Where I Stand

On a whim prompted by the suggestions of the person behind the @GlennAllenWalker twitter handle, I started looking into the Whigs, both historical, and from that Wikipedia entry, the Modern Whig Party.

After looking through their website and their statements on where they stand on various issues, I’ve codified a little further where I stand on several issues.

One of the consistencies in their stances is that they believe the individual states should regulate most things. I have found that I’m a federalist at heart. On issues that affect everyone’s rights, there needs to be a single federal law, or even a Constitutional Amendment, stating that those rights are as broad as they can possibly be without infringing on the rights of another person. Specifically, that the rights granted to married couples should be broadened to include those of the same gender, and that a woman has the right to choose not to grant the resources of her body to incubate another human. On the issue of gun control, I believe that the states have already demonstrated inconsistent regulations and inconsistent enforcement have proven to be exacerbatory to the problems that have plagued us with firearm-related crime.

Economically, the states have proven over and over and over again that they are incapable of considering the needs of other states or the entirety of the union when the opportunity to grab selfishly is given. Pork barrel spending, earmarks, etc. have gotten out of control, but even if those are limited or eliminated, there’s still the opportunity to lobby for federal facilities to be located here or there, with the attendant economic boons. Consistently, the primary spotlight on why a federal facility should be placed in or remain in a specific location is the local economic benefits. The actual needs for the facilities or whatever are far secondary if they’re even mentioned at all. Economic politics has become the most selfish of all of the idiocy we decry. I’m not sure just exactly what to do to limit this. I definitely don’t have any answers here, except to say that I don’t think giving states more say is any kind of answer.

One thing I do agree with the MWP and several other groups out there on: lobby reform. Access lobbyists have to politicians needs to be drastically curtailed to the point of near-elimination. Politicians should be barred from entering lobbies for a period of time after leaving office. This last policy is necessarily linked with term limits because even if politicians are barred from lobbying for five years after leaving office, this doesn’t prevent them from lobbying cronies who stay in office for multiple decades.

If we really want seriously drastic economic political reform, though, I do have a suggestion, based on a governmental system in a novel. Anyone elected to public office has all personal assets stripped and put into the public coffer. During their time in office, they are housed, salaried, and have benefits similar to the lower enlisted ranks of the military. Once their term of office is up, they are given a return commiserate with the growth of the economy during that term, less any compensation they got from lobbying interests or other bribery. All finances while in office are watched extremely closely.

Of course, that system is about the diametric opposite of what we have. It would hopefully encourage more integrity, though!

Interestingly, that system would also be in line with the stated Modern Whig preference for a meritocracy. *smirk*

Tell me about it...