The Cloward-Piven Strategy

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  1. fossten

    fossten Dedicated LVC Member

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    CLOWARD-PIVEN STRATEGY

    Strategy for forcing political change through orchestrated crisis

    First proposed in 1966 and named after Columbia University sociologists Richard Andrew Cloward and Frances Fox Piven, the “Cloward-Piven Strategy” seeks to hasten the fall of capitalism by overloading the government bureaucracy with a flood of impossible demands, thus pushing society into crisis and economic collapse.

    Inspired by the August 1965 riots in the black district of Watts in Los Angeles (which erupted after police had used batons to subdue a black man suspected of drunk driving), Cloward and Piven published an article titled "The Weight of the Poor: A Strategy to End Poverty" in the May 2, 1966 issue of The Nation. Following its publication, The Nation sold an unprecedented 30,000 reprints. Activists were abuzz over the so-called "crisis strategy" or "Cloward-Piven Strategy," as it came to be called. Many were eager to put it into effect.

    In their 1966 article, Cloward and Piven charged that the ruling classes used welfare to weaken the poor; that by providing a social safety net, the rich doused the fires of rebellion. Poor people can advance only when "the rest of society is afraid of them," Cloward told The New York Times on September 27, 1970. Rather than placating the poor with government hand-outs, wrote Cloward and Piven, activists should work to sabotage and destroy the welfare system; the collapse of the welfare state would ignite a political and financial crisis that would rock the nation; poor people would rise in revolt; only then would "the rest of society" accept their demands.

    The key to sparking this rebellion would be to expose the inadequacy of the welfare state. Cloward-Piven's early promoters cited radical organizer Saul Alinsky as their inspiration. "Make the enemy live up to their (sic) own book of rules," Alinsky wrote in his 1972 book Rules for Radicals. When pressed to honor every word of every law and statute, every Judaeo-Christian moral tenet, and every implicit promise of the liberal social contract, human agencies inevitably fall short. The system's failure to "live up" to its rule book can then be used to discredit it altogether, and to replace the capitalist "rule book" with a socialist one.

    The authors noted that the number of Americans subsisting on welfare -- about 8 million, at the time -- probably represented less than half the number who were technically eligible for full benefits. They proposed a "massive drive to recruit the poor onto the welfare rolls." Cloward and Piven calculated that persuading even a fraction of potential welfare recipients to demand their entitlements would bankrupt the system. The result, they predicted, would be "a profound financial and political crisis" that would unleash "powerful forces … for major economic reform at the national level."

    Their article called for "cadres of aggressive organizers" to use "demonstrations to create a climate of militancy." Intimidated by threats of black violence, politicians would appeal to the federal government for help. Carefully orchestrated media campaigns, carried out by friendly, leftwing journalists, would float the idea of "a federal program of income redistribution," in the form of a guaranteed living income for all -- working and non-working people alike. Local officials would clutch at this idea like drowning men to a lifeline. They would apply pressure on Washington to implement it. With every major city erupting into chaos, Washington would have to act.

    This was an example of what are commonly called Trojan Horse movements -- mass movements whose outward purpose seems to be providing material help to the downtrodden, but whose real objective is to draft poor people into service as revolutionary foot soldiers; to mobilize poor people en masse to overwhelm government agencies with a flood of demands beyond the capacity of those agencies to meet. The flood of demands was calculated to break the budget, jam the bureaucratic gears into gridlock, and bring the system crashing down. Fear, turmoil, violence and economic collapse would accompany such a breakdown -- providing perfect conditions for fostering radical change. That was the theory.

    Cloward and Piven recruited a militant black organizer named George Wiley to lead their new movement. In the summer of 1967, Wiley founded the National Welfare Rights Organization (NWRO). His tactics closely followed the recommendations set out in Cloward and Piven's article. His followers invaded welfare offices across the United States -- often violently -- bullying social workers and loudly demanding every penny to which the law "entitled" them. By 1969, NWRO claimed a dues-paying membership of 22,500 families, with 523 chapters across the nation.

    Regarding Wiley's tactics, The New York Times commented on September 27, 1970, "There have been sit-ins in legislative chambers, including a United States Senate committee hearing, mass demonstrations of several thousand welfare recipients, school boycotts, picket lines, mounted police, tear gas, arrests - and, on occasion, rock-throwing, smashed glass doors, overturned desks, scattered papers and ripped-out phones."These methods proved effective. "The flooding succeeded beyond Wiley's wildest dreams," writes Sol Stern in the City Journal. "From 1965 to 1974, the number of single-parent households on welfare soared from 4.3 million to 10.8 million, despite mostly flush economic times. By the early 1970s, one person was on the welfare rolls in New York City for every two working in the city's private economy."As a direct result of its massive welfare spending, New York City was forced to declare bankruptcy in 1975. The entire state of New York nearly went down with it. The Cloward-Piven strategy had proved its effectiveness.

    The Cloward-Piven strategy depended on surprise. Once society recovered from the initial shock, the backlash began. New York's welfare crisis horrified America, giving rise to a reform movement which culminated in "the end of welfare as we know it" -- the 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act, which imposed time limits on federal welfare, along with strict eligibility and work requirements. Both Cloward and Piven attended the White House signing of the bill as guests of President Clinton.

    Most Americans to this day have never heard of Cloward and Piven. But New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani attempted to expose them in the late 1990s. As his drive for welfare reform gained momentum, Giuliani accused the militant scholars by name, citing their 1966 manifesto as evidence that they had engaged in deliberate economic sabotage. "This wasn't an accident," Giuliani charged in a 1997 speech. "It wasn't an atmospheric thing, it wasn't supernatural. This is the result of policies and programs designed to have the maximum number of people get on welfare."

    Cloward and Piven never again revealed their intentions as candidly as they had in their 1966 article. Even so, their activism in subsequent years continued to rely on the tactic of overloading the system. When the public caught on to their welfare scheme, Cloward and Piven simply moved on, applying pressure to other sectors of the bureaucracy, wherever they detected weakness.

    In 1982, partisans of the Cloward-Piven strategy founded a new "voting rights movement," which purported to take up the unfinished work of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Like ACORN, the organization that spear-headed this campaign, the new "voting rights" movement was led by veterans of George Wiley's welfare rights crusade. Its flagship organizations were Project Vote and Human SERVE, both founded in 1982. Project Vote is an ACORN front group, launched by former NWRO organizer and ACORN co-founder Zach Polett. Human SERVE was founded by Richard A. Cloward and Frances Fox Piven, along with a former NWRO organizer named Hulbert James.

    All three of these organizations -- ACORN, Project Vote and Human SERVE -- set to work lobbying energetically for the so-called Motor-Voter law, which Bill Clinton ultimately signed in 1993. The Motor-Voter bill is largely responsible for swamping the voter rolls with "dead wood" -- invalid registrations signed in the name of deceased, ineligible or non-existent people -- thus opening the door to the unprecedented levels of voter fraud and "voter disenfranchisement" claims that followed in subsequent elections.

    The new "voting rights" coalition combines mass voter registration drives -- typically featuring high levels of fraud -- with systematic intimidation of election officials in the form of frivolous lawsuits, unfounded charges of "racism" and "disenfranchisement," and "direct action" (street protests, violent or otherwise). Just as they swamped America's welfare offices in the 1960s, Cloward-Piven devotees now seek to overwhelm the nation's understaffed and poorly policed electoral system. Their tactics set the stage for the Florida recount crisis of 2000, and have introduced a level of fear, tension and foreboding to U.S. elections heretofore encountered mainly in Third World countries.
    Both the Living Wage and Voting Rights movements depend heavily on financial support from George Soros's Open Society Institute and his "Shadow Party," through whose support the Cloward-Piven strategy continues to provide a blueprint for some of the Left's most ambitious campaigns.
     
  2. Calabrio

    Calabrio Dedicated LVC Member

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    A while back, I posted information about a book that had been influential in Europe and (at the time) was about to be released in the United States, the book was called "The Coming Insurrection."

    Here's the thread from last July

    At the time, I wasn't quite sure how such a movement would be utilized by the progressive left in this country. I think it makes sense now.

    Instability can hasten the fall of a system. A minority can add a disproportionate amount of pressure on the sytem and cause instability, insecurity, and failure. And a riotous group can give an exaggerated perception of these things as well.

    That's the use of this book, that movement.
    To fan up the useful idiots to further stress the economic and social systems and break them.

    And we can even look back to Woodrow Wilson, also a Progressive, who imposed the sedition act of 1918 to initially outlaw any political speech or communication that expressed disagreement with government policy.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 22, 2009
  3. Calabrio

    Calabrio Dedicated LVC Member

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    November 23, 2009
    Cloward-Piven Government
    By James Simpson

    It is time to cast aside all remaining doubt. President Obama is not trying to lead America forward to recovery, prosperity and strength. Quite the opposite, in fact.

    In September of last year, American Thinker published my article, Barack Obama and the Strategy of Manufactured Crisis. Part of a series, it connected then-presidential candidate Barack Obama to individuals and organizations practicing a malevolent strategy for destroying our economy and our system of government. Since then, the story of that strategy has found its way across the blogosphere, onto the airwaves of radio stations across the country, the Glenn Beck television show, Bill O'Reilly, and now Mark Levin.

    The methodology is known as the Cloward-Piven Strategy, and we can all be grateful to David Horowitz and his Discover the Networks for originally exposing and explaining it to us. He describes it as:

    The strategy of forcing political change through orchestrated crisis. The "Cloward-Piven Strategy" seeks to hasten the fall of capitalism by overloading the government bureaucracy with a flood of impossible demands, thus pushing society into crisis and economic collapse.



    Richard Cloward and Frances Fox Piven were two lifelong members of Democratic Socialists of America who taught sociology at Columbia University (Piven later went on to City University of New York). In a May 1966 Nation magazine article titled "The Weight of the Poor," they outlined their strategy, proposing to use grassroots radical organizations to push ever more strident demands for public services at all levels of government.

    The result, they predicted, would be "a profound financial and political crisis" that would unleash "powerful forces ... for major economic reform at the national level."

    They implemented the strategy by creating a succession of radical organizations, most notable among them the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN), with the help of veteran organizer Wade Rathke. Their crowning achievement was the "Motor Voter" act, signed into law by Bill Clinton in 1993 with Cloward and Piven standing behind him.

    As we now know, ACORN was one of the chief drivers of high-risk mortgage lending that eventually led to the financial crisis. But the Motor Voter law was another component of the strategy. It created vast vulnerabilities in our electoral system, which ACORN then exploited.
    ACORN's vote registration scandals throughout the U.S. are predictable fallout.

    The Motor Voter law has also been used to open another vulnerability in the system: the registration of vast numbers of illegal aliens, who then reliably vote Democrat. Herein lies the real reason Democrats are so anxious for open borders, security be damned.

    It should be clear to anyone with a mind and two eyes that this president and this Congress do not have our interests at heart. They are implementing this strategy on an unprecedented scale by flooding America with a tidal wave of poisonous initiatives, orders, regulations, and laws. As Rahm Emmanuel said, "A crisis is a terrible thing to waste."

    The real goal of "health care" legislation, the real goal of "cap-and-trade," and the real goal of the "stimulus" is to rip the guts out of our private economy and transfer wide swaths of it over to the government to control. Do not be deluded by the propaganda. These initiatives are vehicles for change. They are not goals in and of themselves except in their ability to deliver power. They and will make matters much worse, for that is their design.

    This time, in addition to overwhelming the government with demands for services, Obama and the Democrats are overwhelming political opposition to their plans with a flood of apocalyptic legislation. Their ultimate goal is to leave us so discouraged, demoralized, and exhausted that we throw our hands up in defeat. As Barney Frank said, "the middle class will be too distracted to fight."

    These people are our enemies. They don't use guns, yet, but they are just as dangerous, determined, and duplicitous as the communists we faced in the Cold War, Korea, Vietnam, and bush wars across the globe, and the Nazis we faced in World War II.

    It is time we fully internalized and digested this fact, with all its ugly ramifications. These people have violated countless laws and could be prosecuted, had we the political power. Not only are their policies unconstitutional, but deliberately so -- the goal being to make the Constitution irrelevant. Their spending is off the charts and will drive us into hyperinflation, but it could be rescinded, had we the political power. These policies are toxic, but they could be stopped and reversed, had we the political power. Their ideologies are poisonous, but they could be exposed for what they are, with long jail sentences as an object lesson, had we the political power.

    Every single citizen who cares about this country should be spending every minute of his or her spare time lobbying, organizing, writing, and planning. Fight every initiative they launch. It is all destructive. If we are to root out this evil, it is critical that in 2010 we elect competent, principled leaders willing to defend our Constitution and our country. Otherwise, the malevolent cabal that occupies the government today will become too entrenched.

    After that, all bets are off.

    Businessman and Examiner.com columnist Jim Simpson is a former White House staff economist and budget analyst.
     
  4. fossten

    fossten Dedicated LVC Member

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    1984, George Orwell
     
  5. Calabrio

    Calabrio Dedicated LVC Member

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    Recent Efforts to Overload the American System:
    By DiscoverTheNetworks
    January 2010

    *

    Irresponsible lending practices by financial institutions: The year 1977 saw the passage of the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), a federal law that -- for purposes of "racial equity" -- outlawed redlining and required banks to extend credit to undercapitalized, high-risk borrowers in low-income, mostly-minority areas. The Act also established extensive government oversight to monitor how well banks were complying with its mandates. Among the chief promoters of the CRA was Democratic Congressman Barney Frank, along with community organizations like ACORN and the Greenlining Institute. Such individuals and groups consistently sought to stifle efforts by regulators, Congress, and the White House to place some oversight over the risky lending practices.

    Any bank wishing to expand or to merge with another was required to first demonstrate that it had complied with all CRA requirements. Final approval for bank expansions or mergers could be held up or derailed entirely by complaints -- however frivolous or unfounded -- where community groups like ACORN or the Greenlining Institute accused a bank of having violated the CRA.

    In response, terrified bank executives routinely agreed to appoint ACORN or the Greenlining Institute as their official "advisors" on CRA compliance, thereby giving the groups carte blanche to channel loans to their own hand-picked recipients.

    The New York Post explains what happened next:

    "As ACORN ran its campaigns against local banks, it quickly hit a roadblock. Banks would tell ACORN they could afford to reduce their credit standards by only a little -- since Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the federal mortgage giants, refused to buy up those risky loans for sale on the 'secondary market.'

    "That is, the CRA wasn't enough. Unless Fannie and Freddie were willing to relax their credit standards as well, local banks would never make home loans to customers with bad credit histories or with too little money for a down-payment.

    "So ACORN's Democratic friends in Congress moved to force Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to dispense with normal credit standards. Throughout the early '90s, they imposed ever-increasing subprime-lending quotas on Fannie and Freddie….

    "ACORN's intimidation tactics, and its alliance with Democrats in Congress, triumphed. Despite their 1994 takeover of Congress, Republicans' attempts to pare back the CRA were stymied….

    "ACORN had come to Congress not only to protect the CRA from GOP [Republican] reforms but also to expand the reach of quota-based lending to Fannie, Freddie and beyond….

    "[In June 1995] the Clinton administration announced a comprehensive strategy to push homeownership in America to new heights -- regardless of the compromise in credit standards that the task would require. Fannie and Freddie were assigned massive subprime lending quotas, which would rise to about half of their total business by the end of the decade."

    This strengthening of the CRA's loan mandates, coupled with the authority that ACORN and other community organizations were given to intervene at yearly bank reviews, placed the activist groups in a position of great influence. Banks, eager to receive good reports from these groups (in order to avoid having their merger plans blocked or their lending practices challenged by the Justice Department), funneled immense sums of money to them. But the proliferation of risky loans to underqualified borrowers eventually caused Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to suffer financial collapse in 2008. Many U.S. banks likewise folded.

    This economic crisis led to the implementation of the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP), which Congress passed hurriedly into law in October 2008. TARP authorized the Treasury Secretary to purchase $700 billion worth of "troubled assets" from any financial institutions -- banks, savings associations, credit unions, security brokers or dealers, or insurance companies -- that were in deep fiscal trouble.
    * The $787 billion Stimulus Package: In February 2009 the Democrat-led Congress, pressured by President Obama, rushed to pass a monumental $787 billion economic-stimulus bill that was 1,071 pages long, and which few, if any, legislators had read before voting on it. Obama stressed the urgency of passing this bill at the earliest possible moment, so as to forestall further harm to the U.S. economy. After the bill was passed by Congress on February 13, it sat on the President's desk for three days before it was signed, as the Obamas were away on a family holiday. Heritage Foundation economist/sociologist Thomas Sowell noted that the administration's chief priority was to "act before the economy begins to recover on its own."

    One of the stimulus bill's most significant provisions was its repeal of the essentials of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act, the welfare-reform legislation passed by the Republican Congress and signed by President Clinton in 1996, which reduced the welfare rolls by two-thirds.

    A Heritage Foundation report stated that 32 percent of the stimulus bill -- or an average of $6,700 in "new means-tested welfare spending" for every poor person in the U.S. -- was earmarked for such programs as Temporary Assistance to Needy Families; Medicaid; food stamps; the Women, Infants, and Children food program; public housing; Section 8 housing; the Community Development Block Grant; the Social Services Block Grant; Head Start; and the Earned Income Tax Credit. Said the report:

    "But this welfare spending is only the tip of the iceberg.... Once the hidden welfare spending in the bill is counted, the total 10-year fiscal burden (added to the national debt) will [be] $1.34 trillion. This amounts to $17,400 for each household paying income tax in the U.S."

    Another major example of increased welfare spending in the stimulus bill was Obama's "Make Work Pay" refundable tax credit. According to the Heritage Foundation:

    "This credit represents a fundamental shift in welfare policy. At a cost of around $23 billion per year, this credit will provide up to [$400] in cash to low income adults who pay no income taxes. For the first time, the government will give significant cash to able-bodied adults without dependent children. Since most of these individuals have little apparent need for assistance, the new credit represents 'spreading the wealth' for its own sake. The lack of connection between this credit and 'economic stimulus' is evident in the fact that the first payments under the program will not be made until April 2010."

    In their 2009 book, Catastrophe, political analysts Dick Morris and Eileen McGann provide some keen insights into the monumental significance of President Obama's $400 refundable tax credit:

    "Under the guise of a stimulus package to bring the economy out of recession, the Obama administration is reworking the fundamental politics of our country, passing out checks like heroin to create a constituency addicted to public handouts, and concentrating the tax burden of paying for it all on a smaller and smaller number of Americans. A larger percentage of the American population is paying no income taxes at all and few other levies, making them unlikely to complain when taxes are raised on those who do. At the same time, they're getting checks from Washington as part of a concerted effort to build a constituency that supports big government and big handouts....

    "[W]hen Obama's tax program is fully implemented, a majority of Americans will be exempt from paying any federal income taxes. And, instead of a tax bill, most of them will get checks from Washington every year.

    "Under the guise of cutting taxes and 'making work pay,' Obama is effectively putting a majority of Americans on welfare....

    "Obama has taken the refundable tax credit one step further, giving everyone who earns less than $190,000 a tax credit of $400 (or $800 for couples). And if they don't pay enough in taxes to use up the $400 credit, they will receive a check for the balance. If they pay no taxes at all, they will receive a $400 check in the mail....

    "Obama's refundable tax credit is a permanent part of the tax code, an entitlement we'll have to honor year after year....

    "The political ramifications of this policy will be enormous. Tax eaters will strongly outnumber tax payers, and those who are paying for our government will have little or no voice in what the government does." (Catastrophe, pp. 47-51)

    The stimulus bill also called for a near doubling of federal spending on public education. In addition, analysts noted that a significant amount of the stimulus bill's disbursements would be used to pay illegal aliens working on construction projects funded by the legislation.

    During the 10 months following the passage of the Stimulus Package, more than 4 million additional Americans became unemployed. Yet the Obama administration stated that it had "created or saved" more than 640,000 jobs.
    * The 2009 effort by President Obama and Congressional Democrats to pass a $1.5 trillion to $2.5 trillion overhaul of the American healthcare system, a move that would vastly expand the role of government in that system: Despite the bill's great unpopularity (as indicated by a host of opinion polls) with the American people, its proponents proposed the expansion of both Medicare and Medicaid, programs whose combined unfunded liabilities already totaled more than $100 trillion. Regardless of cost or popular opinion, the objective of the legislation was to make as many people as possible dependent on government assistance.
    * The 2009 effort by President Obama and Congressional Democrats to pass Cap-and-Trade environmental legislation whose effects on the American economy would be catastrophic.
    * The (unsuccessful) 2009 effort by President Obama to make the U.S. a signatory to an international climate bill mandating massive transfers of wealth from industrialized Western Nations (most prominently the United States) to Third World countries: At that time, the U.S. already had a national debt of $12 trillion and was facing a second straight year of $1.4 trillion in annual deficits. There were also more Americans receiving unemployment benefits than at any time since 1983, plus an all-time record number of people for whom government assistance was their sole source of income.

    *

    The monetization of America's debt: The Federal Reserve's response to America's mounting national debt has been to print ever-greater quantities of money, a strategy that has led to hyper-inflation and the devaluation of currency every time it has been tried in world history.
    *

    Unions and pension plans: The United Auto Workers (UAW) union is a good illustration of how unions and pension plans are helping to criplle the American economy. Over the years, the UAW has negotiated an ever increasing number of benefits and perks -- including healthcare coverage and retirement benefits -- for its members. By 2009, General Motors was spending more money on union benefits than on the planning and development of automobiles. The Los Angeles Times reports that GM -- in order to fund healthcare, pensions, and empoyee post-retirement benefits -- adds approximately $2,000 to the cost of each UAW-built car it produces. This arrangement prevents the American auto industry from being competitive with car manufacturers based in other countries.

    But in 2009, the U.S. government enacted an Automotive Bailout that committed nearly $85 billion to help keep this unsustainable system afloat awhile longer, and preventing GM and Chrysler from declaring bankruptcy. In effect, this move nationalized the UAW's pensions, funding them with taxpayer money. The UAW, it should be noted, is a major financial contributor to the Democratic Party.

    In January 2009 Orin Kramer, chairman of the New Jersey Pension Fund stated that U.S. public pensions, as a whole, were facing a deficit of some $2 trillion.
     
  6. Timbo55

    Timbo55 New LVC Member

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    I logged on to figure out why my 2000 LS won't start and found this forum. The hell the LS...it can sit. I am smelling what y'all are cooking up in here..and diggin it.

    One of the few folks who are helping me remain sane during this attempt at radically
    transforming this country is Glenn Beck. Some call him crazy, I call him a modern Paul Revere. The idiots are coming, the idiots are coming. The Cloward/Piven title caught my eye and I am glad to see that others are on to these people. This is a scary time for this country but it seems that more and more folks are catching on to Obama's game and putting the brakes on. Cannot wait till November when we get the chance to "radically transform Obama's agenda" by running it into a ditch.

    Timbo
     
  7. Omegaman

    Omegaman Active LVC Member

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    Drivel!
     
  8. 90boss

    90boss Active LVC Member

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    At 45 years old I have concluded that 535 legislators in Washington are doing all of this by design. Each side says they have the answer and then behinf closed doors they are f'n us all in the tailpipe.

    At some point there will be colapse and possible revolution which will in turn give those in power the chance to further grab more power. But make no mistake what the gov. is doing is by design.
     
  9. 04SCTLS

    04SCTLS Dedicated LVC Member

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    People are contradictory some more than others but IMO all of us to a certain degree and a person has a Balance Sheet
    of plusses and minuses
    then he/she is presented with a Moral Hazard
    and then the question becomes
    How much "sin" you can live with.

    Romney has knowingly and manipulatively played his base well but if he gets elected IMO he will not be a zealot and attempt to enforce the more despicable bigoted conservative prejudices and arbitrary contradictory to reality cognitively dissonant moral positions and merely pay the appropriate lip service to religion while giving them nothing substantive.

    Remember the mark of a superior intellect is the ability to hold 2 contradictory points of view and still function and Romney knows this and uses it well.
     

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