Monday, May 19, 2008

Party Liners

Post 7

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Whenever election time springs into being (you can always tell when it is coming, as you start seeing ads that you don't quite know what they are saying but they make you scared, happy, or horny, or all three in some odd combination) you start to see certain people take sides. Well, more specifically, you see most people take a side right away. Usually, they either pick Democrat or Republican, though they sometimes will claim to be of some other party. Most of these people toe the party line, either they are for abortion or against it, for the death penalty or against it, or something like that. Really, they exist to help this corporation (remember, these parties are incorporated) raise more money and help their main stock holders (the politicians running for said party). The problems with 'party liners' is really threefold (as, it seems, almost everything I post is): they vote only party line, without thinking about what they are voting for - they vote only for their party, without thinking of whom they are voting for - they think that the other party is uber-conservative or commies (depending on their side of the political middle) and therefore evil and stupid. Party Liners: What really Grinds My Gigantic Notched Wheels.

They vote only party line, without thinking about what they are voting for:
When one starts to think of a party liner we immediately think of the person who votes only for their party, I.e., the stereotypical Democrat or Republican. This, more or less, is the problem with people who toe the party line. While you may join a party because you agree with more of its positions than those of another party (which is why I am registered Democrat), you probably agree with a fair amount of the opinions and positions of the other party. Furthermore, most of the parties have positions that are very near and similar to each other. The main problem is when people vote on an issue because the Democrat Party of Ohio or the Republican Party of California endorse it. The same problem happens when people only vote on issues that the ACLU or The Citizens for Community Values support. When one expresses blind faith in an organization to make choices for them then they have made a mistake. While you might think that the Democrats, Republicans, or CCV are always correct, more often than not they take stances that you can not agree with. If you don't take the time to educate yourself, you are the one who loses.

They vote only for their party, without thinking of whom they are voting for:
I know, you are probably thinking that this is a cop out, that this is just like the above paragraph with only a few things changed. And, frankly, it is, but it is also a much different issue with the same problems but different outcomes. Voting for a person based solely on their party is the exact same as voting for an issue based on what parties recommended and supported it. While one can often judge (pretty accurately) the positions of a person based on their party support there are quite often variables that are pretty inconsistent. Take Joesph Lieberman for example. He is an independent now (due to a screwed up Connecticut Democrat Primary election) but was once a Democrat. Now, the Democrats have a position of anti-war, pro-choice, etc. and Lieberman (who ran for Veep on a Democrat ticket under Albert Gore) is outside of that area. Just like voting for an issue on the party, here you have the party not always having the position that you think they would. However, when voting for a person it is even worse to not know what is going on. By not being educated on an issue you only affect one area (granted, it could be a big issue, but one issue none-the-less); by electing a person without being educated you are affecting every area that they can touch. Clearly, it is worse to vote party line when looking at people as to when you are looking at just issues, but voting party line in both is purely idiotic.

They think that the other party is uber-conservative or commies (depending on their side of the political middle) and therefore evil and stupid:
This is one of my biggest issues with people who toe the party line, they always think that any person in the other party is automatically evil and wrong, also that they are stupid. They also come up with inflammatory labels for them - Neo-cons and Commies. Furthermore, both sides will see those in the middle (which is where I am) as either being very left or right, depending on which side they are being viewed from. This is a big issue as it does not allow for any respect or decency in politics, and it also keeps us from being able to find any middle ground. In most areas, from abortion to the 'war' in Iraq to tax cuts people either argue for or against, and then accuse the other side of one or another egregious thing. Really, all of these issues, along with most of the other issues there are in this wide world, have a middle ground that we can agree on. Most people think that abortion should be okay if there is a health danger to the mother, rape, and/or incest. Most people think that wealthy tax cuts are bad, but argue about the middle tax brackets, and stuff like that; however, these areas are rarely discussed. The Political Parties make it their business to keep us from finding a common ground, after all, if we did, we would be able to ignore their sides and come up (via debating, of course) how our country should run.

While I think that Political Parties serve an important purpose, I feel that they are exploited to easily and that people need to work within both parties to find a common ground to fix this country up. The biggest threats to democracy are apathy and ignorance, and this Democrat feels that we need to fix both problems to succeed in the long term as a country.


As always, please leave any comments, no matter how large or how small about the contents of this blog post. Also, please leave any comments/suggestions about this site/post as a whole.
Thanks,
Barga


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25 comments:

Evan said...

I agree about people blindly following their party. Many Christians simply believe that the Republican party is the party that supports their values & they've fallen into supporting pre-emptive war, which as a Christian I cannot understand. And most Democrats tend to think that once their party gets into power the Gov't will magically right its wrongs & start being friendly, helpful Big Brother. Both these parties have been in power for a long time and we the people are still being taxed too heavily for getting so little in return. I agree with Jesse Ventura that we should have no political parties & candidates should just run on ideas & policies. You here the media talking about how the Republican party needs to get its act together & unite its fractured base, but then they ignore Ron Paul who has generated so much enthusiasm and new voters. Ron Paul was right when he said the Republican Party has lost its way & is no longer Conservative. The Liberty message unites people, it is a mainstream message that people just aren't hearing (in many parts thanks to our big media corporations). Our founding fathers died not for Democracy, but for Liberty. Eventually, the people of this country will have had enough Federal Gov't over-regulation, mis-management, excessive taxation, & ineffective beauracracy & they will vote to downsize the Gov't to restore State's Rights & individual Liberty. Unfortunately, only a fraction of us are fed up enough to support Ron Paul currently. I don't know what will be the final straw to break our faith in this 2-faced political corporation/machine, but it is inevitable & I just hope we wake up before the whole house of cards comes crashing down.

Hajile said...

I would think that party-liners would be bad, and I agree that we should listen to each person and make a educated descision on who to support.

The thing is... More often than not, the person who agrees with you most, happens to be with one party.

I strongly doubt I will ever support a democrat, not because they are a democrat, but because democrats views are always opposite of mine.

So what is my other choice? Oh yeah. Republicans.

And, not to mention, they kinda force you to vote for someone.

For example, say there are 3 candidates. Two candidates have the majority of the support. But even though you agree with the third candidate the most, you vote for one of the other two candidates just because you know the 3rd candidate doesn't have a chance. So you want your vote to count.

Hajile said...

-Evan: Wars are bad. But they are fought to prevent a worse evil. The war on terror is necessary to fight against the terrorists that think that they can do whatever they want. If we pull out and don't support the war, then that's just a message to them saying "Oh! The retreated! Full charge, men!"

Yeah.

Barga said...

Evan -

Our system exists because the voting blocks make sense, you consolidate power and keep it. Most people do fall into these groups for the most part. The problem comes when you have people like me; I agree with both sides on a large variety of issues, and so I create the problems with this system. As for Mr. Paul, I would contend that he himself is not a conservative as he does want governmental interference, just not with things he wants open.

Barga said...

Hajile, let us take your points one at a time.

------I would think that party-liners would be bad, and I agree that we should listen to each person and make a educated descision on who to support.-------
Good, but then you contradict yourself further down


-------The thing is... More often than not, the person who agrees with you most, happens to be with one party.------
Really? So, I know that you claim to be republican. Okay, are you pro-life, pro-death penalty, pro-Isreal, pro-Iraq, pro-global warming, pro-tax breaks for the rich, pro-letting companies ship jobs overseas, pro-eliminating education, health care, and welfare, anti-gay right? Are you pro McCain, Pro Romney, and Pro Huckabee (hell, also Pro Paul) all at the same time?

------I strongly doubt I will ever support a democrat, not because they are a democrat, but because democrats views are always opposite of mine.-------
I am a democrat and we agree quite often. Would you vote for Lieberman?

-----So what is my other choice? Oh yeah. Republicans.-----
Don’t vote, write in, third party

Also, voting for the lesser of two evils is as bad as not voting at all

Barga said...

Hajile –

If we were talking just about Afghanistan you have a point. However, Iraq was never involved in 9/11 or anything of the sort.

Evan said...

The primary job of the Gov’t is to protect our freedoms. When we give up freedom for security, we lose both. The Gov’t, defying its Constitutional authority, has not become an evil more dangerous than the one it claims to protect us from. I think we are safer with our Freedoms than without them. Basically, I think we can’t afford the wars. It’s not a matter or if it’s the right or wrong thing to do, it’s simply unsustainable & unaffordable, we are going broke. We can’t keep borrowing money from China & Japan at this rate to fund both our Warfare & Welfare. I mean, Medicare is insolvent in 7 years, we can’t protect our own borders (which is where the next attack is coming from), & yet we spend how much to protect Iraq?

Am I to understand that my vote won’t count if I don’t vote for one of the parties currently controlling the country? What kind of Democracy is this? I mean, do you vote for what you believe in or do you vote for who you think is gonna win? Are we so obsessed with winning & getting one over on ‘the other side’ that we’ve lost site of what we think is best for the country?

Ron Paul is conservative, relative to any other candidate even considering running. Sounds like you’re arguing that he’s not an anarchist. If you’re gonna be president, then you must decide both where the Gov’t wont’ be involved, & where it will be. I think the majority of people don’t fall into complete agreement with any one party, but I also think that put so little thought into their political beliefs and are so wantonly open to accepting what they hear from the Mainstream Media that they just accept on party or the other.

Barga said...

Evan, I think this was the only part of your post directed at me, so I will respond to it alone:

-----Ron Paul is conservative, relative to any other candidate even considering running. Sounds like you’re arguing that he’s not an anarchist. If you’re gonna be president, then you must decide both where the Gov’t wont’ be involved, & where it will be. I think the majority of people don’t fall into complete agreement with any one party, but I also think that put so little thought into their political beliefs and are so wantonly open to accepting what they hear from the Mainstream Media that they just accept on party or the other.-----

The thing is, many people claim he is for freedom and conservative when he really is neither. He is a reactionary and, looking at his positions, not for freedom.

-Sepp said...

Ron Paul is "not for freedom"? Are you nuts?
I hope you're not thinking that Hillary or, Obama are pro-freedom since their records and platforms say otherwise!
Getting the government back in check is paramount if we ever wish to see freedom ever again.

Dr Paul's record outshines every one of those other clowns who are hell bent on being president and say anything you want to hear...even though their history is 180 degrees out of battery from what flows from their mouths.

Examples?
"I'm against the war!" ...but has been voting to keep it going!

"I'm for working families!" ...but try to increase the tax burden on them at every chance!

"I'll defend your civil rights!"...but vote in favor of the patriot act and HR1955 in order to make it legal to violate them!

I USED to be a democrat but, that was back when the democratic party used to have democrats in it.
Today it's been subverted in a defacto socialist party. The rupublicans have gone into the crapper too.
Maybe if we followed the constitution and, forced our elected leaders to obey it...or else...we wouldn't have the mess we have now.
If we allow our leaders to break the laws and violate the constitutional powers of office, we're doomed to be the next banana republic with a despot at the helm.

Evan said...

Yeah, I can't understand what claim you're trying to make about Ron Paul. Either it's too succinct or doesn't make sense. So he's "reactionary", as in he reacts to things? I mean, who doesn't react to things. I appreciate Ron Paul's consistency & the fact that he has maintained his political views & stance since the 70s. Then you say he's not conservative based on his positions, well this is a perfect example of why I think that word sucks, because we obviously have 2 different definitions of the words conservative. Why don't you tell me what it means to be conservative & what Ron Paul really stands for?

Barga said...

-Sepp, yeah, of course none of them are for complete freedom. However, Paul:
Voted against gay marriage
wants to ban the court from hearing about it
wants to removed the 14th
wants states rights back
etc.

That is a pretty big attack on freedoms

Barga said...

Reactionary means that he reacts with a huge jump back to progress.
As for conservative, socially liberal and fiscally conservative is how i use it (old school)

Evan said...

Well let's just realize one thing right now, not all "progress" is in the right direction. When you make mistakes, like the Government usually does, then perhaps it would be better to go back to a system that was shown to work rather than continuing to create more progress. If Ron Paul is anything, he's fiscally conservative & the idea of eliminating the IRS & letting Americans keep the money they earn with their own hard labor is a great idea to increase Freedom, Economic Freedom. Restoring States Rights would also increase Freedom, no more Feds arresting terminal cancer patients for smoking pot in California when it's legal by State Law, that's not what my tax dollars should be paying for. Just because he voted against the Federal Gov't sanctifying Gay Marriage doesn't mean he thinks they should ban it. He thinks the Federal Gov't should have no say whatsoever in marriage, thus increasing the Freedom of States to make their own choices about it rather than being mandated by the Federal Gov't on how to handle it. Do you understand this concept? Less Federal Regulation, more freedom for States to chose their own path. This gives people for freedom when they chose what State to live in that has laws that agree with their values. More one-size-fits-all blanket solutions to diverse problems in this country are not going to work, get the Fed out of it, that is Ron Paul's stand. I think it's easy to just say, Ron Paul is against X or he voted against Y. I mean, do you think that the Federal Reserve, an un-elected group of wealthy private bank owners controlling our money supply with no oversight whatsoever (interesting to note that Clinton prevented the videotaping of their meetings) is a good thing for America?

Anonymous said...

You mean he voted against A CONSTITUTIONAL change dealing with gay marriage! God forbid we stop the federal machine from tampering with the constitution anymore than it already has!

State's rights are a bad thing? As opposed to what? Making the federal government the official lord and master over everything and everyone? State's citizens have a far easier time getting grievances redressed than any number of states together have when going against Washington!

No, he's not going to repeal the 14th amendment and return blacks back into non-citizens. Abortion is what he's against and he's already said the government shouldn't be in the fight since it's a STATE ISSUE!

Cmon man!

-Sepp

Barga said...

Evan -

Progress is good, some progress is bad, but most is good. Lets take the states rights argument the other way. Slavery, christian only states, white only states, etc. I agree that some levels of the Fed. should not be allowed to touch areas of gay rights and the like, but the courts should be able to say if laws violate the constitution or not.



Sepp -
As usual, you have not researched your arguments. He is against allowing the courts to hear anything on gay marriage, which is practically the same thing as a constitutional ban

-Sepp said...

So show me the link where I can see this.

And do you really want to pretend that states rights would reinstate slavery or, force christianity on it's residents?
How about medical marijuana? Plenty of states have authorized it only to have the Fed step in and quash the idea. Speed limits? The Fed used extortion that kept states from going beyond 55 mph for years!
With your gay rights issue, should California's people be the deciders of who can marry or, the Fed alone?
You seem to put a lot of faith into a federal machine that regulates more freedoms and liberties now than it allows.

And what are "gay rights"? They are protected as individuals under the constitution. And, have been granted special rights in a lot of areas.

In my oppinion, gay marriage isn't a question the government should be ruling on. Marriage is a religous ceremony which should be either allowed or, disallowed by the church. If your church allows it, so be it then.

On the flip side gays do risk losing "partner benefits" from the workplace when gay marriage IS allowed and will then be forced to marry if they want partner benefits the same as everyone else.

I'll be the first straight man to warn gays that marriage isn't what it's cracked up to be and way over rated!
I'd love to be able to add my girlfriend to my healthplan...and if things don't work out, well she comes off of it and I don't lose half my assets in the process!

Barga said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/We_the_People_Act
Here is what it banned the courts (federal) from hearing:
Religious texts and images on public property
abortion
gay marriage
sex acts
unless to challenge the constitutionality (which is rarely why they are challenged, specially because he refers to Roe. V. Wade not being allowed even though it was constitutional)


-------And do you really want to pretend that states rights would reinstate slavery or, force Christianity on it's residents? How about medical marijuana? ----
My point was that this would work both ways



-------Plenty of states have authorized it only to have the Fed step in and quash the idea. Speed limits? The Fed used extortion that kept states from going beyond 55 mph for years!------
That is based on funding, which they still could do


-----In my opinion, gay marriage isn't a question the government should be ruling on. Marriage is a religious ceremony which should be either allowed or, disallowed by the church. If your church allows it, so be it then.------
I am talking about the legal aspect, not the religious part. I agree with you on the religious part

-Sepp said...

What I'm reading in the "we the people act" is it will stop groups from "judge shopping" on social issues where they know the populace as a whole would reject their agenda were it placed on a ballot.
Meaning, I know my idea is unpopular so, I'll just search for a sypathetic or, bribable judge who will legislate from the bench.

Paul's veiw on this is that local laws shouldn't be dictated or, overridden by a federal power.

You have wayyy too much faith in the federal government's honesty and benevolence where neither exists.

Barga said...

So, if the law is: Let us kill all blacks, the courts should not be allowed to override it?

Evan said...

I think a law saying "let us kill all blacks" would be unconstitutional.

-Sepp said...

Not only would that be constitutional but, I'm betting pretty far fetched too.

Barga said...

-----I think a law saying "let us kill all blacks" would be unconstitutional.------
----Paul's veiw on this is that local laws shouldn't be dictated or, overridden by a federal power.----

You see the point I was trying to make?

-Sepp said...

You're reaching for the unreal here.
The Fed is only supposed to have a LIMITED role in governing the lives of the people and, the people are supposed to have the final say.

"We the people" seem to have forgotten that WE dictate to the government and not vice versa.

I'll suggest a book for you to check out called "Attention deficit democracy".

Barga said...

-sepp

You are forgetting that we are not a democracy and were never set up to be one, or nearly one.

Jesus Girl said...

Linworth moment! So in Government with Rick, he talked a lot about making sure you really think about everything. And he meant, *think*. I've learned from this not to blindly follow something. I want to understand it fully before I commit to it. So many people don't *think* about what they're doing, what they're saying, what they're voting for. It explains quite a lot about our country. If people would would really *think* about things, this country would be...awesome.

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