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View Diary: African-Americans, Social Security Cuts & Priorities (73 comments)

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  •  I prefer that people be civil (13+ / 0-)

    but in politics when people feel passionately about something, they often get un-civil.

    In the latest great intrasquad liberal flame war, neither side has the monopoly on civility.  However, I will say that my sympathies are far more with the people opposed to Social Security cuts.

    Again, while I generally disdain nastiness, I can at least understand where the Obama critics are coming from.  Social Security cuts will harm friends, family, and the most vulnerable.  I can understand why people would get upset to the point of getting nasty over such concerns.  Because I have friends and family who would be hurt by a SS cut.

    On the other hand I have less tolerance for nastiness coming from the folks defending SS cuts.  It would be one thing if they were motivated by genuine belief that such cuts are necessary, good policy, but that's not the case.  We know this because they've been telling us that "PBO" would never cut SS in this way, but now that such cuts have been officially put on the table, suddenly they're not so bad after all.

    This, and a lot of the interactions with them over the last four years, indicate to me that much of the over-the-top nastiness that comes from the pro-Obama camp is motivated less by spiritied and honest debate over policy but by personal affinity for President Obama himself, and extreme offense when people challenge Obama, especially so when people are quite frank or angry in challenging the President.  At the end of the day, these folks seem driven more by loyalty to the President, much less so by principles.

    Why else why anyone would get so nasty defending someone, let alone a politician, who they do not know personally?  I mean, I get spirited defending Joe Montana in arguments about the greatest QB ever, but I never get nasty because I don't know the guy.  But if I get into an argument over my mom's SS benefits being cut, I could totally see myself getting a little emotional and carried away.

    While I like the President, he is a politician, and at the end of the day what matters to me more are the best interests of the American people.  I am far more offended when the best interests of the people are threatened than when someone threatens the best political interests of the President.  

    “Th’ noise ye hear is not th’ first gun iv a revolution. It’s on’y th’ people iv the United States batin’ a carpet.” - Mr. Dooley

    by puakev on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 05:24:17 PM PST

    •  When I posted a link to the Black Agenda Report (17+ / 0-)

      and their attack on the President due to his positions on SS cuts, and its impacts on African Americans, the response by one of the President's loyalists was to question the "blackness" of Black Agenda Report.

      To me, that story sums up what's wrong with the discussion from the loyalists. A series of posts about how Social Security cuts will harm Blacks becomes an  excuse to attack those making these arguments merely because they disagree with President Obama's positions and what they mean.

      Ultimately, the point really - whether its the civility distraction or the "blackness" dig or the "you question President Obama because  are a racist" misdirection all stem from the same thing: The desire to silence dissent.

      •  That gets nerve wrecking (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Roger Fox

        Ther are plenty of things...personal things and grounds on which to question Glen Ford.

        Ford's (or Dixon's) blackness isn't one of them.

        oh well, maybe I should just to doing my little book reviews and things (which I am very, very busy doing)

        By the way, long time no see, bruh1

        •  I didn't find it nerve wrecking. I found it (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          aliasalias, JayRaye

          clarifying. Its easy to say things like You don't like Obama because he's  Black, but when you say that in the context above one understands that the Obama loyalist argument isn't to be trusted as a substantive discussion of race.

        •  by the way, you keep doing the vague (3+ / 0-)

          comments where there are reason to dislike someone but you don't state why. For record, I don't care about the personal grounds. That suggests to me the wrong priorities too. I work with peple every day that I don't like. I am not workign with them to build a friendship. I am working with them to get something done.

          •  If you want me to be not vague (0+ / 0-)

            stop it with your usual ellipitcial bullshit.

            First of all, it's not as if both sides don't come fully equipped with a  set of facts

            The "I have the truth about x,y,z and the other guy has nothing...that's a bunch of bullshit and both sides do that.

            So what IS your function here; to preach to the choir? Simply to disseminate information? To educate those whom are confused?

            •  Just so everyone is clear (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Chitown Kev, JayRaye

              (1) I asked you to please stop being vague in your attacks here , engaging in false equivalence and not attack people  based on how you feel about them personally if that has nothing with substance of public debates. You respond by claiming I am writing ambiguously.

              At this point, if you aren't able to backup your statements, please avoid making them. I don't think anyone here would question the meaning of what I am saying to you.

              (2) Your rebuttal about the facts relies on a post from the People's View that states Chained CPI isn't a cut because they say so. That's the core of the argument as written.

              I will focus on the relevant portions of the article you cite towards this discussion, which is under the sections about whether Chained CPI is a cut rather than the politics.

              Here are some of the articles and opinion pieces that the article you cite leaves out in its citation from Krugman:

              Switching from the regular CPI to the chained CPI doesn’t affect benefits immediately after retirement, which are based on your past earnings.What it does mean is that after retirement your payments grow more slowly, about 0.3 percent each year. So if you retire at 65, your income at 75 would be 3 percent less under this proposal than under current law; at 85 it would be 6 percent less; there’s supposedly a bump-up in benefits for people who make it that far.

              This is not good; there’s no good policy reason to be doing this, because the savings won’t have any significant impact on the underlying budget issues. And for many older people it would hurt. Also, the symbolism of a Democratic president cutting Social Security is pretty awful.

              3. Other things the article you cite says;

              (a) Compares Chained CPI to slowing the rate of growth in Defense spending

              (b) Mischaracterizes an article published by CBPP  by 2 authors there that was published months earlier that in fact admits that in terms of inflation Chained CPI can lead to cuts, but decides its worth the risk.  Your article claims that the article is some how endorsing the idea that its not a cut due to the impact of inflation.  Your article also ignores that the same CBPP said only 2 days before about the actual proposed policy:


              I can go on, but what would be the point. You aren't from what I can tell dealing fairly or honestly here.

              Feel free to respond as much as you want here, but realize that no one is buying that you are trying to bring civility. You are engaged in the politics of distraction.

              (c) Manipulates and parses in precise the way you attempted to accuse me of language to pretend that their statement about 'baseline benefits" has any meaning in the context of a discussion about benefits matching the rate of inflation.

              To illustrate the intellectual dishonesty of the article, let me offer a really simply version of the facts:

              i. I offer you 30k a year in salary.
              ii. Inflation is increasing by 3 percent.
              iii. I assume that inflation is increasing by 0 percent each year.

              So for each year that I make that assumption where I leave you at 30k, the reality is in real dollars, you have less money although baseline looks the same. It would be intellectually dishonest of me to claim that I have no harmed you economically by pretending that inflation is zero. Yet that's what the article you cited does.

              If you think you are dealing with two equal sides here- pro and con, I got to question whether you are as objective as you claim or simply pretending to be. Objectivity doesn't mean pretending all sides are equal. It means understand factually and logically what arguments actually pan out to be true.

              On its face, none of the pro-CPI peo claiming its not a cut. they are simply trying to obfuscate the admission.

              •  ambiguous...not at all (0+ / 0-)

                On one hand, you present a "set of facts."

                You say that the set of facts have been opposed by nothing other than accusations of racism and not another "set of facts."

                It's pretty much the exact same thing that I saw in the People's View post (TPV gets to be too much of an Obama circle jerk for my tastes...which is such a bad pun...)

                Now you're dealing with a "set of facts" from the opposition.

                That's what I really want to see.

                I haven't rebutted either of the posts, by the way.

                •  By the way (0+ / 0-)

                  all I'm really asking is that you engage in the substantive arguments that the other side is making, which you do wonderfully here. That's what I (as a reader and as someone who doesn't know much about this stuff) needs to see.

                  •  THis is not a conversation that exists (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    tableau rasa

                    Youa re doing something I find annoying about people online.

                    Its not my job when you are in an online environment to engage every aspect of an argument that leads me to write an article on one aspects of the debate.

                    Readers needing to see what you want to see are being unreasonable. If you wanted to know why this is a cut, you could have read the article to which you link me by linking through to the citations (that a lone would have made you question the article you linked me to since that's all I did). Instead, you required that I do that for you. Do you see a problem with that?

                    And if after reading if, it you were uncertain, you could also do what I did, which is google the topic to once again confirm, think about logical analogies etc

                    Again, see the problem here with what you are saying?

                    Its not my job to make you think. Its my job to present an argument that I care about, and if you don't hve enough background to understand it, and if you want to understand it, you will look it up. If you don't care todo that, you don't care tounderstand the debate. its really that simple.

                    And yes, of course, most Americans won't. That does't make it something that explains your arguments about vitriol or spewing.

                    if its all substnanceless exchanges in which you don't undrstand the debate then of course it appears the same, but that's your fault for not taking the time to understand. Not that of the anti-cut side. These arguments are all over the placed with a plenty of backup. You just have to choose to google them.

                    •  You're the one (0+ / 0-)

                      who started this conversation on this thread about civility.

                      It's in your first sentence, as a matter fact.

                      It's a topic that's important to you, yes, and by writing about it, I have to assume that you would think that it should be important to me.

                      And perhaps it should be. Not all of us have the time to research this stuff that thourghly.

                      and I don't trust either camp of circle jerkers

                      So you (or the TPV, for that matter) basically are doing the exact same thing...granted, I think there's more substance to your article.

                      There's a bigger issue more in line with my own interests, actually.

                      It's not simply questions of bias or information objectivity (whatever that is) or even's all of that.

                      You haven't exactly presented a debate. You've presented a set of facts with a POV...which there's nothing wrong with, provided we all know exactly what it is.

                      •  I don't find this exchange fruitful. (0+ / 0-)

                        Good luck.

                        •  Hey, you started the conversation (0+ / 0-)

                          about civility.

                          And you further stated these premises.

                          If you are discussing civility, rather than how to prevent the cuts, you and I are quite simply going to fight.
                          I'm saying that discussions of civility may not be simply a derailment of the issues (very often it is).

                          I am saying that the lack of civility could result in non- or mis- communication. If I say I don't understand what's being said or that I don't have enough information on the topic (pro and con) to form an opinion (although it is resonable to make an assumption based on the fact, for example, that I am a semi-regular poster at Daily Kos), then I'm not attempting to derail an issue.

      •  I hoped it would end (0+ / 0-)

        once the election was behind us, but apparently not.

        We decided to move the center farther to the right by starting the whole debate from a far-right position to begin with. - Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay

        by denise b on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 12:24:46 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  thanks for your eminently sane and balanced (6+ / 0-)

      point of view

      I myself have gotten a bit nasty due to being overly hot under the collar, these past few days. But I care less about personalities here on DKos or in DC than I do about real, concrete BAD effects of bad policy.

      A thousand Sharkeys are invading a thousand Shires every day across our country.--James Wells

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 06:59:53 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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