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Member since: Thu Jun 13, 2013, 07:49 PM
Number of posts: 488

About Me

In the interest of full disclosure, I am not a Democrat. I would call myself progressive, but honestly prefer the term liberal. Times being what they are, I\'ll use the word \"progressive.\"

Journal Archives

George Bush had a good heart

This I firmly believe. His policies were wrong. His upbringing was privileged and colored his world. He was easily influenced. And yet, I believe by his own world view, he mostly followed his conscience. And I choose the word mostly deliberately. He was never in charge.

Why did I post this? Because I believe Barack Obama has a good heart as well. Mostly. His ideas are better. But he is also, not in charge.
Posted by LearningCurve | Thu Sep 5, 2013, 02:40 AM (144 replies)

A 3rd Party may tip the election in 2016

For those around in 2000, 2016 has the potential to give some a feeling of deja vu. For those not around, Gore lost the electoral college by a small margin. One of the reasons, many claim, is that the Green Party siphoned enough votes that otherwise would have gone for Gore. Had the Green Party and Ralph Nader not been on the ballot, the argument goes, Gore would have gotten enough votes to win at least one more state, if not several.

The position of those who supported Nader and the Greens in 2000, is that on issues that they cared about, Democrats were just as beholden to the corporatocracy as Republicans. Those who voted Green were chastised by those on the left, for effectively allowing Bush to become president. Mostly cowed, those who supported Nader in 2000 did not do so in nearly the numbers in 2004. The Greens effectively disappeared as an option for the left.

End of generalized and truncated history lesson.

Approaching 2016, we have the exact same sentiment among a certain section of the populace that led to a 3rd party getting enough of a vote to tip the scales. Only this time, it won't be the Greens. It will probably be the Libertarians. Now thought doubtlessly has some Democrats not only not bothered by the possibility, but excited about it.

The reasoning here is, that this time, it will be the Republicans who lose votes to the 3rd party, thereby ensuring a Democrat wins the presidency. The theory here is, most of the people who are likely to vote Libertarian are those in the Libertarian wing of the Republican Party. Sure, a few Dems who really want pot legalized might vote that direction, but the net gain will be for the Democratic nominee.

I suspect this line of reasoning, only holds true for the moment. This theory is based on seeing someone perceived as a libertarian-leaning Republican at the top of the ticket. If that indeed holds up, say a Rand Paul defected (and I don't for a moment believe he would) from the GOP, Democrats would have good reason to think the election was in the bag.

There is another possibility however. What if, the Libertarian candidate is someone like Penn Gillette? At that point, I think it becomes unclear who the most votes get siphoned from. It could be a wash. Or, it might actually pull more votes from the Democrats. At which point, Democrats would then blame those who voted for a 3rd party for losing the election, rather than blame the policies that caused progressives to look for alternatives on issues that were paramount to them.

The important lesson of 2000 and the Greens is not the outcome, but the conditions that allowed for that outcome. Both parties are ignoring a passionate part of the electorate right now at their potential peril.
Posted by LearningCurve | Tue Sep 3, 2013, 10:40 PM (45 replies)

The US has not always felt a need to respond when chemical weapons were used

While chemical weapons are indeed horrific, and there is a ban, we have ignored prominent use once before. During the Iran-Iraq war, Hussein repeatedly used them. At the time, there was no one attempting to rally popular opinion that something need to be done.

Why do I mention this? Because if anyone has forgotten here, you can bet no one has in the Middle East. To suddenly be upset about the use of chemical weapons, looks to a lot like selective outrage. Any response by the US WILL be viewed through this prism. We shouldn't be surprised if others look for ulterior motives beyond the stated moral high ground.
Posted by LearningCurve | Tue Sep 3, 2013, 05:05 AM (2 replies)

Either we should go for regime change or stay out of Syria

This in-between option is the worst of all. The statement is being made that "Assad needs to be punished." I can't imagine anything being contemplated is going to punish him personally.

Will there be an assassination attempt or capture? No.

Will his family be targeted? No.

Will his personal property be confiscated or destroyed? No.

Will the chemical weapons be destroyed or removed? No.

What is most likely to happen, is a few targets will get struck by missiles. The people who die in these strikes will probably not be anyone Assad sheds tears over. The targets damaged will not cause Assad to grieve. Instead, what it will look like to the world is exactly what it is: the US beating its chest because Assad defied the prohibition on chemical weapons. To some, that will be cause to see Assad as a hero.

On the negative side, the US will make no friends in the Middle East by any military strike. Every person we kill will turn family members into passionate haters of the US. IF the rebels are successful, and overthrow Assad, they will hardly be grateful for limited action. We please no one with a middle course, except our own pride. Because our red line was crossed.

You can make a passionate argument for intervention or non-intervention, and I will take your arguments seriously. No one has yet to make any kind of argument that some sort of middle stance is the best possible approach. However, many have succeeded in reaffirming my opinion is the worst.
Posted by LearningCurve | Mon Sep 2, 2013, 08:55 PM (18 replies)

Why Are We Going To Spend Money Bombing Syrians When We Have So Many People At Home We Could Bomb?

I think that's the only point in the Syria debate that has yet to be covered.
Posted by LearningCurve | Fri Aug 30, 2013, 04:39 PM (6 replies)

#1 Porn Search Term By State

What or who the heck is Anita Queen?

Posted by LearningCurve | Fri Aug 30, 2013, 04:09 PM (5 replies)

Eating wings during pregnancy could affect son's penis size

I'm thinking of suing my mother.

Posted by LearningCurve | Fri Aug 30, 2013, 01:30 PM (11 replies)

When Is It Appropriate And Not Appropriate To Hire Someone Based On Physical Appearance?

Had a lively discussion recently, and the answers ranged from "Always appropriate" to "Never." Most answers were in-between, but the line kept moving as various situations were brought up. Let's just say, no clear line or consensus was reached. I'd like to receive more input.
Posted by LearningCurve | Fri Aug 30, 2013, 03:59 AM (84 replies)

Until This Situation With Syria Is Resolved, Discussing The NSA Is In Bad Taste And Unpatriotic

Plus, it will give aid and comfort to the enemy. Also, keep in mind, if not for the surveillance programs, we would not have intercepted calls confirming the atrocity in Syria. These programs will also allow us to pinpoint the locations to prevent more outrages in Syria, thereby saving countless lives. Did I miss anything?

Oh yeah, this ....

Posted by LearningCurve | Fri Aug 30, 2013, 12:43 AM (9 replies)

Credit Cards Can Again Be Used To Donate To Wikileaks

This article is a bit dated, but I'm posting because I recently discovered this, and hadn't yet seen it posted in GD.

Posted by LearningCurve | Thu Aug 29, 2013, 11:40 AM (2 replies)
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