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Author Topic: The Liberty Amendments: Restoring the American Republic
Seneca
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If Progressive goals, ideas, beliefs, etc. are so desirable, then why do the Progressives need to have them put into law and have them forced onto everyone Shouldn't people naturally and voluntarily want to embrace these things?

The mark of a tyrant is someone who forces their beliefs onto others because they cannot persuade them to do so voluntarily. In a free society I could care less what my neighbor believes so long as he does not force his beliefs onto me.

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Pete at Home
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Isn't that why George Washington set the example of a two term precedent, rather than encoding it into law? [Big Grin]
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Seneca
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In that way Progressives reveal themselves as true fascists by attempting to criminalize dissent from their beliefs. This is the entire point of putting a belief system into law and requiring obedience to it.
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Pete at Home
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Seneca, do you think that, say, regulations that prohibit employers from chaining their employees to their desks in a rickety fire-hazardous building, decrease freedom? http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-4194175/stock-photo-woman-chained-to-her-desk.html
How about laws against adults having sex with their students? http://thegrio.com/2010/04/23/teen-and-teacher-sex-exposed-by-jilted-girlfriend/

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TomDavidson
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quote:
In that way Progressives reveal themselves as true fascists...
You know who's a true fascist on this site? Redskull. Seriously. No joke. He'll tell you up-front.

You got a problem with fascism, how about you take it up with him?

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Seneca
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Laws preventing others from harming others or imprisoning them aren't part of that. Those laws empower freedom.

Laws against murder, false imprisonment, assault, theft, etc., aren't subject to this as they aren't laws that tell people what do to if they aren't harming anyone.

The Progressives attempt to conflate their legion of laws and regulations into this ideology by claiming those laws are simply an extension, but they are an unreasonable overreach into "pre-crime" and sectors of life that anyone with a reasonable viewpoint would look at and determine those actions would not be harming others.

In the recent case of California, if I shoot a deer with a lead bullet and then slaughter and eat my deer, does it harm anyone else? Nevermind the fact that the science shows it probably won't even harm me, but you get the point.

[ October 14, 2013, 04:26 PM: Message edited by: Seneca ]

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TomDavidson
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It seems to me that laws against immigration prevent, at best, the sort of indirect harm that a ban on lead bullets does. What's your issue there?
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KidTokyo
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quote:
In the recent case of California, if I shoot a deer with a lead bullet and then slaughter and eat my deer, does it harm anyone else? Nevermind the fact that the science shows it probably won't even harm me, but you get the point.
It's not always about "you." Someone else could riddle a deer with lead bullets and feed it to their children. It's almost inevitable. The kids don't know what risk they are taking.

This falls into that "public health" category of regulations that even hardcore laissez-fairists over a century ago accepted as necessary.

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Seneca
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As there is not an epidemic or any cases that I know of of people dying from using lead bullets in hunting from meat contamination (which was always an absurd argument), but there IS evidence to show illegal aliens have attacked this nation by abusing our immigration system there is a difference between a manifest threat that has occurred and is still occurring, and an imaginary threat.
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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by KidTokyo:
quote:
In the recent case of California, if I shoot a deer with a lead bullet and then slaughter and eat my deer, does it harm anyone else? Nevermind the fact that the science shows it probably won't even harm me, but you get the point.
It's not always about "you." Someone else could riddle a deer with lead bullets and feed it to their children. It's almost inevitable. The kids don't know what risk they are taking.

This falls into that "public health" category of regulations that even hardcore laissez-fairists over a century ago accepted as necessary.

You really want to argue this specifically? Despite the fact we've been using lead bullets in hunting for an eternity and these poisoning cases are virtually unheard of? Feel free to open a different thread on it, but I'd be definitely willing to argue that one.
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kmbboots
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quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
Laws preventing others from harming others or imprisoning them aren't part of that. Those laws empower freedom.

Laws against murder, false imprisonment, assault, theft, etc., aren't subject to this as they aren't laws that tell people what do to if they aren't harming anyone.


Why not? Surely if murder, false imprisonment, assault, theft and so forth are so undesirable, then why do we need to have laws against them and have laws against them forced onto everyone Shouldn't people naturally and voluntarily want to embrace not doing these things?
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KidTokyo
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quote:
You really want to argue this specifically? Despite the fact we've been using lead bullets in hunting for an eternity and these poisoning cases are virtually unheard of? Feel free to open a different thread on it, but I'd be definitely willing to argue that one.
Well, it took me twelve seconds to find an article on "Gun-Tests" dot com which states that breathing in lead is actually a serious problem for the shooter. It does not appear to be a website run by progressives.

http://www.gun-tests.com/performance/feb97lead.html

But that's really beside the point. The right to pass a certain kind of law cannot be premised on solely on the science behind it. That's an argument for ratifying or not ratifying it -- not for whether the state has a right to pass it.

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scifibum
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quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
In that way Progressives reveal themselves as true fascists by attempting to criminalize dissent from their beliefs. This is the entire point of putting a belief system into law and requiring obedience to it.

Can you give an example?
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TCB
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Seneca said:
quote:
Amending the Constitution is:
-better than nothing
-good if done in a specific and direct way that specifically targets a certain behavior and very directly says "do not do X or do X." It will be hard for the legal technocrats to wiggle around such direct language as they've manage to do with the 18th century wording of the Constitution. But even if they did, it would be a much more clear violation of the Constitution that everyone would have to acknowledge and hopefully the powers that be that have the authority to stop those people and hold them accountable would move to do so. (ie: Presidential impeachment, etc.)

It's definitely better for a political movement to enshrine their set of policy preferences in the Constitution, where it's permanent, instead of legislatively, where it can be repealed. But as a practical matter, if a movement is too unpopular to win elections, it's definitely too unpopular to amend the Constitution.

Paladine said:
quote:
The basic problem conservatives have over the long term is that liberals by their nature move much more quickly. It's a lot harder and more complicated through the normal electoral process to drastically reduce the size of scope of government than it is to grow it. A liberal administration might implement a new vast entitlement program tomorrow, and the conservative administration which follows would have a difficult or impossible task in rolling it back given that millions would come to depend upon it.
There's no structural reason why it's any harder to repeal New Deal or Great Society programs (or any law, for that matter) than it was to pass them. If repealing those laws was popular enough Congress could do it today. The practical reason those programs can't be repealed is that the welfare state is immensely popular. The greatest impediment to the conservative vision of America has historically been democracy, not corruption.

quote:
One of the benefits to a government limited by a written constitution is that there's a structural impediment to growth beyond a certain point or beyond certain functions. The whole reason our system of government is set up the way it is was to mitigate the damage caused by that natural desire of government to expand. Divide the power up between federal and state, executive, legislative, and judicial, split the legislature into two bodies that work differently and represent different constituencies.

It worked pretty well for awhile, but now everything's become fused. The federal government has assumed many of the roles of the state. The executive branch has vast legislative and judicial functions through the administrative state, promulgating and interpreting tens of thousands of pages of "regulations" carrying the force of law every year. The courts assume legislative functions by rewriting statutes and enacting policies which no democratic body ever voted to make law prior to their decision.

This problem is solvable electorally - just elect politicians who respect separation of powers and federalism. You might say, as Seneca does, that it's not possible because politicans are corrupted by the office. I say the conservative base has never really even tried to push Republican presidents, congressmen, and judges on those issues.
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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by kmbboots:
quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
Laws preventing others from harming others or imprisoning them aren't part of that. Those laws empower freedom.

Laws against murder, false imprisonment, assault, theft, etc., aren't subject to this as they aren't laws that tell people what do to if they aren't harming anyone.


Why not? Surely if murder, false imprisonment, assault, theft and so forth are so undesirable, then why do we need to have laws against them and have laws against them forced onto everyone Shouldn't people naturally and voluntarily want to embrace not doing these things?
Believe it or not there is some wisdom here. Suffice it to say most of the laws we have about this are reactionary. So they don't actually STOP someone from attempting to commit those crimes, they just lay out punishments for them if they do. This is also another tell-tale difference between conservative ideology and progressive ideology. Progressives seek to control the behavior of others because they do not trust them to make good choices on their own. Conservatives want to allow free will and give people the choice, but understand that if people use their free will to harm others they will be held accountable.

This is the difference between having laws punishing assault and murder vs trying to ban all methods of killing others.

One can argue that if all citizens were chained to a bed and kept locked in cells with toilet facilities and food delivered by robots that you would eliminate crime completely, but at that point is such a society even worth existing in?

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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by KidTokyo:
quote:
You really want to argue this specifically? Despite the fact we've been using lead bullets in hunting for an eternity and these poisoning cases are virtually unheard of? Feel free to open a different thread on it, but I'd be definitely willing to argue that one.
Well, it took me twelve seconds to find an article on "Gun-Tests" dot com which states that breathing in lead is actually a serious problem for the shooter. It does not appear to be a website run by progressives.

http://www.gun-tests.com/performance/feb97lead.html

But that's really beside the point. The right to pass a certain kind of law cannot be premised on solely on the science behind it. That's an argument for ratifying or not ratifying it -- not for whether the state has a right to pass it.

Inhalation (which is not being regulated by that law) is a MUCH different thing than possibly ingestion. Like I said, the science is rock-solid on this and we have a lot of years of data to support it, but if you really want to argue this I'd suggest taking it to a gun control thread.

The right to pass laws comes from the Constitution. Our Constitution was written to severely limit Congress from passing certain kids of laws. They have grossly exceeded those limitations and used the passage of time to pretend that they aren't.

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KidTokyo
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quote:
Progressives seek to control the behavior of others because they do not trust them to make good choices on their own.
Well, that explains their interest in promoting birth control and family planning. Oh, wait...
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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by scifibum:
quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
In that way Progressives reveal themselves as true fascists by attempting to criminalize dissent from their beliefs. This is the entire point of putting a belief system into law and requiring obedience to it.

Can you give an example?
For instance, laws about methods of raising children (ie: laws and ordinances against spanking, laws hindering the ability or flat-out outlawing homeschooling, etc.).
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TomDavidson
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quote:
Like I said, the science is rock-solid on this and we have a lot of years of data to support it...
It seems to me, then, that debating this law on its actual merits is pretty much all you'd need to do, right? Because you would agree that if lead bullets caused a genuine harm, based on your previous statements, that the government would have the right to ban them?

------------

If the worst example of progressive mind control is the admittedly extreme position that "parents should not be allowed to harm their own children," do you ever feel embarrassed by your alarmism?

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Seneca
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quote:
It's definitely better for a political movement to enshrine their set of policy preferences in the Constitution, where it's permanent, instead of legislatively, where it can be repealed. But as a practical matter, if a movement is too unpopular to win elections, it's definitely too unpopular to amend the Constitution.


This problem is solvable electorally - just elect politicians who respect separation of powers and federalism. You might say, as Seneca does, that it's not possible because politicans are corrupted by the office. I say the conservative base has never really even tried to push Republican presidents, congressmen, and judges on those issues.

Wrong on so many levels. Many things are popular but have no chance in Congress for one simple reason: they go against the interest of the ruling class that runs the government. Polls show people support term limits and a balanced budget amendment by over 75% each, and yet these will never happen under our current Congress. Why? Because it would limit their power.
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KidTokyo
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Homeschooling is legal in all 50 states.
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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by KidTokyo:
Homeschooling is legal in all 50 states.

I never said it wasn't, however in some areas Progressives have placed heavy restrictions on it to attempt to discourage it, and in some other countries Progressives have outlawed it altogether, which is a template for what many of them want to do here in this country.
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TomDavidson
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Again, the rationale -- which they back with studies, of course -- is that homeschooling can be shown to demonstrably harm children. If you can provide alternative evidence, that becomes the argument. Unless your previous logic is incomplete.

If homeschooling were indeed provably harmful, all other factors being held equal, would the government have the right to legislate against it?

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
quote:
Originally posted by scifibum:
quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
In that way Progressives reveal themselves as true fascists by attempting to criminalize dissent from their beliefs. This is the entire point of putting a belief system into law and requiring obedience to it.

Can you give an example?
For instance, laws about methods of raising children (ie: laws and ordinances against spanking, laws hindering the ability or flat-out outlawing homeschooling, etc.).
I generally agree with Seneca that the government is exessively interfering with children and parents. Furthermore racist enforcement results in a bizarro situation where its okay for black parents to spank but not for white parents.


I personally think society would be better off if we kept a spanking between consenting adults. But Yelling at children seems to be more damaging. And tell her to be scientifically shown that spanking does more damage than CPS interference with the family, such a law does more harm than good.

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KidTokyo
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Seneca, I really am mystified by your belief that "conservatives" are the traditional standard-bearers of individual freedom and personal choice. Most of the regulations on personal freedom that I have encountered or witnessed come from conservative legislators. Who's telling me what to smoke? What music to listen to? What to watch or what my kids should watch? Or what they should wear at school? Who's throwing people in prison? Who's stopping and frisking, and who is stopping these practices?

If liberal Massachusetts played any role in getting me out of the house to meet other kids and not be subjected to my parents 24/7, I say, thank you progressives for rescuing me from Mom & Dad. I would have lost my mind.

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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by KidTokyo:
Seneca, I really am mystified by your belief that "conservatives" are the traditional standard-bearers of individual freedom and personal choice. Most of the regulations on personal freedom that I have encountered or witnessed come from conservative legislators. Who's telling me what to smoke? What music to listen to? What to watch or what my kids should watch? Or what they should wear at school? Who's throwing people in prison? Who's stopping and frisking, and who is stopping these practices?

If liberal Massachusetts played any role in getting me out of the house to meet other kids and not be subjected to my parents 24/7, I say, thank you progressives for rescuing me from Mom & Dad. I would have lost my mind.

Funny, I was listening to an interesting discussion about this on one of my favorite radio programs. They pointed out that Progressives have successfully managed to associate the term "conservative" with "bible-thumping facist."
A solution to this is to more narrowly apply labels.

So perhaps a better label for myself and lawmakers that I thought were doing a good job would be: conservative libertarian Constitutionalist.
This would prevent the bible-thumping visceral response, as well as the open-borders/drug-endorsing straw-man attacks that are often used against libertarians.

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KidTokyo
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quote:
So perhaps a better label for myself and lawmakers that I thought were doing a good job would be: conservative libertarian Constitutionalist.

This would prevent the bible-thumping visceral response, as well as the open-borders/drug-endorsing straw-man attacks that are often used against libertarians.

The term I would use to distinguish said group from libertarians is "paleo-conservative," which represents at least as many people as the libertarian wing and is just as much a part of American culture as your creed. Paleo-conservatives are not regulation-shy.

I think things are more complicated than you acknowledge here.

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kmbboots
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quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:

They pointed out that Progressives have successfully managed to associate the term "conservative" with "bible-thumping facist."

Huh. I thought that was Newt Gingrich.
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Paladine
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quote:
There's no structural reason why it's any harder to repeal New Deal or Great Society programs (or any law, for that matter) than it was to pass them. If repealing those laws was popular enough Congress could do it today. The practical reason those programs can't be repealed is that the welfare state is immensely popular.
No, the practical reason is the government has made a promise to people for decades and can't pull the rug out from under their feet. If you tell someone for their whole working life that a program is going to be there for them in their old age, then there are immense practical difficulties inherent in getting rid of it that have nothing to do with whether people think the promise was a good idea in the first place.

I don't think it's a good idea to force companies to insure children of their clients until age 26. That said, if an unhealthy 22 year old enters a post-graduate course of study based upon the promise that he doesn't need to get his own insurance and will be covered, we're really shafting him if we take the insurance away when he's 24 and has invested two years and tens of thousands of dollars on the basis of an unkept promise.

quote:
This problem is solvable electorally - just elect politicians who respect separation of powers and federalism. You might say, as Seneca does, that it's not possible because politicans are corrupted by the office. I say the conservative base has never really even tried to push Republican presidents, congressmen, and judges on those issues.
Yeah, the point of the amendment process to the Constitution is that the people shouldn't always have to rely on the political class doing what they should do; sometimes we need to take power into our own hands in a civil, peaceful way in order to set things right when they've been done badly wrong for a long time, or when our needs and challenges as a people change in such a way as to require it.
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AI Wessex
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For our legal eagles (or beagles), where does the notion of electoral districts for the House of Representatives come from and why is it universally used in all states? Originally, the states could use general elections, but I see references to laws passed in Wikipedia in 1862 and 1967 implying that they have to be used. So, it's not in the Constitution nor do I see an original law that those later laws reinforce.
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OpsanusTau
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quote:
if lead bullets caused a genuine harm
Um they do. Even leaving aside lead fragments in meat consumed by hunters and their families, lead bullet fragments in the environment (when hunters miss, or have a non-fatal hit) are available for ingestion by other wildlife. Where they cause harm.

http://ca.audubon.org/sites/default/files/documents/statement_scientists_final.pdf

Hunters are IMO among the most dedicated conservationists there are, so as education on this issue becomes more widespread I think we will see hunters voluntarily moving away from lead ammunition.

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Seriati
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quote:
Originally posted by KidTokyo:
Most of the regulations on personal freedom that I have encountered or witnessed come from conservative legislators. Who's telling me what to smoke?

Depends on what you mean. That you can't smoke Marjuana, wasn't that largely the alcohol and tabacco lobbies? Not clear if you'd count the Prohibitionists as progressives or not, they seem to fit Seneca's definition but I believe they were frequently conservative. If you mean cigarettes, its Mayor Bloomberg whose progressive agenda stopped you from smoking in many places. I happen to like that change, but its sucess lead to such silliness as attempting to legislate out big soda cups.

Or do you mean the Surgeon General?
quote:
What music to listen to?
I'm curious what limits you feel exist on your music choices. If you mean historically, it kind of loses its meaning as it was more a generational fight than anything else.
quote:
What to watch or what my kids should watch?
Well truthfully both sides are trying to control what you and especially your kids are watching. I mean do you think it was conservatives that prevented a certain episode of South Park from mocking a certain religious figure while another major religious figure is a running character? And I get the root of it may be conservatives from another country, but the choice was made here where they have no political say.
quote:
Or what they should wear at school?
Both get involved in this, liberals are not less likely to advocate school uniforms they just cite to dubious studies on educational quality or safety rather than moral outrage over loose standards.
quote:
Who's throwing people in prison?
Honestly, who's not? Do you read the police reports? I live in a very liberal area and they don't think twice about aresting people and serving them up jail time for minor infractions.
quote:
Who's stopping and frisking, and who is stopping these practices?
Oddly, Progressive Mayor Bloomberg is stopping and frisking because it gets him crime statistic results, and the Progressive Mayoral candidates in NY are all "going to stop stop and frisk" because they think it will get them votes. The interesting question is whether they will implement a stop in fact. I have no doubt they will publically announce the end of Stop and Frisk, but whether Halt and Pat comes about shortly thereafter is a different question.

[ October 15, 2013, 09:50 AM: Message edited by: Seriati ]

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TomDavidson
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quote:
so as education on this issue becomes more widespread I think we will see hunters voluntarily moving away from lead ammunition
And then, no doubt, we will see Seneca agree that the government has the right to restrict the use or sale of lead bullets. Right, Seneca?
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D.W.
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I'm in favor of depleted uranium instead of lead anyway. Though now I'll need a lead lined holster...
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Wayward Son
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quote:
Progressives seek to control the behavior of others because they do not trust them to make good choices on their own. Conservatives want to allow free will and give people the choice, but understand that if people use their free will to harm others they will be held accountable.
That you for stating this, because it's been a canard I've been dying to address for a while.

Conservatives today don't trust people, either, and Obamacare is the perfect example.

Do you realize why the Tea Party Conservatives are so desperate to stop Obamacare now? Because they are afraid people will like it. Because they are afraid that, once it is implemented, no one will be able to get rid of it. It will become political suicide to repeal it once people start believing that health care is a right. And it will bankrupt the country.

That is essentially correct, isn't it?

But think about it for a second. That means that Conservatives believe that, even if faced with fiscal disaster, the American People won't do the right thing. That they will only look out for themselves and not think of what is best for our nation. That Conservatives will have to prevent them from making a mistake, because once they have made it, they will not correct it.

IOW, Conservatives don't trust the American People to do the right thing, so they will force them to do it.

Otherwise, for Obamacare, they would allow the law to go into effect and then point out the problems it would cause. Then, once they are swept into the White House and Congress over the issue, they would repeal the law. Sure, there would be some financial pain from when the law was in effect, but it would be much less than causing the government to default on its obligations.

So please don't tell me how Progressives don't trust people to make good choices on their own, and how Conservatives want to give people free will and choice. Because that's bull. Conservatives don't trust the public anymore than Progressives, maybe even less. They are more than willing to tell us what we can and cannot do, and more than willing not to trust the American system of voting when it doesn't go their way. Conservatives are just as apt to tell people what to think and what to do, and will pass laws to prevent them from doing it. Don't fool yourself.

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Seriati
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Wayward its quite a twisting to claim that opposition to a law that makes purchase of insurance mandatory is attempting to take away the choice of the electorate because you don't trust them. I'd also point out that redistribution laws are not generally parallel examples to other laws, an individual's rational self interest is in favor of recieving handouts over the individual costs, it takes an extreme moral certainty to overrule that kind of self interest.

There are much fairer examples where conservatives attempt to impose religious or moral imperatives through the creation of law.

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KidTokyo
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Seriati,

You illustrate my ultimate point. Legislation comes from disparate parties. Even an absurdly broad definition of "Progressive" cannot fit an accurate picture of reality.

I doubt, as a side note, that most New Yorkers would call Bloomberg -- a billionaire from finance -- a "progressive."

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Wayward its quite a twisting to claim that opposition to a law that makes purchase of insurance mandatory is attempting to take away the choice of the electorate because you don't trust them.
That's not what he said, though. He said expressing opposition to such through political gimmicks with economically devastating consequences that far exceed the costs of the plan, rather than simply by letting the plan go into effect and then legitimately winning the clear authority to repeal it is such distrust.

quote:
it takes an extreme moral certainty to overrule that kind of self interest.
So, in other words, they don't trust the average person to have the same moral objections to it that you do, and thus must save them from their own failings, regardless of what they think they want.
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Wayward Son
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Very well put, Pyrtolin. That is what I meant, not what you said, Seriati.

If the Conservatives truly trusted the electorate, they would allow them to see that Obamacare doesn't work and then allow them to vote people into office to remove it, not close down the government to prevent them from ever experiencing it. [Mad]

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Seriati
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quote:
Originally posted by KidTokyo:
You illustrate my ultimate point. Legislation comes from disparate parties. Even an absurdly broad definition of "Progressive" cannot fit an accurate picture of reality.

I doubt, as a side note, that most New Yorkers would call Bloomberg -- a billionaire from finance -- a "progressive."

I think Seneca's point was that "progressive" was a multi-headed hyrdra where new heads may have nothing in common with the old -other than a direction towards more government, but I'd let him confirm where he thinks prohibitionists fit in.

On your sidenote, I'm not sure I'd agree that most NY'ers wouldn't consider him progressive. I can confirm that the Democratic primaries were absolutely filled with comercials by the candidates claiming to be "true progressives," which to me both implies that Bloomberg was viewed as a progressive, but also that he was deemed not left enough - or I guess you could say a "bad" progressive.

On the other hand, he's autocratic (including changing the rules to get a third term), filled with nanny state ideas that take control out of the hands of the citizens and one of the biggest supporters of gun control, so even if he's not left enough for the extreme left, he's still plenty left.
quote:
quote:
Wayward its quite a twisting to claim that opposition to a law that makes purchase of insurance mandatory is attempting to take away the choice of the electorate because you don't trust them.
That's not what he said, though. He said expressing opposition to such through political gimmicks with economically devastating consequences that far exceed the costs of the plan, rather than simply by letting the plan go into effect and then legitimately winning the clear authority to repeal it is such distrust.
That's quite a reading considering he spent the entire time talking about their lack of trust, wrote the point as a response to the very concept I expressed and failed to mention that his main point was opposition to a political gimmick.

Flipping that particular example around is pretty much straight up Big Brother style propaganda, up is down, black is white.

And notwithstanding your attempt to turn the morality question back on me, the fact remains this is about opposition to taking a choice a way, not about a failure to believe in a future choice.

[ October 15, 2013, 02:48 PM: Message edited by: Seriati ]

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