Author Topic: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?  (Read 67029 times)

MDM

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #50 on: February 25, 2019, 10:35:55 PM »
So it drives me up a wall when "voter fraud" is still used to justify voting restrictions that are pretty clearly aimed at suppressing minority turnout. People believe what they believe for lots of reasons, but I would expect so-called independent observers to recognize the objective realities. Hence why "both-sides" bothers me so much.
I can agree with you on "intentionally difficult to obtain" implementation of voter ID.  Sometimes that is indeed blatant, and those cases ought not be allowed.  Seems various Republican plans don't pass the smell test, so they don't have a good defense there.

I also have no problem with the general concept of a voter ID, implemented well.  Seems Democrat objections to the general concept also don't pass the smell test, so they don't have a good defense there.

But that's just one person's view of both sides.


Mikenost12

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #51 on: February 25, 2019, 11:54:20 PM »
  The system is dying and rotting and feels fraudulent and we aren't sure where to direct our rage...




 
 
  Both sides are bought and paid for, our government, our media, our laws (what is left of them), we didn’t guard our institutions from influence by the rich and powerful. Maybe it has always been that way but before maybe some of the rich and powerful adhered to more egalitarian notions of what our country could be, a sense of noblesse oblige or that the social contract meant society and government have an obligation to provide and protect certain things.

  Similarly our newspapers, TV stations are held by fewer and fewer conglomerations and ultrarich. Who is going to give us the truth, Rupert Murdoch’s news, Jeff Bezo’s newspaper.  General Electric owning channel 4 and making nuclear weapons, Sumner Redstone owning Viacom and CBS, Disney owning ABC, Time Warner AOL, etc... The think tanks are millionaires spouting what the billionaires want. There is no independent media anymore.
 
 Similarly in the name of freedom of speech , the Russians can make up fake stories and Facebook can defend putting them up. Radical right can make up stories about child sex rings run by Clinton and Shumer, or Sandy Hook massacre being a made up lie, and it’s not slander or propaganda or something you can sue them for or shut them down for saying, but allowed to be said …  …after all free speech.  Freedom to make up stories and outright lie… I can’t say we are better off than when we had Cronkite, Murrow and we all shared fewer sources of news but they were real. 

 The growing income inequality and feeling it is getting harder rather than easier for most in the 1st world countries leads to feeling disenfranchised. Many generations did better than previous generations and maybe that had been our expecation. As the American Empire is in decline, we outsourced our production to a nation on the rise with 4x our population,  (a substantially greater population than the US, Canada, Mexico, all of the European Union, England, Japan, Australia combined).

  Both Democrats and Republican told us outsourcing everything and freetrade with poorer economies was a win/win, cheaper goods and growth for everyone. They said free markets and capitalism will bring with it democracy and human rights. Fareed Zakaria (likely on the right side of humanity and a better person than me) pointed out that stagnation and growth of inequality is ok in the first world because the rest of the world, the developing world has been pulling out of poverty, growing rapidly. While the first world is stuck and frustrated, with little growth in real wages adjusted for inflation, with more polarization and far right movements taking power in Western Governments its ok, less people globally are starving, suffering or dying in childbirth. With less barriers the wealth and growth of the world is slowly moving towards homeostasis.

  With rulings like Citizens United, corporations and the wealthy are allowed to give unlimited money, and further laws make it so it is a matter of privacy to be able to not disclose how much money they give and to who. In any other system if a person pays another secretly for a behavior it is bribery, however in politics we somehow are now at a point where our politicians must raise millions, tens of millions of dollars from the rich and or corporations, oil, pharmaceuticals, banks, teachers, whatever and then we expect them to represent the We The People not special interests.  For a very small sum they can buy people to appoint judges to help them win, force more decisions into arbitration, get laws written to protect them and remove ones that don’t, defund institutions that protect or regulate, after all bloated government is the enemy right... corporations create jobs…

  When our government serves the rich, our media is bought and controlled, and peoples lives get steadily worse, while our empire slips away, its no wonder we are all disenfranchised, looking to blame minorities, or the immoral, or the disloyal, or the arrogant coastal elite, or the religious, or the lazy takers or whatever convenient scapegoat people find. The scarier truth is the very rich use only a small amount of their wealth to control policy and ideas both. Hell for 40 years the rich have been selling the idea government doesn’t work, government is the problem, without laws things would be even better. Despite the erosion of government, people’s lives are slowly more difficult, we are scared. The successful older generation confused as to what is wrong with the lazy whiny younger ones, after all the older generation did just fine.

Angry, frustrated people look for someone to blame rather than multifaceted set of complicated issues with tradeoffs as you try to fix them. When we had the Cold War at least we were unified I guess, maybe a joint cause we can all work for, fix the environment, go to space, unify with democracies that respect human rights, I don’t know what our new unifying cause could be that makes us remember we are all on the same side.

Sorry for anyone that read my long late night screed, but in short we should be a better country than this. We don’t lock children in cages as a message to illegal immigrants, we don’t tell our allies we fought world wars they are on their own, we don’t suppress voting and gerrymander districts, we don't ignore science. We used to stand for advancing freedom, human rights, democracy and human dignity (ignoring the hypocracy in our actual actions at least we tried then). America won’t always be the most powerful or richest nation on Earth but for F!@$ sake our legacy should be advancing those ideals.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 07:48:10 AM by Mikenost12 »

runbikerun

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #52 on: February 26, 2019, 12:56:13 AM »
I get that the board leans very left.

It leans just barely left, to be honest. Publicly provided healthcare, low-cost tertiary education and social welfare programmes are regarded as pretty uncontroversial centre-ground policies across a huge swathe of the developed world. To me, reading in northern Europe, it comes across as mild right if anything. I have not seen a single American politician with any kind of public profile offer an economic policy proposal that an average centre-right European politician would consider unacceptable as a coalition demand from a leftist party. Because there are a number of non-American posters, this does have an impact: virtually every point of difference between American liberals and conservatives leaves the conservative side way off into crazypants territory for a lot of posters outside the States. And I know I sound like I'm exaggerating, but I'm genuinely not: conservative American politics is conducted according to a set of assumptions that western Europeans will, for better or worse, regard as fundamentally cruel and spiteful. I default on the liberal side in any kind of debate on this, because I come from a country where almost 70% of voters endorsed both equal marriage and the right to choose and where both of these referenda were instituted by what is historically the most aggressively conservative party in the country.

And speaking as someone from the outside: Trump has turned your country's international reputation into a colossal garbage fire. I don't think there's any way of explaining to someone on the inside just how catastrophic to American soft power the Trump presidency has been.

My family is European (Nordic).  They wouldn't agree with you at all.  I've found people there FAR more socially conservative than in the US.  Kind of funny, actually.  They are economically more liberal for sure, though.

Anyways, OP, it's a scientific fact that liberals are far more emotionally driven than conservatives. Which is why it's hard to discuss anything with them on a rational level.  They think too emotionally.  It's why it's difficult to have these discussions.  It's why they label everyone as racists, and really believe it.  They can't rationalize other points of view beyond their strict emotional disdain.  Trump Derangement Syndrome is becoming a real thing to the point it's flat out fascinating.

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/11/141107091559.htm

Arguing that the other side are impossibly irrational by presenting a wildly irrational mangling of a scientific paper. This has to be trolling.

middo

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #53 on: February 26, 2019, 01:59:49 AM »
From an Australian perspective, the extremes of the conservative fringe, and the left/green fringe have been kept at bay largely because of our compulsory voting system. 

It's hard to get elected on a base of 25% of the population when 87% of the population turns out and votes (91% of registered voters and an all time low last election).

It's also hard to get elected with extreme policies when the voting system is not first past the post.

Maybe electoral reform could help the US with the extremity of it's current political debate.

I think the Australian voting system is fantastic in this way.  It'd be difficult to pass, but the US would benefit from this.  But, where we really need reform is our primary system. Now THAT is a joke. I tried explaining it to a couple Aussies once and they about laughed me out of the pub.

Having watched some of the presidential primaries, I'm not surprised. The right wing "Liberal Party" in Australia has enough issues with its preselection process.  The US system is farcical to those outside the US.

Boofinator

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #54 on: February 26, 2019, 05:51:18 AM »

Saying something is "discriminatory but not strictly speaking racist" is quibbling over details and usually an attempt to avoid talking about the actual point.


Your whole post was great, but I really wanted to single out this part.

This is my frustration with the centrist/independent community. (I'm not trying to lump robartsd in here, I truly don't know where they stand on anything)

Right: "We need to implement voting restrictions to stop illegal voting."

Left: "Okay, but you requested data on voting by race, and after getting that data, you made five new restrictions, all of which disproportionally affect black voters. That fact, combined with the fact that you have failed to demonstrate that illegal voting is a problem makes this an obvious and racist attempt at suppressing black voter turnout."

Independent: "You really shouldn't have used the word "racist" there. It's unfair to the conservatives. They don't want to suppress the black vote because they don't think blacks should be able to vote, they want to suppress the black vote because they don't like who they vote for. Big difference."

Then we all suck up air discussing an issue that should be easily settled by anyone who has looked at the evidence, and meanwhile, five more legislatures propose similar laws.

Good job pegging me in my hole. (After writing that, it doesn't seem like such a friendly analogy.) Despite never registering for a party and choosing not to be partisan, I've never been able to stomach voting Republican, despite sharing many views. For what it's worth.

To get back to the topic: by your reasoning every act that disproportionally affects the black (our any racial minority) vote is racist. This would include gerrymandering, voter ID laws, and even the recent North Carolina voter fraud where the Republican did not perform his fraud in black communities (Harris-McCready). It's certainly possible (maybe even probable) that some of these people are racist, but the motive is pure politics. Just as, I am fairly convinced, institutional racism followed slavery, and not the other way around.

One thing I will concede: Targeting the black vote specifically comes closer to institutional racism than any of the other examples, and punishment should be accordingly severe.

mathlete

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #55 on: February 26, 2019, 05:59:08 AM »
I also have no problem with the general concept of a voter ID, implemented well. Seems Democrat objections to the general concept also don't pass the smell test, so they don't have a good defense there.

But that's just one person's view of both sides.

Can you expand on this?

1. The right to vote is specifically enumerated in the constitution. Doesn’t it make more sense that the burden should be on the people who want to put up barriers to voting? Doesn’t seem that Democrats need a reason to oppose this other than it makes it harder to participate in elections for no empirical reason.

2. In the national discussion on Voter ID, have Democrats done anything to damage the discourse on this topic that is even remotely comparable to a president and party head routinely lying about the issue by fear mongering with made up numbers?

The very important nuance of item 2 is lost when we reduce an issue to “both sides”.

sherr

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #56 on: February 26, 2019, 06:19:08 AM »
To get back to the topic: by your reasoning every act that disproportionally affects the black (our any racial minority) vote is racist. This would include gerrymandering, voter ID laws, and even the recent North Carolina voter fraud where the Republican did not perform his fraud in black communities (Harris-McCready).

Any act that intentionally disproportionally harms minorities is racist, absolutely yes. I don't see how any other definition of the word could be useful.

It's certainly possible (maybe even probable) that some of these people are racist, but the motive is pure politics.

Motives are unknowable and irrelevant (not to mention multi-faceted and often hidden). Actions and their consequences are the only things that we can observe, and the only thing that matter.

Just as, I am fairly convinced, institutional racism followed slavery, and not the other way around.

I agree with you, but I don't see how that's relevant. If you're interested you should check out "A People's History of the United States" by Howard Zinn. He looks at history through the lens of "the rich oppressing the poor", and makes a compelling argument (backed up with lots of documentation) that racism was intentionally introduced as a way to give the poor whites an enemy to hate to distract them from the fact that the rich white plantation owners were consuming 90% (my made up number) of the economic output.

For the sake of argument let's assume he's correct. Are the rich white plantation owners "not really racist" because they don't "believe" their racist rhetoric but only talk and act like they do?
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 06:23:11 AM by sherr »

mathlete

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #57 on: February 26, 2019, 06:22:27 AM »
Good job pegging me in my hole. (After writing that, it doesn't seem like such a friendly analogy.)

Oh my!!


To get back to the topic: by your reasoning every act that disproportionally affects the black (our any racial minority) vote is racist. This would include gerrymandering, voter ID laws, and even the recent North Carolina voter fraud where the Republican did not perform his fraud in black communities (Harris-McCready). It's certainly possible (maybe even probable) that some of these people are racist, but the motive is pure politics. Just as, I am fairly convinced, institutional racism followed slavery, and not the other way around.

One thing I will concede: Targeting the black vote specifically comes closer to institutional racism than any of the other examples, and punishment should be accordingly severe.

I think intent and the specifics matter. Not everything that disproportionately affects one race is racist. Let's use a few examples.

Example 1: Voter fraud is rampant. Lack of a robust validation system leads to a significant illegal voting. Voter ID laws are implemented to remedy this.

This would not be a racist policy because it is clearly being done to combat an actual, verifiable problem in the election system. In this scenario, I would hope a good legislature would address the concerns of the black electorate and take steps to make sure black communities have an easier time getting the required documentation, but no, not racist.

Example 2: The state legislature implements restrictions on voting that target black people because they do not like black people.

Clearly super racist. Pretty open and shut.

Example 3 (reality): I'll just quote the Fourth Circuit Court Decision on this one:

Quote
Before enacting that law, the legislature requested data on the use, by race, of a number of voting practices. Upon receipt of the race data, the General Assembly enacted legislation that restricted voting and registration in five different ways, all of which disproportionately affected African Americans.

In response to claims that intentional racial discrimination animated its action, the State offered only meager justifications. Although the new provisions target African Americans with almost surgical precision, they constitute inapt remedies for the problems assertedly justifying them and, in fact, impose cures for problems that did not exist.

Unlike in example 1, the intent here is obviously to suppress the black vote. Taking specifically with the intent to suppress the franchise of a particular race is racist. Regardless of whatever ends you want to achieve. In this case, the ends are the consolidation of political power, which doesn't really help them IMO. This is what lawmakers do when more explicit discrimination becomes illegal.

sherr

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #58 on: February 26, 2019, 06:35:29 AM »
I came of age in the 1990s when Conservative and Liberals were generally much more willing to work with one another than today, so the current political environment is shocking and disturbing to me.

For all the nastiness in the 1990s with Bill Clinton cheating on Hillary and getting impeached by the House for it (which never really made much sense to me from a legal standpoint), the GOP was still willing to work with him on compromise legislation that allowed the government to function and made the economy keep humming along. Now, everybody on both sides of the aisle is completely unwilling to even listen to what the other side has to say about anything and forget compromise. Instead, we have both sides making ultimatums to each other and calling each other "Nazis" or "Communists". And ordinary people across the political spectrum are suffering for it as we saw during the recent government shutdown.

You should read that article on Newt Gingrich I posted earlier. Or a different one, I don't care. Newt and people like him intentionally and deliberately dragged us down to this level because they believed that it was a way for the Republican party to rise to power again and break the Democrat's 40-year long control of the House. And they're openly proud of it. He didn't do it single-handedly of course, there are other political operatives and billionaires with axes to grind intentionally slanting news sources, equivocating on facts, and intentionally misleading the public.

It's not just something that has happened to emerge, its an intentional strategy that the Republican powers-that-be are pursuing in order to win at any cost. And it's working.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 06:40:43 AM by sherr »

billy

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #59 on: February 26, 2019, 06:42:25 AM »
Why is the country so polarized? Because people have put their identity in political parties (or, rather, in opposition to whichever party they don't like). Recommended reading: https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/democrats-are-wrong-about-republicans-republicans-are-wrong-about-democrats/

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“The danger of mega-partisan identity is that it encourages citizens to care more about partisan victory than about real policy outcomes,”

When it becomes about winning, because we feel good when we win, then decency and humanity get thrown out the window.

Try being a "moderate" or "independent." Folks in this camp don't necessarily averaging out all opposing ideas to arrive in the middle. Instead, they tend to be unorthodox, supporting and opposing aspects of both parties. It's great fun...my conservative friends think I'm a bleeding heart liberal and my liberal friends think I'm a wingnut.

Yep, +1 for moderate/independent

sherr

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #60 on: February 26, 2019, 06:49:31 AM »
Quote
Before enacting that law, the legislature requested data on the use, by race, of a number of voting practices. Upon receipt of the race data, the General Assembly enacted legislation that restricted voting and registration in five different ways, all of which disproportionately affected African Americans.

In response to claims that intentional racial discrimination animated its action, the State offered only meager justifications. Although the new provisions target African Americans with almost surgical precision, they constitute inapt remedies for the problems assertedly justifying them and, in fact, impose cures for problems that did not exist.

Unlike in example 1, the intent here is obviously to suppress the black vote. Taking specifically with the intent to suppress the franchise of a particular race is racist. Regardless of whatever ends you want to achieve. In this case, the ends are the consolidation of political power, which doesn't really help them IMO. This is what lawmakers do when more explicit discrimination becomes illegal.

It's worth noting that this is not unique to NC. We could for example talk about Mississippi that enacted a strict voter-id law but "it's okay because you can get a free ID at the DMV", and then immediately after the law passed started closing down DMVs in black areas. Or how when North Dakota implemented a voter ID law how they straight copied it from another state except adding a "the ID must have a street address" clause, because many roads on Native American reservations are not named and so many Native Americans just don't have a street address.

The details and how open and brazen they are about it varies state-by-state, the broad strokes of voter fraud not being a real problem and the Republicans pursing voter IDs to suppress the minority vote does not.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 06:51:07 AM by sherr »

GuitarStv

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #61 on: February 26, 2019, 07:48:23 AM »
I came of age in the 1990s when Conservative and Liberals were generally much more willing to work with one another than today, so the current political environment is shocking and disturbing to me.

For all the nastiness in the 1990s with Bill Clinton cheating on Hillary and getting impeached by the House for it (which never really made much sense to me from a legal standpoint), the GOP was still willing to work with him on compromise legislation that allowed the government to function and made the economy keep humming along. Now, everybody on both sides of the aisle is completely unwilling to even listen to what the other side has to say about anything and forget compromise. Instead, we have both sides making ultimatums to each other and calling each other "Nazis" or "Communists". And ordinary people across the political spectrum are suffering for it as we saw during the recent government shutdown.

I am certainly not conservative, but am glad that Clinton was impeached for lying about his sexual impropriety.  He abused his position of authority and did something not just wrong, but illegal.  While generally I was a fan of his policies, allowing people in power to get away with illegal actions is not just wrong but extremely dangerous.  The president certainly shouldn't be above the law, regardless of which side he is on.

MDM

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #62 on: February 26, 2019, 07:49:35 AM »
Can you expand on this?

1. The right to vote is specifically enumerated in the constitution. Doesn’t it make more sense that the burden should be on the people who want to put up barriers to voting? Doesn’t seem that Democrats need a reason to oppose this other than it makes it harder to participate in elections for no empirical reason.
Agreed, if the barriers are unreasonable.  Various poll taxes and "literacy" tests are good examples of unreasonable barriers.  But one doesn't get the right to vote more than once per election, and at minimum has to meet constitutional conditions.  Thus, reasonable methods to ensure compliance seem...reasonable.

Quote
2. In the national discussion on Voter ID, have Democrats done anything to damage the discourse on this topic that is even remotely comparable to a president and party head routinely lying about the issue by fear mongering with made up numbers?
The very important nuance of item 2 is lost when we reduce an issue to “both sides”.
Voter id discussion predates Trump.  If the question is "does Trump spout incorrect statements on a regular basis?" the answer is yes.  But that doesn't necessarily mean that everything Trump supports is wrong, or that everything he opposes is right.

Do you think voter ID is inherently bad, or is it a reasonable idea in theory that has been implemented poorly in some cases?

FrugalToque

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #63 on: February 26, 2019, 07:51:42 AM »
Regarding fox news, there are not a lot of good options for a conservative to get news from a TV show.  I guess my issue with the comment implying racism (and others supporting it) is that an assumption is being made about conservatives that is not true of the majority of them.  You can watch a tv station or show without agreeing with everything on it.

The problem with Fox News is that we know, empirically, that it makes people believe untrue things.

We can ask, for instance: Were there WMD in Iraq?
During the war Fox News viewers will probably (66% or more) say yes, because Fox News told them so.
Other people will say no.

The fact - not opinion, but the fact is - that there were no usable WMDs in that country, just leftover non-functioning crap the U.S. sold them during the Iran-Iraq war that they couldn't even keep track of, never mind maintain or use.

That's a problem.  Look at the number of Fox News viewers who thought Obama was either a Muslim, a Kenyan, a Nazi etc.  Remember the "terrorist fist jab"?

Donald Trump, as anyone not in the United States can see, is an objectively horrible human being.  He brags about how his wealth allows him to assault women, brags about walking into teenage girls' dressing rooms, bloviates, blusters and lies constantly about literally everything. (His wall is not an emergency, will cost more than $5B, will not stop illegal immigration or drugs, Mexico will not pay for it, it will not reduce crime).  But he's on the right team, so he gets the votes.  When a Democrat steps out of line (e.g. Al Franken, Anthony Wiener), the Democrats take him down.

To your question: why does it have to be this way?

One side is required to work from facts and scientific evidence, to censure its members for poor actions, to endure racist and sexist abuse.
The other side chose as its leader a racist, sexist abuser who doesn't give a shit whether the things he says are true or not - and the party supports him.

That's the reason your two sides can't see eye to eye.

Also... what?
Quote
Obama was our first black president which is great (I disagree with many of his policies but I'm glad we had a black president).  But, he didn't do much of anything to reduce racism and help us be all one people (if anything, he was divisive).

Obama was only divisive in that a large portion of your country are obviously all-out racist pieces of crap.  His divisiveness was his mixed-race blackness and the fact he forced your nation to look at its racist past and present.  That division was always there.  But his election coincided with the ubiquity of cell phones capturing racism and forcing white people to face it.  He didn't divided your nation - he made your white people notice how shittily the country treated black people.

You want to have an honest, non-emotional discussion and you put "Obama's divisiveness" in your opening statement?

Toque.

driftwood

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #64 on: February 26, 2019, 07:52:20 AM »
Is there anyone else to completely avoids or disengages from any conversation or article once you hear or read general statements about liberals or conservatives or democrats or republicans?

I react to those statements just like I react to someone calling someone racist instead of addressing a problem.

I don't know the political parties of any of my coworkers, friends, or family. If I did find out, I'd ignore it, and probably forget it almost instantly. It's not a way I want to classify a person. If someone does something stupid or has a stupid policy, the action or policy is stupid.

All divisive language turns me off. Fine. If you just want to throw shit at people, let's have a shit fight. We'll both be covered in shit and nothing will be better. If you want to actually talk about possible solutions to all the problems we have as humans, then let's discuss the actual problems, causes, solutions.

GuitarStv

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #65 on: February 26, 2019, 07:56:16 AM »
- Banning people from Muslim countries from legally crossing into your own country (and referring to this as a 'Muslim ban')
Not.

Because the country with the single largest population of Muslims (Indonesia) was not included.


Let's say I'm the president.  I say 'White people have oppressed others for too long.  In order to even things out, I'm going to tax all people in the country with a mostly white sounding name (Smith, Johnson, Williams, Jones, Davis, Miller, Wilson, etc.) at 90%.

You would argue that I'm not implementing a racist policy because some black people probably have those last names too?
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 08:00:26 AM by GuitarStv »

Davnasty

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #66 on: February 26, 2019, 07:57:02 AM »
Can you expand on this?

1. The right to vote is specifically enumerated in the constitution. Doesn’t it make more sense that the burden should be on the people who want to put up barriers to voting? Doesn’t seem that Democrats need a reason to oppose this other than it makes it harder to participate in elections for no empirical reason.
Agreed, if the barriers are unreasonable.  Various poll taxes and "literacy" tests are good examples of unreasonable barriers.  But one doesn't get the right to vote more than once per election, and at minimum has to meet constitutional conditions.  Thus, reasonable methods to ensure compliance seem...reasonable.

Quote
2. In the national discussion on Voter ID, have Democrats done anything to damage the discourse on this topic that is even remotely comparable to a president and party head routinely lying about the issue by fear mongering with made up numbers?
The very important nuance of item 2 is lost when we reduce an issue to “both sides”.
Voter id discussion predates Trump.  If the question is "does Trump spout incorrect statements on a regular basis?" the answer is yes.  But that doesn't necessarily mean that everything Trump supports is wrong, or that everything he opposes is right.

Do you think voter ID is inherently bad, or is it a reasonable idea in theory that has been implemented poorly in some cases?

This has been answered by both mathlete and sherr. A voter ID requirement in combination with mailing voter ID's to everyone would be acceptable. If it could be implemented in some other way that does not deter any eligible voters from turning out, it would be fine.

But why would we put the energy into making that happen when voter fraud is a non-issue?

I think intent and the specifics matter. Not everything that disproportionately affects one race is racist. Let's use a few examples.

Example 1: Voter fraud is rampant. Lack of a robust validation system leads to a significant illegal voting. Voter ID laws are implemented to remedy this.

This would not be a racist policy because it is clearly being done to combat an actual, verifiable problem in the election system. In this scenario, I would hope a good legislature would address the concerns of the black electorate and take steps to make sure black communities have an easier time getting the required documentation, but no, not racist.

Is saying "I think it makes sense to make people show ID to vote" racist? Of course not, and actually something I'd be 100% behind if the government mailed everyone a free ID that they could use.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 08:07:18 AM by Dabnasty »

MDM

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #67 on: February 26, 2019, 08:16:24 AM »
A voter ID requirement in combination with mailing voter ID's to everyone would be acceptable. If it could be implemented in some other way that does not deter any eligible voters from turning out, it would be fine.
Works for me.

mathlete

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #68 on: February 26, 2019, 08:20:39 AM »
Agreed, if the barriers are unreasonable.  Various poll taxes and "literacy" tests are good examples of unreasonable barriers.  But one doesn't get the right to vote more than once per election, and at minimum has to meet constitutional conditions.  Thus, reasonable methods to ensure compliance seem...reasonable.

If you're going to put up barriers to voting, you'd better have a damn good reason. There is no widespread evidence of people double voting, or voting without meeting the conditions under the current system.

Given the North Carolina case, and the other cases that sherr pointed out, I don't think an honest person would come to the conclusion that the laws proposed and enacted by Republican state legislatures constitute

reasonable methods to ensure compliance

I totally agree, in principle, with what you said earlier. That honest discussion and understanding requires acknowledging subjective differences and considering different assumptions that each side brings to the table. But taking as gospel, that voter ID is about reasonable methods to ensure compliance is being charitable to a fault when many contemporary examples show otherwise.

Assuming that someone is making an argument in good faith when the evidence suggests that they are not doesn't make political discourse more honest. Quite the opposite.

Voter id discussion predates Trump.  If the question is "does Trump spout incorrect statements on a regular basis?" the answer is yes.  But that doesn't necessarily mean that everything Trump supports is wrong, or that everything he opposes is right.

You're right. Voter ID does predate Trump, as does dishonesty regarding what voting restrictions are intended to do. Trump turned the dishonesty up to 11 though.

I disagree with Trump on a great number of things, but sure, he can support or oppose a policy for which his position could be supported by facts and reason. He doesn't personally do this though. He lies all the time and is often incoherent and inconsistent.

So we either have to do one of two things. We have to take everything he says with good faith and with the best intentions in mind, which I believe is an objectively stupid thing to do. Or we have to rely on "Trump Whisperers". People who will say, "When he says (lies about) this, he actually means this."

This is an extremely difficult way of having political discourse. His lying, incoherence, and inconsistency was easily observable in 2015 and prior, but Republicans still made him the head of the party. And Republicans still overwhelmingly (89%) support him.

Because of this, I think it is wrong to characterize all sides as sharing equal blame for the poor state of political discourse in the United States. Conservatives tolerate and echo this type of dishonesty and bad faith at all levels. It seems like a waste of time, by and large, to assume they're even interested in good faith discussions. So it resorts to game theory and shutdowns.

This doesn't mean liberal democrats can't and don't do dishonest and politically craven things. But we don't have to pretend that all sides are equal here. One side is clearly worse at this.

Do you think voter ID is inherently bad, or is it a reasonable idea in theory that has been implemented poorly in some cases?

I could see supporting voter ID in a word where there was a empirically demonstrated need for voter ID. Otherwise, I err on the side of, "don't make it hard to vote".

MDM

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #69 on: February 26, 2019, 08:21:30 AM »
- Banning people from Muslim countries from legally crossing into your own country (and referring to this as a 'Muslim ban')
Not.

Because the country with the single largest population of Muslims (Indonesia) was not included.
Let's say I'm the president.  I say 'White people have oppressed others for too long.  In order to even things out, I'm going to tax all people in the country with a mostly white sounding name (Smith, Johnson, Williams, Jones, Davis, Miller, Wilson, etc.) at 90%.

You would argue that I'm not implementing a racist policy because some black people probably have those last names too?
This is getting into angels dancing on pin heads territory, but ok....

Your analogy would be more apt had you excluded the most common names, just as Trump's measure excluded the nation with the most Muslims.

the_fixer

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #70 on: February 26, 2019, 08:27:23 AM »



Also... what?
Quote
Obama was our first black president which is great (I disagree with many of his policies but I'm glad we had a black president).  But, he didn't do much of anything to reduce racism and help us be all one people (if anything, he was divisive).

Obama was only divisive in that a large portion of your country are obviously all-out racist pieces of crap.  His divisiveness was his mixed-race blackness and the fact he forced your nation to look at its racist past and present.  That division was always there.  But his election coincided with the ubiquity of cell phones capturing racism and forcing white people to face it.  He didn't divided your nation - he made your white people notice how shittily the country treated black people.

You want to have an honest, non-emotional discussion and you put "Obama's divisiveness" in your opening statement?

Toque.

Wow and from a moderator no less...

Your view of the citizens of the US is in no way reality and quite honestly offensive and rude.





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Watchmaker

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #71 on: February 26, 2019, 08:33:35 AM »
  The system is dying and rotting and feels fraudulent and we aren't sure where to direct our rage...

(I've truncated the quote, but my response is to your entire post.)

I get that a lot of people feel like this, but I don't agree. I think now is the best time it's every been to be alive, and the general trend continues to be up.

You mention the press being largely owned by a few powerful people, but this has always been the case. The fact that we're so aware of it now actually suggests progress on this front to me. And we have many robust non-profit, publicly funded, or independent sources. That's not to say there aren't massive structural issues in the news media, but I'm doubtful you could point to a time outside our lifetimes when the situation was any better.

I am concerned about the long term impacts of growing economic inequality, but it is important to remember that life has gotten better for almost every segment of western society over the last 100 years. One of the basic points that MMM makes is that the "bare minimum" middle class lifestyle in America is, in fact, an astonishing life of opulent luxury. The difference in what a "poverty line" lifestyle looked like in 1950 vs now is incredible. If nothing else, a person living in the modern world has access to the richest array of information and art ever available to any member of humanity.

That's not to say there aren't risks, or there aren't serious problems to be dealt with. But, in my opinion, a rational perspective should be based to the the understanding that we've had a huge number of successes on which we can build.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 08:36:51 AM by Watchmaker »

GuitarStv

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #72 on: February 26, 2019, 08:33:47 AM »
One thing that I've noticed about this conversation is we're talking about fiscal and social conservatism/liberalism as if they're the same thing.

I think that there are valid points to be made on both sides of fiscal liberalism/conservatism.  They're different approaches to economic theory and government spending, and while I certainly don't agree with everything (on either side) there are compelling (and logical) arguments made.

It's a bit of a different argument on the social conservatism/liberalism side.  Social liberals seem to have been right pretty consistently through history.  Social conservatives liked slavery, they fought against interracial marriage, they fought against equal rights for black people, and continue to attempt to deny black people the ability to vote.  They are currently or have in the past fought against women voting, women in the workplace, women's right to divorce, against women's access to birth control, abortion, and most women's rights in general.  Social conservatives have pushed for making gay acts illegal, opposed gay marriage,  and currently oppose trans-gendered people using the bathroom they feel most comfortable it.  Social conservatives have repeatedly been a roadblock for education, demanding that lies (religious based "science") be taught alongside real science, and opposing sex ed.  Social conservatives tend to be religiously motivated, but also tend to believe that whatever religion they happen follow is the right one, and often attempt to suppress practice and growth of other religions.

It is very hard for me to see socially conservative arguments as being equally valid.  Most of them just seem mean spirited and unfair, based upon fear, doctrine, and/or pettiness.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 08:43:20 AM by GuitarStv »

MDM

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #73 on: February 26, 2019, 08:34:23 AM »
So we either have to do one of two things. We have to take everything he says with good faith and with the best intentions in mind, which I believe is an objectively stupid thing to do.
Agreed.
Quote
Or we have to rely on "Trump Whisperers". People who will say, "When he says (lies about) this, he actually means this."
Or ignore pretty much everything he says, and focus instead on what policies are being enacted.  Of course, there is plenty of room to debate the policies themselves. ;)

Quote
This doesn't mean liberal democrats can't and don't do dishonest and politically craven things. But we don't have to pretend that all sides are equal here. One side is clearly worse at this.
I agree that we don't have to pretend. :)

Quote
I could see supporting voter ID in a word where there was a empirically demonstrated need for voter ID. Otherwise, I err on the side of, "don't make it hard to vote".
Agreed.  But now we have to define "hard."  I think Democrats are missing an opportunity to co-opt the issue from Republicans.  E.g., say "we agree with Republicans that voter ID is a good idea.  Consequently, we propose legislation to provide a free voter ID to all eligible people."

boy_bye

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #74 on: February 26, 2019, 08:35:34 AM »
Is there anyone else to completely avoids or disengages from any conversation or article once you hear or read general statements about liberals or conservatives or democrats or republicans?

I react to those statements just like I react to someone calling someone racist instead of addressing a problem.

I don't know the political parties of any of my coworkers, friends, or family. If I did find out, I'd ignore it, and probably forget it almost instantly. It's not a way I want to classify a person. If someone does something stupid or has a stupid policy, the action or policy is stupid.

All divisive language turns me off. Fine. If you just want to throw shit at people, let's have a shit fight. We'll both be covered in shit and nothing will be better. If you want to actually talk about possible solutions to all the problems we have as humans, then let's discuss the actual problems, causes, solutions.

Just because you don't like a word, doesn't mean it's divisive.

Part of the reason it's so hard to have conversations with so many Republicans at this point in history because of BS like this -- they are more concerned with white folks being called racist than with the actual suffering borne by black people, caused by actual racist policies and attitudes.

Being called racist is not the worst thing that can happen to a person, especially not when compared to being thrown in prison, killed by police, denied medical care, prevented from accumulating generational wealth, etc. All of the data show that black folks suffer worse outcomes than whites in almost all areas of life. In the face of this, to get your panties knotted up about the use of the word "racist" -- even when it's CLEARLY accurate, such in the case of our illustrious leader -- speaks to a lack of empathy and perspective that is both remarkably selfish and, sadly, common as dirt in the Republican party.

Until Republicans start listening to facts and thinking about how other people experience the world, they are going to continue to come across as greedy and short-sighted. Because they are.

GuitarStv

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #75 on: February 26, 2019, 08:40:13 AM »
- Banning people from Muslim countries from legally crossing into your own country (and referring to this as a 'Muslim ban')
Not.

Because the country with the single largest population of Muslims (Indonesia) was not included.
Let's say I'm the president.  I say 'White people have oppressed others for too long.  In order to even things out, I'm going to tax all people in the country with a mostly white sounding name (Smith, Johnson, Williams, Jones, Davis, Miller, Wilson, etc.) at 90%.

You would argue that I'm not implementing a racist policy because some black people probably have those last names too?
This is getting into angels dancing on pin heads territory, but ok....

Your analogy would be more apt had you excluded the most common names, just as Trump's measure excluded the nation with the most Muslims.

Either way, my point was clear . . . but you haven't answered my question.  You don't believe that the white name tax is racist (even though the president explicitly said he was doing it for racist reasons) because it will impact some people who aren't white?

fuzzy math

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #76 on: February 26, 2019, 08:40:28 AM »

Do you think voter ID is inherently bad, or is it a reasonable idea in theory that has been implemented poorly in some cases?

Its a reasonable idea in theory but we can't talk about it at all without bringing up a lot of racial issues which cause a large segment of the population to freak out about possibly feeling like they're being labeled racist (see above about Obama's presence making ppl feel bad). So it forces the Democratic party to not speak about the actual issues and take a hard line stance in support of the disenfranchised. When we talk about people who can't get an ID there is a huge racial component. Some people lack a birth certificate to get an ID. This represents a cost. Some people actually were never issued a birth certificate. This represents cost and time and in some cases submitting to a system that is inherently untrustworthy to some people for many (including racial) reasons.

Actual non discriminatory solutions to voter ID legislation would require mandatory compliance with the following:

1) Free ID, dispensed at locations convenient and times convenient to people with no access to transportation and people who work shitty unpredictable jobs.

2) Expanding voter registration, making it opt out instead of opt in so people who have been disinfranchised for any number of reasons now have a much lower burden to vote

3) Expanding polling times, allowing early voting and mail in voting. Again accommodating people with no access to transportation and/or shitty working hours.

There are a million reasons that this will never happen, most of them having to do with the fact that one party blatantly gains an advantage when these things are restricted instead of expanded.

mathlete

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #77 on: February 26, 2019, 08:41:48 AM »
Agreed.  But now we have to define "hard."  I think Democrats are missing an opportunity to co-opt the issue from Republicans.  E.g., say "we agree with Republicans that voter ID is a good idea.  Consequently, we propose legislation to provide a free voter ID to all eligible people."

I could be on board with a system that added no friction to the current process, but such a system would be difficult and expensive to come up with.

Even something that seems super comprehensive, like driving out to people's homes, taking a picture, and making an ID on the spot, would have holes. As sherr pointed out, many Native Americans don't have traditional street addresses. And if you're a renter, your address may possibly change with a new lease every year. So if your photo ID address has to match your current address, that's a huge barrier that dis-proportionally affects renters (poorer people by and large) much more than it affects homeowners (richer people).

And homeless people have no address. They're still citizens though. They're still entitled to participate in the political process and to have their concerns heard.

If you could implement voter ID in a way that has no impact on turnout across the board, I guess I wouldn't oppose it. But given that voter fraud isn't a demonstrable problem, I wouldn't personally spend public funds or political capital doing this.

Kris

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #78 on: February 26, 2019, 08:46:46 AM »
Voter ID is a solution in search of a problem.

However, I would definitely be 100% on board with it IF it was a part of a national campaign to give all people a free, legal ID once they reach the age of 18, which would serve as government ID for purposes of opening bank accounts, proof of identity in any and all contexts, etc.

Because there are many people in this country who do not have this -- and in many parts of the country (rural, for example) obtaining an ID is a process that requires time and money -- and in some instances, proof of identity that not everyone has. This would be a win-win for everyone, make *more* people able to vote more easily, and solve the "problem" that people who are so afraid of voter fraud are worried about. And at least it would mean we'd stop talking about it.

This, however, is not what voter ID is about.

fuzzy math

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #79 on: February 26, 2019, 08:46:57 AM »
Agreed.  But now we have to define "hard."  I think Democrats are missing an opportunity to co-opt the issue from Republicans.  E.g., say "we agree with Republicans that voter ID is a good idea.  Consequently, we propose legislation to provide a free voter ID to all eligible people."

I could be on board with a system that added no friction to the current process, but such a system would be difficult and expensive to come up with.

Even something that seems super comprehensive, like driving out to people's homes, taking a picture, and making an ID on the spot, would have holes. As sherr pointed out, many Native Americans don't have traditional street addresses. And if you're a renter, your address may possibly change with a new lease every year. So if your photo ID address has to match your current address, that's a huge barrier that dis-proportionally affects renters (poorer people by and large) much more than it affects homeowners (richer people).

And homeless people have no address. They're still citizens though. They're still entitled to participate in the political process and to have their concerns heard.

If you could implement voter ID in a way that has no impact on turnout across the board, I guess I wouldn't oppose it. But given that voter fraud isn't a demonstrable problem, I wouldn't personally spend public funds or political capital doing this.

It would also cause the Fox News screaming word orifices to make people panic that the GOVT IS COMING TO YOUR DOOR TO GET YOU.

ministashy

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #80 on: February 26, 2019, 08:47:07 AM »
In answer to your original question--why does it have to be this way?  I find this piece sums it up perfectly: 

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/i-dont-know-how-to-explain-to-you-that-you-should_us_59519811e4b0f078efd98440

MDM

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #81 on: February 26, 2019, 08:49:44 AM »
- Banning people from Muslim countries from legally crossing into your own country (and referring to this as a 'Muslim ban')
Not.

Because the country with the single largest population of Muslims (Indonesia) was not included.
Let's say I'm the president.  I say 'White people have oppressed others for too long.  In order to even things out, I'm going to tax all people in the country with a mostly white sounding name (Smith, Johnson, Williams, Jones, Davis, Miller, Wilson, etc.) at 90%.

You would argue that I'm not implementing a racist policy because some black people probably have those last names too?
This is getting into angels dancing on pin heads territory, but ok....

Your analogy would be more apt had you excluded the most common names, just as Trump's measure excluded the nation with the most Muslims.

Either way, my point was clear . . . but you haven't answered my question.  You don't believe that the white name tax is racist (even though the president explicitly said he was doing it for racist reasons) because it will impact some people who aren't white?
No, I wouldn't believe a tax that affected only ~8% of whites is a "white tax," just as I don't believe a travel ban that affected only ~8% of the world's Muslims is a Muslim ban.

Eric

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #82 on: February 26, 2019, 08:57:34 AM »
Agreed.  But now we have to define "hard."  I think Democrats are missing an opportunity to co-opt the issue from Republicans.  E.g., say "we agree with Republicans that voter ID is a good idea.  Consequently, we propose legislation to provide a free voter ID to all eligible people."

I could be on board with a system that added no friction to the current process, but such a system would be difficult and expensive to come up with.

Even something that seems super comprehensive, like driving out to people's homes, taking a picture, and making an ID on the spot, would have holes. As sherr pointed out, many Native Americans don't have traditional street addresses. And if you're a renter, your address may possibly change with a new lease every year. So if your photo ID address has to match your current address, that's a huge barrier that dis-proportionally affects renters (poorer people by and large) much more than it affects homeowners (richer people).

And homeless people have no address. They're still citizens though. They're still entitled to participate in the political process and to have their concerns heard.

If you could implement voter ID in a way that has no impact on turnout across the board, I guess I wouldn't oppose it. But given that voter fraud isn't a demonstrable problem, I wouldn't personally spend public funds or political capital doing this.

It would also cause the Fox News screaming word orifices to make people panic that the GOVT IS COMING TO YOUR DOOR TO GET YOU.

They don't need a "cause" for that to happen.  They do it whenever there's nothing else to talk about already.

FrugalToque

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #83 on: February 26, 2019, 09:08:54 AM »
Obama was only divisive in that a large portion of your country are obviously all-out racist pieces of crap.

I'll amend this, carefully, to explain that "large portion" means "relatively large, considering we're talking about racism here", not "the vast majority" of the country.  What's "large" for racism?

If 15% of your country belongs to the the group of:
: outright Klansmen
: white supremacists
: people who talk about getting their guns to get the "coon" out of the henhouse or whatever
: people whose children made monkey noises when describing the president
: people who just wouldn't vote for a non-white person

... then you have a large portion of racists in your country.  They're loud, and they're divisive, and you can't blame that on the African American who was in the oval office.

Toque.

Davnasty

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #84 on: February 26, 2019, 09:09:17 AM »
In answer to your original question--why does it have to be this way?  I find this piece sums it up perfectly: 

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/i-dont-know-how-to-explain-to-you-that-you-should_us_59519811e4b0f078efd98440

I'm not sure if you're posting this because you agree with the article or if you're presenting it as evidence of the divide. In any case, I think the view taken in this article is the opposite of reality. Assuming that the other side disagrees because they don't care about other people? That is very closed minded.

In the first example she concludes that if someone isn't willing to raise the minimum wage to $15 then they don't care if the workers can feed their family. Has she considered that some people are against raising the minimum wage for economic reasons? Or because an increased minimum wage will push employers toward automation leaving their employees with no income at all?

Personally, I am torn on the issue of raising the minimum wage but I generally lean towards an increase. But regardless of my feelings, I can see why someone would reasonably support either view.

It's as if the author thinks everyone has seen and accurately assessed all of the same studies and data as she has, but came to a different conclusion because they don't care about other people. Chances are, the vast majority of voters do not take the time to research the issues and even when they do there is plenty of illegitimate "research" to support most any view.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2019, 09:10:55 AM by Dabnasty »

Boofinator

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #85 on: February 26, 2019, 09:11:37 AM »
I came of age in the 1990s when Conservative and Liberals were generally much more willing to work with one another than today, so the current political environment is shocking and disturbing to me.

For all the nastiness in the 1990s with Bill Clinton cheating on Hillary and getting impeached by the House for it (which never really made much sense to me from a legal standpoint), the GOP was still willing to work with him on compromise legislation that allowed the government to function and made the economy keep humming along. Now, everybody on both sides of the aisle is completely unwilling to even listen to what the other side has to say about anything and forget compromise. Instead, we have both sides making ultimatums to each other and calling each other "Nazis" or "Communists". And ordinary people across the political spectrum are suffering for it as we saw during the recent government shutdown.

I am certainly not conservative, but am glad that Clinton was impeached for lying about his sexual impropriety.  He abused his position of authority and did something not just wrong, but illegal.  While generally I was a fan of his policies, allowing people in power to get away with illegal actions is not just wrong but extremely dangerous.  The president certainly shouldn't be above the law, regardless of which side he is on.

1) Clinton's sexual impropriety should have never even come up in the national political debate and 2) though a lie is abhorrent, in this case impeachment was not the correct path (maybe censure, but again the topic was irrelevant as it was a consensual relationship*). To prove the point, Trump has had far more sexual improprieties and lies, but has not been impeached, as is also the case with many other presidents and politicians who have come before.

*Though Monica Lewinsky no longer seems to think it was consensual due to the power dynamic, but that is a topic for another thread.

ericrugiero

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #86 on: February 26, 2019, 09:12:28 AM »
Thanks everyone for having an open discussion and keeping it fairly civil.  It's been an interesting read.  There are a few things that stand out to me.  Some of them I already knew and others make sense but I hadn't thought of them exactly that way. 

One major issue we have is that people on both sides believe vastly different "facts" which are reported differently from various sources.  (ex: do we have a problem with voter fraud?)  We all get our "facts" from different sources and it's easy to believe polls stories that support your own beliefs.  If you believe those "facts" then it's going to be difficult for someone with a different set of beliefs and "facts" to change your mind. 

I was honestly surprised to be challenged on the fact that most mainstream news sources have a liberal bias.  When I watch most channels (CNN, ABC, CBS, etc) and see what is reported/not reported as well as how it's reported it's clear to me that the station has a different perspective/bias than me.  It shouldn't be a surprise to me that people whose views align with those stations don't see it as biased, but I hadn't thought of it that way.  (Even though my views are closer to Fox News I'm not a big fan of that channel either.)

Obviously, both sides believe the other side "started it" but just about everyone can agree that both parties are playing dirty at this point.  As was stated above, neither has the moral high ground.  That seems VERY obvious and VERY sad. 

Mathlete said "...even if you’re a fan of Donald Trump, you would have to see that says incredibly stupid, petty, and offensive things on almost a daily basis."  I agree with this totally and that is WHY I'm not a fan. 

GuitarStv made a list and asked for examples of what is and is not real racism?  See my comments below:
- Paying someone less because of their race -Racist
- Marching in street carrying a Nazi flag, shouting that Jews and blacks must die -RACIST
- Calling Mexican immigrants rapists, when crimes committed by immigrants are significantly lower than those committed by natural born Americans-I'm not sure the context of this.  If it was a general comment about Mexicans then that is racist.  If it's citing statistics about ILLEGAL aliens committing crimes then it may not be although he probably didn't need to specify Mexican. 
- Calling your local (all white) high school sports team 'The Indians' and performing a tomahawk chop in the crowd while attending the game-Not racist (I don't see it as meant negatively towards Indians) but maybe poor taste if the actual Indians are offended. 
- Crossing the street because you see a black guy- Racist if you are crossing because he is black.  Not racist if he is acting suspicious and you are protecting yourself from being mugged. 
- Implementing laws that make it harder for minorities to vote- It makes sense to verify identity before someone votes.  Unfairly targeting because of race is a problem.
- Flying a confederate flag in front of your house- Many people don't mean this as racist when they do it but many blacks perceive it as racist.  I'm going with not racist in most cases (intent of the person doing it) but in poor taste and something I would certainly not do. 
- Implementing drug laws and procedures that disproportionately impact people of color- Drug laws should be designed to solve a problem and not targeted at a specific race.  They may disproportionately impact people of color without being racist if there is a disproportionate problem with those people.  This should definitely not be the goal. 
- Calling African countries 'shithole countries'- Very poor taste and not acceptable for a president.  Did he call them that because they are not nice countries or because they are primarily black?  I think he would call certain places in my area "shithole counties" and they are predominantly white.  So, not racist but not right either. 
- Throwing someone's resume in the garbage because they have a stereotypically black name- Racist
Basically, I want to see everyone treated the same regardless of race.  We should be color blind in how we treat people.  That does become difficult sometimes because many stereotypes have some basis in truth.  I'm also in favor of programs that help the less privileged get opportunities.  Then it's up to them to seize those opportunities and they should be treated just like anyone else. 

Watchmaker asked "@ericrugiero, just a prompt for further discussion--how do you approach disagreement? Are you as kind, open-minded, fair, generous, and collaborative as you can be?"  I try to be, but of course we all fall short sometimes.  Most people that know me would say that I do tend to fit that description for the most part. 


GuitarStv

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #87 on: February 26, 2019, 09:24:54 AM »
GuitarStv made a list and asked for examples of what is and is not real racism?  See my comments below:
- Calling Mexican immigrants rapists, when crimes committed by immigrants are significantly lower than those committed by natural born Americans-I'm not sure the context of this.  If it was a general comment about Mexicans then that is racist.  If it's citing statistics about ILLEGAL aliens committing crimes then it may not be although he probably didn't need to specify Mexican. 
- Calling your local (all white) high school sports team 'The Indians' and performing a tomahawk chop in the crowd while attending the game-Not racist (I don't see it as meant negatively towards Indians) but maybe poor taste if the actual Indians are offended. 
- Crossing the street because you see a black guy- Racist if you are crossing because he is black.  Not racist if he is acting suspicious and you are protecting yourself from being mugged.
- Implementing laws that make it harder for minorities to vote- It makes sense to verify identity before someone votes.  Unfairly targeting because of race is a problem.
- Flying a confederate flag in front of your house- Many people don't mean this as racist when they do it but many blacks perceive it as racist.  I'm going with not racist in most cases (intent of the person doing it) but in poor taste and something I would certainly not do. 
- Implementing drug laws and procedures that disproportionately impact people of color- Drug laws should be designed to solve a problem and not targeted at a specific race.  They may disproportionately impact people of color without being racist if there is a disproportionate problem with those people.  This should definitely not be the goal.
- Calling African countries 'shithole countries'- Very poor taste and not acceptable for a president.  Did he call them that because they are not nice countries or because they are primarily black?  I think he would call certain places in my area "shithole counties" and they are predominantly white.  So, not racist but not right either. 

Basically, I want to see everyone treated the same regardless of race.  We should be color blind in how we treat people.  That does become difficult sometimes because many stereotypes have some basis in truth.  I'm also in favor of programs that help the less privileged get opportunities.  Then it's up to them to seize those opportunities and they should be treated just like anyone else. 

I don't necessarily agree with all of your posted reasons here (and think that there's room to debate), but also believe that we're close enough on the most important parts that we can get along.

MDM

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boy_bye

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #89 on: February 26, 2019, 09:35:09 AM »
Anyone who thinks that Voter ID laws are not racist, and that efforts to restrict voting should be considered in good faith should read just the first chapter of this book: https://www.amazon.com/One-Person-Vote-Suppression-Destroying/dp/1635571375

History shows us that state lawmakers are very skilled and not at all bashful about using any and all means at their disposal to prevent black people from voting. This is a huge reason why we need the Voting Rights Act (2016 was the first election in 50 years that we didn't have its protections, and we see what happened) -- which was established specifically because the past behavior of many states show that they cannot be trusted to not use their power in order to disenfranchise black people.

sherr

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #90 on: February 26, 2019, 09:37:57 AM »
One major issue we have is that people on both sides believe vastly different "facts" which are reported differently from various sources.  (ex: do we have a problem with voter fraud?)  We all get our "facts" from different sources and it's easy to believe polls stories that support your own beliefs.  If you believe those "facts" then it's going to be difficult for someone with a different set of beliefs and "facts" to change your mind. 

I believe in objective truth. There are different ways to view the same facts, different reasonable conclusions that can be reached on how best to solve problems. But there are objectively true facts and objectively false lies. The problem with both-siderisms is that they ignore that the vast majority of the flat-out lies are coming from one side, to the point where conservatives now consider all attempts "fact check" or "filter blatant propaganda from the news feeds" to be politically biased.

I was honestly surprised to be challenged on the fact that most mainstream news sources have a liberal bias.  When I watch most channels (CNN, ABC, CBS, etc) and see what is reported/not reported as well as how it's reported it's clear to me that the station has a different perspective/bias than me.  It shouldn't be a surprise to me that people whose views align with those stations don't see it as biased, but I hadn't thought of it that way.  (Even though my views are closer to Fox News I'm not a big fan of that channel either.) 

Every person and therefore every news source will have a bias, the difference is that most News sources try to stick to neutrality but "conservative news sources" intentionally lean-in to their bias. Cable News is mostly an entertainment show, but things like PBS and NPR are incredibly neutral, and yet conservatives ignore them and call them "the liberal mainstream media". If you want to test this, get your news from some external source like the BBC and see which side it aligns with more in terms of tone.

Obviously, both sides believe the other side "started it" but just about everyone can agree that both parties are playing dirty at this point.  As was stated above, neither has the moral high ground.  That seems VERY obvious and VERY sad. 

Have you read that article I linked on Newt Gingrich? I keep harping on it because I think it's incredibly important if we are going to understand how we arrived where we are. We can talk about "both-siderisms" all day long, but when you have one side that is openly and proudly claiming to have started it, well, I guess I'll take their word for it.

And yes, I absolutely think that the Democratic party has the moral high ground in almost every respect. They are not perfect but at least they are trying, which is a lot more than what I can say for the Republicans.

sherr

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #91 on: February 26, 2019, 09:50:05 AM »
Perhaps a little recent humor: Never Give Reasons - Dilbert Comic Strip on 2019-02-25 | Dilbert by Scott Adams

Scott Adams is an open Trump supporter who constantly contorts himself through logical gymnastics in order to explain away and support everything Trump does or says. He was one of Trumps first and loudest proponents during the primary campaign, and would constantly say things like (paraphrase) "who cares if what Trump is saying is a blatant racist lie, it doesn't matter, what matters is that it will motivate people to vote for him." Which I guess is true in an objective manner of speaking, but he would say it to imply that that was a good thing and as it should be. It's more blatant in his blog.

So you see humor, I see him intentionally training Trump supporters how to disingenuously engage in intellectually dishonest debates, spread misinformation, and emotionally manipulate people in order do win. Because winning is what's important, not being right or honestly engaging in constructive debate. I guess he's a lot like Trump and Gingrich and Bannon in that respect. And that's why we are where we are RE political discourse in the US.

mathlete

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #92 on: February 26, 2019, 09:52:25 AM »
Perhaps a little recent humor: Never Give Reasons - Dilbert Comic Strip on 2019-02-25 | Dilbert by Scott Adams

Scott Adams is an open Trump supporter who constantly contorts himself through logical gymnastics in order to explain away and support everything Trump does or says. He was one of Trumps first and loudest proponents during the primary campaign, and would constantly say things like (paraphrase) "who cares if what Trump is saying is a blatant racist lie, it doesn't matter, what matters is that it will motivate people to vote for him." Which I guess is true in an objective manner of speaking, but he would say it to imply that that was a good thing and as it should be. It's more blatant in his blog.

So you see humor, I see him intentionally training Trump supporters how to disingenuously engage in intellectually dishonest debates, spread misinformation, and emotionally manipulate people in order do win. Because winning is what's important, not being right or honestly engaging in constructive debate. I guess he's a lot like Trump and Gingrich and Bannon in that respect. And that's why we are where we are RE political discourse in the US.

It's upsetting that we have to interpret what should be a cute comic that way, but I came to the same conclusion.

Adams is a dishonest loudmouth.

Kris

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #93 on: February 26, 2019, 09:54:14 AM »
Perhaps a little recent humor: Never Give Reasons - Dilbert Comic Strip on 2019-02-25 | Dilbert by Scott Adams

Scott Adams is an open Trump supporter who constantly contorts himself through logical gymnastics in order to explain away and support everything Trump does or says. He was one of Trumps first and loudest proponents during the primary campaign, and would constantly say things like (paraphrase) "who cares if what Trump is saying is a blatant racist lie, it doesn't matter, what matters is that it will motivate people to vote for him." Which I guess is true in an objective manner of speaking, but he would say it to imply that that was a good thing and as it should be. It's more blatant in his blog.

So you see humor, I see him intentionally training Trump supporters how to disingenuously engage in intellectually dishonest debates, spread misinformation, and emotionally manipulate people in order do win. Because winning is what's important, not being right or honestly engaging in constructive debate. I guess he's a lot like Trump and Gingrich and Bannon in that respect. And that's why we are where we are RE political discourse in the US.

It's upsetting that we have to interpret what should be a cute comic that way, but I came to the same conclusion.

Adams is a dishonest loudmouth.

Yep. And an apologist for arguing in bad faith.

Davnasty

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #94 on: February 26, 2019, 10:00:59 AM »
Perhaps a little recent humor: Never Give Reasons - Dilbert Comic Strip on 2019-02-25 | Dilbert by Scott Adams

Scott Adams is an open Trump supporter who constantly contorts himself through logical gymnastics in order to explain away and support everything Trump does or says. He was one of Trumps first and loudest proponents during the primary campaign, and would constantly say things like (paraphrase) "who cares if what Trump is saying is a blatant racist lie, it doesn't matter, what matters is that it will motivate people to vote for him." Which I guess is true in an objective manner of speaking, but he would say it to imply that that was a good thing and as it should be. It's more blatant in his blog.

So you see humor, I see him intentionally training Trump supporters how to disingenuously engage in intellectually dishonest debates, spread misinformation, and emotionally manipulate people in order do win. Because winning is what's important, not being right or honestly engaging in constructive debate. I guess he's a lot like Trump and Gingrich and Bannon in that respect. And that's why we are where we are RE political discourse in the US.

It's upsetting that we have to interpret what should be a cute comic that way, but I came to the same conclusion.

Adams is a dishonest loudmouth.

I read "the Dilbert Principle" published by Scott Adams in 1996 and I concluded he most closely identified with Dilbert. 20 years later he has become a Dogbert. I guess the fame and fortune really got to him, another example corrupted by power.

Or maybe he was always an ass, what do I know :)

Nick_Miller

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #95 on: February 26, 2019, 10:23:53 AM »
The GOP has become so repulsive, I don't know what else to do than fight them as hard as I can. I wish there were more nuanced choices, but there aren't. There are two sides, and you have to pick one if you want to have any chance of making a difference.

I was a Republican years ago. I've changed a lot since then, but they've changed too, and we've went in opposite directions.

Most people would be fine with having a party opposite the Dems that would push back on spending, military, regulations, etc., because healthy debate is good. But the GOP isn't interested in healthy debate. They've become the party of voter suppression, bigotry against LGBTQ and POC, religious zealotry, science denial, and worship of the top 1 percent.

I don't understand how anyone looks at that and says, "Sign me up." And almost half the country has said that. It makes me ill.


mathlete

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #96 on: February 26, 2019, 10:24:02 AM »
I want to take a moment to highlight differences in political discourse at the highest level. To do that, I'm going to look at what is probably the biggest lie Obama told during his presidency. Politifact's 2013 Lie of the Year:

"If you like your health care plan, you can keep it"

While we work through this example (if you can stand to read my wall of text :) ) try and think about Trump handling one of his daily lies in anything that remotely approaches this level of professionalism.

---

https://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2013/dec/12/lie-year-if-you-like-your-health-care-plan-keep-it/

The politifact article is really good, but essentially, Obama made a promise that he couldn't keep. He may have thought the ACA Grandfathering provision would help, but he couldn't guarantee that insurers wouldn't cancel plans. It was a dumb and horribly misleading thing for him to say. Given comments by his HHS Secretary, he should have been reasonably clued in. He should have known better than to say that. And it is probable that he stretched here to look better during his re-election campaign.

But then, the bulk of the ACA law started taking effect. People got letters that their insurance was canceled. This is how Obama handled it. I'll link the whole thing because it's good, but here are some higlights.

https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/the-press-office/2013/11/14/statement-president-affordable-care-act

He takes responsibility, and explains himself:

Quote
With respect to the pledge I made that if you like your plan, you can keep it, I think -- and I’ve said in interviews -- that there is no doubt that the way I put that forward unequivocally ended up not being accurate.  It was not because of my intention not to deliver on that commitment and that promise.  We put a grandfather clause into the law, but it was insufficient.

More explanation. More responsibility taking, and a commitment to fix things:

Quote
You have an individual market that accounts for about 5 percent of the population.  And our working assumption was -- my working assumption was that the majority of those folks would find better policies at lower costs or the same costs in the marketplaces, and that the universe of folks who potentially would not find a better deal in the marketplaces, the grandfather clause would work sufficiently for them.  And it didn't.  And again, that's on us.  Which is why we’re -- that's on me.  And that's why I’m trying to fix it.

He pushes back against the ACA as a punching-bag though. He highlights that the roll out is getting insurance to more people, and talks about cooperation with Republican John Kasich towards getting more Ohioans insured:

Quote
Later today, I’ll be in Ohio, where Governor Kasich, a Republican, has expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.  And as many as 275,000 Ohioans will ultimately be better off because of it.  And if every governor followed suit, another 5.4 million Americans could gain access to health care next year.

And ACA has aged well after it's rough start. Kaiser shows that it has reduced uninsured numbers dramatically.



And it's actually become a fairly popular policy: https://www.kff.org/interactive/kff-health-tracking-poll-the-publics-views-on-the-aca/#?response=Favorable--Unfavorable&aRange=all

I still have major criticisms to make on ACA, but it was a good start. And the Democrats seemed committed to fixing some of the issues with it. Republicans spent 7 years railing on it though. Often times spreading misinformation about it. And when they finally held both chambers and the Presidency, they had full reign to make something better.

They couldn't come up with a single proposal that didn't result in CBO projections showing people losing health insurance by the millions.

Given that, I feel pretty good about concluding that most Republicans working against the ACA during Obama's presidency, were doing so in bad faith.

And just as an aside, John Kasich, the Republican governer who expanded Medicaid in Ohio under ACA, and who Obama talked about cooperation with, is one Republican who came out looking pretty great through all this Trump stuff. He didn't compromise on decency and fact-based discussion in the way that his other colleagues did. I don't think this is a coincidence.

Since the passage of ACA, Ohio's uninsured rate has been cut in half, and is well below the national average.

mathlete

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #97 on: February 26, 2019, 10:27:08 AM »
This is not to heap praise on Obama. I have a lot of problems with Obama. Libya and Syria top the list. But he was an effective executive. And he set a tone of rational discussion. A tone that Republican leaders in congress seldom matched.

Kris

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #98 on: February 26, 2019, 10:48:07 AM »
I want to take a moment to highlight differences in political discourse at the highest level. To do that, I'm going to look at what is probably the biggest lie Obama told during his presidency. Politifact's 2013 Lie of the Year:

"If you like your health care plan, you can keep it"

While we work through this example (if you can stand to read my wall of text :) ) try and think about Trump handling one of his daily lies in anything that remotely approaches this level of professionalism.

---

https://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2013/dec/12/lie-year-if-you-like-your-health-care-plan-keep-it/

The politifact article is really good, but essentially, Obama made a promise that he couldn't keep. He may have thought the ACA Grandfathering provision would help, but he couldn't guarantee that insurers wouldn't cancel plans. It was a dumb and horribly misleading thing for him to say. Given comments by his HHS Secretary, he should have been reasonably clued in. He should have known better than to say that. And it is probable that he stretched here to look better during his re-election campaign.

But then, the bulk of the ACA law started taking effect. People got letters that their insurance was canceled. This is how Obama handled it. I'll link the whole thing because it's good, but here are some higlights.

https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/the-press-office/2013/11/14/statement-president-affordable-care-act

He takes responsibility, and explains himself:

Quote
With respect to the pledge I made that if you like your plan, you can keep it, I think -- and I’ve said in interviews -- that there is no doubt that the way I put that forward unequivocally ended up not being accurate.  It was not because of my intention not to deliver on that commitment and that promise.  We put a grandfather clause into the law, but it was insufficient.

More explanation. More responsibility taking, and a commitment to fix things:

Quote
You have an individual market that accounts for about 5 percent of the population.  And our working assumption was -- my working assumption was that the majority of those folks would find better policies at lower costs or the same costs in the marketplaces, and that the universe of folks who potentially would not find a better deal in the marketplaces, the grandfather clause would work sufficiently for them.  And it didn't.  And again, that's on us.  Which is why we’re -- that's on me.  And that's why I’m trying to fix it.

He pushes back against the ACA as a punching-bag though. He highlights that the roll out is getting insurance to more people, and talks about cooperation with Republican John Kasich towards getting more Ohioans insured:

Quote
Later today, I’ll be in Ohio, where Governor Kasich, a Republican, has expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.  And as many as 275,000 Ohioans will ultimately be better off because of it.  And if every governor followed suit, another 5.4 million Americans could gain access to health care next year.

And ACA has aged well after it's rough start. Kaiser shows that it has reduced uninsured numbers dramatically.



And it's actually become a fairly popular policy: https://www.kff.org/interactive/kff-health-tracking-poll-the-publics-views-on-the-aca/#?response=Favorable--Unfavorable&aRange=all

I still have major criticisms to make on ACA, but it was a good start. And the Democrats seemed committed to fixing some of the issues with it. Republicans spent 7 years railing on it though. Often times spreading misinformation about it. And when they finally held both chambers and the Presidency, they had full reign to make something better.

They couldn't come up with a single proposal that didn't result in CBO projections showing people losing health insurance by the millions.

Given that, I feel pretty good about concluding that most Republicans working against the ACA during Obama's presidency, were doing so in bad faith.

And just as an aside, John Kasich, the Republican governer who expanded Medicaid in Ohio under ACA, and who Obama talked about cooperation with, is one Republican who came out looking pretty great through all this Trump stuff. He didn't compromise on decency and fact-based discussion in the way that his other colleagues did. I don't think this is a coincidence.

Since the passage of ACA, Ohio's uninsured rate has been cut in half, and is well below the national average.

This.

The "both sides do it" whatabouters love to cite Obama's "If you like your health care plan, you can keep it" "lie."

I put the word "lie" in quotes. Because a lie is an intentional untruth.

Obama's statement ended up not being true. But, for the reasons he stated.

He did not deliberately set out to mislead the public.

And it's always struck me as hilarious that this is the "lie" they always trot out.

Because they apparently can only find one.

One thing they can label as a lie. In eight years.

Whereas with Trump, if he lies only once a day, it's a remarkably honest day for him.

"Both sides do it."

Sure.

MDM

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Re: Liberals vs Conservatives - why does it have to be this way?
« Reply #99 on: February 26, 2019, 10:52:17 AM »
Obama was only divisive in that a large portion of your country are obviously all-out racist pieces of crap.

I'll amend this, carefully, to explain that "large portion" means "relatively large, considering we're talking about racism here", not "the vast majority" of the country.  What's "large" for racism?

If 15% of your country belongs to the the group of:
: outright Klansmen
Don't know about the other items in your list, but according to Ku Klux Klan - Wikipedia that first item accounts for a whopping 0.001%.