On the right wing's imperviousness to information

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Regarding Thom's inquiry into whether the conservatives' rightward march is dangerous to democracy, I thought this was relevant:

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2010/4/19/858812/-The-Epistemic-Closin...

It deeply distresses me that we have no common basis on which to have discussions with people we disagree with politically.

Satchel Pooch's picture
Satchel Pooch
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Comments

i have one idea. Stop referring to tea-partiers as tea-baggers. That might open things up a bit.

ProudCon's picture
ProudCon
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote Satchel Pooch:

It deeply distresses me that we have no common basis on which to have discussions with people we disagree with politically.

If that is how you view differing opinions, then you never will have a common basis.

slabmaster
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Apr. 1, 2010 11:12 am

I'm not distressed any more. They act as I expect them.

However, I make an extra effort to use the term "right-winger" rather than "conservative" simply because there are rational conservatives, who aren't so ideological as to not accept that reality has proven them wrong. A good example is Greenspan, who accepted that his belief in the free market was misplaced and he was wrong. You may not agree with him, but you must give credit for a level of objectivity not displayed by right-wingers who, also being conservative, have the distinctive characteristic of simply being opposed to everything not "conservative". I put that in quotes because "conservative", like all words, means whatever they want it to mean. There are many conservatives who left the Republican party percisely because it has been taken over by the right-wing.

For example, McConnell is either a) a right-wing ideologue and is incapable of seeing how wrong his free market ideology is or (b) a right-wing corporatist who sees the wealthy elites as what power in America should be due to his acceptance of Calvinism or its secular version, objectivism. Either way, for the right-wing the ends justify the means and it is their obligation to create the America that a) god wants or (b) that is controlled by the worthy. They do not like democracy, in any form, simply because it provides a voice to either a) the unrighteous or (b) the unworthy and so, as in battle, there is no dirty trick not worth using to destroy those that oppose them. This includes exiling those, like Frum, who fail to support the group in their all or nothing battle plan.

That right-wing conservatism has taken over relegates moderate and liberal conservatism into the enemy camp. The message is that if right-wing conservatism wins, the United States will no longer be a democratic republic. As we were discussing in another thread regarding the Unitary Executive, even though Bush has set precedent, there is always the hope that the Legislature or Judiciary will rebalance power. However, under the right-wing, that will no longer be possible because they will rework our system to refute everything they don't want, including amending the consitution and purging non-believers from power. Proof that this is so was shown by the actions of the Bush administration, they were setting the program in motion and succeeding.

jeffbiss's picture
jeffbiss
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

In support of jeff's excellent points, I'll reference this article for more contemplation:

The GOP's changing definition of "moderate" This isn't the first time the right has tried to purify the party. But the targets have never been so conservative

Since Barack Obama's inauguration, the right wing of the Republican Party has mobilized against, among others, Arlen Specter, John McCain, Bob Bennett and Charlie Crist.

The result: Specter left the GOP over a year ago; McCain is facing a grave primary challenge; Bennett may need luck just to make it to a primary in Utah; and Crist is now poised to abandon his GOP primary campaign and run as an independent.

Is this a purge? Absolutely. They've all been targeted for being insufficiently conservative, and the purification campaign doesn't stop with them: Other GOP establishment figures also face potentially serious primary challenges in statewide races across the country.

This isn't as new a phenomenon as you might think. Conservatives have mobilized to cleanse their party of "moderates" before, sometimes with dramatic results.

The interesting thing I can remember from the Bush days is Arlen Specter, probably one of the top Constitutional scholars in the Senate, was one of the few Republican politicians to speak out about the Unitary Executive Theory practices by the Bush Administration -- very weakly I might add, and may have undermined any push back from other Senators and Congressman with his tactics. But I do think he was genuine in his concerns. Now what would he do with Obama's tactics, which amount to picking up the Bush UET banner and charging on?

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.ren
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Apr. 1, 2010 7:50 am

I actually like to piss conservatives off because they are often so bull headed it doesn't matter what you save anyway so you might as well have fun pissing them off. Occassionally you can find something they agree with you on but that is rare. And half the time they really don't have the brains to understand what we're saying anyway. Those psychologists that did the study on how political positions relate to intelligence were spot on.

captbebops's picture
captbebops
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote captbebops:

I actually like to piss conservatives off because they are often so bull headed it doesn't matter what you save anyway so you might as well have fun pissing them off. Occassionally you can find something they agree with you on but that is rare. And half the time they really don't have the brains to understand what we're saying anyway. Those psychologists that did the study on how political positions relate to intelligence were spot on.

Quote slabmaster:If that is how you view differing opinions, then you never will have a common basis.
Alpharius's picture
Alpharius
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Apr. 20, 2010 10:28 am

Excellent comment Jeff.

norske's picture
norske
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

"The message is that if right-wing conservatism wins, the United States will no longer be a democratic republic."

Funny, I would say that the message is if left-wing liberalism wins, the United States will no longer be a democractic republic. All depends on your viewpoint I guess. And around and around we go, endlessly taunting each other, flinging insults, calling each other liars, calling each other names. It's pathetic, really, and pretty depressing. I need to find other ways to spend my time I s'pose.

ProudCon's picture
ProudCon
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Finding common ground between the opposing views is absolutely the starting place to get things done like passing legislation. However my frustration from the GOP these days is that they are not conceding on anything even when you think the Dems and Republicans share common ground. For example Wall Street and health care reform. Both parties think it is necessary. However in todays's political climate, once a bill is introduced it is never good enough for the right despite the major concessions from the left, liberals, progressives, Dems, (or whatever you want to call them) to pass legislation.

The recently passed health care bill gives an individual state the option to opt out of health care reform, allows people to cross state lines to get insurance, and also has some tort reform. These conservative ideas were included in the bill. Still we get the words like "armegeddon", "communist" and "anti-capitalist' from the GOP leadership. To the GOP, considering you lost big time in the 2008 elections please be thankful that your ideas are being implemented even without your congressional votes.

ethanpintard's picture
ethanpintard
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Apr. 15, 2010 11:47 am
Quote Satchel Pooch:

Regarding Thom's inquiry into whether the conservatives' rightward march is dangerous to democracy, I thought this was relevant:

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2010/4/19/858812/-The-Epistemic-Closin...

It deeply distresses me that we have no common basis on which to have discussions with people we disagree with politically.

Slate has an interesting article: http://www.slate.com/id/2251101/

"If Responsible Republicans are in fact nearing extinction, I think we can identify the crucial event that signaled their demise. It was a December 1993 memo by conservative strategist and commentator William Kristol. Kristol's advice about how Republicans should respond to Bill Clinton's 1993 health care effort—and a series of follow-up memos he wrote in 1994—pushed the GOP away from cooperation with Democrats on any social and economic legislation. His message marks the pivotal moment when Republicans shifted from fundamentally responsible partners in governing the country to uncompromising, hyperpartisan antagonists on all issues. "

There should be enough open minded Conservatives and Independents to punish the close minded at the polls as the economy normalizes. I'm optimistic!

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maraden
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Currently Chatting

GOP Blocks Equal Pay...again.

Just in time for election season, Senate Republicans blocked legislation aimed at closing the gender pay gap. For the third time since 2012, Republicans refused to allow debate on the Paycheck Fairness Act, and reminded women that the GOP doesn't believe in equal pay for equal work.

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