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Thread: How Trump Hurt America

  1. #21
    Pull the strings! Architect's Avatar
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    I'm independent and have voted left and right in the past. Here's my perspective, both personally and observed. In parenthesis is a note of where the perspective 'scope' - who it applies to

    • (Upper middle class) There's a daily grind on our psyche's from the mania in the Whitehouse and the flaunting of the norms of the presidency. My UMC friends are distressed and counting the days until the midterms, if not the next election.
    • (Liberals) My liberal friends are mostly scared/bothered he'll put us in a war, outraged over him generally, and are worried about how we're being viewed internationally
    • (Conservative) Rank and file conservatives have gone over the dark side. My conservative friends either happily or reluctantly voted for him, but now he's in office and bullying everybody they're happy.


    In terms of domestic policy little has been accomplished, with two exceptions

    • (Tax laws) AFAIK our tax rates have gone down a bit, running a projection on my taxes shows a possible decrease of about $1k. On the flip side there are multiple benefits to business owners - being one I'm looking forward to seeing what benefits I can get there (I heard that it's particularly true for LLC type businesses which we aren't, but anyhow I haven't had a moment to dig into it).
    • (Healthcare) The Republicans are trying to cripple healthcare any way they can. Ultimately it has the effect of encouraging us all to become wage slaves, as employer supported plans will again be the only way to have healthcare.


    Being in California we're generally more liberal than most (though there are plenty of conservatives around). It's still a shock to see his name on WH sponsored things. For example there's a Presidential academic success award for grade schoolers. If you get good grades you get a certificate endorsed (not personally of course) from the President. I went to the middle school graduation of a nephew, and when they announced the "President Trump Academic Excellence" awards there was an uncomfortable titter. Well more than that, people looked around in a bit of uncomfortable shock, it felt dirty and demeaning to have him endorsing our kids academics, not least because by all reports he has the intellectual stamina of a kindergartner.

    I keep reminding myself that he proves the strength of our system, in that a idiot like him could get elected, and that he has as little effect as he has had.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Architect View Post
    I'm independent and have voted left and right in the past. Here's my perspective, both personally and observed. In parenthesis is a note of where the perspective 'scope' - who it applies to

    • (Upper middle class) There's a daily grind on our psyche's from the mania in the Whitehouse and the flaunting of the norms of the presidency. My UMC friends are distressed and counting the days until the midterms, if not the next election.
    I don't really care about the norms (though I'm not sure whether I fall in this category or not) considering the same "norms" allowed us to go to war over bogues reports of WMDs, which had the effect of destabilizing the Middle East and causing a lot of people to die. Because it was done through adhering to "norms" and politicians then adhered to "norms", everyone just shrugged their shoulders about this. Personally it sticks in my craw whenever someone mentions "norms" as a reason for not liking Trump. What is so great about the norms of our system that nobody can challenge them? Doesn't adhering to norms just mean sweeping the massive problems we had in this country before Trump was in office under the rug (not that I'm going to do anything about them)? An example of norms that might be worth pointing is that only Congress is supposed to declare war, but the last war Congress actually declared was WWII, IIRC. This is now part of the "norms" to have the President just kind of shrug off the Constitution in this way.

    Sorry if I'm standing up on my soapbox and unfairly singling you out, it's just something that bothers me generally, for the reasons I just stated.

    If Trump is hurting America, it sure as shit isn't because he's adhering to some personal standard of decorum that has fuck all to do with policy and only revolves around "optics." I think people are pushing the "norms" thing because it sets a low bar for whoever comes after him. "Well he didn't do anything, but he respected the norms... thank God!"

    Trump isn't a competent person, and unlike the Bush administration, the people around him aren't competent, which limits the amount of damage he can do, which is probably why the discussion is centering around "norms" and not policy.

  3. #23
    Pull the strings! Architect's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrubjay View Post
    I don't really care about the norms (though I'm not sure whether I fall in this category or not) considering the same "norms" allowed us to go to war over bogues reports of WMDs, which had the effect of destabilizing the Middle East and causing a lot of people to die. Because it was done through adhering to "norms" and politicians then adhered to "norms", everyone just shrugged their shoulders about this. Personally it sticks in my craw whenever someone mentions "norms" as a reason for not liking Trump. What is so great about the norms of our system that nobody can challenge them?
    Fundamentally politics in the US is a tug of war between keeping the best of the past (conservative) and bringing in new approaches that work better (liberal). The die hards (far left and right) just want it all now - either change everything or change nothing in either case. Which is why I sit in the middle, history is made by building on the best of the past and bringing in new innovations.

    In this case, the US presidency has norms for very good reasons. We could talk about diplomacy for one. The POTUS is a stabilizing force in the world and has been so post WWII. Now if Trump was bringing much needed or useful innovations to the office that would be great, but rather he's capricious and arbitrarily throwing his weight around as it suits. There's no overriding plan or agenda, except the one for personal power. As far as I can tell all he wants is the adulation of his base, so he does whatever he can to keep their support.

    The POTUS norms are important, just ask anybody who has a family or a business. These things run on stability, during WWII both were shattered due to capricious leadership. It's a trait of the young to want change and care little about the past, it's equally a trait of the old to care too much about the past, hence as I say what works best is a balanced tug of war, which plays out best in the US. Trump is on an island of his own making.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Architect View Post
    Fundamentally politics in the US is a tug of war between keeping the best of the past (conservative) and bringing in new approaches that work better (liberal). The die hards (far left and right) just want it all now - either change everything or change nothing in either case. Which is why I sit in the middle, history is made by building on the best of the past and bringing in new innovations.

    In this case, the US presidency has norms for very good reasons. We could talk about diplomacy for one. The POTUS is a stabilizing force in the world and has been so post WWII.
    Yeah, like in Southeast Asia and the Middle East. Let's not forget South America, either.

    Now if Trump was bringing much needed or useful innovations to the office that would be great, but rather he's capricious and arbitrarily throwing his weight around as it suits. There's no overriding plan or agenda, except the one for personal power. As far as I can tell all he wants is the adulation of his base, so he does whatever he can to keep their support.
    He certainly isn't, but violating "norms" is small potatoes compared to some of the other stuff that's happened in my lifetime.

    The POTUS norms are important, just ask anybody who has a family or a business. These things run on stability, during WWII both were shattered due to capricious leadership.
    The last time the constitutional precedent was used to actually declare war was a shattering of norms? Explain.

    It's a trait of the young to want change and care little about the past, it's equally a trait of the old to care too much about the past, hence as I say what works best is a balanced tug of war, which plays out best in the US. Trump is on an island of his own making.
    I'm not that young anymore. Nevertheless, I still don't care about political "norms."

  5. #25
    your cheapest wine Johnny's Avatar
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    I think the biggest hurt Trump has put on America has come from telling the truth.

    For example:



    *************

    The truth can cut anyone and everyone, unfortunately. The potential for contagion is not insignificant...
    Last edited by Johnny; 05-31-2018 at 12:10 AM.
    What's the difference? It's just soda, bro.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Architect View Post
    Fundamentally politics in the US is a tug of war between keeping the best of the past (conservative) and bringing in new approaches that work better (liberal). The die hards (far left and right) just want it all now - either change everything or change nothing in either case. Which is why I sit in the middle, history is made by building on the best of the past and bringing in new innovations.
    The gerrymandering of the party lines can't be boiled down like that. It's not as if the conservatives are fond of the legacy welfare state of the 20th century, and it's not as if they're concerned about fiscal conservatism either. They're the ones changing everything right now. Would it be liberal or conservative to invest in infrastructure? How about the environment? Minarchists are radicals.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by stuck View Post
    The gerrymandering of the party lines can't be boiled down like that.
    Agree, I was alluding to the extremes on both side. The far conservatives gerrymander and chip away at every turn with regulations. The far liberals are obsessed with gender. The surprising thing is how they both don't realize self-defeating stupidity of these positions. For example, the far conservatives try to introduce religious favoritism into government, somehow not realizing that the 1st Amendment (the freedom from religion) is there to protect them. Somehow they think that giving Evangelicals a leg up they'll be ahead of the game. The Mormons know better on this issue.

    Likewise the far left is obsessed with gender. Look folks, don't fuck with sex. There is a tiny percentage of people with confused sexuality - born male and feel female. In the old days these guys would just become drag queens and contribute their wonderful outrageousness to society. That's not good enough though, now we need to obsess about it and give them hormones and operations. With the inevitable backlash from the other 99.9999% of humanity who are pretty sure of their gender.

    It's not as if the conservatives are fond of the legacy welfare state of the 20th century, and it's not as if they're concerned about fiscal conservatism either. They're the ones changing everything right now. Would it be liberal or conservative to invest in infrastructure? How about the environment? Minarchists are radicals
    .

    Actually very little is changing, again the Federal Govt. firmly stays in the middle of the tug of war. For eight years the Dems got to tilt it a bit their way, now the GOP gets to bully everybody for a bit. But if you look at it, little fundamentally is changing other than some executive actions that can be reversed with an administration change.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Architect View Post
    In the old days these guys would just become drag queens and contribute their wonderful outrageousness to society. That's not good enough though, now we need to obsess about it and give them hormones and operations. With the inevitable backlash from the other 99.9999% of humanity who are pretty sure of their gender.
    You're conflating a few demographics there. Crossdressers aren't necessarily drag queens, and neither are necessarily transgenders or gay. The good old days sucked for anyone with a slightly deviant sexuality, and the trans community at large is still one of the most vulnerable in society, even in big cities.

  9. #29
    Pull the strings! Architect's Avatar
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    The good old days sucked for anyone with a slightly deviant sexuality
    lol ... I grew up in the gay capital of the world probably, those people knew how to live. They had it better than the rest of us.

    Quote Originally Posted by stuck View Post
    Crossdressers aren't necessarily drag queens, and neither are necessarily transgenders or gay ... and the trans community at large is still one of the most vulnerable in society, even in big cities.
    I'm repeating a point (almost word for word) made by https://www.lambdaliterary.org/inter...inst-marriage/ because I liked it - said very well in a recent Jessa Crispin podcast he was on (http://www.jessacrispin.com/podcast/). On trans - anecdote here, but some acquaintances have a son who was always girlish. Loved dressing up as one and so on. Their doctors (Kaiser Permamente, one of the biggest health conglomerates) are recommending gender surgery, and the kid isn't 16 yet. Kids are sexually confused enough, this seems predatory to me. Though it varies across the country

    Regardless the last thing I want to get into a discussion about is gender issues (the liberal trap), as little as I want to get into a global warming discussion with my best friend (the conservative trap). It's all pointless, which is my point.

  10. #30
    malarkey oxyjen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Architect View Post
    Regardless the last thing I want to get into a discussion about is gender issues (the liberal trap), as little as I want to get into a global warming discussion with my best friend (the conservative trap). It's all pointless, which is my point.
    But...you brought it up?

    It is only a huge thing because conservatives lost the battle on same sex marriage so they need their "sexually different boogeyman" who will prey and molest average American children. A few transgender families across the nation took legal action against their school to get access to the accommodations they feel fit them. If I recall, I think the desire for liberals was to make the already existing federal law against discrimination clear--discrimination based on sex is not allowed, does that extend to gender identity or biological identity?

    The pushback was much, much louder than the advocacy measures. 17 states proposed "bathroom bills" to block or punish people who are trans from using facilities which do not match their biological sex. Some highlights:

    "A bill introduced to the Texas House of Representatives in March 2015 proposes to award any student in a school who can prove that another student who does not identify with their "biological sex" was using a public facility at the same time damage reparations in the form of $2000 for any "mental anguish" that may have been caused them"

    "A 2013 proposed amendment to Arizona bill S.B.1432 would have allowed police to demand identification from anyone suspected of using the 'wrong' public bathrooms or showers, meaning the facilities assigned to the sex not matching the sex on their birth certificate. If found guilty, a person would have been subject to up to 6 months in jail and a $2500 fine under a disorderly conduct charge"

    "A bathroom bill was introduced in Alabama on February 7, 2017 by state Senator Phil Williams. The bill, if passed, would require attendants to be present in mixed-gender public bathrooms to ensure that no crimes are committed there."

    --
    They villianize a small minority who can't fight back in order to win votes from a fearful and ignorant base, now that public opinion is changing and they can't use gays as much as their given scapegoats.
    Last edited by oxyjen; 05-31-2018 at 08:18 PM. Reason: corrected wording

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