Mission Statement

Mission Statement: This blog is dedicated to both political philosophy and application to current issues based on the ideas of limited government, free markets, and individual liberty. Additionally, this blog strives to create an atmosphere where intelligent discussions based on the principles of logic, no matter the viewpoints expressed in their conclusions, are not only welcome, but also thrive.

To learn more, feel free to read the introduction and subsequent posts which explain the aforementioned philosophy and purpose of this blog in more detail.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Foundations 2: The Other People

In America’s political landscape, there is not a lot that separates the two major political parties.  Both generally follow the Constitutional mission of the Federal Government to “form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.”  Establishing justice, insuring domestic tranquility, and providing for the common defense are all established in form and function and, while the specifics vary slightly, the courts, police, and military are all fundamental institutions in most people’s idea of government.  The rub comes on the other three precepts, and what it means to form a more perfect Union, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty, and this ambiguity creates the two major issues in American politics.
Most contested issues fall into one of two categories: economic liberty and social liberty.  These two concepts can each be individually supported or stymied, creating four different ways to look at life based on these concepts.  The four ways are to curtail liberty of both in favor of government control, eschew government control of both in favor of liberty, push economic liberty while guarding social behavior tightly, or allowing social liberty while working to control the economy.  The American left generally takes the last view of social freedom and economic control and redistribution while the American right general supports greater economic freedoms while intruding into people’s private lives.
The other two views are both largely trampled in the “compromises” that Democrats and Republicans craft in order to push the most important aspects of their agendas, trading certain liberties for others.  I in no way support the view that all liberties should be abandoned and government control be the norm.  I think most Americans also do not support this, and thus the communist or totalitarian movements that would support it are very weak. 
The view that Americans should be free in all aspects of their lives that do not hinder others, however, is severely underrepresented in American politics.  Through both personal interaction and media I see people every day who are disappointed in the American political system.  They consider themselves Republicans or Democrats, but more moderate than many of their more vocal party-members.  They may be happy with what their party is doing in regards to economic or social liberty, but disappointed in the other aspect.  They may even recognize the inconsistent policy that their party puts forward through a lack of axioms or principles that govern their thinking.  I have talked to several people who now claim to embrace libertarian ideas (ideas, not political party), but could not accurately identify these ideas when they were dissatisfied with the major political parties.  Many moderate Democrats and Republicans really align their true beliefs with neither party, but want the freedom and liberty guaranteed by the American Constitution, but don’t know where to turn.
This blog is dedicated to those people, who want to be left alone to live their lives and not hurt others.  I embrace this idea of liberty through minimal government, and know many others do as well.  What I would like to explore throughout the next entries is how this belief takes the shape of policy and follow it to its logical results.  If you are frustrated with politics in America, are losing or have lost faith in Republicans and Democrats to work for your interests, and have difficulty finding a place to honestly discuss your ideas without tie to party or threat of partisan anger, then work with me here in this forum to raise the standard of American political participation to the level it should be.


The Heathen Republican said...

"the American right generally supports greater economic freedoms while intruding into people’s private lives"

So far this is the only thing I'd quibble with. You've simply repeated the caricature that the left puts out there, that the right intrudes on people's private lives.

The two common examples are abortion and gay marriage. In the case of abortion, the right is (justifiably) standing up for the innocent. Agree or disagree with the pro-lifers, it's not about intruding on someone's privacy.

And Republicans have little interest in what goes on in the bedroom, but when the gay lobby aggressively attacks traditional marriage, we feel the need to provide a defense.

Live Free said...

I understand that completely. However, the right (whether that be Republicans or just people are fiscally AND socially conservative) have also put their hands into anti-sodomy laws, alcohol prohibition in the old days, leftover alcohol laws about when and where and how it can be sold, current drug-prohibition, etc. If you don't have an interest in regulating these things (as well as others), then maybe you are more libertarian than Republican?

As a caveat, I understand that not every person on the right will agree with each of these laws and positions, but that is part of my point. I think that many people on the right are more libertarian than republican, just as many on left who favor fiscal sanity may be more libertarian than democratic.

The Heathen Republican said...

I won't belabor the point, but you have to go back pretty far to come up with Republican examples... and I won't even disagree with them. But there are many more present day examples of progressives intruding on our private lives.