Why Aren’t Democrats Concerned with Being Moderate?

 

Conservatives get a lot of flak from their own side for standing on principle. Our political betters are quick to explain that such and such issue is “not the hill to die on.” As we’ve been sounding the retreat for the better part of a decade, and the hills flying our enemy’s banner disappear in the horizon, it gives me pause to wonder why only our side is ensnared by this trend.

We’ve largely surrendered on Biblical morality following the Obergefell decision. Rather than attempt to recapture this territory, the GOP went along to get along. Meanwhile, the pagan horde, with hardly a pause for celebration, pressed their advantage. We are now faced with a choice to fight or retreat on the issue of puberty blockers for children, with tolerance of “minor-attracted persons” sure to follow.

Government spending, once a favorite talking point of the kabuki troupe, has been purged from our collective memory, only making a cameo appearance when apposite the inflation debate. If a serious push to cut spending and pass a budget came to fruition, would we die on that hill?

Obamacare, repeatedly challenged when there was no threat of a repeal, is still the law of the land. A government created “of the people, by the people, and for the people” was fundamentally transformed into a quasi-socialist dystopia where the elect few choose what we can and must buy. When the opportunity to turn back the tide was present, did we choose to die on that hill? Begrudgingly at first, but that faint glimmer of hope was quashed by the agents of spite and malice, to sighs of relief from the begrudgers.

Time and time again, the left advances and the right sounds the retreat.

How is it then that the most extreme social views in US history are unceasingly advanced without upsetting the independent voter, but any attempt to roll back those changes is anathematized?

In parts of the world where haggling over price is still the norm, a shopkeeper may overcharge for his wares in preparation for the customer to lowball him. While savvy customers can typically negotiate a fair price, a naive customer may end up paying far too much and walk away thinking he got a huge discount.

In the marketplace of ideas, Democrats in power tend to amplify their most ideological members to establish a prohibitive cost for their policy agenda, e.g., the Green New Deal. While this would typically upset the independent voter, the party leadership steps in and agrees to negotiate with the conservative minority. Negotiations proceed from the absurdly high cost already established by the left, and ultimately the Democrats walk away with 70% of what they wanted while the GOP adulate themselves for the 30% discount. Both sides are happy, and the Democrat leadership is praised for its willingness to negotiate with the minority party.

On the other hand, Republicans in power tend to suppress their most ideological members to appeal to the independent voter, and inadvertently establish a low cost from which negotiations start. Democrats accept a “difficult” compromise where the GOP squeaks by with a slim advantage on an already anemic deal.

In short, Democrats expend their political power to shift us left. Republicans expend their political power to keep us right where we are. It doesn’t take a mathematician to figure out that trend line.

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  1. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    In evolutionary psychology, there is a subset of the K-selected that strive for themselves, in a way that protects and advances the group. When they deliver safety and stability for more than a generation, a complementary subset of the r-selected surfaces, that advances by dividing the group.

    Division of the group by r-selected elites can continue repeatedly, as long as no stressors arise that are more severe than those in their arsenals.

    Every successful divide-and-conquer cycle moves the field. The next opportunity for division, which is how they get ahead, is by nature a new previously-unthinkable extreme.

    That’s this layman’s understanding of evolutionary psychology’s perspective on why the left can never be moderate.

    • #1
  2. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    The beauty of being GOP is you can always expect your side to let you down and stab you in the back and abandon you.  

    • #2
  3. Samuel Block Support
    Samuel Block
    @SamuelBlock

    This is a good post, worth some real brooding. It’s also the internet, and hot takes are winners.

    Progressives (the club has Ds and Rs alike) are good at hot takes because everything is simple for them. That’s a disadvantage for unasterisked conservatives… if we buy into whole marketplace of ideas thing. Changing minds seems like a fools errand.

    Liberals and “Independents” are oddly ambivalent about boys, girls, sexual propriety and the sacrality of conception. (Weirdly enough, et ceteras are in order.) If MAGA was a long-term plan—and I don’t see why it wouldn’t be—this would seem like a slam dunk. 

    Maybe we’re too busy brooding, but blathering is not the right’s trump card (if you’ll excuse the expression).

    In theory we’re better at doing. What are we doing?

    • #3
  4. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    Samuel Block (View Comment):
    This is a good post, worth some real brooding. It’s also the internet, and hot takes are winners.

    Progressives (the club has Ds and Rs alike) are good at hot takes because everything is simple for them. That’s a disadvantage for unasterisked conservatives… if we buy into whole marketplace of ideas thing. Changing minds seems like a fools errand.

    Liberals and “Independents” are oddly ambivalent about boys, girls, sexual propriety and the sacrality of conception. (Weirdly enough, et ceteras are in order.) If MAGA was a long-term plan—and I don’t see why it wouldn’t be—this would seem like a slam dunk.

    Maybe we’re too busy brooding, but blathering is not the right’s trump card (if you’ll excuse the expression).

    In theory we’re better at doing. What are we doing?

    Each thing has its place, I think. We can’t be too focused on tactics at the expense of strategy, and vice-versa.

    • #4
  5. Zafar Member
    Zafar
    @Zafar

    Is there more of a public appetite for far Left stuff like single payer than for far Right stuff like abolish (socialist) medicaid and medicare?

    Modus Ponens: Republicans in power tend to suppress their most ideological members, to appeal to the independent voter, and inadvertently establish a low cost from which negotiations start.

    Or Republicans in power really don’t believe the things they say they believe? By which I mean not believe as in ‘a matter of principle’ but rather that if implemented they would make a massive mess. (I’m thinking repealing Obamacare.)

    This is true of Democrats in power as well, but then it comes down to what appeal/disappeal these far Left/Right positions have for a critical mass of people.

    • #5
  6. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat
    @drbastiat

    Excellent post.

    • #6
  7. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    Zafar (View Comment):

    Is there more of a public appetite for far Left stuff like single payer than for far Right stuff like abolish (socialist) medicaid and medicare?

    Modus Ponens: Republicans in power tend to suppress their most ideological members, to appeal to the independent voter, and inadvertently establish a low cost from which negotiations start.

    Or Republicans in power really don’t believe the things they say they believe? By which I mean not believe as in ‘a matter of principle’ but rather that if implemented they would make a massive mess. (I’m thinking repealing Obamacare.)

    This is true of Democrats in power as well, but then it comes down to what appeal/disappeal these far Left/Right positions have for a critical mass of people.

    I tried not to touch on their motives, whatever they may be. I’m referencing what is stated publically.

    What I’m hearing from the GOPe is that Principled Candidates scaring independents is what costs the Republicans elections. There is absolutely no question which party pushes the most extreme views in our society, and it’s not the GOP. Therefore, I must conclude that their premise is flawed.

    On the Topic of Healthcare, I don’t remember any popular push for single-payer healthcare when he took office. It was a completely manufactured crisis. There too, we can see how the left wins in their negotiations by setting a high initial cost. They pitched a public option from the outset, and the GOP hemmed and hawed until that portion was removed. However the left ultimately succeeded in asserting massive government control over the healthcare market, with the GOP getting their 30% discount on the healthcare bill and patting themselves on the back.

    • #7
  8. HeavyWater Reagan
    HeavyWater
    @HeavyWater

    I think it comes down to where the votes are or, perhaps where the votes are perceived to be.

    Back in 2004, George W Bush ran for reelection on a platform of marriage being a union of one man and one woman.  In many states, including the critical state of Ohio, there were referendums on tradition marriage, some putting this issue into state constitutions.

    This was a response to some state judges in Hawaii and later in Iowa ruling that people had a constitutional right to marry a person of the same sex and that any law to the contrary was unconstitutional.

    The Republican party at that time viewed the issue of traditional marriage vs same sex marriage as a winning issue for Republicans and a liability for Democrats.  Why?  Because polls showed that, in 2004, most people, including lots of Democrats, opposed same sex marriage.

    When Barak Obama ran for president in 2008 he said that he believed marriage was between a man and a woman and also in 2008, in California, a referendum passed prohibiting same sex marriage.  This referendum narrowly passed in California at the same time that Obama beat McCain in California by a 24 percentage points (Obama 61 pct to McCain 37 pct).

    Same sex marriage wasn’t very popular in 2008.

    But by 2012 the traditional marriage vs same sex marriage issue looked a bit different.  In the November 2012 election, those supporting traditional marriage put a referendum on the Minnesota ballot that would have reinforced the idea that marriage was between a man and a woman.

    When the referendum unexpectedly failed, the Democrat controlled Minnesota legislature passed legislation legalizing same sex marriage, apparently feeling like the voters had, by rejecting the traditional marriage ballot measure, given them an implicit green light to do so.

    So, there was a perception in the eyes of the candidates, politicians and parties of where the votes are.

    Simiarly, both political parties are probably looking at the 5 state referendums on abortion (Kentucky, Monana, Michigan, California and Vermont) and also exit polling data to try to get a sense of whether the Dobbs decision by the US Supreme Court has had an impact on voter inclinations on abortion.

    I’m not saying that politicians don’t have their own ideas about what legislation should be passed or blocked.  But they certainly care about getting elected and reelected.  They like being in the majority and if that requires them to “rise above principle,” they might do it.

    It often comes down to where the votes are and where the votes are perceived to be.

    • #8
  9. Misthiocracy has never Member
    Misthiocracy has never
    @Misthiocracy

    From their point-of-view, they are being moderate. An extremist Democratic Party would simply outlaw private property altogether.

    • #9
  10. HeavyWater Reagan
    HeavyWater
    @HeavyWater

    Misthiocracy has never (View Comment):

    From their point-of-view, they are being moderate. An extremist Democratic Party would simply outlaw private property altogether.

    The voters of Michigan voted for a very extreme constitutional amendment legalizing abortion during the entire term of pregnancy for any reason.  

    When the median voter is willing to vote for extreme pro-abortion referenda, this is likely to yield elected officials who hold extreme views.  Oh, and the Democrats now control the Michigan state senate for the first time since the 1980s.  The Democrat governor got reelected in a landslide.  

    Politicians are willing to adopt extreme views if it gets them elected.  

    • #10
  11. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    Misthiocracy has never (View Comment):

    From their point-of-view, they are being moderate. An extremist Democratic Party would simply outlaw private property altogether.

    That’s the leadership’s claim, and that’s why I think they are able to shift us left. In reality they are creating the illusion of being moderate because they let the ideologues in their party set the baseline of the discussion. Of course the wise and moderate democrat leadership would never advocate the outlawing of private property. They would merely request that property rights be contingent on a citizen’s ability to pay their fair share of an increasingly unmanageable Tax Burden. The GOP will dutifully put on a show of heavy resistance to this absurd measure, and manage to slightly reduce that tax burden.

    In this fictional scenario, the governement now has the ability to make property rights contingent. When the Democrats regain power in a future administration, they will expand what sort factors can be used to deny property rights. SCOTUS will most likely allow this to take place, because the Precedent has already been established.

    This is why we lose as a party.

    • #11
  12. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    HeavyWater (View Comment):

    I think it comes down to where the votes are or, perhaps where the votes are perceived to be.

    Back in 2004, George W Bush ran for reelection on a platform of marriage being a union of one man and one woman. In many states, including the critical state of Ohio, there were referendums on tradition marriage, some putting this issue into state constitutions.

    This was a response to some state judges in Hawaii and later in Iowa ruling that people had a constitutional right to marry a person of the same sex and that any law to the contrary was unconstitutional.

    The Republican party at that time viewed the issue of traditional marriage vs same sex marriage as a winning issue for Republicans and a liability for Democrats. Why? Because polls showed that, in 2004, most people, including lots of Democrats, opposed same sex marriage.

    When Barak Obama ran for president in 2008 he said that he believed marriage was between a man and a woman and also in 2008, in California, a referendum passed prohibiting same sex marriage. This referendum narrowly passed in California at the same time that Obama beat McCain in California by a 24 percentage points (Obama 61 pct to McCain 37 pct).

    Same sex marriage wasn’t very popular in 2008.

    But by 2012 the traditional marriage vs same sex marriage issue looked a bit different. In the November 2012 election, those supporting traditional marriage put a referendum on the Minnesota ballot that would have reinforced the idea that marriage was between a man and a woman.

    When the referendum unexpectedly failed, the Democrat controlled Minnesota legislature passed legislation legalizing same sex marriage, apparently feeling like the voters had, by rejecting the traditional marriage ballot measure, given them an implicit green light to do so.

    So, there was a perception in the eyes of the candidates, politicians and parties of where the votes are.

    Simiarly, both political parties are probably looking at the 5 state referendums on abortion (Kentucky, Monana, Michigan, California and Vermont) and also exit polling data to try to get a sense of whether the Dobbs decision by the US Supreme Court has had an impact on voter inclinations on abortion.

    I’m not saying that politicians don’t have their own ideas about what legislation should be passed or blocked. But they certainly care about getting elected and reelected. They like being in the majority and if that requires them to “rise above principle,” they might do it.

    It often comes down to where the votes are and where the votes are perceived to be.

    I think it’s a trap to only focus on where the votes are. That’s the tactical part of the fight. Strategy would look at where the votes need to be and how we get them there. The GOP only cares about tactics, but they have no strategy.

    • #12
  13. Misthiocracy has never Member
    Misthiocracy has never
    @Misthiocracy

    HeavyWater (View Comment):

    Misthiocracy has never (View Comment):

    From their point-of-view, they are being moderate. An extremist Democratic Party would simply outlaw private property altogether.

    The voters of Michigan voted for a very extreme constitutional amendment legalizing abortion during the entire term of pregnancy for any reason.

    When the median voter is willing to vote for extreme pro-abortion referenda, this is likely to yield elected officials who hold extreme views. Oh, and the Democrats now control the Michigan state senate for the first time since the 1980s. The Democrat governor got reelected in a landslide.

    Politicians are willing to adopt extreme views if it gets them elected.

    Policies that the electorate votes for (in a free and fair election) aren’t extreme, almost by definition.

    VOX POPULI VOX DEI

    • #13
  14. Misthiocracy has never Member
    Misthiocracy has never
    @Misthiocracy

    Modus Ponens (View Comment):

    Misthiocracy has never (View Comment):

    From their point-of-view, they are being moderate. An extremist Democratic Party would simply outlaw private property altogether.

    That’s the leadership’s claim…

    Like I wrote, it’s from their point-of-view.

     

    • #14
  15. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    Misthiocracy has never (View Comment):

    Modus Ponens (View Comment):

    Misthiocracy has never (View Comment):

    From their point-of-view, they are being moderate. An extremist Democratic Party would simply outlaw private property altogether.

    That’s the leadership’s claim…

    Like I wrote, it’s from their point-of-view.

     

    We agree on that point.

    • #15
  16. Zafar Member
    Zafar
    @Zafar

    Modus Ponens (View Comment):

    I tried not to touch on their motives, whatever they may be. I’m referencing what is stated publically.

    Sure.  But if they aren’t truthful in public (all the ‘theys’, not just Republicans) that’s a methodological issue?

    What I’m hearing from the GOPe is that Principled Candidates scaring independents is what costs the Republicans elections. There is absolutely no question which party pushes the most extreme views in our society, and it’s not the GOP. Therefore, I must conclude that their premise is flawed.

    There’s an assumption that the voting public responds equally warily to extremes on the Left and on the Right.  I am not sure that’s the case.

    On the Topic of Healthcare, I don’t remember any popular push for single-payer healthcare when he took office. It was a completely manufactured crisis. There too, we can see how the left wins in their negotiations by setting a high initial cost. They pitched a public option from the outset, and the GOP hemmed and hawed until that portion was removed. However the left ultimately succeeded in asserting massive government control over the healthcare market, with the GOP getting their 30% discount on the healthcare bill and patting themselves on the back.

    I think the moment of truth will be when/if the Democrats have the numbers in both houses and they still don’t legislate to make the public option real.  I have no doubt that this will happen – I don’t think everybody who publicly supports the public option will really do so when the rubber hits the road.

    • #16
  17. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    Zafar (View Comment):

    Modus Ponens (View Comment):

    I tried not to touch on their motives, whatever they may be. I’m referencing what is stated publically.

    Sure. But if they aren’t truthful in public (all the ‘theys’, not just Republicans) that’s a methodological issue?

    What I’m hearing from the GOPe is that Principled Candidates scaring independents is what costs the Republicans elections. There is absolutely no question which party pushes the most extreme views in our society, and it’s not the GOP. Therefore, I must conclude that their premise is flawed.

    There’s an assumption that the voting public responds equally warily to extremes on the Left and on the Right. I am not sure that’s the case.

    On the Topic of Healthcare, I don’t remember any popular push for single-payer healthcare when he took office. It was a completely manufactured crisis. There too, we can see how the left wins in their negotiations by setting a high initial cost. They pitched a public option from the outset, and the GOP hemmed and hawed until that portion was removed. However the left ultimately succeeded in asserting massive government control over the healthcare market, with the GOP getting their 30% discount on the healthcare bill and patting themselves on the back.

    I think the moment of truth will be when/if the Democrats have the numbers in both houses and they still don’t legislate to make the public option real. I have no doubt that this will happen – I don’t think everybody who publicly supports the public option will really do so when the rubber hits the road.

    I agree that they respond differently to extremes on the left and the right. My post is addressing one reason why that is the case.

    • #17
  18. HeavyWater Reagan
    HeavyWater
    @HeavyWater

    I have 2 examples from the 2022 election last week that might be illuminating.  One shows how the Democrat candidate’s perceived extremism cost him the race.  Another shows how the Republican candidate’s perceived extremism cost him the race.

    The Wisconsin US Senate race pitted “progressive” Mandela Barnes against Republican US Senator Ron Johnson.

    Barnes tried to depict Johnson as extreme and he might have been partially successful.  But Johnson was more effective in presenting Barnes as dangerously extreme on the crime issue.   Johnson, who was considered very vulnerable, won reelection, even as the Democrat governor won reelection.  Clearly some ticket splitting or undervoting in Wisconsin last week.

    In the 3rd congressional district of Washington state, they had a jungle primary, as is the case for all congressional races.  The incumbent Republican member of the House came in third, in part because he voted to impeach Donald Trump.  Joe Kent, another Republican, came in 2nd place and, thus moved on to the general election against Marie Perez, a Democrat.

    Perez tried to present herself as a moderate by taking a slightly conservative position on the issue of gun ownership and gun control.  She tried to paint herself as being concerned about crime by mentioning that her business was a victim of crime in the past year.

    But Perez went on office, depicting Joe Kent as a follower of Donald Trump and an extremist.  Perez won the race 50.5 percent to 49.5 percent in a district that very few political analysts thought had a chance of being won by a Democrat.

    So, the key in politics is to make your opponent appear like the extremist while you are just a common sense person wanting to represent “the people.”

    • #18
  19. Ed G. Member
    Ed G.
    @EdG

    Modus Ponens (View Comment):

    Zafar (View Comment):

    Is there more of a public appetite for far Left stuff like single payer than for far Right stuff like abolish (socialist) medicaid and medicare?

    Modus Ponens: Republicans in power tend to suppress their most ideological members, to appeal to the independent voter, and inadvertently establish a low cost from which negotiations start.

    Or Republicans in power really don’t believe the things they say they believe? By which I mean not believe as in ‘a matter of principle’ but rather that if implemented they would make a massive mess. (I’m thinking repealing Obamacare.)

    This is true of Democrats in power as well, but then it comes down to what appeal/disappeal these far Left/Right positions have for a critical mass of people.

    I tried not to touch on their motives, whatever they may be. I’m referencing what is stated publically.

    What I’m hearing from the GOPe is that Principled Candidates scaring independents is what costs the Republicans elections. There is absolutely no question which party pushes the most extreme views in our society, and it’s not the GOP. Therefore, I must conclude that their premise is flawed.

    On the Topic of Healthcare, I don’t remember any popular push for single-payer healthcare when he took office. It was a completely manufactured crisis. There too, we can see how the left wins in their negotiations by setting a high initial cost. They pitched a public option from the outset, and the GOP hemmed and hawed until that portion was removed. However the left ultimately succeeded in asserting massive government control over the healthcare market, with the GOP getting their 30% discount on the healthcare bill and patting themselves on the back.

    Further confirmation that there really is no such thing as Independents. They are and always have been leftists.

    • #19
  20. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    HeavyWater (View Comment):

    So, the key in politics is to make your opponent appear like the extremist while you are just a common sense person wanting to represent “the people.”

    I agree, but would add a corollary: The list of ideas a candidate can put forward while appearing common sense is dynamic and can be influenced by a multitude of factors, one of which is the strategic vision of the party he represents.

    • #20
  21. DrewInWisconsin, Oik Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oik
    @DrewInWisconsin

    HeavyWater (View Comment):

    The Wisconsin US Senate race pitted “progressive” Mandela Barnes against Republican US Senator Ron Johnson.  

    Barnes tried to depict Johnson as extreme and he might have been partially successful.  But Johnson was more effective in presenting Barnes as dangerously extreme on the crime issue.   Johnson, who was considered very vulnerable, won reelection, even as the Democrat governor won reelection.  Clearly some ticket splitting or undervoting in Wisconsin last week.  

    Barnes simply used the standard Democrat playbook on Johnson. “He’s a rich guy who votes for tax cuts to help his rich pals. Oh, and he’s an agent of Russia.” That was the message repeated over and over. It wasn’t anything new. It was an old and boring tactic. The playbook Dems run on Republicans as long as I can remember (plus the new Russia garbage).

    Most people did not think Johnson was vulnerable. I knew he was, simply because Democrats control elections in this state. That Johnson won is only because he managed to get past the margin of fraud. It was a squeaker. 

    Republican Derrick Van Orden also won, and is our newest House member. Wisconsin got a tiny bit redder this year.

     

    • #21
  22. HeavyWater Reagan
    HeavyWater
    @HeavyWater

    Modus Ponens (View Comment):

    HeavyWater (View Comment):

    So, the key in politics is to make your opponent appear like the extremist while you are just a common sense person wanting to represent “the people.”

    I agree, but would add a corollary: The list of ideas a candidate can put forward while appearing common sense is dynamic and can be influenced by a multitude of factors, one of which is the strategic vision of the party he represents.

    Yes.  And if the district or state is sufficiently deep blue or deep red, the “extremism” issue might be enough to result in a close race, but not a defeat for the “extremist” candidate.  

    AOC can win easily in her district, but not necessarily in a light blue district.  

    In Colorado’s 3rd district, the incumbent Republican Lauren Boebert said that she is “tired of separation of church and state.”  The Colorado 3rd is pretty red, but Boebert is likely to win by a very close margin.  

    • #22
  23. GlennAmurgis Coolidge
    GlennAmurgis
    @GlennAmurgis

    Corporate Media/Big Tech and Education keeps pushing the Overton window keeps being pushed left 

     

    • #23
  24. Raxxalan Member
    Raxxalan
    @Raxxalan

    GlennAmurgis (View Comment):

    Corporate Media/Big Tech and Education keeps pushing the Overton window keeps being pushed left

     

    Exactly.  The left gets a pass on extremism because they have the commanding heights of the cultural to redefine their views as the mainstream.  “Moderate” GOPe types are terrified of the Left’s cultural supremacy and so cave constantly.  Independents are pretty easily swayed by elite opinion so they are more likely to see extremism on the right than on the left.   

    • #24
  25. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    Misthiocracy has never (View Comment):

    From their point-of-view, they are being moderate. An extremist Democratic Party would simply outlaw private property altogether.

    And if they were successful, that would become the new moderate position. The next turn of the cycle would have to be something more extreme still, because their technique is to first divide, then conquer, then repeat.

    • #25
  26. HeavyWater Reagan
    HeavyWater
    @HeavyWater

    Barfly (View Comment):

    Misthiocracy has never (View Comment):

    From their point-of-view, they are being moderate. An extremist Democratic Party would simply outlaw private property altogether.

    And if they were successful, that would become the new moderate position. The next turn of the cycle would have to be something more extreme still, because their technique is to first divide, then conquer, then repeat.

    I think concealed carry weapons legislation and school choice are the only areas where the overton window has moved to the right rather than the left.  

    • #26
  27. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    GlennAmurgis (View Comment):

    Corporate Media/Big Tech and Education keeps pushing the Overton window keeps being pushed left

    Certainly one of the biggest factors. Thankfully, there has been significant improvement on the Conservative side in recent years, with the growth of internet alternatives to the big three. The biggest thing we’re missing is a party strategy to shift the discussion back to the right. Goodness knows, the national GOP missed some huge opportunities. The insanity of transgenderism was well on its way to being the next Gospel Truth for the GOP, lest we scare the independents. It was thanks, in large part, to the folks at the Daily Wire like Matt Walsh for regaining ground on this front. If the GOP had taken advantage of this at a national level, independents would have a much clearer choice: One party thinks you should start your children on puberty blockers and lose custody if you refuse to do so. Do you even need to hear the opposing party’s platform at that point?

    • #27
  28. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Modus Ponens: In short, Democrats expend their political power to shift us left. Republicans expend their political power to keep us right where we are. It doesn’t take a mathematician to figure out that trend line.

    On the left, the term “radical” is a term of endearment.  But extremism is somehow bad.  

    • #28
  29. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    I agree with the OP and had my own experience with it here on R a few years back. I made an absurd and extreme policy statement and a more moderate R reacted and by the end of the conversation, we were reaching agreement on a “compromise” far closer to my preference, but not nearly as extreme as my original statement.

    We both came away feeling content, I thought. It stated contentiously and ended amicably.

    Keeping your extremists makes a more solid right position sound reasonable. Allowing the extreme to have purchase in the argument and allow it to be debatable makes concession towards the middle seem like a win.

    You must anchor your bottom with the same extremism as the left anchors the top. They must mirror each other to anchor it in the center. To move right, you need to go slightly more extreme.

    They think we are extremists for opposing boys in girls’ bathrooms. There really isn’t anything to lose.

    • #29
  30. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    Stina (View Comment):

    They think we are extremists for opposing boys in girls’ bathrooms. There really isn’t anything to lose.

    Yes, but is mixed-sex bathrooms really the hill to die on or should we wait for them to propose open floor, mixed-sex bathrooms before we rally the troops?

    • #30
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