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Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:21 AM

???What the bloodly hell are Centrists???

I mean, seriously. Help me out here folks.

Why are there so many people enamoured with becoming or being seen as a Centrist or an Independent? It's as if calling oneself such is the same as labelling oneself reasonable while calling the Left and Right equally unreasonable. But does that make sense?

I hear things like "Well, the right is too extreme in one way... and the left is too extreme in the other way, so the best path is in the middle." It's the false equivalence thing again. They make it sound so reasonable --- and make themselves out to be the image of reasonableness -- but what do they really mean when they say that?

For example:

Left/Democrat position on women's rights: Equality -- period.
Right/GOP position: No.

So.... what is the Centrist position on this and why is it better than either of the above? In particular, why is the Left's position on women's rights too extreme for a Centrist?

OK... maybe I'm not being fair. Let me try pitching a soft ball:

Left: Civil Rights Act: good for all society.
Right/GOP: Bad.

So... what is the Centrist position on this one? That discrimination is unacceptable between 10am and 3pm on alternating Thursdays? I mean, help me out here.

OK... maybe that pitch was a little too fast. Let's try this one:

The rights of labor:

Left: supports labor.
Right: against labor.

So, what's the middle ground here? That some amount of intimidation and exploitation is OK?

Really folks... I need help here.
When people call themselves Centrists or Independents, what are they really saying?

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Arrow 42 replies Author Time Post
Reply ???What the bloodly hell are Centrists??? (Original post)
6502 Aug 2012 OP
Rincewind Aug 2012 #1
Drunken Irishman Aug 2012 #2
reflection Aug 2012 #31
HiPointDem Aug 2012 #3
limpyhobbler Aug 2012 #4
lapfog_1 Aug 2012 #5
pampango Aug 2012 #8
lapfog_1 Aug 2012 #37
boomerbust Aug 2012 #6
hfojvt Aug 2012 #7
Madam Mossfern Aug 2012 #10
JHB Aug 2012 #12
pampango Aug 2012 #18
RC Aug 2012 #32
Ikonoklast Aug 2012 #19
RC Aug 2012 #36
Capt. Obvious Aug 2012 #9
datasuspect Aug 2012 #11
IDemo Aug 2012 #13
TransitJohn Aug 2012 #14
jp11 Aug 2012 #15
DonCoquixote Aug 2012 #16
Norrin Radd Aug 2012 #17
hifiguy Aug 2012 #20
kctim Aug 2012 #21
Autumn Aug 2012 #23
frylock Aug 2012 #25
kctim Aug 2012 #38
Jamaal510 Aug 2012 #41
kctim Aug 2012 #42
Autumn Aug 2012 #22
white_wolf Aug 2012 #24
Throd Aug 2012 #26
Lint Head Aug 2012 #27
ann--- Aug 2012 #28
The Magistrate Aug 2012 #29
randome Aug 2012 #30
taught_me_patience Aug 2012 #33
Comrade_McKenzie Aug 2012 #34
NCTraveler Aug 2012 #35
LanternWaste Aug 2012 #39
Ash_F Aug 2012 #40

Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:30 AM

1. What they are really saying is

"I'm a republican, but too embarrassed to admit it out loud, so, I call myself a centrist, or an independent".

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:36 AM

2. From what I've gathered...

A centrist is...

Someone who is probably pro-choice, but might consider themselves pro-life. They believe a woman has a right to an abortion, but might be opposed to late-term abortions (unless the health of the mother is at risk). They probably aren't very fond of affirmative action and are skeptical of unions because of their past ties with mobsters and corruption (and they they're always glorified in the movies as such). They're religious, most likely not opposed to the idea of In God We Trust on our money and might not even hate the idea of prayer in schools. They believe kids should say the pledge every day.

They support social programs, but are increasingly critical of people who might freeload off the system. They don't like high taxes, but might not be opposed to higher taxes for the wealthy. They don't like cuts to social programs like education and healthcare, but aren't fully on board with maybe defense cuts because, in the end, they still believe in a strong national defense.

These are people who voted for Reagan in the 80s, Clinton in the 90s and Bush in the 00s. They probably voted Obama four years ago and are wondering if they should vote for him again. They might not even be very political and vote solely based on the current situation of the country. In 1980, they went Reagan because the economy was bad and Carter seemed ineffective. They supported Reagan's reelection because the economy was growing again and Reagan seemed effective. They voted Bush in '88 because they weren't convinced by Dukakis, but voted Clinton in '92 because the economy was bad and Bush seemed ineffective. They supported Clinton's reelection because the economy was growing again and Clinton seemed effective.

You can't rationalize centrist voters because it's not black & white with them. They're not liberal or conservative in the sense they don't have a deep passion for some of the issues diehard partisans do.

I've tried figuring 'em out and I can't. But they obviously exist or we'd be a one-party state every election and that just isn't the case. How else do you explain going from Clinton to Bush to Obama in a span of twelve years?

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #2)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:35 PM

31. Well said.

Let's face it, even among DU members, there have been occasional purity tests in the heat of battle where someone will say (paraphrasing) "if you don't believe (X) you aren't a real Democrat." So if someone doesn't believe X, it's not like they're suddenly Republicans. They must be centrists, right?

By definition, isn't anyone who doesn't agree with every single aspect of the party platform a centrist? It's just that some are closer to the 'center' than others.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:37 AM

3. right wingers & libertarians.

 

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:38 AM

4. What's the difference between Centrists and Independents?

I'm indpendent but not a centrist.

Actually I think all these labels have been thrown around so much they have lost their descriptive value.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 04:58 AM

5. Today's "Centrists" used to be called something else....

John Birch Society members.

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Response to lapfog_1 (Reply #5)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 06:17 AM

8. What about the John Birch Society is "centrist"?

The John Birch Society is an American political advocacy group that supports anti-communism, limited government, a constitutional republic and personal freedom. It has been described as radical right-wing.

The society upholds an originalist interpretation of the U.S. Constitution, which it identifies with fundamental Christian principles, seeks to limit governmental powers, and opposes wealth redistribution, and economic interventionism.

The society opposed the Civil Rights Act of 1964
, claiming it violated the Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution and overstepped individual states' rights to enact laws regarding civil rights. The society opposes "one world government", and has an immigration reduction view on immigration reform. It opposes the United Nations, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), and other free trade agreements. They argue the U.S. Constitution has been devalued to favor of political and economic globalization, and that such alleged trend is not accidental. It cites the existence of the Security and Prosperity Partnership as evidence of a push towards a North American Union.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Birch_Society

I don't see much that is 'centrist' in the JBS agenda. It sounds right-wing to me and is consistent with the usual pantheon of far-right conspiracy theories.

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Response to pampango (Reply #8)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 11:25 PM

37. yup - you are correct

Today's tea party repukes are to the RIGHT of the old John Birch Society... which makes them where... oh yeah, in the middle.

hence the huge divide between the left and the tea party right.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 05:46 AM

6. A centrist

Is a person that will vote Republican but are ashamed to admit it.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 05:59 AM

7. What are you really saying here?

Because it reads sorta like "I hate centrists".

And that is part of what makes a centrist.

Where the left is saying "We hate the right" and the right is saying "We hate the left", the centrist is saying "there are good and decent people on both sides" and also that "there are jerks and idiots on both sides". The centrist is not gonna take a side and refuse to talk or negotiate, but is gong to be looking for reasonable people on both sides.

Now look at how you frame the issues. In a very dualistic way. There is absolute right and absolute wrong. There is black and there is white, there is no shade of gray.

The other point is that even if there is an absolute right on some issues, we are not gonna have an apocalypse now. The final battle between good and evil would cause more problems than it solves, so it is better to be a centrist - an incrementalist.

Now about your question of issues. First, you have picked very broad issues. "Equality - period" is very broad and far reaching. What does it mean in a specific case? Does it mean free birth control? Does it mean abortions funded by medicaid? Does it mean equal prize money for the men and women at Wimbledon? Does it mean one male and one female Senator in each state?

But by stating it with a "period" you do not allow any room for negotiating or understanding with people who differ with you on various issues. Your side is right - period.

For civil rights though, you mention an act. That act though, was a compromise. As Wiki writes about the Act of 1964 "After 54 days of filibuster, Senators Everett Dirksen (R-IL), Thomas Kuchel (R-CA), Hubert Humphrey (D-MN), and Mike Mansfield (D-MT) introduced a substitute bill that they hoped would attract enough Republican swing votes to end the filibuster. The compromise bill was weaker than the House version in regard to government power to regulate the conduct of private business, but it was not so weak as to cause the House to reconsider the legislation." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civil_Rights_Act_of_1964 Apparently the Happy Warrior knew how to compromise.

Finally, there is labor. But what you mean there is "organdized labor". Well what about unorganized labor? Don't those people work too? I think there is plenty of room for middle ground, for more complexity than just black and white, our side vs, their side, Jets vs. Sharks in a battle to the death with all weapons allowed and encouraged.

Part of what I am saying, if not all, is give peace a chance.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #7)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 06:41 AM

10. Thank you

for bringing some sensibility to the issue. The problem with politics now is the refusal on both sides to even look at the others' arguments; they're rejected out of hand because of staunch adherence to ideology.

I believe that the majority of Americans would consider themselves "Centrists."

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Response to Madam Mossfern (Reply #10)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 07:25 AM

12. Which conservative/Republican arguments are you referring to? Which ones should we look at?

You make the mistake of assuming that "centrist" actually means the center, and is not used as a rhetorical ploy to paint ones' self as the "reasonable" person standing between ideologues on either side, while pretending that the sides are equally ideological, equally balanced in power and influence, and that one does not have an agenda of one's own.

That's the difference between what "centrist" should mean and what it actually means in terms of who describes themselves (or gets described) as "Centrist" in government and media these days.

For some, especially in the media, "centrism" is part lazy cynicism, e.g., taking the view of "the right yells at me, the left yells at me: I must be doing something right!" even when one side considers you 'the liberal media' and criticizes everything that does not promote their specific agenda whereas the other side is yelling because you didn't look up easily-verifiable facts and take those into account in your reporting. "He said-she said" stories are safely "centrist", whereas looking into the record and finding one side is full of crap is "partisan".

"Centrist" is also the label of choice for those who like to call themselves "pro-business", which is to say: business lobbying groups. They've been perfectly willing to support policies that wreck middle-class incomes: anti-union policies, deregulation, outsourcing & off-shoring, tax avoidance by corporations and wealthy individuals, etc. To this variety of "centrist" anything that smacks of "populism" or "protectionism" is to be roundly condemned. Many also pose as "deficit-hawks", but somehow it's "entitlements" that are in their sights, not our bloated military spending, nor taxation at anything approaching historical levels.

This country has been dragged rightward for the last 30 years. I remind you that someone running with the same platform Ronald Reagan had in 1980 would be too liberal to be elected by the Republican Party. For the left to be as extreme as the right has gotten, they'd have to be outright Bolsheviks. They are not, not even close.

Labeling something or someone as "centrist" doesn't mean it's in the center. It's just a branding word, like "all-natural", "mouth-watering", or "fair & balanced". You're best off if you ignore the word and look at what it's being used to sell.

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Response to JHB (Reply #12)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 10:23 AM

18. "Populism" can be good or bad depending on whether is based on the left or on the right.

Arguably, there is no populism without democracy: populism is a by-product of democracy... It arises from a perception of betrayal of the democratic promise. And the greater the foundational promise of equality, the greater the chances of populist politics emerging, once the promise is seen as broken...

Holding political and economic elites accountable is intrinsic to the democratic process. But anti-elitism of the kind that right-wing populists wield is a form of inchoate vengeance, an easy rallying cry that isn’t about improvement but about resentment. ...populism on the left is not xenophobic and therefore is perfectly OK. Take away the xenophobia ... and you’ve got yourself a democratic movement.

If the ‘real people’ and their common sense hold the keys to a saner, realer, more democratic process, then it becomes imperative to determine who within the available population, is the ‘true people’. ... This is how trouble arises, with the need to start cutting - however clumsily - into the body politic in order to cookie-cut who is ‘with us’ and who is ‘against us’ (and isolate the latter as traitors). ... It's aim is not to build consensus, but to isolate those elements who need to be fingered as ‘against’ the interests of ‘true people’. In diverse societies (and an interconnected world) this can become quite tricky.

For right-wing populism, a variant of racism or xenophobia (more or less sophisticated in its language and its footwork), will do the trick ... their appeal is to those people who not only feel they have been cheated by a system that privileges elites of all sorts whilst abandoning them to a mediocre existence, but for whom solutions are to be found in an increasingly closed model of society that can privilege them, protect them, as the ordinary, true people - the keepers of the national flame. A closed model of society and politics is foundational to this strand of populism. It is defining of the vision they outline, firmly setting their sights away from Europe, away from diversity (both within and without), away from global forces that complicate matters so much.

On the left
... we find Occupy and the Indignados, but also the rhetoric of any talented politician or political activist in an era of mass democracy and media driven politics. Those whose explicit use of the concept of accountability (rhetorically and in practice) de facto creates an ‘air de famille’ with populism, but who don’t rely on exclusion or any form of xenophobia to drive the project: those whose vision might encompass enemies, but whose aspirations belong to an open society, mindful of diversity.

http://www.opendemocracy.net/catherine-fieschi/plague-on-both-your-populisms

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Response to JHB (Reply #12)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:46 PM

32. Centralist now are Blue Dog, DLC types and moderate Republicans.

 

That's the difference between what "centrist" should mean and what it actually means in terms of who describes themselves (or gets described) as "Centrist" in government and media these days.


Liberals like me, who used to be in the real center, are now part of the Loonie Left. I had things mostly out a long time ago. Since then, I have been watching the political scenery go by toward the Right at an ever increasing rate.
This election is seeing people waking up and realizing we are circling the drain. When people like Todd Akin, Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney are one election fraud away from total takeover of this country, it kinda puts a cold knot in people's stomachs, when they realize how complacent they have been over the belief they still had a say in how the country was being run.
Our last chance is to overrun the Republican's planned election frauds by getting out the vote.

It does not matter where in the political spectrum one adheres.
The same rules of right and wrong, good and evil apply to Everyone.
Our greatest danger of extinction
comes from those that think the rules do not apply to them.
RC

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #7)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 10:35 AM

19. The only question that needs answered, and you didn't address it, is this:

Do you vote for Republicans at any level?

Because almost without exception, they all work to enact the same agenda, and it is for the wealthy and large corporations against all other citizens.

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Response to Ikonoklast (Reply #19)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 04:09 PM

36. Not voting Republican, is not good enough by far.

 

Too many Democrats are Blue Dogs and/or DLC and even ex-Republicans, sleepers infiltrating the Democratic party.
You have to look at their political history.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 06:18 AM

9. Centrists get money from RW sources

and from the DNC

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 06:49 AM

11. you gotta stand for something

 

or you will fall for anything.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 07:35 AM

13. Largely a myth, it turns out

Last edited Mon Aug 20, 2012, 08:18 AM - Edit history (1)

A study published just last week showed that despite identifying as independents or swing voters, people almost invariably vote for a single party.

Motivated Independence? Implicit Party Identity Predicts Political Judgments Among Self-Proclaimed Independents

http://psp.sagepub.com/content/early/2012/08/08/0146167212452313.abstract

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 07:37 AM

14. 'Centrists', 'Moderates' are the same thing

Republicans. They're the Republicans that fled that party when it went off the rails cuckoo for cocoapuffs pandering for the fundie vote. The policies that these so called Centrists espouse are to the right of where Reagan governed.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 08:11 AM

15. As I'm sure you know there are segments of the population that are

uninformed/ill informed along with that there is a huge percentage of the population that is disgusted by professional politicians period. It is politicians inability to act like a responsible adult and work reasonably with the other elected side for the common good of the people is what makes people hate them along with the lying and corruption that often accompanies being a politician.

The two big parties both fail many that might or perhaps did identify with them at one time. Many 'left' democrats might feel the democratic party is too 'centrist' or not 'left' enough for them so identifying as independent might be appealing to them. You then have issues where a so called blue dog democrat is the representative of a state and to ID as a democrat when your rep is often voting against things you agree with might be confusing or at least irritating for some with deep beliefs but perhaps not that engaged in politics(say a young adult).

What I've read is it seems many republicans seem to id as independents over democrats but I don't know how accurate that is. I can see it making some sense with those that find their party to be getting stupider and stupider as well as wanting to hide or mask their traditional party's unpopularity.

I myself am a registered independent that votes democratic. I didn't register as a democrat because the party isn't left enough for me. At first it was because through my own ignorance and the media's false equivalency that I didn't feel either party fit me, really no party can be big enough to entice half the population into it and fit everyone's beliefs. But I'd still register as an independent because the democratic party needs to earn my vote and not just be the lesser of two evils or the 'adult/sane/fair/etc' party compared to the other one. I feel being a registered democrat just gives them a reason to ignore me and see me as in the bag come election time, meaning they don't need to be accountable to me for their actions.

As far as identifying my politics I call myself a liberal/progressive and perhaps a democrat if/when I feel like not taking the 'extreme' position I think many uninformed people would attribute to liberal/progressive. I am not comfortable with generic labels when we all have different ideas, some right and some wrong, about what those labels actually mean. Independent at least conveys one truth virtually no one can ignore that I don't adhere to or instinctively go with party X no matter what all the time. Beyond that there is that issue of accountability I mentioned earlier.

I think centrists take on the label more in response to the both sides are extreme where you can dig up some 'extreme' politicians or talking head/activist to make it seem like both sides have a 'crazy' person arguing extreme positions that of course represent the entire party/side. Toss in the media rw bias/bs about the country being 'center' or that the centrist position is 'reasonable' people ill informed and uninformed would probably agree with being reasonable and might say they are centrists even if they are registered republican or democrat.

I'd add you are taking on the 'left' view of the sample issues you've listed.

For women's rights, right against, when the 'correct' skewed/media biased bs view might be the left is for abortion, against morality/religion/marriage, giving 'special' rights/treatment and the right is against abortion, supports morality/religion/marriage, and doesn't favor 'special' rights for anyone.

For labor, the left is against capitalism, competition, anti-job, etc and the right is against socialism, special treatment/protection, pro competition/job etc.

You are painting those examples with the 'liberal' brush of simplicity and reality which isn't how they are painted in the media or seen by the many millions of Americans that don't follow politics very much.

People have numerous reasons for why they'd id as centrists or independents and to know what they are really saying you'd have to ask them.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 08:20 AM

16. There may have been centrists once

But sadly, thanks to people like the Clintons, it became apparent that, even if the Che and Mao types creeped you out, the party was being forced to lean right, mostly to take in former GOP. Sadly, at this point, we all have to lean hard left just to avoid falling into the right.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 08:32 AM

17. I am reminded of what Jim Hightower said.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 10:44 AM

20. They are people who are either confused

or fundamentally intellectually dishonest. They want to be "fair" and non-judgmental even when there are 500 million tons of evidence on one side of the scale and a couple of nanograms on the other side.

In other words, weak-minded fools.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 11:04 AM

21. You can't see the center

 

because of your ill informed partisan opinions of what the "other side" believes. You are basically under the false impression that it is you who gets to define the issue and anybody who disagrees with your definition is wrong.

How do you define how a person doesn't support equality with women's rights? Not being pro-abortion after a center amount of time? Not believing government should pay for contraception and abortions? Not believing in universal health care?

How about civil rights? Is a person againt civil rights simply because they do not support gay-marriage or affirmative action?

Labor? Is a person against labor if they believe everybody should have a choice on whether to be a part of a union or not?

As a centrist, I reject the idea that the far-left or far-right define an issue and I reject the opinion that all who disagree with their definition is against or hates.

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Response to kctim (Reply #21)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 02:45 PM

23. Sounds like republicanism shit to me.

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Response to kctim (Reply #21)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:13 PM

25. you just managed to illustrate how far to the right the "center" has migrated..

nice job!

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Response to frylock (Reply #25)

Tue Aug 21, 2012, 01:49 PM

38. More like

 

just how far progressives and conservatives have "migrated" away from the center.

The fact is that, even though they are the minority of their respected parties, progressives and conservative are all we ever hear from in the media and they are the reason our country seems so divided.
All one has to do is look at their pitiful OWS and Tea Party rallies to see just how many people actually support their extremist views.

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Response to kctim (Reply #38)

Wed Aug 29, 2012, 01:00 PM

41. It's not that folks on the left have migrated that far from the "center";

it's that the right-wing has moved much farther away than the left has in the past few decades, which shifts the point on the spectrum where the supposed center actually is compared to about 30 years ago. You said that OWS is extremist, but all they are doing are promoting tax fairness and speaking out against union-busting and money being involved in politics. Back in the day, Eisenhower (a Republican) had something like a 90% tax rate for top income earners, and FDR expanded the government with his New Deal. Today, people on the right refuse to even return to Clinton-era tax rates, which were lower than Eisenhower's. All they want are more tax cuts for millionaires, while chopping services that many working-class Americans depend on.

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Response to Jamaal510 (Reply #41)

Wed Aug 29, 2012, 02:32 PM

42. The majority define where the "center" is

 

and that is almost always gauged by how much, or how little, government is desired. You claim were are further right than ever, but our government is larger than ever and is involved in our private lives more than ever before.
The lack of government ran health care does not make us a far-right wing nation no more than our safety-net programs make us some kind of far-left nation.

The lack of support for OWS and their proposed "solutions" are what makes them "extremist," not my opinion. Using your logic, one can easily say that all the Tea Party is doing is promoting the Constitution, speaking out against trampling individual rights and government being involved in personal lives.

The simple fact is that the majority of Americans reject the large amount of government liberals/progressives desire, and they reject the lack of government the Tea Party desires.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 02:43 PM

22. Centrists or Independents seem to think republicans have a few ideas they like

As if fucking republicans in this day and age ever have an idea that is worth a shit.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 02:48 PM

24. They are people who have committed their entire political ideology to a logical fallacy.

The Golden Mean Fallacy or Argument to Moderation "is a logical fallacy which asserts that the truth can be found as a compromise between two opposite positions."

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:20 PM

26. Anyone to the right of me is an evil idiot and anyone to the left of me is a delusional crackpot.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:21 PM

27. Fence sitters.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:21 PM

28. I'm not a centrist but

I'm one of those who doesn't have a party affiliation. I'm registered as an Independent/non-partisan voter. But, I have NEVER, EVER voted Republican. I am a liberal, so I guess that puts me on the "left side" and not in the center. Centrists are those who agree with parts of the platform of both parties. It is possible - and that is where the character and personality of the presidential candidate comes in. in my view.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:21 PM

29. It is A Seductive Fallacy, Sir, Known As The Fallacy Of the Golden Mean

It is far from always the case, or even the usual case, that the truth lies in the middle between two views, but the idea has a certain charm. It lets people posture as deep and wise, when what they really do is apply a cookie-cutter to complex matters without having much awareness of facts concerning them, or having to give much thought to the question at all.

"A man with one foot on a hot stove and one frozen in a block of ice could be said on average to be tolerably comfortable."

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:24 PM

30. If the extremists are way out on very long limbs, then that leaves a vast space for centrists.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:47 PM

33. I'm a centrist

Typical centrists in California are social liberals and moderately fiscally conservative.

Social liberal is pro-choice, pro gay marriage
Fiscal moderate means many different things. Here are some of the "moderate" fiscal positions that I believe:

#1) It is unfair to single out a any group of people to have taxes raised. If you raise taxes, then you raise them for everybody.
#2) Everybody pays income taxes (who earn income)... whether it's 1% or 40%... everybody benefits and everybody pays.
#3) Medicare is on an unsustainable path. Reforms I'd consider would be to 1) raise the fica tax by 1%, 2) raise the age by a year or two, 3) start a serious discussion on end of life care.
#4) Lower the corporate tax rate and close loopholes
#5) Public sector pensions are out of line and will have to be scaled back
#6) Defense spending should be cut (at least 30% as a percentage of GDP)
#7) Pro free-trade of goods

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:48 PM

34. Useless people. nt

 

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Mon Aug 20, 2012, 03:59 PM

35. You need go no further than.....

Obama/Clinton. Many will think that is a negative. It is what it is. I don't think it is negative and don't think centrists are without strong political beliefs. They are just in the middle of American main stream politics. Fiscally and socially.

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Tue Aug 21, 2012, 02:06 PM

39. People who look to their left and to their right and ask

"What the bloodly hell are Centrists???"

People who look to their left and then to their right and ask, "what the bloody hell are these extremists doing?"

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Response to 6502 (Original post)

Tue Aug 21, 2012, 02:31 PM

40. A centrist is someone who agrees with every item on the Democratic platform...

..but watches too much tv and/or radio.

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