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Author Topic: I Never Thought of Politics This Way  (Read 1089 times)

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Offline RetributionTopic starter

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I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« on: January 15, 2014, 10:58:51 AM »
http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2014/01/bridgeghazi_chris_christie_and_corruption_american_politics_should_be_dirtier.html

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2014/01/chris_christie_perfect_antidote_to_barack_obama.html

Two articles on Slate in light of the current scandal in New Jersey. Uh, those of you who read me much know I am a right leaning centrist. Reading the two articles listed above makes me feel kind of dirty, but I get the point. Maybe we do not want our politicians so pristine.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2014, 11:41:04 AM »
There are a lot of small things like that going on all the time.

There is 'petty' political BS like this ALL the time. The nastiest political events occur down the path from national level. I've seen petty..nasty political maneuvers on the local, county and state levels.

I have seen all manners of BS come down the pipe for petty reasons. A beltway loop was bumped for a 'priority' beltway around another city..despite the fact that: 1. The first beltway only had something like 4 miles left. 2. The 'new' beltway isn't needed till like 2050 (the one in place is only like at 60% of capacity. The difference? Location location location. (one is on the 'popular' side of the state for the democratic machine in the state)

The number of country level vendettas and feuds are amazing if you hear about them. 

Offline RetributionTopic starter

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Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2014, 11:47:44 AM »
I will bite Callie, but what about the allegation that the whole back scratching and heavy handed thing actually makes deals possible? Intellectually it makes sense to me especially when viewed in light of current gridlock. What I think of is Pelossi (sp) when it came to the deal on the budget when she told her Democratic compatriots "shutup and take the suck."

Maybe we have been having our politicians a bit too pristine.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2014, 12:13:24 PM »
When I was home for Christmas I got more than I wanted to about the local 'city vs country administrators' feud.

I won't go into specifics but there is ONE specific individual pushing the county board into withdrawing from the city facilities they have used for more than two decades for a facility they have wasted 3+ million dollars in buying a failing mall outside of town. I could say a LOT more..but I can't without revealing who I've been talking to. And not everyone I've talked to did so outside of confidence.

Folks I've dealt with in the past have shown incredibly petty sides over things folks said/opposed in the past. Truman said the nastiest politics he ever encountered were the local level back when he was a hat maker in Missouri.

Online Neysha

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2014, 10:16:03 PM »
http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2014/01/bridgeghazi_chris_christie_and_corruption_american_politics_should_be_dirtier.html

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2014/01/chris_christie_perfect_antidote_to_barack_obama.html

Two articles on Slate in light of the current scandal in New Jersey. Uh, those of you who read me much know I am a right leaning centrist. Reading the two articles listed above makes me feel kind of dirty, but I get the point. Maybe we do not want our politicians so pristine.

First, Bridgeghazi is a stupid term to coin and Plotz should stop trying to manufacture relevance by forcing that term into his articles.

But more importantly, I really don't see Chris Christie as being particularly dirty or corrupt. Not compared to Chicago politicians of which Barack Obama is one, or in general. I actually reject the notion that Chris Christie would be somehow more scandal laden then the Obama Administration, at least in public. The Fort Lee Bridge Scandal is basically the only scandal that has really stood out all this time since he's become Governor. All of his other publicized scandals have been policy based. There does seem to be a snowball effect in more scandals coincidentally rising up in the wake of this but we'll see if they even stick through the news cycle.

And as Governors of New Jersey go, Christie is fucking pristine, pardon my Jersey. Corzine, as soon as he left office, managed to weasel out of the MF Global Scandal as well as personal indiscretions whilst in office. Jim McGreevey had to resign over his inappropriate affairs while in office as well as several scandals of his own.

As for being a 'bully,' he wouldn't be the first successful politician known as such. Lyndon B. Johnson is the most famous of the bunch. And more contemporary, everyone from Rick Perry, Joe Biden, Richard Blumenthal, hell even Al Gore tried it once quite famously. ;)

Offline RetributionTopic starter

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Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2014, 08:44:43 AM »
I think y'all are kind of missing the point I got from the two stories. Recently pork barrel pet projects for districts have been all but eliminated, political black eyes are often attached to making a deal with someone from another party along the lines of you vote for this project of mine and in return I will vote for one of yours. Or a little I got the votes to ram this down your gullet in an ugly manner but if you go along I can sweeten things down the road for you. Or say you want person X appointed what have you and I would considering doing that little bit of patronage for you in exchange for.....

Less than savory politics for sure. But such methods have been able to move things along in decades past. Right now, we seem to have two political sides who are trying to hold the standard of ideological purity.  We have crippling gridlock and a two party system that is at each other's throats like a pack of rabid animals.  So just maybe a little dirt is not all bad if it comes in the form of dirt the greases some of the wheels.

Offline chaoslord29

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2014, 11:39:39 AM »
Letting politicians form relationships over a certain amount of corruption sounds more like a worst case scenario to me. If the only way we can get them to negotiate or relate to one another is through back-room power brokering and trading political favors (especially patronage) then that's just the public losing out on both fronts. The gridlock is bad, but the dirty dealing are worse, since in neither case can we trust the politicians to have the public interest at heart. Partisan gridlock is about not being willing to compromise your ideals for even the right reasons; dirty dealings are about being willing to compromise your ideals for all the wrong reasons. So you're basically outlining either no compromise or the wrong kind of compromise.

Granted, I think the depiction of the two party system as two sides at each other's throats constantly is an over-simplification. The Dems and the GOP each have a stake in keeping the other in power, and that's the reason they compromise at all, because they know that in the long run, they'll always have a turn in power or a chance to beat them in the next election. If third parties start cropping up everywhere, that security disappears, and so they both work to protect each other in that regard. That's when things actually get done, and while it's not ideal, it at least has an air of transparency to it that outright corruption and dirty dealings do not. I'd rather have ideological extremists on both sides, than amoral political animals running wild.

Online Neysha

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2014, 02:56:10 PM »
I must be terribly missing the point here.

They're compromising... the Fort Lee Scandal is just that, a scandal which may or may not be indicative of Chris Christie's governorship. But it is pretty well known he's willing to compromise more on issues then say a Ted Cruz or Pete Sessions type.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2014, 09:48:26 PM by Neysha »

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2014, 06:23:21 PM »
It's like this.. Christie can read a dictionary and understand the words in it. Particularly 'compromise' and 'bipartisan', whereas Cruz thinks that being democrat means they should lose their citizenship or right to eat/think/breed.

I don't think he's a bad choice for a bipartisan president. Most of the GOP options for the next cycle are radical asshats who want to cut out half the cabinet seats, and trim at least 3 amendments off the constitution (13th, 14th and one other depending on the person)

Offline mia h

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2014, 12:49:15 PM »
Most of the GOP options for the next cycle are radical asshats who want to cut out half the cabinet seats, and trim at least 3 amendments off the constitution (13th, 14th and one other depending on the person)
Well if it was Rick Perry he'd cut the 13th,14th and err, and err, err I forget the last one  ;D

Online Neysha

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2014, 01:22:51 PM »
Yeah most of the other GOP 2016 hopefuls are pretty radical. Rand Paul, Ted Cruz and to a lesser extent Scott Walker though I don't see Wisconsin as a particularly 'right wing' place and he's won two elections there. But on a national scale he'd probably still be unelectable. Bobby Jindal and Marco Rubio might have some promise, but I don't think either of them are particularly standout, Jindal especially. The only two hopefuls at this juncture that really stand out that are competitive on a national level IMHO are Chris Christie and Paul Ryan, and of them Christie is the only one with significant executive experience. Maybe Mike Pence, but no one knows who he is.

The interesting thing would be who would run for the Democratic ticket in 2016... if not Hilary Clinton. I mean obviously there's Joe Biden but... he seems far from certain or gets much buzz.

Offline Valthazar

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Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2014, 01:28:07 PM »
The interesting thing would be who would run for the Democratic ticket in 2016... if not Hilary Clinton. I mean obviously there's Joe Biden but... he seems far from certain or gets much buzz.

Elizabeth Warren has already said she's not running, but I think she would have made a good contender.

Online Neysha

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2014, 01:42:12 PM »
Elizabeth Warren has already said she's not running, but I think she would have made a good contender.

She's not the Native American is she?

Offline Valthazar

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Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2014, 02:00:31 PM »
She's not the Native American is she?

Well, yes, she claims to be part Native American, but there's a lot of controversy surrounding whether or not she really is, which I think is pretty silly.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2014, 10:46:49 PM »
Elizabeth Warren has already said she's not running, but I think she would have made a good contender.

that just goes to show that she's got a couple brain cells to rub together.. the woman KNOWS the media goes after candidates with a rotoscope.

Online Neysha

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2014, 10:55:43 PM »
I'd like to see Mark Warner make a presidential run for the Democrats.

Offline Valthazar

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Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2014, 12:33:53 AM »
Neysha, you are right though, I am having a hard time thinking of very many moderate Republicans now that Chris Christie is in a world of trouble.  McCain won't run, and I think it is safe to say Romney won't either.  Jon Huntsman always struck me as an intelligent guy for his economic views, but his views on abortion and gay marriage will ruin his shot.

It's these social views that are killing the GOP.  Some of the economic views of the moderate GOP members make a lot of sense, but they're kicking any chance they have by focusing so much on abortion and gay marriage.

Online Neysha

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #17 on: January 20, 2014, 11:28:43 AM »
Yes personally I'm sympathetic to many of the conservative social views myself, but would hazard myself into thinking it should be legislated into law at a federal level. 

But yes,  Jon Huntsman would be another fine candidate.  But even with social issues aside,  I just don't see him having the personal magnetism or gravitas or simple name recognition that others like Christie or Romney do. Though if the last Republicsn primary was any indication, maybe he will get a shot.

The interesting thing is that despite many predictions to the contrary, both of the Republican candidates, Romney and McCain, were moderates and won the Republican primaries. And this is despite both the backlash against neoconservatism in 2008 and the Tea Party in 2012.

Offline IStateYourName

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2014, 12:35:14 PM »
Neysha, you are right though, I am having a hard time thinking of very many moderate Republicans now that Chris Christie is in a world of trouble.  McCain won't run, and I think it is safe to say Romney won't either.  Jon Huntsman always struck me as an intelligent guy for his economic views, but his views on abortion and gay marriage will ruin his shot.

It's these social views that are killing the GOP.  Some of the economic views of the moderate GOP members make a lot of sense, but they're kicking any chance they have by focusing so much on abortion and gay marriage.

Agreed.  If the GOP would ditch the Christian theocrats and go with a consistent center-Right small-government platform with a dash of Libertarian ideas, they'd make a lot more headway than they do with the mishmash of Christian theology, corporatism, and small-government lip service they have now.

Online Neysha

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2014, 03:26:41 PM »
Eh the closest we'd seen to a 'theocrat' was Rick Santorum, and he had his turn as the runner up to Mitt Romney (he was the last person in that carousel after Rick Perry, Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich) and nothing from his political career suggests he'd be able to establish a government based on theocratic principles.

Offline meikle

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #20 on: January 20, 2014, 04:25:20 PM »
Some of the economic views of the moderate GOP members make a lot of sense, but they're kicking any chance they have by focusing so much on abortion and gay marriage.

There was a time when our representatives, if they were so inclined, would challenge each other to duels and kill each other.  I wonder what that kind of thing (the risk of someone trying to kill you) did to influence politicians to focus more toward functional outcomes (rather than pandering to maintain votes).  Maybe it was mostly actually just angry spats.  I'm going to read more about Washington duels.

My theory is that putting "someone might duel and kill you" on the table for politicians would make them more likely to support the things they actually think matter, rather than what they think they need to say to win votes.

edit: though I guess it never really happened that often and probably wasn't actually a motivating factor for anyone.  Still, I think that with the immense personal power some of our politicians wield, they should probably have immense personal checks held against them (even if that isn't, uh, duels to the death.)  I'd rather their motivation be "this is my job and I'm fucked if I do it wrong," than "I like bribes!" as the articles in the OP suggest, but maybe that is the idealist in me.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2014, 04:34:56 PM by meikle »

Online Neysha

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #21 on: January 20, 2014, 04:54:42 PM »
There was a time when our representatives, if they were so inclined, would challenge each other to duels and kill each other.  I wonder what that kind of thing (the risk of someone trying to kill you) did to influence politicians to focus more toward functional outcomes (rather than pandering to maintain votes).  Maybe it was mostly actually just angry spats.  I'm going to read more about Washington duels.

My theory is that putting "someone might duel and kill you" on the table for politicians would make them more likely to support the things they actually think matter, rather than what they think they need to say to win votes.

Now that you mention it:





That... is some high quality politics! :D


Online TheGlyphstone

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #22 on: January 20, 2014, 06:39:17 PM »
I've always advocated a new policy on Capitol Hill of requiring all filibusters and debates to be settled with a bare-knuckle fight between the sponsors and lead opponents.

1) Improve the health of our Congresspeople by encouraging them to work off that extra weight
2) Make them think twice before pointlessly stalling bills, or introducing frivolous ones
3) Reduce the budget crisis by turning C-SPAN into a Pay-Per-View channel. ;D
4) Natural selection will prevent long-term incumbents unless they're really good fighters.

"And the fight to pass Obamacare continues tonight. Let's hope it does, because those senators are going to need it!"
"Absolutely!  I just hope they have enough stretchers on hand this time."

Online Neysha

Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #23 on: January 21, 2014, 10:16:07 PM »
It's been over twenty four hours.

Clearly silence is consent.

The motion passes.

*taps gavel*

Offline Valthazar

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Re: I Never Thought of Politics This Way
« Reply #24 on: January 21, 2014, 11:58:41 PM »
Don't just blame the politicians, it's the people who got them elected.  There's a ton of people voting for Huckabee just because he's an Evangelical Christian, Hillary just because she's a woman, Obama just because he's black, and so on.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2014, 12:04:22 AM by ValthazarElite »