succumbing to peer pressure

Tuesday, July 13, 2004


Asks the same question I do:

A little background: at the Republican convention, most featured speakers will be social moderates like Rudy Giuliani and Arnold Schwarzenegger. A moderate facade is necessary to win elections in a generally tolerant nation. But real power in the party rests with hard-line social conservatives like Mr. DeLay, who, in the debate over gun control after the Columbine shootings, insisted that juvenile violence is the result of day care, birth control and the teaching of evolution.

Here's the puzzle: if Mr. DeLay's brand of conservatism is so unpopular that it must be kept in the closet during the convention, how can people like him really run the party?


The larger picture is this: Mr. DeLay and his fellow hard-liners, whose values are far from the American mainstream, have forged an immensely effective alliance with corporate interests. And they may be just one election away from achieving a long-term lock on power.

So my follow-up question is, if most people seem to realize that money makes the world go round, do they simply not realize just how much influence $ has or do they simply not care?

And in the hypothetical, utopian world where perhaps money doesn't make the world go round, how would that work? Could that work? Would some other tangible good just replace money? What institutions would fall apart? What if all candidates were alloted the same amount of time for advertising in public media, and some equal budget for other campaign products and tools and that was it? No candidate would be beholden to a particular group for campaign funding. But would that be worse? Would the threat of not getting reelected be enough to force politicians to actually represent the people? These are my musings.

Also, picked up the following button at tonight's Democratic meet-up:
"Bring Back Complete Sentences. Kerry/Edwards."
Makes me smile.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I often get in long conversations about this with my brother, so when I'm back in the states I'd love to get into this with you.


3:21 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When did a fascist like Giuliani end up being considered a social moderate?


12:12 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Yeah, that's pretty funny. I was actually wondering that about Schwarzenegger too. But, compared to the likes of Bush and Ashcroft, I s'pose they are more middle-of-the-road.

3:36 PM  

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