Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Political Tribes Continues

From MinnPost Politcs and Tribes. Paul made some more Far Left comments that I just felt the need to reply to.
"You're producing garbage data. Again, you don't seem to be able to distinguish between economic systems and political systems and priorities. If you put garbage into an analysis you can only get garbage out no matter how much magical thinking you dump into the equation.

You can compare GDP to government spending ratios all day but it's not going to tell you what an optimal percentage is aside from the basic fact that those nations with higher ratios are more prosperous than those with lower ratios. At the end of the day you're just making this up. At some point you might want to consider the possibility that this "problem" might be beyond your capacity to "solve". Paul U.

"We have normal bell curve with clear majorities of the electorate distributed in the middle. Furthermore our majorities tend to cluster around liberal agendas like universal health care, civil rights, and environmental protection. What we don't have is a political party that is clearly and substantially devoted to servicing those majorities.

The Democratic Party is currently focused on resisting some Republican initiatives but beyond that they still haven't embraced any of the long term proposals that are supported by clear majorities of Americans. We can predict that they will "win" in the next election cycle, and then lose some more. It's kind of a one step forward, one step back affair with Democrats.

Bernie Sanders isn't an outlier in any way comparable to Roy Moore. Sanders is actually the most popular politician in America while Moore is one of if not the most reviled. These attempts by Republicans and centrist to portray Sanders's as some kind of "leftist" are simply facile.

Although a minority of American's get their information from unreliable sources, clear majorities informed by reliable information still manage to emerge somehow. The minority just keeps spinning ever further out into it's alternative reality, but that's a minority spinning out into an alternative reality, it's not a process of polarization wherein one group is spinning out into it's own reality while another spinning in the opposite direction." Paul U.

"So we know that spend vs gdp percentage isn't perfect, however it is pretty good. I mean we know that Welfare expansion, Medicaid, ACA, Public employee unions, Special education funding, etc have all flourished during the past 50 years. And these are clearly increasing the cost and control of government. And the cost of servicing the growing National Debt is also driving the ratio up.

So this makes sense...
1967: total government spend was ~30% of the GDP.
Today: it is about 38% of the GDP.

Therefore it seems pretty clear that our culture has moved further Left during the past 50 years. (not to mention Civil rights, LGBT rights, Environmental protections, etc) And if the Liberal tribe has their way by socializing healthcare and higher education, and passing many more regulations... It is pretty clear that the Spend vs GDP percentage will increase further. Just as it is much higher in Norway, Denmark, Sweden, etc. Seems logical to me.

As for the bi-modal distribution, and if you focus on the left hump. I agree that Bernie Sanders is popular amongst the Left side of that Liberal tribe. However that again is only maybe 1/6th of all American voters.

And as disturbed as Roy Moore was, there was a group on the Right side of the Conservative hump / tribe that supported him in much the same way. And if the young woman allegations had not surfaced he likely would have been a Senator now... (scary...)

As I have said elsewhere, I think we used to have a normal distribution of voters in the USA. However our freedom to pick our social network friends, our news sources, etc... It is clear that the 2 distributions/ tribes are growing more separate. The Liberal tribe who believes more federal government control/ wealth transfer / regulations are how to improve the USA. The Conservative tribe who believes that less federal government control/ wealth transfer/ regulations are how to improve America.

Both tribes have the same goal... Just totally different beliefs about how to attain them. :-)" G2A


Sean said...

Bernie Sanders and Roy Moore aren't the same things, just ideologically opposed.

Bernie Sanders wants to raise taxes and expand government, to an extent slightly outside the mainstream.

Roy Moore is a racist birther alleged child molester who twice lost his job as a judge for not following the law.

To say they reflect two sides of the same coin is like Trump's "very fine people" comment.

John said...

Okay okay already... It was Paul who brought both name into the dialog...

How about Inhofe who ever that is... He looks pretty far right.

John said...

By the way, please remember that to the folks on the far right Bernie looks, sounds and acts like a "Damn Baby Killing Communist"... So beauty is definitely in the eye of the beholder. :-)

Sean said...

You're missing the point. It's not just about the individuals, it's about the people who back them. When one party rallies around a racist birther alleged child molester who twice lost his job as a judge for not following the law, simplifying the problem down to "tribalism" and creating a false equivalency between the two sides actually makes it harder to solve the problem.

John said...

I think you are missing my point.

I am certain that the people who supported Roy do not label him with any of those words used by you. And they certainly do not believe he is guilty of those things.

I am pretty sure almost half the good folks in Alabama would not vote for a racist birther alleged child molester... However please remember what was written about tribes. They work hard to demonize the people in other tribes.

Would you see Bernie as a "Damn Baby Killing Anti Religion Communist"?

Kind of hard to imagine since he is part of your tribe... Though far to the Left side of it.

Sean said...

Here's the thing, though. Whether or not people believe it, there's *actual evidence* that can be evaluated, like:

Roy Moore has said that Muslims shouldn't be allowed to hold public office and said during his 2017 Senate campaign that Sharia law was being practiced in Illinois and Indiana.

Roy Moore opposed a Alabama Constitutional amendment that would have eliminated language about poll taxes and separate schools by race for children.

Roy Moore's foundation hosted events for neo-Confederate groups.

Roy Moore said he would favor removing all amendments after the Bill of Rights from the Constitution -- that would include the abolition of slavery (13th), equal protection (14th), equal voting rights regardless of race (15th) and women's suffrage (19th).

Roy Moore has brought up birtherism every year since 2008 and refused to disavow it during his 2017 campaign.

Roy Moore criticized the Voting Rights Act during his 2017 campaign.

Roy Moore called to impeach judges who ruled in favor of same-sex marriage and equal rights for LGBT persons.

Those beliefs are objectively much further out of the mainstream than what Bernie Sanders represents.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of government and money, I must have missed your post on the deficit-exploding, military-expanding crime of a budget request that came out this week.


Sean said...

"Those beliefs are objectively much further out of the mainstream than what Bernie Sanders represents."

A reminder that single-payer health care earns plurality or majority support in recent polling (WSJ 9/2017, Quinnipiac 9/2017, Politico 9/2017, KFF 10/2017).

A reminder that free public school tuition and reducing student loan debt gets majority or plurality support in recent polling (Gallup 5/2016, CNBC 8/2016, Politico 9/2017).

A reminder that support for Roe v. Wade gets majority support in recent polling (Quinnipiac 2/2017, CBS 2/2017, Pew 12/2016).

John said...

I haven't commented on the Trump Budget document because it seems silly since Congress already signed a 2 year spending bill. I just don't understand the point of releasing a seemingly point document, unless he is going for Conservative support.

Maybe he is trying to tell them... "Well I signed that... However this is what I really wanted..."

Let's assume that all of the Roy Moore "facts" that you have raised were actually noise from the Liberal press, and that people were happy that he stood up to that "Liberal Obama Government". This is what his supporters would be thinking...

Now here is Roy's Positions. Though far right... They do not seem crazy... Do they?

Sean said...

"Now here is Roy's Positions. Though far right... They do not seem crazy... Do they?"

Roy Moore exists beyond words on a web page -- we have decades of actions that show what he believes and how he acts.

This is not a "both sides" deal, no matter how hard you try to spin it.

John said...

That is an excellent lead in... Here is some background on Sanders...

DB Sanders Past
Newsmax Sanders Past
Yahoo Sanders Past

Now I agree whole heartedly that Moore is crazier than Sanders, and the good news is that he did not get elected.

Sean said...

"Let's assume that all of the Roy Moore "facts" that you have raised were actually noise from the Liberal press"

But they aren't! If one's tribe is in such a bubble that it can't process truth at any level, then that tribe has a problem and needs to get fixed. The answer is not to accommodate it and pretend it's OK and that delude one's self into believing that everybody does it.

I'm not saying Democrats are perfect, because they aren't. But Democrats show a hell of a lot more introspection and self-awareness on these sorts of issues than Republicans do.

Sean said...

"Here is some background on Sanders..."

This still isn't even equivalent. Pointing out what Bernie Sanders believed 30-50 years ago isn't the same as the list of things I posted about Roy Moore at 2:41, all of which happened since 2000, and most of them came up during his campaign for Senate last year.

Anonymous said...

"Well I signed that... However this is what I really wanted..."

Isn't it comforting to know that you voted for someone who wants to do the exact opposite of something you continually rail about on here?


John said...

I rail about a lot of things... You will need to be more specific...

I pretty well voiced my frustrations regarding the tax cutting, spending increasing idiots here... :-)

And please remember if I had voted for Hillary... This statement would still apply unfortunately.

"you voted for someone who wants to do the exact opposite of something you continually rail about on here?"

It is hard to find a real fiscal Conservative social Liberal now days with both tribes ostracizing them...

John said...

As long as the DEM default positions are:
- more & higher taxes on successful Americans who get married, learn, save and invest
- more welfare / less personal responsibility for those who choose differently
- more pardons for illegal residents
- more poorly qualified immigrants
- more public employee unions
- less public employee accountability
- more regulations and inspectors
- more government mandated min wages, sick time, leave, etc
- less religious freedom

I will find this hard to believe. "Democrats show a hell of a lot more introspection and self-awareness"

Sean said...

"Democrats show a hell of a lot more introspection and self-awareness"

It's not about whether you agree with the positions, it's about how unmoored conservatives have come. Compare Barack Obama to Donald Trump. Compare Rachel Maddow to Sean Hannity. You may disagree with Obama or Maddow, but they ain't in the business of not even remotely caring if what they say has any semblance of truth to it.

For cripes sake, Paul Ryan was complaining about the deficit today, after he's voted for two giant deficit-increasing bills. You don't see that sort of shameless mendacity from Democrats.

Laurie said...

I think you should focus on a wider range of statistics rather than just govt spendiing as % of GDP. For instance, the real value of the min wage peaked in 1968 and has much less buying power today. When considering if tax cuts for the wealthy were good policy it makes sense to look at how much inequality has increased in recent years.

If we had a living wage and less grotesque inequality we could have less spending on the safety net and lower taxes. Also, spending is higher because our population is aging and we have more retirees.

John said...

Please note that Rachel does not even make this list...

And she is only number 11 over here.

Where as Sean and Rush certainly made the top 10 over here. And I don't even know how one can call them journalists... Especially Rush since he is an entertainer through and through.

And Hannity just seems to be an idiot.

John said...

GDP is not the focus, it is just a thermometer. You want higher wages for Americans enforced by the government while you support:

- buying high foreign content goods to save money

- flooding the low skill low knowledge work force with illegal workers

- not holding Parents accountable for only having the children they can responsibly raise

- not holding the education and social services agencies accountable for helping these families and kids

- tenure, steps and lanes instead of pay for job difficulty and performance

- giving unsuccessful people welfare without forcing them to change, learn and improve

If you really want the poor to escape poverty, they need to be pressured to think, believe and behave like a successful person:

- continuously learn

- stay married or in a long term relationship

- have only the kids you can raise well within that relationship

- live below your means, save and invest

John said...

- avoid gambling, smoking, drugs and excess alcohol

- get a job, work, learn, find promotion opportunities, learn, etc

Your "solution" of feeding and enabling the poor with few expectations of them is NOT a solution. It has just bred and enable an ever growing number of broken families and kids that have no more skills or capabilities than their Parents.

John said...

By the way, please remember that I think I was for the corporate tax rate cut... We need to make it advantageous for companies to operate IN THE USA. However I was strongly against the other tax cuts and leaving that terrible "carried interest" loop hole in place.

And I was against all of those budget increases.

John said...

Food for Thought
NR Poverty and Single Mothers

NR Poverty and Single Mothers 2

John said...

And the Liberal answer is not to promote 2 Parent households and better education...

It is to create more governmental mandates and subsidies to support and enable broken families. What are Liberals thinking??? :-)

John said...

Please remember that I am not a Religious Right Supporter. Let's...

- get great sex education in the schools

- get Long Acting Reversible Contraception easily and cheaply accessible

- limit how many babies a welfare Mom can keep

- get serious regarding early education for low income parents and toddlers

- ensure the Teachers working in the most challenging classrooms and doing a great job get paid the most. Not some gray hair in that low stress classroom.

- send all illegal workers to the back of the legal immigration line, thereby reducing the supply, freeing up jobs and driving up wages

- Let's weaken the welfare system so poor city people will move to higher paying / harder jobs

If you want American's to get paid more. IMPROVE THEIR CAPABILITIES...

Laurie said...

I looked up the word sanctimonious and found this example as part of the definition.

"no one wants to hear your sanctimonious hot air" which captures my thought on you rlittle rant.

John said...

Sanctimonious: "making a hypocritical show of religious devotion, piety, righteousness, etc"

Well I am not very religious and am fine with healthy sexual relations, long acting birth control, LGBT rights, early term abortions and drinking alcohol within reasonable limits. So I don't think the definition applies very well.

More on the topic of logic vs sanctimony later when I get time...

Sean said...

When you pull lists from 5+ years ago, yeah, Rachel Maddow isn't going to be on the list.

The point still stands -- Rush and Hannity have much more pull and influence over Republican politics than any liberal journalist/entertainer does. What does that tell you?

Sean said...

It's been reported, for instance, that Hannity and Trump speak multiple times a week and that they give each other feedback on what to push. Do you think Barack Obama was reliant on Chris Matthews for political counseling?

John said...


So you are saying that because 3 million of the 60 million Republicans listen to Hannity, that is proof that Republicans are extremist? Really?

"Fox News Channel's Sean Hannity held onto his crown as King of Cable News, beating everyone in the November ratings period with an average audience of 3.2 million viewers, making Hannity the most-watched cable news show for the second straight month.

MSNBC's Rachel Maddow, who led her network to record ratings in the third quarter, finished November in third place overall, with a total audience of 2.8 million viewers. Among the advertiser-coveted demographic of adults 25-54, Maddow finished in second place, with 634,000 viewers."

Anonymous said...

"And please remember if I had voted for Hillary... This statement would still apply unfortunately."

Remember, deficits were shrinking under Obama, and Hillary was more likely to continue that than the person you voted for. You own this mess. I did not vote for it. You did.


John said...

Thankfully due to the electoral college system... My vote didn't count for much... :-)

Remember that Hillary won in MN.

By the way, I agree that a DEM President and a GOP Congress seems to make for the best combination to promote fiscal sanity.

Unfortunately a DEM President also comes with more regulations, a weaker foreign policy, fewer work requirements, etc...

Anonymous said...

"By the way, I agree that a DEM President and a GOP Congress seems to make for the best combination to promote fiscal sanity."

Because the DEM President keeps the GOP's insanity in check, as is further proven by the past year.

"My vote didn't count for much."

Your vote for Drumpf. Let's be clear. You voted for this.


jerrye92002 said...

"This is not a "both sides" deal, no matter how hard you try to spin it."

And yet it is. The vote in 2016 was NOT 93%-7%. It was almost evenly split. No matter what "facts" you want to throw up on either side, half the folks in the US will insist on the opposite being true, or at least on a radically opposite interpretation of them. That's tribalism. Another great book I've never read – the title being sufficient – is "The Myth of the Rational Voter."

Sean said...

"So you are saying that because 3 million of the 60 million Republicans listen to Hannity, that is proof that Republicans are extremist? Really?"

It's one of the smaller pieces of evidence, sure. But it's far more important to note the impact folks like Hannity and Rush have on Republican politicians, as noted already. When Republican politicians take their marching orders from an "idiot" and an "entertainer", that's a problem.

jerrye92002 said...

And when idiots like Maddow get their talking points from politicians, is that less of a problem?

And do those who listen to either do so /knowing/ that they are getting biased information or "fake news"? How many "rational voters" do you believe have all the information needed to make an objective assessment of the right candidate or the right side of an issue (which may be mutually exclusive)?

John said...

More correctly... The DEM President constrains the tax reductions and the GOP Congress constrains the spending increases... It will probably be okay next year if the DEMs take back at least one chamber in Congress.

This one party to rule us all works out poorly who ever is in charge...

By the way, other than the Trump obnoxiousness and the Deficit issue... I am pretty okay with most of what is happening at the Federal level...

John said...

And yet a lot of GOP support voted to raise governmental domestic spending.

I am guessing that neither Rush or Hannity were for that... So I am guessing their control is pretty weak.

Sean said...

"I am guessing that neither Rush or Hannity were for that... So I am guessing their control is pretty weak."


Hannity: Trump Pivots To Infrastructure After Budget Victory

Hannity: DONE DEAL President Trump Signs Historic Two Year Budget Agreement

Rush on the GOP Budget: 'I Just Don't Worry About The National Debt Much Anymore"

John said...

Thank for the sources. I'll look at them later.

If this is true... Then it sounds like Rush and Hannity have Trump pulling their strings... Not the other way around.

jerrye92002 said...

Heh. It seems like we have two warring tribes in this discussion. And outside interference in who the opposing side should choose as chief.

Sean said...

Daily Beast: Hannity Has Been Advising Trump on the Nunes Memo

John said...

I think Trump is probably the current Leader of Tribe Conservative for better or worse.

I have no idea who is the current Leader of Tribe Liberal?

With a name like the Daily Beast I had always thought it was a right leaning publication, when ironically it is on the far left.

Should I start citing Breitbart as a credible source?

Sean said...

You might want to read up on the first name in the byline.

Lachlan Markay Bio

John said...

Maybe he has been brainwashed by the org and his partner :-)

John said...

More from MP...

"Yes, government and private spending are both components of our economy.

The Liberal tribe wants to delegate more of their personal / family finance decisions to politicians and bureaucrats.

The Conservative tribe wants to maintain more personal / family control over their personal finance decisions.

As my source shows, the Liberal tribe has been pulling our society their way for 100+ years for better or worse. The Conservative tribe says they want to pull it back somewhat. However they seem to cave to our current citizens who want lower taxes and higher benefits, no matter the mess it leaves our kids.

As for military spending, it is at historical lows relative to our GDP. Not sure what the consequences of that will be. Also, please remember that most of that funding goes to pay American citizens and develop technologies. so it also is part of that feedback loop.

Not to mention that a stable world is good for trade, which is excellent for American citizens." G2A

"If Uncle Sam can take $100 of Taxes and provide $99 of beneficial services to America, where if we needed those services privately it would take 10 $100 of private $ to get the same services, The real answer is not the taxes, its a perspective that certain taxes have perceived value from some and not others. The great example is police protection, its a waste of money until you need a cop! So, need a cop pay up $3000, or take out $125 a year from your property tax. Without specifics, its a Don Quixote argument. Now, curious what tribe am I in? The wants to do the right thing for the largest majority at a reasonable price, but it doesn't necessarily have to benefit me today tribe?" Dennis W.

"I'll keep this short since the moderators here have me almost giving up again... Good thing I have elsewhere to post my replies. :-)

I know of NO tribe that wants to cut the spending of the core functions of government. (ie roads, bridges, police, fire, national defense, inter state commerce, etc)

So the little snippet you have described does not help me identify your tribe.

Tell me how you want to handle the problem that a huge number of the country's children are being single parent households. Then maybe I can take a guess. :-)" G2A

jerrye92002 said...

It isn't the taxes OR the spending, it is the efficacy of the spending, and collecting only those taxes necessary to produce those services that government can perform more efficiently than the private sector and that work for the "common good"-- all of us. National defense is certainly in that category, courts, police and public safety, border control, As much as 25% of the current budget. The rest, not an effective use of public funds and should be eliminated or phased out. That's not a tribal assessment, that's just the reality. In any debate, one "tribe" is always closer to the right answer than the other, even if they do not know why.

John said...

Please provide your source that 75% of the federal budget is used ineffectively.

It seems to me that 80% is used effectively, and 20% could be used more effectively.

John said...

Here are some interesting tribe demographic links I found.

Political Typology
Partisan Divide

And here is a good graph that shows my bi-modal curve.
Political Polarization

John said...

From Charles at the Minnpost Tribes Piece who tends to be a Far Left member of the Left Tribe... I have not even read it yet, but the other Far Lefters love it so I want to make sure it is where I can find it for further review. :-)

Mr Sullivan’s article is an undifferentiated mess.
Decontextualized, leveled and stripped of cause and effect, its bits of observational debris obscure rather than illuminate analytical understanding and, importantly for Mr Sullivan and the party he always has served, culpability. Mr Udstrand in several paragraphs provides far more of value in understanding our “tribalism” (objection to the term aside) than Mr Sullivan in his many-paged exertion.

The views of the polity aren’t represented by a bell curve nor, as Mr. Appelen suggests, bimodally. Maybe two-thirds of the polity subscribes to basic values of democracy (ordered liberty, equal opportunity). This group can be arranged in a bell shape largely toward the right (due to the pull of the establishment frame) on a continuum that describes the optimal balance of private vs. collective economic prerogative. The other third are authoritarian followers, eager to trade freedom and existential agency for security. We are not “polarized”; again as Mr. Udstrand notes, the two-thirds muddle about where they always have, while a third have been caused to abandon the democratic sphere entirely.

Authoritarianism cannot exist absent a frame of “us” vs. “them,” for without enemies that threaten, the security imperative evaporates. What Mr Sullivan calls “tribalism,” then, is the core of the authoritarian follower’s view of society. And the never-ending succession of false enemies is the means by which the authoritarian inclination is cultivated and nourished in those whose democratic commitment and civic capacity otherwise might have been strengthened.

Conversely, the democratic view, in its essence, is anti-“tribalist.” To the left, the crux of civic engagement is the obligation to shed self-interest as much as one can, to lend one’s best efforts toward creating laws and norms that are fair toward all in their circumstances (see John Rawls). The left defines the very project of civilization as surmounting the innate atavistic fear of what lies beyond the circle that the fire illuminates, always extending the concept of the “clan” to encompass an ever-widening sphere of humanity different in superficial matters of race, faith and culture.

In short, one “side” is defined by its inability to exist without demonizing the other, while the other “side” is defined by its rejection of the us vs. them dichotomy. Indeed, which of these prevails will decide whether civilization endures. There is no lazier and more irresponsible act of Both Siderism than to begin by assuming a symmetry that defines the essence of our present civilizational struggle out of existence.

John said...

And the praise that followed...

"Thank you Charles. I was so focused on "centrism" I hadn't noticed how the "polarized" narrative actually serves authoritarianism in the way you describe. Of course manufactured divisions of extremes are an historical foundation of authoritarians... thanks for pointing that out." Paul U

"CH: Very nicely written, seems like (My opinion) the "tribe" of the "We the people" vs the "tribe" of the us vs them." Dennis W.

jerrye92002 said...

Very well put, indeed. What I take from it is that one side is deliberately causing the "polarization" of the other. There's a meme out there that "you made us"-- that the left, in pushing so hard and so far, created the backlash that elected Trump. I would agree with that.

John said...

My last attempt to get a comment accepted over there for now...

This source shows the bi-modal distribution well.

Spend to GDP Ratios are directly related to country ideology.

I think that almost all citizens agree that it is best to tax to support key areas of governmental activity. (National Defense, Law and Order, Infrastructure, Care for the Truly Disabled, etc) The difference is that people on the Left also support taxing to support government mandated wealth distribution between healthy and capable citizens.

jerrye92002 said...

As for your topology pieces, once again I am totally unhappy being classified as a "core conservative" simply because most of the questions posit a very vague yet binary choice. For example, "government has done enough to offer blacks equal opportunity." They have legal rights to employment and voting, but what about the right to a good education? This conservative is very unhappy about that. And the companion question, "Anybody that works hard can get ahead." How is it possible, if you couldn't get a good education because of the public school you attended? As with all "topology" exercises, there is absolutely no room for actual thinking and nuance. All it does is reinforce our tribalism.

John said...

As usual... Your failure to accept the actual root cause is the weak point in your argument...

"because of the public school you attended"

However I suppose that is just an indicator of the tribe you exist within.

jerrye92002 said...

You are correct. I do NOT accept the outcome, regardless of "root cause." I could as easily say that poor education is the root cause of the poverty that causes poor education, could I not? I do not think that is because I am "conservative," it is because I am human and believe in equal opportunity-- hardly extreme positions. The question was whether GOVERNMENT has offered that equal opportunity, and it is quite obvious that the government-run schools have not. Their "excuses" mark the question as one in the "gray area" and the resulting "topology" (tribal ID) is thereby severely flawed.

I think we lose ground when we consider someone as belonging to only one "tribe" when we should be thinking of tribes around issues. Yes, we can generalize-- Democrats favor abortion, Republicans oppose it, for example-- but that misses the honest disagreements within the larger tribe on any given issue. And if we want an honest conversation, we have to start by accepting that the person we are talking to is NOT defined by their larger tribe but is an individual.

It was recently made very clear to me that this one-on-one approach CAN overcome tribalism, but the minute we have a group of 4 or more, balanced from the larger tribes, the conversation stops and the fur starts flying. No one wants to be "kicked out of the tribe" for differing with tribal orthodoxy or recognizing that the other viewpoint may have some validity. And it is very hard to persuade 1/2 of the whole population by speaking one-on-one.

John said...

After ~9 years of posting, I can not think of one issue or idea where you differ in any significant way from the Right Side of the Conservative Tribe.

Can you think of one?

Unless maybe your somewhat acceptance of early term abortions.

John said...

Is it bad that your views are pretty much perfectly predictable?

Or is a sign of consistency?

John said...

Latest I left over their. In response to Charles' comment.

"I think you have the tribes confused. Ever since I have been paying attention one of the tribes has been obsessive about demonizing members of the other. The "members" vary depending on the day and issue however it has included:

- Greedy wealthy people who supposedly "don't pay their fair share"

- Self serving companies who supposedly "pollute, move jobs, keep wages low, etc"

- Ruthless banks who make loans and hold the recipient accountable

- Religious Right business owners who do not want to be part of LGBT activities

- Pro Life advocates who see terminating the life of a human fetus as wrong

- Citizens who support legal immigration, but want illegal workers removed from the country

- Citizens who want to hold public employees accountable for successful performance of the duties they are paid to perform.

- Others?

It seems to me that it is that tribe who has an "inability to exist without demonizing the other".

Now please remember that since I stand between the tribes, I perceive them as simply similar but different. Not better or worse."

jerrye92002 said...

"...one issue or idea where you differ in any significant way from the Right Side of the Conservative Tribe."

I defy you to define every issue or idea that defines the "conservative tribe." How about the war in Syria? How about permitting abortion up to 5 months but not after, and never at taxpayer expense? In which tribe does that "idea" fall? How about school choice, favored by about 70% of folks according to a recent survey? Surely they are not all of the conservative tribe?

If my views are predictable, then is it not equally predictable you will find fault with them? If I am consistent with my own views, all the time, is that so incredible? Any resemblance between my view and that of my supposed "tribe" is purely coincidental. And I think we can learn something, here. The complaint about Donald Trump, at least from the Right, is that he is not an "ideological conservative," and I am firmly convinced that is not only true but a Good Thing (TM). Instead of doing what the "tribe" expects him to do based on pure ideological cant, he tries to find the "best solution" to a given problem. He's not a conservative or a liberal, but an individual.

jerrye92002 said...

At last we agree on something. The Left tribe is far more tribal than the Right, in that they tolerate little difference in their own, and survive by demonizing the other. Again, in the last US Senate race in Iowa, both sides spent roughly $16 million (outrageous, I know). One side spent, I believe, about 2 of that 16 million on ads against the opponent. The other spent 15 of the 16 demonizing the opponent.

John said...

I will never understand your need to be a "self made individual"...

The reality is that almost all of us are a product of our Parents, society, friends, circumstances, etc. If one is raised in a tribe it is likely that individual will grow into a member with similar views, logic, priorities, values, etc.

Remember that old saying... "The apple does not fall far from the tree."

A long time ago I asked you what you would believe and how would you think if you had been born to a poor Taliban family in Afghanistan. To some extent you may still be you, but I am pretty sure you would not be:
- a Christian
- pro-America Military, Business, etc
- etc

By the way, negative ads are not a tribe issue. Apparently they are a product of how humans are motivated in our modern society. It is unfortunate that people are more likely to get out to vote against someone they fear...

jerrye92002 said...

You can play "what if" until the cows come home and it will not change the fact that people are "tribal" in many ways. Suppose your family was Christian in Taliban Afghanistan. Would you have a different view than your Taliban or Muslim neighbors? What's wrong with that?

For a guiding quote, I prefer this one: Winston S. Churchill supposedly once observed that "anyone who was not a liberal at 20 years of age had no heart, while anyone who was still a liberal at 40 had no head. " You are forgetting free will and the capacity for people to "grow" in their understanding and beliefs. I was not always a Republican, but I have admitted that mistake to myself.

And if you insist on only two tribes, then one is vastly more prone to creating negative ads than is the other, as my example proves.

John said...

There are 2 primary parties, however per my bi-modal diagram above I see at least 5 tribes

- Progressive Tribe
- Liberal Tribe
- Confused Tribe (aka Moderates)
- Conservative Tribe
- Ultra Conservative Tribe

And somehow floating over this are social issue tribes:
- Religious Mandate Tribe (Make others live by our Religious Beliefs)
- White Supremacist Tribe (White People Good Others Bad)
- Save Everyone Tribe (Let poor foreign people flood America, Regulate every possible interpersonal transaction, etc)
- Go Natural Tribe (Regulate all emissions, business activities, etc)
- Anarchists Tribe (all regs are bad, chaos is good)
- Other?

So people can belong to multiple tribes. The First category points to where you reside Left and Right on the Nolan diagram. The Second category points to your vertical location.

John said...

Some people do continue to challenge and expand / refine them.

Unfortunately I think most people do what you call "growing in to them..." They keep finding reasons to reinforce and harden them.

As for ads... I think both sides use TOO MANY of them.

jerrye92002 said...

OK, we agree that there are a couple of general tribes, with the oddballs "falling in line" at election time or in public fora. You're a Democrat all down the line or you are "out of the tribe." Republicans tend to do it, too, but we excommunicate our own elected officials and hold them to a higher (impossible) standard. But if our tribes made sense, everybody would be an individual and we would come together around issues. People could float all over, like "independent voters" rather than "moderates" (I like the term "confused" or "not paying attention."

And yes, "confirmation bias" is one reason that tribes sustain themselves, without much individual thought; the "iron law of knowledge" (aka propaganda) is the other.

We all agree there are too many ads, but you point out that negative ads work. I have a solution, but the media would hate it. FCC licensing of TV requires that stations offer a certain amount of "public service time." So, require that each station donate, say 2 hours to each race in their service area. Candidates could take 1 hour each or agree to a debate of two hours length, and paid advertising would be banned. It would end the 30- or 15-second hit pieces that flood our airwaves. Oh, and ban political news coverage from every network except Fox "fair and balanced." :-)