An Interesting View of Today's GOP . . .

CaptnKirk

Lifer
Jul 25, 2002
10,053
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In the Name of Politics

Finally - a Republican (and a relegious leader) having a moment of thoughtfullness
<New York Times>


By a series of recent initiatives, Republicans have transformed our party into the political arm of conservative Christians. The elements of this transformation have included advocacy of a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, opposition to stem cell research involving both frozen embryos and human cells in petri dishes, and the extraordinary effort to keep Terri Schiavo hooked up to a feeding tube.

Standing alone, each of these initiatives has its advocates, within the Republican Party and beyond. But the distinct elements do not stand alone. Rather they are parts of a larger package, an agenda of positions common to conservative Christians and the dominant wing of the Republican Party.

Christian activists, eager to take credit for recent electoral successes, would not be likely to concede that Republican adoption of their political agenda is merely the natural convergence of conservative religious and political values. Correctly, they would see a causal relationship between the activism of the churches and the responsiveness of Republican politicians. In turn, pragmatic Republicans would agree that motivating Christian conservatives has contributed to their successes.

High-profile Republican efforts to prolong the life of Ms. Schiavo, including departures from Republican principles like approving Congressional involvement in private decisions and empowering a federal court to overrule a state court, can rightfully be interpreted as yielding to the pressure of religious power blocs.

In my state, Missouri, Republicans in the General Assembly have advanced legislation to criminalize even stem cell research in which the cells are artificially produced in petri dishes and will never be transplanted into the human uterus. They argue that such cells are human life that must be protected, by threat of criminal prosecution, from promising research on diseases like Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and juvenile diabetes.

It is not evident to many of us that cells in a petri dish are equivalent to identifiable people suffering from terrible diseases. I am and have always been pro-life. But the only explanation for legislators comparing cells in a petri dish to babies in the womb is the extension of religious doctrine into statutory law.

I do not fault religious people for political action. Since Moses confronted the pharaoh, faithful people have heard God's call to political involvement. Nor has political action been unique to conservative Christians. Religious liberals have been politically active in support of gay rights and against nuclear weapons and the death penalty. In America, everyone has the right to try to influence political issues, regardless of his religious motivations.

The problem is not with people or churches that are politically active. It is with a party that has gone so far in adopting a sectarian agenda that it has become the political extension of a religious movement.

When government becomes the means of carrying out a religious program, it raises obvious questions under the First Amendment. But even in the absence of constitutional issues, a political party should resist identification with a religious movement. While religions are free to advocate for their own sectarian causes, the work of government and those who engage in it is to hold together as one people a very diverse country. At its best, religion can be a uniting influence, but in practice, nothing is more divisive. For politicians to advance the cause of one religious group is often to oppose the cause of another.

Take stem cell research. Criminalizing the work of scientists doing such research would give strong support to one religious doctrine, and it would punish people who believe it is their religious duty to use science to heal the sick.

During the 18 years I served in the Senate, Republicans often disagreed with each other. But there was much that held us together. We believed in limited government, in keeping light the burden of taxation and regulation. We encouraged the private sector, so that a free economy might thrive. We believed that judges should interpret the law, not legislate. We were internationalists who supported an engaged foreign policy, a strong national defense and free trade. These were principles shared by virtually all Republicans.

But in recent times, we Republicans have allowed this shared agenda to become secondary to the agenda of Christian conservatives. As a senator, I worried every day about the size of the federal deficit. I did not spend a single minute worrying about the effect of gays on the institution of marriage. Today it seems to be the other way around.

The historic principles of the Republican Party offer America its best hope for a prosperous and secure future. Our current fixation on a religious agenda has turned us in the wrong direction. It is time for Republicans to rediscover our roots
 

PatboyX

Diamond Member
Aug 10, 2001
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wasnt there a tape that surfaced of tom delay saying the opening points about utilizing the christian right as a tool to help weild more power?
i think its an well-written piece but we have to realize that it will be discounted from number of people who would do well to read it because of the source. (being printed in the times, regardless of who wrote it)
 

syzygy

Diamond Member
Feb 5, 2001
3,038
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76
danforth has always butted heads with the religious element in the party. these kind of complaints from him come out in lean times and fat.
there is nothing short of explicit censorship or expulsion that can reduce the voice of the religious folk with the success the gop has seen in
the past six months. political suicide is not option, which explains why john continues to piss in the wind.

the facts are the party has enjoyed its greatest political success when the religious element is, in some form, ascendant. from reagan to now
bush 2.0, these are peak times. bush gathered 60,000,000 votes (the most in american history) by not listening to the likes of john danforth.
enuf said.
 

Red Dawn

Elite Member
Jun 4, 2001
57,530
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Originally posted by: syzygy
danforth has always butted heads with the religious element in the party. these kind of complaints from him come out in lean times and fat.
there is nothing short of explicit censorship or expulsion that can reduce the voice of the religious folk with the success the gop has seen in
the past six months. political suicide is not option, which explains why john continues to piss in the wind.

the facts are the party has enjoyed its greatest political success when the religious element is, in some form, ascendant. from reagan to now
bush 2.0, these are peak times. bush gathered 60,000,000 votes (the most in american history) by not listening to the likes of john danforth.
enuf said.
Yep you gotta give the Devil his due!
 

syzygy

Diamond Member
Feb 5, 2001
3,038
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Originally posted by: Red Dawn
Originally posted by: syzygy
danforth has always butted heads with the religious element in the party. these kind of complaints from him come out in lean times and fat.
there is nothing short of explicit censorship or expulsion that can reduce the voice of the religious folk with the success the gop has seen in
the past six months. political suicide is not option, which explains why john continues to piss in the wind.

the facts are the party has enjoyed its greatest political success when the religious element is, in some form, ascendant. from reagan to now
bush 2.0, these are peak times. bush gathered 60,000,000 votes (the most in american history) by not listening to the likes of john danforth.
enuf said.
Yep you gotta give the Devil his due!
if you're not happy with living in hell, try canada. a number of american liberals have blessed us with a migration to canada. as much as i pity the rest of the world for suffering through the worst of our american culture exports, nothing can compare to the hideousness of seeing our liberals fleeing and invading innocent nations. better we flood their markets with a gagillion copies of 50cent's latest opus than see one of our liberals find a new home over there somewhere.

i mean. . . look at antartica . . so much real estate potential and there is nobody around. why don't those lovely liberals go there ? its so much cooler and dryer than down here in malebolge.

 

Red Dawn

Elite Member
Jun 4, 2001
57,530
3
0
Originally posted by: syzygy
Originally posted by: Red Dawn
Originally posted by: syzygy
danforth has always butted heads with the religious element in the party. these kind of complaints from him come out in lean times and fat.
there is nothing short of explicit censorship or expulsion that can reduce the voice of the religious folk with the success the gop has seen in
the past six months. political suicide is not option, which explains why john continues to piss in the wind.

the facts are the party has enjoyed its greatest political success when the religious element is, in some form, ascendant. from reagan to now
bush 2.0, these are peak times. bush gathered 60,000,000 votes (the most in american history) by not listening to the likes of john danforth.
enuf said.
Yep you gotta give the Devil his due!
if you're not happy with living in hell, try canada. a number of american liberals have blessed us with a migration to canada. as much as i pity the rest of the world for suffering through the worst of our american culture exports, nothing can compare to the hideousness of seeing our liberals fleeing and invading innocent nations. better we flood their markets with a gagillion copies of 50cent's latest opus than see one of our liberals find a new home over there somewhere.

i mean. . . look at antartica . . so much real estate potential and there is nobody around. why don't those lovely liberals go there ? its so much cooler and dryer than down here in malebolge.
Settle down Beavis, I never said living here was hell. In fact I wouldn't want to live anywhere else (well I'd prefer California to Mass)

IMO the Fund A Mental Cases aren't in charge of anything. Sure they have a strong pull with this Administration, they should, without them the Dub wouldn't be where he is, thus my comment "You gotta give the Devil his due"

 

Zebo

Elite Member
Jul 29, 2001
39,398
19
81
Meh they gotta throw a dog his bone is more like it. These are minor issues. American Cos are all doing stem cell research through subsidaries in Switzerland, Sweden etc. So no biggie calling out for it's abolition to appease the nuts. Similarly with Gay marriage/abortion. Almost all say they are against and rail on it... but notice no legislation/const amendment is surfacing dispite control of all three branches of govt and most state houses. Again to apease the nuts and get them to ballot box.

What I'm most concerned w/ about republicans is debt, police state, welfare state, and const lapses which Bob Barr talk about. Basicailly facists.
 

Jhhnn

IN MEMORIAM
Nov 11, 1999
62,365
14,681
136
Interesting that Danforth would reference departure from principle by repubs wrt wooing the religious right, or that he'd refer to himself and fellow former repub senators as "internationalists"- one of the primary Kerry bashing terms used in the last election...

Sooner or later, moderate mainstream repubs will come to the realization that certain old fashioned common sense admonishments have a basis in fact, and apply to their current actions wrt the religious Right and other far Right factions- "Don't Feed the Bears" comes to mind...
 

phillyTIM

Golden Member
Jan 12, 2001
1,942
10
81
Let the Party implode with its greed and as their flock sees how they are being used to further the political agenda for an exclusive, small sect of money-hungry oil barons.
 

Stunt

Diamond Member
Jul 17, 2002
9,717
2
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I feel sorry for all fiscal conservatives in the US. I really don't think the two party system is really working all that well. You've got two parties that only see black and white, and you force this huge broad spectrum of morals and ideals to conform to one of the two parties.

You've got people like lieberman in a party with dean, and democrats that are pro-life, republicans that are pro-choice.
There's far too much confusion in each party let alone bikkering between the dems and reps.

What is a pro-choice, pro-gay rights, small c conservative to do these days?
(and this is not a fringe belief system, the youth seem to be far more accepting of gays and are more open with their sexuality, these people will grow up to be conservative as they get a more realistic view of the world)

Ideas?
 

PatboyX

Diamond Member
Aug 10, 2001
7,024
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Originally posted by: syzygy
danforth has always butted heads with the religious element in the party. these kind of complaints from him come out in lean times and fat.
there is nothing short of explicit censorship or expulsion that can reduce the voice of the religious folk with the success the gop has seen in
the past six months. political suicide is not option, which explains why john continues to piss in the wind.

the facts are the party has enjoyed its greatest political success when the religious element is, in some form, ascendant. from reagan to now
bush 2.0, these are peak times. bush gathered 60,000,000 votes (the most in american history) by not listening to the likes of john danforth.
enuf said.


that "most in american history" is sort of disingenuous...the person who recieved the second most votes in american history was the competition. just nitpicking.
i also dont think i would call these "peak times."
although, i have no idea what sort of things you look for in that area.

edit: i also always enjoy a "settle down, beavis." always makes me laugh.

 

syzygy

Diamond Member
Feb 5, 2001
3,038
0
76
Originally posted by: PatboyX
Originally posted by: syzygy
danforth has always butted heads with the religious element in the party. these kind of complaints from him come out in lean times and fat.
there is nothing short of explicit censorship or expulsion that can reduce the voice of the religious folk with the success the gop has seen in
the past six months. political suicide is not option, which explains why john continues to piss in the wind.

the facts are the party has enjoyed its greatest political success when the religious element is, in some form, ascendant. from reagan to now
bush 2.0, these are peak times. bush gathered 60,000,000 votes (the most in american history) by not listening to the likes of john danforth.
enuf said.


that "most in american history" is sort of disingenuous...the person who recieved the second most votes in american history was the competition. just nitpicking.
i also dont think i would call these "peak times."
although, i have no idea what sort of things you look for in that area.

edit: i also always enjoy a "settle down, beavis." always makes me laugh.

why mention the loser ? look at all the monstrous effort expended by his ants and minions to 'vote or die'. for months we were bombarded with endless fearmongering by the irresponsible body that is the democratic liberal mass. the 60 million needed for the win were supposed to be his, pre-ordained by whatever god secularists pray too and by the sheer volume of their hysteria. but they lost. they lost badly. they lost the executive, the senate, the house, and the governorships. full and total humiliation, partly by their own hand. how very liberal.
 

smc13

Senior member
Jan 5, 2005
606
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"During the 18 years I served in the Senate, Republicans often disagreed with each other. But there was much that held us together. We believed in limited government, in keeping light the burden of taxation and regulation. We encouraged the private sector, so that a free economy might thrive. We believed that judges should interpret the law, not legislate. We were internationalists who supported an engaged foreign policy, a strong national defense and free trade. These were principles shared by virtually all Republicans.

But in recent times, we Republicans have allowed this shared agenda to become secondary to the agenda of Christian conservatives. As a senator, I worried every day about the size of the federal deficit. I did not spend a single minute worrying about the effect of gays on the institution of marriage. Today it seems to be the other way around."


Well said. I agree with Danforth. The Republican Party is becomming the anthesis of what it was. It used to be about individual liberty, internationalist, free market, limited government, and low taxes. Now the party is about living "The Moral Way", protectionist, and expanding government. The new right wing is essentially the politically correct left.
 

Pandaren

Golden Member
Sep 13, 2003
1,029
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In case you missed the point of the column, IT'S NOT JUST LIBERALS WHO ARE DISGUSTED WITH THE REPUBLICAN PARTY.

The republicans have brought us bigger government, more spending, and lack of respect for the Federal System (look at the whole Schaivo affair). I'm disgusted by the Republican party, which is clearly a festering trashheap in decline.

Originally posted by: syzygy
if you're not happy with living in hell, try canada. a number of american liberals have blessed us with a migration to canada. as much as i pity the rest of the world for suffering through the worst of our american culture exports, nothing can compare to the hideousness of seeing our liberals fleeing and invading innocent nations. better we flood their markets with a gagillion copies of 50cent's latest opus than see one of our liberals find a new home over there somewhere.

 

arsbanned

Banned
Dec 12, 2003
4,853
0
0
Well, to one dimensional thinkers like syzygy, anyone who criticizes the Republicans is a LIBERALLLLLLLL.
 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
72,386
6,065
126
Along time ago the Devil figured out how to take down the human mind. He realized that everybody thinks they are good, so all he had to do was to make what is good what is evil.

Thus he set out to have real Secular Humanism go by the name of Religion and real Religion look like Secular Humanism.

To that end he created the false ego that always sees itself as good and defined that good as religion. Then he stuffed these minds with the garbage of literal translation as he himself interpreted and recommended. He then taught that people who actually think and feel for real truth are deviants from the path.

And thus it came to pass that the world is ruled by Secularism called Religion and stands in terror of Truth called Secular Humanism.

But don't imagine for a moment that you will ever see through this illusion. That is only for those who die to everything they hold dear. Who but the meek will ever give up what they treasure.

This message was brought to us by somebody who died and went to heaven.