21 Jul 2010

I ran across a letter to the editor today, to some paper in Louisiana, makes a really good point. Liberals get their facts from MSNBC, NPR and left-wing blogs. Conservatives get their facts from Fox News, Rush Limbaugh and right-wing blogs. If you obtain all your facts from one viewpoint, you can be easily brainwashed. That is what communist countries have, news with one point of view, telling half the story. Most people (with some crazy exceptions... *cough*Oliver Stone*cough*) think that censorship is a terrible terrible thing, in any form. But its not at all a rare occurrence for people to censor their own exposure to information that could potentially threaten their worldview... and this is just as absurd as some totalitarian regime doing that to their own people. Why anyone would only limit themselves to reading things that are tinged with their worldview, and only opinion writing that confirms their own beliefs... is beyond me. Its no ...

21 Jul 2010

David Catanese, over at Politico, has a great post deflating the idea that the GOP has much of a chance to take over the Senate this cycle. Good estimates show they've got a pretty good shot at taking the House, but talk about a Senate takeover as well is mostly bluster at this point, unless something big falls for them in the next few months. Money quote: Boiled down, the problem is this: The first six or seven seats of the 10 necessary for a takeover are within the GOP’s grasp. Winning the final three or four, however, will require something close to a historic wave. It’s that cold math that has even Republicans acknowledging that their dream of regaining the Senate is just that — even in an election year marked by impressive fundraising tallies, encouraging poll numbers and an exceptionally favorable election environment. Read on at Politico >>...

19 Jul 2010

Check out this good polling analysis by Public Policy Polling, showing how deep disaffection with both parties really is. Here is the money quote: The extreme unpopularity of both parties in Congress is a broken record now, but only 33% of voters approve of the job Congressional Democrats are doing to 57% disapproving and for Congressional Republicans the numbers are even worse with 20% approving and 60% disapproving. If anything mitigates Democratic losses this fall it will be the inability of the Republicans to cast themselves as a viable alternative. I couldn't agree more. The Democrats have shown only a willingness to dig themselves into an even deeper hole, ignoring the fact that the disaffection with them from the center comes not just from a lack of better talking points, but actually from terrible results. This would be a landslide election if the Republicans weren't so off in right field. Read more at the Public Policy Polling blog......

19 Jul 2010

Washington Watch, a fantastic watchdog organization, has shown the hypocrisy between the talking points of selling the individual mandate, which Obama actually campaigned against when running for president, and how his Justice Department is justifying their right to enforce the law based on a legal standard that allows them to tax. Is there one reality for campaigning about a bill, and another one about the U.S. Constitution? Its jaw-dropping to think that a politician can say one thing so emphatically and walk away from it just a few short months later. This wasn't just a passing comment by Obama during his run in '07 & '08. This was one of the major points that differentiated him from Hillary Clinton. See this Factcheck on a debate between Clinton and Obama that detailed the differences on this. Its disturbing that the press isn't, and didn't, cover this more. His campaign promise to be against the individual mandate just never materialize...

11 Jul 2010

Diana Furchtgott-Roth (say that five times...) has dug up a real doosie, buried in the recesses of the financial regulation bill currently making its way through DC. In a post over at Real Clear Politics, she finds that there is a section of the bill that "race and gender employment ratios, if not quotas, must be observed by private financial institutions that do business with the government". Not only that, but this section would create some serious bureaucracy: "The Treasury, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the 12 Federal Reserve regional banks, the Board of Governors of the Fed, the National Credit Union Administration, the Comptroller of the Currency, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau...all would get their own Office of Minority and Women Inclusion. ... What would be the mission of this new corps of Federal monitors? The Dodd-Frank bill se...

09 Jul 2010

In a stereotypical example of how both parties filter the facts and only present fractions of the truth that fit into their narrow ideological talking points, we're hearing a lot of spin over what the government should, or shouldn't do about the potential stagnation in the economy and job market. What the Democrats have right is that people would like the government to do something to create jobs. Polls are clear on this point. This Gallup poll, for instance, shows that 60% of respondents support legislation that would "Approve additional government spending to create jobs and stimulate the economy". And why wouldn't we? We can look back into history and see some amazing accomplishments of the depression era job creation programs, that worked on infrastructure that quite literally paved the way for the economic boom that came later on. Looking closer, we can see that some stimulus spending does create jobs quickly, and can produce what they ca...

08 Jul 2010

Just out of curiosity, I did a quick search to see if my site was listed on Google yet. Not surprisingly it is, as I set up my Adsense account just the other day and saw that Google had crawled my site, but I came across a very nice article, by David Ignatius at the Washington Post, literally titled 'Rise of the Center'. It would make for a good story if I said that I read this way back in November of 2005, and have been looking for the right time to start a blog called this ever since. Its not true, but I might say it at dinner parties just for fun anyway...really though, it almost perfectly explains what this blog is about. For example: "With Tuesday's elections, you could sense a small shift in the polarities that have been tugging Republicans and Democrats toward their bases. All of a sudden the center doesn't look quite so lonely or inhospitable. In fact, it may be regaining its status as the commanding heights of American politics." He...

08 Jul 2010

In a recent article, columnist Ari Berman discussed this idea that has been kicked around in the last few years that there is a demographic tidal wave coming that is going to usher in a new age of Democratic, hard left progressive dominance. Quite a few people started to buy into this idea a couple years back, after the 2006 takeover of DC by the Democrats, and the as the Obama campaign phenomenon emerged, but is there any truth to it? Do demographics really determine our political destiny? No.   Hubristically Ignoring Centrist Swing Voters = Pendulum Politics But wait - weren't Republicans saying the same sort of thing just a few years ago? How quickly things turn around, no? Where is that 'red sea, as far as the eye can see'? In short, it led to overblown hubris, and ignoring centrists even more than that did before, which led to a wave election that gave them split government. Yet again, if that sounds familiar, it's probably bec...

08 Jul 2010

a lighthouse in front of the Sleeping Giant at Thunder Bay
I was just thinking to myself just now that this is a great week to start a blog that will be tracking the 'rise of the center' (I should name something after that... wait...) of American politics, with all that has been coming out about centrist independents and moderates, but as I wrote those words just now, it occurred to me that this isn't an abnormal week at all. Over the last few months, I've been digging around for high quality centrist and independent bloggers, columnists and organizations, signing up for their email lists, RSS feeds and any other communications they have. What I've found, but is really only now just starting to sink in, is that it isn't so much that there isn't a constant stream of positive news coming out of what I call the 'centrist groundswell', but its that its so spread out that most centrists and moderates don't notice. That's not merely because we don't have a remotely fair number of centrist voices in the media,...

08 Jul 2010

centrist standing alone
Why Start a New Independent Centrist Blog? I launched Rise of the Center to try and debunk myths, fight back against extremism - ideological and otherwise - call out corruption wherever I see it and track the evolution of the emerging rise of the center of the American electorate, from center-right / moderate conservatives, centrist independents and center-left / moderate liberals. There are other centrist independents in the blogosphere and on social media, but not nearly enough. A cursory view of the support among the general populace for the two party system over the last few decades shows a steady move away from the two parties, as they have become more corrupt, influenced by narrow special interests and have moved farther away from the majority of Americans who stand in the center of the political spectrum. But it wasn't until more recently that those who consider themselves unrepresented, or underrepresented, began to coalesce into a polit...