Democrats & Liberals Archives

Counterintuitive and Clever Can Be Two Different Things

A quitter is a winner, right? There’s been no shortage of spin out there about Sarah Palin’s abrupt and shocking departure from the Alaska Governorship. What makes it ultimately pathetic is that folks are trying to make the incomprehensibility of this move into a virtue, as if she’s playing three-dimensional chess blindfolded and winning.

I don't think its anything so glorious. She came out, made an announcement in a speech that had even Republican Commentators going like that duck from the Yogi Berra AFLAC commercial. One could say that when Palin saw the fork in the road in the direction of her rhetoric, she took it.

And what is she doing? Sticking to it, working her way through the rest of her term as a public servant, Demonstrating she can do the job? Or begging off and leaving the voters, who expected, shall we say, a more long term investment from their governor of her time, in the lurch?

This lady seemed to be unable to resist provoking arguments all over the place, getting into a fight with David Letterman, for crying out loud. (Quitting something and getting into a fight with Letterman didn't work that well for John McCain, either)

Some are suggesting she's doing this so she can go out and make speeches to drum up enthusiasm in the party, or so she can go become yet another right-wing voice on Fox News. Others are suggesting that she may be giving up politics altogether. Well, of all the possibilities, that might be the wisest of the paths she could take, because then the supposedly unforced resignation and its dizzy goodbye speech wouldn't have to make any kind of sense. If she's not planning to do anything political for the rest of her life, it wouldn't be an albatross around her neck.

Not a day or two goes by, though, before the Pundits, apparently having finished their gobstoppedness long enough to recover their cleverness, start singing their hosannas and lauding her brilliance. And yet we don't even know what she's going to do next. Not only are we ignoring the tone and the incoherence of the primary source, and the abject rarity of this kind of sudden, seemingly willful resignation, but we're speculating on the future cleverness of her actions. Actions we've yet to witness.

I have found that it's remarkably easy to declare somebody a genius for great decisions yet to come, for brilliant strategy still unknown. Takes care of that pesky little thing most valid arguments require: premises that aren't counterfactuals (any statement about the future qualifies).

I don't envy anybody this position. If Sarah Palin's actually bailing out from public life for good, then they just bought into the rhetorical equivalent of a mortgage security on the day before the crash. It wouldn't be the last time.

The Conservative press, in it's fervor to support the conservative cause, wants her to be brilliant, wants her to be charming, wants her to simply be a victim of the liberal media, instead of the agent of her own downfall, or the author of her own errors. Sure she can charm the base. That's why she's there. She said all the right things to folks on the Right who want to continue to indulge the fantasy of a party yet triumphant.

Hence the claims that Sarah Palin's a Keyser Soze waiting for the moment to get out of the police stations before she drops the false appearance. The greatest trick Sarah Palin's judgment ever pulled, was convincing the world it didn't exist.

Don't drop your coffee cup, folks. There are simpler explanations for these embarrasing incidents like this.

They are what they are. The Republicans have developed a tragic, truly tragic aptitude for self deception. To avoid admitting defeat to anybody, especially the hated Democrats, they say what they have to say in order not to say "uncle" They don't want to be pinned down to anything but a success. Failure is truly an orphan in the Republican party, and nobody's got the heart to admit who the fathers of their defeat are.

Or the mothers. What happens if you can't admit somebody's lacking in charm? What happens if the majority of other voters don't find your proudly abrasive stance so thrilling in its bracing defiance? What happens if you can't call a failure what it is, or whether you admit it in words or not, make the tacit admission of fault that comes with taking care of the problem?

Throughout history, flatterers have been the doom of the leaders and politicians who lend them their ears. The Republicans have created a system for themselves that does nothing but that, that does nothing but protect them from the lashes and scourges of a discourse they can't control.

The consequences of that closed in loop of a system was visible for all to see as the party declined and fell under Bush. Bad judgments were made lines in the sand worth fighting for. Excuses were offered for every mistake, explanations and apologetics for policies that didn't work. Those who questioned things, who said things now that are quite fashionable now Bush and the GOP majority are gone from office, were tarred and feathered. And now, only after having brought the rest of the country over the edge into disaster, do they suddenly wake up, recognize a crisis has come upon them...

Then blame a Democrats and Liberalism, renewing their conservatism by essentially doing the same things they were doing before with different rhetoric.

The Republicans need to break their addiction to ditto, detox their party's system from the narcotic of its own propaganda. Conservatives need to bring themselves closer to the perspective of the people whose trust they have lost, bring themselves back in touch with those they have scorned and ostracized. The alternative is a long haul in the wilderness.

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at July 6, 2009 9:08 PM
Comments
Comment #284100

Maybe she’s trying to protect her family, like a good mother.

Posted by: mike at July 7, 2009 3:56 AM
Comment #284105

“The Republicans have developed a tragic, truly tragic aptitude for self deception.” Great line Stephen, and it really hits home. I got so sick of every conservative talking head saying “don’t underestimate Sarah Palin or it will be your doom.” In hindsight, my misunderestimations were right on target. Her only political attribute is ambition. I’m sorry, it takes a lot more than that to be successful, and even more than that to be good.

If someone can tell me the point of that resignation speech, please let me know. It was more incoherent than some of Boris Yeltsin’s drunken speeches and I don’t speak Russian. I heard some pundit say that she is crazy like a fox … just remove the last three words.

Posted by: tcsned at July 7, 2009 7:52 AM
Comment #284107

People don’t get where she is by being completely dumb. I’m sure she’s got fairly decent skills at working politics behind the scenes, playing the internal game.

But that’s one game, out of many, and though Palin’s good at manipulating the opinions of the party base, good at pushing their buttons, she’s terrible in dealing with folks outside her natural constituency.

The Republicans have got to learn that self-serving politics will not regain them the middle. Even if they succeed in making people fear change, they are still one disaster away from being back at the bottom of the cliff they fell off of. The need to relieve the tensions that are pulling them down, and Palin unfortunately reinforces those.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 7, 2009 8:58 AM
Comment #284110

“People don’t get where she is by being completely dumb. I’m sure she’s got fairly decent skills at working politics behind the scenes, playing the internal game.”

But how hard is it to run for office as a republican in Alaska and get elected? As a conservative republican in Alaska and get elected? I don’t see this to be a major challenge.

Posted by: j2t2 at July 7, 2009 9:26 AM
Comment #284111

In the real world, Palin was thrust into the liberal media’s den of wolves, made some nervous misquotes, and yet, was still able to turn what was going to be a landslide into a much closer contest.
She brought millions of voters, who probably were going to sit home on election day, to the polls. Because of that, her and her family became the leftists ‘public enemy number one.’

The left doesn’t hate Palin because of her lack of experience, if that was the case they would hate the Obama.
The left doesn’t hate Palin because of a few bad interviews, if that was the case they would hate that other guy, I think his name is Biden or something.
No, they hate her simply because of her beliefs, and they hate her even more so because millions of voters share those beliefs with her.

Posted by: kctim at July 7, 2009 9:43 AM
Comment #284112

stephen

“What makes it ultimately pathetic is that folks are trying to make the incomprehensibility of this move into a virtue, as if she’s playing three-dimensional chess blindfolded and winning.”

this incomprehensible move as you put it may be because she’s decided to devote time to her family as opposed to putting up with the continuing bogus ethics investigations that the democrats keep conjuring up, or the fact that these bogus investigations have all but bankrupted her bacause of th mounting legal bills, it could be she’s tired of her family being trashed by a#$holes like david letterman, and the leftwing attack machine. if this is the case it would make the above statement completely asinine.

think about it stephen, maybe shes just had enough of it. on the other hand she may be considering a senate run in 2010, just speculation of course, but if she is at least she’s doing the decent thing and getting off the public dole while she does it, and allow someone else who will devote thier full attention to the business of being governor. thats more than i can say for obama who promised to finnish his senate term, but hey thats just one of a long list of promises he’s made and then completely ignored.

Posted by: dbs at July 7, 2009 10:12 AM
Comment #284113

kctim-

In the real world, Palin was thrust into the liberal media’s den of wolves, made some nervous misquotes, and yet, was still able to turn what was going to be a landslide into a much closer contest.

The liberal media crutch is killing your side. The problem isn’t that the media’s philosophically opposed to the candidate. The problem is, the media wants something else than just the candidate’s claims about their record, about their lives to work from.

Just airdropping her in, lying to everybody about what she did and what her past was, was a recipe for disaster from the start.

At best, she re-energized the right, but she lost them everything else. She was abrasive and offensive to many people in her manner, and she reminded everybody else too much of Bush.

And no, it was more than nervous misquotes. It was non sequiturs, it was abyssmal ignorance on the issues, it was any number of intellectual shortcomings.

Regardless of what you think, putting your hopes in people like her is a losing game. You need the people who can realize your interests through compromise, not somebody who can express your interest, but do the same kinds of things that have taken your side’s power to do much productive.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 7, 2009 10:17 AM
Comment #284114

No, no, no. We hate her because of her freedoms. Gotta keep those memes straight, kctim. You know us and Osama Obama are busy cavorting with terrorists.

Posted by: gergle at July 7, 2009 10:18 AM
Comment #284115

stephen

“getting into a fight with David Letterman, for crying out loud.”

if letterman had made a comment like that about one of obamas children the press would have screamed bloody murder. the fact that he would make such a disgusting comment just gos to show that he has no class. what crime did that woman commit to have her family torn apart by the media? the left must be mighty frightened of her if they’re willing to spend so much time, and effort trying to destroy her.

Posted by: dbs at July 7, 2009 10:22 AM
Comment #284116

“The liberal media’s den of wolves” line from kctim makes milk shoot out of my nose in fits of laughter. Stephen is right - that old GOP crutch is a lame, typical, and laughable response from a party with no direction, no ideas, and no values - even though the party espouses to possess each in spades. It’s not the media that smeared Palin. It’s Palin that smeared Palin. She’s a complete laughing stock. Yet anyone who disagrees with her is part of the “liberal media?” Pathetic. Until the lunacy of the far right dies away, the GOP will never regain the middle - and will never regain power until that happens.

Posted by: Tony at July 7, 2009 11:31 AM
Comment #284117

kctim & dbs,
Palin quit, so I don’t think she inspires fear so much as she confirms everything negative that’s been said about her. She’s a flake. She’s incompetent. And yes, she has a constituency.

She publicly responded to inappropriate comments about her family. It would be one thing if the comments had come from prominent politicians. However, these comments came from a late night comedian who is definitely not known for his class and good taste (although he can be pretty funny), and from some obscure blogger in Alaska. As prominent ultra-conservative columnist Goldberg noted the day before her surprise resignation, a politician cannot afford to respond to everything that appears on the web or late night tv.

I don’t think the word ‘fear’ applies to liberal attitudes towards Palin so much as disrespect and derision. Maybe it applies in the sense that the vast majority of Americans fear the combination of incompetence and a constituency attaining so much power.

Americans have seen this constituency at work during the Bush years. They make up perhaps 20 - 30% of the electorate. We saw these people during the Terry Shiavo debacle. We saw a third of the public still believing Saddam and Al Qaida worked together as late as last year. We saw them give Bush a positive approval rating.

No thank you. An arrogant, ignorant, inexperienced yet oddly self-assured version of Bush is unwelcome, and most Americans will treat such a person with disrespect. If either of you insist on belonging to such a constituency, please put forward a competent leader, someone like Huckabee. Rush Limbaugh does not count.

Posted by: phx8 at July 7, 2009 11:38 AM
Comment #284118

Stephen
“The problem is, the media wants something else than just the candidate’s claims about their record, about their lives to work from”

That is ALL they got with the Obama, and it was them being “philosophically opposed” to any and all Republicans which played out in the media. The Obama’s lack of experience and questionable actions were made light of, while just about everybody else’s was highlighted and distorted. At best, the Obama was qualified to be Biden’s VP, but I’d be willing to wager even Biden would have been smart enough to pick somebody more qualified.

“And no, it was more than nervous misquotes. It was non sequiturs, it was abyssmal ignorance on the issues, it was any number of intellectual shortcomings”

It was nervous misquotes to all but the partisans who were willing to do and say anything to stop the wave she created. The intellectual shortcomings were from the left because she did not answer how they thought she should or believe as they believe. Biden offered just as many “gaffes,” but isn’t it funny how the right doesn’t fixate on him and feel the need to destroy him?

Spare us the ‘evil Republican’ bit and telling “my side?” we should cave in to the left. You were told the same thing by the other side and, even though your party did put up moderates in order to win, you did not want that advice.
IF the leftists want compromise, they will leave the people and their rights alone and intact.

gergle
I have more important things to worry about than the few people who say some are “cavorting with terrorists.” Things like the takeover of the private sector and our individual rights, freedoms and lives.

Posted by: kctim at July 7, 2009 11:44 AM
Comment #284120

I lean to the left on many issues and I don’t hate Palin at all. It is easy to stick up for her recent resignation by blaming the dems for “hating” her, the media for ‘attacking” her and imagining that she saved the repubs from a rout this past election guys. Please continue to do so. Keep her in the limelight then cry because what she says and does is reported and because those on the left respond to her misdeeds.
Between her and Joe the Plumber the right has a shoo in ticket to the WH in 2012. IMHO this type of candidacy is just the remedy for what ails the repub party. Of ccourse I thought the movie “Idiocracy” was prophetic and it seems Palin and the Plumber would make it so.

BTW did you guys think it was OK when the right unleashed it’s propaganda wing on the Clinton’s and that by doing so the bar would be lowered for some time to come or did you just think because it was Clinton it was OK?

Posted by: j2t2 at July 7, 2009 11:47 AM
Comment #284121

Tony
The direction, ideas and values are there, some people just refuse to acknowledge them. Why? Because they fear the individual responsibility that comes with them.

Palin destroyed Palin? Then why didn’t the Obama destroy the Obama or Biden destroy Biden? Because with the latter two, the media went out of its way to tell us what was “really meant.”

Posted by: kctim at July 7, 2009 11:51 AM
Comment #284123

Get real Phx8. If she had hundreds of supporters instead of the many millions of supporters, the left wouldn’t even give her the time of day.

Posted by: kctim at July 7, 2009 12:09 PM
Comment #284124

“Biden offered just as many “gaffes,” but isn’t it funny how the right doesn’t fixate on him and feel the need to destroy him?”

Not as funny as how they ignore the obvious kctim.

http://michellemalkin.com/2009/03/19/audio-comedy-gold-bozo-the-vice-president-is-looking-out-for-you/

http://blog.newsweek.com/blogs/stumper/archive/2008/09/23/biden-turns-on-the-gaffe-machine.aspx

Posted by: j2t2 at July 7, 2009 12:20 PM
Comment #284125

dbs, Lisa Murkowski R. Senator from alaska the incumbent is a moderate Republican, She is generally pro-choice on abortion and supports stem cell research. She is also a member of the Republican Majority For Choice, Republicans For Choice, and The Wish List (Women in the Senate and House), a group of pro-choice women republicans, Is up for re-election in 2010 what are you saying ? Palin is not that Brash is She ?

Posted by: Rodney Brown at July 7, 2009 1:02 PM
Comment #284126

And that compares to what is said about Palin how?

I can guarantee three things J2:
1- the left wants to destroy and silence Palin.
2- those same people will cry and moan when it happens to one of their own and they will continue to defend, ignore and excuse anything that gets in the way of their agenda.
3- the coming election cycles are going to be the ugliest ever, lines will be drawn and the crap is really going to hit the fan.

Posted by: kctim at July 7, 2009 1:46 PM
Comment #284127

kctim:

1- the left wants to destroy and silence Palin.

Not so sure about that… Any half-intelligent liberal does NOT want Palin to go away. If they did, it wouldn’t be such a big deal. Palin has a way of alienating all but the hard-core republican base, which only represents about 20-30% of the electorate. Palin falling out of the picture is BAD news for liberals as she may be replaced by someone more moderate and polished… someone that might make independents such as myself vote for him/her.

2- those same people will cry and moan when it happens to one of their own and they will continue to defend, ignore and excuse anything that gets in the way of their agenda.

Yup… you hit that one on the nose.

3- the coming election cycles are going to be the ugliest ever, lines will be drawn and the crap is really going to hit the fan.

Like it or not, the republicans are going through a re-tooling cycle… the same one the dems went through in the mid-90’s when they had to re-invent themselves to stay relevent. And they will… nobody wants a one-party system (hell… I don’t even want a two party one!) Until they once again come together with a unified, polished, and amicable platform, they are only going to continue to excite their base while further alienting moderates and independents. I was silly enough to think McCain could do it, but he kind of went up against the wrong candidate at the wrong time (just like what Hillary had to contend with in the primaries). Until the repubs can come together as a unified front, you are correct… it will be quite ugly.

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at July 7, 2009 2:52 PM
Comment #284128
1- the left wants to destroy and silence Palin.

Not so sure about that… Any half-intelligent liberal does NOT want Palin to go away.

I guess much on the left on this site aren’t half-intelligent… phx8 started the ball rolling back in September with the ‘her baby is her grandaughter’ rumor that showed just to what lengths those on the left wanted her gone. In fact, a look at the articles posted during the time show clearly that they wanted to win the presidency on the vp pick since they couldn’t on experience.

http://www.watchblog.com/democrats/archives/006142.html#260396

Posted by: rhinehold at July 7, 2009 3:00 PM
Comment #284129

Rhinehold… well… I can’t comment on the intelligence level of any site that allows ME to contribute, however…

The whole baby-as-grandaughter routine WAS a bit much… but any worse than those on the right calling Obama a Muslim or suggesting terrorist ties? Them’s politics…

No… my point was that she makes herself a bit of any easy target by not reading up on foreign affairs and suggesting that her state’s physical proximity to the barren and non-populated part of Russia would make her qualified to deal with the likes of Putin. Liberals would MUCH real be able to jump all over gaffes like these instead of acutally having to deal with a polished, experienced candidate like Romney.

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at July 7, 2009 3:15 PM
Comment #284130

dbs-
Letterman was making a joke in poor taste, of that there is no doubt. Palin could have been more dignified about it, though. When folks started going after Obama’s family, he drew the line, but he drew it without having to be nasty about it. Palin had no such grace. She basically called Letterman a pedophile, despite the fact that most people could figure out it was the oldest Palin child, already infamous for her out of wedlock pregnancy, who he was referring to.

As for her destruction? Give me a break. Clinton survived worse (Both). Palin’s just got an unrealistic idea of how the modern media operates.

kctim-
I think it would be informative to remember that Obama wasn’t just airdropped into his candidacy. He had already won a Senate Seat, made a highly regarded, highly visible debut at the 2004 Democratic Party Convention, and he had 20 months of debates and campaign appearances, coming up to the time he got on the ticket. His past, warts and all, was already out.

Obama was a known, and to many, promising quantity. As he asserted his leadership over the party, he did not become known for being the guy whose actions were questionable. Palin’s candidate was the one with that problem.

You equate one with the other, but I think you do so with little justification. If Palin had been in the Republican Primary, it might have given her a higher profile, and the media more time to get to know her. But she was instead just dropped into the limelight, with a story regarding who she was and what she believed in that was full of holes, full of disturbing details.

It was nervous misquotes to all but the partisans who were willing to do and say anything to stop the wave she created.

Yes, and next she will come out in clothes that are only visible to those who love America. Good thing she’s in fine shape.

But seriously, SNL was able to skewer her by having her quote Palin’s words practically verbatim. Whatever waves she’s creating, they’re washing around in a small pool.

Biden could string together coherent arguments. The right didn’t try to destroy him because he could tear right back into them. And you’re right. They didn’t focus on him. They had Obama.

IF the leftists want compromise, they will leave the people and their rights alone and intact.

By leftists, do you mean the majority of Americans who decided on Democrats, On both ends of Pennsylvania avenue? Most of the “Leftist” legislation is supported by the people, people who trust them to do things better than the Republicans. You talk about people’s rights, what about the rights of the Americans who deliberatedly increased the Democrat’s margin of majority?

Why must we perpetually compromise with the Minority. I don’t mind laws and constitutional principles that preserve the rights of the minorities, but the majority rules in this country’s congress.

Sooner or later, they’v got to let the legislation come out for an up and down vote.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 7, 2009 3:29 PM
Comment #284131

rhinehold-
I recall telling you that that was controversial even within the party, and that the question was only resolved with the only somewhat less stunning revelation of Bristol Palin’s real pregnancy.

The real issue with Palin, at this point, is that if the Right convinces itself that what Palin did was a smart move, it will only be out of ideological desperation, not on the merits.

I’m not sad to see her go; hopefully her Lt. Governor will be a better and more dedicated servant to the Alaskan people. What I also hope, though, is that the Republicans stop indulging in this intellectual self-lobotomy that they’ve been forcing on themselves for the past few years.

When I talk about them needing a new kind of conservative, that’s exactly what they need. They need GOP leaders who can think and speak for themselves, not folks whon have essentially been deprived of all choice as to what they’re running on. Until a Republican can raise taxes and support a woman’s right to choose, until being a moderate in the Republican Party isn’t synonymous with being an endangered species, They will be politically hemmed in by Democratic Moderates who are willing to crossover on issues, for voters who have a few conservative positions, but not necessarily completely conservative ones.

It is Republican’s complete lack of freedom to speak for themselves, and decide for themselves that prevents them from taking back seats.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 7, 2009 3:43 PM
Comment #284132
The whole baby-as-grandaughter routine WAS a bit much… but any worse than those on the right calling Obama a Muslim or suggesting terrorist ties? Them’s politics…

Nope. Which is why I can’t stand either party, the words ‘conviction’ and ‘princple’ are abscent when they assemble.

Posted by: rhinehold at July 7, 2009 3:51 PM
Comment #284133
Most of the “Leftist” legislation is supported by the people, people who trust them to do things better than the Republicans.

I think you might be in for a rude awakening to that theory, from all of the polling I’ve seen. The people like Obama, they are not crazy about the policies though…

Posted by: rhinehold at July 7, 2009 3:54 PM
Comment #284134

Doug
I believe she grabbed more than just the hard-core conservatives and that is why the left views her as enemy number one. Many many people, especially women, were giving her a chance until all the negative “news” hit before the facts were known.

Stephen
How long was the Obama in that Senate seat? The one he said he was not going to give up and run for President? His experience was haven given a good speech and some debates? And his closest wasn’t opened up, it was re-defined.
You know, none of that really bothered me about the Obama either, not until Palin came around.

SNL could have skewered the Obama and Biden just as easily as they did Palin. Are you really surprised they did not?

I like Biden and I believe everybody makes gaffes. Isn’t it odd that the Obama was put into the same league as the Reps VP pick and Biden was put into the league as the Reps Pres pick?

“Why must we perpetually compromise with the Minority.”

Because the Obama promised he would represent ALL of us? Because the difference between those voting for the Obama or McCain was only around 6 million or so? Because the left complained non-stop about being ignored and promised they would not do the same thing?

“I don’t mind laws and constitutional principles that preserve the rights of the minorities, but the majority rules in this country’s congress”

NOT without respecting the rights of the minority. Or would you rather D.A.N’s words come true? “The in party becomes the out party.”

Posted by: kctim at July 7, 2009 4:09 PM
Comment #284135

kctim,

It’s statements like Stephen that make me glad we still have some semblance of a constitution left, though I am sure that the likes of Jefferson, Adams, Franklin and Madison are rolling in their graves with how we bastardized it, exactly like they warned against.

Posted by: rhinehold at July 7, 2009 4:45 PM
Comment #284137

hmm, seems that CBS is starting to question the president on health care. I’m shocked.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JeZyxO41cFA&feature=channel_page

Good quotes:

“You may want to keep your doctor, but your doctor may not want to keep you.” Apparenlty under the plan, doctors would be paid 20 to 30% less. Going ‘Galt’ as Stephen says?

“Americans will have to have some level of healthcare.” If it is more than what you currently have, you may find yourself without work sponsored care and have to take the public options. Oh wait, didn’t President Obama decry this ‘requirement’ when he was running for president? Oh well, no good campaign promise goes unbroken in this era of change.

Posted by: rhinehold at July 7, 2009 4:52 PM
Comment #284140

Rats, that was meant to be on the other article, sorry. I’ll repost it there.

Posted by: rhinehold at July 7, 2009 5:26 PM
Comment #284142

“I guess much on the left on this site aren’t half-intelligent… phx8 started the ball rolling back in September with the ‘her baby is her grandaughter’ rumor that showed just to what lengths those on the left wanted her gone.”

Rhinehold you may have forgotten some of the accusations the extremist right wingers were spreading regarding Obama during the same time frame. It seems when the rumors, half truths and outright lies are coming from the right it is OK but when those on the left fire back the righties start crying foul and blaming it on the media as if they watch anything but Faux. Seems they have appointed her as a Messiah or something and it is sacrilegious to state facts about her, go figure.

To hear you guys complaining about Palin being beaten up by the left is .. well funny. You make it sound as if the Governor of Alaska can only dish out the politics but can’t take it. Like I said earlier I don’t hate her I don’t want her gone and I sure as hell don’t want her in any national office if her followers think she is unable to deal with the media and the opposition party while in a presidential campaign. This is the future of the party? Really? Didn’t Joe the Plumber do better with the media than she did during the campaign?


Had the repub VP candidate been versed in national policy issues and been able to talk intelligently about issues important to America perhaps she would not have had her own words used against her so often. Did those on the right think she had a free pass at the national level? Why on earth would anyone think that? Why would they then speak of those on the left as less than intelligent?

Posted by: j2t2 at July 7, 2009 6:24 PM
Comment #284143

I find it humorous that people on the right think anyone on the left is trying to silence Palin. She is the best running ad for what’s wrong with the GOP out there. She’s shallow, misinformed, and righteously indignant. I don’t know what has happened to the GOP that they have turned to this type of person and have silenced most of the real intellects in the party/conservative movement. Palin is an extension of the low-brow garbage that Rush Limbaugh and his ilk have been spewing since the Clinton era. It’s one thing to have a bumper sticker slogan to get a message across to the masses but when one’s own understanding doesn’t go any deeper than the one-liner as Palin’s does it is sad because there are intelligent conservatives out there. I don’t agree with George Will (except on baseball) but he has an intellectual basis for his beliefs and articulates them well. I just don’t understand the rabid defense of this person as most of the posters on this blog are better informed than Sarah Palin. I find my Democratic congressman an intellectual lightweight - if someone called him a moron, I would agree because he kind of is. I wouldn’t defend him to the death simply because there is a “D” next to his name.

Posted by: tcsned at July 7, 2009 6:34 PM
Comment #284144

Rhinehold-
It’s interesting that you take issue with the parties for the ugliness of their politics, and then talk about how everybody else is just taking the constitution out of the Archives and using it to blow their nose.

One of the things that ticked me off about Palin most was her cheerful hatefulness towards Liberals. There’s something about a chirpy, folksy tone that makes the slanders and vitriol all the worse.

The interesting thing about the CBS report is that they put forward a Cato Institute thinktank source, Michael F. Cannon, as the only expert involved, and did not give anybody from the other side of the argument a chance to respond, besides the President. So of course, you must be excited to see a one-sided report giving voice to a Libertarian’s POV on the subject without telling the viewers that the CATO institute takes these kinds of positions by default.

So of course, you have the slick, rehearsed lines, but lets face facts: one of the things that makes healthcare so expensive is how much is charged for it. A great many doctors will see their oxes gored. A surgeon benefits from unnecessary surgery. A Hospital finds it more profitable to treat people when their treatment is expensive, than prevent it when its cheap.

So, some doctors will lose out. But others might not. Others might see patients more often, as they come in for regular check-ups, rather than weigh economic options. Others might see people come around more often as checkups become less luxury, more routine.

It’s statements like Stephen that make me glad we still have some semblance of a constitution left, though I am sure that the likes of Jefferson, Adams, Franklin and Madison are rolling in their graves with how we bastardized it, exactly like they warned against.

We have plenty of constitution left. Let me ask you a question: how the hell do you know what these guys would think about today’s world, today’s government?

New York in Modern America: An Alien World was my attempt to point out the grievous fallacy involved in trying to predict what the framers would think of today’s world.

Once upon a time, the nation was 20% or less Urban, 80% rural. That ratio is reversed now. Once upon a time, you didn’t have ten million people in the whole nation. Now, those people easily inhabit the spaces of our greatest cities. Even Texas, of all states, is mostly urban now.

If we showed them modern healthcare, they would probably be enormously impressed. We have anesthetic, blood transfusion, organ transplants, open heart surgery, and so on and so forth.

We could not predict who among them, who when confronted by all this, would not want this to be a basic right. Life Expectancy in the founding father’s time was less than HALF of our own now.

An interesting thought experiment arises. Relative to their time, even universal healthcare would be a bloody miracle. Now, you’re going to ask these men whether they would want such healthcare for all Americans.

They might think it a marvellous thing, these men who weathered epidemics, and were extraordinarily lucky to live past thirty-five. Many Americans would think it a marvellous thing even with our jaded perspective, given the fact that it’s so difficult to get a fair shake from our healthcare providers.

kctim-
Obama sought and gained approval for that promotion from the people of Illinois. He was still working for them right up until the rest of the country chose him as boss.

Palin, by contrast, quit her job, and (perhaps) now seeks that same promotion.

All other things being equal, do you hire the quitter or the person who’s still working for your company?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 7, 2009 6:36 PM
Comment #284147

Of all the things I don’t get about Sarah Palin - and trust me, there are a few - perhaps the most perplexing is her continued portrayal of herself as a victim: of the left, of the media, of Katie Couric, of bloggers, of the ethics investigators, of squirrels, of peanut butter, of Kobe Bryant… whatever, the list goes on. Who does she think this impresses? I mean, seriously, who?

Nobody likes a whiner - when my kids bleat about a toy being misappropriated briefly, I tell them to deal with it and stop whining. How come Republicans didn’t say the same thing to Palin? It’s a nauseating personality trait - in fact, often a sign of mental distress - to perpetually moan that everyone’s out to get you.

Perhaps the Republicans are so caught up in their indignation that the Democrats appeal to more of their countrymen and women right now (NOT FAIR!!) that they can actually understand and even empathize with this philosophy.

In fact, I think that’s it. Hannity and Limbaugh and Coulter are all constantly whining about how unfair life is now that the Dems are running the country: they have no solutions, they have no ideas, they have only righteous indignation.

I for one welcome an intelligent and well-meaning Republican Party. It does our country good to have to choose between rivals who are bent on making our country work again. Right now though, the Republicans - epitomized by Palin - seemingly just want to throw their toys out of the stroller and cry for Nanny Reagan.

I hope the Republicans leave Palin out in the cold where she belongs: as the clearest possible example of the George W. Bush anti-intellectualism that infected this once intelligent and thoughtful political machine, her disappearance from the roster can only elevate the average IQ of the Republican Party.

Now if only Limbaugh et al could follow suit, we could actually have some intelligent debate in this country…

Posted by: Jon Rice at July 7, 2009 7:38 PM
Comment #284149

jon

“Nobody likes a whiner - when my kids bleat about a toy being misappropriated briefly, I tell them to deal with it and stop whining. How come Republicans didn’t say the same thing to Palin? It’s a nauseating personality trait - in fact, often a sign of mental distress - to perpetually moan that everyone’s out to get you.”

sounds like the democrats from 94 to 04.

“In fact, I think that’s it. Hannity and Limbaugh and Coulter are all constantly whining about how unfair life is now that the Dems are running the country: they have no solutions, they have no ideas, they have only righteous indignation.

still stuck on evil right wing talk radio eh. LOL!!!

“I for one welcome an intelligent and well-meaning Republican Party.”

let me translate: one that agrees with democrats. once again LOL!!!

i’ll be laughing my a$$ off jon when you guys loose seats in 2010, and laughing even harder in 2012 when obama is shown the door, just like carter. hey just keep thinking americans want to live under a marxist dictatorship LOL!!!


Posted by: dbs at July 7, 2009 8:32 PM
Comment #284153

dbs-
Why not be stuck on it? If you’re going to repeat the talking points, you might as well accept the association. Or maybe you don’t realize who’s giving you your ideas?

As for who will be laughing? Well, I wouldn’t be surprised if some elections are won, but I don’t think Republicans have a sustainable, sympathetic message. The only think the Republicans are saying is no, and I don’t think the problems of this country are going to lead people to want to stick with the status quo, which is most of what the Republicans have to offer.

Maybe they catch a break, and scare enough people to get back on top a little. Nobody knows these things for sure.

But here’s the thing: It’s very easy to mistake enthusiasm with in a party, for everybody elses, especially in a party that is use to thinking that it’s leading the public opinion. Just like it thought the last two times.

The Republicans will probably not do themselves much good either by staying the way they are, or becoming completely like Democrats. They stay the way they are, they continue to remind people why they should be the minority now. They become completely like the Democrats… Well, the Democrats have that licked better than they ever could. Three things are going to have to happen. Republicans are going to have to accept some adulteration of their party purity, unless they want to be a smug, rather concentrated minority party. Second, they’re going to have to have some REAL, TRUE philosophical breakthroughs, that actually work. Speaking of things actually working, the Republicans have to become trustable as practical statesmen and decision makers.

So how does Sarah Palin not fit into that?

First, she’s Sarah Barracuda. She doesn’t have much compunction about bashing people who aren’t doctrinaire Republicans, or alienating voters who aren’t supporters of that either. Republicans have unfortunately learned to take great joy in ticking off those who aren’t right-thinkers in their book. Problem is, they need those people to elect them.

Second, there’s nothing much new about Sarah Palin’s politics. She’s no different than many of the 1994 Gingrich Republicans, in her political purism, her gleeful belligerence towards liberals an other political opponents, her religious ostentation, and her claims towards conservatism that are undercut by some rather severe hypocrisies. She’s also, like many Republicans of that time, rather poor on the policy side. So really, if people are looking for a successor movement to the conservatives of that era, they should hike far and wide to give Sarah Palin wide berth, because she’s a relic of the nineties Republicanism that came crashing down.

Finally, she didn’t stick with it. If she goes off and makes a living as a pundit, a speaker, or a commentator in the journalism world, it will always haunt her, because her resignation makes it clear that she can be a leader on policy or a leader on politics, but not both, and that it’s quite obvious what she chose. Now some Republicans might believe that going out to be another Republican media figure is the most important thing she could do.

But let’s not be naive her. The most important thing a governor could have done is run their offices well and do their job. Strip off all the modern permanent campaign armor off the vehicles of these offices, an the engine underneath that carries it all, are the results that they can get.

This is all not to say that a slick, well run campaign might not work miracles. But the trouble with such miracles is that you get Bush-type leaders in charge, who at best operate with minimal mandate, and at worst give new reasons to other to avoid voting for the party.

What made Obama attractive to Democratic voters was that he was the full package wonky, charismatic, and a terrific organizer. He combines smarts with personality, humor with empathy. He’s a person who can catch people off guard, whereas others put people on their guard.

The Republicans, for the next generation, will always have people on their guard. Nobody will fully trust them, even if they manage to frighten people into submission.

And Democrats will always have a ready-made remedy for that perpetual inferiority complex: visions of what America is capable of, the message that it is capable of more than the Republicans are offering.

Which sounds more like the losing strategy: inspiring people, or making them feel like the world is a living hell? I think the Democrats learned which one had greater power in 1980. Nobody wants to be told there is a malaise, that things are crap. Folks want hope. Folks want the motivation to move beyond our current problems.

The Republican strategy, currently, is to protect the status quo.

Somebody has to tell me how this wins, if everybody else puts up a fight.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 7, 2009 10:26 PM
Comment #284155
Rhinehold you may have forgotten some of the accusations the extremist right wingers were spreading regarding Obama during the same time frame. It seems when the rumors, half truths and outright lies are coming from the right it is OK but when those on the left fire back the righties start crying foul and blaming it on the media as if they watch anything but Faux

I haven’t forgotten anything, I think it is you who has forgotten that I don’t support them doing it either. However, when a party tries to claim that they are ‘better than the other guys’ and then pull the same crap, it’s just more hypocrisy, which I can’t stand.

And that is just what the Democrats have been doing. Crying about ‘Faux News’ and then salivating over MSNBC. Saying it is bad journalism to make false accusations and attack people personally (which it is) and then defending their own when they do it because the ends justify the means.

You can keep trying to pretend to be above it all, but people see the truth.

Posted by: rhinehold at July 7, 2009 10:44 PM
Comment #284156

Dbs,
A “marxist dictatorship”? Do you know anyone who is a marxist? And why would anyone view the current administration as a dictatorship?

Why would Democrats lose seats in the next midterm? GOP polling numbers are very, very low. Guess who the most unpopular politician in the country is. It’s not Nancy Pelosi. It’s Boehner, the Republican leading the House.

The situation with the economy is terrible, but until the GOP actually comes up with ideas to address problems- something a little more plausible than the threat of marxist dictatorship- what you’re saying seems extremely difficult to justify.

Posted by: phx8 at July 7, 2009 10:51 PM
Comment #284157
and then talk about how everybody else is just taking the constitution out of the Archives and using it to blow their nose.

I don’t find defending the constitution ‘ugly’ and I don’t mean small minor disagreements about what some things might mean. I am specifically talking about decisions and policies that turn the document on its ear and remove all meaning that it has. For example, the specific instance of ‘general welfare’. How many people think it means that the congress can do what it wants as long as it is for the general welfare of the citizens? Well, that’s not what it meant and we have some of the founders written words to support that…

“To lay taxes to provide for the general welfare of the United States, that is to say, “to lay taxes for the purpose of providing for the general welfare.” For the laying of taxes is the power, and the general welfare the purpose for which the power is to be exercised. They are not to lay taxes ad libitum for any purpose they please; but only to pay the debts or provide for the welfare of the Union.

“They are not to do anything they please to provide for the general welfare, but only to lay taxes for that purpose. To consider the latter phrase not as describing the purpose of the first, but as giving a distinct and independent power to do any act they please which might be for the good of the Union, would render all the preceding and subsequent enumerations of power completely useless. It would reduce the whole instrument to a single phrase, that of instituting a Congress with power to do whatever would be for the good of the United States; and, as they would be the sole judges of the good or evil, it would be also a power to do whatever evil they please… Certainly no such universal power was meant to be given them. It was intended to lace them up straitly within the enumerated powers and those without which, as means, these powers could not be carried into effect.” —Thomas Jefferson: Opinion on National Bank, 1791.

“This phrase,… by a mere grammatical quibble, has countenanced the General Government in a claim of universal power. For in the phrase, ‘to lay taxes, to pay the debts and provide for the general welfare,’ it is a mere question of syntax, whether the two last infinitives are governed by the first or are distinct and coordinate powers; a question unequivocally decided by the exact definition of powers immediately following.” —Thomas Jefferson to Albert Gallatin, 1817.
The Constitution is not neutral. It was designed to take the government off the backs of the people. — Justice William O. Douglas
“I hope our courts will never countenance the sweeping pretensions which have been set up under the words ‘general defence and public welfare.’ These words only express the motives which induced the Convention to give to the ordinary legislature certain specified powers which they enumerate, and which they thought might be trusted to the ordinary legislature, and not to give them the unspecified also; or why any specification? They could not be so awkward in language as to mean, as we say, ‘all and some.’ And should this construction prevail, all limits to the federal government are done away.” —Thomas Jefferson to Spencer Roane, 1815.

And that is exactly what happened, which is why I know that Thomas Jefferson would be rolling in his grave, because he feared exactly what has happened would happen to what he put his life on the line for.

and did not give anybody from the other side of the argument a chance to respond, besides the President

Much like every other piece they do when they don’t have a libertarian on to give their view of any story. I don’t think I have ever seen you stand up and yell, ‘why was that article or story devoid of the libertarian’s view’. if you did, you’d be yelling an awful lot.

Consider that one 4 minute piece to be the counter to the 24 hours biased reporting by Fox News and MSNBC and CNN.

Oh, and make sure to try and denounce the entire piece without once defending against anything in it, that is what the major parities do as a matter of course. I wouldn’t want you to actually have to defend the plan or the president.

We have plenty of constitution left. Let me ask you a question: how the hell do you know what these guys would think about today’s world, today’s government?

See above, but simple, we have their words written down and know what they meant when they said it. It is not rocket science to see a warning from someone to never do X that when we do X that they wouldn’t approve.

Once upon a time, the nation was 20% or less Urban, 80% rural. That ratio is reversed now. Once upon a time, you didn’t have ten million people in the whole nation. Now, those people easily inhabit the spaces of our greatest cities. Even Texas, of all states, is mostly urban now.

And is an entirely meaningless sentiment. Individual liberty is individual liberty. It didn’t change be cause some of the country decided to live more on top of each other than they did previously.

And if there were new powers that the federal government needed, it only needed to pass an amendment to give it those powers, not turn the constitution on its head to give it to them. But we couldn’t help ourselves, couldn’t do the extra work to ensure individual liberty was preserved when we put programs into place. Where is the power over the people in that?

Now, you’re going to ask these men whether they would want such healthcare for all Americans.

They would, as long as their individual freedom was ensured and protected. Making a law to MAKE people have insurance? I’m very confident that they would be very against that. Don’t you think Food and Houses are more important than health care? Did they enable the federal government to require that farmers had to give their food to the community at the point of a gun through law? Why do you suddently think that they would see any difference when it comes to healthcare?

Posted by: rhinehold at July 7, 2009 11:12 PM
Comment #284158
GOP polling numbers are very, very low.

Really?

“Republicans Remain Ahead on Generic Ballot”

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/mood_of_america/congressional_ballot/generic_congressional_ballot

Posted by: rhinehold at July 7, 2009 11:17 PM
Comment #284165

Rhinehold,
Interesting poll. Is there such a thing as a generic candidate?

“Washington Post/ABC News - “The survey found the favorability ratings of congressional Republicans at their lowest point in polls dating back more than a decade. Obama also has significant advantages over Republican lawmakers in terms of public trust on dealing with the economy, health care, the deficit and the threat of terrorism, all despite broad-based GOP criticism of his early actions on these fronts.” … The state of the Republican Party remains grim. Just 22 percent of those surveyed identified themselves as Republicans, near April’s decades-long low point.” [Washington Post/ABC News, 6/22/09]”

“Pew Research - “The job approval of Republican leaders in Congress remains at near record lows. Currently, 29% approve of the job Republican leaders in Congress are doing, while a majority (56%) disapproves. Approval ratings are little changed from March when Republican leaders received their lowest approval marks (28%) since Pew Research first began tracking the question in 1994. [Pew Research, 6/18/09]”

“NBC/WSJ - “The public doesn’t blame Obama for the deficit or the economy — that honor instead goes to the previous Republican administration. Moreover, 72% believe the current state of the economy is something the president inherited. Indeed, the Republican Party finds itself at all-time lows in our poll (25% positive rating) and in the NYT/CBS one (28%).” [NBC’s First Read, 6/18/09]”

“NYT/CBS - “Republicans have steadily increased their criticism of Mr. Obama, particularly on the budget deficit, the poll found that the Republican Party is view favorably by only 28% of those polled, the lowest rating ever in a New York Times/CBS News poll.” [NYT/CBS, 6/17/09]”

Posted by: phx8 at July 7, 2009 11:56 PM
Comment #284173

BTW speaking of media biases…

What do you think the lead story on MSNBC would have been had President Bush called Putin ‘president’ three times in an interview?

Or Sarah Palin?

We know what they would say if President Obama did it…

Now, I don’t think we should make a big deal of it, no matter who it is, but how about a little consistency?

Posted by: rhinehold at July 8, 2009 12:47 AM
Comment #284177

Consistency like continually stupid and dishonest statements from say a Governor of Alaska, or say Texas? Or consistently smart and measured statements from say a Senator from Illinois?

Consistency without a frame of reference is pretty meaningless. A frame of reference that paints a true picture is more meaningful than balance. When one argument is sensible and cogent and another is whacko and stupid, balance doesn’t mean giving them both the same weight.

Posted by: gergle at July 8, 2009 1:02 AM
Comment #284180

So, you’re saying our news media should ignore the mistakes of Obama and focus on the mistakes of Palin/Bush/etc because Obmaa is a wonderful brilliant man who is going to save us from ourselves and the others are ignorant rednecks who want to destroy us all?

That’s just the sentiment I expected.

Btw, ‘consistently smart and measured statements’? Interesting. So, never contradictory, illogical or plain wrong?

I don’t think you’re paying as close attention as you think you are… Or somethings just not getting through the messiah filter.

Posted by: rhinehold at July 8, 2009 1:13 AM
Comment #284181

Oh, and Stephen, another quote that may help with how the founders thought we should interpret the constitution:

“On every question of construction carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed.” —Thomas Jefferson to William Johnson, 1823.
Posted by: rhinehold at July 8, 2009 1:31 AM
Comment #284182

Rhinehold,

“What do you think the lead story on MSNBC would have been had President Bush called Putin ‘president’ three times in an interview?”

As opposed to Pooty Poot?

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at July 8, 2009 2:22 AM
Comment #284183

Rhinehold,

BTW, did Obama report that he had a sense of Putin’s soul?

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at July 8, 2009 2:35 AM
Comment #284186

rhinehold-
You know, they have questioned whether Obama’s a native-born citizen, questioned his patriotism, alleged terrorist connections, and have continually alleged that he is a left-wing extremist, a charge few beyond the right would agree with.

And that’s just the attacks you can mention in front of your family. There have been shocking racial attacks, shocking allegations, which the Right has peddled.

And yes, some people actually badmouthed Palin. But most of the most shocking stories are true. She is closely associated with a separatist movement, even going so far as to record a greeting to them (don’t tell me it was all innocent, her husbands a former member). She did basically lie about all her earmark busting, her mayoral administration actually getting her town hooked on it, when they weren’t seeking that stuff before. And she was for that Bridge to Nowhere, before she said No thanks- something she said only after the Federal Earmark was yanked. She tried to sell the plane on E-Bay. Tried, and failed, but she didn’t mention that.

She’s a fraud, and frauds get savaged by the media because there’s news value in the revelation of deceptions.

I don’t find defending the constitution ‘ugly’ and I don’t mean small minor disagreements about what some things might mean. I am specifically talking about decisions and policies that turn the document on its ear and remove all meaning that it has.

Read carefully. I didn’t say I found defending the constitution ugly. It’s what you say in order to defend your point of view, the constant allegation that most Democrats or Republicans like sincere motives, or a belief that theirs is the proper interpretation of the Constitution, rather than an improper one they cling to just because they don’t want to lose arguments to constitutional heroes like yourself.

I believe the federal government is allowed, consistent with other principles of the constitution, to work for the general welfare of the country. That’s part of the point of having a federal government.

You quote Jefferson, but Jefferson wasn’t the only guy talking. He was having a debate, most likely, with some of the original proponents of the Constitution, folks who would think that a national bank would be a good idea.

As for Justice William O. Douglas, I think there again you lack proper context. To be blunt, while his quotation might intrigue and delight you, the fact was he was a raving, FDR-appointed liberal. As the Wikipedia article notes:

In general, legal scholars have noted that Douglas’s judicial style was unusual in that he did not attempt elaborate justifications for his judicial positions on the basis of text, history, or precedent. Instead, Douglas was known for writing short, pithy opinions which relied on philosophical insights, observations about current politics, and literature, as much as more conventional “judicial” sources.

Or, as modern Republicans would say, he’s what they’d call a Judicial Activist. And worse, I would think, by your standards. He got his start working among the socialists and the unions.

So when we look at that quotation of yours, we have two broad choices as to our intepretation. Did he mean using the constitution to get Government off people’s backs by way of strict constructionism and states rights, or did he mean that in the civil libertarian sense that your typical liberal might focus on?

The latter choice seems more consistent with the facts. Context is more than just a politician’s excuse for saying something stupid, and you should know what your subject means before you try and use their quotes against somebody else.

Much like every other piece they do when they don’t have a libertarian on to give their view of any story. I don’t think I have ever seen you stand up and yell, ‘why was that article or story devoid of the libertarian’s view’. if you did, you’d be yelling an awful lot.

First, I will not argue bias here. Sometimes the truth tips in one party or another’s favor. And sometimes, nobody’s. What I believe is not that we should be screening all stories for unconscious bias, trying to be balanced politically. Rather, if you’re going to cover a controversy, don’t just take one guy’s view at face value. He’s making claims there, claims which the Reporter leaves unchallenged. That’s not good reporting. Good reporting, like good science, is built on skepticism. You check the claims. See above, how I checked your implicit claim as to what Justice Douglas meant?

Good reporting is not merely getting quotes from people. It’s investigation. It’s detective work. It’s research.

But there are some things, some points, that you really never can substantiate under the facts.

That’s what I take issue with you on the next count for.

See above, but simple, we have their words written down and know what they meant when they said it. It is not rocket science to see a warning from someone to never do X that when we do X that they wouldn’t approve.

Remember what I said about context mattering? It matters because everybody says what they say in these words concerning matters in their time and place. Most of the time, these people aren’t writing so that posterity can admire their greatness. Often times, they are sunk down into the issues of their day and age.

That’s why I find the use of their quotations to bludgeon people about the modern government to be so disingenuous.

Yes, they are the framers. But they’re not here, and cannot offer their opinion about what the correct judgment is. And really, they thought that was something we could decide for ourselves. They gave us a revisable constitution, courts to decide matters, and a Congress to write laws.

Our style of government has changed with the times, changed with the advance in technology. When we were more agrarian, more frontier-ish in our population, we had a smaller, less interventionist government. But as technology has changed the landscape, as society has changed over the years, as we have grown and changed as a nation, our government has change with it.

And is an entirely meaningless sentiment. Individual liberty is individual liberty. It didn’t change be cause some of the country decided to live more on top of each other than they did previously.

Individual liberties must be expressed in the time in which the individuals are situated. If we read the constitution literally, we wouldn’t be able to stop warrantless wiretapping, because the technology wasn’t even mentioned.

But we don’t restrict ourselves to a needlessly literalist point of view here. Instead, we reason out what it is that they meant by including this: that people’s property, their person, their vehicles, their communications would be privileged from search and seizure, except by probable cause and the issuance of a warrant.

And dealing with larger populations, more concentrated, with interstate commerce an everyday part of people’s lives, why does one expect the law not to change, and new interpretations not to arise, in order to fit old law to new circumstances? Though warrantless wiretapping is a modern issue, we apply the old principle to it. Now, we could do as you say, and just create new amendments to deal with everything, but what if we can just look at the constitution’s intended meaning, and then work out what a modern application of that meaning would be?

Folks in the thirties had to deal with an industrial economy in devastating collapse. you would have them rewrite the constitution to suit. But already, there was a wealth of jurisprudence as to how matters should be decided. The national crisis simply redefined the application.

And in redefining the application, we discovered that a nation could not only survive this reinterpretation, it could thrive under it.

We lost sight of that, and bitter reality has come back to haunt us. Many of the mistakes that were made on Wall Street with this crash are little different in their basic idea from the last time.

I’m going to cut things short here for the time being.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 8, 2009 7:32 AM
Comment #284187

I have only a few things to say about this whole Palin thing. BLAH, BLAH, BLAH, BLAH, BLAH.

This woman doesn’t deserve the time we are giving her. She is an average intelligence person who got where she is with a wink and a smile. If she wasn’t so physically attractive she would not be getting any of the attention she is getting. It is pretty obvious that that is all she has working for her.

Why can’t we just let her fade into obsurity. If we had not had Michael Jackson to obsess on the last few days it would have all been about Sarah Palin. Our nation is sick. Look at everything going on in our country and the world and what do we spend hours and hours talking about on TV-Mark Sanford, Michael Jackson, Sarah Palin. Why are we not discussing the fact that Cynthia Mckinney and others were arrested by Israel trying to get humanitian aide into Gaza. Now thats a story that needs to be discussed.

Posted by: Carolina at July 8, 2009 7:49 AM
Comment #284189

A lot of spin and speculation isn’t necessary, and why should anyone be surprised by Palin’s resignation?

This speaks volumes: www.youtube.com/watch?v=CcEiR01QK7o

Posted by: d.a.n at July 8, 2009 8:38 AM
Comment #284190

“It’s statements like Stephen that make me glad we still have some semblance of a constitution left, though I am sure that the likes of Jefferson, Adams, Franklin and Madison are rolling in their graves with how we bastardized it, exactly like they warned against”

Oh so true Rhinehold. Sad to see how their thinking is now dismissed as the “status quo” in the country they created.

Posted by: kctim at July 8, 2009 9:28 AM
Comment #284191

WHY is this idiot recieving so much publicity from the media? We are sick and tired of hearing about her stupid remarks, her inept governorship, her lies, and her trailer-trash family. Yet usually decent websites like McClatchy devote 3 or 4 stories about her DAILY! Is there something going on here, some kind of deal between her and her “handlers” and the press?
Let her run for president. I, or even my dog, could probably beat her. Meanwhile let’s stop giving her so much undeserved publicity and let her go back to her igloo or whatever.

Posted by: capnmike at July 8, 2009 9:41 AM
Comment #284192

carolina

“Why are we not discussing the fact that Cynthia Mckinney and others were arrested by Israel trying to get humanitian aide into Gaza. Now thats a story that needs to be discussed.”


because no one cares. that woman is a nutjob. if she wanted to bring aid to the palestinians why didn’t she get permission to enter israeli waters, and the country. she was off her rocker when she was in congress, and she was shown the door. now we’re supposed to care that she’s half way across the world once again making an ass of herself. let her stay there, at least she’s not here.

Posted by: dbs at July 8, 2009 9:47 AM
Comment #284194

neocon,

Critique the message, not the messenger…that is the only Watchblog rule we need to be concerned about. How Stephen writes is not an issue. Yes, I read his entries with interest and sometimes admiration.

Posted by: Marysdude at July 8, 2009 10:09 AM
Comment #284195
Does anyone ever read Stephen Daugherty’s lengthy posts?

I do, as you can often see by my lengthy replies.

Is saying, he uses paragraphs of writing, when it could be said in sentences, a personal violation of watchblog ethics?

No, though I think it would be incorrect. The topics of discussion that some of us are involved in here are not things that can be decided or convincing in a few ‘sound bites’ for the attention span impaired that makes up the majority of our country now. Thoughtful eloquence should be applauded, not derided.

Conservatives are always in violation of the rules, but liberals can say anything they want, with no consequences.

Again, not accurate. There have been several liberals who are no longer allowed to post here becaues of their repeated emotive violations of the rules. That recently the few who have been shown the door were on the conservative side does not show a bias, there is a whole study of mathematics that can help explain this to you but I’m afraid that explanation would be ‘lenghty’ and not easily summed up in a few sentences.

All in all I don’t find your comment to have any basis in reality or fact.

Posted by: rhinehold at July 8, 2009 10:17 AM
Comment #284196

stephen

“Or maybe you don’t realize who’s giving you your ideas?”

who would that be? do tell.


“I don’t think Republicans have a sustainable, sympathetic message. The only think the Republicans are saying is no,”


i think they do, and that is that the current crop of liberals running things are going to bankrupt the country, just as they did in california. IMHO “NO” is exactly what the republicans need to be saying right now.

“But here’s the thing: It’s very easy to mistake enthusiasm with in a party, for everybody elses, especially in a party that is use to thinking that it’s leading the public opinion. Just like it thought the last two times.”

1994-2004 anyone? does this sound familiar?

“The Republicans will probably not do themselves much good either by staying the way they are, or becoming completely like Democrats.”

you’re right they need to go back to being republicans. IMO they were thrown out because of scandals, and forgetting thier principles. they will never get ahead by trying to appease democrats.

BTW stephen just curios, what do you do for work?


Posted by: dbs at July 8, 2009 10:25 AM
Comment #284197

“I read his entries with interest and sometimes admiration.”

do you read mine with interest, and sometimes admiration too? c’mon don’t hold back. ;-/

Posted by: dbs at July 8, 2009 10:32 AM
Comment #284200

Dbs,
Phx’s comments read like a hefty bag full of hair and vegetable soup splatting on the monitor…

Hmmm. Self-critique has to be against some rule…

Posted by: phx8 at July 8, 2009 10:53 AM
Comment #284201
And yes, some people actually badmouthed Palin. But most of the most shocking stories are true

Well, half true most of the time.

She is closely associated with a separatist movement, even going so far as to record a greeting to them (don’t tell me it was all innocent, her husbands a former member).

Sorry Stephen, no matter how much you attempt to peddle this one, it doesn’t hold up. She was never a member herself, she attended one meeting, etc. You want to assign all kinds of meaning to this but then want to defend Obama’s attendance at Rev Wright’s church and tell us he didn’t believe the things that Rev. Wright was peddling?

You can’t have it both ways, as you are attempting to do here. ‘Closely tied’? This is the same kind of rhetoric you just got done trying to say ‘they’ were doing, that you can’t see it is something I think you should be taking a second look at.

She did basically lie about all her earmark busting, her mayoral administration actually getting her town hooked on it, when they weren’t seeking that stuff before.

I agree mostly with this assessment, though there is a reasonability to think she may have changed her views in the intervening period of time. I don’t think this goes to the level of ‘shocking stories’, it’s pretty much par for the course for most politicians to lie, basically, about their positions, don’t you think? Again, do you want this same assessment applied to President Obama?

And she was for that Bridge to Nowhere, before she said No thanks- something she said only after the Federal Earmark was yanked.

Again, technically she was telling the truth and it is not ‘shocking’ to me that a politician misrepresents their past positions.

She tried to sell the plane on E-Bay. Tried, and failed, but she didn’t mention that.

Her original quote was ‘she put the plane on ebay’. Never did she say that she sold it. I have never figured out why Democrats are so hell bent on making this a ‘damning’ story, other than character assassination which much of what I see out of both parties recently. There is this tried and true tactic that has been used by both Democrats and Republicans in making your opponent look like a ‘stereotype’ and then hammer away at the straw man that they create. The only problem is that people are not that easily defined and usually much more complex than that. And while it is easy to defend those of your own party for their complexities, they are pounced on when found in those of the opponent party by those who don’t know what the word ‘hypocrite’ means.

It’s what you say in order to defend your point of view, the constant allegation that most Democrats or Republicans like sincere motives, or a belief that theirs is the proper interpretation of the Constitution, rather than an improper one they cling to just because they don’t want to lose arguments to constitutional heroes like yourself.

There are people, usually the leaders of the parties, who are looking at extending their own political power that their parties have. Are you going to tell me this doesn’t happen? In doing so, they are willing to ignore the basic fundamental meaning and purpose of the Constitution to suite their own needs. Again, are you arguing that this isn’t occuring?

My ‘interpretation’ is not ‘right’ other than to say it is consistent with what the founders intended. It has been changed over the years (imo unconstitutionally) so that NOW those meanings are irrelevant, as Jefferson warned about. And it is not just Jefferson, he was just the one who I have studied more than others because I am Jeffersonian in political thought, like the Democratic party ONCE was. Trust me, after researching these things for over 20 years, I know a thing or two about what I am writing.

I believe the federal government is allowed, consistent with other principles of the constitution, to work for the general welfare of the country. That’s part of the point of having a federal government.

Yes, I know you do. Unfortunately, it does not mesh up with history or the founder’s desires for what this country was to represent and provide. It is a late to the game view that you are offering up, one that was warned against by the founders. Many didn’t want a listing of rights because they were afraid that someone might think, later on, that it was an exhaustive list. None of them wanted to give the federal government more power than was specifically spelled out in the Constitution. There was no debate on there being a line, only where the line should be. It did give more power to the federal government than the Articles did, but no UNLIMITED powers.

My historicial view of this is correct. The CURRENT meaning of the document has been changed to something else now, it is not the same as it was when it was created because of those things we were warned against. Now we have a federal government that feels it has no boundries or limits on what it can do. Congratulations, we now have the government as YOU want it to be. But don’t confuse yourself into thinking it is what the founders wanted or intended it to be. It is most definately not that.

As for Justice William O. Douglas, I think there again you lack proper context. To be blunt, while his quotation might intrigue and delight you, the fact was he was a raving, FDR-appointed liberal.

Even then, ‘raving FDR-liberals’ were concerned about individual liberties. It was only after the 30s, when more and more socialists/communists attached themselves to the Democratic party, did it change from the party of Jefferson to the party of Stalin.

Remember, *I* am a liberal. That is what libertarianism is, classic liberalism. Liberalism before it was preverted to mean something else. I have never been nor will I ever be a ‘conservative’.

You say I lacked proper ‘context’ but then never actually provide any. Douglas was a staunch defender of individual liberty and was considered a civil libertarian. In his later years he did start to look for causes to be the center of the maelstrom, but that doesn’t take away from what he did and what he stood for. I may disapprove of some of his methods and decisions (he supported the internment of the Japanese for example, though there is some suggestion that he was against it but was forced along to support it at the least second) and he wigged out after his first divorce, but your attempt to try to paint his quote in a light more friendly to the exact opposite of what it means is the usual tactic that the modern day liberal uses to support their agendas.

The ‘agenda’ should be doing what we the people want us to do provided we are not violating individual liberty while doing it. If we were having those discussions, I would be a very happy man today. But we aren’t, the idea of individual liberty doesn’t cross the mind of most modern day liberals because it gets in the way of their socialistic tendancies..

But there are some things, some points, that you really never can substantiate under the facts.

And you have yet attempted to counter any of the points made in the original video, other than to say it was a fellow at the Cato institute who made them. Come on Stephen, that’s classic deflection…

Yes, they are the framers. But they’re not here, and cannot offer their opinion about what the correct judgment is. And really, they thought that was something we could decide for ourselves. They gave us a revisable constitution, courts to decide matters, and a Congress to write laws.

Yes, and warnings that if we did certain things than we would be violating the meaning of the document completely. It would be ‘legal’, but it wouldn’t be what they sacrificed their lives for.

Our style of government has changed with the times, changed with the advance in technology.

Stephen. Tell me ONE thing that ‘advances in technology’ have given us that must violate the individual liberties of everyone in the United States in order to deal with. You mention wire-tapping, but as I point out in a second, that is entirely flawed logic…

If we read the constitution literally, we wouldn’t be able to stop warrantless wiretapping, because the technology wasn’t even mentioned.

This drives deep into the heart of your misunderstanding of the way the document was written. Was wire-tapping mentioned in the Constitution? No. Therefore, the federal government does not have the right to DO IT. It is not a matter of stopping them from doing it because it wasn’t mentioned, it is because it wasn’t mentioned that it isn’t allowed to do it.

In addition, we have the right to privacy (though it isn’t specifically mentioned in the constitution once) because of the 9th and 10th amendments, along with the way the document was originally written. Because of these things, in order for the government to do something that they were not given the specific right to do, an amendment to the constitution should have been necessary.

But we didn’t want to do the hard work in writing one so we just ignore the limitations of the document and push it on through. And as a result, we lose more civil liberties. We lose the concept of individual freedom. Right up to the point that many people today, like yourself, no longer understand that this was not how the document was meant to be read.

I’ll give an example. In order to stop the sale of alcohol (personal use of alcohol was never even attempted to be stopped because that was way over the line for the people of the time) a constitutional amendment needed to be passed. Today, we want to stop the sale AND USE of drugs like marijuana an cocaine, why was a constitutional amendment not needed then? Was it not needed or was it just ‘ignored’ for expediency? Where in the constitution does it allow for it, but wasn’t there when the 18th amendment was ratified?

And in redefining the application, we discovered that a nation could not only survive this reinterpretation, it could thrive under it.

And be a completely different country no longer based on the ideals of individual liberty or limited government. That is our RESULT of bypassing the constitution to get what we want now, we end up with consequences down the road that bring us to the notion that the thing doesn’t exist anymore.

Many of the mistakes that were made on Wall Street with this crash are little different in their basic idea from the last time.

And just like the last time, it was not the crash of the financial markets that CAUSED the depression, it was just an indicator of what was going on, a result of governmental meddling by Hoover into the financial markets that he had no business implementing, just like Bush/Greenspan when they implemented artificially low interest rates that put us where we are today.

Posted by: rhinehold at July 8, 2009 11:43 AM
Comment #284203

neocon,

Remember, authors are able to remove comments of articles as well. There used to be column managers as well, though I don’t think there are anymore.

It is possible that Yukon Jake had been banned from posting (or someone claiming to be Yukon Jake posted) so his posts would be removed as a matter of course when discovered. I read his original comment (hence my response to him) and do not remember any violations in that comment, nor any real reason for anyone on the left to want it removed, it was critical of Sarah Palin…

Unfortunately, we do not always get an explanation of why comments are removed (they are not usually deleted, but rather blocked from view). We have to either trust the fairness of the manager of the site or not. If not, then people will stop coming to the site. This is a private individual’s site, not a governmental site or a public place, so there is no right to free speech guaranteed here…

I would suggest that if you are having an issue with the watchblog manager’s running of the site, that you write him an email and discuss it with him. That would seem to me to be the prudent course of action.

editor [at] watchblog.com, OR drremer [at] gvtc.com

Posted by: rhinehold at July 8, 2009 12:13 PM
Comment #284204
I find your posts interesting and not he same old rhetorical claptrap as others post. You gave valid answers to SD.

Oh, and thank you. Though I suspect this is a minority view. :)

Posted by: rhinehold at July 8, 2009 12:14 PM
Comment #284206

SD the folks Reps and Dems both didn’t have to be told in 1980 or in 2009 what they already knew about the economy. Ford and Carter had good Ideas too they both were shot down by the congress.Reagan had the senate and got what he wanted and so did the Dems in the congress for the most part Cha Ching!~ jlw made a good point in the green post about Corporations running the show.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at July 8, 2009 12:46 PM
Comment #284207

SD the folks Reps and Dems both didn’t have to be told in 1980 or in 2009 what they already knew about the economy. Ford and Carter had good Ideas too they both were shot down by the congress.Reagan had the senate and got what he wanted and so did the Dems in the congress for the most part Cha Ching!~ jlw made a good point in the green post about Corporations running the show.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at July 8, 2009 12:48 PM
Comment #284208

sorry about the double post WB is holding my comments ?

Posted by: Rodney Brown at July 8, 2009 12:53 PM
Comment #284218

DBS, and Sarah Palin isn’t a nut job! Some of us admire Cynthia Mckinney and don’t think she is a nut job. Again the corporate owned media strikes again. Some much for the liberal press. The powers that be wanted her gone. What was the best way-make her out to be a nut job-broadcast it wide and far-and guess what-she is now a nut job and is gone.

Sarah Palin-had a religious nut lay hands on her to protect her from witchcraft-if thats not nutty-then what is-so why is she still the darling of the corporate owned right wing conservative media (which is all the media)?

Posted by: Carolina at July 8, 2009 3:25 PM
Comment #284228

dbs-
It would likely be friends or associates who tell you things, or it could be conservative media outlets and media figures.

Conservative media figures and groups get the talking points from the Republicans political communications offices, which helps them all suddenly develop a quick consensus (like Sarah Palin’s move going from mystifying to brilliant.) You consume news from the outlets, as do your friends. Do you think, I’m getting information from those who have a conflict of interest about being candid concerning the party’s problems? No. Because it doesn’t occur to you how much coordination is actually going on.

i think they do, and that is that the current crop of liberals running things are going to bankrupt the country, just as they did in california. IMHO “NO” is exactly what the republicans need to be saying right now.

There was a spending problem in California. But how can you tell me that after every Republican President failed to keep their budget out of deficit, that this is uniquely Liberal as a problem? One part of the problem in California is that Republicans in the legislature are utterly unwilling to allow taxes to be raised. Thus, huge deficits, which paralyzes the states.

As far as The Republicans leading public opinion? Ehhh. No. I don’t think they ever lead public opinion as much as they thought they did. if they did, Why did Clinton serve out both his terms? Why did the Republicans just barely win 2000?

As for work, this being the interwebz, I won’t be too specific, but I’m in IT.

Rhinehold-
Regarding Palin’s association, they were not limited to being married to an Alaskan Separatist. She was also closely associated with folks who could be charitably described as the black-helicopter crowd.

That she felt sentimental enough about things to record a nice little greeting to this secessionist group amplifies the issue.

Obama’s church was fairly mainstream, and Wright wasn’t always giving sermons like the controversial ones he became notorious for. This as opposed to a Separatist group whose position has remained fairly constantly outside the pale.

What’s damning in Palin’s dishonesty is its pervasiveness. Not much of what she initially claimed turned out to be true.

I’m going to respond more on this later.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 8, 2009 4:37 PM
Comment #284229

Palin’s ethical troubles may not have really cost the state anything it wasn’t already going to spend, an outcome that would invalidate one of Palin’s given reasons for why she resigned.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 8, 2009 5:01 PM
Comment #284237

stephen

“Do you think, I’m getting information from those who have a conflict of interest about being candid concerning the party’s problems? No. Because it doesn’t occur to you how much coordination is actually going on.”

so what you’re saying is IYO i’m not smart enough to digest the the multitude of information available and therefore cannot judge what is bullsh#t, and what is not? sorry but i beg to differ.

“There was a spending problem in California. But how can you tell me that after every Republican President failed to keep their budget out of deficit, that this is uniquely Liberal as a problem?”

i don’t think i suggested it was uniquely liberal, but that as a rule liberals tend to be bigger spenders, and i’m being proved correct by the deficit that obama and congress are already accruing. if the trend continues it will make bush’s deficit look popcorn money.

“One part of the problem in California is that Republicans in the legislature are utterly unwilling to allow taxes to be raised. Thus, huge deficits, which paralyzes the states.”

not if the democrats don’t insist on spending money the state doesn’t have. california already has some of the highest taxes, and fees in the country. i know because i paid them for years.


Posted by: dbs at July 8, 2009 7:29 PM
Comment #284238

California has a unique problem that isn’t the fault of either major party. It has the strongest public referendum system in the country, and the public pass laws that create lots of unfunded mandates and restrictions on taxes.

It’s not just that the governor or the legislature are unwilling to make tough decisions; there’s an additional actor who constrains the options.

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 8, 2009 7:35 PM
Comment #284241

California is what you get when you leave it up to the majority to write laws and decide on taxation. They want everything and they want it for free.

Don’t think for a moment that politicians don’t know that. Republicans appeal to fear and ‘morality’, Democrats appeal to fear and ‘greed’.

America ends up floundering away and the experiment fails because we removed the safeguards that the founders put in place.

Posted by: Rhinehold at July 8, 2009 9:48 PM
Comment #284245

How else would you define an elected official who resigned early but a quitter. Who would elect her now?

Posted by: mule at July 8, 2009 11:18 PM
Comment #284254
kctim wrote: Or would you rather D.A.N’s words come true? “The in party becomes the out party.”
Yes, the IN-PARTY and OUT-PARTY merely take turns, because power corrutps, and the IN-PARTY always grows more corrupt … at least, until repeatedly rewarding irresponsible, incompetent, FOR-SALE, and corrupt incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates finally becomes too painful, at which time the unhappy voters finally ousted incumbents by the hundreds from BOTH parties
  • Start __ End __ Congress _ Re-Election ___ Party Seat-Retention
  • Year ___ Year ___ # _____ Rate ________ Rate
  • 1927 ___ 1929 ___ 070st ___ 83.6% ________ 96.4% (087 incumbents ousted: 22(D), 64(R), 1(FL) )
  • 1929 ___ 1931 ___ 071st ___ 79.7% ________ 92.5% (108 incumbents ousted: 51(D), 44(R), 2(FL), 1(S) )
  • 1931 ___ 1933 ___ 072nd ___ 76.8% ________ 88.5% (123 incumbents ousted: 36(D), 87(R) )
  • 1933 ___ 1935 ___ 073rd ___ 61.2% ________ 78.7% (206 of 531 incumbents ousted: 59(D), 147(R) )
  • … … … … … … … …
  • 1989 ___ 1991 ___ 101st ___ 90.1% ________ 99.6%
  • 1991 ___ 1993 ___ 102nd ___ 87.7% ________ 98.3%
  • 1993 ___ 1995 ___ 103rd ___ 73.5% ________ 98.1% (142 of 535 incumbents (mostly Democrats) ousted)
  • … … … … … … … …
  • 1999 ___ 2001 ___ 106th ___ 89.2% ________ 99.3%
  • 2001 ___ 2003 ___ 107th ___ 89.2% ________ 98.7%
  • 2003 ___ 2005 ___ 108th ___ 87.9% ________ 98.1% (65 of 535 voted out)
  • 2005 ___ 2007 ___ 109th ___ 88.6% ________ 98.7% (61 of 535 voted out)
  • 2007 ___ 2009 ___ 110th ___ 84.9% ________ 93.1% (81 of 535 incumbents voted out (68=16(D)+51(R)+1(I) in the House) + (13=3(D)+9(R)+1(I) in the Senate)
  • 2009 ___ 2011 ___ 111th ___ 86.9% ________ 94.0% (70 of 535 voted out (57=13(D)+44(R) in the House) + (13=3(D)+10(R) in the Senate)
The sooner the better, because even in year 1933, the Great Depression lasted for almost another decade.

Perhaps when things get bad enough, when enough voters are deep-into-debt, jobless, homeless, and hungry, perhaps enough voters will most likely repeat what voters did in years 1929, 1931, and 1933.
Here in Dallas, foreclosures are up 40% and unemployment is up 50% from last year.
It the stimulus working, or merely growing the debt MUCH larger? One-Simple-Idea.com/DebtUntenable1.htm

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 9, 2009 8:53 AM
Comment #284261

“”California already has a budget in place for the 2009-10 fiscal year, thanks to a two-year budget package approved in February, but the spending plan is badly out-of-balance. “”“The main culprit is the recession, which caused a 34 percent plunge in personal income tax revenue during the first five months of the year.”” ” They’ve raised every damn tax already DMV fees have doubled, Sales tax sky high , ect tax ect tax tax ect tax ect tax ect tax, OOPS Lets go after property taxes great,”“”” The main culprit is the recession, which caused a 34 percent plunge in personal income tax revenue during the first five months of the year “”“”’ How many more empty houses can we ADD to the list. Going to have to make some big CUTS also folks.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at July 9, 2009 10:43 AM
Comment #284262

“”California already has a budget in place for the 2009-10 fiscal year, thanks to a two-year budget package approved in February, but the spending plan is badly out-of-balance. “”“The main culprit is the recession, which caused a 34 percent plunge in personal income tax revenue during the first five months of the year.”” ” They’ve raised every damn tax already DMV fees have doubled, Sales tax sky high , ect tax ect tax tax ect tax ect tax ect tax, OOPS Lets go after property taxes great,”“”” The main culprit is the recession, which caused a 34 percent plunge in personal income tax revenue during the first five months of the year “”“”’ How many more empty houses can we ADD to the list. Going to have to make some big CUTS also folks.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at July 9, 2009 10:45 AM
Comment #284265

rodney

california is lucky in one sense, they have prop 13 passed back in the 70s which prevents them from being having thier property tax burden raised more than 2% in one year. in fact mine back in the early 90s didn’t increase at all because of the drop in property values between 93 and 96.

Posted by: dbs at July 9, 2009 11:28 AM
Comment #284269

Yes dbs, California the “Golden State “other than mid 1997- mid 2000 the rest of the 1990s was SLOW there too Wilson did good, The 2000s so sad.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at July 9, 2009 12:04 PM
Comment #284271

Rhinehold-
It’s also that they’ve got some of the most rabidly anti-tax Republicans in the nations. The truth of the matter is, I think the problem has more to do with the extremes of California politics than one party or the other.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 9, 2009 12:49 PM
Comment #284273

dbs-
Smarts doesn’t enter into it. You’re getting bad information, and you’re restricting yourself to one set of sources.

The approach you should take is a skeptical one. Before you make a claim, or accept a claim from somebody else, you do your own research, through sources that don’t have a political agenda, or at least are willing to gore their own oxen for the sake of honesty.

Saying that Obama’s responsible for the deficit is disingenuous. He came in with TARP, the multiple bailouts, and two wars already on the bill. One reason the increase looks so huge is that Obama’s not BSing you on what’s being spent on those matters. He’s also budgeting the money to take care of disasters, rather than leaving it off the books.

He is responsible for the stimulus package, that much is true, but only the partisan Right Wing Think-tanks weren’t suggesting that at the time. And as it turns out, we underestimated how much was needed.

Of course, the Democrats could have told you that. We had economists saying that we had to have double. Unfortunately, folks on the right are always fighting the inflation-driven recession of the 1970’s. That’s unfortunate because our problem’s different. We got a hole in our economy where a lot of financing, lending, and credit card purchases were.

If we let it naturally be filled, perhaps a few partisans will be satisfied with themselves, but here are the likely outcomes: first, we will see deficits continue to be a problem, because whatever savings we get from not spending to boost the economy will be swallowed up by a flat to recessionary economy, where people don’t have the funds to spend and encourage business growth; Second, the economic problems will become long term, more entrenched. It will be harder as time goes on and the economy gets used to being in a shrinking or stagnant growth pattern to change things; And ultimately, we will still be forced to deal with Healthcare, Energy, and other problems which will put increasing pressure on our economy as fuel prices rise along with medical costs.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 9, 2009 1:02 PM
Comment #284279

stephen

“You’re getting bad information, and you’re restricting yourself to one set of sources.”

really, and you know this how?

“He is responsible for the stimulus package, that much is true,”

he is also responsible for pork in the omnibus spending bill. if those two disgusting pieces of legislation ever hit his desk, one being cap and trade, and the other being socialized healthcare he will be responsible for that huge increase in spending also. both will be a rat hole for tax $s. don’t give me that old tired BS about how all of a sudden people will start going to the doctor and future health crisis’ will be avoided. no one with any common sense is buying it.

Posted by: dbs at July 9, 2009 7:31 PM
Comment #284291

dbs-

really, and you know this how?blockquote>

Because your points hardly vary that much from the standard talking points from Washington. Sweet water can’t flow from bitter springs, and if it’s wrong in Washington, it’s wrong coming from you. Nothing personal.

I read the news, and the blogs on the left everyday, and we’re kept quite aware of what Republicans are saying up in Washington. And sadly, I don’t see much difference between what’s up there, and down here.

Take that “pork” in the stimulus bill. First problem is, you and I may not agree on what is waste. Additional money for the transition to digital television was raised as being an example of pork. So was spending on digital information systems for medicine. Useful, stimulative measures, whose effects would be greater than their costs- these got labelled as pork. So was spending on physics research. So was spending on Universities improving their biomedical programs So was spending on NOAA to buy new satellites.

This doesn’t sound like pork to me. This doesn’t sound wasteful. Wasteful would be handing money to Uncle Bill’s concrete company. Wasteful would be spending on Ketchup ads.

You want Pork? You look at what Palin was funnelling into her town as mayor, and her state as Governor. She wasn’t shy about asking for earmarks on her own behalf.

But nobody can say that Congress asked for those kinds of Earmarks on the Stimulus bill, because nobody got any.

This is why I don’t trust your sources, the talking points you repeat. They’re engineered for convenience in Rhetoric, rather than accuracy in fact. We’ve had years worth of policymaking based more on rhetoric and politics than on facts and practical realities. That’s got to end.

You talk about cap and trade and healthcare. You folks had the chance to do things your way. You had the chance to make the system work as it was supposed to. It is success that justifies continuation of policies, not sincere political principle.

As much as you may believe yourself right, you were proven wrong. If we go through with cap and trade, and healthcare reform, I can only hope we get it right, and that we’re willing to try new things if the old don’t work out.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 10, 2009 9:41 AM
Comment #284293

>As much as you may believe yourself right, you were proven wrong. If we go through with cap and trade, and healthcare reform, I can only hope we get it right, and that we’re willing to try new things if the old don’t work out.
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 10, 2009 09:41 AM

Stephen,

If those who failed give new ways a chance, and the new ways pay off, it matters not, because old ways were better even if they failed…damn, Stephen, just how long will it take for you to understand that? Better new ways are always worse than failed old ways…

Posted by: Marysdude at July 10, 2009 10:59 AM
Comment #284296

“New ways” that infringe on individual rights and freedoms are NEVER “better.”
How long will it take for the left to understand that?

“We’ve had years worth of policymaking based more on rhetoric and politics than on facts and practical realities. That’s got to end.”

Too bad it’s only gotten worse.

Posted by: kctim at July 10, 2009 11:55 AM
Comment #284299

stephen

“I read the news, and the blogs on the left everyday, and we’re kept quite aware of what Republicans are saying up in Washington. And sadly, I don’t see much difference between what’s up there, and down here.”


so this is proof that my points are invalid? i too read the news, read the blogs, and watch the news. appearently we just process the information differently. BTW the daily kos, and the huffington post are hardly legitimate sources for hard news. trust me i do think things through more than you might want to believe, and when i make a mistake i admit it, and have right here on this site.

Posted by: dbs at July 10, 2009 12:03 PM
Comment #284304

kctim-
If the principle that no freedom should be infringed is carried out to its logical end, you only have Anarchy. Anarchy is never true freedom, because those with power create their own unofficial order, which is unaccountable to most people out there.

True freedom requires a balancing act between the laws that allow society to run smoothly, and those that allow people to keep the widest space of freedom possible.

I am not, and never have been a believer in a control economy. But I am not of the opinion that government can never intervene. I believe it should limit its interventions and be watchful, but nonetheless, the Great Depression taught us that an absolute free market cannot last.

Like I have said before, people cheat. When people cheat and get away with it, that behavior becomes habitual, and infects others. The market encourages competitiveness, but only the law determines what is allowable within the competition.

The markets can only “correct” after the fact, if the truth gets out. Which it rarely does in time to prevent people from getting very invested and very damaged by the frauds and trickery.

I would rather the markets correct for bad business decisions, and let the rule of law handle those who deceive, who transgress the boundaries of decent behavior, who build unaccountable systems that destroy wealth as they distort the marketplace. The market, over the course of my lifetime, seems to be a fire engine that doesn’t arive until the building’s a pile of glowing embers.

dbs-
I take what I read on the blogs with a grain of salt. I look for myself.

The thing about being a Democrat is that you’re often fighting your own politicians as much as anybody else. We’re not complacent with what we have, nor with backing the rhetoric. With our party, we trust, but verify.

The language at Kos can be caustic, but we like to find the good news sources to back up our opinions. Unlike some, who simply make up the news to suit their agenda. Watch the whole video through, if you don’t want me to have to walk you through what Sean Hannity cut out, so he could make his fictional point.

We know somebody’s going to factcheck us, somebody’s going to do their best to keep us honest. So we make it a practice in the Left Blogosphere to get the news right.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 10, 2009 3:59 PM
Comment #284331

Didn’t ya’ll hear?
There’s no such thing as pork-barrel, waste, and earmarks anymore.
The way to stop pork-barrel, waste, and earmarks is to simply pretend there is no such thing and/or change the definition.

Thus, none of the following is pork-barrel and waste.

  • $54 Billion for federal programs that the Office of Management and Budget or the Government Accountability Office have already criticized as “ineffective” or unable to pass basic financial audits.
  • $53.6 billion for the “state stabilization” slush fund
  • $8 billion for high-speed railway (including earmark for Los angeles to Las Vegas MagLev)
  • $2 billion for Byrne JAG program
  • $1.3 billion for Amtrak…
  • $1.2 billion for “youth activities” (for “youth” up to 24 years old)
  • $1 billion for the 2010 Census {What’s the point with 12-to-20 Million illegal aliens?}
  • $1 billion earmark for the “FutureGen” near zero emission sci-fi plt in Matoon, Illinois that is a pet project of Senator Durbin and former governor Rod Blagojevich. The Washington Post has called the project “prohibitively expensive” and scientists at MIT oppose the project. See February 13, 2009 Washington Post story “Despite Pledges, Package Has Some Pork”
  • $830 million for NOAA research and facilities
  • $650 million for the Digital TV converter boxes
  • $500 million earmark for National Institute of Health facilities in Bethesda, MD
  • $500 million earmark for the SSA National Computer Center in Maryld
  • $375 million for Mississippi River projects
  • $360 million for construction of NIST buildings
  • $300 million for “green” cars for federal employees
  • $295 million for administrative expenses associated with food stamp program
  • $220 million for the International Boundary and Water Commission, part of it going to Mexico
  • $200 million for public computer centers at community colleges and libraries
  • $200 million to design and furnish DHS headquarters
  • $176 million for renovating Agricultural Research Service buildings
  • $146 million for trail maintence at National Park Service sites
  • $125 million to restore trails and abdoned mines
  • $50 million for the National Endowment for the Arts
  • $25 million for the Smithsoni museum
  • $24 million for USDA buildings and rent.
  • $20 million for IT upgrades at the Small Business Administration
  • $10 million for urban canals
  • $9.9 million for science enhcement at historically black colleges in South Carolina.
  • $9.9 million for South Carolina’s historically black colleges and universities, requested by House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn, (D-SC);
  • $3.8 million on a Needles, Calif., highway. Rep. Jerry Lewis of California, the top Republic on the House Appropriations Committee.
  • $951,500 Sustainable initiatives for Las Vegas. Berkeley and Reid sponsors.
  • $950,000 nature education center in Moss Point, MS. Sponsored by Sen. Thad Cochr of Mississippi, the top Republic on Senate Appropriations.
  • $300,000 Monta World Trade Center. Rehberg sponsor.
  • $950,000 Myrtle Beach International Trade and Convention Center. Sponsored by Graham.
  • $381,000 for Jazz at Lincoln Center, New York, NY for music education programs. Sponsored by Jerrold Nadler.
  • $238,000 for the Polynesi Voyaging Society, Honolulu, HI, for educational programs. Sponsored by Sen. Diel Inouye.
  • $200,000 Oil Region Allice. Peterson sponsor. {Why don’t oil companies with record profits fund this themselves?}
  • $190,000 Buffalo Bill Historical Center, Cody, WY for digitizing and editing the Cody collection. Sponsored by Barbara Cubin
  • $185,000 for coral reef research and preservation in Maui County, HI
  • $143,000 Las Vegas Natural History Museum, Las Vegas, NV, to expd natural history education programs. Sponsored by Harry Reid
  • $55,000 in meteorological equipment for Pierce College in Woodld Hills, CA.
  • $24,000 A+ for Abstinence, sponsored by Specter.
The question now is: Is it working?

Was it worth it?

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 11, 2009 7:41 AM
Comment #284353

Dan-
Let me ask you a question right off the bat: what is so slushy about the state stabilization fund, whose purpose is to shore up state budgets that have taken a major hit? Got any news articles? What are you relying upon here?

There’s a different between calling something a slush fund because it sounds like a nice perjorative, and calling it that because it qualifies under a reasonable definition.

The claim of the high speed railway earmark is bogus. As Matthew Yglesias reports, there are no such provisions, and there is no such earmark. Senator Reid said that might not be a bad idea, but beyond that, there’s no earmarks in the entire Stimulus bill, much less one for the railway.

Why is billions for the census pork? I know you think there’s no point, but this is a constitutionally mandated job the government does, and there were some serious setbacks under the mismanagement of the Bush Administration.

Why is money for NOAA research and facilities pork? Why is NIST money pork?

You’re listing a lot of project as wasteful, but you don’t seem to have a serious rationale for what counts as waste. You just seem to count any government spending you don’t like as pork, which makes the discussion useless between you and anybody else who takes a more liberal notion of what proper government spending is.

What could you and I both agree was potentially wasteful? After all, you and I both have an equal share in this government. What’s wasteful to both of us? Perhaps the first part, but we’d have to see how those programs performed in the wake of the stimulus and whatever management was done.

I’m not going to analyze this stimulus bill by a rhetorically based notion of things. Are you just getting this stuff wholesale from CAGW or some other group like that? If so, what’s the point?

I remember hearing on the radio about Obama’s construction programs going better than expected in certain places because they were able to get lower bids.

How tenable the debt ultimately is depends on the strength of the recovery we bring about. We may not have much of a recovery unless the government leads this society away from its former economic structures towards something new, with new energy infrastructure, repaired and enhanced transportation infrastructure, and healthcare expenses managed in order to cut those costs as well.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 11, 2009 4:57 PM
Comment #284373
Stephen Daugherty wrote: d.a.n- Let me ask you a question right off the bat: what is so slushy about the state stabilization fund, whose purpose is to shore up state budgets that have taken a major hit? Got any news articles? What are you relying upon here?
Easy.
  • (01) Since when was it the federal government’s job to take tax dollars from us (or borrow and create new money from thin air), and then re-distribute to whoever they see fit? Not everyone buys into your extreme beliefs that wants a nanny-state with citizens increasingly dependent on the government; with massive cradle-to-grave government programs (which are usually severely mismanaged) that nurture a sense of entitlement and dependency on government; wants to grow government ever larger (despite the already current nightmare proportions); rewards failure and laziness; and perpetuates the myth that we can somehow all live at the expense of everyone else. Next thing you know, there will be a BILL in Congress to wipe our noses and butts to, eh?
  • (02) If the federal government wants people to have more money, then why the hell don’t they fix the $%@#ing unfair and regressive tax system, or let people KEEP more of the own income?
  • (03) Why should the federal government TAKE money from states, only to give it back (with strings attached)? Where is this in the Constitution?
  • (04) Since when was any similar behavior by the federal government not riddled with fraud, waste, and corruption? The largest reason being because the federal government is FOR-SALE, aside from being irresponsible, incompetent, and corrupt, as evidenced by the state of the nation today. Duh!
  • (05) Too often, the sort of people that like the cradle-to-grave style government are the ones that are (or have been) on the dole, or trying to get re-elected (i.e. FOR-SALE).
So, can you show us how the federal government’s redistribution of tax dollars and borrowing and/or creating new money from thin air has done a better job than letting tax payers keep their OWN income from the very beginning? As for people with real needs, that’s what welfare, unemployment, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are for. We can’t all live at the expense of everyone else. It’s a recipe for disaster. There are many abuses hurting most Americans and those abuses should be a major focus. Not more redistribution of wealth, more debt, and more new money created from thin air. What part of that do you not understand?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: There’s a different between calling something a slush fund because it sounds like a nice perjorative, and calling it that because it qualifies under a reasonable definition.
See above. You obviously don’t understand it.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: The claim of the high speed railway earmark is bogus. As Matthew Yglesias reports, there are no such provisions, and there is no such earmark. Senator Reid said that might not be a bad idea, but beyond that, there’s no earmarks in the entire Stimulus bill, much less one for the railway.
False. Read it and weep: articles.latimes.com/2009/feb/14/nation/na-stimulus-rail14
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Why is billions for the census pork? I know you think there’s no point, but this is a constitutionally mandated job the government does, and there were some serious setbacks under the mismanagement of the Bush Administration.
What’s the point with tens of millions of illegal aliens?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Why is money for NOAA research and facilities pork?
Bad timing. There are many better ways to spend money than on the NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Why is NIST money pork?
Bad timing. There are many better ways to spend money than on the NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology), and is not focused on any specific project (e.g. alternative energy sources).
Stephen Daugherty wrote: You’re listing a lot of project as wasteful, but you don’t seem to have a serious rationale for what counts as waste.
False again.

Wealth re-distribution alone, instead of stopping these 10 major abuses (One-Simple-Idea.com) is more that sufficient reason.
Not everyone subscribes to your nanny-state style of governnment, that really fleeces most Americans via the perpetuation of many abuses and constitutional violations (One-Simple-Idea.com/Abuses.htm).

Stephen Daugherty wrote: You just seem to count any government spending you don’t like as pork, which makes the discussion useless between you and anybody else who takes a more liberal notion of what proper government spending is.
More nonsensical, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook.

Not everyone subscribes to your nanny-state style of governnment, that really fleeces most Americans via the perpetuation of many abuses and constitutional violations.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: What could you and I both agree was potentially wasteful? After all, you and I both have an equal share in this government.
Think so? A person has to be delusional to really believe we all have an equal share. Especially when 99.7% of all eligible voters are vastly outspent by a tiny 0.3% of the wealthiest voters who make 83% of all federal campaign donations of $200 or more.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: What’s wasteful to both of us? Perhaps the first part, but we’d have to see how those programs performed in the wake of the stimulus and whatever management was done.
Right. Perhaps Congress should create a dozen committees, a dozen commissions, and allocate $500 Billion to research it for a few decades (while never accomplishing a damn thing)?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: I’m not going to analyze this stimulus bill by a rhetorically based notion of things.
Funny how some people do the very thing they said they don’t do?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Are you just getting this stuff wholesale from CAGW or some other group like that? If so, what’s the point?
Please feel free anytime to disprove any facts from CAGW.ORG.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: I remember hearing on the radio about Obama’s construction programs going better than expected in certain places because they were able to get lower bids.
Really? With illegal aliens doing the work, perhaps? Where’s your proof? Saying it and proving it are two different things.

Besides, since when was it the federal government’s job to take tax dollars from us (or borrow and create new money from thin air), and then re-distribute to whoever they see fit? Not everyone buys into your extreme beliefs that wants a nanny-state with citizens increasingly dependent on the government; with massive cradle-to-grave government programs (which are usually severely mismanaged) that nurture a sense of entitlement and dependency on government; wants to grow government ever larger (despite the already current nightmare proportions); rewards failure and laziness; and perpetuates the myth that we can somehow all live at the expense of everyone else.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: How tenable the debt ultimately is depends on the strength of the recovery we bring about.
The debt is already untenable.

Only a fool doesn’t see it and/or thinks another bubble will solve the problem.
Importing more illegal aliens and more cheap foreign labor, fueling more inflation, and creating more debt and new money from thin air is a recipe for disaster, and that is exactly what is happening now. More debt, more pork-barrel and waste, more unemployment, more abuses, and continued constitutional violations.

Besides, since when did any nation so ridiculously deep into debt ever spend, money-print, and borrow its way to prosperity.
Gobbledygook and circular obfuscation will never substitute for principles.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: We may not have much of a recovery unless the government leads this society away from its former economic structures towards something new, with new energy infrastructure, repaired and enhanced transportation infrastructure, and healthcare expenses managed in order to cut those costs as well.
And you think the federal government is going to do that for you, while continuing to ignore these 10 major abuses? One-Simple-Idea.com/Abuses.htm

Such confidence in the federal government is laughable.
Especially when it so severely mismanages almost everything it touches.
Would you like to make a bet on where this recovery will be 4 years from now?
I’m going to base my bet on track record, history, principles, and human nature.
How about you?
Do you really believe that blind partisan loyalties and YOUR party will somehow turn things around?
Not likely … not even close.
Not until enough voters wake up and reject such blind partisan loyalties, and start truly holding their elected officials accountable will anything improve.
And that most certainly ain’t gonna happen by repeatedly rewarding irresponsible, incompetent, FOR-SALE, and corrupt incumbent politicians in ANY party with 85%-to-90% re-election rates.
That appears to pain you to no end, which is most likely because it is true, and substantiated by history.
Federal reforms have never come about by repeatedly rewarding irresponsible, incompetent, FOR-SALE, and corrupt incumbent politicians in ANY party with 85%-to-90% re-election rates.

Perhaps when things get bad enough, when enough voters are deep-into-debt, jobless, homeless, and hungry, then perhaps enough voters will finally repeat what most unhappy voters did in years 1929, 1931, 1933, and 1993.

It the stimulus working, or merely growing the debt MUCH larger? One-Simple-Idea.com/DebtUntenable1.htm

  • Start __ End __ Congress _ Re-Election ___ Party Seat-Retention

  • Year ___ Year ___ # _____ Rate ________ Rate

  • 1927 ___ 1929 ___ 070st ___ 83.6% ________ 96.4% (087 incumbents ousted: 22(D), 64(R), 1(FL) )

  • 1929 ___ 1931 ___ 071st ___ 79.7% ________ 92.5% (108 incumbents ousted: 51(D), 44(R), 2(FL), 1(S) )

  • 1931 ___ 1933 ___ 072nd ___ 76.8% ________ 88.5% (123 incumbents ousted: 36(D), 87(R) )

  • 1933 ___ 1935 ___ 073rd ___ 61.2% ________ 78.7% (206 of 531 incumbents ousted: 59(D), 147(R) )

  • … … … … … … … …

  • 1989 ___ 1991 ___ 101st ___ 90.1% ________ 99.6%

  • 1991 ___ 1993 ___ 102nd ___ 87.7% ________ 98.3%

  • 1993 ___ 1995 ___ 103rd ___ 73.5% ________ 98.1% (142 of 535 incumbents (mostly Democrats) ousted)

  • … … … … … … … …

  • 1999 ___ 2001 ___ 106th ___ 89.2% ________ 99.3%

  • 2001 ___ 2003 ___ 107th ___ 89.2% ________ 98.7%

  • 2003 ___ 2005 ___ 108th ___ 87.9% ________ 98.1% (65 of 535 voted out)

  • 2005 ___ 2007 ___ 109th ___ 88.6% ________ 98.7% (61 of 535 voted out)

  • 2007 ___ 2009 ___ 110th ___ 84.9% ________ 93.1% (81 of 535 incumbents voted out (68=16(D)+51(R)+1(I) in the House) + (13=3(D)+9(R)+1(I) in the Senate)

  • 2009 ___ 2011 ___ 111th ___ 86.9% ________ 94.0% (70 of 535 voted out (57=13(D)+44(R) in the House) + (13=3(D)+10(R) in the Senate)
The sooner the better, because even in year 1933, the Great Depression lasted for almost another decade.

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 12, 2009 2:02 PM
Comment #284415

Dan-

Since when was it the federal government’s job to take tax dollars from us (or borrow and create new money from thin air), and then re-distribute to whoever they see fit?

Since the constitution gave Congress the power to tax, take out debt in the people’s name, take necessary and proper steps to carry out its powers, and appropriate funds as it sees fit to do that.

Not everyone buys into your extreme beliefs that wants a nanny-state with citizens increasingly dependent on the government; with massive cradle-to-grave government programs (which are usually severely mismanaged) that nurture a sense of entitlement and dependency on government; wants to grow government ever larger (despite the already current nightmare proportions); rewards failure and laziness; and perpetuates the myth that we can somehow all live at the expense of everyone else. Next thing you know, there will be a BILL in Congress to wipe our noses and butts to, eh?

I’m glad to see you’re not letting your rhetoric run away with your argument.

You’re arguing a strawman. Most people do not want to deal with overcomplicated bureacracies, with people capriciously ruling their lives. I trust people to holler, and react when Government starts intruding. You don’t.

Has it occured to you that many Democrats nowadays do not want to fulfill the stereotypes people like you traffic in, that we’re willing to compromise, to be be more disciplined?

Make however many assumptions you want, but don’t come complaining to me if people don’t take your rhetoric seriously.

On point two, let me ask you a question: what point is a tax cut if you don’t have a job? Unemployment is one of the prime drivers. Additionally, if you create a job, and things improve, the job may become permanent. Don’t folks like you like to use that “give a person a fish…” metaphor? We’d rather get the person fishing with a job than hand him a tax cut fish.

On number three, What? Seriously, though, what instance of this are you speaking of?

On number four, with an attitude like yours, people don’t bother to shape things up. There’s no motivation. If Governments going to be corrupt, you might as well have a piece of the action. If they’re going to be wasteful, why not wasted in the benefit of your benefactors. And if people are going to be deceptive, why bother looking to deep into anything?

Any government with any power is going to draw corruption to it. The question is, do we have the motivation to clean it up?

And on number five? I know people who worked hard all their lives, and now are no longer able. They paid into this system, now they’re being paid out of it

We all live at each other’s expense. That’s what an economy is. People pay other people, who pay other people, and everybody’s setting the prices for what goods and services they’ve got to offer.

The question is, how? Do we saddle people with both their parents and their children, or do we allow them to live independently? Do we allow huge sectors of society to live in poverty, and drag the rest of us down, or do we give them money to live on, and see the poverty rate in this country drop in half. You call it a recipe for disaster. But it hasn’t been.

On the topic of the slush fund, there is a specific definition for what a slush fund is. If your hope is to be convincing, rather than engage in rhetorical flourishes people with a command of the facts won’t take seriously, you’ll have to back up specific claims and charges with appropriate evidence.

On the high speed rail issue, we’ve got an excellent example of that. You say, read it and weap. Why? You didn’t disprove anything I said. It’s not an earmark, it’s not written into the bill. What you wrote, claimed otherwise.

Next, you say that we shouldn’t put funds up towards the Census because there are tens of millions of illegal aliens in the country.

That’s nuts. The rest of us still have to be counted, and the constitution has not been amended to remove the mandate for it. We count our citizens every ten years, and that’s the end of the fricking discussion. If you think it’s wasteful to provide funds to carry out a necessary constitutional mandate, then I don’t really know what your definition of waste and inefficiency are.

NOAA is the agency that keeps us apprised of little things like Hurricanes and weather systems, among other things. How wasteful.

NIST helps provide helpful standards for measurement, experimental data, time sychronization for the nation’s clocks (very important for many purposes), and also distributes Material Safety Data Sheets. What an awful waste, right, and just because you say so!

Right. Perhaps Congress should create a dozen committees, a dozen commissions, and allocate $500 Billion to research it for a few decades (while never accomplishing a damn thing)?

So, I propose that we retain oversight of the Stimulus Package’s efficacy, its return on investment, and you tell me that, too, would turn out to be a waste? You think you have me on the horns of a dilemma, but from the looks of it, you actually have me on two sides of your own self-contradiction. You’re against waste, but lets not waste any money determining what’s actually effective!

Please feel free anytime to disprove any facts from CAGW.ORG.

My problem is that very often, their opinions are stated as facts. They’ll decry something as waste, simply because it doesn’t square with their vision of what government should be doing.

If you really want to deal with government waste, you must deal with it objectively. Look at something’s intended purpose, see whether that purpose is fulfilled, see how much it cost to do that, and how much was gained. At least if you start from that, you can get past less objective notions of what’s right to spend on. It’ll be easier to get agreement and action.

Besides, since when did any nation so ridiculously deep into debt ever spend, money-print, and borrow its way to prosperity.

We spent many times our GDP financing WWII. It was tough, required sacrifice, but we did it. But our current debt is nothing compared with that.

The trick of this will be to avoid a deflationary spiral. We hit that, and all the belt tightening in the world won’t help. In fact, it’ll take money out of the economy, and so have a paradoxical effect of harming, rather than helping the economy. We know this can happen from Hoover and FDR’s bitter experience during the Great Depression with monetary policy and taxing and spending.

Let me explain something: under most circumstances, a large amount of deficit spending is stupid. It either forces interest rates up, or it forces an expansion of the money supply, creating inflation in prices.

Right now, We don’t have too much demand chasing too little supply, but rather the opposite: too much supply chasing too little demand. People can’t afford or get financing for things, and not making those purchases, they end up not giving businesses the funds they need to survive. Businesses, trying to be competitive, then cut costs and cut prices, which in turn put downward pressure on wages and employment, which in turn puts downward pressure on costs and prices.

And so on, and so forth.

We’re not dealing with an inflation-born economic crisis here, we’re dealing with what could be a deflationary trap, and that will be much worse than inflation. With inflation, the Fed can easily raise interest rates, taking the excess money out of the system. It won’t be pleasant, but if we’re in a position where the value of the dollar is declining, we can put a stop to that quickly.

We got absolutely no room, outside of government borrowing, to halt a deflationary spiral. The Greenspan lowered interest rates too far, and the underregulated banks are simply not lending and financing like they should be. And Consumers? Consumers are, wisely as individuals, not spending, but saving. But as a society, this too is a problem, since the money gets sidelined a lot in those banks that aren’t lending.

It isn’t a matter of confidence in the Federal government, Dan. It’s a matter of asking who else can borrow, and pump liquidity back into the market. The answer is no one.

It’s not a matter of trust. I don’t trust the federal government. It’s an institution you must handle with skepticism. Fortunately, the system is built for that. It’s true believers that have the hardest time, because they want everything their way, and those imperfect people out there, and the imperfect world don’t line up with their perfect vision of how things should be done.

If we don’t plant the seeds of growth now, stimulate the economy now, we could be seeing ourselves at the wrong end of a long term drop in revenues, and greater sensitivity to government spending. The point of a stimulus is to get government in and out of stimulating the economy quickly, rather than make it into a long term addict.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 13, 2009 1:35 PM
Comment #284422

More twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook.

When’s that Wipe-Your-Nose and Wipe-Your-Butt BILL up for a vote in Congress?

Never mind debt and rampant pork-barrel spending and waste Untenable Debt.

Stephen, not everyone subscribes to your to your nanny-state style of governnment, that fleeces most Americans via the perpetuation of many abuses and constitutional violations.

Not everyone wants to fuel and wallow in the circular, divisive, destructive partisan warfare.

Enjoy your party’s brief time as the IN-PARTY, because, because the IN-PARTY always becomes the OUT-PARTY, and eventually, the unhappy voters will most likely hold hundreds of incumbent politicians accountable in BOTH parties, when failing to do so finally becomes too painful.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: We spent many times our GDP financing WWII. It was tough, required sacrifice, but we did it. But our current debt is nothing compared with that.
Do you think everyone is so stupid not to know that difference between DEBT-TO-GDP and DEBT-TO-GDP-PER-CAPITA.

Which do you think is a better measure?

Any way, the $11.5 Trillion National Debt per-capita ($37K) today is 70% larger than the National Debt per-capita ($22K in 2008 dollars) in year 1945 after World War II.

Showing only DEBT-to-GDP is another unsurprising and clever obfuscation, but not everyone is so stupid as to fall for such twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook.

Debt per person is a better measure than debt-per-GDP, but you choose to ignore that like so many others that try to use every obfuscation in the book to make the debt look less severe.
And it isn’t like you didn’t know that already, since I’ve posted it on this site about 100 times.
Also, feel free to show us anytime where the facts are wrong.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: We’re not dealing with an inflation-born economic crisis here, we’re dealing with what could be a deflationary trap, and that will be much worse than inflation. With inflation, the Fed can easily raise interest rates, taking the excess money out of the system. It won’t be pleasant, but if we’re in a position where the value of the dollar is declining, we can put a stop to that quickly.
Inflation is low now, but not for long. So much borrowing and new money created out of thin air has the real potential to make things MUCH worse.

If the currency becomes essentially worthless, things will be MUCH worse: One-Simple-Idea.com/USD_Falling.htm

All of that money can not be withdrawn when 90% of it exists as debt: One-Simple-Idea.com/DebtUntenable1.htm

Blind IN-PARTY loyalists always want to paint a rosy picture when THEIR party is in power.
Nothing new there.
However, that’s sort of hard to do isn’t it, when things continue to get much worse?
Democrats and Obama’s ratings are falling.
Why is that?
Perhaps it is because they haven’t seen any significant change?
Not all unhappy voters are going to keep falling for fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the blind, circular, partisan warfare.
Your comments constantly engage in the endless blame-game, and such blatantly partisan loyalties overwhelms any truths in your comments and articles.

There’s a reason why people say your articles and comments are partisan.

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 13, 2009 8:35 PM
Comment #284445

Dan-

When’s that Wipe-Your-Nose and Wipe-Your-Butt BILL up for a vote in Congress?

I think that’s on the legislation Agenda for DCe 12, right behind the Diaper Change Act.

Seriously, man, who are you kidding? Was I not explicit enough about my sentiments, or do you think I tell you these things just for argument’s sake? You’re setting up your strawman of a Democrat, and disregarding anything that disagrees.

Enjoy your party’s brief time as the IN-PARTY, because, because the IN-PARTY always becomes the OUT-PARTY, and eventually, the unhappy voters will most likely hold hundreds of incumbent politicians accountable in BOTH parties, when failing to do so finally becomes too painful.

Wow. How profound. You just copied the political rhetoric of half of the pundits out there. The whole point of the system is that there’s always somebody out, always somebody in, and that those in try to stay in, and those out try to replace those who get in. There’s no escape from it, even if you multiply parties. That just increases the number of out parties.

The question is WHY an out party becomes an out party, why an in party becomes an in party. I like to see this in terms of natural selection, with voters being the environment.

If we make arbitrary partisan ideology the point of who stays in, then we end up evolving politicians who tell us what we want to hear.

Practical results are what we must select for. I’ll deal with this more when I get home from work, if I can.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 14, 2009 8:47 AM
Comment #284455
Do you think everyone is so stupid not to know that difference between DEBT-TO-GDP and DEBT-TO-GDP-PER-CAPITA.

We have both a much larger economy, and a much larger population than we did in, say, 1947. Also, per capita measures are useless for determining the tenability of a nation’s ability to pay. Nobody’s going to be asked to write a check today for their share. It’s the government that pays the debts, and it pays the debts with all our tax dollars.

If those revenues go down, it becomes harder to reduce deficits. The tenability of our debt depends on our ability to pay it off. If our economy is in better shape, so are our efforts to reduce the budget deficit.

Inflation is low now, but not for long. So much borrowing and new money created out of thin air has the real potential to make things MUCH worse.

Most economists I hear from are saying that inflation is not a real problem anytime soon. We simply don’t have the demand for products and services necessary to justify higher costs. Inflation is a problem that comes about when there’s more money than goods to spend it on. The economy more or less has to recover first for inflation to be the most serious problem.

Not all unhappy voters are going to keep falling for fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the blind, circular, partisan warfare. Your comments constantly engage in the endless blame-game, and such blatantly partisan loyalties overwhelms any truths in your comments and articles.

And your comments contstantly have to tell the reader that I’m losing the argument. But if yours are better, why the need to hit them over the head with it?

There’s a reason why people say your articles and comments are partisan.

Could it be perhaps that I’m a contributing editor on the Democrats and Liberals Column of this Blog?

My policy, for the most part, is that I don’t criticize people for their choice of parties, I criticize the parties for their choices. It’s okay to be a Republican, a Green, a Libertarian, or whatever. But don’t expect people to take your points as Gospel without your making arguments that transcend partisan sentiment.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 14, 2009 1:16 PM
Comment #284484
Stephen Daugherty wrote: But don’t expect people to take your points as Gospel without your making arguments that transcend partisan sentiment.
Funny how some people accuse others of the very thing they repeatedly do themselves, eh?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: My policy, for the most part, is that I don’t criticize people for their choice of parties, I criticize the parties for their choices.
Really? Like this?
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: They [voters] should be allying with us [Democrats].
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: And yes, I obviously want voters to vote for Democrats. {Really? No kiddin’?}
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: d.a.n- If third parties can’t win offices, what good are they to the voter?
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: Being spoilers [independent/3rd party voters] only ensures being fringe…
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I do think voters should ally with Democrats.
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: In my opinion, the proper people to run this party are the voters who elect Democrats.
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I don’t disdain third parties.
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: … as I don’t like to hear people get down on my party, …
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: … because then your [independent/3rd] parties get blamed for sending things in a lousy direction.
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: How many people curse the Green party for George W. Bush (43) getting elected?
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: It’s what Democrats like myself had to do, after all, to take back the majorities and the White House.
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: My generation of Democrats prides itself on not being caught blindsided by either the Republicans, or their own side’s problems. The ears [of Democrats] are to the ground, and we’re always, ALWAYS watching. {Always? Then why does the IN-PARTY “always” become the OUT-PARTY?}
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: Democrats have significantly shifted the balance of power, despite all the barriers the Republicans put in place to keep their power.
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: The Republicans have the choice, which I gladly let them have, of doing scuzzy things so they can make the Democrats look bad …
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I chose to be like this. However, I don’t like doing things in a way that I know is arbitrary. It offends me. My comments about third parties are valid.
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I‘ve been rather cross about your tendency to call the new [110th] congress a do-nothing congress … {Why? What did the 110th do-nothing Congress accomplish since 7-NOV-2006 ? And the 111th Congress consists of 86.9% of the 110th Congress.}
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I think you’re underestimating the results of this last election. {We’ll see, since 85%-to-90% of incumbent politicians were re-elected.)
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote {NEW!, which is ironic indeed}: … why do you uncritically accept partisan rhetoric …?
  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I don’t disdain third parties.
Yep. Taht’s not critical one bit of anything not-DEMOCRAT, eh?

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 14, 2009 8:53 PM
Comment #284494

Dan-

Funny how some people accuse others of the very thing they repeatedly do themselves, eh?

You do know that “tu quoque” arguments are by their nature fallacious. Whether or not I’m a hypocrite, my argument is true or false on its own merits.

Sort of like my argument is true or false regardless of whether you call it “twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook” or not.

As for all those things I said? Nothing tells people that they’re idiots for being part of another party, or a third party. I can say its wiser in my opinon to be a Democrat, but that doesn’t mean a person can’t believe the other way.

But political strategies and actions are fair game for criticism. If we can’t criticize those, there’s no accountability for either in or out parties.

Oh, by the way: it is also fallacious to argue that just because a particular group or person advocates something that the inference is invalid, or the facts unsound. Those determinations must be made independently, on the merits.

My argument has always been that third parties need to break into the lower, local, municipal governments, and produce a record of good stewardship in those offices. This will earn the trust of the voters, and enable them to take advantage of voter’s loss of confidence in the parties; otherwise, the voters will simply settle for the safer alternative, what you call the out-party. It’s not enough that there’s a potential phase change out there, where people are willing to flip to other parties and other candidates. There must be something to draw voters to the third parties.

What, would you say, is wrong with suggesting that Third Parties that want to be elected should do well in lower levels of government, to attract attention and confidence that they can invest in challenging higher level Democrats and Republicans?

That to me is a better idea than waiting around for the forces of history to suddenly plant you in office. The added bonus is, that with real experience, third party candidates and politicians will be less likely to embarrass themselves, and sour people on their party’s further progress.

And yes, I do criticize the Republican Party’s actions and philosophies. But I acknowledge I do that from my own subjective perspective, with my own history, and my own particular interests in mind. Politics does not operate in a vacuum for people. Everybody’s got their reasons and their roots for why and how they believe what they believe.

You can’t change that in people. You can encourage them to change their alignment, but ultimately, that’s their choice, and its going to start from who they already are, and what they already believe. You must deal with that, if your goal is to persuade people and change their minds.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 15, 2009 8:35 AM
Comment #284603
Stephen Daugherty wrote: d.a.n- You do know that “tu quoque” arguments are by their nature fallacious. Whether or not I’m a hypocrite, my argument is true or false on its own merits.
Only a fool can make a fool of one’s self.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Sort of like my argument is true or false regardless of whether you call it “twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook” or not.
Twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook is rarely (if ever) true, because the reason for it is often to prop-up and/or salvage a weak and/or failing argument.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: As for all those things I said? Nothing tells people that they’re idiots for being part of another party, or a third party. I can say its wiser in my opinon to be a Democrat, but that doesn’t mean a person can’t believe the other way.
You say it’s wiser to be a Democrat? No kiddin? Who would have ever thought that based on your own numerous comments about 3rd parties and/or anything NOT-DEMOCRAT?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: But political strategies and actions are fair game for criticism.
True.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: If we can’t criticize those, there’s no accountability for either in or out parties.
Nonsense.

We can criticize.

And there will eventually most likely be accountability and painful consequences for most (if not all) incumbent politicians in BOTH the IN-PARTY, OUT-PARTY, and the voters that repeatedly reward them with 85%-to-90% re-election rates.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Oh, by the way: it is also fallacious to argue that just because a particular group or person advocates something that the inference is invalid, or the facts unsound. Those determinations must be made independently, on the merits.
More gobbledlegook.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: My argument has always been that third parties need to break into the lower, local, municipal governments, and produce a record of good stewardship in those offices. This will earn the trust of the voters, and enable them to take advantage of voter’s loss of confidence in the parties; otherwise, the voters will simply settle for the safer alternative, what you call the out-party. It’s not enough that there’s a potential phase change out there, where people are willing to flip to other parties and other candidates. There must be something to draw voters to the third parties.
We know how you feel about anything NOT-DEMOCRAT.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: What, would you say, is wrong with suggesting that Third Parties that want to be elected should do well in lower levels of government, to attract attention and confidence that they can invest in challenging higher level Democrats and Republicans?
When the two main parties become corrupt enough, the voters will either (a)vote out most incumbent politicians up for re-election (such as in year 1933 when 206 members of Congress were ousted), (b)or create a third party, or (c) worse (e.g. civil unrest, civil war, revolution, etc.).

A third party isn’t necessary.
What is necessary, and will most likely happen when failing to do so becomes too painful, is to stop repeatedly rewarding FOR-SALE, incompetent, irresponsible and corrupt incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates. And perhaps when enough Americans are deep into debt, jobless, homeless, and hungry, then perhaps they’ll figure that out. Rewarding failure only creates more failure, and that is exactly what too many voters are doing based on dismal 9%-to-28% approval ratings for Congress, despite 85%-to-90% re-election rates for Congress. The majority of voters will eventually learn that they will reap what they sow. They will get their education one way or another. Those are the fact, which blind partisan loyalists loathe hearing/reading.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: That to me is a better idea than waiting around for the forces of history to suddenly plant you in office. The added bonus is, that with real experience, third party candidates and politicians will be less likely to embarrass themselves, and sour people on their party’s further progress.
Your concern is not very convincing due to your numerous derogatory comments about anything NOT-DEMOCRAT.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: And yes, I do criticize the Republican Party’s actions and philosophies.
No kiddin’ ? That’s quite a talent for stating the obvious, eh?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: But I acknowledge I do that from my own subjective perspective, with my own history, and my own particular interests in mind.
But are those interest rooted in short-term selfishness and blind partisan loyalties, or long-term, enlightened self-interest?

The former is almost certainly the case for many hard-core blind loyalists who hate anything NOT-THEIR-PARTY. Nothing else matters to them.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Politics does not operate in a vacuum for people.
Again, that’s quite a talent for stating the obvious, eh?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Everybody’s got their reasons and their roots for why and how they believe what they believe.
True. But the main question is:
  • Are their reasons and logic rooted in short-term selfishness and blind partisan loyalties, or long-term, enlightened self-interest?

At any rate, the voters will reap what they sow. The built-in self-correction (if any) is the motivation produced by the pain and misery of too much selfishness, greed, and delusional partisan loyalties.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: You can’t change that in people.
False. Change is slow, but not impossible. Progress is slow: 2.00 steps forward, and 1.99 steps backward.
Stephen Daugherty wrote:You can encourage them to change their alignment, but ultimately, that’s their choice, and its going to start from who they already are, and what they already believe. You must deal with that, if your goal is to persuade people and change their minds.
Pain and misery is more effective, and there’s years of it in the pipeline for many more years to come, due to decades of excessive short-sighted selfishness, greed, and blind, circular, distracting partisan warfare.

You think YOUR party is going to do things better, but it’s not happening, and things are getting worse (One-Simple-Idea.com/NeverWorse.htm), especially the debt (One-Simple-Idea.com/DebtUntenable1.htm), and these 10 major abuses (One-Simple-Idea.com/Abuses.htm) are still being perpetuated.

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 16, 2009 7:47 PM
Comment #284611

Dan-
No, I’ve observed that people of all different intelligence and wisdom levels are capable of making fools of themselves. I’ve also observed that some people seem to think they can take shortcuts to getting people to see things their way.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Sort of like my argument is true or false regardless of whether you call it “twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook” or not.
Twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook is rarely (if ever) true, because the reason for it is often to prop-up and/or salvage a weak and/or failing argument.

If it was twisted. If it was obfuscation. If it was circular. If it was gobbledygook. See, you miss the crux of my argument: that you lack the authority to simply proclaim any argument you want BS, and not have to explain why.

See, even here, I’m explaining to you how you miss the point: that simply proclaiming another person’s argument “twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook” is meaningless as an argument, in fact circular, if that’s how you insist that I’m wrong. You’re saying I’m wrong because I’m wrong.

Yet you don’t prove me wrong. You supply few arguments to support that claim, but instead follow up with just more of that scorn.

It is a fact that an argument that depends on a certain group being inherently wrong is a fallacy of logic. A Republican is not wrong for being a Republicans. They can be wrong because their source doesn’t know the full facts, or cites a discredited theory, but merely being a Republican or a Democrat or anything else does not discredit an argument, if we consider it apart from those elements that evoke emotional biases from us.

We know how you feel about anything NOT-DEMOCRAT.
We? I think many people out there are asking, “What are you talking about we, Kemosabe?” Unless you’re using the royal plural in this case, the only logical position is that you claim to know how I feel, and keep on trying to build a case that I simply hate non-Democrats.

Give it a rest. I don’t agree with Non-Democrats on a number of things. That’s no secret. But if you look at what I’m arguing, I’m giving free strategical advice.

I’m simply logically working out what are the most significant barriers to third-party penetration of the political market. So what are the problems?

1) The Candidates aren’t familiar. Part of an incumbent’s strength is their public recognition, which is greater for somebody actually out there doing work in the office.

The operative question, then, is how does somebody become familiar to an audience. We’ve seen some third party/independent candidates win, but often they have a high profile to start with.

2) The candidates have not built up a store of experience that signifies to voters that a promotion or a flat-out hiring at a certain level is merited. People might, on a very rare election day, be pushed by simple irrational frustration to desperately seek out one candidate or another. That’s how a person without any other outstanding virtues might get the office.

But such events are rare for a reason. Most of the time, there’s an at least partially rational weighing of the interests.

The operative question here is how do we reassure voters that the candidate is capable of carrying out the responsiblities successfully.

3) Lastly, Third Party candidates face considerable organizational and legal obstacles in successfully defeating and gaining territories that belonged to the two parties.

It’s an admirable and correct sentiment to consider laws doing those things wrong. But are you ever really going to get candidates to shoot themselves in the foot?

The operative question, then, is how do you break the bias of the system towards the two big parties?

Local elections. Local elections are less jealously guarded, less generously funded than their larger counterparts. The disadvantages in funding and manpower are largely cancelled out, if the position goes under the radar.

They give third party and independent politicans the chance to enact practical policy, prove that their different perspective is also useful, if not actually superior. Rather than just talking about what a third party can do for you, such candidates can prove what those parties can offer.

Increasing those numbers at more local and state levels might enable them, through coalition building, to begin to reshape the political landscape, change the laws, and make it easier for third parties to operate.

That in turn makes it easier to just bootstrap up the strength and recognition of the party, to build the reputation to challenge the two major parties, and much, much, more ably take advantage of critical phase shifts in politics, like those that just put the Democrats in the Drivers seat.

Fate favors the prepared mind.

Again, that’s quite a talent for stating the obvious, eh?

Nothing wrong with stating the obvious, if we’re arguing something less obvious from that first principle. You ask a question like this, though:

Are their reasons and logic rooted in short-term selfishness and blind partisan loyalties, or long-term, enlightened self-interest?
, and you’re far from arguing things on a level from which any kind of reasonably paced progress can be had.

You might be satisfied with .5% progress, with extended pain and suffering, but I think that’s a missed opportunity. If you want to move at a decent clip, you got to stop browbeating people, and start creating a dialogue, an opportunity for mutual cooperation, or you won’t get anywhere with decent speed.

I think people can be encouraged to action long before things get really painful, and can be taught some good lessons long before things get that desperate.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 17, 2009 12:37 AM
Comment #284655
Stephen Daugherty wrote: d.a.n- No, I’ve observed that people of all different intelligence and wisdom levels are capable of making fools of themselves.
And all some people have to do is look in the mirror.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: I’ve also observed that some people seem to think they can take shortcuts to getting people to see things their way.
Such as fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the incessant partisan warfare?

Do you know anyone who does that?
There’s a huge difference between:

  • (a) fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the incessant partisan warfare,

  • (b) and simply encouraging voters to stop repeatedly rewarding irresponsible, FOR-SALE, incompetent, and/or corrupt incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% ; especially in view of dismal 9%-to-28% approval ratings for Congress, the perpetuation of these 10 major abuses, and the worsening and painful consequences.
Which do you prefer? That answer to that should be obvious. Especially based on your numerous comments revealing a disdain about anything NOT-DEMOCRAT.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: If it was twisted. If it was obfuscation. If it was circular. If it was gobbledygook. See, you miss the crux of my argument: that you lack the authority to simply proclaim any argument you want BS, and not have to explain why.
Don’t take my word for it …
  • David R. Remer wrote: Sorry, Stephen D[augherty], … And that means d.a.n’s reference to your comment’s obfuscation, twisting and construction, is valid.
  • Roy Ellis wrote: In spite of all the intellectual dishonesty espoused by those opposing AVC we know we are being denied a Constitutional right. It’s there in black and white.
  • Rodney Brown wrote: … He also was a believer in The Founding Fathers and the constitution and today you better believe he’d be fighting for Article V!
  • Byron De Lear wrote: Point being: ideas live on; amendment proposals live on — the proof’s right below you if you care to see the historical track record refuting your assertion that legitimate action can only spring forth from currently assembled state legislatures, and from only living and seated legislators. Poppycock. … You [Stephen Daugherty] should help realize this people’s convention; it strengthens the democratic values and engaged electorate that I know we both support.
  • John DeHerrera wrote: The question is whether the applications are valid or not. Show a law which shows how they are expired—not an opinion, but a law. Until you do that your position is bogus.
  • Bill Walker wrote: The fact is Mr. Daugherty defeats himself in his argument and thus requires no further comment once this hypocrisy is pointed out.
  • d.a.n wrote: d.a.n wrote: No amout of twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook will change the truth.
  • Yukon Jake wrote: [Stephen] Your posts are usually the longest of anyone besides d.a.n. and that’s only because he cites so much data in his posts. For someone who is not fond of politics (or bloviating), you have somehow managed to write 1,000,000+ words on the topic since I first stumbled on watchblog.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: See, even here, I’m explaining to you how you miss the point: that simply proclaiming another person’s argument “twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook” is meaningless as an argument, in fact circular, if that’s how you insist that I’m wrong. You’re saying I’m wrong because I’m wrong.
See above. Especially David R. Remer’s and Yukon Jake’s comments.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Yet you don’t prove me wrong. You supply few arguments to support that claim, but instead follow up with just more of that scorn.
No one else has to do much (if anything).

Much of the rebuttal to your arguments is the large number of your own previous contradictory and hypocrtical comments.
Like Forrest Gump said …

Stephen Daugherty wrote: It is a fact that an argument that depends on a certain group being inherently wrong is a fallacy of logic. A Republican is not wrong for being a Republicans. They can be wrong because their source doesn’t know the full facts, or cites a discredited theory, but merely being a Republican or a Democrat or anything else does not discredit an argument, if we consider it apart from those elements that evoke emotional biases from us.
More gobbledygook.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: We? I think many people out there are asking, “What are you talking about we, Kemosabe?” Unless you’re using the royal plural in this case, the only logical position is that you claim to know how I feel, and keep on trying to build a case that I simply hate non-Democrats. Give it a rest. I don’t agree with Non-Democrats on a number of things. That’s no secret.
Doth protest too much.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: But if you look at what I’m arguing, I’m giving free strategical advice.
. “free strategical advice”?

HMMMMmmmmmm … how humble, eh?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: I’m simply logically working out what are the most significant barriers to third-party penetration of the political market. So what are the problems?
The biggest problem is short-term selfishness (such as fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the circular partisan warfare), instead of long-term, educated, enlightened self-interest.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: You ask a question like this, though:
  • d.a.n wrote: Are their reasons and logic rooted in short-term selfishness and blind partisan loyalties, or long-term, enlightened self-interest?
Why does that question bother you so much?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: You might be satisfied with .5% progress, with extended pain and suffering, but I think that’s a missed opportunity. If you want to move at a decent clip, you got to stop browbeating people, …
Browbeating? Like this ? Funny how some people accuse others of the very thing they repeatedly do themselves, eh?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: … and start creating a dialogue, an opportunity for mutual cooperation, or you won’t get anywhere with decent speed.
But the prolific, twisted, circurlar, obfuscated gobbledygook and the fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the blind partisan warfare is the solution?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: I think people can be encouraged to action long before things get really painful, and can be taught some good lessons long before things get that desperate.
False.

History proves otherwise over and over and over.
But please feel free to give more entertaining pretzel imitations trying to prove otherwise.

Even in years 1929, 1931, and 1933, when unhappy voters during the Great Depression finally ousted 108, 123, and 206 members of Congress (respectively), the Great Depression still lasted almost another decade. Pain and misery is the built-in self-correction mechanism, which helps provide some progress (though very slowly; 2.00 steps forward, 1.99 steps backward).
However, we may not always have the luxury of repeatedly re-learning the same lessons over and over and over.

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 18, 2009 11:20 AM
Comment #284694

Dan-

Stephen Daugherty wrote: d.a.n- No, I’ve observed that people of all different intelligence and wisdom levels are capable of making fools of themselves.

And all some people have to do is look in the mirror.

Come on Dan! Come right out and say what you’re implying if you dare!

I thought so. People can judge how foolish or how wise I am for themselves. But however wise or foolish I am most of the time, it is irrelevant to whether I am right about things at one time or another.

Ad hominem arguments aren’t merely bad because they are ill-mannered, they are bad because they have no logical strength. They are fallacies. It is the argument itself that must be met and confronted, its premises examined. A bad, evil, foolish, insane person can be right, and a good, benevolent, wise person with all their faculties can be wrong.

Character does not determine correctness, not with the immediate person, nor with their associations. Because of that, any argument that attempts to build its inference on that point will be invalid.

Also invalid are arguments that attempt to use the impression of popular support or restatements of the conclusions as premises for the argument that makes that conclusion. You try a little of both with your list of people who have disagreed with me.

Trying to show the masses turning against me? Yet as many lone prophets and whistleblowers, many unpopular pessimists and doomsayers have shown, to be unpopular is not to be wrong.

Trying to show other people saying the same thing, as if it must make your claims true? Doesn’t work that way. You are simply using their words to argue yours in a different form.

It doesn’t matter if you get several other people to say the same things. Without their premises being supported, they simply echo your own unsupported allegations.

But more to the point, there’s nothing about any of these arguments where it puts me on the spot to have to agree. This is especially true, since most of the quotes you’ve brought up are from people and places where we arguing about Article V’s Convention Clause. They were invalid there, too, because nothing about the nature of constitutional law depended on their opinions of my argument.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Yet you don’t prove me wrong. You supply few arguments to support that claim, but instead follow up with just more of that scorn.
No one else has to do much (if anything).

Is that so? I guess that why you call any argument over three sentences in length gobbledygook. Because its so easy to prove you don’t have to.

Why don’t you humor the rest of us, however few we may be, with the reasons that I am wrong, the facts, the mistakes in inference. You know, deal with the SUBSTANCE of the argument.

With your rote answers, you could barely skim my arguments, and nobody could tell the difference, because your approach is so impersonal, so lacking in factual or argumentative reference to what you’re critiquing most of the time, as to make no difference. You can say “nonsense”, and leave at that, but so can any amateur who’s just trying to insist on their opinion through stubborn will.

My disability, which I mentioned before, has taught me lessons through experience about the problems of just insisting on things because you believe strongly in them. The world is different than we expect, often enough, if we peel back our expectations and really look at things.

I learned that also by going to school in a very conservative, very Christian atmosphere. I learned that a number of my beliefs about how such people behaved, thought, and carried out their lives were erroneous.

I don’t think this is an uncommon situation. I think Americans have far more in common, on average, in their morals, their patriotism, their belief in the constitution, their hunger and thirst for liberty and freedom, than many believe they do. I have seen for myself how fluid the barriers are, between supposedly irreconciliable sides.

This is what leads me to believe that the lines of many controversies lie within people, not between them. Or put another way, people are conflicted about their political choices. Many modern partisan tactics are about using those conflicts in order to separate people from supporting political parties they might otherwise support, based on their other beliefs. We call these wedge issues, issues like Abortion, guns, and taxes.

You talk of partisan warfare, but it seems like on a number of issues you take the philosophical bait and side, even if only in spirit, with the hardline Republicans in Washington.

But do they argue what they argue out of firm beliefs, or because it makes them politically attractive?

They argue against paying for healthcare because it might cost a trillion dollars to do so. But they paid more than that out to millionaires and billionaires for the most part, saying that it was necessary to keep the economy growing.

They argue against paying for people’s treatment, having only a few years before voted for a Medicare Drug Benefit.

But yet, you don’t question them now when they say they want to freeze spending, that doing nothing to deal with the collapse of the economy would have been the smart thing.

These are arguments of tactical convenience, and any close look at them will reveal that.

On the subject of “free strategical advice”, yes, I’m serious. And is that not what I’ve offered?

You give this as the problem:

The biggest problem is short-term selfishness (such as fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the circular partisan warfare), instead of long-term, educated, enlightened self-interest.

How nice of you. The people who don’t agree with greater third party presence yet are selfish people who fuel and wallow in partisan warfare, rather than participate in your educated, enlightened self-interest.

Can I propose an alternative? That people aren’t simply going to hand power to unknown quantities because they’re mad at what the big parties are doing?

Earning people’s trust. Gobbledygook, right? I mean, it’s not as if uncertainty about what a person might do in office might affect a person’s vote, correct?

Building a record. Nonsense, right? I mean nobody EVER used inexperience against their opponent in an election, right?

Creating a base of political support. Really going off the deep end, right? I mean, it couldn’t possibly be useful to have a bunch of well known figures to offer voters, a dependable party presence to support whatever candidates make it to the higher offices.

No, we should just expect people, by some extraordinary miracle, to just dump what are many times lifelong party loyalties, or give up their independence to support a party that they can’t necessarily be sure represents them, has the capacity to do a good job, or the ability to follow through on its promises.

What I am advising is that the party develop in substance, in its presence on the ground. Stop expecting people, in a crisis, to appeal to a different party just because. You often cite a group of years surrounding the Great Depression as the exemplar years for Incumbent removal. But you fail to mention that this removal was in favor of the long established Democratic Party, and lead to a dominance of several decades in American politics. A third party did not win that crucial election, not like it did in the 1850s, where the Republican Party overtook its moribund predecessor.

The dynamics I speak of center on the development of the critical mass needed in order to create the critical mass for a significant presence on the national stage. There’s nothing much magical about this. It will be hard work to do things, but why not? If you care enough, its the battle you’ll fight.

If you just want to sit around and blame the duopoly for all that’s gone wrong, then you can just sit around and expect somebody to come along and give you the magic beans with which to build a beanstalk to the top.

Otherwise, you have to earn people’s votes by putting your theories, whatever they may be, to the practical test, and whatever else happens, being of use to the people who elect you. The only good way for the third parties to win is to be better than the alternative.

If you want to know, one of the reasons why I don’t respond that enthusiastically to your focus on numbers and percentages is that I don’t believe that those things are determinative of the outcome. It’s the choices that people make, and those cannot be reduced to mere numbers. Those who do try to reduce things to mere numbers might find human nature defying their predictions.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 19, 2009 10:33 AM
Comment #284710
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Come on d.a.n! Come right out and say what you’re implying if you dare!
No need.

Why should it upset anyone, unless it applies to them, eh?
It only applies if the shoe fits?
So, why is that so upsetting?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: I thought so. People can judge how foolish or how wise I am for themselves. But however wise or foolish I am most of the time, it is irrelevant to whether I am right about things at one time or another.
Who ever said otherwise? Few people are wrong all the time.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Ad hominem arguments aren’t merely bad because they are ill-mannered, they are bad because they have no logical strength.
“Ill-mannered” ? Perhaps like this?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Character does not determine correctness, not with the immediate person, nor with their associations. Because of that, any argument that attempts to build its inference on that point will be invalid.
But character is most certainly a strong influence. Some people have poor or no guiding principles. As a result, many of their arugments are doomed to be wrong and frustrating by having to resort to twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Also invalid are arguments that attempt to use the impression of popular support or restatements of the conclusions as premises for the argument that makes that conclusion. You try a little of both with your list of people who have disagreed with me.
The truth is painful.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Trying to show the masses turning against me? Yet as many lone prophets and whistleblowers, many unpopular pessimists and doomsayers have shown, to be unpopular is not to be wrong.
More gobbledygook.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Trying to show other people saying the same thing, as if it must make your claims true? Doesn’t work that way. You are simply using their words to argue yours in a different form.
Sure it does. If not, why get so upset about it? Doth protest too much?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: It doesn’t matter if you get several other people to say the same things. Without their premises being supported, they simply echo your own unsupported allegations.
Sure it matters. Especially when it is true.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: But more to the point, there’s nothing about any of these arguments where it puts me on the spot to have to agree. This is especially true, since most of the quotes you’ve brought up are from people and places where we arguing about Article V’s Convention Clause. They were invalid there, too, because nothing about the nature of constitutional law depended on their opinions of my argument.
They are material. Especially David R. Remer’s and Yukon Jake’s remarks about your comments …
  • David R. Remer wrote: Sorry, Stephen D[augherty], … And that means d.a.n’s reference to your comment’s obfuscation, twisting and construction, is valid.
  • Yukon Jake wrote: [Stephen] Your posts are usually the longest of anyone besides d.a.n. and that’s only because he cites so much data in his posts. For someone who is not fond of politics (or bloviating), you have somehow managed to write 1,000,000+ words on the topic since I first stumbled on watchblog.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Is that so? I guess that why you call any argument over three sentences in length gobbledygook. Because its so easy to prove you don’t have to.
More gobbledygook.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Why don’t you humor the rest of us, however few we may be, with the reasons that I am wrong, the facts, the mistakes in inference. You know, deal with the SUBSTANCE of the argument.
On what subject. Those evil Republicans? More fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the blind, circular, partisan warfare?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: With your rote answers, you could barely skim my arguments, and nobody could tell the difference, because your approach is so impersonal, so lacking in factual or argumentative reference to what you’re critiquing most of the time, as to make no difference. You can say “nonsense”, and leave at that, but so can any amateur who’s just trying to insist on their opinion through stubborn will.
More gobbldeygook.

Funny now some people accuse others of the very thing they do themselves, eh?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: My disability, which I mentioned before, has taught me lessons through experience about the problems of just insisting on things because you believe strongly in them. The world is different than we expect, often enough, if we peel back our expectations and really look at things.
HMMMMmmmmmm … it doesn’t seem to be working, does it?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: I learned that also by going to school in a very conservative, very Christian atmosphere. I learned that a number of my beliefs about how such people behaved, thought, and carried out their lives were erroneous.
Right. Everyone else is wrong, eh?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: I don’t think this is an uncommon situation. I think Americans have far more in common, on average, in their morals, their patriotism, their belief in the constitution, their hunger and thirst for liberty and freedom, than many believe they do. I have seen for myself how fluid the barriers are, between supposedly irreconciliable sides.
Perhaps. But the extremists are always trying to screw it up for the majority.

Which extreme do you belong to?

  • Extreme #1: One extreme wants regressive taxation, unfettered capitalism, little (if any) government regulations, and freedom to explore and wallow in every manifestation of unchecked greed.

  • Extreme #2: The other extreme wants a nanny-state with citizens increasingly dependent on the government; with massive cradle-to-grave government programs (which are usually severely mismanaged) that nurture a sense of entitlement and dependency on government; wants to grow government ever larger (despite the already current nightmare proportions); rewards failure and laziness; and perpetuates the myth that we can somehow all live at the expense of everyone else.
You disagree, but there’s really not much difference between the majority of Republican and Democrat incumbent politicians and their loyal hacks, beyond their two destructive extremes.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: This is what leads me to believe that the lines of many controversies lie within people, not between them.
True. Some people have no real principles or values to guide them. So they lazily adopt THEIR party’s thinking, rather than do it for themselves … at least until that finally becomes too painful.

Fortunately, pain and misery is the built-in self-correction mechanism for excessive short-term selfishness, instead of long-term, educated, enlightened self-interest.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Or put another way, people are conflicted about their political choices.
That frustration often comes from trying to twist, obfuscate, and re-interpret the bad things THEIR party does, while trying to constantly demonize everythingt the OTHER party does.

That is the nature of the blind, partisan warfare, and some people love to wallow in it.
Some people find that very irritating, because it is so true.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Many modern partisan tactics are about using those conflicts in order to separate people from supporting political parties they might otherwise support, based on their other beliefs. We call these wedge issues, issues like Abortion, guns, and taxes.
Duh!
Stephen Daugherty wrote: You talk of partisan warfare, but it seems like on a number of issues you take the philosophical bait and side, even if only in spirit, with the hardline Republicans in Washington.
Nonsense. I’m not a Republican, and have voted for policitians that were Democrats, Independents, and Republicans. So, your accusation (as usual) is baseless.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: But do they argue what they argue out of firm beliefs, or because it makes them politically attractive?
Too many have no real principles or values, and simply love to fuel and wallow in the blind, partisan warfare, in order to keep the majority of voters pullin’ the party-lever.

Know anyone like that?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: They argue against paying for healthcare because it might cost a trillion dollars to do so.
It was my understanding that it was supposed to be a voluntary national non-profit health insurance system.

Now there are reports that it won’t be voluntary.
Why?
Did we wake up in North Korea today?
If the federal government really wants to help most Americans, they would first stop these 10 major abuses (One-Simple-Idea.com/Abuses.htm), and then perhaps more Americans could afford health insurance.
But that would make too much sense, eh?
And if the severely bloated and fiscally irresponsible federal govnernment runs a national healthcare system like it runs the Social Security system (trillions plundered from it) and the Medicare system (7% lost to fraud and waste), then it will be a dismal failure too.
The federal government has no right to force all citizens to pay into a national government health insurance system.
Obama campaigned on a voluntary national health insurance system.
If Obama pushes an oppressive system that forces people to participate, and forcefully extracts wages from people to fund it, it will most likely be a huge failure.
If the federal government would stop the 10 abuses hammering most Americans today, many Americans would most likely be able to acquire reasonably priced health insurance.
And for the people that can’t afford it, that’s what welfare is for, and the two (welfare and health insurance) should not overlap.
A national non-profit health insurance system could be started, which people could voluntarily join. With no profits to pay stock-holders and owners, such as system should be sustainable. However, forcing people to participate is a clear form of oppression. There’s too much of that now (e.g. regressive taxation; constitutional violations; despicably pitting American citizens and illegal aliens against each other for votes and profits; 195,000 people killed annually by preventable adverse drug reactions and medical errors; massive and oppressive debt of nightmare proportions; usury and incessant inflation; unfair trade practices; a FOR-SALE, plutocratic, kleptocratic federal government; extreme fiscal irresponsibility; etc., etc., etc. (One-Simple-Idea.com/NeverWorse.htm) ), and we don’t need more of it.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: But they paid more than that out to millionaires and billionaires for the most part, saying that it was necessary to keep the economy growing.
They? HMMMMmmmm … wasn’t it Chris Dodd who removed the restriction for more bonuses for AIG exective bonuses?

It’s pathetic how some people want to blame everything on the OTHER party, as if THEIR party had no culpability for this economic meltdown.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: They argue against paying for people’s treatment, having only a few years before voted for a Medicare Drug Benefit.
True. And weren’t Democrats right along with them on that BILL?

You seem to have the strange idea that only NON-DEMOCRATs had anything to do with it. Their BOTH pathetic, and so are the voters that foolishly fuel and wallow in the same blind, circular partisan warfare.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: But yet, you don’t question them now when they say they want to freeze spending, that doing nothing to deal with the collapse of the economy would have been the smart thing.
False.

What do you call this, which questions NUMEROUS things done by ALL political parties, and politicians, and the voters who repeatedly reward FOR-SALE, incompetent, and corrupt incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates, despite dismal 9%-to-28% approval ratings:

  • (01) One-Simple-Idea.com/MainPartySimilarities.htm (little difference beyond equally destructive extremes)

  • (02) One-Simple-Idea.com/Abuses.htm (10 major abuses)

  • (03) One-Simple-Idea.com/DebtUntenable1.htm (debt beyond nightmare proportions)

  • (04) One-Simple-Idea.com/Links1.htm (pork-barrel, waste, corruption)

  • (05) One-Simple-Idea.com/DebtAndMoney.htm (usury, incessant inflation, and the debt pyramid)

  • (06) One-Simple-Idea.com/USD_Falling.htm (inflation for many consecutive decades)

  • (07) One-Simple-Idea.com/ConstitutionalViolations1.htm

  • (08) One-Simple-Idea.com/NeverWorse.htm (and still getting worse)

  • (09) One-Simple-Idea.com/IllegalImmigration.htm

  • (10) One-Simple-Idea.com/FairTaxFraud1.htm

  • (11) One-Simple-Idea.com/Transcript1.htm (false statements to rationalize an unnecessary war)

  • (12) One-Simple-Idea.com/ProblemAndSolution.htm (the root of most problems)

  • (13) One-Simple-Idea.com/Solutions1.htm (solutions)
So, your comment (again, as usual) is baseless.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: These are arguments of tactical convenience, and any close look at them will reveal that. On the subject of “free strategical advice”, yes, I’m serious. And is that not what I’ve offered?
How humble, eh?

Surely, everyone is falling all over each other in a mad rush to get that advice.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: You give this as the problem:
  • d.a.n wrote: The biggest problem is short-term selfishness (such as fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the circular partisan warfare), instead of long-term, educated, enlightened self-interest.
How nice of you. The people who don’t agree with greater third party presence yet are selfish people who fuel and wallow in partisan warfare, rather than participate in your educated, enlightened self-interest.
Nonsense. I never said that.

My statement has nothing to do with the greater third party presence, which I welcome, but don’t really see as necessary, nor the solution.

Is that the best you can do; make up lies about me saying “people who don’t agree with greater third party presence are selfish people who fuel and wallow in partisan warfare” ?
Where did I ever say that?
Thus, your comment (again, as usual) is not only baseless, but a blatant lie too.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Can I propose an alternative? That people aren’t simply going to hand power to unknown quantities because they’re mad at what the big parties are doing?
They will most likely do that when failing to do so finally becomes too painful.

Perhaps when enough voters are deep-into ($11.6 Trillion national debt and $57 Trillion nation-wide debt)debt, jobless (now at 10%), homeless (8,000-to-10,000 foreclosures per day), and hungry (over 10% (32.2 million) of Americans receive food stamps as of 2-APR-2009), then perhaps enough voters will do what that majority of unhappy voters did in years 1029, 1931, and 1933, when they ousted 108, 123, and 206 members of Congress (many in BOTH the Democrat and Republican party).

Repeatedly rewarding failure and rewarding incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates certainly ain’t workin’, is it?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Earning people’s trust. Gobbledygook, right?
Who ever said “earning people’s trust” is gobbledygook?

Is that the best you can do?
Just invent stuff?
What’s anyone’s beef with blind, circular, partisan loyalties, if it doesn’t apply to themself?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: I mean, it’s not as if uncertainty about what a person might do in office might affect a person’s vote, correct?
Building a record. Nonsense, right? I mean nobody EVER used inexperience against their opponent in an election, right? Who ever said building a records is nonsense?

Again, is that the best you can do?
Just make up new arguments where none exist, having failed miserably to salvage other doomed arguments with twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Creating a base of political support. Really going off the deep end, right?
Some one is going of the deep end?

After all, who ever said creating a base of political support was “Really going off the deep end” ?
Again, is that the best you can do?
Why are you trying to pretend we have disagreement on things where no disagreement exists?
Is it perhaps to distract from the the dismal failure to salvage other doomed arguments with prolific, twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: I mean, it couldn’t possibly be useful to have a bunch of well known figures to offer voters, a dependable party presence to support whatever candidates make it to the higher offices.
Who ever said a dependable and responsible candidates was a bad thing?

Again, is that the best you can do?
Trying to pretend we have disagreements on things where no disagreement exists is most likely an attempt to distract from the dismal failure to salvage other doomed arguments with prolific, twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: No, we should just expect people, by some extraordinary miracle, to just dump what are many times lifelong party loyalties, or give up their independence to support a party that they can’t necessarily be sure represents them, has the capacity to do a good job, or the ability to follow through on its promises.
Who said people should support any party or politicians that don’t represent their values and principles?

Where is all this desparate nonsense coming from?

The question is, why do too many voters continue to reward failur and reward excessively FOR-SALE, incompetent, irresponsible, and/or corrupt incumbent politicians in Congress, despite dismal 9%-to-28% approval ratings for Congress.

The answer is simple.
Not enough voters are yet feeling enough pain to take voting seriously.
That’s an inescapable fact.
When they do, enough voters will very likely repeat what the majority of unhappy voters did in years 1929, 1931, 1933, and 1933.

  • Start __ End __ Congress _ Re-Election ___ Party Seat-Retention

  • Year ___ Year ___ # _____ Rate ________ Rate

  • 1927 ___ 1929 ___ 070st ___ 83.6% ________ 96.4% (087 incumbents ousted: 22(D), 64(R), 1(FL) )

  • 1929 ___ 1931 ___ 071st ___ 79.7% ________ 92.5% (108 incumbents ousted: 51(D), 44(R), 2(FL), 1(S) )

  • 1931 ___ 1933 ___ 072nd ___ 76.8% ________ 88.5% (123 incumbents ousted: 36(D), 87(R) )

  • 1933 ___ 1935 ___ 073rd ___ 61.2% ________ 78.7% (206 of 531 incumbents ousted: 59(D), 147(R) )

  • … … … … … … … …

  • 1989 ___ 1991 ___ 101st ___ 90.1% ________ 99.6%

  • 1991 ___ 1993 ___ 102nd ___ 87.7% ________ 98.3%

  • 1993 ___ 1995 ___ 103rd ___ 73.5% ________ 98.1% (142 of 535 incumbents (mostly Democrats) ousted)

  • … … … … … … … …

  • 1999 ___ 2001 ___ 106th ___ 89.2% ________ 99.3%

  • 2001 ___ 2003 ___ 107th ___ 89.2% ________ 98.7%

  • 2003 ___ 2005 ___ 108th ___ 87.9% ________ 98.1% (65 of 535 voted out)

  • 2005 ___ 2007 ___ 109th ___ 88.6% ________ 98.7% (61 of 535 voted out)

  • 2007 ___ 2009 ___ 110th ___ 84.9% ________ 93.1% (81 of 535 incumbents voted out (68=16(D)+51(R)+1(I) in the House) + (13=3(D)+9(R)+1(I) in the Senate)

  • 2009 ___ 2011 ___ 111th ___ 86.9% ________ 94.0% (70 of 535 voted out (57=13(D)+44(R) in the House) + (13=3(D)+10(R) in the Senate)
Until then, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Why this disturbs some partisan loyalists so much is most likely because it disturbs their blind, circular partisan loyalties, and forces them into unnatural situations where they constantly have to preserve their blind partisan loyalties by resorting to twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook to try to rationalize, dismiss, ignore, or re-interpret things to fit into their partisan model. It can be very frustrating. Especially for the most hard-core, blind, partisan loyalists who constantly set themselves up with difficult (if not totally doomed) arguments and battles.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: What I am advising is that the party develop in substance, in its presence on the ground.
How humble?
Stephen Daugherty wrote: Stop expecting people, in a crisis, to appeal to a different party just because.
Giving orders to other people again, eh?

You often cite a group of years surrounding the Great Depression as the exemplar years for Incumbent removal. But you fail to mention that this removal was in favor of the long established Democratic Party, and lead to a dominance of several decades in American politics.
False. The numbers of BOTH Democrats and Republicans were very clearly disclosed (see above).

As usual, that is yet another false statement.
I’d be ashamed to be making so many false statements.
It certainly doesn’t do much for the credibility of one’s own statements, does it?

Stephen Daugherty wrote: A third party did not win that crucial election, not like it did in the 1850s, where the Republican Party overtook its moribund predecessor.
Who ever said it did?

In year 1933, unhappy voters ousted many from BOTH the Democrat (59) and the Republican (147) parties.
You seem to think that is a ringing endorsement and congratulations for the Democrat party?
It isn’t.
The majority of voters were fed up with BOTH , which is why so many were ousted in BOTH parties.

In year 1993, the majority of the 142 incumbent politicians ousted from office were Democrats.
How convenient to omit that, eh?
Such omissions don’t help the credibility of such comments, not to mention the incessant fuelin’ and wallowin’ in the blind partisan warfare.
The Democrats had the vast majority of Congress for all but 14 of the last 78 years?
The Democrats had the vast majority of Congress for the 40 consecutive years between 1955 and 1995?
So, if the Democrats have had the majority in Congress most of the time, why are things getting worse for so many decades?
OOOOOOHHHHHhhhhh … that’s right. It’s ALL the Republicans’ fault, eh?
That’s what the huge majority of your articles and comments claim.
That fact is, it’s most (if not all) incumbent politicians in ALL parties, and the voters for not only tolerating it, but rewarding failure and Congress with 85%-to-90% re-election rates, despite the curious and dismal 9%-to-28% approval rating for Congress (One-Simple-Idea.com/CongressMakeUp_1855_2011.htm).

Stephen Daugherty wrote: The dynamics I speak of center on the development of the critical mass needed in order to create the critical mass for a significant presence on the national stage. There’s nothing much magical about this. It will be hard work to do things, but why not? If you care enough, its the battle you’ll fight.
Again, third parties are not necessarily the solution.

The solution is more long-term, educated, enlightened self-interest, and less short-term selfishness.
It’s not that complicated, and it doesn’t require a third party.
The most effective form of motivation is pain and misery.
Education, enlightenment, and knowledge of ways to avoid pain and misery is the key; not necessarily another political party.
I don’t have anything against 3rd, 4th, … , Nth parties, but that isn’t the solution.
The solution is right there under the voters very noses, and they’ll come to realize that in time, when failing to do their duty and vote responsibly finally becomes too painful.
And repeatedly rewarding irresponsible, FOR-SALE, incompetent, and corrupt incumbent politicians in Congress (which has given itself a raise in 10 of the last 12 years) with 85%-to-90% re-election rates, despite dismal 9%-to-28% approval ratings, is not voting responsibly.
Blindly pulling the party-lever is not voting responsibly.
Rewarding failure is not voting responsibly.
When will it stop?
Most likely, ONLY when it becomes too painful.
Of course, blind partisan loyalists reject this truth, but there’s a reason the IN-PARTY always becomes the OUT-PARTY.
Power corrupts, and the IN-PARTY is always more corrupt by virtue of the power they have to abuse.
Unfortunately, simply letting two almost equally corrupt parties take turns doesn’t work either.
That’s why 1929, 1931, 1933, and 1993 are significant.
Those were painful times, and it took a long time to get over.
If voters want more responsible government, then enough voters must vote more responsibly.

It’s that simple, and blindly pullin’ the party-lever ain’t workin’ is it?
Things are still deteriorating (One-Simple-Idea.com/NeverWorse.htm), as they have been for several decades, because the federal government still allows these 10 abuses (One-Simple-Idea.com/NeverWorse.htm) to continue to hammer most Americans. But why should our elected officials change, when the majority of voters continue to repeatedly reward the incumbent politicians for failure and corruption with 85%-to-90% re-election rates? The largest group responsible for the state of any voting nation is the voters themselves. Trying to blame it ONLY on the politicians in the OTHER party only lets the two main parties take turns using and abusing most Americans via those 10 major abuses.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: If you just want to sit around and blame the duopoly for all that’s gone wrong, then you can just sit around and expect somebody to come along and give you the magic beans with which to build a beanstalk to the top.
Funny how some people accuse others of the very things they do themselves, eh?

Who is it that continually fuels and wallows in the blind, circular partisan warfare and repeatedly blames the OTHER party for everything?
Who is it that is continually frustrated with their own pretzel logic while trying to twist, obfuscate, and somehow prop-up a doomed and failing argument?
Who is it that continually expresses their disdain for anything NOT-DEMOCRAT?
For example:

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: They [voters] should be allying with us [Democrats].

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: And yes, I obviously want voters to vote for Democrats. {Really? No kiddin’?}

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: d.a.n- If third parties can’t win offices, what good are they to the voter?

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: Being spoilers [independent/3rd party voters] only ensures being fringe…

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I do think voters should ally with Democrats.

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: In my opinion, the proper people to run this party are the voters who elect Democrats.

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I don’t disdain third parties.

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: … as I don’t like to hear people get down on my party, …

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: … because then your [independent/3rd] parties get blamed for sending things in a lousy direction.

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: How many people curse the Green party for George W. Bush (43) getting elected?

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: It’s what Democrats like myself had to do, after all, to take back the majorities and the White House.

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: My generation of Democrats prides itself on not being caught blindsided by either the Republicans, or their own side’s problems. The ears [of Democrats] are to the ground, and we’re always, ALWAYS watching. {Always? Then why does the IN-PARTY “always” become the OUT-PARTY?}

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: Democrats have significantly shifted the balance of power, despite all the barriers the Republicans put in place to keep their power.

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: The Republicans have the choice, which I gladly let them have, of doing scuzzy things so they can make the Democrats look bad …

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I chose to be like this. However, I don’t like doing things in a way that I know is arbitrary. It offends me. My comments about third parties are valid.

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I‘ve been rather cross about your tendency to call the new [110th] congress a do-nothing congress … {Why? What did the 110th do-nothing Congress accomplish since 7-NOV-2006 ? And the 111th Congress consists of 86.9% of the 110th Congress.}

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I think you’re underestimating the results of this last election. {We’ll see, since 85%-to-90% of incumbent politicians were re-elected.)

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote {NEW!, which is ironic indeed}: … why do you uncritically accept partisan rhetoric …?

  • Stephen Daugherty wrote: I don’t disdain third parties.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Otherwise, you have to earn people’s votes by putting your theories, whatever they may be, to the practical test, and whatever else happens, being of use to the people who elect you. The only good way for the third parties to win is to be better than the alternative.
Again, I’m not interested in starting a third party.

While there’s nothin wrong with people forming more political parties, education is what is truly needed; not another political party.
History is the test, and history proves my theory over and over and over.
The majority of voters will get their education one way or another, but they will get it.
And human natures and history show us over and over and over that people procrastinate … until if finally becomes too painful.
It is quite simply rooted in too much short-term selfishness, and too little long-term, educated, enlightened self-interest.
Selfishness, in general, is the path to more pain and misery, and we’ve been on the wrong path for too long, which is why things are still deteriorating.

There are no guarantees.
Enough voters may not finally hold their politicians accountable, in which case the outcome could be worse.
However, it is most likely that enough voters will finally repeat what the majority of voters did in years 1929, 1931, 1933, and 1993, when failing to do so sooner than later finally becomes too painful.
Of course, many blind partisan loyalists abhor that … mostly because it is true.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: If you want to know, one of the reasons why I don’t respond that enthusiastically to your focus on numbers and percentages is that I don’t believe that those things are determinative of the outcome.
Only a fool ignores the numbers.

The $57 Trillion nation-wide debt has grown from 100% of GDP in year 1956 to over 411% of GDP today (and the per-capita figure is worse).
The $11.6 Trillion National-debt per-capita ($37K) is 70% higher today than the National Debt per-capita ($22K in 2008 dollars) in year 1945 after World War II.

Only a fool would say that:

I don’t believe that those things are determinative of the outcome.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: It’s the choices that people make, …
True.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: and those cannot be reduced to mere numbers.
False.

Try ignoring the numbers in your own budget, borrow far beyond your ability to repay, and see how that works out.
No nation has ever borrowed, money-printed, and spent its way to prosperity.
Only a fool thinks the debt is not a very serious issue.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: Those who do try to reduce things to mere numbers might find human nature defying their predictions.
Who ever said everything has to be reduced to numbers?

Such extreme extrapolations and gobbledygook ain’t foolin’ anyone, and merely demonstrates the weakness of your position.

History proves otherwise with regard to debt, and debt involves numbers.

Numbers have significance, as do words.

Only a fool tries to ignore, twist, obfuscate, and rationalize everything they prefer not face nor admit as the truth.
Trying to trivialize the seriousness of the debt is just that.

If you now want to entertain us with some more pretzel imitations while trying to ignore, dismiss, twist, obfuscate, and trivialize the $11.6 Trillion federal national debt and the $57 Trillion nation-wide debt, please do. It should prove to be most interesting.

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 19, 2009 3:58 PM
Comment #284727

Dan-
If the shoe fits? Or is it more like “he who smelt it, dealt it?”

I find it very amusing the lengths you go to blame me for being offended for your constant character assaults.

You don’t have to believe something is true about yourself to not want it said about you, to want to respond to defend your reputation.

Character doesn’t make an argument good, logic and fact does. Popularity doesn’t make an argument good, logic and fact does. How strong a person badmouths an argument doesn’t have a thing to do with how well they rebut it.

You can talk about the truth being painful, but why should the rest of us buy that you’re the one who’s got this painful truth?

People will judge for themselves the quality of my arguments and your arguments, and if they don’t buy your arguments, the arbitrariness of them will only serve to convince them all the more that you’re wrong.

I try not to get on the wrong side of an argument.

I try to avoid fallacious arguments. Main reason is, the arguments that take this kind of route also happen to be the softer, easier to deny kind of argument, the kind that move no-one and nothing, because those who would agree with conclusion already agreed with it to start with, and those who didn’t weren’t going to agree with it anyways.

I qualify claims. I look them up on google, make sure that I’m on the right side of the facts.

I argue this way because I want to move people. I want people, of their own free will, to feel like joining my side. It’s nothing I can force, or should try to force.

You rob yourself of traction with the uniformity of your comments and responses, and your tendency, in my case, to just repeat that mantra about gobbledygook. Who do you think takes it as anything else but a standard response in a long internet grudge? What facts and logic support them, if any?

I don’t believe people are obligated to read my works, that the readership in question is something I have to earn. I’m a believer in my cause, much like you are, but I do not feel that it’s some kind of natural moral obligation to believe like I do.

I believe my opinions and my suggestions are something I developed, owing to my particular experiences, my education, and my readings. I venture into a lot of areas that many people don’t go too far into, and I like to make people aware of the things I find out about.

One particular facet of my condition is that I have a tendency towards saturation learning. I immerse myself into subjects in a way most people would find difficult to endure. I wasn’t known as a walking dictionary or encyclopedia as a kid for nothing.

Naturally, you want to share such fascinating things. But naturally, not everybody, especially the normal folks out there, wants to discuss things so exhaustively, with such strong focus.

I’ve learned to moderate it in two ways. One, I’m less quick to volunteer that information nowadays. Two, I’ve learned how to boil things down better. In my studies of information theory, I came across the rather useful concept of exformation, where the strength of the meaning in something depends strongly on what information can be left out, what trouble can be saved for somebody.

The trap that’s easy to fall into is that you reduce things to far, or inappropriately. So it’s important to respect the irreduceable complexities in the world, and to do your best to get the facts straight, because a clever explanation that’s factually incorrect, or which overlooks an important reality is a poor model for good behavior or good argument.

The best cure for extremism is not the defeat of extremists, but that their conclusions and arguments are put to the test, rather than allowed to be the unquestioned gospel. That’s one reason in particular that it’s important to focus, as I do, between the lines of partisan issues, to transcend the pigeonholes that ideology often tries to cram the real world into.

Our job is not to stop people from believing what they do. Our job is to be a good guide to other lines of thoughts, other methods of consideration, other paradigms of understanding.

In many cases, the dynamics of people’s behavior are caught on maybe one or two things, things that might prevent a certain pressure from leading people to push policy in a different direction.

The Republicans are trying to use various hooks to get people who otherwise might resist and even actively oppose their endorsement of the status quo to hesitate and even oppose what they’d otherwise go for. Democrats are working their butts off to make the healthcare package budget neutral. We’re doing our best to keep choices open.

We understand the pressures, the political consequences of getting too excessive on matters. And the Republicans understand, all too well, what nightmare slippery slopes to predict, what budget disasters to loudly prophecize. The know what they’re doing, what kind of wedge they’re driving, and who they’re trying to drive it into.

They know what buttons to push, to get people like yourself to resist reform, to get people off the insurance companies backs. Before you talk about what freedoms we lose under a healthcare plan, let me ask you: what kind of freedoms do we really have now? Can we choose our own doctors, choose where to get healthcare, get treatment where we need it, how we need it, when we need it, and not otherwise? Can we get healthcare if we’ve already suffered a major health problem, or if we’re laid off, etc.?

I would say that many of the things we were promised would happen if we were to abandon private healthcare are the things that happened anyways, just with different people raising the costs and upping the bureaucratic snarl. Somebody already rations healthcare, already picks and chooses who we see and who we don’t. We’re not free, and the sooner we realize that the free market is the last thing that’s operating, the sooner we’ll reject the status quo such arguments defend.

The right facts, the right truths, presented in concentrated and well connected enough forms, can change minds.

And the right presence. You got bent out of shape because I defended my advice. The truth of the matter is, I was saying that reducing uncertainty, growing public awareness and support, broadening the political base, might not be bad first steps to expanding the reach of the third parties.

But as usually, you’re taking the tact that I’m the argumentative bad guy, so you’re taking these facetious, frustrated words of mine literally, as if I were opposing those things.

This is sort of like fighting a war, in the sense that you can talk about doing the things it takes to win, or you can figure out what works, and what doesn’t, and apply that knowledge and experience to actually making forward progress, conquering territory, so to speak.

To take and hold territory, third parties must start small, gain trust, gain clout, and then use that to enable victories on higher levels. Its kind of like the “bootstrap” process that brings up an operating system, the first code and circuitry waking up higher and more complex levels of the system.

The thing to keep in mind, is that much of what keeps people in place in politics, especially in a Democracy, resides in the software. If you want to offer an alternative operating system on the political market, it’s got to recreate the features of its competitors, at least the most important ones, or offer innovations of its own.

What I advocate is that whatever third parties (or party insurrections, for that matter) seek to make forward progress should build a relationship with the public as their foundation, because there we have the fulcrum of the lever that moves things. Change does sometimes come gradually, but in my opinion, change often just snaps. You think it will just keep on building. But if you look what’s happened already, you’ll see that there have already been several release of political tension. This is less about who keeps their seat, and more about how people go about it, what they do in order to keep them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 19, 2009 11:39 PM
Comment #284753

blah, blah, blah.

No amount of twisted, obfuscated, circular gobbledygook will change the truth. That is most likely the source of so much frustration.

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 20, 2009 8:53 PM
Comment #284767

Dan-
You can disparage my arguments, but can you match them?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 21, 2009 2:09 AM
Comment #284772
Stephen Daugherty wrote: You can disparage my arguments, but can you match them?
No, because I don’t know anyone who an equal mastery of twisted, circular, obfuscated, gobbledygook.

As for disparaging your arguments, that’s what debates are about, by pointing out the flaws in logic.

If that bothers anyone, then perhaps they should refrain from flawed logic (much less prolific, twisted, circular, obfuscated gobbledygook) instead of trying to blame someone else for their own flawed logic?

At any rate, the voters have the government that the voters elect (and re-elect, and re-elect, and re-elect , … , at least until that finally becomes too painful).

Posted by: d.a.n at July 21, 2009 9:18 AM
Comment #284849

Dan-
Treading dangerously close to the line there, aren’t you? There’s no excuse. I have given you every opportunity to explain WHY the particular things I say are wrong.

Hell, you’ve spent hundreds of pages worth of text making the charge over and over again. That can’t be that quick to do. So why not engage me directly? Why not address the points and the facts one by one? You talk about circular arguments, but if all you can say is that you can’t match my arguments because I’m not matchable at lying, covering things up, twisting things, or pumping out content, then you’re just arguing in circles yourself.

You haven’t been pointing out flaws in logic, you’ve merely been alleging them. To point out something, you’d have to at least reference the offending remark, and then to really do it right, you would have to examine the logical inference and the test the facts.

If you were one of those folks whose standard posts were a paragraph or two long, I could understand the claim that my prolificness would be hard to keep up with. But in fact, you’ve done better than me at generating output. Typically your responses is longer than mine.

If my logic is twisted, all the better. If you’re so sure that it’s turned around on itself, you should easily be able to point out what is wrong, and make it clear to a reader. If I’m obfuscating, you can confront me with facts. If it’s gobbledygook, you can clarify.

There’s no point to just rendering that verdict over and over again. No logic to it, either.

If you want to prove the superiority of your logic, then you must demonstrate that superiority by being able to parse even the worst gobbledygook I can offer.

Unfortunately, as it stands now, you don’t try to really examine the argument. You tend, instead, to interject smart alec comments and authoritative and repetitions renderings of your verdict.

You have to get out of that kind of belligerent paradigm. Though I respond in anger sometimes, I often let myself cool down, because I know that I can do my best work if the force of my argument is not an emotion that everybody else will be missing, but a set of truths that make that argument sound and its inference valid.

If you want to charge flawed logic, fine. Then demonstrate better logic. Don’t tell me that you can’t be logical until I’m logical. That’s just a cop-out. The choice to argue rationally is nobody’s but one’s own.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 22, 2009 10:23 PM
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