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Thread: Wednesday November 2, 2005 noontime (Political) question from Michaelskis

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    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Wednesday November 2, 2005 noontime (Political) question from Michaelskis

    The past few days have shown what political party most people align them selves with. Many people say that the are Republican or Democrat, Conservative or Liberal… but why?

    Why do you align your self with a particular political party? What characteristics and beliefs of the political side do you agree with?
    Not my monkey, not my circus. - Old Polish Proverb

  2. #2
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    The more entrenched I become the less I see myself beiing afiliated with any party. Well except for maybe Kzoo alefests.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    I hate democrats and republicans. But nowadays neither party is consistent with their traditional definitions. I used to appreciate and agree with many things republican on economic and foreign policy issues but they (repubs) have since taken a 180 degree turn from those principles they used to have. Whereas I agree more with democrats on social issues.

    I would argue I am a social liberal, fiscal conservative, and moderate on foreign policy. Nobody represents me.

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    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    take a test

    this one is pretty good - i came out as a liberal, yipes:

    http://typology.people-press.org/typology/

    i do have some libertarian undertones but i can't find the test that told me that once...

  5. #5
    Originally posted by imaplanner
    I would argue I am a social liberal, fiscal conservative, and moderate on foreign policy. Nobody represents me.
    Sounds like me. There was a time I would have considered myself a republican. However, I too have become disenchanted with both political parties. Neither party seems to represent me.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian The District's avatar
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    i am happy to vote for candidates from either party that sit closer to the middle of the road than the extremists from both parties that get a substantial chunk of attention. there are great leaders on both sides of the aisle, so i tend to vote either way, depending on the candidate's views and not their party affiliation. for example, despite past votes i have cast for democrats, i would gladly vote republican in 2008 if mccain gets the nomination (which he won't) or someone like him, especially if hillary clinton gets the democratic nomination. wishful thinking.

    i believe my lack of ability to commit to a specific "side" is mainly due to the hijacking of the Republican party by the christian right and the hijacking of the Democratic party by ultra-politically correct yet unaccepting left. it would be important to note that i am an ACTIVE christian. that said, i don't feel very comfortable with the right's "God is with us" attitude, nor with the left's "all Christians are like jerry falwell" stigma.

    i think my religion plays heavily into my political views, but by watching the american political environment since 9/11, it has become obvious that not everyone agrees with my interpretation of christianity. i know-i shouldn't be surprised. but i am.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Planit's avatar
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    I'm registered as "Unaffiliated" and have been since the first time I voted.
    "Whatever beer I'm drinking, is better than the one I'm not." DMLW
    "Budweiser sells a product they reflectively insist on calling beer." John Oliver

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    Cyburbian Tide's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by luckless pedestrian
    this one is pretty good - i came out as a liberal, yipes:

    http://typology.people-press.org/typology/

    i do have some libertarian undertones but i can't find the test that told me that once...
    Great site thanks for sharing.

    Ok, I'll throw this out there now. I'm a right winger and a planner, yes it can happen. But that's because (which that web site backed up) a social conservative. My moral beliefs lean one way when my economic beliefs lean the other, so basically I'm Independant but lean to the right.

    I do not blindly vote for a candidate based on party unless I do not know anything about either candidate. However, coming from NJ I can't believe either candidate and the right is as corupt as the left. However, I do find the NJ democrats tend to be a bit shadier and lie more but that's my own observation.

    I do believe in this though. It is called G.R.I.P. (Get Rid of Incumbant Politicians). You know the state senator that has been in office for 26 years or the mayor on his 5th term. You mean to tell me there is noone better qualified for the job? I also believe when a politician becomes so entrenched in the government that it becomes their "job" they then have lost all effectiveness of working for the people and work for themselves and their freinds.

    I'll leave you with this great quote from Newsweek many years ago; "There can be no democracy when we have professional politicians"

  9. #9
    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    ah yes, democracy...

    Quote Originally posted by Tide

    I do believe in this though. It is called G.R.I.P. (Get Rid of Incumbant Politicians). You know the state senator that has been in office for 26 years or the mayor on his 5th term. You mean to tell me there is noone better qualified for the job? I also believe when a politician becomes so entrenched in the government that it becomes their "job" they then have lost all effectiveness of working for the people and work for themselves and their freinds.

    I'll leave you with this great quote from Newsweek many years ago; "There can be no democracy when we have professional politicians"
    yes, but, remember:

    if they are doing a good job, then so what if they are in there forever?

    if you place term limits, then only rich people really ever have a chance of being in state/federal political positions because what middle class person can give up their job for x # of years and then go back to it later?

    i don't have a problem with career politicians if people vote them in

    besides, nobody returns your call in the beltway until you've been there a few terms anyway - i think it would be chaotic to have a continual change of leadership at the federal level - at the local level, when i get 2 new Board members that's chaotic enough, and a quorum of new people, forget it - can't imagine what it's like at the federal level or even the state

    the harsh reality about democracy is that everyone really doesn't get to rule - if we did, then that's anarchy

    if you've ever been to a new england open town meeting, then you'll know what anarchy in a democracy really is

    our democracy is a machine - sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, sometimes it makes alot of weird noises that you don't know what's wrong with it and sometimes the mechanics are crooked

  10. #10
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    I'm a proud member of the Disgruntled Masses Party that are growing increasingly dissatisfied with both major parties. My last voting ticket went about 60% democrat and 40% republican (there were a few independents in there, but I'm to lazy to ballpark the percentages). I did a review of a book called God's Politics in the Book Club subform that comes strikingly close to identifying my issues with the parties today.

    I'll give you the most cursory version of my affiliations:

    Abortion: I am morally opposed to it, but feel that the government should not prohibit it. Regulating it is fine. I like the Clinton statement of "safe, legal and rare". Both parties suck on this issue. We have much bigger issues to worry about. I get very Libertarian on this issue. It does not factor in my selection of a candidate because I honestly don't see anything changing on this in the near future and I feel that there are much more important things.

    Taxes: I support ditching the income tax in favor of a simpler consumption system. I don't care what it is as long as it is progressive (difficult to do with consumption, but not impossible), doesn't involve a small novel's worth of forms, is fair, and doesn't require me to spend an entire weekend figuring out what the hell I owe or am owed. Both parties was reform, but neither has put forth a plan worth a damn. Once again, both parties suck. Reform will only happen through a bipartisan effort, not from one party or the other. That's the only way it will get passed. The bad part about losing the income tax is that it becomes harder to use tax deductions to encourage certain behaviors.

    Spending: Weren't Republicans supposed to be all about curbing wasteful spending and avoiding "big guvmit"? I really don't care about spending as long as the government is performing it's duties well and accomplishing policy objectives. Sadly, it is not and has not for a VERY long time. OMB and LBB need to do a better job of reviewing agency performance. Both parties share the blame here.

    War: Yep. We screwed up. Remember though, 20/20 hindsight is a bitch and both parties share blame for not asking the right questions early on. We're in it now and obligated to finish it, so I will support it 100% at this point. All I ask is that we get a damn plan for completion and exit. I'm not asking for dates, just trigger points when certain objectives are met. Not enough heads have rolled for the intelligence failures, IMHO.

    Weed: Legalize and regulate in similar manner to alcohol. I find that potheads tend to be more pleasant than raging alcoholics. I get real Libertarian on this issue. This is one of those "we have more important things" issues.

    Beer: We should allow ours to be more potent like Canadian beer.

    Social Welfare: Some say hand-out, some say hand-up. I say you need both hands. Give them the hand-out, but attach that to conditions like mandatory job training, GED, vocation training, etc. Everyday in the San Antonio paper there is not less than 30 ads for electrical linesmen. These are well-paying jobs that do not require you to be a rocket scientist, just some vocational training. Oh yeah, and time to give that minimum wage a bump. I probably go democrat here.

    Church & State: Should be seperate. No official prayer in school, but a "moment of reflection" does no harm. Schools can make local decision to offer theology courses that look at different religions and their belief systems objectively, but should not be exclusively Christian. Tablets on courthouse grounds don't bother me and fall under "don't we have more important issues?" I prefer them displayed with other historic laws like Hamarabi's Code, Magna Carta, etc. I may swing a tad Republican on this issue.

    Death Penalty/Criminal Punishment: Killing one innocent person is too much. There have been way too many last minute reprieves that have saved an innocent person. Let's make prison less pleasant and get rid of the DP (at least for now). There's nothing wrong with offering inmates training that will allow them to go legit once they get out (see welfare above), but they do not need extended cable, only enough air conditioning to prevent heat stroke, etc. I like seeing orange suits cleaning up highways, etc. Child molesters get castrated and serve life sentences. Overall, I lean ever so slightly democrat on this issue.

    Education: we need reform bad and are so far behind in math and science that it's not even funny. As I recall, we have the lowest literacy rate of the developed world. No Child Left Behind has not worked, nor has any previous policy (elephant or donkey).

    Gay Marriage: I do have some moral issues with homosexuality, but would never (and have not) let them effect how I treat people or whether I become friends with them. They should have the same rights as any other committed heterosexual couple. I don't care what you call it as long as they get the same rights.



    Some overall statements:
    The Democratic Party is like a chicken with no head. They don't know where they are going, all they know is they don't like where they are. Stop being "anti" and start giving us alternatives. Oh, and don't forget that you can be Christian and vote Democrat--just something to consider for the next election.

    This is not the same Republican Party of Lincoln, TR, or even Reagan. Gone is the thriftiness and emphasis on minimal government interference in personal lives. When my dad stops voting Republican, you know something is wrong.

    What infuriates me more than anything is that 10% of people on each side of the political spectrum are the only ones presenting policies. Neither side is correct. The only good legislation comes through bipartisan efforts that have a spirit of compromise for the good of the public without regard for their financial backers or special interest groups.

    Keep an eye on that "Gang of 14". It has moderates from both sides of the aisle that aren't tied too close to their party lines. You might think I'm crazy, but this is how new political parties are born. They are my glimmer of hope for generating leaders that I can better identify with.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  11. #11
    Cyburbian Plus Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    I've always been registered as an Independent. Neither party floats my boat.

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    Cyburbian Tide's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by luckless pedestrian
    yes, but, remember:

    if they are doing a good job, then so what if they are in there forever?

    if you place term limits, then only rich people really ever have a chance of being in state/federal political positions because what middle class person can give up their job for x # of years and then go back to it later?

    i don't have a problem with career politicians if people vote them in

    besides, nobody returns your call in the beltway until you've been there a few terms anyway - i think it would be chaotic to have a continual change of leadership at the federal level - at the local level, when i get 2 new Board members that's chaotic enough, and a quorum of new people, forget it - can't imagine what it's like at the federal level or even the state

    the harsh reality about democracy is that everyone really doesn't get to rule - if we did, then that's anarchy

    if you've ever been to a new england open town meeting, then you'll know what anarchy in a democracy really is

    our democracy is a machine - sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, sometimes it makes alot of weird noises that you don't know what's wrong with it and sometimes the mechanics are crooked

    Unfortunetly I think we've become acustomed to thinking like this and your point of view is what hurts the system that originally wasn't designed to be the way it is. But change hurts and we don't like change, but not changing is what's really hurting us.

    "Where are we going and why are we in this handbasket" ~Jim Gerhardt

  13. #13
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    Been a registered Dem since age 18. Family has a long history of union membership/leadership. Usually classify myself as slightly left leaning on most political issues, but slightly right leaning on some social issues.

    Never voted a straight ticket, and in state races often find myself voting for the Republican candidate.

    I do find myself a frustrated Dem, as the national party does not have clear direction, but find myself completely disgusted with the extreme conservatism of the administration and leading national GOP'ers. Adding to the frustration is living as a Dem in a typically solid red state.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

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    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    okay tide...

    Quote Originally posted by Tide
    Unfortunetly I think we've become acustomed to thinking like this and your point of view is what hurts the system that originally wasn't designed to be the way it is. But change hurts and we don't like change, but not changing is what's really hurting us.

    "Where are we going and why are we in this handbasket" ~Jim Gerhardt
    in theory, you are right, no doubt - but our forefathers could never have predicted the reams of documents state/federal officials have to become acquainted with, the committee work and all the complexities of the state and federal level that, in part, grew out of creating bigger government, but also is a product of population growth - more people, more government - that's why i love the local level, you don't lose sight of the people (although, sometimes...i could use a break...)

    we can't go back to original idea because really, if only the number of people that made decisions today that made decisions in our infancy as a country, then wow, i'm not sure that's a good thing -

    and originally, alot of wealthy men ran the country in the beginning, we just have more of them now because we have more people

    i'm not afraid of change, but what is the change - a complete turnover of congress every x # of years? what will that give us? how does that equate to better government?

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    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    The test above said that I am an Enterpriser

    For the most part I agree with Suburb Repairman with many of the issues.

    For me it’s like this:
    Abortion: I am morally opposed to it and I think that it should be illegal
    Taxes: The system we have now is crazy. People should be taxed on one end or the other, but not both.
    Spending: Both parties suck at this. I say downsize the Government
    War: We made the right choice based on the information available at the time. We must finish it, and if Sadam was not removed, he would have come after us at some point
    Weed: Legalize it and regulated it like Tobacco and Alcohol.
    Beer: Is always a good thing... as long as it’s not lite beer.
    Church & State: In most cases separation is a good thing. But people in CA need to get a freaking life and quit whining about the pledge in school, the Ten Commandments in courthouses, and moments of reflection.
    Death Penalty: Might not be a good thing... but the prison system is softer than an old school YMCA. It needs to be overhauled and make people fear going there. Having your bunkmate do unpleasant things to you should be the least of your worries.
    Education: Right now it sucks. Teachers are only a small part of the problem. The curriculum and parents are the major problems. Financial education should be required, math and science should be promoted, technology should be used in a beneficial way, and parents should be held responsible for their kid’s performance. Kids who don’t try and fail because of it should be transferred to a private boarding school. If the kids fail but they try they should be sent to a public boarding school that has the amenities to help them.
    Gay Marriage: While I have moral issues with homosexuality, I still have some friends that are Gay. But I don’t think that they should be able to get “Married” I do however think that “Civil Unions” should be offered the same benefits and tax breaks as Married couples.
    Health Care: Heath care needs to be improved but society needs to stop accepting a toxic and obese lifestyle. We could give fee health care, but the majority of society will continue killing them selves.

    Overall I think that people should be held responsible for their own actions and the actions of their kids. We need to stop blaming everyone and get busy with getting things done.
    Not my monkey, not my circus. - Old Polish Proverb

  16. #16
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    I am basically a left-leaning independent.

    I won't go into all the current hot button political issues of the day, but I will say that it is morally and ethically wrong tp prohibit two people of legal age that love each other from getting the same legal and economic benefits as two other similarly committed people.

    In other words, marriage is a contract (in the eyes of the government), so whether you're hetero or homo, makes no difference.

    Now, if you don't want you priest/pastor/minister to marry gay people, then that's your deal.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    Let's not be didactic in this profession, because that is a path to disillusion and irrelevancy.

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  17. #17
    Cyburbian
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    I am a liberal but am not a registered Democrat (although I generally vote Dem in national elections). I have taken to voting for Green canidates in local and state elections in recent years. I know a lot of people think Green=Socialist, but they are wrong. I identify with their platform on social issues, environment, etc. (liberal) as well as with their platform on strong local governments (a more Republican perspective I would argue). I particularly like their slogan...We are neither right nor left, but in front. I don't think they should be engaging in national campaigns quite just yet, but I would argue that they are a strong choice for local and state gov't.

    www.gp.org

  18. #18
    Cyburbian dobopoq's avatar
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    I am a liberal in the sense that I disagree with the current politics of those in power in America and want them to change. If I was living in some place like Sweden with it's low poverty rate, social welfare etc., I'd probably consider myself conservative in that I would like many of the government's policies, and want them to stay the same.

    As regards the modern definitions of Republicans and Democrats, this is the way I see it: The Republican perspective is an outgrowth of the view that life is a competitive struggle in a dangerous world. (Basically a patriarchal attitude.) The Democratic perspective is an outgrowth of the view that private pleasure can't and shouldn't be completely separated from concern for the common good. (Basically a matriarchal attitude.)

    So in general (if given a choice of only the two dominant parties), I side with Democrats because I think viewing the world as neccessitating an aggressive competitive attitude creates a self-fullfilling prophecy. I'd rather be on the lookout for strangers in need of help, than regard strangers as competitors to be feared and/or contended with. Of course, you can argue this creates a self-fullfilling prophecy too. But I would argue that there is plenty of corporate wellfare too. And I'd rather suffer a brethen that is somewhat dependent on help from the state to avoid poverty, than a brethren that is dependent on help from the state to incite, exacerbate, provoke and perpetuate conflict in the world for the sake of war profiteering.

    The current incarnations of the two parties are somewhat skewed from the schema I have outlined, but that is another topic.
    Last edited by dobopoq; 21 Nov 2005 at 6:29 AM.
    "The current American way of life is founded not just on motor transportation but on the religion of the motorcar, and the sacrifices that people are prepared to make for this religion stand outside the realm of rational criticism." -Lewis Mumford

  19. #19
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    My politcal and societal beliefs are parts of both the Republican and Deomcratic agendas. However, when push comes to shove, I side more with the Democrats. The Republican Party has moved too, too far right and cannot represent the core values I hold most strongly to (environmental protection, looking out for the less fortunate, taking care of the average American, and not subsidizing the rich)
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  20. #20
    Cyburbian Coragus's avatar
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    If it ever arrives, I'll be an official card-carrying Libertarian. I have this strange thing about backing weak horses, which is why I root for the Lions.

    Seriously though, I spent one day reading the party platforms and found the Libertarian one the closest to my views. I don't agree 100%, but I'm way closer to them than Dems or Reps.
    Maintaining enthusiasm in the face of crushing apathy.

  21. #21
    Cyburbian
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    Even before the test, I considered myself a liberal. I think our govt. need serious reform. My biggest plank in my platform is environmental based. I do not consider myself to be a tree hugger, rather one that would like to see our govt., industires, and citizens do more to protect our environment.

    I think the war in Iraq is unecessary, and felt that way since day one. Sure, Saddam was a tyrant, but we should not be the world's police force. Clearly, the intelligence on WMD was wrong, but our elected officials should have scrutinized the info more. That falls on every one of them (except those that were against it from the beginning). Now, we are in a bad situation because we can't just up and leave or Iraq would be more of a problem than it was before and there is no end in sight. Doesn't it fly in the face of democracy to force democracy on a country?

    The issue that I am the most conservative on is abortion. Using it as a form of birth control is dispicable. However, I don't think that it should be illegal.

  22. #22
    Cyburbian Breed's avatar
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    I probably consider myself a social liberal but a fiscal conservative... like Clinton without the chicks.
    Every time I look at a Yankees hat I see a swastika tilted just a little off kilter.
    Bill "Spaceman" Lee

  23. #23
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Breed
    I probably consider myself a social liberal but a fiscal conservative... like Clinton without the chicks.
    Couldn't have said it better myself.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

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