To the Republican voters/supporters on the board

I am glad you are here on the SDMB. Ignorance cannot be fought in an environment limited to a narrow range of perspectives, and such environments are commonplace whether due to self-selection or a more active culling out of perspectives that are not widely shared. Among you are many who add a lot to the board.

I know you’re running into a lot of anger in the threads here. The things being posted by those of us who are bitterly disappointed in the election may make you feel like you could have a more enjoyable forum experience on a forum where you are less outnumbered, if only to get away from the screaming. I hope you don’t do that.

Yes, I am profoundly unhappy. I really do think ‘ITS TEH END OF THE WORLD!#@!’ as Brutus encapsulated it. While you are happy-dancing I am thinking I will not live long enough to see the undoing and repairing of the damages done by the first George W Bush term plus the simple fact of his reelection, and I worry about the chances and opportunities for the US to ever really spring back from it, although the world as a whole certainly will, eventually. The probably-ruined possibilities makes me miserably sad. I know this may not make much sense to you, but that’s where I’m at.

Meanwhile, yeah, if Kerry had won I’d be hollering “Whoo hoo!” at least 35 times a day and pumping my fist in the air, and I’m sure we’d be filling the board with our own happy-dance threads. You know we would, and I know we would. So I don’t expect otherwise of you.

If you have reason to wonder or care about the strong sentiments of a large minority of Americans today (a contingent especially well-represented on this board), to expand your understanding of what we think we’ve lost, what’s at stake, and why it matters so much to us, please consider yourself invited to listen past the anger and the FUCK BUSH AND EVERYONE WHO VOTED FOR HIM stuff. Not because you have to learn about the perspectives of the people you defeated at the polls, but because you can.

That advice should go both ways. I don’t expect anyone to accept or even like opposing viewpoints but understanding them is going to help.

Also I’d kindly ask you to not paint all Bush voters with the same brush. I’m doing no happy dance but that topic is for another thread.

I was thinking today it would be WONDERFUL if a Bushie could outline the good things Bush might do in the next four years (without mentioning Iraq or God/Jesus). It would make me feel better. This is the only place I know of where someone might actually be able to do that. And that’s what makes this place so great!!!

Thanks for the sentiment. I don’t know why it’s supposedly ok for real Liberals (with a capital L) to foam at the mouth around here. Some seem to see it as a right. It’s what they DO.

Oh, and if you want to see Bush voters telling their side in a nonacrimonious thread, see

I haven’t posted to any of the post-election threads, but I want to add my voice to this one. Like AHunter3, I am profoundly disappointed and saddened by the outcome of the election, but that doesn’t change the fact that I am grateful for (most of) the conservative voices on this board. You are truly an invaluable resource to those of us who don’t have access to well-reasoned conservative viewpoints, and I hope the current anger and disappointment coming from the liberal members of the board doesn’t drive you away.

It is clear that this country wants to follow a conservative path. I hope you guys know what you’re doing.

On one condition: While you’re screaming FUCK BUSH AND EVERYONE WHO VOTED FOR HIM, try to remind yourself that our system worked, as it was intended, and I see no reason why it won’t continue to work. It worked through other crises. It worked through other flop Presidents. After 200 years and not a single person killed as a result of an election, I think we can safely say that SOMETHING happened right (no pun intended, I swear).

But apparently arrogance can flourish and reign unchecked anywhere. :rolleyes:

It’s true, though, to some extent. I COULD hang out at any one of hundreds of conservative boards/sites. But I’ve found them to be TOO insular. Like my religious convictions, my political convictions demand constant testing. The character muscle needs resistance training to better strenghten it. But there’s no qualitative resistance from hot air.

Yes, part of the reason I’ve cut back on my posting here during this election year is that no matter how insightful a point I might attempt to make, I knew it’d stand a better-than-even chance of getting dogpiled before I had the time to expand on it.

…and the whining. And the paranoia. And the excessive hyperbole. Vis:

No, it doesn’t make sense. I look at the country, and can’t understand how someone could think things are so godawful. Whatever Goldbergian thought-processes that lead to that conclusion are so completely alien to me… Well, that’s another reason I’ve not been posting. They jus’ ain’t no reasonin’ with some people. I mean, just because one calls onesself “not ignorant”, doesn’t mean one is smart.

I certainly DO wonder. Caring is a little more difficult when faced with supreme hysteria.

Ya kinda got the cart before the horse there, buck-o. Howzabout eliminating the anger, so I don’t have to listen past it? After all, how do I know it’s worth sifting through the screeching to find a gem of reason?

Sure. But I’d be willing to bet that the bulk of us conservatives would just roll our eyes, grumble a bit, and get on with our lives. No pitting, no wailing of teeth, gnashing of garments, and rending our… uh, whatevers. No posting ad infinitum, ad nauseum about how the Republic was doomed, that’s it, the United States, the great experiment, is no more, we might as well go ahead and subsume ourselves to Canada, you won’t be able to tell us apart from them in a few months anyhow…

No. The vast majority of us would retain our perspective. Sounds like a reasonable idea, no?

OK, then…

hypothetically speaking, suppose a liberal Democrat were to be elected after a bad recession along with a Democratic majority in Congress, and during his first term had

• passed “emergency economic measures” that spelled out conditions under which any business that were either failing or came to be considered vital for national interests could be nationalized;

• expanded those measures to include the nationalizing of other resources and properties;

• appointed a huge swath of Federal judges who were openly favoring making private ownership of handguns illegal and specifically interpreting the 2nd Amendment to be saying only that states have the right to form state militias if they desire them;

• pledged US troops the UN, to be deployed per UN choice and under UN military leadership, and actually placed US divisions in the field worldwide under these conditions;

• openly stated, to the loud cheering of supporters, that we were on an irreversible track to restrict the right of American states to defy the Federal government and to similary restrict the right of the US as a nation to defy the UN, the leadership of which was rapidly falling into the hands of political allies of the current President; nothing subtle about it, he openly states that his goal is to get rid of nationalism worldwide, and he’s starting at home.

• had not only reinstituted the progressive tax brackets for income as they existed prior to the Reagan administration but had also rolled out new taxes on estates setting a flat cap to the amount that can be inherited at 2.5 million US dollars and taxing inheritance of more than $750,000 at the 60% level;

• rolled out a series of badly-written laws against “hate speech” that were obvious panderings to some of his constituency, and again appointed many Federal judges apparently litmus-tested to support and enforce these.

Then he stands for re-election, you see the national mood souring on him and think he’s toast, watch a good Republican campaign unfold with extremely enthusiastic support and figure this is the last chance to save America from being put down the tubes in a way it can’t come back from, only to have to watch this awful politician win by the skin of his teeth, knowing that the narrowness of the election isn’t going to stop him from pushing his communist-socialist-worldgov agenda just as hard as he can. Oh, and for additional funsies, let’s say he’s going to get several Supreme Court appointments to make and the liberal Congress is going to help him push his appointees through.

Now (disclaimer time) I’m only guessing awkwardly at what might


Odd, it cut the end paragraph. It read:

Now (disclaimer time) I’m only guessing awkwardly at what might make you as uncomfortable as the policies and practices of the Bush administration. In order to do that, I have to generalize about Republican political perspectives. I should also mention that a Presidency such as described above would scare the crap out of me too, in case you’re wondering.

Do I evoke a shudder?

Way to gracefully accept the olive branch, Tygr. :rolleyes:

It’s so nice of you to bend down from your lofty height and soil yourself by contacting idiots.

I’m a New York Republican, which means I’d be considered a conservative Democrat any place else. I decry the vote in 11 states to ban same-sex marriages by ballot initiatives, because I hate the idea that some of my countrymen are denied legal priveledges that I enjoy. Hell, I could do a whole thread on that.

I’m pissed off about the handgun control policy here, but not so much that I’m willing to spend a lot of time, money and effort to fight it too hard. To be honest, my ox isn’t getting gored. Pistols bore me; I like shotguns.

I’m conflicted on the abortion issue, and I think that the War On Drugs is just as pointless as the War On Poverty.

I also find the OP to be horribly insulting.

Thank you so much for inviting me to listen to you. Not that I haven’t heard it all before, but it’s nice to know that you are finally willing to speak to me in good faith, and at least acknowledge that I might be smart enough to understand two-sylable words.

Thank you ever so much for your offer to listen to me, but my experience has taught me that you will just assume from the beginning that anything I have to say is just monkey chatter and you will be smirking like a condescening fool when you aren’t trying to shout me down. Or throwing bags of urine at me. Or defacing my car.

In short, I find the OP offensive, and I frankly don’t have any desire to attempt to politely discuss politics with you, simply because I don’t think you know what a polite discussion is, and I can predict your next sentence anyway. Believe me, I understand you. It’s just that I disagree with you. I’m not mentally deficient and in need of an education. In fact, I think I could teach you a few things.

I get annoyed when midgets try to talk down to me.

Well-spoken, Ex.

Not really.

I mostly object to the fact that the OP just assumes that he’s correct because he’s just so smart, and doesn’t seem to understand that reasonable people could reach different conclusions on the same issue honestly. The problem is that we start from differend presumptions, and therfore debates are skewed from the start.

That post would have made a lot more sense if I’d mentioned that I’d voted for Bush as a protest against Kerry.

I’m sorry I sound condescending. Fuck, I probably am condescending, let alone “sounds”. I don’t mean to be, I’m really not like that generically. I just don’t get you folks, and my worldview makes sense to me to the extent that I’ve got a helluva lot of confidence in it and it’s really hard for me to think of it as other than on target. (left on target, of course).

Yes, I do need to understand you and yes it probably would have made more sense to emphasize that rather than the possibility of you folks understanding me and other folks who are deeply upset about the outcome of this election.

I apologize. Will you teach? And if you are indeed curious, I will try to reciprocate. In my most immediately previous post I was trying to cast a scenario where y’all would be feeling something akin to what I feel. Just as a way of saying that there would be some election outcome that you’d have a hard time accepting, to the point that you might be behaving…umm, kind of like we are, OK?

There is hope here, AHunter3. We all tend to think that our way must be the best, because it’s ours. As Ex mentioned, a great deal of the problem in communication comes from different presumptions, and a great number of those come from different backgrounds, upbringings, and life experiences. As a solidly middle-class Californian, I’m not going to start from the same place as an upper-class New Yorker or a lower-class Ohioan. Until we can agree on shared parameters and starting points, most argumentation is moot. Then both sides get frustrated and start name-calling, and we’re worse off than when we started.

Throw in people like me, who are liberal socially and conservative economically, and the puddle just gets deeper. :smiley:

Here’s something I don’t get if you want to comment on it, OP:

I know liberals. I’ve heard every argument in the book for (name issue here). I can even UNDERSTAND why liberals believe the way they do. I even agree with them sometimes.

But I see liberals acting as if they are just shocked at conservatives. It’s like Republicans are a foreign species or something. Not only do liberals disagree with what conservatives believe, they can’t fathom … even a little bit … why people are conservative. Not only that, they write off anyone who doesn’t agree with their agenda, accompanied by name calling and, sometimes, demonization (ex: Bush=Hitler). I believe one of the main reason Republicans are in the minority here at SDMB is because of the shitstorm that ensues if they say anything that doesn’t suit a group of very loud, very hateful liberals. (The normal liberals sit back and wait for everything to die down.) And really, I don’t see these boards as “fighting ignorance” anymore, except maybe GQ. You can’t fight ignorance without a wide variety of people, as you said, and the sad truth is conservatives need not apply at SDMB. If what we’ve seen recently keeps up, in another year this place will be no better and no more interesting than the Guardian boards. (I was offline from late September up till a few days ago, and while I’ve enjoyed catching up on GQ, I really didn’t miss anything else.)

I can’t figure if liberals really are superior, smug little pricks who think they are better than everyone else, or if they simply only hang out with like-minded people and that’s why they’re baffled at those who hold different opinions.

If I’d never met a liberal, hung out with them or exposed myself to what liberals believe, I guess I’d think they were Martians, too.

So what’s up with the libs? Do they just not know any conservatives? Do they only hang out with other liberals in some kind of “safety in numbers” thing? Is it just easier for liberals to label and dismiss conservatives rather than try to “get” them?

Are conservatives so bullied by liberals in areas where liberals are actually the majority (NY, CA, etc.) that there’s no discussion between the two groups?

I guess I’m just confused by people who honestly think their politics are the “norm” in America, when we found out on Tuesday that they are resoundingly NOT the mainstream. The average Doper would be considered a liberal on Main Street, USA, yet to hear people on these boards you would think the US just suddenly became extreme right-wing overnight.

So … what’s up with that?

A few weeks ago there was a thread that contained a link to a test on whether one was Strong Liberal/Soft Liberal/Centrist/Soft Conservative/Strong Conservative, both economically and socially. In that thread, a doper plotted the outcome and I was the second closest to being plotted on the cross-hairs. My point is that those that tested “Strong Liberal” intimidate me to the point that I lurk on most if not all threads they are contributing to so aggressively. The same is not true coming from the other end of the spectrum. The OP asks us to ignore the language and hunt for the gems. I was always taught that such language is used to cover the fact that there is nothing worthwhile being said.

Having said that, I appreciate AHunter3’s sentiments and recognize that he has made an honest attempt to reach out to those dopers that don’t think the sky is falling. I can understand the points that Exgineer made, but I myself would rather be talked to somewhat condescendingly than be called a “cocksucker”. What Abbie Carmichael posted addresses the problem with trying to have a reasonable discussion with many liberals under any circumstances, but here on the boards some of them think that they have a license to say and do as they please.

I also voted more against Kerry than for Bush, but if I started a thread on that subject I would end up being called a “cocksucker” just the same. I totally agree that this board is being taken over by those that think that intimidation is a means of fighting ignorance, since they are the sole possessors of the truth.

:frowning: [sup]Having said that I will now wait for the pile-on.[/sup]

The problem is that what we would mention as good things for Bush to do over the next four years would seem like exactly the opposite of what many people on your side of the aisle would deem to be good. Pretty much by definition, liberals are against what conservatives are for, and vice versa.

Many of us here have tried over and over to explain what we thought were the benefits of the conservative viewpoint only to be shouted down and called every name in the book, and to try to do so here (present company excepted) would likely only result in more of the same.

But I would say, try to be of as good cheer as possible. All is not lost…nor would all have been lost for my side had Kerry won. Amazing changes occur over time, and nothing is permanent. I don’t think anyone from thirty or forty years ago could possibly have guessed at the developments that have taken place since that time. The only constant is change, and major changes will occur several times over the course of a person’s lifetime.

And one thing I’ve found with the passage of time is that things turn out okay in a big-picture sense. Some things that were bad forty years are better now, and some things that were pretty good back then are worse now. But still things were pretty much okay for most people on a day-to-day basis back then, and they are pretty much okay for most people on a day-to-day basis now.

And so I imagine that forty years from now there will be some things about life today that are bad which will be much improved, and there are some things about life today which is good that will be worse.

So again, be of good cheer, even though I know it must seem easy for me to say. But believe me, during the afternoon of the election when all the news media was abuzz with the surprisingly inaccurate exit poll information indicating that Kerry would win, I was very much working to remind myself of the same things I’m saying to you now.

And AHunter3, if I remember correctly we’ve had some pretty harsh encounters here. But just for the record, I don’t find your OP objectionable at all. I think you’ve gone to quite a bit of trouble to encourage us on the other side to explain ourselves, and I think your reason for doing so is that it’s your acceptance of defeat – and your hope that now that things are firmly in conservative hands, disaster will not ensue. I look at it somewhat differently, I suppose, in that I know these things are only trends, and are therefore temporary; whereas you probably feel like the way things are now is the way they are going to stay until so far into the future as to be irrelevant.

But honestly, I don’t know if I could have shown the same openness and willingness to listen to the other side as you and many of the liberal posters here at the Straight Dope have done. I probably would have just groused to myself, argued with people here from time to time over some specific point or other, and waited for some future time when things would turn out either not to be as bad as I feared…or turn out in such a way that change I favored would begin to happen. But either way, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have come into any threads asking the liberal contingent to explain why they are right and what they hope to accomplish on my behalf during their time in power.

And to me, this speaks better of you than it does of me.

Regards. :slight_smile:

Thanks :slight_smile:

I suppose the single area of policy most rife with nightmares for me is international foreign policy. I assume you folks have heard our assertions about what we think Bush has done to our international reputation and so forth, so there’s no need to rehash it yet again here.

Do you think we’re way out of touch with reality? Or is it more like you think it’s something from which the US will recover in far shorter time than we liberals fear? Or (on the proverbial third hand) do you think we’re largely right (at least to an extent) but that it doesn’t matter, that international politics is not a popularity contest and/or that it won’t prevent us from pursuing US interests effectively in the international theatre?

I guess there’s plenty of room for you to agree that this is a concern but to have voted for Bush either because of this or that potential Kerry policy that would be worse or because of this or that Bush stance that outweighed it in your opinion.

Was there a particular proposed Kerry initiative that really constituted a deal-breaker for you?

I liked his “I have a plan” initiative, that man had a secret plan for everything.
With policies like that how could he have lost?