General Question

wundayatta's avatar

Is it possible to be sincere about a proposal that has no chance?

Asked by wundayatta (58349 points ) February 15th, 2011

I was reading about John Boehner’s view of entitlement cuts, and it made me wonder about the psychology of politicians and of policy advocates. One would think that if someone has been around the block, that they could only propose legislation that has no chance for rhetorical purposes. It seems like Social Security is a sacred cow, so why would anyone propose cutting it? So is this a political strategy, or is it sincere?

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6 Answers

WasCy's avatar

I don’t see why Social Security can’t be cut.

Despite the fact that, as you point out, it’s probably suicide to even suggest that we actually do that, it’s going to go away completely one of these fine days, anyway, when the rest of the house of cards comes tumbling down. It would only make sense to make real attempts to cut our debt load. After all, it’s not as if anyone is admitting that Social Security is a huge scam, anyway. We don’t have to face that reality, apparently.

Really, the fact that people are concerned about a Chinese military buildup that might make them the equal of, oh, maybe Israel or Pakistan + India… why do we worry about that? They’ll defeat us with our own debt, and get nice waterfront property while they do it, without a shot being fired. And they certainly have the patience to do it. All they have to do is wait, and continue to buy the debt we issue on what amounts to our daily expenditures. (We don’t even go into debt for ‘big things’ any more; we add to our debt for every little thing.)

While we dig our graves with our spoons and argue about political posturing on “both sides of the aisle” (as if it matters which side says what), they’re happy to buy the debt and actually grow an economy.

wundayatta's avatar

I take it that means your answer would be “no”?

WasCy's avatar

I don’t think anyone in Washington, DC is sincere about anything at any time. That would be a “resounding ‘no’”.

Cruiser's avatar

Yes it is possible and done on a grand scale every single day in Washington and you should witness some of the finest examples of “sincere political strategies” starting now on up through the next big election. IMO all legislation proposed and passed has political agenda strings attached and yes sincere ones at that.

Republicans like Boehner can press for cutting entitlement spending because it will happen on the Dems watch and become a political hot potato around the next election. Nothing in done In Washington doesn’t have a sincere political agenda behind it….nothing!

tranquilsea's avatar

The first time you propose something: no chance.

The second time you propose it: a slight chance.

The third time it’s proposed: an even slighter chance.

This is how change happens: incrementally.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

Any fool can propose ideas that most others would reject. Most fools engage in such behaviour.
They may be sincere, yet they remain fools.

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