Principled or Practical?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Kevin_Kennedy, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. Kevin_Kennedy
    Offline

    Kevin_Kennedy Defend Liberty

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    Messages:
    17,590
    Thanks Received:
    1,581
    Trophy Points:
    205
    Location:
    Ohio
    Ratings:
    +2,027
    Do you prefer your representatives to be principled or practical? Some would call standing on principle simply being pigheaded, and others would say being practical is selling out. I would prefer a representative that stands on principle on every issue rather than one that constantly compromises. In Washington the middle way still leads to statism so it's useless.
     
  2. RetiredGySgt
    Online

    RetiredGySgt Platinum Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2007
    Messages:
    39,553
    Thanks Received:
    5,900
    Trophy Points:
    1,140
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Ratings:
    +8,971
    I want my representative to represent me not himself. However on issues where he does not know his district's mind I expect him to vote on his beliefs.
     
  3. Kevin_Kennedy
    Offline

    Kevin_Kennedy Defend Liberty

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    Messages:
    17,590
    Thanks Received:
    1,581
    Trophy Points:
    205
    Location:
    Ohio
    Ratings:
    +2,027
    The problem with that is that there are probably people in your district with the exact opposite view of you living in your district so that can't always apply. With something like the stimulus, where a majority of people are outspokenly against it, that certainly makes sense, but generally it doesn't work out like that.
     
  4. Sallow
    Offline

    Sallow The Big Bad Wolf. Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2010
    Messages:
    56,535
    Thanks Received:
    6,132
    Trophy Points:
    1,840
    Location:
    New York City
    Ratings:
    +7,394
    Practical and Pragmatic. Willing to listen with an open mind, analyze logically, come up with the best solution and compromise if need be..
     
  5. JBeukema
    Offline

    JBeukema BANNED

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2009
    Messages:
    25,613
    Thanks Received:
    1,703
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    everywhere and nowhere
    Ratings:
    +1,705
    Principled and pragmatic; focused on the end goal/ideal and looking for the best way to get us closer to it.

    The third way should be a strategy, not a goal.
     
  6. The Rabbi
    Offline

    The Rabbi Diamond Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2009
    Messages:
    67,619
    Thanks Received:
    7,821
    Trophy Points:
    1,840
    Location:
    Nashville
    Ratings:
    +18,214
    Normally I would say principled with a strong dose of pragmatism.
    But in these times "pragmatism" often ends up meaning compromise on core principles. I don't want any compromise on this. I want all out war.
    When things return to normal we can talk about compromise.
     
  7. midcan5
    Offline

    midcan5 liberal / progressive

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2007
    Messages:
    10,787
    Thanks Received:
    2,365
    Trophy Points:
    245
    Location:
    Philly, PA
    Ratings:
    +3,298
    "A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both." Dwight D. Eisenhower

    Rereading our history from the forties and fifties demonstrates that something changed. Ike is right but today his party and its followers contradict his words.

    Cornford's cynical and satirical words fit the times too. "The Principle of the Dangerous Precedent is that you should not now do an admittedly right action for fear you, or your equally timid successors, should not have the courage to do right in some future case, which, ex hypothesi, is essentially different, but superficially resembles the present one. Every public action which is not customary, either is wrong, or, if it is right, is a dangerous precedent. It follows that nothing should ever be done for the first time."

    But then JK Galbraith tells us why or at least when. "Galbraith is using irony here, irony little short of sarcasm. What he really means is the culture of smugness. His argument is that until the mid 1970s round about the oil crisis the western democracies accepted the idea of a mixed economy and with that went economic social progress. Since then, however, a prominent class has emerged, materially stable and even very rich, which, far from trying to help the less fortunate, has developed a whole infrastructure - politically and intellectually - to marginalize and even demonize them. Aspects of this include tax reductions to the better off and welfare cuts to the worst off, small 'manageable wars' to maintain the unifying force of a common enemy, the idea of 'unmitigated laissez-faire as embodiment of freedom,' and a desire for cutback in government. The most important collective end result of all this, Galbraith says, is a blindness and a deafness among the 'contented' to the growing problems of society. While they are content to spend, or have spent in their name, trillions of dollars to defeat relatively minor enemy figures... they are extremely unwilling to spend money on the underclass nearer home. In a startling paragraph he quotes figures to show that 'the number of Americans living below the poverty line increased by 28% in just 10 years from 24.5 million in 1978 to 32 million in 1988 by then nearly one in five children was born in poverty in the United States more than twice as high a proportion as in Canada or Germany." Peter Watson in "The Modern Mind"

    So I guess being a liberal I don't know, depends.... ;)
     
  8. Seawytch
    Offline

    Seawytch Information isnt Advocacy

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    Messages:
    28,998
    Thanks Received:
    3,962
    Trophy Points:
    280
    Location:
    Peaking out from the redwoods
    Ratings:
    +7,043
    I'll take Practical for $1000 Alex. An elected official has to represent ALL his constituents.
     
  9. Rozman
    Offline

    Rozman Gold Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2009
    Messages:
    16,575
    Thanks Received:
    3,060
    Trophy Points:
    290
    Location:
    Brooklyn,NY
    Ratings:
    +6,688
    I would say Principled because that's the reason I supported/voted for that person.If the person I helped elect voted with the Democrats half the time what was the purpose of sending that person to Washington.
    I might as well have voted for the Democrat or thrown up in my mouth.At this point I'd take the puke over a Democrat every day of the week and twice on Sunday.
     
  10. Greenbeard
    Offline

    Greenbeard Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    Messages:
    6,809
    Thanks Received:
    1,200
    Trophy Points:
    200
    Location:
    New England
    Ratings:
    +1,323
    Well, someone without a trace of pragmatism isn't going to be a very good legislator. I'd prefer my rep go to Washington to be more than a figurehead. Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul may be lots of things, but they aren't good legislators. At the same time, someone without a core set of principles that I largely support probably isn't going to represent me well.

    Ideally, I'd like a legislator who has the right mix of both qualities to be effective. Ted Kennedy is the obvious example: he certainly had a very strong set of guiding principles, yet he was still an amazingly productive legislator who could get significant bipartisan legislation through even when he was in the minority or a Republican sat in the White House.

    Just FYI, in February of 2009 when it was time for legislators to vote, 80% of the public viewed passing a stimulus package as critically important or important.
     

Share This Page