I Am A Liberal

“A liberal is a man or a woman or a child who looks forward to a better day, a more tranquil night, and a bright, infinite future.”

– Leonard Bernstein

Hi, I’m Harvey. I’m one of the members of the Evergreen Institute for Progressive Thought. Welcome to the site. I don’t speak for all the folks who will be posting here, but I want to tell you a little about my approach to politics and patriotism.

As the headline suggests, I am a liberal. I’m a classic Yellow-Dog Democrat (That means I always vote “D” … even if the only Democrat on the ticket is an ol’ yella dog, although these days that’s mostly because there are no viable options to the Left of the D position). I’m proud of being a liberal, and I’m not a new convert to the Left.

As a liberal, I believe everybody should get a shot at a first-rate education and a level economic and judicial playing field, no matter what kind of parents they had.

As a liberal, I believe rationing health care only to people who can afford it – or who mortgage their work lives to an employer that can – is economically foolish as well as morally bankrupt.

As a liberal, I believe most people radically misunderstand Adam Smith’s “invisible hand.” I believe capitalism, restrained by rules, is a positive force, but capitalism unrestrained is destructive. And no, an unrestrained free market does not make its own rules.

As a liberal, I believe we ought to spend money – lots of it – subsidizing pure research and building infrastructure. In the long run those are investments in our national security. In the short run, they put a chicken in every pot.

As a liberal, I do not believe government ought to be run more like a business. Businesses have a primary responsibility to maximize shareholder profit. Our government has a responsibility to, “establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.” Government is not the same thing as business.

As a liberal, I believe the government is me. And you. And your neighbor. And the guy down the street, etc. If we are unhappy with our representation, it means we need to talk louder, organize better and pay more attention.

As a liberal, I believe as long as one person – one child, one elder, one veteran, one average working schmoe – goes to bed hungry or homeless tonight we should all feel shame. Regardless of the reason.

As a liberal, I believe it’s not my business who my neighbor falls in love with. It is my business to help make sure my neighbor gets the same rights under the law that I’ve always had.

As a liberal, I am honored and humbled when people from other countries want so desperately to live in America that they risk life and limb to come here. I can’t for the life of me understand why anyone would cast derision on those people. I don’t know about you, but my ancestors were once “those people.”

As a liberal, I believe my right to swing my fist ends at the tip of your nose. That my “constitutional rights” exist only so far as they don’t infringe on your “unalienable Rights” to “”Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

That’s just a start. If any of this makes others uncomfortable, then as FDR said, “I welcome their scorn.”

Again, welcome to the site. I think I do speak for all our contributors when I say I hope you enjoy reading what we write.

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4 thoughts on “I Am A Liberal

  1. Pingback: My Party Identification | Everblog

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