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Old 08-20-2012, 04:45 PM
 
122 posts, read 167,184 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smdensbcs View Post
Am I missing something, or are the Tea Party and Occupy people not simply examples of the extreme polarization currently taking place? Aren't both groups effectively saying "their" mainstream party just ain't dang extreme enough and should therefore be replaced by a different political party and/or candidates that ARE sufficiently extreme for their radical protestor tastes? That strikes me as not exactly a recipe for recapturing that common-sensible middle/moderate part of the spectrum that no longer seems to be represented in politics. All those rational, reasonable, compromising types are getting the heck out of Dodge, being replaced by fiery-eyed true-believers. It's honestly frightening. I could not agree with Jazzlover's above post more, particularly the first paragraph.
You are correct, but that's the problem with the common-sense middle/moderate crowd - while they often have a mixture of views and opinions from both sides of the political spectrum, the very definition of moderate is just that, moderate. It's the opposite of radical; they don't care either way. Ergo, it's rather difficult to get them fired up to vote for one particular side.

For apathy, I blame the media and its ever-encroaching impact on our lives. Bad news travels faster and further than good news, so anytime a politician appears in the news it's always about some new scandal, breeding apathy towards politics and consequentially voting since "They're all corrupt crooks anyway."

The media is to blame for extremism as well. The most extreme opinions are often the loudest, and since news outlets love hyperbole, they never hesitate to give a voice to these whackos. Combine this with political pundits who will say anything for ratings, and the voters who tune in regularly will eventually start believing that the most extreme candidate is the best choice. And if the majority is too apathetic to vote, then extremists are the only ones who are voting.

Are you arguing against my assessment that the growing radicalism in this country will soon reach a boiling point? Because you seem to be in agreement so far.

 
Old 08-20-2012, 06:07 PM
 
16,178 posts, read 20,184,521 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
The problem in Colorado--and the whole United States--is that the radical wings of both political parties are increasingly gaining control of the nominating process from the caucus level to the primary level. That means that the political debate has become continually more polarized, divisive, and gridlocked. Colorado did not used to be that way. Most candidates from both parties were fairly centrist and, though the political rhetoric could get heated during the campaign, those elected found common ground and consensus in governing. It worked pretty well in Colorado for a lot of years, but no more.

The other problem is that Americans on any side of the political spectrum simply do not want to hear the hard truths about anything that would involve them having to sacrifice ANYTHING for the general good of the country. So, they will follow off any lying SOB politician who will tell them what they want to hear. That speaks volumes about the level we have sunk to as a society and why there is such a lack of real leadership in this country. A quote from an unknown source that I remember well is this: "The sign of a good leader is one who can lead people where they have to go, not to where they want to go."
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ YES! ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ ^^^
One of the oldest sayings going:


Politicians only worry about two things.

1. Getting elected.
2. Getting re-elected.
 
Old 08-21-2012, 08:31 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,103,855 times
Reputation: 9065
Quote:
Originally Posted by Antares45 View Post
You are correct, but that's the problem with the common-sense middle/moderate crowd - while they often have a mixture of views and opinions from both sides of the political spectrum, the very definition of moderate is just that, moderate. It's the opposite of radical; they don't care either way. Ergo, it's rather difficult to get them fired up to vote for one particular side.

For apathy, I blame the media and its ever-encroaching impact on our lives. Bad news travels faster and further than good news, so anytime a politician appears in the news it's always about some new scandal, breeding apathy towards politics and consequentially voting since "They're all corrupt crooks anyway."

The media is to blame for extremism as well. The most extreme opinions are often the loudest, and since news outlets love hyperbole, they never hesitate to give a voice to these whackos. Combine this with political pundits who will say anything for ratings, and the voters who tune in regularly will eventually start believing that the most extreme candidate is the best choice. And if the majority is too apathetic to vote, then extremists are the only ones who are voting.

Are you arguing against my assessment that the growing radicalism in this country will soon reach a boiling point? Because you seem to be in agreement so far.
Another problem is that most Americans do not understand the political process. Many of them think that they are being "smart" by declaring themselves Independents. The result is this: In our two-party system, it is at the caucus, county and state assembly, and primary level that the candidates that will be on the general election ballot are chosen. "Independent" voters who refuse to affiliate with either the Democrat or Republican Party effectively deprive themselves of any say in what candidates are going to be on the general election ballot in November. That is left to the "party activists"--who, as I noted earlier, are getting increasingly polarized and radical--to make the candidate selection. Then those "independents" complain about the lousy selection of party candidates on the general election ballot.

Though I vehemently disagree with many of their current beliefs and policies, I remain registered as a Republican because that allows me to participate at the caucus, assembly, and primary level of the election process and have some say in who makes the ballot. Those "early" political events give individual people who participate at that level a very large say in who makes the general election ballot. Believe me, I know, because I have personally had significant influence at that level as to who gets on the primary ballot at the local and state level. The "radicals" in both the Democrat and Republican parties are fully aware of the influence that can be wielded at the caucus and assembly level and they are using it pretty effectively. That is why both parties are nominating more "extreme" candidates for the general ballot and it is why "moderate" voters now have little choice of moderate candidates at the November ballot box.
 
Old 08-21-2012, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,754 posts, read 16,455,342 times
Reputation: 9287
^^^^You covered only a portion of this issue. Let me chime in to tell another side of the story. The reason I became an independent is based on my experience with both parties earlier in my life. RARELY has there ever been a candidate from either of the mainstream parties that I could support without going against my conscience. The choices within either party are no better than the choices present when the parties are going head to head. IMO, it's six of one and half dozen of the other. Using independents as a scapegoat, ignores the underlying issue of a totally corrupt political process. As long it requires humongous amounts of $$$ to run for office, anyone running for office from either mainstream party will remain beholden to the big money interests who can afford to buy a candidate.
 
Old 08-21-2012, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Pueblo - Colorado's Second City
12,102 posts, read 20,355,007 times
Reputation: 4131
It, also, depends where you live as well. In Pueblo for example if you want any say in local politics you must be a registered Democrat. The reason is many local issue get decided on in the primary and if you are not a registered Democrat then you do not get to vote and when it comes time for the general election there is only one choice.
 
Old 08-21-2012, 11:32 AM
 
9,816 posts, read 19,023,867 times
Reputation: 7537
I don't place much stock in "independents" and the elite, lofty, high and mighty status they bestow upon themselves.

To me they are wishy washy people with no core values who exist to be bought off by either party and who don't participate in the process to push candidates forward who have value.

At the end of the day there is no perfect candidate because people are not perfect. I don't vest huge amounts of expectations in those people anyways because they are no smarter than most other people. I think some, especially those dependent on government hand outs, grant these people status as all knowing, all seeing, all caring masterminds, when in reality, some of those people, like obama, know nothing and are not experts at all. obama was pumped up as this grand wizard of intelligence and turns out he's one of the dumbest most out of touch presidents of all time.

To me there are either 2 ways and no middle road. You either are for utopian statism and rejection of individual freedom and sovereignty and private property rights or you are for minimizing government in people's daily lives and maximizing the individual.

Term limits worked for the presidency, 8 years and he is still a very powerful man. We need to go to 12 year limits in the house and 12 years in the senate and the supreme court, one 15 year term. We have millions of capable people out there that can serve and need a chance. Term limits will bust the cronies and beltway mentality.
 
Old 08-21-2012, 12:07 PM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,754 posts, read 16,455,342 times
Reputation: 9287
wanneroo wrote: Term limits will bust the cronies and beltway mentality.

IMO, this would be a major step in a good direction!
 
Old 08-21-2012, 12:10 PM
 
808 posts, read 1,176,209 times
Reputation: 2074
Quote:
Originally Posted by wanneroo View Post
To me there are either 2 ways and no middle road. You either are for utopian statism and rejection of individual freedom and sovereignty and private property rights or you are for minimizing government in people's daily lives and maximizing the individual.
Naturally, the way you phrase your "2 ways" makes it obvious there is, in reality, only one way - your way. I have many non-Colorado friends who would agree with your "2 ways and no middle road" approach, only theirs would be some variant of: "You either are for Ayn Randian worship of the self and your own 'individual freedom' including the right to enslave others if you are so inclined or you are an educated individual in favor of protecting the weak against the strong, the intolerant, and the infinitely greedy."

Personally, I think you're both obscenely biased and mind-bogglingly wrongheaded, but I suppose that just makes me a wishy-washy moderate who believes in a balanced approach. Which is why I shake my head in disgust almost daily at the ridiculous antics of both sides. Note to self: skip directly to sports page or lose 10 years off lifespan due to aggravation-induced political stress and semi-educated radicals who invariably believe they're right and, as often as not, just following God's law. Might as well give ourselves over to the Taliban and be done with it, they're no more radical than our home-grown radicals, who are pretty much taking over.
 
Old 08-21-2012, 01:08 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,103,855 times
Reputation: 9065
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
It, also, depends where you live as well. In Pueblo for example if you want any say in local politics you must be a registered Democrat. The reason is many local issue get decided on in the primary and if you are not a registered Democrat then you do not get to vote and when it comes time for the general election there is only one choice.
Unfortunately, there are numerous places where this is true. As an example, I have a friend in New Mexico who has not voted for a Democratic candidate at the national level for over 20 years. But he is a registered Democrat because the Republican Party basically does not exist in his county. So, he participates at the county level in the Democratic caucuses and assembly. Interestingly, many of the local Democratic candidates who are elected at that level in his county are more politically conservative than many Republicans elsewhere. The county has all Democrat elected officials, but regularly votes Republican in state and national races. So, the lines are never as black or white as people would like to think.

As to an earlier comment by Cosmic, no candidate is going to exactly mesh with any one person's personal beliefs. When I vote, I look to the candidate who most closely meshes with the opinions and values that I consider the most important. I never agree with any one candidate about everything. "Single issue" voters who support a candidate only based on that candidate's view on one topic are idiots. As an example, a single-issue voter whose only issue was good treatment of animals would likely have voted for Hitler because Hitler loved his dog. Not a good way to choose a leader. I look at a candidate's overall views on the issues that I consider important to me. I also look at ethics--I will more likely vote for a candidate with high ethical standards with whom I have some policy disagreements rather than for a candidate who holds similar view to mine, but has proven to be untrustworthy. Why? At least you know where the ethical candidate stands (whether you agree with his or her stance or not)--with the unethical one, you never really know.
 
Old 08-21-2012, 01:18 PM
 
9,816 posts, read 19,023,867 times
Reputation: 7537
Quote:
Originally Posted by smdensbcs View Post
Naturally, the way you phrase your "2 ways" makes it obvious there is, in reality, only one way - your way. I have many non-Colorado friends who would agree with your "2 ways and no middle road" approach, only theirs would be some variant of: "You either are for Ayn Randian worship of the self and your own 'individual freedom' including the right to enslave others if you are so inclined or you are an educated individual in favor of protecting the weak against the strong, the intolerant, and the infinitely greedy."

Personally, I think you're both obscenely biased and mind-bogglingly wrongheaded, but I suppose that just makes me a wishy-washy moderate who believes in a balanced approach. Which is why I shake my head in disgust almost daily at the ridiculous antics of both sides. Note to self: skip directly to sports page or lose 10 years off lifespan due to aggravation-induced political stress and semi-educated radicals who invariably believe they're right and, as often as not, just following God's law. Might as well give ourselves over to the Taliban and be done with it, they're no more radical than our home-grown radicals, who are pretty much taking over.
Well, individual freedom doesn't involve enslaving people, as they can make their own choices, however utopian statism and a totalitarian state does so and it's what the democratic party advocates. Do you ever hear obama talking about the great individualism and private property rights this country went through great struggles to obtain? I sure don't and I listen and track most of his speeches and what he talks about.

As Ronald Reagan said, we have an obligation to help those that cannot help themselves. We have government because most of us do not want anarchy and government exists as a check to people's passions and to protect their individual rights and to keep one man from imposing unduly on another.
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