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All Your Honor Are Belong To Us: banazir in 2008

Dignity consists not in possessing honors, but in deserving them.

A friend of mine recently introduced me to the notion of torturing one's students to death slowly as an educational exercise. So, here we go!

zengeneral posted a slightly tongue-in-cheek platform statement that I thought about and responded to here and here. Then it occurred to me: it might cause him great, endless misery to know it had been turned into a meme! Plus, my other students would reply to it (right, y'all?)

OK, here goes.

Please summarize your position on the following in a sound bite or one-liner and post this in your LiveJournal:

International Issues

Foreign Policy
Homeland Security
War & Peace
Free Trade
Energy & Oil

Domestic Issues

Gun Control
Civil Rights

Economic Issues

Budget & Economy
Government Reform
Tax Reform
Social Security
Welfare & Poverty
Technology & Infrastructure

Edit, 09:35 CST - Whoops! That'll teach me to post at 04:13.

Social Issues

Education: Incentives for Public, Private, Both, or Neither?
Health Care: Nationalized or Privatized?
Families & Children
Principles & Values

Interesting Topics

Affirmative Action
Death Penalty
Drug War
Flat Tax
GLBTPπ (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transsexual, Pansexual, and Piesexual) Rights
Illegal Immigrants
The Middle East and U.S. Relations with Islamic Countries
Right to Die

Here are my answers (work in progress):

International Issues

Foreign Policy: In my opinion, America derives strength from diversity and openness, but it has been becoming increasingly isolationist. The irony is that this isolationism, in the name of a perceived hegemony, makes America more vulnerable to the deterioration of its reputation, the depredations of its enemies, and the ill effects of its government's errors. Stefan Sokolowski, a colleague of mine, once said that 21st century America reminds him of 18th century Poland under the Nobles' Commonwealth, before the Three Partitions, in that its intelligentsia went abroad and famously fell under foreign influence. The lesson I draw from this, however, is that internal divisiveness is the beginning of the end - not foreign influence itself. "We must all hang together or we shall all hang separately," said Benjamin Franklin.
Homeland Security:
War & Peace: While it is true that humanity has never been entirely free of war even for a short period of its history, we should - we must - keep trying. Si vis pacem, para bellum (if you wish peace, prepare for war) is a sound defense strategy, but we could equally say: Si vis bellum, para bellum; si vis pacem, para pacem. Give peace a chance. I swear, it's not too late.
Free Trade is desirable if and only if there is mutual benefit. It can be a way to open up profit potential with trading partners, especially developing nations that are new partners. I do not believe that all free trade agreements hold mutual benefit, but I generally oppose protectionist stances, especially unilateral protectionism.
Immigration: America has thrived by opening its doors to immigrants with a high level of talent, intelligence, education, and technical skill. Meritorious standards for immigration are good. So is a moderated degree of compassion: America has also thrived by accepting immigrants fleeing certain historical disasters. As a child of American immigrants, I put a lot of stock in Emma Lazarus's "The New Colossus". Do we still grok this sonnet? Do we still live it as a people?
Energy & Oil: Big Energy exemplifies the worst in American plutocracy. The temptation to give in to greed and the worst of selfish human nature runs rampant in its high profit-to-conscience potential. I support research in long-term energy solutions such as fusion as well as increased reliance on alternative fuels (bioenergy) and renewable (solar, wind, geothermal) energy.
Also, human dynamos are good; not human lipid combustion as zengeneral modestly proposes, but sproglet power. It's good for their health! Get your kids on treadmills today.

Domestic Issues

Gun Control: Some regulation of firearms is necessary. I disagree with the NRA position that education in the responsible use and keeping of firearms is alone sufficient. If this were true, there would be fewer incidents of guns being turned against their owners; and if the education currently mandated by law were sufficient, the United States would not have as high an incidence of injury and death due to firearm accidents. People kill people, and sometimes they kill people with guns. I do not yet own a firearm, and if I did, I would not keep it in my home or on my person for self-defense. I support the rights of qualified individuals to own and carry firearms, but I believe that the first clause of the Second Amendment, referring to the necessity of a well-regulated militia, is often (disingenuously) ignored to the detriment of constitutional law. Context is important.
Crime: "To make someone stop doing something," wrote Orson Scott Card, "you have to make him stop wanting to do it." Education, social reform, and genuine deterrence are more important in that sense than enacting draconian punishments, which can lead to tremendous injustice. Crimes should be punished fairly, with consistent standards for imprisonment (e.g., set reasonable, even lenient, minimum sentences, but do not let the guilty walk free and do not release wealthy or otherwise privileged criminals early). Prisons should be there for the purpose of rehabilitation as well as incarceration; our pop culture references to inhumane living conditions, including prisoner rape, give the lie to this.
Drugs: Prescription drugs should be regulated to control abuse. Certain drugs such as cocaine, opiates (e.g., opium/morphine/heroin/fentanyl), and amphetamines are both harmful and addictive; therefore, their production and distribution should be prevented by law enforcement. Chemical behavioral modifiers in general are potentially very harmful, and education in responsible use - especially abstinence - should be mandated and funded by government. Treatment for addiction should be cheap or free. We need to do better than just asking our private citizens for anti-drug ideas and cracking down primarily on the user. The excessive crackdown on the casual marijuana user is an example of this double standard in priorities. "Just say no"? Make it possible. Make it desirable. Make it worth while.
Civil Rights are the responsibility of society and its government. Preservation of individual civil liberties, such as the freedom of speech, religion, assembly, and the press is not just a constitutional guarantee; making sure they are honored is part of America's contract, its covenant, with its people.
Jobs: Maintenance of a healthy and competitive job market is of paramount importance to the economy and the future. Whether you favor a more or less capitalistic business law, a more or less socialized system of social welfare, you should recognize that America's future has and continues to live in its people; its economy, in their livelihood; its prosperity and leadership, in their personal well-being.
Environment: Our environment must be protected as we have at present only one planet, and not enough to go around as it is. Malthusian economic theory reminds us that we need to stay aware of and responsible about our consumption of resources. Whether you believe we owe it to our descendants, the earth, our Creator(s), or the future - we owe it. Alternative energy sources should be researched, and practical findings should be disseminated, not quelled. Pollution should be curtailed; remediation should be accelerated. As the leading consumers of the world, we have been lax and lazy about this.

Economic Issues

Budget & Economy: A balanced budget is important; a trade surplus or reduction in trade deficit is even more important. Create jobs and you create the future. Knee-jerk protectionism is not the answer. Education, productivity, innovation, and technological superiority should take precedence over futile hand-wringing over free trade and outsourcing. Becoming and staying better than the competition is the American way.
Government Reform: Special interest groups have made too many inroads into American politics. This goes for both conservatives and liberals. I support privately-funded advertisements, but campaign contributions should be regulated and reasonably limited. We need to return to the age of intelligent discourse; the 11, 9, and 7-second sound bites of the 1980s and 1990s were bad enough; the 5-second one is inane. We should be raising a nation of thinkers, not idiots.
Tax Reform should favor equity in pay across demographics: income level first and foremost, but also place of residence, gender, and ethnic origin. "Everything should be made as simple as possible - but no simpler," as Albert Einstein said.
Social Security is very likely nearing obsolescence. Many bailout plans exist, and some that involve its reform are actually good ones. We should not deny that the problem exists, and our leaders need to be sincere about how funds that could be used to salvage and repair Social Security are being allocated.
Welfare & Poverty: Social welfare is important. Letting extreme poverty persist is tantamount to "eating the seed corn". America's strength is in its people. Our people fill a role like that of the "good earth" in Pearl Buck's novel: when we let them down, there will be little left worth preserving in American society. Public funds for social welfare are therefore important, especially for enabling people to become self-sufficient.
Technology & Infrastructure are very important, in my professional opinion. Clearly, I have a vested interest, but I do believe that our information and telecommunications infrastructure is a critical aspect of America's leadership and presence as a world superpower, and will continue to be for the foreseeable future, as long as we remain a leader. Our transportation and manufacturing infrastructures are also important.

Social Issues

Education: Ignorance is a fire, and poverty its tinder. Free (or inexpensive), high quality public education is a right that I believe is part of the American social contract. Having attended both public and private institutions through primary, secondary, and higher education, I feel qualified to state that private education can be good, but should not become America's last, best hope.
Health Care: Accessible, affordable health care is another part of the American social contract that we have not made good upon. I support a more socialized degree of health care if only to reduce the level of bureaucracy and decrease the number of incompetent and unreasonable decisions that are made in our country under the influence of HMOs.
Abortion is a matter of a pregnant woman's choice, and between her and her physician. It is also an unfortunate practice for which contraception provides one way to reduce the necessity. Economic reasons for abortion abound, and should be minimized; pro-life persons in our government should put its money where their mouths are. Partial-birth abortion is a cruel way to end a third-trimester pregnancy and should be replaced with more humane means to terminate a technically viable fetus if and when necessary. ETA - some afterthoughts: Yes, abortion is killing, and we should not seek to sugar-coat that. I personally believe the severity of the killing is continuously proportional to the viability of the fetus (a soft step function, not a jump discontinuity at conception or at birth), but that's just my opinion. Some killings ought to be a matter of normative ethics and not of law. In other words, one cannot legislate morality in the general case. That is not to say that ethics are a matter of personal taste, nor that social consensus, which is, after all, a basis of law, has no place in policy-making. On the specific issue of reproductive freedom, IMO, it is between the individual and what higher powers exist, not between her and those who would impose moralistic law. I happen to personally agree with both the statement that curtailment of reproductive freedom is a form of oppression (witnessed by the continued backlash against the sexual revolution) and Mother Teresa's assertion that "It is a poverty to decide that an unborn child must die so that you may live as you wish". As do most other freedoms, this one comes with responsibilties and consequences for abuse.
Families & Children: Support for family units, traditional and otherwise, is important, especially keeping children fed, clothed, housed, and transported. Safety, mental and physical health, and education are also reasons the integrity of a family is important. America is, however, supposed to be a free society, which means that the sovereign rights of the individual should not be trampled for the sake of this integrity. It is all too easy to fall into an oppressive mindset, or at least become complacent in the face of curtailed individual freedoms.
Corporations: Corporate greed is perennial, and leads to poverty and the dissipation of American skills and work ethics. When The Apprentice is the best we can do, we are in trouble. I advocate responsible business, big or small: considerate of private citizens and public health, practiced with a (real) conscience. "Big" tobacco gets no love from me, nor do big fossil fuels (oil and coal) where they fail to consider the environment and public welfare.
Principles & Values: "You have to stand for something, or you'll fall for anything," goes the Aaron Tippin song. Conversely, as Rodney Crowell wrote, "it's not for me to judge". Respect for other's beliefs is key. Tolerance is not a bad word, in my opinion; intolerance generally is. One can have moral principles without necessarily subscribing to your precise value system, or your faith.

Interesting Topics

Affirmative Action: Necessary at present, but the purpose of its existence is phased obsolesence as inequities due to racial and gender bias are reduced - which has not sufficiently happened yet.
Death Penalty: Elective euthanasia for capital crimes. Suspension on all other executions except under military law in case of tactical need.
Drug War: Drug control, especially reduction of traffic and consumption of dangerous drugs, is a good thing. The current "War on Drugs" in America is largely a failure, due in part to lapses in education and more targeting of users and petty dealers than distribution channels and cartels. Legalization and careful regulation of marijuana, a harmful drug, would do less damage than current practice.
Flat Tax: A flat tax promulgates income inequities. A continuous, nonlinear tax function with some caps is appropriate; none of these stupid "brackets". Continuity and smoothness are good. Learn linear algebra and calculus, you stupid politicians.
GLBTPπ (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transsexual, Pansexual, and Piesexual) Rights: Yes, including the right to marriage. Especially woodchucks, ducks, and apple pies. (See me flout the MLA comma rule!)
"My gift to you," as zengeneral wrote.
As for pie: If you really like McDonald's this much, you need more help than I can give you.
Illegal Immigrants: Excessive deportation is likely to be inequitable as certain groups of illegal immigrants are targeted. In brief: keep the laws, make them fair and reasonable, enforce them consistently.
The Middle East and U.S. Relations with Islamic Countries: Islam is a significant religion to which many of our citizens adhere. It is not going away. Normalize relations with Middle Eastern countries and show them we are a civilized nation.
Right to Die: Support for explicit, written living wills by adults and minors ruled competent to decide (this ruling is a fine line). No one else should be able to decide for you. Legal physician-assisted suicide in cases of extreme incurable illness. Anything else, you're on your own. ETA: By physician-assisted suicide, I mean "no heroic measures" in the case of terminal conditions, and administration of drugs to ease pain rather than preserve life. If unable to survive without technology, one should have the right to choose one's time and manner of death by "pulling the plug". Lethal injections cf. Kevorkian's machine are a grey area. Death with dignity is good, but clearly not all suicides are euthanasia.



( 21 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 16th, 2004 03:06 am (UTC)
International Issues

Foreign Policy: middle east foreign policy needs to be re-examined
Homeland Security: is futile
War & Peace: there will always be war
Free Trade: becomes communism
Immigration: *shrug* if we made a few reality TV shows about job hunting in America our immigration problem would solve itself
Energy & Oil: alternate energy sources need to be more honestly investigated, while oil resources in Canada are utilized instead of those in volitle areas

Domestic Issues

Gun Control: less/none
Crime: is the result of a free society
Drugs: decriminalization is the key to winning the war
Civil Rights: personal liberties are key
Jobs: we've lost our advantage in everything but information, so we're fucked
Environment: buy land ; they stopped making it

Economic Issues

Budget & Economy: as long as we're fucked, we're good
Government Reform: *shrug*
Tax Reform: *shrug* from each his ability, to each his need
Social Security: good plan, wrong century
Welfare & Poverty: support and re-educate
Technology & Infrastructure: this is my tradecraft and our lifeline, so, um, keep it?
Nov. 16th, 2004 03:30 am (UTC)
I ain't a Murkian, so here's my take:

International Issues
Foreign Policy: Be nicer to us. Give us money. Go for some cross-cultural classes or summink. Beat your children until they learn foreign languages.
Homeland Security: by all means keep yourselves safe.
War & Peace: It is a long and boring book. We've never had a year without war. Humans suck.
Free Trade: is good.
Immigration: either take those huddled masses yearning to breathe free or knock down that statue. it was given by the eViol French nazwaz.
Energy & Oil: invade Canada!

Domestic Issues
Gun Control: "I'm against gun control. In fact, I'm against all control... mind control, self control, birth control, remote control, and ground control to Major Tom."
Crime: is bad. implement prison whipping and maybe it'll go down.
Drugs: are good if they're prescribed by a doctor. as for the illegal ones, all drug dealers should also be publically flogged with raw deermeat steaks.
Civil Rights: are good.
Jobs: those are nice too.
Environment: be good to the earth. protect your forests. stop burning coal and gasoline and all use solar energy. cover your deserts in solar farms. that would be cool.

can't be bothered with the Economic issues... since i have no idea aboot Murkian tax blah.


Nov. 16th, 2004 04:47 am (UTC)
Why I'll never get elected
International Issues

Foreign Policy Under my administration, foreign policy will be dedicated to humanitarian projects and aid, not political ends.
Homeland Security Will be abolished in favor of bringing back the non-Reichesque terminology of "national defense."
War & Peace War will be reserved exclusively as a "lesser evil," only in cases where the alternative is worse (cf. Nazi Germany, Rwandan genocide, et al.). Otherwise peace will be our foremost goal. Nuclear arsenals will be reduced.
Free Trade Will undergo piercing scrutiny to weigh benefits against negative results, with a strong lean toward preservation-minded policies.
Immigration Will be hopefully reduced through sustainable economic development in poorer nations. Illegal immigrants will be given clemency, except in the case of wanted criminals, etc.
Energy & Oil One of my top priorities will be converting to sustainable energy sources.

Domestic Issues

Gun Control Will be enforced and in some cases increased, suplemented by extensive (re)education programs.
Crime Will hopefully be reduced by a number of economic and social changes.
Drugs Will be legalized to a limited degree and regulated much like alcohol and tobacco. Stronger drugs might be federally distributed in limited amounts to addicts under rehab programs.
Civil Rights Will be religiously preserved, no pun intended.
Jobs My administration will be markedly pro-labor. Employment will rise thanks to my enormous utopian projects (conservation, energy self-sustainment, inner-city renewal, etc.).
Environment Will be ruthlessly defended. Say goodbye to industrial use of federal land, for starters.

Economic Issues

Budget & Economy A profound overhaul of economic policies, with an Old Europe-style "soft socialism" as the end result, will complicate these issues, but I will place public welfare above corporate profit in all cases. The budget will eventually be balanced and the debt paid down, but not in my first four years, I'm afraid.
Government Reform Will be far-reaching. Elections will be made fair, for starters, and cronyism and corporate donations will be punished by banishment.
Tax Reform Higher taxes for everyone! But don't worry, it'll come back to you with vastly improved social services and quality of life.
Social Security Will never be privatized, but will probably be phased out in favor of a new "soft socialist" solution.
Welfare & Poverty Will be reduced thanks to higher employment, and social programs.
Technology & Infrastructure Technology that will better the human condition will be a national priority. Infrastructure will be altered with conservation in mind, but will be improved in conjunction with inner-city reclamation.
Nov. 16th, 2004 10:33 pm (UTC)
Re: Why I'll never get elected
Heeheeheehee. Some novel ideas there. ....or are they? Everyone wants to up the tax and increase socialism. But I noticed something... In Australia, the tax percents are already higher and the handouts much larger (cheaper, free-er university education, and free medi-cover, to name just a few). They have gun-control too. ;) So take a good look. If you like what you see, then your ideas might work.... Then again, America is the country that's on top of the world, not Australia. (Unless you turn your world map upside-down. Heeheeheehee!)
Nov. 17th, 2004 04:42 am (UTC)
Re: Why I'll never get elected
My ideas aren't novel - basically I was toying with ways America could catch up with the rest of the developed world in terms of health care and other social services. It's been said before that America is fifty years behind the rest of the developed world; that gap is only going to increase until some sort of social movement gets, um, moving here.
Nov. 16th, 2004 04:49 am (UTC)
International Issues

Foreign Policy - Yes please, for a change.
Homeland Security - You're safe enough. You just like to be scared.
War & Peace - your wars are boring. Pick on somebody your own size, at least the CNN news will be more interesting
Free Trade - is the only way to be.
Immigration - Accept And Assimilate. Don't repeat our mistakes.
Energy & Oil - If you'd invent a way to get rid of oil, you'd have first three topics covered.Give all the money you spend on warfare to alternative energy research, and there'll be no need for most of wars.

Domestic Issues

Gun Control - Hmm... on one hand, the less stupid people the better... on the other - the good guys get it too... so, no gun control, but give out free bulletproof vests in schools.
Crime - Keep people happy and entertained, and employ Thief Guilds a la D&D.
Drugs - Yes, please
Civil Rights - Not nearly enough.
Jobs - Free trade, cheap energy, low taxes
Environment - Yes, there IS such a thing as greenhouse effect. Sheesh. Again, find a way to live without oil and coal, and everything will be OK. And, I like nuclear energy. Nuclear Energy is your Friend. Ban SUVs unless they run on fuel cells.

Economic Issues

Budget & Economy - Low taxes for everyone. Fight the monopolies. No subsidies.
Government Reform - Change the bipartisan system to something more resembling real life. Have the anti-monopoly court order a split of GOP and Dems into at least six different parties.
Tax Reform - As low as possible, as few as possible, as simple as possible.
Social Security - Private.
Welfare & Poverty - Don't really need to care about the poor, as long as they're kept entertained. Bring back the Gladiator Fights. The mob wants blood.
Technology & Infrastructure - Disband most of the army and give all the money to scientists and teachers instead. Probably invest in railways and energy network, since you're 50 years behind Europe. You don't need any more highways.
Nov. 16th, 2004 05:10 am (UTC)
Hey, you left out the best part!
Social Issues

Education - Privatize, except for the poorest. Basic level for everyone, the rest, pay up. This way we'll get a cast of handsome, healthy, rich, educated elite to rule us in the future (YR). Concentrate on important stuff that matters, like philosophy, history, ethics and psychology, not the boring geek stuff like maths or phyiscs.

Health Care - Do I need to say 'privatize' again?

Abortion - I say, until it can breathe alone, it's killable. Same thing goes for the other end (euthanasia)

Families & Children - Who needs them? Free love and free condoms.

Corporations - Kill Bill, but in a truly free society only proper education and being smart can stop them.

Principles & Values - Not a concern of the government. Whenever there is an ethical controversy, the government should take the more liberal approach, just in case.

Interesting Topics

Affirmative Action - With privatized education this will be left for each school to decide.

Death Penalty - doesn't solve anything. But is a nice way to keep the population in check.

Drug War - Only if you mean drug producers fighting to provide me with a better, cheaper product

Flat Tax - Yes. Preferably low.

Gay Rights - As long as all (note I didn't say 'both') parties can (potentially) say 'I do', give them proper marriage. This will include dogs some day, I'm sure.

Illegal Immigrants - There should be no such thing. Open the borders for everyone.

Mid-east - Without oil, they're nothing. So first get rid of oil, then we can start messing up. Begin with giving them lots of money in exchange for democratic reforms.

..all this and I'd still vote for Kerry...
Nov. 16th, 2004 05:41 am (UTC)
Lemme try this!
International Issues

Foreign Policy: Shoot first, ask questions later.
Homeland Security: You need a mauve alert.
War & Peace: Don't get mad. Get even.
Free Trade: Fuck WTO then.
Immigration: Invade Mexico, make it the 51st state and get it over with.
Energy & Oil: Canada has lots. Cue "Blame Canada".

Domestic Issues

Gun Control: M-16 for deer huntin' or bust!
Crime: Pays
Drugs: are good...I mean bad...mmmmmkaaaay....
Civil Rights: Jail all hippies.
Jobs: Outsource, outsource, outsource.
Environment: Club baby seals. Club 'em all!

Economic Issues

Budget & Economy: No new taxes.
Government Reform: Hail King George!
Tax Reform: Read my lips, no new taxes!
Social Security: They should all get a job, lousy hippie bums!
Welfare & Poverty: See above.
Technology & Infrastructure: Invest in mo' better porn and faster internet to transfer all that good stuff all over the globe.

I am Zolthar! Fear me!
Nov. 16th, 2004 07:39 am (UTC)
dude, you forgot

Social Issues
Health Care:
Families & Children:
Principles & Values:

Interesting Topics
Affirmative Action:
Death Penalty:
Drug War:
Flat Tax:
Gay Rights:
Illegal Immigrants:
Nov. 16th, 2004 08:05 am (UTC)
Re: dude, you forgot

Social Issues

Education: Incentives for Public, Private, Both, or Neither? No new taxes!
Health Care: Nationalized or Privatized? Just don't get sick. Exercise you slobs!
Abortion: I'm pro coat hanger
Families & Children: Taste good with ketchup.
Corporations: Should rule the world. Wait...nermind.
Principles & Values: Should be strictly enforced. No books except the Bible.

Interesting Topics

Affirmative Action: Is racist, but you know. Them KKK wear nice uniforms.
Death Penalty: Should be enforced for all crimes, felonies and misdemeanors. That'll teach those hippies to fall in line and finally get a haircut.
Drug War: Must be won! Free drugs for everyone!
Flat Tax: No new taxes!
GLBTPπ (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transsexual, Pansexual, and Piesexual) Rights: Do whatever you want. Just don't do it on my porch.
Illegal Immigrants: Should remain illegal. We don't want children to get hold of those.
The Middle East and U.S. Relations with Islamic Countries: One should start thinking about referring it to as the Middle East mentality rather than the Middle East crisis.

I am Zolthar! Fear me!
Nov. 16th, 2004 09:31 am (UTC)
Interesting issue: (cross posted)
Right to Die
Well, it is a natural right for any living being. Suicide (which, oddly enough is illegal...) is an option to any living being that is capable of pulling a trigger, throwing oneself down several flights of stairs, throwing oneself out of an office building (capitalism style)... etc. So, what is remaining is individuals most likely handicap and unable to do themselves in. Living and Existing are too different things, at the point in which a person decides that they should die, they are not living life, they are just existing. I fully support a persons right to die regardless of their competency. if they are not competent (ergo unproductive), then the robot army will take care of them regardless.
Nov. 16th, 2004 12:53 pm (UTC)
International Issues

Foreign Policy - Global Social Security!
Homeland Security -
War & Peace - no more half-measures one way or another!
Free Trade - ...is a TWO-WAY street!!
Immigration - Global Social Security!
Energy & Oil - Zero tolerance on needless spending!

That'll do for now...
Nov. 16th, 2004 04:52 pm (UTC)
Reply, part 1 of 2
Special interest groups have made too many inroads into American politics.
What, you don't have your own SIG. I do, FMFWD, Fat Men For World Domination.

We should be raising a nation of thinkers, not idiots.
HAHAHAHAHA... Boohbah, nuff said.

should favor equity in pay across demographics
demographics? what? no... pay should reflect job level.

Social welfare is important.
No, let religion (where compassion should be) deal with it. The government should play no part in welfare. I admit, that welfare is a good idea, but so is communism.

high quality public education
that’s the second oxymoron today.

reduce the level of bureaucracy
and the government knows how to do this?

and decrease the number of incompetent and unreasonable decisions that are made in our country under the influence of HMOs.
if you have a good insurance plan, and a good hospital near by, then things should be good. I have never had an incident since I am still covered by my dad's protection. Also, considering how well my mother has done on my dad's insurance plan, I am convinced that there exists level of protection that lack bureaucracy and incompetent and unreasonable decisions. Since they exist, I am sure the difference is cost to the company and the individual, and therefore the better off you are, the better health you and your family will have. A free market for health is the only way to keep up with the increasing demand of health care. Once government regulates it, the motivation for being a doctor will go down. Research funding will be provided by the government, and thus become a political motivation. Every time the government regulates something, it gets fucked up. Consider California and their power; They had a freaky-deaky recall!!

Support for family units, traditional and otherwise, is important, especially keeping children fed, clothed, housed, and transported.
Yes, including the right to marriage.
The government sees marriage as the fundamental support for families, and grants such said support by treating two as one for the sake of taxation. To change marriage would require changing to notion of a family (aka, why do I have two mommies or two fathers... etc). Which, I believe isn't good. Not for any moral reason mind you; I am as degenerate as them come. A non traditional family places undo burden on children, and as of yet, children are the cruelest of humanity.

Corporate greed is perennial
greed keeps the market going, greed crushes corporations (Enron)... {btw, I have no sympathy for former Enron employees). We are a capitalistic society, which is based on free market and corporations make a free market possible. Granted, per sector there may only be 2-3 corporations (Or, in software, just Microsoft). However, as long as these 2-3 try to be competitive, it will only benefit us. This is why organizations like the RIAA that do price fixing has caused the boom of MP3. When corporations fail, consumers take over.
Nov. 16th, 2004 04:54 pm (UTC)
part 2 of 2
"Big" tobacco gets no love from me
I love "Big" tobacco, they are willing to exploit stupid people. I smoked once, and it was like "this is nasty", and so, I don't smoke now. I am fully willing to let all smokers give all their money to the tobacco. Since that only gives them more funds to make new food items to me. The only problem is that socialist programs at the state level cover the damages from smoker related problems; this in turn pisses you and me off, but I say separate people based on drug use.

intolerance generally is [a bad word]
intolerance brings debate, debate brings resolution, resolution is good... Intolerance is a fundamental human property, perhaps not a good one, but a needed one to keep life interesting.

Necessary at present
It was never needed. All that was needed was take out the checkbox for [your race here], as well as a national ID for purposes of avoiding name detection. If given a list of anonymous workers, then who are going to be picked? the best workers. That is how a free market should reward people; not by, well, we need X percent of ..., Y percent of ..., Z percent of ....

The current "War on Drugs" in America is largely a failure
which side are you on?

Excessive deportation is likely to be inequitable as certain groups of illegal immigrants are targeted. In brief: keep the laws, make them fair and reasonable, enforce them consistently.
Can't be done with limited resources. If you were too design a decision network for targeting people at the airport, it would be racially motivation. There is no way around it. Terrorists have time on their side, we do not. With limited resources, we have to make decisions (although unpopular) have to minimize risk exposure. If that means that the rights of some are violated to the protect the lives of the many, then so be it. As a key point, shouldn't ethnic groups have pride in themselves enough to stop the others within their own group from doing bad things. If the few do bad things, that group should take the heat and try to protect from future occurrences as well as endure the current tide.
Nov. 16th, 2004 10:22 pm (UTC)
Interesting stuff... Funny how everything becomes more interesting when one's head gets stuffed full of philosophy. (Even if only the barest understanding.) The amount of postmodern relativism I see here scares me to death. Like, truly...
Nov. 17th, 2004 12:59 am (UTC)
Interesting stuff... Funny how everything becomes more interesting when one's head gets stuffed full of philosophy. (Even if only the barest understanding.)
You know, philosophi doctoris is meant somewhat figuratively.
I may have a smattering of philosophy background ("barest understanding" sounds about right), but it isn't my feidl. "Stuffed full" - not so much.

Do I know you?
How are things down under, BTW?

The amount of postmodern relativism I see here scares me to death. Like, truly...
Relativism? I think not. Care to elaborate?

Nov. 17th, 2004 09:01 am (UTC)
if (!You Can Make A Difference)
Here is my two cents

International Issues
Isn't this being taken care of by the UN (Largly a board of dictators)

Foreign Policy
Remove Oil dependancy and stop Throwing away our future in protected interest(IRAQ,ISRAEL)

Homeland Security
Redefine: Construct a VGF(Virtual Great Wall) consisting of
A: Everyone move to the Border and alter lifestyle to moniter incoming traffic.
This allows Environmental Ecosystem to Regenerate in the MidWest...
B: Everyone required to recieve implant with gps.
C: Mandatory screening of Immigrants (In depth psychological profile,
no pass/No Pass)
D: Star Wars Technology model applied to Goegraphic boundaries.
(Must place Warning disclaimer Signs liberally around Border)
War & Peace
Pull out of all Wars and indirect funding of such(see Foreign Policy), then
boycott any and all countries guilty of War and indirect support of such.

Free Trade
An oxymoron-There is nothing free about trade.

See Homeland Security.

Energy & Oil
(See Foreign Policy)

Domestic Issues
This hasn't changed since the beginning of time.

Gun Control
Swords are good...

Model the prison system after "Escape From New York"

Stop the influx of dangerous chemicals through our borders(See Homeland Security)
and ban private pharmaceutical companies and the stupid ads they generate
and go herbal.

Civil Rights
Sheez...It will never change.

Make it a law that every one has to do community service for two years for minimum wage.
Stop all outsourcing(Painful short term-Wonderful long term--"If you don't
eat your meat,Ya can't have any pudding! How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat")

See Homeland Security (sec-A)
Economic Issues
Are you better off than you was 4 years ago?
Hell, we are no better off than we was 1000 years ago!

Budget & Economy
See Economic Issues.

Government Reform
Down size!

Tax Reform
Flat Tax!

Social Security
Privatize to the level of the Individual(They control it
so if they squander it then they have themself to blame)

Welfare & Poverty
Temporary Welfare for those suffering Non self induced misfortunes.
Poverty is a choice by many people-let sleeping dogs lie...

Technology & Infrastructure
Increase budget dramatically!

Social Issues
Treat the whole world as a group of kids in romper room and apply cognitive therapy.

Make it more competitive in the private sector-(unlevel playing field based on performance)
Equal incentives in the public sector (fair/even distribution of tax dollars)

Health Care
Hybrid-National bare bones package only

Start a stem cell clone-farm, then stop all abortions.(Unless death is imminent for child-(within 30 days)
or death is imminent for woman(giving birth))

Families & Children
Be fruitful and multiply (while seeking to colonize and terra form the moon-cheaper than Mars)

Tax breaks ONLY for those that donate half of the profit from the tax break to
a trust fund evenly distributed amongst the citizens via monthly paychecks.

Principles & Values
This document reflects the standard that should be implemented.

Interesting Topics

Affirmative Action
I affirm myself, I am in action, ergo "Affirmative Action".
This is crazy in it's present form(says a southern white redneck)

Death Penalty
Not necessary-Punishment for crimes should be done while alive.

Drug War
A myth-A joke right!?
Just say no to incessant brainwashing by government/media complex.
This ad approved by teenage mutant redneck salamanders bent on world conquest...

Flat Tax
Yes! Duuuh...

GLBTPp (Gay...ect) Rights
"Escape from Gay New York"
My only flaw using the "Politically Correct" standard. "I was Born That Way"

Illegal Immigrants
See Homeland Security (sec-A,B,C,D)

The Middle East and U.S. Relations with Islamic Countries
If this plan is implemented then we do not need them.

Right to Die
Of course-it may be desirous living under these conditions!

Nov. 17th, 2004 09:02 am (UTC)
My Position
See Andrew.Sterling.Hanenkamp.com (http://andrew.sterling.hanenkamp.com/?q=node/52). I hate cross-posting.
Nov. 17th, 2004 09:21 am (UTC)
Re: My Position
Read - very interesting. Thanks for posting.

I'm shouldn't be suprised that we have views in common despite being on "near-opposite" ends of the fiscal liberal-conservative spectrum and "far-opposite" ends of the social liberal-conservative spectrum, but we do. I haven't written my diatribe about Homeland Security yet, but it's coming.

I may reply in your blog later, if time permits.

Nov. 19th, 2004 01:53 pm (UTC)
Re: My Position
Nice post, Sterling.. I commented on your blog just for the fun of it.

-Ben Perry
Nov. 19th, 2004 01:13 am (UTC)
Yeah, me too.
My thoughts. (http://www.tbradshaw.net/?q=node/158)
( 21 comments — Leave a comment )

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