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News: Atlas Hardware Upgrade complete October 13, 2013.

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1  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Presidential Election Trends / Re: Why Democrats can't win over (more) white working-class voters (Slate) on: December 18, 2014, 12:52:33 am
The problem with this article, and many others, is that it conflates "non-college educated whites" with "working class whites". Although these categories overlap, they're distinct categories. In many parts of the country, Democrats have continued to perform strongly with working class whites. Non-southern working class whites who aren't tied to the extraction industry still compose a formidable Democratic constituency.

In many states, the white working class doesn't exist. Most working class voters in California, Nevada, Texas, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona are Latino. The working class in Hawaii is solely composed of Latinos and Asians. The majority of working class voters in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are racial minorities. The Democratic Party is still the party of the working class.

Good points. There are a fair number of wealthy whites (including a few on the Forbes 400)-and an even greater number of moderately well-off whites-who lack college degrees. These are the groups of non-college whites who are the most Republican, and who would certainly add a significant contribution to the Republican share of those white voters who lack college degrees. And even in the South, it's the upper and middle-income white voters who are the most staunchly Republican. And in much of the South, with its lower cost of living, people with rather modest incomes can live a "middle-class" lifestyle quite comfortably.

I'd also add that there are a good number of people who have bachelor's degrees-including many whites-but who really should be described as working-class based on their work. This would especially be true of the younger generation, working in the service sector, etc.-particularly in urban environs and places where a lot of people in general are highly educated. Not many (white) working-class Republican voters in many of the cities-especially not among the young and highly educated demographics.
2  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obama pardons 8 non-violent drug offenders, part of "larger push" on: December 17, 2014, 09:59:46 pm
It's a start.
3  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Who is your favorite Beatle? on: December 17, 2014, 07:13:21 pm
And frankly Pete Best deserves his own category here

4  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Who is your favorite Beatle? on: December 17, 2014, 07:12:40 pm
George was the best. He was everything as a person the hypocritical Lennon's songs preached about and his music was great, too. Paul was too pop oriented.

"We're bigger than Jesus Christ himself."

5  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Stephen Collins confesses. on: December 17, 2014, 07:09:39 pm
6  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Presidential Election Trends / Why Democrats can't win over (more) white working-class voters (Slate) on: December 17, 2014, 01:45:23 pm
This article was from last month, but it's absolutely relevant to discussions nowadays.  I think it hits on some good points and adds an appreciation of the many factors-historical and contemporary-for why Democrats lose so badly with significant segments of white working-class voters these days.

The party’s economic populism doesn’t reach that far.

Some excerpts:
...working-class whites didn’t leave the Democratic Party over insufficiently populist policy and rhetoric. The liberal economic reforms of 1960s—and Medicare in particular—paid benefits to white working-class families throughout the 1970s and ’80s, even as the group moved to a decisive break with the Democrats. No, the proximate cause of the break was the Democratic Party’s close identification with black Americans, who—after the riots of the late ’60s and ’70s—became identified with urban disorder and welfare.

Specifically, whites were bewildered and infuriated with liberals who defended rioting communities—correctly noting the decades of deprivation and abuse that led to those violent outbursts—and pushed anti-poverty programs to address the underlying conditions. Black incomes rose while at the same time, many white incomes were beginning to stagnate or even fall. Why was the government spending our tax dollars on them, working-class whites asked, when they destroy their neighborhoods and refuse to work, and we’re losing our jobs and our homes? In Nixonland, historian Rick Perlstein captures the basic attitude by relaying this comment from a white construction worker, directed at George McGovern, “They’re payin’ people who are on welfare today doin’ nothin’! They’re laughin’ at our society! And we’re all hardworkin’ people and we’re gettin’ laughed at for workin’ every day!”

Part of this was just racism. For most of the post-war era, whites were empowered by the federal government to separate themselves and their lives from black Americans. For the white middle class, federal aid built white suburbs and white schools, and for the white working-class, it built segregated housing projects and cities. The civil rights revolution brought blacks and black demands to their doorsteps, and for the white working class—which couldn’t just leave for the suburbs—it fueled a backlash.

But part of it was something broader. After all, there wasn’t a backlash to government programs writ large. Then, as now, working-class whites are ardent supporters of Social Security and Medicare. But to them, our retirement programs came with an implicit social contract: If you work and contribute to society, society will care for you into your old age. By contrast, you didn’t have to work to benefit from anti-poverty programs, in fact, you could riot and still receive government benefits. To these whites, the New Deal and its successor programs rewarded self-reliance and independence. The War on Poverty didn’t. And they hated it.

The grievances haven’t gone away, and in an era of slow growth and stagnant wages, they’ve likely gotten worse. It’s why, in the 2012 presidential election, Republican nominee Mitt Romney ran a series of ads—concentrated in the white working-class areas of Ohio and Pennsylvania—attacking President Obama for “gutting welfare” and “cutting checks” to people who wouldn’t work. For as much as this was plainly racial—welfare is still associated with blacks in the public mind—it also reflected a genuine frustration with the shape of the world.

Put another way, for a new rhetoric of populism to work—or at least, attract the winnable whites identified by Teixeira and Halpin—it needs to come with a commitment to universal policies that working-class whites like and support. (It’s no coincidence that the most liberal working-class whites belong to private and public sector unions.)


I would also add that the contempt directed at working-class whites (particularly those who are "foolishly voting against their own economic interests", which as a Democrat, I admit is frustrating to watch) by many liberals-who are often middle-class whites themselves!-doesn't help build bridges to white working-class voters. Hell, the fact that Democrats need to "build bridges" at all is a big part of the problem!

At the same time, I don't want the Democrats to pander to racists- or bigots in general. That's a lousy strategy that would betray Democratic Party principles.  But it would be a grave mistake for the Democratic Party-and frankly, elitist, insulting, hypocritical, and quite arguably, bigoted in and of itself -to write off many millions of voters as "a bunch of ignorant, undereducated rubes, bigots, and fundamentalist morons." We need to do better with at least some of these voters.
7  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: some thoughts on homosexuality on: December 16, 2014, 06:08:39 pm
It's kind of shocking to me that there are still people who are hung up about the gays. Not so much for the gays themselves because everybody has their personal insecurities, but for anybody else, really? It's really Inksing bizarre.

8  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: 1 out of 5 Republicans Agree: Rectally feeding suspected terrorists is a-ok! on: December 16, 2014, 12:53:02 pm
A lot of Republicans don't really seem to care about the dignity and human rights of people so I'm not surprised.

The pro-life party
9  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Would Warren being a Reagan-Bush voter hurt her among Democrats? on: December 15, 2014, 09:23:52 pm
There's a difference between being a Republican in the mid-1960s as a teenager and being one in the mid-1990s as a middle aged woman

10  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Would Warren being a Reagan-Bush voter hurt her among Democrats? on: December 15, 2014, 08:45:21 pm
No difference because she's going to lose anyway against the best GOP candidate.

She may not even make it past the primary.
11  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Would Warren being a Reagan-Bush voter hurt her among Democrats? on: December 15, 2014, 08:38:13 pm
Or would Democratic voters (particularly constituencies like black Americans, LGBT Americans, the poor, union voters, and others who were harmed by Reagan and Bush's policies-along with older generations of  liberals and Democrats in general who remember the Reagan-Bush years)  be willing to "forgive and forget" this?

12  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Cruz vs Warren 2016, Who wins? on: December 15, 2014, 08:36:31 pm
An epic battle between two opposite ends of the political spectrum, could this be the most divisive election in modern times, a huge blowout, or something else? YOU DECIDE!!!!!!!!!!

FWIW, Warren was a registered Republican who voted for Reagan and Bush Sr.
13  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: opinion of the following definition of rape on: December 15, 2014, 02:15:33 pm
This thread is almost as unnecessary as Tweed himself.

Most art is "unecessary" (/sagetroll)
14  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: David Koch: "I'm a social liberal" on: December 15, 2014, 11:27:37 am
Anyway, I read Koch's comments as: "If it does not affect me or my wallet personally, I don't give a sh*t." Since he's a (very) rich white man, he has that luxury.
15  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Rudy 9/11: Eric Garner death caused by teachers' unions on: December 15, 2014, 11:12:08 am
You know if not for 9/11 this guy would be living in obscurity and we wouldn't have to listen to his fascist drivel. Damn you Osama. Angry

Yeah, didn't his idea of being "tough on crime" involve arresting homeless people, graffiti artists, etc.??

Then 9/11 happened and he became "America's Mayor" and milked it for all its worth. Remember his joke of a presidential campaign?
16  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: David Koch: "I'm a social liberal" on: December 15, 2014, 11:07:20 am
Why are so many people under the misapprehension that being "socially liberal" is the same thing as being socially libertarian?

because the political compass
17  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: December 2014 At-large Senate Election on: December 14, 2014, 11:29:57 pm
1. SWE
2. Lief
3. Bacon King
18  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Which US Senator is most likely to be a secret Atlas Poster? on: December 14, 2014, 04:11:04 pm
Mary Landrieu
19  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Mike The Trainers guide to STAYING FIT and a HEALTHY WORK OUT on: December 13, 2014, 10:27:35 pm
20  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Favorite U.S. Supreme Court Justice and favorite pizza topping? on: December 13, 2014, 10:23:42 pm
what is this thread
21  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Parting shots? on: December 13, 2014, 10:14:37 pm
lord have mercy on this troubled soul
22  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: "Holiday tree" on: December 13, 2014, 08:03:12 pm
Of all the things to be upset about...
23  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Ted Cruz accidentally helps confirm up to 20 Obama nominees! on: December 13, 2014, 08:01:59 pm
Following Senate procedures is like watching people play Magic The Gathering.

Fortunately we have Ted Cruz to entertain us!
24  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: MINMUM WAGE on: December 13, 2014, 07:36:33 pm
Preach it!
25  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: What is the worst country in the world? on: December 13, 2014, 07:34:01 pm
Somalia (if you want to call it a country at this point), North Korea, etc.
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