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Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Speaking a different language on 02/15/2013 19:50:27 MST Print View

Interesting read:

... Democrats see Republicans as inattentive to evidence and expertise, unconcerned about Americans struggling to get by and reflexively opposed to government action to deal with our collective challenges. On the other hand, Republicans see Democrats as the party of a government that routinely infringes on personal freedom, as creators of a “culture of dependency” among people who should stand on their own and as promoters of change from traditional values that will leave us weaker than before.

These different perspectives drive congressional debates far more than the immediate subject before the House on any given day. Above all, the abiding clash between the view of government as a vehicle for the common good and the view of government as an obstacle to progress and personal freedom sits close to the center of our ideological gridlock. That’s why I believe that Congress is best characterized as a forum for interest-group politics overlaid by worldview politics, and it’s the latter struggle that contributes more to the dysfunctional nature of the institution. ...

More at: http://www.salon.com/2013/02/09/former_congressman_tom_allen_gop_speaks_a_different_language/

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Speaking a different language on 02/15/2013 20:10:25 MST Print View

Good read indeed. Thanks, Doug.

The sooner we (collectively) stop viewing people and issues in simplistic black-white; liberal-conservative; left wing-right wing terms -- and strive more to understand each other and to understand the often complicated issues involved -- the better we will be as a nation. Too often, folks take the intellectual shortcut with a quick labeling -- and move on -- without really deciding or solving anything.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Speaking a different language on 02/15/2013 20:16:07 MST Print View

yeah - especially for us citizens

but congress mostly just does what political contributors tell it to do

although recent increases in capital gains tax rates show there's some hope that the government isn't totally bought off

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Speaking a different language on 02/15/2013 21:37:39 MST Print View

Yeah, that increase in capital gains tax really makes me want to go risk my savings.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Speaking a different language on 02/15/2013 21:42:22 MST Print View

There's plenty of capital. And what else can you do, buy a CD or Treasury bond? They get zero interest.

There's a shortage of people buying things, that's the problem.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Speaking a different language on 02/16/2013 00:08:14 MST Print View

There are very few purely "liberal" or "conservative" people. Most are somewhere in the middle, often without even knowing it. It's a lazy tendency to need to find labels and opponents in every debate that causes problems. Most social issues are simply ones of basic human needs, that have nothing whatsoever to do with left or right. Personally I don't believe left or right exist, that it is mostly some artificial construct in people's heads. If only we would see ourselves the way we see our pets: apolitical, just other living things whose welfare we hopefully care about.

As to different languages... if everyone would take the time to really learn a language other than their own and try to see the world through that other language, much of the stereotypes and assumptions we have of others would dissipate. People are basically the same everywhere, wanting the same things for their life and happiness. All the "parlor talk" is just that, just talk. Making enough money, taking care of the children, building a house, getting to work on time, finding something that feels meaningful for your own life... these are things people do everywhere in the world. If only we could all freely and easily talk to one another about it all.