Friday, November 30, 2012

Don't Stand If You Can Sit; Don't Work If You Can Steal

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The Great Train Robbery

Allowing for cultural exceptions, such as the Protestant Work Ethic, labor is most often motivated by the desire to satisfy physical [1] needs.  We don't like to be hungry or cold or thirsty or standing wet in the rain or being unprotected from human enemies and predatory wild things.  Human nature, being what it is, we try to find shortcuts (not always a good thing) and efficiencies (usually good), or when we can get by with it, not work at all. But working is not always necessary, particularly in rich societies where stealing may be an attractive alternative.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Fiscal Cliff: Let's Test Obama

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How Steep the Cliff; How Hard the Fall?

It comes to a choice, I think, between acute and chronic pain.

"Fiscal cliff" [1] ranks right up there with "shovel-ready jobs, reset button and pivoting..." as another simplistic and vacuous metaphor.  Nevertheless, the consequences of great tax increases paired with sharply reduced government spending should not be underestimated.  Another recession, bankruptcies, defense vulnerabilities and a probable downgrading of US credit seem all but certain.  But what if Republicans compromise with the administration in raising revenue through "taxing the rich"? [2]
What if they don't?

Friday, November 16, 2012

Conservatism Might Be A Good Thing...

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I allude by reference to George Bernard Shaw's famous quotation, Christianity might be a good thing if anyone ever tried it.  Actually, Christianity has been tried by a great many people, and with considerable success.  And the same is true of conservatism, but in a much more limited way.  

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Romney Retrospective

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The Romneys in Altoona, Iowa

I suspect that for many of us on the conservative side Mitt Romney's rise through the primaries had a foreboding familiarity about it.  McCain redux.  Another politically spineless pretender to conservatism carrying the Republican banner.  Another candidate of adaptive principle who would rather be liked than respected.

Monday, November 12, 2012

How Progressives Won

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Adding to the general confusion to be expected in a political rout is how questions are framed.  Establishment Republicans tend to put it this way: How did we lose?  Contrast the question with this essay's title.  I hope the reader will see what I see.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Mea Culpa; Mea Maxima Culpa

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Manasseh's Sin and Repentance

Whatever shortcomings I may have -- and they are many -- I maintain a high regard for integrity.  In myself and others.  It's for that reason that I long ago resolved not to be a "drive-by" blogger.*  If I make a mess along the way, I'll retrace my steps and clean it up.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Predicting An Early Night

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Here, I take a position squarely at odds with pollsters, pundits and political pros.  I expect the presidential election to be called early by Fox News.  For Mitt Romney on the wave of a strong mandate.  If I am wrong, there is a great deal more at stake than my credibility.