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Reply #3: "Center-right" in relation to what? [View All]

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liberalpragmatist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-02-09 12:03 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. "Center-right" in relation to what?
Thanks for engaging the question - I respect that. But I have to ask, center-right in relation to what?

Obama is much more liberal in most respects than the politicians of the '60s who called themselves "liberal." Back in the '70s, few "liberal" politicians were proposing a public plan for universal health care. (Single-payer never had many advocates in Congress.) On social issues, on environmental issues, none of the New Deal "liberals" were anywhere near to the left of Obama - most of them would be solidly to his right.

Granted, on an issue-by-issue basis there would be differences, and in some cases, the postwar liberals would be to Obama's left. But on the whole, Obama strikes me as clearly to the left of most of them.

Even FDR wouldn't qualify as a "progressive." At the time, he was assailed by many on the left as being a sellout. His initial safety net programs were far less extensive than they are today, and social security eligibility was extremely limited.

So again, Obama is "center-right" relative to what? Relative to other countries? Which other countries? Europe? Perhaps, but even in Europe, single-payer health care systems are the exception, not the norm (Germany isn't single-payer - neither is Switzerland). And there are plenty of issues on which American liberals are to the left of Europe, such as immigration, ethnic and religious diversity, even abortion in many cases (many European countries have more restrictions on abortion than the U.S.).

Is he "center-right" in relation to Americans? I find that *very* hard to believe, despite what some "progressives" will insist, citing favorable polls and surveys.

Moreover, I would question whether any person - no matter how liberal - will be as liberal as progressives desire when actually in office. Obama may be well to the left but faces political constraints that tie his hands. Put Dennis Kucinich in power, and I guarantee you he'd let plenty of supporters down on numerous issues.
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  -Is claiming Obama isn't a "progressive" exclusionary? liberalpragmatist  May-02-09 11:45 AM   #0 
  - Such crap is while I'm proud to never call myself a "true progressive"...  BlooInBloo   May-02-09 11:47 AM   #1 
  - Obama is not a progressive, nor is he a liberal  Somawas   May-02-09 11:53 AM   #2 
  - "Center-right" in relation to what?  liberalpragmatist   May-02-09 12:03 PM   #3 
  - Nixon would be considered a liberal today.  bananas   May-04-09 09:30 AM   #31 
  - "So Obama is cnter-right. Look it up. See where his dot is at"  Political Tiger   May-02-09 12:03 PM   #4 
  - Well, but won't it depend  polmaven   May-02-09 01:57 PM   #10 
  - Let your political compass be defined by the right wing.  Somawas   May-02-09 03:14 PM   #11 
     - I DON'T let it be defined by a WEB SITE  Political Tiger   May-02-09 03:25 PM   #12 
     - So am I, for that matter.  Somawas   May-02-09 10:32 PM   #14 
        - Why not just rely on his record. You don't need subjective political commentary  Liberal_Stalwart71   May-03-09 10:03 PM   #27 
     - Why people continue to call him a liberal is beyond me. There is nothing in his record,  Liberal_Stalwart71   May-03-09 08:43 AM   #18 
        - Well, he sure as hell isn't right-wing.  TwilightZone   May-03-09 09:50 PM   #23 
           - Thank God he isn't. He's a Centrist. And I think in many ways a pragmatist.  Liberal_Stalwart71   May-03-09 10:09 PM   #28 
           - Obama is center-right  bananas   May-04-09 09:44 AM   #32 
  - Sure he is...  TwilightZone   May-02-09 12:55 PM   #5 
  - President Obama in NOT a "Left Liberal"  LostinVA   May-03-09 08:01 AM   #17 
  - People keep saying that....  TwilightZone   May-03-09 09:42 PM   #22 
  - Thank you!, I always use that site when some idiot calls Obama "center-right"  Odin2005   May-03-09 09:57 PM   #25 
  - What you said -- +1  LostinVA   May-03-09 08:00 AM   #16 
  - I doubt Obama cares what people call him  Adelante   May-02-09 01:17 PM   #6 
  - I couldn't agree more!  Undercurrent   May-02-09 01:33 PM   #8 
     - If Obama is able to move something along a 1/2 mile instead of the mile he wants  Adelante   May-02-09 01:49 PM   #9 
  - he specifically denies being one  Enrique   May-02-09 01:22 PM   #7 
  - To make matters worse, he called himself a Clinton Democrat which to me means that he is a  Liberal_Stalwart71   May-03-09 08:46 AM   #19 
  - No, but opposition to marriage equality sure as hell is.  Orsino   May-02-09 07:10 PM   #13 
  - based on his actions and stated positions Obama occupies the ideological postion as Bill Clinton  wyldwolf   May-03-09 07:05 AM   #15 
  - Obma is to the left of Bill.  Odin2005   May-03-09 10:00 PM   #26 
     - Want to compare them issue by issue?  wyldwolf   May-04-09 06:10 AM   #29 
  - Both "liberal" and "progressive" are open to  LWolf   May-03-09 03:13 PM   #20 
  - Progressives usually agree with Liberal ideals.  anonymous171   May-03-09 03:17 PM   #21 
  - I call myself a Liberal and I consider Obama one too.  Odin2005   May-03-09 09:56 PM   #24 
  - I got it - you're a centrist, and so is Obama  bananas   May-04-09 09:28 AM   #30 
  - "Liberal" and "leftist" aren't interchangeable.  TwilightZone   May-04-09 10:31 AM   #33 
  - "not far left" does not equal centrist, though. "liberal" in fact implies "center-left"  Odin2005   May-04-09 02:27 PM   #34 
  - The President is a religiously conservative thinker  Bluenorthwest   May-04-09 02:47 PM   #36 
  - He opposes equal rights for all Americans  Bluenorthwest   May-04-09 02:44 PM   #35 
     - Bullshit!  Odin2005   May-04-09 04:17 PM   #37 

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