How could I possibly vote for your guy?

I hope I can articulate this adequately, but here are my thoughts on what I consider to be a primary difference between the two major parties duking it out this year.

First, I believe that America deserves to have someone leading it who believes in America, and the basic goodness and positive intentions of the country. Not to mention the people that make up the country and their intentions. This is why I will be voting for GW this year.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe that Kerry himself believes in the exact opposite, however, a New York Sun poll shows that the majority of Kerry supporters do believe that America is a negative force in the world.

Why on earth would I vote for someone who is backed by people who believe such a thing? Regardless of whether America is a negative force in the world (I don’t believe that it is), I feel that it is important to have a leader who acts on the belief and is backed by people who believe that America is not a negative force, but rather a positive one.

Now, I know I’m going to get slammed for being “jingoistic,” but my simple belief is, if you don’t believe in your country, then you damned well don’t deserve to lead your country.

Now for the debate part: why would someone who is backed by a majority of “non-believers” in America be deserving of leading that same country?

The OP is deeply offensive. Unfortunately, it seems to be exactly the kind of slimy politics that Bush relied on in 2000 to disparage John McCain, and in 2004 to promote lies of anti-Americanism in someone who volunteered to go to war and has since dedicated his entire life to public service, as opposed to flittering around jobs runing failed oil companies and baseball teams.

I could ask a similar question: why would people who want to defend the honor, strength, and security of America vote for a warmonger? In other words, why are the majority of Bush supporters warmongers?

Yes, it’s a stupid question. But unless one bothers to engage the other side in an honest debate, rather than getting talking points from the New York Sun and the Bush campaign, this country will remain as divided as it is today. I would also point out that one side of the campaign has based its election strategy entirely on negative attacks (Kerry opposes our military, Kerry will raise everyone’s taxes, Kerry can’t lead), while the other has had a remarkably more upbeat, positive campaign (jobs, health care, renewed alliances).

I’d have to look at the poll, but they probably believe that America is a negative force in the world under Bush, not in general. They probably believe America is a negative force right now, but not always. If they didn’t “believe in America” then they wouldnt be voting anyways. They just believe in an America different from Bush’s America.

Thing is, not everybody thinks issues like jobs, health care, and renewed alliances are upbeat — especially when they are public works jobs, socialized health care, and surrender of American sovereignty to the UN’s World Government. The Republicans are no better than you. They’re big spending Fabianists as well, but they understand the importance of nuances like dressing up in the clothing of 1776. You do not.

I don’t think Republicans have done ANYTHING “nuanced” in the last ten years, whether in campaigning or in policy.

And I know that Republicans are no better than me. I just think I’m better than them. :slight_smile:

When discussing elsewhere about Bush, I hear a lot about “you should think more positively”. What ?! Labeling anti-Bush as “negative” and “against America” isn’t good for discussion or democracy. Anyone who thinks Bush isn’t doing a good job is anti-patriotic automatically ?

If Bush is making the US a negative force in the world (I also think so) then they prefer to make America a positive force in the world once more… by taking down Bush. The problem is not love of country…

And if you did a worldwide poll, you probably would find that most people, including the one’s the Admin says it’s trying to help, believe that America is a negative force in the world. Do you think that’s irrelevant? The whole world is wrong and we’re right?

You are dismissing the bolded part as irrelevant. It isn’t. If it is true that America is acting as a negative force in the world, then America needs a leader who knows that and is determined to change it, not a leader who believes whatever his country does is right because his country does it.

Hitler believed in his country. Does that mean he deserved to lead it?

I don’t get your reasonning. If the US is a negative force in the world, it’s necessarily due to its actions. So, it can be a very negative, negative, neutral, positive or very positive force depending on the decisions of its administration. So, what would be the issue with saying “with the current administration, the US is a negative force in the world, but under my lead, it would become a positive force in the world”?

It’s not different that stating for instance that the current economical situation in the US is disastrous. Do you also feel that it is important to have a leader who acts on the belief that the economy is great or that there’s no much crime, regardless of the actual situation? I can’t see the difference.
Besides, assuming that the US is actually a negative force, you apparently would still prefer a leader who wouldn’t ackowledge it. So, you mean that you would rather have a leader basing its decisions on his delusions? Would you also want a leader thinking that there’s no terrorism risk, since everybody everywhere loves the USA? Once again I can’t see the difference.
Your stance seems really weird to me.

But that’s all that should matter. If you think Kerry “believes in America”, then what his supporters may or may not think shouldn’t make any difference.

Keep in mind that there are certainly things that many Bush supporters believe that are counter to your own beliefs. It would be a mistake to decide for whom to vote based on one single issue. Surely you don’t think they are equal except for this one thing, do you?

Let me put this as clearly as I can:

I believe America is a positive influence in the world.

I CANNOT support a candidate whose majority of supporters believe that America is a negative influence in the world.

Oh, and Hitler did NOT believe in his country - Hitler believed in the Germany that HE wanted to create: a Germany without Jews and “inferior” humans. There is a difference, but please, let’s not get sidetracked (again) with Hitler comparisons - they only hold up so far, and I personally don’t believe this is the case here.

Seriously, let’s continue: why would someone who is backed by a majority of “non-believers” in America be deserving of leading that same country? I honestly want to hear the reasons, whether I can effectively debate them or not (I’m not a very good debater, and sometimes don’t state myself clearly, and these are the reasons I don’t spend a lot of time in GD.)

Unfortunately, negative campaigning works and positive campaigns do not. Bush I rode Willie Horton all the way to the White House, Bush II smeared mud over McCain all over South Carolina.

Back to the OP- others have rebutted the premise better than I can. If you want to vote whatever candidate appears to wrap himself tightest in the flag then you have every right to do so. If you want to vote against someone because of the perceived attitude of his supporters, that defies all logic. If the economy is not going well, is it indeed a negative thing to point that out honestly? Or do you find comfort with someone telling you that we have turned the corner when in truth he’s going down the wrong street?

Let me put this as clearly as I can:

I believe America is a positive influence in the world.


***All ***the time or just some of the time?

If you look closely, you’ll find that it’s a matter of degree.

Actually, I’m not a single-issue voter, but rather look at a great many things. I will clarify this one position further, however:

I believe that America is a positive influence overall in the world at large (regardless of if others hate us). Sometimes the unpopular stance is the RIGHT stance.

Now, I cannot bring myself to vote for a person whose constituency believes other than this, or in fact does believe the opposite. Also, if Kerry doesn’t actually believe this himself, but is WILLING TO PANDER TO THOSE WHO DO TO GET THEIR VOTE, then I don’t want him, either, because it means he is willing to sell out his principles to get elected; and I don’t want a leader like that.

Now I expect the dogpile to begin about how Bush sold HIS principles out, etc…

…and I’m also hoping a few of our better-equipped conservatives will come in here and help me out a bit, since I’m sure I’m miscommunicating something here.

That’s what generally happens when you aren’t in possession of the facts.

I think I understand exactly what you’re saying. I rarely vote for Democrats, and it’s sometimes hard to think of voting for Kerry because many of his suppporters hold beliefs so profoundly different from my own.

But might it be that Kerry’s supporters think we’re not all that good an influence in the world ***because ***we’ve got a Republican in the WH? Might they believe that we WOULD be positive influence if Kerry (or even another Republican besideds Bush) were in the WH? Might a lot of Bush supporters think we’d be a negative influence on the world if Kerry were in the WH?

IOW, I think this issue is a lot more complex than it might appear.

DG: I’m not trying to push Kerry. I haven’t decided who is getting my vote yet. I just think your decision making process on this issue is flawed.

How did he pander? Was the convention full of speeches about how America is a negative influence? Were there not enough flags for you?

And how, my friend, is American torture of prisoners a positive influence? The unilateral invasion of a country based on lies? Backing out of treaties? Insulting allies? And, do you think most of these people would have answered the question the same way four years ago, or even in October 2001?

Or are you a my country right or wrong kind of guy (in the commonly accepted meaning of the phrase, not the original one.) I think Anmerica is a positive influence, as long as we keep to our principles. The trashing of the principles, the humility, of what made America great is why I despise Bush. Do you agree with the long-held principle that America should be slow to anger but quick to respond to an attack? Or are you in favor of taking out any country that annoys us? Which stand do you think is more American?

DrkGently, there’s no way you’re going to understand the arguments for supporting Kerry or for opposing Bush. The problem is, that your premise, your reasoning, and your grasp of the facts are all faulty.

What does it mean to “believe in one’s country”? What does it mean to “believe that one’s country is a positive force in the world”? Unfortunately, these statements are completely divorced from any notion of policy or action. And, as a result, they become non sequiturs.

How can I possibly answer the question “Do you believe that your country is a positive force in the world?” when I know that that question is being linked to an ongoing political campaign?

Politics is not about these kinds of vague statements. Politics is not about loyalties or patriotism. Politics is about policy – “Do you agree with President Bush’s policies?” Now, of course, that is a very general statement – there may be some I agree with and some I don’t agree with – however, in the end, I can decide which policies are more important to me and balance them out between the candidates.

When you try to confuse these questions with issues of loyalty and patriotism – well, that’s demagoguery, pure and simple.

I might as well ask you these questions –

  • Do you believe that it is possible for individual Americans to commit acts that should be criticized or punished (if they are serious enough)?
  • Do you believe that it is possible for a sitting American president to make incorrect policy desicions?
  • Do you believe that it is possible for actions taken by the American government to have negative effects, either at home or abroad?
  • Do you believe that a policy that is incorrect and has had negative effects should be reversed?
  • Do you believe that individual Americans who see that a policy is incorrect and disastrous should advocate for its change or for the electoral defeat of those who have implemented that policy?

Now, of course, the Republicans believe that all these things are true – look at their criticisms of Clinton, Gore, and Kerry, just to name a few.

However, when it comes to those who believe that Bush’s policies are incorrect and should be reversed, and that his policy decisions and actions have had disastrous effects at home and abroad, and that some individuals (who happen to be Americans) have committed acts that should be criticized and punished – well, now, all of a sudden we are negative and don’t believe in our country and are insufficiently loyal and patriotic.

Excuse me, but that’s just horseshit.

I bet most times an incumbent is running, you could conduct a poll and “find out” that the many opposition supporters believe “America is a negative force in the world.”

Do you have a link to the poll, or the story about it? The “America is a negative force in the world” choice, for whatever question, is ridiculously loaded. I would refuse to answer, suspecting that whoever was conducting it was intentionally “leading the witness” in order to make a political claim they wanted to make.

You’ve already said you’re voting for Bush, but rest assured, in case Kerry wins, those of us for Kerry aren’t against the USA, we just don’t like the direction the country is headed in.

DirkGntly – it seems that your objections to Kerry are based upon your (bizarre) views of what you think his supporters think. I hope you’ll consider a couple of questions.

Do you think that Clinton supporters didn’t think America was a positive force in the world? What about Carter? Or Bush I? Or Gore?