I guess at some point I should give my own political and religious leanings.
I totally respect the mindless idealism of progressive thought. Even with the 100% failure rate of liberalism and “big government”, I can see that it’s a beautiful theory: just let the government solve all problems, and utopia will be at hand. Granted, that path has always led to horrific disaster and the slaughter of many millions of innocents, but that kind of idealism in the face of logic is precious. “War is good, providing nobody profits” is basically the catch phrase of this line of thought.
I started life as a leftist—heck, didn’t we all? I was trained in school to swear to the flag, sang the national anthem every day before classes, was taught that the US was a force for democracy (whatever the heck that means), and that republicans were basically evil. In retrospect, I can see I was indoctrinated, but I grant that everything a child is taught classifies as indoctrination.
The right wing is more intelligent, but leans too much towards evil. The idea of slaughtering for profit, while consistent with conservative thought, just is repugnant to me. “War is good, providing the right people make a profit”, may be a more honest way of looking at things, but I don’t like it. Once I got older and saw the left was certain to fail, I went to the right…an insidious part of that childhood indoctrination is training in the belief that there are only two possibilities, “Democrat/left” and “Republican/right”.
Now, I realize there are many choices, and, for most things, I’m a libertarian. I grant that it doesn’t solve every problem or create a utopia, but compared to the certain misery of the only options I was told about in school, I find it more palatable.
As far as religion, well, I used to be atheist, but I met so many truly nasty and amoral atheists that I found myself asking the age old questions and not getting certain answers. Watching Hitchens get shredded in a debate didn’t hurt, I admit. Now I lean agnostic; I acknowledge atheism is perfectly reasonable, I accept that the beliefs instilled in childhood are certainly tough to shake and that may taint my views…but even questionable evidence is still not “evidence of negative”, and so I doubt.
Anyway, back to our regularly scheduled dissection of higher education…