What political inclination would you describe yourself as?

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What political inclination would you describe yourself as?

  • Liberal

    Votes: 18 28.6%
  • Conservative

    Votes: 9 14.3%
  • Libertarian

    Votes: 14 22.2%
  • Statist

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Centrist

    Votes: 7 11.1%
  • Other

    Votes: 10 15.9%
  • I don't do politics.

    Votes: 5 7.9%

  • Total voters
    63
  • #51
15
1
I do know that there is a tendency in America to brand any modest social program as "authoritarian" (eg the "public option" in regard to healthcare).
The problem is that there is nothing "modest" about the idea of a "public option." It is a Trojan horse to eventually make the road to single-payer healthcare.
 
  • #52
15
1
The American left wants the government to more strictly control the economy, but give people personal freedoms. The American right wants to keep their hands off of the economy, but want to control the personal lives of people. Libertarians want government to keep their hands out of both the economy and out of our personal lives.
The hardcore Left (not the center-Left, the hardcore Left) seek to control both the economy and people's lives, with a few exceptions. That is why they want to control the economy. You control the economy, you control everything. The hardcore Left want to regulate everything people can say, do, eat, drink, drive, energy use, gun ownership, smoking, religious displays (they want freedom from religion as opposed to freedom of religion, etc...the only exceptions are gay marriage, allowing abortions, and a few other things. The Right want the economy left free because that means a free society.

The hardcore ultra religious portion of the Right, unfortunately, want to ram religion down people's throats, and thus seek to control things like marriage (no gay marriage) and being pro-life to the point of saying birth control is evil.
 
  • #53
Char. Limit
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The problem is that there is nothing "modest" about the idea of a "public option." It is a Trojan horse to eventually make the road to single-payer healthcare.
Not to hijack the thread, but it's NOT. If people choose this public option, and it's cheaper and more effective, and eventually becomes the dominant plan, then the free market will have spoken. Also, no one would be angry, except right-wing pundits.
 
  • #54
15
1
Not to hijack the thread, but it's NOT. If people choose this public option, and it's cheaper and more effective, and eventually becomes the dominant plan, then the free market will have spoken. Also, no one would be angry, except right-wing pundits.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZ-6ebku3_E&feature=player_embedded

A public option is not "free-market." In a free-market, companies that can fail compete with one another for market share, and they seek to offer cheaper prices and better service then the competition. A government-subsidized company that can never fail, and thus can offer artificially lower prices then the private companies, is not free-market. It is a complete cheat.

If the government tried setting up a for-profit healthcare company that was government-owned and government-run, but for-profit and not subsidized, it would be out of business within a year.

Furthermore, we already have two government-run, single-payer health insurance companies---Medicare and Medicaid---that are in dire financial straits as it is. And the one program that did have lots of money to fund it, Social Security, the government quietly opened up its surplus and robbed it.

And finally, the whole idea about "increasing choice and competition" is bogus as well. We could do that very simply through much simpler and shorter legislation. Except the problem is that such legislation is truly free-market, and the Democrats do not want that. They want government control of healthcare. It is like a religious holy grail to them. They will sacrifice all of their power in Congress and buy off every vote they can to pass this current bill, which they have designed to be mostly unreversible.

As the video says, it is a long-term goal. Pass the current bill, which lets the federal government take informal control over the healthcare industry, give President Obama something thus to sign, maybe lose a ton of seats in Congress later this year, but the bill is unreversible, so then in the future, win back seats, then make the way for a public option as a modification to the bill, then thus move us to single-payer.

And yes I know the Republicans under Bush had eight years to do all the stuff they are saying we should do now but never bothered, yes they blew the pooch on that.
 
  • #55
Char. Limit
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Lol, that's quite the conspiracy you've got there. As a cynic, I do support that probability, but not in public.

However, that almost reaches Birther level from the sound of it. Are you sure that Yemengate (trademarked) hasn't unhinged you a bit?
 
  • #56
Al68
It was in reference to a previous poster who berates goverments that actually "take control" of things. I don't think there is anything "authoritarian" about this. The idealogies of communism or collectivism are truely authoritarian systems of goverment.

I do know that there is a tendency in America to brand any modest social program as "authoritarian" (eg the "public option" in regard to healthcare).

I personally do believe that if a goverment pools resources and redistributes them, this is a better, more reliable way running a country.
LOL again. You are describing communism and collectivism perfectly with that last statement.

I find it fascinating that people who wholeheartedly agree with the core tenets of communism/socialism object to using the words.
 
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  • #57
15
1
Lol, that's quite the conspiracy you've got there. As a cynic, I do support that probability, but not in public.

However, that almost reaches Birther level from the sound of it. Are you sure that Yemengate (trademarked) hasn't unhinged you a bit?
I do not equate saying the political Left, who control the Democrat party right now, want single-payer healthcare, and are trying to enact fundamental change towards it, with birthers and 9/11 truthers (who are on the same plane as birthers) and so forth.

The political Left want single-payer healthcare. That is the holy grail for them. They have been fighting for it for decades (look at the career of Ted Kennedy). They are true believers in this. And now they finally have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get a permanent foot in the door towards it. You think they are going to let that slip?
 
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  • #58
Al68
What do you call the people that want the government to control the economy AND our personal lives? We can't call them "authoritarian," because it has a negative connotation. We can't call them "statist," according to someone in this thread, because then everybody is a statist to some degree. All my post asked was "so, what is the correct term then?"

So what CAN we call such people?
There is no term that will be both accurate and not objected to.

People who want government to control the economy will object to being called any word that means "want government to control the economy".

Gee, I wonder why that is.
 
  • #59
62
0
LOL again. You are describing communism and collectivism perfectly with that last statement.

I find it fascinating that people who wholeheartedly agree with the core tenets of communism/socialism object to using the words.
You kind of prove the point I was making - there is a tendency for people to rush to brand others as "communist", "socialist", "authoritarian", etc. I wasn't aware I had discussed the "core tenets" of communism or socialism but surely enough you made the point that I "wholeheartedly agree" with those complex but discredited (in the case of communism) idealogies.

I'm going to give you bit a shock now: Human beings tend to be incredibly mulifacated in their thinking, so it's a bit silly to try and pidgeon hole people like this.
 
  • #60
172
1
The hardcore Left want to regulate everything people can say, do, eat, drink, drive, energy use, gun ownership, smoking, religious displays (they want freedom from religion as opposed to freedom of religion, etc...the only exceptions are gay marriage, allowing abortions, and a few other things.
You're just making up your own arbitrary definition of left. What you call "hardcore left," I'd call "authoritarian" or "statist" or whatever. I'm a pretty hardcore atheist, but I haven't heard a single person that wants to ban religious displays. NOT ONE PERSON. We DO, however, want to ban the GOVERNMENT from paying for religious displays, or endorsing one religion over another.

It's a similar thing with smoking. I don't know anybody I'd call "left wing" that wants to ban cigarettes completely. It'd be pretty strange to want to ban cigarettes, but want to legalize marijuana. Every "hardcore left" person I know wants to legalize drugs.

I define "left" the same way the World's Smallest Political Quiz does; somebody who advocates personal freedom, but also advocates tight government controls over economic matters.

You apparently define "left" as "somebody that disagrees with me."
 
  • #61
BobG
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Many Liberals believe that the government should have full control over healthcare and education because they believe these services are rights.
That's not the only possible reason.

Education, at least, affects your overall workforce and how productive your economy will be in comparison to other nations. I guess a purely free market capitalist would say individuals are free to decide their own education levels and a country's overall technological level should be whatever the mass of individuals decide, while others would say the government should raise the country's overall economic capability by raising the capabilities of its workers. I think there's at least a lot of benefit in making sure there's a good education available for those who want it, since the entire economy benefits from each person that becomes a scientist, engineer, etc.

Healthcare might be a different story, but I'm sure there's some who could see that as an investment, as well, as opposed to providing it because it's a right.

In other words, to say the only reason to provide healthcare and education is because they're rights is an over generalization. The reason to provide them could be the same as why a government would reduce taxes on corporations during a recession.

You have to assume there's no overall benefit before you state they're being provided solely because they're rights.

That doesn't mean there's not at least some truth to your statement. The idea of providing school vouchers, etc, so people can take government money and decide what they want their education to consist of shouldn't even be an issue. And the tuition assistance the government does subsidize should be in fields where there's a payoff for the economy as a whole - in other words, more for science majors and less for literary majors. The emphasis should be towards providing the education that businesses need to thrive - not towards a person reaching some personal level of satisfaction.
 
  • #62
15
1
You're just making up your own arbitrary definition of left. What you call "hardcore left," I'd call "authoritarian" or "statist" or whatever. I'm a pretty hardcore atheist, but I haven't heard a single person that wants to ban religious displays. NOT ONE PERSON. We DO, however, want to ban the GOVERNMENT from paying for religious displays, or endorsing one religion over another.
The hardcore Left are your more statist types, but since they know they couldn't get statism per se in modern America, they go for what they see as the second-best option. Remember, I made a distinction between center-left and hardcore Left.

It's a similar thing with smoking. I don't know anybody I'd call "left wing" that wants to ban cigarettes completely. It'd be pretty strange to want to ban cigarettes, but want to legalize marijuana. Every "hardcore left" person I know wants to legalize drugs.
California bans smoking to some degree, with anti-smoking laws. BTW, as for strangeness, the hardcore Left do not make much sense (neither do the hardcore right) IMO!

I define "left" the same way the World's Smallest Political Quiz does; somebody who advocates personal freedom, but also advocates tight government controls over economic matters.

You apparently define "left" as "somebody that disagrees with me."
Nope, it is just that personal freedoms are tied to economic freedom, so while you can retain certain personal freedoms perhaps if the government controls the economy, you can lose them incredibly easily.
 
  • #63
255
0
That's not the only possible reason.

Education, at least, affects your overall workforce and how productive your economy will be in comparison to other nations. I guess a purely free market capitalist would say individuals are free to decide their own education levels and a country's overall technological level should be whatever the mass of individuals decide, while others would say the government should raise the country's overall economic capability by raising the capabilities of its workers. I think there's at least a lot of benefit in making sure there's a good education available for those who want it, since the entire economy benefits from each person that becomes a scientist, engineer, etc.
Yes, it is true that their are many reasons for why people want to the government to supply a free education to the public besides many believing that it is an entitlement such as the reasons that you listed , but it is not only liberals that believes that we need to have the government fully support the education of everyone's if we want to "compete" with the education of students in other nations. I argued that overall many liberals , and possibly a few so -called conservatives believe that education is an entitlement because they believe that it should be the federal government job to provide services for those who cannot afford because they believe that the free market would live these people behind. besides there is no gaurantee that a nation would churn out more scientists, engineers if the federal government publicly funded everyone's education nor is there any evidence to support that leaving your education in the hands of the free market would be a detriment to the entire economy. In fact, evidence points that the free market had the capability of providing free access to educational resources to those who might not be able to afford it since you can find a variety of learning tools such as MIT opencourse ware online and therefore increase the chances of providing a better quality education for each individual student.

In other words, to say the only reason to provide healthcare and education is because they're rights is an over generalization. The reason to provide them could be the same as why a government would reduce taxes on corporations during a recession.

You have to assume there's no overall benefit before you state they're being provided solely because they're rights.
I never said that liberals didn't not believe that the reason they want publicly funded is because they believe that it would benefit the economy as a whole. That might be a reason for their support of universal healthcare . But from my experience, when looking at liberals blogs, articles written by liberals on liberal websites, some of the reasons you mentioned for publicly funded healthcare I don't often hear why there should be universal healthcare. The reasons I often hear/read are 'that the federal government should assist the poor', or 'that the free market should have complete hands off the service of providing healthcare because health is a crucial part of life ' and 'you should not make a profit off of someone's health'. Rarely do I ever hear/read from liberal blogs/articles that we should have universal health care because it benefits the economy when its in a recession.
 
  • #64
Char. Limit
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LOL again. You are describing communism and collectivism perfectly with that last statement.

I find it fascinating that people who wholeheartedly agree with the core tenets of communism/socialism object to using the words.
it's because the words have been both debased, now meaning almost nothing, and demonized. Joseph Stalin wouldn't describe himself as a Communist in America today, the words mean so little.
 
  • #65
246
3
Exactly which political party is in favor of a balanced budget?
 
  • #66
Char. Limit
Gold Member
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Neither.
 
  • #67
BobG
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Exactly which political party is in favor of a balanced budget?
The Libertarian Party.

The last Republican to believe in a balanced budget was probably Bob Dole. First, they evolved into Kemp's supply siders and then morphed into something kind of strange and bizarre during the Bush administration.

Actually, I could almost be a Libertarian. I just couldn't vote for one. They have a strict criteria of only allowing slightly off kilter characters to run for office.

Wait! Can I rethink that? I have to think of a Republican or Democrat that hasn't abused alcohol/drugs, hasn't been married three times, doesn't give speeches while turkeys are being slaughtered in the background, doesn't tell crippled people to rise up from their wheel chairs.........
 
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  • #68
Char. Limit
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Good luck, Bob. And don't forget Dan Quayle, thee mane whoe spellede potatoe wronge.
 
  • #69
Al68
You kind of prove the point I was making - there is a tendency for people to rush to brand others as "communist", "socialist", "authoritarian", etc. I wasn't aware I had discussed the "core tenets" of communism or socialism but surely enough you made the point that I "wholeheartedly agree" with those complex but discredited (in the case of communism) idealogies.
I was "branding" your stated belief as a core tenet of communism and socialism, since a core tenet of both is the belief that government should control/manage/regulate the economy. And use force to prevent "non-compliant" private enterprise.

Of course there are different degrees, and full communism is at the extreme, but every "label" has different degrees.

I have asked several times before on this board for an alternate "label" that would be unobjectionable but accurately describe that belief system.

How about "economically anti-libertarian"?
 
  • #70
Al68
Actually, I could almost be a Libertarian. I just couldn't vote for one. They have a strict criteria of only allowing slightly off kilter characters to run for office.

Wait! Can I rethink that?
Sure, but with what's at stake in today's political climate, I think Libertarians, Republicans, and everyone else against this massive expansion of government power over us had better put aside our differences real quick. The alternative is to watch the nation we love disappear completely.
 
  • #71
Char. Limit
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I was "branding" your stated belief as a core tenet of communism and socialism, since a core tenet of both is the belief that government should control/manage/regulate the economy. And use force to prevent "non-compliant" private enterprise.

Of course there are different degrees, and full communism is at the extreme, but every "label" has different degrees.

I have asked several times before on this board for an alternate "label" that would be unobjectionable but accurately describe that belief system.

How about "economically anti-libertarian"?
How about "fiscally progressive"?

Your wish to be "unobjectionable" sickens me, you PC Police Chief.

Sorry about the insult, but that's how American politics seem to work nowadays. Just look at McCain calling Obama a radical Nazi Muslim Kenyan terrorist (and the Republicans are still calling him each of these things)
 
  • #72
Al68
How about "fiscally progressive"?

Your wish to be "unobjectionable" sickens me, you PC Police Chief.
LOL. I see you don't have that problem. :smile:

But I don't think "fiscally progressive" is specific enough to mean anything, or could mean multiple things.

Given the progress made on economic freedom post-Enlightenment (pioneered by the U.S.) I'd call more restrictions on that freedom setbacks, not progress.
 
  • #73
Char. Limit
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Thats true, maybe...
 
  • #74
BobG
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I never said that liberals didn't not believe that the reason they want publicly funded is because they believe that it would benefit the economy as a whole. That might be a reason for their support of universal healthcare . But from my experience, when looking at liberals blogs, articles written by liberals on liberal websites, some of the reasons you mentioned for publicly funded healthcare I don't often hear why there should be universal healthcare. The reasons I often hear/read are 'that the federal government should assist the poor', or 'that the free market should have complete hands off the service of providing healthcare because health is a crucial part of life ' and 'you should not make a profit off of someone's health'. Rarely do I ever hear/read from liberal blogs/articles that we should have universal health care because it benefits the economy when its in a recession.
I never gave any economic reasons for publicly funded health care (just education). There are some for the average American, but only because we're not going to deny health care just because people can't pay for it (limit it, maybe, but it's hard to let people actually die on the street). In other words, once people have already made the decision that health care is a universal right, you have to figure out the most cost effective way to provide it. But, the tail wags the dog and the economic benefits aren't the root reason for providing health care.

I said it was likely that some people could give you reasons why universal health care was an investment, not an entitlement - not that I would. (And I do think a reason unrelated to the entitlement aspect would be interesting to hear.)

On the other hand, if improving people's health is a right the government should provide, then inept handling of the economy means the government is doing its job well - Is the recession good for your health? That last is added a bit tongue in cheek since it's always dangerous to assume two phenomena must be related just because their cycles mirror each other.
 
  • #75
149
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How about "fiscally progressive"?

Your wish to be "unobjectionable" sickens me, you PC Police Chief.

Sorry about the insult, but that's how American politics seem to work nowadays. Just look at McCain calling Obama a radical Nazi Muslim Kenyan terrorist (and the Republicans are still calling him each of these things)
Can you elaborate (and maybe support)?
 

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