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Where We Stand

Our basic editorial stance is that people have the right to be left alone and the obligation to leave others alone. To the extent that this is a "conservative" stance, then well, we're conservative.

Disclaimer: This is Filbert talking, using the editorial "we" on occasion. Snookums or others on this board may or may not agree with the following.

Click on this link to enter your comment on this position paper.

Unlike the U.S. Constitution, this is a "living document." We'll be adding and modifying these entries from time to time, as our positions evolve (no pun intended). So, let's start . . .

Aardvarks: OK, the only reason we have a position on aardvarks is because that keeps abortion (shudder, yuck) from being first on the list. We like aardvarks. Our favorite aardvark is a character in a "graphic novel" (i.e. "comic book") series--Cerebus the swords-and-sorcery aardvark. It's better than you might think. All hail the Earth-Pig-Born!

Abortion: Let's get this over with . . . we think abortion should not be the first option in most cases. The issue is: when does a "fetus" become a "person?" Is it "viability" or is it conception? Personally Filbert leans toward viability, but has some sympathy for the all-or-nothing conception view. Pro-abortion people tend to concentrate on the mother and ignore the baby, while anti-abortion people concentrate on the baby and ignore the mother. Mothers have a responsibility not to get pregnant if they don't want to carry a baby to term (see our position on Personal Responsibility).

Pregnancies which pose a serious risk to the mother's health should be terminated. The baby has no right to put the mother at serious risk. We recognize that any pregnancy poses some risk for the mother--what consititutes "serious risk" should be left to the informed choice of the mother in consultation with her doctor.

But what about rape/incest? Well, that's when it gets hard. The mother has no responsibility for being pregnant, but there's still a life involved. This is where I go back to "viability." If the pregancy can be terminated before the baby is viable, it should be terminated in those cases where the mother had no free will in the pregnancy.

How about parental notification of a minor daughter's pregnancy? Well, the whole concept of a "minor" is that an underage person is a) not competent to manage their own affairs and b) that the parent is ultimately responsible for whatever the minor child does. So, you have to allow parental notification. You also have to proscecute the man who impregnated the minor daughter for statutory rape. Guys, keep it zipped. You've got a responsibility, too.

Geez, I hate this issue. Let's talk about something more fun . . .

College Basketball: The best spectator sporting event in the world. It is much better enjoyed in person where crowd interaction with the game is an important part of the game (as long as fans stay off the court, and players stay out of the crowd, that is.) Filbert is a devoted follower of his beloved alma mater, South Dakota State, while Snookums is into her school, the Tennessee Lady Vols.

Democrats vs. Republicans: We see the Democratic Party at its worst as an incredibly cynical, manipulative, borderline criminal enterprise, more than willing to use smear and lies to advance an agenda which is diametrically opposed to the "leave me alone and I'll leave you alone" philosophy. Those willing to make a counter-argument to this are invited to list those Republican "machines" throughout U.S. history which were equivalent to the Tammany Hall in New York or Pendergast machine in Kansas City, or list documented Republican dirty tricks equivalent to the Democrat "non-conspiracy" to steal the 2004 Presidential election in Wisconsin or the gubernatorial election in Washington State. (Note: that's documented instances not wild-eyed conspiracy theories. We had plenty of those from the Republicans during the Clinton Administration, and now it's the Democrats' turn.)

Democrats today, in our view, psychologically project their worldview onto others--and this worldview is very dark indeed, holding that people are unable and unwilling to competently run their own lives, and need "the elites" to guide them. At its best, the Democratic Party really does want to help people, but is not sufficiently concerned with the "unintended consequences" of many of its initiatives. The Democrats scare the hell out of us.

On the other hand, the Republican Party has an unfortunate tendency to careen from milquetoast waffling and indecisiveness in domestic policy to doctrinaire "religious right" meddling in issues which are best left to individual choice. They're not as good at corruption as the Democrats are--they keep getting caught (i.e. Nixon). That doesn't keep them from trying. The Republicans to date have been mildly preferable based on the "leave me alone" philosophy, but they're in power now. As Lord Acton noted: "Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." The Republicans haven't quite scared the hell out of us yet, but we expect that to happen before the end of W's second term.

Diet: Low-carbohydrate, high fiber diets are the natural diet of the human animal. Processed foods are bad, while unprocessed vegetables, fruits, eggs, dairy products, and meat are good. The rule-of-thumb of staying on the outside edge of the supermarket (produce, fresh fish and meats, dairy) is a good place to start. Refined sugar (in all its forms--candy, soft drinks, white bread, etc., etc.) is the great dietary bane of the modern age. Sugar causes obesity. Period. Eat your veggies.

The Environment: We're for it. We favor responsible development of resources, and things like pollution credit markets to manage environmental impact of human activities. We think that companies that egregiously pollute should be put out of business and their assets sold off to pay for the cleanup. In this as in other things, personal responsibility rules--"clean up the messes you make."

Free Trade: We favor "reciprocal" trade between the U.S. and other nations. That is, any rules/restrictions/incentives offered by another country should be "cancelled out" by appropriate U.S. import/export laws. We think that unfettered free trade is naive, and that protectionism is disasterously wrongheaded.

The Mainstream Media: A den of cynical and manipulative vipers with a hard-left agenda which they are less and less successful in hiding, thanks to the "new media." Nothing reported by CBS News can be taken seriously at all. Other media outlets' news products are viewed with healthy skepticism. Individual journalists can do some very good work, but if you get too many of them together in a room, they become a menace to society.

Military intervention: We'll make you a deal: don't fly our airplanes into buildings and kill thousands of our citizens, and we won't take out despotic foreign governments by military force. OK? We're with President Bush in using freedom as our most powerful weapon for world peace.

Personal Responsibility: You broke it, you buy it. The action is what matters, not the tale of woe you come up with to "excuse" the fact that you just killed your neighbor's cat (or whatever.) Get this 100% clear: We are not responsible for your actions, you are. You are not responsible for our actions--we are. If you can live with that, we'll get along just fine. If you can't, then just leave us alone. We mean it.

The U.S. Constitution: In the words of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia--the Constitution is a legal document, not a "living document." It means exactly what it says, no more, no less. There are no rights to be "found" in the Constitution because they're already in there--look at Amendment X, for instance. From this article from the Woodrow Wilson Internation Center for Scholars, Scalia notes:

"If you believe that the Constitution is not a legal text…if you think the Constitution is some exhortation to give effect to the most fundamental values of the society as those values change from year to year, if you think that it is meant to reflect—-as some of the Supreme Court cases say, particularly those involving the Eighth Amendment—-evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society, then why in the world would you have it interpreted by nine lawyers? What do I know about the evolving standards of decency of American society?"

Today, people talk about the need for justices who will interpret the text in a “moderate” way. “There is no such thing as a moderate interpretation of the text,” Justice Scalia argued. “Can you draw up a moderate contract?”

Justice Scalia also countered the common argument that the idea of the living Constitution is a partisan one. “Conservatives are willing to grow the Constitution to cover their favorite causes” just as much as liberals are. When he deemed that the Court has overreached, he has dissented in cases that variously favored conservatives and liberals. “It has nothing to do with what your policy preferences are…I have my rules that confine me,” Justice Scalia said. “When I find the original meaning of the Constitution, I am handcuffed.” Such an approach explains why he votes to uphold the right to burn an American flag, “even though I don’t like to.” He added, “Though I’m a law-and-order type, I can’t do all the mean, conservative things I’d love to do to this society.” . . .

“The Bill of Rights is meant to protect you and me against the majority. My most important function on the Supreme Court is to tell the majority to take a walk.”

Last Updated: Saturday, August 13 2005 @ 05:53 PM CST| Hits: 3,011 View Printable Version