Democrats & Liberals Archives

Now Everybody is for Change

Republican ideas dominated political debates in the last few years because they knew how to frame the debate. Usually, those who frame the debate win the debate. So Democrats decided that this time THEY would frame the debate. And they are doing pretty well.

Republicans framed the debates in terms of how terrible liberals and Democrats are. Liberals are selfish, stupid, meek, sentimental, envious, anti-business, unpatriotic, Socialist and traitorous. They did such a good job that "liberal" is the strongest negative epithet they can produce. One of the worst things George W. Bush could say about Kerry is that he is a "Massachusetts liberal."

To support this message, Republicans used threats, scary propaganda, character assassination, smears and outright lies. Naturally, the electorate is appalled, which is why the Congress is now run by Democrats.

Hillary Clinton framed her presidential campaign message around this polarizing conflict between Democrats and Republicans. She said that she has the "experience" to win. She had the guts to fight conservatives and Republicans who have been denigrating Democrats for so many years. She knew how to beat them at their own game.

Edwards has a better message frame. He is going to help the poor and unfortunate among us. But he too, accepted the general Republican frame that depends on fighting and polarization.

Along came Barack Obama and changed the frame. He wants to "change" the way things are done in Washington. He wants to advance his ideals by talking to everyone, not necessarily to arrive at consensus, but to consider all opinions and arrive at a pragmatic solution most could live with.

Obama, with his inspiring message of change, beat Clinton in Iowa. Suddenly, all Democratic hopefuls are talking about change. Clinton says that she has produced change with her experience. Edwards says he wants to change the business-bias of our government. They are trying to drag change into the frame they have been following.

Now that Republicans see that people do not want the conflict-ridden society they have produced, they too are calling for change. When I heard the Republican candidates talking about change, and McCain accusing Romney as being for change, I was delighted.

Now everybody is for Barack Obama's change. Isn't this a good reason to believe that Obama will win the Democratic nomination and then the election?

Posted by Paul Siegel at January 8, 2008 6:36 PM
Comment #242594

OH Please, politicians have been talking about change since at least the Roman Empire. What the hell does saying “I’m for change” mean to anyone with a brain? What drivel. Americans have nearly a year to discover what the two final candidates mean by change and to fully understand their policies. One thing we know for certain, there will be a change in the Presidency. God help the person who wins.

Posted by: Jim at January 8, 2008 6:58 PM
Comment #242595

What key change has Obama made in this country so far?

What is his greatest achievement?

Where is the beef?

He does give a great speech.

P.S. (The emperor has no clothes on)

Posted by: Craig Holmes at January 8, 2008 6:59 PM
Comment #242598

You are driving down a road. You decide you don’t like your direction and you want to change it. Time for a change you say!

Which direction do you go…? Is anyone pointing a compass, and when they do how many people want to go a different way?

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 8, 2008 7:10 PM
Comment #242602

Remember when GWB claimed to be a uniter,not a devider.Must admit he brought change to Wasington.
People are tired of the bitterness. They are MORE tired of getting screwed over and ignored while corporations call the shots.They are tired of trying to raise their families on the shrinking supply of crumbs that fall of the table that Obama wants everyone to have a seat at.The gluttons have been there too long already.Compromise? You are either pro-union or anti-union.Whats the compromise,just a little anti-union?You either believe in universal healthcare or believe in healthcare only for those that can afford it. You believe in Habeaus Corpus or you do not. Whats the compromise,only imprison some people forever without access to trial?You either support spending your retirement and sacrificing your sons to pursue a forign empire to enrich oil companies or you do not.Whats the compromise? Just small wars?
This change the MSM ,and pardon me,you are talking about is not about making nice nice. Thats a deversion. Its about kicking corporate lobbiest out of Washington.Thats why people are flocking to the polls. Thats why Huckabee is doing well also. Its not just Dems that are fed up.
Edwards has been calling for THAT change for a long time. Its not new, as you inferred.You said he wants to help the poor as if that is his only issue. Sure he does. That should be a Dem bedrock position. He was the first with the nerve to bring it up. He was the first to offer a truly universal healthcare plan that Clinton copied. Obama has yet to propose a plan that would cover everyone.Most of Edward’s change agenda is designed to rebuild the middle class. For example:On Nafta he wants to scrap it and re-negotiate a treaty with labor provisions that have teeth. Obama,well maybe,Clinton,undeclared.
Obama is a deversion from real change. The powers that be are terrified of Edwards.Clinton was their best shot but they realized her electability problems,so now they are backing Obama. Watch his coffers fill. Edwards has stayed ,voluntarily,within public financing guidlines and refuses contributions from lobbiest or corporate pacs.You have favored this for a long time. Put your money where your mouth is and at least look at Edwards policy proposals.

Posted by: BillS at January 8, 2008 7:58 PM
Comment #242604

CHANGE? The only change we’ll get is who resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Posted by: KAP at January 8, 2008 9:19 PM
Comment #242605


Say, buddy, can ya spare a dime? Any change will do.


Posted by: googlumpugus at January 8, 2008 9:43 PM
Comment #242607


I had the exact same thoughts when Obama took Iowa. He has been campaigning on change since the beginning. He obviously was smart enough to take a serious look at what people desire and wise enough to pursue that avenue. The american people are fed up with the same old stodgy corrupt politics that have delivered only lip service to the voters while the lawmakers capitalize at our expense. He is imo, other than Edwards, the only candidate that delivers a genuine message. Hillary may be an intelligent woman, but unfortunately she has that ugly aura of old school politics surrounding her. Edwards would be the only other candidate, republican or democrat, that appears to be running on conviction and seemingly truly believes in what they preach. All the rest are suddenly jumping on the change bandwagon but in the end all they would deliver is more of the same tired self serving crap we are all so sick of.

GW claimed he was a uniter but in the end he was what most of us knew he would be. Just another political hack with a selfish agenda capable only of creating an even greater degree of division. So long as we keep electing people like him we will never escape the corrupt grip of self serving politics.

I am giving Obama and Edwards a serious look. One of them will get my vote. All I have to do is decide which one is most capable of delivering on that promise of change.

Posted by: RickIL at January 8, 2008 10:53 PM
Comment #242630

It is always easy to be for change. You can imagine something better than you can achieve, so it is always a safe bet to claim to be for change.

Think about change in your own life, however. Would a majority of the changes you could realistically expect in your life all be good?

If you are aleady in good health, how much change do you really want? If you are happily married, would it be a good idea to change your spouse? If you have a good job (as MOST people do, BTW) should you just quit and try your luck doing something completely different?

The call for change is nearly always pure BS. It works because it remains undefined. ALL challengers are for change by definition. This year ALL the candiates are challengers. Is it really surprising all of them call for change.

As I recall, the last successful candidate who did NOT call for change was Abraham Lincoln, who told voters not to change horses in mid stream. I wonder if changing to George McClellan would have been a better choice.

Posted by: Jack at January 9, 2008 10:07 AM
Comment #242634

look back at Bill Clinton’s messages from his election re: change sounds a lot like Obama.

I still have not decided which democrat to vote for and will settle for whichever one wins the nomination. I live in SC so I will need to decide soon.

I don’t like Hilllary’s connection to big business. I think that Barack is smart and a good motivational speaker but what does he have to show for all this anointing him as the second coming. John Edwards does nothing for me and I was orginally from NC. His platform was different in 2004 and now he is so impassioned about the poor and the middle class. I grew up in NC and I am the same age as he is. I remember nothing of him until he decided to run for the senate. If he was so into helping the middle class and the poor then show me what he did for NC during his formative years and his years as a lawyer earning big bucks. How come his name is not well known in NC as a humanitarian.

If you look for change in the dictionary, the definition is way long. Change is a nebulus word that lacks a clear definition. All candidates will make some change even Hillary would be a good change from Bush. I have listened to Barack and listened to Barack and he sounds more like a preacher than Huckabee. I want someone who can do things differently but work the system cause he can talk a good game but let’s be honest-washington will not change that much. There is more to it than just getting everyone to the table. To get people working together there has to be compromise which I believe is important but I equally believe there are somethings that you don’t compromise on. I believe that Obama can do things differently in Washington but I also believe he is too green to fully understand and appreciate what he would be up against.

Again we have all talked as if there are only 3 candidates. I am seriously looking at Bill Richardson and would recommend we all do that before we are so quick to jump on the bandwagon for Hillary, John, or Barack.

Posted by: Carolina at January 9, 2008 10:36 AM
Comment #242639

John is right about change.
Take our energy policy. It was written by Mobile Exxon with the primary purpose to maximize profits. Half the congressmen and three fourths the senators have a check in their pockets from the fossil fuel companies. If you can get by that and convince the politicians to change our policy. Then the corporations will run 40 million dollars worth of misleading ads on national TV and the citizens will be on their side. Like they did when Hillary tried to change healthcare. Either way it’s going to be a fight!

Posted by: Mike the cynic at January 9, 2008 12:08 PM
Comment #242641

Hillary tried changing healthcare by making it illegal for anyone to go outside of ‘the system’ she created. Sorry, but that deserved to die the quick death (and usher in the Contract With America) that it did.

And if it gets offered up again, as it looks like it will, it will get rejected again. People want solutions, not a prison sentence.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 9, 2008 12:13 PM
Comment #242642

Gee,a conservative being skeptical of change! Not especially surprising.When is your next piece about great the economy is REALLY doing or poverty is not a problem because some poor people are obese and have microwaves?
Must say,though, I am gratified at how well your boy,McCain is doing.A Rep candidate with integrity.He represents more of a change than you are willing to admit.Plus it will be great fun watching that slimeball Rohmny try to swiftboat him and attack him on immigration,furthur assuring the Latino vote for the Dems for the next 50 years.

Posted by: BillS at January 9, 2008 12:34 PM
Comment #242650
People are tired of the bitterness.

Compromise? You are either pro-union or anti-union.Whats the compromise,just a little anti-union?You either believe in universal healthcare or believe in healthcare only for those that can afford it. You believe in Habeaus Corpus or you do not. Whats the compromise,only imprison some people forever without access to trial?You either support spending your retirement and sacrificing your sons to pursue a forign empire to enrich oil companies or you do not.Whats the compromise? Just small wars?

Oh, in other words, “You’re either with us or against us?”

I love the rhetoric that both parties use and then claim that the other side is the one causing ‘the great divide’ between us. Instead of accepting that each side might have issues that need to be addressed they instead move right into the emotive demagoguery.

There are more choices than the two, there are more solutions that the ones you say exist. People know this but they let emotion get in the way of their decision making and don’t hold their politicans to them. But they know it in the back of their heads, which is why both parties are universally despised and hated by most people in this country. Presidential and Congressional approval polls anyone?

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 9, 2008 1:07 PM
Comment #242655

Jack said: “The call for change is nearly always pure BS.”

Republicans called for change in the last decade, and man, did we ever get it.

Democrats are calling for ending our occupation of Iraq. Universal health care insurance. Lowering the cost of health care delivery. Increasing wages and drawing better educated and talented persons to become teachers. Lowering the cost of college education so that cost does stand between a capable mind and will and a highly productive career. And there are other noteworthy changes they are calling for.

Sorry, but, I think you will find the majority of Americans will view these changes in a positive light, not as B.S. as you characterize them.

Posted by: David R. Remer at January 9, 2008 1:41 PM
Comment #242656

Rhinehold said in reply to BillS regarding his direct questions:

“There are more choices than the two”

That’s it? How lame. BillS asked what is the compromise between between universal health coverage and no universal health coverage? He asked what the compromise is between being pro union and anti-union? Between respecting Habeas Corpus and disregarding it when convenient? Between spending on war and seeking alternatives to war?

And the best reply forthcoming from you is: “There are more choices than the two”. No specifics, no details, that’s it? I confer upon your comment the Lamest Reply of the Day award. If your reply were a horse, it would be shot and buried for mercy’s sake.

Posted by: David R. Remer at January 9, 2008 1:53 PM
Comment #242660

Lame? You’re talking to me about lame now?

BillS stated “You are either pro-union or anti-union” “You either believe in universal healthcare or believe in healthcare only for those that can afford it” “You believe in Habeaus Corpus or you do not”.

The fact is, as I stated, there are other positions than those he expressed, including one for healthcare in this thread that I just got done fleshing out in a modicum of detail (time and size contraints for this forum), whether you agree with it or not doesn’t allow for you to say I have not provided details or specifics, which I always attempt to do when asked seriously, unlike some…

But what is even lamer is, coming from you “No specifics, no details, that’s it?”

If you want specifics or details, you’ll have to provide a research fee.

Rhinehold, I do requests when I am paid. Throw $50 my way and I will do your homework for you. Otherwise, do your own.


Posted by: Rhinehold at January 9, 2008 2:28 PM
Comment #242661

FYI, since it was in the previous article and not this one:

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 9, 2008 2:31 PM
Comment #242663

Its an historical race for more than the reasons you pointed to. We have the opportunity to elect the first Morman,the first over 70 yo,the first Italian Catholic as well as the first woman or person of color.
As to opening your eyes,I am afraid that is a personal responsibility.Its my observation that this campaign has more policy specifics available than usual,mostly on the Dem side but not entirely.

Dr& RH

So the compromise position here is that RH is only a little lame? Thanks for demonstrating my point LOL.

Posted by: BillS at January 9, 2008 3:03 PM
Comment #242666

Touche’, Rhinehold. Except that your HSA’s don’t answer the universal health coverage issue at all. It is not a compromise. It is health care for those who can afford HSA’s and to live without the benefits other’s HSA’s are insufficient to cover.

So, I repeat, where are your specifics in replying to BillS’ inquiries. Still waiting…for something other than lame and empty replies.

Posted by: David R. Remer at January 9, 2008 3:29 PM
Comment #242670

I am guessing then that you didn’t read the comment that detailed funding of HSAs for lower income individuals and using the HSAs to pay for catastrophic health insurance…?

BTW, I further work to call for the creation of a non for profit organization that would fund HSAs through charity, anyone submitting funds to that charity would then receive a 1 for 1 tax rebate up to the amount of their annual income tax that goes to fund them. I am guessing that we would see nearly full charitable funding of the HSAs for lower income individuals in short order…

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 9, 2008 4:00 PM
Comment #242730

The reason HSAs will not solve the major health care crises is that they do nothing to control cost. Without that element,any solution is doomed to fail as a broad solution,not just for those at the bottom but for all that are burdened with huge rate increases and diminishing quality.

Posted by: BillS at January 10, 2008 1:13 PM
Comment #242732

They do control costs by using market forces to ensure that prices are what can be handled and not arbitrarily set. This occurs, as I detailed, by removing the infationary 3rd and 4th party forces from the equation.

History tells us that the best way to control costs is market forces, not arbitrary governmenetal price controls.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 10, 2008 1:37 PM
Comment #242743

Poor Obama, it looks like John Kerry is supporting him now. Well, it was fun while it lasted, say hello to your new nominee Mrs. Clinton!

BTW, the picture I saw of Kerry leaning in with an arm around Obama while he is looking a little preturbed is PRICELESS. I may have to save that one somewhere…

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 10, 2008 4:26 PM
Comment #242748

Getting closer. Perhaps adding a body like the PUC so price increases at least have to be justified would improve your scheme.
Other than that your thoughtful policy changes are no more politically saleable than a single plan. Those 3rd and 4th parties won’t allow it.
Beyond that, we have a multitude of other systems to model that work well. The ones that work are hybrid single payer plans. Cananda is not a despotic country for example. Your fears of government limitations on freedom are not well founded in this case. Perhaps you do not fully appreciate that government is not the only threat to personal liberty.I have to work nearly a week a month to provide health coverage to my family. Thats a week a month I am basically enslaved to an insurance system holding the lives of my children hostage.If a government program can reduce that burden they are increasing my freedom,not diminishing it.

Posted by: BillS at January 10, 2008 5:25 PM
Comment #242776
Cananda is not a despotic country for example.

Despotic, no. As free as the US was designed to be? Not close.

Your fears of government limitations on freedom are not well founded in this case.

I’ve pointed out several ways that individual liberty is destroyed with these healthcare systems being offered.

A great example is one of Steve Kubby. Steve was diagnosed with cancer in 1968. In 1976 it has moved to his liver and all others diagnosed with this had a 100% mortality rate within 5 years. He and his doctor found that using marijuana was keeping for over 25 years.

But uhoh, this cancer patient that was growing about 3.5 pounds of marijuana in his basement for personal use was arrested, thrown in jail, had to flee to Canada at one point, was kept apart from the very drug that was extending his life… All because POLITICS and a police state we live in now were allowed to control his decisions about his own individual health and lifestyle.

Do you really think it is going to get better or worse when we allow government, the only entity that can legally use the force of a gun on us, to get MORE involved?

If you want to debate the liberty issues with me, I’ll all ears. But to dismiss them as paranoid fantasy is ignorant.

Perhaps you do not fully appreciate that government is not the only threat to personal liberty.

Actually, by definition, it is.

I have to work nearly a week a month to provide health coverage to my family. Thats a week a month I am basically enslaved to an insurance system holding the lives of my children hostage.

Yup, and we should find a way to fix that. If you had a way to work with the doctors and look for the one that treats you fairly with billing, you would. But you are blocked from that now by our current system AND the ones being offered.

If a government program can reduce that burden they are increasing my freedom,not diminishing it.

No, because to pay for it they are going to have to increaes your taxes the amount you were paying individually. IT ISN’T FREE.

As for your freedom, ask Steve Kubby what freedom is and isn’t.

Once we allow government to control our decisionmaking of how we live our own lives, and that will happen with a government funded healthcare system, we are not as free.

Perhaps we just have different definition of freedom. I view freedom as being allowed to make my own decisions about how I live my life and in return allow everyone else the same. It seems that you say it’s ok to give up some of that control of your own life if you can get a little temporary security, or even worse, a few bucks, in return.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 11, 2008 12:55 AM
Comment #242777
In jail after the arrest, Steve Kubby was deprived of medical marijuana and became seriously ill. His blood pressure shot up to dangerous levels. USC Medical Center’s Dr. Vincent DeQuattro, who made Kubby’s original diagnosis, wrote a letter to the court explaining Steve’s condition and warning the judge what could happen if Steve was further deprived of cannabis.

“ Please consider the consequences of Steve’s condition not being controlled. His tumor is manufacturing large quantities of norepinephrine (noradrenaline) and possibly epinephrine (adrenaline). Either compound in minute quantities could kill him instantly by causing sudden cardiac death due to arrhythmia or acute myocardial infarction, or sudden death due to cerebral hemorrhage or cerebral vascular occlusion. ”

Kubby described their ordeal in his official complaint,

“ During the entire three days I was incarcerated in the Auburn jail, my tormentors mocked me and my wife as medical-marijuana patients, going out of their way to punish us. Both of us were exposed to freezing conditions, and my wife contracted pneumonia as a result. I spent the entire night shivering and vomiting and could not even get a second blanket for my concrete holding cell. I recall one of my tormentors was a tall, muscular deputy named ‘Davis,’ who threatened me physically because I was too sick to complete the intake procedure… I also filed a written objection about my left eye going blind, and not receiving even a medical examination.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 11, 2008 1:29 AM
Comment #242780

I did not and never have dismissed your fears of government intrusion as a paranoid fantasy. I think you get carried away with concern sometimes. Your story is indeed evidence of an out of control government.I do not know where you are but I am in CA. We voted to allow medical pot use but the feds ,under the Bush regime have been harassing people.So much for the Rep concern for states rights.These stupid anti-drug laws are NOT part of any health care proposal. They have national mandated health care there. Why would,as you stated,Mr. Kubby flee there if they were so much more repressive.
My basic point is that there are othe private, out of control institutions that also enslave people.Its hard to look historically at which set of instituion has enslaved more numerically governments often become tools of the private institutions.
Outside of laborious refutations of many of your points IMO you just have not established any link between national healthcare and any loss of liberty. I would submit that in some aspects liberty would be increased by eliminating the rapaceous insurance robery that effects us all.People are forced to stay in jobs they do not want. People are forced to choose between medical cost and college for their kids or sometimes even food.To repeat,there are intitutions besides government that enslave people.

Posted by: BillS at January 11, 2008 4:01 AM
Comment #242787

The “power of choice,” is liberty and losing that power is a definite link between national healthcare and the loss of liberty.

You say its wrong that “people are forced to stay in jobs they do not want,” but yet, you advocate forcing people to participate in a program they do not want or do not agree with.
Are you saying your beliefs and your power of choice, is more important than anothers? Do you like it when others try to take away your power of choice?

“there are intitutions besides government that enslave people”

Besides government? How is being enslaved to govt any better than being enslaved to an institution?
It’s not, you are still a slave.

Posted by: kctim at January 11, 2008 10:36 AM
Comment #242788


There is a difference between deciding you have to stay with a company to pay your bills and being forced to do something at the point of a gun. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a private company get away with making people work against their will. That would be what we like to call ‘slavery’ and as I recall, that ended quite a while ago.

You don’t like ‘big business’, that is clear, but as bad as they are you can not make a valid argument that they FORCE anyone to do anything.

Only the government has that power.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 11, 2008 10:43 AM
Comment #242789
Why would,as you stated,Mr. Kubby flee there if they were so much more repressive.

You misread what I wrote. I said that Canada was not as free as the US was DESIGNED to be.

We currently live in a police state, and have for decades. And worse is that we accept it and many (the majority apparently) even defend it.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 11, 2008 10:46 AM
Comment #242848

BTW, just a small point, I don’t think it would ever be possible in the US at this point in our history that we would allow a law to be passed that made it illegal to speak a language in public. Well, perhaps it could, but it hasn’t yet…

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 12, 2008 12:37 AM
Comment #242852

Yes, making it illegal to speak a language in public is kinda dumb,no? How about making it illegal and throwing people in jail for smoking a plant that grows beside the road?

Posted by: Ray at January 12, 2008 5:33 AM
Comment #243260

Change is what brought us from stone age to today, it is necessary in society evolution.

There is an interesting discussion going on why is America so hard to change today

Posted by: Vladimir at January 18, 2008 9:51 AM
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