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Consensus [Nov. 6th, 2008|09:29 am]
Okrzyki, przyjaciel!
In response to curly

"I find it so interesting to read/hear the D's talking about how those not in Obama's camp need to come together with them/quit whining/get over it/stop overreacting. That's not the tune they were singing 4 years ago when the shoe was on the other foot."

There's two things going on here -- there's making the noises that one has to make when one wins, and whether one actually means them sincerely. I remember Bush saying similar things both times he was elected. The big question is whether Obama A) actually believes them and B) has the political acumen and determination to make it stick. I believe A and hope B.

I think Bush was more sincere about his bipartisan gestures than people give him credit for, but was severely lacking in the focus, energy and strength of will to make them a reality. I think that his presidency has been a disaster for the entire world, but there's also a personal tragedy happening. George Bush's better angels were thoroughly vanquished by the Republican Thug-ocracy around him.

The best example of this is the genuine humane concern for illegal immigrants that Bush -- and, to give him credit where it's due McCain -- showed when they tried to pass an immigration reform bill. Bush started walking the right direction and got tackled by the knuckledragging racist xenophobic faction of the Republican party.

I think that what's been severely broken in our country is any sense of shared purpose or consensus. I learned this going to Quaker Meeting -- when one makes a point of moving forward where consensus exists, it builds trust and shared purpose. Acting together where people can agree encourages good feelings and communication. Acting on consensus can enlarge consensus -- it's a virtuous feedback loop.

Where things are more controversial, it's better to table them until consensus forms. Otherwise, the disagreements take away from the agreements and nothing gets done. We all in this world have basic consensus on a large number of issues and need to act NOW on that consensus or we're all fucked.

[User Picture]From: hypnotyza
2008-11-06 07:28 pm (UTC)
I think that what's been severely broken in our country is any sense of shared purpose or consensus.

Also, I would add to that a very pronounced feeling of "in order for someone to gain, someone else has to lose". As if there is a ceiling on success that we have already reached as a nation, and now it's just a matter of which way the see-saw is going to tilt.
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[User Picture]From: bdu
2008-11-06 07:48 pm (UTC)
Unfortunately, a lot of the things we have real consensus on are actually opposed by the minority of the population that controls most of the money in this country, thus preventing actual progress on those items.
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[User Picture]From: bitterwhiteguy
2008-11-06 08:29 pm (UTC)
I disagree, there's a total consensus!

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From: elkay
2008-11-07 09:00 am (UTC)
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