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Lincoln Would Weep

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Posted on May 15, 2011
Eli Pousson (CC-BY-SA)

By E.J. Dionne, Jr.

Republicans are unhappy with their field of presidential candidates and yearn for someone who will come along to save them. But here’s what the GOP doesn’t want to confront: Its problem lies not in its candidates, but in itself.

The candidates appear much smaller than they are because the party’s primary voters and core interest groups insist upon cutting them down to size. To win a Republican nomination, a candidate has to move right, recant absolutely any past position that violates the current conservative catechism, and never dare to speak the truth that solving our deficit problem will require new revenues—aka, taxes.

Thus we have Mitt Romney defending the individual mandate to buy insurance that was part of the health plan he championed in Massachusetts, but then denouncing President Obama for imposing a similar mandate at the national level. This shuffle wasn’t good enough for the guardians of conservative orthodoxy. It ruled that Romney will merit salvation only by fully repudiating his greatest achievement as governor.

Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty has been absolutely abject in declaring his sinfulness for once believing in a cap-and-trade solution to the global warming problem. “I’ve said I was wrong,” he insisted. “It was a mistake, and I’m sorry.” Pass him the sackcloth-and-ashes, please.

And then there is Mitch Daniels. The Indiana governor has the advantage of not having joined the race yet, which is why so many in the GOP are turning their lonely hearts to him.

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Daniels was lauded for bravery when he called for a “truce” in the culture wars. But in the first test of his commitment to a truce, he chose to break it by signing a law cutting off all state funding for Planned Parenthood. What else would Daniels have to do to win the nomination? He is more conservative than the conventional wisdom now paints him. But what will be left of even the current Daniels once the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, otherwise known as the GOP primary electorate, is done with him?

Even if you accept some pandering to the primary electorate, the Republicans’ problem is deeper and it creates huge difficulties for the country as a whole. The reason Washington is paralyzed over the deficit is because most Republicans are petrified to admit that we will never get our budget close to balance without some tax increases. Both Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush raised taxes when deficits got too high. Now, Reagan’s party would condemn him as a big-taxing liberal. 

In a rational deficit debate, Republicans would call for more spending cuts than Democrats want and also some form of a consumption tax to avoid hikes in levies in income and capital gains. Democrats would insist on fewer cuts and tax increases on income, capital gains and dividends. We’d fight it out, and maybe even find ground for compromise. But as only a few brave Republicans publicly acknowledge, taking all revenues off the table is not a serious position.

This goes to the biggest problem of all. Today’s Republicans have totally broken with the party’s long commitment to innovative national action: the land-grant colleges, national parks, food and drug regulation, interstate highways and government student loans. The creation of the income tax itself was supported by a good conservative Republican president, William Howard Taft.

Today’s GOP is committed to one proposition above all others: reducing the size of the federal government. In this, Republicans resemble no group so much as conservative Democrats from the 1850s—minus, it must be said quickly and with gratitude, the shameful position such Democrats took on slavery. Even nullification and secession talk is now in vogue among some Republicans.

Imagine what would happen today to a Republican who said this: “Having never been States, either in substance or in name, outside of the Union, whence this magical omnipotence of ‘State rights’ . ... Much is said about the ‘sovereignty’ of the States; but the word, even, is not in the national Constitution. ... ” Abraham Lincoln spoke those words on July 4, 1861, and believed so much in the national government that he waged a bloody war to save it. Can you imagine any Republican quoting Lincoln on states’ rights during the 2012 debates?

What this nation most needs right now is a Republican Party that believes again in its own best traditions. It would be lovely if at least one of the party’s presidential candidates stood up for them.

E.J. Dionne’s e-mail address is ejdionne(at)washpost.com.
   
© 2011, Washington Post Writers Group


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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, May 28, 2011 at 7:29 am Link to this comment

Your post, Inherit The Wind is how I know that everything
you say is a lie, and that you are an ignoble, self serving,
disingenuous Right-Winger; the pattern of your post that devolves
into framing and representing both sides of a false conversation, so
that you can pose your own rhetorical statements and answer them
yourself for whoever you consider your enemy of the moment to be.

What you are doing in this respect is what Right-Wing Hitleresque
sophists and spouters of Right-Wing Hitleresque dialectic always do;
in this regard you are no different and you have sought refuge in a
traditional Right-Wing Hitleresque pattern of behavior.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, May 27, 2011 at 7:55 pm Link to this comment

Blather on with your gibberish.  I told you I’m done.
You have nothing to say that means anything to me.
Your judgment is meaningless as you have no logic or ability to reason.

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, May 27, 2011 at 6:53 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, May 27 at 5:42 pm,

“I have nothing to be ashamed of.  But you need to examine yourself
and your “certainty” that somehow, without any logical reasoning,
you just “know” what is right and what is wrong.  If I thought that
way like you, I WOULD be ashamed of myself.”—Inherit The
Wind, May 27 at 5:42 pm

You say, “without any logical reasoning,” when, in fact, x=x
sublation as a unity of balance is the very foundation of G. W. F.
Hegel’s, “Science of Logic.”

If, infact, what you say in your post about being a Jew is true, I
would think that you would be more aware of the need for positive
and negative unity of balance in dialectic, avoidance of sophism, and
avoidance of negatively balanced dialectic to accuse, condemn,
denounce, and provide a reason to kill, as well as positively balanced
dialectic used to glorify those who use negatively balanced dialectic
to accuse, condemn, denounce, and provide a reason to kill.

Your attitude toward Hitleresque dialectic and Hitleresque sophism is
inconsistent with what you say your Jewish heritage is.  I would
expect a more sober attitude regarding Hitleresque dialectic and
Hitleresque sophism from a Jew.

When I was 16 years old I was sent an invitation to join B’nai B’rith
and I did not even know that I was a Jew.  I have since been told
that I would never have been invited to join B’nai B’rith if I was not
of Jewish heritage.

The linguistic basis of dialectic and sophism that enabled the killing
of between 20 to 30 million people in the World War II Era is in no
way funny, and I cannot conceive of any way that anyone could find
humor in the tragedy of the World War II Era.

The fact that comedians use humor to highlight the Holocaust and
tragedy of the World War II Era is gallows humor not meant
to be funny, that is meant to be deadly serious humor, meant to
serve warning that the whole Fascist Holocaust could happen all
over again, if we are not vigilant and aware of the causal
relationships that resulted in World War II and the Holocaust.

You say you have nothing to be ashamed of, but you should be,
even more so, if you are truly a Jew.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, May 27, 2011 at 5:42 pm Link to this comment

No Martha,
You should be ashamed of yourself for being so dense and dogmatic.

You’ve made an inane argument out of standing on a soapbox about nothing.

I’m a Jew and I have relatives with tattoos from the camps. I know damned well what a threat Hitler and his teacher Mussolini were, and what threats little hitlers are. Humor is a way to deal with our fears of the monster, so he can’t petrify us with his cold stare and his ranting hate-filled speeches. And so we can find our courage to stand up to him.

And I’m not going to let someone get away with saying “Oh, if you just ignore slavery, the South was as Liberal as the North and not feudal at all.”

You don’t have to find me funny.  I don’t give a damn if you do or don’t. I don’t claim to be as funny or talented as Stewart or Colbert, and certainly not as funny as Carlin or Russell.

But I have nothing to be ashamed about.  I am confident and comfortable with my solid moral grounding. My morality is logically based, not on some ancient arbitrary latitude of right and longitude of wrong, iced with a fear of damnation from an invisible character who insists on obedience without understanding.
And if you want to sniff and say “Humph! You ought to be ashamed!” then do it on your own time.

I have nothing to be ashamed of.  But you need to examine yourself and your “certainty” that somehow, without any logical reasoning, you just “know” what is right and what is wrong.  If I thought that way like you, I WOULD be ashamed of myself.

Now I’m done here.

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, May 27, 2011 at 2:12 pm Link to this comment

You should be ashamed of yourself, Inherit the Wind,
because you are advocating a Hitleresque dialectic and
Hitleresque sophistry market
as previously stated in my
following post:

“We as a society, need to spend as much time, or more,
making the populace aware of both sophistry and Hitleresque
dialectic, WHEN sophistry is used, HOW sophistry is used, WHAT
purpose sophistry serves, and HOW sophistry is constructed
to lead the masses
to accept a false sense of
advantage
, as we spend mining sophistry and Hitleresque
dialectic for commercial advantage, rather than to encourage its
spread and abuse to serve as a market for comedians;
this is one market that society would be better off
without——the comedians would find something else to poke fun
at and the world would be a better place.
—MarthaA, May
27 at 8:07 am

For you to put yourself in the same league as Stephen Colbert and
Jon Stewart is ludicrous, neither Colbert or Stewart are advocating
the use of Hitleresque sophistry and Hitleresque dialectic as a
means of enabling a continuing market for their humor ——
BOTH Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert are rendering a public
service to edify and inform the American Populace as a whole and
doing so in a humorous fashion that appeals to the masses—God
Bless them both.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, May 27, 2011 at 12:12 pm Link to this comment

You should be ashamed of yourself.
********

Oh, I’m not ashamed of myself. Not one little bit!

You have just said I should be ashamed of myself for thinking Mark Russell, George Carlin, and all the other political comics, are funny!

Now, despite the fact that Hitler isn’t funny, Charlie Chaplin’s spoof of him “The Great Dicatator” IS funny—hilariously funny and I make NO APOLOGIES FOR THINKING CHARLIE CHAPLIN IS FUNNY!

The Three Stooges spoofed Hitler, with “Hailstone, Gallstone, and Pebble”.

The Marx Brothers spoofed Hitler, but more so Mussolini in “Duck Soup”.

If you don’t think these comedies are funny, then YOU are the worthy of being spoofed!

Don’t you know laughter is a FEROCIOUS weapon? 

Ashamed???? Damned if I am!  I WORSHIP these comedians’ ability!  It’s not sinful, it’s SACRED!

Anarcissie may be sophist but you are displaying a pomposity beyond belief!

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, May 27, 2011 at 8:07 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, May 27 at 3:22 am,

“Politicians are sophists…and comedians mine it!  Better than
bathroom humor, too.”—Inherit The Wind, May 27 at 3:22
am

We as a society, need to spend as much time, or more, making the
populace aware of both sophistry and Hitleresque dialectic, WHEN
sophistry is used, HOW sophistry is used, WHAT purpose sophistry
serves, and HOW sophistry is constructed to lead the
masses
to accept a false sense of advantage, as we
spend mining sophistry and Hitleresque dialectic for commercial
advantage, rather than to encourage its spread and abuse to
serve as a market for comedians; this is one market that society
would be better off without——the comedians would find
something else to poke fun at and the world would be a better
place.

Humor based upon sophistry and Hitleresque dialectic is sick and
twisted humor, and it has a place in dealing with the effects of sick
twisted sophism and Hitleresque dialectic, with regard to bringing
awareness of sophistry’s use to the masses, but perpetuating and
condoning sick and twisted sophistry and Hitleresque dialectic to
perpetuate a market for comedians is sick, twisted, perverted, and
destructive of the best interests of society as a whole.

You should be ashamed of yourself.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, May 27, 2011 at 3:22 am Link to this comment

I guess, Martha, you don’t appreciate all the comics over the years who’ve made fun of the sophistry of politicians.

Mark Russell always said he had a team of 535 writers: 100 senators and 435 congressmen/women.

George Carlin made a career out of making fun of sophistry.

Without sophistry, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert would be out of business.

Think about it: What beats Newt Gingrich calling Ryan’s plan “Conservative Social Engineering” and then turning around with days, saying he didn’t say that, and accusing the MSM of mis-representing him?  If that’s not funny I don’t know what is!

Or Tina Fey in 2008 pretending to be Sarah Palin and repeating Palin’s inane and sophist responses to Katie Couric….VERBATIM!

Politicians are sophists…and comedians mine it!  Better than bathroom humor, too.

“Gentlemen: We can’t afford to have a college and a football team. Tomorrow we start tearing down the college.”—Prof. Quincy Adams Wagstaff

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, May 26, 2011 at 8:57 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, May 26 at 8:20 pm,

“Of COURSE sophistry is funny!” Inherit The Wind, May 26 at
8:20 pm

I can see that sophism would be funny for those in the bunker
under the Reichstag before the failure of the Battle of the Bulge,
but I doubt that there was much sophist humor after the gas ran
out for the panzers and the Russians were at the door, and later
at the Nuremberg trials.

I suspect that Conservative Right-Wing sophist humor in the
United States will most likely follow the same course to the same
effect.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, May 26, 2011 at 8:20 pm Link to this comment

Oh stop it, MarthaA! You’re killin’ me!

You keep getting funnier and funnier!

Of COURSE sophistry is funny!  The sophist is a pompous ass just waiting for Groucho to let the air out with a wise-crack and Harpo to shake hands with a leg, followed by a Gookie!

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, May 26, 2011 at 7:38 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, May 26 at 6:18 pm,

“Simple.
She’s saying your attempt to differ between American slavery and
European serfdom is fundamentally sophist.”
—Inherit The
Wind, May 25 at 4:38 pm

Laughing your ass off about what is fundamentally sophist; is this
an inside joke in the sophist community?

If so, sophistry and what is fundamentally sophist is not a matter
that strikes me as a ROFLAMO moment.

If what is, as YOU say, fundamentally sophist is a matter that strikes
you as a ROFLAMO moment, that is your affair, and it strikes me as
being inappropriate behavior.

Why on earth would you consider what is fundamentally sophist,
YOUR words, NOT mine, as a ROFLAMO moment?

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, May 26, 2011 at 6:18 pm Link to this comment

I suggest that you engage a bit in the sublated
nature of “gestalt patterns of perception” and a “unity of balance,” if you are not intentionally promoting sophism.

********************
LOL!
Ya got me, Martha!
You were pullin’ my leg the whole time!
ROFLMAO!!!!

(BTW, NJ outlawed slavery in 1846, not 1865.  And Russia’s feudalism, which included the right to kill a serf without penalty, existed until 1861.)

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, May 26, 2011 at 9:23 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie, May 26 at 7:43 am,

What you are engaging in is pedantic parsing, and
pedantic parsing serves no point, other than the
perpetuation of sophism.

I suggest that you engage a bit in the sublated
nature of “gestalt
patterns of perception” and a “unity of balance,” if
you are not
intentionally promoting sophism.

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, May 26, 2011 at 7:43 am Link to this comment

Well, I think the differences between chattel slavery and traditional serfdom are significant, unless one is going to go the total romantic-anarchist route and say that all forms of domination whatever are equally evil.  I suppose it depends on what you’re trying to prove.  If the South was feudal before 1865, though, then so was the North, because they had the same form of government and social organization.  Slavery was legal in New Jersey, for instance, until 1865.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, May 25, 2011 at 4:38 pm Link to this comment

Simple.
She’s saying your attempt to differ between American slavery and European serfdom is fundamentally sophist.

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, May 25, 2011 at 11:23 am Link to this comment

MarthaA—I’m not understanding the context of your question.  Give me an example.

Report this
MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, May 25, 2011 at 10:17 am Link to this comment

When you parse perception down to structural components to
obstruct the pattern, Anarcissie, is the pattern of
perception the same as it was absent the obstructed
structural components? 

This is what sophism and propaganda is all about.

Again, parsing perception down to structural components to
obstruct the pattern is what sophism and propaganda is all about.

It seems to me that too many on the Truthdig Forum and in our
nation take this perspective, and that we of the majority populace
Left should rethink our perception in this regard.

Report this
Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, May 25, 2011 at 8:56 am Link to this comment

ITW—The serfs of medieval Europe and Russia differed from America’s Negro slaves primarily in that they were bound to the land and often had some legal protections, whereas the Negro slaves could be bought, sold, tortured and killed like cattle; there was no notion of ‘attachment to the land’.

Obviously, Southerners (and most Northerners, too, up to the middle of the 19th century) didn’t consider the slaves to be fully human.  After all, Thomas Jefferson, a slave-owner, wrote that all men were created equal and endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among which were life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  Since he did not personally or politically recognize these rights in the Negro slaves, then clearly for him they were not ‘men’, not human.  (This casts a peculiar light on his relations with Sally Hemmings which I shall be too delicate to go into here.)  In a sense the Negro slaves didn’t exist or were invisible politically. 

Outside of that little omission, the political and social form of the South was, as I have said, those of a liberal republic, not in any way a monarchy or a feudal state.  People did not go about swearing fealty to their liege lords, etc. etc. etc.  It is true people in the South went in for a certain amount of mummery derived from the Middle Ages and Antiquity, but let’s not let this silly stuff fool us.  When it came down to brass tacks, such as how money got passed around, or who did the work and what work was done, or how racism was implemented and used, they were quite modern.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, May 25, 2011 at 6:15 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie, May 24 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment

I was demonstrating that the South was not feudal. ‘Like the North, it had a liberal social order with private property, capitalism, elections and representative government.’  Same Constitution, same Bill of Rights, same Federal government until 1861.
**************

Please explain to me how serfs bound to the land as slaves and slaves in the South differed.

Please explain how those Southern slaves got to enjoy rights and freedoms that the serfs didn’t under feudalism.

A “feud” in the sense of feudalism refers to a domain ruled by a noble of some sort.  This was identical in structure to the vast plantations of the South.

Those lords could not be blindly dictated to. They had to be convinced, cajoled, bribed, threatened and in all manor convinced to support the policies of the monarch.  If he pissed them off enough they could toss him out, or force him to agree to changes….the Magna Carta dates to the 1200’s.

The Southern land barons ruled the South the same way.  Their “freedom” to dissent and vote was in structure identical to the feudal system.

Sure, the Southern land barons had freedom. So did the feudal lords.  Did anyone else? Better read your history!

It didn’t take the ordinary citizen long to figure out that the Civil War, promoted by their land barons to protect slavery, meant nothing to them but death and destruction:
“Rich man’s war. Poor man’s fight” became the mantra of the CSA foot soldier as he realized just how royally he had been HAD.

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, May 24, 2011 at 5:42 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, May 23 at 8:46 am,

Corporations are taking control of government through mergers, so
that it will be easy for a Fascist leader to control everyone through
the government, just like the Hitler Regime did in Germany.  All
Republicans along with the Republican Lite Conservatives and
Moderates in the Democratic Party are cooperating against the best
interest of the populace, which is why the 70% Majority Common
Population of the United States need to forget the Middle Class and
start demanding representation politically of the Common Majority
that is NOT BEING REPRESENTED.

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, May 24, 2011 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment

I was demonstrating that the South was not feudal. ‘Like the North, it had a liberal social order with private property, capitalism, elections and representative government.’  Same Constitution, same Bill of Rights, same Federal government until 1861.

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, May 24, 2011 at 9:19 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie, May 23 at 7:31 pm Link to this comment

John Locke justified slavery.  George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry and their peers—liberals all—practiced it.  They were successful landowners and politicians in Virginia, so presumably their neighbors agreed with their opinions.

As for their class system, we have a class system today.
***************

Clearly you are trying to show that there’s not much difference between their society and caste system and ours.  Otherwise, why would you say this? Unless it’s in this context it makes no sense.

My inference is the only logical one (I can’t speak for illogical inferences)

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, May 23, 2011 at 8:40 pm Link to this comment

I didn’t say there was no difference.  It might help your understanding of what I wrote if you read it as it is, instead of rewriting it.

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By Inherit The Wind, May 23, 2011 at 8:16 pm Link to this comment

“justifying” slavery doesn’t justify it.

Washington realized it was wrong and freed his slaves in his will.  I believe Madison did too.  Jefferson didn’t.

Ironically, Robt. E. Lee freed his slaves, but U.S. Grant didn’t.

If you don’t see the difference between our “caste” system now, and the ones the men you name lived under then you don’t understand what slavery is or what it means to live under it. To argue there is no difference is to insult those who suffered under bondage and their descendants, and the people who died to free them.

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, May 23, 2011 at 7:31 pm Link to this comment

John Locke justified slavery.  George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry and their peers—liberals all—practiced it.  They were successful landowners and politicians in Virginia, so presumably their neighbors agreed with their opinions.

As for their class system, we have a class system today.

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By Inherit The Wind, May 23, 2011 at 1:50 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, May 23 at 9:31 am Link to this comment

If the South had been feudal in 1861 it would have had a hierarchy of lieges and vassals, which it did not.  Like the North, it had a liberal social order with private property, capitalism, elections and representative government.

************************

WTF are you talking about????? How can you call a “social order” liberal when 1/3 of the population were defined as property, denied the right to capitalism, to vote for their rulers and to be represented in government????

There was a caste system in the South that was as rigid as India’s.  Office holders, particularly governors and Senators were ALWAYS from the very elite.  Yeah, they rotated amongst themselves who got to rule.

Did the ordinary white guy? No! Did Blacks get to vote or run for office? Even if they were free?  No! Other than a brief period following the Civil War, until the KKK and Jim Crow laws were enacted, 1/3 of the population was TOTALLY denied their rights all the way up into the 1960’s and 1970’s.

Even after slavery the South found ways to retain a feudal society…and the serfs were the Black Americans.

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Anarcissie's avatar

By Anarcissie, May 23, 2011 at 9:31 am Link to this comment

If the South had been feudal in 1861 it would have had a hierarchy of lieges and vassals, which it did not.  Like the North, it had a liberal social order with private property, capitalism, elections and representative government.

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By Inherit The Wind, May 23, 2011 at 8:46 am Link to this comment

MarthaA:

I’ve been saying almost the same thing for several years now.  But will we have the mass starvation that we see in the 3rd World?  Not impossible, but highly unlikely.  However, I DO think there is a concerted effort to create a modern feudal society. Of course, the South in 1861, WAS a totally feudal society, where might made right, and about 1/3 the population was doomed to unpaid toil, another chunk was doomed to poverty, and only a small elite enjoyed prosperity.

And it’s clear the GOP and TeaParty want a return to that: Just think…22% of all Republicans describe themselves as being in the top 1% of earners.  The oxymoron of that impossible statistic should bring up a rueful laugh….

Are we in trouble? Damn straight. Are our resources exhausted? Not even CLOSE!  Are they be squandered? Certainly.

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By MarthaA, May 21, 2011 at 8:20 pm Link to this comment

Those were hard times, ITW, but the nation is now headed toward
bankruptcy and in more debt that ever since the USA became a
nation, all the natural resources for the populace have been
exhausted, manufacturing has been given away to other nations,
and there is no where to turn for the majority population, and the
sad part is that it was all done on purpose.  Whether you know it
or not, our nation is headed for the worst starvation period it has
ever had and all because of the Right-Wing and cooperating DLC
Democrats con job against the majority population; it seems the
wealthy got tired of so many genteel wealthy that didn’t know the
difference and decided to make the entire majority common
population aware that they are all poor by taking away the
genteel infrastructure. 

http://www.independent.com/news/2011/apr/29/big-con-job/?print

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By Inherit The Wind, May 21, 2011 at 5:44 pm Link to this comment

MarthaA, May 20 at 9:19 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, May 20 at 3:50 am,

The Conservative Republican Revolution that began in 1980 and all the presidents involved in the Conservative Revolution, which includes the DLC Democrats, for a Conservative New World Order have done more damage to the populace of this nation and the world than all the other presidents combined and that’s all I have to say about
that.

***********

In other words, your mind’s made up. Let’s not confuse you with facts.

In EVERY era people think they are living through the worst time ever. 

Do I think we are worse off now then when resources and men were being commandeered to be sent to fight the CSA?  Do I think it’s worse now than for the people in Pennsylvania, Maryland, the Shenandoah, or Georgia who had troops marching across where they lived destroying and pillaging as they went?

No, of course not. 

During the Civil War many Americans faced what the Iraqis and Afghanis and Libyans are facing today. 

Would I rather be here now in the mess we are in than in those places? Damn straight!  Would I rather be in THIS mess than in the Civil War in the battle zones? Damn straight!  And so would you, if you are honest with yourself.

Don’t get me wrong: I’m not defending Ronald Reagan and you are absolutely right that his Conservative Revolution took the GOP from the Rockefeller-Goldwater-Nixon kinds of Republicans to the bat-shit crazy Jesse Helms-type fascism. 

But when one takes an historical view, one must try to alienate oneself from one’s own time.

Look, the Baseball Hall of Fame Veterans’ Committee is always, and has always been heavily trending toward inducting players from their own era, players they played against.  It’s an old story and in the light of distance, many players don’t belong there who are (Lloyd Waner, “Little Poison” comes to mind whose sole reason is that his HoF brother, Paul, “Big Poison” was there).

When the original list for the 100 Best Players of the 20th Century was compiled, Cal Ripken, Jr, and Ken Griffey, Jr., both active, were on it.  Stan Musial, who, in his era, was every bit the equal of DiMaggio and Ted Williams, was left off.  Brooklyn Dodger fans had such a love/hate relationship that they nick-named him “Stan The Man” (the first to get that moniker).  Musial hit over 3000 hits, which neither DiMag or Williams did, long held the record for doubles, had more homers than DiMaggio, and won more batting titles than Williams.  But when the list was compiled, he was long gone and didn’t milk fame for decades like the other tow.

Or take the “100 Best Comedy shows”. #1, the “Best” comedy of all time? Seinfeld.  When the list was drawn up, Seinfeld had just ended a fabulous run. M*A*S*H, an epic turning point show, was out-ranked by “The Simpsons”.  Point being? Recent comedies did far better than older one.

We are all biased towards our own time.  We didn’t live in 1860, 1863 or 1865.

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By Anarcissie, May 21, 2011 at 9:00 am Link to this comment

Buchanan’s crime was attempting to avert the Civil War through compromise, a probably impossible undertaking.  Now, many people seem to think the Civil War was a good thing and a lot of fun, but it wasn’t for the 620,000 soldiers, mostly young men, who were deprived of their lives, and the untold numbers of civilians who went with them, or the large sections of the country which were economically destroyed—an outcome which was not hard to foresee in 1860.  Buchanan is despised, not because he was particularly bad or incompetent, but because men love wars, especially historians who can write books about them instead of having to fight and die in them.

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By MarthaA, May 20, 2011 at 9:19 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, May 20 at 3:50 am,

The Conservative Republican Revolution that began
in 1980 and all the presidents involved in the
Conservative Revolution, which includes the DLC
Democrats, for a Conservative New World Order
have done more damage to the populace of this
nation and the world than all the other presidents
combined and that’s all I have to say about
that.

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By Inherit The Wind, May 20, 2011 at 3:50 am Link to this comment

MarthaA
You don’t get it We are in agreement.  Do I think Washington was a great President? Yes. Lincoln? Of course. FDR? Definitely! Jackson? Probably. Harding/Coolidge/Hoover? Miserable!
Nixon? (BLeeh!!!!!)
Reagan? I OBVIOUSLY think he was a disgracefully bad, dangerous and harmful President, who damaged this nation.  I just have problems thinking the guy who could have prevented the Civil War and didn’t, a war that is STILL the most singular and scarring event our history is actually a better President than Reagan.

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By MarthaA, May 19, 2011 at 8:55 pm Link to this comment

Worst/best based on what?  The public benefit or private benefit.

Conservatives are the best for private benefit of capitalists.

Liberals are the best for public interests of the populace, the 70%
Majority American Populace.

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By MarthaA, May 19, 2011 at 8:42 pm Link to this comment

Worst/best based on what?  The public benefit or
private benefit.

Conservatives are the best for private benefit of
capitalists.

Liberals are the best for public interests of the
populace, the 70% Majority American Populace.

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By Inherit The Wind, May 19, 2011 at 5:46 pm Link to this comment

MarthaA:

You mistake me: we’ve had 44 Presidents and I rank Ronald Reagan the 41st best, but that’s only because 42 is John Tyler, 43 is James Buchanan, and 44 is George W. Bush.

That means there were/are 40 Presidents better than Reagan INCLUDING such inepts as Grant, Millard Fillmore, Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon (remember HIM????), and Warren G. Harding.

Imagine being a worse President than Nixon or Harding?  Yet Reagan was, easily.

However, since the rise of the Republican Party with Lincoln’s election, I can EASILY agree that Bush and Reagan were the worst since then..even worse than Grant, Harding and (may he burn in Hell) Nixon.

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By MarthaA, May 19, 2011 at 9:45 am Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, May 19 at 9:10 am,

You can think whatever you want, but since the 1980 Conservative
Revolution more harm has come to our nation from corrupt
Conservative Presidents than all the presidents combined from the
beginning of the United States as a nation, because these
conservative presidents not only signed conservatism’s engineered
laws and agenda into effect, but enabled savant education of the
public school system, even college, and allowed corporate fascist
control of the media and continually push for more public interests to
be sold into private control or placed into private control through
their conservative laws than ever in the history of the nation.

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By Inherit The Wind, May 19, 2011 at 9:10 am Link to this comment

Martha,

That’s just because you don’t know anything about Buchanan, the man who let the Union rip itself apart.  Buchanan could have and should have taken steps to prevent secession and the Civil War.  He chose not to.

And Tyler?  Tyler wasn’t even liked by his OWN party!

What about Grant? While he was a great general he ran what may well have been the most corrupt regime in history…and he didn’t have a clue. Grant all his life was taken in by the most crooked people, even after he left office.

Woodrow Wilson was a virulent racist, who, despite being an historian, LOVED “Birth of a Nation” despite its clearly teaparty-like falsifications. He put any anti-war protester in jail, and tried to take the war-making power away from Congress (something only Truman could manage).

By today’s standards Teddy Roosevelt would be a super-liberal Democrat advocating positions left of Andrew Cuomo.

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By Anarcissie, May 19, 2011 at 5:52 am Link to this comment

I don’t see the point of categorizing presidents as ‘best’ or ‘worst’ since the standards of judgement are mixed and often contradictory.  People like Roosevelt (T.), Wilson and Truman are praised by some and damned by others for the same things—basically, advancing American imperialism, or failing to advance it efficiently enough.  Lincoln, the American Bismarck, has been so sacralized that it’s virtually impossible to discuss his regime intelligently, although Gore Vidal has tried.  We have no agreed-upon standards of ‘good’ or ‘bad’ here.  Would it really have been better if George W. Bush had been smarter?  As smart as Cheney?

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By MarthaA, May 18, 2011 at 10:10 pm Link to this comment

I am in agreement that W. Bush and Reagan were
the two worst presidents ever and a close runner
up was greedy DLC Bill Clinton and his
signing of NAFTA caused all the jobs to begin being
sucked out of the United States and right in there
with Bill Clinton is Obama following right along doing
the same thing.

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By Inherit The Wind, May 18, 2011 at 7:50 pm Link to this comment

I strongly disagree that Dubya and Ronald Reagan were the two worst presidents we ever had.

Here’s why:
Dubya is simply the worst President ever.  He did MORE damage to this country even than…

James Buchanan.  While “Old Buck” was letting the nation tear itself part, he was doing it to please the Southern Congressman he had “shared” rooms with for 15 years…his lover.  He sold the nation down the road to war to please a lover.

Almost as bad as Buchanan was John Tyler, first man to attain the Presidency by death, of the equally inept W.H. Harrison.

THEN comes Ronald Reagan, as the 4th worst President, not the 2nd.

After Reagan comes such luminaries as A.Johnson, Grant, Pierce and Harding.

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By MarthaA, May 18, 2011 at 5:35 pm Link to this comment

TDoff, May 17 at 4:22 am,

I did cut and paste your Republican Platform from May 16 at 6:52 pm
on this thread over on Truthdig’s thread ‘This is What Resistance
Looks Like’.  Thank you.

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By Anarcissie, May 18, 2011 at 7:18 am Link to this comment

I don’t think the military has been seriously controlled by Congress since the lead-up to World War 2 in regard to either funding or activities.

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By surfnow, May 18, 2011 at 4:54 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie:
I disagree. There was a time not long ago when the military for example was completely controlled by the Congress ( so, by the people through our representatives)  and the president. Increasingly, more day to day operations on the ground- Iraq was a perfect example- are being conducted by corporations who answer to no one but their boards of directors. ( Like Halliburton andBlackwater. Domestically, another example is our huge prison system- in which there construction and day to day operations ,the day to day operations of which used to be under state and local government control are now operated by private firms. The fact that their profits come from our tax dollars is just adding insult to injury. Privatization was a win-win for conservatives. They actually did shrink government by taking control of much of it out of our hands, but were able at the same time to enrich themselves by controlling the abovementioned corporations.

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By Anarcissie, May 17, 2011 at 7:54 pm Link to this comment

surfnow—They’re not really outside the government.  They’re outside the nominal, visible government, but the government pays for them, and the government also creates the state, and they’re part of the state, and what they do is directed by the same ruling class that directs the government.

Rightists, including Republicans, are not against government.  They love government.  The talk about ‘shrinking the government’ is guff.

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By SarcastiCanuck, May 17, 2011 at 11:32 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If Lincoln were alive today and saw the current GOP,he’d probably shoot himself in the head..

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By MarthaA, May 17, 2011 at 11:20 am Link to this comment

Here is a you tube link about Capitalism that I saved from one of the
other Truthdig threads, can’t remember which one, but it is a good
rendition of what has happened with Capitalism that needs to be
shared here as well:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qOP2V_np2c0&feature=relmfu

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By surfnow, May 17, 2011 at 9:16 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie:
But the dramatic increases you cite- the military,law enforcement etc.- are fast becoming outside of the government, as they become privatized. WE the people are the government, and those areas you cite used to be entirely under our control,increasingly since 1980 they are controlled by private firms- perhaps you’ve heard of Halliburton, Bechtel and Blackwater. The tax money they take may very well from us, but they are not in any stretch of the imagination any longer part of the “public sector.” This was why privatization was such a key component of the insidious conservative revolution.

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By Anarcissie, May 17, 2011 at 9:00 am Link to this comment

surfnow—One way of measuring the size of a government is by noticing its expenditures, which certainly puts Reagan on the side of expanded government, as MarthaA reminds us.  ‘Defense’ (war) expenditures and the wars and imperialism they buy are part of the government! 

However, the big government - small government paradigm as put forward by the major political parties and most of the media is a deception anyway.  We should be looking at the state, the whole social apparatus of institutionalized coercion, which includes those things which are created and supported by the government as well as the government itself, like corporations.  ‘Privatization’ is generally a scheme for moving certain community functions from one part of the state to another: from the nominal government, where they may be subject to public review, to corporations, where their performance will be less visible and more completely subject to ruling-class control. That doesn’t mean anyone is actually freer or better off; the inmate of a private prison is just as imprisoned as the inmate of a regular government prison and may in fact be vulnerable to worse treatment.

What everyone except the small minority of libertarians and anarchists seems to agree is that the way to get needed things done is to coerce people to do them, using as much force as necessary.  Then everyone is surprised when this system produces corruption and abuse; but it doesn’t cause them to question their assumptions.

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By Salome, May 17, 2011 at 7:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

To TDoff’s point#3:  Maine Governor is already at work putting kids to work, forget school.  There are two kinds of people in the world, those who say things like, “I was working at age 11, and it didn’t hurt me”; and those who say, “I was working at age 11, and if I can keep anyone else from suffering what I went through I’m glad to do it”.

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By aacme88, May 17, 2011 at 6:37 am Link to this comment

It is scarily fascinating to watch an entire party of sociopaths, having painted itself further and further into a corner, writhe and rage to avoid cooperating with anybody in order to get out. Better to trash the entire project.

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By surfnow, May 17, 2011 at 4:35 am Link to this comment

BProgress:
Ironically, even Adam Smith, the father of the free market economy understood that there are areas of the public sector that should never,ever become privatized. And he goes to lengths in the Wealth of Nations to specify them- among them, the military, law enforcement and maintenance of the infrastructure; all areas of the public sector that the evil conservatives who are killing us are busily privatizing.

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By TDoff, May 17, 2011 at 4:22 am Link to this comment

MarthaA, Feel free to cut and paste it.

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By MarthaA, May 16, 2011 at 7:46 pm Link to this comment

TDoff, May 16 at 6:52 pm,

Also, you should post your May 16th 6:52pm post on Truthdig’s ‘This
Is What Resistance Looks Like’.  Your post is sorely needed there.  Here
is the link:  http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/this_is_what_resistance_looks_like_20110403/

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By MarthaA, May 16, 2011 at 7:45 pm Link to this comment

TDoff, May 16 at 6:52 pm,

Also, you should post your May 16th 6:52pm post on Truthdig’s ‘This
Is What Resistance Looks Like’.  Your post is sorely need there.  Here
is the link:  http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/this_is_what_resistance_looks_like_20110403/

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By MarthaA, May 16, 2011 at 7:37 pm Link to this comment

TDoff, May 16 at 6:52 pm,

You have a really good grip on the Republican situation.  Now, keep
saying it over and over and over again in the hopes that the
populace will pick up on it and quit supporting a false sense of their
own advantage by voting for Republicans and corporate Democrats.

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By TDoff, May 16, 2011 at 6:52 pm Link to this comment

Why all the doom and gloom about the republican chances in the 2012 presidential campaign? Look at the terrific platform they have made to run on, just the first seven planks of their platform pretty much tell the tale they have to sell:

1. Renege on all the debts The Dummy and his NeoCon Cabal ran up from ‘01-‘09…unless we get our way on

2. Keeping the tax breaks for the top 1% of the richest of the rich, to make certain they pay less taxes than the lazy, shiftless other 99%, and

3. Reduce all this educational crap for the kids of the general populace, they’re never going to amount to anything, anyway, not with the system we have set up, and

4. Get rid of unions. The really rich, the folks who ‘create all the jobs’, don’t need no mobs of poor people telling them how to run their businesses, if they didn’t now how to run them, they wouldn’t be rich (and the secret is, hire less people than you really need, and work their a**es off, paying them   less than they need to live, so they really NEED their jobs, and won’t give the boss any lip), and

5. Cut out this health care boondoggle for old folks, they’re a drag on the economy, anyway, they’re too poor to buy much and they take up a lot of space and use a lot of valuable air and water, so why have them hanging around forever. While we’re at it, we should stop paying them for sitting around on their a**es all day, criticizing us movers and doers, so we’ll cut out Social Security, by privatizing it and letting Wall Street steal it’s ‘Trust Fund’, and

6.This health care for poor kids is another waste, we only want and need healthy kids in our society, sick kids who keep needing doctors aren’t going to be able to work hard, and sustain themselves working the twelve-hour days and six and seven-day weeks we’ll get back to after the unions are gone. So we’ll give the old folks and the poor kids vouchers for health care, and let the insurance companies rip them off, and

7. What’s this ‘Comity’ crap? We don’t play well with others, and it’s our way or the highway, ‘cause ‘god’s’ on our side, which is why we’re always right, totally, far, right.

Geez, a political party that has ‘god’ on their side, how can they miss?

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By BProgress, May 16, 2011 at 4:12 pm Link to this comment

@Surfnow, low taxes, elimination of public services, deregulation, and
privatization of public assets is the foundation of Milton Friedman’s “free-
market” fundamentalist economics theory. They cannot exist without each
other. It’s a utopia that can never possibly work in the real world. (see “The
Shock Doctrine” by Naomi Klein)

@Martha, I understand the concepts you’ve outlined. I’m not entirely sure where
your 70% figure comes from, but that’s a moot point. I would argue that a
third-party starting in key “blue” state elections and moving up thru the
government from a grassroots level would have a much quicker and more
effective result (i.e. New Democratic Party in Canada). Both parties are far too
entrenched in the Wall Street and Main Street interests that you outlined below.
I’m really not sure where you think this awareness is going to come from with
the misinformation that passes for media in this country.

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By berniem, May 16, 2011 at 4:10 pm Link to this comment

Cut the crap! the current incarnation of the republican party is the antithesis of that of Lincoln. It was formed by the rebellion of the ignorant and bigoted “dixiecrats” and shepparded into prominence by the Nixonian southern strategy! Jim Crow is still nothing more than an unrepentent confederate!

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By surfnow, May 16, 2011 at 3:41 pm Link to this comment

BProgress:
Supply side economic policy,which is proving to be the disastrous idiocy most real economists have always agreed on was only one component of the Conservative Revolution’s agenda in the 1980s. Privatization of the majority of government employment and deregulation were- and still are- equally disastrous to our nation.

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By MarthaA, May 16, 2011 at 3:03 pm Link to this comment

BProgress, May 16 at 2:34 pm,

Let’s talk about the American Populace a 70%
majority population in the United States as a
class and culture.

Populous and populace do not
mean the same thing, the words are specifically
different, as populous refers to many
inhabitants; while populace refers
specifically to the common people, the
masses; the majority common population, the
American Populace or Back Street America that is
being attacked, apart from the minority
populations of Wall Street and Main Street who
are the attackers
and have been the
attackers ever since the Conservative Revolution
began in the 1980’s, which is why I use the word
populace, instead of the Right-Wing’s
most preferred populous

It is more important than ever that the populace
of the United States, the Left, the Majority
Populace, Back Street America all over the United
States be represented by a political party,
because the cumulative voting strength and
contributions of the 70% Majority Common
Population of the United States as a united class
and culture are all that stands a chance to
counter balance the fascist leanings of the
current Right-Wing Supreme Court led by Roberts
and his Right-Wing Cronies and the corporate
interests of Wall Street and Main Street.

Wall Street has the Republican Party;  Main
Street has the Democratic Party; and the
American Populace have no political
party
and are unrepresented in the making
and enforcing of legislated law and order in the
United States of America, which is why the
American Populace is being tyrannized.

Even though it appears to be Main Street being
attacked, it is more specifically a Back Street
attack upon the American Populace and the
infrastructure for the American Populace that is
causing and has caused the destruction of small
town Main Streets across the USA and
imprisonment of a large majority of America’s
populace because of oppressive and tyrannical
laws made by Wall Street and supported by Main
Street to oppress the populace and destroy the
populace’s public school system.

If the 70% majority American Populace as a class
and culture, do not choose to be ruled by Wall
Street supported by Main Street, then Back
Street must always forgo backlash
votes
between the Democratic Party and
the Republican Party and secure a political party
of their own with representatives for America’s
populace in government of the United States by
whatever expedient means necessary in order
that the American Populace as a class and
culture will be able to have an equal part in the
making and enforcing of legislated law and order
in the best interest of the 70% majority American
Populace as a class and culture in the United
States that is currently being assaulted by
oppressive and tyrannical laws.

It is not necessary for the American Populace to
take over the Republican Party that represents
Wall Street’s American Aristocracy, as the Tea
Party did to help the Right; but the American
Populace, who are the Left, do have to take over
the Democratic Party of Main Street America’s
Middle Class, because the Democratic Party is the
only political party of the two that can be secured
for the 70% majority populace of the United
States, because it can be made to represent the
entire American Populace and form a balance, at
least until more political parties that are equal
with the Democratic Party and the Republican
Party can be formed through legislation to
represent the New Middle Class. 

Awareness in the 70% majority populace must
emerge and when awareness is sufficient to
establish a new order that will represent the
70% majority populace in the making and
enforcing of legislated law and order in the best
interest of the Majority Populace in the United
States it must be done to counter the Fascist
tyranny of the Corporate Right.

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By BProgress, May 16, 2011 at 2:34 pm Link to this comment

@MarthaA,

You’re confining yourself to the narrow worldview of American superiority. Your
points on Ronald Reagan are well taken. BUT, “supply-side economics,” aka
“trickle-down economics,” aka Chicago School Economics actually started in
this country under Jimmy Carter when he reduced the Capital Gains tax from
39% to 28%. The Economic Theory was first introduced to the world during the
CIA and ITT inspired coup d’etat in Chile in 1976. Ever since then, the oligarchs
of the western world have been applying there shock therapy to third world
nations all over the planet, whether thru CIA inspired coups or direct US
military intervention in order to strip sovereign nations of their national
resources and export potential and funnel all that wealth up to the top leaving
nothing but poverty in their wake. Now they have their sights set on the US, and
they will not stop until everything is privatized and the middle class is
eradicated from existence. Picking on Reagan and G Dub because of their failed
tax policies is an exercise in futility. Every President since and including Nixon
has been nothing but a puppet for our overlords. Making boogie men out of
Republicans, when both parties are complicit in this heist accomplishes nothing
except creating further divisions in our society and playing right into the elites
divide and conquer strategy.

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By Big B, May 16, 2011 at 2:06 pm Link to this comment

I love that every four years people seem to turn their lonely eyes to Ron Paul.

But keep in mind, while anti-war (for financial reasons only) this libertarian scumbag would sell whats left of our souls to wall street and have everybody drilling oil and gas wells in their front yards. The USA has had enough of the GOP’s brand of free market libertarian voodoo. We can’t takes no more.

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By surfnow, May 16, 2011 at 1:26 pm Link to this comment

MarthaA:
The absolute two worst presidents in Amerikan history were W.Bush and Ronald Reagan. And the only thing H.W.Bush ( another lousy CE but no where as bad as his idiot son)  ever got right was during the primaries when he called supply-side, “voodoo” economics. I agree, and I also agree what we need is good,old fashioned Keynesian, demand-side economic policy. However, don’t discount the Conservative Revolutions love of privatization of all government employment. That is the policy that has directly dismantled union membership and is eliminating millions of decent paying middle class jobs.

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By MarthaA, May 16, 2011 at 1:01 pm Link to this comment

Apparently my link got jinxed.  Here it is again.  The
last action role of Ronald Reagan that put him on
the Republican radar:

Ronald Reagan played the President in “A Turkey
For The President:”

http://ronald-reagan-tv-role.blogspot.com/

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By Octopodian, May 16, 2011 at 12:31 pm Link to this comment

They rode the tiger of social conservatism in order to get elected.  It’s a disingenuous strategy that only works if you can feed it the occasional bit of red meat, and, of course, hang on.

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By MarthaA, May 16, 2011 at 12:07 pm Link to this comment

surfnow, May 16 at 10:25 am,

Reagan was a diseased Democrat that got Alzheimer’s disease
and played the part of a president in a movie “A Turkey For the
President” http://ronald-reagan-tv-role.blogspot.com/and was
convinced by the Republican’s that he could handle being a
Republican Governor and then President, so Reagan changed from
a Democrat to a Republican, because it didn’t mean anything to
him and being Governor and President was much more profitable
than just playing a president. 

Reagan did not actually run anything, he remembered his lines
well until he got into trouble, then he couldn’t remember anything,
and because he couldn’t or wouldn’t remember anything, his
whole administration was deemed not guilty, but were as guilty as
guilty can be of selling guns to Iran in what is known as the Iran
Contra Scandal. http://www.u-s-history.com/pages/h1889.html

And his “Supply Side Economics” that was put into effect while
they had him in office is what got the United States in the
condition it is in today.
  “As president, Reagan implemented
sweeping new political and economic initiatives. His supply-side
economic policies, dubbed “Reaganomics,” advocated reducing tax
rates to spur economic growth, controlling the money supply to
reduce inflation, deregulation of the economy, and reducing
government spending.”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ronald_Reagan 
Anyone who thinks Ronald Reagan was a
good president for the majority population has to be members of
the Epsilon-Minus Semi-Moron Brave New World Society of Aldous Huxley
—a very happy bunch who have no ability to
understand anything.

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By Morpheus, May 16, 2011 at 11:35 am Link to this comment

The country is weeping. We have a huge leadership deficit.

Memo to America: Stop waiting for Democrats and Republicans to save you.

“WAKE UP!”  -  JOIN THE REVOLUTION
Read “Common Sense 3.1” at ( http://www.revolution2.osixs.org )

We don’t have to live like this anymore. “Spread the News”

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By LT, May 16, 2011 at 11:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Lincoln might understand them perfectly.
He appeased and played to the notions of “white supremacy” during his election campaign.

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By surfnow, May 16, 2011 at 10:25 am Link to this comment

MarthA:
You’re both wrong. The Gipper meant exactly what he said with ” Government is the problem, not the solution.”  The reason debt balloned under Reagan and every other R since, was the mushrooming defense costs. Rs have no problem spending when it’s for the military or law enforcement, but that doesn’t mean Reagan wanted bigger government. That’s why privatization was such a key component of the Conservative Revolution, and still is.

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By MarthaA, May 16, 2011 at 8:37 am Link to this comment

TDoff, May 16 at 8:33 am,

But he would destroy as much as possible before he dies and then
leave us with possibly a Cheney type VP move up.

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By TDoff, May 16, 2011 at 8:33 am Link to this comment

Those folks excited by Ron Paul’s candidacy may have a point. At his age, he should die by about late January/early February 2013.

And better a dead President than the last couple we’ve had.

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By Paul_GA, May 16, 2011 at 8:15 am Link to this comment

Reminds me of one of my favorite sayings from P.J. O’Rourke: “Democrats are the party that says government can make you richer, smarter, taller, and get the chickweed out of your lawn. Republicans are the party that says government doesn’t work, and then they get elected and prove it.”

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By MarthaA, May 16, 2011 at 7:33 am Link to this comment

surfnow, May 16 at 6:47 am,

Actually Republicans increased government, so
Republicans are not opposed to big government,
Republicans are only opposed to government that
supports the populace, all the rest of Republican
opposition is sophistry.

Also, Republicans outrageously increased the
deficit, so how could one legitimately say
Republicans are opposed to the deficit in deed. 
Of course Republicans are opposed to the deficit
in Conservative and Republican sophistry, but
definitely not in practice.

So, Anarcissie is correct in her assessment.

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By mike lemmon, May 16, 2011 at 7:32 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

My fondest wish is for the SOuth to secede. We should have freed the slaves and let the south go. From day 1, they have dragged our country down with their immorality, sloth and ugly,ugly politics.

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By surfnow, May 16, 2011 at 6:47 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie:
Ronald Reagan’s favorite saying was ” Government is the problem, not the solution.” So which Republican Party are you referring to when you write they are not opposed to big government?

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By Anarcissie, May 16, 2011 at 5:25 am Link to this comment

The Republican Party is not against big government, and the ‘deficit’ issue is completely vacuous.

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By Paul_GA, May 16, 2011 at 5:16 am Link to this comment

Establishment commentators like Dionne ignore Ron Paul because they wish the good doctor and his ideas would just dry up and blow away, prisnersdilema. Someone like Dr. Paul could upset the applecart, y’know.

Considering what the applecart is like, I for one would be delighted to see it upset ...

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By E in Korea, May 16, 2011 at 4:02 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Imagine what would happen today to a Republican who said this: “Having never been States, either in substance or in name, outside of the Union, whence this magical omnipotence of ‘State rights’ . ... Much is said about the ‘sovereignty’ of the States; but the word, even, is not in the national Constitution. ... ” “

I can’t imagine many GOP candidates even putting together a sentence that complex.

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By Daniel Haszard, May 16, 2011 at 3:33 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, a potential Republican presidential candidate credits his success in government to the business skills he learned as an Eli Lilly executive.
The Eli Lilly *Viva Zyprexa” scam occurred 1996-2003 so Mitch Daniels was 4 years into the thick of it,reaped $27 million from Lilly stocks.

Eli Lilly’s #1 cash cow Zyprexa drug sale $40 billion dollars so far,has a ten times greater risk of causing type 2 diabetes over the non-user of Zyprexa. So,here we have a conflict of interest that this same company also is a big profiteer of diabetes treatment.
FIVE at FIVE
The Zyprexa antipsychotic drug,whose side effects can include weight gain and diabetes, was sold for “children in foster care, people who have trouble sleeping, elderly in nursing homes.”
Five at Five was the Zyprexa sales rep slogan, meaning 5mg dispensed at 5pm would keep patients quiet.
It’s as addictive as tobacco,because withdrawal is accompanied by severe insomnia for 6 weeks. 
—Daniel Haszard

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By ardee, May 16, 2011 at 2:41 am Link to this comment

Anyone with a passion for reforming this nations policies and paths would find dissatisfaction with all candidates from either major party.

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By zack, May 16, 2011 at 12:25 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Dionne would prefer to keep his readers in the dark
about Ron Paul’s candidacy. A true anti-war candidate
scares the establishment and their warmongering
figurehead Obama.

Premium job search assistance - http://www.jobwaltz.com

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By prisnersdilema, May 15, 2011 at 11:53 pm Link to this comment

You seem to have forgotten Ron Paul….lots of people are exited by his candidacy,
especially he part about auditing the federal reserve..

I have a feeling he Republicans, don’t feel any threat from Obama, so their saving their
money for next time. Obama is another Republicrat like Clinton, only more weasely.

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By Virginia777, May 15, 2011 at 10:14 pm Link to this comment

oh yeah, Abraham Lincoln would not be happy with the Republican party in the state it is in, and how!

Lincoln could not stand extremism.

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By MarthaA, May 15, 2011 at 8:45 pm Link to this comment

E. J. Dionne, Jr. doesn’t appear to be aware that the
Republican Party has always been an extremist warring party,
but not until the Conservative Revolution in the 1980’s did the
Republican Party decide to take over the world and destroy their own
country’s infrastructure that supports the American Populace with the
help of a New cooperating Democratic Party Middle Class, and they
have accomplished their mission.

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By TDoff, May 15, 2011 at 8:37 pm Link to this comment

If Lincoln is weeping because of the current GOPer candidate list and their perverted, contorted, hypocritical stated ‘positions’, he’s in good company.

There were a group of people marching in my city after church today, carrying signs that said:

‘JESUS WEEPZ

‘CUZ

THE GOP SUX’

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