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(Washington Post)   America seems very polarized, until you look at actual issues   (washingtonpost.com) divider line 51
    More: Interesting, Americans, Dan Balz, E.J. Dionne, American Jobs Act, safe seat, workplace discrimination, Jonathan Chait, divided government  
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3267 clicks; posted to Politics » on 06 Jan 2014 at 5:34 PM (34 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-01-06 04:43:47 PM
If people voted for candidates based on policies they support the democrats would be too far right.
 
2014-01-06 04:54:56 PM
Global Warming is taking care of this.
 
2014-01-06 04:58:48 PM
Say what you will about their infinite moral failings, but Republicans sure as hell know how to successfully propagandize.
 
2014-01-06 05:35:25 PM

MacEnvy: Say what you will about their infinite moral failings, but Republicans sure as hell know how to successfully propagandize.


cdn.crooksandliars.com

Don't ya just want to punch his fat face?
 
2014-01-06 05:36:55 PM
It seems so odd that Republicans in most of their social standings should be whittling down their base to nothing--but the supposed belief that Democrats will tax everyone out of life and liberty essentially keeps people voting for them.
 
2014-01-06 05:41:50 PM
We need more good political science getting to the bottom of what's really causing all the gridlock and sense that the country is hopelessly polarized.

Good thing we're not cutting funding for political science.

Oh snap.
 
2014-01-06 05:44:54 PM
The Tarkin Doctrine is strong with the GOP, "Rule through fear of force, rather than force itself."

Scare enough backwards rednecks into thinking Obama is coming for their guns, their 'christian' beliefs, their taxes, and anything else with nothing but rhetoric, 'what if' nonsense that has absolutely no bearing on reality, and throw out soundbites and weasel words to the point the 'brave Real Americans(tm)' become bedwetting cowards, and you have people who will consistently vote Republican despite the fact it's against their best interests.

That is the GOP. Rule through fear. Fear of what the democrats 'want' to do (despite no basis in reality), and fear of what the republicans will do (that is based in reality) that causes them to isolate independants and moderates from the party and vote (D) instead.

It doesn't matter if none of it is true. Scare tactics are effective.
 
2014-01-06 05:46:34 PM
So on economic issues the electorate is solidly unified.  On social wedge issues we are sharply divided.  What a farking shock.

Some of us have been saying this for years.  Deal with the stuff we agree on first.  Resolve the harder stuff later.  Rule #1 of management, pick the low hanging fruit first.

No.  Instead we piss and moan about abortion, gay marriage, guns, drugs, and any number of other things we'll NEVER agree on while people are starving for jobs and the 1% keeps getting wealthier.

We're idiots.
 
2014-01-06 05:49:14 PM
Jon Stewart has been saying this at least since I saw him interviewed by Rachel Maddow a couple of years back.
 
2014-01-06 05:51:20 PM
considering half of the political spectrum is dividing amongst itself on the issue of whether there should even be an effective government or not, perhaps 'polarized' isn't the right word. unless polarity allows for sub-polarity to be the largest distinction available.

perhaps 'bug-shiat-crazy' might be more applicable.
 
2014-01-06 05:51:47 PM
You are turning fark into a democrat echo chamber by continually posting republican bashing articles.

Nothing good comes from only hearing your own opinions spewed back at you ad-nauseum.
 
2014-01-06 05:53:18 PM

Boloxor the Insipid: You are turning fark into a democrat echo chamber by continually posting republican bashing articles.

Nothing good comes from only hearing your own opinions spewed back at you ad-nauseum.


and when the page is full of daily caller and WND links, you probably think we're just picking on the poor retards.

it isn't our fault that democrat bashing articles arrive as self parody.
 
MFK
2014-01-06 05:53:31 PM
FTFA:  We need more good political science getting to the bottom of what's really causing all the gridlock and sense that the country is hopelessly polarized.

Glaringly obvious answer:

crimson.newpal.k12.in.us
 
2014-01-06 05:55:26 PM

Boloxor the Insipid: You are turning fark into a democrat echo chamber by continually posting republican bashing articles.

Nothing good comes from only hearing your own opinions spewed back at you ad-nauseum.


Remember, unless every day is Freeper Friday, fark.com is the vanguard party stronghold from which the real-life version of  Red Dawn will begin!  Two whole left-leaning articles greenlit, SHUT. DOWN. EVERYTHING.
 
2014-01-06 05:55:57 PM

fusillade762: MacEnvy: Say what you will about their infinite moral failings, but Republicans sure as hell know how to successfully propagandize.

[cdn.crooksandliars.com image 460x345]

Don't ya just want to punch his fat face?



pleated-jeans.com
 
2014-01-06 05:58:10 PM
Basically most Americans support Democrat ideas, it's just the GOP has made a strawman of those ideas are so much that people don't really understand what those positions are.
 
2014-01-06 06:04:48 PM

Soup4Bonnie: Jon Stewart has been saying this at least since I saw him interviewed by Rachel Maddow a couple of years back.


Noam Chomsky has been saying it for decades.

No end in sight.  I mean, despite hundreds of hours of interviews, televised debates and speeches, BOTH Presidential candidates made herculean to NEVER make it clear what their specific platform was.

Insipid comments like, "I wanna bring back the strong, resilient America we all adore" is all you get, and the last Obama win is the blueprint for all future campaigns.

They call it Marketing...  Vote for the guy you want to have a beer with, not the one who has a solid, understandable plan.  Makes it easier when both candidates steer clear of any specifics.

 Your job as an American voter is to choose amongst 2 hand-picked elites who's job it is to be vague about their plans as your leader for the next 4 years.
 
2014-01-06 06:06:25 PM

jakomo002: Soup4Bonnie: Jon Stewart has been saying this at least since I saw him interviewed by Rachel Maddow a couple of years back.

Noam Chomsky has been saying it for decades.

No end in sight.  I mean, despite hundreds of hours of interviews, televised debates and speeches, BOTH Presidential candidates made herculean to NEVER make it clear what their specific platform was.

Insipid comments like, "I wanna bring back the strong, resilient America we all adore" is all you get, and the last Obama win is the blueprint for all future campaigns.

They call it Marketing...  Vote for the guy you want to have a beer with, not the one who has a solid, understandable plan.  Makes it easier when both candidates steer clear of any specifics.

 Your job as an American voter is to choose amongst 2 hand-picked elites who's job it is to be vague about their plans as your leader for the next 4 years.


Let me guess...
RON PAUL?
 
2014-01-06 06:08:13 PM
Yup, in polling there's always large majorities in favor of government spending ... until you mention the method of paying for this government spending ... and then those majorities all fall apart.

POLLSTER: Should the government extend unemployment insurance?

AVERAGE PERSON: Yeah, let's be compassionate!

POLLSTER: Okay, but it is going to raise your taxes by X amount of dollars.

AVERAGE PERSON: fark that, they've already had 99 weeks.  No extensions.

POLLSTER: Well how about if we tax someone other than you to pay for it?

AVERAGE PERSON: Well that's fine, then I don't care.
 
2014-01-06 06:10:30 PM
When you see people on Facebook genuinely surprised that the cold weather is a product of global "warming" you understand why people vote republican.
 
2014-01-06 06:11:16 PM
Whoa. When did the Post comment section turn into a better spelled Yahoo! comment section?
 
2014-01-06 06:12:18 PM
 
2014-01-06 06:13:33 PM

TimonC346: It seems so odd that Republicans in most of their social standings should be whittling down their base to nothing--but the supposed belief that Democrats will tax everyone out of life and liberty essentially keeps people voting for them.


http://www.hoover.org/publications/policy-review/article/139271 - Left 3.0

TLDR: The American Left, thrown into disarray by St. Reagan and the collapse of their fellow Commies, has finally recovered and created a brilliant strategy: Lose Elections.

No seriously.  The basic plan is to:

* Get people elected.
* Once they're elected, push them to do unpopular things or get primaried.
* Lose the next election(s) until the opponent's overreach makes people vote for them again, but move the Overton Window.
* Push for the next step.

So Obamacare is both their finest victory and their first step of many to an NHS.  Ditto for gun control, gay rights, affirmative action, income redistribution, etc, etc.  And therefore, it is the duty of those right-minded folks to fight them at every step.

/Remember, they think it's true.  They live in a world where that is true, and you have to deal with the fact that they think it's true.
//And if you think about it, this has been the way the Republican party worked for the last decade.
 
2014-01-06 06:14:36 PM

Lord_Baull: When you see people on Facebook genuinely surprised that the cold weather is a product of global "warming" you understand why people vote republican.


Scientist: We have 30 years of a global temperature increasing trend that show global warming is real.

Denier: 30 years! That's not long enough to find a trend in global temperatures. Your data is too limited. Global weather and climate is way to complicated to make that decision on such limited information.

[One cold event for in one part of the of the world]

Denier: See, look this one event in one part of the world proves global warming is a myth!!

Scientist: *facepalm*
 
2014-01-06 06:16:47 PM
It's a more complicated issue than simply "most people think this" about a certain issue. The public may not be that polarized, but the voting bases are (to a lesser degree in Democrats and moreso for Republicans). For moderate Republicans - whatever scrap of that electorate may remain - don't turn out for primaries and have a lot of cultural baggage tying their support of the GOP into their wider identity. But there are touchstone issues that for the moderates that will unilaterally gain their support, because guns, abortion, religion, and all else define who they are to themselves. That said, the craziest candidates in the past couple of cycles has proven that while you can't motivate these people to vote Democratic, you can spout crazy enough shiat about not being a witch and legitimate rape that they just won't bother showing up to vote.

Some of those people may otherwise vote for a more centrist Democrat who aligns overall more with their political beliefs, but if they swing foul on these identity markers, they're ultimately not one of us. And even then it's hard to break that initial tautology that Republicans are the best, most god-fearing people because Republicans say they are the best, most god-fearing people.

I'm struggling to find a comparison for Democrats here, because to find an equivalent political ideology to the nutters in the House, Democratic candidates would need to be under the threat of a primary for not advocating for the collective ownership of capital and resources in America. They would need to be fighting over who's the better Marxist and who can socialize the most of our economy, and frankly, that ain't happening, however much I wish there was a counterbalance to the inevitable slide to the right this country continues down.
 
2014-01-06 06:17:44 PM

btchin trans-am: Let me guess...
RON PAUL?


Oh fark no.  Wouldn't vote either D or R, based on the current diseased crop.

Maybe Bernie Sanders or Warren if she went Independant.

When I say that I feel they're all cheats and liars, I mean it.
 
2014-01-06 06:22:02 PM
Step 1: We could stop giving a crap about the opinions of people in Iowa who have nothing better to do than hang out at the courthouse all day during primary season.
 
2014-01-06 06:26:33 PM

Boloxor the Insipid: You are turning fark into a democrat echo chamber by continually posting republican bashing articles.

Nothing good comes from only hearing your own opinions spewed back at you ad-nauseum.


i167.photobucket.com

Coming from a Fark Independenttm that is goddamned hilarious.
 
2014-01-06 06:43:05 PM

meyerkev: TimonC346: It seems so odd that Republicans in most of their social standings should be whittling down their base to nothing--but the supposed belief that Democrats will tax everyone out of life and liberty essentially keeps people voting for them.

http://www.hoover.org/publications/policy-review/article/139271 - Left 3.0

TLDR: The American Left, thrown into disarray by St. Reagan and the collapse of their fellow Commies, has finally recovered and created a brilliant strategy: Lose Elections.

No seriously.  The basic plan is to:

* Get people elected.
* Once they're elected, push them to do unpopular things or get primaried.
* Lose the next election(s) until the opponent's overreach makes people vote for them again, but move the Overton Window.
* Push for the next step.

So Obamacare is both their finest victory and their first step of many to an NHS.  Ditto for gun control, gay rights, affirmative action, income redistribution, etc, etc.  And therefore, it is the duty of those right-minded folks to fight them at every step.

/Remember, they think it's true.  They live in a world where that is true, and you have to deal with the fact that they think it's true.
//And if you think about it, this has been the way the Republican party worked for the last decade.


Yeah, I was gonna say that I can't really think of any prominent sitting Democrat who has been primaried out of Congress since Lieberdouche, and he kept his seat because the Republicans liked him so much they didn't run a legitimate candidate.
 
2014-01-06 06:47:50 PM
I really hope Boehner had a moment of clarity over the holidays, especially after his revealed "shock"* that the conservative groups that he claim pushed them into the shutdown knew it wasn't going to work, and will put up for a vote legislation that has majority support in the House even though it doesn't have a "majority of the majority" in the House.

If he did that, they might actually survive 2016.  2014 isn't going to be pretty for anyone running, Democrat, Republican, or other.

*Boehner knew it wouldn't work, his shock is feigned to deflect blame.
 
2014-01-06 07:05:06 PM

MacEnvy: Say what you will about their infinite moral failings, but Republicans sure as hell know how to successfully propagandize.


According to Edward Bernays style PR, the only cost of winning is how much of a scumbag you're willing to become. If you're utterly immoral you can pretty much win every time.
 
2014-01-06 07:16:02 PM

Misch: We need more good political science getting to the bottom of what's really causing all the gridlock and sense that the country is hopelessly polarized.

Good thing we're not cutting funding for political science.

Oh snap.


If you've had 9th grade civics and don't understand basic fundamentals of how our political system works, I don't think 4+ years in college and unknown sums of money in research is going to help you.
 
2014-01-06 07:30:48 PM

jakomo002: They call it Marketing...  Vote for the guy you want to have a beer with, not the one who has a solid, understandable plan.


But most of all, don't vote for the "elitist intellectual."
 
2014-01-06 07:32:10 PM

jakomo002: btchin trans-am: Let me guess...
RON PAUL?

Oh fark no.  Wouldn't vote either D or R, based on the current diseased crop.

Maybe Bernie Sanders or Warren if she went Independant.

When I say that I feel they're all cheats and liars, I mean it.


So throwaway vote or not vote, just so you can look down on both?
 
2014-01-06 07:48:59 PM

ginandbacon: Whoa. When did the Post comment section turn into a better spelled Yahoo! comment section?


When the people who used to post on Yahoo! graduated from junior high.
 
2014-01-06 07:49:36 PM

a particular individual: jakomo002: They call it Marketing...  Vote for the guy you want to have a beer with, not the one who has a solid, understandable plan.

But most of all, don't vote for the "elitist intellectual."


WE LIKE IKE!
 
2014-01-06 07:55:08 PM
It's just another divide and conquer game. Both parties split up a few hot button social(irrelevant) issues like gay marriage and abortion and then proceed to do nothing about either at the federal level once elected.

This keeps the people bickering and pledging loyalty to one of the two establishment parties while our foreign policy remains the same, our civil rights are slowly eroded, and our electoral system is so farking broken that we have legalized bribery and no one seems to give a damn.
 
2014-01-06 08:07:56 PM
Is anyone surprised by this?

In the US, there's the choice of a right wing, corporatist, Christian party, or an extreme right wing, corporatist and fundamentalist Christian party.
 
2014-01-06 08:09:32 PM
The dog and pony show known as "politics" is the only thing that is polarized.  It's funny; a buddy of mine has taken on more leftist viewpoints and almost overnight he automatically assumes I believe whatever the current republican talking point is.  It's horribly disingenuous.  It's also stupid how this "us vs. them" mentality is so prevalent.
 
2014-01-06 08:25:14 PM

Bob Dolemite: It's also stupid how this "us vs. them" mentality is so prevalent.


It's been that way since forever and it's nothing new. The only difference is now we have the internet which gives both sides access to each other more often. That's the only thing that's changed. Hell, we fought a Civil War because of an "us vs. them" mentality. That's just the way it is.
 
2014-01-06 08:40:13 PM

rustypouch: Is anyone surprised by this?

In the US, there's the choice of a right wing, corporatist, Christian party, or an extreme right wing, corporatist and fundamentalist Christian party.


Hey, the neocons were probably the single greatest expression of Jacksonian thinking you'll see in the next century.  (The whole point of Jacksonianism is "You leave me alone and I'll leave you alone. You play fair with me and I'll play fair with you. But if you fark with me, I'll kill you.").   It's a pity that they happened to share the same bodies (much less a party) with pre-enlightenment fundamentalists* and people who believed in the Arab Traditionalism theory**.

* On Al-Qaeda, but it can be applied to our home-grown people:  Instead, event A is simply the occasion for God to cause event B, so that the genuine cause of all events occurring on our ontological plane of existence is nothing else but God. More here:  http://www.denbeste.nu/cd_log_entries/2003/11/binLadensstrategy.shtml

** which stated that the "root cause" of terrorism was Arab Failure + Arab Pride + Fantasy, and that therefore the only way to defeat Arab Terrorism in particular was to reform Islam and Middle Eastern Culture by creating democratic, secular societies in the Middle East which would a) Be able to participate in the world on their own terms, and b) NOT treat failure as a cause for suicide bombings.   It's also worth noting that under the core concepts of this theory, we did something similar in Japan and to a lesser extent, Germany.

/And since I'm an Engineerist myself (so I agree with about 90% of the things he's saying.  Not so much the atheist, ethical cynic bit, but the "socially liberal, economically conservative and politically libertarian. Note the use of lower case letters on all of those words; I'm "socially liberal" but damned well not "Socially Liberal". "), I certainly find the theory interesting, especially since it explains a lot about why Bush was doing the things he was doing if you assume that Bush believed it instead of just "Bush was a retard".
 
2014-01-06 08:46:15 PM

meyerkev: rustypouch: Is anyone surprised by this?

In the US, there's the choice of a right wing, corporatist, Christian party, or an extreme right wing, corporatist and fundamentalist Christian party.

Hey, the neocons were probably the single greatest expression of Jacksonian thinking you'll see in the next century.  (The whole point of Jacksonianism is "You leave me alone and I'll leave you alone. You play fair with me and I'll play fair with you. But if you fark with me, I'll kill you.").   It's a pity that they happened to share the same bodies (much less a party) with pre-enlightenment fundamentalists* and people who believed in the Arab Traditionalism theory**.

* On Al-Qaeda, but it can be applied to our home-grown people:  Instead, event A is simply the occasion for God to cause event B, so that the genuine cause of all events occurring on our ontological plane of existence is nothing else but God. More here:  http://www.denbeste.nu/cd_log_entries/2003/11/binLadensstrategy.shtml

** which stated that the "root cause" of terrorism was Arab Failure + Arab Pride + Fantasy, and that therefore the only way to defeat Arab Terrorism in particular was to reform Islam and Middle Eastern Culture by creating democratic, secular societies in the Middle East which would a) Be able to participate in the world on their own terms, and b) NOT treat failure as a cause for suicide bombings.   It's also worth noting that under the core concepts of this theory, we did something similar in Japan and to a lesser extent, Germany.


Many Middle Eastern nations had been functional democracies until the mid-20th century, when we started sticking our dicks into their metaphorical mashed potatoes, such as the 1953 coup of Iran, leading to the rise of leaders who served as useful idiots to us.
 
2014-01-06 10:04:03 PM

Boloxor the Insipid: You are turning fark into a democrat echo chamber by continually posting republican bashing articles.

Nothing good comes from only hearing your own opinions spewed back at you ad-nauseum.


So far on the Politics Tab today I see Glenn Beck, Townhall, The Washington Times, Reason and The American Spectator. Hardly lefty echo chamber material.

Anyway, it's not our fault conservatives have such a hard time coming up with funny headlines.
 
2014-01-06 11:02:24 PM
meyerkev:
/And since I'm an Engineerist myself (so I agree with about 90% of the things he's saying.  Not so much the atheist, ethical cynic bit, but the "socially liberal, economically conservative and politically libertarian. Note the use of lower case letters on all of those words; I'm "socially liberal" but damned well not "Socially Liberal". "), I certainly find the theory interesting, especially since it explains a lot about why Bush was doing the things he was doi ...

The problem I have with the Engineerist approach, as you call it, is that pragmatism is not a policy goal.  Yes, it's good to determine what policy has the best outcome and work to that end, but you still have to determine what can be considered the best outcome in the first place.

Also, it seems more like way to brand yourself instead of an actual philosophy.   This blog post makes the argument better than I can (read sections I and II), even if it isn't written very well.
 
2014-01-07 12:11:01 AM

liam76: So throwaway vote or not vote, just so you can look down on both?


Absolutely.  If I think the R and D candidates are crap and untrustable, I would spoil my ballot.

The stupidest thing to do would be to vote the lesser evil, and reward whoever is marginally less shiatty.
 
2014-01-07 12:27:54 AM
jakomo002:

No end in sight.  I mean, despite hundreds of hours of interviews, televised debates and speeches, BOTH Presidential candidates made herculean to NEVER make it clear what their specific platform was.

And this is why I make equally herculean efforts to NEVER so much as hear a goddamned word the assholes have to say.  Their voting records are what interest me.  (and written platforms, for entry-level positions/candidates who haven't got one yet.)
 
2014-01-07 12:50:18 AM

UndeadPoetsSociety: And this is why I make equally herculean efforts to NEVER so much as hear a goddamned word the assholes have to say.  Their voting records are what interest me.  (and written platforms, for entry-level positions/candidates who haven't got one yet.)


Exactly.  If they spout inane platitudes ("I will enact all kinds of hope and change!") without any specifics, I don't vote for them.  The Cult of Personality is ridiculous.  These candidates are groomed for ages on "how to seem friendly", except for some reason not Romney.

They can give me their platform on their website, with specifics, otherwise they're never getting my vote.
 
2014-01-07 12:55:07 AM
"I plan to reinvigorate the middle class!"

"How, exactly?"

"Through, uh, careful planning and, uh, really awesome policies."

"What plans."

"Plans that we're totally developing right now and that are super complicated and that I really can't go into detail right now."

"..."
 
2014-01-07 01:41:51 AM
FTA:   "conservative entertainment complex"

Nice phrase.  Is it new?  Can we keep it?  Can we can we can we?
 
2014-01-07 05:59:18 AM

a particular individual: jakomo002: They call it Marketing...  Vote for the guy you want to have a beer with, not the one who has a solid, understandable plan.

But most of all, don't vote for the "elitist intellectual."


You forgot: "who ain't got no common sense."
 
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