Friday, February 08, 2008

A Shameful Reality - Is this the key to Republican victory in 2008?

Republicans face a huge challenge to keep the White House in 2008. The President has stood firm in his convictions, despite public opinion and the consequences to his legacy. After 8 years of George W. Bush, the nation is not only ready for a new president but for a new ideology.

It seems that Senator John McCain will be the eventual Republican candidate. As a moderate Republican McCain is the probably the candidate that offers the G.O.P. the best shot at winning come November. McCain probably has the best chance of appealing to independent voters and conservative Democrats.

This is a reality of Presidential politics. In order to win a candidate needs to keep the core support of the party, while appealing to independents and the 'swing' voters of the other major party.

This year the Democratic party has the instant appeal of a historic candidacy. If Senator Clinton is the nominee then America will have the chance to elect the first woman president. If Senator Obama is the nominee America will have the chance to elect the first African American president. There are Democrats who are offended at the notion that a win in November would come in part because of people simply voting for history. Despite this, the fact is there are people who will support a candidate of historic precedent. The are women who will vote for the first woman and African Americans who will vote for the first African American president. The fact that Clinton and Obama are both formidable candidates only makes supporting them easier.

In the face of this, in order to win in November the Republicans need to offer up a candidate who will appeal to those voters not inclined to vote for Clinton or Obama. They need to offer up someone moderate enough to appeal to Democrats and independent voters but there is a shameful reality. If the Republicans do win in the 2008 it will not only be because the candidate appealed to independents and conservative Democrats it will be because of what the candidate was not. Just as there are voters who will vote for the historic precedent of the Democratic ticket there will be voters who will vote for the Republican because it means not voting for a woman or an African American.

It's sad to think that there is an element of our society who can't or won't see past skin color or gender. It's tragic that this element will now lend its support to the Republican party and have their prejudices misrepresented as conservative values.

With a moderate candidate as the Republican nominee here is the opportunity for the party to reposition toward the center and to reconnect with the American people. Here is the chance for the Republican party to once again champion progressive ideals.

However, it is a shameful reality that a Republican victory would come in part due the prejudices of the American voter.

Cross posted at Papamoka Straight Talk

38 comments:

Anonymous said...

Lefty...AGAIN WITH THE BACKHAND SLAP

So if I vote for McCain I am a sexist or a racist ...How about a vote for McCain means that I am a conserative ...While McCain may not be the best conserative candidate possible he is the best left in the race

As a hard working middle class American that pays his own bills in life I would like you to present an argument that would convince me to vote for Clinton or Obama

I am
1) Pro Gun
2) Pro Life
3) Anti Universal Health
4) Anti Entitlement
5) Responisble for myself and my family not YOU AND YOURS

RadioKeri said...

No, if you vote for McCain because you believe in all of those things, it makes you a neanderthal.

Wanna own a gun? Join the military.
Wanna control a uterus? Get your own.
Think our healthcare system is great? Don't bitch about having to pay for people who don't have insurance and are forced to use emergency rooms -- or maybe you'd prefer those people to die in the street. What "entitlements" are you talking about? Education? Feeding poor kids and the elderly so they don't starve?

The only reason you're capable of being responsible for YOU AND YOURS is because you've been fortunate enough to live in a society that cares whether YOU live or die. And gives you the right to be a selfish pig -- who doesn't realize he supports a party that is destroying the middle class. Talk about voting against your own self interest.

You need a slap alright -- a bitch slap.

Lefty -- you need to clean up this conservarrhea on your blog. It stinks.

phayemuss said...

Actually I find the last two posts quite amusing. :)

America IS ready for either an Obama or a Hilliary, ethnic origin and gender withstanding. The energized 20-somethings who grew up with the internet as their primary source of social interaction are coupled with the 30-somethings who are upwardly mobile or at least "sensitivity trained" and compassionate to those less fortunates - have little concern of the color/gender bruhaha. They didn't live in the history those in their 40's, 50's and especially those in their 60's and 70's did.
A yet it keeps getting proved - primary after primary - Americans across the political landscape - young, gray and in between - have lessened their prejudices. Having campaigned for Bobby Kennedy in my early 20's, voted for Reagan in my 50's, and planning to vote for Obama, I find I am not a political anomaly in my 60's.

Faye Musselman
Payson, AZ

Lefty said...

Anon,

Voting for McCain does not make you a racist or a sexist. I believe the majority of McCain voters will do so do to character, platform, ideology, leadership, and experience. However, there are certainly people that will vote for Hillary simply because she is a woman, Obama simply because he is black, and McCain simply because he is neither. I am not implying that these are Republican voters, simply that these are voters who will vote Republican.

I'm sure Senator McCain appreciates your support.

Keri,

I don't mind anon sharing his views, although they are more conservative than mine. I would have responded to them earlier, but this anon, likes to argue for arguments sake.

Personally I hope McCain's nomination is a sign that the party is moving away from the far right and back toward the center with the majority of Americans.

Faye,

I agree the majority of American voters are ready to vote for the candidate they feel most qualified regardless of race, sex, religion, etc. However, there is still a segment of our society that just hasn't reached that level yet.

phayemuss said...

Lefty - I agree there is still a "segment of our society" or geographic pockets that are NOT ready to vote for a woman or a black man as President. However, they are NO LONGER A MAJORITY, as it was when *I* was in my 20's, 30's, 40's and 50's.

But this is certainly the most interesting, the most dynamic, the most dramatic and the most groundbreaking Presidential campaign I've ever witnessed. Hallelujah! And pass the ballot box. ;)

Anonymous said...

Radiokeri ....THIS IS FOR YOU

The 1st amendment states PEOPLE not military can keep and bare arms

It is not control over the uterus but protecting the life inside

As far as healthcare is concerned ...GET A JOB ....If you are somwhat intelligent then you should be cable of finding one that offers benefits

Whate entitlements ....FREE ROOM AND BOARD ....Housing projects and food stamps

No I am not selfish I am just protecting what is mine from BON BON Queens like yourself

Not destroying the middle class but trying to protect it

SLAP RIGHT BACK HONEY

Lefty said...

Anon,

1. Hate to break it to you but that's the SECOND AMENDMENT.

2. It's not just having a job that offers benefits, it's being able to afford them. Health care is a huge crisis in this country and to think all is good because you have coverage is pretty callous.

3. Many if not most Republicans believe that entitlement programs need to be kept in place. The issue is stopping the abuse and making sure that those who need them can get them.

I'm also throwing out the caution right now. Keri's comment was pretty strong and Anon in my book you like to provoke.

I will be deleting anything I think crosses the line. So nothing personal, and keep it above the belt.

Anonymous said...

1)The mistake was on purpose ...It was an attempt to test Radiokeri's knowledge of Civics

2)You are wrong about healthcare any decent jobs will offer benefits that provide sufficient health coverage, any added expense is because of FREE CARE that hospitals are forced by law to provide

3)I did not say that Republicans wanted to stop entitlement programs ...I only said that I WAS ANTI-ENTITLEMENT

4)I only fight as dirty as my opponent ...CHECK MY EARLIER POSTINGS

leftsquared said...

McCain is far closer to right-wing than he is to moderate. There's very little difference between McCain and Bush with McCain deviating ever so slightly on a few issues (i.e., torture, drilling in Alaska, immigration).

I laughed when Romney, Huckabee, Coulter, Limbaugh, etc. attempted to paint McCain as a flaming liberal. Perhaps David Duke is more of an ideological match for them.

The true moderates are Clinton and Obama, which is why I'll hold my nose and vote for one of them because they're not liberal enough for me.

When it comes to the middle class (most of whom aren't even covering their own butts when it comes to paying taxes), ignorance is usually the reason people vote aganst their own self interests.

FedUp said...

As middle class I cannot see how you can say that the middle class is not paying their fair share of the tax burden ....The middle class is in reality are paying much more than they should, and contaray to what you might believe it is not because of the war or that the rich aren't paying enough, it is in fact because of liberal democratic policies that have increased the tax burden to the point where it is killing the middle class

leftsquared said...

Even by raising the bar for the middle class by assuming an "average" family of 4 with $125,000 in wage income, $1,000 in interest and no other deductions, that family of 4's income tax (inc. MA tax) would be about $21,000 total).

The education cost for the 2 children is ($9,000 x 2 or $18,000). The remaining $3,000 does not even cover for per capita road repairs, police and fire protection, infrastructure expenses, peace-time defense spending, etc.

The money we spend on so-called "liberal democratic" policies such as unemployment, Social Security, etc., pales in comparison to what we spend on corporate welfare and subsidies for the wealthy. And I'm not even taking Iraq into consideration.

A lot of what our government spends is because of failed economic policies that are usually the result of Republican leaders (i.e., banking industry deregulation).

1. Unregulated mortgage companies have taken our economy well into recession and now the government is expected to clean up that mess, which will drive up the already record-setting deficit. So much for personal responsibility -- oh yeah, that's not for Republicans in power, that must be for the little people.

2. Oil company profits are higher than ever. Oil has gone up, but should oil company profits disproportionately increase?

3. Corporate power brokers continue to lead failing companies. Should they receive excessive bonuses and golden parachutes as a reward for their incompetence?

4. Immigration is a problem, but isn't the problem worsened by the corporate offenders who are hiring illegal immigrants?

In conclusion, don't give me your crap about "liberal democratic" policies. Most of those policies are the exact reason why many of our families have been able to achieve middle class status.

Anonymous said...

Lefty

"The education cost for the 2 children is ($9,000 x 2 or $18,000)."
The majority of this is for social programs given in the schools and OVER PAID TEACHERS

corporate welfare
Most people benefit from corporate welfare not YOUR SOCIAL PROGRAMS

subsidies for the wealthy
NAME THEM

Iraq
You or your children volunteer to stand in the next building that they fly a plane into

Unregulated mortgage companies
If you can't afford the loan then don't sign the paper ....The borrowers are just as much to blame

Oil company profits
Profits are what people go int business for ...The more the better

Corporate power brokers
Take what you can get ....GM workers are being offered a by out that the union is not refusing ...The greed goes ALL THE WAY DOWN THE LINE

Immigration is a problem
Yes it is ...Corporate offenders hire illegal ALIENS because unions have driven the to the point that they cannot hire U.S.citizens

CRAP ...I don't think so ...The liberal democratic policies since FDR have ruined this country ...It has turned into a GIVE ME society ...Remove all these liberal policies and YOU will see the middle class prosper like never before ....AGAIN I WILL STATE THE MAJOR PROBLEM WITH THIS COUNTRY IS THE TAX BURDEN IMPOSED BECAUSE OF LIBERAL DEMOCRATIC POLICIES

Reality said...

Mr. Leftsquared,

I am going to comment on just one of your issue and that issue is "Corporate Welfare" ...All countries give their major industries money in some way ...Please research the following

1)Boeing versus Airbus

Airbus was able to pass Boeing and become the number 1 Large Comerical Aircraft manufacture due in large part to corporate welfare from France, Great Britain and Germany

2)U.S. Steel Industry versus Japan

Most U.S. Steel mills are closed today due to the Japanese government's corporate welfare

While I am not saying that it is right it is the way the world operates and the U.S. needs to play ball or watch our country fall behind

TruthSeeker said...

Lefty,

"However, it is a shameful reality that a Republican victory would come in part due the prejudices of the American voter."

Are you saying that a Clinton or Obama victory WOULD NOT come in part due the prejudices of the American voter ?

Lefty said...

Anon,

Your argument goes to Leftsquared not me. I think you both have some good points though.

truthseeker,

That is a good question! I guess an Obama or Clinton victory would also come in some part due to the prejudices of voters. Who knows what opinions people bring into the voting booth?

I believe that racism and sexism are among the most common prejudices of our nation and as such could play such a shameful role.

leftsquared said...

Anonymous...

"The majority of [education cost] is for social programs given in the schools and OVER PAID TEACHERS"

Administrators, building costs, materials, etc. are what rack up the bills. And the average teacher salary in MA is <$60K. Hardly overpaid for what they have to put up with.

"Most people benefit from corporate welfare not YOUR SOCIAL PROGRAMS"

Yeah -- corporate executives who mis-manage, pilfer and lie (i.e., Anderson, Enron). I guess that's why getting the minimum wage up (for working people by the way) is such a challenge.

"subsidies for the wealthy
NAME THEM"

There are tax shelters, supplemental retirement plans, continued reductions in capital gains taxes, elimination of estate taxes, etc.

"Iraq
You or your children volunteer to stand in the next building that they fly a plane into"

I worked for a company that lost nearly 400 people on 9/11, some of them very close colleagues. But the last time I checked, the Iraqi government was not responsible for the WTC. Furthermore, Hussein hated the terrorists reponsible for it as much as we did. Hussein was a jerk and one of the good things that came out of our involvement there was his demise, but at what cost? He kept a lot of the extremists at bay. Now the instability in Iraq is a breeding ground for them.

"Unregulated mortgage companies
If you can't afford the loan then don't sign the paper ....The borrowers are just as much to blame"

Agree, but the preying should have been illegal. In addition, the mortgage companies loaned people money who couldn't afford to pay itback. Now we're expected to loan our country money when all indications say they can't pay it back (national debt).

"Oil company profits
Profits are what people go int business for ...The more the better"

Yes - but unregulated corporations lead to corruption and eventual economic failure.

"Corporate power brokers
Take what you can get ....GM workers are being offered a by out that the union is not refusing ...The greed goes ALL THE WAY DOWN THE LINE"

Buy-outs are not generally a government program, but I do agree that we live in a culture of greed.
I'd prefer to focus on the biggest offenders (proportionally).

"Immigration is a problem
Yes it is ...Corporate offenders hire illegal ALIENS because unions have driven the to the point that they cannot hire U.S.citizens"

I certainly have issues with unions, but 1) many of the workers displaced have not been organized, and 2) most of the jobs illegal immigrants take are not jobs anyone in our society could support a family on.

"CRAP ...I don't think so ...The liberal democratic policies since FDR have ruined this country ..."

Look at the national budget, and you'll see where most of the money goes.

leftsquared said...

Also to anonymous...

I do agree there are some points you make that are valid to a certain extent, but what we fail to realize is that the corporate AND political powers manipulate the rest of society.

By distracting the lower classes (including the middle) with issues that polarize, they keep the focus off of the real problems we face. Most people are just not savvy enough to get past these issues in order to protect their own interests.

I hope you know I mean no disrespect, but simply disagree with you.

Anonymous said...

"$60K. Hardly overpaid for what they have to put up with."

How many people get 60k for 9 months work

"Anderson, Enron"
Thieves not business men

"There are tax shelters, supplemental retirement plans, continued reductions in capital gains taxes, elimination of estate taxes, etc."

Like you would not use them if available ...All of the above are just TAXES levied by liberals

Iraq if fought correctly would be over and the US could have moved to the next country ...Unfortunately Bush gave into the liberals and did not fight the war correctly ...to little to late

National Debt is due to TO MANY SOCIAL PROGRAMS

"unregulated corporations"
OK BIG BROTHER

At least we agree on unions

I don't care where the MOST money goes ....Only where WASTED money goes ....ie SOCIAL PROGRAMS

Anonymous said...

Leftsquare,

No disrespect either ....Just a different point of view

Merriam said...

For All You People That Think That Big Business Does Not Pay Enough Taxes Please Read The Following That Was Post On NewsMax


Investors usually know far more about corporate profits than corporate taxes — but those struggling to get their returns in on time can be glad they don’t have to pay Exxon’s tax bill.
Exxon will pay the IRS $30 billion of its 2007 $40.6 billion net income after taxes.

For some additional perspective, consider this:

Exxon Mobil pays as much in taxes as do the lower half of all U.S. taxpayers — some 65 million people — combined.

Dunlap said...

"I believe that racism and sexism are among the most common prejudices of our nation and as such could play such a shameful role."

Lefty,
You are correct. Since the Kennedy / Nixon debates we as a nation have gone from substance to flash and finally to bigotry as a decision maker for our vote ....Remeber that people who listened to the debate on the radio thought Nixon won but people watching thought Kennedy won ...It has become all about presentation and not about what is presented ...Regretfully that presentation has come down to race or sex

leftsquared said...

Anonymous...

I can tell by your statements (style and substance) that we're definitely coming from different perspectives. I will disengage and agree to disagree.

Merriam...

Those taxes are paid after millions of dollars in executive perks are deducted from the profits. Again, didn't say they did not pay, just that they don't pay a fair amount given what's allowable for deductions against profits.

Glencoe said...

Leftsquared

Do you not take deductions off your taxes ...Executives get millions because they make billions

leftsquared said...

Glencoe...

My comment was to Merriam about CORPORATIONS not paying a fair share of taxes and the deductions CORPORATIONS take against profits.

My issue with what the wealthy pay in personal income is not necessarily the deductions but how the personal income tax code is structured to favor the wealthy.

Glencoe said...

Leftsquare,

The rich have more deductions because the rich make more money ...Making more money means more income tax ...They own more expensive homes so they pay more real estate taxes ....They drive more expensive cars so they pay more in sales tax and excise tax ...Also look at the tax rate for someone earning over $100,000 ...He or She will pay 50% income tax on their earnings ....Being rich is good ....Staying rich is hard ...The only fair tax would be a straight consumption tax ...

leftsquared said...

Glencoe...

Did you not read my post? Again, I was responding to Merriam about my issue with CORPORATATIONS and what they pay.

And AGAIN, I said I had a problem with the personal income tax structure NOT what people pay on wage income. I agree 50% income on wage earnings is not the answer.

Anonymous said...

Leftsquared,

Stop being jealous of CORPORATIONS

They are in business to make MONEY and if the deductions they take are legal then too bad for you

Board members of corporations have to answer to stock holdersthat want profits
(REMEMBER IF YOU HAVE A 401k OR PENSION YOU OWN STOCK)
Less taxes means more profits

You just want someone (OTHER THAN YOURSELF) to foot the bill created by liberal democratic social policies

leftsquared said...

Anonymous,

Yes, you got me. I'm jealous. You must be a genius because you figured me out so quickly.

Reality said...

Leftsquare,

It was not very hard for Anon to figure you out.

NO DISRESPCT, but you are like every other liberal, you want everything and think that someone else should pay for it

Well life is NOT free and real adults pay their own way

leftsquared said...

Reality,

Wow! You might be even smarter than Anonymous. You know what I pay, and apparently my income as well.

Glencoe said...

Leftsquared,

It is very apparent that you are the typical liberal

Exposed and left with no argument you start the sarcasm

To quote General Douglas MacArthur
"There is no security on this earth only opportunity"

The government does not owe you a living only the opportunity to make one

Fall River Community said...

Well,

I suppose I should add my 2 cents into this discussion.

The Preamble of the Constitution states,"We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."

The view expressed by Anonymous that "They are in business to make MONEY and if the deductions they take are legal then too bad for you." ignores the very point that perhaps those laws are unjust and that in the interest of establishing justice, insuring the domestic tranquility, and promoting the general welfare.

An economy that so greatly supports the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer is a recipe for domestic upheaval or I suppose we can "let them eat cake."

Social programs not only keep people from enduring severe poverty, but they are also measures of public safety as it prevents social disorder, riots, and chaos.

Are corporations supposed to make money? YES

Should corporations take legal deductions to minimize their tax burden? SURE

If the wealth of corporation in comparison to the ordinary worker grows in an alarmingly disproportional rate, should the government change its laws for a fairer, more just system? ABSOLUTELY

Simply research the term "combined reporting" to see how corporations are creating subsidiaries for the sole purpose of shifting costs to reduce their tax burden.

I am a PERSON, and it was we THE PEOPLE, who created the Constitution and I do not have the luxury of creating a "subsidiary" to reduce my tax burden.

Fall River Community said...

I forgot to add that it is silly for workers to be unemployed en masse as the CEOs of those companies are being paid absurd salaries and in fact, these ridiculous salaries are a cost that reduces profits.


In Japan, the current CEO-to-avg worker salary ratio is closer to 55 to 1. This figure is what it used to be in the US back in the 1950’s.

In the US, the average CEO makes 430 times the salary of the average production worker in 2004. Up from 301-1 in 2003. Up from 109-1 in 1990.

Perhaps, CEO salaries should be tied to the wages of the employees of their companies.

Anonymous said...

Fall River Community

You also sound jealous ...It is not the fault of a corporation that someone is poor ....People need to be responsible for themselves ...If you do not like your standing in the world then better yourself and get a better job ....DO NOT tax me in order to live ...When corporations make money WORKERS make money ....

Lefty said...

Folks,

Let's stick to the merits of the argument and not get personal.

In an ideal world social programs etc. would be unneeded or needed by very few. Also ideally there would be no abuse.

On the flip side, ideally you would have corporations that met their obligations, paid the taxes they should and not bribe, cheat and steal to eek out every ounce of profit and lobby for every benefit, deserved or not.

The problem is the world is not ideal and you people and businesses do whatever they can to put themselves first.

Merriam said...

Lefty,

NOT GET PERSONAL

"The problem is the world is not ideal and you people and businesses do whatever they can to put themselves first."

As a business person I take offense to this statement

PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH !!

Lefty said...

merriam,

I apologize there is some mistyping in there.

I didn't mean to say 'you people' and I didn't mean to imply everyone.

The point I was trying to make is there are abuses on both sides and that ideally there wouldn't be. Instead you do have people who abuse entitlement programs and you do have corporations that unethical and corrupt.

Anonymous said...

Lefty,

You are correct there are abuses on both sides ...The problem is that each side only wants to clean up the opposing side's abuses and not touch their own ...A good house cleaning is needed ....Unfortunately none of the candidates running are capable of doing it