Political, Fiscal, Social and Cultural Conundrums

Member Group : Jerry Shenk

Why do many people who eagerly offer strong political or cultural opinions become angry and refuse to respond to questions or requests for expansion, clarification, references or hard data? Is smug, but otherwise-unsupportable certainty actually a defense mechanism?

In a country of about 315 million people, if only one or two anecdotes are offered to "prove" an argument, how many similar anecdotes are needed to create real data?

Is that number reduced by how politically-correct or emotionally-charged narrators consider their anecdote(s) to be?

If the combined unemployment and underemployment rates are nearly twice the rates when the recession began, millions more have given up looking for work and no longer count as unemployed, and the percentage of the population in the workforce is at a half-century low, did the recession, as the administration assured us, really end more than four years ago?

Is the best way to retire a $17 trillion national debt to borrow and spend trillions more? Why?

Does anyone know what Congress does anymore? Does anyone care? With thousands of imperial executive orders and executive branch agency decrees directing national policy, does America still need a legislature or a judiciary?

Since Democrats opposed President George W. Bush’s 2006 troop surge in Iraq, why didn’t they react the same way when President Barack Obama copied it in Afghanistan?

Since the American casualty count in Afghanistan under the Obama administration is three times higher than during Bush’s — in less than three-fourths the time — why, as they once did, aren’t Democrats protesting the unnecessary loss of American lives?

For that matter, if, according to international estimates, in Pakistan alone, the Obama administration has launched more than 300 drone strikes causing as many as 800 or more Pakistani civilian casualties, why haven’t Democrats protested the loss of innocent civilian lives?

Should Americans trust the people who claim they responsibly collect controversial domestic data to protect us, even though some of the same people abandoned Americans in Benghazi?

If your health care plan premiums double, but you can’t access the exchange to see it, will you still "save $2,500 per year"?

Do President Obama’s sinking approval numbers result, at least in part, from the fact that what he says cannot be trusted?

When the president says "let me be perfectly clear," should his teleprompter be replaced with a polygraph?

Will ambitious Democrats who wish to succeed the president in 2016 do better by aligning themselves with or distancing themselves from Obama’s policies?
On the social and cultural fronts:

Does "social justice" still have any intrinsic meaning to the American left other than "whatever we say?"

How can one simultaneously believe that capital punishment for the guilty is "barbaric," but aborting the innocent is not?

Are the churches which are most supportive of nation-wide gay marriage the ones with the emptiest pews?

How many government programs are necessary to aid the disadvantaged? Are bureaucratically-managed government social programs superior alternatives to families, friends, concerned neighbors, community centers, local charities, churches, private schools and organizations which aid struggling people or other places and ways people connect and interact?

Why does government measure means-tested programs by how much money is spent on them and how many people are enrolled rather than by how many recipients were encouraged by them to escape dependency to live responsible, productive, independent lives?

Do most welfare recipients escape dependency? Or has public welfare created a permanent American underclass?

Who benefits more from welfare programs – welfare recipients or politicians and the welfare bureaucracy?

Will poverty in America be cured by giving amnesty to millions of poor illegal aliens? How?

If, as we are told, illegal aliens are forced to "live in the shadows," why, on the day the U.S. Senate’s amnesty bill was passed, were so many illegals in the Senate gallery chanting the president’s campaign slogan?

Does it make sense that people can be arrested for driving, fishing or hunting without a license, but not for being in the country illegally?

Ultimately, will Americans who look to the government to improve their lives be content – or are they doomed to an endless loop of grievance and disappointment?
If America defaults, will government dependents who helped institutionalize an unsustainable welfare state through the ballot box suffer the consequences quietly? Or will there be a public backlash from angry, "entitled" former beneficiaries of government largesse?