Policies Over Personalities in Partisan Politics

 
 

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Image: SustainAbility.com

 

Al Gore –

“Republicans are the best sellers of the worst products.”

Gore is right about the Republicans, but moreover he made this simple point without the venom we so often see in political right-wing critiques.

Conservative-Republican policy is an awful product, not fit for public consumption.

But they understand how to hard-sell better than they understand how to make good solution-oriented policy and I have long since believed that most Liberal-Democrats have almost none of the much needed ability to sell effective solutions and positive social change in a cogent manner to the public at-large.

I would like to be very clear about this: I am not advocating that the left-wing simply mimic the right-wing. I am advocating shameless theft of their selling-tactics on a both political and news-media levels.

It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it.

Negative political ads and partisan attacks are highly effective.

The key element being here is that any liberal or Democrat doing this must stick to the record and focus on the policies over the personalities. The use of public-misinformation should never be looked kindly upon but wherein the source of your reasoning and the portion that is purely opinion being clearly declared as such there is plenty of room.

Rep. Alan Grayson has provided exactly the kind of example this argument requires.

He confined himself to the policy issue at hand and presented his evidence for believing this.

Make no mistake, I am advocating for partisanship.

But if there is such a beast as “ethical partisanship” then this is what I would promote. Full-disclosure partisanship. (What makes you believe that, where did you hear / see this happening?)

Focus on the facts with the Neoconservative-Tea-Baggers. Focus on the facts with the Pro-Cheney Corporatists. Focus on the facts with the Fox News Loyalists.

To some degree there are elements of labeling that cannot be avoided in politics; the wagging of fingers a near must in some cases and nothing less than shameful to stand silent amidst bigoted sentiments toward minorities or faiths disguised as political commentary. It is possible, however, to attempt to stick to the point in the process rather than degenerating into vileness. Which is a far cry from the totalitarian-ideology of the neoconservatives.

We should all strive to make ourselves and our opinions known, but strive to keep our criticisms based on policy and provable facts as opposed to personalities and wild theories.

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A Liberal’s Survival Guide

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I recommend picking up a copy of Newsweek for yourself. The cover story for the issue of the week of November 2nd 2009 is an excellent piece on President Barack Obama. Anna Quindlen has put to words what I felt to be true since early in the 2008 Presidential Campaign:

Barack Obama campaigned as a populist firebrand but governs like a cerebral consensus builder. The Founding Fathers wouldn’t have it any other way.

Campaigns are bad crucibles in which to forge the future. They speak to great aspirations; government amounts to the dripping of water on stone.

The president is a person of nuance. But on both ends of the political number line, nuance is seen as wishy-washy. There’s no nuance in partisan attacks, soundbites, slogans, which is why Barack Obama didn’t run with the lines “Some change you might like if you’re willing to settle for” or “Yes, we can, but it will take awhile.”

If the American people want the president to be more like the Barack Obama they elected, perhaps they should start acting more like the voters who elected him.

In my personal estimation the liberal-left mainstream view of Barack Obama was overly optimistic as to his clearly stated positions. This situation has altered since the campaign but still seems to maintain elements of previous misconceptions.

This president is entirely unique.

I was adamant about this in the first few months of The Obama Presidency when the media-punditry were attempting to compare Obama to another American President of the recent past. The only comparisons to draw are poor ones.

Many attempt to call The Obama Presidency a “centrist” presidency. I believe this is only in part true and better descriptions would be “staunchly bipartisan” or “consensus builder” as to what we see of The White House of 2009.

Ultimately, I myself am far too left-wing to support every Obama Policy. I am certainly left-wing enough to vote for him, but in the instance of national health care reform I would seek to isolate the insurance giants in the face of the bipartisan concept of bringing them to the table.

I would seek to remind readers that The Founders had many ideological differences between them and while they surely would approve of the goal of consensus building, I believe some would argue that party loyalty or campaign kick-backs mean nothing in the face of protecting the general welfare of the people of The United States.

Allow me to put forth my view on The Founding Fathers as it applies to the proposed health care reform in the U.S.:

A single-payer bill, like H.R. 676, might be scientifically approved but does not incorporate the spirit of incrementalism that is key to sound reform. If one was to augment the “single-payer” model of this bill into a national health care insurance option for citizens ages zero to sixty-five, included the Dennis Kucinich Amendment in which states can opt-in to a single-payer system, and included the Harry Reid Proposal in which the states can opt-out of the national option within a single piece of legislation; this unwritten bill would be within the true desires of the framers of The U.S. Constitution.

I can only see two clear flaws in Barack Obama as president, thus far.

Handing health care to the Congress was a bad move.

Isolating the giant of media-misinformation when there are other offenders within the spheres of foe-news.

Both of these are purely strategic flaws and amount to simple criticism and nothing more on my behalf.

On the matter of his appointments I believe what I was speaking on before comes around once again. It’s not a fair assessment to call it a “liberal” cabinet but rather a “bipartisan” cabinet, or “centrist” if you must.

We didn’t elect the liberal-firebrand that came to destroy the GOP and tear down the corporate empire.

We elected Barack Obama.

Sara Palin Quits Her Job

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Former Republican Vice-Presidential candidate, and soon to be former Governor of Alaska, Sara Palin has decided to walk away from her responsibilities as governor as well as her obligations to those who voted her into office.

Whatever her reasons may be she is electing to be extremely vague and elusive, leaving the speculation running wild. It’s possible the ethics probes are the reason. It’s possible she is fed up with political partisan bickering and propagandizing.

Whatever the reason the fact remains that this representative is walking away from her responsibilities and setting a terrible example to the nation in terms of governorship.