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amjucsc Donating Member (195 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:32 PM
Original message
Is Dean really all that liberal?
I hear a lot about Dean being from the left of the party, but---my memory is actually a bit hazy on this--- I don't recal Dean striking me as being terribly liberal during the primaries last year (and this is coming from a moderate Dem). Except for supporting universal healthcare and coming out in strong opposition to Iraq (which isn't a particularly liberal position) what exactly was it that made everyone think Dean was from the left?
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GreenArrow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:33 PM
Response to Original message
1. no, not particularly
.
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genius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:00 PM
Response to Reply #1
32. Dean says he's to the right of Bush economically.
He proposed a middle class tax increase that would have been devastating while not taking a position on the re-instatement of the estate tax. Also he's conservative on environmental, criminal justice, labor and trade issues. He called for questioning the need for civil liberties before USA-PATRIOT.
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Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:16 PM
Response to Reply #32
39. LOL, and your personal grudge against Dean never ends
actually nothing you just said is true.
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GreenArrow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 05:13 PM
Response to Reply #32
49. I'm not real fond of "fiscal conservatives" in general
Money before people (and the environment) is what it generally amounts to. It's funny how so many of the so-called idealists actually have fairer and more pragmatic economic plans.
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sellitman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:34 PM
Response to Original message
2. Depends
He was more Liberal than Kerry but less Liberal than Kucinich. It's all in the eye of the beholder.
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blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:44 PM
Response to Reply #2
23. I suggest you check their records and try again.
Edited on Tue Jan-11-05 03:50 PM by blm
Kerry's lifetime rating was more liberal than DK's because of DK's past record of voting against abortion rights and for an amendment against flag-burning. It is important to note that Kucinich is now a strong prochoice supporter, and no doubt his record will soon reflect his commitment to liberal positions. The ratings just need to catch up with his current positions and votes in Congress.

Dean governed for 11 years as a centrist. He has opened his eyes quite a bit in the last two years thanks to his primary supporters and is today a more committed progressive than he when he governed.

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henslee Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:34 PM
Response to Original message
3. Well, he's progressive.
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eg101 Donating Member (371 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:38 PM
Response to Reply #3
13. no, he is REgressive
Dean: "this is sort of the last gasp of the Left"

Umm. He is just saturated with progressive spirit...
http://www.sf.indymedia.org/news/2003/12/1668089.php

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brainshrub Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:56 PM
Response to Reply #13
31. self deleted.
Edited on Tue Jan-11-05 03:57 PM by brainshrub
Self deleted.
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henslee Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:08 PM
Response to Reply #13
34. Quite unfair to cite that "last gasp" quote which is 10 yrs old and two
sources removed (it being part of an article that is referenced in the article you link to.) Dean was anti-war when no one else was. This last year, he touched a lot of regular folks, obviously not you. His hat is now in the ring for DNC chair, not for the presidency and I doubt anyone further left will ever be considered for this position. Though you may hate his guts, you might want to realize he is not a discard -- that it would not be such a bad idea to have him head the DNC.
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Capn Sunshine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:43 PM
Response to Reply #13
42. Quoting the Int'l Socialist Review??
Well, yeah, if THAT'S your definition of liberal, Dean's DEFINITELY a centrist.

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greenohio Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 11:52 AM
Response to Reply #42
53. You have a problem with Socialism?
The man describes himself as a fiscal CONSERVATIVE. He supported NAFTA and still does, with slight modifications. He says we should embrace "pro-life" Dems. He is against gun control. He cut taxes. The man is a moderate by any standard.
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:46 PM
Response to Reply #3
27. Yes, but he's no lefty
He's a fairly typical New Englander, willing to live and let live, tight with a dollar, willing to help any neighbor who needs it without getting all gushy.

I backed Dr. Dean because he had the wits to do an end run around the DLC and use the net to build a grassroots organization. I support him now because after the DLC and press torpedoed his campaign, he kept on building a grassroots organization outside the DLC.

Change is going to have to come from the grassroots. The DLC is not going to budge their fat arses off the party throne until somebody gets powerful enough to dump them off. Dean's organization is the main hope of that right now.

Just don't expect him to be a lefty. He's not.
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WI_DEM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:34 PM
Response to Original message
4. It was the media who wanted to lump Dean as an anti=war lefty
He is difficult to identify. He doesn't slam the Liberal label like others do but answers it directly, "If balancing the budget and providing jobs and health insurance is liberal then I'm a liberal." He has always spoken strongly about fiscal responsibility and balancing the budget.
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Downtown Hound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:34 PM
Response to Original message
5. It was the media that kept calling him ultra liberal
It was part of their strategy to portray him as unelectable.
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BattyDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:35 PM
Response to Original message
6. For the most part, Dean seems to be a social Liberal and a ...
fiscal Conservative. He's certainly not the extreme, left-wing Liberal he's been portrayed as.
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eg101 Donating Member (371 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:37 PM
Response to Reply #6
12. he is an extreme RIGHTwing on economic welfare state policy
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Capn Sunshine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:45 PM
Response to Reply #12
43. Quoting the Int' Socialist Review? Again?
Edited on Tue Jan-11-05 04:46 PM by Capn Sunshine
Geese, John Kerry is a conservative then.
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eg101 Donating Member (371 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:49 PM
Response to Reply #43
44. kerry is definitely a conservative--economically speaking n/t
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Cuban_Liberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:35 PM
Response to Original message
7. No, and he never claimed to be.
He says he's a 'passionate centrist'. That said, he's progressive as hell, where it counts.
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mistertrickster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:43 PM
Response to Reply #7
22. That's my feeling too--he doesn't get bogged down in policy stances.
He cuts to what's important to people.
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Mojambo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:35 PM
Response to Original message
8. He comes from the northeast
Only Liberals live there.

Howard Dean is about middle of the road. I don't support him because he's liberal, I support him because he's effective.
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crispini Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:42 PM
Response to Reply #8
20. LOL, only liberals live in the northeast. Really? nt
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aintitfunny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:55 PM
Response to Reply #8
30. Absolutely correct N/T
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blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:36 PM
Response to Original message
9. He didn't support universal healthcare and the media painted him to be
more liberal than he was which actually benefitted him during the primary campaign period. He governed as a centrist in Vermont.

However, they continue to paint him as too liberal these days to marginalize his voice, which I think could be put to good use as DNC chair.
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yurbud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:36 PM
Response to Original message
10. better than the rest, articulate and fiesty
that Roemer guy is not only a stealth republican, he's a mush-mouthed bore.

Dean will fight for us unapologetically, and say things that people will remember.
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naryaquid Donating Member (282 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:46 PM
Response to Reply #10
26. I'm with you...He IS better than the rest...
and he has the cojones to take on the Right Wing...
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eg101 Donating Member (371 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:36 PM
Response to Original message
11. he didn't support universal healthcare
You really cannot believe a word outta dean's mouth, just like 99% of all politicians. Back in the 90s, he was practically a Democratic party Newt Gingrich, what with all his plans to roll back SS benefits, and raise the retirement age.
see more here:
http://www.sf.indymedia.org/news/2003/12/1668089.php

Why are so many people fixated on politicians? They are nothing but opportunists.
Work outside the party to create a leftist consciousness centered around new memes, and these scumbag politicians will come a running to the Left/
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On the Road Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. As I Recall
Dean did NOT have a "plan to roll back SS benefits, and raise the retirement age." He was determined to save SS even if it meant changes in benefits and delaying the retirement age. There's a huge difference.
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Upfront Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:43 PM
Response to Reply #11
21. Funny
We have a ways to go folks, thank God for Howard Dean.
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cali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:05 PM
Response to Reply #11
33. codswallop.
Dean is indeed a social liberal and a fiscal conservative, as well as being principled- though at times, I thought he was just stubborn as hell.

Here's a little example from David Moat's book "Civil Wars":
When Dick Sears, leader of the Senate and Pete Shumlin, leader of the House, both dems, tried to delay action on civil unions, they went to talk to Dean. Here's what happened: "Shumlin said that when he brought up the idea of delay, Dean's neck and face went red.......Dean told them, "Peter and Dick, every once in a while you have the opportunity to change history and do the right thing, and that's what we're going to do." Shumlin said Dean was not ordinarily an emotional man, but in this instance he was furious. Shumlin and Sears left the meeting knowing there was no choice but to act."

Both these long time Vermont pols are liberals and supporters of gay rights. In fact, Sears introduced the bill that enabled gays and lesbians to adopt in the mid-nineties, but the atmosphere in the state was so poisonous, and they were so afraid of losing their majority in the legislature, they wanted to stall. Dean once committed to the idea of civil unions, refused to countenance such a scheme. Maybe now we can get rid of that stupid story about Dean hiding out when he signed the legislation.

Dean has lent full throated support to womens' issues since he's been in elective office. He's been decent, though not farsighted, on environmental issues, and passionate on issues concerning children.

I'd just like to add that working outside the party may be viable on a local level in some places, but we need to rebuild the Democratic party, not just dump it.
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Upfront Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:40 PM
Response to Original message
15. DlC, Rethug, And Media
Hack job. Check his record as governer. Dean will lead us out of the wilderness.
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:40 PM
Response to Original message
16. Never figured him out. Love this....it is like the primaries never ended
:evilgrin:
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greenohio Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 11:58 AM
Response to Reply #16
55. Good post.
Tis true...tis true.
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Generator Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:41 PM
Response to Original message
17. He tells the truth
Is that liberal? I sure know it's not neo-con.

That ALONE scares the bejesus out of CNN and their ilk. Imagine! They might have to check FACTS. :scared:
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Krupskaya Donating Member (689 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:41 PM
Response to Original message
18. He's that b.s. "progressive" label that's pissing me off.
Whenever people say they're "progressive," I watch them very carefully, because they always seem to work against my particular interests.

I think he'd be fine for DNC chair, but not because he's a "liberal," because I don't think he is.
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Zensea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:41 PM
Response to Original message
19.  strong opposition to Iraq (which isn't a particularly liberal position"
Edited on Tue Jan-11-05 03:42 PM by Zensea
In this country it is.
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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:12 PM
Response to Reply #19
57. THIS IS DEAD WRONG !!!
i wish it were true ... i really do ...

but let's be clear here ...

"strong opposition" to Iraq means 2 key things (see if you agree):
1. we should not have gone in because there was no "imminent threat"
2. we should get the hell out of there

fair enough ?? keep reading ...

On point #1: Dr. Dean called for an invasion of Iraq if Saddam did not allow inspectors back in within a 60 day deadline. Stated another way, he agreed the U.S. had a right to invade Iraq although Iraq had not attacked the U.S., Iraq was "contained" by the no-fly zones, there was only bush's word that Saddam had WMD, Saddam's military had been decimated by the Gulf War, and most importantly that there was no proof whatsoever that Saddam was an imminent threat.

On point #2, Dr. Dean has repeatedly stated that now that we've gone in, we must remain in Iraq because we cannot allow the country to fall into the hands of the fundamentalists. Dr. Dean has not called for either immediate or near-term withdrawal of American military forces.

Recently on MTP, Dr. Dean did state that he's less certain of his stated position. I'm hopeful that Dr. Dean will soon recognize the utter hopelessness of continued occupation in Iraq. I'll applaud him and welcome his support on the issue when he does.

But to call his position on Iraq as "strong opposition" is nothing but media myth.
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sellitman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:44 PM
Response to Original message
24. He can
Scream louder than Limpballs.....that's a plus!
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IronLionZion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:45 PM
Response to Original message
25. The liberal media said he was a radical liberal lunatic
so it must be true.


Why do you have to label people? He's a good person with solid progressive views and knows that America is only as strong as our weakest links - like poor people who can't afford health care and don't want their children to die in Iraq.
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LSK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:51 PM
Response to Original message
28. that would be from the republican media machine
They all fear Dean, and in their pea brains they try to paint him as extreme liberal to put him down.
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brainshrub Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 03:53 PM
Response to Original message
29. No, but I wish he were.
I suppose 50 years ago he would have been considered a Republican. These days anyone to the left of Mussolini is considered a left-wing nut-job.

Pity.
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RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:11 PM
Response to Original message
35. My take is that he is populist moderate.
The pundits were calling him liberal last year because they were scared of him. His message, if it had gotten out, would have drawn many moderate independents and repubs who * wanted. The real liberals last year never got any press because, compared to Dean & Kerry, they looked like wild-assed radicals, and so were marginalized.

IOW, the only thing that made people think Dean was a liberal was the 'liberal' media, not any position of his.
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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:11 PM
Response to Original message
36. He's not, but he's not a centrist either...
He's a rock solid democrat.

More important, he's got charisma and energy and clear positions. He's also liberal IMO on social issues.
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Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:13 PM
Response to Original message
37. Yes he is liberal....
depending on how you define liberal of course. I think objecting to that unjust war is pretty darn liberal myself since most democrats in congress and the senate including the #1 and #4 most liberal senators, Kerry and Edwards, supported it.
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greenohio Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 11:57 AM
Response to Reply #37
54. Depends on what the definition of "is" is. In the end it is all about the
war. You are liberal if you are against the war. Dean wasn't truly against war in Iraq. He himself said, it was the way we went about it, very similar to Kerry....as has been posted on board. He just used the anit-war crowd to get groupies....who obviously still hang on.

I really do hope Dean gets chair of the DNC. I think he will do the party good. He can no longer claim this outsider garbage. He will have to make real choices, exposing his true leanings. I also think the "hate Dems" crowd will realize he isn't god almighty. They already defend DFA's funding of DLCers.
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mandyky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:15 PM
Response to Original message
38. The media labelled him as liberal
He was the first Gov to sign a civil unions bill. And he was anti-war.
He also wanted to rescind the Bush tax cuts but because he is a deficit hawk. Dean really is not a liberal. He is very difficult to label, but he is pragmatic and populist. I think he goes at problems like the Doctor he is, what's the problem?, what are the possible treatments? etc
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eg101 Donating Member (371 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:51 PM
Response to Reply #38
45. the media loves to label economic rightwingers as "liberal"
Edited on Tue Jan-11-05 04:57 PM by eg101
that's their JOB!
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ibegurpard Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:20 PM
Response to Original message
40. The people who continue to state that Dean misrepresented himself
are just buying into the line the media and the Democrats who wanted anyone but him as a nominee were pushing. Dean is a moderate who never claimed to be anything else policy-wise. However, TACTICALLY he was calling for the party to be unafraid to stand up for the traditional populist positions that had been its traditional mainstay.
People bought into the "Dean's so liberal" mantra because he signed a gay unions law and opposed the Iraq War. On many other issues he is very moderate.
I'm sure that this will be ignored, however, because it serves the purpose of some to continue to try to say that he misrepresented himself.
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eg101 Donating Member (371 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:56 PM
Response to Reply #40
46. why would we want a moderate unless WE are moderates?
I am not a moderate. I am a liberal. Therefore I want a LIBERAL to represent me. Dean is NOT a liberal. He has said he is a centrist/moderate. Therefore he does not represent ME.

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ibegurpard Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 05:00 PM
Original message
I'm sorry, can you point to the part in my post
where I was telling anyone to support Dean?
I was giving a general answer to the question about his policy positions.
Support who you like.
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:42 PM
Response to Original message
41. I posted about this topic....in the DLC's words.
Edited on Tue Jan-11-05 04:46 PM by madfloridian
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x_y_no Donating Member (291 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 04:58 PM
Response to Original message
47. Sheesh!
How did I know this would turn into a Dean bashing thread ... to be followed closely by Clark bashing threads no doubt.

IMHO, Dean is thoroughly in the progressive mainstream, and that's fine with me. I believe he would make an excellent DNC chair.
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 05:00 PM
Response to Reply #47
48. Yes, Dean bashing one day, Clark the next....you got it! LOL
It is our turn today. :evilgrin:
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eridani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 06:49 AM
Response to Original message
50. No, but he has a backbone--
--and will IMO inspire the Dems to quit taking shit from the neocons.
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LynnTheDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 07:24 AM
Response to Original message
51. No, he isn't.
His opposition early on against Iraq made him "far left" as a means of discrediting him.
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CWebster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 07:29 AM
Response to Original message
52. Depends on who is measuring
What Dean has is a firm grasp of reality and a good sense of priority on the issues. He is very clear about that and it is like a breath of fresh air.
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NoPasaran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:10 PM
Response to Original message
56. Dean stands for opening up politics
Dean stands for opening up politics to the participation of everyday people and reclaiming the control of our society from the domination of deep-pocketed special interests. I don't know if that's liberal, or progressive, but it's certainly revolutionary.
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youngred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:31 PM
Response to Original message
58. He isn't
he was a long time member of the DLC, is strongly in favour of gun rights, etc etc

He got the liberal label for his passion, opposition to the Iraq War and use of the internet.
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BlueManDude Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:31 PM
Response to Original message
59. Dean's a reformer. He's a kick in the ass for a party that needs it..
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mzmolly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:33 PM
Response to Original message
60. Dean is not to be labeled, he's a free thinker not an ideologue.
:hi:
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greenohio Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:34 PM
Response to Reply #60
61. Does that apply to all, or just Dean?
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mzmolly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:40 PM
Response to Reply #61
62. That applies to all who are NOT ideologues. But the thread is about Dean
is it not?
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greenohio Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:41 PM
Response to Reply #62
63. It is. I'm just trying to figure out where your coming from.
So aren't most Dem politicians NOT ideologues? Who are examples of Dem ideologues?
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mzmolly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 12:54 PM
Response to Reply #63
64. It depends on who you ask does it not?
Where I'm coming from is, who is liberal? Kucinich? NO he was anti-choice for decades, supported flag protection ammendments, and putting minors in jail with seasoned prisoners. Nader, nope - he busted unions and stiffed homeless people in Pennsylvania.

So you see, Dean of the three mentioned here, is the MOST liberal in MY eyes, but the label "liberal" serves no purpose except to keep people from discussing the issues. For example Kerry was voted the most "liberal" senator in the Senate by some as you know. He surpassed Kucinich in spite of his vote for the war because his overall record was more "liberal."

So who gets to decide what "liberal" is? Me, you, Limbaugh?

I agree with you we could say most Dems are NOT idealogues, but they agree on some central issues, which is why they are Democrats. Those issues don't necessarilly make one a "liberal" unless of course you ask Rush Limbaugh.

It's all in the eye of the beholder.

Dean is a social liberal and a fiscal conservative - so you tell me, is that "liberal" ?
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greenohio Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 01:05 PM
Response to Reply #64
65. No. Its moderate, in my eyes.
But to say Kucinich and Nader aren't liberal is very fascinating.

In short, I don't know how you can label anyone liberal since there are no true ideologues. Everyone, including Dean, is above the labels.
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mzmolly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 01:17 PM
Response to Reply #65
66. Again, it's all a matter of personal values. I considered Wellstone a
liberal but he voted for anti-gay marriage legislation and that embittered some.

:hi:

Screw labels, let's discuss what Dean wants to do for the party.
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