What do our opponents mean when they apply to us the label "Liberal?"

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Prof., Sep 16, 2008.

  1. Prof. macrumors 601

    Prof.

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    #1
    I wanted to share this with all of you. :)

    Continued
    There's the rest of the speech but I just wanted you to focus on the first paragraph. :)
     
  2. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #2
    Thanks for posting that! And I wholeheartedly agree. I get a little tired of conservatives getitng away with saying those of us who disagree with them "hate America". It's exactly the opposite.

    The sad thing is that they mean the first part of that paragraph. :(
     
  3. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #3
    Very good. There should also be a counterpoint entitled: "What do our opponents mean when they apply to themselves the label "Patriot?"
     
  4. GfPQqmcRKUvP macrumors 68040

    GfPQqmcRKUvP

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    #4
    Or perhaps

    We conservatives do care. We just don't want to hand you government jobs, government housing, and government health insurance. We want economic freedom, where you are free to enjoy a life of success and equally free to screw it up, but without us footing the bill.
     
  5. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    Of course you do. Freedom from obligation rather than freedom from privilege.
     
  6. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

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    Ah, sheep??

    Was this a test??
     
  7. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    #7
    I don't know as how I'd agree with JFK's idea of how "non-liberals" view liberals.

    What I see is not so much an antipathy about goals. Hell's bells, nobody wants to see folks go hungry or homeless, to be poor or uneducated. To not have a decent life. I think that's a common goal for liberals and conservatives.

    IMO, the arguments are about how to achieve those goals. Further, how much public responsibility is there? Are we to use government to guarantee a "good life" for 100% of the population?

    By and large, most of us who are of a conservative view see liberals as too willing to use the coercive power of government to solve social problems which--again, my opinion--either cannot be solved or whose solutions impinge too much on the individual's freedoms.

    The JFK/Nixon race was the second presidential race in which I voted. Let me interject some context: JFK ran on a platform of "Reduce taxes, and get government off the back of business." This led to an economic boom.

    Same deal for Reagan, for platform and economic boom.

    :), 'Rat
     
  8. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #8
    This is such a disingenuous statement. No one here wants the government to do this. But we DO need to recognize when the private sector isn't good at something, and health care is definitely one of them.
     
  9. jplan2008 macrumors regular

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    #9
    Umm .. look back at the realities of Reagan and taxes and the economic ups and downs. (Kennedy lowered the highest bracket from 91% to 77%, BTW) Why is it o.k. for the government to kill in my name using my dollars, but it's not o.k. for the government to save lives in my name using my dollars? How many die in this country every year from poverty? The richest country (although getting poorer) in the world. How can people be outraged at murder of innocent people from despicable terrorists, but not be outraged at the number of people who die every year just from INSURED people being denied coverage by their insurance companies, people dying from the heat and cold, from curable diseases, etc. Apparently it's not the deaths that matter, just the cause. If it's inaction on the part of OUR OWN government, that's more excusable than the actions of foreign terrorists who proclaim their hatred for us? I honestly just don't understand. Shouldn't it be MORE despicable that OUR OWN government has killed 100,000 Iraqis, caused 4,000 US troops to die defending a lie, and sits back and watches tens or hundreds of thousands of Americans die each year when those deaths could be prevented?

    And the people who argue for "small government," want the government involved in personal decisions of women's bodies and marriage, and prayer, but not in education and healthcare and improvements to housing and job opportunities and the environment and working conditions?

    GUARANTEE a "good" life for 100% of people? No. "Even the playing field?" Yes. Improve lives for many who don't have the good fortune to be able to improve them on their own? Yes.
     
  10. NT1440 macrumors G4

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    #10
    Great post.
     
  11. GfPQqmcRKUvP macrumors 68040

    GfPQqmcRKUvP

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    I *almost* stopped reading after this.

    It depends who they're killing, first off. Would you have told the government they can't spend your tax dollars fighting the Axis in WWII? This isn't so black and white as you make it to be, killing can sometimes be in the best interest of not only one nation, but of the rest of the world. It's up to us to separate what is worth military action on and what is not.

    I don't know, why don't you tell us?

    It's quite hard to keep growing at a rate equal to or greater than other countries who have just gone, or are going through the Industrial Revolution (which we did over a century ago).

    I'm glad you asked a question, because the answer is no. Those who actually believe and want the government to be smaller don't turn around and make it larger. The people you're talking about are all rhetoric. By the way, about the abortion issue: You're not going to change anybody's mind. Don't give me the "personal decision of women's bodies" stuff, because you know full well pro-lifers consider it murder, not restricting choice (hence the names pro-life and pro-choice). This has nothing to do with small government, so don't group them together. (Disclaimer: I support abortions in the first trimester, but I respect both viewpoints on the issue because when it comes to ambiguity, it's downright naive to believe that you are the completely right side and they are the immoral people who take rights away from others.

    It depends what you mean by "evening the playing field". I was born 6 feet tall, blonde hair, blue eyes, a well shaped nose, and a naturally muscled physique. Shall we butcher my face and body because research has shown that people like me, on average, make more than another person? (I am not the person I just hypothetically said I was).

    The good fortune to be able to improve on their own...

    Oh, you mean the people in the inner-city who have access to services (that are paid for by my tax dollars such as the police (but people are labelled snitches if they cooperate, and this non-cooperation hurts the serving of justice), the public schools (where even if the teacher is bad, it's frowned upon to take school seriously and learn all you can), the libraries (where if you hang out there you are peer pressured away from it from people making *fun of you* because you are studious and want to learn?)?

    All these things are available to everyone. YES, someone might have a single mother and be expected to provide for the family, YES, someone might have a sick dad who needs to be taken care of, but all the resources to lift yourself up out of poverty are there. We are all born into different circumstances, it's what you make of them that matters. No one will be born into an identical situation, but there are provided ways, no matter which situation you're born into, where you can make the right decisions, take some personal responsibility, and become a better person than your peers.
     
  12. Iscariot macrumors 68030

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    #12
    Come on Badandy, you know that both of those comparisons are absurd. Surely you can defend conservatism without resorting to reductio ad hitlerum and a straw man so large it can be seen from space.
     
  13. jplan2008 macrumors regular

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    #13
    But I notice you don't have a reply for the point of my ummm, which was replying to higher taxes are a bad for the economy and lower taxes are a boom, which has been disproven time and again: There wasn't much of an overall boom in Reagan's years, and the upturn in the economy happened after he RAISED taxes (twice). First their was a downturn from his tax cut.
     
  14. GfPQqmcRKUvP macrumors 68040

    GfPQqmcRKUvP

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    #14
    And surely you can retort without reciting Argument 101 buzzwords...:D


    -He clearly oversimplified "Why can the government kill using my tax dollars and not save lives using my tax dollars." That's pretty anti-military to me, and I just wanted to say (without ever invoking Hitler I might add) that some military action is justified.

    -Straw Man? jplan08 seems willfully ignorant that people are born into different circumstances with inherent advantages/disadvantages. As long as there are institutions provided that can allow these people to lift themselves up, I don't know what more we can do. I'm tired of people saying it's rich people's fault that there is crime (when people don't cooperate with the place), when people don't have an opportunity to learn (when there are local libraries I helped paid for), and such...

    Personal responsibility, try it.


    EDIT: If you can a billion dollars in taxes, you will not lose a billion dollars in revenue, you will lose less. No one knows how much less, but the fact that it does stimulate extra investment and business activities is widely accepted. Secondly, I want lower taxes combined with lower spending. Lower taxes without slashing spending makes things worse.
     
  15. Iscariot macrumors 68030

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    They're called logical fallacies for a reason.

    WWII and Axis of Evil invokes Hitler. Although I had heard that some Americans were there for the wicked Belgian waffles.

    Local libraries can't offer you a college diploma, and if you think that a few libraries are all that's necessary to put an end to the inequalities, then you're sadly mistaken.
     
  16. jplan2008 macrumors regular

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    Did I say it's rich people's fault, or the fault of those with privileges? No. I happen to be one of those people. But it's also not the fault of those without the privileges. It's mostly the fault of the government, who has taken away most of those institutions that you're talking about. (and Clinton took some of them away, too, BTW, although he was not as bad as either his predecessor or his sucessor). I'm NOT ignorant, willfully or not, that some people ARE born without privileges. You seem to be willfully ignorant that many of the circumstances are NOT capable of being overcome by "personal responsibility." Yes, a few people here and there can overcome them, but they are the exception. Generally poverty continues and worsens within the same school districts and in the same neighborhoods. Do you think it's because poor people are lazy and don't take personal responsibility? THAT sounds more elitist than the alleged "elitists" that support Obama and are in Washington, or whatever. (not to mention racist, since race is one of those barriers).

    Tax cuts do NOT help the economy -- that may be widely quoted, but it's not widely accepted among thinking economists. So if we're going to tax, then we can tax to CREATE and to NOURISH, or we can tax to KILL and to NOURISH the GREED of the few.

    Yes, I'm "anti-military." (but FOR the draft, in opposition to so some liberals.) In my lifetime (older than some but not all here, but not alive during WWII), the vast majority, if not all, of military use by the U.S. was not justified, and was actually in itself usually a terrorist act, and was the basis of lies, and often was barely acknowledged by the U.S. government. (and this includes a lot more than the few official "wars" in my lifetime). The few possible exceptions were when the U.S. ignored grave human rights violations and genocide, then did too little too late in joining the U.N. I'm not going to count the separate conflicts, but I'm talking about over 30 illegal, immoral military actions in my lifetime with my (or my parents') tax funds. There are four military conflicts in the entire history of the U.S., all before I was born, that have general acceptance as being justified, and even they are not as clearcut as you make it seem. So it seems natural to say let's tax and create and build and feed and cure, instead of tax to kill. Especially considering what happened at the end of WWII, which makes the danger of war far worse for everyone on the planet. That doesn't mean we shouldn't have a DEFENSIVE military, which even Sarah Palin knows means that if any NATO member is attacked, we treat it as if we were attacked.
     
  17. Iscariot macrumors 68030

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    #17
    What institutions have been taken away? The problem isn't legislative, it's a lack of awareness and the triumph of prejudice over reason.
     
  18. GfPQqmcRKUvP macrumors 68040

    GfPQqmcRKUvP

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    And I don't think illustrative examples are logical fallacies...for a reason?



    It's supposed to underscore the need for a military because real evil does exist and can legitimize military action. You can interpret my use of that example however you'd like, but it was a perfectly valid use of the Axis...

    What I do know is we have libraries that aren't used, schools where you are looked down upon for wanting to learn, and police forces that aren't being cooperated with. Perhaps there should be some more personal accountability instead of excuse making. I'm not saying some people are not born into privilege and don't have an easier path than some others, but when institutions do exist to provide opportunity at little or no cost to those who weren't born into privilege, part of my sympathy vanishes when they aren't utilized.

    EDIT: And after free high school, community colleges exist for very cheap combined with very generous financial aid (student loans combined with community college is extremely cheap) and even grants for low income people.
     
  19. jplan2008 macrumors regular

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    And you seriously think that these are the barriers to an education in the inner city and in rural poor school districts? That you're "looked down upon for wanting to learn?"

    These kids mostly don't have a chance at community college, free or not.

    (and the Democrats joined Bush for the "Leave Many Children Behind" Act, which has made the problem a lot worse, and many supporters are regretting their decision. Of course, original proponents of the bill used lies -- shocking in Bush's administration, to get support. The main example of success to be replicated by the bill was a district in Houston where the officials lied about dropout rates, and said they had gone to zero under a pilot program)

    Some quotes from children who WANT to learn, but aren't given opportunity, and this isn't just a California problem.

    Sacramento Bee http://www.interversity.org/lists/arn-l/archives/Sep2001_date/msg00900.html

    SAN FRANCISCO -- The children plead for homework, teachers and the classes they'll need to get into college.

    The teachers say the schools are programming bright students for failure.

    In stacks of sworn statements from a dozen public schools, both groups offer snapshots of filth, chaos and desperation:

    Young children picking up beer bottles, condoms and bullets on school grounds. The students are taken out of reading instruction and assigned to this "beautification" work in rotating shifts, the teachers say.

    Special-education students assigned to no teacher. One roves the campus for weeks, until a teacher notices and takes him in for half the school year.

    Rats in cafeterias, one carrying fruit in its mouth, others scurrying around a bread rack. Chemistry labs with no chemicals at all. Literature classes without books. Computer classes where, according to one student, "we sit there and talk about what we would be doing if we had computers."

    "We say we care about children, but what is going on?" asked Delia Mendez, a teacher at Watsonville High School.

    Such pictures of a dozen schools emerge from the piles of depositions and sworn declarations in a lawsuit contending that systemic change is needed at the state level to address similar conditions throughout California.

    ...


    For example, at Fremont High School in Los Angeles, students complained about being shunted off to "service" classes, where their only work was running errands for teachers.

    The state contends all such classes are electives, but student Cindy Diego said her counselor gave her only two options: service or advanced placement Spanish, a course she already had passed with the highest score.

    At Jefferson High in Los Angeles, teacher Steve Bachrach said, "The aggregate number of students enrolled in service at any given time is staggering, making it quite possibly our most heavily populated elective offering."

    In their statements, students complained their schools didn't have or wouldn't let them take classes needed for college -- calculus, foreign languages -- or, in some cases, for high school graduation -- English and U.S. history. They blamed overcrowding or counselors who botched schedules and refused to fix them.

    At Crenshaw High in Los Angeles, Jasmine Donaldson said she was forced to take sewing instead of a college prerequisite.

    Delwin Lampkin at the same school said he was assigned to two Spanish and two science classes at the same time but no health or physical education. He complained, but his counselor told him to keep going where he was told.

    Or the students had the classes but not the books.

    "In my English and reading classes we did not have any books at all," wrote Victoria McKelroy, a student at Gompers Middle School in Los Angeles. "I really want to read out of a book."

    Or no teachers.

    Because a succession of substitute Spanish teachers showed movies at Balboa High in San Francisco, said Alondra Jones, "everybody failed the final."

    Or no desks at which to sit.

    Students and teachers in several schools told of classes in which students were forced to stand or to sit on bookshelves, cabinets or window sills all year or until enough of them left.

    Teacher Craig Gordon of Fremont High in Oakland said, "The district builds an expectation of a high dropout rate into its planning, creating a self-fulfilling prophecy."

    At Hosler Middle School in Lynwood, teacher Gregory Colleton swapped math books for a desk one year, he said. Now, having given three more math books to a teacher "because he didn't have any math textbooks at all," Colleton said he's left with seven math books for his 33 students.

    "I can't describe to you how horrible and depressing the school is," Colleton said in his declaration. "It is hard for these children to imagine that they can have anything better than this or that there are possibilities for them outside of Lynwood."

    However, many students did imagine better.

    "Set high standards like private schools have ... set high standards for me," Alondra Jones demanded during her deposition. "Don't sit there and expect me to fail and then pass me old ... textbooks and expect me to achieve from that." Jones goes to City College at night to get classes she'll need for admission to Howard University but can't get at Balboa.

    Defiant throughout the quizzing by the state's lawyers, she said, "I've been through a lot, so I can persevere."

    Other students seemed to be on the verge of tears.

    "All I'm asking," said Manuel Ortiz, a Watsonville High student, "is just give us the books we need, proper facilities, and we'll try to do our best to, you know, come out on top because without education, all we could do is go work in the fields. ... If there are kids that want to be astronauts, why should the state of California shatter their dreams? They should help them out with their dreams," he said, ending his deposition. "I don't want to cry."
     
  20. GfPQqmcRKUvP macrumors 68040

    GfPQqmcRKUvP

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    And how should we fix that? Throw more money at it? I understand things need funding, but the funding is being swallowed in bureaucracy and administrative oversight. So what do we do so that my tax dollars are being spent for actual improvement?

    EDIT: By the way, in my school district, we bus in kids from the city to go to the better schools where hopefully they will excel. That doesn't happen. Crime rose around the high school and metal detectors had to be purchased because of gang activity in school. Make no mistake, community colleges and state universities (CSU system) are NOT hard to get into with even a very basic high school education. Most of the high schools that I have come into contact with also offer classes that are enough to get into these colleges.
     
  21. Iscariot macrumors 68030

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    Then you think wrong.

    Ignoring that a community college doesn't provide the same level of education, your explanation is that the kids getting bussed in aren't "trying hard enough"? Do you honestly think that the only obstacle faced is merely access based? There are clearly other problems at work, and there are clearly other solutions, as there are many first world nations who don't experience the staggering level of poverty among children and achieve a vastly superior level of education.
     
  22. jplan2008 macrumors regular

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    It works for the suburbs, and the rich. They "throw money" at their kids' education, and it ... works. But then it's not called "throwing money," it's called "investment." Instead of duplicating the experience of schools that for many, many years have been successful, we duplicate a "pilot program" for a historically failing district that lied about improvements. I agree with the bureaucracy bit, but it's gotten much worse with the NCLB Act. A teacher can't do anything without a state-approved "rubric." And they have to spend all their time prepping kids for high-stakes tests that demonstrate nothing but how well the students score on the tests.

    Then we have a tax that is mostly on the poor and desperate -- the lottery -- that in most states was passed to augment education funds. Except the money went to education while other education funds were diverted.
     
  23. GfPQqmcRKUvP macrumors 68040

    GfPQqmcRKUvP

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    Or you are too quick to point the finger. You know I respect you on this forum, Iscariot, but you're getting a little loose with the examples that you try to discredit by calling them logical fallacies. If you can reply, with content, to what I said, go ahead, but I'm through (for now) with you brushing posts aside with your overzealous LogicalFallacySwifferPickerUpper(tm).
     
  24. Iscariot macrumors 68030

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    Third option: I respect you enough to have come to expect better than that, and I'd honestly like to hear it. But then this might turn into a love-in, and Leekohler would be jealous.
     
  25. GfPQqmcRKUvP macrumors 68040

    GfPQqmcRKUvP

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