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  1. #21  
    I've just done a google on "John Kerry Voting Record" to see if I could work out myself what the fuss is about. I came across this site: http://www.kerryquotes.com/votingrecord.htm which is quite obviously anti-Kerry. I looked at the list of votes, I found them remarkably consistent. In USA terms probably consistently left-wing, I can understand people not liking him for that, but I couldn't find much evidence of inconsistency. In terms of the 350+ votes for increase in tax, that's a very misleading way to present a vote against a tax-cut (which some of the votes are) or a vote for a Democrat tax-cut which would be less of a cut than the Republicans wanted (which some of them are).
    Onto the list of flip-flops then, on the same website. Some of them are undoubtedly U-turns (as the terminology goes over here) but some of them are less clear cut. Some of the ones which are U-turns, for example calling Arafat a statesman, then agreeing that he's not a partner for peace, are certainly understandable in historical terms. Some of the ones which are presented as flip-flops just aren't contradictory at all - his position on gay marriage for example. Why does allowing the individual states to decide their position (which is also, I believe, **** Cheney's position) conflict with not agreeing with it yourself?
    I'm not going to go into every one, but there's room for argument as to whether they are flip-flops or not, and it's certainly simplistic to say they all are.
    So in conclusion, what's the fuss? I'm not defending John Kerry here particularly, just calling into question the dubious nature of the attacks on him.
    Animo et Fide
  2. #22  
    Sorry if the above post should really be in antoher thread, they're beginning to blur a bit
    Animo et Fide
  3.    #23  
    I don't think there is any dispute that his voting record is consistent. An independent analysis of Senate voting records (I don't remember the source, but my understanding is that it was truly independent) found Kerry to be the most ideologically liberal member of the entire Senate.

    His flip flopping comes with his current push toward appealing to the political center of the U.S. to win the general election, and by making conservative statements which vary from his liberal voting record.

    He has also been baited by the Bush team into making some stupid statements which make great sound bites in an election. 2 examples: (1) I voted for the 87-billion Iraq bill, before I voted against it; and (2) knowing what I know now, I would still have voted the same way on Iraq.

    So, the main flip flopping contention comes from this: conservatives want to paint Kerry as a flaming liberal. Kerry wants to paint himself as a mainstream moderate, so he makes mainstream statements which conflict with his record.

    Some analysts believe that hardly any U.S. Senators successfully run for the President because their voting records (whether conservative or liberal) are difficult to defend when that Senator is trying to appeal to all sides of the political spectrum in a general election. I can't think of the last Senator who became President - it's been a while.
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  4. #24  
    I think it was in one of the other threads, someone said (and I may be paraphrasing, but this is an attempt at verbatim) 'looking at his voting record I can't see what he stands for'. That's what the first part of my post was about. Being baited into making silly statements is a worrying trait in an experienced politician though, especially silly statements with substance, as opposed to silly statements which are complete nonsense like most of Bush's
    Animo et Fide
  5. mrjoec's Avatar
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    #25  
    Quote Originally Posted by heberman
    I don't think there is any dispute that his voting record is consistent. An independent analysis of Senate voting records (I don't remember the source, but my understanding is that it was truly independent) found Kerry to be the most ideologically liberal member of the entire Senate.

    His flip flopping comes with his current push toward appealing to the political center of the U.S. to win the general election, and by making conservative statements which vary from his liberal voting record.

    He has also been baited by the Bush team into making some stupid statements which make great sound bites in an election. 2 examples: (1) I voted for the 87-billion Iraq bill, before I voted against it; and (2) knowing what I know now, I would still have voted the same way on Iraq.

    So, the main flip flopping contention comes from this: conservatives want to paint Kerry as a flaming liberal. Kerry wants to paint himself as a mainstream moderate, so he makes mainstream statements which conflict with his record.

    Some analysts believe that hardly any U.S. Senators successfully run for the President because their voting records (whether conservative or liberal) are difficult to defend when that Senator is trying to appeal to all sides of the political spectrum in a general election. I can't think of the last Senator who became President - it's been a while.

    Very well said, Heberman. This is exactly what's going on. What Kerry needs to do is respond to statements like : "I voted for the 87-billion Iraq bill, before I voted against it" by reminding voters that the Republicans in Congress (most of them, anyway) voted against it before they voted for it.

    Once again, a very smart Rove is oversimplifying a complex issue.

    The reason for all the so-called flip-flopping on that issue wasn't whether or not the troops needed the money - everyone agreed on the $87 billion. What they disagreed on was where that money was coming from. Kerry wanted a slight roll-back on the massive tax cuts given to the ultra rich, and the Republicans were compeltely opposed to that. The Repubs got their way, of course, thanks to the threat of a presidential veto on anything that altered the tax cut plan, and the rest is history. What's that deficit up to now? Over 400Billion, or something?

    But try to explain all of this in a sound byte. Not easy.

    The media craves big, bold, simple concepts. "Al Gore invented the Internet" fits a lot easier in a front-page headline than "Al Gore championed and consistently voted to fund the AARPANET, predecessor of the Internet, and thus played an important part in the most influential technological revolution since the printing press."

    Kerry is having a hard time painting himself as a moderate, though that really is his best chance at grabbing middle-of-the-road voters. It's the same reason why Bush has to call himself a compassionate conservative, even though most of his policies and administration members are WAY to the right of the average republican.

    As far as Polls and Bouncing goes (the original topic here) I agree that they're pretty much useless as an accurate guide to anything. But they do have massive influence on the undecided voters. People, unfortunately, have a strong desire to "vote for the person who is going to win" so they can feel like a winner, too. As if it were some kind of lottery, or something. I remember the first Clinton win in 92, someone actually told me "You have to vote for Clinton, if you want your vote to count. He's going to win anyway." And I thought, "no, you *****. If I vote for Clinton JUST because some poll tells me he's going to win, then my vote really DOESN'T count."

    For this election, I believe the polls will be inconclusive, and thus, it will be yet another really tight race. Keeping in mind the margin of error, 40-something percent to 40-something percent doesn't show any candidate as a lock. Which is great for the media, who loves tight races, but it can be bad for America, who is very divided at this point, and doesn't look to be getting any more united any time soon, regardless of who wins.
    mrjoec
    www.joecieplinski.com
  6.    #26  
    Quote Originally Posted by mrjoec
    People, unfortunately, have a strong desire to "vote for the person who is going to win" so they can feel like a winner, too. As if it were some kind of lottery, or something.
    That also bothers me. I agree that the perception of who will win will actually influences people's votes. From a political viewpoint, the current polls which show Bush with a huge lead will actually help Kerry. Bush's lead will almost certainly sink in later, more accurate polls. And when he does, the media, and Kerry's camp, will pounce on the new numbers and boldly claim the Kerry comeback, the Bush panic/mistakes, etc.

    I predict the term "The Kerry Comeback" will even be used, and that this fictional comeback will dominate the cable-news stations for at least a week. (of course, I've never been wrong before. )
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    #27  
    Quote Originally Posted by mrjoec
    ...massive tax cuts given to the ultra rich...
    So you've bought into the lie that the tax cuts were massive for the ultra rich and they were somewhat less than massive for those who are not ultra rich? Well how about looking at it from a mathmatical perspective which is that everyone who pays income taxes got about a 10% tax cut irregardless of their income. That makes the tax cut equal. Looking at this from a percentage viewpoint is the only fair way to look at it. Did some people get more dollars in their pocket? Of course they did but the tax cut was still equal amongst tax payers. It is also true that those same people are still paying a whole lot more taxes than those who are not ultra rich.
  8. mrjoec's Avatar
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    #28  
    Quote Originally Posted by TxDot
    So you've bought into the lie that the tax cuts were massive for the ultra rich and they were somewhat less than massive for those who are not ultra rich? Well how about looking at it from a mathmatical perspective which is that everyone who pays income taxes got about a 10% tax cut irregardless of their income. That makes the tax cut equal. Looking at this from a percentage viewpoint is the only fair way to look at it. Did some people get more dollars in their pocket? Of course they did but the tax cut was still equal amongst tax payers. It is also true that those same people are still paying a whole lot more taxes than those who are not ultra rich.
    True. If you only look at the cuts themselves. But by cutting services like Head Start, etc. to pay for those 10% equal tax cuts, the people in the lower Middle class end up paying more, not less, in the long run. They get a $300 check, but a much larger cost of living, because services that were previously provided by the government no longer exist. Rich people don't utilize those services, so they are unneffected by the cuts. They simply get money back into their pockets.

    Many of the reports we're getting are indicating that there is a wider gap now between the rich and poor in America than there was just a few short years ago. And let's not forget Bush's famous quote during his first debate with Gore: "By far, the vast majority of my tax cuts go to those at the bottom of the economic scale." Which was a lie, plain and simple.

    Now, the argument can be made very successfully that rich people who don't need those government services shouldn't have to pay for them, and actually, I'm somewhat torn on that issue myself. Economics is one of the areas I tend to be somewhat conservative on. But Kerry didn't want to eliminate the tax break, anyway. My point was that he wanted to roll it back slightly, say by about $5,000 to $10,000 per person in the highest bracket, which, as we all know, is peanuts to these people. Kerry himself is in that bracket, as are many politicians. And I'd be willing to bet that if you asked most Americans in that bracket if they'd be willing to make that simple sacrifice for the sake of our troops, just about all of them wouldn't hesitate to say yes.
    mrjoec
    www.joecieplinski.com
  9. TxDot's Avatar
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    #29  
    Quote Originally Posted by mrjoec
    True. If you only look at the cuts themselves. But by cutting services like Head Start, etc. to pay for those 10% equal tax cuts, the people in the lower Middle class end up paying more, not less, in the long run. They get a $300 check, but a much larger cost of living, because services that were previously provided by the government no longer exist. Rich people don't utilize those services, so they are unneffected by the cuts. They simply get money back into their pockets.

    Many of the reports we're getting are indicating that there is a wider gap now between the rich and poor in America than there was just a few short years ago. And let's not forget Bush's famous quote during his first debate with Gore: "By far, the vast majority of my tax cuts go to those at the bottom of the economic scale." Which was a lie, plain and simple.

    Now, the argument can be made very successfully that rich people who don't need those government services shouldn't have to pay for them, and actually, I'm somewhat torn on that issue myself. Economics is one of the areas I tend to be somewhat conservative on. But Kerry didn't want to eliminate the tax break, anyway. My point was that he wanted to roll it back slightly, say by about $5,000 to $10,000 per person in the highest bracket, which, as we all know, is peanuts to these people. Kerry himself is in that bracket, as are many politicians. And I'd be willing to bet that if you asked most Americans in that bracket if they'd be willing to make that simple sacrifice for the sake of our troops, just about all of them wouldn't hesitate to say yes.
    You're unfairly bringing government programs into the tax cut argument. They are seperate issues and should be debated on their own. I have even heard people blame hikes in college tuition on the tax cuts and use that as an example of how Bush's tax cuts have hurt poor people. Of course they don't provide any evidence to support their claim but it plays well to "poor" America which is exactly what they want to do.

    Being a economic conservative myself I think there should have been even greater cuts in government programs to pay for the war rather than see the deficit go up. There are all kinds of programs that could be cut back and that would provide plenty of money to pay for the war. We need to cut the pork evenly across the board and then there can be even greater tax cuts and economic growth and plenty of money to fund the military.
  10. mrjoec's Avatar
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    #30  
    Quote Originally Posted by TxDot
    You're unfairly bringing government programs into the tax cut argument. They are seperate issues and should be debated on their own. I have even heard people blame hikes in college tuition on the tax cuts and use that as an example of how Bush's tax cuts have hurt poor people. Of course they don't provide any evidence to support their claim but it plays well to "poor" America which is exactly what they want to do.

    Being a economic conservative myself I think there should have been even greater cuts in government programs to pay for the war rather than see the deficit go up. There are all kinds of programs that could be cut back and that would provide plenty of money to pay for the war. We need to cut the pork evenly across the board and then there can be even greater tax cuts and economic growth and plenty of money to fund the military.
    Or, we could have had better UN support for the war, and gotten other nations to pay for Iraq, the way they did during the first Bush's term. Right now, we're paying 90% of the bill, whereas in the case of Desert Storm, other nations footed 95% of the bill.

    Then we could have tax cuts, AND keep our government programs. Or, we could cut some pork (I agree there's quite a bit there), have even BIGGER tax cuts, and still produce a much smaller deficit.

    There's nothing unfair, by the way, about bringing government programs into the tax cut argument, if those tax cuts are being paid for by cutting those programs, and the working-class people who are on paper getting a break are really getting a cost of living increase. You argued that the tax cut treated everyone equally; I beg to differ. Bush has cut funding to Police and Firemen, cut funding to Veterans, and underfunded his own "Leave No Child Behind" educational initiative, all while threatening a veto on any bill that altered his tax cut proposal in any way. What more proof do you need?
    mrjoec
    www.joecieplinski.com
  11. #31  
    Quote Originally Posted by heberman
    Really, your guy Kerry has got more secrets than anybody I know
    Oh, I see where you're going. Yeah, you're right -- it's flat-out stupid to say stuff like that.

    Kerry: "I have a secret."

    Question: "Can you tell us about it?"

    Kerry: "No, it's a secret."

    Well, obviously. Sheesh.

    That's not quite accurate to say that "Kerry has got more secret than anybody [you] know," however. I mean, we're talking about secrets, right? Kerry is just (foolishly) announcing that he has secrets.
  12. TxDot's Avatar
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    #32  
    Quote Originally Posted by mrjoec
    Or, we could have had better UN support for the war, and gotten other nations to pay for Iraq, the way they did during the first Bush's term. Right now, we're paying 90% of the bill, whereas in the case of Desert Storm, other nations footed 95% of the bill.
    Please provide backup for your claim that we only paid 5% of the cost of Desert Storm. I agree that other nations paid more than the current war but I don't think it was any where near 95%.

    Quote Originally Posted by mrjoec
    Then we could have tax cuts, AND keep our government programs. Or, we could cut some pork (I agree there's quite a bit there), have even BIGGER tax cuts, and still produce a much smaller deficit.

    There's nothing unfair, by the way, about bringing government programs into the tax cut argument, if those tax cuts are being paid for by cutting those programs, and the working-class people who are on paper getting a break are really getting a cost of living increase. You argued that the tax cut treated everyone equally; I beg to differ. Bush has cut funding to Police and Firemen, cut funding to Veterans, and underfunded his own "Leave No Child Behind" educational initiative, all while threatening a veto on any bill that altered his tax cut proposal in any way. What more proof do you need?
    I stated that the tax cut treated everyone equal from a percentage standpoint. I stated it that way for a reason. I would also like to see proof that the tax cuts were paid for in the manner that you say they were (BTW, I don't agree with the premise that a smaller than hoped for increase equals cutting a program). It is my understanding that the tax cuts are the biggest reason for the increased deficit. Which by the way I'm not happy about. I agree that tax cuts are a very good thing but they should be offset by spending cuts. That is the real fiscally conservative approach.
  13. #33  
    Quote Originally Posted by heberman
    An independent analysis of Senate voting records ... found Kerry to be the most ideologically liberal member of the entire Senate.

    His flip flopping comes with his current push toward appealing to the political center of the U.S. to win the general election, and by making conservative statements which vary from his liberal voting record.
    Careful telling us things like that. Finding out that Kerry is only *pretending* to be conservative makes me like him a whole lot more! My biggest beef with the US political spectrum these days is that it's hardly a spectrum at all; politicians run the gamut from Ultra-Conservative to Moderately Conservative. Us politically liberal, economically socialist, socially libertarian types don't have much in the way of good political representatives these days. I haven't been happy with Kerry because he's way too conservative for my tastes. In fact, I suspect that sentiment is why a lot of Democrats are taking the "anybody but Bush" stance, instead of actually speaking well of Kerry.

    Nareau
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    #34  
    Quote Originally Posted by TxDot
    Please provide backup for your claim that we only paid 5% of the cost of Desert Storm. I agree that other nations paid more than the current war but I don't think it was any where near 95%
    http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c102:H.R.1187.IH:

    This bill, introduced to the House in 1991, suggests that the estimated cost of Desert Storm and Desert Shield would be 11.1 billion in 1990, and 55 billion in 1991. It then states that other nations pledged a total of 65 billion to us to help pay for it. That's somewhere around 98%, I believe.

    But, of course, these are estimates, and I do believe the war ended up costing us closer to 80 billion in reality, so, you're right, we probably ended up paying something like 19% of the cost. Still, that's 15 Billion for Desert Storm, as opposed to 150 Billion so far in the current conflict, and growing.

    The bottom line: George W. could have used some of his father's diplomacy skills and helped curb the deficit.
    mrjoec
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    #35  
    Quote Originally Posted by mrjoec
    http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c102:H.R.1187.IH:

    This bill, introduced to the House in 1991, suggests that the estimated cost of Desert Storm and Desert Shield would be 11.1 billion in 1990, and 55 billion in 1991. It then states that other nations pledged a total of 65 billion to us to help pay for it. That's somewhere around 98%, I believe.

    But, of course, these are estimates, and I do believe the war ended up costing us closer to 80 billion in reality, so, you're right, we probably ended up paying something like 19% of the cost. Still, that's 15 Billion for Desert Storm, as opposed to 150 Billion so far in the current conflict, and growing.

    The bottom line: George W. could have used some of his father's diplomacy skills and helped curb the deficit.
    I would like to see how much of the pledges actually made it to us. IIRC there was some amount of concern at the time about countries not paying up like they were supposed to.

    You could also say that it would have helped if our "allies" really acted like our allies. There is more proof coming out about what our allies were really doing where Saddam was concerned. I said back when this first started that France, Russia, China, and Germany had financial reasons for opposing us, not ideological reasons. I also said and still believe that if they had stood with us we could have bluffed Saddam into cooperating.
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    #36  
    Quote Originally Posted by mrjoec
    The media craves big, bold, simple concepts. "Al Gore invented the Internet" fits a lot easier in a front-page headline than "Al Gore championed and consistently voted to fund the AARPANET, predecessor of the Internet, and thus played an important part in the most influential technological revolution since the printing press."
    It might've been helpful if Gore had actually been more specific then, instead of saying, "I took the initiative in creating the Internet." Can't blame the media for the backlash that followed.
  17. #37  
    Meet The Press,” where he said of the War on Terror: “I will use our military when necessary, but it is not primarily a military operation. It’s an intelligence-gathering, law-enforcement, public-diplomacy effort.”
    How is that not fair game for criticism?
    Last December, Kerry told Boston Globe reporters and editors: “If any person in this table believes we would be at war today in Iraq if I were President, you shouldn’t support me.” This was after he voted to authorize the war. Then last month he said that, knowing what we know now, he still would have voted to authorize the Iraq war. Then this week he said the war was “the wrong war in the wrong place at the wrong time.”
    Nobody, including Kerry’s own supporters, knows where Kerry really stands on the War on Terror or the war in Iraq. Inconsistency of that magnitude sends a signal to America’s enemies that this man is weak and indecisive. Were he to be elected President, his irresolution would be an invitation for terrorists to attack us — and for rogue nations to become more aggressive at home and abroad.

    eh? peter brown?
  18. #38  
    enlighten me, dear peter. I should think this might help you understand the nature of our "dubious attacks" as you called them... of the honorable john "f" kerry?
  19. #39  
    5/4/03

    In First Dem Debate, Kerry Strongly Supported President’s Action In Iraq. KERRY: “George, I said at the time I would have preferred if we had given diplomacy a greater opportunity, but I think it was the right decision to disarm Saddam Hussein, and when the President made the decision, I supported him, and I support the fact that we did disarm him.” (ABC News, Democrat Presidential Candidate Debate, Columbia, SC, 5/4/03)
    9/2/03

    Kerry Later Claimed He Voted “To Threaten” Use Of Force In Iraq. “I voted to threaten the use of force to make Saddam Hussein comply with the resolutions of the United Nations.” (Sen. John Kerry, Remarks At Announcement Of Presidential Candidacy, Mount Pleasant, SC, 9/2/03)
  20. #40  
    folks.... as far as knowing who you're going to vote for in john kerry... only the shadow knows....
    this man is scary.... bush does have his faults - he is by no means a skilled linguist and has had his share of errors in the past... but I have to tell you... there's no telling what youre getting with kerry in office.... I shudder to think.
    Last edited by treobk214; 09/10/2004 at 01:38 AM.
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