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Where are our statesmen?(53 posts)

Where are our statesmen?Matno
Jul 29, 2002 10:31 AM
This country was founded by statesmen. Now it is run by politicians? What happened to cause this disaster? (No need to answer that - I already know that it's because people are, on the whole, completely ignorant of political issues). I have seen so few leaders act honorably and uprightly in the last few years that I'm beginning to wonder if they even exist any more. I'm pretty sure the media makes sure that they don't get elected. The only one I've seen for a long time is Alan Keyes (and MSNBC just canned his wonderful new show for one with poorer ratings...). Why can't we get more like him? This guy could answer the deepest questions on ANY issue with clarity, sound reasoning, and common sense. Let's see W, Al, or anyone else even come close to that. I'm actually amazed that he made it as far as he did considering how much the media abhors a conservative black man.
Howard Dean D-Vt. (nm)jtolleson
Jul 29, 2002 12:22 PM
Jul 29, 2002 2:11 PM
When I said statesmen, I meant strong leaders who stand up for what is right, not cowardly perverts who cave to radical special interest groups like the homosexual lobby. I don't find his legal parody of marriage to be humorous in any way. I was kind of under the impression that elected officials are supposed to vote (within reason) for things their constituents support. The majority of people in Vermont did not support the "civil union" bill, yet fear of "offending" people's supposed sensitivities overshadowed reason and right.

Any real candidates for statesman of the year?
Jul 30, 2002 1:19 AM
your use of the words cowardly perverts says more about your intolerance than anything about howard dean-- you don't seem to even be aware of why vermont needed to enact a civil unions law-- instead of just listening to alan keyes, do a little research into baker v. state of vermont--

civil unions in vermont and affidavits of partnership in california are about access to the legal structures of civil marriage-- things like. recognition for hospital visitation, making medical decisions for incapacitated partners, bequeathing property to a domestic partner using a statutory will, using sick leave to care for a partner, administering a partner's estate, entitlement to joint title, transfer from one to the other on death, property transfer tax benefits and exemption to a state income tax on health benefits--

each individual's journey through life is unique-- some will make this journey alone, others in loving relationships.maybe in marriage or other forms of commitment-- we need to ponder our own choices and try to understand the choices of others-- affirming the goodness of committed, loving, nurturing, respectful relationships should be what's protect, support and encourage each other through life's joys and sorrows should be the goal-- when two lives are intertwined, blessed in faith, filled with compassion, understanding and love.why would the gender of that couple be important?

"we love the people we love for who they are."
... robert frost
Full of contradictionsMatno
Jul 30, 2002 5:55 AM
Vermont did not "need" to enact a civil unions law. The points you make just serve to strengthen the argument AGAINST civil unions of same-sex couples. Providing the benefits you listed to anyone other than a spouse (by spouse I mean partner in a VALID marriage) opens the door to force employers to give benefits to everyone if they offer them to anyone. The cost of such union laws, if implemented everywhere, would be staggering. Legislatures are so concerned about drawing lines when we already have the best distinction for such benefits firmly in place. Since you bring up Baker v. Vermont, I'll just point out a few problems in the ruling.

"plaintiffs may not be deprived of the statutory benefits and protections afforded persons of the opposite sex who choose to marry." No one is deprived of anything here. Everyone has the right to marry under our Constititution. Hence, everyone who wishes to may receive the same benefits by meeting the requirements of the law. There is no discrimination here; nobody is deprived of anything. Sexual misorientation is not the same as race. It is a conscious decision to act a certain way. I agree with you that we should love people for who they are, but this is an entirely different matter altogether. We need not (and SHOULD not) condone wrong acts even though we love the people who do them.

"it is important to emphasize at the outset that it is the Common Benefits Clause of the Vermont Constitution we are construing, rather than its counterpart, the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution...." That's because the 14th Amendment contains no such entitlement, nor does any other clause in the Constitution because it is concerned with protecting God-given rights, not creating new ones that aren't actually rights at all. I'm not saying that the Vermont constitution couldn't mean this, I'm just saying that perhaps there's a problem with the interpretation of the document.

"to the extent that the State's purpose in licensing civil marriage was, and is, to legitimize children and provide for their security, the statutes plainly exclude many same-sex couples who are no different from opposite-sex couples with respect to these objectives." I guess legitimizing children doesn't have anything to do with their real parents, and providing for their security has nothing to do with protecting their health. "No different"? I beg to differ. Even the most liberal studies that compare children of same-sex unions to other children only show them to be equivalent to children of single-parent families. That's a vast difference from families with a mother and a father who are legally married to each other. Rates of physical, sexual, and emotional abuse, suicide, depression, and numerous other problems are significantly higher for children of same-sex couples.

"The most substantive of the State's remaining claims relates to the issue of childrearing. It is conceivable that the Legislature could conclude that opposite-sex partners offer advantages in this area, although we note that child-development experts disagree and the answer is decidedly uncertain. " The "experts" referred to here rely on poor science at best and unsupported opinion in most cases. There is plenty of evidence to support the State's claims here. On the other hand, a study about two years ago by family science professor Richard Williams showed that the "other side" has little to no real evidence. He examined over 200 "studies" that claimed that children of same-sex unions were no worse off than children of natural parents (every single study he could find at the time). His two main criteria in looking at the validity of the studies was (1) Did the study actually question the children? (as opposed to just asking their same-sex parents who are obviously biased); and (2) did the study have a control group of children from normal families to compare? Simply bas
Jul 30, 2002 5:56 AM
Simply based on those two criteria, which any statistician would agree are necessary for even the most simple study, all but 11 of the studies were eliminated! The remaining studies were each invalidated for other blatant statistical errors. So much for the so-called experts.

"[T]here is no doubt that the overwhelming majority of births today continue to result from natural conception between one man and one woman." I just threw that one in. That's kind of like saying that most plane crashes are the result of something going wrong. As far as I know, no one has EVER circumvented the one man/one woman combination for conception. (Keeping in mind that conception is the "formation of a viable zygote by the union of the male sperm and the female ovum"). Granted, they are probably referring to sexual intercourse between one man and one woman, but it's a poor choice of words for a judge to use.

Finally, to quote you: "we need to ponder our own choices and try to understand the choices of others-- affirming the goodness of committed, loving, nurturing, respectful relationships should be what's important" Speaking of overwhelming majorities, the overwhelming majority of same-sex unions are neither nurturing nor committed. You can blame that on the fact that such unions are not "blessed" with the protection of the law, but the fact of the matter is that homosexuality is a tragic side effect of other underlying mental disorders. In fact, some psychologists have found that when their gay patients resolve other issues in their lives, they lose their same-sex attraction altogether (but that's a topic for another post...) Thus, it's not just the children of such unions who suffer higher rates of abuse, etc., the partners themselves suffer from the same problems. Add to that the fact that they do not stay together nearly as long as real marriages (on average), and you start to wonder where the commitment is.

Unfortunately, the whole concept of morality has its foundation in religion, which has been snuffed almost completely from public life in this country. Until people in general stop thinking that rights can be created at whim and recognize that rights come from God, we will have to live in a society that believes that rights can be taken away just as easily. That's sad.
Blind ignorance!critmass
Jul 30, 2002 7:04 AM
Harlett asked you to do some research. You spew your ignorance instead. The Vermont Supreme Court ruling gave the Legislature two options; either provide legal marriage, or a nearly identical form of domestic partnership. You are either a mindless troll or really blind to your own homophobic ignorance.
What? Did you say something?Matno
Jul 30, 2002 8:05 AM
Oh, I guess not. I'm not sure how you equate facts with ignorance, but that's all I included in my post. My point was that the Vermont Supreme Court made an incorrect ruling which contradicted their own musings. I guess I should expect personal attacks though, since you can't dispute my argument.

I think you're a bit confused about the term homophobic. I have no unnatural fear of homosexuality. I just think it's wrong. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, however, the facts support my opinion that homosexuality is harmful for everyone, not just those involved in it.
The real pointcritmass
Aug 1, 2002 4:11 PM
As you said "Vermont did not "need" to enact a civil unions law". The point is that your ignorance on the basic FACTS of what happened in Vermont is what contradicts your so-called claim to have any true knowledge and have lobbied "on both national and international levels for the last 4 years". As the troll you are you're doing nothing but searching the internet for insensitive provocative responses to keep your repulsive game in play. Koolaid has it right. You weren't terribly smart as JOM and even less so as Manto. As both you contradicted yourself as the reply needs with no attention to what you have previously said, well pointed out by jtolleson. That is what gives your game its immature quality and says so loudly that you're a mindless troll.
What's your native language?Matno
Aug 1, 2002 6:07 PM
Obviously not English (unless you went to American public schools that is...)
Critmass isn't the only one to see through you!xxll
Aug 1, 2002 7:15 PM
He is right about the immaturity of your contradictions. Find a chat room of high schoolers to practice your trolling on. It isn't working here.
You take the baitcritmass
Aug 2, 2002 10:02 AM
like the hungry guppy you are!
Matno........Len J
Jul 30, 2002 8:45 AM
It appears that you are starting from your belief that Homosexuality is wrong & evolving your argument from there. It erodes your argument dramatically.

While I respect your right to this oponion, I have to disagree with it. I believe that there is no greater manifestation of the goodness of the species than Love. I also believe that the gender of the participants is immaterial to the expression of this Love.

Those who think same sex relationships are immoral seem to grasp at every dysfuntional same sex relationship as proof of its immorality. Unforunatly this ignores the many dysfuntional opposite sex relationships. You allude to things as seeming facts that are not facts )"Add to that the fact that they do not stay together nearly as long as real marriages (on average),")("the fact of the matter is that homosexuality is a tragic side effect of other underlying mental disorders.")They are your oponion. While you are certainly entitled to them, please don't present them as fact.

I realize that there is nothing I (or anyone else) can say that will open your mind to the possibility that you might be wrong, however, I would ask you the question: How will you feel if someday (maybe at your judgement) you find out that you are wrong?

I wish you peace

Jul 30, 2002 9:21 AM
You're right about my belief that homosexuality is wrong. I also agree that "there is no greater manifestation of the goodness of the species than Love." However, I think that people involved in this particular situation often don't know how to distinguish between love and lust. I'll leave it at that.

I did not ignore dysfunctional heterosexual relationships in my posts. Perhaps you didn't notice them in my long ramblings. They are obviously not desirable. Which is why I pointed out that dysfunctional heterosexual families are directly comparable (statistically speaking - this is the part where I mentioned abuse, depression, etc.) to ALL homosexual "families." That is NOT my opinion, it is simple statistical data. Same goes for the comparison between the duration of homosexual unions and heterosexual marriages. It is not my opinion that they don't last as long, it is proven fact that has been shown over and over again. Everything I quoted came from the best valid statistical evidence available.

Your final question ignores the idea of eternal truth. Right and wrong does not change. It is not subject to what makes us feel good. It is not affected by public opinion. I realize that I'm probably not going to change anybody's opinion on this forum, I'm just hoping to clarify the issue for those who haven't been exposed to both sides of the issue (which is most people in this country). Having lobbied heavily against same-sex marriages on both national and international levels for the last 4 years, I feel like I have heard both sides plenty of times. I can say without exception that the homosexual lobby (one of the most powerful and well-funded lobbies I have ever seen) always resorts to frivolous name-calling and distorting of the truth. They don't go out of their way to make sense, they just turn up the volume if anyone disagrees. It's about the only issue which can garner boos and hisses from the homosexual NGO's at the United Nations. I know there are some people who give my cause a bad name, but I don't subscribe to hatred and violence. I consider my lobbying efforts to be purely educational (i.e. I'm educating politicians), and while it's a slow task, by pointing out the rampant errors and half-truths in the "other side's" arguments, we are making progress.
How do you know......Len J
Jul 30, 2002 9:53 AM
that......"people involved in this particular situation often don't know how to distinguish between love and lust."

My final question does not ignore the idea of eternal truth, it asks you What if the eternal truth of Love trumps your "eternal truth" that homosexuality is wrong?

You quote statistics, which we all know can be manipulated by how the questions are asked, I rely on personal experience interacting with individual same sex couples that exhibit as much or more life affirming, loving, and mature caring as any opposite sex couple I have known (my own relationship included). How can this be wrong?

As to the homosexual lobby, there are good and bad in all groups, I'm sure that you know some christian fundamentalist lobbyist that you distance yourself from.

In the end, isn't it about people caring about & nurturing people, no matter what sex?

"in the end..."Matno
Jul 30, 2002 10:23 AM
"In the end, isn't it about people caring about & nurturing people, no matter what sex?" Yes. It is. I believe we all have a responsibility to love everyone. I just find it odd that people choose to identify themselves with their sexual preference.

As for my comments about lust and love, in my personal experience, I do have friends who live homosexual lifestyles. Some of them are good friends. However, I find it undignified that I rarely have a conversation with any of them where they don't bring up sex. Some of us still believe that sex is something private that should remain in the bedroom, not something to be discussed with third parties. Just based on the way my gay friends talk, I can say with certainty that they are addicted to sex. In addition, every one of them was introduced to sex through sexual abuse when they were young. (Most of them don't acknowledge it as abuse, but any sex between an adult and a child is abuse. Period. That's one issue on which I won't budge, and it's one of the reasons why I lobby against such groups as NAMBLA). I don't think sex itself is a bad thing, but there is such thing as too much of a good thing. My concern is that my children will grow up in a world where homosexuality is taught as normal, while a belief in God is shunned as being "parochial" and ignorant. Oh wait, they are already growing up in that world. I guess that's why I do what I do.
So then if I.........Len J
Jul 30, 2002 10:40 AM
introduced you to a loving Homesexual couple that wasn't "addicted to sex" and where neither party was sexually abused when they were young, what would you say then?

"I just find it odd that people choose to identify themselves with their sexual preference." Aren't peopl forced to identify themselves by their sexual preference because of the denial of rights given to same sex couples? You (seem to be) the one who is differentiating based on sexual preference, not based on Love.

I personally find it hard to reconcile Jesus's teachings about Love with the Christian Fundamentalist view regarding Homosexuality.

What if instead of focusing on heterosexuality being normal & homosexuality being abnormal, we put all of our energy on focusing on encouraging Loving Functional relationships and discouraging Unloving dysfunctional relationships. It seems to me that (just due to numbers) that there are more dysfunctional heterosexual relationships than there are total homosexual relationships. Wouldn't we have more of an effect on our children & their lives if we solved this problem?

Just dreaming I guess.

So then if I.........Matno
Jul 30, 2002 7:05 PM
Well, if you introduced me to such a couple, I would say "now that we're at the level of dysfunctional heterosexual family (assuming the best case scenario), let's see what we can do to help."

I don't have a problem with equal protection of the laws for people with homosexual tendencies. However, we already have that. EVERYONE'S fundamental human rights are protected by the Constitution of the United States, particularly the Bill of Rights. What the homosexual lobby wants (and I'm not saying that all agree with them, just the politically active) is SPECIAL treatment under the laws. Similar things were tried with race (e.g. affirmative action) and have caused a disaster in education. ("Reverse discrimination" is the worst kind of discrimination because the only way it differs from "regular" discrimination is that the gov't says it's acceptable).

As for Jesus's teachings, he NEVER taught tolerance for sin, only love for all men. I agree with that wholeheartedly. That does not in any way clash with how I feel about the topic at hand. Obviously we see the Bible differently, since if you believed, as I do, that it is the literal word of God, there is NO WAY to condone homosexuality without abandoning both Old and New Testaments. The Bible is absolutely clear on that issue. I'm not sure what you mean by Christian fundamentalist since there are so many different (confusing) beliefs among those who profess to be Christian. If you mean those who use the Bible to belittle others and promote "homophobia," I'm definitely not that. If you mean those who believe in a literal interpretation of all of the Bible and who preach that in the hope that others will accept it as well and change for the better, then THAT is what I am trying to be. Of course, I completely support your right to believe in God however you want (or not at all).

You're right that working to improve dysfunctional relationships of any kind is the first step to a more loving society. Let's do it.
I don't get where it's special treatment .Len J
Jul 30, 2002 7:27 PM
Lifelong friend of mine, a woman, was in a committed relationship with another woman for over 17 years. They had the kind of relationship that most people would give anything for. I always was more hopeful for all of us when I was around them.

The partner contracted cancer and nearing death was admitted to an intensive care unit with limited visitation. The partners Mother (who had disowned my friends partner due to her lesbianism) who had not talked to the partner in 20 years, shows up, takes over, and forces the hospital to enforce it's "Family only" policy in intensive care visitation. My Friend, because she had no legal standing, was not able to be at her partners side when she died. I daresay they were more "Married" then many "legally married couples I have been around. How is this asking for special treatment? It is only asking for the same treatment as committed heterosexual couples are afforded under marriage laws.

It is obvious that the chasm between us is that you unequivically see all hoimosexuality as sin & I cannot see anything that comes from genuine, committed love as sin. I wonder what would happen if you ever allowed yourself to entertain the notion that it is possible for a non-heterosexual relationship to be truly loving and not originating in anything other than free choice.

I pray that your rigidity does not blind you to the truth.

One more prayer....Starliner
Jul 31, 2002 11:23 AM
If Matno is Catholic, I pray he can reconcile his system of beliefs.
No, but...Matno
Jul 31, 2002 7:35 PM
I've worked with many wonderful Catholics from National Right to Life and International Right to Life, as well as United Nations delegates from the Holy See. They are good people who feel the same way as I do about many issues (including this one). Reconcile my beliefs with what? They're already in line with God's teachings. Is there something more important than that?
Well then...Starliner
Aug 1, 2002 7:56 AM
You're not Catholic. But as for your Catholic acquaintences, given their (your) position regarding homosexuality, I would think it to be difficult to reconcile those beliefs with the way the church has played a game of betrayal, denial, and cover-up with the subject for so many years.
Aug 1, 2002 9:16 AM
Other people in this string of posts have warned me against stereotyping. I don't think "the church" is guilty of what you say - at least not directly. Some members of the Catholic church are certainly guilty of awful things, and should bear the consequences of those sins, but there are still plenty of good Catholics. Just because I think there are some good people among them does not mean that I agree with their theology. In fact, I think they have a lot of basic principles wrong. But their official stance on many moral issues is one of the few remaining religious strongholds that hasn't caved in to public pressure. (e.g. female priests, abortion, etc.)
I would have to say that the Catholic church's advocacy of celebacy is a large part, if not the sole cause, of the problem that has been in the news lately. Celebacy is not natural and combined with frequent opportunities to be alone with youngsters is a recipe for disaster. This is just another example of how a normal healthy marriage and a loving family would benefit all involved.

The whole idea of "all roads lead to Rome" simply doesn't work for religion. I've heard literally hundreds of people tell me that they think that God expects each of us to find our own way, and that he will reward each of those ways equally, as long as we accept him. Not one of those people has been truly satisfied or happy with their own lives, but they just can't seem to accept that the only way back to God is God's way. The simplicity of it is beautiful, He has a way for us to return to live with Him, and all we have to do is live according to His teachings. I guess it's not easy for people to give up sin. (I know from my own experience that simple does not equal easy. I am certainly far from perfect, in every way).
it goes to the topStarliner
Aug 1, 2002 12:46 PM
When top officials of the church are not only aware of the misdeeds of predatory priests, but cover things up, and move them to new church locations where the acts have been repeated, then the "church" should be up for scrutiny. If I were Catholic, this would certainly be a time for me to weigh the importance of my beliefs versus the importance of the church in my life... and hope that the former is greater than the latter.
I'm certainly not going toMatno
Aug 1, 2002 6:33 PM
defend anyone who has done anything wrong or covered up for someone who has. Plus, I certainly would never try to convert anyone to Catholicism. True Christianity on the other hand...
Well then...Starliner
Aug 1, 2002 11:47 AM
You're not Catholic. But as for your Catholic acquaintences, given their (your) position regarding homosexuality, I would think it to be difficult to reconcile those beliefs with the way the church has played a game of betrayal, denial, and cover-up with the subject for so many years.
Thank you Lencritmass
Aug 1, 2002 4:38 PM
It's gratifying to see someone take the time to lay out a series of posts that gives a compassionate and human view of this issue. THANKS! You and Jtolleson and Harlett each gave this thread a sense of honor and thoughtfulness.
Beautifully put.Len J
Jul 30, 2002 8:34 AM
"each individual's journey through life is unique-- some will make this journey alone, others in loving relationships.maybe in marriage or other forms of commitment-- we need to ponder our own choices and try to understand the choices of others-- affirming the goodness of committed, loving, nurturing, respectful relationships should be what's protect, support and encourage each other through life's joys and sorrows should be the goal-- when two lives are intertwined, blessed in faith, filled with compassion, understanding and love.why would the gender of that couple be important? "

Making the point eloquently without attacking.

it's ok to disagree but acquiesceDougSloan
Jul 30, 2002 8:39 AM
There may be many things or lifestyles I may not choose or disagree with, but I'll leave it to each person to make his or her own decision.

You can disagree vociferously with someone, but still respect their decisions. That's a difficult concept for many people.

Why.......Len J
Jul 30, 2002 8:48 AM
do you think it's so difficult? What is it about other peoples choices that are so thretening to some?

Well put BTW

Jul 30, 2002 9:35 AM
I think some people prefer not to or can't deal with complexity. To them, the world is a much easier place to deal with if there is clear right and wrong, good and bad, and someone lays it right out there for them as to which is which. Give them a code, a set of rules, strict guidelines. This requires no thinking, then, only observation as to which pidgeonhole something fits. I think people tend towards that which is easiest. In a way, it is very comforting. You murder, you die. You steal, you spend 10.4 years in jail, for that's what the sentencing laws require. You live with same sex, you are not married. If you are not married, you receive none of the benefits of marriage. Everything is very clear, packaged, and predictable.

Dealing with concepts such as fairness, new circumstances, and different perspectives is much more difficult. It results in chaos, arguing, fights, and unpredictability. It requires listening, pondering, learning, consideration... these things are hard.

Some great teachers have attempted to sway us from the code/rule way of life and consider instead the fairness/loving way of life. Not hard to come up with a few examples. That have taught that while rules are necessary, they are not the end-all. In other words, step back and see the bigger picture, and try to do what is fair right for everyone involved. I think many people have totally missed this point in the New Testament, for example. The whole point was to live not only by codes, but love one another (and God, btw).

It is relatively easy to live by Draconian codes, until you are the victim of a harsh rule that just isn't fair.

So, yes, it is very difficult sometimes to be a libertarian. You must accept that other people can make decisions you really don't like, that may not fit your idea of what is right and wrong, or fit within your whole view of reality. Simplicity is so much easier.

Let me add that I think there are simple minds on both ends of the liberal/conservative spectrum. It is not reserved for conservatives, as most would think. Both liberals and conservatives have their "codes" of ideas that they would impose on everyone. I would restructure the political spectrum, rather from liberal to conservative, to "imposing" to libertarian. On this scale, totalitarian Nazi's as well as Communists would be at one end, and pure libertarians at the other.

I agree 100%Len J
Jul 30, 2002 10:02 AM
You hit the nail on the head.

I would add the concept of personal responsibility also. It is much easier to rely on codified rules than to take personal resposibility to think through & decide what is right or wrong on your own.

Your point about simple minds on both sides of the debate is spot on also. One of the complexities people don't want to deal with is that any belief system is a continuum from one extreme to the other, and people line up at different spots on the continuum on different issues. As much as simple minds want to catagorize people & ideas, it fails under scrutiny.

IMO the danger in extremist is their underlying belief that they alone have the only correct answer. This always seems to result in right/wrong, good/bad, righteous/sinful discussions & actions. There is no conversation, no exchange of ideas, it seems to deteriorate into a shouting match.

Howard Dean D-Vt. A strong pres. candidate imo.128
Jul 30, 2002 12:20 PM
He finessed that civil union wicket expertly.
Not likely,TJeanloz
Jul 31, 2002 4:32 AM
I'll eat my hat next time the Governer of a state with 3 electoral votes becomes President. Has it ever happened?

Maybe Franklin Pierce?
the problem is saying what you thinkDougSloan
Jul 29, 2002 1:42 PM
People seem to prefer politicians who tell them what they want to hear, rather than what the politician really thinks. Clinton was very good at that.

Buchanan, while you may disagree with him, certainly says what he thinks and is a much of a statesman as anyone. Perot tried to be. Bush tries, and I believe says what he thinks, but he's just not eloquent enough to pull off the statesman role.

For me, though, I much prefer a person who says what they really think, even if I disagree on some aspects. The ones who stick their finger in the air and go with the prevailing wind are untrustworthy and unpredictable.

You're absolutely right.Matno
Jul 30, 2002 8:17 AM
The problem is that people think of politics as a career rather than a way to benefit society as a whole. If all politicians would say what they believe (assuming they even have a stance!) at least we'd know what we were voting for. Unfortunately, people who speak their mind, even if they're right, don't get elected. Standing for what's right will always offend someone, and our current system rewards the candidate who offends the least amount of people. We live in a world where one careless comment can destroy a politician, even if the opposition is horribly in the minority. I think this has a lot to do with the media's propensity to blow things out of proportion. I agree that politicians should be of upstanding moral character, but it would be nice to see both sides skewered by the press instead of just one.

I'm not sure I agree about G.W.Bush though. I initially thought he would stand up for what he said in his campaign, but I have been continually less impressed, even though I still think he tries to do what's right. I'm not sure what's worse, a wolf in wolf's clothing, or a coyote in sheep's clothing. At least with the wolf, you would know that he was doing harm. With W, I think Republicans tend to turn a blind eye while Democrats are secretly cheering.
I stand by my nomineejtolleson
Jul 30, 2002 8:12 AM
First, what Howard Dean brings to the political stage is much larger than your single-issue obsession. And the description others have given you of the Vt. Supreme Court's dictate is accurate. You then merely respond by calling the decision "wrong." And that means what, exactly? A state's Supreme Court is the arbiter of its state constitution. If Vt. voters wanted to bury their heads in the sand on the issue of equal protection, they could have AMENDED their state constitution (a la the panicked voters in Hawaii) but did not.

The state of health care, environmental protection, public education, AND personal liberty (no one can call Vermont a statist model) under Dean has been admirable.

But my nomination of him as a "statesman" wasn't about political outcomes, it was about personal integrity and courage. He is also a very moving speaker. You say he's not a "statesman" because he's on the wrong side of the political aisle.

Who's the hypocrite?
I stand by my nomineeMatno
Jul 30, 2002 8:27 AM
What you're overlooking is the fact that the "side of the aisle" that he's on IS the side that panders to what will get them elected and not what will be most beneficial for society. Eloquence in speaking does not a statesman make. Bill Clinton proved that. As for Dean's dismal record on health care, environmental protection, AND public education, he has continually tried to extend the government's reach far beyond its proper boundaries in every one of those areas. Perhaps he really thinks what he is doing is the right thing, but he's trampling the concept of individual liberty.

Oh, and the comment about "panicked voters" in Hawaii? That was an example of the people and honest politicians sounding their opinions against the rage of powerful special interest groups. Maybe the people of Vermont actually didn't want their laws amended, but I think it was more a result of apathy than anything else. Had the Vermont law been as revolutionary as the proposed law in Hawaii, I think Vermont would have rejected it. Just my opinion.
The contradictions continue...jtolleson
Jul 30, 2002 9:13 AM
In your first post, you took Dean to task for not supporting the wishes of his constituents (who actually re-elected him following the civil union law). Your latest post implies that he panders Clinton-like "to what will get [him] elected."

Bottom line, however, is that this discussion has gotten so tainted by your anti-gay animosity and refusal to consider someone from the other side of the aisle a "statesman" that there is really no point.
You can't prove that I'm wrong though, can you?Matno
Jul 30, 2002 9:34 AM
There were other issues besides the civil union law at play in his re-election, but you make a good point about MY apparent contradiction. I guess immorality speaks louder than morality these days. Thus, it is possible to be elected by a vocal minority who votes, even when the majority of the public does not support your cause. But what goes around comes around. Now Vermont voters get to live with their poor decision. Smarter states have already passed laws that specifically state that they will not recognize "marriages" that are not legal there, even if recognized elsewhere.

Can you refute any of what I've said? This isn't flame bait, I'm really curious to see what you or anyone else can come up with.
Is this a "physics" experiment?jtolleson
Jul 30, 2002 9:59 AM
Can "who is a statesman" be proven or disproven? Of course not. Nor am I obligated to share your cynical view of democracy.

You asked an opinion question, I shared mine. You got so caught up in anti-gay rhetoric that you virtually changed the subject.

And so it goes.
You know what I meant...Matno
Jul 30, 2002 10:25 AM
And I already knew you wouldn't have a real answer when I asked the question. I just thought I'd give you a chance to explain.
The contradictions continue...jtolleson
Jul 30, 2002 9:14 AM
In your first post, you took Dean to task for not supporting the wishes of his constituents (who actually re-elected him following the civil union law). Your latest post implies that he panders Clinton-like "to what will get [him] elected." Which is it?

Bottom line, however, is that this discussion has gotten so tainted by your anti-gay animosity and refusal to consider someone from the other side of the aisle a "statesman" that there is really no point.
Meanwhile, back to my ORIGINAL question...Matno
Jul 30, 2002 9:23 AM
Where are all the statesmen? Any other nominees? (I'll nominate Jesse Helms. Too bad he retired. What a fabulous mind he has!)
JOM changed names to Mantokoolaid
Jul 30, 2002 9:36 AM
and is still trolling his stupid games.
Who is "Manto"?Matno
Jul 30, 2002 10:04 AM
I have never posted under any other name than Matno on this forum. You can double check the ip addresses if you want to...
Ok, I'll settle this once and for all -- I am! :-) nmDougSloan
Jul 30, 2002 10:06 AM
He's down at the Ramrod getting layed by a gay fundamentalist.128
Jul 30, 2002 12:15 PM
Talk about pandering to your constituency.

"When once we begin to define, we fool ourselves into thinking we are separate from that which we define." T. Mihn Hah

There are great "statesmen" (still undefined here) everywhere, but since maybe they don't fit your model, maybe you don't hear them?

George Wallace.jtolleson
Jul 30, 2002 1:17 PM
Is this a better suggestion? After all, he didn't let any silly judges tell him that there was an equal protection problem. He just stood up for what he knew was RIGHT!

He blocked that school door! Special interests and activist judges be damned! And he gave a helluva speech!
"And someone shot him, too." -- F.G. nmDougSloan
Jul 30, 2002 1:31 PM
Just a comment.........CARBON110
Aug 11, 2002 2:49 PM
I lived in Vermont all my life except the last two years but return about 6 times a year. I know this issue well and I have met and listened to Gov. Dean alot. I am impressed that he took this issue as far as he did but he is no US Pres. period. His economics are horrible and have done Vermont a grave injustice with ACT 60. Howard is honest as far as politicians go, but I am sure I would not vote for him....well, I would over GW Bush! This is the best conversation ever recorded by the way, on RBR.

Hillary is a statesman NMCARBON110
Aug 11, 2002 2:55 PM
She beats the hell out of Jesse Helms and his non-compassionate leadership....isnt he neighbors with a former ( FAT ) speaker of the house.....what was that guys name...I forget...BAHAHHAHAH
Please don't tell me you think Hillary is compassionate!Matno
Aug 23, 2002 8:42 AM
Not possible for an educated person with sound reasoning and good judgment to think that she gives a dang about anyone but herself. If you do, then she's got you just where she wants you. Just be glad that most of us will never get close enough to her to end up like Vince Foster (who, BTW, was #21 in a known list of close friends of the Clintons who died "mysteriously." That list is way too long to be coincidence, and that's just the ones we know of...).