Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Some Post Election Thoughts

Some post election conversations I’ve been having….

- I think it’s a good thing the Democrats took the House. One-party rule is NEVER good. We’ve gotten nothing but war, big-government, outrageous spending, and an obscene trampling of the Bill of Rights under the Republicans. At least now…we can look forward to some good old-fashioned gridlock.

- Bill Peirce garnered over 67000 votes. The campaign was fairly well-run, creative, and run with dignity and class. Because of Bill Peirce, a retired Economics professor, people can look at the LP and say that we run bona fide candidates with the actual skills needed to govern effectively, instead of being a bunch of overambitious political hacks. I’m proud to have voted for Bill Peirce yesterday. I pity those people who enter the voting booth with fear. Democracy is supposed to be about "the people" excercising their power. A voter who casts his ballot under a cloud of fear, suspicion, and worry (which is exactly what most voters do, when they vote because they are afraid of one of the parties and/or candidates gaining power) doesn’t exactly strike me as a person who feels powerful. Something’s wrong here.

- The minimum wage increase passed. There is NO economic justification for a minimum wage – or any other form of price controls. Some co-workers are optimistic about the increase to $6+ /hr, because they think that their sons and daughters will now be able to earn more money to spend, because they always seem to be short. What this overlooks is that in order to spend more, one must produce more. The actual wage is simply a gauge to measure the value of services rendered. Furthermore, by raising the minimum wage, we lock out those at the lowest end of the labor market because their skills are not valued enough to offset the increased price. Thus, being unemployed, they now must pay more for goods and services which cost more…because of the higher labor costs of business. Even at my company, HR just had a meeting this morning to decide how to respond to the new minimum wage that is being enforced. As our wage rates are already competitive (at about $4/hr more than minimum), it was decided that no increase would be passed off to our current workforce. In relative terms, our entire workforce just got that much poorer. And as I said to one of my coworkers…if we could make more people, more prosperous, simply by raising the minimum wage, then why not jack it up to $100/hour? Think of how rich we would all be! Common sense tells you that this wouldn’t work. Do why would it work for any other, strictly arbitrary, "minimum".

- The smoking ban passed. In the war between Big Pharmacueticals and Big Tobbacco, it was the small business owners and Liberty itself that was the casualty. Johnson and Johnson, and other companies which sell "the patch" and other anti-smoking aids, now stand to reap a windfall with the potential increase in sales. And you thought this was a "public health" issue. Its all about using the State to line ones pockets. Stupid voters!

- As I noted before… Blackwell lost by about 20+ points. And I still have people telling me they voted for him "because he had a chance". Uhh.. Sorry folks… About a week or two ago he was down by 10 points in the polls. That doesn’t strike me as having much of a chance. And then he came out with some attack ads to try to pin Strickland with NAMBLA, and making implications that he’s gay? C’mon, people! If that isn’t the most desperate tactic imaginable, I can’t imagine what is. So, to you Blackwell voters out there… you wasted your vote. You had a chance to send a message that you wanted REAL change…REAL accountability… REAL reform… and a REAL commitment to smaller, limited government, private property, individual liberty, and personal responsibility. You had a chance to vote for Bill Peirce. You didn’t take it. You wasted your vote and asked Republicans to continue offering you candidates who are corrupt, and will use their positions to advance their own interests at the expense of the ordinary Ohioan. There never was any real chance he was going to win. You’re delusional to think he had a shot.

- And then there’s the typical, worn-out argument… "I would vote for Peirce, but it’s a vote away from Blackwell." Well… for the record, I knew 3 different people who told me that they wanted to vote for Peirce, but felt it was more important to get rid of the Republicans, and therefore were voting for Strickland. To them, a vote for Peirce was a vote FOR Blackwell. Both people cannot be right. Yet, neither side allows themselves to see this contradiction. Then again… no one ever said voting was about rational, philosophical introspection and sound, objective decision making.

I’m sure I’ll have some more conversations today. Will keep you posted.

2 Comments:

Blogger Freedom_Man said...

Jason,

I can't buy your line that we ran a "a retired Economics professor" and therefore "people can look at the LP and say that we run bona fide candidates with the actual skills needed to govern effectively."

Would your company hire Bill to be CEO or even a division manager? Of course not. He doesn’t have the skills or experience. Yet you seem to think that Bill, without a jot of real political experience, has the skills to govern an entire state. If you really believe that, you are as deluded as the Republicans who still think their party stands for small government.

I've been president of my community council for three years now. After three years on the job, I still have a lot to learn about politics and political leadership. I plan to run for a fourth term and then I might have the chops to be a Cincinnati City Council member.

We must stop deluding ourselves about these types of candidacies. We must focus on running candidates for small, local races that we can win. If we do that, one day we will have a “bona fide candidate” to run for Governor. But if we don’t, we will forever be the Harold Stassen of political parties – perennial losers.

11:42 AM  
Anonymous Libertarian Jason said...

Freedom Man...

Thanks for the comment, and I see your point.

However, what I was trying to distinguish was between Bill Peirce's qualifications, and other Libertarians in the past who think that just because they have enough energy and passion, they should run for the highest office possible. One example that comes to mind here in Ohio was the attempted candidacy by a guy named George Mays for US Senate. The guy was a part time Karaoke DJ, and he wants to be a Senator?

The same can be seen on the national level when random people throw their hat in the ring to be president.

The point being...many Dem and Rep voters I talk to will only consider voting for someone they think has _some_ credentials. Ideally, yes...we want governing experience....but if Californians can elect an Actor to be their governor...one who had no previous political experience...and it _worked_ for the Republicans...why shouldn't the same leeway be given to the LP's candidates. Was Bill Peirce the _perfect_ candidate? Of course not... But let's not make "good" the enemy of "perfect". One reason why the LP doesn't advance as much as it could is because of too many "purist" positions.

Bottom line... Bill Peirce brought more to the table with his past accomplishments and qualifications than probably the last 100 candidates that ran for office from the LP. It is to that point, and that point only, that I was speaking.

7:21 AM  

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