Statist claim: Everyone Is Republican Or Democrat


"Maybe you should get your GOP congress to amend the constitution to say, 'General Welfare is not carte blanche to infringe rights.'" - Jason Rivera


"You do support Iran. You're either with us or you're against us, and you're clearly against us. You love Ackmajednazi. Admit it. Why do you hate freedom? Not responding to acts of war with overwhelming force is pacification. 'The modern liberal will invariably side with evil over good.' Most of you are neo-liberals and anarchists." - Joseph Egan

A whole litany of false dilemmas!


Statists, at least in the US, like to divide the world into two groups: Republican-statists and Democrat-statists, supporters of the two major US political parties. (This is likely less common in countries without such an entrenched two-party system, although it is still possible that people will try to match you to a party rather than a philosophy.) Their "thinking" is that anyone that is not an adherent (cheerleader) for one party must cheer-lead for the other. It is, of course, a classic false dilemma fallacy, but beyond that worth a little more examination.

One reason statists like to divide people into one of those two neoconservative, "socialist-lite", crony "capitalist" parties is that it makes them feel better about themselves. Sure, their party opposes gay marriage, supports locking people up for smoking or possessing plant matter, supported bank bailouts, and likes to bomb brown people, but your party wants extortion-funded abortions, supports locking people up for smoking or possessing plant matter, supported bank bailouts, and likes to bomb brown people (or vice versa). So we're "equal": we just each want force applied for different personal preferences and it's just a tug-of-war to see who gets to hold the gun.

But enter the libertarian! He's against all initiation of violence (but is not necessarily a pacifist), not just a few flavors of it. He doesn't want to hold the gun on others (except in self-defense); in fact, his rallying cry is "Put down the gun, and then we'll talk". They don't understand this. Now, the statist can't feel good about themselves as just someone that wants to use force against peaceful individuals for different reasons: they have to confront the idea of non-(initiation of)aggression.

For many, this causes what Rand called a "blank-out". They'll start lashing out randomly: "What about the roads?", etc. They'll try to pretend you're just a "conservative" or "liberal" despite all facts to the contrary. Some of them never get over this freak-out; the idea of anything beyond the two parties is beyond them. They find it hard to fathom that someone might have a consistent political philosophy rather than picking and choosing likes and dislikes based on their party's platform. (DBR)

In short, this claim is a classic False Dichotomy fallacy, also called Boolean Syndrome, or the Bipolar fallacy. It is usually the result of political tribalism. [HB]