What is Dean's Platform????

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Okay, I am a little worried to ask, so I'm going to but the disclaimer up front. I'm being serious in asking this, and while I am unashamedly conservative, I don't hate liberals, and in fact, I very much understand many of their views, and occasionally agree with them.



I do not however understand what Howard Dean brings to the debate. I watched the entire AFL-CIO "dialogue" last night on CSPAN2 with the group of democratic candidates, and I honestly couldn't figure out what his position is other than that he hates George Bush.



It seems he's just running on an anti-Bush platform. What issue oriented positions am I missing?







Again: THIS ISN'T FLAME BAIT - THOSE WHO WISH TO ARGUE NEED NOT APPLY. FREE AND OPEN DISCUSSION WELCOME - NARROWMINDED, IGNORANT, SLANDEROUS NONSENSE IS NOT.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 20
    scottscott Posts: 7,431member
    I'm not in front of the TeeVee much these days so I don't catch a lot of this stuff. When I started reading this thread I thought, "What does he sand for?" All I could come up with was anti-Bush stuff. That an higher taxes.



    Kind of like those TeeVee commercials that after they are over you think, "What were they selling?"
  • Reply 2 of 20
    jante99jante99 Posts: 539member
    Try http://www.deanforamerica.com/ It's Dean campaign website. Sure it's not exactly unbiased but it covers all his platforms.



    I agree with you though on asking this question. Right now his speeches and such make him appear to be an angry man railing against Bush. This may work in getting people like me to support him but it doesn't help rally support from other people. I'm sure pretty soon he will switch tacts and start bringing in the supposed moderates. (Who republican strategist have supposedly are not targeting and are counting on Bush's loyal supporters to keep the White House).



    In actuality Dean has much to offer.



    Specifically the fact that he is more fiscally conservative then Bush. He kept Vermont deficit free during his term as governor. While Bush has created 25% more non-military (ie non terrorism related) spending since he took office and the biggest deficit ever.



    Plus Dean has a perfect record with the NRA. Quite a feat for a insurgent "liberal" Democratic candidate.



    The most amazing thing Dean is doing right now is getting volunteers. His goal is 4 million by election day. Even right now I believe he the most ever (250,000).



    In a Washingtonpost profile Dean says votes vote for the candidate they trust. His goal is to be that candidate. For that to happen he will have to drop the angry rants. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...-2003Jul5.html
  • Reply 3 of 20
    brussellbrussell Posts: 9,812member
    His appeal, IMO, is that he's the only serious candidate who has shown straightforward opposition to the war in Iraq. Kucinic has too, but he hasn't been appealing in the same way as Dean for some reason. Maybe because Dean's a governor in a group of mostly national politicians (mostly Senators), who don't tend to do well in presidential elections, maybe due to their "insider" status.



    I don't quite get his appeal either. If I had to rank my preferences, it would be 1. Lieberman, 2. Kerry, 3. Edwards, 4. Graham, 5. Gephardt. I'd almost certainly vote for Dean over Bush, but I haven't been too impressed with what I've seen of him so far.
  • Reply 4 of 20
    Quote:

    In actuality Dean has much to offer.





    I can certainly appreciate an honest arguement. Even without finding myself agreeing with liberal positions, I agree that they bring something of value to the political process.



    Quote:

    Specifically the fact that he is more fiscally conservative then Bush. He kept Vermont deficit free during his term as governor. While Bush has created 25% more non-military (ie non terrorism related) spending since he took office and the biggest deficit ever.



    Plus Dean has a perfect record with the NRA. Quite a feat for a insurgent "liberal" Democratic candidate.



    The most amazing thing Dean is doing right now is getting volunteers. His goal is 4 million by election day. Even right now I believe he the most ever (250,000).



    In a Washingtonpost profile Dean says voters vote for the candidate they trust. His goal is to be that candidate. For that to happen he will have to drop the angry rants. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dy...0-2003Jul5.html



    If Dean has significant views on different issues, I don't understand why he doesn't run on those. I know that this political process doesn't always make sense to those on the outside, but I have to wonder if this won't backfire.



    At least with a candidate like Lieberman, or Gephart, you have someone you can have an honest discussion about the issues (or at least as honest as a politician can be). How to you have a rationale conversation with someone who's only issue is that he's not GWB.



    This is especially significant considering we cannot forcast what the landscape of America will look like in a year. It could very well be that the economy rebounds generously by then, or that Bush's foreign policy proven to have profoundly positive impact on the Arab/Israel situation, or some other unpredictable scenario. If this is the case and Bush's popularity continues to remain high in the general population, or especially if it increases any significant amount, being the anti-Bush isn't such a great place to be.
  • Reply 5 of 20
    buonrottobuonrotto Posts: 6,368member
    Seems that he's just run a better campaign. He's managed to use both word-of-mouth/grassroots appeal, especially leveraging his web site and other internet "fan" sites, TV and news media opportunities, plus he's gotten a clear message out about his objections to the war. It's a bit like McCain's nomination run in '99-'00, at least in terms of media and grassroots appeal. He's one of the only Democrats who hasn't appeared to flip-flop about the war issue with the except of Lieberman who takes the opposite stance anyway.



    Jante is right that he's a true New England politician: socially progressive but fiscally conservative. That's got to have a lot of appeal these days. He's probably beating up on Bush for good reason right now -- to win over the core democrats. You can argue about whether it's to soon, too much, or whatever, but this is the pattern of American national politics -- play to your more hardcore constituents who nominate you, then run to the middle as fast as you can. He has the track record to be in a good centrist position after a nomination if he doesn't overdo the first part to the moderates who vote (those precious few).
  • Reply 6 of 20
    Quote:

    His appeal, IMO, is that he's the only serious candidate who has shown straightforward opposition to the war in Iraq



    Yes, but this isn't a political platform. It's a hot issue right now, but I don't think it's one that would get you elected. Who knows what the world will look like in a year. You have to have a little more substance than that.



    Quote:

    I don't quite get his appeal either.



    Well, we've seen it before... Clinton was popular even before he really had anything to offer. Although I don't agree with many liberal interpretations of issues, I generally consider them smarter than that.
  • Reply 7 of 20
    brussellbrussell Posts: 9,812member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Salinger

    Well, we've seen it before... Clinton was popular even before he really had anything to offer. Although I don't agree with many liberal interpretations of issues, I generally consider them smarter than that.



    I strongly disagree with your characterization of Clinton - he was "Mr. Issues" in an election year when issues were more important than they had probably ever been. He had books and town hall meetings, he was the New Democrat.



    Clinton also said that running against an incumbent president is doubly hard - you have to show people 1. why the other guy should be thrown out and 2. why you should be put in. Hence what you describe as "hatred of Bush." Lots of us truly think Bush is an awful, awful president. There's not as much hatred of Bush as there was of Clinton, I'll give you that, but that's what Dean is tapping into.



    There's still plenty of time for his specific policies to get fleshed out.
  • Reply 8 of 20
    shawnshawn Posts: 32member
    Howard Dean is appealing because he's a moderate liberal who can energize the party's liberal base.
  • Reply 9 of 20
    buonrottobuonrotto Posts: 6,368member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Shawn

    Howard Dean is appealing because he's a moderate liberal who can energize the party's liberal base.



    But there are arguably a bunch of those candidates in the fray besides Dean.
  • Reply 10 of 20
    Quote:

    I strongly disagree with your characterization of Clinton



    Okay, so what... and I disagree with yours... life goes on.



    Quote:

    Lots of us truly think Bush is an awful, awful president.



    And I can certainly respect that (I don't at all agree, or understand, but I respect your right to think that way), however I am under the impression that you do so because of his positions. You think that he has taken a poor stance on issues of importance to you. I've read your posts. You're an intelligent individual who is capable of making an articulate arguement in support of your position on issues. Dean isn't doing that. He's just ranting about how horrible Bush is.



    It's like being at a pep rally for a Notre Dame football game - there's a lot of shouting about how Boston College is the seat of the anti-christ, and how their starting quarterback is so ugly he looks worse than an octopus in a car accident - but that doesn't win you a football game... it's get's a lot of people excited, but you still actually have to go out and put points on the scoreboard.



    I don't know if you watched the program I'm referring to, but I know it's available at cspan.org. I'm not exaggerating when I say that everytime a question came to him, he didn't get a sentance into his answer before he made a reference about how horrible Bush is and how the biggest issue facing America is to unseat him.



    Maybe that's a proven political strategy, but it doesn't lend yourself much credibiltiy.
  • Reply 11 of 20
    toweltowel Posts: 1,479member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Salinger

    ...Dean isn't doing that. He's just ranting about how horrible Bush is.



    That isn't the impression I've gotten. Dean has very specific issues with Bush. Tops among them are the Iraq War (and the general approach to foreign relations) and the deficit/tax cuts. But also Bush's approach to health care and education, among other issues. I haven't listened to many of Dean's campaign speeches, though - does he attack Bush personally? If so, does it go beyond the "we can do better" level?



    I find it amusing, actually - Dean isn't a liberal. He's an ecclectic mishmash of policies which can't be fit into a neat peg hole. That's part of his appeal, I think. He got painted as "uber-liberal" by his opposition to the Iraq War, but if you look beyond that single issue, he defies categorization. "Fiscal conservative and social liberal" is close, but he's not as socially liberal as is popularly thought. Much like McCain, I guess. McCain was way more conservative on most issues than people realized, but his appeal wasn't based on the old labels, and many liberals loved him. I think there's still a huge block of wish-they-could-be-McCain-voters out there, across the political spectrum. If Dean can tap into that, and still survive the nomination process, he could have a real chance.
  • Reply 12 of 20
    shawnshawn Posts: 32member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Salinger

    You're an intelligent individual who is capable of making an articulate arguement in support of your position on issues. Dean isn't doing that.



    Neither is Bush doing that, nor has he ever done that. Are you anti-bush?
  • Reply 13 of 20
    Quote:

    Neither is Bush doing that, nor has he ever done that. Are you anti-bush?



    well, first of all I don't even think Bush has officially declared his candidacy, but even as that may be the case, I'm not sure what you mean by your statement. Bush has very clearly laid out his arguement on issues regarding iraq, terrorism, the economy, social security, etc. It's perfectly fine to vehemantly disagree with his views, but I think it's intellectually dishonest to say that he hasn't laid them out.





    and no, I'm not anti-bush - where did that even come from? This is a thread about Dean? You read my original post right?



    Quote:

    That isn't the impression I've gotten. Dean has very specific issues with Bush. Tops among them are the Iraq War (and the general approach to foreign relations) and the deficit/tax cuts. But also Bush's approach to health care and education, among other issues. I haven't listened to many of Dean's campaign speeches, though - does he attack Bush personally? If so, does it go beyond the "we can do better" level?



    Ah, see that's the problem. I watched the entire hour and a half program, and I'm telling you - it's very personal. He exudes a deliberate and calculated hatred of Bush and calls it out by name. Perhaps it was the audience, but it just seems to me that a candidate should have answers to the problems they raise, not just simply point them out.





    He goes beyond the "we can do better" level. I suppose he has every right to feel that way, and every right to run accordingly, but if I were a democrat I'd be a little nervous at his popularity. I'd be wondering what exactly he would plan to do if he were elected. Last night he didn't offer any solution except not voting for Bush....



    Generally people don't just vote for you because they dislike you less than your opponent, which means it's not just enough to generate enough disdain for him/her. You have to actually bring something to the process.



    The last time it was a successful campaign strategy.... well we all know how that turned out.
  • Reply 14 of 20
    bungebunge Posts: 7,329member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Salinger

    If Dean has significant views on different issues, I don't understand why he doesn't run on those.



    Running for the primary is different that running for the office. In the primary, it's difficult to stand out among a group of people that generally agree.
  • Reply 15 of 20
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Salinger



    Generally people don't just vote for you because they dislike you less than your opponent, which means it's not just enough to generate enough disdain for him/her. You have to actually bring something to the process.





    I think you're wrong about this.



    Note that I'm not a US citizen but the impression I get is that many liberals, Democrats and even some Republicans *hate* Bush and will do anything to get rid of him. If that means voting for someone who isn't the perfect liberal, the perfect Democrat or even the perfect Republican then that seems to be acceptable to avoid another four years of Bush.
  • Reply 16 of 20
    shawnshawn Posts: 32member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Salinger

    well, first of all I don't even think Bush has officially declared his candidacy, but even as that may be the case, I'm not sure what you mean by your statement. Bush has very clearly laid out his arguement on issues regarding iraq, terrorism, the economy, social security, etc. It's perfectly fine to vehemantly disagree with his views, but I think it's intellectually dishonest to say that he hasn't laid them out.





    and no, I'm not anti-bush - where did that even come from? This is a thread about Dean? You read my original post right?




    Bush indeed lays out his case on the issues, but by no means is he articulate about it. He's no Tony Blair, Bill Clinton, or even George H. W. Bush in that matter. He's arguably a bumbling fool who looks strong and sounds decisive during that 8 second sound bite on the cable news networks (which is enough for many Americans.) He stages few press conferences to articulate his policies to the press, and when he does, most are staged during the afternoon so that they are not primetime (when more people could watch him waffle). Rather, by staging press conferences earlier, the President can benefit from his sound-bite intended one liners. This is a President also obsessed more with image than with articulation of his policies. (See the Mission Accomplished ordeal on the fighter jet; the Mt. Rushmore ordeal where Bush's head was positioned in line among those great presidents; the slogan backdrops that accompany many events). While clever marketing is a good thing, it shouldn't be a replacement for clear articulation of the issues, something Bush can never be accused of.



    But my point is that a Presidential candidate mustn't even articulate his stances on policy to be deemed legitimate. President Bush surely isn't the best spokesman for his own policies, so why should Dean be?



    (Note: I don't think Dean is purely anti-Bush. I think he taps into that anger on the left [an anger which is much more policy-oriented than personally-oriented]. Dean can waffle at times, but he's at least as good as Bush in the articulation department.)
  • Reply 17 of 20
    thttht Posts: 3,212member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Shawn

    (Note: I don't think Dean is purely anti-Bush. I think he taps into that anger on the left [an anger which is much more policy-oriented than personally-oriented]. Dean can waffle at times, but he's at least as good as Bush in the articulation department.)



    Yup. Dean is insurgently popular with Democrats because he has, or at least shows the appearance of, a backbone.
  • Reply 18 of 20
    sondjatasondjata Posts: 308member
    he uses Windows
  • Reply 19 of 20
    Dean reminds Dems of Jed Bartlett... and there's that whole anti-Bush thing too.
  • Reply 20 of 20
    Quote:

    Originally posted by BRussell

    I strongly disagree with your characterization of Clinton - he was "Mr. Issues" in an election year when issues were more important than they had probably ever been. He had books and town hall meetings, he was the New Democrat...



    Nope. He had an issue. "It's the economy, stupid." To be sure, he was also a policy wonk but people didn't care about that. Clinton focused on the economy and had a "solution" - a middle class tax cut. That election was about our wallets. The nation felt secure so we turned our attention inward to our economic problems. Bush seemed out of touch with those concerns so he lost.
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