Comments Posted By Dave Rickey
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If you want a less slanted explanation of the leftist viewpoint on earnings and taxes, it would be like this: The very existence of money and wealth is a social construct (as opposed to a strict barter system, or a tribal collectivism). You have wealth because we all have agreed to act like your stack of dead presidents has value. You collected that stack of presidential engravings in an environment of government-supplied "externalities", a legal system that makes contracts enforceable, a road system that makes it easy to get around, a social safety net that keeps poverty-driven crime down and a penal system that tries to keep those that commit crimes anyway out of circulation, the list goes on.

You only have wealth because society made that wealth possible. So you have both a moral obligation and a self-interest motivation in preserving that structure, and simply by the self-evident fact that you have "wealth", you have obviously gained more from it than those that do not, and should expect to kick more into the pot.

Comment Posted By Dave Rickey On 15.02.2010 @ 01:01


*Who* wants reassurance? What form would that take?

I have never understood something about "Movement Conservatives": Why are you all so full of fear? I lived in DC on 9-11, saw the Pentagon when it was still burning, took the train to New York and slipped the outer cordons to walk through the debris fields while the Trade Towers were still piles of smoking rubble. A little later, I saw the Anthrax Letters, and the DC Sniper. And although the latter pair of events made me cautious, and the former pair made me angry, none of it made me fearful. People all over the country flipping out and snagging their kids out of school was an understandable reflex (i was on the phone to my relatives as well), but the sense that bearded ragheads were going to be bombing the local Walmart or Corn Festival any minute now? WTF was that about?

Note I didn't say you were cowardly, only that you were fearful. Acting in spite of your fears is often brave, but acting ineffectively or counter-productively in response to irrational and misplaced fear is just foolishness, neurosis.

Why should the President take time to go on national TV and re-assure you nervous nellies that you have nothing to worry about? Would you think better of him, or dissect his words and wait for, *look* for, events to prove him wrong? Why should this incompetent self-gelding schmuck rate a personal address from POTUS? Wouldn't that just make this event *more* than what it is, a failed attack? It would make it an outright Event.

By the same token, the President having something to say publicly and directly about Iran's protests is not going to help those protesters. It will probably actually hurt them, by reinforcing Iranian state propaganda that they are merely malcontents stirred up by the Great Satan.

Bravado is not bravery. Foolish certainty is not resolve. Get over yourselves. The question is not "Do you remember how you felt?" It's "How long before you stopped feeling, and started *thinking* again?"


Comment Posted By Dave Rickey On 29.12.2009 @ 00:59


Shane, my blogroll casts such a wide net, I routinely read blogs that criticize Palin and the Tea Parties from the right. I'm not trapped in a bubble of progressive punditry, although I'd be curious for your definition of where the line for "progressive" (by which you apparently mean clearly leftist, rather than the centrism that meets Michelle Malkin's standard of "radical leftism") starts.

To claim the GOP is open-minded would be to claim they have minds they actually use. Unfortunately, that's becoming an oxymoron, as you so ably demonstrate for us.


Comment Posted By Dave Rickey On 3.12.2009 @ 08:39

“Just discovering?” I’ve been “just discovering” the problems with the right since I started to blog 5 years ago. And before then in my other writings.

It’s a pretty simple minded formula without much heft or nuance. If things were that simple, life would be a breeze. Humans are a touch more complex and complicated than you make them out to be.

That's the point, you exist in a world of nuance, of subtle truth, of doubt. The modern GOP is "Often wrong, but never uncertain." You can reach compromise, they define compromise as a defeat. You can see both sides, they claim there is only Truth.

In essence, the GOP has already left you, as they left me, as they have step by step left everyone to the right of Pat Robertson. They don't want moderates, they don't want anyone that tells them they *need* moderates, and their answer to every reversal or success is going to be the same: More purity, less compromise. How long you'll pine for what the GOP used to be before admitting it is the only question.

As long as you're claiming the label, you're enabling the crazy people who have taken control of the apparatus under it. The sooner the GOP hits rock bottom, the sooner a (desperately needed) sane Conservative party can rise.


Comment Posted By Dave Rickey On 1.12.2009 @ 18:32

The fact remains, every person who wants to wear the label of "conservative" needs to ask themselves one question: Do I really want to be surrounded, ideologically, by assholes?

You're just discovering that you're surrounded by assholes, and you're hoping that there's a way to get rid of them politely. But the fact remains they *own* the GOP, top to bottom, and you have only three choices: Leave; Get thrown out; Or become an asshole to fit in. Charles Johnson opted for the door.

--Dave (sorry if the blunt term trips your tolerance for bad language, but there's no polite way to put this)

"Just discovering?" I've been "just discovering" the problems with the right since I started to blog 5 years ago. And before then in my other writings.

It's a pretty simple minded formula without much heft or nuance. If things were that simple, life would be a breeze. Humans are a touch more complex and complicated than you make them out to be.

Fortunately, I don't have to listen to that kind of drivel.


Comment Posted By Dave Rickey On 1.12.2009 @ 16:33


If you borrow and spend to build a road, you've got a road. Even the "Bridge to Nowhere" was going to have economic benefits for the area it served (nowhere near adequate to justify the expense, but a bonus over and above the jobs from building the bridge). Spend it building a plane, you've got a plane that may be obsolete before it's actually needed. Spend it building an F22, you've got a plane that is too expensive to lose, the capital equivalent of an entire WW2 aircraft carrier that can be destroyed by a single medium-caliber round.

If tax-cuts for the wealthy and de-regulation are always the answer, why are we in this mess? Never mind, I know what answer the Conservative catechism gives: There haven't been *enough* of those yet. Bush was too liberal.

News Flash: We're quickly reaching the point where there's going to be no point in taxing the non-wealthy: They don't have any money.

Comment Posted By Dave Rickey On 18.11.2009 @ 22:29

The problem is not if the majority of Republicans would vote for Charlie Crist in the general: They would complain, many would claim they'd stay home and a few would actually go it. The question is if Charlie Crist has any chance of beating Rubio in an off-cycle primary, and if Rubio has any chance in the general election afterwards (or if even Crist would after running way to the right to get the nomination).

The likely answer to both is "No", and that polls says the GOP rank and file, what's left of it, is fine with that, better to lose the seat than have someone in it that won't march in lockstep. That strategy is no longer working that well in the House, it's a sure ticket to permament minority status in the Senate.

I really am a centrist independant, leaning left on social issues (gay marriage, if they're crazy enough to *want* it, why not?) and right on fiscal issues (the Clinton balanced budgets were nice), and having to think long and hard about some where those values come into conflict (socialized medicine seems to work pretty well in Europe, but the sticker shock and civil liberties questions are not trivial).

And that's the thing: Palin's base doesn't want to think too hard, and doesn't trust anyone who does. This is why Palin's obvious ignorance and "from the gut" snap decisions appeal to them, she isn't telling them the problem is hard and trying to think it through. They think that's a good thing, they aren't ever confused about what she does or why because they're convinced ignorance is wisdom. Even when what she does makes no rational sense, the certainty and conviction with which she does it makes them sure she must be brilliant.

And wisdom is lies. They don't trust Obama because they don't understand his thought process, they find it confusing. If they can't understand why he does what he does, it can't be because he's smarter than they are, it has to be because he's hiding something.

Comment Posted By Dave Rickey On 18.11.2009 @ 15:53

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