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Anybody recognize themselves here: Nate Silver - The Two Progressivisms

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Pirate Smile Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 06:13 PM
Original message
Anybody recognize themselves here: Nate Silver - The Two Progressivisms
Edited on Sun Dec-06-09 06:20 PM by Pirate Smile
This battle seems to be played out every day on DU, Daily Kos, etc.

Some of the characteristics, such as Optimism v. Pessimism, are palpable within most threads.

The Two Progressivisms

by Nate Silver @ 6:58 PM

The definitions of the terms liberal and conservative have been the subjects of much debate in contemporary American politics. But it has become increasingly clear that the term "progressive" is equally ambiguous, and is associated with at least two relatively distinct philosophical traditions. Although these two "progressivisms" share common ground on many (probably most) issues, they are at loggerheads on some others, as has perhaps become more apparent since the election of President Obama.





The first type of progressivism has its philosophical underpinnings in 18th Century, Enlightement-era thought. It believes that politics is a battle of ideas. It further believes that through the use of reason and the exchange of ideas, human society will tend to improve itself through scientific and technological innovation. Hence, it believes in progress, and for this reason lays claim to the term progressive. Because of its belief and optimism in the faculties of human reason, I refer to this philosophy as rational progressivism.

Rational progressivism tends to be trusting, within reason, of status quo political and economic institutions -- generally including the institution of capitalism. It tends to trust these institutions because it believes they are a manifestation of progress made by previous generations. However, unlike conservatism, it also sees these institutions as continuing works in progress, subject to inefficiencies because of distorted or poorly-designed incentives, poorly-informed or misinformed participants, and competition from 'irrational' worldviews like religion. It also recognizes that certain persons who stand to benefit from preserving the status quo, particularly elected officials but also corporations, may seek to block this progress to protect their own interests. The project of rational progressivism, then, is to propagate good ideas and to convert them, through a wide and aggressive array of democratic means, into public policy.

The second type of progressivism is what I call radical progressivism. It represents, indeed, a much more radical and comprehensive critique of the status quo, which it tends to see as intrinsically corrupt. Its philosophical tradition originates in 19th Century thought -- and specifically, owes a great deal to the Marxist critique of capitalism and the Marxist theory of social change. It also finds inspiration in both the radical movement of the 1960s and the labor and social movements of late 19th and early 20th centuries (from which it borrows the label "progressive").

Radical progressivism is more clearly distinguishable from "conventional" liberalism and would generally be associated with the "far left" -- although on a handful of issues such as free trade, it may find common cause with the "radical" right. Radical progressivism embraces the tradition of populism and frequently adopts a discourse of the virtuous commoner organizing against the corrupt elite. It is much more willing to make normative claims than rational progressivism, and tends to view conservatism as immoral and contemporary American liberalism as amoral (at best). Its project is not reform but transformation.

Rational progressives sometimes regard radical progressives as impractical, self-righteous, shrill, demagogic, nave and/or anti-intellectual. Radical progressives, in turn, regard rational progressives as impure, corrupt (or corruptible), selfish, complacent, elitist, and too quick to compromise.

It should come as no surprise that I regard myself as a rational progressive. I believe in intellectual progress -- that we, as a species, are gradually becoming smarter. I believe that there are objectively right answers to many political and economic questions.

I believe that economic growth is both a reflection of and a contributor toward societal progress, that economic growth has facilitated a higher standard of living, and that this is empirically indisputable. I also believe, however, that our society is now so exceptionally wealthy -- even in the midst of a severe recession -- that it has little excuse not to provide for some basic level of dignity for all its citizens.

I believe that answers to questions like these do not always come from the establishment. But I also believe that it is just as important to question one's own assumptions as to question the assumption of others.

The truth is, I dont particularly care whether you call me a progressive or not. In fact, I'm suspicious of people who line up on the same side of the ideological divide on every single issue. The world is more complicated than that, especially when one strives to see the world through a scientific, empirical lens. While progressives, in my view, clearly have the preponderance of good ideas, they do not have a monopoly on them. Nor do conservatives have a monopoly on bad ideas, especially when radical progressives flirt with Marxist modes of discourse.

Let me be very clear about what I am saying. I believe that our country needs a lot of work -- a lot of work -- almost certainly more work than Barack Obama is going to be able to accomplish in four or eight years. I believe that greater awareness and greater participation on behalf of everyday citizens is almost certainly a necessary condition to facilitate that work. To the extent that blogs, political campaigns, church groups, labor unions, and whatever other organization you can think of can coalesce that participation and turn it into a "movement", I am all for the "movement".

But if someone wants to marshal an army to fight a battle of wills while playing fast and loose with the truth and using some of the same demagogic precepts that the right wing does, I am not particularly interested in that. In fact, I think it is acutely dangerous.

http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2009/02/two-progressivis...
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Unvanguard Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 06:17 PM
Response to Original message
1. That's, um, binaristic of him, and a bit question-begging.
Is it now impossible to be a rational radical?
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jwirr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 06:22 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. Yes, I am feeling like I have two halves. A little on one side and a
little on the other. I don't think we are that easy to describe.
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dbmk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 06:21 AM
Response to Reply #4
41. I don't think he is saying that persons are easy to describe
The list is not a description of a person, but traits of the two philosphies.
Noone will fit perfectly into any box.
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readmoreoften Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:15 PM
Response to Reply #1
16. Or a radical progressive AND reactionary.
I like "flirting with Marxist discourse" as a bad idea. God forbid!
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readmoreoften Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:18 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. Wow, someone can make a silly, meaningless chart about nothing.
If "rational progressives" are optimistic, how come some of the nastiest hysteria results from criticism of Obama? This is beyond circular reasoning, it's silly and arrogant and obviously written by someone who wants to think of himself as "rational" against the bad "radicals."

Idiocy.
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Kurt_and_Hunter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 06:20 PM
Response to Original message
2. Sounds like the I... You...She... game
Edited on Sun Dec-06-09 06:28 PM by Kurt_and_Hunter
"I am sexually uninhibited, you are promiscuous, she is a slut."

I am very much in the rational progressive camp as described, but I assume most people would consider themselves to be in the rational camp.

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hfojvt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 12:53 PM
Response to Reply #2
54. I think lots of people are proud of being radical too
When I looked at the two lists sometimes they both seemed bad and I wanted a middle ground, for example, between credulous and cynical.
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tabatha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 06:21 PM
Response to Original message
3. Sometimes one can wear a different hat depending upon
the circumstances.

People cannot be reduced to numbers, Nate.
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Pirate Smile Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 06:43 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. I'm sure it is more of a spectrum then a black or white thing.
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HopeOverFear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 06:33 PM
Response to Original message
5. Tell 'em off, Nate...
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Jim Sagle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 07:02 PM
Response to Original message
7. Fuck off, Nate...
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grantcart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 02:29 AM
Response to Reply #7
35. Now which column would that fit in to?
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Jim Sagle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 02:56 AM
Response to Reply #35
37. Does it really matter?
Edited on Mon Dec-07-09 02:59 AM by Jim Sagle
His breakdown is misleadingly simplistic - intellectually dishonest, to coin a phrase.

And how "rational" is it, really, to suck DLC ass? Unless you're paid to - which he obviously is.
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davidpdx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 05:12 AM
Response to Reply #35
39. we love you no matter which half you fit into
other people...maybe not so much.
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Phx_Dem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 11:32 AM
Response to Reply #7
46. Sounds like you're in the radical column.
Based on your heated response.
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Jim Sagle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 12:27 PM
Response to Reply #46
50. Not exclusively, but mainly.
Not Kucinich/McKinney radical but Dean/Sanders/Harkin/Grayson "radical", which is only radical if you accept Silver's simplistic either-or Hobson's Choice.

His piece is simplistic and dishonest because it stakes out his preferred position as the only rational one, yet he does not provide (or even allude to) any evidence.

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emulatorloo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 07:08 PM
Response to Original message
8. Well this quote does sound like recent DU flame-fests
Rational progressives sometimes regard radical progressives as impractical, self-righteous, shrill, demagogic, nave and/or anti-intellectual.

Radical progressives, in turn, regard rational progressives as impure, corrupt (or corruptible), selfish, complacent, elitist, and too quick to compromise.
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Blue_In_AK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 07:09 PM
Response to Original message
9. I'm not real fond of labels
I see some of myself in both of those categories.
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vaberella Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 01:19 PM
Response to Reply #9
61. You do realize that your username says something else.
:D However I do agree that I find myself in both categories. But then I can find some things I'm conservative on and may share with the Repubs (unfortunaely) and other issues that I'm liberal on (which is more often and tolerably side with the Dems). But when I vote, I vote one way and with one label.
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Cha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 08:33 PM
Response to Original message
10. Nate Silver is making sense so of course..he's told to "fuck off"..
"But if someone wants to marshal an army to fight a battle of wills while playing fast and loose with the truth and using some of the same demagogic precepts that the right wing does, I am not particularly interested in that. In fact, I think it is acutely dangerous."

It's dangerous all right..to themselves.
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ClarkUSA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 08:53 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. Personally, I think the two types should be Rational Progressives vs. Irrational Progressives.
;)
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Cha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:04 PM
Response to Reply #12
15. Irrationally
Pessimistic who aren't troubled by propagandistic tactics.
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readmoreoften Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:20 PM
Response to Reply #12
18. So now the centrists are going to co-opt "progressive" along with "positive"
Silliness.
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QC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:47 PM
Response to Reply #18
22. Already happening. The DLC has been calling itself "progressive" for years.
And, perhaps not coincidentally, many of our resident "centrists" here love to describe themselves as progressives.
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Cha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 11:31 PM
Response to Reply #22
32. And, the radically so-called progressive have
been lying for years.

"But if someone wants to marshal an army to fight a battle of wills while playing fast and loose with the truth and using some of the same demagogic precepts that the right wing does, I am not particularly interested in that. In fact, I think it is acutely dangerous."

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Sebastian Doyle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 11:45 AM
Response to Reply #22
47. Yep.
DLC co founder Will Marshall literally repackaged PNAC global fascism plans under the banner of the "Progressive" Policy Institute. :puke:

Which is why I still prefer to call myself a Liberal. Though the treasonous fucks have tried to corrupt that one too.
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ClarkUSA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 01:09 PM
Response to Reply #18
58. I'm a liberal who opposed the Iraq war and IWR. And since when is Nate Silver a "centrist"?
Edited on Mon Dec-07-09 01:09 PM by ClarkUSA
Silliness, indeed.
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:42 PM
Response to Reply #12
20. I actually agree. There is nothing rational about alot of the stuff we've been seeing
since Obama's election from the very people who scream the loudest about being his "base."
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ClarkUSA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 10:52 AM
Response to Reply #20
44. Exactly.
Edited on Mon Dec-07-09 10:58 AM by ClarkUSA
Nate scored with this observation of what he calls Radical Progressives...

"But if someone wants to marshal an army to fight a battle of wills while playing fast and loose with the truth and using some of the same demagogic precepts that the right wing does, I am not particularly interested in that. In fact, I think it is acutely dangerous."

Obviously, Nate Silver is good at using euphemisms. ;)
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Adelante Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 11:50 AM
Response to Reply #12
49. Nice one
:D
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ClarkUSA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 08:48 PM
Response to Original message
11. To the Greatest with Ye... from one Rational Progressive to another.
Edited on Sun Dec-06-09 08:51 PM by ClarkUSA
:thumbsup:
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Hissyspit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 08:54 PM
Response to Original message
13. Ah, way too simplistic. Not impressed at all.
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nemo137 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 10:56 PM
Response to Reply #13
30. Of course it is, you expected it to be totally fleshed out in one post?
I think the analysis is rough, but does describe two ways of approaching progressive politics. I'm not sure I would have picked "rational" and "radical" as my labels, but I think the two strains (technocratic, working within the system vs. populist, skeptical of the system) are definitely there. Being a D&D nerd, I'd probably label them Lawful Good and Chaotic Good.
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Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:02 PM
Response to Original message
14. Well that describes DU flamefests very well.
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billh58 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:37 PM
Response to Original message
19. K&R n/t
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chill_wind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:42 PM
Response to Original message
21. Stick to baseball, Nate. n/t
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:47 PM
Response to Original message
23. Money Quote:
"The truth is, I dont particularly care whether you call me a progressive or not. In fact, I'm suspicious of people who line up on the same side of the ideological divide on every single issue. The world is more complicated than that, especially when one strives to see the world through a scientific, empirical lens. While progressives, in my view, clearly have the preponderance of good ideas, they do not have a monopoly on them. Nor do conservatives have a monopoly on bad ideas, especially when radical progressives flirt with Marxist modes of discourse."

Good stuff. Thanks for posting. Happy to rec
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boppers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 09:58 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. ...which he says after labelling "empirical" as a specific, narrow, type.
:rofl:
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Number23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 10:21 PM
Response to Reply #24
26. I actually thought his use of the word "scientific" made less sense than his use of "empirical"
But whatever. :)
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davidpdx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 05:17 AM
Response to Reply #23
40. Yeah I like that one too
But this is what I liked:

But if someone wants to marshal an army to fight a battle of wills while playing fast and loose with the truth and using some of the same demagogic precepts that the right wing does, I am not particularly interested in that. In fact, I think it is acutely dangerous.

There is a specific reason though, I saw someone post a picture next to a column the other day. The column was about the war in Afghanistan. Granted, I had absolutely no problem with what was written. But the person posted a picture of Obama morphing into Bush. And this was on a "progressive" blog. Talk about playing fast and loose with the truth.


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NJmaverick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 10:03 PM
Response to Original message
25. This is an outstanding read. Thanks for posting it
I most definitely fall under rational progressive
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jefferson_dem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 10:24 PM
Response to Reply #25
27. Agreed.
I love reading analysis like this. Cogent, provocative. Nate is spot on, per usual.

I'm with you in the "rational progressive" camp. I've always called myself a pragmatic progressive...or a progressive pragmatist so that's pretty much the same thing.

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NJmaverick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 10:42 PM
Response to Reply #27
28. I agree with you about the value of being pragmatic
it's fun to be an idealist but that rarely leads to success.
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murdoch Donating Member (658 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 10:48 PM
Response to Original message
29. Where the list fails
"outcome-oriented versus process-oriented"

I wouldn't say the radical person is less outcome-oriented than the "rational" person, the radical person just has longer term goals.

You can certainly peg the date earlier if you want, but there is no doubt that from 1690 on, the Irish people were under the complete domination of England. An Irish nationalist back in 1690, who wanted freedom from "John Bull's tyranny" would not see any real gleam of hope until the (failed) rising in 1916, which took over parts of Dublin for less than a week. What would the be the "outcome-oriented" thing that fellow back in 1690 could do to get his goal reached? Very little, other than the two centuries of "process-oriented" preparation for 1916 and after.

A lot more in the list is silly. I don't see how the above Irish revolutionary is a "pessimist". How can you be a pessimist if you spend two centuries working for something which if it happens or not, will certainly not happen in your lifetime? So in this case, the "optimists" are the ones who said nothing can be done, let's make a deal, and the pessimists were the ones who spent generations fighting for a freedom they eventually won. This makes no sense.
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laughingliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 11:42 PM
Response to Reply #29
33. Good points...nt
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Undercurrent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-06-09 11:07 PM
Response to Original message
31. Thanks, Nate.
Interesting concise analysis from a fine mathematical mind. Very thought provoking.

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mcablue Donating Member (625 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 01:54 AM
Response to Original message
34. Nate aspires to land a job in a big newspaper (like Ezra Klein did)
Edited on Mon Dec-07-09 01:56 AM by mcablue
With that in mind, he knows he can't be seen as friendly to those darn "radical" lefties.
The way to be seen as a Very Serious Journalist is to stay close to the center.

When Krugman has been pessimistic, he's been attacked by those Serious "optimistic" progressives, including Rahm Emanuel.


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impik Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 02:41 AM
Response to Original message
36. Way to go, Nate!
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Hekate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 03:27 AM
Response to Original message
38. Oh lord. Of course it would be 18th century Enlightenment ideas that attract me...
My mother practically weaned me on them. :eyes: Seriously. I mean it. It underlay her whole system of ethics.

Nate Silver is a very bright young man--which we already know--with a keen analytical mind. I'm glad he's applied that mind to this particular issue. The fact that I think he's right LOL does not hurt, but his side-by-side list seems fair to me, presenting as it does how we see ourselves as well as how the "other side" sees us.

And yes, this is pretty much the root of the flame wars we are having here all too often.

Thanks Pirate Smile -- this is very good.

Hekate

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HamdenRice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 07:12 AM
Response to Original message
42. "playing fast and loose with the truth and using some of the same demagogic precepts"
I see this everyday around here among the anti-rationalists.
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AllentownJake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 07:14 AM
Response to Original message
43. I expect every DLC shill on here to start touting themselves as a rational progressive
and using it as their fallback when they lose an argument.

:rofl:
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dionysus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 11:06 AM
Response to Reply #43
45. jake, a big way to cheapen whatever point is was you had is to act as if everyone who disagrees with
Edited on Mon Dec-07-09 11:09 AM by dionysus
you is not a liberal and is DLC. and my favorite, people paid to disagree with you.

you actually prove the point of the OP... but that just sailed over your head...

:shrug:

*dodges tomato*
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Jim Sagle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 12:41 PM
Response to Reply #43
53. "Rational progressive" sounds SO much better than "five buck an hour DLC hogwash dispenser", yes?
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Greyhound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-08-09 03:35 AM
Response to Reply #43
66. Took a little less than four hours by my clock.
I expect the additional lag comes from todays shocking departure of one of their own.
:hide:
:rofl:


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Starry Messenger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 11:48 AM
Response to Original message
48. That's a lot of "I" statements for a supposed empiricist.
Shrug.
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 12:31 PM
Response to Original message
51. He forgot the third column.
Whackadoodles. They often are mistaken for the second column- radicals. But really they're just whackadoodles.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 01:06 PM
Response to Reply #51
56. If we're adding categories, the a-ideological attention seeker should be mentioned. nt
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supernova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 12:33 PM
Response to Original message
52. According to him, I'm somewhere between the two
Using his verbiage, sometimes I'm a "rational," others a "radical."

For instance, I consider myself an idealist in most major ways, I look forward to a time when we have a fully equal society, regardless of what color we are, whom we love, or what god(s) or no gods we admire. That means I work toward those goals not just by participating in the political process, supporting the candidates I think best represent my ideals, but I try to live my life that way too. I try to let the people I cross paths with tell me how they wish to be treated, I don't prejudge others, and I try to give an receive information as honestly as I can.

And what does he mean by "rational" and "normative?" If he's saying that more pragmatic-minded Dems and liberals -- *whispers* DLC --will choose only what is rational, i.e. based on some kind of emperical evidence those ideas that will win, I don't think I agree with that. Why? It lacks "the vision thing," as Bush I said once.

Great leaders have to be both pragmatic and inspirational. They have to be mindful of what's possible, and they also have to inspire their people to greater notions about what it means to be alive and in this place and time with this government. Otherwise, you're just standing still, and eventually you will fall behind the rest of the world. I don't mean in terms of material wealth exclusively. I mean in terms of why a person would get up in the morning and participate in our democracy. A pragmatic president, a "rational," would not have asked us to prepare for then go to the moon, for the greatest recent example.




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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 01:05 PM
Response to Original message
55. This is self-congratulatory nonsense. *I* am a "rational" progressive, but *you* are a radical!
What a stunning intellect this Nate Silver possesses. :eyes:
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vaberella Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 01:11 PM
Response to Reply #55
59. You can easily rephrase it to Progressive Pragmatist and Progressive Radical.
Look being a Radical is not a bad thing. Kucinich is a radical in most cases, ditto for Feingold. However, that's not a bad thing. It's good and it helps to see that there are people who help keep the "rational" ones honest when they might give a little too much away.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 01:12 PM
Response to Reply #59
60. Still self-congratulatory tripe. nt
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vaberella Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 01:08 PM
Response to Original message
57. Rational Progressive chiming in...Ugh, apparently I'm elitist.
Well yes, I have said this for a while, there are two spectrums and maybe two even more extreme groups within those two. I side with the Rational, you can get more in the end and as long as the main idea is maintained and adhered too, I'm willing to make som compromises, since the political sphere is a nightmare.
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 01:21 PM
Response to Original message
62. It's called positivist vs. dialectical materialist
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Bullet1987 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 02:37 PM
Response to Original message
63. The terms rational and radical are poorly chosen...and show his bias
Edited on Mon Dec-07-09 02:39 PM by Bullet1987
I find anyone suspect that is always ready to call people who disagree with them RADICAL. It's an alarmist word meant to equate with the fringe or crazy. I don't think anyone should be called fringe in this day and age. My philosophy is that if you can build a strong argument backed by evidence...then your conclusions can be considered rational (so Teabaggers for instance can't be considered rational to me because their entire argument lacks a TON of evidence). Too often, rational is equated with what's ACCEPTED. You can write a perfectly rational book about the Kennedy Assassination with hundreds of sources and government files. But it would be considered radical not because of the lack of evidence, but simply because what you're saying is not accepted or taken seriously. Nate Silver's whole premise is backwards.
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Occam Bandage Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 03:09 PM
Response to Original message
64. K&R.
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county worker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-07-09 03:33 PM
Response to Original message
65. Reminds me of the days of Hillary and Obama primaries.
Take some of the words and change them and the argument is very similar. Argument for argument's sake I think. Who gives a shit whether you or I am radical or rational? It ain't that important folks. Our days are numbered. How are we going to live in the future? Let's get together and create jobs and a better life for us all!

Get the government to spend money on people, that isn't rational or radical, it is just common sense.
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RepublicanElephant Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-08-09 03:47 AM
Response to Original message
67. idealist vs realist.
this divide occurs across the political spectrum.
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