Sorry, GOP, but You Will Never Out-Care the Democrats

The Grand Old Party realizes it needs a new strategy.

Republicans now have a comprehensive "autopsy" report detailing some of the perceived and some of the real shortcomings of the 2012 presidential election. And the rather optimistically named Growth and Opportunity Project's report is jampacked with so many painfully obvious observations that one wonders why it had to be written in the first place.

You may not be surprised to learn, for instance, that a bunch of people find the Republican Party "scary," "narrow minded," "out of touch" and a party of "stuffy old men." Alas, the "perception that the GOP does not care about people is doing great harm to the Party and its candidates," states the report. This theme was in full display at the recent Conservative Political Action Conference, as well. The GOP has to care more, a lot more.

As practical politics go (not to mention personal morality), compassion is never a bad idea. But rest assured, politically speaking, the GOP will never out-"care" the Democratic Party. It will never out-empathize it. Or out-diversify it. Or be able to promise that government can do more. And it shouldn't want to.

For starters, there's no reason to accept the liberal definition of caring—at all. Conservatives can be as compassionate as anyone else; just look at polls that gauge who gives to charities. It just so happens that conservatives don't like to do their caring with other people's money. If Republicans start holding up government as the principal source of empathy, hope and charity, America can expect an even bigger arms race in spending and dependency—the kind that, in the end, burdens the young and poor and everyone else.

It's one thing to be more diverse and open-minded, to engage all sorts of people, even to shift your opinions when generational forces or facts demand it. It's quite another to, as Newt Gingrich explained at CPAC, become a "party focused on the right to life and the right to a good life." To begin with, politicians are in no position to offer you a good life—or a right to it. Secondly, it's a myth that a good life isn't available to anyone who is genuinely seeking it. In any event, liberal populism already has a monopoly on victimhood, so there's scarce room for Republicans in that space.

In many tactical areas, the Growth and Opportunity Project seems to make sense. Modernization and more effective outreach are great ideas. The problem is that too often, the RNC allows Democrats to define the parameters of debate. There's way too much worrying about acceptance and far too little about persuasion.

As a practical matter, let's concede for a moment that conceding issues such as immigration, gay marriage and abortion makes sense—and that's the implicit message of the project's report. I'm sympathetic on a number of points, but what's the cost-benefit analysis? Folks in Washington are obsessed with winning, and winning is nice. But politics is their livelihood. Average Americans don't participate in the political process to join a team; they knock on doors because—as surprising as this may be to some—they believe in something.

And even though social conservatives feel as if they're being swept aside by Republican Beltway types, fiscal conservatism will fare no better under this thinking. The idea of free markets is a moral one—an American idea—and a sellable one. Yes, polls show that young Americans are more pro-government than ever. So it'd be nice if there were a plan to convince them of how wrong they are—as opposed to trying to sound more like the people they already agree with.

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  • Homple||

    Mr. Harsanyi has nailed it, exactly right and concisely.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    The problem is, of course, whether this "caringness" manifests itself as providing opportunities or attempting to guarantee outcomes.

    And, no, I did not RTFA.

  • sloopyinca||

    The GOP will pay lip service to this analysis...right up until it's time to nominate candidates. That's when they look into the mirror and decide once again that America wants their SoCon morality and big-spending war machine politics.

    And they will lose.

  • sarcasmic||

    Yup.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    Well, those libertarians actually expect you to cut the size and scope of government. How are you supposed to buy votes doing stuff like that?

    /GOP Establishment

  • Gordilocks||

    +1000

  • ||

    Yeah, people want grievance-mongering morality and big-spending war machine politics. Jeez, get with the times you old fashioned bigots!

  • sarcasmic||

    So it'd be nice if there were a plan to convince them of how wrong they are—as opposed to trying to sound more like the people they already agree with.

    First you have to convince them to stop emoting and to start thinking.

    No amount of reason and rationality will convince someone who feels that they are right. Just look at Tony.

  • WTF||

    The GOP has to care more, a lot more.

    Whatever the fuck that's supposed to mean. I'm guessing 'moar free shit'. (No, I didn't RTFA) And it doesn't matter, anyway, the media will still lambaste them as uncaring ghouls no matter what they do. Thus we get things like the recent poll where people generally agreed with GOP policy postions, until they were told they were GOP positions and then they disagreed.

  • WTF||

    Yes, polls show that young Americans are more pro-government than ever. So it'd be nice if there were a plan to convince them of how wrong they are-

    Well, that plan would probably need to entail somehow reversing the left's long march through the institutions, and reverse their control of education, news media and entertainment media.

  • Calvin Coolidge||

    A few years on their own as adults, trying to earn a living and being left to the tender mercies of the Federal Government, can be hoped to fill its traditional role of opening their eyes.

  • Pro Libertate||

    The GOP doesn't even have to change its positions. All it has to do is emphasize the ones they kill the Democrats on, particularly on economics (though they need to reform themselves dramatically before that will be realized).

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    "As a practical matter, let's concede for a moment that conceding issues such as immigration, gay marriage and abortion makes sense"

    Assuming that immigration reform and gay marriage are inevitable (I don't actually know), I don't want to lump in abortion with these two.

    The choicers only outpoll the prolifers when attention gets focused on that small minority of abortions performed on children conceived in rape, or in life-threatening (to the mother) situations, or if the media misleads the public into thinking that Planned Parenthood is all about mammograms and free puppies and scarcely bothers with abortion.

    In the case of the vast majority of abortions actually performed - no rape, no danger to the mother, just a matter of the mother's convenience (and unwillingness to place the child for adoption despite the enormous demand for adoption), the public is highly skeptical of abortion.

    If abortion were a lost cause, why are there more prolife laws getting passed (just consult the hysterical news sites and fundraising letters of the choicers)?

  • Tony||

    Nowhere under no circumstance at no time in history have private charities (read: churches) been able to sufficiently take care of the basic needs of vulnerable people. If this country has fewer vulnerable people that other places, it's because it has a government-funded social safety net in place. There's no shortage of charities sending aid to Haiti or other places with lots of poor people. What they lack are strong institutions. The real difference between the competing governing philosophies is one occasionally says it cares and the other demonstrates it in concrete ways.

  • R C Dean||

    Nowhere under no circumstance at no time in history have private charities (read: churches) governments been able to sufficiently take care of the basic needs of vulnerable people.

    Also true.

  • Calvin Coolidge||

    Damn, I was looking up the html for strike, but you beat me to it.

    Government has found one effective way to take care of the basic needs of vulnerable people, however. Kill them. Solves the problem nice and permanent-like.

  • sarcasmic||

    If by demonstrates you mean using coercion to obtain funds, as opposed to giving the money voluntarily, then yes I believe you are correct.

  • Tony||

    If you're against taxation and government coercion, then you're an anarchist. Then compassion is irrelevant. That's just the way it is.

    Libertarians' problem is that the stupid nonsensical and oft-contradicted moral law that taxation is thievery trumps every other concern, even human well-being. Your compassion extends only as far as the person being taxed, as if that were a greater harm than starving or being ill.

  • sarcasmic||

    I'm just pointing out the fact that you honestly feel that someone who voluntarily gives of their own money cares less than someone who leaves their wallet in their pocket and instead uses extortion to fund their charity.

    The fact that you cannot see how absurd that is is, well, sad.

  • Tony||

    I didn't say that. I said private organizations cannot handle the load of creating a stable social safety net. Ask the Catholic Church, which does untold amounts of charity work, but is also begging governments to beef up safety nets to lighten their load.

    Taxation is not extortion anymore than paying a restaurant bill is extortion. You use the stuff taxes pay for from the moment you're born. And you don't get to freeload.

  • dinkster||

    And you don't get to freeload.

    Fuck off slaver.

  • sarcasmic||

    Ah yes. That social contract that I signed in blood at birth.

  • Tony||

    Your parents were free to move you somewhere else, as were you when you came of age. You chose not to, yet you insist upon the right to freeload on the society taxes and spending built. Why are you such a looting moocher?

  • dinkster||

    our parents were free to move you somewhere else

    Sins of the parents. Ah, liberal hypocrisy.

  • sarcasmic||

    Never making the choice to leave the country amounts to a positive act of signing a social contract.

    Inaction is action. Got it. You're like so Zen and stuff, you know?

  • ||

    Tony:

    You chose not to, yet you insist upon the right to freeload on the society taxes and spending built. Why are you such a looting moocher? You're free to choose your favorite state-run cage to live in. This means you are free, and now you must pay.

    FIFY.

  • KPres||

    Lol. Love it or leave it!

    Of course, this works for anything.

    Gay people want to get married? They're free to move.

    Government wire-tapping? You're free to move.

    etc, etc.

  • ||

    Gay people want to get married? They're free to move.

    Right, and, since they haven't, this implies that they not only agree not to marry, but approve of using their taxes and state force to prevent others from marrying.

    How convenient for conservatives.

  • sloopyinca||

    Taxation is not extortion anymore than paying a restaurant bill is extortion.

    It is if you're making me pay your restaurant bill by putting a gun to my head.

  • Tony||

    It is a metaphorical gun right? So in a way the restaurant owner is putting a "gun" to your head. If you don't pay for the stuff you consumed, you might have a real one pointed at you. And you should find nothing wrong with that.

    Pay for the stuff you consume. Stop being a moocher.

  • ||

    Tony:

    It is a metaphorical gun right?

    No, it's not. If you don't pay you taxes, they only start with letter campaigns. If you don't pay, they get a judgment from a judge with a very fancy black robe, assigning fines on top of taxes. If you don't pay the fines, they send people with guns and handcuffs to take you to jail. If you resist them in taking you to jail, they kill you, with actual guns.

    Why do you think people pay their taxes? It's not to preserve a credit score.

  • Tony||

    Same reason they don't commit other crimes. But you can't have sanctions for crimes, especially the most horrific crime of all, stealing your property, without taxpayer funded government to, you know, make it a crime.

  • ||

    you can't have sanctions for crimes, especially the most horrific crime of all, stealing your property, without taxpayer funded government to, you know, make it a crime.

    Gotcha. It's not wrong to steal someone's things, or murder someone you don't like, or rape someone you feel like raping unless some collection of assholes writes down on paper that it's wrong.

    You oughtta go try that some time in one of the flyover counties where guns are still legal.

  • ||

    Tony:

    But you can't have sanctions for crimes, especially the most horrific crime of all, stealing your property, without taxpayer funded government to, you know, make it a crime.

    [Citation needed]

  • ||

    Tony:

    You use the stuff taxes pay for from the moment you're born. And you don't get to freeload

    Not really. I've been paying social security and medicare taxes. If I died today, I wouldn't get anything from that.

    My taxes go to fund plenty of things I don't use.

    Oh if only I paid taxes for the stuff I used. That would be great.

  • Tony||

    You're paying for a program that you benefit from even if you're not now receiving payouts. You benefit because you don't have to step over homeless old people on your way to work. You benefit, perhaps, because you have a relative who is getting payouts, freeing you of the burden.

  • ||

    Tony:

    You benefit because you don't have to step over homeless old people on your way to work.

    I don't have relatives getting payouts. They died too young.

    Right, and I need to pay for the Iraq war, the drone war, and domestic surveillance because, without that, I'm sure I'd be dead from another terrorist attack.

    Citation needed.

  • KPres||

    "I said private organizations cannot handle the load of creating a stable social safety net. Ask the Catholic Church, which does untold amounts of charity work, but is also begging governments to beef up safety nets to lighten their load."

    This is a bit like saying private defense contractors couldn't fend off a foreign invasion. Of course not, the state has the industry monopolized.

  • Sevo||

    Tony| 3.21.13 @ 1:18PM |#
    "I said private organizations cannot handle the load of creating a stable social safety net"
    Nor can the gov't, shithead.

  • Calvin Coolidge||

    So, are there any limits to the amount of money you are allowed to steal, just so long as you insist that your morality compels you to steal it?

  • Tony||

    I'm not allowed to steal.

  • sarcasmic||

    I'm not allowed to steal.

    But you would if you could get away with it.

  • ||

    Tony:

    I'm not allowed to steal.

    Right. Stealing is when you take property and you're not the state. When the state does it, it's magically different.

  • Tony||

    Different, but not magically so. Our system of laws determines what IS property. If you owe something to the Treasury, it's not your property.

  • ||

    Tony:

    Different, but not magically so. Our system of laws determines what IS property. If you owe something to the Treasury, it's not your property.

    Right, and when slavery is legal, a slave doesn't own himself.

    I can't believe you've been around here for so long and still believe in the magic qualities of law, when there are so many counter-examples.

  • Tony||

    I don't believe law is magic. I believe it is necessary that it be enforced, however. Believing otherwise is the magical thinking.

  • ||

    Actually, that's very magical.

    Since you believe that the law determines was is property, and that it's necessary to be enforced, walk me through the property rights of this scenario:

    A slave lives in the south, where the law says he is the property of another. He wants to own himself, so he escapes to the north. Agents of the south pursue him on his way and into the north, attempting to capture him and bring him back south. The law of the north says that every man owns himself. Agents of the north find out about the agents pursuing the slave from the south, and begin pursuing the pursuers themselves, with the intent to arrest them for kidnapping.

    Since the law determines property rights and enforcement is necessary, then this implies that his initial condition is not self-ownership. Does he undergo a magical transformation to self-ownership? If so, when does this happen? When he begins to flee? When he crosses an arbitrary, imaginary line between the south and the north? Or, since both states and their laws disagree, does he magically own himself and not own himself, simultaneously?

    Whatever your answer is, a libertarian would say he always owned himself, regardless of the law. You label this magical thinking. Then, you begin hand-waving towards words written on paper (i.e., laws), imaginary lines on maps, and agents running through the woods with chains and guns. You might as well read palms and channel the dead. That would be less irrational and arbitrary.

  • Tony||

    With no constitution or laws, nobody owns anything, including himself. "Ownership" is what is asserted by whoever has the most firepower, including ownership over other human beings.

    Your moral principles are wonderful, but they are just shouts in the wind without law and order backing them up.

  • ||

    Tony:

    With no constitution or laws, nobody owns anything, including himself.


    "Ownership" is what is asserted by whoever has the most firepower, including ownership over other human beings.

    These two statements contradict each other. If ownership is what is asserted by whoever has the most firepower, then ownership does not depend on constitutions or laws.

    Should people really care when you whine about libertarian consistency, when you can't stay consistent over two sentences?

    Go back start over, and come up with a stance that isn't blatantly self-contradictory. Then, come back and lecture everyone on the nature of rights.

  • dinkster||

    tony is Max Headroom. His head starts stuttering, then his brain resets. the next day he will make these same contradictory comments.

  • KPres||

    You steal every time you vote.

  • sarcasmic||

    Dude, the rich haven't paid their fair share. How do we know this? Well, they're rich. If they had paid their fair share then they wouldn't be rich. So as long as they are rich, they can always pay some more.

  • dinkster||

    For every dollar stolen, 60 cents is spent bombing Pakistan. Tell me more about that compassion.

  • ||

    Tony:

    Libertarians' problem is that the stupid nonsensical and oft-contradicted moral law...

    And progressive's problem is that they put so much nonsensical and oft-contradicted moral law into democracy and systematic force and coercion.

    First, we need this democratic process because, apparently, fighting it out violent-right is just bad and wrong. Nobody wants to resort to force.

    Then, we have these great systems and votes and decision in place that, essentially all revolve around using force to control people.

    Apparently, we should accept rulers and go along with it because, hey, violence isn't the answer, even though violence is, apparently, the answer.

    It's such a blatant performance contradiction.

  • Free Society||

    If you're against taxation and government coercion, then you're an anarchist. Then compassion is irrelevant. That's just the way it is.

    Compassion isn't irrelevant, it's just that compassion is worthless if you express it immorally. Just like if you hold a gun to someone's head to force them to give to charity, your feelings of compassion don't make your actions noble or wise.

  • OldMexican||

    Re: Tony,

    Nowhere under no circumstance at no time in history have private charities (read: churches) been able to sufficiently take care of the basic needs of vulnerable people.


    Only the Sith speak in absolutes.

    Not only churches created private charities, you underschooled moron. There have been mutual support societies ever since the 18th Century and other non-Church private charities working to help the poor and sick.

    The ONLY difference between them and the government is that these organizations did not set up to create a culture of dependency.

    If this country has fewer vulnerable people that other places, it's because it has a government-funded social safety net in place.


    Ah, yes - the safety net. Never mind production, investment, protection of private property or of contracts, all those things that made the country wealthy enough to squander money on those things.

  • KPres||

    Not only churches created private charities, you underschooled moron. There have been mutual support societies ever since the 18th Century and other non-Church private charities working to help the poor and sick.

    Not to mention, things like extended family and local community, which were the greatest social insurance ever created until people like Tony began to see these institutions as a threat to their centralized power and set out to destroy them.

  • sloopyinca||

    Because nothing says "I care" more than pitting one class of people against another in an extertion scheme.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    "Nowhere under no circumstance at no time in history have private charities (read: churches) been able to sufficiently take care of the basic needs of vulnerable people."

    They did enough caring to provoke the ire of Nietszsche, who deplored the fact that people he didn't like were kept alive by Church charity.

  • Marshall Gill||

    Nothing says caring like creating dependents.

  • KPres||

    Of course, then you get to "care" about them forever! What more could these pathological concern-trolls ask for?

  • KPres||

    "There's no shortage of charities sending aid to Haiti or other places with lots of poor people. What they lack are strong institutions."

    Actually, what they lack is economic growth, thanks to their caring socialist histories.

  • KPres||

    "Nowhere under no circumstance at no time in history have private charities (read: churches) been able to sufficiently take care of the basic needs of vulnerable people."

    When you look at what Churches and other charitable organizations were accomplishing circa 1900, mind you, back when per capita GDP was under $2000, and compare it to the utter disaster that is modern state welfare, this comment becomes almost mind-bogglingly stupid. Can you imagine what it would be like today if we made $2000/year and only had state welfare to depend on? There would literally be bodies lying all over the streets.

  • Brandybuck||

    "The Roman emperor decided to hold a competition to determine the best singer in the whole of the empire. News of the contest was spread far and wide. On the appointed day, only two singers appeared. The first was presented to the emperor and began to sing. After a minor mistake or two, the emperor declared the competition over and awarded the prize to the second singer."

    Tony doesn't need to hear the second singer sing.

  • R C Dean||

    It would be nice if the problem was not caring about the Constitution, freedom, all that.

    Instead, the problem is not caring about people's opportunities to leech off their productive fellows.

  • ||

    I used to follow Harsinyi on Twitter because I thought he was libertarian-ish. Then the Hagel hearings rolled around and Harsinyi was all, "OMG, Hagel hates Israel and is like a total anti-semite!"

    Fuck Harsinyi.

  • ||

    "OMG, Hagel hates Israel and is like a total anti-semite!"

    Hagel doesn't like Israel. The extent to which that implies anti-Semitism is debatable, of course.

  • OldMexican||

    For starters, there's no reason to accept the liberal definition of caring — at all.


    Especially when one realizes that the working definition of "caring," in the liberal mind, is "forced wealth transfer."

    The problem is that too often, the RNC allows Democrats to define the parameters of debate. There's way too much worrying about acceptance and far too little about persuasion.


    That's because a) the Republicans are as unprincipled as the Democrats and b) they couldn't care less about freedom or free markets. It was the Republicans who gave us the Patriot Act and the surveilance state in the first place, protectionism and economic bare-chested chauvinism in the second.

  • entropy||

    Policy is actually irrelevant to campaigning. It matters not what your policies are, only how you package them (and you can package anything anyway if you are creative enough). Nobody actually reads the legislation, not even the senators who vote on it. Once they're in office they do whatever they want - what they ran on has absolutely no bearing whatsoever.

    The very few people who actually pay attention to policy probably already know this - that nothing the politician says has any real bearing on what he will do, so the policy he advocates doesn't matter because the whole thing is a crapshoot, with people deciding who seems more authentic based on cultural affinity.

    The vast majority of voters - LIV's, don't even pretend to understand or care about the policy minutia.

    So the idea that you can achieve anything politically with policy changes is retarded. Policy is unrelated to politics and matters only in governing, not to getting elected.

    It's not that they oppose gay marriage as a matter of policy that sinks them, it's that when they talk about their policies they seem like they don't like gays. Even when they change their policy to support gay marraige, they still seem awkward and pandering like they're only fake not hating gays so it makes no difference. You could pass a law that deported all the gays to canada and it wouldn't matter so long as you seemed tolerant and reasonable talking about it and most of the GOP couldn't seem that way if they were blowing a guy.

  • JohnTheRevelator||

    What you're describing is 20% the effect of social cons in the GOP who, as stated elsewhere, rush in just after a successful election to introduce things like DOMA that were carefully kept out of the campaign. They could theoretically fix that.

    It's the other 80% coming from e.g. Jon Stewart that kills them. Why do you think of cave trolls when you hear the name Palin, or easily believe that George Allen blatantly slurred an Indian-looking audience member in front of thousands? Because these themes are beaten to death daily in everything from Democrat campaign ads to popular TV shows, movies and everything that makes up the background noise of society for the majority of people who barely care about politics at election time, let alone any other time.

    The party can't do anything about that.

  • entropy||

    Why do you think of cave trolls when you hear the name Palin, or easily believe that George Allen blatantly slurred an Indian-looking audience member in front of thousands?

    I don't.

    You missed (or chose not to reply to) my larger point which was that policy is mostly irrelevant to politics.

    But as to what you're talking about, it's more than just the democrats being good at politics, it's also the GOP sucking donkey balls at politics.

    Guys like Romney and McCain? They couldn't relate their way out of a paper bag. Proof is in their current attempts - they're changing policy. That doesn't matter, it's packaging. The idea you are going to pick up the hispanic vote by passing amnesty or pick up more of the youth vote by legalizing gay marraige is delusional, that's not how you relate to people (or make them think you do).

    Don't blaim it all on democrats. Their smear machine is mighty, but republicans are still playing Elmer Fudd, which probably makes the dem machine look mightier than it is.

  • entropy||

    The party can't do anything about that.

    That's their attitude and that's probably half the problem.

    They don't do anything about it. They just ignore it. The republicans prime political strategy is preemptive surrender.

    They get duped by their permanent political advisers that, for one instance among others, they're not supposed to attack their opponents. That's just idiotic. Republicans fight harder and dirtier in primary campaigns than they do general elections.

  • ThatSkepticGuy||

    A more succesfull stragetgy would revolve less around trying to "out-care" the Democrats, and conclusively demonstrating again and again that the Democrats don't "care" two runny shits about anything except the consolidation of their own absolute power.

  • ant1sthenes||

    Maybe they need to take that image and reshape it so it works in their favor. They can be the hardass dad who loves his kids but wants them to grow into adulthood, and they can characterize the Democrats as neurotic helicopter parents whose "caring" not only cripples their kids but has the self-serving impact of keeping them dependent to fulfill their parent's selfish emotional needs.

  • ChrisO||

    The GOP will win the presidency in 2016 if they find a candidate with good TV "star quality." It really doesn't matter what sort of words they spew, just as no one really pays attention to all that dreck Obama says. The presidency has become theater, more than anything else.

    In other words, another McCain or Romney won't cut it. Look at how much energy Palin brought to the 2008 race--she was the only reason McCain came within shouting distance of winning. And underneath her "star quality", she was a horrible candidate for national office.

  • Brandybuck||

    Except look at all the problems Ahnold gave California.

  • ||

    If a Republican is elected president any time in the next 2 decades I will gladly shave your scrotum in the middle of Times Square

  • Alien Invader||

    The problem is that too often, the RNC allows Democrats to define the parameters of debate.

    That's because in the Republican Party, principles went the way of dodo right around the time that Reagan left office. Bitch all you will about what Reagan actually did, but he actually espoused free markets and small(er) government. And with that, the Republicans at least had a tenuous grip on principles.

    I haven't really heard that kind of rhetoric from the Republican mainstream since then......

    But somehow this whole problem just doesn't seem that hard. If you want to succeed, that is. Free markets are the "more caring" position. Consider the lot of poor people in the US, and contrast with the lot of poor people in India and Asia. The difference is free markets and the wealth they generate. And if you've got half a brain, it's Game Over right there.

    The Left can come back and bitch "but but, income inequality!". And the Right comes back and says "yeah but, if you really cared about poor people, you'd be willing to tolerate that 'inequality' because poor people are better off that way."

    There's your "I Care" rock. Grab on, and don't *ever* let go.

    What part of this is hard?

  • Alien Invader||

    OM,

    the Republicans are as unprincipled as the Democrats

    Gotta disagree with you there. The Republicans are utterly unprincipled. The Democrats are often hypocrites, but they do have principles and they know what they want. They're socialists (whether Reason is willing to recognize it or not), as the general flow of their push over the decades shows. What they really wanted in ObamaCare was total government take-over, they couldn't quite pull that off in one fell swoop.

  • Gadianton||

    Caring is a form of job security for bureaucrats. As long as the government is paying people to care for the poor, we have people with a vested interest in the continuance of poverty.

  • OldMexican||

    Re: Tony,

    If you're against taxation and government coercion, then you're an anarchist.


    Just like being against rape and murder makes me anticrime. Same thing, and I am being serious. Being an anarchist places ME on a much higher moral ground than YOU, who supports a criminal state.

    Libertarians' problem is that the stupid nonsensical and oft-contradicted moral law that taxation is thievery trumps every other concern, even human well-being.


    You're making a nonsense argument. The "often-contradicted" is nothing more than a made-up qualifier; nobody (at least, no one that has some semblance of intellectual honesty) has been able to argue that taxation is not theft, only getting as far as arguing that it is legalized theft.

    Your compassion extends only as far as the person being taxed, as if that were a greater harm than starving or being ill.


    In other words, your justification for stealing is that there's someone, somewhere, starving. Is that your argument?

  • Tony||

    Being an anarchist places ME on a much higher moral ground than YOU, who supports a criminal state.

    No it doesn't, because being an anarchist means you support the inevitably consequences of anarchy, which are widespread death, disease, ignorance, and generally hellishness.

    legalized theft.

    An oxymoron. Theft is by definition illegal taking of something. Taxes are not illegal, hence aren't theft. You can't pay for a system that meaningfully defines and punishes theft without taxes anyway.

    In other words, your justification for stealing is that there's someone, somewhere, starving.

    I'm not justifying stealing, I'm justifying not-anarchy. Which isn't all that difficult.

  • Sevo||

    Shithead:
    "which are widespread death, disease, ignorance, and generally hellishness."
    Yep, gov't is so healthy:
    "Communism. In less than 100 years, Communism has claimed more than 100 million lives. Today, it continues to enslave one-fifth of the world's people."
    --------------------------
    "Taxes are not illegal, hence aren't theft."
    Translated: Shitheads buddies have the guns and they say it ain't theft.
    --------------------------
    "I'm not justifying stealing, I'm justifying not-anarchy. Which isn't all that difficult."
    From your posts, it seeming is, you lying slimy turd.

  • Tony||

    Government is plainly "healthy" compared to anarchy. Government is the most essential institution for human beings, and without institutions human beings live short, stupid, miserable lives. Nobody's talking about fucking communism, strawman police.

  • dinkster||

    I can't breathe. One, because the government didn't teach me how. Two, because you are incredibly amusing.

  • ||

    Taxes are not illegal, hence aren't theft.

    Slavery is not illegal. Hence it is not immoral.

    /Tony circa 1840

    Might makes right. We get it. You're a consequentialist Marxist. Stacked up against your definition of anarchy, which can be taken to mean any ideology more economically liberal than Leninism, you still come out a pretty gigantic piece of brutality-endorsing, authoritarian shit.

  • Tony||

    You want to pretend you have some sort of special brownie points with God because you assert slavery is immoral, whether you do anything about it or not.

    I have all sorts of policy preferences, among them slavery being illegal. But if you want to go around and say words mean whatever you want them to mean, then how about I assert that you don't own your stuff and that it's all mine? Why am I wrong? Because God said so?

  • dinkster||

    slavery isn't a fucking policy preference.

  • ||

    Tony:

    ...then how about I assert that you don't own your stuff and that it's all mine? Why am I wrong? Because God said so?

    According to your philosophy, all you need is the firepower to enforce that, and, apparently, you can.

    But, then, so can anyone else, with any other policy preferences.

    See, this is what I don't get: in an effort to undermine libertarianism, you state that libertarians just have policy preferences, that no policy preferences are morally right or wrong, and that people only have rights based on what firepower asserts. This argument undermines all policy preferences equally, including your own.

    Also, this is blatantly contradictory to your earlier claims of morality based on human well-being maximization as an arbitrary first principle. From wikipedia: Rights are legal, social, or ethical principles of freedom or entitlement. So, apparently, rights are determined by whoever has the most firepower, and rights are ethical principles that should maximize human well-being. This is completely contradictory.

    It's like you wake up and barf whatever thoughts are on the top of your head towards disagreeing with a libertarian, without a thought given to consistency. That's shocking, since you whine about consistency frequently.

  • buybuydandavis||

    The republicans should favor freedom, where people are left with the resources and prerogative to exercise their own compassion and values.

    The distinction between Central Government or Self Governemnt isn't over the goals to pursue, it's over who gets to decide what goals are pursued.

  • mauboy_j||

    my buddy's sister makes $70/hr on the computer. She has been out of work for 8 months but last month her pay check was $18807 just working on the computer for a few hours. Read more on this site http://www.jump30.com

  • XM||

    The welfare benefits in this country aren't "safety nets" that provides temporary relief to laid off middle class families who needs a few months of support to get by as they look for a new job. They're essentially government funded supplementary income given to anyone who doesn't make enough money (among other easily met requirements). This includes older white folks to Suburbanite Obama fans who lives on unemployment check after getting laid off from their office jobs.

    The romance of America is a capitalist one - towering skyscrappers, elite universities, huge tech industry, glitzy malls and amusement parks, etc etc. Your typical immigrants aren't like the pilgrims, they don't come here seeking free speech or religious liberty.

    We're spending a lot of money on people who has very little chance of advancing anywhere in life. Some of them are hopeless to begin with, while others may have the skills but are left out because the jobs just aren't there. I daresay we have more poor people in this country in the last 20 years than the entire population of Canada. It's not sustainable.

  • Tony||

    Soooo what do you do about it?

  • ||

    MOAR FREE SHIT! Duh!

  • SteveC||

    The GOP doesn't have to out-care the Dems, it just has to stop being the party of haters. Same as the LP, it needs to be *for* something, not just against things.

  • ||

    When the working definition of "hate" has turned into "opposition", you really can't avoid being a hater. The more so when 99% of what government does is the rightful object of completely justifiable hatred.

  • BeBraveUSA||

    Republicans were suckered in and remain mired in so-called "moral issues". I believe if they completely disengaged in discussions of all issues other than the US economy, defense of the nation, and the debt, they would be on solid ground in lieu of democratic quicksand.
    Distill it back to the constitution.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    just look at polls that gauge who gives to charities

    It should be noted this only holds if you count donations to churches. Most of the funds donated to churches aren't spent on actual charity work; they're spent providing non-charitable services to the churches members (a weird mix of a country club, therapist, marriage counselor, and self-help seminar).

    If you look at how much is donated to real charities, the trend reverses.

  • ||

    Citation? Bear in mind that the Sierra Club is not really a "charity" either...

  • Calvin Coolidge||

    The problem is that the Democrats' version of caring is always going to be more popular, because it is much easier. All you need to do is declare your moral outrage that some people either don't get everything they want, or have to actually choose between alternatives. Then, you blame it on rich people, insist that the government do something, and denounce anyone who disagrees as a moral pariah.

    It is much more difficult to preen over the higher moral plane on which you exist if you are going to be expected to actually dedicate your own time or money in order to address the problem.

  • Barrett70||

    like Frank responded I am taken by surprise that a person can make $9582 in 1 month on the internet. did you look at this website http://www.wow92.com

  • Rhino||

    So the GOP is going to stop pretending to be the small government party?

  • lendapatricia||

    If you think Daniel`s story is exceptional,, a month ago my girlfriends brother basically got paid $4438 just sitting there 20 hour's a week an their house and they're neighbor's sister`s neighbour did this for five months and got a cheque for over $4438 parttime from a pc. the advice from this address,
    http://JUMP30.COM

  • christacampbell147||

    If you think Joan`s story is inconceivable,, a month-ago my son got $9651 workin a 20 hour week from home and their roomate's ex-wife`s neighbour did this for 10-months and earnt over $9651 part-time at Their laptop. follow the instructions on this page, http://www.fly38.com

  • grey||

    How come I don't hate Newt as much as I think I should? Shutting down the government took some balls, sci fi geek at heart, and talked back to liberal commentators.

    He is an aspiring autocrat like most of the them, but at least he has a few highlights. It seems like if I can find a few things to like about him, I should be able to identify a few Obama highlights. Even inconsequential. Gary rights maybe, sort of. Maybe it was on purpose, and secret Obama genius that we left Iraq? He didn't start a new war, unless you consider Afghanistan, and we don't ever hear about it on the news so it may not actually be happening. My opinion, Obama is a bigger cocksucker than Newt. And the entire comparison makes me glad I'm a Libertarian.

  • Chadwick||

    like Edna said I am blown away that anybody can earn $6418 in 1 month on the computer. have you seen this link http://www.wow92.com

  • bajwa||

    I quit engaging at shoprite and currently I build $35h - $80h...how? i am operating online! My work did not precisely build Pine Tree State happy therefore i made a decision to require an opportunity on one thing new… when four years it absolutely was therefore onerous to quit my day job however currently i could not be happier. Heres what I do, www.hdcash1.com

  • PatrickHenry||

    Can't out propagandize is what this blogger really meant. The US leftist media is the new ObamaPravda, anyone with half a brain sees that. Anyone with half a brain also knows that Demoncrats thrive on dependency, not freedom. Anyone with half a brain also knows that the goal of the progressive is to halt all progress. Is there really any such thing as a libertarian Demonrat? That just takes my breath away. They are the new fascists. It's obvious.

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