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, September 03, 2008

Is there really such a thing as "too honorable"?

The September 8 issue of Time magazine has a cover picture of John McCain, with a cover story that seems to imply that he has too much of a sense of honor to be a good President. Seeing this made my eyes blanch in disbelief. Can anyone be too honorable for the Presidency?

It's true that Jimmy Carter had a sense of propriety that went well beyond the usual — the "lust in the heart" quote, for example. But Carter's flaws were not excessive honor; they flowed from naïveté about the way the world works. And I think that McCain's sense of honor poses a refreshing contrast to his opponent's rather dishonorable past. A person who would stab his political mentor in the back, as he did Alice Palmer; a person who would favor a corrupt machine politician, like John Stroger, even against a personal friend (Forrest Claypool); a person who would steer government favors to a corrupt slumlord (Tony Rezko), even while representing a poor constituency in the Illinois State Senate; this is Barack Obama.

I for one say that John McCain's sense of honor is an unalloyed positive.

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