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, January 04, 2013

A good idea, but not feasible

I saw a post last night on Vanity Fair magazine's site by Kurt Eichenwald, entitled “Let’s Repeal the Second Amendment.” Now I wish we could do just that. Most of what Eichenwald says makes a lot of sense to me. But the fact is, it has no chance of happening. There are too many gun nuts around who think the Second Amendment is as important as the First. There is no way a repealing amendment could get two thirds of each house of Congress and three fourths of the State legislatures to approve it — in fact, I doubt it could get simple majorities in both houses or even half of the State legislatures to approve it. So Eichenwald's column makes no sense. By pushing for something that has no chance of passing, he deflects the debate from where it needs to be — reducing the incidence of guns in a country whose Constitution has the Second Amendment in its text.

I don't disagree with Eichenwald that it would be better if we had no Second Amendment. But let us be practical. It would also be better if we had a Senate that did not give Montana the same two Senators as California. That is not going to change, and neither will the Second Amendment be repealed. Wishing for the impossible makes the possible less likely to happen.

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