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Current: 8 of 34
Thursday 4 September 2008 4.45pm
Oh I do love it when people have really good data to back up their arguments. Well done martinr.
Thursday 4 September 2008 5.06pm
Maurits wrote:
It is reported that Sarah Palin supports abstinence only sex education.... and appears ineffective in managing her own daughter. Once again, I cannot imagine that the republicans like that, for a proposed Vice President.

Pardon me for interjecting, but as one of those American conservatives whose preferences appear to be "unimaginable" I'd like to point out that we don't take out impressions from left-wing media talking points. Sarah Palin has made a direct impression, and its been Reaganesque in its magnitude--any number of commentators have compared her to Margaret Thatcher (whom we like very much, even if some in the U.K. do not...).

The conservative position on abstinence is routinely distorted by our Democrats and their media poodles. For Americans, particularly conservatives, its a matter of opposition to the active encouragement of sexual relations for the very young. We are simply aghast as the sexualization of incredibly young girls, now reaching into the prepubescent realm. Conservatives are demonstrably, and statistically, far more sexually active than the liberal left, but we believe that sex cannot and should not be divorced from the responsibility for its outcomes--pregnancy of course, but also the interpersonal commitments that should attend this ultimate physical intimacy. In the larger sense, conservatives (who may also be Republicans) believe in love and commitment, in family, that sex should be a bonding force for families, and ultimately the community.

I've gone on too long as it is, but I hope I've contributed some sense of the cultural differences that would account for Sarah Palin's overwhelming reception you will shortly see reflected in the polls.
Thursday 4 September 2008 5.15pm
This administration is certainly not socially conservative. It's 'compassionate' conservative with grotesque spending on healthcare and education. A socially conservative administration would have vouchers for education, personal responsibility for health, no death tax and a flat tax. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would have been wound up long ago instead of bringing potentially trillions of obligations onto future generations.
Thursday 4 September 2008 5.40pm
markadams99 wrote:
This administration is certainly not socially conservative. It's 'compassionate' conservative with grotesque spending on healthcare and education. A socially conservative administration would have vouchers for education, personal responsibility for health, no death tax and a flat tax. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would have been wound up long ago instead of bringing potentially trillions of obligations onto future generations.

I think you're mixing up social conservatism with fiscal conservatism. The two things are not necessarily the same. People can be socially conservative whilst supporting more government spending for example to support family institutions through tax breaks.

Most people take social conservatism to mean social issues such as gay marriage, abortion rights, stem cell research etc.

In fact many of those things that you refer to which arise out of less government invovlement and so on are features of "economic liberalism" as originally espoused by Adam Smith.

I hate the way that the word "liberal" has been turned into a dirty word in the US, losing sight of its original meaning.

From Wiki:

Economic liberalism is the economic component of classical liberalism. Theories in support of economic liberalism were developed in the Enlightenment, and believed to be first fully formulated by Adam Smith which advocates minimal interference by government in the economy, though it does not necessarily oppose the state's provision of a few basic public goods.[1] These theories began in the eighteenth century with the then-startling claim that if everyone is left to their own economic devices instead of being controlled by the state, then the result would be a harmonious and more equal society of ever-increasing prosperity[2]. This underpinned the move towards a capitalist economic system in the late 18th century, and the subsequent demise of the mercantilist system.
Thursday 4 September 2008 6.11pm
Martinr, good points. I do maintain my theoretical stance, but I don't want to belabour it. I agree about 'liberal'. I also mourn the degradation of the beautiful word 'gay'. This administration has not been socially conservative except at the fringes. There's been no federal impediment to 'gay' marriage for example. That's all come from referenda within states. There's been negligible federal impediment to abortion on demand. Limitations like parental notification have come from states. That all awaits the next Supreme Court appointment, crucial to both sides. It's not stem-cell research that Bush vetoed for federal funds, it's embryonic stem-cell research. That's one socially conservative veto against Brave New World. The rest is mostly mood music, signifying nothing.
Thursday 4 September 2008 6.15pm
Interesting factoid: "every Democratic presidential nominee for president and vice president in the last seven elections — except Gore, who dropped out of law school to run for Congress — has been a lawyer.
.....The problem is that lawyers usually do not run companies, defend the country, lead people, build things, grow food, or create capital."
Friday 5 September 2008 12.44am
Comment please, Obamans:

“I think that the surge has succeeded in ways that nobody anticipated,” Obama said while refusing to retract his initial opposition to the surge. “I've already said it's succeeded beyond our wildest dreams.”
Friday 5 September 2008 9.53am
Crickets chirping...
Friday 5 September 2008 10.55am
The surge is only successful when compared to the bloodbath that went in the previous few years. If someone had said at the start of the war that we would now be in a position where "only" a few attacks are happening each day I think we'd have been horrified.

Here's Wednesday's toll (the latest available figures):

Wednesday 3 September: 10 dead

Baghdad: 4 security men on patrol killed by US helicopter fire; gunmen kill general director of Transport Ministry, Ur; 1 body found.

Babil
Iskandariya: roadside bomb kills 1 at market.

Diyala
Muqdadiya: roadside bomb kills 1.

Ninewa
Mosul: policeman dies in clashes with gunmen; child dies in drive-by shooting.

This is the total for August:

AUGUST TOTAL: 631 CIVILIANS KILLED -8 by US forces, 11 of them children.
Friday 5 September 2008 11.48am
I just don't find that impressive in the historical context, but arguing about Iraq is usually sterile. I'm wondering how the SE1 Obamans see the electoral consequence, if any, of Obama's admission of error on such a signature issue for both Obama and McCain.
Current: 8 of 34

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