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Old Dec 22, 2012, 07:39 PM   #26
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You missed 1968, when George Wallace won a bunch.
Doh! Totally missed that one. Thanks for the correction.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 07:50 PM   #27
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Clearly some of you just need to move to Europe.

If you think it's better "over there" you should go live there for a while. There can be anywhere that's not the US and you will see politics of division, crime, corruption, health care problems, education problems, etc.

I've been living outside the US full time for the past 3 years and have spent roughly 20% of my life over the last 55 years living in countries other than the US.

It Is no paradise "out here" and many of the failures result in significant challenges for these countries.

The US can change, however as long as politicians make a career about of being re elected, you will see the current strategy of divisiveness continue. It's in their best interest to divide the country. The Democrats have developed this as their strategy for success over the past 40 years. Class warfare, racial division, the society of envy and victim mentality - all Democrat talking points designed to make people more dependent on the government and win more votes. The Democrats talk about being the party of inclusion. Nothing could be further from the truth. It is the party of hate, envy and division, and has been since the 60s.

I currently live in a Muslim country that is more religiously tolerant than the US, however the government here has been slowly bringing the country closer to failure by requiring its non Muslim citizens to follow more and more Muslim tenants. This leads to anger and bitterness in unrelated areas, as Muslims get preferential treatment over others, and concession becomes necessary to simply survive. The government has become obsessed with self preservation and they have blatant cash giveaways to the "poor" right before elections. The current government has been in control for the last 30 years, and while economic growth has been strong, it's been driven mostly by outside investments. Those have tailed off and in many cases stopped, while the schools have become segregated, talent is leaving the country for employment abroad, the division between classes has widened, and government focuses on maintaining power and not fixing the problems of the nation.

Collapse here is imminent - just like in the US - and mostly because the politicians lust for power, forgot what made the country work, and divide its citizens into polar opposite views that do not lead to cooperation and understanding, but to a win at all costs mentality.

The pending economic collapse in the US will be very telling, and the ripples across the rest of the world will be of tsunami proportions.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 10:04 PM   #28
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It's been 50 years since the 60's. The US had a 2-party system for at least 50 years before then, so why wasn't it polarized, or becoming more polarized, for all the time before the 60's?

That's a serious question. I can think of various possible causes, but if you're going to point to the 2-party system as the root cause, and multi-parties as a possible solution, I think you should explain how 2-parties suddenly stopped working when you say it did.

My opinion is that there was plenty of extremism before the 60's, plenty of polarization, and there was no single root cause for America's path since the 60's. There were plenty of contributing factors, some mitigating factors that prevented eruption before the 60's, and no simple single answer.
I think I was pretty clear with my qualification when I wrote "Part of the problem".

My main point was however, that Europe as a whole faced far greater challenges than the US did since WWI, yet the US has been moving backward, not forward since the 60s.

So far nobody has been interested in discussing whether that may be the case, they're only interested in picking apart my broad opening statement. Denial is not a positive attribute.

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They might be ahead as far as the gas mileage or environmentally friendly is concerned, however today you can find very environmentally friendly new vehicles in the US. If you want to buy those vehicles I think it is great. I drive something that is decent on fuel and is clean, but can still pull my snowmobile trailer. I went about as small as I can as far as any towing capacity is concerned.

Now as far as actual vehicle safety is concerned no country in the world regulates safety standards as well as we do. In fact when Ford decided to bring some of their vehicles over from Europe to the US to sell they had to rework major components to strengthen safety requirements and add additional safety equipment. Straight European cars without changes will not pass US safety standards. Now maybe we need stronger safety standards because of the larger vehicles on the road, but it is what it is.

I get tired of the whole idea that some in the US have that Europe is a better place to live. If you honestly believe that I am not sure why you would stay here. All countries have their pros and cons. I'm quite happy with my life in our country. My life isn't perfect, but I doubt life is perfect anywhere and in some places it would be MUCH worse. I know I lived in Iraq for a year while I was deployed and I can promise life really stunk for those people.
Does the EU have the poverty levels, social dysfunction and abysmal educational levels that the US does?

Also, I'd like to see something to back up your statement that US cars are safer than EU cars.

Don't you think that the obese American gas guzzlers are little more than a hidden tax imposed by the Republicans because of their refusal to increase mileage requirements?
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 11:44 PM   #29
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I think American Extremism is born out of American Exceptionalism. To a lot of people here, it seems like it's always "go big or go home". Everything is about competition, and winner-takes-all. Instead of learning to co-exist, we try to crush those who offer any deterrent to our own success. The only time I'm successful is when I make my competition fail. If I'm not massively wealthy, then I need to find some way to make it so.

It seems like we're almost constantly bombarded with talk of massive competition instead of cooperation and coexistence.

In the end, it's a "I have to be better than you" mentality.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 12:51 AM   #30
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Because Europe isn't America and America isn't Europe. Europe's population statistics show it to be at a different level of development than America. Religion statistics show Americans find religion more important than Europeans (although it is falling in the US). Some attitudes are changing, but other issues aren't. America is a more individualized society than Europe, and this is something that is getting more pronounced (source, Bowing Alone). Just, different. I'm glad to see things like marriage equality, women's rights, workplace equality and anti-discrimination litigation, comprehensive healthcare, detachment of religion from government are gaining momentum as I think that helps everyone, but I'm against higher taxes, I have issues with many welfare programs that seemingly don't work, I like having the ability to shoot a gun, and I like being more individualistic. Does that make me an extremist or just different? I see nothing wrong with the European way of life, and I appreciate their many contributions to society, but my attitudes and beliefs aren't completely in line with most of my European friends. I don't see either belief set as better, just different.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 06:40 AM   #31
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America is a more individualized society than Europe... and I like being more individualistic.
What does this mean? Is it code?
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 07:07 AM   #32
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What does this mean? Is it code?
I think he's saying that in Europe, apparently, you can't be an individual, and don't have as much choice about what you want to do. Of course, I've never quite seen that over there.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 07:18 AM   #33
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I think he's saying that in Europe, apparently, you can't be an individual, and don't have as much choice about what you want to do. Of course, I've never quite seen that over there.
well since higher education doesn't cost an arm and a leg/is highly subsidized in large parts of europe i'd say that the playing field is a hell of a lot more level over there than it is over in the us (re: choice about what you want to do)
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 07:24 AM   #34
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What does this mean? Is it code?
I care about "me" more than I care about "us."
It's the unwritten code of "true Americans."
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 07:27 AM   #35
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Does the EU have the poverty levels, social dysfunction and abysmal educational levels that the US does?
Yes unfortunately it is just as worse in some European countries.

We live in a global economy now which was totally different 50/40/30/20 years ago.
We're at a turning point when it comes to the monetary system as well. This is the time where jobs become obsolete and never return. Automation will take over most of that what is needed.

But here is the problem.... Our social level hasn't changed radical enough. We stick to much to old thinking, our own culture, our norms and values. (which are forced upon us by our ancestors). Poverty will hit a all time high if this isn't going to change. We need to think of systems which would benefit everyone on this planet. Only then we will get beyond our problems of today.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 08:14 AM   #36
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well since higher education doesn't cost an arm and a leg/is highly subsidized in large parts of europe i'd say that the playing field is a hell of a lot more level over there than it is over in the us (re: choice about what you want to do)
I can't tell if you're agreeing with me or offering a counterpoint. Is the subsidized education a good thing because it allows more people to choose their future, or a bad thing because it doesn't create enough competition?
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 08:27 AM   #37
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I can't tell if you're agreeing with me or offering a counterpoint. Is the subsidized education a good thing because it allows more people to choose their future, or a bad thing because it doesn't create enough competition?
good thing! it levels the playing field

i don't think education should be about competition
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 08:37 AM   #38
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OK , so where is the evidence that Europe has less extremism? I have lived in the UK for 20 years, and the left and right are even more polarised than the US, there is intermittent violence still in Northern Ireland, and even the animal liberation movement is so extreme in their 'direct actions' that they are considered terrorists. Across Europe there are xenophobic groups that are prejudiced against immigrants and non-Christians, and sometimes they commit violence. And let us not forget the number violent jihadist groups who originated in Europe. From where I sit the US extremism seems about the same as Europe.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 08:43 AM   #39
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Does the EU have the poverty levels, social dysfunction and abysmal educational levels that the US does?

Also, I'd like to see something to back up your statement that US cars are safer than EU cars.

Don't you think that the obese American gas guzzlers are little more than a hidden tax imposed by the Republicans because of their refusal to increase mileage requirements?
Then why in the world aren't you packing up and moving as we speak? Seriously if you hate living in our country I have no idea why you would not move to a place you would be happier. I know if my life was as terrible as yours appears to be I'd get the heck out of here. No reason in living in a place you hate.

As far as the so called obese gas guzzlers maybe you need to go car shopping. The lots are full of small cars that get excellent MPG. A good friend of mine is dealing on a new Ford C-MAX Hybrid right now with a combined MPG rating of 47. If you think a vehicle that does 47 MPG combined with a score of 10 (lowest) on the pollution chart is an obese gas guzzler I don't know what to say.

Do you want the Government to ban all trucks, SUVs or anything larger then a subcompact car? It seem the only solutions the hard left (or even the hard right in other cases) ever come up with is ban...ban...ban unless we are talking about something like illegal drugs or abortion. Now for the record I am pro-choice (anti-abortion personally, but feel people should be able to make the choice) and I am completely neutral as far as marijuana legalization goes.

So after saying all of that what is the major difference between the hard right and hard left? Just what they want to ban. Seriously. That's it! lol
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 09:06 AM   #40
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I think I was pretty clear with my qualification when I wrote "Part of the problem".

My main point was however, that Europe as a whole faced far greater challenges than the US did since WWI, yet the US has been moving backward, not forward since the 60s.

So far nobody has been interested in discussing whether that may be the case, they're only interested in picking apart my broad opening statement. Denial is not a positive attribute.



Does the EU have the poverty levels, social dysfunction and abysmal educational levels that the US does?

Also, I'd like to see something to back up your statement that US cars are safer than EU cars.

Don't you think that the obese American gas guzzlers are little more than a hidden tax imposed by the Republicans because of their refusal to increase mileage requirements?
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Originally Posted by VulchR View Post
OK , so where is the evidence that Europe has less extremism? I have lived in the UK for 20 years, and the left and right are even more polarised than the US, there is intermittent violence still in Northern Ireland, and even the animal liberation movement is so extreme in their 'direct actions' that they are considered terrorists. Across Europe there are xenophobic groups that are prejudiced against immigrants and non-Christians, and sometimes they commit violence. And let us not forget the number violent jihadist groups who originated in Europe. From where I sit the US extremism seems about the same as Europe.
My solution that you two switch places.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 10:04 AM   #41
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Europe as a whole faced far greater challenges than the US did since WWI, yet the US has been moving backward, not forward since the 60s.
Comparatively both are true.

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Yes unfortunately it is just as worse in some European countries.
Which ones are you thinking of?

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A good friend of mine is dealing on a new Ford C-MAX Hybrid right now with a combined MPG rating of 47. If you think a vehicle that does 47 MPG combined with a score of 10 (lowest) on the pollution chart is an obese gas guzzler I don't know what to say.
It isn't that great. A Peugeot 308 can do 75 miles per US gallon.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 10:08 AM   #42
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OK , so where is the evidence that Europe has less extremism?
The OP listed the following ...

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Abortion isn't an issue anymore, gay marriage is the norm, guns have no place in urban civilization, unions are stronger than before, cars get excellent mileage, public schools are the best in the world, healthcare is a right not a privilege.
You did not address those points.

Do you see them as insignificant or untrue?

Do your examples overshadow or refute them?
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 10:12 AM   #43
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It isn't that great. A Peugeot 308 can do 75 miles per US gallon.
Compare the capabilities and performance of both vehicles and then get back to me.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 10:30 AM   #44
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Compare the capabilities and performance of both vehicles and then get back to me.
The capability and performance was stated. It gets 75 mpg.

Now you could argue that it doesn't go zero to 60 in 8 seconds ... or that it's not appointed with rich Corinthian leather, but that kind of makes the point the OP was trying to make.

The main function of an a car is to get you from point A to B. In Europe, the've been able to do that more efficiently than in the U.S. The fact that the car might have a little less horsepower, or be a little smaller is IMO moot, but indicative of the mindset of many Americans, who seem to care less about efficiency, and more about power and luxury.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 10:38 AM   #45
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The capability and performance was stated. It gets 75 mpg.

Now you could argue that it doesn't go zero to 60 in 8 seconds ... or that it's not appointed with rich Corinthian leather, but that kind of makes the point the OP was trying to make.

The main function of an a car is to get you from point A to B. In Europe, the've been able to do that more efficiently than in the U.S. The fact that the car might have a little less horsepower, or be a little smaller is IMO moot, but indicative of the mindset of many Americans, who seem to care less about efficiency, and more about power and luxury.
But us European's can do both power and luxury. Does the name Bugatti Veyron ring a bell?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bugatti_Veyron
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 10:47 AM   #46
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The main function of an a car is to get you from point A to B. In Europe, the've been able to do that more efficiently than in the U.S. The fact that the car might have a little less horsepower, or be a little smaller is IMO moot, but indicative of the mindset of many Americans, who seem to care less about efficiency, and more about power and luxury.
Well I sure hope you are driving the smallest little roller skate you can find and never ever get anything larger no matter if you have a family or need any sort of hauling or towing capacity. Never ever break this rule. As for me I actually need to haul a few things and I live on top of a hill which gets a lot of snow in the winter. Getting up the hill is terrible when it snows without an AWD vehicle. I drive a Ford Escape. It gets me up the hill and pulls a small trailer I own since I am a homeowner and need to haul things at times. I feel it is absolutely the smallest vehicle I could buy that would still meet my needs.

It is a compact utility and gets pretty decent MPG for being 4WD, but I am sure you consider it a gigantic gas guzzler and it should be banned from purchase!
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 10:54 AM   #47
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Compare the capabilities and performance of both vehicles and then get back to me.
You seem to think this is little more than a contest to see whose willy is bigger.

The point is, US carmakers did not get serious about MPG until Obama mandated it. Now, it's a race to see who can get the best mileage but unfortunately, I still see a lot of new gas guzzlers out there. The fabricated need for power and once a year towing power is just another Republican tax on America. Every time the Democrats propose conservative legislation; ie improved mileage, the Republicans start crying that it is an imposition on their freedoms and it results in cars that are overbuilt and get very poor mileage while they are rarely used for anything more onerous than grocery runs. This effectively becomes a tax on American families. The same with faux chateaux on a quarter acre in gated communities.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 11:24 AM   #48
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You seem to think this is little more than a contest to see whose willy is bigger.

The point is, US carmakers did not get serious about MPG until Obama mandated it. Now, it's a race to see who can get the best mileage but unfortunately, I still see a lot of new gas guzzlers out there. The fabricated need for power and once a year towing power is just another Republican tax on America. Every time the Democrats propose conservative legislation; ie improved mileage, the Republicans start crying that it is an imposition on their freedoms and it results in cars that are overbuilt and get very poor mileage while they are rarely used for anything more onerous than grocery runs. This effectively becomes a tax on American families. The same with faux chateaux on a quarter acre in gated communities.
Why do you get to decide what I need or don't need? I drive a fuel efficient vehicle that is as small as I can go for my needs. Go and look at vehicle sales and stats in our country over the past 5 years. There has been a large shift to smaller vehicles. Some of it has to do with Obama's policies, but a lot of it has to do with higher gas prices. If higher gas prices are driving consumers to buy smaller vehicles... great... it shows that the consumer is voting with their pocket books.

In some cases vehicles are overbuilt in North America. For example: Why on earth does a US Focus weight more then a European Focus? Check the safety standards and you will find the reason for those extra pounds.

You seem to be upset that some people live in a faux chateaus on a quarter acre in a gated community. Why does this bother you? People can live however they want to live. It is their money. They are probably paying huge amounts of property tax on those McMansions, but you know what? That property tax helps everyone else out. Now personally I would not live there because those "ain't my type of people" but I could care less. Heck I own 160 acres of land. It is all in set-aside conservation reserve acres, but I own it and care for it.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 11:32 AM   #49
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Well I sure hope you are driving the smallest little roller skate you can find and never ever get anything larger no matter if you have a family or need any sort of hauling or towing capacity. Never ever break this rule.
I've actually done pretty well by that rule. I didn't own a car for most of my 20's. The first car I bought was a 3-cylinder Chevy Sprint which I drove into my mid-30's. I removed the front passenger seat and used that car to haul many loads of broken concrete for retaining walls as well as building supplies for backyard projects.

When that car died, I commuted daily by bus for 4 years, walking about a mile and a half each way to the stop ... rain or shine. It's only been within the past couple of years that I got a car again. I drive a Toyota Corolla that gets 30 mpg. And when I need a dozen 2x4's, the front and passenger seats fold down and they fit very nicely.

I'm not in the market for a new car, but when I buy one the primary feature I'll look for is gas mileage. The first thing it must be is one of the leaders in fuel efficiency, then reliability, then other features like power or luxury.

----------

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The point is, US carmakers did not get serious about MPG until Obama mandated it.
Mitt Romney campaigned to abolish them.

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Why do you get to decide what I need or don't need?
Ugg is speaking generally.

Not about anyone in particular.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 11:40 AM   #50
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Or: Europe isn't the paradise you're making it out to be, and the US isn't the hellhole you're making it out to be. There are great places to live in the US and terrible places to live in Europe. I wish America was a lot more progressive on some things but there are other ways of approaching a problem than the "European way".

Now about gas mileage, cars in Europe aren't actually more environmentally friendly. The gas mileage difference is because an imperial gallon is more than a US gallon so the numbers make European cars look better. Then there are differences in testing and some emissions laws that favor European cars.
I must disagree. Cars in Europe had better fuel efficiency because gas was $7+ per gallon. Before the implosion, GM and others were selling exactly what US citizens wanted, large gas guzzlers because gas was cheap in this country. Now GM is putting out respectable cars that get 40mpg+.
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