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  1. #71
    ⒺⓉⒷ Eric B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacGuffin View Post
    Excellent points, though I believe bail outs have never been popular with either side of the political divide.
    What I mean, is, isn't that the logical conclusion of "supply-side/trickle-down" economics"? Give them the breaks and it will trickle down to everyone else (hence, the rationale of some being "too big to fail", because the fear was that they would bring down the entire economy with them if they fell).
    I mean ranting about welfare mothers? People still do that? Is it 1988 again?
    Yeah, and totally ignoring that the system was reformed in '96. The rhetoric died down a bit, and while some people still found ways to get by, in the last few elections, the volume would be turned up on this again, as if the reform never occurred. Needed the scapegoat back when economics got really tight again.
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  2. #72
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    It seems like I'm wasting my time trying to get you guys outside of your mental comfort zones.

    I'll leave it to you more liberal minded members to just agree with each other about your preconceptions.

    Although I must say, out of everyone I've debated with in these threads, @onemoretime was the most enjoyable to interact with.

  3. #73
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    I matured out of my Republican preconceptions a decade ago.

    The Republican Party used to be bastion of conservative and independent thinking. Now it's a haven for demagogues.

  4. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacGuffin View Post
    I matured out of my Republican preconceptions a decade ago.

    The Republican Party used to be bastion of conservative and independent thinking. Now it's a haven for demagogues.
    As true as that may be, neither side has the market cornered on demagoguery.

  5. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    As true as that may be, neither side has the market cornered on demagoguery.
    I disagree:



    I was standing in line on the Mall to see the 2004 inauguration and I overheard young women saying she was who they wanted to be when they were older.

  6. #76

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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    It seems like I'm wasting my time trying to get you guys outside of your mental comfort zones.

    I'll leave it to you more liberal minded members to just agree with each other about your preconceptions.

    Although I must say, out of everyone I've debated with in these threads, @onemoretime was the most enjoyable to interact with.
    Do you come to a forum whose theme is a pseudo-scientific set of personality theories frequented mostly by college-aged nerds and expect to not find it full of liberal minded members?

    Some of us only pop in every once in a while. I looked through some of the recent political threads you started, and I am not sure what your opinions are. I see a lot of quotes of political commentators.

    Are you saying you agree with the people you quote, or they meant mainly as food for thought?

    If you don't have firm opinions about these things, I can respect that.

    Can you describe the comfort zone you mention? Do you believe a simple description captures the comfort zone of all the people you have been debating?

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  7. #77
    resonance entropie's Avatar
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    Kinda ranty the op but not too wrong. I come from a business owning family and my Dad runs his business for 30 years now. The biggest problems he always had with taxation which by a long shot aint cheap in Germany. My Dad is a craftsman and as such you for instance have to automatically join a Union just upon signing the start of your business, which he has to pay around $1500 for each year. If he wouldnt join them, he would have no right for a statesperson to approve to his woprk when its done, which is necessary cause otherwise he would have zero orders.

    The problem with cutting taxes is that the order situation needs to be good as well. In Germany they had a clever way of doing that: when the order situation dropped and companies began to feel taxes, they started the program "Industrial Quality made in Germany" and spent a lot of tax payer money on promoting products worldwide. At the same time they invested structurally in companies so they had a chance to change and adapt to alternating markets. When the order situation improved, they lowered taxes for company owners and raised the goods and services taxes to refinance their spendings. Since the wagers increased everywhere nobody really complained about anything.

    Only downside to this is that you need your national trade to stay national. Thats why I have big problems buying stuff from the States for instance cause I'ld have to pay ridicously high taxes on import.
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  8. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by swordpath View Post
    When you have a comatose man on the verge of death, you don't defibrillate and shock his thumb thinking that will bring him back to life, do you? Or, do you defibrillate his heart? Business is at the heart of America and always has been. To restart it, you must stimulate it, not kill it.
    This wise man speaks in parables

  9. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    Do you come to a forum whose theme is a pseudo-scientific set of personality theories frequented mostly by college-aged nerds and expect to not find it full of liberal minded members?
    I initially came here to find out more about myself through MBTI.

    After being here for a while I realized that there are some actually smart people here with views that differ from my own.

    In 2004, the first time I ever voted, I was the most hardcore republican you could think of. I took everything I heard from news and others as the gospel truth. That's understandable b/c I was just starting out in Poli Sci, and didn't know enough to know any better.

    As I learned more about politics and about people, I became more liberal minded. Culminating in my vote for Obama in 2008. A very smart Reagan Republican (who is now a democrat) friend of mine, convinced me over the course of months to shift my personal political paradigm.

    Even knowing what I know today, if I went back in time to 2008, I would still vote Obama.

    Through the course of Obama's first term, and a reevaluation of the world, I have found where I stand politically.

    It would take me too long to go through every possible policy point and explain my position, so I will say this gives a good guide to my beliefs.

    I am first and foremost a fiscal conservative. Nothing anyone says can or will change that. That being said, my fiscal conservatism is fairly moderate. I don't think that saving money and spending less is the only concern (like many conservatives). It just happens to be the greatest concern on my list of concerns (after the concern of is the gov't doing a good job of course). I also care about welfare and equality etc.. Just not to the extent that I'm willing to overlook fiscal stability to cater to those concerns. Behind having a gov't that functions well, getting the greatest bang for our tax dollars is at the top of my list.

    Secondly, it is my view that the greatest answers to the problems of the day come when both sides compromise. When we have honest discussions about our problems, and take the best ideas from both sides and combine them we usually get the best results we can hope for (certainly better than if any one side implements their agenda solely). Given my political leanings, my ideal compromise is more fiscally conservative than liberal, but ultimately I'm willing to support whatever works best.

    I knew what I was getting into coming here. And I also knew that it would be an uphill battle to get any traction with my ideas.

    That's why I came, having to debate with smart individuals with nuanced political opinions that differ from my own makes me a better political thinker. It forces me out of my comfort zone, and broadens the horizons of my political thought.

    That being said, I was expecting less entrenched opinion among the liberal thinkers here.

    Some of us only pop in every once in a while. I looked through some of the recent political threads you started, and I am not sure what your opinions are. I see a lot of quotes of political commentators.

    Are you saying you agree with the people you quote, or they meant mainly as food for thought?
    If I post something, I agree with it more than I disagree. If I post something by David Frum, I usually almost totally agree with it.

    My posts are also intended to be food for thought. I'm just trying to provide the same service this site has provided me, broadening political horizons.

    If you don't have firm opinions about these things, I can respect that.
    I have firm opinions about most things.

    Can you describe the comfort zone you mention? Do you believe a simple description captures the comfort zone of all the people you have been debating?
    For this site I would say, that the comfort zone is founded in great society liberalism. The assumption that the welfare state needs to be protected at all costs, and that any reform to the same counts as an attack, and shouldn't be entertained as a possible improvement.

  10. #80
    Dreaming the life onemoretime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    I initially came here to find out more about myself through MBTI.

    After being here for a while I realized that there are some actually smart people here with views that differ from my own.

    In 2004, the first time I ever voted, I was the most hardcore republican you could think of. I took everything I heard from news and others as the gospel truth. That's understandable b/c I was just starting out in Poli Sci, and didn't know enough to know any better.

    As I learned more about politics and about people, I became more liberal minded. Culminating in my vote for Obama in 2008. A very smart Reagan Republican (who is now a democrat) friend of mine, convinced me over the course of months to shift my personal political paradigm.

    Even knowing what I know today, if I went back in time to 2008, I would still vote Obama.

    Through the course of Obama's first term, and a reevaluation of the world, I have found where I stand politically.
    I hope you still keep yourself open to having your political beliefs evolve and develop. Political ideologies and belief systems were encapsulated in environments, subject to normative preconceptions and under pressures that were very different from the world we live in today. "Liberal" and "conservative" were terms created to discuss the relationship between the interests of the bourgeois class and the landed nobility, and have become relatively useless in an environment where a meritocratic polity is accepted as a norm.

    It would take me too long to go through every possible policy point and explain my position, so I will say this gives a good guide to my beliefs.

    I am first and foremost a fiscal conservative. Nothing anyone says can or will change that. That being said, my fiscal conservatism is fairly moderate. I don't think that saving money and spending less is the only concern (like many conservatives). It just happens to be the greatest concern on my list of concerns (after the concern of is the gov't doing a good job of course). I also care about welfare and equality etc.. Just not to the extent that I'm willing to overlook fiscal stability to cater to those concerns. Behind having a gov't that functions well, getting the greatest bang for our tax dollars is at the top of my list.
    This is a good example of where our political language meets its limitations. I don't believe that there are adults, if not subject to more pressing needs, such as putting food on the table by whatever means necessary, who disagree with the central tenets of what is commonly described as "fiscal conservatism." Except for a few people who unfortunately have a whole lot of power in this country, most of us understand that you have to live within your means, and you can't get something for nothing. Much of the debate, though, comes from a reasonable misunderstanding of where things come from. A big part of that stems from the widespread belief that money is something in and of itself, rather than a means of exchange that is solely representative of something else.

    In the grand scheme of things, the books always balance.

    Secondly, it is my view that the greatest answers to the problems of the day come when both sides compromise. When we have honest discussions about our problems, and take the best ideas from both sides and combine them we usually get the best results we can hope for (certainly better than if any one side implements their agenda solely). Given my political leanings, my ideal compromise is more fiscally conservative than liberal, but ultimately I'm willing to support whatever works best.
    The problem with compromise is that it requires that all actors are participating in good faith, that all actors have information parity, and that none are willing to engage in outright deception. We know from experience that this does not happen in our political system.

    I knew what I was getting into coming here. And I also knew that it would be an uphill battle to get any traction with my ideas.

    That's why I came, having to debate with smart individuals with nuanced political opinions that differ from my own makes me a better political thinker. It forces me out of my comfort zone, and broadens the horizons of my political thought.

    That being said, I was expecting less entrenched opinion among the liberal thinkers here.
    While this is a noble intention, I'd offer the critique that this comes off as a little self-serving. Rather than doing what's best for everyone involved, it seems like you're more interested in how to "win" the argument. Since politics is about figuring out how we're all going to live together, it can be counterproductive to think of things this way.

    One of the most subtle assumptions that pervades American life is that competition is a good thing by its very nature. Competition is seen as efficient, impartial, fair and ultimately, virtuous. The political ideal is supposedly the marketplace of ideas, where the "best" idea will win out.

    Unfortunately, what this viewpoint loses sight of is that competition is also very dangerous, because it adds the element of domination to the social equation. Unlike medieval feudal hierarchies, where the domination of a few over others was seen as the end result of Man's sinfulness, modern hierarchies justify the "winners" as deserving to dominate over the "losers." Furthermore, everyone wants to be a winner, and no one a loser, with no place in between. This sort of ranking leads to all sorts of tension.

    For this site I would say, that the comfort zone is founded in great society liberalism. The assumption that the welfare state needs to be protected at all costs, and that any reform to the same counts as an attack, and shouldn't be entertained as a possible improvement.
    I don't think this is what most people here think, necessarily. This places too much emphasis on the structure itself, rather than the ends served. It's not so much about the preservation of the welfare state, as much as it is preventing the "losers" of society from being cast aside, exploited, or treated inhumanely by a dominating class that regards them more as a nuisance than a fellow human being of equal worth and dignity.

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