November 10, 2012

Help me understand


Over the last week I've done a lot of thinking and wondering as to why people don't like Obama as President. For me, I think he leans too far to the right and is not doing all he can to help the everyday person in America. I've made excuses for him saying that perhaps he has to cater to greater influences and demands from those who are truly in charge of the world. I don't know. I do know that I think he is better for the average person in America than the Romney camp.

Meanwhile, I'm trying very hard to understand why people like and support Romney and all that he stands for politically. And so I'm asking you, Romney supporters, what is it about the right that is good and upstanding? I swear I am not being facetious or flippant.

My concern is that close to half of America voted for Romney and I have no real clue as to why. I think I understand why wealthy people support him but I'm at a loss as to why the working and middle classes like him. I'm asking you to help me understand what it is that I don't or can't see about the other half. I think by listening to and coming to understand the other, we may also come to understand our own place in the world better.

I know there are intelligent and caring and unafraid Romneyians out there.


140 comments:

  1. They are afraid of what they perceive to be the Other. IMO, these issues remain: abortion and gay marriage, with deeply ingrained racism lingering over it all.

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    1. I agree Teresa, but I know people who are Republican who I don't think have these prejudices and also happen to be bright. The thing is they don't speak out and I'm afraid all we hear are the bigots and the ignorant.
      I'm hoping one of these bright ones will leave a comment here.

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  2. Some of it is actually due to his race. It was predominantly white Americans that voted for Romney. It's not overt racism, it's the subtle lack of trust of the unknown.

    A lot of it is the internet. So many opinions not based on reality can become fact in a very short time. I called it the fastest dispenser of propaganda known to man during a conversation with someone.

    And too, our news media tends to leave so much out when they report. It's much more biased than it should be. And we worship celebrity because life is hard and we need entertainment.

    We're too divided between black and white without honest examination of gray areas. In order to achieve a left leaning Presidency we all have to lean to the left and we don't. No president can ignore the needs of a segment of our society by not traveling the middle of the road.

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    1. I think the media may have a lot to do with the spreading of propaganda, but I really hope to hear from some critical thinking Republicans about what motivates their politics.

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  3. I'm not qualified to answer, Rubye, but as someone who stayed up until 5am on Wednesday morning to watch your election results come in (and went to bed rejoicing in Obama's re-election) I'd be very interested to hear the responses of others.

    As an interested outsider, I wonder whether President Obama had no choice but to be a centrist, otherwise he hadn't a chance of getting any of his reforms through an obstructionist Congress. My guess is that he may well not need to work like this after winning his second term and you may see a difference.

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    1. I don't think too many Republicans read my blog, if any, but I'm still hoping to hear from a couple anyway. Somehow, we all need to start talking to each other and I think it may only go well in very small groups. Or maybe the Democrats need to start doing more education like with such topics as global warming or over-population.

      I think Obama had no choice but to lean to the right but he still has essentially the same congress, and "they're" saying the budget crisis will probably be argued until the very last minute. Ugh!

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  4. Hello Rubye Jack:
    Like Perpetua [above] we are not really in a position to answer this question but it is one which, addressed to the Conservative Party in the United Kingdom, we have often found ourselves asking and never receiving a satisfactory answer. We too rejoiced in Obama's victory.

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    1. I guess it's kind of like, "go figure".
      Anyway, hi Jane and Lance. :)

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  5. I keep asking this same question and GET NO ANSWERS. Which really, really makes me even more curious.

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    1. Is it like their little secret and they won't tell outsiders/Democrats their real true reasoning?
      My state, Oklahoma, had the greatest percentage of Romney voters, next to Utah, and none of the Republicans I know talk about their reasoning.
      Racism?

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  6. Rubye, I doubt if you'll get any response. BF just told me that I "don't get it"??? I asked, "what don't I not get?" ...and he got pissy and left. I've listened to the debates, Fox News and still don't understand. I'm sorry, but it's got to be racism, gays rights and women's rights to have control over their own bodies. I have honestly listened and can't come up with anything that "I don't get". On facebook, one person declared that Obama will end democracy and capitalism. He also went on blabbering that Obama is "that Muslim"...huh??? This guy doesn't like any race, but claims he's not a bigot??? is anti gay, justified by the bible??? So far, I've listened to the issues...tried to understand, so I guess BF is correct in saying that I just don't get it!!! humpf!!!

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    1. I'm guessing that what you don't get and I don't get has to do with feeling threatened by something different. I guess with Bush a lot of Republicans felt like they were protected in their cocoon of upper class America and that some sort of status quo was being upheld and then along comes this young energetic very intelligent charismatic guy who just happens to be black. I don't so much think that the Republicans are extreme racists like the KKK but they do like to think of themselves as better than other groups of people who are not white and well off. And so, they talk about Obama being a Muslim and not an American, knowing better but wanting to still be better than. They know this and know it's wrong and so can't admit to it.
      Come on Republicans and help me out here since I'm totally guessing about your motivations.
      Thanks TM for sharing this!

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    2. Rubye, how can you possibly ask for "honest interaction" with Republicans when you parade your own biases as incontrovertible truth? I never realized before that I (a) am in my cocoon of upper class America, (b) like to think of myself as better than other groups of people who are not white and well off, (c) talk about Obama being a Muslim, (d) know better but still want to be better than, and (e) know this is wrong but can't admit it. Thanks ever so much for clearing that up.

      (I'm not saying there aren't some who may have some of those qualities, but hey, there'a a whole lot of generalizing going on.

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    3. Thank you for commenting Rhymes. I very well may be biased but I'm open to hearing a better way and nothing I say is ever written in stone. If I learn something better and more sensible I change my opinions and thoughts.
      These are all absolutely generalizations and things I've heard before in the media as being said about Republicans. I haven't really heard anything different but would very much like to.
      I would love to hear what you think and why. Maybe you can be instrumental in changing my mind and help me to quit making these sorts of generalizations.
      Your blog is intelligent and caring and I would place a lot of faith in whatever you might have to say. If I didn't think there was a lot of good in the regular Republican, I wouldn't have written this post. I just don't understand.

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    4. There is a great divide in our country (example: Florida 50.0% to 49.1%) and neither side understands the other. Let me tell you a little about myself. I am male, Caucasian, 71 years old, retired from a Fortune 500 corporation, with a wife and 3 married kids and 6 grandchildren. My wife, an RN, retired from a local hospital. The 401K I had went to zilch so we live on our pensions and Social Security checks. Our gross income is about $50K a year which includes $6K I earn as pianist/organist at a little Methodist church. Our home is a 3-bdrm, 2-bath, 1-story house on a postage-stamp sized lot. I am not Obama's "millionaires and billionaires" -- far from it. I usually vote Republican (although I was for JFK way back when). I like to think of myself as a "compassionate conservative" (sort of like George W. Bush without the wars). I am concerned about people having enough food, clothing, shelter, and medicines, but I don't want to pay for their contraceptives or abortions.
      I am not a Bible-thumper but I am a Christian. I was high-school valedictorian back in the Dark Ages and attended 2 years of college but never graduated. I don't know that I am your typical anything. I have never lived my life by majority opinion. When the whole world is advocating "A", I have always tried to consider the merits of "B". The older I get the less I trust the media. The best thing that has happened in my lifetime (besides my marriage, my children, and my grandchildren) has been the Internet. I consider myself sane.

      Will write more later.

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    5. Thank you so much for sharing yourself here Rhymes. You sound very much the compassionate conservative indeed, and someone who I would like to have as my neighbor or friend.
      I think that abortions and contraceptives should be legal and readily available, mostly because of over-population but like you, don't know that the tax payer should have to pay for them. Actually, the more I'm thinking about it we shouldn't because in most respects they are either elective surgery or elective prescriptions. But then what about a pregnancy due to rape? Mostly I'm talking to myself here but the point is you have me thinking and re-evaluating my opinion. This is good. The Internet is one of the best things in my life also and for me, it keeps me together. You seem to be one of the saner people in this world from what you say so well here. Again, thank you and I look forward to hearing more from you when you have the time.

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    6. I suppose this will turn into a series of comments, because there's no way I can deliver myself of all my thoughts in a single comment.

      But let me say here at the start, coming from the other end of the spectrum and all, that the most shocking thing in your post to me was your saying that President Obama leans to far to the right. I had to read that twice! Most people in my area (north Georgia, 75-80% Republican vote) view him as the most leftist president in American history. You are perhaps the first actual socialist (except for some of my U.K. readers) with whom I have ever corresponded or had a conversation.

      This could get very interesting. If I respect you and you respect me, we can avoid a lot of name-calling and stereotypes!

      I'm willing if you are.

      I mentioned that I am a Christian, and to me abortion is just off the table as an option. I'm sure people who favor it mean well and want women to avoid mental anguish and embarrassment (I do not say inconvenience), but I believe abortion causes even more mental anguish in the long run. Even Roe (of Roe v. Wade) has now come out against abortion.

      I'm concerned that you and I will just touch the tip of the iceberg with our conversations and peel just enough layers from the onion to make matters worse. I hope not. My views are probably as incomprehensible to you as yours are to me. But we can begin.

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    7. Hi Rhymes, I'm happy you're willing to talk with me, but first of all I should say that I am really not into politics and so can't talk with a lot of depth or knowledge. My main concern is with regard to why our country is so divided and it mostly seems to be over social issues such as abortion, gay rights, and programs setup for those in poverty. I'm not a real card carrying socialist by any means but rather simply like the idea of what I think socialism is about, equality and justice. And so the couple of times I've said I was a socialist it was said loosely.

      I'm not a member of any particular religion but I do believe in something more or greater and believe myself to be spiritual in nature. I recently moved from California to Oklahoma and one of the main things I did not like out there is how so many people have so much money and don't seem to care about anyone but themselves. It seems to me that money makes them this way and so I like the idea of everyone having an equal status.

      I do waiver on abortion but think that it should be an individual's choice because many women who do not want to be pregnant will find a way to rid themselves of the fetus one way or another. I also would rather see a person addicted to crack have an abortion than give birth to a crack addicted baby. It is a very individual decision.

      Someone earlier in the comments sent me this link to an article in "The Atlantic" -- http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2012/09/why-i-refuse-to-vote-for-barack-obama/262861/

      The article lists some of my concerns around what I don't like about Obama. I should say that I don't know what he's talking about in point #2, but that's because I don't keep up the way I probably should.

      Your views are far from incomprehensible to me and I respect them. I think our thinking may not really be so different Rhymes.

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  7. I haven't read other people's comments but my guess is that conservatives sweep an entire sect of the population to vote without questioning other parts of the platform because of a couple of hot-button issues. Abortion is one of them, gay marriage another.

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    1. You're probably right Suze.
      And how do you reason with someone who bases their beliefs on something like the Bible rather than logic and common sense.

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  8. Is there any reasoning with a huge segment of the US who are homophobic, racist, reactionary, elitist, ultra conservative, stuck in a time warp ... don't think so.

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    1. I like to hope so Helen. I don't think all Republicans are as you describe them, by any means. There indeed is that segment but I don't think they represent most Republicans. Living where I do I know a lot of them and they are absolutely not that way.

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    2. I agree with you 100% ... I have four children, two vote Republican .. many many friends as well! It's just the vocal in-your-face folks we hear the most about.

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  9. Hi L., I will keep coming back here to see if you get any explanations that make sense. I, too, am truly interested. I waited until after the election to ask a relative of mine why they supported Romney. Here's a distillation of the answer: they don't want to be punished (aka taxed) for being successful so that the money can be given to the 50% of Americans who get "free stuff" from the government. I listened and kept my mouth shut (which was hard). That being said, I am proud to live in one of the bluest states in the Union
    :)

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    1. The thing is that the people who use this excuse tend to overlook all the "free stuff" the wealthy receive in the form of agricultural, ranch, estate subsidies, energy and pharmaceutical research, tax breaks, ... I think it safe to say a single mother on food stamps receives nothing like what those who benefit from energy research receive. But you know all this already so why don't the relatives know this?

      At times I wonder why I live in the second worse red state in the country. This is where I'm from? duh, I don't know.

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  10. The GOP decided they need to turn their ideals 180 degreesfrom Romneys campaign to win this next time and Romney said he can do that and carry all out.Not the happiest with what we have, but hope for the best to come in the next 4 years.

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    1. Yelp, hopefully these next four years will be good ones.

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  11. Well we may ponder over this, but I think we are seeking to explain the illogical. As someone suggested, there are a couple of hot button issues, but it does not really explain the way people bit the hand that feeds them.

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    1. No it doesn't explain it does it. I think I am going to have to be satisfied with the idea that religion is the culprit and religion is indeed illogical.
      Thanks Andrew!

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  12. in my opinion and i am from the state that voted the highest percentage for romney and this is what my neighbors are all about<><><>they hate to be in dept<><>they hate to get something and not pay for it right off the bat<><>they would rather do without something that go in debt for it<><>so they don't want health care, or social security, or pbs, or gig bird<><>they want to be austere and to preach to every one how they suffer and now that every one says we are approaching a fiscal cliff< they are actually crying, my neighbors are crying, but me with a scitophrenic boy is grateful for the help he gets<><love your philsophy, too bad you can't live in EPHRAIM UTAH

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    1. Hi Putz,
      You certainly live in beautiful country.
      Thank you for stopping by and talking, and I'm so glad you are able to get the help you need. Hopefully, your neighbors will grow to be a bit more tolerant over time. I guess we are both surrounded by Republicans so come what may but we will still be free.

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  13. I read every comment and see that you still don't have any answers. Maybe you're right that Romney supporters don't read your blog. I am not one and was hopeful that I would understand, too. It was telling to see the audience when Romney gave his concession speech, and then looking at the audience when Obama gave his victory speech. Completely different segments of the population. Many of my family members are Republicans, and many friends who I admire. We don't talk politics because I respect their views and don't really want to share mine with those who cannot hear what I am saying.

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    1. Hi DJan, Most of the older members of my family are staunch Republicans and for all the wrong reasons, but hey, you gotta love them anyway. They know no better. Seriously.
      It seems like Democrats and Republicans used to be able to talk, but it's certainly not so today. There's a lot of emotional stuff going on behind politics nowadays.

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  14. Not qualified to answer your question (thinking about it is terrifying). I'm happy in my Obama & friends love bubble. Just wanted to say his!

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    1. Hey Jen!
      Hopefully, no one pops that bubble. But I know what you mean. Right on.

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  15. I wrote a whole paragraph on racism and closed minds, then reread Andrew and decided it's the best answer to your query. Not so sure about biting hands, but we are all in this together. It's a shame tolerance and respect are so thin in places.

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    1. Thanks Joanne.
      Yeah, after this post I'm washing my hands of politics for a very good while.

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  16. I truly believe that most people vote for who they've always voted for. If they're conservative, they vote conservative - same goes with democrats and liberals. It's the philosophy they've embraced all their lives. If questioned, I highly doubt they would be able to give a good answer why they vote one way or the other. I mea, they'd spout out some kind of answer because they're not, after all, robots, and they believe they have given the current election a great deal of thought and still believe their party is the right one ... the only reason one party wins over another is passion - one party wants winning more than the other and they get the numbers out.

    Frankly I can't believe why anyone would vote conservative in a time when blue collar workers are losing their livelihoods in droves and the middle class is disappearing. The CEOs and the conservatives aren't hurting - but you can be sure that the only thing that concerns them is the bottom line. As long as the upper management of society has money and power, conservatives will continue to voted for. The rich want to be richer. End of story.

    I don't think Republicans would put it quite that way but it's the truth.

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  17. I don't now the answer to your question, although I assume it has to do mostly with idea that Americans all think that someday they will be rich, so it is important that once that happens they will not lose any money to taxes. But I certainly could be wrong.

    I voted for Jill Stein who seemed to me to be the least toxic of the candidates.

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    1. I'm a Jill Stein fan also Laoch. Obama is too far right for my personal preferences but better than Romney by far.

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  18. My niece was a Romney girl, she was deathly afraid of the Affordable Care Act and the taxes that might be imposed to support it. No amount of talk would change that mind. I had evangelical friends who supported Romney because they did not like Obama's stance on abortion or homosexuality. I work with someone who referred it it as "makers" vs. "takers" and that since the majority of people were takers, that is why they voted Obama.

    Me, I voted third party. Both Democrats and Republicans are big money parties. While the republicans cater to businessmen and democrats cater to workers, in the end, big money makes and keeps the big money. Over 6 billion dollars was spent on this election and in the end...... nothing changed. The power of big money that shuts out third party ideals because they could never compete on that scale.

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    1. Hi Morgan, I can understand being afraid of even more taxes if you're having trouble surviving or even getting ahead a bit, but if you want no or less taxes so you can have three houses and more cars I don't get it. I can understand the abortion dilemma. But I don't understand why anyone should care if two people of the same sex who love each other are married. Who cares.

      You are so right about where the big money goes. I was tripping on all the money that was spent on the election and how it could have done so much good elsewhere. It is a shame and it is scandalous when people in the world still starve to death. Here I go again...

      Peace be with you Morgan.

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    2. I am reading all of this with great interest -- but just though I'd share an interesting statistic regarding the money spent on the election this year. It would seem that while six billion was spent on the election, 12 billion was spent on Halloween costumes!

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    3. Well that certainly puts things in perspective and makes 6 billion sound not so bad after all. 12 billion on Halloween costumes! Jiminy Cricket.

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  19. Since I'm a Canadian, I sit on the outside of things American. Since I cannot get inside Republican minds, I'm guessing the issues are fear of change and personal/family tradition. That's the only way for me to understand why people vote against their own, long-term best interests. We have a national health care service, paid for by taxes (and which covers abortion), and marriage is legal for same-gendered couples. There were a lot of verbal fireworks over those things, but then everyone settled down, and we're all doing pretty well.

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    1. Hey there Rob Bear!
      My biggest concern today is that our country somehow comes together and that no one secedes or is left out or goes without food or a place to stay warm. I think most Republicans want these things also.

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    2. I certainly agree with that.

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  20. Hi Rubye,

    When I was young, in general, the rich voted Republican to keep their money and the poor voted Democratic to keep their hope. It’s all changed now. Admittedly I was disappointed in Obama’s performance over the last four years. Not enough to withdraw my support. Unless the House and the Senate can find compromise I’m afraid we are in for another four more years of inaction. The logo picture you chose for this piece sums up my feelings better than I can say it. The Republicans I spoke with before the election seemed to be hung up on the same old tired myths about Obama without room for exchange of thoughts. It was not so much they liked Romney or what he said. It was just they hated Obama and thought their reasons were valid. Peace, my friend, happy weekend.

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    1. It was the same for me Lynn. Darn near everyone in the working class, which I was a part of, was a Democrat and they all seemed to have hope. I've been disappointed in Obama also but think he has the good of all the people at heart and is doing what he can.

      Peace to you also friend.

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  21. Well, you certain got the support that you asked for... But would anyone listen to a conservative opinion without looking down on what the person says, if they said anything? I do believe that this was a bit self-serving, Rubye. Pose a question. Ask to be enlightened and then let you liberal followers rip the Republican apart. Why would any self respecting "stupid, redneck, uneducated, hateful,anti women rights ,illogical" Republican even try to respond... and I'm a registered Democrat.

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    1. You're so right Farmlady about how a Republican might not want to jump into it with a bunch of liberals. However, I would listen. I think most of us here have concerns about the division in America and would like to try and mend the tear. If a bunch of Republicans wanted to know why I think the way I do I would be happy to share my concerns with them even if they were all right wingers.

      I know most of the commenters here fairly well and firmly believe that the majority of them would not stoop to berating a person who shares honest feelings and thoughts simply because she was a Republican or because the person may have a philosophy different from their own. If someone did try to do so, I would not publish their comment.

      btw, in my post I didn't ask for support for "my" side but rather help with understanding the other side of our great divide. I hope American can begin to start talking about our differences and become united once again. I hope.

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    2. I know you didn't ask for these responses, Rubye, but the same inflexible and unyielding attitude is prevalent on the liberal side as well.
      Both ends of the train should be going in the same direction. Someone should be talking about how to come together and compromise, before there's a wreck... casting aspersions in all directions. (What the Canadian comment calls "verbal fireworks".) It's such a Facebook/ Twitter thing to do with something so important. It's as if the only ways we react these days is with anger.
      I wish I could give you an answer that's worth something, but no one really wants to listen and if they do they are thinking about a rebuttal.
      I do hope that some well educated, middle class republican writes a comment here. I will be back to check.
      Keep up the good work. I do love your blog.

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    3. Also, perhaps it is somewhat patronizing on my part. I didn't think about that possibility when I was writing the post but now think it is to some extent. Indeed there is a kind of sanctimonious attitude on the part of some of us liberals. I had hoped to start such a dialogue on what you're referring to here but it didn't happen did it? ;0
      I don't use Facebook or Twitter but get the gist of what you're saying. However, I think the social networks are as good a tool as any to start talking to each other. Anger is a cover for fear and there's a lot of fear nowadays. I do think that people want to listen and hear each other out but it needs to be done in a spirit of coming together. Somehow.

      Thanks for your honesty Farmlady.

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  22. Well, I'm afraid I'm one of those who doesn't think Obama is liberal enough. LOL I wanted him to do a lot more. :))

    But I have several family members who are Republican, and of course we talk about this stuff at the holidays. Sometimes loudly. My brother actually preferred Gingrich, but I'm sure voted for Romney in the end. My brother honestly thinks going back to 1950's values is better and more wholesome for the country. And there is no explaining to him about the inequality and prejudice that women and minorities lived with under that guise of a "better America." Believe me, I've tried. Oy.

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    1. Me too L.G.
      I wouldn't mind going back to the 50's in some respects myself. Life was simpler and more secure. But that kind of simplicity is no longer possible. We simply can't afford to leave our doors unlocked any longer and that sucks.

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  23. I'm Australian, so totally unqualified to comment in relation to American politics. But perhaps I can give some insight into how people can support parties, by explaining my switch between our two main parties in Australia.

    I always thought I was a Labor supporter, because they had polices which looked after workers and the disadvantaged. They invented Australian Medicare many decades ago, which ensured every kid could see a doctor without charge. It meant more taxes though. They did all sorts of things to supposedly help those who were not rich, have a "fair go" in Australia.

    Now that I'm older, run my own family budget and the responsibility associated to that, I've noticed something about Labor polices - they create massive debt. When Medicare was started, more people used the services, so more demand was created - so prices went up. It got to the point doctors (and their union) said they can't keep bridging the gap out of our own pocket, as prices were going up for them too. So doctor's took a radical step and decided to stop bulk-billing patients. Patients got Medicare to cover "some" of their doctors bill, but they also had to pay the doctor's "out of pocket" expenses.

    I wont' go through the rest of the policies Labor has been hailed as helping the average Australian with, but the real cost is, prices always increased for everyone. The rich can still afford their excesses, the disadvantaged still get their govt subsidies and assistance from charity organisations, but the middle class are constantly squeezed without compensation.

    Now the other side of politics (Liberal) are considered not as pro women rights, nor pro gay rights and considered more racist. I'm sure there must be that element present in some individuals supporting the Liberal Party: but when you look at their policies in application, what you find is prices in the economy come down for EVERYONE.

    Put racism and all the different affiliated "rights" aside from the Republican supporters (don't imagine they want 3 houses and unnecessary possessions) and consider for a moment they are the canary in the mine shaft. If they are getting squeezed, how long before the money runs out for the disadvantaged? The rich will always stay rich, the politicians want to stay in office after all. They can't tax the poor, so it leaves an increasing number of working middle class to cough up the money to meet their election promises.

    When I switched parties in Australia, I had many relatives shocked - even my own husband. It wasn't about what they thought the other party represented however, (all that religious ideology) it was because the party I used to support, was driving up the cost of living for everyone.

    How was that fair? What if you could give gay people the right to marriage, if it costs them an arm, leg and a kidney to put a roof over their families head? They might be prepared to work hard for that "right", but what about the single parent, widowed through no fault of their own, and the family left behind?

    I think you will find much of the country that is Republican but not (insert generalisation here) voted for Romney because they are the canary in the mine shaft. They see the oxygen (money in the economy) running out and they want to put a stop to it. Or at least that's my estimation based on my own experience.

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  24. Thank you Chris for sharing your experience, and I agree that probably many Republicans who are middle class are concerned with being taxed more with Obama. I think there may be some truth to this but am not sure since I understand Obama's plan to be taxing the wealthy who do not pay much in the way of taxes here. When I was working I paid 25% of my income to taxes while the doctors I worked for paid nothing. I also used to resent struggling to make ends meet while the poor received all sorts of benefits. It is indeed quite a quandary. Meanwhile, what you say does help to understand some Republican resentment. Thanks again.

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  25. The best I could ascertain was that conservatives were not as crazy about Romney as they were afraid of and disgusted by Obama. I looked for intelligent conservative voices online, as there are obviously a lot of them, but the ignorance faction kept drowning them out. Catch phrases kept coming up that made me think maybe a Beck or a Limbaugh had presented them as 'talking points.'

    I think the issues that were most important to me were no big deal to the calm conservatives I know. Kind of like "we know Romney is no friend to the queer community, but try not to take our vote so personally." I felt a real and deep disconnect with them over that.

    It would be great if your conservative readers would at least explain. If they fear we liberals would "rip them to shreds," they needn't ever look back. Just drop an explanation and walk away.

    This TED broadcast has done more to help me understand than most other sources: http://www.ted.com/talks/jonathan_haidt_on_the_moral_mind.html I think it's pretty even-handed.

    But now, i'm not helping a bit. Where is William F. Buckley when we really need him?

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    1. Thank you Good Luck girls.
      I think you've said it all very well here. Maybe it's a kind of walk in my shoes thing before you can really understand anyone different from yourself for a lot of the Republicans. Maybe the Republicans are more extroverted and Democrats are more introverts who like to sit quietly in solitude and write what they think about everything. So maybe Republicans could care less about saying what they think and why in a blog. Maybe I framed it all wrong. Who knows? I sure don't. Ha.

      I'm going to go watch the Ted doc.

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  26. Linda...yes I read your blog before you became Rubye...I have been reading your blog since the beginning. I always thought you were open minded ...I admired your way with words...and your thought process. I thought maybe I was the only Republican that read and commented on your blog but maybe there is one other and a half. I never thought you were mean spirited...just exactly how many Republicans did you think were going to read this post let alone answer it...about as many as your last post...so you must be talking to me and maybe one another. Your replies to the comments in the last posts must have been so good for your ego...to make you feel better...but you know you really hurt my feelings. I never voted for Obama but at the beginning of 2008 I had maybe a glimmer of hope...if not now when...it really didn't last very long. BUT I have never ever called Obama a jerk in posts and comments as so many as your enlightened fellow writers call us Republicans...not once ever...and never in real life either. I truly believe you don't want to talk and share ideas...you want to talk and share YOUR ideas...the same as Obama does. You say you know most of the commenters here and you say most of them would not stoop to berating a person simply because she was a Repbulican. Go back and read your last post and the commments and your replies...it is just sad.This is not the place to try to explain my politics..on a comment on someone else's blog. Like Christopher Hutchins says about being an atheist..."I'm not trying convert any one...I just want to be left alone." I sometimes wonder what the now "have nots' did for anyone when they were the "haves"...would the "have nots" now still feel the same if they were still part of the "have"s. Where did these words ever come from...I don't think from the Republican party. I think they started at a big 40,000 people democrat ralley. Linda, were you a socialist when you were working for enron...would you still be a socialist if were still working for enron? I suggest you look deep in yourself to understand why you are so unhappy and how you got there.

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    1. Hi Cheryl,
      First off, I am sorry if what I have written here hurt your feelings but I would like to assure you my words were not meant for you in particular, but rather for anyone who wanted to listen to my babbling. :)

      Actually, what got me to thinking about and wanting to understand the Republican side of things is where I live and the old friends I have who are Republicans. People where I work are Republicans and they are some of the most caring, generous, and intelligent people I've ever known. This got me to thinking and provided the motivation for me to write this post.

      You raise a lot of issues Cheryl. Of course, blogs are all about ego and I am guilty of liking to hear myself talk, and so have been thinking a lot about no longer blogging or at least not in this same format.

      I really don't understand what you're getting at with the socialist/Enron connection. Yes, I've always been a socialist at heart. I like ideas like fairness and justice and equality and think the socialist party best exemplifies these values. I worked for Enron as a customer service person, answering phone calls to start electric service. It paid my rent. I saved some money there and lost all of it like everyone else who worked there. Just because the top Enron executives were Republicans does not mean the people who worked them were the same. Most of us were just poor working slobs.

      Thank you for your suggestion to examine myself as I've always felt "the unexamined life is not worth living." (Socrates)

      Peace to you and yours Cheryl.

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    2. For both Cheryl and Rubye Jack (Linda):

      The first time I ever heard the terms "haves" and "have nots" was from Lyndon Baines Johnson when he was running for office in 1964. I heard him say with my own ears, "We're going to take from the haves and give it to the have-nots who need it so much."

      I was caught in the middle then and I am still caught in the middle now. I was not then nor have I ever been a "have" but I have at times been a "have not" and it is no fun. Still, I am not enamoured of having Big Brother take more the little I do have to give to someone who has less because my stash (lol) will run out long before the "have nots" are satisfied. The "haves" don't ever feel the pinch and are quite happy with giving away great portions of their own (and everyone else's) money. So, yes, fear of losing what little one does have enters very much into the picture. I'm not saying this very well, as usual. I mean, we ARE our brother's/sister's keeper, but I would like to help voluntarily and not have the federales dictating to me what I can and cannot do.

      Your semi-anonymous rambler,
      Rhymes



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    3. For both Cheryl and Rubye Jack (Linda):

      The first time I ever heard the terms "haves" and "have nots" was from Lyndon Baines Johnson when he was running for office in 1964. I heard him say with my own ears, "We're going to take from the haves and give it to the have-nots who need it so much."

      I was caught in the middle then and I am still caught in the middle now. I was not then nor have I ever been a "have" but I have at times been a "have not" and it is no fun. Still, I am not enamoured of having Big Brother take more the little I do have to give to someone who has less because my stash (lol) will run out long before the "have nots" are satisfied. The "haves" don't ever feel the pinch and are quite happy with giving away great portions of their own (and everyone else's) money. So, yes, fear of losing what little one does have enters very much into the picture. I'm not saying this very well, as usual. I mean, we ARE our brother's/sister's keeper, but I would like to help voluntarily and not have the federales dictating to me what I can and cannot do.

      Your semi-anonymous rambler,
      Rhymes



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    4. Cheryl and Rubye Jack:

      The first time I ever heard the words "haves" and "have nots" was out of the mouth of Lyndon Baines Johnson who said, "We're going to take from the haves and give it to the have-nots who need it so much" (circa 1964).

      I was caught in the middle then and I am still caught in the middle now. I have never been a "have" but there have been times when I have been a "have not"...I am not all that fond of the concept of Big Brother taking ever more from my "stash" (lol) and giving it to someone else. In that respect, I am not a socialist. I do believe we are our brother's/sister's keeper, but in a perfect world we would help them voluntarily because it is the right thing to do, not be dictated to from Washington DC about how we must or must not use our resources. Unfortunately, though, we do not live in a perfect world. As usual, I am not saying this very well. Fear does enter into it, fear that my limited resources will be completely gone before either the need is met or the richest of the rich feel any pinch at all.

      Your semi-anonymous rambler,
      Rhymes

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  27. Thanks, Chris. That makes sense to me.

    What would happen to a party who offered the high points of both parties? Relieve the middle-class, assure reproductive freedom in a way that keeps society from paying for children mothers can't afford (an economy), assure same-sex marriage as a right? Would this "perfect" party platform flush out hidden motives for the "other side?"

    It seems like that would leave the very rich, the very fundamentalist, and the very bigoted exposed.

    I guess I just don't understand why we must choose between fiscal responsibility and compassion. The things that make a woman's life easier would certainly make her less of a burden in society. Gay marriage only boosts the economy. And, since the poor now get their healthcare from Medicaid or expensive emergency room visits, preventive care would be a bargain.

    So maybe it comes down to slinging the numbers. The conservatives I have talked to feel the cost of preventive services (including birth control) is exorbitant compared to letting poor women get pregnant and then supporting the baby and mom. Personal responsibility and consequence seems much more important to them than the bottom line.

    Thanks again for a reasonable response to RJ's question.

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    1. Yeah, I liked what Chris said also.
      I keep wondering why the Democrats don't do more educating because I think a lot of people don't understand the reasoning behind a more liberal approach to life. Maybe they're afraid it would be perceived as too much like propaganda.

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  28. What a huge but fascinating can of worms, Rubye!
    After several attempts my reply is still over 1,000 words... and Chris has just opened another can of worms, so here's just a part of it:

    Cathy Olliffe-Webster is right to suggest some people vote as they have always voted. This means the small number who do change their vote or level of participation at an election are the ones who decide the outcome. These are the people targeted by marketing. These are people who are not extreme or fundamentalist, and it is the reason the Democrats are so centrist - the left has more chance of stealing votes from the right if it is not too far left itself.

    Why don't Republicans have to move to the left, then? To a point they do, but the biggest problem is that no matter how extreme or moderate Republicans might be, they mostly agree on HOW to achieve their shared aims: more god, more family, more incentive etc.

    The left, however, are divided, made up of predominantly single issue groups each competing with each other for a slice of the Democrat pie. They also disagree amongst themselves about the best means of achieving their shared aims.

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    1. Wow! It certainly is turning into a can of worms isn't it FC?

      I think with Romney the Republicans did move a lot to the left and perhaps Romney would have been more moderate in office. It seems that when the Moral Majority and Tea Party came along to encompass rigid fundamentalist religious groups that the Republican Party had to move to the extreme right to gain that massive amount of support. It now appears to be their undoing.

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  29. Multiple posts because it's too long --
    I answer hesitantly, because I am so sick of the viscera of the most recent election it made me want to throw up. The viscera on both sides.

    I am a registered Republican. I regsistered this way when I first registered at 18. I was rather sheltered at the time and will admit I listened to my parents, thought they were wise, and blindly followed. It's not that way anymore. I have re-examined my feelings many times over the last 24 years. I have read through the party platforms of many political parties. I keep feeling more aligned with Republican than anything else.

    Last election I kept looking for a reason to vote for Obama. I wanted to be part of an important part of history. I wanted to be able to tell my children and grandchildren that I voted for the first black president. But I couldn't. My vote it too important to me to use it that way.

    My vote says I believe in this person (or, sometimes, this party). I believe he/she will face our country's problems similar to the way I would. I believe Obama is a good man who is trying to do what he thinks is best for our country. I just don't agree with him.

    I also believe Romney is a good man who thinks he can do what's right for our country. Did I vote for him? Yes and no. His was the name I pushed on my ballot, but I didn't vote for him. I voted for the party. I think he is a great husband and father and probably a brilliant businessman. I think he's a lousy politician. And speaking as a Mormon, I think he sold out on his principles to try to get elected. But my vote is about action. I believe Romney would have followed the Republican platform pretty closely.

    I know a lot about how Washington runs. I know how little power the President, any President, actually has. I believed he would listen to the leaders of the Republican party. I've followed politics enough to have a good idea who's going to do what a long time before the decision comes.

    I do not believe that people who disagree with me are stupid or evil. I have not shed a single tear about the outcome of the election. I believe our country is run by a lot more people than those in Washington and we are mostly all pulling together in the hopes that things will get better. We just have different ideas of how that's possible.

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    1. Hi Robin,
      I agree with what you say about Washington and that the President has little real power. Romney's lack of charisma and conviction probably had much to do with his defeat.
      No, differences in politics do not make a person stupid or evil by any means whatsoever. I think the problem is when people like Limbaugh start their diatribes that they are perceived as stupid by those who think differently. When Democrats say that Republicans are stupid I think they are referring to the Limbaugh way of thinking. Regardless, we shouldn't do it and personally I think it is a shortcoming of mine to dismiss people as stupid because they are so vehement in their prejudices.

      Most of my response to what you have said here is in the comments below. This is one of those times where words fail me because I don't how to say how much I appreciate your honesty and ability to reason so well and to explain it all so clearly.
      Thank you Robin.

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  30. Some of the things that made me align with the Republican party (I consider myself just slightly to the right of center):
    ** I believe in the power and right of states to govern themselves. I believe the federal government is there to unite us in a few limited causes. But I believe the members of each state know what they need in most cases better than the federal government.
    ** I believe in limited abortion, although this one is still a struggle for me. I don't want things to go back to the back streets and not be safe. I don't know the answer to this problem yet, but I believe in the sanctity of life (even unborn life) and feel that the Republican party is closer to protecting it the way my heart says we should.
    ** I am opposed to more and more government programs. Not because I don't think people who are struggling shouldn't be helped, but because I don't think they help in the best way. I think they often enable. And I think too many of them are run at the federal level which contributes to waste. I also believe government programs don't always handle things most effectively. I believe in private enterprise and the free market economy. I believe if there is a problem, someone will step up to fix it -- if only so they can make money off of it. And when one person makes money, someone else thinks they can make money but do it better. This creates competition that tends to serve the public well. When government tries to maintain a monopoly by pushing out the private sector I don't think anyone is well served.
    ** I believe we have a duty to protect those who cannot protect themselves, even if it means going to war. Yes, this is a dangerous area. My 16-year old son has talked about joining the Marines when he is old enough and asked how I would feel. I told him I would support him and be incredibly proud, but I would also be very scared. It would break my heart, but if he died defending something he believed in, I would be honored to have offered him to the world.
    ** The debt issue as I see it is that Democrats seem to be okay with debt for social issues/programs and Republicans seem to be okay with debt for security issues. I hate debt and don't agree with either of them. I think if you can't pay for it you don't get it, even if you're a country. I believe in a system of pay as you go.

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    1. THANK YOU Robin!
      This is beautiful and I find I agree with much of what you have said so clearly and succinctly here.
      You make so much sense. Romney should have had you by his side.
      I'm going to come back and read this again when I've more time.
      Thank you!

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  31. There are many more, but I'm tired of politics. I haven't even been willing to discuss things with my adult daughters and husband since the election (and they mostly voted the same way I did). I just don't want to talk about it anymore. But you are my friend, Rubye, and you asked.

    I have always felt that you were a truth-seeker. You see the world your way but know there are other views. You may not understand them, but you respect the right of others to have them. And even though you and I are on such different sides of many coins, you have always been respectful in your communication with me.

    I hope I have answered your question at least a little bit. I am Mormon. I am Republican. I have voted in almost every election since I turned 18, including non-presidential years. Every year. I get excited on election day. I refuse to vote early because I love the patriotism I feel seeing my neighbors who are election judges and getting my "I Voted" sticker.

    I am lower-middle class. We have been on food stamps and Medicaid several times throughout our marriage. We have had reduced and free school lunches. We have had fees waived because we had no income. We have chosen not to have medical issues addressed because we couldn't afford it. We have gone without the food of our choice, living off the things no one likes that were available, to keep the electricity on. We have had our electricity, phone, natural gas, and internet turned off on multiple occasions because we couldn't pay the bills. We have always been able to get them turned back on through a network of family, friend, and our church. Over the course of our twenty-two year marriage, my husband has been laid off or fired 11 times. My husband and I both struggle with mental health issues that make it difficult or impossible to work. We have five children, ages 14-21. We own our house (through a mortgage) and another close by that we rent out. We wouldn't have been able to purchase either of these without help and pushing from my parents.

    We have struggled, but not nearly as much as so many others. I don't claim to understand where everyone is coming from. There is no way that I can. I explain some of who I am so you can judge for yourself whether or not you think my opinions are valid.

    I believe that any time we seek to understand another person we make the world a better place. Thank you for seeking, Rubye. May you be blessed in your quest for truth.

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    1. Thank you Robin for your kindness.

      When I very first started blogging you were one of the first people I met and the first who reached out to me. I always appreciate what you have to say, how you think, and your caring for others. You have a gift for rhetoric and have always made me think more than I would have without you. I count myself as extremely fortunate to have you in my life.

      Thank you for sharing yourself here and I hope people will read your comments and understand the other side of life that may be a bit different from their own. At heart we are all indeed the same.

      Peace be with you and your family Robin!
      Your friend,
      Linda

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  32. Indeed, it sounds like you know what I'm talking about - that impossible squeeze. Not enough money to throw around witlessly but too much to qualify for the various subsidies. Any subsequent price rise in the economy, means the squeeze only gets tighter.

    Most of our money goes to operating costs to get my husband to work. While we could qualify for all sorts of govt subsidies (including medical) if he deliberately earned less, it's not who he is. He takes pride in being able to work for his family and to be able to pay his fair share in tax.

    Being working class too, we won't ever be in a position to earn a six figure income. That doesn't mean however, when the Australian Labor party decided to go for increased taxes in other areas (including the wealthy) we got more benefits. We still don't qualify based on that magic cut off limit of income.

    I suspect, just because Obama says he's going to tax the wealthy, it doesn't necessarily mean he'll pass any benefit down to the middle class. He hadn't proven anything substantial in his first term, to offer relief to the middle class, so maybe they were looking to give the other side of politics a try?

    It took me quite a few years to change allegiances between our two major parties in Australia. I always thought I was a Labor supporter because they appeared to back everyone having a fair go. Yet for all their talk about women's rights to maternity leave, cheap childcare, gay rights to marriage and supporting the workers of Australia - none of their ideology has ever translated into policy. They talk about it to garner support, which they very rarely deliver on.

    In my opinion of Australian politics (and it's probably an international trend too) both major parties promise a lot but deliver little. They each run on a platform of strong ideology, but when it comes to the real nuts and bolts of how economies work, it's always a case of "show me the money".

    When I understood this myself, I was able to let all ideology go from both parties, and started to evaluate them as I would my own budget. Whose policies stood to pay the best across the board - to span across all different levels of income to derive a profit for more than just a few specialised groups? I had to draw on my 20 years of voting life (and life experience) to evaluate how each party had performed.

    That process is what made me pick one Australian party over another, not what they said they believed in ideologically. Because I've voted based on ideology before, politicians talked a lot about it, yet ultimately only ever delivered on their party's historic economic credentials. If they were a party of creating debt for the nation, they remained true to their historical roots. If they were a party that consistently got the nation out of debt, they stayed that historical course too.

    Ideology has very little to do with the political machine (other than campaigning) but then the true business of economic policy begins. This is what ultimately determines how much freedom people have, because we all still have to pay the Piper somewhere along the line, no matter what we believe in either.

    Of course I don't write this as proof of the Republican supporters motives in America (the ones you want to comment) but it's just one example of how I was able to bypass ideological camps, in what can often be an ideological minefield, come voting time in Australia.

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    1. I like these words --
      "none of their ideology has ever translated into policy. They talk about it to garner support, which they very rarely deliver on."
      I agree with what you have said here Chris, and I wonder if the working class will see any differences in the future.

      It is all so very exasperating and like Robin said, I am so very tired of politics. It's funny. I avoided all the political blogging before the election but here I am now talking politics and hoping for some resolution as to why we seem to be so divided. I'm beginning to think maybe we aren't so separate in our thinking but the way the stage is set makes us see ourselves as different.
      Thank you Chris!!!

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  33. It is disguised, but it is racism. Before 1948 the old Confederate south use to vote Democrat. Then in 48 the Democratic Party included integration into the party platform. The southerners walked out of the convention and later formed the Dixiecrat party with the platform: 'Segregation for ever." When the party failed there was a mass movement of the southern Christian racist into the Republican party. Now that Republican party is the party of the old south and covert racism is still a major factor down there along with fundamentalist Christian prejudice. The south is still the land of white supremacy.
    the Ol'Buzzard

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    1. Hi Buzz,
      Yeah, I can see it may be true for those in the south and probably in other places also. I often wonder what would have happened to Hillary if she had won. One can only imagine. It's sad.

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  34. Dear Rubye Jack, I voted for President Obama in 2008 and again this past Tuesday. I am a lifelong Democrat who supports the philosophy of the party. So I cannot speak for those who voted for Romney. But I do remember reading a book back in 2006 called something like "Whatever Happened in Kansas?" that helps explain a little why so many people now vote Republican.

    In the book, the author said that the working class in our country always used to vote for the Democratic Party candidates because they stood for the working man and his pocket book. However, in the past 30 years, people are not voting their pocket books, they are voting for or against social issues, especially gay marriage and abortion.

    Many Republican voters are Roman Catholics and other Christians who vote against the Democrats, whom they would have supported many years ago, because of these two issues and where the Democratic party stands on them.

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    1. That makes sense Dee. Part of my problem with coming to grips with this whole thing has been understanding why someone who is working class could be a Republican. I just have a lot of difficulty understanding why people are so dead set against gay marriage. The abortion side I can understand more readily.

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  35. From a UK and European perspective (well, my own perspective really, I can't speak for everyone else!) it is fear of the unknown, fear of progressive ideas and "where they might lead", fear of diversity, fear coming from long-established Christian, conservative, reactionary, "I got where I am today through sheer hard work and I want to protect my family and community with handguns and keep all my hard-earned money for myself and my family and everyone else can go screw themselves" mentality.

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    1. I agree SW. Fear is usually what's at the bottom of our anger.
      I think you describe one set of Republicans quite well and I think those of us on the Left make the mistake of seeing all Republicans as being like this. However, I've come to learn there are also the compassionate conservatives who are not like this and who do care very much about the welfare of others.

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    2. Yes, I agree, and I was really talking of the Tea Party et al. I suppose. Sorry about the caricature. I don't normally oversimplify things like this!

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    3. I do it myself. It's easy to lump the Tea Party and the Moral Majority and the fundamentalists into one big bag.

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  36. I read in a blog from a woman who lives in Idaho that her Republican friends are furious. All this talk of issues is on our side. The other side is incoherent with rage.

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    1. Hi Hattie, I think many have moved on and accepted Obama and just want to lead their lives as best they can. Just like everyone else.
      More than likely those who are angry were angry before the election.

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  37. Oh that book is "What 's the Matter with Kansas" by Thomas Frank.

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  38. I was so relieved when it was Obama and not Romney. the thought of him running the US scared the living daylights out of me. I don't really get it either. I think right-wing people must be scared, too. that's why they embrace conservatism and the bullying of everything that is different. I don't know. but it's the only explanation I can come up with. fear. people defending the status quo. nothing new or different allowed... and I'm afraid it's part of human nature and will never change. the percentage of people willing to think for themselves will always be smaller than the percentage of people who are happy to follow.

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    1. Hi Petra, Fear is a very strong dictator.
      Actually, Robin left an excellent comment above about why she is a Republican and it is because of reason and her beliefs rather than fear. There are also the social issues. People say they weren't for Obama because of abortion and gay marriage. Whatever! That whatever is only referring to the gay issue. I just don't get why people care except maybe they are afraid their wives will leave them for another woman. Ha. Thanks for stopping by.

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    2. “It is a sign of great inner insecurity to be hostile to the unfamiliar.” Anais Nin

      I don't know enough about American issues, or maybe I'm just too far removed, I don't know. but don't get me started on 'beliefs rather than fear'. organized religion is nothing but a way to gain power from peoples' fears. I tolerate everyone's religious beliefs as long as I sense they tolerate mine. as soon as there isn't even a discussion any more I'm out.

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    3. When it comes down to it, I don't think too many of us Americans know enough about our issues either and yes, self included.
      The difficult thing about Christianity is so many of the fundamentalists base everything on what the Bible says and so discount other people's beliefs if they don't have a Bible, which really is simply not playing fair.

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  39. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2012/09/why-i-refuse-to-vote-for-barack-obama/262861/

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    1. This is the kind of stuff that makes me very tired and very sad and very ashamed because I know and understand what is being said here by Conor Friedersdorf. I'm ashamed because I know his words to be true and I don't do a thing about it. My reason for not taking a stand - fear, fear of retaliation. And here I am with the audacity to talk about other people's fears. Shame on me. I think there are many people who feel the same today. We know better but we don't speak out because we're afraid of our own government.
      I need to get a subscription to the Atlantic.
      Thanks Laoch.

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  40. I think the only way things are going to get better is if the two parties learn how to compromise. Given that they continue to act like kids fighting over toys in a sandbox, I am disinclined to think this will happen.

    It's sad and disappointing to see our elected officials - who are supposed to be doing right by us and the country - too busy squabbling to sit down and do the work they were hired to do.

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    1. Well my take on it MS is that the House cares nothing about what the right thing to do is and only about what will keep them in a place of power and get them re-elected. They are silly petty people elected by silly petty people who would rather self-destruct than compromise. They are worse than kids and more like sociopaths. Both sides. Sorry but I'm tired of it all.
      I think we all somehow or other need to let them know we won't take it anymore.

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  41. I have this issue in my own family, and I still find it hard indeed to understand. The family members who vote this way are not lunkheads, yet something takes hold of them and won't let go. The best I can fathom, it's some sort of fear and anxiety, fed by media and their friends, all of whom are suffering from the downturn that's gone on for so long. I see it as a misunderstanding as to what the cause of the problems is. (I share your view that Obama is too tentative, too willing to make compromises where they shouldn't be made. His temperament, to my mind, is that of a law professor: weighing, considering, balancing, where what is needed is bold action. But I'm certainly glad he's been reelected. The alternative, well, I shudder to think.

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    1. My supposition is that ever since the Enron crisis and the ensuing realization that dishonesty and greed were acceptable regardless of laws and ethics, that Americans began to lose faith in our system of government. And, the demoralization of it all over the years has made many people feel like they've got to get it while they can regardless of how it needs to be done. Security has come to override honesty and goodwill.
      Who knows how much leeway Obama actually has to do anything different. It does seem to come back to the less of two evils but does that make it okay for us to support him. That is the question I'm now asking myself.
      It's a sad complicated situation.
      Thanks Susan for your take on it all.

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  42. Rubye -- Just like the saying -- there are two sides to a coin. Historically there has always been two sides (or more) to every issue human kind has ever had. Many factors lead us down this multiple view pathway and all we can do is try to understand and what we don't lay it aside and continue on with our life. -- barbara

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    1. Wise words Barbara.
      Before continuing on I need to do my best to come to terms with what I don't understand. And then, yes, move on.

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  43. rubye, first of all i'm really happy you did this post. i have read through most of the replies but was most taken by misssrobin's. while i am a democrat and support obama, i appreciate reading her point of view in answering your question. i really wanted to understand why folks who are not rich would vote for romney, and i've heard all the negative stuff about their just being against everything liberals believe in such as abortion and gay rights. but misssrobin gives an even more in depth reason for her beliefs concerning government programs and right of states to govern, and she is candid about citing that debt issues exist on both sides. even though we have differing beliefs on many issues, i heartily agree with her that the viscera as she calls it should stop on both sides and we start to put our energy towards reaching across the aisle in the next 4 years to solve our problems. if more folks on both sides shared her bipartisan insight this country would be in a lot better shape.

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    1. I've learned a lot from this post Amanda. It's helped me to think outside of my little box of a mind and I've found a lot of people have the same concerns but say them in different ways. I agree wholeheartedly with what you say. Thanks!

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  44. I'm late to the party here....but my two cents is that there are Republicans and then there is the Tea Party and fundamental conservatives. I can and do respect the first for the most part.

    I believe that the anti Obama sentiments are based on fear as well as racism and come from the more extreme end of the party.A friend told me she understood the fear because we liberals were afraid of Bush/Cheney not too long ago. My arguement is that we feared the known with these two men ( based on their actual performance) whereas the fears of our current President being a secret Muslim or a Socialist are based on nonsense in my opinion ( and began before he even took office ) yet reflect a disturbing narrow mindedness as well as the obvious bigotry.

    I'm glad elections are over and relieved that Obama won.





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    1. I agree Linda. There are so many disparate segments of the Republican party that it is hard not to lump them all together, but isn't that the essence of America--the melting pot. I'm beginning to see more and more just how much racism plays a big part in how people perceive Obama. It'll be interesting to see what they say about Hillary if she should run. Talk about division!
      I'm also glad the election is over but wish the division was over with also.

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  45. Wow! What a great post. Although I am a committed Democrat and glad that Obama won I do believe that it is important to have an opposition in politics. In Britain the 'other' side is called the 'loyal opposition' in parliament and I think it would be a good idea if we Americans thought of whatever the 'other' side is in the same way. No democracy can stand without opposing views and politics should be about working at solving the problems that occur because of this opposition. I think Miss Robin's posts are just wonderful.

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    1. Robin is the coolest!
      I agree. The opposition provides something of a centering force I guess and is probably a good thing. I need to think about it some more. :)
      Take care Broad.

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  46. Oh, Ru, I hesitate to answer as I see myself as entirely apolitical, but, well, here's just a bit: Romney/republican: I must admit I'm pulled toward the republican ideals (ideals), smaller government, etc.--but don't agree with everything. I can tell you though, when my husband comes home at night, late, late, like he always does, from trying to keep his business afloat--a business he's spent years building, taking big risks--and tells me that HALF our money is going to taxes this year, I FREAK! Our numbers might look good on paper, it might look like we're doing just fine, but these numbers, the money, it all goes right back into the business. To keep it afloat. So NO ONE has to be fired. So his employees can keep their jobs, and maybe, more employees can be hired.

    So, this is when I say--Get an offshore account!

    Sounds selfish, eh? But I cannot tell you the amount of sweat equity that's gone into this business and what my husband, may family has sacrificed to keep it alive. No business owner should be penalized because he's building something important. Nope. Don't tell me, OBAMA, that someone else built the business. No, the person who built it is the person who was willing to take the risk. (OH, what a rant I'm on.) That person has worked hard for his rewards. That person, btw, happily gives to charity what he can with what's left after the government has robbed him of half his earnings.

    Here's the thing: if we, the government, actually spent those tax dollars wisely, I might not have reason to rant. ;)

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    1. To tell you the truth Jayne, I'm also rather apolitical but my concern is around how we all ended up on one side or another for the most part, and it seems to get worse every election. I hate all the bickering. I don't know if you were exaggerating for the sake of emphasis when you said the government takes half your money in taxes. Now that just doesn't seem right to me. I thought businesses could write off enough stuff, like putting money back into the business, to not have to pay terrible taxes. If I was in such a position, I would think about an offshore account also. I don't get it. I don't know. It's sad that things are this way.

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  47. Ok, I apologize for that rant. It's all too raw right now. :-/
    (And Lil Rhody doesn't make it easy for small business, either.)

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    1. No apologies are needed, by any means. Rants can be a good thing. Heaven knows I go off on them all the time, and I respect you so much that you can say anything you want and I'll give it thought. I had to google Lil Rhody I'm afraid. :)

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  48. "Rubye Jack" has been included in the Sites To See for this week. I hope this helps to point many new visitors in your direction.

    http://asthecrackerheadcrumbles.blogspot.com/2012/11/sites-to-see_16.html

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    1. Thanks Jerry. This is rewarding in a manner but a bit frightening also. My first thought was now, do I have to make nice all the time. Regardless, thank you.

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  49. RJ... really interesting reading. Just caught up with my blog reading today. Sorry I missed this earlier. Still very deep and passionate feelings from both sides. Of course, I live in a state that is currently circulating the "secession" petition... knowing that worked so well for us back in 1861! I have to just shake my head and wonder how in the world my conservative, Christian friends can hold such grudges. Yes, I am a Christian Democrat (that is not an oxymoron) and I suffered through many a Republican admininstration without going balistic on my friends and family when I did not agree. I am a blue soul in a RED state. Thankfully, my husband, son and daughter-in-love have the same political leanings. I just have to be real careful when daughter and her family visit. No political discussions allowed! The link below is to a wonderful piece written by a Texas blogger the day after the election. It provides much food for thought and is too good not to share.

    Grieving and Hope After the Election by Jenthevideogirl on 11/7/2012
    http://lethoperise.com/

    Thanks for asking the tough questions on your blog. Peace and blessings to you...Susan

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    1. Thanks so much Susan. I just read Jen's post and very much appreciated what she had to say.

      Yelp, I'm a blue soul in a red state also. By no means does Christian and Democrat seem like an oxymoron to me. Actually, I would think all good Christians would be Democrats since Jesus would have been one based on what he taught.

      Peace to you also Susan.

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  50. I am not a Romney fan. His agenda and beliefs would turn back the clock.(That alone should concern any educated woman who understands what he is about and has admitted to). I don't understand how he made it as far as he did. So, I have no answers.

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    1. I think he made it so far because he was not as radical or extreme as the other Republicans. Definitely, he is no friend to independent women. Thanks SW.

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  51. Rubeye, Unfortunately, I read all these comments before I formulated my own. Sadly, all I can do now is tell you, using your commenter's own words, what I am not. I am not:
    homophobic, racist, reactionary, elitist, ultra conservative, stuck in a time warp, narrow-minded, bigot, rich, bullying, fearing what's progressive, fundamentalist, white supremist, anti- Muslim, anti-abortion.
    Whew!
    Nor did I vote for Obama.

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    1. Hi Leonora,
      I'm not any of those things either and I didn't vote for Obama either. :)

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    2. Wow Lenora . . . I did vote for Obama . . . for all of your standards. Great post. Luv ya, Rub.

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    3. Isn't it interesting how some of us can have the very same ethics but see different paths as the way to achievement of them?
      Thanks Lynn.

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    4. First and foremost we are Americans. Every vote counts. Peace.

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  52. A fascinating post : one of those rare examples where the comments are as interesting as the post itself.

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    1. Thanks Alan.
      In this case, as well as probably most of my posts, the comments are far more interesting than what I had to say.

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  53. Fabulous comments. May I add my own? I think President Obama has tried to be president to the whole United States, not just his constituency, making it impossible for anyone to be truly satisfied with everything he does. I think history will look kindly on his presidency.

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    1. I hope so.
      Thanks for stopping by Reya.

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  54. interesting interesting comments. and i just came here to put you on my bloglist :^)

    i think there is a fear in 'white' america that too many people depend on the government and that they do that because they don't want to and don't care to work. (i am white) this seems especially true of white males and comfortable but not wealthy middle class families. many folks saw romney as a guy would could deliver jobs and beef up the economy and saw the president as too tolerant of folks on welfare.

    that is the first part. the second part is about race. how troubled i am even saying that. there is a belief by many conservative folks that the path to prosperity is blocked by folks who are black or gay or Hispanic or..different.

    certain people think they own the flag. that is a great problem for america. because if we don't figure out inclusion, as we did for my immigrant grandfather, at the same time being able to insist that people who can work must work because there are jobs available to them, then we are going to have class warfare and the numbers of the 'less thanks' will be as strong as they were in this election.

    a surprise to many....

    okay. that is my opinion. :^)

    love
    kj

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    1. I agree with you KJ.
      I've had a difficult time coming to terms with the idea that a lot of people are just plain old prejudice toward Obama because he is black, but the more I talk to different people it does seem to be true. And that's sad.
      Thanks for leaving your thoughts here.

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  55. Wow! 126 comments - won't blame you if you don't get to mine: I don't know either - it is baffling
    the Ol'Buzzard

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    1. Well Buzz, first of all you have to figure half of all the comments are mine. Bit of hubris there I suppose.
      It looks like I touched on something that means a lot to a lot of people, which I think is good. I honestly thought I would be clobbered with this post but decided what the heck. Ha. Once again I was reassured by all the good reasonable people around the block here. I'd always get to your comment because you are definitely one of my very favorite people.

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  56. I've been following the comments here and applaud the general civility of the conversation. I don't "do" politics online, so I'll just leave it at that. Great job at getting a great discussion going.

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    1. Me either MM. Except I pretty much don't do politics at all but am actually concerned about our great divide. The comments are great aren't they. I always love seeing what people have to say and how they are thinking. Thanks for stopping by.

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  57. Linda,
    You are not going to get an answer from Republicans or from anyone, for that matter. You are asking Republicans to speak out and since Republicans are on the opposite side of the fence of Democrats AND Democrats are in the White House now, a Republican would be speaking out against the government.

    Did you forget that New Years Eve of 2011, the President signed the NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act)? Most of the bill was money allowance for the military EXCEPT one clause that would allow the military to detain terrorist suspects, including Americans, arrested in the U.S. without charge. They could be held indefinitely without trial.

    Speaking out against government, one could be classified a terrorist. There is also the Utah Data Center, built for the NSA. It stores vast amounts of communications, as all your private emails, cell phones, google searches, parking receipts, travel and books you buy. Also all your money transactions.

    I doubt very much if anyone would speak out.

    Enough about that. Seem like I always am late to the party. All the food is put away, the dishes washed and people are out on the veranda saying their good-byes. But, I just got in town and it's a pleasure to visit you again. Thanks for stopping by my blog.

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  58. I'm glad you dropped in Manzie.

    I understand what you are saying here and even think there may be some validity to fears of such things as the Utah Data Center. However, at the same time, I don't think we're to the point where people can't say what they feel with regard to the division in our country and honestly, I don't think the party reps, even the president, have that much to do with what you speak of here. I see them as merely pawns in the game personally, and think we still have many years of freedom left before evil prevails. If it should ever do so.
    With that said, perhaps I could use the camaraderie of like thinkers in a fema camp.

    Actually, we did have the good luck to hear from a few sound thinking Republicans. See above.

    As for the late arrivals, they are always by far my favorites. The ones you break out that pricey bottle of wine for and sit by the campfire with, while talking over real things as the moon begins to set. After all, the dishes are done.

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  59. I voted for Obama two times, of course I was voting for my favorite idiot. Wise people don't run for office, we have to vote for our favorite idiots.

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    1. It kind of makes you wonder why anyone at all would run for office. I do believe they are all highly functioning psychopaths.

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  60. I like him! I see more of a human touch in him than the past few presidents. That is the viewpoint of a person who can fall asleep within a nano second when politics invade my bubble!

    Have a wonderful Christmas. Wishing you peace and Joy!
    Much love.
    Di
    xxxx

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  61. It's simple, we have a flawed system and wise people don't run for office, America was an experiment, the forefathers knew that, we're fucked.

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    1. A failed experiment. Yes, it does seem that way more and more lately.

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