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Old 11-10-2007, 03:15 PM   #1
rccar328
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Republicans vs. Democrats...who's the bigger scumbag?

This is a branch-off from the off-topic discussion we got into in this thread.

The question is this: which party's politicians are bigger scumbags, Republican or Democrat?

Most Republican politicians purport to be for conservative family values, yet again and again Republican politicians get caught up in sex scandals (most notably Mark Foley & Larry Craig). Most of the time, Republican politicians caught in these scandals don't remain in power for very long after they're caught, and the scandal pretty much kills their political career.

Democrat politicians, on the other hand, don't usually make any claims about supporting conservative family values. Democrats have also been caught up in sex scandals (most notably Gerry Studs, Mel Reynolds & Bill Clinton).

Republicans who say they stand for family values and then engage in this kind of behavior are hypocrites...but, then, so are Democrats who condemn Republicans engaged in scandals and then support those in their own party who are caught in the same type of behavior.

So which is worse: a party that tries to stand up for values but struggles with scumbag politicians engaging in reprehensible behavior, or a party that stands up for "anything goes," and doesn't seem to care when members of their own party engage in this type of behavior?


Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty.
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Old 11-10-2007, 10:56 PM   #2
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I've got serious problems against both.

The Republican party is full of hypocrites who make laws against behavior they themselves engage in. A person who has an intense amount of self hatred because of an issue should not be trusted with the power to write legislation. Senator Craig is one of hundreds who wrote and voted on legislation for decades on an issue that he had a vested interest in. Not just because he had accepted bribes, as it typical of congress to do, but as a homosexual in congress, he wrote legislation and signed off on legislation based on his conviction that he was a terrible person who needed to be punished, not based on what would best serve the public. Then they justify what they do by saying that they do it in God's name.

The Democrats don't really stand for anything. They stand against Republicans, because they see the Republicans doing things that are motivated by hatred. They don't stand for God. They don't stand for morals. They don't claim to have morals. But they don't betray their stances or God, because there have not any stances to betray. They don't fix anything, because they've always been irrelevant.

Before the 90's the Republicans were the lesser threat to the economic welfare of their own constituents than the Democrats were. The Democrats were the lesser threat to the spiritual welfare of their constituents. The Democrats wanted to micromanage and enslave people economically. The Republicans wanted to micromanage and enslave people spiritually.

Not a lot of difference really.
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Old 11-11-2007, 01:17 AM   #3
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I'd like to point out that I make every effort to be an informed voter, and I do not have a party allegiance (I think that's insane). I've voted for Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians and Independents if I think they were the right person for the job. I do not vote for any party, but rather for the immediate position in question. With this in mind, I consider the competent execution of the position as the most important thing when voting, and a person's particular moral/religious bent as something generally irrelevant. So:

What values in specific are being talked about here? Simply because someone does not have a particular value, or perhaps places a different importance on a value than you do does not mean they don't have any values whatsoever. Using sexual scandals to prove that democrats have "no values" is ridiculous, and the same applies to the republicans as well.

I eat bacon and pork and cow. Many believe that these things make me somehow unclean. Clearly, it is proven that I have no values.

Clearly.


People do indeed do things that I do not approve of all the time, things I would never do myself. Still, I'm not one to moralize and dictate exactly what other people should do. Me, I tend to think, "Does this problem he's having interfere with his job?" If it does, then I can (and probably will) complain about it. If it doesn't, then it's not worth my time.

Lewinski? Couldn't care less. Lying under oath? That's a bit more serious.

I wouldn't give a second thought to Foley being gay. Breaking the law, however, deserves attention.

Simply placing a different amount of importance on some things hardly reduces the amount or strength of the values a person may have. The price of imposing your values on people is that they don't have as much freedom. Perhaps democrats in general place more emphasis on sexual freedom than you do. Even if that's true, however, it doesn't follow they have no values.

It is no doubt true that bin Laden has some values. Those values don't necessarily align with mine. Fine; I don't care very much about them. Then he decides to blow up things and I get concerned. He tries to impose his values by force and I get concerned.

This case is pretty similar to what I think of public officials. You have your values. Fine; I don't care much what you think, only what you do insofar how it affects your job. So you sexed up someone that's not your wife? I don't want to hear trivia; leave that for the magazines with Batboy on the cover. How did you vote?

Now that's something I'm interested in.

Republicans? Democrats? Asking which party is the bigger scumbag seems foolish, since I don't elect parties, I elect people. And I will be harshly critical of those people that fail in their duty, regardless of which club's badge they wear.


"Words are deeds." - Wittgenstein

Last edited by Samuel Dravis; 11-11-2007 at 01:30 AM.
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Old 11-12-2007, 10:36 AM   #4
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This case is pretty similar to what I think of public officials. You have your values. Fine; I don't care much what you think, only what you do insofar how it affects your job.
Very often this is why they don't do their jobs though, because they're busy trying to take away freedoms other people might have that they themselves participate in, on both sides. Lately more from the republicans and democrats, because the democrats lately are only marginally effective, but neither party has a monopoly on this.
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Old 11-14-2007, 08:44 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Jvstice
Very often this is why they don't do their jobs though, because they're busy trying to take away freedoms other people might have that they themselves participate in, on both sides. Lately more from the republicans and democrats, because the democrats lately are only marginally effective, but neither party has a monopoly on this.
"Freedoms" need restrained somewhat because if they aren't, you get mass chaos. The instant thought I got was the abortion debate, where it is about the freedom of a woman to do what she wants with her body, and on the other side it's about the freedom of an individual who is not yet sentient. In this case, it is the freedom for whom.

To be honest, politics has a dirty name nowadays. This is thanks in part to the media and a lot of really dumb politicians. I will say that there are media studies that have been published saying that the media leans to the left, and that is conceivably why you see Republicans getting blown up more. But I think it more has to do with the fact that Republicans are supposed to be this great set of values but then they turn up being gay or something and they just get slandered by everyone.

What I'd like to see is a return to the day when being a politician was a noble job. I intern for a state legislator and we had a constituent who called in for a meeting and we gave her one, appointment or not. She then came up and we talked about an issue and she began to rant, and when my boss (who was not the legislator but one of his aides) tried to reason with her and tell her some of the evidence they collected, she just dismissed it. She said she had no reason to trust us or our data, and she preferred her consultants to anything we could have said. It was a mindless, irrational rant, and nothing we said could have changed her mind. That being said, it didn't have its good parts to it. But in other places, it was woefully misinformed and she was doomed from the start.

My point is this. Politics in America is not seen as an honorable profession. You are seen as a liar and an idiot out to only line your own pocket with taxpayer dollars. Some politicians have this as their motive. I've seen in my time that I've been in politics some very honorable men and women on both sides of the aisle. I've also seen plenty of idiots and met one politician in particular who just got reelected and I don't like at all. The media gets better ratings if it focuses on the idiots and the pinheads. It would be better if more often we heard about the good things the good ones do, not always about what the bad ones do.


Proud to be an American.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."-Edmund Burke
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Old 11-14-2007, 10:18 AM   #6
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Heavyarms: good post. I'll see if I can answer you similarly rationally.

As to the abortion debate, I agree wholeheartedly. That does come down to a question of freedom for whom. I would argue though, that it's not a model in miniature for what goes on in the larger country with other issues. Neither side really wants to get rid of it though, anything said to the contrary is just rhetoric. There have been documentaries about how people in the Bush white house made it a point not to push abortion legislation, while courting Focus on the Family for money so that they could have something to run on the following election.

As to how the abortion debate is not representative of other issues in being a freedom for whom question. I'm heterosexual and I'm married. If a gay person wants to call themselves married too, it has no effect on my marriage whatsoever. My marriage is no more nor less sacred in the eyes of God because of their being able to call their relationships a marriage in the eyes of the law or not, and our country does have a theoretical freedom of association and right to property. As a matter of fact, it makes it less likely a gay man would make a pass at me if he married another gay man, so I don't see how opposing gay marriage, like Senator Craig and others like him did/does really increases my freedoms in any way.

Or the debate on the torture bill of summer before last. Republicans and Democrats were deadlocked on whether to pass it for months. Four "moderate" republicans negotiated with the administration, and instead of a bill that only allowed for the torture of foriegn nationals as enemy combatants, the language was expanded so that U.S. citizens could also be tortured. Rather than a toning down or a meeting in the middle, it was made more extreme, to take the away the liberty of more people with no recourse to due process.

That's why I say that the Republicans on the whole attempt to put shackles on their constituents' spiritual lives.

So you will see I'm not being one sided, I will admit and condemn that the Democrats do the same thing in robbing people of their economic freedoms. For instance, I was raised in Florida from 1979 to 1991 when I graduated high school. When I first moved there, there were only Democrats. In time, it came to be a more even split. Statewide, there were $1,000 impact fees every or any time you wanted to build any building on your own property, no matter what it was you wanted to build. If you wanted a $10,000 mobile home, you paid the same fee as the person building the $1,000,000 home. This was a highly regressive tax instituted from the party that claimed to be the "working man's party" at the time. Currently, the county I live in is debating instituting similar impact fees here.

As to people seeing politics as a noble profession, that hasn't been the case since I've been alive in any place I've lived or visited. It would be good if it got rid of a lot of the rhetoric, but when people placed such total faith in our government were when some of the greatest mistakes of the cold war almost got us all killed. I don't look for it to happen soon, and quite honestly, I have severe reservations about whether that would be a positive development for the citizens on the whole.
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Old 01-14-2008, 06:26 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jvstice
Heavyarms: good post. I'll see if I can answer you similarly rationally.

As to the abortion debate, I agree wholeheartedly. That does come down to a question of freedom for whom. I would argue though, that it's not a model in miniature for what goes on in the larger country with other issues. Neither side really wants to get rid of it though, anything said to the contrary is just rhetoric. There have been documentaries about how people in the Bush white house made it a point not to push abortion legislation, while courting Focus on the Family for money so that they could have something to run on the following election.

As to how the abortion debate is not representative of other issues in being a freedom for whom question. I'm heterosexual and I'm married. If a gay person wants to call themselves married too, it has no effect on my marriage whatsoever. My marriage is no more nor less sacred in the eyes of God because of their being able to call their relationships a marriage in the eyes of the law or not, and our country does have a theoretical freedom of association and right to property. As a matter of fact, it makes it less likely a gay man would make a pass at me if he married another gay man, so I don't see how opposing gay marriage, like Senator Craig and others like him did/does really increases my freedoms in any way.

Or the debate on the torture bill of summer before last. Republicans and Democrats were deadlocked on whether to pass it for months. Four "moderate" republicans negotiated with the administration, and instead of a bill that only allowed for the torture of foriegn nationals as enemy combatants, the language was expanded so that U.S. citizens could also be tortured. Rather than a toning down or a meeting in the middle, it was made more extreme, to take the away the liberty of more people with no recourse to due process.

That's why I say that the Republicans on the whole attempt to put shackles on their constituents' spiritual lives.

So you will see I'm not being one sided, I will admit and condemn that the Democrats do the same thing in robbing people of their economic freedoms. For instance, I was raised in Florida from 1979 to 1991 when I graduated high school. When I first moved there, there were only Democrats. In time, it came to be a more even split. Statewide, there were $1,000 impact fees every or any time you wanted to build any building on your own property, no matter what it was you wanted to build. If you wanted a $10,000 mobile home, you paid the same fee as the person building the $1,000,000 home. This was a highly regressive tax instituted from the party that claimed to be the "working man's party" at the time. Currently, the county I live in is debating instituting similar impact fees here.

As to people seeing politics as a noble profession, that hasn't been the case since I've been alive in any place I've lived or visited. It would be good if it got rid of a lot of the rhetoric, but when people placed such total faith in our government were when some of the greatest mistakes of the cold war almost got us all killed. I don't look for it to happen soon, and quite honestly, I have severe reservations about whether that would be a positive development for the citizens on the whole.
Took me exactly two months to reply

Yes, I through the abortion debate out there because I knew it went against you. To be honest, I am a Republican, but would probably not be called a Conservative. However, I also believe gay marriage is for others, and if they want it, they can, but I don't. However, we need some freedoms restricted. You mentioned the torture bill. I place faith in that the career bureaucrats are not going to go spying everywhere and set up cameras in my apartment or put intercepters in my eyes (a la GitS).

Well, I understand we can't be completely nonskeptical. But you know, a lot of our elected officials suck. I'm not going to lie. I worked for one who let's just say I thought was doing ethically questionable things. VERY questionable things. I just kinda wish that it could get better, and some do want it, like McCain and Lieberman.


Proud to be an American.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."-Edmund Burke
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Old 01-15-2008, 05:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rccar328
The question is this: which party's politicians are bigger scumbags, Republican or Democrat?
Wow! There are actually some really long arguments here. Fascinating. To answer the question: I'd say none of them. Every politician is a scumbag who tells you what he (or rather his campaign team) thinks you want to hear so he/she could get a position that grants him/her certain power and more importantly money. Government jobs are highly paid, so yeah, I think they're all in it primarily for the money, no matter which party they belong to.

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Old 01-15-2008, 11:11 PM   #9
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Wow! There are actually some really long arguments here. Fascinating. To answer the question: I'd say none of them. Every politician is a scumbag who tells you what he (or rather his campaign team) thinks you want to hear so he/she could get a position that grants him/her certain power and more importantly money. Government jobs are highly paid, so yeah, I think they're all in it primarily for the money, no matter which party they belong to.
Okay. Have you ever actually seen a politician's schedule? I know people think them overpaid, but to be honest, they work more hours a week than you probably ever will, and I'd say probably they go about 60-65 hours a week easy. They work weekends, early mornings, nights. I bet you don't work many of those.


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"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."-Edmund Burke
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Old 01-16-2008, 02:40 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heavyarms
Okay. Have you ever actually seen a politician's schedule? I know people think them overpaid, but to be honest, they work more hours a week than you probably ever will, and I'd say probably they go about 60-65 hours a week easy. They work weekends, early mornings, nights. I bet you don't work many of those.
QFT.
Their income may seem pretty high to some, but when compared to how much responsibility they have (not to mention how much they spend/give up to get there), it's a pittance.
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Old 01-16-2008, 04:13 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heavyarms
Okay. Have you ever actually seen a politician's schedule? I know people think them overpaid, but to be honest, they work more hours a week than you probably ever will, and I'd say probably they go about 60-65 hours a week easy. They work weekends, early mornings, nights. I bet you don't work many of those.
I think it would be correctly said that they are supposed to work more hours a week than any of us ever will, but I'm not convinced that they spend a lot of their working hours actually working. Why? Well, here's an example - I don't know what's it like over there, but in my country we have televised sessions of the Parliament, meaning that every time they're in session there's a live broadcast on the second channel of the national television. Anyway, regardless of how long their sessions last anyone with an ounce of brain can see that they aren't actually doing anything but call each other names and say how this government is better/worse than that government. Also, voting is trivial - they'll spend the whole day talking about unimportant things (see above) and then the governing majority will vote yes on the issue at hand, meaning that the law, or amendment, or whatever will be passed, if it's proposed by the governing majority (if it's proposed by the opposition, chances are it won't be passed, though there are some extremely rare exceptions). Hey, it's democracy in action.

(Since I have cable TV, I can say that the above doesn't apply to just my country's Parliament, but to the Parliaments of at least two neighboring countries. And before you come to the wrong conclusion, no I don't watch their sessions that much, but I usually see a few minutes of each while scrolling through channels and when you see the same pointless bickering at least three times that day, you know they aren't doing what they were elected for.)

I'll give you one thing, though - I don't work, but that's because I'm in college and am devoting most of my time to studying.


Last edited by igyman; 01-16-2008 at 04:23 AM.
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Old 01-16-2008, 08:43 AM   #12
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Since you are in college, it sounds to me like you need to work in a politician's office. Most schools will give you credit for doing it, so you can take a smaller class load and do that.

Voting sessions require their attention. Those "pointless debates" are how politics are argued and is exactly what their job is. They are almost always decisions that affect you in some way. They deserve their fullest attention so they vote properly (although they tend to know before they go in.)


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Old 01-20-2008, 07:17 PM   #13
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No party has bigger/more "scumbags." The only scumbags are the people that side w/ them just because of their party affiliation and not the issues themselves.



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