Something's wrong in Washington: Is American democracy in crisis?

Feb 18, 2014

The Federal shutdown may be the most striking evidence to support claims that America's political system is broken, but it is far from the only example. Writing in Governance, acclaimed political scientists Norman Ornstein and Jared Diamond explore if tribalism is at the heart of the problem, or if the U.S. is facing a far greater political crisis.

"The state of our overall political process as the most dysfunctional I have seen in over 44 years of watching Washington and American politics up close," writes Norman Ornstein, from the American Enterprise Institute. "If we are not in the most dysfunctional period in our history, we are certainly in the top five."

American political history has recorded many inept and ineffectual congresses, from the scandals of the 1970's to the divided house of the 1860's, so what makes the 112th and 113th congresses any different? Ornstein argues that the rise in political extremism, manifested in open tribalism, is to blame.

From acts seeking to tighten the rules over gun ownership, to commissions established to tackle America's debt problem, the list of legislation that has been sunk by tribalism continues to grow into President Obama's second term.

"Political dysfunction has serious consequences for the health, well-being, and future prospects for the country that go well beyond gridlock or political gamesmanship," concluded Ornstein. "American history suggests that these problems are cyclical, that eventually we will come out of it and restore a modicum of problem-solving rationality. But 'eventually' does not mean anytime soon."

In contrast, Jared Diamond, writing from the University of California, proposes that the United States is facing four existential threats to its democratic system.

"Our form of government is a big part of the explanation why the United States has become the richest and most powerful country in the world," said Diamond. "Hence, an undermining of democratic processes in the United States means throwing away one of our biggest advantages."

Diamond argues that political compromise has been deteriorating in recent decades, that restrictions on voting are reversing the positive historical trend of political enfranchisement, that the gap between rich and poor continues to grow, and that public spending by the government In areas such as education is declining.

"Large segments of the American populace deride government investment as 'socialism,' but it is not socialism. On the contrary, it is one of the longest established functions of government," said Diamond.

Explore further: Book examines 'Latino gender gap,' future of US politics

More information: Norman Ornstein, "What's Wrong with Washington? Tribalism," Governance, Wiley, DOI: 10.1111/gove.12085

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Doug_Huffman
1.7 / 5 (11) Feb 18, 2014
Our Founding Fathers righteously feared democracy and struggled to insulate US from its worst consequences with a unique Constitution that bound only the tyrant, but which has been loosed on the people.

The righteous fear of democracy has its foundations in Ancient Greece (Sortition), but the fear has been camouflaged by the lies that are The Poverty of Historicism.

The demotic Pandora's Box has been opened to horrors yet to be seen, unimagined.
freethinking
1.5 / 5 (23) Feb 18, 2014
When you have the most corrupt president in history protected and supported by the fifth estate, when you have government unions funneling money and supporting corrupt politicians (who then increase the power of said government unions), when you have government teachers unions maligning and misrepresenting conservative ideology, when you have race baiters and race warriors ie. Jesse Jackson pitting on race against another, what do you expect?
Maggnus
4.6 / 5 (22) Feb 18, 2014
Where do all these nut case commenters come from? Every article on here seems to have its share of them.
Q-Star
4.7 / 5 (15) Feb 18, 2014
Where do all these nut case commenters come from? Every article on here seems to have its share of them.


I just wish they would stick to these articles about politics and "social" sciences and leave the physical sciences alone.
Firefly Mal
2.9 / 5 (18) Feb 18, 2014
Jared Diamond's statement is factually incorrect.

Ever since the dawn of the progressive era at the end of the 1800's early 1900's liberals have been trying to convince us that market entrepreneurs are bad and political entrepreneurs are good.

Market entrepreneur's are people, businessmen, who are trying to succeed by competing in the marketplace by producing a good quality product and selling it at a competitive price.

Political entrepreneurs try to succeed by using a government subsidy, some form of government regulation, or government hand-out to enhance their ability to compete effectively.

Political entrepreneurs use coercive argument which terrorizes their political masters compelling them to pass laws in their favor or to give them money in the form of tax dollars which are produced on the backs of working citizens – this final step is redistribution of wealth, which is socialism.

Market entrepreneurs succeed by producing high quality goods to please consumers.
Firefly Mal
3.3 / 5 (15) Feb 18, 2014
To further illustrate the error of Jared Diamond's statement, he implies the duration of a practice is equivalent to validation – it is not.

Theft has been a long-standing practice since the first primitive figured out that he could just beat another primitive over the head with a club and take the food the other had labored to acquire. Just because theft is a long-standing practice doesn't mean it should be encouraged.

The fact that politicians can hand out favors and enact regulation to pick winners and losers leads to corruption, the way to stop the corruption is to remove their ability to do so.

Firefly Mal
3.5 / 5 (15) Feb 18, 2014
"Democratic" in its original meaning [refers to] unlimited majority rule . . . a social system in which one's work, one's property, one's mind, and one's life are at the mercy of any gang that may muster the vote of a majority at any moment for any purpose.

The American system is not a democracy. It is a constitutional republic. A democracy, if you attach meaning to terms, is a system of unlimited majority rule. Democracy, in short, is a form of collectivism, which denies individual rights.

The American system is a constitutionally limited republic, restricted to the protection of individual rights.
Shakescene21
4.1 / 5 (8) Feb 18, 2014

"...acclaimed political scientists...."

"Political Science" is not a real science and does not belong on Physorg. We could spend our whole time arguing about politics and not getting much done, but that's better left to politicians.
Doug_Huffman
1.4 / 5 (9) Feb 18, 2014
The author of The Logic of Scientific Discovery, (Logik der Forschung) that gave us falsification as the solution to the Problem of Demarcation of science from non-sense, capped his career with The Open Society and Its Enemies and The Poverty of Historicism. Historicism is the fallacy that stems from the Hegelian Marxist dialectic.
Bonia
Feb 18, 2014
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
Modernmystic
2.2 / 5 (11) Feb 18, 2014
"Something's wrong in Washington..."

For the purposes of THIS article the translation is "Washington is having trouble pushing my values and agenda on other people therefore something is wrong there..."
kochevnik
1 / 5 (4) Feb 18, 2014
Demos, meaning "mob rule"
cjn
1.7 / 5 (7) Feb 18, 2014
We don't have a democracy... maybe that's why there is a crisis.

At the end of the day, until we have civil war again, we're nowhere near the "worst climate eva!!!"
big_hairy_jimbo
4.3 / 5 (12) Feb 18, 2014
I think a lot of the comments above are the reason for America's woes. You are too busy blocking each other, and internal fighting to actually get anything done. Forget all your terms and ideology, and get on with sorting out the problems of your country for your peoples sake!!!

At the moment, America looks like it's in the state of 'collapse of Empire'.
Code_Warrior
3 / 5 (6) Feb 18, 2014
I think a lot of the comments above are the reason for America's woes. You are too busy blocking each other, and internal fighting to actually get anything done. Forget all your terms and ideology, and get on with sorting out the problems of your country for your peoples sake!!!

Perhaps, but the differences are real and stark. At this time it's like two people in a room, one who thinks it's too hot and wants to lower the temperature and the other who thinks it's too cold and wants to raise the temperature. There is no middle ground there. Compromise means that one person's suffering must increase so that the other can be more comfortable. Sometimes compromise isn't possible. That is the case between liberals and conservatives now. Liberals want more government, conservatives want less. The size of government is already beyond any acceptable level for conservatives, but isn't large enough for liberals. No common ground exists. Thus, gridlock.
Cocoa
2.4 / 5 (7) Feb 18, 2014
@ code_Warrior
conservatives want less.


Your analysis is way too simplistic. I live in the U.S. The level of regulation in this country is asphyxiating. I don't believe the conservatives do want less government. They are as regulation happy as the Dems. It is illegal for me to grow a tomato in my front yard - here in red state bible belt land. They are busy passing laws to limit the growth of the wind industry. It is not about less government - it is about manipulating government to serve what ever interest you subscribe to.
TheGhostofOtto1923
4.4 / 5 (7) Feb 18, 2014
People accept the illusion that democracy is self-correcting and stable. In reality it is fragile and prone to collapse, and as such cannot survive without Manipulation.

The Weimar Republic collapsed because the stress of overpopulation coupled with crippling war reparations led to the formation of over 30 major political parties. Under those conditions no one can be happy with their govt. Crime and corruption flourish and it soon reverts to despotism as aristotle indicated.

We watch our own democracy quiver and quake with every recession. We see new parties like Perots Reform party and the tea party emerge whenever growth falters just a little bit.

And this country has never suffered the deprivations of weimar. Who knows what would happen to our so-called democracy if we ever did.
Doug_Huffman
1.4 / 5 (10) Feb 18, 2014
Demos, meaning "mob rule"
No! Demos is the people. Democracy is rule of the mob of people.

Progressivism is the political bowel movement, of the right and the left, to make-things-better willy-nilly damn the unintended consequences, The Poverty of Historicism.

Only The Constitution Party represents America's conservative Country Class against the progressive Ruling Party of Demotic Repugnant Liars.
Bonia
Feb 18, 2014
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
Code_Warrior
4 / 5 (4) Feb 18, 2014
Your analysis is way too simplistic. I live in the U.S. The level of regulation in this country is asphyxiating. I don't believe the conservatives do want less government. They are as regulation happy as the Dems. It is illegal for me to grow a tomato in my front yard - here in red state bible belt land. They are busy passing laws to limit the growth of the wind industry. It is not about less government - it is about manipulating government to serve what ever interest you subscribe to.

Gee, I live in the US too! With only 1000 words, half of which was taken up by the quote, and having no intention of going in depth in a comment section of a news site, I was just trying to illustrate the impasse in simple terms. On the other hand, your in-depth and insightful analysis spanned an entire sentence. Wow! People want a government that serves their interests! Next you'll regale us with the brilliant flash of insight that water is wet.
Bonia
Feb 18, 2014
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
Cocoa
4.8 / 5 (4) Feb 18, 2014
@Code_Warrior

I was just trying to illustrate the impasse in simple terms


And with the way I read your post - you were buying in to the lies that are spread all over physorg every day by freethinking, and Rygg, etc. etc. - that the Republicans stand for small government - and the evil socialist Dems represent a socialist take over of the world. I was challenging your premise - and presenting a little more nuanced perspective. It does not surprise me that it is responded to with sarcasm - simpletons don't like the complex.
StillWind
1.8 / 5 (10) Feb 18, 2014
My God, what a propaganda piece... "Restrictions in voting"? Really? Just what kind of parallel universe does this person come from?
Not only are there no restrictions on voting, the Democrats have dead people, and illegal aliens voting, as well as blacks who get multiple votes.
I guess this person completely ignores the fact that multiple Democrat operatives have been indicted and convicted for this crime in the last year, as well as the unfortunate reality that more than 100% of the residents in many precincts voted for Obama.
It is true however that the American republic is all but dead, but ti is democracy that is killing it.
TechnoCreed
4 / 5 (6) Feb 18, 2014
Conservatism is about merit and traditional values, liberalism is about equity and social advances. Both of these political positions are needed to maintain social cohesion, because both extremes lead to abuses. To maintain equilibrium between these political polarities is to maintain a healthy democracy. Viewed from the outside it seems like there is some intended manipulation to provoke cynicism and political disaffection in the general public, willingly maintaining low participation in the democratic process. Could this be? If so, why?
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.3 / 5 (6) Feb 18, 2014
To maintain equilibrium between these political polarities is to maintain a healthy democracy
"the 2000 United States presidential election between George W. Bush and Al Gore... The Florida vote was ultimately settled in favor of George W. Bush, by a margin of only 537 votes out of almost 6 million cast"

-Do you really think that the leadership of the most powerful country on the planet would be left up to whether or not it was raining in dade county on election night? The course of civilization is too important to be letting the people decide it.

The people will ALWAYS vote to support their own interests. But there are decisions which must be made that the majority of the people would not approve.

And so the people are told what to believe. They are presented with candidates and are told which ones to vote for. And the people who are elected do not, and never will, work for the people who elect them.

The people are the traditional enemies of Leaders everywhere.
TheGhostofOtto1923
4.1 / 5 (7) Feb 18, 2014
Both parties share an interest in maintaining the perception that the system works, but know that outcomes are Predetermined. And so each plays a part in ensuring that the Proper candidates get elected.

Who really believed that the mewling McCain and his ditsy vp would get elected? Obama was the person, and the dems were the party, most suited to shell out the necessary money to counter an economic collapse which had been Engineered a decade or 2 previous.

Economic cycles, like wars, can destroy a civilization and therefore CANNOT be allowed to happen by themselves. They are Engineeded, Choreographed, and Managed to prodece a predetermined Outcome.

The Players we are given to vote for are complicit in this whole Process as much as they need to be. They are the most skilled of each generation; selected, groomed, flawless performers. The Clintons are some of the best.
Howhot
3.7 / 5 (9) Feb 18, 2014
From the article;
The state of our overall political process is the most dysfunctional I have seen in over 44 years of watching Washington and American politics up close
and in my few years of observation, its the Republicans that have pushed us into a chaotic state. Seems they are the ones to blame for stagnation, intolerance and a complete collapse of the American way. That is just my point of view, but for the past two years, congress has been gridlocked and it wasn't Democrats doing the gridlock.

CapitalismPrevails
2.1 / 5 (7) Feb 18, 2014
Democracy is nothing more than mobacracy. When you get a mob voting themselves other peoples money and getting addicted to it, then approves policies to help keep them addicted to it and solidify the process, then going into debt to maintain their fix, there's ultimately going to be a crash. Debt is the eating of the future to satisfy the present. Any government program ,whether military or social, which creates debt only steals from the future of our children.
Code_Warrior
2.3 / 5 (3) Feb 19, 2014
@Code_Warrior
And with the way I read your post - you were buying in to the lies that are spread all over physorg every day by freethinking, and Rygg, etc. etc. - that the Republicans stand for small government - and the evil socialist Dems represent a socialist take over of the world. I was challenging your premise - and presenting a little more nuanced perspective. It does not surprise me that it is responded to with sarcasm - simpletons don't like the complex.

Your thoughts weren't complex or nuanced and didn't challenge anything, they were obvious and deserved the sarcasm they received. You know NOTHING about what I think, but chose to assume you knew my mind based on 1 general characterization of the 2 groups in question: one group wanting less and the other wanting more, and then you exaggerated that in your mind to an extreme position that I never took based on a faulty assumption and then followed that up with an insult. You appear to be reactionary, not thoughtful.
ubavontuba
2.2 / 5 (5) Feb 19, 2014
Is American democracy in crisis?
American democracy is perpetually in crises. This is why we must remain ever vigilant. And this is the very reason it works.

Cocoa
4.4 / 5 (7) Feb 19, 2014
Code_Warrior - Here is what you said
Liberals want more government, conservatives want less.


More of the same crap we get thrown around here everyday. 'Conservatives believe in small government' - So I called your bullshit. No they don't - they expand government just as readily as the Dems do - much to my dismay - cuz I get to live in country that is being strangled with a bloated government system that gets bigger with every administration.

Yes I am reactionary - but also very thoughtful. If you disagree with my premise (government - like most other organizations - looks to protect itself - and grow, grow, grow). Which is in contrast to your characterization of conservatives - who want smaller government - then provide some support.
seilgu
5 / 5 (5) Feb 19, 2014
A website dedicated to science should report quantifiable results, not just based on some personal observation.
Birger
4.3 / 5 (12) Feb 19, 2014
Regarding "The level of regulation in this country is asphyxiating"
and
"I get to live in country that is being strangled with a bloated government system that gets bigger with every administration"

-Try visiting Western Europe and Japan. Those countries have more reglations and bigger governments. Those countries also compete well with the U.S. economy. Germany -a country with much longer paid vacations and more extensve social security- is doing as well as, or better than USA.
The claims about USA being horrbly overburdened by taxes and regulations are repeated ad nauseam in Fox News and the right-wing echo chamber but do not stand up to scrutiny.

For those of you actually interested in facts, I recommend the book "Rich Democracies" comparing conditions in various industrialised nations. Note the relative success of the Scandinavian nations which right-wing writers usually describe as horrible socialist countries...
TechnoCreed
3.5 / 5 (4) Feb 19, 2014
Liberals want more government, conservatives want less.

More of the same crap we get thrown around here everyday. 'Conservatives believe in small government' - So I called your bullshit. No they don't - they expand government just as readily as the Dems do - much to my dismay - cuz I get to live in country that is being strangled with a bloated government system that gets bigger with every administration.

I am not from the US (just a friendly north of the border neighbor) so my questioning is neutral, investigative but also some food for taught. I am aware that the US is in a difficult position with a growing debt per capita, and this situation is cause for anguish and lack of confidence in the government; especially since the Greek crisis that brought evidence to economic vulnerabilities. But I think a substantial government is needed to manage and maintain a strategic economic and military edge over other countries. Many of you are questioning all the spending in agencies like NASA, DARPA, DoE and other fundamental research. You should be aware that the US strategic position is still, and by far, at the apex, and in the global context is very envious. I think there should be a way to ponder strategic positions and debt per capita to shed some light to the real global economic position of the US. I am pretty sure that it would bring back a healthier level of confidence for your economic future. Can anybody give me taught feedback about that?
Guy_Underbridge
5 / 5 (6) Feb 19, 2014
This article is definitely click-bait for wackos.
ryggesogn2
2.2 / 5 (12) Feb 19, 2014
What's wrong is the socialists have begun the final push and people don't want socialism.
This why the people's House is becoming more conservative and why state legislatures are becoming more anti-socialist.
Note the relative success of the Scandinavian nations which right-wing writers usually describe as horrible socialist countries...


Their success is NOT based on socialism. They respect private property rights and know they can't plunder the wealth of its citizens forever.
Sweden abolished a wealth tax and Norway is now evaluating its welfare state the discourages work.
Sweden also has school vouchers to parents can choose a school.
Cocoa
3.7 / 5 (3) Feb 19, 2014
@Birger

The claims about USA being horrbly overburdened by taxes and regulations are repeated ad nauseam in Fox News and the right-wing echo chamber but do not stand up to scrutiny.


I am not arguing from the meta kind of perspective I think you are coming from. I am coming from an individual perspective. Let me give an example. We recently installed a tornado shelter in our garage. It was installed by a company that is licensed by the state to install shelters. None the less - I had to submit plans to the city, pay a permit fee, and have 2 inspections by the city engineer (to put a shelter in my own garage). I am considering installing solar panels on the house. In the U.S. - you will pay double what you pay in Germany - and the only difference is the soft costs (permits to the city). I do not dispute that other countries are even more burdened in some ways - it is the nature of government to grow.

TheGhostofOtto1923
3.6 / 5 (7) Feb 19, 2014
What's wrong is the socialists have begun the final push
Pull out your 'good' book ryggy, turn to the chapter written for priests.

"There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace." ecc3

-A PROPER Time for everything. Tech has made millions of workers obsolete. Social programs are needed to compensate - for the moment.
TheGhostofOtto1923
4.2 / 5 (6) Feb 19, 2014
Also dont forget this one.

"16 And I saw something else under the sun:
In the place of judgment—wickedness was there,
in the place of justice—wickedness was there."

-Theyre talking about laws and lawyers and lawmakers and the courts and the police etc. Intrinsically corrupt without Control from behind the Curtain.

There is SO MUCH good stuff in the bible that has absolutely nothing to do with saving your fictitious soul. The People who wrote it knew that the only way to get you to comply was to get you to believe you had one. Not hard really. No one wants to die.

"For god so loved the WORLD (the world ryggy, not you)" -that he would promise you just about anything in order to save IT from YOU.

-I paraphrase.
Code_Warrior
3.8 / 5 (4) Feb 19, 2014
@Cocoa,
I don't equate liberals with Democrats and conservatives with Republicans. Liberals and conservatives are separate from Democrats and Republicans. Democrats and Republicans are politicians and politicians want power. More government means more power. Liberals want more government as a balance to injustice against the common man, conservatives want less government as a balance to tyranny against the common man. Liberals and conservatives have different goals than politicians.

That characterization is still overly simplistic, but my original point to big_hairy_jimbo remains. Sometimes there is no way to compromise. Our discussion serves as a case in point of the problem with politics in the US. I made a very simple and harmless observation to which you reacted with incorrect assumptions about me that formed the basis of your initial response. I reacted with sarcasm as I viewed your response as equally simplistic and obvious. Battle lines were drawn and this is the result.
Modernmystic
2.9 / 5 (7) Feb 19, 2014
Our form of government is a big part of the explanation why the United States has become the richest and most powerful country in the world.


...And did we get there with a smaller more restrained government in the past or with the mammoth bull in the proverbial china closet we're saddled with now?

Cocoa
5 / 5 (2) Feb 20, 2014
@Codewarrior
I made a very simple and harmless observation


That I disagreed with - and continue to disagree with. Your characterization that Liberals want more government, and conservatives want less - is I believe not born out by the facts. None the less - we would probably be in agreement that the U.S. political system is broken. I think we need a very complex dialogue about culture, and what kind of a world we want to leave our grand children. The whole issue is of course way to complex to discuss in 1000 words. I definitely am reactive - it is frustrating seeing the over simplifications that are tossed around on Physorg. Re-read the second comment on this thread to see what I mean. The influence of money in the political system is probably the biggest issue. I don't see that changing soon.
ryggesogn2
1.7 / 5 (6) Feb 20, 2014
Now the Marxist czar of the FCC wants to put govt agents is all TV and radio newsrooms.
http://newsbuster...omeone-0
ryggesogn2
1.8 / 5 (5) Feb 20, 2014
"the Federal Communications Commission, where I am a commissioner, does not agree. Last May the FCC proposed an initiative to thrust the federal government into newsrooms across the country. With its "Multi-Market Study of Critical Information Needs," or CIN, the agency plans to send researchers to grill reporters, editors and station owners about how they decide which stories to run. "
http://online.wsj...28260732
ryggesogn2
1.6 / 5 (7) Feb 20, 2014
"The CBO report said that boosting the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, as Mr. Obama wants to do, would probably cost jobs – with employment falling by an estimated 500,000 workers."
"The CBO analysis is "completely consistent with the latest thinking in the economics profession," he told reporters at a breakfast organized by The Christian Science Monitor."
http://m.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/monitor_breakfast/2014/0219/Minimum-wage-hike-would-cost-500-000-jobs-CBO-director-defends-the-estimate.-video

freethinking
1.4 / 5 (10) Feb 20, 2014
So why is Obama so mean.... $10.10 is not a good enough wage to support an average family of 6 in Washington DC. Come on you mean socialist/progressive/democrats. That's only $1600 dollars a month before taxes and deductions. No family can live on $10.10 a month nor $15.00 as proposed by mean wacko progressives in Seattle. If, as the uncaring wacko progressives say that it is good for the economy and doesn't harm businesses to pay $15.00 minimum wage, then why not raise the minimum wage to $30.00 an hour. That way people who work at fast food joints can afford to raise families.

Any wacko progressive who does not support raising the minimum wage to $30/hr is just a hateful, mean, uncaring, stupid person who doesn't understand what it takes to live.
freethinking
1.4 / 5 (9) Feb 20, 2014
Rygg, you keep spouting off on the constitution. Why should people care about the 1'st amendment? This amendment is dangerous to the Progressive agenda because if the word ever gets out the Progressives are lying, hateful, spiteful, hypocrites then people might not vote for them. Hey Obama should be able to stop the media from posting the lies he said about obamacare (ie. costs will drop, you will be able to keep your dr. and insurance, etc). No reporting should be done on any of his other scandals like sending guns to Mexican drug cartels that are used to kill American boarder patrolmen. I can go on and on about the scandals Obama and his administration have been involved it, that shouldn't be reported. but I only have 1000 characters to use.

So rygg my question to you is, why do you want to protect the 1'st amendment so much when North Korea does so well without it? Don't you want to hear only positive news about your country and leader just like the North Koreans do?
ryggesogn2
1.5 / 5 (8) Feb 20, 2014
"to date attorneys general in five other states, Virginia, Pennsylvania, California, Illinois and Nevada have declined defending their states ban on same sex marriage against legal challenges by gay couples. In New Mexico, a sixth example, while no law specifically banned same-sex marriage the laws generally did not allow it. Mexico legalized same-sex marriage in December."
""She swore an oath of office that she would enforce all the laws, not just those she personally agrees with. The people are entitled to a vigorous defense of the laws they enact, and the marriage amendment is no exception to that solemn obligation," Brown said in a statement. "Further, Ms. Rosenblum is dead-wrong in her conclusion that the amendment cannot be supported by rational legal arguments."

Read more: http://dailycalle...tujrLuqg

Without rule of law there is only rule of kings and tyrants.
ryggesogn2
1.5 / 5 (8) Feb 20, 2014
Rule of tyrant, not law:
"On Jan. 8, DOJ and DOE informed school districts across the country that they must take proactive steps to ensure that black and Latino students are not being punished in greater numbers than white and Asian students — even if the latter groups were more likely to misbehave."

Read more: http://dailycalle...tukQKbM4
dtxx
5 / 5 (1) Feb 20, 2014
I always vote no matter what. One time I had to run two miles at a full clip to hit my polling place before it closed (I was having car problems, and how many Americans can even run one mile at a moderate clip without collapsing) and showed up dripping with sweat and smiling. This democratic process is extremely important to me, but I definitely see it as less than ideal. I am so disgusted by political dynasties and especially the lack of turnover in both state and local congress. I'm nealy 40 and my state representative has been in a position of mayor of a MAJOR city or higher since before I was born. She now has massive clout in the federal senate and makes sure to supress individual rights. As bad as ayatollahs and their ilk sound, I would argue at least one of the senators from my state has exceeded them in influence. How the fuck does democracy let that happen? I always vote for the opposing candidate, even if he has Down's and is in a wheelchair. Fuck Feinstein.
Code_Warrior
5 / 5 (2) Feb 20, 2014
@Cocoa,
I think the political system has been broken for a long time. I remain optimistic that it can be fixed, but fixing it will require an end to polarizing politics and a better educated population that clearly understands how government is supposed to work and who holds elected representatives accountable for their governance. It will also require a press that is always skeptical without bias and is eager to turn up the heat on whomever is in office whenever it becomes necessary. Elected officials must be required to attend periodic press conferences where they aren't allowed to set the agenda and must answer the questions posed like the servants that they are. Elected officials must be made to chew their humble pie slowly and have their egos force fed to them as a constant reminder of their status as servants of the people.
Cocoa
5 / 5 (1) Feb 20, 2014
@Code_Warrior

I definitely agree - especially about the 'better educated population'

freethinking
1 / 5 (6) Feb 21, 2014
rygg, you are so old fashioned...... Why do you have a problem with Obama creating and changing laws with a pen and a phone? Come on the North Korean leader does the same and it works for North Korea.

You who believe in the rule of law are so old fashioned. If a Progressive leader doesn't like a law, who are you to force them to enforce it, or force them to live under it? Laws are meant only for those who follow the laws. For example those law abiding people who carry guns MUST be held to a higher standard and must be thrown in jail if they violate or appear to violate a rule, while Thugs, Criminals, or Progressive leaders do not need to follow the law and anyone who says they do are racists.

So Rygg, you are a racist, bigoted, homophobic conservative for demanding/expecting our Progressive leaders to enforce the law, to follow the law, or to follow the constitution.
freethinking
1.2 / 5 (6) Feb 21, 2014
So Rygg, when Obama said that Obamacare will save the average family $2500/year, when he said you could keep your insurance, when he said you could keep your doctor. He knew this wasn't true, BUT it was ok as what he meant was that Obamacare would save the economy $2500 (or much more from my own personal experience) from being spent as an individual wanted, and that all the people who would lose their jobs could now be supported by the government, and that he knew the better insurance plan you HAD needed to be replaced by a worse more expensive new Plan, and the doctor you liked is worse than the doctor you are now forced to have.

What's wrong with Obama using his pen to change the law he wrote? Anyone who didn't vote for Obama should be ashamed of yourselves..... Obama has every right to lie, be corrupt, use tax money to support his cronies, and to hurt the average American. Anyone who doesn't support Obamas right to do this is a Racist hater bigot.
freethinking
1 / 5 (6) Feb 21, 2014
Rygg, expecting Obama or any Progressive to respect and uphold the American Constitution is racist.

Expecting Obama or any Progressive to be truthful is hateful.

Expecting Obama or any Progressive to believe the law applies to them is bigoted.

The rule of law is a racist term.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Feb 21, 2014
"But whoring is whoring, and the gods must be appeased. So if California burns, you send your high priest (in carbon-belching Air Force One, but never mind) to the bone-dry land to offer up, on behalf of the repentant congregation, a $1 billion burnt offering called a "climate resilience fund."

Ah, settled science in action."
http://www.washin...ory.html
freethinking
1 / 5 (6) Feb 21, 2014
rygg, you are a hateful bigot for pointing out the hypocrisy and lies of our Progressives elitists leaders. It is ok for Obama to lie, cheat and steal, even if people lose their healthcare, lose their lives, lose their freedom. It's Ok for those who are making a profit out of the Global warming scam to drive monster cars, fly private jets, and own monster mansions, while telling the rest of us we need to make sacrifices for the environment.

Rygg, you need to admit you are a racist, homophob, bigot for apposing elitist progressive leaders.
kochevnik
4 / 5 (4) Feb 21, 2014
Nice to see you have gone into the strawman business, freethinking
zaxxon451
5 / 5 (2) Feb 21, 2014
@Cocoa,
I think the political system has been broken for a long time. I remain optimistic that it can be fixed, but fixing it will require an end to polarizing politics and a better educated population that clearly understands how government is supposed to work and who holds elected representatives accountable for their governance. It will also require a press that is always skeptical without bias and is eager to turn up the heat on whomever is in office whenever it becomes necessary. Elected officials must be required to attend periodic press conferences where they aren't allowed to set the agenda and must answer the questions posed like the servants that they are. Elected officials must be made to chew their humble pie slowly and have their egos force fed to them as a constant reminder of their status as servants of the people.


Well said. I would add that education should be less about a vocation and more about social justice.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 21, 2014
What is 'social justice'?
freethinking
1 / 5 (6) Feb 21, 2014
Koch, I'm just poking fun at Progressives. Their answer when you confront them with the truth is to lie then accuse the person speaking the truth of being a homophobes racist, hater of some sort....

Problem for Progressives is, most intelligent people now know that Progressives are habitual liars, that you need to define each word they say, and they accuse those that speak the truth of being racists, homophobes, or haters of some sort.
zaxxon451
5 / 5 (1) Feb 22, 2014
What is 'social justice'?

Liberation of the oppressed.
ryggesogn2
1.8 / 5 (5) Feb 22, 2014
What is 'social justice'?

Liberation of the oppressed.

Does this include liberation from a socialist regulatory state or does this include the use of state power to redistribute wealth?
julianpenrod
2.5 / 5 (4) Feb 22, 2014
The problem with "democracy", which is the problem with all power structures, as with economics, is that so many unwisely think they are independent systems acting solely in response to circumstances abiding by universal laws. Stock price manipulation, dummy corporations, creative bookkeeping, engineered tax losses create a market that, to those not aware these things are happening, may seem impenetrable. Democrats and Republicans being the same gang of millionaires, just tapping different monetary sources but selling snake oil to the unwary, colluding behind the scenes, appearing to disagree in public, creating a society intended to keep "the little guy" from getting ahead or realizing they're being scammed. That's what defines "power", in all cultures. The gullible would necessarily see no sense in a bridge shutdown for a so called "traffic study", those who understand the world around them could smell a scam from the start!
freethinking
1 / 5 (4) Feb 22, 2014
Zaaxon, as you know I have said for a long time that you must make a Progressive define each term to get a clear understanding of what they are saying. So Please define what you mean by liberation, and define what you mean by oppressed.

My guess is once you define those two words Social Justice, will mean Progressives Forcing their beliefs on everyone else and making everyone else but them pay for it.
kochevnik
5 / 5 (2) Feb 22, 2014
Koch, I'm just poking fun at Progressives. Their answer when you confront them with the truth is to lie then accuse the person speaking the truth of being a homophobes racist, hater of some sort....
Perhaps you're confusing Democrats with progressives. Progressives are poorly represented in Russia and USA while Democrats are well aligned with industries
ryggesogn2
1.8 / 5 (5) Feb 22, 2014
creating a society intended to keep "the little guy" from getting ahead or realizing they're being scammed.


The real scam is that the 'little guy' really does have the power. The power to choose his attitude.
"Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way.

Viktor E. Frankl

Read more at http://www.brainy...QwpwR.99
The rabid attacks on the tea parties indicate how much the 'progressives' fear them.
All tyrants fear their victims will discover they have the power to overcome the tyranny.

ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Feb 22, 2014
"
"All it takes for evil to succeed is for a few good men to do nothing..."

― Edmund Burke "

"'I am sure Ukraine will join the EU': Former PM Yulia Tymoshenko is freed hours after parliament ousts President Viktor Yanukovych "
http://www.indepe...467.html

"The real mystery behind the FCC's now abandoned "study" to police American newsrooms is why the mainstream media refused to raise holy hell over it. While Obama's lapdogs refused to bark, it was conservative media who fought for newsroom independence and got the FCC to finally back down. "
http://www.breitb...om-probe
ryggesogn2
1.8 / 5 (5) Feb 22, 2014
"There is just no rational explanation for the media's lack of outrage over a federal government "study" that should put a chill down the spine of anyone who understand how important a free press is to protecting democracy.

It is bad enough when the media pushes to have the freedoms of everyone else crushed by the federal government. But when the media stops fighting for their own freedom, the canary in that coalmine doesn't have a chance."
http://www.breitb...om-probe
zaxxon451
4 / 5 (4) Feb 22, 2014

Does this include liberation from a socialist regulatory state or does this include the use of state power to redistribute wealth?


No to the first, and yes to the second. Unfortunately the power of our government rests in the hands of plutocrats, so no redistribution is coming without an awakening of the populace.
zaxxon451
4 / 5 (4) Feb 22, 2014

My guess is once you define those two words Social Justice, will mean Progressives Forcing their beliefs on everyone else and making everyone else but them pay for it.


85 people control half of the wealth of the planet, and you're concerned that they might have to contribute?
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (4) Feb 22, 2014
How is armed robbery considered to be justice?
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (4) Feb 22, 2014
" This question of legal plunder must be settled once and for all, and there are only three ways to settle it:

The few plunder the many.
Everybody plunders everybody.
Nobody plunders anybody.

We must make our choice among limited plunder, universal plunder, and no plunder. The law can follow only one of these three. "
"Law is organized justice.

Now this must be said: When justice is organized by law — that is, by force — this excludes the idea of using law (force) to organize any human activity whatever, whether it be labor, charity, agriculture, commerce, industry, education, art, or religion."
"When law and force keep a person within the bounds of justice, they impose nothing but a mere negation. They oblige him only to abstain from harming others. They violate neither his personality, his liberty, nor his property. They safeguard all of these. They are defensive; they defend equally the rights of all. "
http://bastiat.or...ION_G015
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Feb 22, 2014
"It ought to be stated that the purpose of the law is to prevent injustice from reigning. In fact, it is injustice, instead of justice, that has an existence of its own. Justice is achieved only when injustice is absent.

But when the law, by means of its necessary agent, force, imposes upon men a regulation of labor, a method or a subject of education, a religious faith or creed — then the law is no longer negative; it acts positively upon people. It substitutes the will of the legislator for their own wills; the initiative of the legislator for their own initiatives. When this happens, the people no longer need to discuss, to compare, to plan ahead; the law does all this for them. Intelligence becomes a useless prop for the people; they cease to be men; they lose their personality, their liberty, their property. "
http://bastiat.or...ION_G015

Social 'justice' is truly unjust and de-humanizing.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Feb 22, 2014
What's wrong with the US is what Bastiat noted was wrong in France in 1848, legal plunder.
The law is perverted to commit injustice instead of preventing it.
As Bastiat noted, this why politicians will viciously fight for power.
BHO considers his critics his enemies and uses all state power to crush them.
Politics for the 'progressive' is war for power.
""I think it is the broader pattern of going after people who are critics," he continued. "Not just me, but the Hollywood guys, the group Friends of Abe, these are Hollywood guys who are conservatives. So I think there is a sense here that Obama treats his critics not merely as people who disagree, but as enemies.""
http://www.mediai...enemies/
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Feb 22, 2014
"While Julie Boonstra of Dexter, Mich., struggles to survive leukemia, she now also has to cope with being called a liar by the Democrat who wants to be her next senator.

And the campaign of Rep. Gary Peters is also going after television stations airing ads in which her story is featured, threatening their licenses.

The ad by Americans for Prosperity features Boonstra talking about how her insurance was canceled under Obamacare and saying that Peters' decision to vote for the law "jeopardized my health." The ads are airing in Michigan as Peters seeks the Democratic nomination to replace Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., who is not seeking re-election."
http://washington.../2544430
"Venezuelan President blames media for 'broadcasting hate'"
http://www.telegr...ate.html
Any difference?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 23, 2014
"

The belief in a perfect future inevitably inspires a passionate (and otherwise inexplicable) hatred towards the imperfect present. The first agenda of social redeemers is to dismantle the existing social order, which means their intellectual and political energies are focused on the work of destruction.

With a false utopia as their goal, the left grants itself permission to commit any crime. With this is a free pass to lie about everything. In their world the victims of Stalin, Ho Chi Minh, and (today) Hamas are all airbrushed from history"
"Communism, which killed 100 million people in its course – in peacetime, not in war but in peacetime – and bankrupted whole continents, created unimaginable poverty for a billion people, artificial mass starvation where millions upon millions of people died because of government schemes that didn't work, showed that this Socialist idea is a bankrupt idea; there's nothing there."
http://www.breitb...rowitz-e
kochevnik
5 / 5 (3) Feb 23, 2014
How is armed robbery considered to be justice?
You prefer bribes and influence peddling
zaxxon451
4 / 5 (2) Feb 23, 2014
" This question of legal plunder must be settled once and for all, and there are only three ways to settle it:

The few plunder the many.
Everybody plunders everybody.
Nobody plunders anybody.

Now this must be said: When justice is organized by law — that is, by force — this excludes the idea of using law (force) to organize any human activity whatever, whether it be labor, charity, agriculture, commerce, industry, education, art, or religion."


Plutocrats use their riches to buy legislators who will enact policies which serve to increase their wealth at the expense of the poor. Social justice is not about the suspension of justice. It is about the establishment of justice for those who have never tasted it.

Make no mistake, the rich hate the poor. The wealthy have always despised the poor because poverty itself is a rebuke to the very system by which they enriched themselves.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 23, 2014
Social justice is not about the suspension of justice. It is about the establishment of justice for those who have never tasted it.


If 'social justice' uses force to plunder wealth, that is suspending justice.

Make no mistake, the rich hate the poor.

Bull $hit!
Do you hate George Soros or other 'liberal' billionaires?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 23, 2014
Using z's logic, (rich hate the poor) then it must be the democrats in the USA that hate the poor:

"Thirteen of the top 20 donor groups gave nearly all of their campaign cash to Democrats, with ActBlue leading the list with $97.2 million, all of it contributed to Democrats.
"If so, Mr. Steyer is the newest cash cow for Democrats.

He dispensed millions to install Terry McAuliffe in Virginia's governor's mansion. Mr. Steyer extended his generosity to Congress, inviting the most endangered freshman Democratic senators to his San Francisco manor for a fundraiser and pep rally."
"
Hypocrisy doesn't even stop there. Mr. Steyer made his enormous fortune as a hedge-fund manager, the demonized trade that Democrats blame for the 2008 market collapse."

Read more: http://www.washin...u9sttWT4
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter
lengould100
3.5 / 5 (4) Feb 23, 2014
It is scary how blind the right wing in the US is to history. Every advantage they now have was wrested away from the plutocrats by workers uniting and fighting bloody battles, and now they scream that the powers must be given back. Agreed, a vote for the democrats isn't a perfect choice, but it's sure as heck a LOT smarter than a vote for the republicans, given where their allegiances lie.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 23, 2014
Every advantage they now have was wrested away from the plutocrats by workers uniting and fighting bloody battles,


More Marxist BS.

Henry Ford increased wages not because he was a nice guy or because he was forced by a Marxist union supported by the govt, he doubled the daily wage of his workers to increase his profit.
zaxxon451
5 / 5 (2) Feb 24, 2014
Using z's logic, (rich hate the poor) then it must be the democrats in the USA that hate the poor:


I make no distinction between corporate owned republicans and neo-liberal democrats. They are slaves to their greed and enact the policies of the highest bidder.
zaxxon451
3 / 5 (2) Feb 24, 2014

If 'social justice' uses force to plunder wealth, that is suspending justice.


Wealth itself is an injustice when 22,000 children die each day of starvation. (UNICEF) No one on earth works hard enough to give them the right to billions of dollars when so many are suffering.

Do you hate George Soros or other 'liberal' billionaires?


I hate nothing but the system that allows such injustice.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 24, 2014
Wealth itself is an injustice

Without wealth, there would be MORE starvation

I hate nothing but the system that allows such injustice.

The system you demand promotes injustice.
freethinking
1 / 5 (2) Feb 24, 2014
ZAX, please define Social Justice?
zaxxon451
2.5 / 5 (2) Feb 25, 2014

Without wealth, there would be MORE starvation


Concentration of wealth is the problem. One which democracy cannot survive, as we are seeing in our politics.

The system you demand promotes injustice.


Perhaps southerners felt it was an injustice for the government to liberate their human "property" following the Civil War. Redistributing ill gotten wealth is not injustice.
zaxxon451
5 / 5 (1) Feb 25, 2014
ZAX, please define Social Justice?


Please see above.
freethinking
1 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
OK Zax, what does liberation of the oppressed mean? I'm not trying to demean you in anyway on this point, however Conservatives understand words very differently than Progressives (Conservatives and most people use common meanings of words, while Progressives use ideological meaning of words) so perhaps if Progressives want Conservatives on board they need to be very specific on what they mean.

In other words define liberation:

define oppressed:

Zax, it was a progressives that said,"it depends on what the meaning of the word is is."
ryggesogn2
1.7 / 5 (6) Feb 25, 2014
Define "ill gotten wealth ".
I define ill gotten wealth as wealth that was taken by force or fraud.
It makes no difference to me if the force or fraud is state sanctioned (legal) or by an individual.
Slavery was legal around the world for hundreds of years and does make it right.
Just as the state legally plundering wealth from those who earn that wealth is not just.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
"the fact that reality does not match the preconceptions of the intelligentsia shows that there is something wrong with reality, for which somebody must be blamed. Apparently their preconceptions cannot be wrong."

Read more: http://www.realcl...uM4Xh1pL
Follow us: @RCP_Articles on Twitter
"
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
" Hayek did not say that government welfare programs were comparable to the actions of Hitler or Stalin. His argument was that once a government departs from the order-keeping functions of the classical liberal state and begins to benefit some at the expense of others, its rulers will be irresistibly tempted to keep aggrandizing their power."
"A taste of government welfare will inevitably lead to demands for more of it, and interest groups will work to pry more favors out of the government once it's apparent that obtaining wealth this way "works.""
"Hayek cautioned that politics would attract men who would play upon people's envy and try to create the sense that they are needed to save the mass of the people from enemies. "
"From FDR to Nixon to Obama, we've seen Hayek's prediction unfolding in America"
http://www.forbes...were-so/
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
"Dionne's contention that we suffer from "gridlock" in Washington is patently ridiculous. The federal leviathan continues to grow due to Obama's diktats, bipartisan follies in Congress (such as the recent Ag bill), and the constant swell of bureaucratic mandates and prohibitions."
"What is preventing that necessary downsizing of the government is, well, gridlock! We are gridlocked against even the tiniest scaling back of the scope, power, and cost of the federal government. The reason for that is the dominance of Keynesian theory that has fooled so many people into believing that an expanding state is essential for prosperity."
http://www.forbes...re-so/2/
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (1) Feb 25, 2014
Zax n Rygg
Either of you have any idea where Warren Buffett stands on your discussion? Or Bill Gates, for that matter...
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (4) Feb 25, 2014
Zax n Rygg
Either of you have any idea where Warren Buffett stands on your discussion? Or Bill Gates, for that matter...

They are socialists.
Why do you ask or care?
TechnoCreed
2.3 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
Zax n Rygg
Either of you have any idea where Warren Buffett stands on your discussion? Or Bill Gates, for that matter...

They are socialists. Why do you ask or care?

This is odd! While you, a pure product of neo-capitalism ideology, seems to strive to make ends meet, those so called socialists are bathing in the fortune they have created. No offense meant, just an observation made trough following the discussion.
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (4) Feb 25, 2014
What is 'neo-capitalism'?

Buffet and Gates are socialists because they want the state to control private property, for their benefit.
It's called rent seeking or political entrepreneurism.
TechnoCreed
3.7 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
It is thru that neo-capitalism does not really mean anything; I did not want to prejudge your economic ideology filiations. But let me put it this way; you seem to be looking for severe economic reforms.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
ou seem to be looking for severe economic reforms.

And you are not?
Do you like recessions and depressions?
kochevnik
5 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
ou seem to be looking for severe economic reforms.

And you are not?
Do you like recessions and depressions?
Ryggie what billionaires made their fortune without government intervention, subsidies and political flirtation? And while you dislike economic cycles, you defend the bankers that make them
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
Rockefeller, Carnegie,....
kochevnik
5 / 5 (2) Feb 25, 2014
Rockefeller, Carnegie,....
That's amazingly ignorant. Both were heavily involved in politics, Ryggie.
TechnoCreed
2.5 / 5 (2) Feb 25, 2014
you seem to be looking for severe economic reforms.

And you are not? Do you like recessions and depressions?

If you would have read my earlier comments, you would have known that I am not an American. So any answer I would give would not be pertinent since the subject here is American democracy.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Feb 25, 2014
Rockefeller, Carnegie,....
That's amazingly ignorant. Both were heavily involved in politics, Ryggie.

Not while they were creating their wealth.
I am not an American.

So? Recession and depression is world wide because of socialist policies.
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (2) Feb 25, 2014
Rockefeller, Carnegie,....
That's amazingly ignorant. Both were heavily involved in politics, Ryggie.

Not while they were creating their wealth.
I am not an American.

So? Recession and depression is world wide because of socialist policies.

So.... you think Gates and Buffet were heavily involved in politics in order and prior to gain their wealth?
TechnoCreed
3.7 / 5 (3) Feb 25, 2014
Well, Canada is governed by the conservative, but it is still socialist from an American point of view. Anyway, I can assure you that our economy is doing fine. And no, I am not scared about recession, depression or giving away my money for the well being of others. Here we care about each others.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 26, 2014
Gates and Buffet were heavily involved in politics in order and prior to gain their wealth?

Buffet, yes. It's called lobbying.
Gates' socialism has blossomed after he became wealthy by supporting state control of private property.
Buffet, too, by advocating for higher tax rates has demonstrated his socialism.
that our economy is doing fine

Do you understand why? Canada is supporting free market principles, but only recently.
Elect another socialist and watch the Canadian economy tank, again.
TechnoCreed
3.7 / 5 (3) Feb 26, 2014
Do you understand why? Canada is supporting free market principles, but only recently.
Elect another socialist and watch the Canadian economy tank, again.


Scandinavian countries are all pretty much what YOU call socialists. No economic struggles there neither and they even put money aside for future generations. As for us up north we elect governments to keep a political equilibrium. Like in all loving families, people come first the economy comes after.
freethinking
1 / 5 (5) Feb 26, 2014
democracy no longer exists when homosexuals rights trump religious rights. When homosexuals can use the power of the governments gun to force a person to be in a place where he doesn't want and force that person to take pictures of things he doesn't want to take, or make a woman bake a cake she doesn't want to bake, for an occasion she doesn't want to celebrate, or force another woman to arrange flowers for an activity that offends her, or force another man to print material promoting sexual acts he wouldn't participate in, that is not democracy, but slavery.

ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 26, 2014
Scandinavian countries are all pretty much what YOU call socialists.

Did bit deeper and you will find they are not really that socialistic.
They respect private property and have limited govt spending.
Sweden repealed a wealth tax and has school vouchers.
Norway is reevaluating its welfare state.
Of course they have a homogenous population that has a long tradition of ethics limiting corruption.
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (4) Feb 26, 2014
What happens when the chief law enforcement officer in the US refuses to enforce the laws passed by the people and announces state law enforcement officers don't have to enforce the law either.
Lawlessness reigns.
TechnoCreed
3.7 / 5 (3) Feb 26, 2014
Did bit deeper and you will find they are not really that socialistic.

Still , you must admit that they are way out of line of your ideas!
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (4) Feb 26, 2014
Did bit deeper and you will find they are not really that socialistic.

Still , you must admit that they are way out of line of your ideas!

No, I must not.
TechnoCreed
2.5 / 5 (2) Feb 26, 2014
@ryggesogn2
It is funny to realize that, because we are not compatriots, we can hold a polite discussion on a political subject. This comment column shows that it is not the case between American opposing political positions were compatriots become belligerents. Could it be that some politicians are deliberately causing frictions? This is not the way it works in my country; hate is not in the equation.
ryggesogn2
3 / 5 (2) Feb 26, 2014
Could it be that some politicians are deliberately causing frictions?


That depends upon what the politicians are trying to do.
Socialists from both parties in the US want more govt control, more govt spending, and want to plunder more wealth.
Anti-socialist oppose this tyranny and are fighting for liberty.
Socialists like Obama treat anyone who disagrees with him his enemy and uses any political power he can to destroy his opponents, just like any third world dictator does.
zaxxon451
5 / 5 (1) Feb 26, 2014
Define "ill gotten wealth ".
I define ill gotten wealth as wealth that was taken by force or fraud.
It makes no difference to me if the force or fraud is state sanctioned (legal) or by an individual.
Slavery was legal around the world for hundreds of years and does make it right.
Just as the state legally plundering wealth from those who earn that wealth is not just.

I think I've already explained this. The wealthy hijack democracy through 501c organizations that only support candidates who are willing to make policy in the interest of those same wealthy individuals. The policies enacted are crafted to facilitate the creation of more wealth for those wealthy individuals. In my opinion, this is the definition of ill gotten wealth.
zaxxon451
3 / 5 (2) Feb 26, 2014

In other words define liberation:

define oppressed:

Zax, it was a progressives that said,"it depends on what the meaning of the word is is."


Social justice speaks to a wide range of issues, but at the root of most of our society's problems is the failing of our democracy. In this case, the oppressed are those without a voice, which is most of the population. The only voice that matters to politicians is that of wealthy donors. Liberation means the restoration of real democracy through the removal of money from politics.

By the way, Clinton is not a progressive, nor is Obama. They are neo-liberal radicals committed to the destruction of our middle class through globalization, free trade, and deregulation of banks. There are actually few progressive voices in our government, aside from a handful including Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and John Lewis.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 26, 2014
The policies enacted are crafted to facilitate the creation of more wealth for those wealthy individuals.

This is also called socialism, state control of private property.
There are actually few progressive voices in our government, aside from a handful including Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and John Lewis.

These are socialist voices.

Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (4) Feb 26, 2014
Buffet, too, by advocating for higher tax rates has demonstrated his socialism.
that our economy is doing fine

For the Wealthy, if I remember correctly...
(He thinks it sucks that he pays a lower tax percentage than his secretary...)

You realize how paranoid you sound?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 26, 2014
For the Wealthy, if I remember correctly...
(He thinks it sucks that he pays a lower tax percentage than his secretary...)


Buffet is free to donate has much of his wealth as he wishes to the US Treasury.
Why doesn't he do so if he feels he is not paying enough to the state?
If Buffet were an anti-socialist he would have advocated for tax cuts and govt spending cuts.
But he chose the socialist path, tax and spend.
Captain Stumpy
5 / 5 (6) Feb 26, 2014
democracy no longer exists when homosexuals rights trump religious rights

@freefromthought
this is total BUNK. Its like saying democ. doesnt exist when tall people have the same rights as short people! What a moron!
democracy no longer exists when a single religion forces a gov't to adopt a standard in which only allows said religion control of morals (in which it usually does NOT comply).
Democracy should be equal rights for every individual
When homosexuals can use the power of the governments gun to force a person to be in a place where he doesn't want and force that person to take pictures of things he doesn't want to take, or make a woman bake a cake she doesn't want to bake, for an occasion she doesn't want to celebrate, or force another woman to arrange flowers for an activity that offends her, or force another man to print material promoting sexual acts he wouldn't participate in, that is not democracy, but slavery.

replace homosexuals with blacks and you have almost a verbatim argument from pre-civil rights america... thank you for joining the ranks of religious stupidity- tell us again how you god is the god of love and forgiveness?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 27, 2014
The real issue is the right of association.
Individuals have the right to associate and if any business owner does NOT want to associate with a customer, for any reason, he has that right.
When the state can force individuals and business owners to associate, then the individual and business owner are state slaves.

And the other issue is the failure of law enforcement officers to enforce the law.
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (6) Feb 27, 2014
The real issue is the right of association.
Individuals have the right to associate and if any business owner does NOT want to associate with a customer, for any reason, he has that right.
When the state can force individuals and business owners to associate, then the individual and business owner are state slaves.

And the other issue is the failure of law enforcement officers to enforce the law.

Your argument is too polarized.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 27, 2014
Forcing people to associate is not polarizing?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 27, 2014
Is this polarizing?

"Spike Lee isn't happy with the current wave of gentrification in his beloved Big Apple and neighboring communities."
http://www.breitb...fication
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 27, 2014
"the first sign that a fledgling democracy is heading for the rocks often comes when elected rulers try to erode constraints on their power—often in the name of majority rule."
"The best way to constrain the power of special interests is to limit the number of goodies that the state can hand out. And the best way to address popular disillusion towards politicians is to reduce the number of promises they can make. The key to a healthier democracy, in short, is a narrower state—an idea that dates back to the American revolution. "In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men", Madison argued, "the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself." "
http://www.econom...an-be-do
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 27, 2014
Why Sweden is doing better:
"Governments can exercise self-restraint in several different ways. They can put on a golden straitjacket by adopting tight fiscal rules—as the Swedes have done by pledging to balance their budget over the economic cycle."
"The Swedes rescued their pension system from collapse when an independent commission suggested pragmatic reforms including greater use of private pensions, and linking the retirement age to life-expectancy."
http://www.econom...an-be-do
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (4) Feb 27, 2014
Forcing people to associate is not polarizing?

Step out of your little box into a larger one. Nothing to fear....
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2014
Forcing people to associate is not polarizing?

Step out of your little box into a larger one. Nothing to fear....

Can't or won't answer the question?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2014
Homosexuals in Boston are demanding to march as a homosexual group, not an Irish group, in the St. Patrick's day parade.
The organizers say no. Boston's mayor states he won't support the parade.
A homosexual bar owner in CA refuses to serve legislators who don't support his political agenda. Where is the lawsuit demanding he serve all?
Who is being polarizing? Me for pointing this out or the homosexuals demanding special treatment?
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2014
Forcing people to associate is not polarizing?

Step out of your little box into a larger one. Nothing to fear....

Can't or won't answer the question?

Homogenizing. In this day an age of 7 and a half billion people on the planet, it's kind of a necessity.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 28, 2014
Forced homogenization?
USSR tried that.
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2014
Forced homogenization?
USSR tried that.

Once again - too polarized.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2014
Forced homogenization?
USSR tried that.

Once again - too polarized.

It's your idea.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2014
""Environmental advocates target climate change as Democratic election issue." Actually, the headline might be translated to read, "Green liberal billionaires plot to elect Democrats who will squeeze down the energy industry." Indeed, the piece details the efforts of former vice president Al Gore and a coterie of billionaires, mostly clustered in the San Francisco Bay Area, including hedge funder Tom Steyer and Esprit founder Susie Tompkins Buell, to bankroll the Democrats to victory in 2014. "
""Wealthy environmentalists are pushing Democrats to take bolder positions on climate change." Once again, if we might be allowed to translate, "wealthy" means, in fact, "super rich."

Steyer, for example, retired from investing to devote himself full time to liberal-left activism, mostly, green activism; he seems determined to play the role of Green Godfather. "
http://www.breitb...ed-Piper
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 28, 2014
"Yet as The Washington Times recently noted:

The Koch brothers, despite their wealth and interest in politics, are not even in the major league of contributors to political causes. The nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics compiled a list of "Heavy Hitters," top political donors from 1989 to 2014, and the Koch brothers are in 59th place. Thirteen of the top 20 donor groups gave nearly all of their campaign cash to Democrats, with ActBlue leading the list with $97.2 million, all of it contributed to Democrats… Only three of the top 20 donor groups gave predominantly to Republicans.

In other words, the left is beating the right at the big-money game. So once again, we can see why the Democrats don't seem preoccupied anymore with the goal of "getting money out of politics." "
http://www.breitb...ed-Piper
Whydening Gyre
4 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2014
Forced homogenization?
USSR tried that.

Once again - too polarized.

It's your idea.

guess I should have said - YOUR RESPONSE is too polarized...
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2014
Facts are polarizing?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Feb 28, 2014
"Four of the five authors responsible for drafting an invasive Federal Communications Commissions media study seemingly designed to regulate news coverage donated to Barack Obama's campaigns for president.

Professors Carola Weil and Ernest J. Wilson III from the University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism along with Lewis Friedland from the University of Wisconsin-Madison Center for Communication and Democracy and Philip Napoli from Fordham University all donated to Obama and were subsequently commissioned to write the study,

Read more: http://dailycalle...ug1kyNRX
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (4) Mar 01, 2014
Facts are polarizing?

Yep. when used to create division by confusion.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Mar 01, 2014
What confusion?
Socialists want to take more power in the US, violate the Constitution and selectively enforce laws.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Mar 01, 2014
"In the Cato letters printed in Zenger's New York Weekly Journal, it was argued that each individual had not just the right but the duty to seek truth in his own way. From the book (emphasis mine):

"Every man's religion is his own," Cato declared, "nor can the religion of any man, of what nature or figure soever, be the religion of another man, unless he also chooses it; which action utterly excludes all force, power or government."

The media now call people who agree with this notion "bigots" or "Jim Crow" types. "
http://thefederal...utshell/
TechnoCreed
3.5 / 5 (4) Mar 01, 2014
Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace

You, you may say
I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people sharing all the world

You, you may say
I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one

(John Lennon)

In this song, Mr Lennon was not promoting any destructive or prejudicial ideologies. He was inviting people, to open their mind and be respectful of each others. Everyone is entitled to have his or her own opinions about any given subject and is allowed to defends his or her ideas, but when somebody start to feel hate toward others, he or she should realize that the problem might be caused by his or her own narrow mindedness.

Sometime people are feeling distressed because their favorite medias are reinforcing the impression that they are deliberately being oppressed. Try to look at the world from a global point of view. There are good people everywhere and from all ideologies and political spectrum and, just like you, they deserve respect.
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (4) Mar 01, 2014
"In the Cato letters printed in Zenger's New York Weekly Journal, it was argued that each individual had not just the right but the duty to seek truth in his own way. From the book (emphasis mine):

"Every man's religion is his own," Cato declared, "nor can the religion of any man, of what nature or figure soever, be the religion of another man, unless he also chooses it; which action utterly excludes all force, power or government."

Key word - choose. Pick a place not too extreme and you'll be ok.

GREAT quote, Techno!
freethinking
1 / 5 (3) Mar 01, 2014
When you no longer have rule of law, you quite becoming a democratic nation.

Does anyone believe that Obama and the democrats believe in the rule of law?
He chooses to re-write laws at his whim?
He ignores laws he doesn't like?

Under Obama and the Democrats, USA is close to no longer being a democratic country of laws.
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (6) Mar 01, 2014
In this song, Mr Lennon was not promoting any destructive or prejudicial ideologies.

Yes, he was. It is called socialism.
'a brotherhood of man' is not the same as 'a brotherhood of men'.
Lennon denies and disrespects unique individual human beings just as socialism does.
Everyone is entitled to have his or her own opinions

But only if they conform to the collective, right?
I prefer what was written in the US Declaration Independence: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. "
The fundamental axiom is that every human being has unalienable and inherent rights that no man or collective of men can deny.
Lennon's dream is an impossible fantasy for which millions have been murdered in attempt to impose that fantasy on others.
Socialists are free to voluntarily attempt that fantasy, but not coerce others.
TechnoCreed
4.2 / 5 (5) Mar 01, 2014
The title of this song is Imagine not Act, the boundaries are inside ourselves. We must learn to look beyond. And...
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. "

also mean that values of other are as valid than our own. So all one can do is bring his ideas forward and let others decide if it fits within their own values.
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (6) Mar 01, 2014
Lennon does encourage action.
"I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one"

"Nothing to kill or die for"
Where is this fantasy land? Even any environmentalism fantasy world. there must be predatory animals and if you are not willing to kill them to protect your fellow man or, to be selfish, your family,
Lennon's imaginary land reminds me of the Eloi in Time Machine.
TechnoCreed
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 01, 2014
The world that he is singing about is not a fantasy, it already exist in the minds of millions of people; in two words, open mind.
freethinking
1 / 5 (3) Mar 01, 2014
Until men realize that God has made man in his image,

http://www.youtub...PHk4HF6k

John Lennons view will never occur.
ryggesogn2
1.8 / 5 (5) Mar 01, 2014
The world that he is singing about is not a fantasy, it already exist in the minds of millions of people; in two words, open mind.

Imagination leads to actions.
Christians call the world Lennon imagines Heaven.

And the world will live as one

As one ...what?
Humans are individuals, not a hive.

ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Mar 01, 2014
TC reminds me of how the 'progressive'/socialists imagine there there exists perfect humans that if only they were in control, the world would then be perfect.
Every time a socialist state fails the socialist assert that the leadership was flawed, not the system.
Bastiat notes in The Law how the legislator must pass laws to control people since, unlike the legislator, the people are lumps of clay that need their guidance and wisdom.
Lennon's fantasy world demands all who live there to be perfect, an impossibility leading to its collapse.
Free market systems, rule of law, property rights, limited govt accept men are not perfect yet create a structure that will support the efforts of men to aim for that goal.
freethinking
1 / 5 (3) Mar 01, 2014
rygg, don't you know Obama and the Democrats are perfect which is why the media keeps propping him up and avoiding investigating all the scandals. If they even scratch the surface, then the whole house would fall down.

If the current administration was republican......... what would the media be doing right now?
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (2) Mar 01, 2014
The world that he is singing about is not a fantasy, it already exist in the minds of millions of people; in two words, open mind.

Imagination leads to actions.
Christians call the world Lennon imagines Heaven.

And the world will live as one

As one ...what?
Humans are individuals, not a hive.

You are over-reacting. It's just metaphorical.
Stop being so paranoid. sheesh...
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (2) Mar 01, 2014
If the current administration was republican......... what would the media be doing right now?

Probly the same thing - like they did with Bush 2. Media knows which side their bread is buttered on - the side in power at the time.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (1) Mar 01, 2014
robly the same thing - like they did with Bush 2. Media knows which side their bread is buttered on - the side in power at the time.


Don't pay much attention to news do you?
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (4) Mar 01, 2014
robly the same thing - like they did with Bush 2. Media knows which side their bread is buttered on - the side in power at the time.


Don't pay much attention to news do you?

I do. But not ALL Fox news... Try BBC a little...
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Mar 01, 2014
BBC is of little use for me.
"What's strange about this ongoing and long-term debate about 'BBC bias' is that -- strangely enough -- the BBC has often admitted to it. The BBC has even been explicit about the precise political nature of that bias. In the last decade or so I've heard -- on the radio -- ten or more confessions (as it were) of that political bias from various BBC bigwigs. For example, the BBC has often been described -- even by its supporters/fans -- as being 'liberal' as well as being 'left-liberal'. What's more, the BBC has describe itself in such ways. Despite that, at other times those admissions -- if that's what they are -- of political bias are wholly denied. "
http://www.americ...ias.html
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Mar 01, 2014
But I will say the British press has been much better at reporting on the failures of the Obama regime than most US press.
Whydening Gyre
5 / 5 (4) Mar 01, 2014
Well, I tried....
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Mar 02, 2014
Is Obama the reincarnation of Chamberlain?
A socialist US president and socialist mischief in Europe. History repeats.
freethinking
3 / 5 (2) Mar 03, 2014
I think the democrats and Obama just made Jimmy Carter look good.

At least with Jimmy Carter, you could keep your doctor, your health insurance, the first amendment was safe, American allies knew we were behind them, he didn't use the DOJ, IRS, DOE, FBI, DHS, and many other government agencies against those that disagreed with him, he believed in the rule of law, didn't go against the constitution, sent troops (though disastrously) to rescue diplomats, and he didn't threaten the media.

So yea, Jimmy Carter years were a lot better than Obama and the current batch of Progressive democrats in power for the last 8 years.
freethinking
3 / 5 (2) Mar 03, 2014
OK, who is in charge? Obama knew nothing about or outright lied about Obamacare, Benghazi, AP wiretaps, IRS targeting, Fast and Furious, DHS Ammo Purchases, DHS Criminal Releases......

In 2008, Sarah Palin predicted that if Obama was elected President, Russia would invade Ukraine. Obama, and the Democrats laughed and the media protecting Obama and the democrats mocked Palin.

In 2012, when Mitt Romney warned of the geopolitical threat posed by Russa, Obama called it "cold war thinking" and the Democrats laughed while the media protecting Obama and the democrats mocked Romney.

Today Putin Mocks Obama while he invades the Ukraine.

Obama, has now taken the Most Inept Presidents award away from Jimmy Carter.
freethinking
3 / 5 (2) Mar 05, 2014
Democracy is seriously in danger or no longer in existence when top Government officials are afraid for their lives if they speak publicly about corruption in Government.

Lois Lerner fears for her life if she testifies openly before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Wednesday, according to her attorney. Who is she afraid of, and why are they threatening her?

http://dailycalle...v6fmV8An