Obama's Candidacy


by Pythagorean
Tags: candidacy, obama
ThomasT
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Feb24-12, 08:29 PM
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Quote Quote by Hobin View Post
I should add that, given that the above is based on interaction with people in my country and things I've heard people say in public, my view might be inaccurate or only be accurate for many people in my country (the Netherlands).
I think, and polls will show, that about 50% of Americans agree with your assessment, and about 50% don't. The US is an extremely divided country in certain respects.

I agree with you that, compared to the GOP candidates, Obama seems head and shoulders above them in many ways.

Unfortunately, I don't believe that Obama is particularly special, other than wrt his general demeanor and rhetorical skills. That is, I think he's basically a bought and paid for advocate of the status quo ... in practice if not necessarily in belief.

So, I won't be voting for him, and I certainly won't be voting for any of the GOP candidates.
Pythagorean
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Feb24-12, 09:12 PM
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Quote Quote by russ_watters View Post
Do these people ever explain anything or is the only thing they every say that bible verse? Perhaps they figure it is too obvious to explain what "pro life" means? I've never heard of them and I find it hard to believe a group that is only 8 years old is the most vocal group on abortion. Around where I live...
The argument has already been had and established long ago in Roe vs. Wade. It's pro-life activists whom the iotas is on. Many do feel justified citing God; others fail to come up with convincing arguments (they appeal only to pathos).

Obama's not talking about one example (such as a specific organization that formed 8 years ago) he's talking about people who feel that it's their place to enforce the laws of the bible.

You use your locale as a reference, should I reference mine? Can you imagine what kind of people might be hanging outside of Planned Parenthood by how I've demonstrated my perception of the pro-life movement? Can you image they're the same group that protest Elton John playing local shows?

Anyway, we don't need to base it on our locals or specific organizations; there's a long national history already established in the US:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pro-life

Obama is declaring a clear separation philosophy in a concrete example that is well-known in the US. He has made political actions to back it up (by making sure EVERY female has access to birth control measures). He has faced resistance!

Anyway, this a thread about Obama's candidacy. The point is that his statements are consistent with Obama's image as progressive and a large body of the US wants progressive. It especially strengthens him against Santorum.
mege
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Feb25-12, 12:18 AM
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Quote Quote by Pythagorean View Post
Obama is declaring a clear separation philosophy in a concrete example that is well-known in the US. He has made political actions to back it up (by making sure EVERY female has access to birth control measures). He has faced resistance!
Every female already had access to birth control, his policy just makes sure that someone else is paying for it.

He basically constructed a straw man and beat it down with his 'contraception mandate'. What deficiency was he honestly correcting? This 'separation philosophy' is coming at the expense of everyone's choice. What is the harm in allowing someone (or a religious orgnization...) a choice in what medical coverage they buy? Freedom is constricted via the President's policies (with this being the latest in a long line), I don't see how there is any other way to look at it.

I'm far from being a religious person, but President Obama (and his cohort) are waging a war on freedoms, starting with Religion. If (reasonable) Religious freedom can be thrown to the wayside by the government so easilly, what other freedoms should I be prepared to give up? Women (and men) already had the freedom to buy contraception, but now they lack the freedom to NOT buy contraception (via paying for insurance).
Pythagorean
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Feb25-12, 12:44 AM
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Quote Quote by mege View Post
Every female already had access to birth control, his policy just makes sure that someone else is paying for it.
Your twisting the meaning; the point of healthcare reform is that everyone gets access to healthcare financially and this should be regardless of what beliefs their employers hold.
turbo
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Feb25-12, 04:56 AM
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Quote Quote by Pythagorean View Post
Your twisting the meaning; the point of healthcare reform is that everyone gets access to healthcare financially and this should be regardless of what beliefs their employers hold.
And that's not a bad policy. Birth control is cheap. Pregnancies and childbirth can be very expensive. That's why the employees of faith-based companies can often get free riders to provide contraceptives even if the companies refuse to pay for the service.
mege
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Feb25-12, 06:29 AM
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Quote Quote by Pythagorean View Post
Your twisting the meaning; the point of healthcare reform is that everyone gets access to healthcare financially and this should be regardless of what beliefs their employers hold.
What about the employee's beliefs? 'Employers' aren't the only ones with beliefs. Individuals, despite what many leftists belief, do have beliefs of their own that may not be owed to religion or some other orthodoxy. Even if that belief IS owed to some religion - does it really make it less viable?

And I didn't twist the meaning in the slightest, the paradigm is slanted from the start. Being against a mandate does not mean that one wants the total opposite mandated instead. ie: just because I think that a contraception mandate is entirely unneccessary that does not mean that I am against the use/purchase/etc of contraception. I think that the mandate is being unfairly posed as a matter of 'women's health' when it is nothing more than another purposely divisive policy that strips individuals of their freedom of choice. If an individual (woman in this case) is employed in a job that has health benefits and they are unable to afford birth control out of pocket, then they probably have larger problems (I paid for my college GF's pills out of pocket: we got it from a corner pharmacy, unsubsidized, from a 'normal' doctor (not planned parenthood) for ~$15/mo). Making birth control 'free' to women does NOT change the fact that many people still are not responsible for themselves and make bad decisions anyhow. This policy is purely idealogical and has very narrow real impact compared to the constriction of freedom imposed. This President has no problem imposing his beliefs on others, but yet has the gall to tell people that their beliefs are totally invalid.

To put this in different terms: where is the problem inherent in the system that requires such a change that it is neccessary to step on individual's concience and personal freedoms?
Hobin
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Feb25-12, 06:39 AM
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Quote Quote by mege View Post
To put this in different terms: where is the problem inherent in the system that requires such a change that it is neccessary to step on individual's concience and personal freedoms?
The very simple fact that these beliefs are destructive to other people.
MarcoD
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Feb25-12, 07:15 AM
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Quote Quote by Hobin View Post
The very simple fact that these beliefs are destructive to other people.
I think you misunderstood the question and the problem. Moreover, you're projecting local Dutch custom on the US. AFAIK, he made a good point.
mege
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Feb25-12, 07:22 AM
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Quote Quote by Hobin View Post
The very simple fact that these beliefs are destructive to other people.
Personal responsibility is destructive to other people?

Is there an example of a reasonably responsible person that has been 'left out in the cold' regarding contraception due to the status quo? Like I mentioned above - the pill is not expensive, and 'free' condoms are generally already available from NGOs.

The 'contraception mandate' was not in response to some grand call for making birth control illegal. Even Rick Santorum (as an example of the religious 'boogie man') is on record noting that while his family doesn't use birth control, he does not believe it should be banned - but he also believes that making birth control mandatory erodes on individual freedoms.

This is just one of many facets to the ultimate 'insurance mandate' problem. Many states already have a 'contraception mandate' - and while they pose a much less problem (especially since nearly every state with a mandate has a clause for concience objections), an individual can move from state to state unfettered, just like an individual can normally move from job to job if they don't like the benefits. Under the Presidents dictate - this is no longer possible and half of the states which did not have a contraception mandate now have had their soverignty taken away. In a general sense, the all-consuming-power of this President is eroding freedoms and choice bit by bit. The choice to use/buy/sell contraceptions exists. Now, we're left with only the choice to use or not - with zero benefit to show for it. "Freedoms for you, as long as I agree with them" - DNC mantra.
WhoWee
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Feb25-12, 10:05 AM
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Quote Quote by turbo View Post
And that's not a bad policy. Birth control is cheap. Pregnancies and childbirth can be very expensive. That's why the employees of faith-based companies can often get free riders to provide contraceptives even if the companies refuse to pay for the service. This is pretty much a non-issue ginned up to give Santorum, Gingrich, etc, something to beat Obama with. I don't think Mr. Mittens would get much traction on this issue after having signed a universal health-care initiative into law in Massachusetts.
This thread is about Obama - please don't de-rail with off topic comments about the other candidates.
Jimmy Snyder
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Feb25-12, 10:13 AM
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Quote Quote by turbo View Post
... the employees of faith-based companies can often get free riders to provide contraceptives even if the companies refuse to pay for the service.
Then why do we need a law to enforce what would happen on its own anyway?
russ_watters
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Feb25-12, 10:15 AM
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Quote Quote by Pythagorean View Post
Anyway, this a thread about Obama's candidacy. The point is that his statements are consistent with Obama's image as progressive and a large body of the US wants progressive.
That leads well into another point I was wanting to bring up:

First off, I'd like to see your evidence that the "US wants progressive". I think the mid-term elections are evidence it doesn't. And (citation later), it has been true for a long time that the US self-identifies itself as more conservative than liberal.

In addition - and more relevant than today - even though the republican candidates are actively campaigning to their conservative base, more Americans still say Obama is too liberal than say Santorum or Romney are to conservative:
Americans' perceptions of Obama's ideology have changed significantly since he was elected. Four years ago, when Gallup first asked this question about Obama while he was competing for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination, a plurality, 47%, thought his views were about right. At that time, 37% said his views were too liberal, compared with today's 51%.

The perceptions that Obama is too extreme to the left of the ideological spectrum than his competitors are to the right are likely due to three factors. First, Americans are more familiar with Obama than with either of his challengers, as evidenced by the smaller percentage without an opinion of Obama's political views (4%) compared with Romney's (9%) or Santorum's (13%).

Second, for many years Americans have been roughly twice as likely to self-identify as conservative rather than liberal. Thus, the odds are probably greater that a Democratic politician would be perceived as too liberal than that a Republican candidate would be perceived as too conservative.
http://www.gallup.com/poll/152954/Ha...HvZQBQ.twitter

In other words, many people who voted for Obama thought he was more moderate than he really is. Now after seeing him in office, they realize just how liberal he is.

Now for the last part, there may be an issue of biased self-reporting at work and it is something that I've perceived a lot at PF: liberals, even ones that are pretty far to the left, often self-label as "moderates" (a few even as conservative!) even though they aren't. But 40% to 20% is still a big gap.

On the other hand, the poll also reports that Obama has roughly the same split of people agreeing vs disagreeing with him on the issues as those other two candidates. However, this may result from Obama's actions not following his beliefs due to being beaten toward the center by the Republicans. For example, he was pushing for a second stimulus, which he never got, at about the same time as he was signing debt control legislation. This can make his "policies" vs his beliefs hard to reconcile.
Evo
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Feb25-12, 10:16 AM
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Each candidate has their own thread. Please keep all discussions specifically about the canidate.
WhoWee
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Feb25-12, 10:17 AM
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Quote Quote by Pythagorean View Post
Your twisting the meaning; the point of healthcare reform is that everyone gets access to healthcare financially and this should be regardless of what beliefs their employers hold.
I think one of the problems the President has with the healthcare reform is that it hasn't been fully implemented yet and details continue to seep out that some embrace and others reject - this is a good example. Personally, when I see a contraceptive mandate - I have to wonder how close these plans will ultimately come to being the "Cadillac Plans" the President originally intended to punish?

http://www.usatoday.com/news/washing...revision_N.htm

"A proposed 40% tax on high-priced or "Cadillac" health care plans would begin in 2018 instead of 2013, as originally proposed by the Senate. And the definition of a high-end policy would increase to $27,500 for a family, instead of $23,000.

The Senate's version of the tax, which was projected to raise $150 billion over 10 years, was opposed by labor unions. House Democrats, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi, had raised reservations about its impact. A typical family policy costs more than $13,000 in 2009, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Andy Stern, president of the Service Employees International Union, indicated that there would be support from labor leaders for Obama's new proposal. "Working families deserve health insurance that covers more and costs less," he said."


Please note the annual cost of these plans - premiums of over $2,000 per month before the elimination of the lifetime cap and other mandates.
Pythagorean
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Feb25-12, 12:42 PM
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Quote Quote by russ_watters View Post
First off, I'd like to see your evidence that the "US wants progressive".
You've skewed my words here with selective quoting... go back and read the sentence again and compare to what you've written. Once you've done that, look at the link below.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/116479/ba...-approval.aspx

On the particular issue we are discussing, you can see there's still a large body of the US supporting his decision (about half).

http://www.gallup.com/poll/152963/Co...ing-Women.aspx

It's going to come down to swing votes in the end, which means those of us that are looking for the lesser evil. When it comes to a choice between Santorum and Obama, it will be Obama for me. Romney and Obama... I might not even bother voting. I would say they're about equally the lesser evil; Obama is just smoother on stage. Then again, maybe a smooth talker is better for foreign affairs.

And of course, remember that approval ratings don't tell you who people think is the lesser evil. I may not approve of a lot of what Obama does, but that doesn't mean I want Santorum as president if that was the alternative.
Hobin
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Feb25-12, 12:47 PM
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Quote Quote by Pythagorean View Post
Then again, maybe a smooth talker is better for foreign affairs.
It definitely is.
ThomasT
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Feb25-12, 12:47 PM
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Quote Quote by Pythagorean View Post
It's going to come down to swing votes in the end, which means those of us that are looking for the lesser evil. When it comes to a choice between Santorum and Obama, it will be Obama for me. Romney and Obama... I might not even bother voting. I would say they're about equally the lesser evil; Obama is just smoother on stage. Then again, maybe a smooth talker is better for foreign affairs.
I think Obama's personality is better for an American figurehead ... given that other things are equal, which I don't think they are. That is, of the three you mentioned, Obama is clearly the best choice, imho.
Pythagorean
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Feb25-12, 12:53 PM
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Quote Quote by mege View Post
What about the employee's beliefs?
Employees aren't forced to take contraceptive... nobody is... or what are you implying?

And I didn't twist the meaning in the slightest, the paradigm is slanted from the start. Being against a mandate does not mean that one wants the total opposite mandated instead. ie: just because I think that a contraception mandate is entirely unneccessary that does not mean that I am against the use/purchase/etc of contraception.
Nobody said you were....

I think that the mandate is being unfairly posed as a matter of 'women's health' when it is nothing more than another purposely divisive policy that strips individuals of their freedom of choice.
How?

If an individual (woman in this case) is employed in a job that has health benefits and they are unable to afford birth control out of pocket, then they probably have larger problems
So what?

(I paid for my college GF's pills out of pocket: we got it from a corner pharmacy, unsubsidized, from a 'normal' doctor (not planned parenthood) for ~$15/mo).
So what?

Making birth control 'free' to women does NOT change the fact that many people still are not responsible for themselves and make bad decisions anyhow.
So what? This policy reduces the chance that their irresponsibility will result in another mouth for the US to feed. It saves money by removing that burden.

This policy is purely idealogical and has very narrow real impact compared to the constriction of freedom imposed.
You still have yet to demonstrate freedoms taken away from individual employee.

To put this in different terms: where is the problem inherent in the system that requires such a change that it is neccessary to step on individual's concience and personal freedoms?
No individual's rights are being stepped on. Insurance companies and religious institutions are not individuals. Birth control is simply not being discriminated against as a medical issue. It's religious institution that wanted to be the exception, not many other employers even recognized this as some special case of health.


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