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.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

The debt ceiling vote -- as I expected

Yesterday — after 7 pm — the House of Representatives voted to extend the debt ceiling. A moment of drama was added by having Rep. Gabrielle Giffords return to the House for the first time since she was shot last January.

It will still need to pass the Senate, which is scheduled to vote on it today — the last possible day before a threatened default. I assume it will pass.

As I said in an earlier post, the politicians involved were playing "chicken" to win political points. President Obama got the one thing he desperately wanted — an extension past the 2012 election, so the election would not be fought while the debt ceiling debate went on. The Republicans got one thing they wanted — at least short-term, no new tax increases. The Tea Party got only some of the spending cuts they wanted — but this was a bit of a victory for them, since the Democrats wanted, at first, not to make any cuts, and to do it all by tax increases.

It's a compromise. Everyone got something and gave up something. But as a Republican I have to say that the Democrats, controlling the Senate and White House, had so much in their favor, and yet gave up so much in the end. I have to think that the Republican Congressional leaders worked beyond the call of duty to make this a bill with more Republican input than you might expect with the Democrats controlling so much of the machinery.

Kudos to Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, Eric Cantor, and anyone else I forgot in the Republican Congressional leadership.

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