I think that it is particularly interesting that George Will is such an opponent to climate change. He has branded himself as a conservative intellectual, one who is not based on radicalized ideology, but rather on sound practical logic. This contradicts this image of him because he has joined that fringe group of people who deny the vast majority of the scientific base saying that anthropogenic global warming is real.
I think this is a good outline of the major factions of the Republican party. I would say that currently the majority of the Republican party base is misinformed. The reason why they are tethered to the Republican party to begin with is because Republicans have done a very good job of marketing their party as the party for the hard working, pull-yourself-up-by-the-bootstraps, "American" party. At the same time, they have branded the Democratic party as the elitist liberal party for those who sip lates and listen to Wilco. This is why so much of middle America feels they can identify better with Republicans.
The problem is that this branding distorts true party ideologies. While the Republican party is for free market capitalism, with tax-cuts for the wealthy, the Democratic party is the party of equality, trying to regulate the market with various social programs to create a more equitable playing field for everyone. Most of middle America is not very wealthy, and could certainly benefit from many of the measures that Democrats tout, but simply do not realize it. Would elitists care about the poor? Would elitists stand up for seniors? Would elitists care about the plight of the rest of the world? I don't think so. If people really knew what the Democratic party stood for and what the Republican party is trying to advocate, I think more middle class Americans would realize that the Democratic ticket would suit their pocket books better.
Playing devil's advocate: However, there is a possibility that people do not vote with their wallets, but rather based on ideology. It is true that the Democratic party is for various social reforms such as same-sex marriage and abortion rights. If middle Americans care more about social issues than economic ones, then I can understand better why they vote Republican. However, I do not know if I'm willing to make that leap. I think there are certainly some people who vote based on traditional social beliefs, but I also think that there is a large sector of Americans who vote Republican because they actually believe that Republicans will help them more economically. I think THAT should be the group Democrats could try to target in converting by rebranding themselves as the party of the working-class.
What do you guys think of this analysis, like Mr. Frank, I am open to criticisms and comments.
I think up to this point he has not been hurt by his denial of the stimulus money or any of his other absurd stances on things such as supporting intelligent design and opposing same-sex marriage. He has enjoyed quite high public approval ratings. In fact, in 2008 he had one of the highest ratings of any governor in the country.
Now, in a column in Newsweek, there is speculation that he may even be tapped as veep because of what "brownness" and conservatives sensibilities. I guess we'll just have to see what happens, but he doesn't seem to be hurting so far.
In this piece written by Tancredo, he coins the term "Obama Stockholm Syndrome," which a symptom of people "who display a compulsive and irrational need to reaffirm their vote for Obama no matter what happens in the real world." Now, if we stopped right there, we can see that this man has lost some of his marbles. He is going around trying to make up terms to pin on Obama supporters. But there's more. He goes on to say stereotypical Republican refrains about how people who "suffer" from "Obama Stockholm Syndrome" are the "liberal elite", which in his mind refers to anyone who reads the New York Times, or probably more generally, anyone who reads at all.
But the fun doesn't stop there. He then goes on to outline 10 ways you know that you have "Obama Stockholm Syndrome". I've copied a few of the most entertaining ones.
1. You believe the colder winters across Europe and North America over the past 11 years, the cooling of the Pacific Ocean and the increased ice accumulation in the Antarctic are all convincing evidence of global warming.
2. You believe that a committee of United Nations bureaucrats should be given a veto over U.S. economic policies in order to reverse the destruction of the planet's environment by American capitalism.
3. You believe that Obamacare will provide better health care for more Americans at lower cost without rationing because government-run services are always more efficient than services provided by the greedy private sector.
To point 1: First of all, global warming does NOT mean that it warms EVERYWHERE. It simply refers to the idea that we have an accumulation of greenhouse gases that causes temperatures to go out of whack. In some places, it means that it gets warmer, in other places cooler. Secondly, there ISNT ice accumulation in the atarctic, the ice cores data from places like Antarctica proves that climate change is real.
To point 2; Actually, probably this is a good idea. America's policies on carbon emissions are non-existent.
To point 3: Yes, he will provide better health care, and YES rationing is already happening based on income. Oh, and yes, insurance companies are inherently evil because they are held accountable to their share holders who want to see profits. Profits MEANS providing less insurance for individuals. So yes, insurance companies have a vested interest in screwing people.
Tancredo, why must you make everything so black and white? And the truth is, the real conspiracy theorist is yourself. You believe that all those in favor of Obama are liberal elites who want nothing more than to destroy America just because we believe American exceptionalism is synonymous with arrogance.
Congresswoman Virginia Foxx is trying to slam the health care bill saying that it will raise taxes and hurt benefits for seniors. Once again, we have an example of false Republican rhetoric. Foxx's accusation that this will raise taxes, while not completely untrue is certainly misleading. It will only raise taxes on those with cadillac health insurance plans. The bill has made exceptions for many various groups of people with dangerous jobs who need to have better health insurance plans, such as construction workers. Also, the reduction in spending to Medicare Advantage for seniors is not going to significantly cut senior benefits. It will simply make Medicare Advantage competitive with non medicare advantage plans. The bill also closed the donut hole gap on prescription benefit plans. Additionally, health care reform is endorsed by AARP,s so clearly it cannot be hurting seniors. Foxx just wants to get uninformed voters to get riled up over nothing. Why else would she be doing this?
According to this report, Rick Perry was in favor of a bailout before he was against it. This is ironic because Perry has been attacking his opponent Hutchison for being in favor of the bailout. It seems that Rick Perry will have a hard time twisting this thing around now. What do you guys think? Was he for the bailout or not?
Pete Sessions is currently under investigation for potentially giving special treatment to Allen Stanford, a man convicted of money fraud. Stanford gave a significant amount of campaign contribution to Sessions and hosted lavish trips to places like the Caribbean for Sessions and other members of Congress. According to the report, Sessions may have written a letter to Stanford after his conviction giving words of encouragement and support. All of this makes me think about the general practice of campaign contributions and how it creates a culture of special interests. If a person donates several million dollars to a politician's campaign, the politician is now somewhat bound by the whims and fancies of the donor. If the donor is a health insurance company, then the politician is less likely to support health care reform which would undercut health insurance companies. And all of this is completely legal. We say we don't have corruption in the US government, but I think it's just that we have a legalized form of corruption. Sure, it's not as bad as in India where donors give money that directly lines the pockets of politicians, but in the US donors can still buy influence.
What's the solution? I'm not sure, if we stopped allowing politicians to accept campaign contributions they would all have way less money. However, may be if we limited the amount of contribution any single entity could contribute, we would have a more even playing field. And so what if politicians then have less money to campaign with, maybe that's a good thing. Who really needs politicians campaigning for presidency two years early anyways? What do you guys think. I know this is something Obama had once suggested, but I'm not sure if he followed through with this idea. Do you guys have thoughts or ideas on this?
In an interview with Fox, Newt Gingrich says the following:
"It is time to know more about would-be terrorists, to profile for terrorists and to actively discriminate based on suspicious terrorist information."
What do you guys think of the idea to racially profile airport passengers. Proponents of racial profiling say that it would be done as a safety measure and only accepted at airports. However, I personally don't like the idea at all and think that it could lead to a greater acceptance of profiling in the larger community. Once we think it is okay to racially profile someone at the airport, what is stop people from assuming that it is okay to do the same at the grocery store? If anything, geographic profiling may be a better alternative. For example, flights coming in from Yemen could have stricter regulations.
What do you guys think about this issue?
Mitch McConnell recently secured $13 million in defense spending contracts for Raytheon. The manufacturing giant works largely in McConnell's home state of Kentucky and has contributed to an enormous growth of jobs for McConnell's constituency. In a plant near Louisville International Airport, employment has almost doubled, and Raytheon predicts that hiring will continue to grow in 2010.
While this may be great for the economy and certainly for Raytheon's recent hires, you have to wonder-at what cost? In all, McConnell has used his clout to funnel nearly 200 million dollars in defense-contract spending for Raytheon since 1998. Yes, by the US government climbing into bed with defense-contracting companies such as Raytheon and Lockheed Martin, the government can play a direct role in increasing jobs, but what does it mean to put so much money into defense?
Why do you think we constantly have to be in a war, why has the US gone from being a nation sometimes involved in wars to a war-nation? On the one had Obama says that going into Iraq was a mistake, while with his other hand he seeks to wage us into another war in Afghanistan. And if we play our cards right, we may even have a war in Yemen. To continue funneling such huge amounts of money towards defense means the military must continue to make use of its new toys. The only problem is that those new toys, well, they aren't toys. They kill people.
CNN's John Avalon recently did a piece about the most ridiculous and radical politicians doing, giving the grand prize to Michelle Bachmann, the Minnesota representative who believes God him/her/itself has given her the divine duty of representing Minnesota. The comment that won her the award was where she says the following:
"Where tyranny is enforced upon the people, as Barack Obama is doing, the people suffer and mourn."
Clearly, Obama and his tyrannical rule of absolute destruction where he, well where he....he may raise taxes on the wealthiest Americans - is absolute treason. HANG HIM.
The scariest part about all this is that where this seems laughable to us, many Americans actually take what sehe says seriously. How else does a person like this come into power. And she is certainly not alone in her divisive politics. How do Americans stand for this? Are we really this stupid?