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The portrait is Charles Darwin, age 31, in 1840

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Comment by Christopher Lowe on September 18, 2013 at 11:49am

When you look at it objectively it is the Keynseyan (sp?) liberals who have demonstrated a better handle on the economy than than the fiscal conservatives. They have benefited and sustained a much larger swathe of society. This is because they plan in a proactive way rather than reactive. Their outlook is investing into the future rather than investing in the next day's Wall Street Journal's headline.

Reaganomics, the conservative's attempt at long range planning has proven to be an unmitigated disaster. While benefitting a relatively small sector of society it has shredded what used to be the backbone of the american economic engine. 

Americans are cascading downward in regards to the social markers by which countries are measured. "American Exceptionalism"is a joke, unless you consider heavy handed military might to be the keystone of a country's well-being.

While Republican's seem to be content in building an Oligarchy it is through the right wing Christian multitudes that they seek a cynical grab for power. It is blatant pandering to these Christian so called "values" that manipulates them into seemingly voting against their own interests.

It seems as though Americans have a choice: Banana Republic or awesome Pinnacle of Civilization. They have a potential to go either way.

Just saying...

Comment by Drew Carpenter on September 18, 2013 at 12:49am

Chad, I think of myself the same way: a social liberal but largely a fiscal conservative. Neither party is serving my needs on social or political policies. I agree with Roy that the Republican party has been hijacked by the religious right.

This idea of captialism stemming from Christianity is also new to me. I've never thought about it in that way. I don't think that any of the socio-economc models work very well in their purest forms. Captialism has some obvious advantages, like rewarding hard work, talent, and vision. Socialism is, I think, more altruistic. A hybrid model likely stands the most chance of success. In this country, people are scared witless of the term socialism. But most of those people embrace some of the socialist programs that we have, like a public school system and social security. But they don't think of it as socialist. As for pure captialism, I've think we have seen too many times what the results can be. We don't need to regulate less, as so many people are calling for. We need to regulate better--less complicated and more effective legislation.

Izzi, I love that Vidal quote. I hadn't heard it before.

Joseph, I'm with you on the failure of trickle down. It's just a justification for putting more money in the hands of the wealth.

Comment by Izzi Ferreel on September 17, 2013 at 7:26pm

Hi, I'm a newbie here.

I think most, if not all, people need to be in a herd; a group where we can tell each other our way of thinking is the best. Our god is the best etc.

I recently read Free Thought and Official Propaganda by Bertrand Russell. He said he saw a close link between Capitalism and Christianity. It's such a new idea for me that I don't have an opinion, yet.

I don't vote. I'm with Gore Vidal, he said that the Republicans and the Democrats are two wings of the Business Party.

Comment by Joseph P on September 17, 2013 at 5:29pm

Trickle-down Economics doesn't work, either.  Demand-side is the way to grow an economy.

Comment by Roy on September 17, 2013 at 4:56pm

I was all Republican too for about 40 years or more.  Last election I voted all Democratic.  Too much religion in the Republicans these days.

Comment by Chad Kreutzer on September 17, 2013 at 4:55pm
I like to say I'm fiscally conservative and socially liberal. I'm sympathetic to the Libertarian Party but I'm like you with the Green Party. Also, some of their positions are like classical communism--they sound good on paper but don't work in the real world.
Comment by Joseph P on September 17, 2013 at 4:43pm

Same here, Chad, with the Supreme Court nominees.  Even if I was center of the road (which I'm not) on economic issues, the psycho, hard-right turn that the Republican party has made on social issues would make that more important than the economic issues, right now.  Is that pretty much the case, for you?

For transparency sake, let me say that I'm definitely left.  The only reason I vote Democrat is because the Green Party doesn't stand a chance in hell, and I'm in a swing state.  I'm just trying to interpret your position here.

Comment by Chad Kreutzer on September 17, 2013 at 2:39pm

I've been registered Republican most of my life, but as the Religious Right has gained more and more influence in the party, I've been pretty much driven out. (I even voted for Obama both times, mainly cause of potential Supreme Court appointments) It seems to me that the GOP has forgotten the meaning of "Big Tent" and as such, I would not be surprised that they'll Tea-party themselves into irrelevance as more and more rational people leave for either the Libertarian Party, the Democrats, or something else that we haven't heard much about yet.

Comment by Homer Edward Price on September 17, 2013 at 2:30pm

Don't forget that the believers are also much more numerous in this country than the non-believers and that they were actively recruited into politics by the right-wing Republicans.   The Democrats have been running from us ever since.  This was demonstrated when the party insiders rammed "God" in to the Democratic Party platform despite an obvious "no" in the voice vote.

Comment by Chad Kreutzer on September 17, 2013 at 1:54pm
It's easy to be loud when you're absolutely right. We have a hard time being strident because of our constant acknowledgement of doubt and uncertainty. Consider the blowback often received from within our community by the "New Atheists" because of that very thing.

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