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‘Left, Right & Center’: A Nation Divided

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Posted on Apr 2, 2010
Left, Right & Center

Why is America so deeply polarized, politically speaking? This week’s episode of “Left, Right & Center” finds Robert Scheer and Tony Blankley discussing the partisan divisions in the country and agreeing at least on the point that those rifts have never been this deep. But why is there so much anger?  —KA



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Night-Gaunt's avatar

By Night-Gaunt, April 6, 2010 at 11:14 am Link to this comment

Few people are interested in the news or its pseudo counterparts. The majority who are interested get it from local TV. A generally parochial viewpoint of the world as local only.

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By David Hingston, April 5, 2010 at 12:13 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The reason we’re so divided is that, for the most part, we’re reading, listening to, and watching on TV “news” and viewpoints that are offered mainly with a view toward reinforcing our—the target audience’s—partisan preconception and prejudice. The media engages in news-storytelling as sport; half-truths are everywhere, the real truth nowhere.  It’s all about feeling superior to the enemy, and the enemy is our neighbor, or co-worker—or, rather, co-unemployed.  It’s all about selling news to a targeted demographic rather than educating a whole citizenry.  Given this, it’s surprising we’re not more divided than we are. 



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By Night-Gaunt, April 5, 2010 at 9:22 am Link to this comment

The core is that Obama isn’t a Liberal nor a Progressive yet he is vilified in the corporate media as being a “Marxist” and “Leftist” etc. Totally unfounded yet this strange partisanship still goes on. About all it does is make Obama look better than he really is all the while he is continuing the agenda first started by Carter (1978-1980) then cemented under Reagan(1980- ) and continued ever since by both Republican and Democrats to today. No real change except for the person in charge & perceptions given. [Real or imagined.]

The division between parties is more about how many extremists are in charge. There are more in the Republicans than Democrats. But in the Democrats they are still holding most of important seats. There are scattered Progressives and Moderates still within unlike in the Republicans where the last of the Moderates were flushed out a few years ago. The extremists are crypto-fascists who want to bring down the Republic and replace it with a corporate theocracy. If they plunge us into a Great Depression they will get it. They are well practiced disaster capitalists and we are under conditions of the shock doctrine. We are in the eye of the storm with the worse part of it still to come. Nothing has been done to change that fact. Nothing!

A military based economy only makes a profit for about 9 years then it costs. We have been doing it since 1950 and it has only gotten more out of control and taking up more of our, & others resources. The only way such an empire could continue to exist is to take from others and monopolize the resources and fuel to do it. Only a few would live a middle class or upper class life. The rest would be slaves or wage slaves to unregulated corporations. That is in the offing. Worse than during the last Guilded Age. This will be a new and “better” Guilded Age.

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By natera, April 4, 2010 at 12:57 pm Link to this comment

The show was compelling, even revealing at times and though Bob specially tried hard to get at the core of the issue, they never got there.  The real point of the current conservative movement is not policy, but the immediate “neutralization” of the President by any means necessary. 

The constant suggestion that our president might be a foreign agent of some kind, that he is transgressing beyond the regular boundaries of power and that if we don’t “do something” America as we’ve known it will never be the same is simply a call to rebellion; a coded 24/7 message that encourages any “American brave enough to be a Patriot” to water the tree of Freedom.

The Right of today doesn’t want debate, they want War.

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By Tobysgirl, April 4, 2010 at 8:54 am Link to this comment

Democrats hardline on any issue? What world does this woman live in? Obviously, the U.S. of A.! PSmith’s comment is far more accurate, and I would suggest Ms Goforth needs to realize there is a world beyond this country.

Obama continues many of Bush’s policies, plus he throws a big fat bone to the health insurers, and he is reviled by Bush supporters. Why is this? Might it be the color of his skin? Might it be the fears of privileged white males worrying over losing .0001% of their privilege to the immigrant hordes waiting at our borders?

All Obama’s election has done is highlight the sickening racism of U.S. society. It remains quietly under wraps as long as the privileged feel secure, but it has been there all my life bubbling and simmering. I fear for my country, but perhaps it is better to know the truth about ourselves than pretend we’re a generous, open-hearted people.

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By osage, April 4, 2010 at 8:16 am Link to this comment
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“The legitimate object of Government is to do for a community of people whatever they need to have done but cannot do at all, or cannot so well do, for themselves in their separate and individual capacities.” — Abraham Lincoln

“In all those things which deal with people, be liberal, be human. In all those things which deal with people’s money, or their economy, or their form of government, be conservative.”

“[T]he purpose of the Republican Party is to establish and maintain a peaceful world and build at home a dynamic prosperity in which every citizen fairly shares.”

“We shall ever build anew, that our children and their children, without distinction because of race, creed or color, may know the blessings of our free land.”

“We believe that basic to governmental integrity are unimpeachable ethical standards and irreproachable personal conduct by all people in government. We shall continue our insistence on honesty as an indispensable requirement of public service. We shall continue to root out corruption whenever and wherever it appears.”

“We are proud of and shall continue our far-reaching and sound advances in matters of basic human needs—expansion of social security—broadened coverage in unemployment insurance —improved housing—and better health protection for all our people. We are determined that our government remain warmly responsive to the urgent social and economic problems of our people.”

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By Ralph Kramden, April 4, 2010 at 12:11 am Link to this comment
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Whoever wrote the comment: “Left,Right and Further Right” has got it. Liberals laughed at W because W thought Africa was a nation. Yet liberals believe that America is the name of a nation and not the name of a continent. So much for imperialistic phraseology. Then we have Tony B. talking about “entitlements.” Social Security and health care are “entitlements,” according to him. The Pentagon, the bail-out, the subsidies to big Ag, the airlines, big oil, the promise not to negotiate with big Pharma on the price of drugs (anathema to ANY notion of capitalism,) these are not “entitlements.” Tony B. loves the way the Feds rescued Wall Street. Does he love the way the Feds rescued New Orleans? A good government would have rescued New Orleans and allowed the banksters to rot.
Why is it that someone as far right as Tony B. is (works for that crack-pot Sung Moon, adores Gingrich,) is not balanced with someone as far to the left as Tony B. is to the right? Myopia, blinders? And his rant against Social Security should be scrutinized carefully: half of the people who retire have less than $50,000 saved and half of those have less than $5,000. Look it up. So Tony B has his townhouse in DC. He doesn’t know s from shinola when it comes to the lives of the working poor. Social Security is all the working poor have. Any problems with Social Security can easily be remedied by removing the cap on higher incomes. To those who bitch about Social Security: who will take care of your parents when they are old?

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By Constance_Goforth, April 3, 2010 at 10:33 pm Link to this comment

I think the majority of younger Americans hesitate to identify themselves as Democrats (left) or Republicans (right) because both parties have become so ridiculously polarized, having taken up hardline positions on every imaginable issue.

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