I think you're right, Charles, though I suspect the media's partisan (mis)treatment of Bush may have caused a small number of folks to vote for him out of spite. People are noticing that kind of thing and it makes them angry.
You're right about both the absolutist either/or thinking, the alienation of people who are religious, and the concern that some have at having other people's ideas forced down their throats.
What's bothering me is that what was extremist Democratic rhetoric two years ago seems to be mainstream today. It's almost as if they've developed a bunker mentality that prohibits listening carefully to anyone who tries to explain another point of view. How else can I account for the things that have come out of Biden's, Albright's, Cronkite's and Edwards' mouths in the last few months?
I'm amazed by all this.
They never seemed to realize what effect Walter Cronkite discussing the theory of Rovian omnipotence and Madelaine Albright A farmer in the Tulsa area probably looks at some of these
They also don't grasp that some people who think that Bush "isn't going in the right direction" with Iraq don't think that Bush should reverse direction----they want Bush to put the pedel to the metal.
MaxedOutMama: What's bothering me is that what was extremist Democratic rhetoric two years ago seems to be mainstream today.
What you might have said is "extreme leftist/anarchist rhetoric from two years ago has been embraced by the Democrats."
The nuts two years ago were not mainstream Democrats. Today, the party itself seems to have jumped the shark. Witness the embrace of the AWOL, cokehead, chimpy BusHitler Michael Moore-style mendacity.
Ray is also right, that many of us think we have been too sympathetic or merciful, and we need to use overwhelming force sooner rather than later. History has shown that this saves lives, but it does tend to upset the unserious among us.
By the way, Hi Charles! It's been a while.
I'm liberal on most issues but I believe the "War on Terrorism" including the invasion of Iraq was necessary, which left me with a difficult choice. Up until sometime this spring I thought that Bush not being re-elected would be disasterous but then I got so disgusted with Bush over a few things that I started to consider Kerry. I started to think he's got to be smarter than his supporters; he wouldn't really take us back to the appeasement policies of the 20th century. But every time I would get close the ravings of the "Bush=Hitler" crowd would get to me and I would think there's no way I can vote for someone who is supported by people like that especially when he obviously panders to them with is "wrong war, wrong time..." talk. I always suspected that Kerry was not being honest about his position but I had no way of knowing for sure. But sometimes I still wonder if I made the right decision. I worry that I chose domestic religious facists to save us from foreign religious fascists.