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Defining issues of today's politics / Left vs Right

 
 
dyslexia
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:00 pm
dyslexia wrote:
lots of really interesting but totally worn out cliches. used as definitons;
Starting with point 1.
1. "Left is bigger government to oversee most societal activities. Right is minimal government, to include defense, police protection, international trade, etc."

The policies of the "conservative" republicans since Eisenhower have been expansion of both the role and actual size of government in the US of A, increased regulation, greater infringement on personal liberty and few opportunities for the lower and middle classes.

Yes okie I see what you mean, I was quite provocative in starting with (1) and then giving my impression. I should have started with "Yes okie, whatever you say okie, you're always right okie and ended with a prayer for the safety of Oklahoma"
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:00 pm
First, nobody "jumped" on you. Second, if you cannot see that you are attempting to make distinctions between positions which are far to the right, and not so far to the right, on the political spectrum which nearly everyone else on earth recognizes, than it is likely that you would not understand what other people have to say on the matter. It is very much to the point that for the rest of the world, people in the United States represent different degrees of conservatism. Other people in the world, to use your example, would see the divide between those who would allow private ownership of firearms and those who would not. Your question presumes that just about everyone would consider the private ownership of firearms to be reasonable, and that all one would consider would be the extent to which they are regulated (if at all). That is why people are at pains to point out that there really is no left in America. Until everyone is working off the same page in the same playbook, they would just be talking past one another.

As far as firearms are concerned, i think our Constitution assures that people may privately own firearms. I also consider that it gives Congress the power to regulate them. I would not want them banned altogether, but i consider prohibitions on assault rifles, for example, to be perfectly reasonable. Frankly, given that homicide is the obvious sole purpose of a handgun, it would not bother me to see them banned altogether. You might jump up and down and holler that i'm a dangerous left winger. Most people in the world would consider my point of view relatively conservative, and definitely to the right of center.
0 Replies
 
okie
 
  0  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:05 pm
In response to Mr. Hinteler, so perhaps I am sort of an intruder and have to prove I have some intelligence in front of the viewing stand here on this forum? I will admit to being somewhat sarcastic, I may rub some of you the wrong way by barging in here and making grandiose claims about liberals and so on, but I think you should give me a chance, as maybe I can offer a different perspective from what you are accustomed to. I can assure you I am not a whacko, I pay my taxes, I am law abiding, and I get along with all of my neighbors.

Man, I missed a couple of posts. I will try to catch up.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:08 pm
okie said
Quote:
Some of you people here are exposing your true colors. I happen to like our own country, and our own laws. Why don't you move to Germany or the Netherlands if you like it better over there?

...I now understand all you one worlders.


We can hear the commies shuffling behind the hedge as we type. We could probably even discern their whispered words but for those god-damned black helicopters.

You "like our laws". That would include Roe, of course, not to mention those jurisdictions facilitating, by law, homosexual marriage and assisted suicide. And torture.

You "like our own country". And that would include crack cocaine and internet porn. And Jack Abramoff, Mai Lai, Joe McCarthy, Jimmy Swaggart boning a black prostitute in a seedy southern motel, heavy metal, the Edsel, and the ACLU defending Rush Limbaugh on privacy of medical records.

So, where are you going to move?
0 Replies
 
okie
 
  0  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:16 pm
Setanta wrote:

As far as firearms are concerned, i think our Constitution assures that people may privately own firearms. I also consider that it gives Congress the power to regulate them. I would not want them banned altogether, but i consider prohibitions on assault rifles, for example, to be perfectly reasonable. Frankly, given that homicide is the obvious sole purpose of a handgun, it would not bother me to see them banned altogether. You might jump up and down and holler that i'm a dangerous left winger. Most people in the world would consider my point of view relatively conservative, and definitely to the right of center.


This is a good illustration I suppose as to where this debate is headed. I think your position is that the liberal position in America, is really a moderate position from a world view. Okay, I think I've learned something. I don't necessarily agree with you, but I think it explains the rhetoric of the left, I should say "moderates" in your opinion, in the United States. This is actually very instructive as to how your thinking goes, and I suspect the same line of reasoning you would apply to most all the 21 issues that I proposed?
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:18 pm
How very suspicious of you.
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Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:21 pm
I have to do dishes and make supper. I might be back later. One of the problems you run into here is that your list of 21 points seeks to pidgeonhole people, something with which they are unlikely to cooperate. You might go back and look more objectively at your responses in which you began to call people names and suggest that you now had us all figured out. Why should anyone wish to indulge you in such an exercise when that is the likely outcome? I am not a "one worlder," which is not to say that i do not consider international cooperation to be preeminently sensible.
0 Replies
 
dyslexia
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:23 pm
gun regulations along with your 20 other issues are clearly set in concrete. I am sure by now you realized Set and Blatham and meself (in fact all "liberals" (excuse me Setanta for including you) think exactly alike, I suppose this is because all conservatives think exactly alike. Yes Sir that's it, any given conservative is exactly like any given KKK member/John Bircher or Joe McCarthy. Good solid reasoning there okie but really really stupid conclusions.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:24 pm
You callin' me a liberal ? ! ? ! ?


Ma, where'd ya put ma shootin' iron ?
0 Replies
 
okie
 
  0  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:27 pm
I can't wait to break the news to Parados. You guys have just won my argument with him. On another thread, I made a comment that Hubert Humphrey would be considered by some liberals today as a Right Winger. Boy did I catch flack for that. But if America is still clearly to the right, and leftists are truly moderates, and we know that Humphrey was slightly to the right of those now considered to be on the right, or between moderate and right, then he was most definitely a right winger. I won the argument. No need to continue this argument any longer.

My next job probably is to convince him. I appreciate the help.
0 Replies
 
dyslexia
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:30 pm
okie, I quit.
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okie
 
  0  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:33 pm
Don't be a quitter. And hey, you don't have to be a liberal on every issue. I doubt if there are many that are. Just because you might have to commit to something, don't run out now.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:34 pm
Over the last fifty years, has the Klan moved left?
0 Replies
 
okie
 
  0  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 04:35 pm
Ask Senator Byrd.
0 Replies
 
parados
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 07:21 pm
wow,


6 pages and this hasn't moved anywhere.

Sorry okie, it doesn't work to just claim that Humphrey is a RWer just because he might be to the right of some of the world. That is the same argument that prompted this thread to begin with.

Lets start over again. I posted the simple Nolan chart which helps to classify people.

It seems you agreed with some of it okie.
A liberal is for more govt control of economic issues and less on social issues
A conservative is for more govt control of social issues and less on economic issues.

That is the standard political spectrum and analysis. It seems a good place to start for now. We can define what is govt control on each front now.

Topic - Left position - moderate position - right position
abortion - abortion on demand - some restrictions - No abortion under any circumstance
health care - universal health care - health care for the needy - no govt health care
gun control - no guns some gun control anyone can own a gun

(Already we see some problems with the social control measure for political spectrum. If we are strict with liberals are for less govt social control then gun control should be the exact opposite.)



But this is the way each topic should break down, a left/moderate/right We can then measure where a person is on the issues and put them on the left/right scale. No one is left or right on every issue. That wouldn't be expected. We need a measurement system that will put half the people left and half the people right. Without such a measurement then we aren't measuring left/right at all, instead we are just placing a majority on a side based simply on our political leanings. Some of the issues will be easy to categorize. Some will take some work.
0 Replies
 
parados
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 08:16 pm
okie wrote:




Now for each point:
1. Left is bigger government to oversee most societal activities. Right is minimal government, to include defense, police protection, international trade, etc. You give the left an extreme vs a moderate position for the right. A bias in your measurement to begin with that will guarantee the results you want. This is the problem that I think others have tried to point out to you on here.

2. Left is more governmental control in commerce and higher taxes. Right is more free market and lower taxes. The higher/lower taxes argument is bogus. US taxation hasn't changed a whole lot since WW2 but has stayed in a range from 17-20% of GDP. Make it the way taxes are targetted. (The interesting question here is spending vs receipts.)

3. This is a tough one, but in today's world, Left is more of world view and working through international organizations and means, while Right is for stronger defense, a stronger military, to defend our own national interest.
We need to break the issues out more.

4. Pretty much similar to above. On trade, it is even murkier to me, but Right is for open and free trade worldwide. Hard to assess who is really for free trade. Both sides put restrictions on the trade to make it fair.

5. Social Security is already a left policy, but Left would be to expand and raise tax if necessary to carry the program on. Right would be to continue the program but to look for innovative incentives to make the program more self directed and more efficient. A perfect example of left/right in a given time frame. Everything must be viewed with where society is at that time. Incremental changes is all that can be done or in many cases even proposed.

6. Health Care - Left is for complete government oversight and management of this industry, while Right pulls for as much individual choice and responsibility for their own health care. And a very large middle that leans one way or the other. A bias shows in the way you worded this one. Left is FOR, Right pulls for, One is an absolute and the other is not but shows leaning that direction.

7. Welfare - Left means more, while Right wants more personal responsibility. You don't mention corporate welfare which is the opposite

8. Left means more federal control of education. Right means less, and more local control. Say what? Based on what? The right could be totally against Govt sponsored education. It is all over the map. Needs more definition. I don't accept this argument as is.

9. Left means less oil and gas drilling and more government research spending. Right means more free market solutions, let the cream rise to the top in a free market philosophy. Yet the right just did a TON of give aways to the oil and gas industry.

10. Civil Rights - both give lip service and believe in it. The Left believes in numerous remedial programs to right the wrongs of the past, while the Right believes that reverse inequality now only propagates the problem. The left believe in "group rights," while the Right believes in individual equal rights. Seems like a fair assessment. We just have to make it into a measurable question.

11. Abortion - Left is for it, Right is against. And a huge middle again with no clear left/right center point. Can we really define anything here other than the 2 extremes?


12. Illegal Immigration - Left and Right a bit intermixed here, but generally, Left is tolerant while Right advocates a strong stand against it.

13. Crime / Drugs - Left more liberal. Right strongly against.

14. Environment - Left for extreme measures at any cost while Right is more measured and try to work with free market forces as a balance with environmental safeguards. Another example of giving the left an extreme viewpoint and giving the right the middle ground.

15. Religion and government - Left for removing all religious reference, while Right wishes to recognize existing tradition. Another example of an extreme position vs a moderate one. Why don't you say the Right wants to force religion into govt? There is an obvious far right that is trying to do just that.

16. Private Property Rights - Left for less, Right stands firmly for.

17. Public Lands Policy - Left to close off and protect all they can, while Right favors the traditional multiple use policies. Your bias is showing again.

18. Labor, Left favors group organizations and agendas. Right favors individual choice and weaker unions. Bias again here in your use of agenda vs individual choice. It would have been easy to say Left favors stronger unions, Right favors weaker unions.

19. Morality / Family Values - Left is less emphasis on traditional family structures, more government child care, etc. Right emphasizes the traditional family. Bias in use of "traditional"

20. Gay Marriage - Left for, Right against. Easy and simple to tell the difference with no bias in wording.

21. Guns - Left for more control, Right against more control. Why not left for more, Right for Less? You give Left a position that is to change the status quo and Right a position defending status quo. That isn't the reality of left/right at all on gun control.


I gave it my best shot. I don't see this going anywhere. When I get time, I will attempt to evaluate Humphrey according to the above, and compare to today.

There is a definite bias in the way you laid some of this out okie that became very apparant as I started to deal with each point. All the bias needs to be removed. A realistic standard needs to be set for each question. You can't move the center so far to one side or you aren't being objective at all. By doing that you tend to paint the other side as extreme and your side as reasonable. I think that is why people pointed out the flaws in the manner they did. It is a normal reaction for people to be irked when painted as extreme. Most of us here are no more left of center than you are right of center. Respect is a 2 way street.
0 Replies
 
okie
 
  0  
Reply Tue 17 Jan, 2006 09:25 pm
Parados, you did a great job in my opinion of laying out your thoughts on it. I am willing to see your points of view, and yes I admit to likely some bias in my characterization of left and right on each issue, but at least your reaction is constructive as opposed to treating me like an idiot, which is not appreciated. The first few pages that roared down the pike today really surprised me and was truly an education about some of the contributors here. And perhaps I handed back a little sarcasm as well, but I thought it was deserved.

And your Nolan Chart helps the discussion here considerably. There are some points I disagree with it, but its a place to start.

Now, once I throw my assessment of Humphrey in here, I am expecting to say he is liberal on 8 or 10 or 12 points and conservative on the rest, while today's liberals are liberal on virtually all of them. You probably know where I want to go with this and will demand proof beyond a reasonable doubt. The problem is some of these issues like Gay Marriage were not even issues at the time of Humphrey, so how do we know for sure? I think you will need to concede some likelihoods in the absence of clear data. My contention is going to be that 95% of the people were likely against gay marriage at that time, and so Humphrey likely was as well. I don't think he was that far out of the mainstream of political and cultural thought.

I think another surprising thing that may come out of this will be that Bush may be liberal or at least moderate on half or more of the issues as well. I haven't taken the time to rate them yet.
0 Replies
 
parados
 
  2  
Reply Wed 18 Jan, 2006 12:52 pm
okie wrote:
Parados, you did a great job in my opinion of laying out your thoughts on it. I am willing to see your points of view, and yes I admit to likely some bias in my characterization of left and right on each issue, but at least your reaction is constructive as opposed to treating me like an idiot, which is not appreciated. The first few pages that roared down the pike today really surprised me and was truly an education about some of the contributors here. And perhaps I handed back a little sarcasm as well, but I thought it was deserved.

And your Nolan Chart helps the discussion here considerably. There are some points I disagree with it, but its a place to start.

Now, once I throw my assessment of Humphrey in here, I am expecting to say he is liberal on 8 or 10 or 12 points and conservative on the rest, while today's liberals are liberal on virtually all of them.
Say what? This isn't about your opinion okie. This is about factual evidence. You seem to have no basis for either claim you just made. No evidence of Humphrey only being liberal on only 8 of the ill defined points and no evidence that liberals today support all of them. I would argue that liberals like all people support a lot of different issues and are against others. There is no overall consensus for liberals anymore than there is for conservatives. You can only place people on the scale by looking at them directly and judging them on specific issues defined well enough to make a judgement. When you throw your opinion out and pretend it is fact you have to expect people to call you on it. You will find yourself at the bottom of a monkey pile anytime you make such sweeping unsupported claims.

Quote:
You probably know where I want to go with this and will demand proof beyond a reasonable doubt.
I have no more requirement than preponderence of evidence. Lack of any evidence is hardly support. Lets start with the simple demand that you provide SOME support other than your opinion alone.
Quote:
The problem is some of these issues like Gay Marriage were not even issues at the time of Humphrey, so how do we know for sure? I think you will need to concede some likelihoods in the absence of clear data. My contention is going to be that 95% of the people were likely against gay marriage at that time, and so Humphrey likely was as well. I don't think he was that far out of the mainstream of political and cultural thought.
More specious claims. You start with an completely assinine assumption then use that to make an even more specious conclusion. On what can you possibly base your claim that 95% of the people were against gay marriage? There was no polling. It wasn't even an issue. I could just as easily claim that 95% would have been for it since there was no national outcry against it. Then you use your made up 95% "fact" to show that Humphrey was with the majority. That is really out there from a logic standpoint. Humphrey was big on civil rights and wasn't with the majority on that issue at the time. I could as easily claim he would be for it. The point is without it being an issue at the time and without direct evidence of support or opposition then you can't make any claim about someone one way or the other. You wouldn't let me argue that 95% of the country in 1780 was opposed to nuclear power so Washington must have been against nuclear power. If the issue was not being discussed at the time then the question doesn't apply. Absence of clear evidence means just that. There is no concession necessary because there is no objective conclusion that can be drawn. You can't pretend to know what the person would think if the issue wasn't present.

Quote:
I think another surprising thing that may come out of this will be that Bush may be liberal or at least moderate on half or more of the issues as well. I haven't taken the time to rate them yet.
0 Replies
 
okie
 
  0  
Reply Wed 18 Jan, 2006 01:20 pm
I haven't had time to do more research on specific stuff on Humphrey, as to how many of the 21 points he might be classified leaning left and those leaning right. I only mentioned where I thought my argument would go. I haven't yet asserted Humphrey liberal on only 8 points. I merely suggested 8, 10, or 12 was possible. I suspect it could be more than that. I'm pretty sure it won't be 21 or even 17 or 18 or whatever. Give me time.

Just a question, were you alive in 1970? If you were, you would have an idea, based on common sense what would have been logical to the public then. Of course, I will have to admit as an okie that Bush won by an overwhelming majority in Oklahoma in this last election, so the liberal viewpoint is not very mainstream in Oklahoma now, let alone in 1970.

Anyway, I intend to do more work on this because it is interesting even if nobody is convinced from their current position.
0 Replies
 
parados
 
  2  
Reply Wed 18 Jan, 2006 01:50 pm
Humphrey - liberal or conservative

Feel free to dispute any of these okie


1. Size, Scope, and Power of Government - for larger govt. Fed spending on education, Fed control of nuclear power, welfare, civil rights enforcement, foreign aid

2. Economic Policy / Taxes "Humphrey replied that "a balanced budget is a futile dream," which could not be attained anyway until "the world is in balance." Dismissing those "Scrooges" who harbored a "bookkeeper's mentality," Humphrey, a self-proclaimed "jolly Santa," reiterated his priority, people's "needs and desires." http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/resources/pdf/hubert_humphrey.pdf

3. Defense / Terrorism - promoted nuclear test ban treaty, opposed Vietnam war

4. Foreign Policy / Trade - for more foreign aid, nuclear test ban treaty

5. Social Security - He's a democrat - I don't think there is much question

6. Health Care - pushed through Medicare

7. Welfare - supported food stamps and foreign food aid

8. Education - suppported Federal Construction of schools, one of his major achievements, scholarships, scientific research grants, head start

9. Energy - For public power, Atomic Energy Commission to oversee private industry, fed funds for solar energy research

10. Civil Rights - no question in this one since 1948 Dem Convention, 1963 Civil rights bills

11. Abortion - unknown but he was in Senate in 1973 so probably can find

12. Illegal Immigration - Not applicable

13. Crime / Drug Policy -

14. Environment - solar energy research

15. Religion & Government - Not applicable like today

16. Private Property Rights -

17. Public Lands Policy -

18. Organized Labor - strong supporter

19. Morality / Family Values -not defined well

20. Gay Marriage - Not applicable

21. Gun Control - unknown


By my count that is 3 that don't apply, 12 on the liberal side and 6 unknown at this point. Much of it came from here,
http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/resources/pdf/hubert_humphrey.pdf
some from here - http://www.lbjlib.utexas.edu/johnson/archives.hom/oralhistory.hom/Humphrey/humphrey.asp
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