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Is Obama a Centrist, a Leftist, or a Machiavellian?

 
 
Reply Wed 29 Oct, 2008 08:22 pm
Which is he?

Do you true leftists believe he will advance your goals?

Is he really a centrist who just wants us to get along?

Is he someone who will say or do whatever it take to promote his political advancement?
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Oct, 2008 08:27 pm
@Finn dAbuzz,
Not that I believe that all three of those are mutually exclusive ... I think that, his party identification notwithstanding, he is ideologically agnostic. To the extent that he looks at the big picture of the country as a whole, he is a leftist. But my impression is that he sees a problem and looks for the best solution, regardless of ideology. I would also say that he sees the value of ideas that come from the other party or of people that don't agree with him.

Of course, this is all my opinion, and obviously I am a supporter. Others may see something different.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 01:32 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Centrist.

And a tad machiavellian, like any successful politician.
OmSigDAVID
 
  0  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 06:23 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
commie
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 06:57 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
I think he is a pragmatist. I don't think he is going to spend a lot of time pursuing pie in the sky ideas. I do think you will see him trying to expand ideas that have worked on smaller scales in either US communities or other countries.
0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 07:01 am
@dlowan,
Machiavellian, but with an agenda rooted in his formative years.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 07:11 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Quote:
Do you true leftists believe he will advance your goals?

It looks quite certain he will. But I'm an insincere leftist so not sure if allowed to answer that particularly incisive question.

Quote:
Is he really a centrist who just wants us to get along?

Really a two-parter. Yes to last part. As to first part, where's the center, finn? Could you explicate?

Quote:
Is he someone who will say or do whatever it take to promote his political advancement?

Oh, no question here. Simply note the ubiquitous claims from himself, his VP pick and from campaign surrogates that McCain is a fascist with numerous connections to other fascists and fascist organizations. For the last weeks, that's been the foundation of his campaign strategy. Every day. Every speech.
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  3  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 08:40 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Finn d'Abuzz wrote:
Do you true leftists believe he will advance your goals?

Is he really a centrist who just wants us to get along?

Is he someone who will say or do whatever it take to promote his political advancement?

First of all, I am not a true leftist. I am somewhere between libertarian and liberal.

Second of all, when pinning down a senator's political position, I go by voteview, a site run by the University of California at San Diego, using an objective method based on the Senators' rollcall votes.

In this ranking, Obama shows up left of center, right smack in the middle among the other Democratic senators. So I think the public image he himself projects and the Republican caricature of him are both wrong. He is not a socialist, terrorist, closet-Muslim Israel hater -- but neither is he the centrist, bipartisan problem solver as which he sells himself to American voters.
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 08:53 am
@Thomas,
Correction: In the 110th Senate, his ranking is decidedly left of the Democratic center. It's in the 109th Senate that his ranking was in the center among Democratic Senators .
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 09:14 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
The other word you should be hearing in these discussions is "Malthusian", which describes the eco-lunatic wing of the demoKKKrat party. Those are the guys who see 100,000,000 human lives as a small price to pay for saving one goshawk ("what the hey, they're only Africans..."), who have thwarted every effort to keep America's energy industries up to date over the last half century, who WANT gasoline to cost $5 - $10 a gallon, who want an end to suburbs with only farmers living outside of cities (which community organizers can control), and who basically in their heart of hearts would like to reduce human populations on this planet to medieval levels for the greater glory of Gaea, which is basically a form of idolatry.
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  2  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 11:59 am
Here you go, Finn. Seed magazine has put their finger on what he is: an empiricist.

Quote:
Far more important is this: Science is a way of governing, not just something to be governed. Science offers a methodology and philosophy rooted in evidence, kept in check by persistent inquiry, and bounded by the constraints of a self-critical and rigorous method. Science is a lens through which we can and should visualize and solve complex problems, organize government and multilateral bodies, establish international alliances, inspire national pride, restore positive feelings about America around the globe, embolden democracy, and ultimately, lead the world. More than anything, what this lens offers the next administration is a limitless capacity to handle all that comes its way, no matter how complex or unanticipated.

Sen. Obama's embrace of transparency and evidence-based decision-making, his intelligence and curiosity echo this new way of looking at the world. And that is what we should be weighing in the voting booth. For his positions and, even more, for his way of coming to them, we endorse Barack Obama for President of the United States.

http://www.seedmagazine.com/news/2008/10/obama_for_president.php
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 02:33 pm
@FreeDuck,
Man, these guys really love science.

Is there anything that can't be politicized?


blatham
 
  2  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 02:48 pm
@Finn dAbuzz,
Quote:
Man, these guys really love science.

Is there anything that can't be politicized?


Apparently not.

Quote:
In 2004, The Denver Post reported that that George W. Bush administration "has installed more than 100 top officials who were once lobbyists, attorneys or spokespeople for the industries they oversee." At least 20 of these former industry advocates helped their agencies write, shape or push for policy shifts that benefit their former industries. "They knew which changes to make because they had pushed for them as industry advocates."[6]

Also in 2004, the scientific advocacy group Union of Concerned Scientists issued a report, Scientific Integrity in Policymaking: An Investigation into the Bush Administration's Misuse of Science[7][8] which charged the following:

A growing number of scientists, policy makers, and technical specialists both inside and outside the government allege that the current Bush administration has suppressed or distorted the scientific analyses of federal agencies to bring these results in line with administration policy. In addition, these experts contend that irregularities in the appointment of scientific advisors and advisory panels are threatening to upset the legally mandated balance of these bodies."

A petition, signed by more than 9,000 scientists, including 49 Nobel laureates and 63 National Medal of Science recipients,[9] followed the report. The petition stated:

"When scientific knowledge has been found to be in conflict with its political goals, the administration has often manipulated the process through which science enters into its decisions. This has been done by placing people who are professionally unqualified or who have clear conflicts of interest in official posts and on scientific advisory committees; by disbanding existing advisory committees; by censoring and suppressing reports by the government’s own scientists; and by simply not seeking independent scientific advice. Other administrations have, on occasion, engaged in such practices, but not so systematically nor on so wide a front. Furthermore, in advocating policies that are not scientifically sound, the administration has sometimes misrepresented scientific knowledge and misled the public about the implications of its policies."

The same year, Francesca Grifo, executive director of the Union of Concerned Scientists' Scientific Integrity Program, stated "We have reports that stay in draft form and don't get out to the public. We have reports that are changed. We have reports that are ignored and overwritten."[10]

In response to criticisms, President Bush in 2006 unveiled a campaign in his State of the Union Address to promote scientific research and education to ensure American competitiveness in the world, vowing to "double the federal commitment to the most critical basic research programs in the physical sciences over the next 10 years."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politicization_of_science
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  2  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 03:06 pm
@Finn dAbuzz,
Finn dAbuzz wrote:

Man, these guys really love science.

Is there anything that can't be politicized?




Err, it's a science magazine so, yeah, I guess they would love science. And no, there isn't anything that can't be politicized.
Finn dAbuzz
 
  0  
Reply Thu 30 Oct, 2008 03:16 pm
@FreeDuck,
Err.. not all science magazines take the position that everything can be accomplished better through science.

These guys seem to.
0 Replies
 
 

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