The principles that rule this blog

Principles that will govern my thoughts as I express them here (from my opening statement):

  • Freedom of the individual should be as total as possible, limited only by the fact that nobody should be free to cause physical injury to another, or to deprive another person of his freedoms.
  • Government is necessary primarily to provide those services that private enterprise won't, or won't at a price that people can afford.
  • No person has a right to have his own beliefs on religious, moral, political, or other controversial issues imposed on others who do not share those beliefs.

I believe that Abraham Lincoln expressed it very well:

“The legitimate object of government is to do for a community of people whatever they need to have done, but cannot do, at all, or cannot
so well do, for themselves — in their separate, individual capacities.”

Comments will be invited, and I will attempt to reply to any comments that are offered in a serious and non-abusive manner. However, I will not tolerate abusive or profane language (my reasoning is that this is my blog, and so I can control it; I wouldn't interfere with your using such language on your own!)

If anyone finds an opinion that I express to be contrary to my principles, they are welcome to point this out. I hope that I can make a rational case for my comments. Because, in fact, one label I'll happily accept is rationalist.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

An insoluble problem?

There seems to be a clash of values among our citizens on the illegal immigration issue, which seems beyond reconciliation -- it's almost as bad as the abortion issue, which I am certain is beyond reconciliation.

Some people are so imbued with the spirit of compassion and sanctuary that they even refuse to use the word "illegal" in describing these immigrants, which of course obfuscates the issue, because to fail to distinguish legal from illegal immigration denies the actual existence of what, to their opponents, is the principal issue: people entering this country in violation of our nation's laws. As a result, pro-illegal-immigrant groups can paint their opponents as xenophobic and racist, which is a false characterization for many. (I have no intention of denying that there are some among the anti-illegal-immigrationists who are xenophobic and racist, but certainly many, probably most, are not.)

On the other hand, on the other side are folks who insist that any action short of mass deportation constitutes an amnesty. It offends me to see the McCain-Kennedy bill characterized as an "amnesty" bill, since the illegal immigrants would have to pay penalties before being granted legal status. A true amnesty would mean automatically granting them this status.

Since the positions are so far apart, with the pro-illegal-immigrant groups apparently insisting on nothing short of a true amnesty and the anti-illegal-immigrant groups calling any attempt at compromise an amnesty, I cannot see any solution.

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