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.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

John McCain for President!

The result of yesterday's Florida primary is clear. Rudy Giuliani, my favorite among the candidates, is out. The word is that he will drop out and endorse McCain. And I am following him.

As I've said on a few occasions here, McCain is a perfectly acceptable candidate to me. It's only that I preferred Giuliani. But if Giuliani can't make it, I'll be happy to support McCain.

McCain's candidacy resembles John Kerry's four years ago: at the very beginning of the campaign cycle, he was favored. But as the campaign progressed, others took the lead; among the Democrats last time, predominantly John Dean; among this year's Republicans, first Giuliani, later Huckabee and Romney. But with the early contests (as early as Iowa for those Democrats; just afterward for this year's Republicans), they got the lead back. And like Kerry, McCain is now in a great position to be nominated.

But there are some differences, which will surface in the run-up to the November general election. Last time, Kerry represented the extreme-left wing of his party. McCain, by contrast, is a moderate-conservative, able to gain votes from more moderate members of the opposite party. Just about no Republican would support Kerry four years ago; this time, many Democrats will support McCain (my wife having already said she may!), and the fact that Joe Lieberman is going to campaign for him will help that.

In short, I cannot really be too unhappy at the way things are turning out. The Republicans will nominate John McCain, a proven leader, a man who can work with politicians of both parties, and a man with the experience it takes to be President of the United States. And though Giuliani was my first preference, McCain is a great second choice. I heartily endorse John S. McCain, III for the 2008 presidential election.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


All the Democrats (and it would seem Mitt Romney among the Republicans, as well) seem to be portraying themselves as the candidate to bring change to this country. But is this a good thing?

First, is there so much wrong with this country that needs to be changed? I'm pretty happy with the situation as it is. I would be less likely to vote for a candidate that will change things than for one who will preserve things the way they are. But, of course, that is what conservatism is all about, and I'm rather conservative in many ways.

And second, who's to say that a change will be for the better? A lot of ways that we could change would be major disasters. And many would at least make things somewhat worse. I'm sure that the advent of Hitler in Germany, Stalin in Russia, and Pol Pot in Cambodia brought many changes, but most Germans, Russians, and Cambodians were worse off with those changes than they had been before.
So what's so great about change?

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

After New Hampshire

This morning, while I was having a tea and a pastry at a local Starbucks, I heard a woman loudly advocating Mike Huckabee's candidacy. Not, as one might think, because of his “Christian leadership” position, but mainly because he was pro-gun! Of course, this only underscores the problems with Huckabee — it would be hard to find an issue on which Huckabee and I are on the same side. (He did integrate a congregation where he was a preacher; I guess that's one good thing that could be said about Mike Huckabee.)

But looking at the New Hampshire results, it is good to see that they provide a retreat from the craziness of Iowa. New Hampshire tends to have a libertarian mindset; after all, the state motto is “Live Free or Die.” And Huckabee's positions are pretty far from libertarianism. So although my favorite candidate, Rudy Giuliani, didn't do very well there (but then, he hadn't bothered to campaign there!) the candidate who did win, John McCain, is someone I consider a good one. (McCain is probably my second choice, actually.) So I'm not unhappy with the New Hampshire results. (And they probably sink Mitt Romney's candidacy, though he still could help his chances in Michigan.)

Over on the Democratic side, New Hampshire followed its usual practice of confounding the experts. Hillary Clinton beat Barack Obama, even though Obama's win in Iowa propelled him into the public spotlight and Clinton's tears might have ended serious consideration of her candidacy. Of course, since I like neither of the two, I don't really care that much about who won that contest.

Now on to the next state!