William The Coroner’s Forensic Files

Sunday, 31, August, 2008

So, I Was Thinking

Filed under: Social Commentary — williamthecoroner @ 11:40

Actually, I was trying to make the lecture suppliments for my Thursday class, and I started thinking about the election. I’m not a one issue voter. No one candidate fits my philosophy exactly. I feel the Republic will endure, but I’m not gonna like everything that happens. I’m looking for a candidate that will hurt me the least.

I also am amused by the amount of hysterical rhetoric and partisanship that has characterized United States politics since 1992. I remember people not liking Ronald Regan but the level of foaming at the mouth has increased greatly. I came across these passages in the context of public health, and I’ve stolen the good bits an adapted them (Hat tip, Ed Friedlander http://www.Pathguy.com). More after the split (and I’ve just learned how to split posts)

Honest, thinking conservatives focus on how wealth and opportunities are created and defended, rather than how they are distributed. Good, decent conservatives look to science as the means to a higher standard of living, plus personal and national security.

Honest, thinking liberals focus on getting wealth and opportunities redistributed by the government, rather than creating or defending them. Good, decent liberals look to science as the means of ensuring a safe, clean environment, and the way to counter the ignorance and lies that form the underpinnings of prejudice and actual injustice.

Humans interact with their environment. Some folks see the environment as something to be exploited, others think of the environment as something to remain pristine. I think an ethic of stewardship, with sustainable use as the way to go. Nature should be worked with, but it is neither kind nor benign. Both cyanide and rabies are natural, and I want no truck with either of them.

Personally, I’ve noticed that governments and other monopolies tend to do their jobs very poorly, so I consider government the solution of last resort. No-one else can defend the borders or issue passports, and I think that a cobbler should stick to his last.


  1. The irony, of course, is that for many people, conservatism is more about what people shouldn’t be allowed to do in their own homes, or with their own bodies — and, as far as I can tell, that has more to do with _preventing_ wealth or opportunity than the other way around.

    I like the idea of stewardship. How one gets funding to do it [whether that is keeping wild places wild, or keeping broken people from flopping on the sidewalks, or enabling basic researchers to work] is a lingering problem…

    Comment by rethoryke — Sunday, 31, August, 2008 @ 13:43 | Reply

  2. As one of those involved in National security, I tend to agree with the conservative philosphy. However, I don’t want to work my ass off to have someone else benefit financially from my labors. I believe anyone can succeed if they have a REASON to (like food on the table/shelter Maslow’s human needs); I disagree with people being “given” $$ without work in any kind of redistribution, because it breeds a welfare state (look at New Orleans pre-post Katrina, compared to Southern Mississippi…

    Comment by Old NFO — Sunday, 31, August, 2008 @ 20:37 | Reply

  3. The problem, of course, is not the able-bodied that refuse to work, but the helpless ones, infants, children, the old and infirm that cannot work. How to fairly draw the line is the question.

    Comment by William the Coroner — Sunday, 31, August, 2008 @ 21:09 | Reply

  4. “The problem, of course, is not the able-bodied that refuse to work, but the helpless ones, infants, children, the old and infirm that cannot work.”

    It’s been my experience that one big problem is when the people who are responsible for infants, children, etc. refuse to work and want someone else to foot the bill for their dependents. I’ve been around a lot of the so-called “homeless” people, and from what I’ve seen, the majority are junkies, drunks, and bums, and don’t really deserve a handout. Most of the people who are just having a run of bad luck don’t stay that way long; they tend to make an effort to pull themselves up. Those people I don’t mind helping, but not someone who sits around on their butt all day begging for spare change.
    Just my opinion.

    Comment by BobG — Monday, 1, September, 2008 @ 14:33 | Reply

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