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.

Friday, March 09, 2012

My take on some recent columns

Regular readers of this blog know that many of my posts are prompted by columns I read in the Washington Examiner, which is, for me, a local paper. The Examiner is a conservative paper, and its columnists all hew to that line to one or another degree (although not always agreeing with everything that each other says). In this way the Examiner differs from the Washington Post, which often prints columns by Charles Krauthammer, probably the columnist in all the papers I see with whom I most agree. But getting back to the Examiner: two columns that appeared earlier this week particularly caught my eye.

Most of the time, it seems Gregory Kane's columns prompt my disapproval. This time was a rare exception. He wrote the column Sunday, and it appeared in Monday's paper under the title: “Rush Fluke apology came too late” I will not quote the whole column in detail, but only the first paragraph; I do recommend that you read it all on the Examiner's site:

If indeed, as some media reports have indicated, Republicans are now “on the defensive” in the contraception controversy, they have one Rush Limbaugh to thank for putting them there.

The main point was that, by using such offensive language, Limbaugh (if anything) attracted support to the woman he criticized. There was a good case to be made — based on religious freedom and the First Amendment — to oppose President Obama's contraception mandate. But Limbaugh's way — to insult the woman who spoke in favor of the mandate — poisoned the air. Mr. Kane, this time you and I agree.

The second column I want to write about came from a columnist with whom I more usually find myself in agreement: Noemie Emery. And while my agreement with Gregory Kane is out of the usual, the fact that Ms. Emery's column agrees with my thought is more typical. Her column appeared in Wednesday's paper under the title “Back to the what, Mr. Will?” and in it, she takes George Will to task. Again, I will not quote the whole column but advise you to read it all on the Examiner's site. But the one thing she said that particularly caught my eye was this piece:

Romney is poised exactly at the midpoint of the Republican Party, strong with those to the right or the left of this center, very strong with the "somewhat conservative," while being conservative enough not to enrage or discourage the base.

This is the best reason why Mitt Romney should be the 2012 GOP nominee, and I like the way she put it.

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