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October 05, 2004

What is a Flip-Flopper?

I saw this posted on a bulletin board:

Originally posted by Demogorgon
Has it ever occured to people that re-evaluating ones position is a good thing?

I find it odd that anyone could ask something so elementary, so I answered:

Yes, and it's obvious way past the point that it becomes an issue of "Duh!". It's occurred to and has been accepted by me, by virtually every Republican out there, by President Bush, by everyone. The question that you are asking is so obvious and so simplistic that everyone would agree with its implications. And yet you asked it as if to suggest that there is actually someone, anyone, who would disagree with its obvious underlying theme.

The issue isn't changing positions. [Another party on the bulletin board], for example, has brought up plenty of issues where President Bush has changed positions (demonstrating that President Bush is aware of and practices the central principle of your question, himself). Yet the charge of "flip-flopper" does not stick to Bush because changing one's decision when new information compels it is not the issue; doing so does not make one a "flip-flopper".

The issue is the type of facts which compel a person to change positions. With President Bush, it's facts that are inherent to the operations in question. That's why he's not a flip-flopper. Instead, he's just acting intelligently and responsibly.

With Senator Kerry, the facts which change his position are public reactions to his position. He takes a stand for something, loses some support from voters who don't agree with him, then he does a 180_deg turn to get those voters back. In doing so, he loses other voters, panics, then does it again! For him, the issue isn't figuring out from the facts the right thing to do and then doing it; instead, his mission is to escape criticism.

That's a flip-flopper, and that's what he is.

His biggest problem with this has been the Iraq war. Around half of the Democrats are for the war having happened while the other half are against. ANY stand he takes on this issue alienates half of who he's hoping to vote for him. That's why he's flip-flopped all around that issue and why he's been so evasive; it's also why he's attempted to focus his candidacy on the American economy.

Posted by Jeff at October 5, 2004 05:31 PM


I just finished watching Brainwashing 101. Awesome! It was on target with institutions of higher education in this country. I have been a faculty member at the university level for over 10 years. I have taught both undergraduate and graduate (Ph.D.) level courses and have advised numerous doctoral students. In my role as a faculty member I have also been involved in discussions at the national level focused on improving the education of students. Regardless of the context of the situation, the issue of diversity and inherent racism raises its head. Colleagues will say, We need more people of color represented. We need to be sensitive to other cultures and incorporate them into our curriculum (while rabidly dismissing "traditional American culture" as racist, sexist and biased.) I recently read an article in the #1 academic journal in my field. The conceptual (theoretical) framework being used by the authors was "Whiteness". According to this conceptual framework, "whiteness implies and is directly tied to racism". So the diversity preached by many of my colleagues isn't real diversity, It is selective exclusion. Diversity used in these instances is anti-white, anti-male and anti-conservative and more importantly it is antagonistic and hostile toward anyone who does not espouse and support these ideas. I am not surprised to see and hear the stories portrayed in this film. It is the "coin-of-the-realm" in institutions of higher education today. At this point, I think that the university offers a place to hide for neo-Marxists, socialists, communists, and miscreants who couldn't really survive in the real world.

Posted by: Excellent Johnson at October 22, 2004 09:38 AM

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