Towards A Good Samaritan World

Thursday, March 31, 2005


A long post on "The Lessons of History" that I wrote over at Citizen-Journal. Visit and comment.

Bush's approval rating has hovered in the 40s lately. Why? Bush is unpopular with the American public for the same reason that Jiminy Cricket was unpopular with Pinocchio. He tries to get us to do things we ought to do, but don't really want to. Bush is pushing us to tackle the long-term fiscal challenge posed by the Social Security program, and to substitute something less generous perhaps, but more sustainable and consistent with values of personal responsibility. He is pushing us to shoulder the burden of promoting freedom around the world. He wants to keep Terri Schiavo alive, and by implication for all of us to reject euthanasia even when it's convenient. And he wants us to reform immigration laws so that foreign-born people who are peacefully earning their livings in our country are not pushed into a shadowy underclass existence.

Bush is facing up to big problems, big moral problems, that we would prefer to ignore. Good for him, even if we don't like it.


  • We've got to
    1. Raise taxes. It's inevitable. I wish people would stop complaining about it.

    2. I'm only speaking for myself, but I don't think it's America's responsibility to bring peace to the world. Look at what bringing peace to Iraq has cost America and the Iraqi people.

    3. People should get living wills that way there wouldn't be anymore Terry Schiavo incidences.

    4. The two-party system sucks. Republicans and Democrats alike are full of sh!+.

    By Blogger Shavonne, at 2:01 PM  

  • Re: 1. I agree; but we also need to try to prevent politicians from wasting the extra money.

    Re: 2. Well, the Iraqi people are a lot better off than they were under Saddam; and I think we're better people too for having shown a bit of courage and generosity.

    Re: 3. [I don't know]

    Re: 4. Maybe John McCain and Joe Lieberman should run for president in 2008 on a Bull Moose Party ticket.

    By Blogger Lancelot, at 2:11 PM  

  • Regarding Shavonne's point
    1: Yes, we are going to raise taxes. What is at issue is how well we spend the revenue, because we already raised taxes once to fix the SS problem and over more than two decades we spent the money on everything but Social Security. So the public has a vested interest in making sure that we don't repeat the debacle.

    2: I don't either, but who is going to? And if you think that we are spending too much money on Iraq, what is your proposal for dealing with terrorism, which is incredibly expensive? Because like it or not, terrorism seems to be the external projection of the futility and desperation felt under totalitarian systems in the ME, and I can conceive of no effective shield against it.

    3)Do you really think so? Because I know remarkably few people who have signed up to the proposition that they should be deprived of food and water in order to end their lives when they are not dying in the first place.

    4) Or is it us? Because the problems that our society is dithering about are the hard ones - an aging population, distribution of resources, and world politics. Perhaps our politicians would be more realistic if we were more realistic?

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