchers said that conservative ideologies, like virtually all belief systems, develop in part because they satisfy some psychological needs, but that “does not mean that conservatism is pathological or that conservative beliefs are necessarily false, irrational, or unprincipled.”

They also stressed that their findings are not judgmental.

“In many cases, including mass politics, ‘liberal’ traits may be liabilities, and being intolerant of ambiguity, high on the need for closure, or low in cognitive complexity might be associated with such generally valued characteristics as personal commitment and unwavering loyalty,” the researchers wrote.

This intolerance of ambiguity can lead people to cling to the familiar, to arrive at premature conclusions, and to impose simplistic cliches and stereotypes, the researchers advised.

The latest debate about the possibility that the Bush administration ignored intelligence information that discounted reports of Iraq buying nuclear material from Africa may be linked to the conservative intolerance for ambiguity and or need for closure, said Glaser.

“For a variety of psychological reasons, then, right-wing populism may have more consistent appeal than left-wing populism, especially in times of potential crisis and instability,” he said.

Glaser acknowledged that the team’s exclusive assessment of the psychological motivations of political conservatism might be viewed as a partisan exercise. However, he said, there is a host of information available about conservatism, but not about liberalism.

The researchers conceded cases of left-wing ideologues, such as Stalin, Khrushchev or Castro, who, once in power, steadfastly resisted change, allegedly in the name of egalitarianism.

Yet, they noted that some of these figures might be considered politically conservative in the context of the systems that they defended. The researchers noted that Stalin, for example, was concerned about defending and preserving the existing Soviet system.

Although they concluded that conservatives are less “integratively complex” than others are, Glaser said, “it doesn’t mean that they’re simple-minded.”

Conservatives don’t feel the need to jump through complex, intellectual hoops in order to understand or justify some of their positions, he said. “They are more comfortable seeing and stating things in black and white in ways that would make liberals squirm,” Glaser said.

He pointed as an example to a 2001 trip to Italy, where President George W. Bush was asked to explain himself. The Republican president told assembled world leaders, “I know what I believe and I believe what I believe is right.” And in 2002, Bush told a British reporter, “Look, my job isn’t to nuance.”

I’d have to add “denial” to that list of conservative traits…but maybe that’s just part and parcel of “fear” and “fear of change” and “fear of the unknown”…why are the conservatives so fearful…why see a Commie behind every bush…why is everyone out to get “us”…why do “they” hate “us”???

Posted by: Lynne at April 23, 2006 12:29 PM
Comment #142488
(www.berkeley.edu—news—media—releases—2003—07—22_politics.shtml) Researchers help define what makes a political conservative

(www.worldpublicopinion.org—pipa—articles—international_security_bt—102.php?nid=&id=&pnt=102&lb=brusc)
Misperceptions, the Media and the Iraq War

Interesting (links in post above).
However, as pointed out in that:

“The researchers conceded cases of left-wing ideologues, such as Stalin, Khrushchev or Castro, who, once in power, steadfastly resisted change, allegedly in the name of egalitarianism. “

… which means the problem is probably being over analyzed (and this is not an attempt to defending conservatives (myself being slightly left and leaning libertarian)), and another attempt to draw distinctions between political parties, when it all really boils down to something more fundamental, which, regardless of perceived values, result in the same outcome. That is, what people say and do are two, completely different things. The polls and studies should look at the actions, and voting records, and final results. There are probably many more similarities , than differences, which is why voters are perplexed, what gives rise to the terms “Republicrat”, “Demopublican”, and why incumbent politicians refuse to pass numerous, badly-needed, common-sense reforms while problems grow in number and severity.

If voters really want change, they need to realize that parties are not the problem or solution.

What those parties consist of is the problem.

Voting such that the parties conintue to take turns is not working is it ?

But, the partisan warfare is very seductive.
Millions of Americans are totally consumed with it (I used to be one of them).

The party thing is the big lie. It is what keeps voters trapped in the circular pattern of thought and behavior, without realizing how they are all being duped, and distracted from the fact that voters are being used and abused on a massive scale.

Democrats are probably going to win back the executive branch and a majority in congress, but things will not improve.
It will get worse, because party does not matter. Parties are more about perception than reality.

Most voters have not figured this out yet, and most likely, won’t until it is too late, when the pain and misery of decades of ignoring corrupt govenment becomes all too painfully clear.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 23, 2006 1:25 PM
Comment #142489

Goodkinged

You stated the I proposed recognition of Cuba. That was incorrect. I asked a question, why not,in light of relations with other communist countries,notably China. I am still waiting for an answer. I do not share the view of some that conservatives are essentially unable to address complex issues expressed by some others here. Please do not prove them right. How about an answer that goes beyong Florida politics or the sugar lobby.

Posted by: BillS at April 23, 2006 1:33 PM
Comment #142495

Goodkinged

furthur: I merely copied the definition of liberalism given AS the political context. Just how is this out of context?Because you do not want to accept it? Is the American Heritage Dictionary slanted ,just like CNN? Come now.

Posted by: BillS at April 23, 2006 1:54 PM
Comment #142502

another post from a conservative…

“It is so sad to see such missguided thinking but then again look at Howard Dean and the type of thinking that has taken down the democratic party politically. I am glag to see they are trotting him back out now that the black hotel worker comment has cooled off.now the dims can get the Chocolate’s all fired up again over New Orleans and yes N.O. is a chocolate city that will never be governed by vanilla. It makes you feel good to think that I might be a angry vanilla troll but you see there are millions of us every where all around you.The dimms need to brush there teeth and move on remember to much chocolate will rot your teeth.”

OK - anyone not on the liberal side of things have an issue with this one? Are conservatives all for one and one for all - or can you weed your own gardens?

Posted by: tony at April 23, 2006 2:30 PM
Comment #142521

Conservatism is a bankrupt philosophy which is driven by the Evil and embraced by the Ignorant. The more Intelligent a Conservative is, the more Evil they must be… Posted by: Betty Burke at April 22, 2006 10:47 PM

I have said it before, Betty Burke, you rock!
I have said this before too, this is the real Rpblcn party home page:
http://evil-guide.tripod.com/

I hope you won’t become discouraged and bail on us, Posted by: Tim Crow at April 22, 2006 08:40 PM

Many already have, look at this thread on the democratic side with all the republican and independant posters. If people just stopped responding to their nonsense, other might want to contribute.
I gave up earlier in the month after threads were flooded with long nonsensical posts by Sicilian eagle, D.A.N., and joebagodonuts. I don’t come into here to read that crap. When people respond to it, they just get more of the same.

Posted by: ohrealy at April 23, 2006 4:22 PM
Comment #142533
I think due to public opinion at the time Al Gore would have invaded Iraq had he won Florida.

I disagree. Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11. The terrorists were not from there. They had no monetary ties. There was no evidence they had weapons of mass destruction.

The sad truth of it is that Bush manufactured evidence and made suggestions to manipulate the public into believing Iraq had something to do with 9/11. It’s so hard to believe it didn’t but that we still went there that a lot of people still hold onto the idea. For instance, 75% of our soldiers think that’s the reason we are there. And isn’t that criminal - soldiers laying down there lives for something that’s just not true? I respect them being there, but I think they should know the real reason - to set up a democracy in the Arab world, not as 9/11 payback.

There are many historians who already believe Bush may be one of the worst presidents in US history. These are cautious people. They could hedge their bets by saying possibly worst in the 3 generations, worse than Nixon, etc., but they are not. So what I don’t understand, I guess because I am a democrat, is why people are still talking about the parties being the same. Was Hoover the same as Roosevelt? This administration and congress has recieved the worst grade of all time for any that ever existed. That’s not the same. That’s like taking a piece of crap and a hamburger and saying that real food must be something in the middle. They both have their problems, but I’d much rather eat the hamburger thanks.

So - what’s the deal? Do people just not see what a horrible job the current administration is doing? I don’t know. I think a lot of people do. We’re somewhat insulated in these blogs to the perceptions of real people, because many of us are true believers. When I hear the two parties are the same, I pray that normal people don’t think that, just diehard Republicans.

I also think that most people have recognized by now that Republicans as a group are less willing to admit failings and learn from them. Also, they are a little prideful, and too willing to point the finger. It’s anyones fault besides their own. We see this on the Republican boards here all the time.

Anytime anything goes wrong Republicans claim Clinton would have done the same thing - it’s so beside the point. You’re supposed to do the right thing - regardless. Bush has brought us to the brink - do people really need to be pushed over to come to their senses? Or would that even help?

Posted by: Max at April 23, 2006 5:19 PM
Comment #142534

Is anyone interested in examining the difficult issues that need to be worked out between the US and China?

How about discussing the history and significance of the movement in China that prompted the protest? Wouldn’t it increase everyone’s understanding of this isolated event to see it in the larger context of current cultural change in China?

No takers?

Apparently not. I don’t support the hate speech referenced above as evidence of the conservative position. I have yet to see reasonable liberals make a clear rejection of hate speech by parties claiming to represent the liberal ideology.

If as ohrealy suggests you wish to ignore any opinions that don’t agree with you, that’s certainly your right. I merely suggest that it is beneficial to examine more than one point of view.

Posted by: goodkingned at April 23, 2006 5:25 PM
Comment #142538

BillS

Regarding normalizing relations with Cuba:

I don’t have much direct knowledge of the political effects of changing the US relationship with Cuba. I have great sympathy for the plight of the Cuban people who are being ground into poverty through Castro’s policies. However, I do think that allowing normalization would give lifeblood to Castro’s administration and not precipitate the sort of economic and cultural changes that would improve the lives of Cubans. It is my understanding that the overwhelming majority of immigrants from Cuba do not support normalization for exactly that reason. Castro won’t rule Cuba forever and at that point I think the US could change their policies.

The US must deal with China and I do think that the Chinese government must be pressured to change their economic and human rights policies. Bush acknowledged these issues in the address that was disrupted by the protester.

There is little that the US can do to force China to change their policies, especially without the support of the world community. China is an economic powerhouse with deadly nuclear capacity, however the fact that China depends on the US to purchase their products is a leverage. The Chinese economy will be so interlinked with the US economy that any major disruption to the US will adversely affect China. It is my hope that the inherent nature of economic globalization will force the Chinese to alter their policies.

Posted by: goodkingned at April 23, 2006 5:42 PM
Comment #142576
RGF wrote: I have fired immense amounts of evidence and analysis at people like Jack and d.a.n. only to be completely ignored or worse, got a response that was silly and clearly not about the argument or the issue at all.

RGF, you say you fired immense amounds of evidence and analysis at people?
Perhaps that’s your problem?
You fired (i.e. attacked). That begets the same, of which most will not back down from.
By the way, while I respect Jack’s viewpoints, and his right to those viewpoints, there is extremely little that Jack and I have in common.

You have been provided with immense amounts of evidence and analysis by several people, which you ignored. And you even stooped so low to play the race card, as evidenced in an earlier exchange below:
______________________________________

RGF wrote:
What tribal nation are you a member of, d.a.n.?

d.a.n wrote: I am an American, born in Oklahoma, and living in Texas. You are the first I’ve ever heard refer to American as a tribal nation.
RGF wrote: I simply don’t buy that you are native american and yet don’t instantly jump at the chance to identify your heritage.
d.a.n wrote: RGF, Why not? You can’t believe others are not itching to make a race issue of it, you like?
RGF wrote: The same exact accusations you hurl at the Mexicans have been thrown before at the Irish, Italians, etc.
d.a.n wrote: OOOhhhhh….you reveal your own racism, since I’ve never mentioned race, color or nationality. Just borders. Both the U.S./Canada and U.S./Mexico border. And I never said what race any illegal aliens are, because they are of all races. It is you that brings race into it.
______________________

RGF, you seem to have a grudge. Why does it seem when you can’t win any argument based on facts and evidence, you resort to personal attacks and racism? Or, run off to some other thread to disrespect them to others, and try to recruit others to take your side against them. How childish and cowardly is that? If you don’t like this blog, why do you continue to frequent it?

goodkingned wrote: Calls to banish all persons currently or formerly involved in politics and elect entirely, unexperienced persons, by Tony and d.a.n… .

goodkingned,
I can’t speak for Tony, but your assessment of what I (d.a.n) have said is in error. All I’ve advocated, many times, is removing irresponsible incubments, which only makes sense. No? I’ve said many times, keep the good ones, if you know of any.
To twist my words into something else is false and unfair. Visit my site One-Simple-Idea.com and you’ll see it too recommends ousting irresponsible incumbents.

ohreally wrote: Many already have, look at this thread on the democratic side with all the republican and independant posters. If people just stopped responding to their nonsense, other might want to contribute. I gave up earlier in the month after threads were flooded with long nonsensical posts by Sicilian eagle, D.A.N., and joebagodonuts. I don’t come into here to read that crap. When people respond to it, they just get more of the same.

If anyone is writing crap, it’s revealed by the excerpt above. Even though I don’t agree with joebagodonuts, sicicilianeagle, or many others, I have not seen any of them stooping to the childish, personal, sniping and backstabing seen above.

The three of you ought to seriously consider how usefull this (or any) blog would be if you three were the only ones here agreeing with each other all the time.

If you don’t like others’ viewpoints, then perhaps you should try to poke holes in their logic, instead of attacking them personally, which you have done, revealing your own character for all to see.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 23, 2006 8:56 PM
Comment #142580

>>The US must deal with China and I do think that the Chinese government must be pressured to change their economic and human rights policies. Bush acknowledged these issues in the address that was disrupted by the protester.

Posted by: goodkingned at April 23, 2006 05:42 PM

And, he acknowledged the protester’s point by having said protester arrested. In the land of the free and the home of the brave…he had the protester arrested. In the land of laws, as in the Constitution, which guarantees free speech, he had the protester arrested. While he was addressing inequalities of human rights in China, he was having the protester arrested…in America. Whee!

Posted by: Marysdude at April 23, 2006 9:13 PM
Comment #142581

goodkinged

Thank you for your reasoned response. It should come as no surprise I disagree with you. I also share sympathy with you about the economic plight of the Cuban people but I would attribute it more to the economic embargo by the US than to Castros policies. How old is that embargo 30-40 years? You mentioned there is little the US can do to change Chinas policies. I would submit the same applies to Cuba and the failure of this embargo is exhibit A. Seems to me, if there is any validity to the arguement that trade opens up dialoge and leads to more open governments ,that the embargo is conter-productive.Not to mention I enjoy a good cigar every once in a while.
I was shocked to find that the infant mortality rate, generally a good indicator of quality of life in a society, is better in Cuba than the United States. I did not check the litercy rate as yet. Also a good indicaor. Lets do it. Relying on the opinion of exiles is specious at best. I know some Philipino expats that think Marcos was wonderful.
I will not try to defend Cubas human rights record nor (sadly) will I try to defend the US record any more.
Castro is an old man dispite the best efforts of the CIA. Now is a good time to mend some fences with a close nieghbor in my opinion. Oddly Bush is in a better position to approach Cuba than any president in a generation.I wo
n’t hold my breath. I will try to get back to you about China after dinner if the baby lets me.
Regards
BillS


Posted by: BillS at April 23, 2006 9:30 PM
Comment #142593

If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”
~ The Dalai Lama

See folks?This is why the president coined the phrase compassionate conservative.

And all along you thought he wasn’t deep…Geez……

Posted by: sicilianeagle at April 23, 2006 10:37 PM
Comment #142594

I can understand the Falun Gong protestor/reporter (47 year old Wang Wenyi) from Epoch Times being removed from the ceremony, but, what law prohibits or justifies punishment of exercising one’s free speech?

Besides, that whole 21 gun salute, the strolling past the troops, and the fife and drum thing was a lot of pomp and nonsense. There should be a law against that sort of waste of tax payers’ tax dollars. Wang Wenyi is protesting the persecution of the Falun Gong.

So Hu Jintao was upset. If he felt disgraced, it is his problem. It is interesting that Hu had pre-warned the White House in advance of who to admit to the ceremony, and the protestor (Wang Wenyi) had already (in 2001) slipped past Jiang’s security in Malta, and got into an argument with Jiang. If Bush planned the whole thing, I’d say that was one of the smartest things he’s done yet. But, now, Wang Wenyi was charged with a misdemeanor for “Attempting to Harass a Foreign Official”, which carries a penalty of up to six months in jail? Never mind the persecution of Falun Gong. If Hu was upset or inconveniences, I’d say that’s tough. Get over it. Perhaps people wouldn’t go about protesting if the government didn’t violate human and civil rights, and limit free speech. The last thing we, in the U.S. need to do, is take after China, and punish people for speaking their mind. The best message we can send is to let Wang Wenyi go free, without so much as a fine. Perhaps she won’t get invited back to a White House ceremony, but she should be released.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 23, 2006 10:39 PM
Comment #142600

>>And, he (Cheney/Bush) acknowledged the protester’s point by having said protester arrested. In the ‘land of the free and the home of the brave’…he had the protester arrested. In the land of laws, as in the Constitution, which guarantees free speech, he had the protester arrested. While he was addressing inequalities of human rights in China, he was having the protester arrested…in America. Whee!

Posted by: Marysdude at April 23, 2006 09:13 PM

There…I’ve said it again…

Posted by: Marysdude at April 23, 2006 11:19 PM
Comment #142601

>>And, he acknowledged the protester’s point by having said protester arrested. In the ‘land of the free and the home of the brave’…he had the protester arrested. In the land of laws, as in the Constitution, which guarantees free speech, he had the protester arrested. While he was addressing inequalities of human rights in China, he was having the protester arrested…in America. Whee!

Posted by: Marysdude at April 23, 2006 09:13 PM

And, again!

Posted by: Marysdude at April 23, 2006 11:24 PM
Comment #142628

d.a.n.

I bow to your reasoning. It was incorrect to say that your position is that ALL incumbents should be removed. I still believe that you have your own fish to fry and sometimes lose sight of the issue being discussed in your zeal to pursue your goal of ousting irresponsible incumbents.

I agree that diversity of opinion is important. Everyone has a right to express their opinion. It would be a boring and unproductive world if everyone agreed. However, I also believe that civility is essential for intelligent discourse and too often comments posted here are thinly veiled hate speech based on unreasoning prejudice.

The balance of power goes back and forth in the political arena. Those on top, don’t stay on top indefinitely, so I don’t think a political philosophy is as important as a sense of personal ethics which dictates how you should treat anyone regardless of their political philosophy. Sweeping generalizations such as all widgets are evil or I hate all widgets, frighten me. That sort of mindset is indicative of someone who will abuse whatever power to which they are privy.

BillS:

Howdy,

Re: Cuba

You will probably find that Cuba has a high rate of literacy. Educational reform is one of Castro’s few strong suits. However, while a relatively high percentage of Cubans are literate, the society doesn’t reward higher education. Professionals often work in menial positions because they are unable to support themselves in their chosen profession. I suppose that is a legacy of Castro’s communist roots. Castro’s Cuba takes a dim view of intellectual and artistic achievement because dissident thinkers often come from these sectors.

Cuba is desparately poor, but while Castro controls the economic system I don’t think that allowing US trade would help. Cuba’s economy has been blindsided twice. First, with the advent of Castro and the introduction of the current economic system, and then, when the Soviet Union stopped proping up Cuba as their proxy. Communism will never work in Cuba and US trade would just be another prop. The funds from tourism allow Castro to minimally maintain this dinosaur of an economic system. The people don’t benefit unless they work at the hotels and restaurants which serve the tourists.


Marysdude:

You can say that bit as much as you want, but that doesn’t change the fact that it is illegal to disrupt functions of state. Protest and free speech, like everything else in any society that accepts the rule of law, has limits. Ms Weng was granted admission to this event with the understanding that she would be functioning as a journalist. Protesters were granted permission to protest in an area that was under more security. When she accepted her press pass, she understood the parameters of acceptable behavior that went with the privilege and she violated them. There are excellent security reasons to severely punish this sort of offense. Surely, you can see the potential danger of allowing unregulated contact with visiting dignitaries. Aside from the potential physical threat, I don’t think that international diplomacy is the purview of one individual with a limited agenda. US foreign policy is relegated to representatives who have been selected through the election process. One person cannot hijack a nation’s foreign policy discussion, no matter how worthy their cause. Her actions are disrespectful to the American citizens whose interests are being represented by their duly elected representative, in this case President Bush.

Posted by: goodkingned at April 24, 2006 2:46 AM
Comment #142638

Ned:

Some of the proposed actions:

- Overthrow of the rule of law by violence, by Ms. Burke.

Hmmm… Do you mean, in the same way as Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton and George Washington proposed: Overthrowing The Rule Of Law By Violence?’

Just checking - because, you see, that’s exactly what they did.


d.a.n.:

You have just done an Intentionally Disingenuous thing. I am very upset at you for it. You took:

The researchers conceded cases of left-wing ideologues, such as Stalin, Khrushchev or Castro, who, once in power, steadfastly resisted change, allegedly in the name of egalitarianism.

entirely out-of-context. And you did it deliberately, becase the very next paragraph said:

Yet, they noted that some of these figures [Stalin, Khrushchev, Castro] might be considered politically conservative in the context of the systems that they defended. The researchers noted that Stalin, for example, was concerned about defending and preserving the existing Soviet system.

And you did it knowing full well Joseph Stalin and many other so-called “Socialist” leaders were, in fact, Tyrants far more in accord with Fascism than with what they pretended to be representing!

Shame on you, d.a.n.! You are far too smart and (so I thought) far too wise to need to do a thing like that! Obviously, there is a Conservative Core within you that “Libertarianism” simply doesn’t explain. And if it sounds like this is coming from an Irish Scold: it IS! It’s the “special” Mushroom Stew for you, my gentle lad, if you keep that up!


ohreahly:

Thanks again. It seems so Plainly Apparent. Why is it that so few of us can recognise it? You, me, Lynne, phx8, Adrienne, MarysDude, LawnBoy. And maybe Aldous (frankly, I don’t know: he’s got me confused, at this point).

WHERE DEM BALLS???

See you at the barricades…

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 24, 2006 4:09 AM
Comment #142639

That just ATE part of my post!

I had written:

As “WHEREDEMBALLS” often says, “WHERE DEM BALLS???

The first part vanished in-between “Preview” and “Post” somehow!

Weird.

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 24, 2006 4:13 AM
Comment #142641

goodkinged

Thanks again for an itelligable response.Seems to me that good health care and education are “strong suits” indeed. It does seem unfair to have full relations with Vietnam and an embargo on Cuba, Then again the Cubans would be even more competion. Anyone that can keep a 52’ Chevy running for fifty-four years would be tough to beat.

One of the dissapointments I have about the China talks is that in the past,before high level talks with the US the Chinese regime has realesed some prominent dissidents from prison. That did not happen this time. One reason for this is because the US no longer has the moral authority to criticize China’s human rights record. That authority was squandered at Gitmo and Abu Gareb. Sad
We were also in a weak position to demand real changes in China’s currency valuation because we need China’s support in N.Korea and Iran. We need them because the Bush administration scared both countries into developing nukes with Bushes “axis of evil’ speech coupled with the invasion of Iraq.

Regards

Posted by: BillS at April 24, 2006 4:40 AM
Comment #142646

BillS:

You keep late hours also. I bet the baby has something to do with that.

Re Cuba:
I really take my lead on Cuba from the attitudes of the people who have immigrated from there, so I don’t support making it any easier for Castro to operate his compound. This position is easier to hold when I see the company that Castro keeps.

Re China:
The incidents at Abu Gareb were blown out of proportion for political reasons. Wrongs were done. People were punished. More specific criteria for prisoner treatment were implemented. I’m satisfied. Of course I’m referring to the s&m photo ops. (By the way, that leather gear isn’t military issue. I think they brought that with them)

You and I might differ on the degree of discomfort military prisoners should be subject to in order to gain timely information, but official interrogation tactics weren’t the focus of the Abu Gareb scandal.

I don’t have any problem with Gitmo. The prisoners there were fighting without benefit of uniform or a recognizable chain of command. In my opinion, we could have shot them on the battlefield without violating any established international policies. Anyway, from what I’ve seen they are treated very well at Gitmo. I personally would favor military tribunals to determine their fate, but politics muddied the water and the Bush administration dropped the ball.

Until China gets all the dissident residue from their tank treads, I don’t think they can compare their human rights record favorably with the US record.

Now I really must call you on the assertion that North Korea and Iran developed their nuclear programs in response to anything the Bush administration has done. We both know that North Korea has been actively developing their nuclear program since before Clinton came into office.

I’ll grant that Iran may have hastened the schedule for their weapons program in response to fear of US intervention, however that program existed for at least ten years. I think they have ramped up the pr now because they are trying to take advantage of Sharon’s departure from the Israeli government.

Well, that’s my two cents. I enjoyed the chat.

Posted by: goodkingned at April 24, 2006 5:51 AM
Comment #142647

BillS:

About Viet Nam:
I’m not sure but I think that we restored normal relations with Viet Nam to facilitate the return of MIA bodies. Not sure though.

About health care in Cuba:
Basic health care was improved, but the whole system is somewhat backwards. You wouldn’t be happy with treatment for a difficult condition.

Bye.

Posted by: goodkingned at April 24, 2006 5:58 AM
Comment #142657
Betty Burke wrote: And you did it knowing full well Joseph Stalin and many other so-called “Socialist” leaders were, in fact, Tyrants far more in accord with Fascism than with what they pretended to be representing!

Did what? Of course Stalin and the others were tyrrants. Who said they weren’t? They were murderers. Why are you implying that I ever thought otherwise ? I’m not sure where you’re comin’ from at all Betty.

Betty Burke wrote: Shame on you, d.a.n.! You are far too smart and (so I thought) far too wise to need to do a thing like that!
Thank you. But I believe you have misunderstood my point completely, and somehow twisted it into something completely different. My point is merely that there is a more fundamental human tendency at work (more so than political philosophy). What’s the beef with that? How does that deserve shame?
Obviously, there is a Conservative Core within you that “Libertarianism” simply doesn’t explain.
Betty, I’m sorry to have to say this, but it seems that you see conservatives around every corner.

Now you are calling me a conservative too? Strange indeed. You might want to have that looked at?

Also, I don’t know how you are making this leap of logic. How does my saying a fundamental human fault (laziness, greed, abuse of power) is the real problem, rathter than a political philosophy? I’m simply boiling it down to a more basic root cause. How that deserves your scolding, being shamed, and being called conservative (as if it were a nasty word) is beyond me ?

And if it sounds like this is coming from an Irish Scold: it IS! It’s the “special” Mushroom Stew for you, my gentle lad, if you keep that up!

Betty Burke, It’s one thing to criticize others’ logic, but quite another to threaten them if they keep it up. Ever heard of free speech? Either way, I am not going to retract or apologize for saying a more fundamental human trait is at the root of things, more so than a political philosophy.

It seems that you believe conservatives are evil. You are as bent on that as I am at saying voters should vote out irresponsible incumbent politicians. However, I’ve know lots of conservatives that are not evil. By the way, facists and truly evil people are not all conservatives. Stalin was pretty far left and facist. Hitler was facist, but only slightly right.:

From linked article: The researchers conceded cases of left-wing ideologues, such as Stalin, Khrushchev or Castro, who, once in power, steadfastly resisted change, allegedly in the name of egalitarianism.
d.a.n wrote: … which means the problem is probably being over analyzed (and this is not an attempt to defending conservatives (myself being slightly left and leaning libertarian)), and another attempt to draw distinctions between political parties, when it all really boils down to something more fundamental, which, regardless of perceived values, result in the same outcome.

Betty,
I am simply saying that a more basic human trait is at work here. It is which fuels greed and abuse of power.

You seem to be reading something else into what I said. Power corrupts. I’m saying it’s more simple than political philosophy. It boils down to power and greed and laziness, regardless of political philosophy.

Betty,
Therefore, you have completely twisted what I said into something else and then scolded me for it? For me claiming that a more fundamental human tendency is at the root of the problem? Where’s the crime? So be it. Scold way, but your attempt to silence others here, and threaten them by saying “It’s the “special” Mushroom Stew for you, my gentle lad, if you keep that up!” is very revealing. Now I see a new side of you that I had not before. Very interesting.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 24, 2006 9:42 AM
Comment #142659
goodkingned wrote: I still believe that you have your own fish to fry and sometimes lose sight of the issue being discussed in your zeal to pursue your goal of ousting irresponsible incumbents.
GKN, We’ve all got our fish to fry here. Nothing wrong with that. But, the fact is, the root of all of our problems, the many reforms we discuss here daily, and the solutions are all futile until voters do their part too, and design our systems better to adequately account for the human factor.
goodkingned wrote: However, I also believe that civility is essential for intelligent discourse and too often comments posted here are thinly veiled hate speech based on unreasoning prejudice.
I could not agree more. Just like your prejudice compelled you to label me as merely anti-incumbent.
goodkingned wrote: The balance of power goes back and forth in the political arena. Those on top, don’t stay on top indefinitely, so I don’t think a political philosophy is as important as a sense of personal ethics which dictates how you should treat anyone regardless of their political philosophy.
I could not agree more. I don’t believe I ever addressed you in a derogatory manner or mischaracterized anything you ever said before. Correct me if I’m wrong.
goodkingned wrote: Sweeping generalizations such as all widgets are evil or I hate all widgets, frighten me.
I could not agree more. Sweeping generalizations are often too simplistic. But, often, the most simple and fundamental causes are overcomplicated. One such thing is the root human trait at the root of most of our problems, and our lack of understanding of it, and failure to adequately design for that human factor in our government, organizations, and society.
goodkingned wrote: That sort of mindset is indicative of someone who will abuse whatever power to which they are privy.
Power corrupts. No doubt about it. That is a common theme in my web-site and much of my writing. I understand that better than most.

Responsibility = Power + Education + Transparency + Accountability

Corruption = Power - Education - Transparency - Accountability

goodkingned wrote: I still believe that you have your own fish to fry and sometimes lose sight of the issue being discussed in your zeal to pursue your goal of ousting irresponsible incumbents.

So, for this thread about political contrasts, I’d say the root causes under political philosoly is well within the topic.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 24, 2006 10:11 AM
Comment #142660

d.a.n.:

Thanks for your careful review of my post. You make good points, however I wasn’t talking about you except in the fish to fry category.

I have never found you to be disrespectful or impolite. Those comments were directed at Ms. Burke who is not so civil.

I’m not surprised she threatens you with “special mushroom stew”. She finds threats of physical damage amusing and maintains that murder for political goals is a tactic embraced by the founding fathers.

Posted by: goodkingned at April 24, 2006 10:29 AM
Comment #142663

GoodKingNed,
Thanks. Yes, I do have a big fish to fry. No doubt about it. I believe the success of our society hangs in the balance. I’m hoping (but not too hopeful any time soon) that voters will start holding their elected officials accountable, and this thread seems (to me) to make matters worse by obscuring things, and exaggerating political philosophies which I think are a symptom of a deeper, underlying (natural) human tendency. If we accept that and design our systems better with more education and transparency, we will reduce opportunities for unethical self-gain, and create a more responsible government and transparent society. That might sound like a pipe-dream, but it is the next step to the next higher level. It may take a long time, maybe not in our lifetime, but we’re attempting it now. We’re just not succeeding yet.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 24, 2006 11:08 AM
Comment #142666

d.a.n.:

Enjoyed the chat. Keep the faith.

Posted by: goodkingned at April 24, 2006 11:17 AM
Comment #142667

Me too. Thanks!
Yes, without faith, there is only hopelessness.
(and I attach no religious or supernatural significance to that).

Posted by: d.a.n at April 24, 2006 11:21 AM
Comment #142777

Almost all of the above comments should be posted in the Republican and independent sides of the forums. I do not understand why they are having this discussion on this side. There is literally nothing for anyone who is a democrat to read or respond.

Posted by: ohrealy at April 24, 2006 7:46 PM
Comment #142782

Posted by: d.a.n at April 24, 2006 8:00 PM
Comment #142887

d.a.n.:

1.) I was only Poking You with the “Irish Mushroom Stew” bit: obviously not a “Threat” (how on earth would I feed it to you over the Internet?) - that’s just silly.

2.) With regard to content, I objected to your use of the One Paragraph from the study which seems to devalue it - *IF* the immediately following paragraph isn’t included, for Context. Otherwise, I had no quibble with your point about Laziness, and so forth.

I think we just managed to bump into each other without actually connecting, if you take my meaning. You seem to have no awareness of how your selective cut-and-paste from that study seemed to be an attack on its validity, and I assure that I had no intent to impugn your post other than for that (seemingly) disingenuous act.

So, my apologies for any part of mine in the misunderstanding. As for:

Betty, I’m sorry to have to say this, but it seems that you see conservatives around every corner.

Well, d.a.n., the thing is this: they’ve Ruined America - both in a real sense and in the eyes of the World - which they’re about the task of Ruining as we speak. They’ve destroyed the Environment and want to destroy it some more; they’ve destroyed the Economy and show no signs of stopping; they’ve destroyed the American Ideal and besmirched the very name of this once-great land in their non-stop orgy of Pillage, Rapine, Profiteering, and Slaughter - and I’ve just about had enough of them, to be frank, d.a.n.!

Like disease-carrying cockroaches, they spawn their filth through a carefully-planned campaign of Wilful Ignorance and Outright Lies and, when caught in the harsh glare of Truth, they scurry for cover behind Spin and the Power Network.

So yeah, d.a.n. - I guess you could say that I have my Stompin’ Shoes on, and a big can of Verbal Flit in one hand, and a keyboard as a Swatter in the other. And I’m going to smash every one of the unclean, soulless little buggers that I come across. In case you hadn’t noticed: this country is infested with them!

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 25, 2006 6:27 AM
Comment #142888

Poor Old Ned:

Whining again?

Let’s see:

She finds threats of physical damage amusing and maintains that murder for political goals is a tactic embraced by the founding fathers.

War is Murder, ned. Mass Murder.


Concord

Lexington

Bunker Hill

Brandywine

Germantown

Saratoga

Valley Forge

Camden


Did you think the Founders simply waved tea-cozies at the Redcoats to “overthrow the Lawful Government” - as you recently whined about me?

And “overthrowing the Lawful Government” is exactly what they did, in case you haven’t realised it yet.

Years after the Revolutionary War was fought and won, Thomas Jefferson opined in letters to other Founders that he believed bloody Revolution every five-to-ten years would likely be necessary in order for the American Ideal to flourish and Liberty be protected.

You see, I know about Jefferson - and you, sir, are no Jefferson.

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 25, 2006 6:52 AM
Comment #142898

Betty -

I agree with your points, but I find your tone a bit over the top. THEY attack the messenger to discredit the content… and if we sink to that level… then that diminishes the difference between us. I can understand your anger - I feel it, too. It seems to me that your tone damages your message and allows others to easily dismiss what you have to say.

Posted by: tony at April 25, 2006 8:39 AM
Comment #142909

Betty,

OK, Betty. Please bear with me for a minute …

Here is one very important thing to carefully consider:

  • It is not conservatives that are the problem.

  • It is not Republicans (or Democrats).

  • It is something you will find in all parties and societies (i.e. many people everywhere).

  • It is something much more fundamental.

  • It is that is the root problem, and it knows NO party boundaries. That is the flaw in your logic.

  • There is a solution, but only if you truly understand the problem, and how to neutralize their opportunities for self-gain.

If you target conservatives (or liberals) only, you are going to miss the real cheaters. Also, falling for that game is falling for the clever game perpetuated by irresponsible incumbents that fuel it. Some are all too fond of wallowing in it.

Power and opportunities have the uncanny power to corrupt many people. It’s nearly impossible to detect it in advance. Many are honest until that one day when Power and opportunity present themselves.

So, you are missing the real target by attacking conservatives. I know you feel very certain about your belief, and you are not going to let go of it easily, but think about it for a moment. The reason our government is corrupt is because of poor design, and failure to account for a very basic human factor, making our government rife with opportunity for self gain. A lack of Transparency allows it to grow.

If you want to solve this problem, you will attack it from a more logical angle. You are not going to eliminate all conservatives (or liberals), and each by themselves not even the real problem. We are all culpable.

If you really want to help government and society to the next level, you have to understand the basics, and that unpleasant fact, and how to neutralize it.

So, Education is the first step. Not bashing or targeting conservatives, since many are actually OK, just like many liberals are OK, and many Centrists are OK. Only the extremists (facists/dictators, anarchists, extreme socialists, or extreme conservatives, etc.) are bad, and there’s a lot of those too, but they, fortunately, are a minority.

You should not confuse or categorize all conservatives or liberals as extremists or bad people. It’s simply not true. You are searching for answers, but you have arrived at the wrong conclusion by targeting conservatives as the root of all evil, and the cause of our nation’s demise (and it is in a demise).

Education will lead to the understanding of the importance of Transparency, which will lead to outrage, and a desire for Accountability, which will finally result in Responsibility.

It’s really that simple.

Now, if you agree with that, how do you fix it?

First, you have to understand how corruption in government is always trying to grow. Secrecy (which we have witnessed) and lack of Transparency breeds corruption. The problem is that lazy voters have allowed the problem to get out of control. Most of the incumbent politicians are corrupt, and they will not pass badly-needed, common-sense reforms to increase transparency, as evidence by their refusal to pass many common-sense reforms for campaign finance, ONE-PURPOSE-PER-BIL Amendment, Lobbying Reforms, Bans on Gifts, Balanced Budget Amendment, Ethics Commissions, Election Reform, etc.

Therefore, voters are left with their last and only option.
They must vote for more responsible replacements.
The only leverage voters have is the leverage they’ve always had, and were always supposed to use when necessary.

Vote out irresponsible incumbents, always.

Either way, since voters have the mechanism (their right to vote), right there under their very own noses, it truly is a government Of / By / For The People.

Education is the first step.
No grand schemes.
No vast conspiracies.
No need for a lot of money or organization.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 25, 2006 10:05 AM
Comment #143023

Betty…I find your tone a bit over the top

Betty Burke, your tone is just fine and thank you for providing something worth reading in this forum.

they’ve Ruined America - both in a real sense and in the eyes of the World…destroyed the Environment…destroyed the Economy…destroyed the American Ideal and besmirched the very name of this once-great land in their non-stop orgy of Pillage, Rapine, Profiteering, and Slaughter
Yahoo, ride em Betty!

Today, GWBush ordered a temporary suspension of environmental rules for gasoline, allegedly to keep prices from going up more. Can ANWR drilling be far behind? We have to get control of Congress before Myrkowski and Stevens turn Alaska into one big oil slick.

Posted by: ohrealy at April 25, 2006 2:08 PM
Comment #143250
They’ve destroyed the Environment and want to destroy it some more; they’ve destroyed the Economy and show no signs of stopping; they’ve destroyed the American Ideal and besmirched the very name of this once-great land in their non-stop orgy of Pillage, Rapine, Profiteering, and Slaughter - and I’ve just about had enough of them, to be frank, d.a.n.!

Betty, I agree except with who they are.
They are not conservatives or liberals.
They are cheaters, masquerading as one or the other.

Seriously, think about it.
It does not make sense that all that is evil joined one party (i.e. Republicans).

The problem and solution is not about party.
Cheaters, like the driving human trait driving all of it, does not know party boundaries.

You seem pretty smart, and I admit to thinking, at one time, just like you (e.g. demonizing the other party). If you are wrong, you are targeting the wrong group. The group you should be after are in all the parties, and if you (and others) learn to recognize their game, we will finally solve this serious problem.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 26, 2006 12:25 PM
Comment #143339

tony and d.a.n.:

I’m sorry, but behind both of your calls for Moderation (normally a laudable thing) is the assumption of a Moral Equivalency.

It’s the same error the Press makes, when striving for “journalistic objectivity.” They have two guests on a talk show: a Conservative and a Liberal. Here’s how the interview goes:


Moderator: So, we’re here today to debate the War In Iraq with two gentlemen with opposing Viewpoints on it: Republican Congressman Hitler and Democratic Senator Gandhi. Congressman Hitler, please tell us your Views.

Conservative: We should kill all Non-White and Foreign People immediately, taking all of their land, mineral rights, and natural resources for ourselves. This is only right, since it is America’s Manifest Destiny.

Liberal: Hey, wait a minute! That’s just Evil…

Conservative: You’re a Traitor; and all of your kind should be shot! You weaken this country. Frankly, you make me sick.

Moderator: Well, there you have it, America: two strongly Divergent Views on the subject. Tune in tomorrow when we’ll have a spirited Debate on the practice of Cannibalism.


You see? You presuppose that the Conservatives haven’t destroyed everything they’ve touched in their quest for Greed and Oppression throughout all of history.

THERE IS NO MORAL EQUIVALENCY!!!!!

Progressives progress the Human Species; Regressives regress it. What part of that simple FACT escapes you?!?

I’m sorry, guys, but I have to go with ohrealy (and Edward R. Murrow, and Winston Churchill, and Others) here: there can be no truck with Fascists. Polite Discourse only serves to allow them to do more Harm.

There is NO Moral Equivalency between their worldview and the Progressive worldview. They destroy the earth and they destroy humanity. The time for Moderate Debate is long past over. And when you hear the sound of their jackboots kicking down your doors, don’t say that Betty didn’t warn you. She did.

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 26, 2006 6:18 PM
Comment #143395

Careful Betty,
You’re starting to sound like the very thing you hate.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 26, 2006 10:54 PM
Comment #143499

Ms. Burke:

Your talents are underutilized in a print medium. Have you considered radio as a venue? Perhaps you could pull Air America from it’s financial doldrums with your brand of political commentary.

Posted by: goodkingned at April 27, 2006 11:54 AM
Comment #143580

Betty Burke, thanks again for expressing the liberal viewpoint so well, and your nice typing too.

A stopped clock is right twice a day and even Hister was right twice: Men make laws, and men change laws; and if you tell a big enough lie, and repeat it often enough, etc.

The Big Lie has become the official policy of the current crop of Rpblcns. The agenda is to change our form of government into an oligarchy.

BTW, GWBush was right once so far. He invited the Dalai Lama to the White House. I am still waiting for that stopped clock to be right again.

Posted by: ohrealy at April 27, 2006 3:06 PM
Comment #143651
You’re starting to sound like the very thing you hate.

d.a.n.: I am fully aware of the Dangers of Fighting Monsters and gazing too long into the Abyss they dwell in.

And, if it weren’t for the simple fact that there IS NO MORAL EQUIVALENCY between Their message and Mine, I would be more mellow about it.

Indeed, before their Transgressions became Atrocities over the past Six Years, I was content with Polite Debate.

But the absolute paucity of America’s most pessimistic imagination, in the face of the many heinous travesties they have committed, beggars the mind’s most hideous conjecture, and requires a more militant response. Of necessity.

Let’s say that, instead of America and the World, Karl Rove and Dick Cheney were gang-raping Your Mother. Would you be so sanguine, then? Would you engage them in Polite Debate? Have a Moderate Discourse with them, in an attempt to get them to stop?

Or would you take the nearest Wood Axe / Fireplace Poker / Tire-Iron / Meat Cleaver into your hand and put a stop to the horrible Crime?

For me, America is my Home, and the World is my Mother. I am merely reacting appropriately, according to my perceptions.

Am I stupid, d.a.n.? Do you believe me to be either Ignorant or Unaware? Tell me: what reason, in my words, ideas, or arguments have I given you to believe me to lack Intelligence or Morality?

If you cannot find me to be either Immoral or Ignorant, then perhaps you might just consider the concept that I am Correct…

(Or not. But I have to give you the benefit of the doubt, that Logic may prevail upon you to do so.)

Think about it.

Posted by: Betty Burke at April 27, 2006 5:26 PM
Comment #143686
Betty Burke wrote: Am I stupid, d.a.n.? Do you believe me to be either Ignorant or Unaware? Tell me: what reason, in my words, ideas, or arguments have I given you to believe me to lack Intelligence or Morality?

Betty,
Not at all. In fact, I wrote that you seem pretty smart. I certainly never said you were stupid or ignorant, and even admitted to being once the same way you are now. You believe conservatives are the problem like I used to think liberals were the problem. Both are wrong.

Your anger with conservatives is obvious, but I believe it is misdirected.
You’re bent on making conservatives the target, but conservatives alone are not the problem.
You have a lot of anger and energy, and it would be good to see it spent on the right thing.

Parties (excluding extremists) are neither the problem or solution.

Moderate conservatives and liberals (from all parties), which is most people, are not the problem. The extremists maybe, but there is something hidden among those conservatives and liberals that is really the problem. And voters are cuplable too.

The problem is cheaters amongst us, everywhere, in every party.

You know them.
You’ve met them.
We’ve all met them.
They are self centered.
They are often inteligent.
They gravitate toward power and opportunity.
Power provides more opportunity for abuse and self-gain.
They resist reforms (like most in congress do now).
There are cheaters, and they are both Democrats and Republicans.

I’m reaching out to you, because you seem so convinced you are right.
But your assertion doesn’t hold up to careful analysis, because:
(1) not all bad people are conservatives;
(2) not all bad people are liberals;
(3) not all bad people are Republicans;
(4) not all bad people are Democrats;
(5) most conservatives and liberals are fairly centrist;

You’d be correct to bash extreme conservatism, but that’s not most people.

Neither are liberals.

Betty Burke wrote: Think about it.
Betty, I have thought about it long and hard (for decades). That is how I finally arrived at what I believe is the truth. The problem is with all of us. We lack education to understand one very important thing about the human species and how to adequately account for it in our government, organizations, and society. As a result, it breeds corruption. While some people are always honest, power and opportunity has the ability to corrupt many.

Betty, please consider that. And please consider this. When you target conservatives, it is really no different than those that target liberals. And, you are doing it in a fashion like I’ve not seen here before. It really appears like someone who has been completely seduced by the partisan warfare that politicians love to fuel. These politicians are on both sides (in all parties). Look closer. The bad things that politicians are doing to this country are not just conservatives. It is both. If varies a bit, depending on who the “In-Party” or “Out-Party” is, but it’s about the same in the long run. If you want to get government on the right track, it has to start with the voters and education, because there is no longer enough responsible incumbent politicians left in congress to accomplish anything in a hurry, unless it is raises or cu$hy perk$ for themselves.

Corruption is rampant, in both parties.
The following is needed as soon as possible, and voters must peacefully force congress to pass these reforms to increase transparency:

  • Strengthen the illegal-gratuities statute by reinstating the theory of
    “status gratuities.” This would prohibit a public official from
    receiving a gift from a favor-seeker meant merely to keep the official
    “happy” or to “create a better working atmosphere” - without a
    connection to a specific official act;

  • Allow citizens to file ethics complaints in the House of
    Representatives;

  • Routinely send ethics complaints in the House and the Senate to
    outside counsel for investigation;

  • Pass campaign finance reform measures to ban soft
    money, and require sham “issue ads” that are really campaign ads to be
    paid for with federal, hard money;

  • Strengthen the FEC by appointing anti-corruption commissioners,
    increasing its investigative budget and authorizing random audits of
    campaigns;

  • Require “527” organizations to disclose their contributors and obey
    federal, hard-money contribution limits if contributions are used for
    sham “issue ads.”

  • Congress likes to brag about being tough on crime.
    It’s time they walk their talk and get tough on their own rampant corruption.

Betty, if you want to focus that severe disgust and animosity at something, make sure it is focused on the right target. There are two fronts. Irresponsible incumbent politicians, and slumbering voters.
Some day, maybe a few years, or maybe a few thousand years, we will figure this out.
Meanwhile, anything else just pushes that day further into the future.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 27, 2006 6:48 PM
Comment #144058

Just recently found this bumper sticker: “HURRY! Exxon needs the money!” Just waiting to put it on my truck, when all the SUVs finish passing me, going 80+ mph…! By the way: we still need those body bags, W! When you going to send them?

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Comment #157023

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Posted by: orange county home inspectors at June 12, 2006 11:31 PM
Comment #158487

Bad move for Bush and his thugs to charge this woman. There is a difference between the two parties, but not much. When in power, the Democrats were just as corrupt.

Posted by: PoliticalCritic at June 16, 2006 6:17 PM
Comment #219059

can we chast on it ………

Posted by: rachel myers at May 2, 2007 1:09 PM
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