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Will the culture war continue in the 2008 election and beyond?

  1. Feb 28, 2005 #1

    SOS2008

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    Will the “culture war” continue in the 2008 election and beyond?

    Per the history and definition of neoconservatives: http://www.csmonitor.com/specials/neocon/neocon101.html, “the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 moved much of the Bush administration closer than ever to neoconservative foreign policy…Neocons envision a world in which the United States is the unchallenged superpower, immune to threats…In the neocon dream world the entire Middle East would be democratized in the belief that this would eliminate a prime breeding ground for terrorists. This approach, they claim, is not only best for the US; it is best for the world."

    Though there is debate regarding reliability of Gallop Polls, CNN reported on the news last night that Billy Graham is more admired than any other person including Reagan, the Pope, etc. Also, according to a recent article by Bill Moyer entitled “There Is No Tomorrow” - January 30, 2005 @ http://www.startribune.com/stories/562/5211218.html, “one-third of the American electorate believe the Bible is literally true,” thus in this past election “several million good and decent citizens went to the polls believing in the rapture index.” The “rapture” belief coincides with the neocons dream in regard to foreign policy. However, according to this article these fundamentalists also do not worry about global warming or the future in general because of their belief that these are the “Last Days” in which they are anxiously awaiting (i.e., looking forward to, even hoping for) the “second coming” of Christ.

    Bush’s polarizing personality and policies will go with him at the end of his final term, but will the “culture war” that was ignited also dissipate, or will it continue in the 2008 election and beyond?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 28, 2005 #2
    It depends on who the candidates and what the issues are in 2008.

    If it's Hillary Clinton vs. Newt Gingrich, you can bet your life that culture wars will continue.

    If it's more like Joe Biden vs. Chuck Hagel, then you're not as likely to see these issues brought up and such a fiery fight being fought about silly cultural things, and more likely to see clash over important policy and such.

    The thing is, there have been huge numbers of Evangelists in this country for quite some time, but the current "culture war" was really ignited during the Bush Presidency, because he clearly takes a side. If there's a more moderate president in 2008, and more moderate candidates in general, both sides are likely to be more placated, because neither choice will be as objectionable to both sides.
     
  4. Mar 1, 2005 #3

    russ_watters

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    Just a quick note: the term "neoconservative" was created by liberals, is intended to be an insult, and is not recognized by conservatives as being a real conservative viewpoint.

    Carry on.
     
  5. Mar 1, 2005 #4

    SOS2008

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    True the term was coined by the left (The Christian Science Monitor web site points this out) though I don't see what's so insulting about it. Nonetheless, the description of neoconservatives provided in this site is useful. In the meantime, since the conservatives use the word "liberal" in such a pejorative manner, I prefer the term "progressive" since that is what liberal really means.

    Now back to your remarks wasteof02...True, the neocons have been around in varying strength since the ‘60s, and the fundamentalists have been around preaching the end of the world since the beginning of time. However, the combination of a born-again president, with 9-11, thus embracing neocon foreign policy, which fits very neatly with scriptural prophecies, is a new phenomenon that has grown in strength and number.

    As a result, the Republican Party now consists of more neocons and/or fundamentalists in its leadership than ever before. The congressional and state legislature candidates are likely to continue riding on Bush’s coat tails (even if a little tattered by 2006-2008) with “wedge” issues and chants of “freedom and peace”. As for the presidential election, there is the Bush dynasty via Jeb, and now Christian women are selling Condi campaign gear instead of going to bingo night at their church—that’s how passionate they are. As stated in another thread, even Guliani knows to capitalize on 9-11 and his personal belief in God.

    Hopefully conservatives and moderates will realize the flaw in the neocon paradigm--in that it is idealistic to think we can address hot spots around the world without becoming embroiled in longer, more costly efforts, and that every super power before has fallen because of such over extension.

    But with regard to Democrats and a platform, how do you appeal to the several million people who see global conflict as a "sign of the times," who do not care about issues of environment and energy, and possibly don’t even care about more current matters of the economy because they believe the world is coming to an end anyway? Maybe because I live in a “red” state where I see the pro-war Christian emails, Support our Troops ribbons on almost every vehicle (often in conjunction with Christian symbols), and I’ve even noticed the increase of religious lyrics in country music, I’m not so optimistic.

    As with surprise about the exit polls of 2004, I feel this should not be underestimated. The “culture war” has been launched and may not end so easily.
     
  6. Mar 4, 2005 #5
    February 10, 2005
    Hillary and Rudy maintain leads...
    Link: USATODAY.com - Sen. Clinton is early presidential favorite among Dems.

    Among Democrats, 40% favor Clinton in a USA TODAY/CNN/Gallup Poll taken last weekend.
    Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts - 25%
    John Edwards - 17%

    Among Republicans surveyed, former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani got 34%;
    Arizona Sen. John McCain, 29%;
    Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, 12%;
    Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee, 6%.

    Hillary versus Rudy – On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 high) would = 7 on the continuation of the “culture war” scale. (Hillary versus Frist = 9, Edwards vs McCain = 4, and so forth.)
     
  7. Mar 6, 2005 #6

    SOS2008

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    According to an article in the NY Times following the 2004 election, the religious aspect of the cultural war is being waged at the state level more than the federal (national) level:

    December 13, 2004
    “Christian Conservatives Turn to Statehouses”
    By NEELA BANERJEE

    Energized by electoral victories last month that they say reflect wide support for more traditional social values, conservative Christian advocates across the country are pushing ahead state and local initiatives on thorny issues, including same-sex marriage, public education and abortion. "I think people are becoming emboldened," said Michael D. Bowman, director of state legislative relations at Concerned Women for America, a conservative Christian advocacy group based in Washington. "On legislative efforts, they're getting more gutsy, and on certain issues, they may introduce legislation that they normally may not have done."


    So perhaps speculation of the 2008 election is a moot point in many ways, and in the "red" states, which out-number the "blue" states, it will be "Onward Christian Soldiers," at least in regard to domestic "wedge" issues. Geez-they are even trying to pass bills agains birth control in Arizona right now. :grumpy:
     
  8. Mar 6, 2005 #7
    Actually, if your going to Generalize, it was created by the radical conspiracy theorists, and like all things the 'Liberals' say, was stolen by them.
     
  9. Mar 6, 2005 #8

    SOS2008

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    The neocons and fundamentalists ARE radical, and beliefs in things such as the rapture are on par with conspiracy theories. In my view the extremism is what has caused the "culture war," which has grown out of control. The question posed is, will things calm down with the departure of Bush? Or is it too late--the divisiveness will continue regardless?
     
  10. Mar 6, 2005 #9

    selfAdjoint

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    I think the whole kerfluffel about culture wars, in the wake of the election, was a misunderstanding. Some people in the red states are more bigoted than others (same for the blue states), but we shouldn't let those bigots define the US people. In fact the electorate was behaving very predictably in rejecting Kerry and electing Bush.

    1. Smearing the president, even if you're telling the truth, doesn't work. The GOP found this out with Clinton and now the Dems have found it out with Bush. The president is the only electoral office the public takes seriously; its occupant is "Hedged around with majesty" in the voters' minds and smear tactics just rebound on the smearer.

    2. The last sitting Senator, or legislator of any kind, to be elected president was Jack Kennedy, and before him - well I don't know who was before him, someone back in the nineteenth century I suppose. It's not that the voters distrust legislators, they just can't seem to fully trust them. Lots of people said that they liked what Kerry SAID better than what Bush DID, but that wasn't good enough, because they couldn't feel comfortable that what Kerry said would conform to what he would do. This wasn't IMHO specific to Kerry, but just what they would have said about any candidate from Congress.

    It's long been stated the the main evidence for culture wars, the answers on some of the exit polls, were mostly due to loaded questions or restriction of choices in multiple selections.
     
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