Tuesday, March 22, 2005

The ones that aren't stupid...

Howard Dean, on why we lose elections to Republicans in spite of our undeniably superior positions:


One major reason his party lost the 2004 race to the "brain-dead" Republicans is that it has a "tendency to explain every issue in half an hour of detail," [Howard] Dean told the semi-annual meeting of Democrats Abroad, which brought about 150 members from Canada and 30 other countries to the Toronto for two days.



Conservative law professor (and contributor to the Bush campaigns to the tune of several thousand dollars) Eugene Volokh's response:

Hey, how's this for another possible major reason: Might politicians who assume their adversaries -- and tens of millions of voters -- aren't just mistaken but "brain-dead" not be very effective politicians?



He has a point there. Dean ignores the fact that many of the Republican voters are not stupid, but rather completely corrupt and utterly lacking in common decency. I'm not sure what political strategy I would advocate, if any, to appeal to them, though.

20 Comments:

At 3:56 PM, March 22, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eugene responds, saying "Centrists love it when one party condemns adherents of the other this way."

Given Eugene's (lack of) criticism over all the Republicans who viciously attack liberals and liberalism generally, maybe he just doesn't like the possibility of Democrats responding in kind. Or maybe he just isn't bothered when liberals are the targets of attacks, but is bothered when candidates he funds are targeted.

Not that it matters much - he lost all semblance of credibility once he said that the Constitution should be changed to permit torturing convicted criminals. He's not a conservative or a libertarian anymore, he's just a thug who uses his academic credentials to mask his ethical corruption.

 
At 4:07 PM, March 22, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Ah, [the] bliss" of denial...

 
At 4:07 PM, March 22, 2005, Anonymous Ron Moses said...

Didn't you Dems learn anything from '04? Snidely insulting half the population of the country is no way to win votes, guys. Try offering a constructive alternative viewpoint that isn't based solely on how much certain people suck.

Ron Moses...
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Father,
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At 6:20 PM, March 22, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Snidely insulting half the population of the country is no way to win votes, guys."

Ann Coulter, Michael Savage, Tom DeLay...

Given the fact that so many Republican politicians and pundits regularly do this all the time, there is no reasonable response to statements like the above aside from derisive laughter. It's not offered seriously or by a serious person.

 
At 7:23 PM, March 22, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am so sick of everybody accusing everybody else of being a hypocrite. Can't anyone argue on the merits?

Given Eugene's (lack of) criticism over all the Republicans who viciously attack liberals and liberalism generally...

Oh really? What's this then?

 
At 7:41 PM, March 22, 2005, Blogger tom_d_perkins said...

Ann Coulter, Michael Savage, Tom DeLay...

But ya gotta remember, when they're insulting liberals, they're insulting way less than half the population.

 
At 8:00 PM, March 22, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I am so sick of everybody accusing everybody else of being a hypocrite."

Tough. When it's true, it should be pointed out. People who don't apply the same standards to their friends that they try to hold their opponents to merit nothing more than contempt and derision.

I retract my earlier statement that he doesn't criticize Republicans who condemn half the nation. I'm glad that I was wrong.

Of course, that doesn't change the fact that he's obviously wrong to imply that condemning half the nation is a losing strategy. So why imply it?

"Can't anyone argue on the merits?"

You mean, like Ann Coulter and Michael Savage do? Or maybe you O'Reilly should be our role model? DeLay, perhaps?

I used vote Republican consistently. I voted for Bush Sr. twice. I voted for Republican senators and representatives consistently at every level. Right now, I can't think of any scenario that would cause me to vote Republican again. I'd sooner get a root canal.

I don't even respect the label "Republican" anymore, though I consider myself philosophically and personally conservative on many levels. I guess that's because "Republican" no longer covers enough conservative principles - only radical ones.

Or maybe it's because of statements like this:

"...when they're insulting liberals, they're insulting way less than half the population."

Yes, thank you Tom for making my point. It's attitudes like that (insulting less than half the population isn't as deserving of condemnation as insulting half or more than half) which has pushed me to respect conservatives and libertarians less and less. I don't like that about myself. I can handle contempt for a political party - political parties are barely above contempt to start with so it's not that much of jump. Contempt for fellow human beings, however, is another matter.

It really bothers me that I've started judging people merely upon knowing their very general political orientation. Statements like yours are why, though. Attitudes like yours make me not like you and myself less - and that's why I want as little to do with people like you as possible. You sicken me, both for how you act and how I react. The less contact I have with you, the easier it is to imagine that you have redeeming qualities - so that's the best path I can follow right now. Someday, when Republicans purge their party of theocrats and corrupt authoritarians, something else can be attempted.

I'm done with this thread, though, so feel free to attack and insinuate or whatever you want.

 
At 4:53 AM, June 08, 2005, Anonymous nick in CA said...

I can think of only four motives for voting for Dubya.

1.) Greed: (Don't take my money to help the weak)
2.) Malice: (harming the weak gets me aroused.)
3.) Arrogance: (America is above international law, since we're good and "they" are evil)
4.) Ignorance: (9/11 happened "because we love freedom")

Have I missed a reason? Most rightwing whackos that I know fall into one of the above four categories. The simple fact is that the more educated one is, the more likely one is to vote democratic. You can call us "elites" but that's fine. There is now and always has been an elite in every socitey. Frankly, I'd rather have a well educated, well spoken intellegent president, than an affable redneck. We were supposed to have been electing a president, but most of the rightwingers seem to have been more interested in picking a fishing buddy.

Besides, what's the difference between an educated elite telling you what to do, and your president telling a poor uneducated third world what they should do? That's hypocracy folks. Don't get me wrong, I don't expect that the progressive movement will prevail. It's unlikely. That's because the truth is usually complicated, and most people can only handle easy answers. (We're good they're evil. You're with us or against us. They hate us because we love freedom. etc. ) As long as the rightwingers keep serving up easy answers to the simple minded, they'll keep winning. It makes me so ashamed.

 
At 11:41 PM, October 04, 2005, Blogger alena said...

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At 11:32 AM, October 23, 2005, Blogger Connor Wilson said...

Every year my son Dylan and I have been building our Halloween animatronic display. This year we added 12 new figures and my wife had been making the clothes etc. but then I clued in that Halloween Costumes were the ideal solution - ya, ok I'm slow but...This year is really cool because we've done an HP Lovecraft display that I'm sure he'd appreciate but I'm not so sure he'd approve of this - The Necronomicon - Is it just me or is that just plain goofy ? Anyway, everybody is doing their own Haunted House thing now but hey - it's fun and if you've got kids I really suggest you try it yourself if you haven't already. It's a nice change from the usual Christmas Lights routine and a lot of scaaarrry fun. Happy Halloween everybody.

 
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