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  1. #11
    Feline Member kelric's Avatar
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    Okay, I'm fairly liberal - so be warned .
    Quote Originally Posted by G-Virus View Post
    ...
    1. The 2nd amendment.
      Has been vastly outstripped from its original intent by technological advances, and now does more harm than good, particularly in urban areas. I'm all for hunting, recreation, etc. - but this is being used as a crutch. Are the Canadians doing so poorly in this respect? Someone said that an armed populace is essential to a free society... numerous free societies (mostly in Europe, and yes, I know about the Swiss) prove this isn't necessarily true. No need to get rid of this amendment, but I'm all for responsible control of guns. Note that the whole problem here is that this is a very different issue, with very different meanings, in urban and rural areas.

    2. Gay marriage
      All for it. Legally, gay people deserve all of the same protections under the law that hetero people have - not "separate but equal" (we've seen how that turns out) - the same. Exactly. This doesn't mean that anyone else (I'm thinking conservative religions, mostly) has to agree or observe it, but under the law, with *all* of the protections provided thereby? Absolutely.

    3. Abortion
      A sad issue. At the risk of inducing ire, I'll paraphrase-quote Bill Clinton... "Abortions should be safe, legal, and as rare as possible". Only because legal abortions are safer than illegal ones.

    4. Alcohol, tobacco and other drugs
      A difficult one for me. I do believe in limits of what should be and shouldn't be legal, but I'm not sure that our current limits are appropriate. I think we've shown over the last 30 years that the "war on drugs" isn't too effective.

    5. Foreign policy
      More in favor of diplomacy and cooperation than our recent endeavors.

    6. The war on terror
      Asinine. I disagree with Peguy on a lot of stuff, but he's exactly right - "terrorism" isn't an enemy to be fought. It's a tactic - and it's being bastardized into meaning "anyone who does stuff we (the administration, pundits, whoever) doesnt' like". Really stopping "terrorism" is impossible... reducing it is more dependent upon addressing *why* people do such things, not just killing them if they do. Making martyrs is *not* stopping terrorism. Also note that although people being hurt and killed by "terrorists" is tragic, the actual danger from "terrorists" absolutely pales in comparison to almost any other danger in our society, and it's utterly trivial compared to the tragedies that come from things like drunk driving. It does, however, make a useful fear-monger manipulative tool - hence, why we hear so much about it.

    7. The War in Iraq
      Obviously based on lies at the beginning, and has only gotten worse. Not sure how we can get out of it now, but we need to look in that direction.

    8. Corporate tax cuts/Middle class tax cuts
      Nobody ever really says this, and I'm surprised. You get what you pay for. I hear, all the time, "we need to lower taxes" - no, we *need* to be fiscally responsible. I'm generally not in favor of cutting taxes at this time (and I'm all for repealing the Bush-era cuts). If anything, we need to focus not on cutting taxes, but on closing loopholes in the tax code that allow (legal and otherwise) tax evasion - offshore accounts, etc. No easy answers there. In general, I'm for higher taxes and better (not simply more bloated) government-run services.

    9. The financial market bailout
      I'm not well educated enough to make a good decision here, but my instinct tells me that if this wasn't an industry so close to politics that they'd have been left to rot. Lots of people made poor or downright deceitful decisions for a quick mega-profit - and now they want someone else to pay for it. That's us.

    10. Social Security benefits
      Headed for trouble. The problem is that you have a very large generation (boomers) who've been paying into the program for years under the (false) assumption that it was some sort of savings program (not everyone, but that's a common perception). Then you have a much smaller generation (mine) who's going to be expected to pay benefits for a much larger one. I don't see how it can stay afloat in the long run, especially as much of the "surplus" paid in by the larger generation of workers has been used for other purposes.

    11. Public health benefits like a two tier system or other ideas
      I'm in favor of a single-payer (government) health system. Works for almost every other industrialized nation. In my mind, every health-care dollar given to "profit" is one that could have been spent helping someone, and I'm most absolutely not convinced that "competition" in the health care arena makes up for in efficiency what it loses in profit. And that's not even going into the disgraceful situation where people can't get coverage, or get dropped as soon as it's determined they might need to use it to protect the profits of the insurance industry.

    12. Welfare Benefits
      Limited but (useful) safety net? Yes.

    13. Funding for higher education/Funding for K-12 education
      I'm pretty comfortable with this being handled at a local/state level, with potential federal grant programs to support very poor areas, etc. to try to make the playing field a bit more equal for anyone who wants to learn. Ax "no child left behind" and similar ilk-programs.

    14. Programs for children like public pre-K and Head-Start.
      No opinion - I just don't have perspective on this one.

    15. Energy, from solar cells, drill baby drill, to nuclear plants, etc . . .
      I'd rather focus on responsible energy independence. Meaning increases in nuclear power (which is basically VERY safe in modern installations - much safer than coal, for instance), and enhanced efforts to develop non-petroleum sources like wind/solar, etc (which now can't provide anywhere near the magnitude of power we need), and yes, especially conservation. But let's face it... it's going to cost more. You get what you pay for - in this case, paying more for power probably needs to happen to offset the externalized costs of environmental degradation, etc.

    16. Any other topic ...
      This has probably already been (way) too long, but the one issue I have is that our society seems to view government as an antagonist, and not something that's responsible to us, for us. Taxes, for instance, should not be considered as "someone taking my money" but an allocation of resources pooled together to support programs (including foreign policy, military, social services, health care) that are more efficiently controlled on a larger scale. Idealistic? Sure. But the propagation of antagonism against the government isn't working for much except to deflect attention from those who take advantage of the situation.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by kelric View Post
    Someone said that an armed populace is essential to a free society...
    I wonder who that someone could be.

    numerous free societies (mostly in Europe, and yes, I know about the Swiss) prove this isn't necessarily true.
    That's very much up for debate actually on numerous levels. For one, let's consider in much of Europe one can get thrown in jail just for mouthing off their opinions on certain issues.

    Here's just one obvious asinine example of such: German who taught dog to give Nazi salute with its paw is jailed.

  3. #13
    IRL is not real Cimarron's Avatar
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    Hey now...Kelric gave you fair warning that he was "liberal"!

    Besides, most of the "conservative" posters have already done theirs, so here comes the tide of "liberal" posters.
    You can't spell "justice" without ISTJ.

  4. #14
    Senior Member Eileen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nillerz View Post

    Gay marriage: Totally support it but they're doing it wrong. Every time the question of homosexual rights has been brought up before an electorate: Homosexuals lose. They shuold realize by now this isn't working, and try other ways, for example, court cases or something.
    Seems to me that most of the time when it comes up before an electorate, it is an initiative such as Prop 8, which puts LIMITING FREEDOMS up for a vote (not as often expanding freedoms). Nobody should get to VOTE on anybody else's civil rights. It's a freakin' farce.
    INFJ

    "I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. You can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality." -Martin Luther King, Jr.

  5. #15
    Feline Member kelric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    I wonder who that someone could be.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kelric
    Someone said that an armed populace is essential to a free society...
    Sorry, Peguy - I meant to go back and correct "Someone" when I finished writing on that train-of-thought, and I missed it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    That's very much up for debate actually on numerous levels. For one, let's consider in much of Europe one can get thrown in jail just for mouthing off their opinions on certain issues.
    I'd call that a first amendment protection (the value of which I'm not arguing, nor would I), not a second amendment issue. Unless you believe that nazi-paw-salute guy wouldn't have been arrested if he'd had a gun. I know, nothing's black-and-white when it comes to the links between citizens' rights, but I don't believe that an armed populace is as instrumental in maintaining freedom of speech, etc. as some do, and there are clear downfalls to an armed populace when it comes to violent crime, etc. (again, mostly in urban areas).
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  6. #16
    Senior Member dga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    That's very much up for debate actually on numerous levels. For one, let's consider in much of Europe one can get thrown in jail just for mouthing off their opinions on certain issues.

    Here's just one obvious asinine example of such: German who taught dog to give Nazi salute with its paw is jailed.
    not just certain issues, but the single most dramatic issue of the 20th century. Try yelling fire in a crowded theater and see how the police favor you. Given the history, they can potentially result in the same thing. Should we get into the US's hate crime laws?

    America's dirty institution was slavery, but there isnt anyone trying to deny it, just a healthy amount of people that continued to get away with what they could. Brown vs Board of Education ring any bells?

    It is a lot easier to protest in germany than the US. No capital punishment in germany...

    No place is perfect, but some make more sense than others for others.

  7. #17
    Senior Member ptgatsby's Avatar
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    [*]Gay marriage

    I think that marriage, in general, shouldn't be a government issue. That is, religious marriages would no longer be recognized by the state. This means that the benefits of marriage come from the government based on social criteria - and they should be legal contracts, such as survivorship, etc. and not financial. The financial breaks should be, in my opinion, based on dependents.

    [*]Abortion

    I don't have a clear answer as to the timeframe, but I clearly do not believe life starts at conception. I also have a lot of issues around who gets to decide and take responsibility. No clear opinion on it yet, although I tend towards pro-choice.

    [*]Alcohol, tobacco and other drugs

    Very strong personal dislike. I think, in general, they should be legal and heavily taxed, with high degrees of punishment for dealing poor quality (ie: cut drugs).

    [*]Foreign policy

    Too broad. Free trade, good relations, etc. Ideally to generate mutual defense as a better outcome than hostile buildup, which is the biggest issue I see.

    [*]The war on terror

    What war? You mean the war on citizens? The war on freedom?

    Far as I can tell, you guys voted against waging that war on yourselves. It remains to be seen if it will actually stop.

    [*]The War in Iraq

    What can I say? As an international, you guys were idiots and the situation is idiotic. Now, I have no idea what you can do that won't cause even more issues. In my view, the probability of stabilizing the region without permanent occupation is very low, and the cost of occupation and the implications of it are high. So, I think you get to hurt a lot more people, withdraw, and then find a new overall strategy to foreign relations.

    [*]Corporate tax cuts

    Not really an issue, any which way. Taxes are taxes, they get passed through, generally. I'd rather see it at the consumption level, but...

    [*]The financial market bailout

    Super long, super involved answer. Short of it - some was necessary, it wasn't very effective, and now it's dangerously close to too much (out of control). Between the two bad answers, I think it has gone too far now and will need time to help it out.

    Most of this is because the government is assuming that if markets stabilize, then the items they purchased will only have a 10-20% default rate. The problem is that markets aren't stable because these items are defaulting, and if they have the wrong 'distribution' of failed loans, the bailout will actually cost more than can be afforded by the market. It's a big hope that the balance between pushing money in and avoiding contractions (by not having the loans be destroyed) and the continued destruction of wealth. If the balance fails, it could be very ugly. Of course, if it fails, it would of anyway, but... this may very well make it worse.

    [*]Middle class tax cuts

    Positive, in general, off income.

    [*]Social Security benefits

    Join the rest of the 1st world.

    [*]Public health benifits like a two tier system or other ideas

    Join the rest of the 1st world.

    [*]Welfare Benefits

    Join the rest of the 1st world.

    [*]Funding for higher education

    Strongly support.

    [*]Funding for K-12 education

    Strongly support.

    [*]Programs for children like public pre-K and Head-Start.

    Against. I think it should be rolled into K-12 (that is, make it universal or not at all). I don't know the situation in the states, but it's dubious here, I find.

    [*]Energy, from solar cells, drill baby drill, to nuclear plants, etc . . .

    Progressive costs for pollution in energy, including all fossils. In terms of policy, I would support a ~3% per year, compounded, cost increase on all externalities associated with energy. Simply phase it out over decades.

  8. #18
    Member Chukamok's Avatar
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    I read Whatever's response and agreed with every bullet-point.

    Thanks for saving me all that typing Whatever.
    "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." - Dr Seuss

  9. #19
    The Unwieldy Clawed One Falcarius's Avatar
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    I am a non-American but any way.

    The 2nd amendment; Against. I am glad I live a country with some of the strictest gun laws. I don't know about everyone else but I find the thought of people having access to guns apprehensive, and I will even include the security services guarding high risk buildings (Airport and landmarks for example).

    Gay marriage; Only for civil unions.

    Abortion; Against in all but the most extreme cases.

    Alcohol, tobacco and other drugs;

    Alcohol - I support a advertising ban, and drinking alcohol in public ban (other than pubs), and alcohol packaging warning messages like the ones for tobacco. Ban on alcohol sale everywhere apart from in pubs and off-licences (specialist alcohol shops). Make everyone have to show identification no matter how old one is (preferable some special kind of electronic card), get rid of the drinking age for anyone other than babies, if someone is caught drunk they should be banned from buying alcohol (the reason for a special electronic card). Special offer and multi-pack ban of alcohol.

    Tobacco - I am for an advertising ban, Compulsory tobacco displays in ban in shops, and tobacco smoking in public ban. I also support tobacco packaging warning messages.

    I support a drug policy like they have in Switzerland for hard drugs. In other words, hard-core drug users would get hygienic drug-prescriptions, equipment, and a safe place to take drugs; in exchange for undergoing treatment.


    Foreign policy; Weston nations should not police nor try to manipulate weaker countries. The primary aim of armies of rich nations should be for defence, and secondly for humanitarian reasons. In other words, not illegally overthrowing democratic elected countries leaders as the don't agree with ones political dogma.

    The war on terror; is a kind terrorism.

    The War in Iraq; Morally and legally flawed.

    Corporate tax cuts; I support progressive taxation based on ability to pay.

    The financial market bailout; Yes, because I see no other sensible option at this moment in time. I would also like to point out, I would have not have done the 'financial market bailout' the same way as the USA did the 'financial market bailout' .

    Middle class tax cuts; Lower middle class, yes. Middle middle class, yes. What John McCain considers middle class, no way. As I said, I support progressive taxation based on ability to pay.

    Social Security benefits; Agree.

    Public health benifits like a two tier system or other ideas; I don't properly understand what you mean, but that said I believe everyone should access to healthcare. Therefore, I support universal healthcare.

    Welfare Benefits; Agree

    Funding for K-12 education, and programs for children like public pre-K and Head-Start.

    I don't know what 'K-12 education', 'pre-K', and 'Head-Start' are.

    Energy; Invest heavily in newer cleaner alternative energy.

    Any other topic you would like to chime in about that better clarifies your own personal/political stance; Nothing to say other than I am a pronounced fiscal liberal radical and somewhat social conservative for a political left winger.
    Quote Originally Posted by Thalassa View Post
    Oh our 3rd person reference to ourselves denotes nothing more than we realize we are epic characters on the forum.

    Narcissism, plain and simple.

  10. #20
    Senior Member Anonymous's Avatar
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    [*]The 2nd amendment.

    I don't trust regular people with the power to take life so easily, and I think this should be repealed.

    [*]Gay marriage

    All for it. There are no justifiable reasons as to why homosexuals should be banned from marrying. And I'm also fully against this whole "take government out of marriage". Marriage came before religious institutions, and it's present in all cultures as far as I know. There's no way that we should hand over complete control for something like that to such biased organizations.

    [*]Abortion

    Support it.

    [*]Alcohol, tobacco and other drugs

    I think the drinking age should be reduced to 16, keep tobacco legal, legalize marijuana and other non-addictive psychedelics (magic mushrooms, LSD, etc), but keep stuff like heroin and cocaine illegal.

    [*]Foreign policy

    We need to follow the guidelines of the UN much more strictly if we're ever to make up for the reputation of being imperialists that we've made for ourselves. More foreign aid programs would also be nice.

    [*]The war on terror

    Get out of Iraq. Continue pursuing the Taliban, Al Qaeda, and other high profile terrorist organizations, but again, plan more with the UN. Don't drop bombs within the borders of friendly nations without asking them first (Pakistan).

    [*]Corporate tax cuts

    Completely against. If some corporations leave, good riddance. If our economy weakens, fine. Maybe we'll grow to not be such rabid consumerists. We could do with a much, much smaller ego.

    [*]The financial market bailout

    Undecided.

    [*]Middle class tax cuts

    Against. Improvement = spending money. There's no free lunch.

    [*]Social Security benefits


    Support them.

    [*]Public health benifits like a two tier system or other ideas

    I certainly want universal health care. I haven't studied it well enough to decide which forms would be better, however.

    [*]Welfare Benefits

    Support them.

    [*]Funding for higher education

    Support them, and wish we had more. I forget what they're called, but I like the idea of loans that you don't have to start paying off until you're making a certain income.

    [*]Funding for K-12 education

    Support it. Wish there was a lot more of it.

    [*]Programs for children like public pre-K and Head-Start.

    And definitely wish there was a lot more of this. If we could involve children in community service more extensively, that'd be great. Plus, mandatory second language programs from kindergarten up as well.

    [*]Energy, from solar cells, drill baby drill, to nuclear plants, etc . . .

    Not necessarily more drilling, but more clean and renewable energy means, and much more money for research.

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