Contrary to the right/left

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by stubeeef, Dec 10, 2004.

  1. stubeeef macrumors 68030


    Aug 10, 2004
    Many of us are not 100% anything, I think?

    In what ways are your political views different than the group you usually identify with?

    Ex. I indentify more with the right more than the left.
    I differ from the usual person on the right in that-
    A) I don't like assualt weapon sales
    B) I think recycling should be mandatory
    C) I think cafe limits ought to be doubled (mpg's for those less familiar)
    D) I am opposed to the death penalty
  2. miloblithe macrumors 68020


    Nov 14, 2003
    Washington, DC
    Other than not voting for the euro, I think the Swedes pretty much have it right. High taxes and excellent social provisions combined with a competitive, open economy. Kind of brilliant actually.

    In the U.S. context, I disagree with the Democrats often. They are nowhere near left enough. Republicans? I can't really think of anything they've been right about.
  3. skunk macrumors G4


    Jun 29, 2002
    Republic of Ukistan
    To paraphrase Groucho Marx, I wouldn't want to belong to any group which would accept me as a member...
  4. blackfox macrumors 65816


    Feb 18, 2003
    I believe in strong domestic social programs and a strong military/foreign Policy for the same reason:

    Although they both involve moral compromises and abuse, it is best to engage and influence the poorest and most wretched with your values, however imperfect, because either:

    (a) someone else will, who in many case will be offering much worse than you.
    (b) sheer demographics and the resultant power of such, makes the benign control/influence of said group a necessity for stability. Ignore (or worse) this group, and it will be at your peril.

    This also adds to the coherence, strength and legitimacy of the State, which again while imperfect, as a Republic, is preferable to a less accountable, less pluralistic alternative.

    Lastly, I believe that both must be exercised wisely and realistically, which in our society means with attention to Liberal Idealism/Moralism, but at the same time not being beholden to it to an extent that negatively effects it's basic practicality.

    With regards to Social Programs, this may mean that the sacrifices made by citizens may be unequal and unfair at times, and that so will the results. It may also involve a degree of societal awareness, engagement and responsibility that some may dislike or be uncomfortable with.

    With regards to Foreign Policy, this may mean a policy that is often times not democratically decided upon in practice, as practical and effective policy will often not have time for deliberation. It may also involve the intervention in other countries affairs and at times a fair amount of viciousness and death, some of it innocent. It may also involve the support of Evil men and the abandonment of Good ones. Much of this will be somewhat morally reprehensible to many, but a necessary step to ensure order, stability and progress in the world. It must not be primarily motivated by morality, however, but by pragmatism.

    I also agree with Stu's exceptions.

    What does that make me?
  5. skunk macrumors G4


    Jun 29, 2002
    Republic of Ukistan
    No, let me guess, was that from Goebbels?

    Unfortunately, you've got George Bush, not Caesar Augustus.

    I don't mean to be obtuse, but what do you mean?

    So more of the same, then? :confused:

    Confused, I'd say. :eek: :D

    Has somebody switched your tablets? :D
  6. blackfox macrumors 65816


    Feb 18, 2003
    Haha. Well, my comments assume a fuctioning Democratic Republic and more benevolent criteria than the Reich used. I was looking more at the Romans as an example.

    That's true, but not relevant to this thread. It is also why I think he is a poor President and did not vote for him.

    I was trying to avoid a lengthy post, but basically I meant no solution will be perfect. As such, if the programs in question are based on tax revenue, then some will pay more than others and receive less (or no) tangible or immediate benefits. Likewise, some will abuse the system and take more than they possibly deserve and some truly needly might not get enough. This stuff can be mitigated by good policy, but not eliminated.

    As to societal awareness/engagement/responsibility, this means that people will have to look beyond mere self-interest and attempt to understand the effects of said policy or the lack thereof. To make any policy work, there must be some level of community awareness and concern. It is not enough to merely write a check and go back to putting your head in the sand. To make this work, this may involve some level of federalism to more accurately reflect the scope of people's interests and the unique needs of a specific

    Well, the current state of Foreign Affairs seems both moralistic and inept (perhaps the latter as a result of the former). Still, to some extent, interventionism is a necessity, and a messy one at that. Often some evil must be tolerated to forstall even greater forms (This is not an endorsement of Pre-emption, which I dislike.) The Powell Doctrine is about where I sit in terms of Policy. As for the Democratic (or lack of) nature of War, it is hard to argue that decisions in a smaller and faster world often do not have the luxury of Democratic deliberation. I am not advocating handing over the keys carte blanche, but it would be equally foolish to demand all choices be decided democratically.

    Perhaps. Still, you hardly mention your opinions on these matters. It is easy to make somewhat glib remarks, as my opinions are hardly impregnable. Just contributing.
  7. mactastic macrumors 68040


    Apr 24, 2003
    Let's see, I'm at odds with most of the left over gun control, as well as many growth issues. I have no problem with just and well-managed military activities. I'd like to see an end to 'professional' aid recipeints, although not at the expense of the truly needy. I'd like to see smaller but more efficient government. I'd like to see the system of tenure scrapped below the college level in favor of some kind of merit-based pay (I know there are problems, but in an ideal world...)

    Guess I'm a left wing nut job, huh?

    Anyhoo.. I'm off the the city for the weekend, so all you ____ wing nut jobs have a good weekend.
  8. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

    Feb 14, 2004
    OBJECTIVE reality
    I'm liberal in that:

    I think social programs not only can but have been highly beneficial to our society.

    I think we whine about our taxes too much.

    I'm against the death penalty.

    I'm against general gun ownership.

    Things like gay marriage don't bother me.

    I think we need to be engaged (as opposed to arrogant) in world affairs.

    I believe in a strong military.

    We badly need to stop depending on oil. Not just foreign oil. Oil.

    Religion and money need to be kept out of our government.

    I believe government should monitor and revoke corporations' charters when they're not acting in the best interests of the public.

    Outside of things like kiddie porn and hate speech, I believe strongly in the First Amendment.

    I'm conservative in that:

    I think states should have the right to have their own militias.

    I'm against abortion as a solution to pregnancies arising from "recreational sex". Where things like rape and medical problems are concerned, I'm still not happy with the idea, but I have a hard time saying it flat-out shouldn't be allowed.
  9. skunk macrumors G4


    Jun 29, 2002
    Republic of Ukistan
    My point here was that your phrase "the benign control and influence" over "the group" of poor and wretched implies a loftiness at odds with government for, by and of. You seem to be talking about keeping "them" under control and at arm's length, a necessary evil, if you will, an obstacle in the way of your philosophy. It's a short step to "panem et circenses". If the arguments of those we employ to manage our system are compelling enough and transparent enough, they will be able to persuade the poor and wretched, as much as any other group, of their rightness. It's the obviously self-serving deception and greed of, and hidden agendas pursued by, those with access to power, which render it necessary to pretend to false and crudely resonant aspirations. It's the politics of deception.

    Absolutely. If one part of the "body politic" is starved of resources, just as applies to the individuals within it, the rest of the body will suffer also.

    Please give an example. And please avoid the word "evil", which has been done to death by the current gang of hooligans. ;)

    But this is the whole point, don't you see? We are only at war in this instance through the illegal and immoral choices made by our leaders, by which they have empowered themselves to invoke rights and priviliges over us which they would not normally be given. "There's no time to consult", "You wouldn't understand", "We're only trying to protect you", "It's for your own good": these arguments should be treated with utter contempt when their only purpose is to attempt to perpetuate the deceptive illusion that where we are in the privileged West is not a position entirely dependent on the intolerable conditions elsewhere in the world, many of which have been caused or worsened by our own past misdemeanours.

    Well, I know, but it was really late.

    I believe it is necessarily our duty to mitigate the historical and natural imbalances fostered and in some cases exacerbated by our system. It is, after all, largely those imbalances which have produced both our profit and their deprivation. This means and deserves some sacrifice on our part: be it agreeing to Kyoto, addressing the inequities of the WTO, IMF and GATT cartels, putting every effort into making the UN into a properly functioning forum, or simply giving more aid to the billions of diseased, disadvantaged and starving. It's a hollow comfort we are living in.
  10. pdham macrumors member

    Jan 28, 2003
    Or in my case have too many conflicting views to even identify with a group.


    - would vastly perfer a socialist (i.e. Swedish) system where economic justice exists and services are offered to all. I do not see why someone must make $42 Billion at the expense of economic stability of others.

    - I would like to see a tax system where the rich pay more and the poor pay less (and below a certain level pay none). I know this is not popular but look at the countries that haver a system like this (Sweden, Norway are the best examples) they have almost non-existent crime, no unemployment, no despertly poor, and health care for everyone.

    - However, I don't support abortion, Fertility CLinics (for a variety of reasons), Embryonic Stem Cell research or the death penalty. I am also very much against assault rifles and would like VERY strict gun laws.

    - I also don't like the current trend of education in the country (i.e. no child left behind), but am at a loss for an alternative plan

    So many more issues... ask if anyone wants clarification.

  11. Xtremehkr macrumors 68000


    Jul 4, 2004
    I'm for a smaller government, and a stronger education system.

    Schools are a joke these days, and anyone can get a college degree.

    I would actually be for a slightly more authoritarian education system to make sure that people are well equipped for life, having learned what they need not only to support themselves but also having an understanding of concepts like the Golden Rule.

    If society could work together more effectively there would be less need for legislation and the more intrusive elements of government.

    I would also pay politicians a ridiculous amount of money and set incredibly high ethical standards that are enforcable. To attract the brightest minds and make sure that they aren't corrupted by power.

    Oh, and for greater seperation of power in government. Government was seperated originally for a reason and that concept should be expanded so that the President (not specifically because of this one either) cannot influence agencies like the CIA which is going to be an integral part of future warfare. It already is, but now that we go to war on hunchs it will be even more so.

    The head of the CIA, FBI, and other agencies would be elected, by us.

    I don't know if those are left or right or what. But the gubment needs sum improvin.
  12. blackfox macrumors 65816


    Feb 18, 2003
    I understand the point you are making Skunk, and it is a noble one. Still, in terms of "bread and circuses", we may already be there. You have only to look at the popularity of some of the crass/violent/sexual programmiing on modern TV, or even the popularity of Professional sports like Football and Basketball. In many cases we have become a Nation of escapists and voyeurs. This "mood of the Coliseum" dovetails perfectly with the Age of Corporations, which offer merely entertainment, not values.

    This attitude, as much as it exists in the population, with an avoidance of important National and International news because of it's tragic nature, but with an appetite for for the sensationalist details of deaths and scandals, is indicative of a willingness to give up self and responsibility. I think you would agree that this is the sine qua non for tyranny.

    As for those of us who are more sophisticated, we become even more cynical about both mass society and government, with diminished loyalty to either, or to a Nation. In an age where divisions are more economic than geographical, loyalties may reflect that.

    This all points to a Democracy that is increasingly hollow. I lament this fact, to the extent that it exists. The current state of US governance, however, may be an effect of this, rather than the source, an uncomfortable reflection of the health of our society.

    The future of America, with so much market and individual freedom, will probably require the supervision of some manner of tyranny over this productive anarchy, otherwise there may be no justice for anyone. After all, Liberty is inseperable from authority.

    ok, I got a little off-track here, my point being is that we may be coming to a point where many people do not care for reasonable argument, if they even have the willingness or time to listen to it. There are of course, many who do, but both groups must be addressed.

    It is my hope that increased civic involvement, even by necessity, is the only way to mitigate some of the darker conclusions made above. The sheer accumulation of material goods, however, and the compromises people will make to protect them. The Greeks used to say "the slave is someone intent on filling his belly." As focus and priorities have shifted form communal to private concerns, it may be a hard sell to get people engaged to the degree that is needed to maintain a functioning democracy and the Liberal values that are, in part, it's crowning acheivement.

    I would probably suggest the Caucasus, where in the wake of Soviet destruction, there are a bunch of ill-conceived, struggling countries wracked with potential ethnic violence, in part a legacy of Stalin. There are moslems, christians (armenians), and sub-divisions of each (such as turkic and persian-influenced Moslems). Social systems are weak, education and job opportunities dismal, enviromental degradation high. Many of the Despots we support there, for reasons of strategy or economics (military bases and oil) are brutal to their populations. Nevertheless, without the discipline they impose, the region would be engulfed in ethnic violence and chaos, further eroding the hope for progressive developments in this region. It may also destabilize Turkey, Russia and Iran, all of which have the possibility to descend into tyranny (or return to) themselves. This would all be disastrous to American interests, and to millions of people in the Region.

    I understand, but I do beleive it is true that in many cases, there is not enough time to deliberate. Now, at times, there is time to decide whether we should enter a conflict, and that of course should be deliberated.

    Still, again, in many cases, the people don't care. Bush was re-elected. This is, for better or worse, a reflection of the character of our society. There is a very real case to be made for our descent into subtle tyranny in the coming years. After all, Athen's "Golden Age" barely lasted a lifetime. Rome went from Democracy to the trappings of, to military rule.

    I am not sure I buy your assessment of the reasoning behind Government deceit, nor our neccessary dependance on the intolerable condition of the rest of the world.

    For the former, I would guess it is as much a response to what some people want to hear, than an excuse for inpropriety.

    For the latter, it is true that Western colonialism and exploitation has worsened the conditions for many in the world, most notably the creation of illogical states without regard to ethnic/cultural realities just so we could have order on a pretty map. The ME and Africa struggle with this colonial legacy still. It is also true that we consume 3/4 of the world's energy and resources, and force ill-advised economic strategies on developing countries in need (through WTO, WB etc).

    Be that as it may, the West hardly is unique in this, and our tools are merely more sophisticated than the past one's used. Colonialism is a fact of history, done by Greeks, Romans, British, Vietnamese, Chinese, Mongols etc, since history began. In almost all case, resources were plundered, and native systems tampered or subverted. Nevertheless, this also aided in the development of mankind, of the Cultures, of the Arts, of Languages, of Trade. The sharing of ideas that was a natural result of disparate cultures coming together, aided immeasureably to the sophistication and development of the whole. The basic point being, there are two sides to this story. In the coming decades, East Asian countries in particular who have taken Western ideas and technology and subverted them to their own culture will mount a credible attack on the dominance of Western Societies.

    I am not convinced the UN has much of a future beyong being a supra-national Aid Organization, which is a fine thing.

    I believe that in an age of decreasing resources and surging populations, that a natural cooperation and balancing will come between reasonably developed countries on issues such as the environment, resources and trade. Developing countries will most likely be as reckless as Western ones a century ago, with the stakes being much higher. Intervention may be needed to forstall disaster, however unfair and hypocritical that appears.

    Skunk, I am basically a pessimist. I find Liberal idealism wonderful and would love to see it implemented as much as is possible. However, my basic point is that, it may not be possible in many places, at least not as a matter of practicality.

    As far as the original topic of this thread, and how that plays in to things, if our Democracy is becoming hollow, then Democrat and Republican are almost meaningless terms. To add to the confusion, they hardly represent the values they once did, anyway. Beyond an easy system of classification for political scientists or pundits, it doesn't seem to mean much.

    I also admire systems like Sweden's, but wonder about the applicability to the US. We have a much larger and more diverse population, and a different cultural ethic than the Scandinavians. We also spend much more money on Military interests than those countries do/need to.
  13. stubeeef thread starter macrumors 68030


    Aug 10, 2004
    I drive a very high mileage compact that is old beatup and still gets 45+mpg, has no leather (except the steering wheel and gear knob) no wood, real or faux.

    My kids can go to bluegrass events wearing a tie dye!

    both not the usual rightwinger!

    Attached Files:

  14. Hoef macrumors 6502a


    Jul 11, 2004
    Houston, TX..... (keep walking)
    Just my $.02 .... Think in more dimensions than left/right, republican/democrat red/blue etc... I recently found out that liberal has a completely different meaning in the US than in Europe.
    I try to imagine the Dutch polical system as a plane with one axe liberal to conservatism and the other one socialist (or maybe even communist) to the opposite (maybe similar to capitalist).
    Even the democratic party here in the US would be more capitalist than any other party in continental europe :p
  15. skunk macrumors G4


    Jun 29, 2002
    Republic of Ukistan
    Sweet pic. :)
  16. stubeeef thread starter macrumors 68030


    Aug 10, 2004
    Thanks man! :)
  17. solvs macrumors 603


    Jun 25, 2002
    LaLaLand, CA
    Socially - Moderate Liberal.
    Fiscally - Conservative (true conservativism, not this neo-con propaganda).
    Religious (spiritual), but not at the expense of others' beliefs.
    Ethic, not this faux morality that passes for religion nowadays.

    Above all else, Constitutionally American. It's all common sense if you're really paying attention. The problem comes when you try to define what is obviously meant to be open to interpretation. Too bad both sides tend to patronize the more vocal minority who tend to swing too far in either direction, and don't seem to be too interested in opening honest dialogue that might be to the contrary of whatever agenda they are trying to push.

    And you see what happens when someone does attempt to straddle the fence. Better to be strong and wrong than appear flip-floppy I guess. Though to be fair, being patronizing and leaning whichever way the wind blows isn't exactly a quality I look for in a leader. But someone who knows the meaning of the word compromise is.

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