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Everyone Deserves A Shot at Happiness

The polarization in U.S. politics has reached a nearly untenable divide. If one party gains control of the federal government roughly half the U.S. population feels completely disenfranchised, and when the other party does so then the other half experiences that same feeling. This is not the way a nation can succeed, and in fact it seems apparent that ours is getting torn apart day by day.

The problem is that the divide is philosophical and neither side can be mollified by logic or persuaded to give the other side a chance without doing their utmost best to impede their chances of success. Look at the ridiculous Trump impeachment talk, which has no basis and yet is constant on the left today. If the left feared that Trump was so off base, why wouldn’t they just stand aside and let him fail, then in two years regain control of Congress and two years later the presidency too? The thing is, they are petrified that he won’t fail and that their ideology might be marginalized more permanently than just one four-year term.

I am clearly partisan in this argument. My philosophy on life and how a society ought to be organized runs towards the concepts of merit, hard work, accountability and responsibility, learning from mistakes and growing, respect for others including their property, and a deep-seated belief that government power needs to be kept in check, because unlike the private sector it has no natural competition to provide checks and balance. I am most decidedly not in favor of irresponsibility, racism of any kind, victimhood, societal dishonesty (nee: political correctness), and a government that attempts to shield us from our life’s journey of discovery and growth even in the name of improving our lives, all the while creating dependency.

Now, with that said, I respect deeply every person’s right to live according to their own standards, as long as they don’t inhibit my journey. Some of our founding fathers like Thomas Jefferson understood this and were deeply opposed to allowing for a growing federal government, instead favoring more powerful state and local government. Of course, we all know that accountability is markedly improved when we can look our leaders in the eye at church or at the little league baseball field or the local diner. But what is equally valuable from the Jeffersonian vision is that people can shop for the society they desire. If, say, California is too progressive for someone more right-thinking, he can move to Arizona, or Texas, or elsewhere, and live happily among likeminded citizens, and be subject to governance that lines up with his ideas. The only real way that the U.S. can move forward from this highly divided place it finds itself in today is to push most of the government-related matters onto states, and reduce the sphere of influence of the federal government to mostly national security matters.

An interesting by-product of this will be for us to see which states pursuing which societal frameworks does better or worse. I have my strong bets, and one need only look at Venezuela or Brazil for clues.

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