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Will Liberals Learn From Adversity?

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Posted on Dec 30, 2010

By E.J. Dionne, Jr.

Was 2010 American liberalism’s Waterloo? How are we to square the achievement of so many goals that have long been on progressive wish lists with the resounding defeat suffered by supporters of these measures in November?

Let’s begin with what is a most painful fact for liberals: Conservatism, a doctrine that seemed moribund on election night in 2008, enjoyed a far more rapid comeback than all liberals and even most conservatives anticipated.

More than that, the current brand of conservatism is far more zealous than the political disposition of either Ronald Reagan or George W. Bush. Barry Goldwater went down to a thunderous defeat in 1964 after he declared that “extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice.” That might as well be the working slogan of the tea party movement.

The energy in our politics has shifted rightward with an abruptness that was inconceivable in the final weeks of the 2008 campaign, when Barack Obama could call a rally and count on tens of thousands to materialize almost at an instant.

If there is one thing the Obama White House most underestimates, it is the dispirited mood of its troops. This is not just about “the left” but, more important, about his broader rank-and-file who expected that he would usher in more change, enjoy more success in confronting his Republican opponents, and prove more skilled in shifting the nation’s political dialogue in a progressive direction.

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For the president’s loyalists, of course, this indictment is profoundly unfair. He inherited a mess at home and abroad. The economic downturn began on Bush’s watch, but its bitter fruits were harvested after Obama took office. By contrast, Franklin Roosevelt took power after Herbert Hoover had presided over three of the most miserable years in American economic history. Blame was firmly fixed on Hoover by the time FDR showed up with his jaunty smile and contagious optimism.

And, yes, there is the small issue of Obama’s real achievements, the health care law above all. If insuring 32 million more Americans is not an enormous social reform, then nothing can be said to count as change. The now well-rehearsed list of additional accomplishments—from Wall Street and student loan reform to the end of “don’t ask, don’t tell” to the simple fact that the economy’s catastrophic slide was halted and reversed—would, in the abstract, do any administration proud.

What, then, can Obama and his discouraged allies do to regain the initiative?

For starters, they must restore a functional relationship between the White House and its sometimes-friends, sometimes-critics on the left. Too often, the White House has been caught whining about its progressive critics. The president’s aides act as if whatever Obama happens to decide is the only sensible and realistic thing to do. For the left to ask Obama to be bolder in testing the limits of the possible means it is doing its job of pushing the president to do more, and to do it faster. Conservatives have mastered this approach. Why can’t liberals do the same?

But too often, progressives have spent more time complaining about what wasn’t done than in finding ways to build on what has actually been achieved. It took decades to complete the modern Social Security system, and years to move from tepid to robust civil rights laws and from modest to comprehensive environmental regulation. Impatience is indispensable to getting reform started; patience is essential to seeing its promise fulfilled.

And both the liberals and Obama need to escape the bubbles of legislative and narrowly ideological politics and re-engage the country on what can only be called a spiritual level. Modern American liberalism is not some abstract and alien creed. At its best, it marries a practical, get-things-done approach to government with a devotion to fairness, justice and compassion. These sentiments are grounded in the nation’s religious traditions and also in our commitment to community-building that Alexis de Tocqueville so appreciated.

Conservatives talk so much about first principles that they seem to forget how difficult it is to govern effectively. Liberals talk so much about specific programs that they forget how much citizens care about the values that undergird those programs and the moral choices that nurture those values.

In 2010, American liberals should have been cured of any overconfidence. Now, they and the president need to rekindle the hope that this year will be most remembered not for the defeats, but for the first steps taken down a more promising road.

E.J. Dionne’s e-mail address is ejdionne(at)washpost.com.
   
© 2010, Washington Post Writers Group


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Go Right Young Man's avatar

By Go Right Young Man, January 11, 2011 at 10:40 am Link to this comment

Still with us Martha?

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, January 9, 2011 at 3:24 pm Link to this comment

Conservative politicians try to claim they are “fiscal conservative”, but by the sophistry and chicanery nature of being a politician, conservative politicians are not fiscal conservative at all.
 
All politicians lead constituents in their best interest and cooperate to lead non-constituents against their best interest; this is the nature of politics, therefore there can be no fiscal conservatives among conservative politicians in Congress, only “political conservatives”, it is the nature of the beast.

All conservative politicians on both sides of the aisle through sophistry and chicanery represent the best interest of Big Business, Big Corporations, Big Insurance, Big Banks, and Big Industry constituents and the American Populace receive no representation at all.

Only real progressive liberals represent the 219,000,000 American Populace, and as GRYM says there aren’t any liberals in Congress to represent the majority American Populace——the American Middle Class is NOT the American Populace.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 9, 2011 at 12:43 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, January 9 at 5:09

Alas. you use terms like ‘conservative’ and ‘liberal’ exactly as others use these terms.  How else, if not for attempts at uniqueness, do you explain your deriding others for being incoherent when you yourself do the same?  This has made no sense from the beginning.

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By Anarcissie, January 9, 2011 at 12:09 pm Link to this comment

Alas, GRYM, uniqueness is not something one needs to strive for; it is inexorably thrust upon us.  It is the great gulf between soul and soul.  We’re stuck with it, even when trying to hide behind traditions and conventions.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 9, 2011 at 1:13 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie, - “If I have failed to express this difference so far, the prospects for my doing so in the future are very slight.”

-

Conservative and non-metaphorical conservative:

You yourself use these and other common terms in order to describe a group by political classification.  Yet you write that others doing the same is meaningless i.e., incoherent(?).

I think you’re trying to hard to be unique.

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By Anarcissie, January 9, 2011 at 12:58 am Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 9 at 4:37 am:

Anarcissie,

Re: non-metaphorical conservative.

You and Martha each have your perceptions of what an contemporary Western conservative is.  You both use this term in describing various individuals and groups.

Aside from personal perceptions I’m still unclear how your use of the term differs from Mr. Dionne.

If I have failed to express this difference so far, the prospects for my doing so in the future are very slight.

Actually, I don’t think I use the term ‘conservative’ very much except in the common dictionary sense of ‘desiring to avoid change, too keep things the same’, applying the same to Mr. O and most of the Democratic Party.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 8, 2011 at 11:37 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

Re: non-metaphorical conservative.

You and Martha each have your perceptions of what an contemporary Western conservative is.  You both use this term in describing various individuals and groups.

Aside from personal perceptions I’m still unclear how your use of the term differs from Mr. Dionne.

-

I see no cohesive, monolithic, individuals or groups running the world.  The globe is fluid and dynamic and ever-changing.  The same with power struggles all over the world.  Both inside and outside of governments.

The globe is a very dangerous place precisely because it’s inhabited by human beings.  Currently there are five major governmental players, along with over a hundred others in the U.N., litigating international law and the use of force and self defense.  Each and every one of these nations are working, first and foremost, in their own best interest.  All with their own dangerous neighbors large and small.

Then we have the private movers and shakers all over the world.  The hundreds of billionaires and tens of thousands of global corporations in every nation and every nationality and culture.  Each working in their own best interest.  Everything from farming to pharmaceuticals to oil to steel to Heroin to child prostitution to human slaves.  Human beings are human all over the globe.

There is no one group or band of Oligarchs in control of the world.  And the United States is not the cause of the world’s ills.

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By MarthaA, January 8, 2011 at 8:53 pm Link to this comment

Conservatives politicians do not willingly make creative change going forward, their only willing changes are to return to the way it was prior to progressive change.  An example of conservative is when the alphabet and the numbering system were made, they became permanent and are now conservative, in stasis, and do not change, which is beneficial, but everything conservative is not beneficial.  Political Conservatives will return to stasis, while progressive liberals choose creative change for the better.

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By Anarcissie, January 8, 2011 at 7:38 pm Link to this comment

GRYM—Having read the small print on the package, I understood that Mr. O was a conservative long before he was elected.  He definitively dumped the proggies off his bandwagon as soon as he had the nomination sewed up, in May ‘08.  So far, he does not appear to have learned anything during his presidential career, but maybe he will surprise me one of these days.

By ‘non-metaphorical conservative’ I meant conservative according to the dictionary definition: someone who wants to keep things the way they are.  The word ‘conservative’ is used to mean a great variety of things, many of which are not conservative in the original meaning of the word at all.  But I’m being conservative about it here.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 8, 2011 at 5:39 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

Perhaps one reason President Obama has not changed many of the foreign policy and security protocols is that, since taking office, he has learned a great deal about how the world operates on a global scale. - Perhaps he’s learned that it’s not the United States that’s wrong with the world and that we, quite literally, live in a dangerous neighborhood.

Seeing that I don’t believe there’s a small group of Oligarchs running the world I am left to conclude that Mr. Obama has reversed himself on nearly every security protocol he had railed against for nearly a decade because he now observes a much different world from 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

All of this leads me to conclude that 99.999% of the talk here on TruthDig regarding evil Neo-Con’s in the White House bent on destroying the world was just so much imaginary conspiratorial garbage.

In other words; perhaps the globe is exactly as Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama claim it is and, you’re just simply wrong?

What, exactly, is a non-metaphorical conservative?

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By MarthaA, January 8, 2011 at 1:09 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 8 at 3:09 pm,

“We sometimes choose absolute nonsense because in our foolishness we see in that nonsense the easiest means for attaining a supposed advantage.  But when all that is explained and worked out on paper (which is perfectly possible, for it is contemptible and senseless to suppose that some laws of nature man will never understand), then certainly so-called desires will no longer exist.  For if a desire should come into conflict with reason we shall then reason and not desire, because it will be impossible retaining our reason to be senseless in our desires, and in that way knowingly act against reason and desire to injure ourselves.” —‘Notes From The Underground’ by Fyodor Dostoyevsky 

With regard to GRYM’s post, I agree with Dostoyevsky, GRYM and those like GRYM are choosing absolute nonsense, which has been transpiring from the time of President Nixon, through Goldwater, Presidents Reagan, Bush I, Bush II and continues to this day.

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By Anarcissie, January 8, 2011 at 12:34 pm Link to this comment

Mr. O is certainly appears to be a small-c, non-metaphorical conservative; he has largely continued the policies of his predecessors in several important fields, including maintenance of empire by means of war and terror, expansion of domestic repression, and extremely dubious financial schemes.  He is not changing the existing order of things.

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By MarthaA, January 8, 2011 at 12:30 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 8 at 3:09 pm,

Other than talk and belief, if you know what liberal is, explain how President Obama is liberal to the majority American Populace.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 8, 2011 at 10:09 am Link to this comment

MarthaA, - “President Obama has consistently followed the Conservative agenda. “

-

You’re saying that you do not see the reality in President Obama as a liberal/progressive president of nation in which only 8% of voters identify with an progressive agenda or ideals.

So you’re saying we disagree.  I’m OK with that.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 8, 2011 at 1:54 am Link to this comment

MarthaA,
That was great! Perfect in a nutshell! I’m still not convinced Obama is a Conservative—but there’s a lot of factual evidence that can be interpreted that way. Certainly his caving in so he can reach a “compromise” makes him look that way.  And certainly the EFFECT is that way.  The man hasn’t vetoed one bill yet.

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By MarthaA, January 7, 2011 at 9:28 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 8 at 12:11 am,

MarthaA’s Question: “What ever gave you the idea that President Obama is liberal?” —MarthaA, January 7 at 7:04 am Truthdig Thread ‘Will Liberals Learn From Diversity’

GRYM answered:  “I believe President Obama is the most progressive president the U.S. has seen since Franklin D. Roosevelt.  I believe Obama considers himself squarely within the 20% of self-described American liberals.

Does that answer all your questions?” —Go Right Young Man, January 8 at 12:11 am

MarthaA’s Answer:  No, you did not answer my question at all.  Belief propaganda is no answer.

What one believes is politically irrelevant, all that matters is what one does.

You are peddling Right Wing Conservative subjective belief propaganda that is not based in objective fact.

The objective facts are that President Obama has helped the Conservatives squander the country’s money and route the country’s wealth that hasn’t been squandered away from being of benefit to the 219 Million members of the American Populace to the coffers of the 6,000 wealthiest families in America, which has nothing whatsoever to do with progressive.

President Obama has consistently followed the Conservative agenda.

Satan believes in God, so religion doesn’t settle for strictly belief in God, and politically no one can settle for strictly belief in Obama; try to learn to talk about something other than your beliefs, as belief alone just doesn’t make the grade.

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By Anarcissie, January 7, 2011 at 7:51 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 7 at 6:18 pm:

Anarcissie,

LOL…..and your #1 answer is?  YOUR definition of a leftist doesn’t jibe with others so, therefor, others use the term incoherently.

No, the correct statement of my view is, ‘Others’ definition(s) of “leftist” are self-contradictory, therefore they are using the term incoherently.’  My particular take on the term accords with historical usage and is consistent; theirs isn’t.  Same with ‘liberal’.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 7, 2011 at 7:11 pm Link to this comment

MarthaA,

I believe President Obama is the most progressive president the U.S. has seen since Franklin D. Roosevelt.  I believe Obama considers himself squarely within the 20% of self-described American liberals.

Does that answer all your questions?

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By MarthaA, January 7, 2011 at 5:13 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 6 at 2:59 pm,

Babble on, as you ignore the truth and my questions January 7 at 7:04 am on this thread.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 7, 2011 at 4:48 pm Link to this comment

ITW,

My sincerest hope is that you stick to your word.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 7, 2011 at 4:09 pm Link to this comment

GRYM:
I am done with you. You never had an interest in honest debate, merely in “blowing up” discussions at TD with your Fox Views.
I know you’ll try to bait me but, hopefully, I’ll be strong enough not to take the bait anymore.
I do know when you challenged me to a bet, you backed down because I wouldn’t accept any standard other than facts and logic.
So where’s YOUR honor?
Enough of you.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 7, 2011 at 2:10 pm Link to this comment

ITW,

TruthDig doesn’t warn or ban people for asking questions.  Nor do they warn or ban people for expecting others to conduct themselves with honor.

It’s simply pathetic that you accuse me of lying and twisting statistics then refuse to answer the most basic questions at the heart of your accusations.

Your complete lack of honor is transparent to even the most casual observer.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 7, 2011 at 1:44 pm Link to this comment

Exactly MarthaA.  But that doesn’t keep him from impugning my honor.  I clicked “Report this” after he posted that.  If more than one person clicks, TD reviews it.

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By MarthaA, January 7, 2011 at 1:29 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 7 at 6:07 pm,

I checked down through this thread and all I have seen is what you say Gallup said, which means nothing.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 7, 2011 at 1:18 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

LOL…..and your #1 answer is?  YOUR definition of a leftist doesn’t jibe with others so, therefor, others use the term incoherently.

I do believe well over 90% of the planet, by your definition, should consider themselves leftists.  It’s not up to you to insist I use your terms.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 7, 2011 at 1:07 pm Link to this comment

ITW,

You go to extraordinary lengths to avoid answering questions. - Not only is your behavior pathetic, it’s transparent.

Let’s try this for the fourth time.  This time I’ll make it easier on you and request that you answer only one question.

Explain how Gallup’s stats are faulty and based on the false premise that liberalism equals socialism.

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By Anarcissie, January 7, 2011 at 12:48 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 6 at 9:55 pm:

‘Anarcissie, - “‘leftist’: people who desire more peace, freedom and equality than they see around them at the moment.”

A wonderfully moral answer.  It’s also a very safe answer.  In my opinion you just described over 90% of the human beings on the planet.  Which does little to describe your socio-political leanings and/or philosophy.

If I believe loosing three nuclear weapons on Israel would bring us all such peace and equality may I too refer to myself as a ‘leftist’?’

You can refer to yourself as a leftist no matter what you do, because you have freedom of speech.  However, if you’re going to speak coherently, and you use my definition of leftist, you can’t go around advocating bombing programs.

I don’t think that, at present, most people actually, materially desire peace, freedom and equality.  They certainly don’t vote for them or work for them, even when the personal cost is very low.  For instance, in the 2008 U.S. presidential election, there were several candidates for the nomination of both major parties, and several minor-party candidates, who supported ending the U.S.‘s numerous imperial wars; none of them, to my knowledge, ever got out of the single digits in polls, and of course they came nowhere near being nominated or elected.  Wars are very popular as long as they’re quick and cheap.  As for freedom, we still appear to have majority public support for the domestic-repression aspects of the so-called ‘War on Terror’ and for that egregious crime against humanity known as the Drug War.  I could go on but I think you can get the picture.

My political aim is to replace the present social order, based on violence, fraud and terror, with another based on voluntary, non-coercive institutions and relations.  Naturally, this program must be advanced non-violently and honestly, so it’s not very popular.  I have a long way to go!  But I can’t see any other way.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 7, 2011 at 11:47 am Link to this comment

You don’t like an answer, you say someone has no honor.

I finally clicked “Report this”.

IMHO, it is the people who think like you who sank our economy, got us into the war in Iraq, have justified serious impingements of our liberties, and have destroyed any hope of true bi-partisan governance.

IOW, people like you are destroying our nation.

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By MarthaA, January 7, 2011 at 2:04 am Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 6 at 2:59 pm,

“You’re the reason why I write that it’s time for many liberals to do some true refection and realize they are not the angels of compassion and all things good.

Here’s a bit of “truth” for you to chew on.

Wall St., the insurance industry, the pharmaceutical industry, all three major auto industry companies and the trial lawyers lobby gave more money to Sen. Obama and the democratic party than each gave to Sen. McCain and the Republican party in 2007-08.” —GRYM

MarthaA’s answer:  What ever gave you the idea that President Obama is liberal?  President Obama is a Conservative on the Left representing the Left’s American Middle Class only, which does not include the Left’s 210 Million strong American Populace of which I am a member.  Like you, many of them think they are being represented by Republicans or Democrats, but neither Republicans nor Democrats represent the Left’s 210 Million American Populace that fall short of the prestigious class and culture of the American Middle Class academics and Corporate and Elite Class and Culture of the American Aristocracy, which is why what the populace wants has no pull with Congress or the President.

I told you what Conservatives represent and Conservatives represent control over the populace for their benefit no matter what side they are on. The American Middle Class in the U.S. is separated from the majority American Populace and, though collaborating with the American Aristocracy, is separate from the American Aristocracy, and conservatively protect their own class and culture, apart from the American Populace, as there are two conservative ruling classes in the United States, a situation you may not have the ability to understand, but because there are two ruling classes, the 210 Million strong American Populace are subjects and have no separate political representation for their best interest whatsoever.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 6, 2011 at 11:36 pm Link to this comment

ITW,

You go to extraordinary lengths to avoid answering questions. 

You have no honor, Sir.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 6, 2011 at 11:19 pm Link to this comment

GRYM:
You are a joke, a caricature of someone trying to present an argument with bent facts.

I’d say your “facts” could always be turned around:

How about: “60% of Americans REJECT Conservatism”?  DUHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

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By Go Right Young Man, January 6, 2011 at 5:06 pm Link to this comment

ITW,

You go to extraordinary lengths to avoid answering questions after taking a position.

Let me try this for the third time.

- Using my words, not your own, pleas do point out my lies

-Explain how Gallup’s stats are faulty and based on the false premise that liberalism equals socialism.

- Explain why only 20% of American respondents in nine nation-wide polls claim to identify themselves as “liberal”.

- Explain how I have skewed statistical data to my benefit.

Or do the much more difficult thing, the honorable thing, and explain how you have been entirely incorrect and misguided in all your previous comments on the subject.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 6, 2011 at 4:55 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, - “‘leftist’: people who desire more peace, freedom and equality than they see around them at the moment.”

-

A wonderfully moral answer.  It’s also a very safe answer.  In my opinion you just described over 90% of the human beings on the planet.  Which does little to describe your socio-political leanings and/or philosophy.

If I believe loosing three nuclear weapons on Israel would bring us all such peace and equality may I too refer to myself as a ‘leftist’?

Report this

By Inherit The Wind, January 6, 2011 at 3:28 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie:
He’s looking for whatever it takes to justify his position. If you can describe conservatives and moderates as people who like mustard on their hot dogs, he’ll take that.  Whatever works for him.

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By Anarcissie, January 6, 2011 at 1:32 pm Link to this comment

GRYM—I describe myself as a ‘leftist’, and I describe leftists as people who desire more peace, freedom and equality than they see around them at the moment.  For most definitions of the words I know about, I would not call myself a ‘progressive’, a ‘liberal’, a ‘moderate’ or a ‘conservative’, but given the mushiness of way these words are generally used, I suppose others might use one or more of them on me.  Does this help, or were you looking for something else?

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By Inherit The Wind, January 6, 2011 at 12:57 pm Link to this comment

MarthaA
You’re getting nowhere—now GRYM is going back to his own, personal definition of “bigotry”, which, to him, seems to mean you don’t accept his POV as valid even when it’s back up with questionable or even false facts. That makes you a “bigot”

We went down this road where GRYM wouldn’t even accept the Merriam-Webster definition, constantly parsing it to edit out what didn’t match what HE wants “bigot” to mean.

It’s a very annoying, sophist method of argument. I was just as pissed-off when Spike Lee used it several years back to insist Blacks couldn’t be “racist”, but refused to actually explain that he was using a radically different definition of “racist” than most of us do, and thus was using it to excuse racially based bigotry and actions by a few Blacks that when called “racist”, allowed him to say “But they are not racist”...

Sophistry.  Nothing but sophistry.  GRYM plays his Humpty-Dumpty word games because he has no basis for his arguments.  For GRYM, words like “bigot” and “liberal” and “moderate” and “conservative” and even “hate” have very different meanings than for most Americans. But rather than use more precise words with more agreed-on meanings, he persists in the deliberate MISUSE of these words to try to push his POV across.  But GRYM will be the first to leap all over a Clinton for saying “it depends what the meaning of ‘is’ is.”

Sophistry.  Waste of time…But that’s how he argues.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 6, 2011 at 9:59 am Link to this comment

MarthaA,

You’re the reason why I write that it’s time for many liberals to do some true refection and realize they are not the angels of compassion and all things good.  They simply believe in a different approach to the same goals other men and woman hold.

Let me be perfectly clear that I don’t believe this of all liberals.  In fact, most are not nearly as nasty and bigoted as you appear to be on these pages.  You appear to actually enjoy making enemies of those who think and see the world differently. - It’s called bigotry.

-

Here’s a bit of “truth” for you to chew on. 

Wall St., the insurance industry, the pharmaceutical industry, all three major auto industry companies and the trial lawyers lobby gave more money to Sen. Obama and the democratic party than each gave to Sen. McCain and the Republican party in 2007-08.

Try fitting that into your narrative.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 6, 2011 at 7:13 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

Perhaps you should come right out and describe yourself in order to show the rest of the globe how wrong they are in how they describe themselves.

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By Anarcissie, January 6, 2011 at 2:43 am Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 5 at 10:20 pm:

‘... You dare to condemn all who use common phrases and terms in order to make an overall point.  A point which is understood by many others.  In fact, it seems, most people well understand these terms. ...’

Yet you and they can’t define or explain the terms, which leads to such complete absurdities as asserting that a bunch of rich people are calling for the equalization of wealth.

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By MarthaA, January 6, 2011 at 12:08 am Link to this comment

GRYM, Here is a post by Ruth Conniff from ICH about Ralph Nader’s correction of the NY Times about the fact that there is also a political Left, that the Right’s war with the Right is not in any way the Left, as the Right tries to paint the far Right-Wing Tea Party.  She says there are no liberals in Congress representing the Left:

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article27202.htm

Liberals are the Left and there is a need in Congress for Liberals to represent the Left, but the Left goes unrepresented, and the Left is the majority of the population of the United States, in need of liberal representation in Congress so that the Left will be a part in the making and enforcing of legislated law and order.

The Conservative Right Wing of our nation is trying to make our country fly with only one wing, the Right-Wing, and are using all means to accomplish that end, but our country can’t fly without both wings.  All equations in whatever form have to be balanced and it is plain to see that conservatives are doing their best to delete the liberal side of the equation, but we are still here, all 210,000,000 of us.

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By MarthaA, January 5, 2011 at 11:18 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 5 at 7:12 pm,

Liberal is favoring the masses of population that make up the majority of the country and rely on liberal government for jobs, etc.  Conservative is favoring the profit of Corporations, Big Business and the Elite.  Liberal and Conservative are really old concepts that do not change.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 5, 2011 at 5:20 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, - “I have been trying to point out to you that equalizing wealth is not liberal policy for any meaning of the word ‘liberal’ I can think of.”

-

Precisely.  How you think of politics and the use of such terms as ‘liberal’. 

You dare to condemn all who use common phrases and terms in order to make an overall point.  A point which is understood by many others.  In fact, it seems, most people well understand these terms.

I think you’re trying to be argumentative for the sake of argument.  I also believe you’re gyrating wildly to prove to others how unique you believe yourself to be.  And you may be right about that.  I doubt, however, that most people will see your unique thought processes by implying that most others are too dense or shallow to know their own mind when they use terms such as moderate, conservative, or liberal.

Perhaps you should come right out and describe yourself in order to show the rest of the globe how wrong they are in how they describe themselves. 

-

According to nine national polling organizations 20% of Americans describe themselves as ‘liberal’, 40% ‘moderate’ and 40% ‘conservative’.  The self-described ‘liberals’, of course, being solidly in the minority.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 5, 2011 at 4:53 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, “I take it the remaining 40% don’t care, or don’t know what the question means.”

-

This is a terrific example of my point.  I have written numerous times the findings of the Gallup organization.

20% Liberal
36% Moderate
40% Conservative

Which category do you assume either don’t care or failed to comprehend the question? - You didn’t arrive at that assumption from anything I’ve written.  In fact I am always aware that it’s moderates and independents that decide elections in the United States.  I write of that fact here on TruthDig almost incessantly.

Did you arrive at that assumption from the Gallup report?  How many of these assumptions are you placing over my words?

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By Anarcissie, January 5, 2011 at 3:51 pm Link to this comment

GRYM—I put ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’ in scare quotes to indicate my doubt as to their meaning, if any.  Now you say I used them correctly—this without knowing what they mean.  Is that how it’s done?  Maybe it’s what Mr. Dionne does, anyway.

I don’t know what ‘moderate’ means in this context, either.  Halfway between mush and mush is, I would guess, more mush.

As to liberals being communists, you did say that liberals wanted to equalize wealth, I believe.  I have been trying to point out to you that equalizing wealth is not liberal policy for any meaning of the word ‘liberal’ I can think of.  You seemed to be getting a grasp of this point in the cases of Kerry and Kennedy.  Keep trying!

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By Go Right Young Man, January 5, 2011 at 3:14 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

When individuals on this Web space gripe about how their agenda is not fully embraced by those in Washington is it not instructive to understand that 20% of Americans see themselves as liberal, 40% moderate and 40% conservative?

Now if you would like to argue how having twice as many conservatives as liberals living within the boundaries of the U.S. is not significant, you should plainly do so.

I am also struck by how you use the term liberal precisely as I have but, you attempt to belittle my using the term precisely as you use the term yourself. - Re-read your last post and you’ll see what I’m referring to.

- You did write that I equate liberalism with communism.  Clearly I have not.

- You did write that I have claimed that most Americans are conservative.  I have not.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 5, 2011 at 2:47 pm Link to this comment

“the obvious inference he (GRYM) wants us all to make (but refuses to say)is that therefore the other 80% must be Conservative…”

-

I want others in ITW’s audience to see the above quote.  Is this not the oddest phenomena?

I repeatedly cite statistical data displaying how 20% of Americans see themselves as liberal, 40% moderate and 40% conservative.  Yet this individual keeps citing someone else.  Someone we cannot see or hear or touch.

This is the oddest phenomena to witness here on TruthDig.  How does anyone argue against an apparition?  A figment of someone’s imagination?  Or are we witnessing someone less than honorable in ITW?

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By Anarcissie, January 5, 2011 at 2:36 pm Link to this comment

GRYM—You’ve been posting polls to show that many more Americans identify themselves as ‘conservative’ than as ‘liberal’—40% versus 20% most recently.  (I take it the remaining 40% don’t care, or don’t know what the question means.)  So I thought I would post a poll showing that, on some very specific issues, many, many people appear to favor what I believe are considered very ‘liberal’ policies, to wit, tax the rich, cut the military, leave Medicare and Social Security alone.  I thought you might be interested since the ‘conservative’-‘liberal’ partitioning of the electorate was of such concern to you.  I would say that it looks like the people, too, are confused as to what ‘conservative’ and ‘liberal’ mean.  They think they’re ‘conservatives’ but they favor ‘liberal’ policies.  I don’t think this is surprising, myself, because the terms ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’, as used by people like Mr. Dionne, seem extremely vague and self-contradictory to me.  But you said you understood Mr. Dionne and the common (media?) usage of these terms, so I thought you might be able to clarify them for me.  Again: how can 40% of the people be said to be ‘conservative’ when 81% of them want to reduce the deficit by taxing the rich?  Are taxing the rich, cutting back the military, and preserving Medicare and Social Security now ‘conservative’ ideas?

I’ve explained before why your depiction of liberals as people who want to equalize wealth is attributing a communist idea to them—one which is most foreign to liberal theory and, I venture to guess, to about 90% of those who identify themselves as ‘liberals’.  Even soak-the-rich types need to preserve the rich so they’ll have someone to soak.

Anyway, I just don’t know how to break these things down to you any more simply.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 5, 2011 at 2:12 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, - “in regard to your contention elsewhere that most Americans are conservative”.

-

The most frustrating thing for me, particularly on this Web space, is people’s perceptions.  I’m still unclear why so many regulars on TruthDig see in such narrow terms, nonetheless, it’s my experience that people here are some of the quickest to judge and the slowest in simply listening. - I spend roughly a third of my time here (3/4 in the case of ITW) clearing up the canyon difference between what I actually write and what many here seem to see in their mind.

Can we clear a few things up before moving on?  a. Where have I written that most Americans are conservative?  b. Where have I written that liberals are communists?  c. You and others on this thread want to argue that my perceptions and statistics are flat out wrong.  This is the oddest thing to me as these are not my perceptions nor my stats.  The statistics I have cited are the findings of nine national polling aggregates after asking voting Americans their perceptions of themselves.  All nine report nearly identical findings. - Of course MarthA will argue that most people are simply too stupid to understand how they feel or comprehend how they are, in reality, something other than what they see in the mirror. 

I still say I give people a great deal more credit than you and Martha seem willing to allow.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 5, 2011 at 2:06 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie:

It doesn’t matter.  GRYM has determined that only 20% of Americans are “liberal” (whatever the hell that means to him) and the obvious inference he wants us all to make (but refuses to say)is that therefore the other 80% must be Conservative, and, therefore their agenda should be forced through.

But, as you note, most Americans really do NOT want that agenda!

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By Anarcissie, January 5, 2011 at 11:36 am Link to this comment

GRYM—I’ll concede that I’m pretty eccentric in wanting discussions about political theory to employ coherent concepts.  Most people, of course, don’t discuss political theory and probably don’t think about it very much.  Those who do are either cranks, like you and me, or pros—people who get paid for it—like E. J. Dionne.  The latter types seem to be selected for their jobs by their ability to faithfully recite conventional opinions and ideas, however incoherent and even absurd these ideas may be.  I don’t get any fun out of this; it’s like trying to play chess with someone who can’t tell the pieces apart and doesn’t know the rules of the game.  Everything is a mishmash.  I demand a higher quality of play for my entertainment!  It’s possible, though, that if only someone would translate Mr. Dionne’s work for me, I’d see the good in it and start to appreciate it.  I was hoping you could do this; but I guess you can’t any more than I can.

Incidentally, in regard to your contention elsewhere that most Americans are ‘conservatives’, I saw the following, allegedly from Reuters:

81% Say Tax Rich or Cut Military; 3% Say Cut Social Security  

Most Americans think the United States should raise taxes for          
the rich to balance the budget, according to a 60
Minutes/Vanity Fair poll released on Monday.

President Barack Obama last month signed into law a two-year
extension of Bush-era tax cuts for millions of Americans,
including the wealthiest, in a compromise with Republicans.

Republicans, who this week take control of the House of
Representatives, want to extend all Bush-era tax cuts
“permanently” for the middle class and wealthier Americans.
They are also demanding spending cuts to curb the $1.3
trillion deficit.

Sixty-one percent of Americans polled would rather see taxes
for the wealthy increased as a first step to tackling the
deficit, the poll showed.

The next most popular way—chosen by 20 percent—was to
cut defense spending.

Four percent would cut the Medicare government health
insurance program for the elderly, and 3 percent would cut
the Social Security retirement program, the poll showed.

Asked which part of the world they would fix first, the
largest proportion of respondents—36 percent—chose
Washington, compared with 23 percent who picked the Middle
East and 14 percent who chose Haiti.

The poll included a random sample of 1,067 adults across the
United States from November 29 to December 2.

Now, are these people ‘liberals’ or ‘conservatives’?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 5, 2011 at 1:38 am Link to this comment

ITW,

You may have missed the few questions in my last post. wink

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By Go Right Young Man, January 5, 2011 at 1:33 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

Is this the first you’ve become aware of Mr. Dionne’s views on U.S. domestic politics?  He’s published several hundred similar pieces in the past.  Perhaps you should use him as your source as to how he uses terms like Liberal and Conservative?

I’m sure you know hundreds, if not thousands, of people who describe themselves as moderate, liberal, conservative etc..  I find nothing extraordinary in how the author uses these same terms.  But then being somehow unique, apart from the crowd, is what you aspire to, yes?  You have no use for such mundane thinking.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 5, 2011 at 12:11 am Link to this comment

Stop it! Stop it!  Too funny!!  Yer killin’ me!

ROFLMAO&PMP;!!!!

The funniest thing is—I think he’s serious!!!!

Not drinking anything or I’d be spitting it on the screen!!!!!!

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By Anarcissie, January 4, 2011 at 11:09 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 3 at 10:54 pm:

Anarcissie, - “If they believed in equal wealth distribution, they’d want to distribute net worth, not income.  See how many rich liberals you can find who propose that.”

Have we not been discussing the politics of the average man or woman on the street?...’

No, I’ve been discussing ‘liberals’.  I think you introduced the term.  Some examples of the man in the street are no doubt liberals, but the ideological definers of liberalism are its leaders, and most of them are (and always have been) rich and powerful.  Or at least they had good jobs at prestigious institutions.

But since you say you understand Mr. Dionne, maybe you could explain to me what he means by ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’.  I gather he is referring to two teams or tribes who compete for various prizes, but beyond that I can’t make out who or what he’s talking about.  It certainly doesn’t correspond to any political theory I know about.  I fear we are in the midst of the sort of thought-muddle mainstream journalists usually make of political matters along with just about everything else.

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By MarthaA, January 4, 2011 at 8:51 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 5 at 12:58 am,

I don’t agree with your figures, but I do agree that there are many of the genteel liberal who are deceived into thinking they are conservatives and are helping the conservatives destroy the country

You should listen to Catherine Austin Fitts as she exposes the “tapeworm economy” of the United States that is re-wiring the financial system of the United States and the world, which is being done by conservatives, even though she doesn’t mention conservatives specifically, it is the conservative agenda: 

http://www.realecontv.com/videos/post-collapse/re-wiring-the-financial-system.html

““Why not just expel the parasites?”

Catherine Austin Fitts was Assistant Secretary of Housing under George H.W. Bush.

She has an extremely sophisticated understanding of how the world’s financial system works right down to the “inconvenient truth” that revenues from the illegal drug business are essential for propping up the big money market banks. (Not a theory. Proven over and over again in criminal court trials.)

Fitts’ well thought out ideas about exactly what needs to be done to put the American economy powerfully back on course were not welcome in the crime-friendly Bush administration and she was driven from government.

In this fascinating interview, she talks about where things are ultimately headed, the the true nature of the threat we face, and what we can do to turn things around.

Absolutely must listening.”

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By Go Right Young Man, January 4, 2011 at 7:58 pm Link to this comment

MarthaA,

Is a white male currently living in fly-over country who happens to be pro abortion, pro gun-control, pro Wall St. regulation, anti capital punishment, pro civil union, pro open sexuality in the armed forces, pro low taxes, educated man who doesn’t beat his wife or children, has no desire to kill little brown babies, and who also happens to believe Saddam Hussein was, BY FAR, a great deal more dangerous than bin Laden the Neo-Con in the crowd?

-

20% of the American voting population identify themselves as “liberal”.  8% “progressive”.

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By MarthaA, January 4, 2011 at 7:20 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 4 at 5:23 am,

Is a genteel family that calls themselves conservative anything other than liberal?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 4, 2011 at 12:23 am Link to this comment

ITW, (too funny!!!!)

-

With your audience in mind; explain once again how Gallup’s stats are faulty.  “Situationally based” on the false premise that liberalism equals socialism.

Explain why only 20% of American respondents, to nine nation-wide polls, claim to identify themselves as “liberal”.

Explain once again how I have skewed statistical data to my benefit.

Or do the much morer difficult thing, the honorable thing, and write that you have been entirely incorrect and misguided in all your previous comments in the subject.

-

Gallup Poll: 40% Of America Is Conservative, 20% Liberal

A new Gallup poll find 40% of Americans now identify themselves as conservative, while only 20% say they’re liberal.

Gallup reported:

Conservatives Maintain Edge as Top Ideological Group
Compared with 2008, more Americans “conservative” in general, and on issues

by Lydia Saad

PRINCETON, NJ—Conservatives continue to outnumber moderates and liberals in the American populace, confirming a finding that Gallup first noted in June. Forty percent of Americans describe their political views as conservative, 36% as moderate, and 20% as liberal. This marks a shift from 2005 through 2008, when moderates were tied with conservatives as the most prevalent group.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 3, 2011 at 10:47 pm Link to this comment

MarthaA, - “—according to your figures, you have not accounted for 40% of the liberals. “

-

40% of the liberals?  I don’t understand.

These are clearly not my figures.  They are the figures reported by Gallup.

Rougly-
20% Liberal
36% Moderate
40% Conservative

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By MarthaA, January 3, 2011 at 10:23 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 3 at 11:34 pm,

So what is the ratio 40-60 for the liberals? —according to your figures, you have not accounted for 40% of the liberals.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 3, 2011 at 9:55 pm Link to this comment

ROFLMAO!

That’s the BIGGEST whopper you’ve ever told!

(too funny!!!!)

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By Go Right Young Man, January 3, 2011 at 6:56 pm Link to this comment

ITW, - “If you didn’t care what people think of your opinions you wouldn’t post them!”

-

That being the real difference between us.  I am here for a much different reason. 

And never once have I written that liberalism equals socialism.  Not once.  Why?  Because I don’t believe it.  But you remain absolutely convinced you know my mind.  Everything I write is seen through your distorted lens.  You have never attempted to simply listen and ask questions.  Not once!

Now how about those Gallup respondents?  Are they too just as whack as I am?  Or are you the one who is out of touch with the pulse of America?  The minuscule minority with a “different” point of view?

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By Inherit The Wind, January 3, 2011 at 6:40 pm Link to this comment

As long as you see liberal=socialist your opinions and statistics will always be bullshit, GRYM.

You’re not going to “deal” with anything. Implicit threats from posters here mean nothing to me—you should know that by now—I’ve been threatened with all sorts of things, including violence (no, not by you), but I’m still here!

You’re just going to play some more of your Humpty-Dumpty make-up-definitions-as-you-need-them games.

If you didn’t care what people think of your opinions you wouldn’t post them!

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By Go Right Young Man, January 3, 2011 at 6:34 pm Link to this comment

ITW,

My use of the term liberal is “situationally based”? Saying that 80% of Americans aren’t Liberal is meaningless?

You are, simply put, going nowhere fast with this crap.  I believed you just might get off your lazy, argumentative, hate-filled ass and do a bit of research before proving, once again, your ass status.

Read and cry a river you pugnacious idiot.

-

Gallup Poll: 40% Of America Is Conservative, 20% Liberal

A new Gallup poll find 40% of Americans now identify themselves as conservative, while only 20% say they’re liberal.

Gallup reported:

Conservatives Maintain Edge as Top Ideological Group
Compared with 2008, more Americans “conservative” in general, and on issues

by Lydia Saad

PRINCETON, NJ—Conservatives continue to outnumber moderates and liberals in the American populace, confirming a finding that Gallup first noted in June. Forty percent of Americans describe their political views as conservative, 36% as moderate, and 20% as liberal. This marks a shift from 2005 through 2008, when moderates were tied with conservatives as the most prevalent group.

-

So everyone at the Gallup organization is situationally challenged.  As is eight other large national polling aggregates reporting nearly identical results over the last EIGHTEEN YEARS.

Now go stick your head in the sand and ignore what 99% of intelligent adult Americans have known for decades.  YOU, Sir, are the minuscule minority in the United States. 

You may one day learn to deal with your minority status and start watching and reading some different points of view.  Because as sure as I am breathing you have lost all context to the world at your nose. - It’s the hate, Mo Mo.  It blinds you.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 3, 2011 at 5:54 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, - “If they believed in equal wealth distribution, they’d want to distribute net worth, not income.  See how many rich liberals you can find who propose that.”

-

Have we not been discussing the politics of the average man or woman on the street? 

You stymie me with your use of the term “Incoherent”.  I first thought you were being petty and argumentative for the sake of argument.  Then I thought perhaps I was unclear in my writing, however, after your questioning the use of the term “conservative” in the article I am more perplexed than ever.  What exactly do you not understand about how I use “liberal” or how Mr. Dionne uses “conservative”?  Or are you using the word “Incoherent” incorrectly?

While I often disagree with Mr. Dionne, I have no trouble understanding how and what he writes.  You, on the other hand, leave me scratching my head.

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By Anarcissie, January 3, 2011 at 4:53 pm Link to this comment

GRYM—If they believed in equal wealth distribution, they’d want to distribute net worth, not income.  See how many rich liberals you can find who propose that.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 3, 2011 at 2:10 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

I believe you’re over-thinking your communist/liberal narrative. 

I personally know communists who are more conservative than I am.  You seem to be suggesting that a Western liberal cannot believe in wealth distribution (if they did they would, necessarily, be a communist).  I know dozens of well meaning liberals who advocate a 90-95% income tax rate.  That, in itself, is wealth distribution.

Let us keep this simple.  This is a liberal gathering place.  Most regulars here are self-described liberals.  Read the comments on wealth and wealth distribution for 30 days and explain to me again how many liberals do not envy the materially wealthy and believe in wealth redistribution.

-

ITW,

a. It’s just not possible for me to care any less what others here think of me.  b. I will deal with your total bullshit later.

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By Anarcissie, January 3, 2011 at 1:25 pm Link to this comment

Speaking of incoherence, I find E. J. Dionne’s use of the term conservative incoherent.  I know he’s just a WaPo shill, but even so….  Does anyone know what he’s talking about in this article?  We can hardly criticize poor GRYM when he has such a bad example before him.

What do you suppose these guys (the WaPo shills) do, anyway?  I envision them sitting down bleary-eyed before ancient typewriters after a night of hard boozing and thinking, ‘Jeez, I gotta write something today and make the rent….’ and then just tapping away, emitting rehashed rehash.  These days, though, there are computer programs that can do this.  What if their masters find out their writers are as superfluous as they themselves?

Tap tap tap, tap tap tap tap tap….

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By Inherit The Wind, January 3, 2011 at 12:45 pm Link to this comment

GRYM:

Your problem is simple: It’s not just me, but all the rest of the posters here at TruthDig see you the same way I do.  That’s not because of what I post and say, but because of what YOU post and say.

Since your definition of “liberal” is situationally based, saying “80% of Americans aren’t Liberal” is truly meaningless. 

Let’s have a thought experiment. I’ll start with an absurd definition of Conservatives.  Then I’ll say “Only 2% of Americans support Conservative values”.  You’ll say “Bullshit!”, but I’ll say “AHA! Conservatives are people who conservatively believe in Marxist-Leninism and haven’t changed in that view since the 1930’s!”  According to MY definition, my 2% is probably pretty damn accurate.

But we both know it’s bullshit.  Because that’s not what Conservative means.

But we has a little problem:  Your definition of “Liberal” is just as much bullshit as my thought experiment definition of Conservative.

The difference is: I deliberately defined it as bullshit and SAID SO.  I don’t pretend it’s a real definition.

Everyone at TD realizes what you are doing.  So the only one you are convincing is….GRYM.

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By Anarcissie, January 3, 2011 at 12:44 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 3 at 12:31 pm:

Anarcissie,
Interesting, isn’t it?  The icons of liberalism, in fact the “Lion of Liberalism, Ted Kennedy, is never mentioned in the category of the “evil, greedy, money grubbing rich”.

If you could point out where I wrote that liberals are communists, I would appreciate it.’

Communists (small-c communists, not the Party) believe that goods should be held in common, that everyone should have the same amount of stuff.  So the idea that the rich are evil, or that an unusually large collection of riches is evil, or at least undesirable, is a communist idea.  A consistent communist would apply this judgement to Oprah or the Kennedys as well as to the Koch brothers.  So when you say something like ‘Liberal leaning minds are more apt to believe that the rich gained their riches in evil ways, don’t deserve what they have, and if only we could redistribute wealth in the U.S. the rest of the globe will follow,’ you’re attributing a communist idea—equalization of wealth—to liberals, a very unlikely combination.

Some liberals may indeed believe in wealth equalization, but if they do, their belief is inconsistent with liberalism.  The famous liberals of past and present certainly haven’t believed in any equalization of wealth.  This big disagreement among liberals is how much to spend on Welfare (soft cop) versus how much to spend on police and other forms of direct repression (hard cop) when dealing with the lower orders.  Communists they aren’t.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 3, 2011 at 7:40 am Link to this comment

ITW,

YES, 80% of American voters do not subscribe to being liberal.

Now if you too can use my own words, not your own, and point out my lies I would appreciate it.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 3, 2011 at 7:31 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

Interesting, isn’t it?  The icons of liberalism, in fact the “Lion of Liberalism, Ted Kennedy, is never mentioned in the category of the “evil, greedy, money grubbing rich”.

If you could point out where I wrote that liberals are communists, I would appreciate it.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 3, 2011 at 7:22 am Link to this comment

GRYM says he doesn’t say something,
says he never said it
...
And then says it again! (and it’s STILL a lie!)

The Perfect Republican.

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By MarthaA, January 3, 2011 at 2:34 am Link to this comment

Obama is NO Liberal.

Liberals will never learn that the nations wealth should all go to 6,000 conservative Republican members and their conservative Democratic toadies at the top of the pyramid and the only part of the population having to do austerity measures is the liberal Majority Common Population, the American Populace.

Which of the Six Big 6 Banking Houses Was the Most Shameless Corporate Outlaw?
http://www.alternet.org/story/149375/which_of_the_six_big_6_banking_houses_was_the_most_shameless_corporate_outlaw?page=entire

Throwing Public Unions Under the Bus
http://www.truth-out.org/throwing-public-unions-under-bus66362

Secession! What Would It Look Like If Red States Formed Their Own Country? http://www.alternet.org/story/149332/secession!_what_would_it_look_like_if_red_states_formed_their_own_country?page=entire

Responding to the Conservative Propaganda Machine  http://www.truth-out.org/responding-conservative-propaganda-machine66356

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By G.Anderson, January 3, 2011 at 12:49 am Link to this comment

ITW all GRYM has an interest in doing is in creating a trap. Which he will spring shut. 
Then his whole focus will be to devalue anyone caught in his trap. He will then
generalize to form conclusions based on the outcome, to devalue everyone who does
not think like him. It’s the same sick tactic Rush Limbaugh uses, and has used for years
and years. Don’t expect him to be honest, or reasonable, he’s a brown shirt.

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By alturn, January 3, 2011 at 12:48 am Link to this comment

The question is not whether America is a right of left nation, it is whether it is a materialistic or spiritual nation. 

It is a question whether we are going to lead the world downward into a materialistic abyss and face annihilation or whether we will become ‘one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all’ and lead the world upward into a new time.  It is not about the left coming to the right or the right coming to the left.  It is about rediscovering and meeting each other in the heart.  The chamber of love, not intellectualism, is both the source of healing and the natural home of a nation whose soul’s quality is Love and Wisdom.  We simply need to come home.

“Make it then your task to tell the others, to point to the simple way of Truth which beckons mankind. Teach men that to share is divine; to love is God’s nature; to work together is man’s destiny.”
- Messages from Maitreya the Christ

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By Go Right Young Man, January 2, 2011 at 11:46 pm Link to this comment

ITW, - “You’ve cooked the stats to make it look like 80% of Americans are against ‘Liberals’, AND inferred they were, at least, sympathetic to ‘Conservatives’. “

-

I have never written anything of the kind.  Not even close.  Although I have little doubt that’s what you believe.

Roughly-
20% Liberal
40% Moderate
40% Conservative

YES, 80% of American voters do not subscribe to being liberal (you had better learn to deal with that).  Now get off your lying ass and look it up!

My goodness you are thick. raspberry

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By Inherit The Wind, January 2, 2011 at 11:21 pm Link to this comment

but I sure could stop you from changing the meaning of my words.
*****************

I don’t need you to stop me from changing the meaning of your words.

I need YOU to stop changing the meaning of your words to suit your immediate needs.

You’ve cooked the stats to make it look like 80% of Americans are against “Liberals”, AND inferred they were, at least, sympathetic to “Conservatives”. 

That’s flatly false.

And you know it.  You always know it.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 2, 2011 at 11:06 pm Link to this comment

ITW,

LOL…you are too much, Mo Mo.

It’s not 20+8=28. 

When asked; 8% of total voters refer to themselves as “progressive/liberal”.  On the broader question 20% identify themselves as simply “liberal”.  These are not my definitions.  They are the definitions of poll respondents.

Think before posting!  My statistics come from the real mean averages of nine national polling aggregates as reported by RealClearPolitics,com.  Now take your head out of your ass and look it up yourself. 

If the RNC is currently undergoing a campaign to minimize liberal numbers in America, then they’re following what I have written here for over 5 years! - And if you look on MSNBC or the Huffington post (Nov. 010) you’ll find RNC spokesman, Lawrence O’Donnell, explaining how he identifies himself as representative of the “extreme left”, a self-described socialist/progressive, in a nation of which 20% of American voters claim to be “liberal”. - Lawrence O’Donnell is now working for the RNC.  I love it…..LOL

Do you finally understand?  Of the 20% of American voters who identify themselves as “liberal”, 8% of those voters think of themselves as “progressive”. 

-

I honestly cannot believe how thick you appear to be.  I would, one time, enjoy talking to you face to face.  Without your precious audience.  Face to face I could mitigate your ability to change how and what people say.  I could never “make” you listen.  but I sure could stop you from changing the meaning of my words.

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By Anarcissie, January 2, 2011 at 7:58 pm Link to this comment

Inherit The Wind, January 2 at 10:38 pm:

Anarcissie:

I TOLD you: GRYM defines terms for the immediate moment to fit his needs and then pretends EVERYONE should accept his current “definition”. ...

Apparently there is no definition.  One minutes ‘the liberals’ are communists, the next they’re fat cats in limousines.  Hmm, sounds familiar….  I’ll bet they’re at war with Christmas, too!

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By G.Anderson, January 2, 2011 at 7:00 pm Link to this comment

Yes ITW, GRYM is a rethuglican shill. It so typical of Republicans to lie cheat and steal,
then protest their innocence what caught. Like a snake, their coils ensnare, there never
was even a second of honesty, in this. It’s always been the Rethuglican talking points.
Unless all of us, each and everyone, stands up to their lies and manipulations then this
country will be completely finished. The people are already the Chattel of the
corporations, but they won’t be finished with us until we have to sell our organs to
survive. It’s Germany 1930’s style.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 2, 2011 at 6:13 pm Link to this comment

GRYM:

“Figures don’t lie by liars figure.” 

I work with statistics for a living—your use of them is pure crap and easy to show.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 2, 2011 at 6:00 pm Link to this comment

ITW,

I still hold out hope that one day you’ll understand how you churn people’s words into things of your own imagination…..LOL

“He is a dreamer, let us leave him.” wink

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By Go Right Young Man, January 2, 2011 at 5:54 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

You’re right.  As you have little understanding of my notion of the contemporary Western liberal mindset you would find my questions incoherent.

Your understanding of what is or is not private property also seems to differ from my own.

“When according to him I am cured, I am entirely unable to see anything at all.”

-

To answer your question regarding Sen. Kerry in a single sentence.  Yes, John Kerry believes in his wealth and in his private property.

John Kerry likes to impune attempts to simplify the tax code, lower tax rates and close loopholes.  Kerry screams on one hand about the wealthy but he is one who doesn’t pay his fair share of tax at all.  John and Tehresa Heinz Kerry paid a net 12% on their tax returns shared during his run for the Presidency.

Millions in investment income and wages and they pay only 12%.  On investment income they paid ZERO toward supporting Social Security and Medicare.  Why?  There is no payroll tax on investment income.

Warren Buffet, Bill Gates’ father, Sen. Ted Kennedy, and George Soros have all requested that we keep the estate tax.  If you look at their publicized financial records you will find that their money is protected from the IRS through trusts or foundations.  For example; Sen. Kennedy’s assets include $500 million in trusts based in Jamaica, Cayman Islands, and the bulk of it in Fiji.  The Kennedy oil company operating in five states, once called Kenn Oil, is now named The Arctic Oil Royalty Trust.  George Soros holds the bulk of his billions in tax-free overseas accounts.

Interesting, isn’t it?  The icons of liberalism, in fact the “Lion of Liberalism, Ted Kennedy, is never mentioned in the category of the “evil, greedy, money grubbing rich”.

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By Inherit The Wind, January 2, 2011 at 5:38 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie:

I TOLD you: GRYM defines terms for the immediate moment to fit his needs and then pretends EVERYONE should accept his current “definition”.

He won’t even accept dictionary definitions, rewording them to suit himself.

And he always follows the RNC talking points, which, currently are trying to minimize who in America is a “liberal” by redefining the term.

Notice that he now claims that “progressives” make up 8% of the voters, but in his gross counts where he claimed “liberals” are only 20%, he didn’t have that 8% anywhere.  Since EVERYONE knows Liberals and Progressives despise each other, you cannot count them together—and since neither is “moderate” (even using GRYM’s definitions) that means 28%, not 20% are to the Left of “Moderates”....so yet again, GRYM’s numbers don’t stand up to scrutiny.

So…is the nation moving “right” or isn’t it?  Or has a brilliantly organized and ruthless movement been able to seize control of one of the parties?

Remember: For all the Teaparty’s victories in the House races, at least 100-150 Republicans who are NOT TP got elected as well.  And how many TP candidates got newly elected to the Senate? Not even 6 of the new ones!

We are also seeing that the TP and the old-line so-called “Conservatives” are at each others’ throats, maybe even worse than Liberals and “Progressives”.

How many TP voters want earmarks and growing budget deficits?  But that’s what the mainstream “Conservatives” in both Houses are pushing.

And how many Liberals and Progressives stayed home, disgusted by the clowns the Dims put up?

No, what the nation wants is THINGS FIXED!  So they went for “Vote the bums out!”

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By Anarcissie, January 2, 2011 at 12:56 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 2 at 5:16 am:

Anarcissie,

You wrote that you had answers.

One cannot approach a jury, or stand in a formal debate, and simply say they reject the premise of the issue and go sit down.  The world doesn’t work that way.

I’ll answer your John Kerry question in a very direct manner, and in a single sentence, if you first attempt something similar.

On the contrary, one can always refuse to speak (unless tortured or otherwise ‘persuaded’) to a court or a debate, and one should, if one rejects the way the court or debate has been constituted.

However, I don’t see a debate or a trial here.  You asked some questions, but I can’t answer them, not because I reject the idea of the discussion, but because I find your usage of terms incoherent—as I said.  I don’t know any political meaning of the word liberal for which private property is not, as I said, a cardinal principle.  I can explain to you why a communist might say Oprah’s wealth is oppressive or unjust, but I can’t explain why a liberal would say so because I think liberals in general are perfectly happy with Oprah’s wealth.  If I’m wrong, I’m sure some liberals will pop up and correct me; but I don’t think I’m wrong.  I don’t know one famous liberal who was against private wealth, whether of the classical, 19th-century, or modern variety.

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By G.Anderson, January 2, 2011 at 10:06 am Link to this comment

It’s clear that GRYM would be happy living in North Korea, mentally he’s already there.
His moralistic finger pointing is of the same ilk as that of the deranged leadership there.
This is so typical of the sickness of the right wing in this country, to turn those lacking in
ego strengths into messianic foot soldiers, attempting to infect the thinking of others with
their personal pathology.. The Republican party has destroyed this country. Now they
are continuing that destruction, with convenient rationalizations to the contrary. It’s just
more poison spewed forth, from the sharks swimming in their heads. Not content to
poison this whole country with their lies they have to try and poison each and every
persons thinking as well. This appeals to those whose personal instabilities, make
becoming a messianic foot soldier for the right wing a way to hide their narcissistic
mental confusion.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 2, 2011 at 9:30 am Link to this comment

glider,

For real progressive change in the United States there will need to be a great deal more than 8% of the voting population identifying themselves as progressive.

-

You desire to take away American farmers ability to lobby the government. - Along with the elderly, school teachers, environmentalists, fisherman, car salesmen, barbers and advocates for children.  How, exactly, does this aid the population at large?

You also advocate taking away the right of free speech by removing private political donations.  Who do you believe should have the right to dictate that you must not volunteer your time and money to any cause of your choosing?

Perhaps you would be more comfortable living in N. Korea, Libya or China.  Governments in those nations appear to see things your way.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 2, 2011 at 7:32 am Link to this comment

CWB56,

So…the evil rich is everyone who has more than average wealth and happens not to be liberal or progressive?  Is that the point?

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By glider, January 2, 2011 at 4:02 am Link to this comment

Ironically, for real progressive change that will have GRYM squirming with discomfort we really only need 2 basic reforms.

Corporations out of government:  i.e. publically financed elections, no lobbyists, no revolving doors.

Corporations out of media propaganda.

The rest will take care of itself.

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By Not One More!, January 2, 2011 at 3:16 am Link to this comment

I consider myself a liberal, and I don’t consider Obama a liberal, or even a centrist. I vote mostly third party. That being said, I have the following items that are on the top of my list of issues that are important:

Ending the war in the middle east (and ending US military corporate imperialism).

Provide health care for all.

Stop corporate corruption.

Provide for safe food and water (and not support GMOs)

And that’s a start.

I think that these issues are shared by more than 20% of the population. The problem is that not all people have the same priority on these issues. Some believe that making money is their god given right, and nothing, including those 4 issues, is going to stop them from having that on top of their list. That is their value system, but it is not mine.

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By Not One More!, January 2, 2011 at 2:47 am Link to this comment

JDmysticDJ, December 31, 2010 at 1:10 pm writes: “GRYMie is quite right when he points out that a minority of the American people define themselves as being “Liberal” or “Progressive,” but its clear that this minority holds the balance of power in coming elections, if this minority becomes apathetic or abandons the Democrats, the Republicans will take power again.”

The sad thing is that the Democratic party leadership would rather have a republican elected than a progressive. That is where their loyalties lie, with the monied class, no matter how despicable they act. They are starting wars against innocent people after all.

Support third parties, don’t throw away your vote.

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By CWB56, January 2, 2011 at 1:49 am Link to this comment

The evil rich?  Murdoch, the Koch brothers, the Walton family, Angelo Mazillo, the
head of every big bank, just about every Senator, Cheney, Bush.  Those are good
examples of the evil rich who’s objective is to go back to the way they think is the
correct order of things.  What is the correct order in their eyes?  A few lucky
individuals with all the money and everyone else a peasant if not maybe a slave.

Does that answer your question?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 2, 2011 at 12:26 am Link to this comment

CWB56,

In a way, I suppose, you did answer that one question.  You want what most everyone wants.  Regardless of political leanings.

I’m fairly certain that’s what was in my words when I wrote that it’s time for many liberals to do some refection and realize they are not the angels of compassion and all things good.  They simply believe in a different approach to the same goals other men and woman hold.

O.K.  So we know Oprah is not amongst the evil rich.  Who are these evil rich we hear so much about on this Web space?  John Kerry and friends?

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By Go Right Young Man, January 2, 2011 at 12:16 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie,

You wrote that you had answers. 

One cannot approach a jury, or stand in a formal debate, and simply say they reject the premise of the issue and go sit down.  The world doesn’t work that way.

I’ll answer your John Kerry question in a very direct manner, and in a single sentence, if you first attempt something similar.

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By Go Right Young Man, January 2, 2011 at 12:00 am Link to this comment

ITW,

Notwithstanding you being you, I still hold out hope that one day you’ll understand how you churn people’s words into things of your own imagination.  You have me conveying thoughts and sentiments that never, even once, appear in my posts…LOL

It’s the most incredible thing to witness.  It’s as if Richard Frankencheny is all you see before you.

Thanks for the chuckles, Mo Mo. smile

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By Anarcissie, January 1, 2011 at 10:48 pm Link to this comment

Go Right Young Man, January 1 at 6:57 pm:

Anarcissie,

I use the term liberal as meaning liberal.  Not democrat.  Not anarchist.  Not communist.

You write that you can answer my sincere questions.  But you chose to avoid answering? ...

I can’t answer questions very well unless I can make sense of them.  Of your three questions, two implied that liberals are more or less opposed to the accumulation of private wealth.  However, private property and ‘the pursuit of happiness’, that is, the accumulation of more property, are among the cardinal principles of liberalism.  Do you seriously think rich contemporary liberals (for example, John Kerry) have any intention of giving up their wealth and the style of life it makes possible?

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By Tesla, January 1, 2011 at 10:15 pm Link to this comment

Liberals must learn that to disparage the “radical
left” is to aid the reactionaries that have somehow
been able to claim the label “conservative”
unchallenged. They are fascists and totalitarians,
not conservatives. Stop legitimizing by calling them
that!

What really needs to happen is for the so-called
“liberals” to begin to embrace their more radical
allies on the real left (not the Eisenhower Right)
and begin to help push that pendulum a little off
“far right”.

There is no such thing as a “moderate republican”
(kind’a like saying a good Nazi) and the sooner the
democrats come to grips with that, the sooner things
can begin to improve for middle class Americans.

Obama has been a failure for the left and a godsend
for the rightwing media machine that passes for news
in this country.

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By CWB56, January 1, 2011 at 9:40 pm Link to this comment

Most liberals are not again Oprah making lots of money but only if she is paying
her workers a living wage, paying enough in taxes to keep the country that has
allowed her the opportunity to make all that money, and not using the money to
bribe our lawmakers to only represent her interests.

Does that answer your question?

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By Inherit The Wind, January 1, 2011 at 9:13 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, January 1 at 5:42 pm Link to this comment

GRYM—It seems to me you’re using the term ‘liberal’ incoherently.  I could answer your questions from some anarchist or communist point of view, although we would first have to establish some basic axioms and definitions to work from, but I think you should get liberals to speak for themselves.  Most of them are probably okay with Oprah having loads of money.

Democrat does not equal liberal does not equal leftist.
********************

Anarcissie—you have touched at what the problem with GRYM’s “statistics” are: He is definitionally challenged and therefore terms like “liberal” “Moderate” and “Conservative” don’t mean what you and I think they mean.  Instead they mean (to GRYM) no more than they need to mean (as he defines) them to “prove” his point that the US is anti-liberal.

However, you’ll notice that GRYM doesn’t allow for: Progressives and so-called “Progressives”, nor does he allow for radical reactionaries (the roughly 20 or so % of the Right that come from the Tea Party) that are NOT Conservative.  And he lumps groups that are traditionally defined as “liberal” in with the more Conservative of the Democratic Party.

However, if you define “Moderates” as most people do, as Liberal, and you define the 20% of the far Left as “Progressive” you’ll see the USING THE SAME STATISTICS 60% of the nation is actually against the Right (so-called “Conservatives”).

Again, Humpty Dumpty is telling us that words mean exactly what he wants them to mean at that moment, no more and no less.

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