Sheesh! Some people's kids...
Sure hope scaryneighbor isn't one of MY neighbors!!!
Pabillsman, I'm no Bush supporter (not so sure about Kerry, either, but since Nader's no choice at all, I'm pretty much stuck with Kerry, unless I write in my own name!!), but that incident about the teacher is beyond ridiculous!! He IS the President and should have his picture with the other Presidents; I don't see the problem. Granted, looking at his weaselly-eyed face makes me want to vomit, but to get someone fired because of MY views/opinions is ridiculous. Hope that teacher fights the dismissal!!!
Soccer: I believe that Kerry will fade into obscurity after Bush defeats him. At least that is what I hope. The problem is that the person's silly stance is given credibility. Could you imagine someone complaining in the past that Kennedy's or Reagan's picture does not belong. This person was listened to and the teacher has been fired. This is insanity!!!!!!! Most people, I believe, see it as such, but in today's world, the tiny minority trumps the majority.
Last night, I spoke with an elementary collegue from another district who told me that the administration has banned the showing Disney movies in school. They offered no reason why. I can guarantee that someone got their feathers ruffled about some minor aspect of a film and therefore we go overboard and ban everything. We need to uncork our butts in this world!!!!!!!!!!!
Put these ramblings away in a file and in a few years come back and see how much you have grown. It could be really enlightening.
[This message has been edited by patrask (edited 10-07-2004).]
I thought I�d posted a response earlier but lost the connection to the Internet while the page was refreshing. Drat the luck. In the meantime, it looks like you all have gone on without me. Forgive me for backtracking. . .
Additional parties will let the two main parties off the hook. They�ll no longer have to make themselves attractive to the �fringe� voters because those votes have found parties that are more akin to their beliefs. For example, we Republicans are encouraging Nader to run and be included on the ballot because we know the Naderites would most likely be Kerry supporters without Nader. Thus, a vote for Nader is, in fact, a vote for Bush. Not a bad thing, I�d say. But imagine what would happen if those Naderites had nowhere else to go. True, they�d likely migrate to the Democrats but if they did so in enough numbers, the Republicans would be forced to make themselves more attractive not necessarily to these �fringe� voters but to the more middle-of-the-road Democrats. As it stands, with those �fringe� voters going to Nader, the Republicans have no need to appeal to the moderate Democrats. I think this exercise would be repeated ad infinitum for each party that cropped up until the electorate had been hopelessly splintered. Works fine for some countries Europe and Canada, you say? Uh, okay. If you want to be more like European countries or Canada, fine and dandy. But surely you�d admit that trying to be more like these countries is a step in a direction most people wouldn�t want to go.
Yes, the candidate with the most votes should win the election; majority, after all, rules. But when you have more than two parties, you run a heightened risk that the winner wasn�t elected by the majority at all. Oh, sure, they received more votes than the other candidates, but more people voted against the winner than for the winner. That stands the majority rule on its head. How much legitimacy can an elected official have with 34% of the voters backing him or her?
Finally, and this is where I get a little radical, the two party system, like the electoral college, actually impedes democracy and that�s not a bad thing. Again, by forcing the candidates to broaden their appeal, they tend to focus on fewer issues of higher importance. Not everyone�s views will be represented � that�s not necessary for a democracy to flourish - but most people�s views will be. And by distilling the issues to only a few of the most important, the electorate benefits by having less government in their lives. The rest of these �fringe� issues are left to be worked out among ourselves, and rightly so.
No, I think the proliferation of political parties can only lead to the further Balkanization of the America. We have enough special interest groups as it is. It�s high time we find common ground and keeping the tradition of two parties is one way of doing it.
I don't know, Pete. I just know I've never seen so many Republican and Democrat voters so disgusted with their respective party's candidate. I hear it all the time. They say things like, "I hate Bush." and someone else will say,"Yeah, I REALLY hate Bush." Then the inevitable, "I hate Bush so much I'm voting for Kerry."
I dunno either. No doubt the stakes are high in this election; I have faith the system will allow for the best choice to be made but it won't work if we don't go out and vote. I know my children are tired of hearing me say how we take our voting rights for granted and how people in other countries are literally dying for the chance for something we take so lightly, blah blah blah, but it's true, isn't it?
Well, maybe a year from now we'll look back on this and wonder what all the fuss was about.
scaryneighbor is as phony as their e-mail address.
I didn't mean for it to sound like Bush-Bashing in my last post. I also know of longtime Dems who are so discouraged, disgusted, and alienated by Kerry they are actually thinking about(threatening to) vote for Bush. Spouse is one of these people. Yeah, can you believe that? God's testing me again.
why should most people be afraid of steping into the european/canadian direction? Would that be all bad?
I would ask all here to review this year's Candian elections. I'm sure there are transcripts and analysies of the debates out on the net. It was as close to democracy as one could wish for.
-I should add - we had 4 major parties asnd some independants. We are now left with a mimority government - what that means is that many of the parties must agree to get things done. Can't get more democratic than that.
[This message has been edited by Translator (edited 10-08-2004).]
Where was this school? What school would ban Disney movies?! Granted, some movies like Aladdin, which uses Allah instead of God, and some other movies that might suggest themes that some people would disagree with. But if you think about it, if Disney movies are so bad, then why do a lot of parents show nothing but Disney movies to their kids when they're young?
By the way, you said that Kerry would just fade into nothingness after Bush beat him. What do you think people who had family who are either in Iraq or have been killed in Iraq would say? Do you think they would believe Kerry's promises to end the war?
Also, why don't you pull up your RocaWear pants, tighten your Confed buckle, turn your Ducks Unlimited hat to the front of your head, and put some duct tape over your big mouth?!?! What do you think you are?
Do you have anything to add, grasstains?
Soccer, first let me say that I appreciate this conversation. Too many times in the past(in this very post)I have seen hatred spewed at me for my beliefs. It is nice to engage in hearty conversation.
The school I spoke of is in Pennsylvania. Normally, the area in which I live is democratic yet conservative in social/moral issues. For instance, our local courthouse puts a Nativity scene up each Christmas. Some complain, but the majority want it there. The district I teach in has Christmas Choral concerts with religious music. No one complains. So I was a bit shocked about this. The teacher told me exactly what I have told you. She didn't know why they did this. Hopefully the next time I see her she will have more of an explanation.
About the Kerry thing, I don't believe that he has a plan. In the debates, they claim to have a plan for everything, but they never give any details. Secondly,if he just pulls out the troops before Iraq is totally secure, the folks who lost family members will feel that they have died uselessly. Most of the soldiers believe in what they are doing. I know you won't see this in the mainstream media, but talk to someone who has been there. They value the importance of the job they had to do.
Kerry has been on too many sides of this issue. One thing no one can accuse Bush of is incosistency. He will stay to see it through.
[This message has been edited by pabillsman1 (edited 10-08-2004).]
I would like to question the veracity of the anecdote about the teacher fired for having a picture of Bush among the presidents. To me it sounds like a total fabrication. Around here, teachers don't get fired until they're convicted of fondling students. Till conviction, they're put on some form of leave. And this is a right-to-work state, where unions are weak. To picture a summary execution like that in a strong union state like New Jersey is just beyond belief.
Let's just say I'm trying to foster critical & independent thought, but this sounds like the kind of story that is passed around on talk radio. The criterion of truth on talk radio is abysmally low. The standard by which the truth of stories & interpretations of events is judged on talk radio is: does it get the listeners fired up, snortin' smoke and breathin' flames, ready to lynch 'liberals'? If it does, then it's got to be true. No further inquiry is necessary.
Now let me very gingerly, very delicately, walk out a little further on that plank. A handful of our regular posters, by the turns of phrase they use, give every indication of being regular and, if I may say so, credulous listeners of talk radio. I must warn you: talk radio degrades you, mind and spirit.
One of its purposes is to give rage addicts their 'fix' every day. If it did not give them this they would feel cheated and go elsewhere. Events and their interpretation are selected and promoted according to how well this baseline criterion is met. In the end you have a progressively debauched listenership.
I will give two examples that should give the thinking person something to reflect on. First, the Big Man, R.L. People write in to our local paper. "Rush is telling the truth", they say. "He's exposing the lies of the liberals."
Well, whenever Rush is caught in an error or fabrication or is chided for his wildly unlikely interpretation of events, he ducks behind this bush --- and you've heard him say it. "I'm just an entertainer," he says. "I'm not a news department. I'm just an entertainer." Thus he proclaims he is not bound by fact-check or the likelihood of truth. He's only there, he admits, to get your juices flowing, to get a rise out of you. How his adulatory listeners can reconcile this oft-used fig leaf with their true-believer credulity is beyond me. Perhaps someone could explain: but I think Orwell called it "doublethink".
Second example. One of our local imitators --- who works the schtick and hopes for national syndication --- was talking about Mikhail Gorbachev the other day. "He's the darling of the left --- " --- someone he really doesn't like is a 'darling of the left' --- "but he turned the tanks on his own people. He had the tanks fire on his own people, that's what the left loves him for. I've got that jerk's number."
What our estimable host was referring to was the '88 or '89 coup attempt in which the generals and some old-line Brezhnev bureaucrats tried to oust Gorbachev while he was out of Moscow. They put him under house arrest. He was too much of a 'nice guy', too much of a 'liberal' for them. The crowds of his supporters came out in Red Square. The generals moved the tanks up to confront them. Yeltsin, mayor of Moscow, hopped on a tank and made a defiant pro-reform speech. The generals backed off. They decided not to slaughter a few thousand Muscovites. The coup crumbled. A bureaucrat shot himself. Gorbachev was brought back, vastly weakened, in debt to Yeltsin.
Our talk host had rearranged these events in his mind to where G., the heartless Red Tyrant, had called out the tanks and mowed down the crowds. And among all his listeners, I'll bet I was the only one that didn't swallow this offering of poisoned meat. Certainly nobody called in to contradict him. It was all, Go, man, go.
That's how ignorant, if you'll pardon the word, these shows are. It's like Circe turning the drinking sailors to swine, or --- who was it? --- Stromboli turning Pinnochio's pals into donkeys by encouraging them to indulge their lower appetites. I'm only here to warn you: if you listen to talk radio, your soul is in danger. You should examine yourself and ask yourself: What pleasure do I get from this --- and why? Personally, I think the whole phenomenon is demon-driven.
Now: if someone can just give me reasonable proof the story is true, I'll back off and say I was mistaken. Show me, for instance, a local newspaper story from the town where this allegedly happened. A story like that would always make the local papers. It was said to have happened in New Jersey. Show me anything that will give me some detail. Anything.
Don't know about either or those stories, but I would be careful not to make an assumption that persons who are conservative are credulous listeners to talk radio. Not all liberals worship at the alter of Marx, either. We're generally better off when we stick to issues and ideas and not make personal judgments on people we've never met.
In fact, the history of this site is that we are usually better off when we stick with Bradbury and his works.
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