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Author Topic: 2010 politics  (Read 11302 times)
Zorag
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« on: August 04, 2010, 10:27:14 PM »

I am not (Yet) expressing an opinion on what I would like to happen.  I would just like to kick the thread off with observations about some trends.  1.  The biggest trend so far is the dominance of female candidates.  2.  The next?  The anti-incumbant movement.  3.  The "Tea Party" is neither a political party nor unified by core beliefs.  Your thoughts or observations?
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wakela
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« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2010, 01:06:20 AM »

I'm an American, but I live overseas, so I'm a little divorced from the situation.  But it seems to me that the Tea Party is unified in their belief in smaller government and lower taxes.  They're not a formal party I guess, but I don't know how one formally defines a political party.
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Zorag
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« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2010, 06:27:27 AM »

The Tea Party may have started with people who believe in smaller government and lower taxes, but they have splintered into factions already.  There are some who have inserted religious beliefs into their platform.  Some are merely Republicans by another name.  There are Tea Party organizations supporting big government Republicans over small government Independents.  This is why I say there are no uniting core beliefs.  I would need to do some more research, but I do not know of anyone running as the Tea Party.  There is a political movement, yes.  The Green party and Libertarian party would be examples of movements that became parties.  Trying to explain myself while accessing the forums on my nonsmart phone is not easy.  I will reply as I can.
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Boggled Coriander
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« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2010, 08:29:27 AM »

The Tea Party may have started with people who believe in smaller government and lower taxes, but they have splintered into factions already.  There are some who have inserted religious beliefs into their platform.  Some are merely Republicans by another name.  There are Tea Party organizations supporting big government Republicans over small government Independents.  This is why I say there are no uniting core beliefs.  I would need to do some more research, but I do not know of anyone running as the Tea Party.  There is a political movement, yes.  The Green party and Libertarian party would be examples of movements that became parties.  Trying to explain myself while accessing the forums on my nonsmart phone is not easy.  I will reply as I can.

Your phone may be insufficiently smart for easy posting, Zorag, but I think you hit the nail on the head here.

On threads like this I'm always scared I'm going to say the wrong thing that'll send the discussion spiraling towards incivility.  I don't want to do that.  I'm genuinely interested in the discussion.  And I know that no one on this board lies awake at night thinking, "I wonder what Boggled Coriander thinks of Barack Obama?"

At least, I hope not.  That would be creepy.

So I'll just say that, like wakela, I'm an American living abroad, and I will be blissfully away from the States for the 2010 elections.  I follow the American news, but I feel like I'm getting only bits and pieces of the prevailing mood.  Interested to hear how this discussion evolves.
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Zorag
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« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2010, 08:50:58 PM »

Now that I'm at home, I'll try to post this a little more clearly.

The 3 items that I listed in the initial post seem to be the biggest trends this year. 

There are some people who will vote for every "D" and some for every "R".  Those people need not be swayed to vote for a particular candidate.  The strategy with these people is merely to motivate them enough to get them to the polls.  Apathy is a large factor in nearly all of our elections.  These are the people that rhetoric works best with.  You'll often hear them repeating talking points from one group or another.

There is a large group of people who go with the flow or whatever is "hot".  Nothing creates a crowd like a crowd.  To get these people to vote your way, you need to create a buzz.

There is another group, not nearly as large, who vote for individual candidates.  These are the hardest to win over, catch phrases and rhetoric don't work very well with them.  Unfortunately for our system of government, they actually have the least impact in elections.  They are not likely to try to sway anyone else to their beliefs.
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wakela
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« Reply #5 on: August 15, 2010, 07:06:04 PM »

There is another group, not nearly as large, who vote for individual candidates.  These are the hardest to win over, catch phrases and rhetoric don't work very well with them.  Unfortunately for our system of government, they actually have the least impact in elections.  They are not likely to try to sway anyone else to their beliefs.
Actually, don't these people have the most influence of all?  Based on the last few elections, it seems like the split between the Repub voters and Dem voters is very nearly 50/50.  So even though the percentage of people who vote for the candidate instead of the party is very small, it's that small percentage that decides the election.

BTW, I don't agree with the frequent maligning of those who only vote their party.  The parties do actually stand for different philosophies of government, and if you agree with one there isn't any reason to vote on the other.  If you think that a low regulation, business-friendly environment is better for the country (or yourself) there is little reason to vote Democrat even if you think their candidate is a smarter guy.  Likewise, if you think the government should be in the business of actively helping people and solving problems, you wouldn't vote Republican.*

*Simplification of political agenda noted.  Also, any snark at either party is unintended. 
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Zorag
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« Reply #6 on: August 16, 2010, 08:35:06 AM »

Granted on infulence.  My problem with voting party line is that there are more choices than D or R.  It is not intelligence I vote for.  I vote based on the best match for my political beliefs.  Whichever candidate is for less government, fiscally or socially, generally gets my vote.  I do not care about their ethics or beliefs, so long as they do not impose them on me.
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wakela
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« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2010, 09:18:03 PM »

Granted on infulence.  My problem with voting party line is that there are more choices than D or R.  It is not intelligence I vote for.  I vote based on the best match for my political beliefs.  Whichever candidate is for less government, fiscally or socially, generally gets my vote.  I do not care about their ethics or beliefs, so long as they do not impose them on me.
I vote the same way.  And it puts us in an interesting position, doesn't it.  One party favors more economic freedom and less social freedom, and the other is for more social freedom and less economic.  So it's more logical for people like us to vote on the candidate since there isn't a significant party that is for both social and economic freedom.   If gay rights or strong defense were most important to you, could could safely pick a party and vote for whoever they run.  I have hopes that the Tea Party could be for both kinds of freedom, but I think they would rather be a movement and an influence on the Ds and Rs rather than have a candidate of their own. 
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Fenrix
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« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2010, 11:00:11 AM »

Tea Party activists tend to focus on lower taxes and smaller government. There are different groups under the tea party umbrella that have divergent views on the other issues, so the lower taxes and smaller government are the only consistent unifying stuff they have.

The Libertarian Party covers the desire to have a party that supports fiscal and social liberty. On one hand, they have a tendency to handicap themselves by nominating unelectable wingnuts. On the other hand, the eloquent speakers in the bunch never get air time, as the last times third party members were invited to the party by mainstream media was Ross Perot and Jesse Ventura. A predominance of time third parties get on the air is clips that make them look like leaders of the tinfoil hat brigade.
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Zorag
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« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2010, 11:12:02 AM »

I consider myself a libertarian with a lowercase l.  The party itself was not that full of loonies until the loonies got the media attention.  It is the same thing the Tea Party will encounter.  I am not claiming there is a conspiracy.  When you gather a large group that has freedom as their main priority, chaos will rule.  Organizing a power structure goes against their very nature.  Insert some huge egos into the mix, add the sheeple who follow the crowd, and sprinkle money and you create an entity that cares more about protecting itself than the ideals that created it.              On a related note, I have changed my political desires.  Balance the budget, pay off the debt, stay out of my personal life and I will pay my 50% in taxes and not complain about how it is spent.
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Millenium_King
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« Reply #10 on: September 07, 2010, 12:20:31 AM »

It will be a Republican sweep.
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Zorag
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« Reply #11 on: November 03, 2010, 09:08:16 AM »

I am fairly pleased with the outcome.  Nowhere near what I would prefer, but should give us plenty of gridlock.  Fillibusters in the Senate, Republicans have the House and Democrats have the Presidency.  Palin had the magic touch with conservatives, but not so much with the public in general.  If I were a D, I would want her to keep running her mouth.  The Tea Party has been swallowed by the Republicans.  There will be more fallout from state races, but I will need some time to digest the info. 
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Talia
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« Reply #12 on: November 03, 2010, 10:43:32 AM »

Why is gridlock a good thing? Don't you want the goverment to have some chance of being effective at anything ever? Tongue

At least one Republican has stated plainly the party's entire mission is to ensure Obama is one-term president. Instead of, you know, helping run the country. But heck, why do that when you can be spiteful and seek ways to cause as much damage as humanly possible instead!

I'm just happy Delaware voters had the common sense not to elect the O'Donnell moron.
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Zorag
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« Reply #13 on: November 03, 2010, 10:53:43 AM »

Alaska, as of now, has elected a write in candidate to the US Senate.  This has not happened since Strom Thurman.  The 3rd party candidate for governor in CO received more votes than the Republican.  I absolutely love these 2 facts.  Rand Paul is going to the Senate!  I burst out laughing when they called that race.  My wife asked why and I told her he is a lunatic.  At least he agrees with my belief in limited government.  This is going to be a fun week for those of us who follow politics for the entertainment value.  I can't wait to hear the President's spin.
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Sgarre1
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« Reply #14 on: November 03, 2010, 11:55:34 AM »

Those who dislike either of their own parties should seriously check out the new episode of THIS AMERICAN LIFE - in particular, the segment on the life-long friends who found a tea party organization is painfully truthful about what the road to hell is paved with...

http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/417/this-party-sucks
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Zorag
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« Reply #15 on: November 03, 2010, 12:16:14 PM »

Listening to President Obama, it appears that he is keeping his cards close to his vest.  I get the feeling he wants to keep pushing his agenda, but does not know the best approach yet. 

Before anyone reads this as an attack, it is not.  It is his right to do what he feels is best, or just plain wants to.  He will have to face whatever consequences his actions bring on.
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Talia
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« Reply #16 on: November 03, 2010, 02:04:23 PM »

Alaska, as of now, has elected a write in candidate to the US Senate.  This has not happened since Strom Thurman.  The 3rd party candidate for governor in CO received more votes than the Republican.  I absolutely love these 2 facts.  Rand Paul is going to the Senate!  I burst out laughing when they called that race.  My wife asked why and I told her he is a lunatic.  At least he agrees with my belief in limited government.  This is going to be a fun week for those of us who follow politics for the entertainment value.  I can't wait to hear the President's spin.

That's pretty cool, I must agree. About Alaska, that is. Not about Rand "headstomper" Paul, who's a douche (Yes, I know it wasnt actually him who headstomped, but it just fits so nicely into the line that way!).
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Fenrix
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« Reply #17 on: November 03, 2010, 03:14:18 PM »

Why is gridlock a good thing? Don't you want the goverment to have some chance of being effective at anything ever? Tongue

Lack of action from the Federal government may very well be the best thing for us. Sure, they can't actively help. But they also can't actively harm.
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Zorag
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« Reply #18 on: November 03, 2010, 03:54:34 PM »

Limited Federal Government, FTW!  States Rights!
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stePH
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« Reply #19 on: November 03, 2010, 04:05:16 PM »

Giant Douche... Turd Sandwich... all the stuff's the same.
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