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> The Death of Conservatism and Traditionalism?
net2007
post Dec 11 2013, 10:48 PM
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Millennium Mark

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I wanted to open this by saying that this will be my last political thread. As long as I've debated I've watched those with clashing political ideologies make valiant efforts to ensure their beliefs are valued. What I need to come to terms with personally is that my values work for me, and it doesn't matter so much if others don't value what I do. If I can make a difference in the lives of those I care about, then that's a start, and that'll be my contribution.

In my view politics tend to divide us along party and racial lines, when some of these issues could unite us with a little effort on the part of our politicians and those who debate them. This is in no way the fault of AD, it's just the nature of partisan politics in general that has gotten to me. This site has been very civil and informative by comparison to many others.

As for the Obama administration and our left leaning politicians, they'll go on doing what they believe is best for this country, as conservative politicians will generally do the same. These are fights that I assume leave to those with power who are out to push their opinions, because it seems to me that's all they're doing. It's been interesting and I learned a great deal, but cutting through the noise is not in me anymore, although I applaud those of you who will continue to have the patience to do so.

___________________________


This forum will focus on the changes we're seeing in America in recent decades. Traditionalism is already as shadow of what it once was, and conservatism and the Republican party may be on their way out as well. I have lot's of evidence to provide which suggest this is the direction our country is headed.

First piece of evidence:



I'll start with equal rights.

With traditional values comes a little history, and not all of it is good. Slavery and lack of rights for Woman, that sort of thing. For many, remembering traditional values comes with the remembrance of the things that needed to be changed. Since the Republican party and conservatives tend to be more traditional, I think this turns away the vote of minorities more than anyone. It's the association being made between traditional values and racism/inequality. I think what worries me is that some tend to discard anything remotely traditional, and push anything that's new or different. Even the good values and beliefs which worked are all being reinvented or forgotten.

To speak about conservatives and Republicans in particular, It's no secret that a great deal of liberals view them as racist, backwards, simple minded, or a combination of the three. These aren't fantastic labels to walk around with, and it's an obvious explanation for why African Americans and other minorities tend to lean toward liberalism and the Democratic party. Having our first minority President be a liberal Democrat seals up the minority vote for them even further.

In the 2012 election Obama got....

93% of the African American vote
73% of the Asian vote
71% of the of the Hispanic vote


According to CNN polling numbers, which I assume are accurate enough...

National Journal / CNN Link

These numbers aren't good for Republicans, and it says nothing of the fact that they've found it difficult to get the minority vote for decades. If that doesn't change the Republican party will be at an increasing mathematical disadvantage with each passing election. Primarily because minorities are on the increase by percentage of the population...

Bloomberg.com Link

QUOTE
"The U.S. continued its transformation into a majority-minority nation last year, with Census Bureau data showing non-Hispanic whites making up the lowest percentage of the population in American history. The estimates released today capture several milestones in the country’s demographic makeup. For the first time in more than a century, deaths outpaced births among white Americans. Almost half, 49.9 percent, of the nation’s children younger than 5 were minorities as of July 1. And the nation’s total minority population grew 21 times faster than whites. Non-Hispanic whites, the nation’s predominant racial group, added 0.09 percent last year to increase their total to 197.7 million, about 63 percent of the total population. Even with the increase, the largest since 2008, the total number of white deaths exceeded white births by 12,419. In 2000, whites were 69 percent of the population, and 80 percent in 1980. “A natural decrease and eventual loss in the white population is baked into the cake of our older white population,” William H. Frey, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, a Washington-based policy research group, said in an e-mail. “It’s the younger, rapidly growing minority population that will be driving economic and demographic growth this century.”


Another thing to consider is that voter turn out has been very impressive among African Americans in particular...

NBC Link

QUOTE
WASHINGTON — Making history, America's blacks voted at higher rates than whites in 2012, lifting Democrat Barack Obama to victory amid voter apathy, particularly among young people, new census data show. Despite increasing population, the number of white voters declined for the first time since 1996. Blacks were the only race or ethnic group to show an increase in voter turnout in November.


Conservatives, and the Republican party which represents the majority of them, absolutely will not survive without the minority vote.

____________________



Second piece of evidence:



Republicans and Rural America

The vast majority of large cities reside within blue counties. Larger cities like the one I live in appear to attract liberal politics. In multiple elections, I've literally watched entire states vote Republican with the exception of a couple counties with higher populations. Because of a handful of counties many states will go Democrat despite the small number of blue counties within the state.

Many states looked like these in the last election....

Politico.com (Nevada)
Politico.com (Florida)
Politico.com (Virginia)

As the politics of Rural America become less relevant to our politicians some are thinking voter turnout in counties with
low populations will be impacted....

triblive.com Link

QUOTE
HARRISBURG — Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack warns that rural America is becoming less relevant to the politics of this country, and he urges people to push lawmakers to do something about that.

In rural areas, “there just isn't as much political juice as there used to be, and I think we have to address that,” said Vilsack, a former Iowa governor who grew up in Pittsburgh.

Many voters in this state with more than 7.7 million acres of farmland might agree. “We lack political influence because we don't give money to campaigns, and we don't need handouts,” said Mat Edgcomb, 38, of Mechanicsburg, Cumberland County, who voted for President Obama but is not sure the president — or Washington lawmakers — understand the values and needs of Pennsylvania's 62,000 farm families.

Much of what he hears about what happens in Congress is always centered on fixing urban problems.


To further substantiate this here's a source which shows that the rural county voter turnout dropped in the last election...

Dailyyonder.com Link

QUOTE
"turnout in rural counties fell from 67.2 percent in 2008 to 54.9 percent in 2012. That is a whopping 18.3 percent decline, double the national rate.

Rural residents still voted more than those in the cities, but the decline is remarkable. And, as the county groups grow less urban, the turnout decline grows larger."


Another source....

Forbes.com Link

My thinking is that this reliance on rural and suburban America will hurt the Republican party in the long run as small cities become bigger ones. I think growing cities eventually hit a point where government supported low income housing replace country oriented trailer parks, while bigger colleges replace smaller and more traditional ones, which brings me to my next section...

_________________



Third piece of evidence:



Colleges and the youth vote.

Youths in America have been a reliable group of voters for the Democratic party....

Pewresearch Link

QUOTE
In the last three general elections – 2004, 2006, and 2008 — young voters have given the Democratic Party a majority of their votes, and for all three cycles they have been the party’s most supportive age group. This year, 66% of those under age 30 voted for Barack Obama making the disparity between young voters and other age groups larger than in any presidential election since exit polling began in 1972.

This pattern of votes, along with other evidence about the political leanings of young voters, suggests that a significant
generational shift in political allegiance is occurring.


As younger generations replace older ones the question then becomes, does the younger generation remain loyal to the Democratic party as they age? If this is the case and we see no trend changes, it's another reason the Republican party and conservatism could be in serious trouble.

One explanation for liberalism attracting the younger generation is education. Most people have a certain degree of bias in favor of the beliefs they find to be true or relevant to them. For some this bias can even mean ignoring certain facts, or pushing certain ideas with a higher priority than other ideas. Our educators are often no exception to this, and it seems apparent that the majority of our educators are left leaning in politics....

Washingtonpost Link

QUOTE
College faculties, long assumed to be a liberal bastion, lean further to the left than even the most conspiratorial conservatives might have imagined, a new study says.

By their own description, 72 percent of those teaching at American universities and colleges are liberal and 15 percent are conservative, says the study being published this week. The imbalance is almost as striking in partisan terms, with 50 percent of the faculty members surveyed identifying themselves as Democrats and 11 percent as Republicans.


Here are some various surveys on the political leanings of college professors...

RationalWiki (sourced) Link


QUOTE
University of Toronto survey....

Liberal 72%
Moderate 13%
Conservative 15%


UCLA survey....

Far left 5.3%
Liberal 42.3%
Moderate 34.4%
Conservative 17.7%
Far right 0.3%

Carnegie University survey....

Liberal professors by discipline...

Public Affairs 88%
Ethnic Studies 76%
Anthropologists 72%
Political Scientists 72%
Economists 63%


Other sources...

Familyactionorganization/Zogby Link
Newsmax Link
Intellectualtakeout Link

The following link is important because it's a left wing spin on the issue, yet it does acknowledge the existence of liberal bias in academia...

Dailykos Link



Fourth Piece of Evidence:



The Media and Hollywood?

To me it's no coincidence that California and New York are a hub for for entertainment and other media sources while also being a hub for liberal politics. Personally I believe their is a slight liberal bias seen in the media in general, but this one is harder to prove beyond clues and subtleties, and it's hotly debated. I welcome any sources which demonstrate otherwise.

I would like to leave some information in reference to celebrities first.......

When I googled "Liberal hollywood" I got over 72,000 hits
When I googled "Conservative Hollywood" I got under 10,000 hits


Similar results came with other search comparisons....

When I googled "liberal celebrities" I got over 17,000 hits
When I googled "conservative celebrities" I got under 12,000 hits


I haven't found any conclusive evidence to suggest that their are more liberal celebrities than conservatives ones, but their
are clues that liberal celebrities are more politically active than their conservative counterparts, at least in recent history....

Yahoo News/CRP Link


QUOTE
Hollywood does seem pretty liberal if all you are looking at is the actual stars. The invaluable political-money research group Center for Responsive Politics (CRP) analyzed the political contributions of the 2013 Academy Award nominees, for instance, and found them overwhelmingly directed toward Democrats.

Nominees and their families have made more than $3.6 million in federal political contributions since 1990, but only $4,000
of that went to Republicans, according to CRP. (That $4K came from film director Steven Spielberg, if you’re interested.)


To further substantiate The National Journal did an article listing the most politically effective celebrities of all time. The list was composed of advocates of both liberal and conservative politics. What I took notice of is that of the conservative or traditional celebrities on the list, most were relics of the past. It included celebrities such as Ronald Reagan, Charlton Heston, and John Wayne. Those in favor of liberal policies included some newer celebrities such as Bono, George Clooney, Michael J. Fox, Angelina Jolie, and Tom Cruise. The article went into details on all the celebrities listed, I highly recommend it.

Nationaljournal Link

As for our news sources in general, most of the links I came across were anecdotal with the majority of conservatives believing their is a liberal bias in the news and the majority of liberals disagreeing. (granted I am conservative myself) the best links I came across at the very least suggest more people (accuse) news sources of having a liberal bias. That in itself doesn't prove liberal bias, but it is a strong indication. I believe the clear exception is Fox News, which has generally been written off as inaccurate. (fixed news) or (fake news) is what I here about the one major network giving stiff and consistent criticism directed at this administration. Anyway, here's what I came up with...

Pew Research 2013 poll

QUOTE
Overall, about seven-in-ten (72%) see news organizations in ideological terms. A 46%-plurality says news organizations are best described as liberal, another 26% say they are conservative. Just 19% say news organizations are best described as neither liberal nor conservative.

Most Republicans See a Liberal News MediaThe balance of opinion on this question has changed little in recent years, with a plurality consistently describing news organizations as liberal, and about a quarter saying they are conservative.

Not surprisingly, there are wide partisan divides in perceptions of news organizations’ ideology. By a 65%-17% margin, more Republicans say news organizations are liberal than conservative. By contrast, Democrats are divided: about as many say the press is liberal (36%) as conservative (37%). By about two-to-one (47%-23%), more independents say news organizations are better described as liberal than conservative.


I believe I've said this before, but what I like to pay attention to are the opinions of independents as they are less likely to be influenced by the extreme elements of the far right or left, these individuals are our swing voters and if they are saying their is a liberal bias in the news, it's probably worth a closer look.

Other well established polling sites demonstrated similar results....

Gallup Poll 2009
Gallup Poll 2013
Zogby Poll 2007

Hollywood and news organizations reach a lot of people, some in the industry are even idolized. If their is indeed a liberal bias here this would be another hit to conservatism, the Republican party, and traditional values.

______________

In conclusion I believe what we see here is a perfect storm which puts social and economic conservatism at great risk of going extinct, unless these beliefs can find representation outside the Republican party, or we see a massive transformation in how Republicans deal in politics. I believe the government shutdown is a strong indication that Republicans are backed into a corner and don't know exactly what to do, or what direction to go. They see their values being replaced by other values, and they're getting desperate. They're not attracting the votes of minorities, they have poor representation in our media and educational systems, they have little appeal in the highly populated counties which matter the most, and they've lost 5 of the last 6 presidential elections by popular vote. That's not a good place to be.


Questions For Debate...

Is the Republican party going extinct, or is this just a bump in the road?

Can conservatism find strong representation outside the Republican party, or are we stuck in a two party system?

Can the Republican party overcome the race divide between Republicans and Democrats, is this important for their survival?

Is the Republican parties reliance on Rural America hurting them?

Is there a liberal bias in academia, the news, or Hollywood?

Bonus Questions:

Can you name off some traditional or conservative values which you believe are worth preserving?

Do you have any predictions for the 2014, and 2016 elections?
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Gray Seal
post Dec 12 2013, 02:20 AM
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I like the data you have put together upon which to base your questions. I personally look forward to your perspective on various subjects and find your thoughts to be a good read.

Is the Republican party going extinct, or is this just a bump in the road?

Times are a changing. The deplorable state of the economy worldwide is coming to a head. There will be some upheavals and political parties are going to experience at least large changes if not extinction.

Can conservatism find strong representation outside the Republican party, or are we stuck in a two party system?

Conservatism is such a broad term. You can find it outside the Republicans. Is it strong? I guess in the perspective of the supposed two party system dominating now conservatism is nearly absent.

Can the Republican party overcome the race divide between Republicans and Democrats, is this important for their survival?

The race divide is not the question. Growing the size of government is the problem whether it is to push social morality, economic favoritism, or military bullying of other nations. These problems are a cancer in the Republican Party which is now a problem in the Democrat Party as well.

Is the Republican parties reliance on Rural America hurting them?

The is a lack of regional representation in government at the federal national level or state level. Cities are dominating as the United States follows the path of the Roman Empire where the biggest cities with their large populations get the silver spoons. Rural America is the savior if they recognize their power and insist upon a correction.

Is there a liberal bias in academia, the news, or Hollywood?

There is a bias towards big government whether it is academia, the news, or Hollywood. At all levels, big government has become the source of money. Controlling government is a substantial factor to determine ones income. Do-gooders think solving problems has to include big brother. Why try to educate or persuade when you can force people? This country is obsessed with using force whether abroad or against its own people.


Can you name off some traditional or conservative values which you believe are worth preserving?

The idea of constitutional limitations is a vital conservative idea. The idea of small government is a vital conservative idea. The idea of a strong military available to protect the country is a good conservative idea.

Do you have any predictions for the 2014, and 2016 elections?

There is a significant minority forming which have finally realized there is a problem which is not going away. Whether this minority will band together to kick incumbents out is the question. The numbers are there to do so. The question is whether this minority recognizes its power and whether it can be motivated to actually vote. Is it bad enough yet?

I expect 2014 could see some big changes from the typical pattern of electing incumbents at over a 90% rate. As economic conditions continue to deteriorate, changes will occur. The voters have been fooled a long time but they will wake-up when it gets bad enough. Of course, there will always be those who will love big government no matter what. I have hope that Yankee streak of independence and love of freedom will arise and squelch the growth of the dependency crowd.

2016 could be a tumultuous year. If there is no correction (idea change of the majority) economic conditions are likely to slump to drop. When will the voters catch on? How bad will it have to be?

I doubt the two party system will survive. It should not. The Republican Party will exist but its place in government will have changed. Conservatives have to rally around the idea of constitutional limited government or they have no issues at all to bring people together.

-------

All the data you have presented does not support what I predict. My entire life government has gotten bigger and bigger. All of the trends say this will continue.

But it can't. This country is taking the path of all empires in history. It will collapse under its own weight.

Hopefully, the productivity and knowledge we humans have will rise to the top and we can start anew with a government which protects individuals and not groups seeking favor. When the people figure this out, it will happen.
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CruisingRam
post Dec 13 2013, 12:43 AM
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Is the Republican party going extinct, or is this just a bump in the road?


We have a two party system. It tends to make things gravitate to the center. Eventually the extreme elements in the party will not win any elections or get any money to campaign, and the republican party will have to adapt. It won't look like the Republican party since 1980, it will look more like the republican party of 1960s. They were champions of the minimum wage, unions and civil rights. Reagan threw those elements out of the party and under the bus to embrace the crazy part of the country. The religious right and the scared/angry white people.

This board is a micro-cosm of the nation. There used to be a lot of very good, very logical and consistent conservative republicans here. GW killed that dead. With the exception of Hobbes, there are no conservatives on this board that are consistently filling those roles of conservatism and traditionalism found prior to GW or Reagan. DaytonRocker is a classic example of a small government conservative republican for most of his life. He said very distinctly "I did not leave the republican party, it left me". The Republican party has turned into a caricature of stupidity, racism and hypocrisy, not to mention the bearer of the double-Standard. You have to laugh every time a Republican calls ACA a disaster- you see, you elected a disaster for two elections named GW Bush. You handed him an open checkbook and told him to spend to his hearts content, while actually reducing revenues. You let him lie to get over 4000 US servicemen get killed and thier sacrifice WAS FOR NOTHING. Yet you did not impeach. You held all three houses of government, yet you ran amok. You proved to all but the craziest die hard partisans you are not fit to govern, and are not fit to even be in the debate over how to run this country.

How could the Republican party gain back it's credibility? By shedding the hypocrisy and double standard. You want to talk about Benghazi and have people give a crap? Charge the entire Bush regime with war crimes and lying to congress. Folks that don't like Obama or dems will say "oh gee, these guys are as moral as they are wanting the Dems to be"- as it stands, to anyone not in the tea bagger choir.

I grew up around REAL conservatives Net. That is why I am so disdainful of the current group. It wasn't okay for Republicans to be scumbags and not okay for Dems to be scumbags. They operated on logic- not on racism and partisan hatchet men like Limbaugh or Faux news to tell them what they should believe. They were critical thinkers- and at the time, the liberals were screwing up left and right, and THEY were the emotional hippies that were long on beliefs and short on real workable ideas and practical reform where it was needed.

The old guard republican valued the mininmum wage, the union worker, the blue collar guy, the hard working poor schlub that was just a dollar short, well, of course the government could help them out- should help them out. Maybe that way they might get the breathing room they needed to barely survive but even get ahead enough to get out of the hole.

Republicans now hate the poor, women and people of color. Literally hate by their actions. They put NO responsibility on the rich white guys that have been destroying our economy and country, and put all the cost of the failure on the backs of the hard working teachers, nurses and firefighters, to name a few, and gave the rich a complete pass on everyone. This was a case not of government bureaucracy, but of private institutional wrongdoing, and they got away with it completely. Somehow, a 20% pay cut to teachers is a fiscal good idea, but an increase of 3% tax on the rich is ruinous socialism.

The republican party has lost the balance, and now they have a shrinking base of angry racist white men, stupid hillbillies, rank blind partisans and racist grannies, maybe throw in some one-issue one dimensional gun nuts for good measure. It is a recipe for very few national wins, if any.

Can conservatism find strong representation outside the Republican party, or are we stuck in a two party system?

We are most likely stuck, and when the chowder heads that agree with Rush Limbaugh and Hannity are gone, some sanity will return to conservatism, and we will have a slightly right of center party again. Good for the country.

Can the Republican party overcome the race divide between Republicans and Democrats, is this important for their survival?


Okay- this is oddly enough, the easiest part of the equation for the Republicans, if they can just stop being a bunch of racist douche bags. Hispanic and Blacks have very, very traditional views on family and other issues. Generally, gun rights and cutting aid to the poor, however, are not at the top of the "to do" list. The white Republican leadership just doesn't get the fact that they could grab a HUGE percentage of voters from the Dems very easily by stop using people of color as the boogeyman in everything. Megyn Kelly just went off on how Jesus and Santa are white. And she still gets to have a job. Hannity gets to bring in a fake panel of folks criticizing the ACA, and still has a Job. Limbaugh is a straight up racist dirtbag, and still has a job. Martin Bashir says something 100% truthful, but mean, about Sarah Palin, and has to quit. How do you think that plays out to someone that actually WANTS to be conservative in many areas, but this crap goes unpunished?

You think Hispanics and Black people believe in every liberal cause in America? Then most likely, you are one of the ones that are the reason people of color will vote ANYTHING but Republican.

Even Herman Cain and Alan West are excluded from the all white republican insanity. If they can't even include those whack jobs, how are they going to include moderate black republicans?

Is the Republican parties reliance on Rural America hurting them?

That is pretty much a white male whackjob base, so yeah.

Is there a liberal bias in academia, the news, or Hollywood?

Well, I am sorry if facts have a liberal bias, you can't change that, unfortunately. Opinion on faux has a conservative bias. You can help that.

Bonus Questions:

Can you name off some traditional or conservative values which you believe are worth preserving?

Fairness and justice for all, not just the poor, holding everyone accountable for their actions, not just the guys in the other party or poor people. Republicans are at their best when they apply their values to all, not just a select few group of non-believers. For instance, Nixon was grilled just as intensely by a guy named Fred Thompson, a young republican at the time, as by Daniel Inouye.

Had the Republicans held GW Bush to the same standards they are now trying to hold Obama, Obama would not have won the first election, much less the second. It is this failure of moral fiber and hypocrisy and the double standard that really, really kills the credibility of anyone not already firmly in that camp. If you are going to accuse others of unethical behavior or hold them to a standard- you had best be prepared to hold yourself to the same standard.

That is basically all it would take for the Republican rebound to happen- 'cause the Dems ain't no great thing either. They just don't pic the same whack jobs.

Do you have any predictions for the 2014, and 2016 elections?


Republicans only continue to win whites and racists and completely illogical an uniformed right wingers. The logical and informed ones stay home. Republican only win in districts with a strong base of the Rush Limbaugh crowd, and only then in rural or heavily gerrymandered districts. Dems continue to make progress as the only sane choice, sadly. The republican antics of the last few years completely mitigate any problems with ACA. ACA will probably be fixed before the election, and millions wil have affordable, good, healthcare and this will be such a non-issue that Republicans will literally have absolutely nothing to run on.

This post has been edited by CruisingRam: Dec 13 2013, 01:07 AM
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Dingo
post Dec 13 2013, 06:35 AM
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Questions For Debate...

Is the Republican party going extinct, or is this just a bump in the road?
Probably just a bump in the road. Greed, theocracy, anti-scientism, bigotry, jingoism, government baiting except the military, blaming the poor and paranoid conspiracies are pretty well established ways of playing to a large segment of the public.

Can conservatism find strong representation outside the Republican party, or are we stuck in a two party system?
The theme of rugged individualism plays everywhere no matter how inappropriate in real life. Just always remember your rallying cry "I don't want government messing with my Medicare." Don't mess, down right cowboy! mad.gif

Can the Republican party overcome the race divide between Republicans and Democrats, is this important for their survival?
Sure. They just have to learn to play the minority races off against each other and stop being so white centric. Heck they have most of the white vote anyway. I mean where else are they going to go? Certainly no one of George Wallace's caliber is available.

Is the Republican parties reliance on Rural America hurting them?
How many farmers do you know? Actually I had an aunt who was a cattle rancher and for a while she headed up her counties democratic central committee. But I would say that was the exception.

Is there a liberal bias in academia, the news, or Hollywood?
Well I talked to Greg Peck once and he was definitely a democrat but he didn't much like the college radicals. After that, former democrat and celebrity prof. S. I. Hayakawa had a run-in with a bunch of them and that blew him right into the Senate on the republican ticket. Things change so fast if you play it right. Cowboy Reagan got a lot of the young vote and Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis to boot.

Bonus Questions:

Can you name off some traditional or conservative values which you believe are worth preserving?
A traditional value is MYOB. I think that is worth preserving. As for a conservative value I don't know what that is unless it means something like the state taking over ownership of women's bodies.

Do you have any predictions for the 2014, and 2016 elections?
As long as they understand their constituents are suffering from a continuous identity crisis, as in "I'm tough and I pack", and play to that, I'd expect the republicans will do all right.
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AuthorMusician
post Dec 13 2013, 08:14 AM
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Is the Republican party going extinct, or is this just a bump in the road?

It's in big trouble because of its policies. They don't match with what most citizens want and are experiencing.

Can conservatism find strong representation outside the Republican party, or are we stuck in a two party system?

It's possible that a third party might form, and that has happened in our history.

Can the Republican party overcome the race divide between Republicans and Democrats, is this important for their survival?

No and yes.

Is the Republican parties reliance on Rural America hurting them?

It looks that way, since most people do not live in the country (meaning rural areas), and most people do not farm for a living. Our nation is changing, has been changing, and there's no turning back.

Is there a liberal bias in academia, the news, or Hollywood?

No. Movies of course bend the facts to sell tickets and thereby make money. That's a conservative/traditional value. Some journalism fluffs the facts to make stories positive for their advertisers, yet another conservative/traditional value. My recent experience with academia also shows conservative/traditional values behind the lesson plans. Everybody wants to make a buck, and they'll lie, cheat, and steal to do so, given the opportunities.

Well, that seems to be changing too, but it's too early to make a definitive call.

So one might conclude that the Democrats adjusted from the left to the center, and the Republicans adjusted from the center to the far right whack-job illogical and bullheaded side. It's no surprise that they are losing followers, especially as they overtly attack sweeping sectors of the voting population. Then they wonder what happened. It's a bit sad, yet funny as all get out.

After the last election season, there were a lot of Romney-Ryan signs left up for long periods of time, expressions of shocked denial. I'm expecting that to happen again and again, in 2014 and 2016 and beyond. So the question is not only will the Republican Party change its policies, but also if it can do so. I don't think it can.
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Dontreadonme
post Dec 13 2013, 10:32 AM
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Is the Republican party going extinct, or is this just a bump in the road?

It's not going extinct. As much as the left believes that the gilded age of the enlightened Democrats may have arrived, the deficit of many of their policies, and infringements on the civil rights and liberties [much as the right does], will always ensure that an opposition has a home.

Can conservatism find strong representation outside the Republican party, or are we stuck in a two party system?

It can, though it all depends on how one defines Conservatism. The GOP has experienced a leak of disaffected members to the Libertarian Party, but most people are still utterly indoctrinated toward the two party duopoly, so I believe at the national level, that duopoly is here to stay for a while longer. If the GOP ever sacks up and decides to own the issue of civil liberties, which I would argue falls squarely in the wheelhouse of Conservatism, the leak of Libertarians would likely be staunched and breathe new life into the party. Might even get me to vote GOP, though it would take the actual practice [instead of preaching] the tenet of limiting the size and scope of government, before that happens.

Can the Republican party overcome the race divide between Republicans and Democrats, is this important for their survival?

It takes two to tango. The GOP needs to eject it's racists and bigots, and the Democrats need to do likewise to their race pimps and hustlers. But given the intellect of the electorate writ large, the survival of either party is not dependant on these actions.

Is the Republican parties reliance on Rural America hurting them?

Hard to say, with suburban sprawl, the definition of rural is evolving.

Is there a liberal bias in academia, the news, or Hollywood?

There's far more of a bias [in the media at least] toward corporate profits. Bias is personality based, and bias is most often merely perception, rather than a metric. Bias on both sides has become more of a political cudgel used as a medium by commentary programming that is itself accused of bias. But ultimately, facts are facts....they have no bias, liberal or otherwise.
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Julian
post Dec 13 2013, 11:47 AM
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Conservatism (with a big 'C') is facing a similar - but not identical - crisis in the UK. Like the GOP, the party base is ageing, increasingly confined to smaller geographic areas, increasingly wedded to ideology over pragmatism, etc. And some of their attitudes that play well with their base are alienating to their potential sympathisers (interestingly, the reverse can also happen - David Cameron's very liberal stance on gay marriage has alienated his base on that issue). So most of my replies are coloured by UK politics - though I'll try to maintain focus on the US.

Is the Republican party going extinct, or is this just a bump in the road?

Political parties that last more than about 50 years are adapted to change with the times. It is conceivable that the rate of change might cause some serious damage - the British Liberal party has still not recovered the position of power it had in the UK until the end of the 1920s, but it is still a live political movement and it is not completely outside the bounds of possibility that it might regain its former power (my guess is that it's position in the current coalition government has harmed its short-term prospects more than it has helped, but coalition governments are not the norm in the UK like they are on the European continent, and we may yet get used to them).

Can conservatism find strong representation outside the Republican party, or are we stuck in a two party system?

As long as you have a first past the post electoral system, a reliance on corporate money, and no independent body to set constituency boundaries in a way that might energise democracy by removing safe seats for one party or the other - then yes, I think you are stuck with a two-party system. Which means that what you're calling conservatism* is pretty much locked out of power as long as the Tea Party, religious right has the upper hand within the GOP.

*All 'conservatism' with a small 'c' means is wanting to keep things the way they are, or going back the the way things were. There is no set time to which the clock has to be reset, so it is perfectly possible for there to be 'conservative' Democrats who want to go back to New Deal ideas that have since been discarded, or who want to fight to 'conserve' Medicare and social security spending against cuts. The political right has no monopoly on political nostalgia, something which most left-wing progressives within political parties often forget, to their own electoral cost.

Can the Republican party overcome the race divide between Republicans and Democrats, is this important for their survival?

Given the way America has already changed, demographically, and the likely trends for those changes to continue to move the US population away from white Anglo-Saxon America, the Republican party has no choice but to adapt to the current, and likely future, racial mix of America. If they don't, they will turn into a rump movement with only sectional appeal. In a multi-party system that might be no bad thing, but as long as there's a two party system, it's a recipe for exclusion and - in response to that - growing bitterness and hostility to "the system" and "the state" for not staying the same. One might as well rail against the weather - change is the only certainty.

Is the Republican parties reliance on Rural America hurting them?

I wouldn't say hurting them, but the demography of the world (not just of America) is moving more and more to cities. That's simply a fact. It is not inevitable that cities are capital-L liberal; most Texan cities are much further to the right that those in, say, California, and very few American cities are further to the left than similarly-sized ones in Europe. (My point is just to show that living in the city does not automatically turn someone into a state-suckling gunshy panty-waist, as some more rural conservatives might think.) What is true, though, is that as a general rule city-living Texans are likely to be politically to the left of rural Texans.

Is there a liberal bias in academia, the news, or Hollywood?

Academia - yes, but this is balanced by a right-wing (mostly neoconservative, as opposed to 'conservative') bias in business.
The news - are you kidding? Watch some news that originates outside the USA. The USA has the most right-wing news media (especially, but not limited to, television news media) in the world. And I'm not talking about the obvious Fox News biases - in a way that's less harmful - but pretty much all news stories on all media are biased to the right in all important ways. Ok, the totem issues of gun control, abortion or religious freedoms are still a big battleground between left and right, but those are sideshows.

Both Dems and Reps in the US mainstream (and most governments everywhere else) are completely wedded to ideas like globalisation; restrictions on the movement of labour but not capital; the necessity of bailing out banks and other financial institutions while allowing other businesses to stand or fall with bemused indifference; the need to project force overseas at the cost of blood and treasure to protect American commercial interest; 'improving workforce flexibility' by removing rights and protections and regulations to allow businesses to keep costs down; and so on.

None of these are truly left-wing ideas - nobody in mainstream US politics is given airtime to talk about genuinely leftwing ideas - like raising taxes punitively, nationalising major industries, increasing worker rights and protections - unless it is as an Aunt Sally to throw bricks at.

Hollywood is a business. It is socially libertarian* but economically, it is deeply conservative. Some actors are prominent liberals (though some aren't. Kurt Russell? Bruce Willis? Ok, how about a certain Austrian-American. Hell, wasn't Ronald Reagan an actor?) but some soldiers or mercenaries campaigning for famine relief or against a particular government spending cut does not make the military-industrial complex a cuddly liberal business of tree-hugging pacifists.

*but not that much - gay actors are afraid to come out because they think they will lose work, not because they think they'll get lynched. Actors that are caught using drugs (or even just being drunk) by the media have to make a show of going into rehab and then coming onto a talkshow to talk about how troubled they are or have been.

Can you name off some traditional or conservative values which you believe are worth preserving?

The idea that hard work is its own reward might be usefully revived. Modern "conservatism" only praises hard work to contrast it with the supposed slackers and lazy people on welfare, but when it comes to rewarding hard work, well, we have to compete with Korea and India and Brazil, ya know, so your wages and benefits are a cost weight on the economy and for competitiveness we just have to... Unless of course you have a boardroom chair to shine with your trouser seat, in which case GOPs (and too many Dems) all agree that the way to encourage you to work hard is to cut your taxes and pay you ever more, no matter how your business performs.

The working and middle classes have lost sight of their ladder up the economic and social scale - going up through the pay grades from the bottom; getting an apprenticeship to get the same skills that the academically-inclined could get from going to college, with that training paid for by your employer (and not by yourself or by the state).

And pragmatism is an old conservative value that the GOP seems to have completely sacrificed on the altar of ideology. Pragmatism is simply "do what works no matter whose idea it is". Sometimes, government-run services can work. Sometimes they can run better than a private business can run them. Not always, it's true. But sometimes. And sometimes, however much we might personally dislike the lifestyle choices of our fellow citizens, allowing them the freedom to behave as they see fit means everyone rubs along a lot better and none of us wastes time and effort forcing anyone to do things they don't want to do (or preventing them doing things they want to do). Up to a point - 60s progressives didn't legalise pedophilia and weren't proposing the sale of heroin to schoolchildren (well, most of them weren't) - but, Prohibition aside, politics in the first 75 year of the last 100 or so didn't spend too much time telling people how to live.

Throughout most of the first three quarters of the 20th century, America had mostly Republican presidents and Congresses (slightly more, anyway) and all of them were more or less comfortable with the notion that government could usefully play a part as an economic actor, at least some of the time, and not just as some un-involved referee. Also, tax was seen as a necessary evil, to be used to achieve particular goals. There was a degree of consensus over that, both within the broad Republican church, and across into the Dems.

Since the mid 70s, that consensus has turned on it's head. Within the political right, the argument that makes the most noise is that government should withdraw from the economy and leave free markets to their own devices. Taxes - particularly on income and on estates - are not a necessary evil, just an evil (how often these days do you hear people say they are "legalised theft"). And the religious right at the same time wanted to increase the powers of the state to intrude into the personal lives of citizens on issues like drugs, sexuality, morality, religious practice (or non-practice), etc. The Reagan-era GOP tried to lasso these Randian-with-a-Bible-style ideas and successfully rode them into office, but by bringing such powerful ideas and passionately committed (and also, in some cases, wilfully ignorant and bullheaded *cough* Palin *cough*) people into the heart of the party, made it almost inevitable that the old style of conservative pragmatism would be squeezed out.

Arguments within the GOP today are more about how little the government should be involved, not about where it should be involved; not about whether there should be tax cuts, but how big they should be and who should get them first.

Do you have any predictions for the 2014, and 2016 elections?

I think the Republicans will do ok in Congress - gerrymandering has seen to that - but if they get the White House in 2016 it'll be the last time for a generation unless they make a concerted effort to be more inclusive, less extreme, and less focused on a small subset of political concerns to do with, well, the Old Testament, basically. Nothing that the current GOP is preoccupied with is very focused on improving the daily lives of American citizens, and many of their preoccupations - in particular their stance on immigration - actively alienate potential voters. Like David Cameron's stance on gay marriage over here, though, the Republican leadership has a fine line to walk. They will need to take their base with them on many issues to be able to do so without losing their campaigning support.

Or some of their bigger donors.

Though in part I think they may need to keep their eyes on the bigger prize - mass support of a kind that'll be enough to win power - over keeping their base and donors happy. Mass political movements have their own momentum - you don't need to capture funding quite as much if you have already captured the zeitgeist, and mass membership comes with its own funding. 1 million affiliated voters each giving a dollar are as financially useful as 1 billionaire supporter giving $1m, and much more electorally useful because one donor still only has one vote no matter how much money they can give.

America is still a small-'c' conservative country - even immigrant populations are coming to work hard and make a life for themselves and their families, not just to suckle on the public teat while tinkering with performance art or whatever the rightwing scare story of the week is. So it should be easy to get a big increase in the size of the GOP electoral base by appealing to those old, pragmatic, small-'c' conservative ideas, not just by bringing in people who are put off by current GOP policy and - well - the general vibe, but also by bringing in those currently disillusioned by politics as a whole.
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Hobbes
post Dec 14 2013, 05:57 PM
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QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 13 2013, 05:47 AM) *
Can conservatism find strong representation outside the Republican party, or are we stuck in a two party system?

As long as you have a first past the post electoral system, a reliance on corporate money, and no independent body to set constituency boundaries in a way that might energise democracy by removing safe seats for one party or the other - then yes, I think you are stuck with a two-party system. Which means that what you're calling conservatism* is pretty much locked out of power as long as the Tea Party, religious right has the upper hand within the GOP.


Those things really aren't the reason for a two party system. It is currently encoded into the very operation of Congress. You are either in the majority party or the minority party (singular). The majority and minority (singular again) party have their own leadership, which determines how things work, who gets on committees, etc. If you took away all the money, etc, we'd still be stuck with a two party system.

QUOTE
*All 'conservatism' with a small 'c' means is wanting to keep things the way they are, or going back the the way things were.


I don't think that is true, when applied to this discussion. Conservatism is the opposite of liberalism. In the Federal government, liberalism means wanting to use the government to create/enforce progressive change. It is the party of big government. Conservatism would then be the opposite---the party of smaller federal government. That doesn't mean maintaining the status quo, or going back to the way things were, necessarily, or even often.

It is worth noting that, outside of the tea partiers, this is NOT what the Republicans have been doing, for decades. Which is why I keep distinguishing conservatism from Republicanism---those ships parted ways long long ago.

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post Dec 14 2013, 11:17 PM
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QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 13 2013, 06:47 AM) *
...
... Nothing that the current GOP is preoccupied with is very focused on improving the daily lives of American citizens, and many of their preoccupations - in particular their stance on immigration - actively alienate potential voters. ...
...

I wonder if you would be so kind as to explain how the GOP's (especially its conservative segment's) stance against illegal immigration (important note: they have no objection to legal immigration) is one that works against American citizens' (especially unskilled/low-skilled ones') interest in improving their daily lives. Should you choose to do so, please make sure to pay particular attention to an aspect of the American labor market that you expressed concern with in another thread: "the freedom of workers to ... use their labour market power to just up and leave one job for another if they don't like the conditions of employment in the first one."

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Hobbes
post Dec 14 2013, 11:42 PM
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QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 13 2013, 06:47 AM) *
...
... Nothing that the current GOP is preoccupied with is very focused on improving the daily lives of American citizens, and many of their preoccupations - in particular their stance on immigration - actively alienate potential voters. ...
...


Not true, although the conservative position is harder to explain. Conservatives feel that the daily lives of American citizens are improved when government stops trying to make everything better (remember the oxymoron 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help'). But with all the liberal programs in place, this gets into a taking candy away from the baby argument---it may be better for the baby, but the baby is sure as heck not going to like it, and its awfully easy to paint that person as the mean uncle who doesn't want the kid to have anything. They also feel that the daily lives of American citizens are improved if they aren't burdened with huge taxes. Which is why liberals are always so quick to point out that if we just taxed only the 'rich' we could still give you all this candy, for free (which is false, but makes good messaging). Hence the class warfare argument, and why liberals have to paint conservatives as pro-rich---without the class warfare, the glass house falls down. Now, Republicans do tend to take positions that make painting that picture all too easy, which is rather stupid on their part, IMHO---but then I'm not privy to how much that helps them fill their campaign coffers.

I do second Akacg's question---what about being against illegal immigration is so bad? I, for one, am fine with immigrants, and if we want more, we should amend the laws to allow it. But illegal is illegal, and why taking a stance that illegal activity is bad is...bad, is beyond me. That's like saying that taking a stance against bank robbers is bad (and there have been times when those committing such crimes had the national attention). But it is definitely an issue that the Republicans are losing the PR war, and maybe that is what leads to your opinion.
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CruisingRam
post Dec 15 2013, 01:27 AM
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QUOTE(Hobbes @ Dec 14 2013, 01:42 PM) *
QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 13 2013, 06:47 AM) *
...
... Nothing that the current GOP is preoccupied with is very focused on improving the daily lives of American citizens, and many of their preoccupations - in particular their stance on immigration - actively alienate potential voters. ...
...


Not true, although the conservative position is harder to explain. Conservatives feel that the daily lives of American citizens are improved when government stops trying to make everything better (remember the oxymoron 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help'). But with all the liberal programs in place, this gets into a taking candy away from the baby argument---it may be better for the baby, but the baby is sure as heck not going to like it, and its awfully easy to paint that person as the mean uncle who doesn't want the kid to have anything. They also feel that the daily lives of American citizens are improved if they aren't burdened with huge taxes. Which is why liberals are always so quick to point out that if we just taxed only the 'rich' we could still give you all this candy, for free (which is false, but makes good messaging). Hence the class warfare argument, and why liberals have to paint conservatives as pro-rich---without the class warfare, the glass house falls down. Now, Republicans do tend to take positions that make painting that picture all too easy, which is rather stupid on their part, IMHO---but then I'm not privy to how much that helps them fill their campaign coffers.

I do second Akacg's question---what about being against illegal immigration is so bad? I, for one, am fine with immigrants, and if we want more, we should amend the laws to allow it. But illegal is illegal, and why taking a stance that illegal activity is bad is...bad, is beyond me. That's like saying that taking a stance against bank robbers is bad (and there have been times when those committing such crimes had the national attention). But it is definitely an issue that the Republicans are losing the PR war, and maybe that is what leads to your opinion.


That is actually a fair question- and there is some nuance to it.

Illegal immigration has about the same amount of "badness" to it as jaywalking. In fact, it is a misdemeanor. the first question is "is the law a good one, and is it worth enforcing". The enforcement of illegal immigration is uneven and unfair and the law itself needs reform. The law is messed up. And the main roadblock to fixing it is in the Republican party, and the conservatives that back them.

My own beliefs on this have done a 180* over the years, since I have seen it so well up close for myself. Illegal immigrants are harder working, more law abiding, and more desperate than Americans. We need to open up and let them in, and give them a legal avenue to do that. How that looks at the end? I don't know. But if it is pragmatic and workable, the folks that are illegal after that, I am fine with enforcement and crying "they are breaking the law".

You will find if you talk to former illegals now illegal, current illegals, and descendents of illegals, they generally feel the same way. It would be so easy for the Republican party to ditch the racist element, and embrace this much, much, much larger potential demo-graph.

This is where the Republicans jump into the "party of the stupid". It should be obvious. Dump the tea party, gather in the brown folks.

I believe the worst part of illegal immigration is the way it exploits the illegal immigrant. I think it is the ONLY valid reason as to why it should be illegal. Employers that knowingly or negligently (kinda know they are illegal, just try not to know) are scumbags and need to go to jail.

We need reform in the law, clearly, but there are a very large group of Republicans out there that are opposed to reform, either because their campaign donors like to exploit the illegals (the corporations) or are Racist and don't want brown people getting to vote.

Any politician that can count and has any insight into what the Mexican-American population looks like, knows that the best way to get rid of the American citizen, legal voter is to go after illegal aliens at the same time- you see, they are frequently related.

Arizona was poised to become one of the first Majority-minority states. Jan Brewer and Sheriff Joe have waged a war against that by targeting brown people in general.

You can deny it, akaCG can deny it- but this reverberates in the psyche of every brown skinned person in this country.

And even though they may share many values with classic conservatives- education is important, hard work is important, abortion is bad, gun rights- very many issues, they feel at their core, usually, that Republicans don't want them in power, unless they have a white master somewhere.

I know the usual suspects here will poo-poo that notion away- but the bottom line is, until Republicans and conservatives address this- those poll numbers will remain the same when it comes to minority voters.



In my experience, minorities are hyper aware of unfairness and the double standard that the Republican party asks of others. The republican party asks other to take " personal responsibility"- which is really a true traditional American platitude. But in practice, ONLY asks the poor, minorities and those with NO real impact on society or the economy to take ALL the responsibility, while taking NONE upon themselves. Rich white guys screwed up the economy- not illegal immigrants. We need to take those white guys to task and take some hide out of their butts.

This quote is a good place to sum up that feeling:

What sort of person thinks there is nothing wrong with asking the folks tasked with educating our children to take a 20% pay cut on an annual 50k dollar a year salary, but think it is a terrible idea to ask millionaires to pay 3% more in taxes"

Minorities are rich, middle class and are not monolithic any more than whites. However, they do tend to know and empathize with those locked out of the American dream a bit better, because they may have experienced it, or have a family member there etc.

So unless the Republicans start asking CEOs and such to start shouldering a bit of the blame and taking responsibility, I doubt there will be much shift in the current voting demo-graphs.

This post has been edited by CruisingRam: Dec 15 2013, 04:03 AM
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Dingo
post Dec 15 2013, 05:02 AM
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The movement against illegals would have some real cache if it was associated with a concern for overpopulation. But since it isn't, it turns into basically a tip of the hat to needed illegal labor while denying them the basic rights as citizens, creating a desperate class of exploitable workers. The hypocrisy is transparent.
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post Dec 15 2013, 06:01 PM
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QUOTE(net2007 @ Dec 11 2013, 04:48 PM) *
Questions For Debate...

Is the Republican party going extinct, or is this just a bump in the road?

Can conservatism find strong representation outside the Republican party, or are we stuck in a two party system?

Can the Republican party overcome the race divide between Republicans and Democrats, is this important for their survival?

Is the Republican parties reliance on Rural America hurting them?

Is there a liberal bias in academia, the news, or Hollywood?

Bonus Questions:

Can you name off some traditional or conservative values which you believe are worth preserving?

Do you have any predictions for the 2014, and 2016 elections?



To me, the racial divide can be bridged. George W. Bush made a concerted effort to court the Hispanic vote and was known to make speeches in Spanish. To me, he had the recipe for success and others have pointed that out. The message on immigration MUST shift. I know many conservatives who are hung up on the "illegal" part of immigration. This harsh language does point out that truth that it is a "crime," but from them, you would think it was akin to a capital offense. A woman with two kids trying to make a better life for herself shouldn't be painted in the same category as a man with a stocking cap, trying to jimmy a lock to get into your house. Screaming about fences, security concerns about drug gangs, and enacting laws at the local and state level against hiring illegals might make you feel good about thumping your chest and following the legal letter of the law, but it won't garner you support among the largest growing demographic. The GOP autopsy report has some practical considerations at all levels of party management. Change the words "amnesty" and "illegal" to "inclusion" and "acceptance" and you get a dramatically different result. It also doesn't help matters when you restrict voting times, same day voter registration, or conduct voting purges that expel validly registered people. As Colin Powell noted, you risk significant blowback on that.

I'm not sure that I buy the rural-urban split in its entirety, there are many suburbs that have strong conservative ties through corporations and businesses in the area which have wide support, not to mention cities like Colorado Springs, which is a strong evangelical bastion. I found many online sources stating that the suburbs are increasingly becoming key toss-up areas a these areas of conservative support are becoming increasingly diverse. Yet more reason to "branch out" and change your tone. The GOP can win in urban areas, if they pull enough of the minority vote to at least a respectable split.

Traditional values worth preserving? The emphasis on families and stability is a key message that should be kept. Say what you want about the libertarian message of "liberty," most Americans want a strongly connected community, as opposed to transforming our cultural into Las Vegas. devil.gif A new "social compact" needs to be created, and the economy has to be a part of that. You can't have a stable family and communities, if workers have to hit up the government for being underpaid. Create this compact, and you will have a center-right agenda that will dominate for years. The Democratic party has nothing "there" there on this issue. Become the party of main street, as opposed to wall street and redraw the parameters to favor the middle class, and you will succeed.
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post Dec 16 2013, 05:42 AM
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Gray Seal
QUOTE(Gray Seal @ Dec 11 2013, 10:20 PM) *
I like the data you have put together upon which to base your questions. I personally look forward to your perspective on various subjects and find your thoughts to be a good read.


I appreciate the compliment, I'll probably stick around for the less political threads. This one I made will be my main focus... Whats New With You

I like just chatting with folks and finding common interest. The music threads, joke threads, science threads, or perhaps personal philosophy threads are still interesting to me. If I have to read one more thread about how angry white people are, or how Obama isn't an American I think I'll go nuts. tongue.gif

----

I hope your right about conservatism surviving. Id hate to see this country have to collapse for that to happen like your predicting though. One wild scenario I've considered is that the Democrats will eventually adopt more of the ideas of right wing politics. I think the moderate Democrats do see some value in certain conservative or traditional ideas, and recognize that some of these values will be needed.

An alternative scenario would be that the Democratic party follows Obamas lead and remains too liberal for it to go unopposed and this results in an independent candidate being elected. Either way I think the GOP is in serious trouble, and if it does survive it will quite different than what we see now.

_________________________________________________


CruisingRam

QUOTE
This board is a micro-cosm of the nation. There used to be a lot of very good, very logical and consistent conservative republicans here. GW killed that dead. With the exception of Hobbes, there are no conservatives on this board that are consistently filling those roles of conservatism and traditionalism found prior to GW or Reagan.


We still have some decent and consistent conservative and Republican members here, I don't know where your getting that other than being at opposition to them politically. Many of them are even acknowledging the trouble seen within the Republican party, and that takes some honesty. While true of some members, what your talking about can be said for some of our liberal members as well. I can think of a couple who don't adhere to the principals of their own constituencies, and who have become increasingly hypocritical, but it is what it is.

As for GW , I've have developed some newfound respect for him, and even look up to him. Take a look at this video...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-ke6wKzPwM

I have my doubt's some members who were opposed to Bush will watch that all the way through. It is interesting though, It's a 5 minute clip of Bush on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno where he was very well received. Two of the things he said which caught my attention were...

"I don't think it's good for the country to have a former president criticize his successor" This was after being asked why he's avoided talking policy in the years after his presidency.

That demonstrates massive integrity, integrity I wish I had. In a political environment with nothing but finger pointing and smear tactics, this type of attitude is rare. The majority of what Obama has done is point fingers at Bush to get elected, and point fingers at Republicans in congress for what problems remain, granted this doesn't come without many Republicans doing the same thing. I knew the GOP was in trouble when their attack tactics became as dirty as what the Democrats demonstrated during the Bush years.

I have lost any hope that we'll see anything but divisiveness and bickering under this presidency or our current congress, and they're both to blame.

Second thing Bush said that caught my attention was this...

"I relied upon my faith and family"

This after being asked how you handle those tough moments as President. If you view religion as a traditional value, one more commonly embraced by conservatives, then you could very well view Bush as having stayed true to a common right of center value, at least in his personal life. The Republican party has always had strong ties with religion in general, the growing distaste for such beliefs was one idea I had for a 5th section of the opening thread.


QUOTE
I grew up around REAL conservatives Net. That is why I am so disdainful of the current group. It wasn't okay for Republicans to be scumbags and not okay for Dems to be scumbags.

Republicans now hate the poor, women and people of color. Literally hate by their actions.


And I'm a conservative who is poor and currently in love with a woman who is a Democrat. Your disdainful of the current group because you make little effort to learn anything positive about them. The woman I'm dating has a huge heart, great amount of compassion, and acceptance for others. For the Dems who actually stick to these principals which are supposed to be valued by their party, I have a great amount of respect for them. As for people of color, I hope they're doing ok and I wish them well.


QUOTE
Okay- this is oddly enough, the easiest part of the equation for the Republicans, if they can just stop being a bunch of racist douche bags. Hispanic and Blacks have very, very traditional views on family and other issues. Generally, gun rights and cutting aid to the poor, however, are not at the top of the "to do" list. The white Republican leadership just doesn't get the fact that they could grab a HUGE percentage of voters from the Dems very easily by stop using people of color as the boogeyman in everything. Megyn Kelly just went off on how Jesus and Santa are white. And she still gets to have a job. Hannity gets to bring in a fake panel of folks criticizing the ACA, and still has a Job. Limbaugh is a straight up racist dirtbag, and still has a job. Martin Bashir says something 100% truthful, but mean, about Sarah Palin, and has to quit. How do you think that plays out to someone that actually WANTS to be conservative in many areas, but this crap goes unpunished?


I think the racist within the Republican party are being punished, just look at the state of things. Republicans are losing elections, and they've been labeled beyond recognition. If anything all Republicans have taken a hit for a racist minority within the party, but it is a minority CR. It's been a masterpiece of political smear tactics to label the majority of the right as racist, bigots, scumbags, dirtbags, and bible thumping morons. I have to say it's been impressive to observe.

My question is.... Will the Democratic party face real consequences for their extremist or will those extremist come to the realization that hate isn't party or race specific?

One of the most valuable things I learned through all of this was from my girlfriend. I was complaining about the amount of ugliness I had observed from liberal protesters at a local Mitt Romney rally I attended during the last election. I even made a forum about that experience and posted videos I took. I had a woman flip me off, and I saw others snickering and making smart and crude remarks to others attending the Rally as well.

When I told Elizabeth about this she said "hate isn't a liberal or conservative trait, it's a human trait."

I came out of that rally having witnessed liberals acting childish for no other reason than being in the presence of those who didn't share their beliefs, it took her and some common sense to bring me back down to earth. So what your witnessing CR isn't anything more than human nature when political ideologies clash, and many liberals and Democrats demonstrate this as well.

This post has been edited by net2007: Dec 16 2013, 06:03 AM
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Julian
post Dec 16 2013, 10:55 AM
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QUOTE(akaCG @ Dec 14 2013, 11:17 PM) *
QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 13 2013, 06:47 AM) *
...
... Nothing that the current GOP is preoccupied with is very focused on improving the daily lives of American citizens, and many of their preoccupations - in particular their stance on immigration - actively alienate potential voters. ...
...

I wonder if you would be so kind as to explain how the GOP's (especially its conservative segment's) stance against illegal immigration (important note: they have no objection to legal immigration) is one that works against American citizens' (especially unskilled/low-skilled ones') interest in improving their daily lives. Should you choose to do so, please make sure to pay particular attention to an aspect of the American labor market that you expressed concern with in another thread: "the freedom of workers to ... use their labour market power to just up and leave one job for another if they don't like the conditions of employment in the first one."


At least in the pronouncements and discussions that penetrate through the Atlantic fog, I don't detect any great distinctions being made between legal and illegal immigrants. The talk mainly seems to be just about "immigrants" and since the detail of that talk is always about Mexican day labourers either getting a legal visa and "taking American jobs" or getting in illegally and "taking immigrant jobs, and never about white Europeans getting headhunted for IT or boardroom work (who are never described as "taking American jobs") or overstaying on a tourist visa (which is equally valid in the figures for "illegal immigrants"). So Latino Americans are not unrealistic in thinking there is an element of prejudice in the rhetoric on immigration, legal or otherwise.

And your link is to a post where I was very specifically talking about the use of unemployment as an economic tool to keep labour costs down in a political economy that sets no store by full employment or empowering employees, and every store by manipulating the jobs market in favour of employers. For sure, the GOP are all in favour of doing away with illegal immigration (though some of their nuttier neoliberal/libertarian fringes would do away with all migration controls to have a "free market" of labour), but for the most part that is not because they want full employment and a therefore a labour force that would have power over employers. If that's what they wanted, their speeches on immigration would mention the words "full" and "employment" next to one another as a policy goal rather more often than they do. Because they don't do that, it is not unreasonable to assume that their interest is not in improving the daily lives of ordinary Americans.
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Hobbes
post Dec 16 2013, 05:01 PM
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QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Dec 14 2013, 07:27 PM) *
That is actually a fair question- and there is some nuance to it.

Illegal immigration has about the same amount of "badness" to it as jaywalking. In fact, it is a misdemeanor. the first question is "is the law a good one, and is it worth enforcing". The enforcement of illegal immigration is uneven and unfair and the law itself needs reform. The law is messed up. And the main roadblock to fixing it is in the Republican party, and the conservatives that back them.


If you take the politics out of it, there are still issues that need to be resolved---issues that Republicans in favor of immigration reform point out. You can't make it too easy, or you are in essence punishing those people who did it legally. This is where Republicans should be doing a lot more PR work---immigrants who came here legally should be for recognition of their efforts to do it right.

QUOTE
My own beliefs on this have done a 180* over the years, since I have seen it so well up close for myself. Illegal immigrants are harder working, more law abiding, and more desperate than Americans. We need to open up and let them in, and give them a legal avenue to do that. How that looks at the end? I don't know. But if it is pragmatic and workable, the folks that are illegal after that, I am fine with enforcement and crying "they are breaking the law".


Yes, this should be the path forward. Ironically, the reason I think Republicans are against it is because of demographics---they see the rise of minorities, and how poorly they do amongst them. But they need to realize that stances like the ones they are taking on immigration are precisely why they do poorly, and also that slowing down immigration certainly isn't going to stop that trend anyway. As you say, minorities are often inherently conservative people, they should be trying to find ways to embrace them within their party.

FWIW, A Better Life is an excellent encapsulation of the illegal immigrant story, and portrays them as you describe. Anyone who hasn't seen it should--it is just a really well done movie, and resonates outside of the immigration issue itself. But then I'm a believer in old school values, which to me is what the movie was really all about.

QUOTE
You will find if you talk to former illegals now illegal, current illegals, and descendents of illegals, they generally feel the same way. It would be so easy for the Republican party to ditch the racist element, and embrace this much, much, much larger potential demo-graph.


YES!

QUOTE
This is where the Republicans jump into the "party of the stupid". It should be obvious. Dump the tea party, gather in the brown folks.


But the tea party is the only fiscally conservative group out there...so that's easier said than done.

QUOTE
I believe the worst part of illegal immigration is the way it exploits the illegal immigrant. I think it is the ONLY valid reason as to why it should be illegal. Employers that knowingly or negligently (kinda know they are illegal, just try not to know) are scumbags and need to go to jail.


Yes. If illegal immigration really is bad, then those that hire them (which is the reason they come) are the real culprits. There should be much more enforcement on that end.

QUOTE
We need reform in the law, clearly, but there are a very large group of Republicans out there that are opposed to reform, either because their campaign donors like to exploit the illegals (the corporations) or are Racist and don't want brown people getting to vote.


I don't really think corporations are that large of a player in this. I think most illegals work for individuals or small companies. Large companies have too much too lose, and too little to gain---they would only really profit from it if they hired huge numbers of illegals, which could not go unnoticed. Which leaves your latter explanation.

Any politician that can count and has any insight into what the Mexican-American population looks like, knows that the best way to get rid of the American citizen, legal voter is to go after illegal aliens at the same time- you see, they are frequently related.

QUOTE
Arizona was poised to become one of the first Majority-minority states. Jan Brewer and Sheriff Joe have waged a war against that by targeting brown people in general.


There are valid reasons to oppose illegal immigration, most especially in border states like Arizona. They place a large burden on the system (hospitals, etc).

QUOTE
So unless the Republicans start asking CEOs and such to start shouldering a bit of the blame and taking responsibility, I doubt there will be much shift in the current voting demo-graphs.


It isn't just Republicans. How many of those banking CEO's has the current administration locked up in jail? Hint: 'None' would be the correct answer. No politician wants to mess with their money supply. Well, no politician not in the tea party, which is a big part of their appeal to many.

QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 16 2013, 04:55 AM) *
At least in the pronouncements and discussions that penetrate through the Atlantic fog, I don't detect any great distinctions being made between legal and illegal immigrants. The talk mainly seems to be just about "immigrants" and since the detail of that talk is always about Mexican day labourers either getting a legal visa and "taking American jobs" or getting in illegally and "taking immigrant jobs, and never about white Europeans getting headhunted for IT or boardroom work (who are never described as "taking American jobs") or overstaying on a tourist visa (which is equally valid in the figures for "illegal immigrants"). So Latino Americans are not unrealistic in thinking there is an element of prejudice in the rhetoric on immigration, legal or otherwise.


As I said, Republicans are losing the PR war.

This also demonstrates, as I keep telling an Australian buddy of mine who loves to talk American politics, you get a biased perspective just listening to the news, especially that part of the news that makes it abroad. Which is true for every country, fwiw.

QUOTE
And your link is to a post where I was very specifically talking about the use of unemployment as an economic tool to keep labour costs down in a political economy that sets no store by full employment or empowering employees, and every store by manipulating the jobs market in favour of employers. For sure, the GOP are all in favour of doing away with illegal immigration (though some of their nuttier neoliberal/libertarian fringes would do away with all migration controls to have a "free market" of labour), but for the most part that is not because they want full employment and a therefore a labour force that would have power over employers. If that's what they wanted, their speeches on immigration would mention the words "full" and "employment" next to one another as a policy goal rather more often than they do. Because they don't do that, it is not unreasonable to assume that their interest is not in improving the daily lives of ordinary Americans.


I don't think that's really what's happening, and it doesn't match up with an anti-immigrant policy either. Republicans are constantly talking about the impact of various laws on small business, and the impact of policies on employment. Despite the rhetoric from the left, I don't think Republicans are anti-worker. There is a philosophical difference...top down vs. bottom up, and also their belief that government should just get out of the way. Republican's wouldn't be against full employment, either---unemployed people tend to be Democrats, as do those on the lower end of the pay scale. Rich CEO's still just get one vote---that won't help anyone win an election.
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akaCG
post Dec 17 2013, 01:03 AM
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QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 16 2013, 05:55 AM) *
QUOTE(akaCG @ Dec 14 2013, 11:17 PM) *
QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 13 2013, 06:47 AM) *
...
... Nothing that the current GOP is preoccupied with is very focused on improving the daily lives of American citizens, and many of their preoccupations - in particular their stance on immigration - actively alienate potential voters. ...
...

I wonder if you would be so kind as to explain how the GOP's (especially its conservative segment's) stance against illegal immigration (important note: they have no objection to legal immigration) is one that works against American citizens' (especially unskilled/low-skilled ones') interest in improving their daily lives. Should you choose to do so, please make sure to pay particular attention to an aspect of the American labor market that you expressed concern with in another thread: "the freedom of workers to ... use their labour market power to just up and leave one job for another if they don't like the conditions of employment in the first one."

At least in the pronouncements and discussions that penetrate through the Atlantic fog, I don't detect any great distinctions being made between legal and illegal immigrants. ...
...

The reason for your difficulty in detecting said distinctions being made is not due to "fog", but the deliberate obliteration (for political rhetoric purposes) of said distinctions on the part of the Left/Libs/Progs/Dems on this side of the Atlantic, which then the overwhelming majority of the press on your side of the Atlantic dutifully regurgitates.

Here, for instance, is the 2012 Democratic Party platform wording on the topic:
QUOTE
...
Democrats are strongly committed to enacting comprehensive immigration reform that supports our economic goals and reflects our values as both a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants. The story of the United States would not be possible without the generations of immigrants who have strengthened our country and contributed to our economy. Our prosperity depends on an immigration system that reflects our values and meets America's needs.

But Americans know that today, our immigration system is badly broken – separating families, undermining honest employers and workers, burdening law enforcement, and leaving millions of people working and living in the shadows.
...

And here, for instance, is the 2012 Republican Party platform wording:
QUOTE
...
The greatest asset of the American economy is the American worker. Just as immigrant labor helped build our country in the past, today’s legal immigrants are making vital contributions in every aspect of our national life. Their industry and commitment to American values strengthens our economy, enriches our culture, and enables us to better understand and more effectively compete with the rest of the world.

Illegal immigration undermines those benefits and affects U.S. workers.

So, which side is the one that eschews making said distinctions, again?

Source: http://www.nnirr.org/~nnirrorg/drupal/site...tform_chart.pdf

QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 16 2013, 05:55 AM) *
...
... The talk mainly seems to be just about "immigrants" and since the detail of that talk is always about Mexican day labourers either getting a legal visa and "taking American jobs" or getting in illegally and "taking immigrant jobs, ...
...

That the discussion about illegal immigrants largely devotes itself to illegal immigrants from Mexico should come as a surprise to no one, given the very simple fact that they comprise more than 60% of illegal immigrants in this country, with another 15% coming from other Latin American countries. Contrast that with the fact that China, India, The Philippines and India ... combined ... contribute only 8% to the illegal immigrant population here.

Source: http://immigration.procon.org/view.resourc...D=000845#graphs

QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 16 2013, 05:55 AM) *
...
... and never about white Europeans getting headhunted for IT or boardroom work ...
...

1.
"Headhunted" foreign-born workers are, by definition, ... legal.

2.
Since white Europeans' getting "headhunted" for boardroom work account for some tiny fraction of 1% of the jobs going to foreign-born people, it should surprise no one that they come up in discussions devoted to the American jobs situation about as often as Martians do.

3.
The overwhelming majority of foreign born workers who get "headhunted" for IT work are not white Europeans, but (to ever-so-briefly borrow your skin-color-"awareness" type "taxonomy") yellow Chinese and brown Indians.

Republicans are strongly in favor of expanding the number of visas granted to that type of workers, no matter their skin color, on the basis that a notable proportion of such jobs continue to languish unfilled due to a notable lack of Americans, no matter their skin color, who are qualified to fill them.

Democrats, on the other hand, prefer to grant visas on the basis of racial/ethnic "diversity", which translates to unskilled/low-skilled Africans for the most part, which then results in ... drum roll, please ... more competition for unskilled/low-skilled ... yet another drum roll, please ... black "ordinary Americans".

So, ...

Who are the ones who really look out for the interests of the American "proletariat", again?

QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 16 2013, 05:55 AM) *
...
(who are never described as "taking American jobs") ...
...

See above.

QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 16 2013, 05:55 AM) *
...
... or overstaying on a tourist visa (which is equally valid in the figures for "illegal immigrants"). ...
...

Behold (bolding mine):
QUOTE
...
Republicans in the House and Senate are insisting that a revision of immigration law include ways to prevent foreigners from staying in the U.S. on expired visas.
...
A proposal from Republican Orrin Hatch of Utah, adopted 13-5, would require setting up a biometric screening system at the nation’s 30 busiest airports to track the departure of foreigners on international flights.
...
Hatch’s amendment on biometric screening was praised by Senator Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican who co-authored the immigration legislation and whose support is critical to its passage. In a statement, Rubio said he would “continue to fight to make the tracking of entries and exits include biometrics in the most effective system we can build when the bill is amended on the Senate floor.”
...
The panel also adopted an amendment by South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, a Republican co-author of the legislation. The proposal would create a database to help federal law enforcement and national security agencies identify individuals who remain in the U.S. after their visas expire.
...
Senators adopted an amendment offered by Utah Republican Mike Lee making the attempted misuse of a passport a criminal offense.
...

Link: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-05-20/r...-overstays.html

QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 16 2013, 05:55 AM) *
...
... So Latino Americans are not unrealistic in thinking there is an element of prejudice in the rhetoric on immigration, legal or otherwise.
...

The Dems got some good "fog" goin' on, that's for sure.

QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 16 2013, 05:55 AM) *
...
And your link is to a post where I was very specifically talking about the use of unemployment as an economic tool to keep labour costs down in a political economy that sets no store by full employment or empowering employees, and every store by manipulating the jobs market in favour of employers. ...
...

One would then expect that, over time, the American "political economy" would consistently feature a higher unemployment rate than that of its more employee-"empowering" counterparts on your side of the Atlantic, no?

Yet, ...

http://econographics.files.wordpress.com/2...yment-rates.jpg

Drôle ça, n'est-ce pas?1

QUOTE(Julian @ Dec 16 2013, 05:55 AM) *
...
... For sure, the GOP are all in favour of doing away with illegal immigration (though some of their nuttier neoliberal/libertarian fringes would do away with all migration controls to have a "free market" of labour), but for the most part that is not because they want full employment and a therefore a labour force that would have power over employers. If that's what they wanted, their speeches on immigration would mention the words "full" and "employment" next to one another as a policy goal rather more often than they do. Because they don't do that, it is not unreasonable to assume that their interest is not in improving the daily lives of ordinary Americans.

It appears that you, like so many, are more swayed by lofty "power to the people" rhetoric than by the actual effects of policies. Thus, ...

The Democratic Party is deemed a friend of "ordinary Americans" because they make sufficiently frequent (in your opinion) references to how much they care about them, despite the fact that their opposition to policies that restrict illegal immigration serves to perpetuate labor market conditions that help depress the earning power of ... "ordinary Americans", especially unskilled/low-skilled ones.

But the Republican Party is deemed to be unfriendly to/uncaring about "ordinary Americans" because they do not make sufficiently frequent (in your opinion) references to how much they care about them, despite the fact that the illegal immigration restrictive policies they support would help lessen downward pressure on the earning power of ... "ordinary Americans" (especially unskilled/low-skilled ones), a fact that not too long ago was recognized/acknowledged by worker rights leaders such as ...

... César Chávez:
QUOTE
...
Mr. Obama designated the César E. Chávez National Monument in Keene, Calif., honoring the labor leader and reaching out to Latinos and union workers at the same time.
...
"César cared," the president said. "In his own peaceful and eloquent way, he made other people care, too."
...
As co-founder of the National Farm Workers Association (which later became the UFW), [Chavez] was a tireless advocate for laborers' rights and helped make the plight of thousands of fieldworkers a moral cause. He also coined the famous phrase "Si, se puede" – the Spanish phrase that was reflected in Obama's "Yes we can" slogan in 2008.

But Chávez was not a fan of expanding immigration. He believed that undocumented immigrants undercut the pay and negotiating power of unionized workers, and he protested farms' use of migrant and undocumented workers as "strikebreakers."
...
In the 1970s, under Chávez, the UFW set up a "wet line" along the US-Mexico border to stop immigrants from entering the US illegally.
...

Link: http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/The-...o-Latino-voters

Aaaah, the power of saying "I love you" with sufficient frequency!

"I love you, illegal immigrants! That's why I want as easy a path to citizenship for you as possible. BTW, make sure that you and yours remember that when it comes to voting, please."

And, at the same time, ...

"I love you, unemployed Americans! That's why I want to extend unemployment benefits for you to 99 weeks and beyond. BTW, make sure that you and yours remember that when it comes to voting, please."

And lots of people continue to fail to draw the connection(s). "He said he loves me! He even bought2 me extended unemployment benefits flowers!"

Sigh.

1 American English version, with an Upper Midwest twist: "Funny that, eh?"
2 With other people's money.

This post has been edited by akaCG: Dec 17 2013, 01:57 AM
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CruisingRam
post Dec 17 2013, 01:18 AM
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And, luckily for Dems, the main people that populate the republican party these days are akaCG. They have no idea that what they are saying is pure crap to the very people that are voting them out of office. If the Republicans keep doing biz as usual- they will go extinct. Good riddance for the most part. thumbsup.gif

Republicans will continue to argue why they are right, and everyone else is crazy and needs to change, it could never be them. Good enough, Hillary in 2016 it is. thumbsup.gif
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post Dec 17 2013, 01:47 AM
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QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Dec 16 2013, 08:18 PM) *
And, luckily for Dems, the main people that populate the republican party these days are akaCG. They have no idea that what they are saying is pure crap to the very people that are voting them out of office. If the Republicans keep doing biz as usual- they will go extinct. Good riddance for the most part. thumbsup.gif

Republicans will continue to argue why they are right, and everyone else is crazy and needs to change, it could never be them. Good enough, Hillary in 2016 it is. thumbsup.gif

Thank you for providing yet another example of how the "more swayed by lofty 'power to the people' rhetoric than by the actual effects of policies"/"the power of saying 'I love you' with sufficient frequency" dynamic works, "CR".

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post Dec 17 2013, 05:26 AM
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QUOTE(akaCG @ Dec 16 2013, 03:47 PM) *
QUOTE(CruisingRam @ Dec 16 2013, 08:18 PM) *
And, luckily for Dems, the main people that populate the republican party these days are akaCG. They have no idea that what they are saying is pure crap to the very people that are voting them out of office. If the Republicans keep doing biz as usual- they will go extinct. Good riddance for the most part. thumbsup.gif

Republicans will continue to argue why they are right, and everyone else is crazy and needs to change, it could never be them. Good enough, Hillary in 2016 it is. thumbsup.gif

Thank you for providing yet another example of how the "more swayed by lofty 'power to the people' rhetoric than by the actual effects of policies"/"the power of saying 'I love you' with sufficient frequency" dynamic works, "CR".



So, the reason that the very, very lopsided vote against Republicans by minorities is just because the Republican party has their own interest at heart, and knows what is best for them, and the Republican policies certainly can't be wrong?

Heck, we should just stop calling it the Republican party and call it the "committee to elect democrats to office". thumbsup.gif
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