The Left, the Right and the Ugly


s_lone
#1
The left-right duality is used so much in this forum it would be good to have a discussion on what these terms really mean.

My feeling is that there is a vague understanding of what the terms mean but in the end, everybody's got their own little interpretation and it causes much confusion and incomprehension.

Here's my own very basic and perhaps naive understanding of the terms...

LEFT has to do with the interests of the masses... of the population in general... the common good...

RIGHT has to do with the interests of individuals... individual freedom, initiative and responsibility...

With my understanding of the terms, the best approach is clearly centrist, in which the left and right mutually balance each other out.

But with all the ugly accusations flowing on this forum aimed at right-wingers and leftists, I wonder if some of you have a different understanding of the terms LEFT and RIGHT in which one is clearly better than the other.

Any thoughts?
 
gopher
No Party Affiliation
#2
RIGHT has to do with the interests of individuals... individual freedom, initiative and responsibility...



If this is true, why does the right applaud reliefs, incentives, abatements, subsidies, and other forms of corporate welfare??
 
s_lone
#3
Quote: Originally Posted by gopher View Post

RIGHT has to do with the interests of individuals... individual freedom, initiative and responsibility...



If this is true, why does the right applaud reliefs, incentives, abatements, subsidies, and other forms of corporate welfare??

From what I understand, the 'right' you speak of want as much individual freedom to do whatever they want with no consideration whatsoever for the global interest. They ask for tax reliefs but if they can avoid paying ANY taxes, they will... And if a subsidy is in their individual interest, they'll gladly accept it.
 
gopher
No Party Affiliation
#4
This much is true. But responsibility involves the discretion and discipline to say ''no'' to such handouts from the government just as the Mormons did to Federal subsidies in the 1930s.

Failure to reject such handouts invalidate the idea that the right exercises responsibility.
 
s_lone
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by gopher View Post

This much is true. But responsibility involves the discretion and discipline to say ''no'' to such handouts from the government just as the Mormons did to Federal subsidies in the 1930s.

Failure to reject such handouts invalidate the idea that the right exercises responsibility.

I guess you're showing how my definitions are naive... To me, freedom is automatically associated to responsibility but it is clearly not the case for everyone.

I would say RIGHT pushed to the extremes is all about freedom that is inconsiderate of others freedom.
 
gopher
No Party Affiliation
#6
I would say RIGHT pushed to the extremes is all about freedom that is inconsiderate of others freedom.


And an bigger problem or greater manifestation of the right's weakness is its failure to be consistent in its application of principle. After all, the left (which has its own weaknesses) does not claim to be of a strict moral principle. It claims, and generally demonstrates, greater flexibility in its ideals. The right does not.

As for myself, I generally disdain categorization and affirm flexibility in principles, ideals, and their application. Rigidity simply does not work for me or for the greater society.
 
YoungJoonKim
#7
I am leftist libertarian
-Government has an important role to play in economy but feel that government should allow people to make their own social decision.

Moderation of centrist is good, it is Canadianish lol
I won't dispute that, I love centrists but its just too common
 
karrie
No Party Affiliation
#8
It was taught to us in social studies by the age of 13, that right and left as we see them in modern politics, mostly consists of slight differences in a centralized area of the political spectrum. True 'right' tends to be libertarians, true left, communists. What we see as right and left, conservatives and liberals, are really two slightly differing shades of grey, rather than black and white.

Both have many of the same values, it's simply the degree to which they'd like to see them applied that differs.

And yet both are incredibly adept, from what I've seen on here, at anticipatory attacks and/or out of hand dismissals, based on the differing quantities to which they apply their politics.
 
JoeSchmoe
#9
It's not black and white....

Pushed to the extremes, both the left and the right are hypocrites.

Extremely fiscally conservative individuals love those subsidies to big business.

The religious right say they believe in individual freedoms, family values and morality.... and they would gladly have you killed for stealing a pack of gum. Plus they believe in a church-run state... not a separation. They would love to punnish the non-believers!

Hypocrites all of them.

Then there are those lefties and righties that support "their party" regardless of what they do.... They can be corrupt, deadly or evil and the party faithful line up behind them. They can deserve to be impeached, jailed and thrown out of office and yet the party faithful will vote for them every time. No thought to throwing them out of office like they deserve. I think they can be referred as sheeple.
 
55Mercury
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by JoeSchmoe View Post

...
Then there are those lefties and righties that support "their party" regardless of what they do.... They can be corrupt, deadly or evil and the party faithful line up behind them. They can deserve to be impeached, jailed and thrown out of office and yet the party faithful will vote for them every time. No thought to throwing them out of office like they deserve..

I think you've just accurately defined what an obtuse voter is.

Party loyalty or consumerist brand-loyalty, both traits of sheeple.

: ? )
 
Curiosity
#11
S_Lone posted this elsewhere and I responded elsewhere - I'll put my post up here if it's ok....

I didn't get a very enthused response so if you disagree heartily - you aren't alone...

Quote:

Defining one's self through political ideology is limiting to say the least

Politics is but one part of the vast spectrum which makes up a human life - in social conduct, morality, life choices, etc.

Canadians aren't stupid - Canadians aren't right, left, ugly. Canadians are still in the process of discovering their identity - being pulled by great forces of their heritage and the overwhelming influence of the nation to the south, the need for assimilating population from other parts of the planet - which presents many problems as well as benefits in order to 'get it right', and of great importance as well Canada's position in the theater of the world.

I hope soon one day Canadians will find some self-descriptives which include the word ARE....rather than ARE NOT... it is time to take responsibility be what you necessarily are - rather than the old worn out explanatory phrases about the U.S. and the Monarchy and the Empire and the government of Canada itself. At the present time - Canadians seem locked into a polite blame game - which buys them nothing but frustration.

What are Canadians.... what are their dreams, their hopes for the future of their young, their position in the global community, how they can lead and what they are best at being...and hardest of all....what sacrifices or hard work must be decided upon to reach these goals.

Those are questions studiously avoided and if faced realistically, may provide a basic outline for Canadians to think in terms of 'self'.

 
mabudon
#12
"brand loyalty"- that's bang-on I would say. The WORST type of brand loyalty is that which causes someone with an extreme ideological viewpoint to position the other folks as the "enemy" and then ridiculously brand others as being affiliated with said "enemies"- I have been called everything but a "right winger" on this forum- NDP, "fiberal" etc simply for finding questions to ask that are not answered by "mainstream thought", yet I do not have any sort of party loyalty. I vote according to what I learn and NOBODY gets a pass.

I still have NO idea how to vote in, say the upcoming Ontario election (tho I know what I am voting on the referendum question). I am, I suppose "left wing"- I don't believe that any of the parties truly represents my way of thinking, though.

It's almost as if partisan brand-loyalty and test-marketing has made all the major parties into waffle-makers, none of them have their own solid ideas, they just try to rip down the other guys, or and up playing a silly game of one-upsmanship- a good example of that would be the "stat holidays" thing- Liberals promise one, can't recall the Conservative come-back (tho I think they jumped straight into teh "funding religious schols" thing withpout touching the holiday issue- god conservatives abhor folks being non-productive I guess), then the Green party ups the ante in a ridiculous (tho I DO like the idea, it's just right outta left field) fashion by announcing SIX new stat holidays- I'm waiting for the NDP to offer a whole stat month, which again is all wel and good, but it realy smacks of nobody having ANY actual initiative and frankly that's kinda sad