Saturday, October 13, 2007

Reply to Troutsky

I've been stumping for Ron Paul for awhile. Troutsky gives me his take on the man:

Saw Paul speak (finally) on the Newshour and am now even less impressed.It is great that certain new ideas are being introduced to the wider public but when done by someone so inarticulate with so many contradictory positions... (choice is a states right issue? I thought abortion was murder?)(are gun rights a state issue?)Was he talking flat tax? This primary race is shining a needed spotlight on the intellectual incoherancy of the Republicans and conservatism in general.

As always Troutsky, thanks for the reply. Let's examine a few of your points to see if we can't put Paul into the proper light.

First, let it be said that it is unlikely that you would agree with all of Paul's positions. He's a libertarian; you're a socialist. There isn't much in the way of common ground there. But there is some, and in comes in the form of a commitment to non-interventionism. If Iraq is the most important issue of the upcoming election cycle, agreement on that issue can help span an otherwise uncrossable idealogical chasm. It's worth remembering too that while Paul's support is still very limited, he's raising a fair amount of money, and word is slowly getting out. In short, while his shot is slim, he has the best shot amongst the anti-war candidates.

I don't think Paul is inarticulate, but he's not an exemplary orator. He does, however, understand his own position, positions which are invariably formed by his strict adherence to the constitution. Thus, to Paul, "choice", the legality of abortion, is a state's right. This is the correct constitutional position. The Bill of Rights was never intended to apply to the states. The bill adumbrated that which the federal government could, or could not do, and, under the tenth amendment, left all other powers to the states. Whereas abortion appears nowhere in the constitution, the ability to regulate or legalize abortion falls to the respective states.

The problem with Roe vs. Wade from a Christian point of view is that it legalized a form of murder. The problem with Roe to the constitutionalist is that it overstepped the constitution and allowed the federal government to grant a "right" that it had no right to grant. The proper thing to do is to either amend the constitution to allow everyone in the United States the right to an abortion or return the regulation thereof to the states.

The same applies to the right to bear arms. States may do whatever they wish, but the federal government is not allowed to restrict a constitutional right. Thus different states have different laws regarding the right to conceal and carry. This is an ingenious compromise by the founders, one not sufficiently appreciated by far too many people. The states become republics to themselves; one may be liberal, one conservative, and the people may find a state to their liking wherein to dwell. At the same time, the federal government provides a basic defense of the states. In this way, as de Tocqueville observed, the citizens of the United States achieve the benefits of both small and large states, an utterly sanguinary position.

Returning to Troutsky, I find it eminently unfair that Paul is being lumped in with other conservatives, so-called. The idealogical consistency is nonexistent for the majority of candidates, both republican and democrat. Paul is extremely consistent, drawing on the constitution, that which our president's swear an oath to defend, for his positions. Show me a similar consistency from any of the other candidates and I will consider taking them seriously, even if they erroneously and immorally believe in interventionism.


troutsky said...

I wonder if this logic holds up as well now that there is so much less room? It was a logic which led to a Civil War. If all the liberals end up in California and all the conservatives in Arizona... I do like Pauls "non-interventionist" stance but wonder does it extend to development aid, support for UN? Missionary work?

The question is not "legalizing" abortion, the question is can the government criminalize abortion.We don't have laws giving us permission to do things, we are permitted to do them unless a law takes away permission.

As for Pauls conservatism,I don't know what metrics to use anymore but the standard seems to be to divide people along social issues (where the government is encouraged to intervene) and economic ones (where it is not)

A Wiser Man Than I said...

I think the logic hold up as long as we don't seek to compel others to play by our rules. If you and the socialists want to have a state, and the libertarians and I get our own state, I don't see why we should have to fight each other.

Paul tends to frown on aid, but he'd be for individuals giving money to charities to address the real concerns.

The Civil War was immoral. There was no reason to go after the south. The war caused more problems than it solved. While it ended slavery, it left a bitterness between the races that may never go away. Then there were the thousands and thousands of deaths as well as the economic recession in the south.

The state governments can criminalize abortion, or pretty much anything they wish to criminalize. The federal government would need an amendment to do so.

I think calling Paul a libertarian makes the most sense. I don't think there are any real conservatives left--maybe Buchanan.

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