ConRANTing (in honor of my bro, coiner of the word), only because now I’m all on about politics

It’s sad that we’re constricted to only two parties. We can always choose the independent candidates, but there’s pretty much no way they would do anything but spoil it for an elephant or a donkey.

I only say this because the two parties are more alike nowadays than not, particularly on domestic issues. Both of them pass out entitlements like candy, buying votes with working peoples’ money.

I’m all for trimmer government, because all of the red tape in the world won’t solve problems. All of the legislation in the universe won’t make our woes go away. People are what make problems go away. Bureaucracy only gets in the way of true social change. I think the answer lies not in some gigantic & over-bloated monolith, but in ourselves–in our families and friends, in how we are raised, in how we are brought up to perceive the world and those around us.

The poor will always be with us. Social inequity is inevitably intertwined with economic inequity. They’re not necessarily always congruent, but they do tend to follow each other closely–it’s not typically perceived, for instance, that the “ultra” rich would hob-knob with the poor. Race is an issue there for many, but certainly not all. I try to be more color blind. Perhaps that’s naive, perhaps not. It’s the way I was raised, and that’s how I think it should be. So, I try to live up to that ideal. The contrast of race, religion and gender do nothing but divide people–sometimes quite violently.

Is the answer to inequity really to be found in government? Is it truly their charge to coddle us from cradle to grave, or is it something we can do ourselves? Surely, somehow, we survived a couple of centuries without them there to wipe our noses. Mind you, it was a different world, where the family support system was more solid than today.

You can take from some people and give to another set of people, sure. But, what of the cost of this? The “rich” are those that give people jobs. If you take enough away from them, what incentive do they have to hire people? What would this ultimately do to our economy, where potentially no jobs are being created simply because they are being taxed out of the ability to create jobs. Someone is always going to be making more than another, and a portion of that will always go in some form or fashion to someone who does a service for you–whether you’re helping to design the next generation spacecraft that takes us to the moon, or you’re the kid down the street who’s mowing the lawn for a neighbor.

As for the Iraqi war, I can’t say I know it all–I was and am privy only to what the media would feed me. Republicans and Democrats alike insisted that Saddam had WMD. Perhaps he did, perhaps he didn’t. Perhaps he moved it all into Syria before the fall, or maybe he was merely on the cusp of the nuclear age and still not close to a bomb. Of course, he didn’t gas the Kurds with Nitrous Oxide back during the first Gulf War, so I’m open to the possibilities. And, of course, we may never know. And, then, perhaps the intelligence fed to Bush was flawed. After all, that’s all he could go on. If someone swore up and down that a country was a gathering threat, and you did nothing about it, where would that place you as a leader?

I’m pretty shaky on that issue because there is, of course, much we’re not privy to–and were we to be privy to more of it, there would be the possibility of more of our troops being put in harms way.

I think what we’re doing there now is particularly good, helping them to reconstruct their country. You could go on all day about being there for oil, but I think that there’s certainly much more to it than that. Al Queda is in Iraq, along with other Islamic extremist organizations who plant IEDs to blow up Iraqis and especially US servicepeople. We’ve stepped down in a major way in a number of cities and provinces, even Baghdad. More control is in the hands of the Iraqis, as it should be. I think our current course there is great, whether or not our initial entry was justified or not. There’s something to be said of that, just as there’s something to be said of the initial reasoning.

None of the Republicans out there really completely share my values. None of the Democrats do, either. The only way my ideals could be even close to be fulfilled would be in independent candidates. I think more people would find this true than not. It’s not a boolean proposition when you vote for one over the other–one isn’t “good” and the other isn’t “bad”. You can vote with the “lesser” evil, but you’re pretty much guaranteed to compromise at least one of your core principles in doing so. In the end, though, hopefully more of your values will be represented than not…and you’ll actually have a candidate you can semi-tolerate as opposed to one you completely loathe.

But, even among the independents, I’m not feelin’ the love…

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