* I was recently asked for my opinion on why there seems to be more hostility and bitterness than ever before between the two parties. While I accept that there is a great deal of bitterness, the truth is that most of it emanates from the left/democrats and is directed at the right/republicans. The issue, then, is why the increased hostility? The answer is fairly straightforward: the democrats and republicans no longer share the same fundamental values. When there is agreement on the basics, then differences over particular issues are not as intense; as both sides feel they are still on the same team. But the left no longer shares the fundamental American values. (It was Obama who said that he wanted to bring "fundamental" change to this country.)
* If you have not had the opportunity to do so, look at the last posting entitled "Why I Am No Longer a Democrat." The comments by the various democrat mayors quoted reflects that they no longer believe in free speech if it opposes their viewpoint; they no longer believe in freedom of religion if it is contrary to their viewpoint; they no longer believe business people who disagree with them have the right to make a living. When Dan Cathy, the CEO of Chick-fil-A, said he believed in traditional marriage, the democrats did NOT say (a quote generally credited to Voltaire): "I disagree with what you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it." The reason is that the democrats are solely issue-oriented. Whatever the issue - gay marriage, abortion, immigration - trumps the fundamentals of free speech or freedom of religion or other fundamental American values. The democrats do NOT believe that there can be an honest, good-faith disagreement on any of their issues. Those who disagree are labeled racists, bigots, ignorant, or haters, and on and on it goes. The main stream media joins in with the labeling. Once you have put those kinds of labels on your opposition it becomes difficult to give any respect to their opinions. In fact, it becomes difficult to respect them as fellow human beings. Hence, the hatred.
* A few examples. It was Obama who disrespected those whom he said "cling to their guns and religion" and dislike people not like them. (Who dislikes whom?) It was Obama who said: "The Republican plan...boils down to this...Dirtier air, dirtier water, less people with health insurance." Biden, speaking to an audience with a large number of blacks, said Republicans are going to "put y'all back in chains." Maxine Waters: "And as far as I'm concerned, the Tea Party can go straight to Hell." Former Rep. Alan Grayson, in reference to Fox News: "It is a threat to this country." Wanda Sykes: "(Rush Limbaugh) just wants the country to fail...I hope his kidneys fail." Cher recently expressed that she hoped Rep. Todd Akin would "get raped by a man with HIV/AIDS." (Akin recently made the ridiculous comment about "legitimate" rape, and that a woman's body can prevent a pregnancy in those cases. He immediately apologized, but the penalty for offending the left is, apparently, death. Something they seem to have in common with radical Muslims.) And my personal favorite, in terms of the venomous hatred for anyone daring to hold a contrary viewpoint, comes from Ellen Barkin, expressing her wish that Hurricane Isaac would "wash every pro-life, anti-education, anti-women, xenophobic, gay-bashing racist SOB right into the ocean."
* So maybe the democrats have given up on being the party of "tolerance." But aren't they still the compassionate party? Aren't they the party that cares about the average working guy? After all, it was the then head of the Democratic National Committee, Howard Dean, who said: "Our moral values, in contradistinction to the Republicans', is we don't think kids ought to go to bed hungry at night." And that sentence, my friends, pretty well sums up why so many vote democrat. They believe that they are being "compassionate." And because those same people let their beliefs dictate their reality, it does not matter to them that Republican policies are the ones that better protect the average person.
* Case in point. Is it more compassionate to provide welfare and food stamps, or a job? Which has a better chance of feeding hungry children: a parent with a good paying job, or welfare and food stamps? According to the Department of Labor, states with Republican Governors have, on average, a 7.6% unemployment rate. Those with Democrat Governors average 8.8% unemployment. When VA Governor Bob McDonnell spoke at the Republican convention he noted that 12 of the 15 states ranked best for doing business in were Republican lead. The bottom three states: Democrat lead and high unemployment (Illinois, 8.9% unemployment, New York, 9.1% unemployment, and California, with 10.7% unemployment). But Governor McDonnell cut spending, did not raise taxes, yet managed to balance the state budget, lower unemployment to 5.9%, and improve his state's standing in the best places to do business to 6th place. Oh, he was even able to create a budget SURPLUS of $448.5 million.
* But Governor McDonnell is not alone. Other Republican governors have obtained similar results: Scott Walker in Wisconsin, Chris Christie in New Jersey, John Kasich in Ohio, Mitch Daniels in Indiana, to name just a few. But the Democrat Governor of California, Jerry Brown, wants to pass a November ballot measure that will significantly raise taxes. It is hard to see where the compassion is for so many people out of work - when the Governor wants to raise the sales taxes on items they buy.
* But lowering taxes and balancing the budget and improving the business climate with resultant lower unemployment is not Obama's way. That is not the Democrat way. After all, it was Obama who said that after you've made a certain amount of money, he thinks you've made enough. It is Obama who creates class warfare by criticizing those who have achieved what used to be called the "American Dream" - success and wealth. Who thinks a society is healthier when it creates millions upon millions of people dependent upon government handouts? (According to the 8/15/12 Investor's Business Daily, we now have over 1/3 of Americans receiving some government welfare, not counting Medicare or Social Security.) Who thinks a society is healthier when the government plays a smaller role with less taxes and less regulations, and allows businesses large and small to thrive?
* There was an interesting piece on FoxNews.com from 8/20/12. A study by the Chronicle of Philanthropy found that states with greater religious participation, such as the South, tended to give a greater percent of their discretionary income to charity. The Northeast, with the lowest religious participation, was also the least generous in charitable giving. (The South tends toward Republican and the Northeast Democrat. But we already know that Republicans give more to charity.) The part I found to be particularly interesting was a comment by a Boston College professor, apparently defending his less than generous Northeast. He said that people in the less religious states give in a "different" way. How? They are more willing to pay higher taxes so the government can equitably distribute more to the poor. And that is how Democrats convince themselves that they are compassionate: by taking other peoples' money and redistributing it around. I would bet these same democrats do not voluntarily pay more than the law requires in taxes. No, their generosity consists of taking other peoples' money. I would also bet that the religious who live in the higher tax states give more of their after-tax income to charity than the liberal, non-religious.
* You see, the real difference between the "compassionate" Obama/today's Democrats and Republicans is this: Obama does not care if his policies bring everyone down to a lower standard of living, as long as it is more "equal." Republicans want to see an ever expanding economy with everyone having the "opportunity" to succeed, to become a millionaire, or even become the next Bill Gates. So, ending where I started, this basic American value of having the freedom to succeed economically and even amass huge wealth, is no longer shared by the Democrats. Unless American values are again taught in our schools and universities, the long term future for freedom and liberty in this country will be very much in doubt.