Tuesday, November 17, 2009

political principle

These are good political times to display true principle rather than political opportunism. If you are a conservative and believed in our justice system to try terrorists in 2006, it seems you would most likely hold a similar position today. Perhaps there is a good reason for a difference, but what is it? Blind partisanship needs to be the exception and not the rule.

If you are a Democrat and generally anti-war; anti every war; then you should be lobbying against President Obama's Afganistan policy. If he does as is predicted, you should be protesting for the same lives you claimed to stand up for when President Bush was in office.

I am a loyal democrat and understand the urge to assume all the best facts and ignore the rest for your own side. But as Americans we need honest debates. We need honest elections. That means if you voted for the anti-war candidate then you should represent that viewpoint.

Now it is logical that some voters simply support their party irrespective of positions. If so, then don't make grandiose statements about human rights, the economy, the environment, etc.

Simply inform people you support whomever because they are in your party.
That is admirable and acceptable.
What is not, is to pretend you are really against corruption and then refuse to attack William Jefferson, Charlie Rangel, and Chris Dodd.

Take the corruption issue for example. I was never anti corruption like others were heading into the 2006 election. I think public officials are held to, too high a standard in many cases. While there are some blatant crooks, most of the charges against officials involve campaign funds, gifts, and the appearance of corruption. Then the story inevitably moves onto a cover-up as to whether someone lied about their behavior.

So while I wish Rangel, Dodd, and others would resign and not seek office next time, that is because of tactical reasons. I believe them as most politicians of both sides to be honorable people trying to do good.

Democrats, we should set a standard and live up to it first. Then focus on others. I know that is not how we won power. But it's still possible to start now.

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