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.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Now what?

The “fiscal cliff” has now been averted, thanks to the professionalism of Vice President Joseph Biden and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who are clearly the heroes of this drama. Now the question is, what next? Will Pres. Obama be even more emboldened, since he was able to fend off spending cuts with only a moderate upgrade from $250,000 to $400,000 in the threshold for the repeal of the Bush-era tax cuts? Or will the Tea Party be emboldened, since now they cannot be hung with the slander that they only want to help millionaires hold on to more of their money?

President Obama had said he would not negotiate on the debt ceiling raise. But he's accepted a compromise plan that does not raise the debt ceiling. He hardly has any cards left to play, now that the “fiscal cliff” compromise is passed and signed. He can bluster that he won't sign any bill that meets the needs Republican lawmakers have to reduce spending, but unlike the tax effects, he does not have the threat that he had built into the “fiscal cliff” issue — if the debt ceiling does not rise, there are provisions that such things as Social Security payments will continue to be made. What will happen? Who knows?

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