Does moral composition matter for politicians anymore?

O-Trap Chief Shenanigans Officer
18,909 posts 140 reps Joined Nov 2009
Thu, Dec 14, 2017 6:10 PM

It seemed like it did when Clinton was in office.  The man was questioned under oath for getting some dome in the Oval Office.  Beyond this, it would appear that having a Christian faith of sorts has often been a mainstay, regardless of party.

However, it doesn't appear that Trump has ever been a religious man (as evidenced by the fact that he refered to 'Second Corinthians' as 'Two Corinthians' on the campaign trail), and his "Grab them by the pussy" comment certainly doesn't smack of the sort of moral composition of most presidents since the Goldwater era.

So, is moral composition relevant for a president?  Is it not?  Were people justified in being upset about Clinton's indiscretions and, thus, also Trump's?  Were people not justified in being upset about Clinton's indiscretions and, thus, not Trump's, either?


gut Senior Member
18,369 posts 93 reps Joined Nov 2009
Thu, Dec 14, 2017 7:19 PM

It matters, and should (to some extent, or what should matter is illegality).

But in today's media climate where left and right lie and distort, and are in the bag for one side....people who want to believe [or not believe] something have no trouble finding justification for it.

And just look at this country....who but a narcissitic pyschopath would want the job?  Deny and spin is not something that comes at all comfortably or easily for someone of strong moral character.

Zunardo Senior Member
815 posts 13 reps Joined Nov 2010
Thu, Dec 14, 2017 8:24 PM
posted by O-Trap

It seemed like it did when Clinton was in office.  The man was questioned under oath for getting some dome in the Oval Office.  Beyond this, it would appear that having a Christian faith of sorts has often been a mainstay, regardless of party.

However, it doesn't appear that Trump has ever been a religious man (as evidenced by the fact that he refered to 'Second Corinthians' as 'Two Corinthians' on the campaign trail), and his "Grab them by the pussy" comment certainly doesn't smack of the sort of moral composition of most presidents since the Goldwater era.

So, is moral composition relevant for a president?  Is it not?  Were people justified in being upset about Clinton's indiscretions and, thus, also Trump's?  Were people not justified in being upset about Clinton's indiscretions and, thus, not Trump's, either?

It didn't seem to matter for Democrats regarding Bill Clinton back then, and it doesn't seem to matter to them today.

I'm not sure what Christian faith Clinton may have - at least some background.

To my knowledge, Trump has never claimed to be a Christian, particularly as evidenced by the fact he has said he believes in God, but has never asked for forgiveness of sins.

Spock Senior Member
5,271 posts 9 reps Joined Jul 2013
Thu, Dec 14, 2017 9:42 PM

Its doesn't in DC

wkfan Senior Member
1,850 posts 13 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 8:16 AM

Moral Composition does not matter TO politicians anymore.

They are vote whores who will do whatever it takes to get reelected.  I simply do not believe a word that comes out of any politicians mouth, regardless of whether it is a D or an R, incumbant or challenger.

If I had my wish, we would fire each and every one of them from POTUS on down.

Washington DC is a cesspool of deceipt and lies.

 

FatHobbit Senior Member
9,058 posts 68 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 9:19 AM

I think it matters for the other teams politicians...

FatHobbit Senior Member
9,058 posts 68 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 9:19 AM
posted by gut

It matters, and should (to some extent, or what should matter is illegality).

But in today's media climate where left and right lie and distort, and are in the bag for one side....people who want to believe [or not believe] something have no trouble finding justification for it.

And just look at this country....who but a narcissitic pyschopath would want the job?  Deny and spin is not something that comes at all comfortably or easily for someone of strong moral character.

 Mostly this...

Dr Winston O'Boogie Senior Member
3,345 posts 25 reps Joined Oct 2010
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 9:33 AM

I think it does.  It is one of the reasons the current president is a complete embarrasment.  

BoatShoes Senior Member
5,991 posts 23 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 10:21 AM
posted by FatHobbit

I think it matters for the other teams politicians...

This. And it also matters to criticize your own team when it is politically convenient. E.G. Kirsten Gillibrand coming out against Bill Clinton now that it is convenient to do so and being the first currently elected Democrat to openly go after him when the Clinton's gave her her political career is disgustingly opportunistic. 

BoatShoes Senior Member
5,991 posts 23 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 10:30 AM
posted by wkfan

Moral Composition does not matter TO politicians anymore.

They are vote whores who will do whatever it takes to get reelected.  I simply do not believe a word that comes out of any politicians mouth, regardless of whether it is a D or an R, incumbant or challenger.

If I had my wish, we would fire each and every one of them from POTUS on down.

Washington DC is a cesspool of deceipt and lies.

 

I humbly disagree. In my opinion there are plenty of decent politicians but the more reserved and decent ones rarely make news. As with any career there are good apples and bad apples. To me, hating all politicians is such a lame trope. Would we rather have a King or elitist technocracy than even our less than perfect system where people have to play team ball and worry about being accountable to voters and donors and losing their job? And moreover, many of them really do risk a lot by running for office and being willing to subject themselves to public scrutiny and irrelevant political attack ads. 

Like for example...I do not agree with Paul Ryan or Mitt Romney politically but are these men really narcissistic pigs without moral character? I disagree. Rather, their chief flaws among conservative voters was not their moral character but that they didn't punch hippies/hate democrats enough whereas "at least Trump fights" or whatever.

wkfan Senior Member
1,850 posts 13 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 10:56 AM
posted by BoatShoes

I humbly disagree. In my opinion there are plenty of decent politicians but the more reserved and decent ones rarely make news. As with any career there are good apples and bad apples. To me, hating all politicians is such a lame trope. Would we rather have a King or elitist technocracy than even our less than perfect system where people have to play team ball and worry about being accountable to voters and donors and losing their job? And moreover, many of them really do risk a lot by running for office and being willing to subject themselves to public scrutiny and irrelevant political attack ads. 

Like for example...I do not agree with Paul Ryan or Mitt Romney politically but are these men really narcissistic pigs without moral character? I disagree. Rather, their chief flaws among conservative voters was not their moral character but that they didn't punch hippies/hate democrats enough whereas "at least Trump fights" or whatever.

I appreciate your opinion.

My main reasoning for my desire to fire all of them is that I don't feel that they are actually doing their job.  Their job is to do what is in the best interests of the American People.....not the 'Ds' or the 'Rs', or themselves...but of the American People.

How often do you see anything but a partisan vote on a bill of substance?  Rarely.  This is why I feel that they actually have no moral 'composition'...because they typically are not doing what we sent them to do and what they are paid to do.

Heretic Son of the Sun
20,517 posts 190 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 12:15 PM
posted by FatHobbit

I think it matters for the other teams politicians...

This. People, in general, are very quick to point out the failings of guys on the other side of the spectrum (up to and including exaggerating said failings or treating any rumor/conspiracy theory as pure truth) while, at the same time, ignoring or downplaying the same sorts of things when it's on their side. Basically turning everything into a mindlessly partisan issue where it's more important to show party solidarity than actually ever doing the right thing.

Which is sort of sadly hilarious, because if you're a regular person, it's not like "your side" actually gives a shit about representing you, so you're white-knighting people who never will take your "love" under consideration when in office. But that's a different topic.

BoatShoes Senior Member
5,991 posts 23 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 12:23 PM
posted by wkfan

I appreciate your opinion.

My main reasoning for my desire to fire all of them is that I don't feel that they are actually doing their job.  Their job is to do what is in the best interests of the American People.....not the 'Ds' or the 'Rs', or themselves...but of the American People.

How often do you see anything but a partisan vote on a bill of substance?  Rarely.  This is why I feel that they actually have no moral 'composition'...because they typically are not doing what we sent them to do and what they are paid to do.

I feel you. I would simply add that I find this to me more of an institutional/political organization problem than politicians in general. Very rarely can politicians truly buck their party without consequence due to the nature of the way political races are financed, the way districts are set up, etc. State Representatives usually have to raise at least $100k to be barely competitive. Not to mention the local political machines, expectations from the party to raise money for them, party driven barriers to independent candidacies, etc. 

Indeed, I bet most of them believe that they are voting in the interest of the American people when they vote on a partisan basis. And that, I think is part of the issue. There is a lot of institutional inertia against getting people in office who don't think that way. 

Take the race to replace Pat Tiberi who is now my Congressman. Delaware county and suburban Franklin county are teeming with talented people who could probably be non-partisan legislators who would do a good job but the money is going to flow in to those who promise to be the most ideological they can be. For example, if the relatively non-ideological county prosecutor Carol O'Brien manages to win she'll always have the wolves at her back ready to say she is a RINO like they did with Tiberi. 

Dr Winston O'Boogie Senior Member
3,345 posts 25 reps Joined Oct 2010
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 12:46 PM
posted by FatHobbit

I think it matters for the other teams politicians...

I think there's some truth to this.  We probably tend to be harsher judges of those on the other side.  However, there are many pols who I don't agree with politically who I still think are honorable men and women.  Case in point, George W. Bush.  I disagreed with lots of things during his presidency, but I genuinely believe he is a good man.  I think most people want their political leaders to be of decent moral character.

wkfan Senior Member
1,850 posts 13 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 1:13 PM
posted by BoatShoes

I feel you. I would simply add that I find this to me more of an institutional/political organization problem than politicians in general. Very rarely can politicians truly buck their party without consequence due to the nature of the way political races are financed, the way districts are set up, etc. State Representatives usually have to raise at least $100k to be barely competitive. Not to mention the local political machines, expectations from the party to raise money for them, party driven barriers to independent candidacies, etc. 

Indeed, I bet most of them believe that they are voting in the interest of the American people when they vote on a partisan basis. And that, I think is part of the issue. There is a lot of institutional inertia against getting people in office who don't think that way. 

Take the race to replace Pat Tiberi who is now my Congressman. Delaware county and suburban Franklin county are teeming with talented people who could probably be non-partisan legislators who would do a good job but the money is going to flow in to those who promise to be the most ideological they can be. For example, if the relatively non-ideological county prosecutor Carol O'Brien manages to win she'll always have the wolves at her back ready to say she is a RINO like they did with Tiberi. 

I understand your point about this being an institutional issue...that is why we need to fire ALL of them...each and every one of them...in order to 'drain the institution'' of this infection.

That is what I mean by POTUS on down....not just the elected officials, but the entire organization under the national 'R' and 'D' org chart.  There is only one way to rid those organizations of this ill...and that is to implode them and re-build the culture and infrastructure from the ground up.

CenterBHSFan 333 - I'm only half evil
7,259 posts 46 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 3:20 PM

Moral composition is still a very important thing, IMO. In some ways, this is why social media can work for us, because more voices calling out misbehavior kinda forces the issue. People still care.

What I think can help enforce the moral composition question is to find a way to dissolve the insitution of lobbying (the Constitutionality of this is questionable).

gut Senior Member
18,369 posts 93 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 5:37 PM
posted by CenterBHSFan

What I think can help enforce the moral composition question is to find a way to dissolve the insitution of lobbying (the Constitutionality of this is questionable).

It's impossible to craft good, effective legislation without input from industry.  I've talked to the legal groups of a few companies about their lobbying efforts, and you might be surprised.  Nearly all of it is opposing bad laws that are basically price controls, and most of that is driven by litigation lobbyists trying to tilt the scales in their favor.  One example given to me was Joe Smith has an issue (it happens, no one has a 100% service record), and he calls up his Congressman, who listens and responds to his consituent by introducing horribly misguided legislation.  These groups spent less than $1M nationally, and generally only got involved if it looked like something would actually make it out of committee to a vote.

No doubt, there are a lot of ill effects from lobbying (BIG lobbying, mostly), but there's also value that comes from a lot of it.

Heretic Son of the Sun
20,517 posts 190 reps Joined Nov 2009
Fri, Dec 15, 2017 6:48 PM
posted by gut

It matters, and should (to some extent, or what should matter is illegality).

But in today's media climate where left and right lie and distort, and are in the bag for one side....people who want to believe [or not believe] something have no trouble finding justification for it.

And just look at this country....who but a narcissitic pyschopath would want the job?  Deny and spin is not something that comes at all comfortably or easily for someone of strong moral character.

Which is how the battle of 2016 was fought between a corrupt career politician looking to further cement the Clinton name as being synonymous with American politics and a buffoonish entrepreneur/reality TV star who takes to social media to cry whenever he doesn't feel properly respected.

Not easy to be enthusiastic with that sort of choice.

ernest_t_bass 12th Son of the Lama
26,698 posts 199 reps Joined Nov 2009
Sat, Dec 16, 2017 6:58 AM

I'd say Jim Jordan has a high moral compass. 

Verbal Kint Senior Member
1,062 posts 16 reps Joined Jul 2017
Sat, Dec 16, 2017 8:45 AM

I'd like to know which presidents you all believe had a moral compass?  Maybe 3-6 depending on your level of scrutiny. 

FatHobbit Senior Member
9,058 posts 68 reps Joined Nov 2009
Mon, Dec 18, 2017 2:54 PM
posted by Verbal Kint

I'd like to know which presidents you all believe had a moral compass?  Maybe 3-6 depending on your level of scrutiny. 

 

I feel like the older i get, the more immoral the presidents become. I'm not sure if it's because I'm more aware more or if anything has really changed. (Although i do think Trump jumped the  moral train off the tracks and through the city right over an orphanage and a no kill dog shelter) 

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