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question for Liberals (Ed?)(17 posts)

question for Liberals (Ed?)DougSloan
Jul 10, 2003 10:46 AM
Serious question, with no intent to imply any answer.

I realize this may be trade secret, but even then maybe people can give their opinions.

To regain seats and possibly take the White House, will Liberals over the next few years move right to capture more center, or move left to distinguish themselves from GOP and motivate potential left leaners (or both)? Curious.

The million dollar question.OldEdScott
Jul 10, 2003 11:10 AM
That's the debate within the party apparatus right now. There are those like myself (and, on the public stage, Howard Dean) who contend that we can never be better Republicans than Republicans. If we're going to have a Democratic Party, we better sound like Democrats instead of warmed-over Repubs. There are holdover DLC-types who favor the centrist approach that Clinton/Morris perfected.

I think the C/M approach was right for its time, but now, with the right wing in heavy ascendancy, we can only succeed by being a clear alternative when they inevitably overreach, i.e. suspend the Bill of Rights, declare war on Europe, whatever.

In that regard, Rush L. and I agree. He says the occasional Bush foray into the center to grab moderates is a tactical mistake for the Repubs. They should concentrate on expanding their right-wing base, and educate the center to come rightward. I think the same thing about our team.

It's very much an undecided debate.
The million dollar question.PdxMark
Jul 10, 2003 12:06 PM
This is one of those questions that I don't, rather didn't, have a strong opinion on. Living in one of the most liberal Congressional districts in the country, I have absolutely no sense for what the rest of the country thinks.

But Ed's thoughts sound quite reasonable. GWB's hard right swing will give Dem's a good basis for distinction. The social conservatism, evironmental recklessness, corporate pandering and fiscal idiocy of the Bush Admin. would seem to give Dems a good opportunity to head a bit left of the Clinton center... even as GWB tries to tie all his policies into his indiscriminant and drifting War on Terrorism.
Makes no difference if Bush can't deliver.czardonic
Jul 10, 2003 11:34 AM
If Bush can't deliver the peace and prosperity his moderate supporters want and/or the theocratic social authoritarianism his right-wing supporters want, he is sunk no matter what strategy the Liberals adopt.
Why move to the right of course.Spoke Wrench
Jul 10, 2003 12:00 PM
How could the Democrats better separate themselves from the borrow and spend Republicans?
I thought I would weigh in hereLive Steam
Jul 10, 2003 1:57 PM
Borrow and spend? I thought the liberals were crying because Bush was cutting back services. Where is the spending coming from? If you mean the tax cut - well that's not spending. The only initiative Bush has to increase spending is in the healthcare package for prescription drugs. I am opposed as should many of you who already get that benefit from your employers insurance. Do you think it will be better once the government gets their hands on it?

As for the topic at hand, I really don't see the Dumocrats changing much in the way they manage their platform initiatives. They are all running scared - except Dean who is a buffoon - because they know the witch will want to run in '08. No one is willing to take her on and they know this election is a foregone conclusion. They have no original message other than to oppose anything GW and the Republican Party offer up. That isn't a plan.

If I were planning something for the Dumocrats I would blur the line further. I don't think that this US of A is ready for more liberalism. I think we are getting farther from it every day. More people have more money and that only means one thing - they want to hold onto it. They do not want initiatives that take money out of their pockets and put it in someone else's including the governments. The downfall of the Dumocrats will be their distribution of wealth plan. I am all for them spreading that message. It will do them in :O)
Tax Cut = Borrow. War on Terror = Spend.czardonic
Jul 10, 2003 2:42 PM
As for getting farther from liberalism everyday, methinks we are in the eye of the liberal storm.

Smart conservatives (the guys who put the words in your mouth, Steam), know this and this is why they are so anxious to institutionalize their agenda now while they have a window of opportunity. The proposed meddling with the Constitution over marriage is a perfect example. It is a reaction to the writing on the wall recently underscored by the SC. They have to get their small minded agenda ratified now, because they know it stands no chance in the future without the force of law propping it up.
How old are you Steam?Spoke Wrench
Jul 10, 2003 3:12 PM
Fact is, for the last couple of decades, the Republicans have clearly proven to be the less fiscally responsible party.
How old are you Steam?Live Steam
Jul 10, 2003 6:15 PM
You know it isn't polite to ask ... 43. I've been around for a while. I had the privilege to vote for Reagan in my first presidential election in 1980 :O) I guess Clinton gets all the credit for welfare reform, huh? How have the Dumocrats been more fiscally responsible? Because they closed down dozens of military bases? Where have they been more fiscally responsible? Don't just make a blanket statement. Support it with facts. Show me!!! My blanket statement is that Clinton balanced the budget because there was a republican run house and senate.
Balanced budgetjtolleson
Jul 10, 2003 7:57 PM
our system of govt. with its checks and balances means conceptually that neither the legislative nor executive branches can take full credit for budgetary success and failure, but Bill Clinton submitted a balanced budget to Congress, which Congress then pass. That's more than you can sa1y for any fiscal year under Reagan, Bush I, or Bush II.

Despite the lip service to balancing the federal budget, I can't remember the last time a Republican President SUBMITTED a balanced budget to Congress for approval.
YupSpoke Wrench
Jul 11, 2003 5:10 AM
Republicans = borrow and spend liberals.
Democrats = balanced budged fiscal conservatives.
A little bit of this; a little bit of thatjtolleson
Jul 10, 2003 12:29 PM
I believe that the typical voter is a social liberal and a fiscal conservative.

Democrats can do well taking a hard line on social progressivism -- promote civil liberties and lambast the PATRIOT Act, remain solidly pro-choice, support affirmative action, support the rights of GLBT people to equality-- while at the same time distancing themselves from the unbridled spending (plus tax cuts) that have arguably crippled our economy.

I generally still believe in the New Democrat (DLC) movement as the future of the party.
Jul 10, 2003 12:40 PM
There will be a democrat in office again at some point in the future. It's inevitable since everything is cyclical. Hopefully for the good of all, it'll be a ways off and I won't live to see it. Good thing it's impossible for any administration to sink the ship. Lucky for all of us the makeup of the nation isn't like many idiotic Californians and won't allow anyone like Bonehead Davis in that office to give the sinking a good hard try.

Now, for your question, which way will they go? I don't know. You turn too liberal and you're doomed though. If they want back in, the MOR stance is the way to go. Just look at Clinton, good fascade, promise the world, deliver nothing.

OES is right.eyebob
Jul 10, 2003 2:01 PM
And he heard it on Rush's show. The conservatives shouldn't try to move to the center because they'll risk losing their base and only the truly politically astute can walk easily between their core constituency and the more moderate voter base. (like Clinton could) The liberals would do well to get over the fact that Bill is gone and energize their base. Ralph Nader and Howard Dean will do more for the Dems (because they speak "liberalism") than the centrists running. But then again, Hillary's on the horizon so Clinton Redux will once again walk the Dems toward the middle.

Trouble isfiltersweep
Jul 11, 2003 6:09 AM
I could be a Republican/conservative if they were more centralist. I'm not a proponent of legislating morality, of false "family values" policy making (DIVORCE has a far greater negative cultural impact than so-called "gay marriage" ever could), anti-abortion (WHY this is such a singular issue for some people is beyond me), bringing CHRISTIAN religious beliefs into the government (that invariably are OLD TESTAMENT (eye for an eye type stuff- rather than New Testament theology that is far too liberal- even though if you want to be all OT, might as well be Jewish ;) ).

I'd sum the far-right's political leanings as "spare the rod, spoil the child" applied to everything...

While I largely regard the far right as the lunatic fringe, they are unfortunately much larger than I give them credit for. I guess their home-schooled and parochial education is quite sub-standard?

All government is about social engineering. Choosing NOT to enact a policy IS setting policy.
Hawkish Do-Gooders will prevailDale Brigham
Jul 10, 2003 1:08 PM
I think Democrats who are big on national security (hawks), but liberal on social issues, will prevail in the long run. I don't personally absolutely agree with the hawk factor, but I think my fellow Americans won't go much for peaceniks (at least for President) in this era of fear. Kennedy and LBJ had the hawk (anti-communism) factor going for them; they also pushed progressive social agendas (LBJ much more than Kennedy).

re: Issue by Issue determines movmentjrm
Jul 11, 2003 8:48 AM
You cant really tell a party by its postion because individual issues will sway party opinion left and or right depending on the subject. But, how much they swing determines whether they gather more or isolate themselves on a specific issue.