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Thread: The sadism of the modern Republican Party

  1. #91
    Southern Strategy Liberal OldGaffer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arkady View Post
    It's not a question of conscience. It's a question of whether people are gullible enough to fall for this two-step swindle. Step one: push through a tax cut that gives huge benefits to the rich, with crumbs for everyone else. Step two: react to the resulting deficit by demanding tax hikes or spending cuts that will hit everyone about equally.

    Thus, the rich get a huge up-front tax benefit in exchange for a moderately sized sacrifice down the road, while everyone else gets a tiny up-front tax benefit in exchange for a moderately sized sacrifice down the road. It's a raw deal for anyone who isn't rich, but the Republicans are counting on most people being too dumb to see what they did.
    Reagan set the bar with his massive tax cut for the 1%, followed by 11 different tax hikes on the middle and working class to offset some of the massive deficits his tax cut engendered.

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ronald-...-with-reality/
    Thanks from Arkady

  2. #92
    Member Arkady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigLeRoy View Post
    Well, yes, and this relates back very nicely to our apparent unwillingness to invest in education at an appropriate level. Education is a long-term investment, where you may not see the returns for twenty years down the road, and of course that is especially true for early childhood education. America, sadly, has become a nation of short-term thinkers, unable to engage in delayed gratification. In the fable of the ants and the grasshoppers, we have become a nation of grasshoppers. In the decade of the 2000's, when we should have been paying down our national debt, to prepare for the mass retirement of the Baby Boomers, when we should have been rebuilding our educational institutions and our infrastructure, we instead went on a program of building a lot of McMansions and starter castles, and waging senseless wars, and just generally engaging in a spending orgy. Which we now seem to be doing again, apparently having learned nothing from the 2007-2009 financial crisis. Samuel P. Huntington wrote that civilizations decline when the elites become unwilling to pay for even the basics like infrastructure and education----and that is what has happened to America. All of this is why I am pessimistic about the economic future of America.
    Agreed. There are a whole cluster of issues like that. Infrastructure and education, which you mentioned, are excellent examples. But so is the environment. If investing to fight climate change results in a 1% diminution in our lifestyle each year for the next ten years, but thereby avoids a 5% diminution each subsequent year in perpetuity, we're clearly vastly better off making the investment, long term, but your typical American would rather just focus on that first decade. Similarly, research on basic science, and investment in technologies that will pay long-term dividends are things we don't do much any more. Compare to the 1950s and 1960s, when people understood investment in space technology was a huge up-front money-loser for the nation, but did it anyway. That investment has since paid for itself many times over, with all the benefits of satellite technology, and the various materials advances that came out of that effort. Even welfare spending is a form of long-term investment. Studies have shown that children who have access to that government assistance wind up far more productive as adults than similarly situated children who lack that access. That money transforms a lot of future public burdens into future contributing members of society. But, if you focus on the first decade alone, there appears to be no benefit. Or consider the right-wing "drill baby drill" mindset. They're in a god-awful hurry to burn up all our nation's reserves, even in the face of what we expect to be a long-term shortage of supply, rather than saving those reserves for when the crunch hits.

    Today's "conservatives" are almost diametrically opposed to genuine conservatism. A true conservative is the ant in the grasshopper and ant fable -- preparing for a rainy day,erring on the side of caution. Today's "conservatives," at least in the US, are basically all about making a banquet of our seed corn.
    Last edited by Arkady; 21st May 2018 at 03:44 AM.
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  3. #93
    Member Arkady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldGaffer View Post
    Reagan set the bar with his massive tax cut for the 1%, followed by 11 different tax hikes on the middle and working class to offset some of the massive deficits his tax cut engendered.

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ronald-...-with-reality/
    I find it astonishing that most Americans are too dumb to see such an obvious two-step swindle. I suppose this is how petty con men get by, as well -- there's never a shortage of people who will fall for this crap. These are the same people who send money to Nigerian princes.

  4. #94
    Veteran Member MaryAnne's Avatar
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    I know most of you are not Christians but our young Pastor preached on, Division for Power and money VS. Inclusion, love and being humble yesterday.

    Straight from the Bible, not a word about Politics.

    To me, the message was clear as to how we should act. I am also sure that message went right over the head of many.

    The Division of the Media, the Right Wing and Evangelicals are clear.

  5. #95
    Veteran Member MaryAnne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arkady View Post
    I find it astonishing that most Americans are too dumb to see such an obvious two-step swindle. I suppose this is how petty con men get by, as well -- there's never a shortage of people who will fall for this crap. These are the same people who send money to Nigerian princes.
    Not most Americans, Arkady. What? One third?

  6. #96
    Veteran Member MaryAnne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arkady View Post
    Agreed. There are a whole cluster of issues like that. Infrastructure and education, which you mentioned, are excellent examples. But so is the environment. If investing to fight climate change results in a 1% diminution in our lifestyle each year for the next ten years, but thereby avoids a 5% diminution each subsequent year in perpetuity, we're clearly vastly better off making the investment, long term, but your typical American would rather just focus on that first decade. Similarly, research on basic science, and investment in technologies that will pay long-term dividends are things we don't do much any more. Compare to the 1950s and 1960s, when people understood investment in space technology was a huge up-front money-loser for the nation, but did it anyway. That investment has since paid for itself many times over, with all the benefits of satellite technology, and the various materials advances that came out of that effort. Even welfare spending is a form of long-term investment. Studies have shown that children who have access to that government assistance wind up far more productive as adults than similarly situated children who lack that access. That money transforms a lot of future public burdens into future contributing members of society. But, if you focus on the first decade alone, there appears to be no benefit. Or consider the right-wing "drill baby drill" mindset. They're in a god-awful hurry to burn up all our nation's reserves, even in the face of what we expect to be a long-term shortage of supply, rather than saving those reserves for when the crunch hits.

    Today's "conservatives" are almost diametrically opposed to genuine conservatism. A true conservative is the ant in the grasshopper and ant fable -- preparing for a rainy day,erring on the side of caution. Today's "conservatives," at least in the US, are basically all about making a banquet of our seed corn.
    Clean Energy.

    https://www.ucsusa.org/clean_energy/...-policies.html

    https://www.theguardian.com/environm...hina-uk-europe

    Those ignorant Politicians need to be voted off the Ship. Forward moving Companies are ignoring the nay sayers.
    Thanks from Arkady

  7. #97
    Radical Centrist BigLeRoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arkady View Post
    Agreed. There are a whole cluster of issues like that. Infrastructure and education, which you mentioned, are excellent examples. But so is the environment. If investing to fight climate change results in a 1% diminution in our lifestyle each year for the next ten years, but thereby avoids a 5% diminution each subsequent year in perpetuity, we're clearly vastly better off making the investment, long term, but your typical American would rather just focus on that first decade. Similarly, research on basic science, and investment in technologies that will pay long-term dividends are things we don't do much any more. Compare to the 1950s and 1960s, when people understood investment in space technology was a huge up-front money-loser for the nation, but did it anyway. That investment has since paid for itself many times over, with all the benefits of satellite technology, and the various materials advances that came out of that effort. Even welfare spending is a form of long-term investment. Studies have shown that children who have access to that government assistance wind up far more productive as adults than similarly situated children who lack that access. That money transforms a lot of future public burdens into future contributing members of society. But, if you focus on the first decade alone, there appears to be no benefit. Or consider the right-wing "drill baby drill" mindset. They're in a god-awful hurry to burn up all our nation's reserves, even in the face of what we expect to be a long-term shortage of supply, rather than saving those reserves for when the crunch hits.

    Today's "conservatives" are almost diametrically opposed to genuine conservatism. A true conservative is the ant in the grasshopper and ant fable -- preparing for a rainy day,erring on the side of caution. Today's "conservatives," at least in the US, are basically all about making a banquet of our seed corn.
    And the most extreme example of your last three or four sentences, to the point of being almost a parody, was Reagan's Secretary of the Interior James Watt, who felt it was unnecessary to conserve resources at all, because "Jesus was coming again soon".
    Thanks from MaryAnne and Arkady

  8. #98
    Member Arkady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaryAnne View Post
    Not most Americans, Arkady. What? One third?
    Well, only about one-fifth of Americans voted for Trump. But if you also count those who had the right to vote and yet couldn't be bothered to show up, because they're not aware how their apathy enables the Republican swindle, it's a lot more. Combining them with the Trump voters, you get to around 56% of all Americans (the remainder being those who voted for someone other than Trump and those who didn't have the vote).

  9. #99
    Member Arkady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigLeRoy View Post
    And the most extreme example of your last three or four sentences, to the point of being almost a parody, was Reagan's Secretary of the Interior James Watt, who felt it was unnecessary to conserve resources at all, because "Jesus was coming again soon".
    From what I've seen with my more religious relatives, that's not even a particularly unusual viewpoint among that crowd.

    I think that may be part of why conservative religious areas tend to be such eyesores. I was struck, driving through the rural south and southwest, how much garbage there was lying around (my own personal impressions line up pretty well with more systematic "litter" scorecards by state). And you see it, too, if you compare religious countries and secular ones, internationally. In secular places like Japan, Switzerland, etc., people tend to be quite cleanly. In more religious areas, whether rich (US) or poor (India), it can look like an open landfill. I guess if you're expecting God to show up and burn the place down any minute, what's the point picking up after yourself?
    Last edited by Arkady; 21st May 2018 at 04:58 AM.
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