What is so bad about spineless politicians

What is so bad about an unprincipled politician who changes his views everytime the mob changes theirs? Throughout human history the main problem with government was that the governors didn’t represent the will of the people. They represented their own agenda and used the people as a tool to get there. Kim Jong Il is a very principled leader who isn’t swayed but thats because what the people want isn’t important to him. A leader who changes his views to get reelected is supposed to be the goal. You would assume a politician who changes his views all the time would be a welcome thing, as this means the will of the people is (somewhat) important.

This has nothing to do with John Kerry btw. I thought of this when i was thinking of the 3 strikes law and how Governor Wilson was against it until public opinion changed.

Well, as it relates to the Americans, the House of Representatives sort-of have to play spineless becuase they’re all up for re-election every two years, while the Senate can take a longer view and the Supreme Court can take a much longer view. Having every level of government fold to the mob is a recipe for incredible brutality.

I have to admit, though, the opposite extreme of the uncompromising Mr. Smith Goes to Washington image is equally disturbing. Were every politician like that, government would be in perpetual gridlock, likely resulting in political assassinations as violence becomes the only means to resolve anything.

Each elected official is there to invoke the will of the people that he represents. If the views of the electorate change, then either the elected must change their views or be voted out.

The idea of waffling is not an issue until it is abused by the elected to remain elected. In the case of Kerry, I have seen little argument that Kerry changed his view while not representing the views of those that elected him, just that he changed his mind.

I’m not so sure. I like to think that my elected leaders ought to be able to, well, lead. If the official changes his/her mind with every shift in political current, how is that being a leader any more? I don’t want to elect an official so they can do their very best to stay in office, which requires little independent thought. I much rather vote for someone who doesn’t always do what I want, but has a good reason, than somebody who always does what I want even if my preferences are unreasonable.

THere is a fine line between changing ones mind on an issue and pandering to the mob to get re-elected. Certainly I can understand when someone thoughtfully changes their stance on something due to new data or even a change in heart. What I can’t stand is when someone changes their stance falsely in order to pander to a different segment of the voting public…especially if its radically against their previous stances. Either A) they think they have the voters from their old side locked up and so can screw them over or B) They are merely trying to trick the voters they are currently courting in an effort to win, with no real intention of changing their stance…only APPEARING too.

I think that both GW and Kerry could be characterized as the later type. Bush panders to the center while maintaining at least a facade of conservative positions However he really hasn’t done all that much FOR the conservatives, so he really has gone (mostly) centrist. This makes Bush an “A” from above.

Kerry on the other hand is a “B” (IMHO), trying to portray himself as a centrist and down play his liberalism to appeal to the center (everyone wants to appeal to the center). The entire DNC was a master piece of this in fact, with most of the truely ‘liberal’ stances downplayed or danced around. My hat is off to them…it was a master stroke. However, it doesnt’ make it honest. And the jury is out on Kerry (and will remain so until he’s elected and sworn in) as to whether he will screw over his liberal voters by taking centrist stances on various things or if his centrist stance was a game to get elected and he’ll screw them over…my guess is, a little of both. We’ll see and I’m fairly sure he’ll be the next president.


Well, there’s two schools of thought here. Edmund Burke believed it was a statesman’s duty to represent his constituents’ interests, not their will. And it was the statesman’s duty to make his own judgment as to what was in their interests. The other tradition is to consider a member of a legislature to be merely a deputy or voice of his/her constituents and a servant of their collective will. Even if you accept that latter theory in principle, bear in mind that government is a very complicated business. It could not function at all without a specialized category of professional statespersons, making decisions in the capital as needed, without checking with the folks back home before every committee vote or floor vote.

Personally? I like an honest, good-hearted guy who can change his mind. It shows that he’s thoughtful, making an honest effort to understand and represent his constituents, and that he’s human. I’ve got no problem with changing a stand. However, I look at “waffling” as a calculated way to dupe folks into voting for you. Kerry ain’t that guy. Bush is.

the problem with politicos that change their position is that I voted for them on one platform (e.g. more taxes and public spending). If they then change to the opposite then they have effectively lied about what they said they were going to do. That is one reason that people dont trust politicians that change their positions. I would have more respect for a politician that stuck to his guns even (especially) if it meant that he would be voted out.

It should be noted that even Winston Churchill jumped government parties a number of times. However he was largely despised for that at the time. He only gained respect when he stuck to his guns over Hitler