Sunday, November 30, 2003

The Political and the Personal

While surfing the web on a Sunday afternoon, I found a great little article by David Neiwert entitled "The Political and the Personal." Here's an excerpt:

Conservatism, especially in the past 20 years, has come less to represent those old-fashioned values, and instead has become a watchword for rampant, unfettered corporatism. Republicans in Idaho particularly were fond of gutting my state's heritage -- letting "free enterprise" pollute our streams, wipe out fish runs and wildlife habitat, destroy the forests in which I used to hunt and fish -- while proclaiming they were doing so in the name of "liberty." They weren't the party of the little people, despite their pose, which so many people I knew bought into. They were the party of the fat cats who bellied up to the public trough, trashed our lands, and walked away fatter and fancy free.

In the end I realized that, when it came to everyone from personal friends to politicians, ideology mattered a great deal less than the person. The proof, in what is now my entrenched view, lies both in the personal integrity they exhibit and in the kinds of policies they promote. It came to matter less and less to me whether a person was Republican or Democrat; what counted, in a politician especially, was how straightforward and honest they were in dealing with the public, how well they balanced the needs of everyone with the rights of the individual, and most of all, how well they made better the lives of ordinary people.


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
E.P. Sunday, November 30, 2003