Monday, April 6, 2009

Post No. 103: Why Do the Democrats Seemingly Have a Lock on African-American Votes


We recently asked our readers to submit possible topics for discussion, and we received numerous responses. We've posted five of them thus far. Here is the sixth:

"Given that African-Americans vote overwhelmingly for Democratic candidates, what advances in the African-American community can be traced to Democratic policies and initiatives, over the past 50 years?"

We believe that some other questions might be addressed at the same time:

Why haven't African-Americans looked more to the Republican Party, or even other smaller parties?

Are there some positive or negative ramifications which flow from the Democratic Party knowing that it will always acquire the vast majority of the African-American vote?

Is the African-American population so small at this point in time that their vote is increasingly taking on less significance, particularly since Hispanics and Asians are now larger minorities in the population?

45 comments:

  1. African-Americans vote Democratic because Republicans welcomed the racist Dixiecrats with open arms when they left the Democratic party for racist reasons. Prior to that, I believe it's a fact that many, or most, African-Americans favored "the party of Lincoln."

    ReplyDelete
  2. Rodak. We suspect that you are substantially correct. Why does the Republican Party attract racists and bigots? Is it because there is no other major party location for them to land? It's either or, and for the racists and bigots, the Republican Party is the lesser of two evils?

    ReplyDelete
  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Why does the Republican Party attract racists and bigots?

    The Republican Party's true core constituency is (to keep it simple) the rich. But the rich are the few. Therefore, in order to achieve the kinds of numbers needed to win national, or even statewide elections, and therefore be able to influence legislation favoring the few, the Republicans have to attract large numbers of "the many." As it turns out, there are "many" Americans for whom an appeal to racism trumped other interests that may have been better represented by Democrats. The same is true for bible-thumping religious conservatives, gun nuts, gay bashers, and all the other mouth-breathing rubes that vote Republican. The trick is for the GOP to present "hot-button" issues which will convince the bleating merinos of our society to vote against their own best economic interests: i.e., to get workers to vote for management. When the GOP accepted the Dixiecrats, the Dixiecrats brought most of the voters in the Southern states with them: the Southern Strategy.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Rodak: Interesting analysis.

    We continue to be struck by George Will's statement to the effect that the beauty of conservatism is its "purity."

    Jonathan Haidt refers to it as "moral clarity."

    And Haidt's best line yet, "What the Democrats fail to understand is that politics is more like religion, while the Democrats view it as more like shopping."

    ReplyDelete
  6. Log, the comment you are replying to is on an older post of yours. Also, I didn't really mean (not sure I said) "all" though I would say it is close to that. Trashcan your comment here and post it there.

    ReplyDelete
  7. rodak, you no more know what the "true core constituency" is than you know what the Democratic Party's is. You "know" what you think it is.

    There is as much racism and bigotry in the Democratic Party as there is in the Republican. It's just ignored; by the media, by the members, by the critics. Racism was evident in remarks by Bill Clinton during the primaries. Ignored for the most part. Sen. Byrd of Virginia was a former Klan leader (not just a member, a leader). He goes on 60 Minutes and talks about "whiggers" and the outrage is barely a murmur. Trent Lott, on the other hand, gives a little praise to a doddering old man (Strom Thurmond) on his birthday and the Republicans are revealed as wanting slavery restored.

    The Republican Party can easily be the party of minorities... if they choose to join it. They can then influence it and change it and create a viable alternative to a left-wing politics that appear to be the future of the Democratic Party.

    Why do African-Americans not join it now? I haven't the foggiest idea. Many of the African-Americans I know are quite conservative and in tune with much of what the Republican Party stands for. Maybe it's the stigma, as evidenced by radak's comments, of being a member. Maybe they are afraid of the peer pressure, of what their families might think of them. I am a white guy, I register with a party that actually tries to do things I agree with, not one that promises me everything and delivers nothing.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I try not to speak in 'absolutes' all everyone always etc

    as for rep/dem they are all politicians and can't be trusted as far as you can throw them.
    That being said, to which party you favor, is your decision, I would imagine AA (af/am) has had issues of domestic interest rather than abroad and as that is the key difference in the parties, dem would be logical.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Douglas--
    While it is of course true, human nature being what it is, that there are racial bigots who vote Democratic--plenty of them, one fears. That said, the legislation that the Democratic party enacts is legislation that African-Americans tend to benefit from. Such as legislation designed to protect the rights of the working class, to provide social safety nets where needed, and to prevent discrimination in public accommodations. It was liberal Democrats who spearheaded the civil rights legislation of the 1960s, driving the southern racists over to the GOP. The topic is why do African-Americans overwhelmingly vote Democratic, not are there individuals in the Democratic Party who are racists, closet racists, or unconscious racists. Intelligent people support the party that responds to their needs, rather than to their prejudices and their fears.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I am a white guy

    Of that, I had little doubt.

    I register with a party that actually tries to do things I agree with, not one that promises me everything and delivers nothing.

    Delivers nothing? You're kidding, right?

    ReplyDelete
  11. It is perception, not reality, that garners the votes. Democrats were the ones who created Jim Crow laws. It was Republicans who supported integration in the south in the 50s and 60s. It was Republicans who were the deciding votes in a Democrat majority Congress in passing the 1964 Civil Rights law.

    African-Americans would benefit from lower tax rates. African-Americans would benefit from school vouchers. African-Americans would benefit from improving economic prospects of small businesses.

    You may actually check the historical record.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Democrats were the ones who created Jim Crow laws.

    That is a disingenuous, misleading statement and I think that you know that it is, and why it is. The Democrats of whom you speak were Strom Thurmond and his ilk; and his heirs today--with their macaca moments--are Republicans.
    And please don't tell me about Sen. Byrd a second time.

    ReplyDelete
  13. As I said, rodak, check the historical record. What they are now has little to do with what they were then. If I cannot tell you about Byrd then you cannot talk about Thurmond.

    Bill Clinton had his "Strom Thurmond" moment (more than once) yet you ignore it.

    And it wasn't misleading, it was true. That's what really bothers you, I think. You know the truth behind it.

    ReplyDelete
  14. The key words here, Douglas, are not "Republican" and "Democrat," but "liberal" and "conservative."

    ReplyDelete
  15. "Democrats were the ones who created Jim Crow laws."

    Doug is right on here Rodak. Jim Crow laws were put in place by red neck Democrats, and certainly upheld by red neck Democrats.

    I'm a White lady. Registered Independent because I have always voted the person and not the party. As for leanings I seem to fall somewhere between Conservative and Libertarian.

    I was active in the Southern states with voter registration in 1959-1962. If the well off are Republicans as you say then I can tell you from experience it was the Republicans who did the most to advance the Black's cause during the early Civil Rights era. The Democrats were the ones we had to fight and who blocked our way to the voter registration offices, pushed us off the sidewalks, wouldn't rent us a room in their motels or let us sit down in their eateries (I am meaning White people here! but we were working to help the Blacks.) These people also spit on us, cussed us and pointed guns at us.

    As to why Blacks are attracted to Democrats I believe it is mostly tradition and simply allowing their thinking to be done by others. Certainly here in Greensboro the Simkins PAC has sway when it is common knowledge that their ruling elite who make the decisions are corrupt to the core. Black voters here in Greensboro seem not to understand that they pay property taxes too so every dollar stolen from the city and County coffers is their money. BB

    ReplyDelete
  16. Rodak - You based your argument for Blacks voting Democrat on and I quote "the legislation that the Democratic party enacts is legislation that African-Americans tend to benefit from" You then go into hyperbole about Democrats historical record on civil rights and you seem to suggest Republicans were either absent or played no part.

    I am a history buff so lets play a little history shall we!

    Eisenhower supported the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka U.S. Supreme Court decision, in which segregated ("separate but equal") schools were ruled to be unconstitutional. He told District of Columbia officials to make Washington a model for the rest of the country in integrating black and white public school children.

    He proposed to Congress the Civil Rights Acts of 1957 and 1960 and signed those acts into law. Although both Acts were weaker than subsequent civil rights legislation, they constituted the first significant civil rights acts since the 1870s. The "Little Rock Nine" incident of 1957 involved the refusal by Arkansas to honor a Federal court order to integrate the schools. Under Executive Order 10730, Eisenhower placed the Arkansas National Guard under Federal control and sent Army troops to escort nine black students into an all-white public school.

    Eisenhower appointed the following Justices to the Supreme Court of the United States:

    Earl Warren, 1953 (Chief Justice)
    John Marshall Harlan II, 1954
    William J. Brennan, 1956
    Charles Evans Whittaker, 1957
    Potter Stewart, 1958

    All these Republican men had an impact on Brown vs Education...!!



    Nixon tied desegregation to improving the quality of education[85] and enforced the law after the Supreme Court, in Alexander v. Holmes County Board of Education (1969), prohibited further delays. By fall of 1970, two million southern black children enrolled in newly created unitary fully integrated school districts; this meant that only 18% of Southern black children attended all-black schools, a decrease from 70% when Nixon came to office.[76] Nixon's Cabinet Committee on Education, under the leadership of Labor Secretary George P. Shultz, quietly set up local biracial committees to assure smooth compliance without violence or political grandstanding. "In this sense, Nixon was the greatest school desegregator in American history," historian Dean Kotlowski concluded.[88] Author Conrad Black concurred: "In his singular, unsung way, Richard Nixon defanged and healed one of the potentially greatest controversies of the time."


    What does the record say about Republicans and the battle for civil rights and specifically for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Public Law 88-352)?

    Since Abraham Lincoln, Republicans have been there for blacks when it counted. Nevertheless, Democrats invariably take all the credit for the success of the civil rights movement and invariably fail to give any credit to Republicans.

    In fact, the civil rights movement was not about politics. Nor was it about which politicians did what and which political party should take the most credit. When it came to civil rights, America's politicians merely saw the handwriting on the wall and wrote the legislation to make into federal law the historical changes that had already taken place. There was nothing else they could do.

    The movement of blacks to the North, as well as their contributions as fighting men in the world wars, plus the hard work of millions of blacks and their families and churches, along with the efforts of many private groups and individuals made the civil rights movement succeed.

    Civil rights for blacks found its historical moment after 1945. Bills introduced in Congress regarding employment policy brought the issue of civil rights to the attention of representatives and senators.

    In 1945, 1947 and 1949, the House of Representatives voted to abolish the poll tax restricting the right to vote. Although the Senate did not join in this effort, the bills signaled a growing interest in protecting civil rights through federal action.

    The executive branch of government, by presidential order, likewise became active by ending discrimination in the nation's military forces and in federal employment and work done under government contract.

    Harry Truman ordered the integration of the military. However, his Republican opponent in the election of 1948, Tom Dewey, was just as strong a proponent for that effort as any Democrat.

    As a matter of fact, the record shows that since 1933 Republicans had a more positive record on civil rights than the Democrats.

    In the 26 major civil rights votes after 1933, a majority of Democrats opposed civil rights legislation in over 80 percent of the votes. By contrast, the Republican majority favored civil rights in over 96 percent of the votes.

    [See http://www.congresslink.org/civil/essay.html and http://www.yale.edu/ynhti/curriculum/units/1982/3/82.03.04.x.html.]

    DIXIECRATS?? ..ALL BECAME REPUBLICAN MYTH

    The myth that all the Dixiecrats became Republicans shortly after passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, another big lie. Richard Russell, Mendell Rivers, Clinton's mentor William Fulbright, Robert Byrd, Fritz Hollings and Al Gore Sr. remained Democrats till their dying day.

    Most of the Dixiecrats did not become Republicans. They created the Dixiecrats and then, when the civil rights movement succeeded, they returned to the Democratic fold. It was not till much later, with a new, younger breed of Southerner and the thousands of Northerners moving into the South, that Republicans began to make gains.

    VOTINGS RIGHTS ACT

    Republicans supported it in higher proportions than Democrats. Even though those Democrats were Southern segregationists, without Republicans the bill would have failed. Republicans were the other much-needed leg of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Also are you refering to Blacks that overhwemigly have a born agian experince and who are religious conservative are they bible thumpers also..or do they cease to be bible thumpers ounce they pull the lever for democrats BUT they reclaim the coveted title when they pull it for Republican...im confused please explain.

    ReplyDelete
  18. "provide social safety nets..You mean like project buidlings which sparked the crack cocaine movement and entrapped millions and killed thousands or like welfare without any back to work initatives until the evil Republicans decided to add them with welare reform..give me a break...how has throwing money at a problem solved our problem.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Why do you continue to lie "The Democrats of whom you speak were Strom Thurmond and his ilk; and his heirs today--with their macaca moments--are Republicans...sorry good try at being a spin doctor that cery conventent for Democrats to say hey our hands are clean its all the Republicans fault. Most of the Dixiecrats did not become Republicans. They created the Dixiecrats and then, when the civil rights movement succeeded, they returned to the Democratic fold. It was not till much later, with a new, younger breed of Southerner and the thousands of Northerners moving into the South, that Republicans began to make gains. The South did not become solidly Republican until the late 90's..years after the Civil Rights bill.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Give me a break - "I register with a party that actually tries to do things I agree with, not one that promises me everything and delivers nothing...That sounds quite impressive and exacly what has the Democrat Party done for you other than send you a check?

    ReplyDelete
  21. The trick is for the GOP to present "hot-button" issues which will convince the bleating merinos of our society to vote against their own best economic interests: i.e., ...Another great line so how long have blacks been voting for The Democrats and why are our people still suffering? Please if there ever was casebook study for the rant you just spwed its blacks and teh Democrat Party...that is folks thinking there voting for there economic interst only to find that at the end of the day they just voted against their own best economic interests: Empowerment is whats in the black communties economic empoerment not dependcy which the Democrats call economic empowerment but in truth is a psedo form of empowerment. It gives you just enough to come begging and never enough to empower you...

    ReplyDelete
  22. Doug is right on here Rodak. Jim Crow laws were put in place by red neck Democrats, and certainly upheld by red neck Democrats.

    Wow. People are going to a whole lot of trouble to teach me things that I've been stipulating all along. Yes--there used to be a higher concentration of moderates and liberals in the Republican Party. There used to be "Rockefeller Republicans" like Jacob Javitts and many others. And, yes, there used to be a much higher concentration of conservatives in the Democratic Party--mostly in the South. I have said all of that from the git-go.
    But, what, dear friends, does that have to do with the make-up of the two parties today? We are not talking about the 1950s, we are talking about the 21st century. The Republican Party today is the party of Ronald Reagan. Reagan's attitude towards African-Americans was to talk about "welfare mothers in Cadillacs."
    So far in this discussion I have attempted to provide some answers to the question posed in the topic. Most of the rest of the comments have been dedicated not to providing opposing ideas but simply to showing me how wrong I am. Fine. If I'm wrong, what is the right answer?
    I don't think that it is this:

    As to why Blacks are attracted to Democrats I believe it is mostly tradition and simply allowing their thinking to be done by others.

    What that basically implies is that they're lazy and stupid. I'm not buying that one.
    I will restate my basic assumption, which is that it is essentially a class issue: the Democrats pay heed to the wants and needs of working class and poor people; the Republicans are fixated on tax cuts for the rich. Those are generalities, true enough; but they draw the basic line in the sand.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Once again, with respect to the shifting ideological positions of the two parties over the course of the past five decades, please take into consideration this statement that I posted yesterday:

    The key words here, Douglas, are not "Republican" and "Democrat," but "liberal" and "conservative."

    ReplyDelete
  24. Exactly where, btw, do I do this?:

    You then go into hyperbole about Democrats historical record on civil rights

    What I think you must be referring to is my statement that liberal Democrats "spearheaded" the civil rights legislation of the 1960s. I think that this is true. I think that it was LBJ who, as POTUS, used his former senate connections to push that legislation through congress and into law. Consider what the word "spearheaded" means.
    If I have lapsed into "hyperbole" I would appreciate a couple of quotes to show me exactly where I made those errors of exaggeration.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Please indulge the necessity of my making one more comment, for I see, in reviewing what I've posted above, that I have a correction to make: I misquoted Ronald Reagan. His signature phrase was not "welfare mothers in Cadillacs, but rather "welfare QUEENS in Cadillacs. Reagan's carefully crafted phrase was meant to send a signal to Joe Lunchbucket that those black women (and don't bother telling me that "Cadillac" was not code for "black") were living high on the hog on the sweat of his hard-working brow. I must not rob "the Great Communicator" of his due by altering his "majestic" slogan. Mea maxima culpa.

    ReplyDelete
  26. With many human institutions and activities, we are the first to recommend that we consult history. After all, we frequently ask that people examine human conduct starting at a minimum of 5,000 years, going back as much as 13,000 years.

    However, looking at history with respect to the political parties in this country, beyond perhaps 1960-1970, advances very little with respect to this particular discussion.

    First of all, all political parties are always in a state of flux. They change as they need to change, and as circumstances change. They also change to garner more votes.

    The real issue here is why do blacks continue, even at this point in time, to vote Democrat. To argue about which party did what some 50 years ago does not advance any societal agenda which might have a positive and constructive influence today.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Log, that is a difficult question for a black person to answer. It is an impossible one for me, a white person. I have no way of understanding why the guy (regardless of skin color) next to me voted for Obama or for McCain. I can only know why I voted the way I did. I can speculate about ongoing campaigns (they never really end, do they?) for new voters, the perpetuation of stereotypes (of each party and it's principles), and social myths and realities. But these won't be the answer you seek.

    Why do abused women (and men) return to their abuser repeatedly?

    Why do people take bad advice from friends, regardless of the problems that advice causes?

    Why do people watch reality TV?

    The mysteries of life.

    ReplyDelete
  28. So, as I understand it, the majority opinion of the commenters here is that there are no GOOD reasons for African-Americans to support the Democratic agenda. It is only that African-Americans have been duped, or perhaps bribed, into voting for liberal policies. Does this pretty well sum up the majority opinion?

    ReplyDelete
  29. Actually, rodak, I think it is more a matter of inertia. Somewhere along the way, the idea caught on that Democrats were "on the side" of the little guy, the downtrodden, etc. Perhaps inherited from the FDR days, a period where a filthy rich guy did little to actually change things but made people think he was helping, and people resist change so they continue. Some of the reasons might be found in the discussion about the viability of third parties.

    ReplyDelete
  30. So, you concur with my last comment, then? African-Americans are too, let's say... "passive" to overcome "inertia," and not gnerally bright enough to see through "the idea" that "caught on"?

    ReplyDelete
  31. Omnium: Thanks for weighing in. Please visit us often.

    Your observation that people want to be on a winning team is probably a very significant factor.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Douglas: There are many imponderables out there. We simply want the young folks to realize that, and explore the various ways of looking at things, and for those of us who are older to constantly question ourselves in a continuing effort to improve ourselves, and the world around us.

    The Logistician frequently notes that his worldview changes substantially roughly every 2 years, based on his travels, experiences, reading, and people who he meets. He believes that we should constantly place ourselves in uncomfortable and unusual situations, because we learn more about the world from those experiences. In his view, sticking with what we know and what makes us comfortable does little to advance our appreciation of the world.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Rodak, I don't think it's racial. I think people are reluctant to break away from anything. They like routine, they like stability, they tend to just "go along" more than "swim upstream". They are taught to "not rock the boat", not to "change horse in mid-stream", and so on. People are pushed to conform. Even when teens rebel against conformity, they only rebel against conforming to the adults' wishes, they conform to their peers. So, no, I guess I do not agree with your last comment. Especially since it was negatively expressed and narrow minded.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Rodak wrote: "So, as I understand it, the majority opinion of the commenters here is that there are no GOOD reasons for African-Americans to support the Democratic agenda. It is only that African-Americans have been duped, or perhaps bribed, into voting for liberal policies. Does this pretty well sum up the majority opinion?"

    That does appear to be the opinion expressed by those who chose to comment, and thus the "vocal" opinion. We view it a little differently conceptually.

    The Democratic Party might be viewed as the party with whom blacks feel most comfortable, or they feel is more responsive to their concerns, or is the lesser of two major evils. It is what it is.

    We guess it is somewhat like marriage. Viewed statistically (in terms of success), and considering the negative costs to society (divorce, broken homes, physical and mental abuse, medical / hospital and legal system costs), marriage is a pretty illogical path to pursue. Society would roundly criticize a CEO making similar emotional decisions about any enterprise, and yet we put up with that foolishness interpersonally.

    Arguably, being associated with a political party, which does not advance your interests, may not be that ridiculous a pattern of behavior, since it does not affect you on an immediately cognizable personal level. Some might argue that there is no good reason to be married, which does have a very immediate personal impact.

    ReplyDelete
  35. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Log, I agree with the idea of re-evaluating one's views every so often. People who do that are those that consider what is going on around them. A friend of mine defined intelligence as "the ability and desire to question one's environment." I would not say that is intelligence, I would call that a word we often used back in the 60s... awareness. Most people go through life without considering those things which do not immediately impact them. You speak about this quite well in your response to rodak above. As I said somewhere else, we (human beings) are creatures of habit and we do not like change, as a rule. People who do seek change, who re-evaluate their views, who question authority, are unusual; they are not the norm. When we speak of groups, as in this question, we are not talking about those outside the norm, we are talking about the majority of any group. And then we have to think in terms of group psychology.

    ReplyDelete
  37. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  38. I am interested in the reaction to my assessment of the consensus on this topic as being "negative" and "narrow-minded." The negativity is not mine, but that seen as having been expressed by others in their comments. I'm not quite sure what the "narrow-minded" refers to. When we see upwards of 90-percent of African-Americans voting Democratic in nearly all elections, that fact does not leave much latitude for "broad-mindedness" concerning African-American preferences. In fact, so large a majority suggests single-mindedness and purpose to be the motivation behind the actions of Black voters. It has been shown how Black voters were originally mostly Republican and how they switched to the Democrats based on issues. Thus, circa 1965, African-Americans were not stymied by inertia. It has also been the case that large numbers of working-class Whites ("Reagan Democrats") have switched parties, also over issues. I see no reason to assume a greater degree of conformity, intellectual laziness, fear of change, etc. among African-Americans than among any other group. Yet, no other identifiable ethnic group votes so overwhelmingly for one party. I have to believe that this is, therefore, purposeful behavior on the part of African-Americans--not mere habit or mindless conformity.

    ReplyDelete
  39. What does it say about any of us commenting on this blog, or any commentators in the media for that matter, when we or they use phrases about those with whom we disagree, or do not understand, which essentially amount to:

    "You're misguided."

    "What you fail to understand...."

    "My choices are good and logical choices, and yours, or those of others, aren't."

    "They're just sheep."

    "They've been duped."

    "They're incapable of realizing what is occurring to them."

    "They're irresponsible."

    "My party advances positive interests in society, and yours doesn't."

    "They've been bribed."

    Those individuals using such phrases, or having such attitudes, are much, much, much better people than the members of this Institute, and are far more intelligent, incisive, and perceptive people. Excuse us. We should bow our heads in deference to you superior people. We don't deserve to engage in the same conversation as you.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Log, you did very well in chastising us... until the last paragraph... then you stooped to our level.

    Rodak, the negativity was in the tone of the words. the narrow mindedness was in what I inferred from those words regarding one segment of our society.

    Let's look at the implications. Does the fact that (on average) 90% of African-Americans vote for Democrats mean they are, as a group, more in tune with which political party serves their needs best? Or does it mean that they, as a group, more oblivious to their own self interests? Does it mean they are more easily duped, or less easily duped than any other ethnic group?

    Do you see where I am going with this?

    My belief is that the unique dynamics of being Black in the US might mean there are factors which add to the desire to be unified and that this applies to political leanings. If I am right then we must factor that into mix.

    I also do not believe the conversion from Republican to Democrat came about in a narrow period of time (as in "circa 1965". But, let's assume it did, could it have been due to an organized effort to register people as Democrats? Much like what was done more recently by The Rainbow Coalition and other Democrat affiliated groups?

    And what is the purpose of registering people to one party over another in our system? Do we pay dues as members of a political party? No, so it isn't for direct monetary benefit. I think it accomplishes two things:

    1. It dilutes the individual power (the more groups you represent, the less power any one bloc has over the leadership).

    2. The "herd effect". This is one of the points I have been trying to make. We tend to follow the crowd, do what we see as popular.

    But what is bothersome about the issue is this. Any group that is so solidly in one party's camp that its vote can be so dependable has no real power within that party at all. the party has no incentive to actually work to keep that group loyal.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Thank you Douglas for being so perceptive. Of course, there was never a doubt on our part in that regard.

    We purposefully "stooped to the level" of some of our commenters for a reason - to emphasize a point.

    It is indeed rare that someone participates in this forum and displays something other than an above average facility with the English language. The vast, vast majority of people who generate comments are articulate, express themselves well, and have a good command of the language.

    That leads us to assume that in the same way in which they are skilled in the presentation and organization of their thoughts, those same skills are also used to inject personal, snide, and subjective invective, which, quite frankly, we would prefer not to have on this blog.

    Every single person who has exhibited some nastiness has the facility and skill to make the same points and to get across the same message without explicitly or implicitly making personal aspersions. It's unnecessary. It advances no societal interests. It makes others more resistant to your communication. It places people on the defensive. It discourages others from participating in a discussion out of fear of being attacked personally.

    Most importantly, it doesn't get us anywhere.

    We developed this forum to be a "take away some value" forum. We hope that people are better off intellectually after having participated than when they first arrived. If they leave angry and bitter, we will have accomplished little.

    Please, everyone, let's observe some civility.

    ReplyDelete
  42. I did not mean to imply laziness or stupidity when I suggested Blacks still tend to vote for Democrats out of "tradition". My extended family of aunts uncles and cousins are almost all Democrats. My parents and grandparents on both sides were Democrats. All of my cousins have college education,(some Masters) and good careers. They are not stupid nor are they particularly lazy. But I will not discuss politics with any one of them because they drive me up a wall. If the candidate has a D after his name then anything he says is the gospel truth. This is why I conclud that your voting just like your choice of church is often tradition.

    One more fact may be operating in my family's case. I am the only only child in the group. The others all have siblings with whom they can confer and who can bolster their opinions. Having no one but my Democratic parents (and you know how we like to go against our parents) I was better able to buck tradition and think for myself.

    LOL :) This is really getting down right silly isn't it? If any of us had the answer to this question the National Republican Committee would pay us big bucks for it. BB

    ReplyDelete
  43. I did not mean to imply laziness or stupidity when I suggested Blacks still tend to vote for Democrats out of "tradition". My extended family of aunts uncles and cousins are almost all Democrats. My parents and grandparents on both sides were Democrats. All of my cousins have college education,(some Masters) and good careers. They are not stupid nor are they particularly lazy. But I will not discuss politics with any one of them because they drive me up a wall. If the candidate has a D after his name then anything he says is the gospel truth. This is why I conclud that your voting just like your choice of church is often tradition.

    One more fact may be operating in my family's case. I am the only only child in the group. The others all have siblings with whom they can confer and who can bolster their opinions. Having no one but my Democratic parents (and you know how we like to go against our parents) I was better able to buck tradition and think for myself.

    LOL :) This is really getting down right silly isn't it? If any of us had the answer to this question the National Republican Committee would pay us big bucks for it. BB

    ReplyDelete
  44. Actually, rodak, I think it is more a matter of inertia. Somewhere along the way, the idea caught on that Democrats were "on the side" of the little guy, the downtrodden, etc. Perhaps inherited from the FDR days, a period where a filthy rich guy did little to actually change things but made people think he was helping, and people resist change so they continue. Some of the reasons might be found in the discussion about the viability of third parties.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Please indulge the necessity of my making one more comment, for I see, in reviewing what I've posted above, that I have a correction to make: I misquoted Ronald Reagan. His signature phrase was not "welfare mothers in Cadillacs, but rather "welfare QUEENS in Cadillacs. Reagan's carefully crafted phrase was meant to send a signal to Joe Lunchbucket that those black women (and don't bother telling me that "Cadillac" was not code for "black") were living high on the hog on the sweat of his hard-working brow. I must not rob "the Great Communicator" of his due by altering his "majestic" slogan. Mea maxima culpa.

    ReplyDelete

"There Are More Than 2 Or 3 Ways To View Any Issue; There Are At Least 27"™

"Experience Isn't Expensive; It's Priceless"™

"Common Sense should be a Way of Life"™

Opportunity to Serve as "Guest Author"

This forum was designed to be YOUR forum for the civil exchange of ideas by people with all points of views. We welcome the submission of articles by all of our readers, as long as they are in compliance with our Guidelines contained in Post No. 34. We look forward to receiving your submissions.