Mitt Romney: Is the American political system broken?
Widely recognized for his leadership and accomplishments as a public servant and in private enterprise, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney currently serves as the Honorary Chairman of the Free and Strong America PAC.
In 2008, Governor Romney was a leading candidate for the Republican presidential nomination and distinguished himself as an important voice in favor of strengthening our economy, military, and families. Elected Governor of Massachusetts in 2002, Governor Romney presided over a dramatic reversal of state fortunes and a period of sustained economic expansion. Without raising taxes or increasing debt, Governor Romney balanced the budget every year of his administration, closing a $3 billion budget gap inherited when he took office. By eliminating waste, streamlining the government, and enacting comprehensive economic reforms to stimulate growth in Massachusetts, Romney got the economy moving again and transformed deficits into surpluses. One of Governor Romney’s top priorities as Governor was reforming the education system so that young people could compete for better paying jobs in the global economy of the future. Romney was CEO of Bain & Company, co-founded Bain Capital and served as the CEO of the 2002 Winter Olympics. Born in 1947, Romney earned his B.A. at Brigham Young University and his J.D. and M.B.A. from Harvard University.
Question: Is the American political system broken?
Mitt Romney: Washington is broken. The states are doing a pretty good job. Cities across the country are doing a pretty good job. States are able to balance their budgets – doing so without raising taxes, without borrowing money. But Washington has been incapable of dealing with the extraordinary challenges America faces today – dealing with global jihad; dealing with the overuse of energy; the overspending of money in Washington; recognizing the need to become more competitive, particularly with Asia. The job just hasn’t been done. Of course something as simple as illegal immigration . . . Washington has been unable to stem the tide of illegal immigrants into the country. So it’s time to have people from outside Washington who are not lifelong politicians finally get the reigns and get America back on track. Recorded on: 11/26/07
Mitt Romney tells Big Think that career politicians have broken politics.
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Civil discourse has fallen to an all time low.
The question that the American populace needs to ask itself now is: how do we fix it?
Discursive fundamentals need to be taught to preserve free expression
In their findings the authors state:
upholding First Amendment ideals.
Talking politics at Thanksgiving dinner
- Progressive Activists: younger, highly engaged, secular, cosmopolitan, angry.
- Traditional Liberals: older, retired, open to compromise, rational, cautious.
- Passive Liberals: unhappy, insecure, distrustful, disillusioned.
- Politically Disengaged: young, low income, distrustful, detached, patriotic, conspiratorial
- Moderates: engaged, civic-minded, middle-of-the-road, pessimistic, Protestant.
- Traditional Conservatives: religious, middle class, patriotic, moralistic.
- Devoted Conservatives: white, retired, highly engaged, uncompromising,
It's interesting to note the authors found that:
"Tribe membership shows strong reliability in predicting views across different political topics."
Here are some statistics on differing viewpoints according to political party:
- 51% of staunch liberals say it's "morally acceptable" to punch Nazis.
- 53% of Republicans favor stripping U.S. citizenship from people who burn the American flag.
- 65% of Republicans say NFL players should be fired if they refuse to stand for the anthem.
- 58% of Democrats say employers should punish employees for offensive Facebook posts.
- 47% of Republicans favor bans on building new mosques.
Here are some guidelines for civic discourse that might come in handy:
- Practice inclusion and listen to who you're speaking to.
Civic discourse in the divisive age
dangerously tribal, fueled by a culture of outrage and taking offense. For the combatants,
the other side can no longer be tolerated, and no price is too high to defeat them.
These tensions are poisoning personal relationships, consuming our politics and
putting our democracy in peril.
Once a country has become tribalized, debates about contested issues from
immigration and trade to economic management, climate change and national security,
become shaped by larger tribal identities. Policy debate gives way to tribal conflicts.
Polarization and tribalism are self-reinforcing and will likely continue to accelerate.
The work of rebuilding our fragmented society needs to start now. It extends from
re-connecting people across the lines of division in local communities all the way to
building a renewed sense of national identity: a bigger story of us."
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