Implied Dissent

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

A Card Short

Orson Scott Card, writing in the Moron Times, I mean the Mormon Times, lays out an argument against gay marriage. I actually agree with it. Certainly not the conclusion nor all of the sub-arguments, but there are smart things in there. Unfortunately, he has no recognition of the actually implications of what he does get right, but hopefully I can help a little.

He says that “marriage is older than government”. Absolutely right. And because of this, like he says, government can’t redefine what marriage is. One man and one woman is just such a redefinition. Contrary to what he claims, marriage does not universally mean “the permanent or semipermanent bond between a man and a woman, establishing responsibilities between the couple and any children that ensue”. How do I know that? Because some people disagree. Hence, there is no universal definition.

He argues that we must destroy governments that act in insane and destructive ways. And that “authority extends only as far as people choose to obey”. Again, absolutely correct. If Card wants to leave the authority of the US government, I fully support his right to do so. I don’t support his right to impose a government on me that won’t let my gay friends marry each other if they so choose.

A point he never explicitly makes, but that is clear throughout, is that he doesn’t think that gay people can love each other. They can be friends and affectionate and attracted to each other, but not in love. In a word, bullshit. He clearly has had very little in the way of interaction with gay people, and filters what he has had through his Moron faith. Sorry again, his Mormon faith. OSC, stop believing in transparent fairy tales, and start living in the real world.

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I'm a John Hussman fan. Yes, I know, who? He runs Hussman Funds and puts out a weekly market comment that is often insightful and useful. His comment this week was not one of his better ones. He argues against the 2001-2003 tax cuts. That's fine, I think they were a mixed bag. Or a few mixed bags. Hussman goes further and defends his benefiting from the tax cut from hypocrisy by saying he gave his own benefit to charity. There is no hypocrisy in accepting a tax cut you don't agree with. There is in thinking that there is and then giving the tax cut to anyone but the government. If you believe that that's the best use of the money, why would you give it anywhere else? Or do you think that you alone know what the best use of the money is, and everyone else is dumb and/or wasteful?

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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Quick ones



Monday, July 14, 2008

The N Word

No, not that offensive word, the other one. Nationalize. And (I can't believe I'm writing this) I agree with Atrios and Yglesias, et al, but the government should nationalize Fannie and Freddie. Keeping them seemingly private, but socializing the risks, was a recipe for disaster. They should be eventually privatized completely, if not blown up, but for now, take them over.

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Saturday, July 12, 2008

What country is this?

Seriously, this is disturbing on so many levels (via LRC Blog). Could any self-respecting person put up with taser-like bracelets on flights? Or even just the bracelets?


Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Please Watch

Video of what Wesley Clark actually said, and of the media response to it.

I am not a Clark fan, not even really a Obama supporter, but this is ridiculous. Clark did not denigrate McCain's years as a POW, he did not Swiftboat him (which would mean lying about his record), and he did not do anything wrong. The interviewer intimated that Obama's lack of POW experience should count against his candidacy, and Clark opined that being a POW isn't a qualification for President. Which it isn't. What McCain went through was amazing, and of all the problems I have with him, and his actions, determination and bravery as a POW are certainly not among them, but how would this help make him a better President? People criticizing Clark are either dishonest, or idiots, or (what's arguably the same thing) forming strong opinions about something about which they know nothing that is easy to learn about. Or some combination of the three.

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