Sunlight Shining Through Cloud

About my thinking

Would that I could write about happy stuff all the time.  It’s not hard for me to find these subjects, and I will.  But ‘good’ news rarely gets on page one; the controversial headlines draw more readers.

The early part of my professional life was spent in broadcasting: television and radio.  I reached my career goal – talk show producer and host – where my old-school training required complete objectivity and equality in the presentation of opinion.  Then came ‘deregulation’ in the mid-80’s bringing relaxed rules to many areas of business including the broadcasting industries.  Deregulation meant (among many things) that a radio or TV station was under no obligation to serve the public good as it had been before.  Now a station could play music or air TV shows 24/7 without news or weather or other information helpful to the local community.  It also meant that a station could position itself with one point of view to the exclusion of others.  Gone was the ‘Fairness Doctrine.’  Gone was reason.  I set new goals and left my first love and life’s passion.

I have always voted based on the character of a candidate first, the issues a distant second and the party not at all.  And I haven’t missed a vote since Nixon/McGovern.

So what is my political thinking?  I lean a bit to the progressive on social issues, and a bit to the conservative on fiscal issues (at least in my own mind).  I believe that only God Himself holds the right to judge my fellow human beings and their behavior.  We do need laws, and there must be justice.  But I, in the ordinary course of life, have no right to judge an individual. (This should not be confused with the exercise of good judgement.)

I believe that an individual, a family, a government, a country should live within its means.  I understand, however, that this is an awfully simplistic belief to hold.  It is sometimes necessary to spend money to make money; or to kick-start the economy with public works projects; or to raise a debt ceiling while steps are taken to both satisfy entitlements and develop solid strategies to lower the national debt.  These are complex and difficult issues and should not fall to rhetoric.  Cool and reasoning heads must prevail.  Beyond that, recent industrial bailouts and TARP funds have been paid back (whew!), financial companies “too big to fail” should never have been allowed to become so, and tax breaks for big banks and the wealthy are just plain wrong.  Looking at my fiscal positions as a whole, you’d have to conclude that I lean slightly toward the left of center despite my self-perceived conservative leaning. Looking at my social positions, you’d have to conclude that I am a staunch egalitarian.

I have religious beliefs that may never see the light of day as it (ironically) regards this blog.  A person’s strongly-held religious beliefs are not to be trifled with.  I’m more comfortable trifling with your politics.  But back to religion.  I grew up Catholic, and became a nothing as soon as I was of age.  Later, I formed a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as my Savior.  I am a Christian, and I think and speak, mostly, from that base.  I have given considerable thought and study to other world religions, however, and have come to understand that my belief system is probably not the only one pleasing to God.  That said, the practice of my faith is mine, and I have no business imposing it on you.

I truly hope that my expressions of opinion and perspective cause thought.  I think of myself as a reasoning being, and I’m proud of it.  I read and listen to voices across the spectrum until I hear the manufactured “talking points” of that day; then I tune out.  That thoughtful voices are not heard as well as those at the extremes is a product of ‘good’ news not making enough noise; of not getting the headlines.  Maybe I can help to change that.

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Postscipt:  The first violation of my no-religion rule occurred just after the Japanese earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.  The post is called The Judgment Of God: Glenn Beck Version, and you can read it at: http://wp.me/p1lCl3-5M

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