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Left vs. Right - Bacchus - April 17th, 2013

There's an old joke that says that the Right thinks the Left is stupid, while the Left thinks the Right is evil. If you actually subscribe to either opinion, I invite you to move along now, so I don't have to delete your post later.

Me, I think we're all just human. But we have different philosophies about life. Righties are the pessimists in life. We look at life and say, "lets try not to eff this up". Lefties are the optimists. They look at life and say "let's fix this." The problem, from where I sit (as a Righty) is that some things just can't be fixed, despite all the good intentions in the world. Economic inequality, for example. What do the Soviet Union, China, and Cuba have in common? They all tried to "fix" economic inequality. How many deaths resulted? It takes nine figures to count them. So, utopian optimism isn't always the way to go. Just so you don't think I'm only hitting Lefties, GW Bush engaged in some similar unreasonable optimism in his approach to the wars in the Middle East.

Now, cynical pessimism hasn't served anyone much better. This is the kind of thinking that gave us propped-up dictators across the globe because we could deal with them.

I don't really have the answers. I've rambled across homeland and foreign policy issues as well. But what do YOU think?

Left vs. Right - Randy Ray - April 17th, 2013

It seems like both sides have conflicting ideas about freedom. In the United States, anyway, the Left believes strongly in personal freedom--the freedom to have an abortion, the freedom of expression, the freedom to get married regardless of gender, etc. On the other hand, they don't seem to have concerns related to the freedom to bear arms, the freedom to do what they want to with their money (in some respects, anyway), the freedom to run your corporation the way you want to run it. On the other hand, the Right leans the opposite way. Libertarians tend to believe in freedom for almost all of those things, but they're a tiny fringe group, even though they've grown a lot larger.

I think I've seen the opposite of a pessimistic approach from the right on a lot of things, though. They seem to have a tendency to be skeptical of global warming, for example. That's an optimistic viewpoint. The folks on the left, on the other hand, think we need to be pessimistic about the problem and at least try to solve it, instead of just assuming that everything's going to be allright. The right also seems to have a tendency to think that the free market will solve everyone's problems, which also seems inherently optimistic.

But neither side is consistent within its own ideology. The supposedly economically-freedom-loving right, for example, doesn't want to let people use their money however they want to when it comes to Internet gambling, for example. The supposedly-personal-choice loving left, on the other hand, seems to think they have the right to tell people what size soda pop they can buy or sell, or whether or not someone can smoke in a restaurant.

Speaking of old jokes about the left versus the right. When I was in my twenties, one of the older men I worked with me told me that everyone who was under 40 who wasn't a liberal had no heart, and that everyone who was over 40 who wasn't a conservative had no brain. I guess that's similar to the old joke that you mentioned.

Left vs. Right - Bacchus - April 23rd, 2013

I first read this several days ago. It's a fascinating take from the other side, and I've considered how to reply. Unfortunately, I'm on a business trip and drunk, so those considered replies might not happen. But let's see where,we end up. First off, on freedom. I think you misunderstand the two factions positions on freedom. It's fascinating what you give the privilege of place,here: abortion, free speech, and gay marriage (in that'order). It's equally fascinating what rights you disparage (more or less the right to dispose of your own money). So far, you're kinda standard Left.

On global warming/cooling/climate change/climate chaos/whatever tomorrows label sorry, but you're wrong. You just are. I model complicated systems for a living, and I wouldn't touch weather with a ten foot pole. But then again, I'm expected to be right (at least directionally). You can't even tell me if its going to rain here next week...I'm supposed to believe that you know the next 100 years? Talk about the precautionary principle all you want, but if you want me to sacrifice 80% of my current lifestyle, you better show methe benefit. My major point here is that you want a ****load of cost, but you show at best a diffuse benefit.

On your final points...I disagree with the folks who disallow,or,otherwise. One caraciture of righties is,that we hate all regulation. Thats untrue. We hate stupid regulation. We also believe that the States should resolve most things. If Oklahoma wants gambling and Texas doesn't? Fine. I-35 will determine who has the better policy. Oklahoma and/or Texas can set the rules.

My conception of a liberal is,about as unflattering as yours,was of a conservative above:

However, after typing a,few things, I'm gonna punch out til another time. No need,to be ugly.

Left vs. Right - Michael - May 4th, 2013

I used to be a staunch Conservative (Right) supporter but over the past 20 years I have become disenchanted with the American Conservative movements. They seem to be uncoordinated and too interested in bickering for my tastes.

On the other hand, there are some Liberal (Left) politicians who have held very prominent positions in Congress (and the White House) who just make me furious whenever they speak about what the country "should" do.

One of the reasons why Obama was able to take the national stage so quickly, early in his national political career, was that he had not yet been tainted in the public eye by staunch liberlalism (as, say, a Kennedy might be) even though Obama is essentially a career politician.

I like to think of myself as moderate in many matters, but there are some Conservative ideas that disgust me and some Liberal ideas that alarm me -- and I tend to be extreme in my opposition to those ideas.

Global warming is an established fact. So is our inability to explain it, understand it, or manage it. Nonetheless, I feel like we should be irrigating the heck out of deserts everywhere -- planting trees and desalinating sea water -- to help manage the environment. Of course, I also realize that we don't understand what impact such a massive program (could it be put into action) would have on the environment and us.

We are a part of global warming -- there is no doubt about that. But the Earth has had warmer periods in the past and even without industrialization and other "contributing factors" the Earth was in a general warming trend anyway. We just seem to be hastening the effect, not causing it.

So what is the best policy, Conservatism or Liberalism? I don't know. Maybe Radicalism in the sense of massive direct intervention -- assuming we could develop the technology we would need to make quick course corrections. I think, however, that our governmental institutions would make such course correction impossible.

Left vs. Right - Space Marshal - August 25th, 2013

Sometimes people don't see the obvious even when it's pointed out. The obvious is that the right isn't any more illiberal or conservative than the left. How can communism, for instance, be liberal? Of course, it can't, but leftists try to get around this by pretending it's right-wing--what a joke that is! And if it's right-wing and liberal and leftist are synonymous then fascism must be liberal! The right, of course, is anti-communist. Of course, the "synonymies" lead to oxymorons such as "liberal authoritarianism", "conservative changes," and the worst oxymoron of all, "liberal fascism" (this is actually the title of a book!) which is not only obscene but embarrassing. And then there's political "correctness", the anti-gun lobby, establishment science (which is mostly left-wing), and feminaziism. Leftists are always saying this should be banned and that should be censored and that should be banned and this should be censored, yet at the same time declare themselves liberal and opposed to censorship. They oppose space exploration n Luddites are decidedly left-wing. They do violent demonstrations "against" war n support warring regimes, yet claim they are for peace. They pretend to be against racism but are racist against Americans, Anglo-Saxons, Israelis, n white ethnic groups. There are libertarian n reform parties on the right, n rightists support political, n judicial reforms n space exploration, but, of course, the left thinks progress can only be social, not political, scientific, or technological.

Where it concerns generosity, a study by Arthur Brooks published in 2006 ("Who Really Cares" ) and which was featured on 20/20 and called "Cheap in America", found that rightists were more generous than leftists, by 27-30% and 18% more likely to give blood; religious people 4 times as much as secular people; the working poor were the most charitable; Americans were per capita 3 1/2 times more generous than the French, 7 times more than Germans, and 14 times more than Italians. These results are consistent with research done in the '90s, the reference for which I could not find, however, which found religious people were more generous than secular people, Americans more generous than Canadians, and among Canadians, Quebecers were the least generous, and Quebecers are also the most left-wing among Canadians.

The left claims it is egalitarian and against class prejudice, yet is virulently opposed to the middle-class, which is closest to egalitarian as it is the majority, represents the average person, n is neither rich nor poor, n is also virulently opposed to anything popular or for the masses, especially popular fiction, saying that in order for something to have merit n quality it must be for the elite, in other words, the wealthy n aristocratic. And many leftists are very wealthy and aristocratic themselves, such as the Kennedys, the Trudeaus, and the Martins.

Certainly, there are liberals n progressives on the left, but they seem to be few n far between.

What I hate about the left is its hypocrisy, anti-social attitudes n behaviour, puritanism, hatred of music, misandry, mysogyny, radicalism, racial prejudice, self-righteousness, elitism, bad taste, insensitivity, malice, mean-spiritedness, close-mindedness, intolerance, repression, conservatism, and irrationality.

Left vs. Right - badlands - October 15th, 2013

Right has become involved with the tea party and racist weirdos.

Left vs. Right - Nightspore - October 15th, 2013

I'm essentially a Marxist. Groucho's my favourite.

Left vs. Right - Michael - October 21st, 2013

I'm basically a Disgustedist right now. I can't stand any of these politicians.

Left vs. Right - Nightspore - October 21st, 2013

Question: How can you tell when a politician is lying?

Answer: Their lips are moving.