Sunday, November 10, 2013


From AlterNet:

America's center is to the left, and even Tea Partyers 
are liberals when they turn off Rush and learn real facts

The researchers also found broad agreement across party lines. Their first report noted, “Among a total of 31 areas, on average Republicans, Democrats and independents agreed on 22 areas — that is, all three groups agreed on whether to cut, increase or maintain funding. In 9 other areas there was dissensus.”  That’s not to say there weren’t differences. Republicans cut much less from defense — $55.6 billion for core defense (versus $109.4 billion) — and much less overall — $100.7 billion (versus $146 billion) — than Americans as a whole. But even so, the position of Republican respondents overall was still dramatically to the left of the political conservation in Washington.

More here.

Conclusions I have drawn from reading about this study:

1. The word "democratic" should no longer be paired with the word "republic" to describe our form of government.  Clearly, we're still a republic.  But just as clearly, representatives no longer represent the citizens.  Instead, they represent big business, the fabulously wealthy, and the organizations and institutions that carry out their will.

2. The political spectrum, that line of political beliefs ranging from far-left to far-right, with all kinds of variations in between, liberal, moderate, conservative, has been artificially redrawn by the establishment, which consists of politicians, mainstream news organizations, the fabulously wealthy, and big business.  The American people, however, have played no role in this reworking of the basic ideological menu, and their place, for the most part, is not within this false political spectrum.  That is, what the people want doesn't matter.

3. The terms "liberal" and "conservative" effectively no longer describe ideology.  Instead, they describe tribal affiliation.  Conservatives, a majority of them, believe in many ideas that are easily understood as liberal, but if and only if those ideas are stripped of the word "liberal."  Meanwhile, liberals vote for faux "liberals" in the faux "liberal" party, the Democrats, which offers "liberal" policy, such as Obamacare, created by the conservative Heritage Foundation.

4. America is not a "center-right" nation, and "center-right" doesn't even mean center-right anymore--it means simply "right."  Instead, we're a center-left nation.  A real center-left, a place on the political spectrum that no longer officially exists, even though it continues to exist in reality among some three fifths of the population.

5. While the fun house mirror nature of US politics continues to be both depressing and alarming, we can also have a great deal of hope about the future.  Most of the so-called division in this country has been entirely manufactured by the ruling elite, and "liberals" and "conservatives" have WAY more in common than they think they do.  Also, I already have faith in my fellow countrymen to know what's best for the country, but this study strongly bolsters that faith.