Feb. 6th, 2012

mackknopf: (Mack Lawyer)

I am taking notes in my head (and on random scraps of paper, easily lost) for an essay about the Republicans' message (an easy sell of classical but simplistic "Good versus Evil"; the Democrats' current "We're the people who aren't the Republicans"; and the Libertarians' message of "get government out of our damn lives."

I think the Democrats need to come up with a stronger, unified message if they're ever going to stay relevant. I'm leaning towards a new version of the "Great Society" that President Johnson spoke of in 1964:

"And with your courage and with your compassion and your desire, we will build the Great Society. It is a Society where no child will go unfed, and no youngster will go unschooled."

This would either be a horrifying vision of a socialistic New World Order, or a spread of compassion towards "the least of these," (to quote the Bible). Viewpoints will obviously differ.

mackknopf: (False Gods)

First, I do know Ron Paul is running as a Republican this year.  However, he's always been a Libertarian as far as I'm concerned, and a look at his campaign platform seems to showcase many traditional Libertarian viewpoints.  Whether we need more than two parties in the United States is an issue outside the scope of my proposed essay, but I can certainly understand why he's running as a Republican.  Traditionally, we have a "winner take all" system between two political parties. Attempts at getting other parties on the ballots have traditionally been very difficult, and poorly represented by the media.

To reply to his pro-life stance and intent to repeal Roe v. Wade, I myself am pro-abortion and pro-death penalty (just call me “pro-death, at least I’m consistent).  I think we have plenty of people on the planet already, and if God really wants our population to boom even more, He will send us a sign.  (Possibly an asteroid strike on the White House.)  Also, if fetuses have souls, won’t they just go back to heaven and come back again later? 

More seriously, yes, I am pro-abortion rights.  I think it's the woman's right to choose.  Does she lose the right at some point close to term?  I'm going to stay away from that for now, as I don't see how men get much of an opinion on this matter.

Now, I can’t tell what Mr. Paul feels about the death penalty.  I favor expanding it to more acts of heinous nature (for instance, I think child rape should get an automatic speedy death sentence, if proved).  On the other hand, Mr. Paul would legalize most drugs.  I say penalties for certain drug crimes should be still present, but often greatly reduced.  I’m not into legalizing methamphetamine because I think the potential damage to society is too great.  However, I don’t see the point in locking (say) pot users up for years and years.  Treating them under the appropriate standard of “were they driving under a chemical influence?”, “Were they drunk and disorderly?” etc, seems sufficient.

He wants to repeal ObamaCare and leave it mostly up to the states.  To me, we need some version of better universal health care that passes constitutional muster, even if it’s just more regulation of the insurance and medical providers.  We need a minimum safety net for those without one, so we don’t just abandon our poor (among others).  I’m also in favor of the FDA regulating dietary supplements and alternative treatments.  Mr. Paul would give those a free pass.  Remember, arsenic is natural, but not good for you.  The FDA has problems (such as the federal preemption issue reducing the ability of state litigation to help people), but I can’t see abolishing the entire department, as he implies.

 Ron Paul wants to get rid of as many controls on business as possible, along with taking an axe to taxes.

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