Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Live Blogging the New Hampshire Primary.

   It's primary night in New Hampshire, and I thought it may be time to make some general comments on what has been happening. I have been watching MSNBC's coverage, and just want to chip in on some of the things they have been discussing as well as some of the candidate's speeches.
  • European Socialism - At one point, the question was asked why does Romney need to accuse Obama of being in favor of European socialism. Easy! It is to create an us-versus-them mentality. Though, it was interesting when Rachel Maddow pointed out that Romney avoided Vietnam by taking a missionary to France, proposing that he's trying to distance himself from that part of his past. Perhaps he is killing two birds with one stone? After all, this idea isn't Romney's; other Republicans have used this argument before.
  • Military - Romney said he would make sure the US military is one no one would think of challenging. OhhhhhhK. That's just nuts.
  • I like Romney running with the hypocrisy of some of his opponents. John Stewart covered this, too, and I plan to put it in a post of its own, so stay tuned for more here.
  • I started blogging late, so is there anything else I missed (from Romney's speech)?
  • Ron Paul is happy to be "dangerous!" Yes, Paul, you are a danger to our economy; for that I can never vote for you. But, he seems to think the Federal Reserve is the entire problem for the current state of the economy. Deregulation (a.k.a. letting banks do whatever the fuck they want) somehow has nothing to do with it, and likewise it's all the fault of regulations, because somehow it's regulations that have led to banks paying off politicians. Somehow, if there weren't regulations, banks wouldn't do this. Oh, and he thinks going to the gold standard is somehow a good idea.
  • At least Paul is for ending the current wars. That's the one primarily good thing he has going for him. Points for making fun of the USA by picking on Russia for invading Afghanistan.
  • Ron Paul claims the roll of government is to protect liberty. Except for States, of course. If they want to discriminate against homosexuals, prevent women from getting abortions, etc, that's cool by Paul. Just as long as the NATIONAL government doesn't get involved.
  • Otherwise, his whole idea of "freedom" just plays on people's naivety. I once met a libertarian from Des Moines, Iowa. Here in Cedar Rapids, we have speeding cameras. Apparently he travels for work a lot and was complaining about those, and traffic laws in general, because they slow him down too much. See, he wanted to get rid of laws (regulations) so that he could legally act irresponsibly. And I have a suspicion that's what is really behind libertarian "freedom": I want to do stupid shit without it being illegal! The problem I have here with libertarians is their lack of concern for others. What about my freedom to drive at a safe speed without having to worry about idiots on the road going too fast? This is, in short, the problem with "freedom": freedom occasionally clashes. What satisfies one person's freedom may violate the freedom of someone else. Libertarians fail to address this problem (I think they fail to realize it even exists).

  • Wife is interrupting the Huntsman speech, making blogging difficult!

  • Huntsman thinks the solution to Congress is term limits. Laughable. But at least he wants to prevent Congressmen to get top positions in banks, etc, after their term. First, any law to restrict Congress would be essentially impossible because you need Congress to pass these restrictions against themselves (unless there is some loophole I do not know about). Good luck with that! But, if you could, preventing them from getting such jobs would be helpful.

  • Like Paul, Huntsman has better military policies than the other Republican candidates.

  • When talking about the "old ways" of politicking, he failed to mention "kissing babies." No reason for him to have said that other than it would have been funny and it fits stereotypes.

UPDATE 1: I forgot! It's not all the fault of regulations, in the minds of libertarians. There is the problem of government picking favorites! Which, to their credit, is something on which I can somewhat agree with them. The issue I have, though, is that the reason we are in this mess is because big business wanted the government to pick them as favorites (through lobbying and other ways); it's not like government just decided to do this entirely on its own. So, you can strip away the government, but you're only taking away a tool — albeit a very powerful tool — from the big businesses all the while failing to address the ethical problems with big business. And here is where things may come full circle, because I think some libertarians have it in their heads that the big businesses are unethical because of regulations.

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