Wednesday, February 08, 2012

In other news...

So Romney is inevitable - or is he?

Before Gingrich went psycho on us he was my guy.   Then he flipped his wig and I lost interest, content with the fact that Romney is the de-facto mediocre and soft intellectual lightweight that will lose to Obama come November.

Fine.  Whatever.  As long as we are relentless with our drones and actually stand by Israel regardless of rhetoric, I can live with another 4 years of "The One".  Our economy will likely be beyond fucked after he's through with it, despite the recent "improvements".  Yeah, 5 trillion in debt and counting with a still very high unemployment rate, things are really looking up.  Insert eye roll here.

But a funny thing happened last night, Romney lost to Santorum in three states.  Not only lost, but was in fact obliterated.  Ron Paul finished second in Colorado, with Mitt a distant third.  This could get interesting.

I'm not a fan of Santorum primarily because he is a big government "conservative" cut from the same cloth as GWB.  He believes it is the government's role to oversee and fund social programs that foster entitlement and bloated bureaucracy.  He doesn't say this in so many words, but his record speaks volumes as to what kind of deficit spending we would face under his administration.  I reckon he might even give Barry a real run for the money.

The other strike Santorum has against him is the whole bat-shit crazy evangelical thing.  Personally, I could care less what God someone prays to as long as they keep it on the down low when they're doing their job.  On the flip side, I would have a real hard time voting for a President that didn't have some kind of faith in the almighty.

Rick Santorum unfortunately has bought into the kool-aid of the extreme religious right and is ardently anti-gay marriage, pro-life and various other hard line positions on issues of "morality", which as I have stated here many times before are big losers for the GOP.

Myself, I'm pro-gay marriage.  It seems a rather obvious no-brainer for conservatives who truly believe government should stay out of our lives.  I am baffled by many republicans who somehow don't see the hypocrisy in calling for less government intrusion while at the same time insisting that the "sanctity of marriage" be protected by the government.

To be fair, there is plenty of anti-gay marriage sentiment on the left side of the aisle as well.  President Obama is still steadfastly against it.  Not to mention the African-American community, as over a three quarters of them in California who voted for Obama in 2008 also voted yes on Prop. 8.

Wherever people line up politically, on this issue of who can marry who - it is quite frankly un-American to dictate that a man/woman union is okay while a man/man or woman/woman union is not.  When I look at some of my straight friends with failed marriages, and then I see a gay couple that I've known still going strong for nearly 20 years, my mind boggles.

So I'm somewhat pleased that the 9th circuit has seen fit to call out Prop 8 for what it is, a "separate but equal" fallacy reminiscent of Jim Crow laws.

There is also a part of me though, the conservative part, that recognizes that laws do not in the end change people's minds or hearts.   They can certainly do more help than harm on occasion, but I truly believe you cannot legislate morality.

A big case in point that liberals like to make is that the supreme court case of Brown vs. Board of Education was the catalyst and biggest instrument of change for the civil rights movement, along with the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

I would have to disagree here and say that it wasn't a legal decision or a passage of any law that brought about real and lasting change in the hearts and minds of Americans.  It was the televised images of dogs and fire hoses being unleashed on blacks in the south that really turned the tide.

Laws certainly can help shape behavior, but people cannot be legislated into being better human beings. For a person to truly change his heart, he as has to be confronted not with threat of legal consequence or even incarceration, but with the light of truth which is rooted in reality.

The Supreme Court of the United States may or may not uphold the 9th circuit's decision, in the end I really think it won't matter as much as many claim.  Real change will only come when society as a whole relents to the truth that "separate but equal" is as false now as it was a half a century ago.

I am optimistic, perhaps naive, but I do believe that in a decade or so most of us will wonder what all the fuss was about.  In the mean time I'm happy to take on the anti-gay marriage folks in both parties who stubbornly cling to their out-dated lines of logic.

I am less comfortable labeling anti-gay marriage people bigots or homophobes.  I don't think anyone would give our President this label, even though he is explicitly anti-gay marriage; so I am not going to sink to this level with someone just because they happen to also be a republican, conservative, Christian or all three.

A second reason to refrain from such severe labeling is that it shuts down dialogue.  Liberals are very eager to name call - tea-baggers, hate-mongers, racists, etc.   That's simply not how I roll, because I find when I do that (though I do love calling the OWS people "flea-baggers") then any chance I have to get through to someone vanishes in the fog of anger.

Also, I find that there is an enormous double standard for those of us on the right. Someone on the left can literally call for bringing back the guillotine and no one gives a shit, but if a conservative gets one toe out of line the world comes crashing down.    This double standard applies not only in the big leagues of g and the media, but is also used to a relentless degree by everyday liberals online and in daily life.

When Sarah Palin has a few crosshairs on her political action map she is directly responsible for the Tucson shooting.  When Obama says that he's going to bring a gun to a knife fight, it's simply an exchange of ideas.


I'm simply going to do my best to stay away from the personal and stick to the issues, recognizing that as a conservative and libertarian I have a much narrower path to walk.

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