Liberals lack empathy

The governor of New York recently told conservatives that they have no place in his state. Imagine if a conservative had done something similar. He later explained, but not entirely. Liberals regularly demonize conservatives. That is no surprise. Both sides do that. But a recent study indicates that while conservatives and moderates can successfully put themselves in the place of liberals, by accurately describing positions from a liberal point of view, liberals cannot do the same for conservatives.

While conservatives usually view liberals as decent people with stupid ideas, liberal persist in seeing conservatives are bad to the bone. The study shows that when liberal "play" conservatives, the "research suggests that many liberals really do believe that conservatives are heartless bastards."

This has been my experience. I have lots of liberal friends and they seem to like me. They make a point of telling me that I am not a "normal" conservative, as if it is a compliment. I have come to understand that when they say "conservative" they do not mean a set of values, but rather a value judgment. As far as they are concerned, what is bad is conservative.

I think there is a deep part of the liberal ideology that accounts for this. Liberals believe that the political is the personal. They talk about the "whole person." A conservative usually doesn't care so much about this. For conservatives, a person's political beliefs are only part of the package. Liberals seem to have a kind of conservative radar. They actually care about your politics.

A guy I work with recently was surprised when he walked into my office and heard NPR. He was surprise because he said that I "gave off a conservative vibe." He couldn't really explain what that meant, but then he quickly followed that I was not like a normal conservative. Actually, I am like a normal conservative; it just happens not to track well with liberal stereotypes of us. Liberals are more likely to listen to NPR, but 28% of listeners are conservatives and 28% moderate.

I recognize that NPR has a liberal bias, but it doesn't stop me from enjoying the programs. It is a lot like adjusting a rife that pulls a little to the left. You just aim a little more to the right and you come out okay. How many of my liberal friend would be so "liberal" in describing Fox News.

In fact, I predict that if one of our liberals friends talks about Fox New at all, he is likely to write it as Faux or some other pejorative variation.

Posted by Christine & John at January 24, 2014 7:19 PM
Comments
Comment #375823

Cuomo says 70% of New York should dictate to 30% because that’s who they are. But 1 person who complains about the name of a football team gets to dictate to everybody else when the one person is “offended”.

What hypocrisy! I wish Democratics would take a time out and really do some self-examinations. They eventually would have to see the contradictions, the falsehoods, and the hypocrisy that make up their philosophy.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 24, 2014 8:28 PM
Comment #375824

Weary

“I wish Democratics would take a time out and really do some self-examinations.” This is the problem. They really cannot. Most cannot put themselves in the shoes of conservatives.

Posted by: CJ at January 24, 2014 8:32 PM
Comment #375825

True. They’re too busy being superior to conservatives. They would rather call them names than listen to them. A liberal is never wrong.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 24, 2014 8:35 PM
Comment #375827

Please don’t bore me with this crap. You don’t empathize with us. If you had real empathy these days your side would have never entered into this ideological war, because you would have understood that in the beginning we wanted to seal up the wounds. We wanted an end to the Rovian antagonism that developed over the last couple decades.

Empathy would have convinced you that the absolute frustration of our agenda would be counterproductive to generating any empathy from us. You can’t spew unending, paranoid schizophrenic hatred at people and then expect them to see you in terms of fellowship. You’ve willingly burned bridges, undermined and replaced the centrists in the party, and spent the last decade questioning every bit of our benevolence towards our own nation. Why again are we supposed to like you, try and see things your way? What have we gotten in return from any attempt we’ve made in the last decade to see things your way and meet you halfway?

You purposefully made any outreach towards you, any attempt to find common ground fail, so we could get blamed for the gridlock.

Now you’re trying to win based on that fruit of the poison tree. Then tell us we lack empathy. Well, You’ve stuck a lot of venom in us to get what you want, so you got nerve asking us to see things your way, because seeing things your way would be no different than giving up on everything we believe and despising ourselves, something any proud, smart Democrat would refuse to do.

If you want empathy, how about regarding us with the respect that lets us see things your way without gutting our own self-respect.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 24, 2014 11:46 PM
Comment #375828

Stephen Daugherty, Democratics will only be convinced conservatives are cooperating if conservatives roll over and do what ever Democratics say they must do. Democratics have, in the past, made deals to get what they wanted and had no intention, and did not hold up their end of the deal. The first amnesty comes to mind with sealing the border. The second was GHWB’s no new taxes pledge. Democratics asked him to cave and then beat him up for caving.

Democratics are untrustworthy. So untrustworthy they will blame their adversaries for what they initiate.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 12:20 AM
Comment #375829

Empathy?

“There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. … My job is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”

“Corporations are people, my friend…”

“I like being able to fire people who provide services to me.”

Guess who.

When conservatives delayed aid to the victims of Hurricane Sandy, was that an example of empathy?

When they pushed food stamp cuts, was that?

How about refusing to go through with extended unemployment benefits, even as they complained about the number of unemployed?

Should we examine examples of ‘empathy’ among prominent conservatives such as Rush Limbaugh, Hannity, Michael Savage, and others?

Is pushing a Constitutional amendment to prevent gay marriage an example of empathy?

For conservatives to play the victim here is absolutely ridiculous. Conservative policies have consistently opposed the interests of minorities, while championing the interests of the wealthy, the white, and religious dogmatists. Conservatives have stoked the fires of hatred, bigotry, xenophobia, misogyny, and more, but now comes the blowback. The lack of empathy worked fine when old, angry white men held the power and most of the money. Demographics have turned the tide, and now, conservatives pretend to be the victims.

Conservatives may have lots of reasons for taking the ideological stands they take. But empathy sure as hell isn’t one of them.

Posted by: phx8 at January 25, 2014 1:06 AM
Comment #375830

Hey, let’s review video clips from the GOP 2012 presidential debates! There are some great examples of empathy there! Should we begin with the conservative audience booing a gay soldier in Afghanistan? Ooh, there are so many to choose from! How about the one where the conservative audience cheers the death of an uninsured man? Or when the audience cheers Governor Perry for the number of executions in TX?

And who can forget that great moment when Herman Cain ‘joked’ about lethally electrifying a fence at the border. Great conservative audience there!

Posted by: phx8 at January 25, 2014 1:24 AM
Comment #375832

phx8

You just proved the point. You can easily spew your hate-filled stereotype but have no ability to emphasize at all.

I am not playing the victim here. I am just recognizing that your side understands our side less than we understand you.

Try a simple exercise. Write one short paragraph from the “conservative” point of view, one where you would try to explain why your basic philosophy is good. Let me do it from a liberal point of view. Tell me how it fits.

I believe that equality must be more than just an abstract. People need to have chance to make it, no matter where they come from. I would like to think this would happen normally, but I see that only and strong and assertive government can make it happen, especially for groups that have been excluded from the mainstream. History shows this is true and the only time there has been real progress has been when liberal ideas flourished. And when government helps the poorest among us, it helps the whole country be prosperous too.

That is about 100 words. I wrote it in a little more than a minute. Do you think this is a true statement? Now you try for conservatives. Hope you can but bet you can’t.

Posted by: CJ at January 25, 2014 5:35 AM
Comment #375834

I wish I had the ability to be as arrogant as the left. To have the absolute confidence that what I believed was totally correct and everyone else was totally wrong. Stephen Daugherty’s comments are typical of the left. I’ve been off this site for a couple of months, but nothing ever changes. Obama’s presidency continues to degrade, the Democrats continue to distance themselves from him, and the future of democrat politicians continues to look bleak…but the left on WB continue to defend the socialist Obama. I know this will spark a plethora of retaliations from the left, but I will be in the Cayman Islands and out of touch for the next week… so spend your anger time is mediation of the decline of America.

Posted by: DSP2195 at January 25, 2014 8:33 AM
Comment #375835

Weary Willie-
Some of us are untrustworthy, some of yours are untrustworthy. Not all of either. That’s the talk of somebody locked in their own little world.

One reason people like you aggravate me so much is that I’ve seen a much more reasonable kind of conservative close up. I’ve also noticed how as the far right groups have increased their influence, even the reasonable Republicans have gotten harsher. The more you win this fight, the more disconnected Republicans become from other Americans. You can’t really expect empathy if you refuse to connect with people. We’re not mind readers.

You know, I think after all this, if Republicans say, “You know, the country’s divided between us, let’s give each side some concession and make a deal”, that would probably be seen as actual progress. It would be noticed. Of course you wouldn’t let just anything pass. But we can’t either, and that is what you are LITERALLY demanding every time, at least the Tea Party.

If the Republican want empathy, they need to tear down the wall between them and the rest of the country and take some risk with reaching out to the center. The closed of club of the pure who demand everything their way will never be sympathetic to outsiders.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 25, 2014 9:05 AM
Comment #375836

C&J-
I believe, as matter of course, that the ties of family and friendship that bind us together are important, and that too much in the way of experimentation with new social orders is not a good thing. I believe there are virtues in the past that need to be preserved, and that not everything that the past represented, in terms of religious tradition needs to be thrown out. Americans need to be proud of themselves, proud of their country, not chasing after every other culture’s supposedly superior aspects. No, we shouldn’t be afraid of looking at what they have, and picking out what’s best, nor should we be afraid of making the decision that something they do is offensive.

Americans need to be free to be themselves, even if they are awful people when they are like that. But no amount of freedom can protect you from other people disliking you, or not wanting to do business with you anymore. Socialism, for the most part, is not a solution to dealing with the complexity of the markets. The government cannot solve every problem. People should be encouraged to get back into the workforce if they are capable of working, and only taken care of on a permanent basis if they are unable to work.

I believe a nation relies on its institutions, relies on rules and order to make all the chaotic, emergent behavior actually add up to something productive and good.

I have never rooted for this nation to lose a war, though I have opposed some, and asked for the end of others. I believe in seeing wars through a strategic lens. What do we gain, what permanent or near permanent change can we extract through force? Are we applying enough force to get the job done, or are we waiting to win with insufficient force, while the signs point to our failing the mission?

I have never had a piercing, a tattoo, or any other kind of body modification. I don’t do drugs, and even if weed became legal, I’d stay away. I don’t even drink soda, much less alcohol.

I believe in God. I believe in Jesus. I believe in a last judgment.

In my own way, I’m quite able to sympathize and empathize with what conservatives think and believe. It’s just that the same is true about liberals as well. I believe in freedom being more than just lip service to liberty. I believe that I would not have found my way to Christianity had I been forced to it the way some would have our government doing so. I believe that change will come whether we like it or not, and as generations grow, and technology changes the way we interact, that change will even deprive most people of an actual perspective on what the past was like, warts and all.

I believe that the distrust of the scientists in this country, however profitable for some, is harming our nation. We can head off a great deal of the rolling disaster of climate change if we heed their warnings. I believe that the concrete in the real world will always triumph over the mental, and whatever disbelief people have about it won’t matter anything if they’re wrong.

I believe that America is a glorious nation fully capable of adapting to the future, and not only succeeding at that, but profiting from it. But we have to get there first if we can. We can’t be the second or even tenth best nation in the world for internet speeds. The rest of the developed world is outracing us, and they’ll be able to do things with their internet we can’t imagine doing. We can’t be second in green technology, because whatever some energy boom makes us feel, there’s always a downside, and the market isn’t enough to lead us out of that downside. It never has been. We need a real energy policy.

So, I’m an odd duckling. I don’t see the triumph of liberals alone as a triumph for the country. I think Conservatives need to learn how to run to stand still, so to speak, preserve what’s good about the nation, defend it’s institutions with means that are compatible with the modern day world. You can’t replicate the past, too much has moved on, too much has changed so that even if you tried, you couldn’t hold things still. And there were reasons why things didn’t work before, and there’s a part of the conservative side of me that says when something fails like that, you leave it behind, and you carry forward that abandonment of it as part of carrying forward what’s good from the past. You heed the warnings and the lessons of the past, you don’t forget them.

Today’s conservatives… I don’t oppose them because they’re conservative. I oppose them in part because they’re not conservative. They’re destroying and uprooting more than they’re preserving, and while they talk about morality, it seems to be the below-the belt variety they’re fixated on, which I happen to think government should stay out of with consenting adults. They’re failing to address something very important: in times past, the businessmen were subject more to their community’s scorn and rejection, if they failed to do good business. They weren’t some faceless corporation domiciled in Delaware, or even overseas. The international and interstate nature of modern business means that many of the people we deal with day in and day out, are agents of a very disinterested, socially untouchable set of people, folks who are much more difficult to shame, people whose organization, like many social groups, might rely on its inward sense of good and bad, rather than sharing ours. If we can’t guarantee empathy by natural processes, we need to use the law to force them to stop behavior which reflects blatant disregard of the needs of others, and the morality of business exchanges as they have been dealt with since the time of the bible. The market isn’t enough to keep people in line. Why else would there be rules in deuteronomy about business dealings? Even then, government had to step in to constrain bad actors.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 25, 2014 9:33 AM
Comment #375838

Liberals have their place in our society. Much like the woman in a marriage. A woman nurtures the weak and those unable to fend for themselves. A woman teaches them to be self confident. A woman is practical when it comes to providing the essentials of life. A woman wants the food, clothing, and shelter needed to survive to be available to her when she needs it. Liberals want and expect the same from society. Like women, they will relentlessly insist untll they get them and that is a good thing because without insistance they will not become real. Many of the liberal policies of the last century are based on the need for food, clothing, and shelter and without the dogged insistance of the progressive wing of the Democratic party and others they would not have happened.

Having completed the exersize I will add thay have gone way too far in their zeal to provide to a point of seeing themselves as the dominant parent needed to take care of an incompetent population.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 10:48 AM
Comment #375839

Stephen

I think that your discussion of conservatism is mostly good, although a little on the negative side and much more than 100 words.

Your first four paragraphs definitely have conservative flavor (although a little on the negative side). But I got confused near the end. In the last paragraphs I cannot tell if you (Stephen) really think or are you trying to explain what conservatives think from their point of view?

But the first four paragraphs are a good summary of conservative positions (although too long and with a few caveats). Congratulations. I didn’t think you could do it. Let’s see if others can too.

Posted by: CJ at January 25, 2014 11:09 AM
Comment #375841

Weary Willie-
Bonus points on your empathy fail. Not only do you assign us a subservient position, you do it with a bloody sexist metaphor.

You may think of us as subservient, but we don’t. We want a society where you don’t have to be rich to have comfort, health, justice, and all those other things. Where if you’re a woman, a non-christian, LGBT, or an atheist, you don’t have to take a second class citizenship. We don’t want to be under your thumb or anybody else’s.

Yes, we want to guarantee that Americans aren’t out on the street, starving, naked. We’re willing to use government power to help make that a reality, because we don’t need huge favelas, huge shantytowns. I don’t take it as a problem that the worst most poor people experience in this country is better than many folks in developing countries have. That’s a point of pride for me. WE TAKE CARE OF OUR OWN. That doesn’t mean we don’t encourage them to get jobs, hell, we back improvements on education and job training so that people can turn around and help themselves.

And we do what’s necessary to provide the nation as a whole the foundation for all that private commerce. If your internet’s slower than half the developed world, you are handicapping your businesses and your customers. If some idiots in those companies are making money off of being the toll collectors of high speed internet, and you’re letting them, you’re doing commerce as a whole harm. If you’re neglecting the satellites that keep GPS and weather forecasting going, you’re harming commerce. Even if you’re not their mummy and daddy, as a government you need to be working towards the prosperity of your nation, not simply letting it happen on accident, if it happens at all. Corporations can be pretty damn lazy sometimes, because upgrading and modernizing costs, and some people in charge think more in dollars and cents than in the material basis of their business.

You can’t get something for nothing. The market doesn’t magically make a pony when you need one. Sometimes progress is deliberate, rather than something that just happens because the market magically creates some virtue.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 25, 2014 11:20 AM
Comment #375842

Project much, Stephen Daugherty? Are you implying I am sexist because you immediately believe what I wrote was sexist? Are you projecting your own mindset onto my comment in an effort to explain it to yourself?

I actually thought I was complimenting the liberal philosophy when I compared it to the natural instincts of women. But I guess the Democratic’s imaginary war on women has to rear it’s ugly head at every opportunity to drive home the point.

I think you just couldn’t handle a conservative leaning person identifying with the liberal position. You have to make it bad because all things conservative are bad. After all, their not liberal, so they must be, by nature and existence, bad.

Your comment, only project the left’s politically correct induced mindset. It’s really a figment of your own imagination. You’ve replaced the saying, “Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” with words being a weapon of mass destruction used against your precious liberal philosophy.

Your comment proves you can’t empathize with a conservative. You had to turn my comment into an attack on your next convenient, downtrodden group instead of seeing it as it was, a compliment.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 12:16 PM
Comment #375843

Stephen

“Yes, we want to guarantee that Americans aren’t out on the street, starving, naked.” - we all want to do this. But HOW and where the locus of activity?

I have seen people on the street, but I don’t see a Federal response that can work to stop it. And it is just not possible that there are many Americans starving naked, and perhaps none that do not have access to something better if they were to take it.

Posted by: CJ at January 25, 2014 12:42 PM
Comment #375844

Willie,

“Liberals have their place in our society. Much like the woman in a marriage.”

Really?

So does that make the conservatives the man in the marriage?

It’s a lame analogy, and Stephen is right to point it out.

You wrote above that “liberals are never wrong”, but if I am to take these pages as an example the statement, “conservatives are always right” would be just as true.

Jack,

There can be no empathy when both sides deal only in absolutes.
Do black and white truly exist, or are there only varying shades of gray?
The Japanese say that there are no problems, only solutions, yet today, we Americans of either ilk seem only interested in pointing out the problems, not in finding the solutions.
We seem more motivated to stick our collected thumb in our opponent’s eye than to solve the problems confronting us.

Stephen,

“Where if you’re a woman, a non-christian, LGBT, or an atheist, you don’t have to take a second class citizenship.”

I hate to bring this up pal, but these are merely “people” we chose to label. Perhaps if we all stepped back, put asside our prejudices for a minute, and identify ourselves as “people” this might become less of an issue.

Seems to me that until we drop the stereotypes…

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 25, 2014 1:14 PM
Comment #375846

How do you get “conservatives are always right” if I say “liberals are never wrong”.
Why would conservatives be automatically considered the male figure because of my post.

You then mention there are no absolutes and only shades of grey. More contradiction?

Democratics should stop trying to make political points and start a real intense self-examination. Start with the last thing said and see if it makes sense to a conservative.

That might qualify as empathy.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 1:30 PM
Comment #375847

Willie,

Simple question;

If one is not a conservative, is one automatically a liberal?

Yes or no.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 25, 2014 1:52 PM
Comment #375848

This reminds me of a guy I knew. He always called me a “damned Republican”. I told him I’m not a Republican. He asked me what I was and when I told him he said, “You’re a damned Republican.”

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 1:58 PM
Comment #375849

Willie,

So…does this mean you cannot or will not answer a simple “yes or no” question?

It’s all about absolutes. Black and white Willie.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 25, 2014 2:12 PM
Comment #375850

C/J, sorry but I failed the exercise. Every time I attempted to put myself in liberal shoes they caught fire.

Much of what liberals have to say about helping those who can not help themselves can be just as easily attributed to conservatives. The difference is how and by whom the help is given.

My conservative view is that we should voluntarily reach into our own pockets to help the disadvantaged with the necessities of life. The liberal view is that government should reach into my pocket and take what is needed by force of law.

My conservative view aligns with the constitution in that our individual states are given all the powers not specifically delegated to the federal government.

The liberal view appears to be one in which the federal government assumes all power and accedes to the states that power which spilled off the federal plate.

My conservative view is that no citizen has a constitutional right not to be offended by another citizen.

The liberal view appears to be that hurtful words should be illegal and punished.

My conservative view is that marriage is between a man and woman and has been for time immemorial. If a state wishes to recognize a union of same sex individuals to achieve certain benefits, and has the consent of a majority of its citizens, it should be allowed and called something besides marriage.

The liberal view appears to be that the word “marriage” has no historical definition and can be applied to any union of consenting organisms.

My conservative view is that organized religion in the United States has been of great value to the nation.

The liberal view appears to be that religion belongs in a building and not in the hearts of men and women and on public display.

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 25, 2014 2:19 PM
Comment #375851

Willie, I grew up in Wisconsin and moved to Texas over 30 years ago. I was working with a lady and she asked me where I was from. I told her. She said…at least you’re not a damn Yankee.

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 25, 2014 2:22 PM
Comment #375852

“If you say that we should not educate children who have come into our state for no other reason than they’ve been brought there by no fault of their own, I don’t think you have a heart.”
Texas Governor Rick Perry during a Republican debate.

The conservative audience booed.

Posted by: phx8 at January 25, 2014 2:35 PM
Comment #375853

CJ,

The governor of New York said there is no place for the likes of conservatives in his state? “Start Up NY”, their economic media innitiative (as seen on t.v.), is all the way a conservative bulkhead. You don’t pay what taxes for 5 years????? These are taxes on inventory? No. Property taxes? No. There must be a “bidnuss” tax there then huh?

YOU STILL PAY TAXES IN NY ALL THE FLIPPIN’ TIME!!!!!!! Hello???!!!

Posted by: simpleheaded at January 25, 2014 2:44 PM
Comment #375854

Royal,

“My conservative view is that organized religion in the United States has been of great value to the nation.”

My view is that “organized” religion of all types has been the bane of mankind’s existence.

“The liberal view appears to be that religion belongs in a building and not in the hearts of men and women and on public display.”

My view is that religion belongs in the hearts of men and women, and therefore does’t need to be on public display, or in a building.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 25, 2014 2:45 PM
Comment #375856

My answer is no, Rocky Marks. What’s your point?

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 3:03 PM
Comment #375857

Willie,

The point is that there are no absolutes.

There is no “black and white”, only varying shades of gray.

You say that liberals belive they are “never wrong”. I observed that conservatives “on this site” belive they are “always right”.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 25, 2014 3:23 PM
Comment #375858

All

Stephen did a decent job of describing conservatism. I am waiting for Phx8 and others to try their hand.

Rocky

Religion’s role in human history is complex. We really cannot find a whole people w/o beliefs, but the superstitions and fears of primitive people are not organized religion. You might call such people per-religous. It is clear that primitive people are much more murderous and violent than civilized ones. I use those un-PC words on purpose. We too often will not admit that. Death by other humans is a leading cause of death among people in primitive societies. Even when we fight big wars, we don’t approach the normal levels of our savage ancestors.

Organized religion has been a part of civilization. In fact, religion was how societies were organized. At first, they were sort of fetish and local. I only know Western history in sufficient detail to comment. In the West, the coming of Christianity made the world more compassionate. The Church handled most of what we would today call social welfare programs. Not perfect, by any means. But in the pagan world, killing and slavery were always accepted and often celebrated. At least in Christianity they were wrong in theory.

In the West we believe in the separation of Church and state. This comes from the belief in Christianity that there is a separation between the temporal and the sacred. It was not an easy evolution, but the church always provided an alternative to the tyranny of the state and the state an alternative to the totalitarian state.

The greatest murderers of more recent times, Mao, Stalin, Hitler and Pol Pot, have all scorned traditional organized religions, if for no other reason that they recognized no power over their own and wanted no alternative organizations in their society.

I agree with Royal that organized religion has been important in the U.S. The anti-slavery movement grew out of organized religion. Many of our schools and hospitals were founded by religious groups. We can “confess their sins” too, but America is a great country and religious groups made a great contribution to that.

Royal

Empathy does not require that you agree, only that you can understand the other side.

Posted by: CJ at January 25, 2014 3:25 PM
Comment #375859

The basic problem with conservatism and its lack of empathy comes from its attitude towards people who are suffering. The idea of conservatism is that, if government helps a person who is starving, that creates dependency. The flaw here is that the conservative alternative either involves letting the person starve to death, or merely making that person dependent on something other than government, such as a church.

Government is large enough to address social issues in a way which is secular. Most charitable organizations are not large enough to do that, or if so, they demand their own form of dependency which is usually non-secular.

Whether it is gun ownership, the death penalty, or educating the children of illegal immigrants, conservatism chooses with hard justice over the quality of mercy. For conservatives, almost half the country consists of “takers” who want free stuff- the elderly, the young, women, blacks, gays, Hispanics- and we see the result writ large: a deplorable lack of empathy and compassion available for all to see on the national stage.

Posted by: phx8 at January 25, 2014 3:32 PM
Comment #375860

It is fair to point out the absolute nature of my comment. There should also be an understanding I was using sarcasm as a method of communication.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 3:35 PM
Comment #375861

phx8, it sounds like you believe the liberal perception of a conservative, not the real positions conservatives espouse. You are painting conservativism as a callous, unforgiving, monster.

Even a liberal, when confronted personally with one who takes advantage, would eventually get annoyed with being taken advantage of. Even a liberal would tell a parasite to get lost and stop enabling them. It’s not fair to say conservativism et al would walk past a starving child on the street.

Actually, I think conservatives are getting tired of being portrayed as villians like this and liberals being portrayed as the saving angel dressed in white, glowing, and clean beyond mortal humanity. The pushback is what liberals resent.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 3:45 PM
Comment #375862

WW,
Conservatives can support the 2nd amendment and gun ownership, but don’t expect to be perceived as the empathetic party when a maniac guns down people at a shopping mall.

Conservatives can demand, as a matter of tradition or religious belief, a Constitutional amendment limiting marriage to a man and a woman, but don’t expect to be perceived as the empathetic party when gays want to marry.

Conservatives can support the death penalty as a matter of justice, but don’t expect to be applauded for empathy for that one, either.

Look, I go can go on and on detailing conservative political positions, public statements by leading conservatives, reactions by conservative crowds, and more.

You are welcome to espouse conservative beliefs. You and other conservatives can denounce liberals for being socialists or communists or community organizers or whatever. I’m sure conservatives belief their ideas are right, just, constitutional, on the side of liberty and freedom, and generally speaking, the best way to go. Just don’t expect anyone to view those beliefs as primarily motivated by kindness or sympathy or empathy or compassion, because they are not.

Posted by: phx8 at January 25, 2014 4:25 PM
Comment #375863

X8 writes; “Conservatives can support the 2nd amendment and gun ownership, but don’t expect to be perceived as the empathetic party when a maniac guns down people at a shopping mall.”

It appears that for X8, empathy trumps the 2nd amendment to constitution. I fail to understand how laws prevent maniac’s from getting guns, knives, bats, poison, or any other weapon.

This conservative believes that who is allowed to marry and the death penalty is a state issue.

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 25, 2014 4:59 PM
Comment #375864

phx8

Still waiting for your attempt at empathy by describing conservatism from a conservative viewpoint. Stephen, to my surprise, managed it, although in a long-winded way.

RE “The flaw here is that the conservative alternative either involves letting the person starve to death, or merely making that person dependent on something other than government, such as a church.” - nobody advocates letting a person starve to death and nobody starves to death in the U.S. for want of food.

The conservative alternative is to work in order. The best alternative is that the person takes care of himself and becomes a productive member of society who can then help others. Help should be to help people achieve this and it best provided by family and friends. The second best alternative is that this person is helped by other citizens in voluntary association. If the person MUST be dependent, it is indeed better if he/she is dependent on non-government sources. It has to do with the delivery system. Government help MUST be delivered through a rules-based bureaucracy with inflexible rules that can let some people fall through the cracks and be gamed by others. Government can provide help as a final resort, best delivered at the lowest level possible, i.e. local is better than state and state better than federal. Again, it has to do with delivery. Conditions differ in a big country like the U.S.

Let’s return to empathy. I have been poor, so poor that I skipped meals. Chrissy and I qualified for food stamps, but refused to take them. I believe that there are values above temporary comfort, including the feeling of competence, independence and responsibility. These values are good for the person and for society. Preserving them in the people we try to help is an act of compassion. Making a free person dependent is an extremely cruel act.

Posted by: CJ at January 25, 2014 5:01 PM
Comment #375865

phx8

I would also point out that empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of others. It does not simply mean giving people stuff. If you empathized with me when I was poor, you would NOT have tried to introduce me to the welfare system.

Many of life’s great accomplishments and joys come after passing through a time of great stress, unhappiness and even pain. If you eliminate the challenge, you may also eliminate the joy. If you care for the ephemeral desires of the body w/o considering the enduring needs of the spirit, you are not empathetic.

I would also point out that your empathy is shallow. You want to get stuff from government and demand others pay for you and everyone else. You cannot be generous with someone else’s money.

Posted by: CJ at January 25, 2014 5:11 PM
Comment #375866

I find it difficult to empathize with a person who is able to work yet turns down work solely because of the wage paid. Can we assume that government enables this person to choose a handout over a job? If yes, why is that good for either the recipient of the handout or the government?

I find it difficult to empathize with the union mentality that values job longevity over job performance.

I find it difficult to empathize with the atheist who finds a creche on the public square during the Christmas season offensive.

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 25, 2014 5:16 PM
Comment #375867

Royal

As I said, you don’t have to agree with them. I find that sometimes the more I understand a person’s motivation the LESS I like them and the more I would oppose their works. You can better help your friends and confuse your enemies if you understand them.

Posted by: CJ at January 25, 2014 5:26 PM
Comment #375868

phx8, most of the maniacs I’ve heard of killing people the way you describe have been, for the most part, whacked out liberals. It’s way out of line to equate the entire conservative movement to these types of people.

I’ve come to the conclusion you have been brainwashed by the liberal philosophy to believe conservatives are the root of all evil. Nothing goes bad unless conservatives have their hands in it. Take the blinders off, phx8. They’re not doing you justice.

I couldn’t care less if two guys or two girls get married. When they go into a bakery and force someone to make their cake for them, when they have other options, ie. gay owned bakeries, is when I see a problem. You may say it’s their right to have a cake depicting their lifestile on their wedding day. You’re right. It’s not their right to make someone else provide their cake for them under duress.

There’s a condition called being excessive, phx8. Lately, liberals have been pushing the extremes. It’s like they’re trying to find out what they can get away with. Like I said before, it’s the pushback they resent. It’s like, “How dare those conservatives deny us!”.


What are you going to do when the government says you must take your quota of homeless people into your home? What are you going to do when the government says you have to let your share of single mothers use your automobile to do their grocery shopping? The way you expect conservatives to pay for liberal policies you should have no problem if the government escalates the amount and nature of the care and compassion they expect you to provide to the less fortunate. Would you go as far as giving them more than your money? Would you go as far as turning over your privacy and physical property to them on a regular basis and dealing with the consequences of doing so? I don’t think you would. You might bring out the Tellerite in you to respond to this but I seriously doubt if you would put up with actually turning over your bathroom and fridge to a homeless person.

There are limits, phx8. Liberals need to start recognizing that.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 5:56 PM
Comment #375869

Willie

Please take this as the compliment intended. Your writing has really improved.

Posted by: CJ at January 25, 2014 6:11 PM
Comment #375870

Thank you very much, CJ! There’s more blood in my alcohol system.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 6:16 PM
Comment #375871

Good discussion. Have a great weekend all.

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 25, 2014 6:22 PM
Comment #375872

Dependency is at the core of the social conservative position on empathy.

Any help given to a person can create dependency, regardless of whether the help comes from an individual, religion, state, or the federal government. Social conservatives are not opposed to ever giving help, so they are not unwilling to risk dependency per se under all circumstances. I think we all agree on that. They oppose giving aid through the government.

But what makes government the best provider of aid is its size, which gives it the benefit of an economy of scale and a nationwide span. Individuals, organizations, and religious groups may be able to help individuals, but they cannot act on a larger scale the way government can. The federal government can not only aid individuals and communities, but also states, regions, and the entire population if necessary; it can provide unemployment benefits during an economic downturn, food stamps to prevent starvation, disaster relief, and more. It can enforce equal rights for all citizens in a way states are simply not capable of, or sometimes simply not interested in doing

This is where the problem with empathy arises for conservatives. Throwing an issue like gay marriage to individual states gives those states the ability to prevent gays from marrying.

Wringing hands over how bad unemployment is, and at the same time cutting off extended unemployment benefits, creates another example of being perceived to have a lack of empathy.

Posted by: phx8 at January 25, 2014 6:40 PM
Comment #375873

phx8 you and Ed Schultz make a good pair, your comments mirror his BS.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at January 25, 2014 6:53 PM
Comment #375874

I disagree with your position that dependency is a core conservative position. Independence is a core conservative position. You must not have any understanding of conservatives. This explains a lot. You fear what you don’t understand. You kill what you fear. (lyrics of a song, not addressing you personally)

Big government only makes it easier for people to be dependent on it. Big government depends on a large dependent population. Every individual has the capacity to take care of themselves, excluding the truly dependent. Even retarded people have the capacity to take care of themselves if given the environment that allows them to do so. If whole regions need permanent, continuous aid from a federal government then the federal government isn’t doing it’s job. If whole states must depend on continuous, permanent aid from the federal government then the state government isn’t doing it’s job. The same goes for fully functional individuals. If they cannot provide for themselves they are either unwilling to do so or their environment created by the state or fed governments aren’t allowing them to do so.

It is a government’s job to provide the environment that allows individuals to succeed. It cannot provide success.
It’s very naive of you to think government can prevent starvation with food stamps. There is no nutritional value to a food stamp. In fact, it’s all digital now. It’s a farmer that prevents starvation. It’s a truck driver that prevents starvation. If the government puts the farmer out of business protecting a rat, that promotes starvation. If a truck driver is put out of business by excessive government taxes and regulations, that promotes starvation. I think if you were to actually understand the conservative position you would find that you can’t have a government and then a society. You can only have a functional society and then add government as a facilitator, not a controller.

There is a simple solution to gay marriage. Repeal all incentives to getting married. That makes hetero and homo sexual marriage equal. The contract will provide the rights granted to the spouse. It’s not that complicated. Take away the government sponsored bias toward marriage of any kind.

Extending unemployment benefits AGAIN is the same as raising the minimum wage AGAIN. It is a band-aid that addresses a symptom. It does nothing to cure the cause. It actually promotes the problem.

I think you don’t understand conservatives, phx8. That’s why you can’t empathize with them. That’s why you can’t relate to them or come to an agreement with them. Open your mind. Listen to them for a change, instead of demonizing them. Just remember, it was the federal government and it’s inability to make the hard, lasting, decisions that led to the Civil war.


Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 7:38 PM
Comment #375875

phx8

Economies of scale are more than swamped by the lack of flexibility and the bureaucratic delivery on a large scale. That is one of the big reasons the war on poverty failed.

Poverty is very much attached to local conditions. The Feds simply cannot gather the necessary information or put it to proper use if they could. Even the most liberal of liberals do not propose what you are. You are extreme even among your fellows.

Re gay marriage - or anything else for that matter - leaving it to states allows us to have the benefit of variation. You automatically seem to assume that the Federal government will be right. Let’s take the gay marriage example. The progress started in the states. Had you waited for Federal action, it is likely the issue would be much further behind, if you consider more gay marriage progress. Gay activists targeted the states first. Why do you think they did that?

I think diversity and variety are good things. That is why I believe in letting people decide at the lowest level possible.

Posted by: CJ at January 25, 2014 7:53 PM
Comment #375876

KAP,
Well, I am sorry to hear that I make a good pair with Ed, because I do not particularly like his extremely pro-union stance, pro-gun stance, or good-ole-boy pose. Not my style.

WW,
Misunderstanding. I should have been more clear. The issue of dependency is a core conservative issue because conservatives see government aid as contributing to dependency. My bad.

I am actually all right with stopping extended unemployment benefits, but that is because I believe the economy is doing better than most people think. Same with cutting food stamps.

The empathy problem for conservatives comes from saying things are terrible, then stopping extended unemployment benefits and food stamps that would, in most people’s opinion, make it worse. Conservatives can’t have it both ways without being perceived as the villain.

And we actually agree, WW. Government can be a facilitator, but in many instances, it does poorly as a controller.

Posted by: phx8 at January 25, 2014 8:12 PM
Comment #375878

If the Democratic Party would have focused on getting the economy back on track when it had full control of the government and put healthcare legislation aside until after the economy was restored, the Democratic party would have enjoyed another century of adoration from the masses. It didn’t. It got greedy. The Democratic party, for some reason, perhaps a perception it would lose power before it could get to healthcare, ignored the will of the people and exposed itself as the hypocritical, lying, power hungry, entity I have known it to be for a very long time.

Rush Limgbaugh said something after the election that stuck with me. He said, “Either we no longer have the numbers, or we have just been subjected to the biggest fraud this country has ever experienced.” This next election cycle will tell the tale. I can’t believe conservatives don’t have the numbers to defeat this liberal agenda. That leaves the fraud aspect in the fore if conservatives lose this next election. I believe this country would have to take a serious look at election fraud if the federal government remains in Democratic’s control. If it makes significant gains I will lose a lot of faith in the election process because I don’t think the American people can be subjected to what it’s been thru in the last 7 years and remain loyal to the party that initiated it. The Democratics lied in the campaign when it said they would focus on the economy. They lied when they said they would bring the wars to a speedy conclusion. They lied when they said they would control spending. They lied about the healthcare law. They ignored the American People’s adamant protest against the healthcare law. They bribed senators to get it passed They have been embroiled in scandal after scandal and their hypocrisy when dealing with petty instances on the other side is obvious. I can’t even begin to get into foreign policy.

If the Democratic Party is successful in this election I will lose faith in my government and the election process. I will seriously promote The Patriot Fast and I will do my best to expose the certain presence of fraud in the election process.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 25, 2014 9:27 PM
Comment #375879

Don’t know and don’t care about what Ed Schultz believes but your rants about conservative sure do mirror him phx8.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at January 25, 2014 10:07 PM
Comment #375880

WW,
Although I would have liked to see the Obama administration use its first two years concentrating on infrastructure bills and job creation, health care reform was also an important issue. The rising deficits and debts for most of the Bush administration were driven by the War in Iraq, War on Terror, War in Afghanistan, creating the TSA, and tax cuts. They were also driven by rising health care costs. We needed reform, and although it was not my first choice of issues, it needed to be addressed.

There is no fraud going on with recent Democratic wins. There is nothing magical about what is happening. It is a simple matter of demographics. The country is changing. If every voting bloc voted the same way in 2016 as it did in 2012, Obama would win by an additional 1.5%

That is why the issue of empathy matters for conservatives. The changing make-up of America is especially noticeable in the number of Hispanic voters. Immigration reform is huge. Same goes for issues involving women voters. If Hillary Clinton runs, and identity voting gives her a lot of women’s votes, it will be virtually impossible for a Republican to win the White House, and everyone downticket will suffer as well.

The GOP is running into a buzz saw in 2016. Everything about the 2014 midterm will work against the GOP by encouraging them to stay far to the political right. Getting out the base might work for the midterm, but it will set up disaster in 2016.

Posted by: phx8 at January 26, 2014 12:40 AM
Comment #375881

Re health care reform. I really do not think conservatives understand just how comprehensive and EFFECTIVE Obamacare is proving:

http://www.investopedia.com/stock-analysis/streetauthority/012414/how-im-finding-86-148-even-350-gains-tomorrows-gamechangers-athn-cern-mck-tcehy-kndi-tsla.aspx?partner=nasdaq_rss

I am not giving investment advice. But this linked article gives some idea of just how big the changes in health care reform really are, especially in data processing. It needed to happen, and now it is happening, and it is happening fast, and it is making a positive difference. An entire new industry has come into existence, and with it, a lot of jobs; the health care sector is becoming more efficient as a result.

Posted by: phx8 at January 26, 2014 12:55 AM
Comment #375882

phx8

More than 2/3 of the Federal budget goes to entitlement, up from about 1/3 in the 1960s. The percentage spent on defense - all defense not just the recent wars - was higher during any year of the Cold War than at any time during the Bush presidency. It has been dropping.

Entitlements drive deficits now and will be even more so in future. This is what needs be addressed.

Re the future - I would not be so confident in demography if I were you. Hispanics are acting much like earlier immigrants, who start off Democratic but move to the right as they get more integrated into America. And the great Hispanic immigrant wave is finished, as birth rates in Mexico are dropping rapidly.

You also should notice that on the state level, Republican are doing very well. They are in charge of making laws where most people live. And if you look at the “bench” state politics are the training ground for national.

We will have Democratic candidates with no executive experience. I think that Obama’s performance shows that just being a good talker and a short term senator is not enough.

Re investing in heath care firms - Moodys recently lowered outlook for the sector. Probably the Obama folks will punish them for their assessment. The industry will probably need to be bailed out and that may have been the Obama plan all along.

Still waiting for those 100 words from the conservative point of view. Even Stephen managed to work up enough empathy to do it.

Posted by: CJ at January 26, 2014 8:04 AM
Comment #375883

CJ,

I believe that equality must be more than just an abstract. People need to have chance to make it, no matter where they come from. I would like to think this would happen normally, but I see that only and strong and assertive government can make it happen, especially for groups that have been excluded from the mainstream. History shows this is true and the only time there has been real progress has been when liberal ideas flourished. And when government helps the poorest among us, it helps the whole country be prosperous too.

This isn’t liberalism at all. Liberalism is about the freedom to do whatever one wants in one’s life so long as one doesn’t infringe on the liberty of another. Discussions of equality as they relate to outcomes shouldn’t enter the discussion at all.

I’m don’t think I do would well do on the ideological Turing test either. In my opinion, conservatism is mostly about doing whatever it takes to preserve preexisting power hierarchies among people and using these hierarchies to control other people. These hierarchies come in the form of many institutions including organized religion, wealthy aristocracies, big business, etc, but the result is mostly the same: limitations on the liberty for those individuals outside of the “in” group.

Posted by: Warren Porter at January 26, 2014 1:11 PM
Comment #375884

Jack,

“I only know Western history in sufficient detail to comment. In the West, the coming of Christianity made the world more compassionate. The Church handled most of what we would today call social welfare programs. Not perfect, by any means. But in the pagan world, killing and slavery were always accepted and often celebrated. At least in Christianity they were wrong in theory.”

I was taught the history of western civilization, and the spread of Christianity, by nuns and priests so please don’t try to blow sunshine my way about how Christianity was a “calming” influence on the western world.

Christianity was spread at the point of a sword, and any disagreement was met with death.
Western history is rife with the violence of the spread Christianity, and man’s inhumanity at the expence of conquered civilizations.

Now, have we put the “Christian” prejudice toward “non-believers” aside?
Perhaps, but only somewhat.

My biggest question would be whether the reletive benevolence we have today balances out the chaos wrecked in the name of Christianity during the millenia prior.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 26, 2014 1:57 PM
Comment #375885

Warren

I think you are describing classical liberalism, not that practiced today by people calling themselves liberal.

What you are calling liberalism is today mostly a conservative or libertarian ideal.

Rocky

I was not taught by nuns. I learned my ancient history, my pre-Christian history, from the ancient authors themselves. If you read them, you see that they accept slavery and genocide and sometimes think both are good things. The goal in those days was to avoid having those things done to you by doing them first to others.

It was even worse with the primitive tribes or the peoples of the ancient Middle East. At least the Greeks developed comprehensive philosophies and Romans developed a rule of law. The Assyrian just killed for fun and profit and required no justification beyond that they could do it.

So Christianity came into a world unbelievable violent. It made it a little less capriciously violent.

I think that modern people really do not comprehend how bad it was in the past. The violence people suffered in war zones in the 20th century was pretty much normal life in many parts of the ancient world.

We sometimes don’t think about it because we don’t know about it or think about it carefully.

During the Middle Ages, the Church tried to establish the truce of God, so that people wouldn’t fight and kill each other on holy days. The fact that they thought it useful to do that tells you a lot about how bad it was otherwise.

I think if we look back on the history of Christianity, we can paraphrase Winston Churchill re democracy - it is the worst possible system, except when compared to everything else that has been tried.

BTW - for the first three centuries of its existence, Christianity was never imposed on anybody. After that, it often became the tool of princes and generals. But there is nothing in Christianity as it developed from it origins that makes it a particularly warlike faith.

I think that blaming Christianity for violence is a lot like the blame Western civilization sometimes gets for slavery. These evils were ancient and universally practiced. It was only recently that Christian Westerners came to the idea that they were both evil and could be eliminated, or at least limited. It is like a doctor who discovers and tried to cure a deadly disease being blamed for the disease and for not being able to eradicate it better.

Posted by: CJ at January 26, 2014 2:24 PM
Comment #375886

Jack,

“If you read them, you see that they accept slavery and genocide and sometimes think both are good things.”

Please give me a little credit for having at least some intellectual curiosity.

Christianity may have been “better” in some senses than what it displaced, but, that said, whole civilizations, despite the brutality associated with them, have been thrown out with the bathwater.

My point was about all religions, not just Christianity.

You and I both know history is written by the victors.

What knowledge has been ignored, or worse yet lost, because those with that knowledge perished because they were considered not worth “saving” by true believers?

We have had this discussion before, just on a different level.

All civilizations/countries have done stupid things. Some continue to do so.

Again, the question remains on whether a balance has been struck between the good and bad done in the name of humanity/civilization.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 26, 2014 3:01 PM
Comment #375887

CJ,
There is no such thing as an ‘entitlement.’ Find another word if you want to discuss the budget- preferably a word not slanted to slam working people as if they were getting something they didn’t deserve. It is a word TOTALLY lacking in empathy. Try this: social security = earned benefit. See the difference?

You’ll be glad to know Obamacare reform stopped skyrocketing health care costs. The increase from 2010 - 2012 is the lowest on record. That helps lessen the deficit.

Private health care insurers are not going out of business, and no one is going to bail them out. That is so wrong, it is hard to know where to start. Did you hear that elsewhere, or make it up yourself? Moody’s did not downgrade the debt or creditworthiness of the private insurers; it downgraded the sector as a preferred stock investment sector. Most of the stocks in that sector are currently at an all time high. Depending on the investment strategy, some financial advisors will recommend moving out of sectors when they are at their peak (sell high), and re-invest into ones that have not appreciated (buy low). Others will recommend rewarding winners with investment (buy high, sell higher).

Anyone who thinks health care reform will bankrupt private health care insurers has no idea- I mean, NO IDEA- how reform works. Obamacare basically does two things that, from the perspective of private health care insurers, immediately affects them: 1) it sets up state exchanges, which creates more competition than before, and 2) Obamacare limits administrative expenses to no more than 20% of revenues. More clients will sign up for health care, and the profit from those new clients will be offset by a phased-in tax on private health insurers. Insurers on the state exchanges can change their rates each year to match changing market conditions.

And that is it.

If competition will make the insurers go bankrupt, then capitalism must be a bad idea. That is the implication of your supposed bailout.

Posted by: phx8 at January 26, 2014 3:19 PM
Comment #375888

phx8

We can call it non-discretionary spending if you prefer. It includes lots of spending besides Social Security.

Re Social Security - I have empathy for my fellow geezers but also for young people. Unlike you, I am empathic enough to advocate my own taking less so that young people can keep more of what they earn.

RE health care - we have a negative selection. Those who feel they will make more immediate money out of health care are signing up. They figure that they will get more than they put in. Everybody cannot get more than they put in. Somebody has to pay for the others. Who will that be?

Faced with higher payouts, insurance firms can raise rates. But that makes it more expensive. Again, who pays?

Rocky

“What knowledge has been ignored, or worse yet lost, because those with that knowledge perished because they were considered not worth “saving” by true believers?” This was actually less a problem in Christianity than in most other religions and in Islam.

Christianity, or at least some Church members, revered Plato, Aristotle, Ovid etc. Even Lucretius, who you would have thought contradicted what Christians held dear. Christian scholarship was fairly promiscuous, again compared with most others.

On balance, I think Christianity was good, when you consider the alternatives. Medieval Christianity was horrible, that is true. But it evolved into the modern West. I don’t think we could have expected such a good result from other religions or atheists.

We cannot really tell. Region is older than mankind and it doesn’t really look like it is going to go away. I am distressed that as the general belief in traditional religion declines, people start to believe all sort of stupid things, such as astrology, aliens, ghosts etc.

Our Hitler/Stalin/Mao experience with power that rejected traditional religion has not been positive.

Posted by: CJ at January 26, 2014 6:06 PM
Comment #375889

phx8

Sorry, I didn’t realize you answered the “who pays” question. You want to tax the crap out of everybody so that we can pay for our health insurance through taxes and fees.

I am familiar with health care in Scandinavia and I kind of like it. Everybody is covered, but it is different than ours. They just don’t pay for lots of stuff. I was in a bike accident in Norway. I banged up my knees. I did not need the system, since they almost recovered on their own. But at the time I was told that the health care would not cover extensive knee repair because my job did not require that I use my knees.

People there get a basic care. It is “inferior” to American care in that it covers much less. But They live longer and are healthier than we are on average, so something works.

The problem is that health care advocates here want to simply extend the expensive U.S. system to include more people.

I cannot resist one comparison. In my accident in Norway, I also broke my toe. They just pulled it more or less back and told me to limp for a while. It got better. A colleague in the U.S. broke her toe. They gave her a little cart to drive around in and she took lots of time off work. We are too much a nation of cry babies to have universal coverage.

Posted by: CJ at January 26, 2014 6:15 PM
Comment #375890

CJ,
“You want to tax the crap out of everybody so that we can pay for our health insurance through taxes and fees.”

Not at all. Unless a person makes an income of over $250,000 per year, they will be unaffected. Health care companies will begin paying a phased-in tax over the coming years, but the additional of 10 million new customers will more than cover the cost. Manufacturers of medical devices will also pay a tax.

Perhaps you do not understand. Private health care insurers charge their monthly premiums. It does not matter if the customer pays all of it out-of-pocket, or the federal subsidy covers some of it; from the private health care insurer’s perspective, the premium remains the same number.

One of the main goals of Obamacare was controlling rising medical costs. Health care premiums went up 110% during the Bush administration. They have been increasing since the late nineties. Health care reform stopped that rise in its tracks. This is a very good thing for the economy and for individual consumers.

You might be curious to know that Norway pays $5669 per capita for health care, an expense of 9.3% GDP. The US pays $8508 per capita, an expense of 17.7% GDP. Furthermore, everyone in Norway is covered, while over $40 million in the US used to lack coverage.

There are behavioral differences, especially a low rate of smoking in Norway, little obesity, and lower alcohol consumption than most developed countries. Over the long run, preventative health care in the US would help address these kinds of problems.

Posted by: phx8 at January 26, 2014 10:31 PM
Comment #375891
I cannot resist one comparison. In my accident in Norway, I also broke my toe. They just pulled it more or less back and told me to limp for a while. It got better. A colleague in the U.S. broke her toe. They gave her a little cart to drive around in and she took lots of time off work. We are too much a nation of cry babies to have universal coverage.

It’s not the people, it’s our payment system based on the cost reimbursement concept that makes this stuff happen. It’s not what you need it’s what you can justify that gets paid, so the incentive to the providers is to justify as much as they can.

The U.S. Government uses similar cost reimbursement contracting methods and then can’t believe when their projects come in over budget and way past schedule. Our government is the largest buyer of goods and services in the world and they are the worst at it. FYI DOE is the worst of the worst.

Posted by: George in SC at January 27, 2014 8:18 AM
Comment #375892

Conservatives strike me more as the old uncle of the family. He doesn’t like the way things are going and blames liberal politics and lifestyles. He is sure that this is the case because things used to be so much better before the liberal philosophy eroded his views of life. He feels entitled to the life that he feels was taken from him and is certain this is the case because things were so much better then. He believes women should know their place and do as told because he knows so much better how they should be. He’s never really understood why women want the control over their own lives since they really have it good and just don’t appreciate that. Someone is trying to take his guns from him although no one actually has, he is certain that is happening and he needs to buy more of them. The gay community tries to force themselves upon him and this is because they want everyone to be like them although he has no evidence of that other than his own belief system. He can’t believe that President Obama has been elected to two consecutive terms and blames people who expect things for free of causing that to happen (not the electorate but cheaters). He is certain that someone is taking things from him mostly in the form of taxes and fees that he does not like or want. He is so convinced of his positions that he is willing to see any or all of it destroyed because liberal philosophy will do that anyway. I could add more but I don’t think it necessary and have already wrote enough to upset some people commenting here. That is just how I see it and doesn’t mean it really is that way but there is another thing the old uncle cannot resolve to, that he may be wrong.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 27, 2014 10:19 AM
Comment #375893

Way to prove the point, speaks.

Posted by: kctim at January 27, 2014 10:32 AM
Comment #375894

“I cannot resist one comparison. In my accident in Norway, I also broke my toe. They just pulled it more or less back and told me to limp for a while. It got better. A colleague in the U.S. broke her toe. They gave her a little cart to drive around in and she took lots of time off work. We are too much a nation of cry babies to have universal coverage.”

Come on, C&J. It is the same treatment in the US. I have broken toes on a number of occasions. The treatment has always been the same: do nothing and limp for awhile.

Posted by: Rich at January 27, 2014 10:34 AM
Comment #375895

Rich, the difference being in the U.S. you would get an Xray and probably an MRI before the doctor tells you to “tape to the next one and limp.” This is part preventive and part for revenue, but mostly because our third party cost reimbursement system encourages it.

Posted by: George in SC at January 27, 2014 11:03 AM
Comment #375896

I am able to empathize with the conservative old uncle that I described however I am not able to agree with his ability to accurately interpret what he believes are the reasons he may have. Empathy is not the same as sympathy.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 27, 2014 12:51 PM
Comment #375897

Aha! I finally found out what conservatives are actually referring to with this talk about a “bailout” of health care insurers .

http://www.newrepublic.com/article/116353/republicans-say-obamacare-insurer-bailout-tying-debt-ceiling

Good, relatively non-partisan article (originally linked at DailyKos) explaining “risk corridors”, a little known mechanism for smoothing the transition between the previous system and the new one. It basically provides a method for evening out excessive costs and profits that may arise from overcharging, undercharging or mis-estimating the make-up of the new additions to the customer base. If insurers made good estimates, risk corridors may not come into play. It will be weeks or more before anyone knows for sure.

In essence, conservatives want to destroy that mechanism before anyone knows for sure, in the hopes that it will cause some private insurers to raise premiums. Nasty piece of work by conservatives, and highly misleading language when they call it a “bailout”, as usual. Ugly, ugly stuff. It gets worse. Rubio and Ryan are leading the cause to harm Americans in the hopes of hurting Obama, this time by using the repeal of risk corridors as a hostage for raising the debt ceiling.

Posted by: phx8 at January 27, 2014 1:58 PM
Comment #375898

So C&J, the Governor of New York was talking about extremist conservative politician as your “he later explained” link tells us and you have come away with all liberal have no empathy!

The Governor was empathizing with more moderately conservative repubs in political office whilst explaining to the extremist conservatives in office the problem they would have getting elected in a state that was far more moderate than their ideology allows the extreme conservative politicians to be. And you come away with all liberal have no empathy for conservatives!

So it seems to me you have taken Gov.Cuomo’s comments out of context attempted to use the out of context comments to tell your readers that Gov. Burnham whose comments were directed at all “extreme liberals” in Mississippi not just politicians and Gov. Cuomo were one and the same. Or as I seem to be saying quite often here on WB comparing apples and oranges to arrive at some illogical theory about empathy.

However bad the example you have chosen may be I do have to say the Haidt link was worth the read.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 27, 2014 2:39 PM
Comment #375899

Jack,

“Region (Religion?) is older than mankind and it doesn’t really look like it is going to go away. I am distressed that as the general belief in traditional religion declines, people start to believe all sort of stupid things, such as astrology, aliens, ghosts etc.”

I know this is a stupid question… but how can a belief system be older than the people that believe in it?

Astrology? Really Jack, Nancy Reagan would be spinning in her grave.
Aliens? Perhaps you feel the universe is devoid of intelligent life, except our own little corner of course, and sometimes with what I read here I even have a hard time with our planet.

My problem isn’t necessarily with the believers themselves. My problem is with the organizations, and while I don’t mean to single out Christianity, the various systems within the umbrella of “Christianity” can’t even be consistent with their own beliefs.

I have seen with my own eyes that faith healing, for instance, is a scam. It’s hard to empathize with someone that is taken willingly by charlatans who prey on the fears of others for profit.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 27, 2014 3:00 PM
Comment #375903

This is a generalization, but I believe a lot of men in general tend to be problem solvers first, and empathizers second.

This phenomenon occurs across all political spectrums too.

I guess that is one of the reasons that guy wrote the book: Men are from Mars, Woman are from Venus

My spouse reminds me of my inappropriate reaction to her immediate concern each time I screw it up…LOL!

Posted by: Kevin L. Lagola at January 27, 2014 6:13 PM
Comment #375904

Rich

I thought so too. But then my co-worker was riding around in that machine.

Norwegians “enjoy” a great deal of social control. If you ask for too much, they kind of judge you and the locals just can’t stand it, so they restrain themselves. They are naturally tougher than we are too. I had a root canal and they asked me if I wanted Novocaine. When I said yes, the dentist blandly commented that not everyone needed it.

phx8

It is not a PERSON who makes more than $250k a year. It is a family. Depending on where you live, that is not as uncommon as you seem to think. A cop and a teacher in New York might earn that much.

But more importantly, why should they pay for you and me? I know you want to play Robin Hood, but remember that Robin didn’t really rob the rich who were productive. He mostly stole back the tax money.

Please see above what I wrote to Rich re Norwegians. I think their system is okay. I would prefer that to what we have. Of course, the downside is that it produces fewer innovations. In fact, the U.S. more or less subsidizes the world in that department. But Americans would not tolerate a Norwegian style system.

Speaks

The problem with your description is that you got it almost all wrong. This is quite a feat, considering even a broken clock is right twice a day. You have given the liberal caricature. I am sure you believe it, which is very sad for you and us.

Rocky

Evidently Neanderthals and Homo Erectus had a sort of religious belief. Therefore religion came before modern man.

Re aliens and astrology. Astrology is just stupid. Aliens may indeed exist, but none have ever been here, at least there is no evidence. Those shows about ancient aliens are not only stupid but they inspire stupidity in their audiences.

I hear that Nancy Reagan believed in that. We can allow everybody some dumb things w/o embracing them.

Faith healing is a scam. It sometimes works for psychosomatic reasons.

But these kinds of things are tangential to the religion. They are not caused by it. As I said, people believe in ghosts, aliens etc. There seems to be a will to believe.

Posted by: CJ at January 27, 2014 7:19 PM
Comment #375912

Jack,

“Aliens may indeed exist, but none have ever been here, at least there is no evidence.”

I probably don’t have to remind you that there is no actual proof that God exists either, but billions of people still have faith.

“Evidently Neanderthals and Homo Erectus had a sort of religious belief. Therefore religion came before modern man.”

You didn’t use the term “modern man”, you said mankind.

There has been speculation that “Animism” or the belief that everything, plant, animal, etc, has a spirit or soul has been around since about 300,000 BCE.
Sorry, but that’s not really a religion.
There is also, BTW, the belief held by some Christians that, using the bible as a reference, man has only been around for 6,000 years.

The decline in religious belief probably isn’t helped by the endtimers that predict, also using the Bible as a referene, that the world is going to end every few years or so.

What more can I say.

Some people apparently need somethng more than themselves to believe in. They need faith in an invisible being to validate their accomplishments and existence.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 28, 2014 6:07 AM
Comment #375913

Believe it, of course I do because it is the truth for a definitive number of conservatives. I can empathize with all of the conservative old uncle’s feelings because I know that he watches Fox news and has everyone of those feelings re-enforced on a regular basis. I cannot however validate the reasoning that they use to come to the conclusions that they do. I understand that you have a lot of commenting to get through, this will happen when you hold untenable positions on political and social matters but tell me you don’t know someone who may be like the old uncle. Speaking of broken things how is the conservative ability to be circumspect?

Posted by: Speak4all at January 28, 2014 9:30 AM
Comment #375915
There has been speculation that “Animism” or the belief that everything, plant, animal, etc, has a spirit or soul has been around since about 300,000 BCE. Sorry, but that’s not really a religion.

I’m not sure what else you would call that, it seems to fit the exact definition of a religion…

In fact, there are many people who still have this belief to this day.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 28, 2014 10:55 AM
Comment #375919

Rhinehold,


“In fact, there are many people who still have this belief to this day.”

And that would be why I used the phrase, “has been around since”.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 28, 2014 1:00 PM
Comment #375925

Rocky

I guess I was being un-PC not to include these pre-humans in the vast realm of “mankind.” Now that you mention it, I notice that anthropology texts more often refer to our species as “anatomically modern humans.” Much less insulting to the Neanderthals and Erectus than “ape-man” or the literally troglodyte “cave man.”

We should note that we share some genes with Neanderthals, so some of our ancestors had relations with them and in fact ARE them. I can well imagine the early anatomically modern human who “invented” alcohol. Maybe he found some fermented grapes and like the communing with spirits it provoked. He was also the inventor of the “what the hell …” feeling, if not the phrase itself, when he woke up beside a Neanderthal after a night of boozing.

Re proof of God and aliens – we are talking different things. I can say with near perfect certainty that aliens never visited earth since we never have found any sign of them that would be credible to anybody with an IQ larger than his belt size, although that would not be all that small consider the type of people who believe in aliens. I cannot say with certainty that aliens do not exist, just as we cannot say with certainty that they do. Most of us rely on a kind of faith-based alien belief, best summed up by “there is so much universe out there, we cannot be alone.”

Belief in God is more akin to the latter.

Posted by: CJ at January 28, 2014 5:27 PM
Comment #375928

C&J how funny, you seem to be running from the conservative uncle many of us relate to. Speaks has given us a very real example of liberal empathy as she/he has describe with great accuracy her relative, and you have countered with a complete lack of empathy. To pretend conservative uncles do not exist is to deny reality. In my case it is a brother in law, and you are wrong, he/she has it spot on. What is sad is your foolish response to a heart felt description of many people in this country today.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 28, 2014 10:42 PM
Comment #375929

j2t2

You guys relate to your “conservative uncle” because you don’t understand conservative ideas. What speaks and you have given is the stereotype. You have described an A-hole who happens to call himself (in your opinion) conservative. I suppose lots of them exist. But we could find some ghetto punk and call him liberal. Lots of them exist too. I can almost guarantee that the vast majority of urban welfare recipients who voted chose Obama, some probably more than once even in the same election. But if I described them, I would not be describing liberalism, would I? We would be back to the dueling stereotypes, which is, I suppose, as far as people like you and speaks can climb.

You both failed the test I gave you. You didn’t even put in an entry.

As I said, was surprised at Stephen. Read what he wrote. It is a bit wordy and not perfect, but I have new respect for him, since he seems to understand at least a little that with which he disagrees.

The research up top confirms what we seemed to have learned here. You guys really do not understand conservatives as well as conservatives AND moderates understand you.

Posted by: CJ at January 29, 2014 3:57 AM
Comment #375930
What speaks and you have given is the stereotype.

I beg to differ C&J. The description Speak has given us describes many conservatives. Perhaps not all of the description fits every one but some or many do. I would suggest that it is you that have a certain stereotype that is off a bit.

(This helps explain why we have sparred over conservative movement leaders,their intentions, and how many movement followers are easily mislead.)

You have described an A-hole who happens to call himself (in your opinion) conservative.

It seems to me, whilst a fitting description of many conservatives, this is a stereotype that lacks empathy.

C&J, see comment #375898.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 29, 2014 9:23 AM
Comment #375931

They only thing I have failed, is in trying to understand your twisted pretzel logic. I have no uncles left to enjoy, they have all passed on many years ago and I miss them dearly. Did I describe the uncle as an a-hole, no I did not you did. The person I described is someone I work with and I do not consider him an a-hole but he is someone’s uncle, I consider him a co-worker and appreciate his ability to help us get things done at work. However I empathize with his feelings of mistrust and fear but do not agree with the reasoning he uses to come to the conclusions he does. That is what I was pointing out. You on the other hand refer to a ghetto thug that votes more than once and that is truly disgusting and exactly why we are unable to understand why you have to constantly refer to your fellow citizens in this manner. I will continue to work with my conservative co-worker, respect his feelings of mistrust and fear but I will constantly point out to him that his reasoning for those fears and mistrust holds great flaws and is demeaning to his fellow Americans. I would say the same for you!

Posted by: Speak4all at January 29, 2014 9:40 AM
Comment #375932

Oh and by the way it is empathy and emphathy. Emphathy is not a word. I don’t think you understand empathy or circumspect. Please refer to a dictionary for more information.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 29, 2014 10:25 AM
Comment #375936

j2t2 & Speaks

Let’s describe liberals. They don’t work hard themselves, but demand that others pay their bills. They like to accuse others of intolerance, but themselves are the most intolerant. They find grievance everywhere and claim to fight for the oppressed, while enjoying all the benefits of being the oppressor. I think this probably describes many liberals, but if I am trying to see things from their point of view, does it help?

I am just too nice to you guys, or maybe I ask too much of you.

Speaks

Thanks for pointing out the typo. But don’t presume to explain definitions to your betters.

Posted by: CJ at January 29, 2014 5:04 PM
Comment #375938

My betters, you are hardly in a position to make that assumption after I have just proven that you use rhetoric and stupid analogies to try to make a point. I would rather suggest that you don’t ask enough of yourself. Would you be willing to work with the liberal you described every day and respect them for what they think but just disagree about how they reach their conclusions? I think not, given your proclivity to make yourself feel like the smartest person in the room. You are a self-important narcissist and it is not very appealing.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 29, 2014 5:29 PM
Comment #375939

Speaks

I do work with liberals every day. We get along just fine, since we agree on a very large % of the things we do, even if sometimes for different reasons.

My conservative ideology is very tolerant and practical. If you and I are working toward a common goal, why you are doing it is only a matter of idle curiosity as far as I am concerned.

I had a couple of very interesting “problems.” At one time, a group of advocates wanted to give me an award for hiring & promoting more women and another time for hiring and promoting more African-Americans. When I explained to them in both cases that I was just hiring and promoting the people best qualified for the jobs, they were vaguely upset. It took me a little while to understand their distress. People like me are a threat to their phoney-baloney jobs. They are in the business of setting targets and goals. If we actually hire and promote based on merit, their jobs are threatened. They would have been very happy if I had just told them that I was working to increase diversity, but that would not have been the truth. I was working to get the best, which I think is a higher calling.

Posted by: CJ at January 29, 2014 6:06 PM
Comment #375940

C&J, tolerant and practical! Certainly you don’t speak for conservatives as a whole. Just a days new of conservative representatives seems to say you are alone in the ranks of conservatives if you are tolerant and practical.


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/28/michael-grimm-threat_n_4684695.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/28/randy-weber-obama_n_4683947.html?ir=Politics

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/eric-zuesse/gallup-poll-finds-democra_b_4683688.html?utm_hp_ref=politics

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/28/steve-stockman-state-of-the-union_n_4684597.html?utm_hp_ref=politics

Posted by: j2t2 at January 29, 2014 7:06 PM
Comment #375941

j2t2

During the Bush time, liberals called the president Hitler with monotonous regularity. I am sure you called him lots of things.

Google “call Bush Hitler” and you will come up with About 10,200,000 results in 0.34 seconds.

You may recall the fun we had recycling liberal posts on Watchblog and simply substituting Obama’s name for Bush’s.

I dislike impolite talk on both sides. But the criticism and name calling of Bush was certainly worse.

RE the poll you sight - one of the big differences between liberals and conservatives is commitment to talk versus action. Liberals claim to be concerned about the poor; conservatives give more to charity. One of my biggest problems with liberals is that they talk about problems but don’t get around to doing anything themselves.

I recall reading about a liberal guy admitting that if he had car trouble on a lonely road, he hoped that the next guy along would be conservative. The conservative would stop and help. The liberal would keep on going, while decrying the state of the roads and the lack of help for people stranded.

Posted by: CJ at January 29, 2014 7:26 PM
Comment #375942

While researching background information regarding income inequality, mobility and the federal minimum wage, I came across This bit of data

I’m curious, what was the minimum wage when you (WB community)started your first ‘real’ (taxable wages, including S.S.)job?

$3.35 for me.

Posted by: Kevin L, Lagola at January 29, 2014 8:53 PM
Comment #375944

I would have made $1.60, but I never actually worked for minimum wage. Even my jobs at McDonald’s paid a little more. You only made minimum wage if you had a spotty work history. One of my roommates, called Dirk, used to get minimum wage, but he was nuts and could not hold a job more than a few weeks. He used to talk to himself … and answer back. My first real job I earner $2.50 in 1973 cleaning the grease and metal out of machines that made lock washers.

Posted by: CJ at January 29, 2014 9:14 PM
Comment #375947

I think it was $1.35 and when I joined the Navy my base pay was under $100.00 per month.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at January 29, 2014 9:58 PM
Comment #375948
During the Bush time,…..

How quickly we forget the conservative onslaught of misinformation, half truths and outright lies against not only Bill Clinton but the first lady of the time Hillary Clinton.

What you fail to mention however is the links I posted in the previous comment were about elected representatives, conservative the lot, who failed to pass the “tolerant and practical” test C&J. TH
The rosy picture you paint of yourself as being typical of conservatives just doesn’t fly C&J, but I feel your pain.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 29, 2014 10:10 PM
Comment #375949

Misinformation, half-truths, lies. Let’s see… those would probably be when he sexually harrassed those poor little girls that worked for him and when he committed a crime while in office that any one of us would go to jail for. Those mean ol’ conservatives called it perjury. He went to war unprepared with the army he had, and not the army he wanted. Those mean ol’ conservatives said he gutted the military , but he called it a “peace dividend”.
People were just dying to work for him. I wonder why. I guess it was better than going to jail for him.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 29, 2014 11:22 PM
Comment #375951

Weary, such a sad misrepresentation of the attacks on both of the Clinton’s. Were conservatives as tolerant and practical as C&J would have us believe they wouldn’t have kept a special prosecutor going for years on one issue after another including throwing Susan McDougal in prison for refusing to lie. The point however is y’all would have us believe it was GWB that was so mistreated. You’ve forgotten about the Clinton attacks by conservatives. Hardly tolerant or practical.

Posted by: j2t2 at January 30, 2014 12:47 AM
Comment #375952

Willie,

“Those mean ol’ conservatives said he gutted the military , but he called it a “peace dividend”.”

Actually it was George HW Bush and Margaret Thatcher that used that phrase. Military cuts started before Clinton took office.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 30, 2014 12:54 AM
Comment #375956

C or J
You use the following:
Let’s describe liberals. They don’t work hard themselves, but demand that others pay their bills. They like to accuse others of intolerance, but themselves are the most intolerant. They find grievance everywhere and claim to fight for the oppressed, while enjoying all the benefits of being the oppressor. I think this probably describes many liberals, but if I am trying to see things from their point of view, does it help?

This would seem to be a dichotomy since you work with liberals and yet they don’t work themselves but demand others pay their bills? WTF?

You sometimes seem to use canards to try to make a point and it does not add to your ability to make valid points. Your example of a driver stuck on a road is a salient example of this.

Look this may come as a bit of a surprise to you but I really don’t come here to read the postings much. Although I enjoy reading yours and Stephen’s and Roy’s postings. I am usually more concerned with the comments because these are the people that I am driven to attempt to understand. I’m pretty sure I know how you, Stephen and Roy feel about things and I admire your ability to put that out there and then defend yourselves against the slings and arrows of commenting made.

I am more interested in understanding the Sicilian Eagles, the Old Mans, the baretta9s and many more (although those handles don’t seem to show up much anymore). I have a great desire to understand the current bunch of commenting. I may challenge the current bunch of these people but I try not to do it in an offensive manor although I am certain they take offense.

As far as the name calling and visceral attempts to denigrate the presidency, yes I believe this has been happening for a very long time and I have never, ever been a participant in that and generally try to point out the stupidity of saying that someone who achieves that level of success in their life (to hold the highest office of the most powerful and beneficial country in the world) is less than this person who makes ridiculous claims about them and is just a two bit commenter on a blog. Adversarial politics has done this country great good and causes great harm sometimes but it is what we have and I feel fortunate for that. Hey at least we don’t have fist fights on the floor of the House of Representatives and Senate as has happened in the past.

Anyway, thanks for putting it out there.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 30, 2014 9:49 AM
Comment #375957

Oh, and my first job was as a car hop but not on roller skates, thank goodness, and I made 30 cents an hour. The minimum wage was, I believe, around 75 cents an hour. They got away with paying me less because I got tips. 13 years old at the time, this was very good money to bring home to help my family (there were 8 siblings at that time). And it all went into a jar in the cabinet for my Mom to use for her needs outside of the weekly shopping along with my paper route money. Which come to think came much earlier, I was about 9 but got a route from my older brother who was 11 at the time.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 30, 2014 10:11 AM
Comment #375960

It would be a nice gesture if you retracted and apologized for calling my conservative co-worker and friend an a-hole. I would never think of calling my friend that and I take offense that you did. I understand that at the time you did not know that but now that you do, do you still think the same?

Posted by: Speak4all at January 30, 2014 2:15 PM
Comment #375962


j2t2, this is why Democratics have such little credibility. Really, you should read what you write before printing it.

… including throwing Susan McDougal in prison for refusing to lie.

j2t2, was she being forced to lie to implicate the Clintons, or forced to lie to support the Clintons? Which is it, j2t2?

If she refused to lie, that means the Clintons were guilty and she wasn’t goint to testify against them.

If the Clintons were not guilty then why would she have to lie? Why would she commit herself to incarceration? Why not just testify and clear the Clintons of any wrongdoing?


Posted by: Weary Willie at January 30, 2014 4:15 PM
Comment #375964
j2t2, this is why Democratics have such little credibility. Really, you should read what you write before printing it.

Actually Weary it is why conservatives really shouldn’t use GWB as an excuse for the myths, misinformation, half truths and outright lies they use in their attacks on Obama.


“Susan’s defense lawyer, Mark Geragos, stated that her ex-husband told her that deputy independent counsel W. Hickman Ewing Jr. would be able to “get Clinton with a sex charge” before the 1996 election if she agreed to lie and say she had had an affair with Clinton. She denies ever having an affair with Clinton.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Susan_McDougal

Posted by: j2t2 at January 30, 2014 4:31 PM
Comment #375965

They already had him on a sex charge. They also had him on a perjury charge. It’s only the double-standard that kept him in office.

I think your quote is just hearsay.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 30, 2014 5:32 PM
Comment #375966

Re Clinton - I always kind of liked Clinton. It was not so much his sexual escapes that bothered me as the fact that he betrayed his wife and took advantage of interns. But since they didn’t seem to much care, neither did I. I did question his standards. Kennedy was connected to the likes of Marilyn Monroe or other really attractive women. You can respect that. He didn’t go after ones like Paula Jones or Monika Lewinsky.

If I was important, I hope I would not take advantage of people like that. BUT if I suffered from that failing, I would hope expect to go after the quality commensurate with the position.

J2t2

And before that, there were the attacks on Reagan. I recall that when he was shot, many people who came to buy papers at the bookstore where I worked in Madison, Wisconsin said that he deserved it and while of course they didn’t condone violence, they could understand the rage against him. As you recall, the guy who shot him was not enraged at all, just nuts.

You mention the special prosecutor. Who thought up this wonderful institution? The institution was generally set against Reagan officials. Republicans disliked the idea. Democrats, in contrast, thought it was a great thing until their own monster bit them.

We can take this far as back as we can still identify liberals and conservative and we will find the same animosities. Politics generally sucks. That is why we should try to keep as much as possible out of the political arena. A big difference between liberals and conservatives, however, is attitude toward politics. Conservatives tend not to want politics to be as important. This allows more tolerance. Remember that tolerance does not mean acceptance or celebration.
As I have said, and not joking, in Iraq I used to have meals with people who I am pretty sure would have tried to kill me a few months before. Maybe they did try. I bet that I disagreed with them in almost every particular of life, except that they were working with us and I could easily compartmentalize it.

Speaks

As I was explaining to you and J2t2 – I was describing liberals in the stereotypical way to show you how you were doing it to conservatives. It is irony. That is why I ended with the rhetorical question, “does this help?”

Re your friend being an A-hole – the guy you describe is one. There are lots of them out there in politics and other spheres. We all play the role sometimes. It is important to be polite, but we must be careful not to let politeness get in the way of truth. I would be unlikely to call your friends an A-hole if he was actually present, but I am pretty sure he would be able to tell that I disapproved.

Posted by: CJ at January 30, 2014 6:31 PM
Comment #375974

Thank you all. this is the first time we have triple digit comments on Watchblog for a long time.

Posted by: CJ at January 30, 2014 10:38 PM
Comment #375976
They already had him on a sex charge.

Wrong. The Paula Jones case fell through and Lewinsky was in 98. But hey why let facts get in the way of your preconceived BS.

I think your quote is just hearsay.

The quote is directly from Susan McDougal Weary, hardly hearsay.

“She denies ever having an affair with Clinton.[6]”

[6]^ The Woman Who Wouldn’t Talk, p. 205

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Susan_McDougal

http://www.amazon.com/The-Woman-Who-Wouldnt-Talk/dp/0786711280

So what next Weary total denial that conservative scum bags like Ken Starr would do such a thing!

The institution was generally set against Reagan officials……. A big difference between liberals and conservatives, however, is attitude toward politics.

C&J Reagan administration was the most corrupt in recent history, Repubs/Conservatives deciding to exploit laws designed to help root out corruption in politics for political gain is shameful. The Starr investigations were much ado about nothing that became the new low in American politics. It was a sad day for America when the conservatives in power decided to become authoritarian and use the laws of this country to jail innocent people for political gain. You should be ashamed for making such silly excuses for these scum bags.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reagan_administration_scandals

Posted by: j2t2 at January 31, 2014 1:34 AM
Comment #375977


decided to become authoritarian and use the laws of this country to jail innocent people for political gain.

Who jailed innocent people for political gain?

Susan McDougal. She was convicted in 1996 of four felony fraud counts.

Susan McDougal and Hale still face new charges.

Not McDougal! It must have been this guy:

After apologizing for his loss, Woods said Clinton told him that the U.S. would “make sure that the person who made that film is arrested and prosecuted.” …


Some are calling him a patsy, others say he’s now a political prisoner.
But the man behind an anti-Islam YouTube video that sparked fierce protests across the Muslim world remains in jail on a probation violation. Nakoula Basseley Nakoula became even more famous when the Obama administration falsely stated that the Benghazi attack resulted from a protest over the video.



The video claim is completely fabricated.
What happened in Benghazi was a terrorist attack and was reported as such to Hillary Clinton at 2 a.m. Reports of a protest outside of the consulate were never issued from Libya to Washington because there wasn’t one.

The hypocrisy just keeps on coming. Democratics good, Republicans bad.

How do you know a person is a liar? He says he’s a Democratic! Oh, wait! It’s not a lie! It’s just ignorance and hypocrisy! Blame it on Bush.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 31, 2014 4:09 AM
Comment #375978
Susan’s defense lawyer, Mark Geragos, stated that her ex-husband told her

That’s hearsay, j2t2.


Posted by: Weary Willie at January 31, 2014 4:13 AM
Comment #375980

j2t2

I make no excuses for corruption anyplace we find it. That is why I have consistently supported measures to limit fraud and enforce the rule of law. But that is a different subject.

I merely point out that the hatred expressed toward Reagan was strong and sustained. As I mentioned, many people were expressing it early in his administration. In fact, I recall in Madison on his inauguration day, there was a big mock ceremony for “Ronald Raygun” where they talked about all the people he had hurt. Of course, since he was taking office that day, he could have hurt nobody.

Posted by: CJ at January 31, 2014 5:33 AM
Comment #375982

If you think my friend and co-worker is an a-hole then I would consider you a no good SOB.

So you give us a stereotypical description of a liberal that really doesn’t exist anywhere but in your fevered imagination and can’t really give me a description of a liberal that you work with and are friends and can share empathy with and point to that description as validation for your argument. While I describe a friend and co-worker in real life and we are supposed to equate this as the same? I’m sorry that is a huge fail on your part, but I am not surprised.

About Clinton, if I had been in an affair outside of my marriage (that has never happened) I would definitely resort to perjury to protect myself (my wife is not as forgiving as Hillary) and my wife’s feelings. The whole witch hunt was despicable, this is something that should have been left to the privacy of his and his wife’s relationship and should still be today. What is it with conservatives wanting to look into people’s bedrooms and sex lives. Please seek help, it is unhealthy.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 31, 2014 9:33 AM
Comment #375984
Who jailed innocent people for political gain?

Conservatives Weary. The OIC was abused by Starr and used to try and get Clinton. They wasted millions of tax payer dollars on a political witch hunt. Trying to frame the Clinton’s for the death of Foster! Whitewater was a land deal that went bad. Susan McDougal was convicted because she wouldn’t testify against the Clinton’s (unlike her ex-husband and Hale), the focus of the witch hunts. They went from there until finally years later they got the stain on the dress, many millions of dollars later.Such an intrusion into the private lives of Americans by conservatives.

Not McDougal! It must have been this guy:…

Ah yes Weary the Benghazi myth instead of staying on subject, game over, the silliness by conservatives is just to much.
One would think Benghazi was the first time we were attacked at our embassies

How funny you use a call in to the Glenn Beck show in one paragraph and then tell us in the next…….

That’s hearsay, j2t2.

Weary don’t be silly, using your definition of hearsay anything a defense lawyer could say would be hearsay. The defense attorney was talking for Susan McDougal which is the job of a defense lawyer.

C&J,

I make no excuses for corruption anyplace we find it. That is why I have consistently supported measures to limit fraud and enforce the rule of law. But that is a different subject.

A different subject!Corruption and Reagan go together like peanut butter and jelly, drunk and disorderly, conservative and authoritarian. You cannot be against corruption and for Reagan and be taken seriously C&J. Really, anyone that tells us government is the problem and then proves it with the most corrupt administration in modern history only to become the deity of conservatives everywhere! What an oxymoron moment.

Of course, since he was taking office that day, he could have hurt nobody.

Is that because he didn’t exit before that day C&J? He wasn’t the Gov. of California? Seems to me he earned the nickname.

“Reagan was involved in high-profile conflicts with the protest movements of the era. On May 15, 1969, during the People’s Park protests at UC Berkeley, Reagan sent the California Highway Patrol and other officers to quell the protests, in an incident that became known as “Bloody Thursday”.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Governorship_of_Ronald_Reagan

Posted by: j2t2 at January 31, 2014 9:53 AM
Comment #375985

Never in my strangest dream would I think that I would have to defend a conservative friend and co-worker against a conservative poster on this blog. This rabbit hole is a little to strange for me.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 31, 2014 10:32 AM
Comment #375987

Apparently, the two main reasons liberals lack empathy are:

1 - They believe leftist opinion to be fact.

2 - They are unable to comprehend what has actually been said.

Posted by: kctim at January 31, 2014 11:25 AM
Comment #375989

^^^^^^^^^^
And the crypto-logic becomes stranger still in this rabbit hole of conservative thought. And again, I am not surprised.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 31, 2014 11:41 AM
Comment #375990

Nothing “crypto” or strange about it, C&Js post went right over your head from the very beginning.

Posted by: kctim at January 31, 2014 11:48 AM
Comment #375991

Oh please pay attention. I just spanked them for their truly rhetorical and false approach to what he thinks liberals are. You on the other hand are just one of the enablers of this fantasy world. Always saying, yep, yep, yep them liberals are bad, bad peoples. And again, I don’t think you know what empathy means. I’ll give you a clue. You can’t have sympathy without empathy but to empathize with someone doesn’t necessarily mean you sympathize with their reasoning.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 31, 2014 12:02 PM
Comment #375992

I find it interesting that now the conversation has included Reagan, we have a curious dichotomy.

Carter, who had way too much empathy, is considered a failure as a President and is denigrated. Reagan, who had way too little empathy, is considered a savior of America, and is deified.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at January 31, 2014 12:53 PM
Comment #375993
You on the other hand are just one of the enablers of this fantasy world. Always saying, yep, yep, yep them liberals are bad, bad peoples.

A conservative says it and, deep down, a liberal thinks it hurt, so they use it on conservatives and convince themselves they thought of it.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 31, 2014 12:58 PM
Comment #375994

I have been paying attention Speaks.
Your uncle co-worker friend is nothing more than a liberal stereotype of all people who dare disagree with them. It is nothing more than trying to gain support for liberal beliefs by exaggerating differing beliefs. Hell man, even people on the right think your exaggerated liberal stereotype is an a**hole. That should tell you just how far out in left-field you are.

In hopes that you’ll stop with the “you don’t know what empathy means” BS:

Empathy
the feeling that you understand and share another person’s experiences and emotions : the ability to share someone else’s feelings

Most people on the right understand the experiences and emotions of others because we have shared them at one time or another in our life. We know what it’s like to struggle. We know what it’s like to make bad choices. We know what it’s like to be cheated. We can empathize with liberals on such things because we have experienced it ourselves.
The very fact that we live in such a huge welfare/entitlement society despite being so divided, is proof that people on the right have no problem with empathy.

Liberals however, are a completely different story. They refuse to even try and understand how a person could place their rights ahead of the desires of others. They refuse to understand why a person who has given up 50% wants to keep the 50% he has left. Liberals have a hard time empathizing with the right because they do not understand or respect individualism.
The very fact that liberals must use government to force compliance with liberal policy, is proof that liberals refuse to empathize with those who disagree with them.

BTW: If you go back and read over what C&J was saying, you might see that one of the things they were getting at was that fighting stereotypes accomplishes nothing.

Posted by: kctim at January 31, 2014 1:39 PM
Comment #375995

My co-worker and friend is not a stereotype, he is my friend. I don’t really care what you think of him but think it is strange that you feel you have to approve of him. You don’t. Typical conservative behavior, always the victim. Please give me an example of you having empathy with a liberal co-worker, friend, casual acquaintance or whatever. Now tell my why you can empathize but do not sympathize with their reasoning. Or don’t and continue to think liberals are bad and conservatives are good based on your stereotypes.

BTW not only do they make a point that fighting stereotypes accomplishes nothing but an unintended point has been made that using stereotypical views causes a ridiculous belief that therefore they are correct. You would fall into that category. I’ll be waiting to hear about your liberal whatever.

Posted by: Speak4all at January 31, 2014 2:17 PM
Comment #376015

Sometimes I mistake Speak4all for simpleheaded. Does anyone feel they have to approve of Speak4all’s friend? I don’t. In fact, this whole tangent is confusing me. Is Speak4all angry because CJ said what he thought of Speak4all’s description of his friend? Perhaps Speak4all needs to elaborate further and clarify his friend’s demeanor to us.

As for being a victim, this is where liberals cannot empathise with me. I’m a victim every time I get a paycheck. I’ve been robbed every week for my entire life. Liberals tell me I should be thankful for being robbed, that it’s my civic duty. I want to know, when was the last time I was asked if my taxes should go up? I’m always told to pay up and shut up. I guess I should say once I was asked if my taxes should go up. Walter Mondale. Look at the results there.

I keep reading Speak4all’s last post and I still can’t make any sense of it.

Posted by: Weary Willie at January 31, 2014 9:15 PM
Comment #376028
As for being a victim, this is where liberals cannot empathise with me. I’m a victim every time I get a paycheck. I’ve been robbed every week for my entire life.

We may not sympathize with you Weary but we can empathize with you. Your sour attitude about taxes is something I can relate to quite easily as I pay my share as well.

Liberals tell me I should be thankful for being robbed, that it’s my civic duty.

Speaking for myself Weary I can only say that taxes as robbery is just wrong, a bad attitude. Something one would expect from a spoiled rich kid who didn’t work a day in his life not a man who has worked and received the benefits of the taxes he has paid all his life. Taxes are the price we pay for civilization, er ah and conquest, well and welfare for the rich, oh and militarized police force, bad roads and welfare queens;)


I want to know, when was the last time I was asked if my taxes should go up? I’m always told to pay up and shut up.

When was the first time Weary? Taxes are down to levels not heard of since the days of Eisenhower. Yet conservatives still complain. What chaps my ass is they are the ones that carded the wars whilst cutting taxes, handed out free money to the drug companies whilst running up huge debts and then are upset because we spend more than we bring in.

You lament the higher tax brackets for those that make more money yet are also upset that those wealthy taxpayers have had their voice heard and have managed to shove the tax burden down to the middle class. Living in a representative democracy you are asked to pay your tithes to those running for office to be heard, if you haven’t tithed enough to them then you aren’t heard how does that sit with you? Kinda upsets me yet when it is pointed out to conservatives all I hear is “I’m being robbed, taxes are robbery, it is the governments fault”.

I keep reading Speak4all’s last post and I still can’t make any sense of it.

So much for the supposed superiority of conservative ability to empathize with liberals, hell Weary you cannot even understand simple clear liberal discourse.


Posted by: j2t2 at February 1, 2014 2:19 PM
Comment #376032

j2t2, government shouldn’t expect to get any taxes from my labor. In fact, government should be paying me for being a citizen. I do the work, not the government. I should be given what I need to perform as a productive citizen. What do you think of that, j2t2?

Posted by: Weary Willie at February 1, 2014 3:47 PM
Comment #376037

Weary, we have an experiment going on here where God doesn’t give “divine rights” to certain people to rule the rest of us. When you support money as free speech you support the “divine right” of the monied class to rule us. The people of the 1800’s were working to get to where we were before conservatism reared it’s ugly head once again in this country. Your desire to have the rich rule because the government is poor and subservient is sad IMHO.


Why on earth should you think you are entitled to anything just because you are a productive citizen Weary? Where in the constitution does it say productive citizens are entitled to special compensation from the government? You are productive because it benefits you.


Are you some kind of 1% type who thinks you are a “job creator”? This type of corporacy governance thinking is why we are so much in debt and why we have so many problems and are ill equipped with representatives in Congress to do anything positive about them. Baby boomers and their “it’s all bout me” attitude, such as you have displayed here, is very unbecoming IMHO Weary.

Posted by: j2t2 at February 2, 2014 12:39 AM
Comment #376044

The people of the 1800’s were far more conservative than anyone can imagine today, j2t2. They had no use for a federal government, never considered a federal government, the federal government never entered their minds because their state government and their local governments were the law.

You deny me benefits you fight for tooth and nail for the welfare class. Why is that, j2t2? We are in debt because of entitlement spending initiated by the Democratic party to buy votes. You say my labor benefits me and yet someone who produces nothing you defend. I believe I should be entitled to my property. You believe I am not. You believe someone who games the system is more important than the people who produce. That is what is unbecoming to me, j2t2. Where would those people be if not for those who produce?

Posted by: Weary Willie at February 2, 2014 9:59 AM
Comment #376045
The people of the 1800’s were far more conservative than anyone can imagine today, j2t2. They had no use for a federal government, never considered a federal government, the federal government never entered their minds because their state government and their local governments were the law.

Yes and we learned from those mistakes Weary, what do you think caused the progressive era in this country, The corruption, the oppression, the rule of the few, the rich, for the benefit of the few or the conservative era as I refer to the time.

You deny me benefits you fight for tooth and nail for the welfare class. Why is that, j2t2?

I thought being on government welfare caused one to be stuck forever in poverty. Conservatives have told us this leads to generational welfare for the bums to lazy to work, Weary. Why on earth would I want that for you?

BTW I don’t fight tooth and nail for welfare, I do support welfare programs and like to see them protected from abuses by conservatives as they attempt to make their myths become reality.

We are in debt because of entitlement spending initiated by the Democratic party to buy votes.

Don’t be silly Weary, we are in debt because conservatives chose to go to war and cut taxes whilst doing so. Just as King George taxed the people of his countries so he could go to war with France and Spain, Conservatives of today insist upon going to war on the backs of the American taxpayer. From Reagan and the Russians, Granada all the way to Afghanistan today. When you spend more on your military than the next dozen or so countries, most of them friendlies at that, it should be a wake up call.

You say my labor benefits me and yet someone who produces nothing you defend.

Yes your labor benefits you Weary. I don’t defend so much as protect.


I believe I should be entitled to my property. You believe I am not.

You are entitled to your property however these rights have responsibilities as well Weary, something conservatives seem to have forgotten. Taxes are part of this responsibility. Government is a means to protect the weak from the strong, to address the commons amongst the people of our country.

You believe someone who games the system is more important than the people who produce.

SO what is it Weary, the government games the people on welfare or the people on welfare games the government? Seem to me you can’t have it both ways. That being said IMHO those you think are gaming us seem to be barely making it. Unlike those “producers” on Wall Street that game the system, serve no jail time, Live the high life and send the bill to us taxpayers. Why do you protect them? Why do you see yourself as a “producers” such as these types and let them hide behind your anger towards the small fish with many problems living on welfare? Weary it is the rich playing you against what is left of the middle class and the poor, don’t fall for it.

Where would those people be if not for those who produce?

“Those people” would be where they were at during the conservative era you seem to think of as being the epitome of our countries life cycle.

Posted by: j2t2 at February 2, 2014 12:34 PM
Comment #376046

The progressive era was caused by a thirst for power. It is an effort to harness the creativity and productivity of a free nation and use it to benefit the greedy you refer to as conservatives, but in reality are members of both parties. You can’t exclude Democratics from the 1%, j2t2.

What you call poverty, people receiving over 50,000$ in benefits call their government check. People in real poverty don’t have cell phones, air conditioning, automobiles, all the food they can eat, internet access, television and cable/satelite, hbo and showtime, ect. People in poverty have one set of cloths and spend their time sifting through garbage dumps looking for their next meal and items they can sell for change.

Name the abuses and myths conservatives make into reality, j2t2. I’m not familiar with them.

Just as King George taxed the people of his countries so he could go to war with France and Spain, Conservatives of today insist upon going to war on the backs of the American taxpayer.

It was not conservatives who kept the wartime tax rates after the second world war was over, j2t2. It was the Democratic congresses. Tax rates were miniscule compared to the pre war, pre Roosevelt tax rates and the post war tax rates under constant Democratic Congresses never returned to pre war levels.

Democratics protect/defend people who take advanatage of the producers of this country. Democratics protect them by buying them and keeping them dependent on the government for the votes. If they don’t have a government handout they wouldn’t vote for people who protect that handout. If asked of the 2 candidates, one who opposes Obamaphones and one who protects Obamaphones, the person with the Obamaphone would vote for the candidate that protects the Obamaphone.


Unlimited confiscation of property in the form of taxes is not a responsibility. There are limits. When my taxes are used to pay for studies of the sex life of a mosquito and how long a shrimp can run on a treadmill, there will be pushback. Politicians can no longer keep track of the money they confiscate from SOME of the American people. When is the responsibility going to be extended to the politician?

Those who game the government for their government check enjoy much more than many people who work for their money. People who receive a check from the government do not experience the confiscation of part of that money each week/month. Just imagine the uproar that would ensue if a relative amount of deductions were made from a welfare check each month!

I do not protect the “Wall Street Producers” as you call them. I also do not protect the people who bailed them out like you do, j2t2. You were in favor of the bail out, were you not? You defended the bail out of the banks. I would have been in favor of paying an equivilant amount of money to the citizens of this country to use as they saw fit, i.e. paying off the mortgage to the bank who would then not have to claim the insurance on bad mortgages going bust. The banks would have been saved. The insurance companies backing them would have been saved. And the people who were buying the houses would have been saved, something that didn’t happen with your party’s solution. This solution would have required a significantly less amount of money to be printed and everybody would have benefited. Not just your party’s chosen few.

The people in what you call the “Conservative era” were enjoying every dollar they earned being paid them. They enjoyed an ever increasing standard of living. They enjoyed the industrial revolution. They enjoyed the freedom to worship their God in public. They enjoyed the right to criticize their neighbor when they disagreed with them. Much of that has been confiscated, along with their wages, by the progressive movement over the last 100 years.

It doesn’t have to be this way. Like I said, “This country prospers in spite of the federal government not because of it.”

Posted by: Weary Willie at February 2, 2014 4:45 PM
Comment #376047
The progressive era was caused by a thirst for power.

Yes the robber barons and many others of the time were thirsty for power Weary but it was the abuse of power and wealth that led people to the progressives and the reforms that set the country on a course of liberty and justice for all. The progressives brought us into the modern more enlightened age with the reforms they passed into law.

It was not conservatives who kept the wartime tax rates after the second world war was over, j2t2.

Of course not Weary why would they pay off the war debt on their watch. The liberal understand the costs of waging wars like WWII and knew the ill needed to be paid. Those that benefited from the war effort had high rates, justifiably so, to pay for the rebuilding effort as well. We have seen the conservative approach of charging wars to the credit card and forcing the huge debt to be paid by the next generation. That was my point.


It is an effort to harness the creativity and productivity of a free nation and use it to benefit the greedy you refer to as conservatives, but in reality are members of both parties. You can’t exclude Democratics from the 1%, j2t2.

Nor do I Weary. In fact if you look back I don’t mention either party instead using the term “conservatives” as they have infected both parties with their myths and misinformation.

Unlimited confiscation of property in the form of taxes is not a responsibility. There are limits.

Unlimited! The exaggeration tells me there is a break with reality Weary. The richest amongst us do not bear an unlimited tax burden what makes you think you do?

Name the abuses and myths conservatives make into reality, j2t2. I’m not familiar with them.

Well for starter Weary ” people receiving over 50,000$ in benefits call their government check.” . Then of course there is the ” People in real poverty don’t have cell phones, air conditioning, automobiles, all the food they can eat, internet access, television and cable/satelite, hbo and showtime, ect.” line used by many conservatives to suggest the norm for welfare recipients is the good life paid for by middle class conservatives only.

Just imagine the uproar that would ensue if a relative amount of deductions were made from a welfare check each month!

Or for that matter the billionaire hedge find managers whose income is called capital gains and taxed at 15%. Or the secretary whose rate is higher than the bosses. But to take taxes from the downtrodden, while it make appeal to conservatives lust for vengeance it would do little good. Why not beat them instead? Or sell their children to corporations to work off the debt?

Not just your party’s chosen few.

Weary the repubs wrote the bill and GWB signed it into law after the dems put some protections into the bill. So my party is a bit of revisionism that conservatives must need, after all it was the conservative deity Reagan that made privatized profits and socialized losses for the corporations the norm in this country.

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Posted by: haokeai at July 21, 2014 4:58 AM
Comment #381730

Christine & John, I think you’re right, and I think the latest findings of social science research into the psychological underpinnings of liberalism and conservatism support your view. See the book “The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion” by Jonathan Haidt.

Ideologies, moralities, and styles of thought differ in the degree to which they employ six psychological mechanisms that evolved in the human mind as we became “The Social Animal.” They are care, fairness, liberty, loyalty, authority, and sanctity. The first three are called “individualizing” foundations because their focus is primarily on maximizing the autonomy and well being of the individual. The latter three are called “binding” foundations because their focus is primarily on helping individuals cooperate with other individuals and cohere into groups for the mutual benefit of all members.

Haidt’s studies find that liberal morality and thought is based almost entirely on the first three foundations, and of those mostly just care. He finds that conservative morality is based on all the foundations in equal balance.

Further studies conducted by Haidt show that conservatives understand liberals and human nature better than liberals understand conservatives and human nature. When conservatives and liberals were asked to fill out questionnaires about moral and political issues first as as they thought the other would, conservatives pretty much nailed it and liberals failed it. In other words, conservatives had empathy for liberals but liberals had little or no empathy for conservatives.

Liberals THINK they have more empathy than conservatives because their morality and style of thought pretty much start and end with “care;” the emotional tug we feel when we see people suffering misfortune, or puppies. And they tend to interpret any tradeoffs or sense of balance between “care” and the other foundations as a distinct LACK of care and/or empathy toward others, and they often see the other foundations and notions related to them as, in fact, immoral; sources of oppression; evil.

But in the sense of the true definition of the word empathy - being able to know and understand where another person is coming from and being able to imagine what it is like to walk a mile in their shoes - conservatives beat liberals hands down.



Posted by: The Independent Whig at August 4, 2014 10:38 PM
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