When they stick to matters of money, conservatives have done a great deal of good for our society - and I hope will continue to do so. But when they gorge themselves on "social issues", they get all mixed up; what's freedom for the taxpaying goose is not, apparently, freedom for the heterodox gander.
No, I don't refer to their knee-jerk preference for margueritas over marijuana - hey, each to his own taste, and for all I know their preference may be very fine. The real problem at the root of Conservatism is that they want to use force to make us agree with them!
It's exemplified by the shocking Supreme Court decision about the man who used his wife's car in Michigan to go cruising for a hooker. Prostitution is against the law in that State, as many a social or religious Conservative will be glad to know; and the Court said it was quite okay for the MI government not only to arrest the gentleman but also to sieze his car, on the mediaeval doctrine that it, the car, having been used in commission of a "crime", was "guilty"! And yes, they knew perfectly well that it wasn't his own car, but his wife's.
Notice the deep series of ironies. First, the black-robed morons who have grabbed for themselves the supposed right to interpret the Constitution (something it never gave them, as you can easily check for yourself) declare that the peaceful exchange of sexual favors for money is a crime. It is, of course, no such thing, for there is no victim. True, in this case it could be argued that the wife was a victim, but she had an unimpeded opportunity for redress by divorcing her errant husband, or for that matter by suing him for the distress he caused her; no "crime" is involved at all.
Then, they compound the outrage by a flagrant violation of Amendment 4, which is expressly designed to prevent the very kind of arbitrary siezure these supposed guardians of our liberties here endorsed.
Then, they did it in the knowledge that the vehicle belonged not to the alleged perp, but to the one person in the drama who might be called a victim. Not only therefore did they turn upside down the Supreme Law as it stands, they also inverted all semblance of common-sense fairness regardless of any law.
So clearly, the Supreme Court has to go. To take a case before these hypocrites is as hazardous as flipping a coin, and vastly more expensive. They would not consistently recognize justice if it hit them over the head with a two by four.
But meantime, observe the discomfort of our religious conservative friends. Of course, they will rail against hookers and their customers, harmless though they are. But they will also rail against the breakdown of family values, most particularly of the sanctity of motherhood, marriage and apple pie; and here, the two come into direct conflict. Ah! - what disconbobulation they must feel; the very law they support has turned on them to confiscate property from the wife-victim! Into what an orgy of cognitive dissonance they must now descend!
For Peace, Get Justice
When the Nation's top lawyers have taken leave of sense as well as law, we are all in a very perilous condition; for justice is a prerequisite for peace. If it is impossible to get grievances resolved in a civilized way, they will end up getting resolved in an uncivilized way. I do not endorse violence, but will not be surprised if we see more. Government can and does distort and suppress justice as a matter of course, but there is some level of arrogant, arbitrary oppression up with which many patriotic people will not put. I think that time is dangerously close; that levels of frustration are extremely high. The minor case above is just one sign of how beyond the Peoples' control they have gone.
At this writing, there is news of a group of "Free Men" in Montana, who have been surrounded by armed government thugs much as the Weavers were in Ruby Ridge four years ago. The line fed to the news media is that they are wanted for check forgery, but that they deny the validity of government courts. They are certainly accurate in that denial; and one of the tragedies of a corrupt justice system is that there exists no remedy if (and in my mind, it's a very big "if") some of them did actually commit fraud with a rubber check. We're being told precious little about it by our ever-alert media, but one hint is that the checks are all drawn on the Fed; that this is actually a protest against the very cosy relationship between government and the banking lobby.
That's as may be; but back to our Conservative dilemma.
Their basic error is to take their prejudice (against gays, abortion, drugs, atheism...) and thrust it down our throats by the force of Law. Most of us have some prejudice, and so long as we exercise it in private, its harm is limited. Consider one of the ugliest kinds: prejudice against people with dark skin.
So long as that nasty sentiment is exercised privately, the dislike it will foster is containable. A restaurateur wants to serve whites only? - then he will pay directly and immediately for his prejudice by losing all the business that blacks could have brought him, along with all the business of those whites who, like me, think his action despicable. And very likely, his action will stimulate the creation of a competitor whose eatery is color-blind; who would not have entered the market had our bigot been color-blind himself.
So, his right to do whatever he likes with his own property will remain intact, while the cost of his bigotry will be carried exactly where it should be. That, in a nutshell, is the free-market answer to prejudice, racial and otherwise. It doesn't violate anyone's rights, it places no morality into law, it exercises no force, yet it applies economic pressure precisely where it belongs.
That's what Conservatives should do with all their prejudices. Freedom WORKS.
|© Copyright Jim Davies 1999|
Jim Davies lives in New Hampshire,
and enjoys contemplating which way is up.
The above is Edition # 154
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