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Poll: Which Democratic candidate do you like the best?

Howard Dean 21 (31%)
Dennis Kucinich 8 (12%)
John Kerry 3 (4%)
Joe Lieberman 4 (6%)
Al Sharpton 1 (1%)
Wesley Clark 6 (9%)
John Edwards 1 (1%)
Bob Graham 0 (0%)
Dick Gephardt 2 (3%)
I'm voting for someone else! 22 (32%)
   Discussion: Which Democratic candidate do you like the best?
Josh Woodward · 15 years, 6 months ago
Good poll, Lauren! Unfortunately, they're all morons as far as I've seen. Libertarian in 2004 :)
lawrence Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
any of them would be better than the axis of evil we have in office right now.

a vote for a Libertarian is a vote for Bush. don't do it.
Pacho Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
i was going to post "what's a democrat".. then i realized that bc has the "new democrats party"...

i'm not sure i understand the "a vote for Libertarian is a vote for Bush" comment. (personally i'd be libertarian if we had such a thing in canada but that's unrelated) doesn't the american voting system distinguish between who you're voting for as your federal representative and who you're voting for president? in canada we elect the federal party and they pick out the prime minister (roughly). i was under the impression that in america you could pick, say, a libertarian for local federal office and then vote for the republican candidate for president, say.

i'm just a lowly canadian so if that's totally bullshit then please point it out. our social studies in school doesn't really stress anything about usa... (other than that burning down the white house bit ;)
Andrea Krause Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
I believe he's saying a vote for libertariant *presidential* candidate is a vote for bush. The implication being it lessens the unified opposition to Bush.
Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
No, a vote for a libertarian would be a vote for a libertarian. If you vote "the lesser of two evils", you still get evil. I don't see how that's a good thing.

If you vote for the lesser of two evils, it just shows you have no principles, or rather, your principles don't matter.
lawrence Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
If you vote "the lesser of two evils", you still get evil. I don't see how that's a good thing.

if you vote for a libertarian, you apparently get someone who sees issues only in black and white and can't distinguish between "evil" and "less evil."

just because something isn't the best possible choice overall doesn't mean it's not the best choice of the available options.
Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
Evil, and less evil...is that like saying that Hitler was less evil than Stalin? I wouldn't want either one running my country. I hate to break it to you, but issues are generally black and white. How could they be otherwise?
Andrea Krause Back · 15 years, 6 months ago

See, and I can't conceive of most things not being made up of shades of grey. Black and white leads to stagnation in my opinion. No one budges. No one does a damn thing. One always says black, one always says white. If each side would admit there's some grey involved they just might find a way to frickin' get past square one.

Sorry that seems out of context of this particular issue. I'm talking the adherence to black and white in general. You can say white is white and nope not a bit of grey and sure you have integrity of your convictions. But you don't have much else because the world will NEVER meet you all the way.

Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
For moral fundamentals, there can only be right or wrong, moral or immoral. There are some issues which are debated which are not about moral fundamentals, but personal choice. Sexual preferences, drug use, and whether you like chocolate or vanilla are not moral fundamentals.

You cannot have shades of grey on moral fundamentals. For it to be grey means it would have to be made up of white and black, good and evil. If something is partway evil, it is evil, regardless.
Pacho Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
I think I see what you're meaning. So, for example, Andrea's opinion is white (right) and your opinion is black (wrong). I was willing to passively consider you grey but, uh, yeah, somewhere in your frequent posting you definately crossed over to black.
Zach Back · 15 years, 6 months ago

What about killing? First, is it right to kill someone? Of course not. That's black and white. Is it right to kill someone who is holding a gun to your head, given the chance? Is vengeance moral? Can two wrongs make a right? Should you be allowed to kill someone who is breaking into your home? Those are shades of grey. I would think that the issue of causing someone's demise would be the most morally fundamental.

Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
It is right to kill someone who initiates the use of force and places you in immediate fear of serious bodily injury or death. Someone breaking into my home? You bet I will shoot them. It is not about a shade of grey. It is about someone who is initiating the use of force, violating my property and placing me in fear of my life.

A person's right to life does not entail violating another person's right to life or placing that person in fear for their saftey.
Zach Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
That is a rather strict guideline, to which I can guarantee not everyone adheres. I'm afraid disagreement among strict and detailed guidelines is what I would consider to be a shade of grey.
lawrence Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
they could be interpreted as black and white if you broke them down into tiny components and circumstances, but I can't think of any issue as a whole where it can be completely generalized into only two possible answers.

and choosing candidates is no different - what do you do when there are two people running and you agree with each of them on some things and not others, or on certain elements of some issues? you have to prioritize.
Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
Murder.
nate... Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
That's what you do when there are two people running and you agree with each of them on some things and not others?

Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
*laff* Yes, cuz I think they are both lying! ;-)

No, murder is an example of a black and white issue. Murder is wrong. Period.
Pacho Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
On an unrelated note, are you vegetarian?
stealthlori Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
Are you suggesting that the murder of plant foods is somehow less hideous than that of motile beings? :D

"I hear the screams of the vegetables (scream, scream, scream) ..."
Gordondon son of Ethelred Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
That always reminds me of a story. I forgot who wrote it but it is about a commune that started off being vegetarian but decided they shouldn't kill living plants either so they subsisted on wilted lettuce.
Pacho Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
i'm not suggesting that it's better or worse. i'm just trying to come to an understanding of starfox's position here. if murder of humans is wrong, is murder of animals? how about vegetable murder (vegicide ;)?

i have a hard time understanding the claim that everything is black and white, i really do. i can't see how a person can claim that murder of a lesser being is less wrong that murder of a human, if one considers murder to be totally unequivocally wrong. the jump to plants is more tenuous, but then again i don't know if plants being considered "living" is right (white) or wrong (black). if one profits directly from murder, then are you less wrong? does it justify the act?

a crazy dude is holding a bomb that will kill hundreds. is it wrong to kill that man to prevent him from hurting others, even if not killing him causes massive death? is it wrong to kill someone who you know will kill multiple other people? is one life worth more than another?

am i missing something fundamental here that makes murder a black and white issue? am i unenlightened in some deeper logic or religious fundamental truth?
Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
"i'm not suggesting that it's better or worse. i'm just trying to come to an understanding of starfox's position here. if murder of humans is wrong, is murder of animals? how about vegetable murder (vegicide ;)? "

Because animals, and this will probably start another huge argument, are not self-aware. They are a lower form of life, and not embued with the same qualities as human life.

"a crazy dude is holding a bomb that will kill hundreds. is it wrong to kill that man to prevent him from hurting others, even if not killing him causes massive death? is it wrong to kill someone who you know will kill multiple other people? is one life worth more than another? "

See, now you jumped the line and changed terminology. Killing is different than murder. Murder is initiating the use of force to deprive someone of their life. Killing is simply the taking of a life. Force is only to be used in self-defense, and then only against those who initiate the use of force. So, in your hypothetical scenario above, the crazy dude is initiating the use of force against hundreds, and it is absolutely moral to kill him in self-defense of yourself and those hundreds.
Jºnªthªn Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
Thought I'd chime in.
Say a psychic, knowing what would happen, murdered Hitler before he took power. Murder, yes. Evil?

Black and white labels of human behavior are simplistic, and ultimately relative. One man's "evil" is a another man's righteousness. We have created these concepts to define behavior that is constructive to our living together in large groups, or anithetical to it. Unless you truly believe that good and evil are universal concepts. Which I don't. But you might.

In any case, I think we can all agree that Ann Coulter is either evil, crazy, or a man.
Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
"Thought I'd chime in.
Say a psychic, knowing what would happen, murdered Hitler before he took power. Murder, yes. Evil? "

And you just took the discussion out of the realm of reality, so it's a meaningless hypothetical.
Jºnªthªn Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
My point was that actions are viewed as good or evil in a particular context. Let's put it another way - Hitler's mother was supposedly going to get an abortion, which some call murder, and evil. She didn't, and the world got Adolph.
Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
No, the only context is reality. Your example is not within the realm of reality therefore immoral. You can't stop bad people from doing bad things, but it would have been absolutely moral to kill Hitler the minute he initiated the use of force against someone to deprive them of their lives.

And besides, if the leftists peaceniks hadn't appeased him at every turn out of a misguided notion that peace is always preferrable to war, then Hitler would have been stopped before he could have threatened the world.

Oh, and one of the ways Hitler was able to garner complete control and shuff all the Jews off to their deaths? Gun control.
Pacho Back · 15 years, 6 months ago

Killing is different than murder. Murder is initiating the use of force to deprive someone of their life. Killing is simply the taking of a life. Force is only to be used in self-defense, and then only against those who initiate the use of force.

Do you favor the death penalty for murderers then? Or is that murder?

How about soldiers in an army? If they are ordered to kill someone, does that make it murder? An army sharpshooter is asked to kill an army commander who (obviously) cannot defend himself from said attack. Is the sharpshooter murdering the commander or just killing him?

How about abortion where the pregnancy endangers the mothers life?

I don't see how any issue can be exclusively right or wrong. I really can't.

Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
Do you favor the death penalty for murderers then? Or is that murder?

No, I don't favor it.

How about soldiers in an army?

War is an armed conflict where usually one side is the aggressor (the initiator of force) and once side is the defender. Soldiers involved in a war are only as moral as the the reasons for their fighting.

How about abortion where the pregnancy endangers the mothers life?

In this case there is no "right" answer. You have two lives competing for the same resource, therefore, by definition, one must die, then the only moral choice is to choose the wrong that does the least harm. Since both lives cannot be saved, you are left with having to choose one life over the other.

I don't see how any issue can be exclusively right or wrong.

The you do not believe in any absolutes.

Pacho Back · 15 years, 6 months ago

The [sp] you do not believe in any absolutes.

*shrugs* I believe that an object in motion stays in motion unless acted on by an outside force (physics). I believe that it's impossible to have 100% efficiency in any process acted on by real-life forces (thermodynamics). I believe any closed subset of real numbers has a maximum and minimum (math).

I also believe that no (non-trivial) issue is simple enough that there is only one perspective. I believe that saying that something is absolutely true (in a moral authority sense) is fundamentally flawed, because I do not believe that any one person can see every perspective at once. Saying "honor thy father and thy mother" is bullshit if you come from an abusive family, it is valid as a general rule though. Ditto any other religious doctrine. It might be valid in some cases, maybe almost all cases, but just accepting it as a fundamental truth is a dangerous thing. There must be qualifiers, there must be limits.

Gordondon son of Ethelred Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
I dont' think any of them are morons. I'm quite sure that to the contrary they are all quite intelligent. Not agreeing with you doesn't make someone not intelligent.

Andrea Krause Back · 15 years, 6 months ago

True.

Though I do often feel that even intelligent candidates get poisoned by politics into dumbing things down, lessening their convictions, catering what they stand for to fit what's most likely to get them elected. Politics corrupt competence. Which sucks.

Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
How about most of them are illogical and immoral? Although I'm not really sure that Kuchnich has that much going on upstairs.
Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
So who do you like out of the field so far for LP?

I don't like Gary Nolan. Michael Badnarick seems pretty good.

I personally would love to see L. Neil Smith run and have some financial backing sorta like Harry Browne did. He'd at least make things interesting.
100% dainty! Back · 15 years, 6 months ago

Thanks Josh! :) I didn't know you were libertarian. I do not know much about that party. Isn't it super-right?

I'm divided between Dean and Kucinich. I agree with Kucinich the most on all the issues, but I'd rather him stay in congress, and I think Dean has the better chance.

stealthlori Back · 15 years, 6 months ago

I'm with you on being divided between Dean and Kucinich. Kerry also gets a thumbs-up from me. The rest I'm kind of "eh" about, but they're still much better than George W. (And that's not to say they're the "less of two evils", because I don't think they're evil. Opportunistic, crass, and prone to caving in, yes. But not evil.)

What has my interest this week is the possibility of a maverick Republican declaring his primary candidacy in opposition to George. The two I've heard mentioned are McCain (duh) and Lincoln Chafee. It would be refreshing to see some moderate Republicans stand up to the religious reich and take back their party.

As for Libertarians, Josh and Starfox can probably tell you more. My impression is that yes, some of them are "super-right" in terms of beingopposed tobig government, taxes, and a publicly-funded social safety net, and convinced that the free market is the fairest and most effective cure for all of society's problems. But they're not right-wing at all on social issues, because they genuinely believe in personal freedom, not in "big government" hamstringing people's personal choices that are none of government's business anyway. I only wish the current batch of Republicanpolicymakerswere so reasonable, or at least could be consistent on the big-gov't issue.

Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
You summed it up pretty good.

Basically, libertarians believe that force should be banned from all human relationships. If you join the Libertarian Party, you have to sign their statement of principle which says you do not believe in the initiation of the use of force.

If you think of a political spectrum as the degree of freedom believed in and on the right extreme you have anarchy (total "freedom" if you will), and on the extreme right you have absolute totalitarianism, then libertarians are very much right wing. They believe that government exists to secure people's freedoms and to provide an objective way of punishing true crime (where someone's person or property has been infringed upon) in the form of a court system.

As with everything there are varying degrees of libertarianism; I would venture to say that I'm probably more "hard-core" libertarian than Josh.

Liberals tend to agree with the libertarians on social issues (drug use, sexual freedom, etc), but not on fiscal issues (lower taxes, free market business, etc).

There's a quiz you can take on the Libertarian homepage here: Take the LP quiz.
Josh Woodward Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
To simplify, Libertarians are econonomically aligned with the right, and socially aligned with the left. We believe in less government all around, whether it's invading our wallets or our bedrooms.
Phoenix · 15 years, 6 months ago
I really am an outsider on this one. But as an avid B5 fan a potential president Clark gives me the creeps ;D
Phoenix · 15 years, 6 months ago
And I'm missing the option: I'm not eligible to vote in the U.S. you insensitive clod!
stealthlori · 15 years, 6 months ago
Where's Carol Mosely-Braun?
Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
That's what she's asking! :)
Eri · 15 years, 6 months ago
How about the option, "I'm not American and therefore have nothing to do with this election"?
nate... Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
Perhaps you misread the question..... it didn't ask who you were going to vote for, just who you liked....

Last I checked, people in canada still have opinions on things.

Eri Back · 15 years, 6 months ago

Okay, then... "I'm Canadian and our newspapers haven't told us anything about any of these people." It seems to me that I'd either have to watch an awful lot of American TV, or, take the time to read American newspapers online all the time. I recognize not one of these names.

Mark · 15 years, 6 months ago

What about Carol Moseley Braun?

http://www.carolforpresident.com

100% dainty! Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
Yeah. . . I know about her too. But there weren't enough options to put all of the candidates in, and I wasn't sure if she was still in the running. I guess it was sexist of me. I could have left out one of the guys.
John · 15 years, 6 months ago
You know, I had never really given Dean much of a chance. I'm reading his issues on www.deanforamerica.com and actually I respect alot of what he's saying. I may have to change my vote.
George E. Nowik · 15 years, 6 months ago

perot! get good ol' elephant ears back! get the business side of our country back in shape!

-= george =-

Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
Oh good GOD NO!! Don't you remember his infomercials on how he was going to balance the budget?

"Now...lookie here now..."

:)
George E. Nowik Back · 15 years, 6 months ago

"now ... here's the deal, see."

i loved it! his foreign policy would have been terrible, but i can't imagine that it would be any worse than the foreign policy right now of LETSALLGOINANDBLOWSTUFFUPINTHENAMEOFDEMOCRACY!!!:D:D:D:D:D ...

at least foreign peoples wouldn't hate us so much.

and the budget would get balanced. seriously. the country is a business and it needs to be treated as such, not this crap that we're doing right now with working politicians making 100k+ per year and declaring bankruptcy so that they can have their house and car for free. right! good system!

nope. not bitter in the slightest. :D

-= george =-

J. Andrew World · 15 years, 6 months ago

Not entirely true. However I feel that I have to vote Demecrat to get the evil one and his evil cabenet out of the white house. I really don't like Dean. He seems like too much of a bumbling idiot from what I have seen of him so far. That was my impression of our "beloved" dictator, Bush.

Clark seems to me the most level headed and intelligent person in the group of them. I really agree with what he is saying. He feel's it isn't the milaray's goals to police the world, that is the UN's job. And this guy is aretired 4-star general. He is also the guy who nogotiated peace in the balkins. He has a workable plan for the middle east.

In the Primaries, vote for who you feel should win! Something tells me it's going to be between Bush and Dean. Please vote for what ever Democrat wins the primary's. This country can't stand another 4 years of Bush.

Starfox Back · 15 years, 6 months ago
Noone is going to be able to bring peace to the Middle East. Not until both sides, particularly the Palestinians acknowledge the right of the other side to exist. The Israelis do believe in the right of the Palestinians to exist as a state, whereas the Palestinians want to see Israel eradicated.

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