Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Political postings

In the run-up to the elections in 2008, I came to the conclusion that commenting on politics was bad for my soul. The temptation to despise seemed overwhelming. During the past 8 years I've more or less held to my resolution to back off. And when all's said and done, much that's said never changes any minds anyway--sometimes the values and presuppositions are too different.

Is liberty valuable, and if so what is its scope? For that matter, what is it? Not a question people like to discuss, but an illuminating one...

The tribe that believes that people are perfectible doesn't generally value liberty very highly--probably for the same sort of reasons that kings punished heretics. Monarchs owed it to their subjects to protect them from those who could mislead them into hell--or, these days, from being perfected subjects with all traces of evil ideas scrubbed away.

Naturally that protection requires more and more centralization, and more and more micromanaging, and more and more careful parsing of anything that might smack of subtle evil ideas (an analysis that apparently only certain people are capable of--and as with The Force, they must trust their feelings).

No, an essay on "why you should deliberate carefully when trying to overhaul the health care system for a nation" is not going to change any minds across that kind of divide. Nor are those impatient to undo the damage going to listen to an essay about "why there needs to be some bandaging to let things grow back."

I'm probably not going to be commenting much during this administration either.


Unknown said...

But James, minds have been changed. Dialog is necessary for understanding. I will continue to rally and march as I am able. I will continue to call my Senators and Congressman,and I will continue to thank people for standing with the marginalized and the homeless, as I do. What you say has the taint of, "lie back and enjoy it".
I refuse to be silent. I am not bombastic (except with you, of course), but I have to speak, if not for myself, then with those who are losing their healthcare, their pending and current immigration status, those who will lose the support on which thy live. I will speak for the poor, because I am poor. I will speak for women, because I am a woman.
Your non-statement is in fact, a statement. I'm a Christ-follower. I believe in hope and change.

james said...

Political posts on a weblog are not a very effective means for advancing dialog. And in any event, I notice that "dialog" is usually people talking past each other. A common language has to come prior to dialog, and that is what I will be thinking about.

Unknown said...

You didn't say you were talking about weblogs. I read your blog. I talk with people. I don't blog. Different styles entirely, I guess.