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A question that I hope will not turn ugly as I truly don’t mean it to be. If you are a conservative atheist and a member of the Republican Party how do you reconcile that the party has been taken over by the Religious Right? The Republican Party and the Democratic Party for that matter, when I was growing up, was about economic philosophical differences but America was put first. You could have a Liberal Republican on social issues and be an Economic conservative on the economy. The “prime the pump” model verses the more Adam Smith model of letting the “invisible hand” dictate the economy. Now I find no social liberals in the party and there seems to be a religious litmus test along with dogmatic tribalism where you must be “pure” in order to be part of the party. How do you overcome this paradox and remain in the Republican Party? I’m asking for understanding not to start an argument.

LibrePenseur 7 June 10
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31 comments

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31

Time for a moderate party. Where we fight for human rights AND financial responsibility. Where Science and Logic are King. Where we constantly strive to get better, fix mistakes and try new things. Where we work towards solutions rather than assigning blame. Where we are happy to be wrong, if another party gets it right. Where we are worried about doing the right thing rather than worried about getting re-elected.

In other words, secular humanism.

OMG does that world even exist. I wish. 😟

Sounds like the beginnings of a platform. Thoughts on a name for this new party?

@Donna_I Just call it The Moderate Party, I think anything else would just get marginalized by the big two.

@Humanity4all excellent!

@Donna_I The Progressives as a party name works for me.

20

I recently returned to the republican party after being an Independent for over 30 years. Reagan, the religious right, and the "moral majority" ran me off back in '83.
I went back because I got really tired of doing nothing but bitching about how
truly heinous the GOP has become.
Instead of just bitching, which does absolutely NO good at all, I'm going back in
to effect change from the inside.
Granted, it's definitely an uphill battle, especially here in the Deep South bible-belt, but anything worth doing is going to take hard work.
I want religion out of politics entirely. I want the tax-exempt status of all churches to be revoked. I want the conservative, regressive policies of the current incarnation of the party to cease.
So, if I want those things, it's incumbent on me to get in there and work toward that. Complaining about it accomplishes NOTHING, and has gotten us to where
we are now.

KKGator Level 9 June 10, 2018

I wish you success in your endeavor.

@jlynn37 Thanks!!! I'm sure gonna need it!!!!
I realize that it's a rather Quixotic endeavor, but
I must at least try.

@TheAstroChuck That's just it. I'm not a conservative. I don't believe in conservatism. I think it's negative and regressive.
Thanks though.

Good for you....you're on the right track. We need to get the secret money out of politics and we damn sure need to get the churches off of the tax exempt rolls. When a televangelist preacher lives in a mansion, has a private jet and drives a car that cost half a million dollars - well, you know however well intentioned that tax exempt idea might have been in the beginning it has led to the ultimate climate of greed and corruption.

Awesome. But why call it Republican then? Sounds independent and Maverick to me and has nothing in common with them.

@CallMeDave That's just it. I WAS an Independent and it did NO good at all. Sure, there have been a handful of Independent candidates who have won a handful of seats, but it's still the republican/democrat show. The same thing can be said of the Libertarians. They aren't making any difference either.
The republicans are currently holding the majority in all branches of government, that must stop. Outside influences haven't made a dent. So, it's time to change tactics. Complaining about them doesn't work. The only option I see is going in to effect change from the inside.

@KKGator Can't argue with that. I hope some younger version of Bernie will tip the balance

@CallMeDave I'm not seeing that. YET.
Perhaps the midterms will produce someone who can take up that mantle later on. Another reason why I'm focusing my efforts on the republicans.

@KKGator not a conservative so why be republican? I feel we need to be careful of how we spend the money spend were it is needed not toss it in a garbage pt like military contractors who have no soul. We also needto keep our social programs contract to help the people.

@benhmiller The idea is to effect change within the party. The GOP is not the exclusive territory of conservatives. As I have previously stated, it does absolutely not good at all to be a Libertarian or an Independent. Neither of those parties has a snowball's chance in hell of effecting any kind of meaningful change. They don't have the power OR the money.

Your vote will still count as Repub. I don't see that as helping in any way.

@SheBeSecular So what? I never said I'd be voting for republican candidates. I will continue to vote exactly as I did when I was an Independent. I'm working within the party on the local level to effect change. You are missing my point.

@KKGator Am I? Perhaps.

19

I'm registered as a Republican. I never vote straight ticket. I don't consider myself a member of the party. What it has become is.....shallow. But then again, shallow, pathetic souls who don't even understand their inner selves, let alone the complex world outside of them....well they need somewhere to go .

I suppose the reasons I registered and voted the way I do has to do with economics. But that along with everything else has changed. The invisible hand no longer is a viable solution (if it ever was) . Reckless de-regulation does not work when there is little respect for the laws. The takeover by religious zealots is the most most frightening of all. Faux Patriotism. Willful Ignorance.

Here's my favorite: The RepublicanTs have convinced millions that the Poor People have all of their money. Count me out of that crowd.

Today is a new day.

twill Level 7 June 10, 2018

How did I reconcile the Religious Right co-opting the GOP? Easy, I became a GDI (for those that were unaware of the Greek system at American universities, that stands for Gosh Darn Independent). I've lived in many states where that didn't affect me at all (open primary states). But now that I am in the Grating State of Texas, I had to register else I would lose the ability to vote in the primaries. (I had to pick a party in New Mexico, as well). Last election, I couldn't even remember WHICH party I had registered with.

It's a wise man who examines his beliefs objectively. I shall endeavour to emulate.

the problem with republicans are they have no common sense, heart or humanity. They think if you can't work you can die. if you did not save for retirement you can die. If you can't be worth a big wage then you can die. They are anti unions, anti socialism even though they do not see all the socialist programs out there as socialism. Roads, water projects, police, fire, safety programs, and yes the military and politicians are socialist programs. The Constitution of the United States is a socialist document A government of for and by the people! That is socialism!

Well said - and I couldn't agree with you more. And here's something I've noticed over the years - people I talk to that are on the lower rungs of the middle class ladder seem to have the most animosity towards the poor. I've had more than one of them say to me "I struggled and scratched my way to where I am without ANY HELP FROM ANYONE so why should I care about people who are too lazy to do the same thing." Upon closer examination however, it turned out that most of those people had indeed received help from quite a number of sources - they just didn't get "food stamps". Having "arrived" they now were busy pulling the ladder up behind them and slamming the door shut in other people's faces. I suppose next we'll be changing the country's mantra from "In God we trust" to...."I've got mine now the rest of you can go f**k yourselves". Its the subliminal message that comes from the Oval office and trickles down thru congress, etc etc

14

A number of people who were staunch republicans are now speaking up in the various news outlets about how they can no longer - in good conscience - call themselves republicans. They are very disappointed in how the party has been taken hostage by a group of people who do not follow politics normally - who absolute adore reality TV - and heard Trump say "vote for me and I'll give you all the best reality TV show you've ever seen". That was all it took. They don't care how badly he screws everything up - they just want to be entertained. And they are - he didn't disappoint - his tweets are like crack to his his base. It is going to take a long time to undue all of the damage that he will have done. The people who I hold in serious contempt are the GOP members of Congress who are so TERRIFIED of being primaried this November they are willing to simply crawl under a rock and hide until the November mid-terms. Having said all that - the most appalling fact is that something like 49% of the american public did not even bother to vote....

when you do not research who is running and just vote one way you are the problem!

That makes me cry. 49% WTF is wrong with people.

Put into office by evangelical bots and the Honey Boo Boo mindset. IF Boo Boo folks even vote?

13

If you go back far enough in time, the Republicans used to be the liberals left-wingers of the United States, while the Democrats were the right-wing conservatives. It's really interesting to see how political parties change over time.

MarcO Level 5 June 10, 2018

have you seen Eisenhower's platform?

@btroje yes, and I'm sure that if he were to run today the Republicans would think him to "liberal" Hell, I think even Nixon and Regan would be "too liberal" for them now.

In my mind, Eisenhower was the last TRUE Republican.

The big thing now is for the racists to claim they're not racist by saying Lincoln was a Republican. The best response to this that I have seen has been "Yeah, and Nicholas Cage won an Oscar. But a lot of shit has happened in the intervening years"

try telling that to die in the wool republican they will never see it

@Ozman That is hilarious! That Nic Cage thing is my new go-to response. Thanks!

I mentioned this to a couple of conservative friends of mine and they both told me I was full of shit. I did the research. I don't hang out with them much anymore, lol.

12

Join Bernie Sanders Party and rock both worlds.

Bernie started a party?

if you read the democratic party platform Bernie fits in it just fine but the problem with all parties they want their members to just follow not create waves. Democrates are not as easliy lead like republican or libertarian parties.

@CallMeDave He is a NEITHER.

I voted Bernie in primary.

12

Not sure if my two cents is worth much but some if it has to do with the cultural war. It seems people are given fewer and fewer options today. One must either be one one side or the other. We need a centrist party not given over to either a political or religious ideology.

It seems like 2 choices is what we get....bad and worser

It seems perfectly logical that a moderate, centrist party would appeal to the majority of people.....and yet - we see the centrist candidates losing elections most of the time. It makes me wonder if we are simply indulging in wishful thinking when we say that the majority of people want those moderate policies.....maybe the truth is that we have become so polarized - fractured, splintered....that we can't get a dozen people to agree on anything anymore... ????

Won't matter if Drumpf sold us to Putin. The elections must be hack proof. Is it already too late? I wonder...

12

I'm a conservative Republican, but now registered as a Libertarian. My Republican values are from the Reagan years. I hope the Republican Party returns to a more centric, and logical philosophy. I hope, but I'm not optimistic.

11

Based upon their actions, I don't understand how anyone can reconcile belonging to either party.

mt49er Level 7 June 10, 2018

Agreed.

Totally agree - the people are merely presented with an illusion of choice.

11

Based on the only conservative I’ve conversed with on this site, maybe they don’t… maybe they’ve bought into the conspiracy as a way to protect… well… that’s the part I haven’t figured out. Racism? Bigotry? Misogyny? This guy likes to blame Hillary and Obama for pretty much everything, right down to the Great Ice Age. Although, to be honest, I can’t tell if he’s really just a troll or if he is what he claims to be. He strikes me as a troll. He sounds like a troll.

a toll is a troll no matter if they say not! Conservative use the blame game on everyone but them selves. We need to look at each subject and decide what is practical.

@Faithless1 lmfao....that is so true.

10

I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member.

Groucho Marx

9

The short answer is about 40 years ago the Republican party was losing most of its voting power. In order to stay relevant they needed to draw in a new crowd and they found it in the religious right. At the time very small percentages of Republican leadership actually cared about Christian values it was merely a PR matter. One could argue that this is still the case but less publicly honest.

well said....and I totally agree.

8

You don't remain in either party...that's how. Republicans long ago abandoned fiscal responsibility - and I still can't figure out what Democrats stand for - other than being anti-Republicans.

Not that there are other great options out there. I like some things the Libertarians like - but then they go off the rails on others. Same goes for the Progressives. The Green Party totally loses me.

There is no solution for those of us who's politics are a little from column A, B, C, D, E, and so on - that aren't defined by one ideology. I hate ideologies, they turn into dogmas, and there is a reason I'm an atheist.

7

I look forward to the responses.

@Mike007 and so far you are right

Nice empty double pointer.

@CallMeDave Really? It's 10 points, not 10,000. He just didn't have any insight to the question but expressed an interest in the topic and that he would be following. There is no shame in his game. He just happened to be the first one to comment.

@AdorkableMe Thank you.

@AdorkableMe
Oh. I thought it was 10,000.

@CallMeDave ?

6

If you don't get much of a response, you might try asking in the conservative atheists or conservative republican (I think?) group...but don't be surprised when the start in with the 3rd grade name calling, it's pretty common with a few of those folks.

5

There is no good answer to this conundrum. I personally am an independent. i vote Dem when they are for certain freedoms. I vote Rep when they are progressive and not a religious nut. But yeah man they are really ruining the party.

4

The question which concerns me more is whether people have become more focused on the labels than what people really stand for and support.

In Canada, i believe that party membership is still not the determining factor for how people vote or who they support. I hope that is the norm, and not just my impression.

I refuse to be put in any political box, and when asked, answer that I am a fiscal conservative with socialist tendencies which prioritize ensuring that all people have adequate housing, food, educational, and success-determining opportunities.

Balance is all in my view; so for example, if military budgets mean reduced supports so some people are left out and fall though societal cracks, I refuse to support any politicians who put politics before the needs of some Canadians.

So i guess i would myself a political hybrid. LOL

4

We are saturated with malignant integration that has strangled and nearly asphyxiated individual thought and reasoning. The danger comes from both Left and Right. If one considers the ways in which "public education" has morphed into regimented indoctrination it is a huge clue to at least one of the causes.

Younger people don't possess the perspective of those of us who developed relatively free of such captivity. Society has always afflicted the young with mores, most of religious origin, withing which we could navigate as individuals. Today? There is no tolerance on the fringes of the Left or Right for differences or criticism. Another thing that both kinds of fanaticism demonstrate that is most threatening to personal liberty is willingness to violate Constitutional principles and protections in any ways necessary to advance their respective ideologies.

At least the Left is more honest about it; stating their contempt for the document and the philosophy upon which it rests. The theological fanatics on the Right swear they cherish the Constitution until it gets in the way of theocratic nonsense they wish to make into public laws punishing and limiting the liberty of others.

Nowhere is it required for people to 'belong' to ANY political party or to be exclusive wards of this or that ideology as a requirement for validity of personal ideas and reasoning. One can agree with one herd on one issue and with the other on a different issue and be equally hated and indicted as a dupe or loved as a sage. It's disgusting.

Fortunately, NEITHER PARTY OR FRINGE ever elects our chief executive. They only comprise about 40 + or - % respectively of the electorate anyway. The only control they have is over who gets nominated while we in the middle determine which of their choices stinks less than the other. Last election, the process escaped them a bit and even though the winner is about as corrupt and opportunistic as any compromised, pedigreed politician, they are in full panic because they can't get a handle on him. Very entertaining to watch.

The national hiring process of choosing a leader has degraded to hero worship or hatred akin to the archaic 'Punch and Judy' puppet shows.

3

My two bosses claim to be economic conservatives. They simply ignore that the evangelical, and Fascist wings even exist.

3

I see were you are coming from. The republican party has moved to religion not liberty. They spout out religion like it is a polictical party but according the constitution no state sponsered or backed religion. No laws shall be made on only religion alone. How can someone be a republican today who cares about others or even supports the constution of The United States. Equal rights for all! Yes I know it never has been but does not mean we can not strive to make it true!

3

It is called selective belief without any morals or values.

3

You don't. The party as you knew it is dead. Move on, find another.

2

It seems to me that the whole left v right debate that has polarised politics is merely a blindfold for the people. Real politics are too complex to be captured in such a limited array of choices and views, and that the American system has come down to that choice shows how broken it is and how almost nobody stands for their principles in politics.

Denker Level 7 June 11, 2018
2

Personally speaking I am a Lefty Libertarian which sound like a contradiction in terms but it actually isn't. Part of being a Libertarian is supposed to involve social responsibility but that seems to have gone out of fashion with the current Right Wingers, Republitards and Libertarians alike. Democrats seem to just want all the money and power for themselves to mete out as they see fit, which translates as most of the money for themselves and their friends with a few scraps tossed to the special interest groups. It makes more sense to me to take care of all members of society and especially those who are most vulnerable than to build a police state that profits from incarcerating people, it's not civilized or humane and frankly it is bad business because incarceration and policing is expensive. Ultimately, the whole system is unworkable because with only 2 parties it is just too easy for big money interests to buy off both sides and have them work for the good of the few instead of the good of the many. 3 crooks are better than two because two will eventually come to an understanding that is to their mutual benefit but 3 is one too many and being crooks they can't trust two opponents so they keep each other at least a little bit honest and that benefits the many.

2

Republicans are all motivated by money and control. Any one of them that claims their reasons are religious are just lying to themselves

Yes, they lie to themselves and align themselves with the right to lifers and religious fundamentalists to give themselves a sense of morality. The so called moral majority are anything but moral. Pandering to the evangelicals serves a dual purpose, it eases cognitive dissonance and wins elections. Win win for them. Sadly for us, the Dems are not much better.

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