maanantaina, syyskuuta 15, 2008

Ronald Reagan's interview by Reason magazine. The interview shows that Ronald Reagan was a thoughtful man and a political philosopher. Reagan discusses how conservatism and libertarianism relate to one another and presents concrete examples of their principles at work. Ronnie was obviously not just a front whose handlers held the real power. (Hat tip: Half Sigma)

3 kommenttia:

9:04 ap. , Blogger Tiedemies kirjoitti...

Reagan subscribed to some rather dubious economic ideas, mainly the overzealous emphasis on "supply-side" economics.

The main quarrel I have with Reagan-type conservatives has to do with "morals" or "values", not necessarily the economy, however. These conservatives believe that the state should not provide means, only uphold values. If anything, I tend to believe the opposite.

The idea that beyond some very basic ideals, like a certain level of property rights, civil rights and personal liberties (many of which are pretty well outlined, albeit somewhat ambiguously in the US constitution), there is very little in the "positive" that the state can or indeed should do for people, is at the core of being a "libertarian", and I do hold this belief myself.

When the state does interfere with the lives of people, it should, in my view, interfere only where there is a deficit in actual efficiency. It is simply a fact, which most libertarians and indeed many conservatives deny, that if someone has "money to burn" whilst another is starving, clearly something is not going right. The idea that the deprived are also morally deficient and that the two are equivalent is to me hateful and bigoted.

 
5:06 ip. , Blogger Markku kirjoitti...

When the state does interfere with the lives of people, it should, in my view, interfere only where there is a deficit in actual efficiency. It is simply a fact, which most libertarians and indeed many conservatives deny, that if someone has "money to burn" whilst another is starving, clearly something is not going right. The idea that the deprived are also morally deficient and that the two are equivalent is to me hateful and bigoted.

The question of whether or not one agrees with libertarianism or conservativism is separate from recognizing them as political philosophies.

Absolute poverty is minimal in developed countries in our age. What really separates the middle class (including the working class) from the lower class is the utter moral destitution of the latter. The nature of the problem is brought into clear focus in the writings of Anthony Daniels, a British prison psychiatrist who goes by the pen name Theodore Dalrymple. Of course, to the economic margins of society also belong people such as subsets of pensioners and the disabled.

 
8:38 ap. , Blogger Tiedemies kirjoitti...

What Reagan did was to implement many economically dubious and morally rotten economic policies. What I meant was, the problem I have with them has less to do with the fact that they were economically just plain stupid (which some of them were) and more with the fact that they were morally rotten.

Reagan characterized himself as a libertarian-leaning conservative. While he did hold this tradition, he was in practice (as a president) so much pro-corporate-welfare that this characterization is, in my opinion, false.

 

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