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Politics

Distributing Political Power

Political power – the power to tax, enforce and write law – must be distributed across individuals. Each area of power may be distributed differently. There are two main actors: the government itself and the people who are governed. Within the government the same division exists as well. In Canada, the provinces are governed by the federal government and federal courts. There are two main ways of ...

Government and Power

I have discussed the two previous arguments for anarchism already and have explained by they both fail. This third argument does not fail in the usual sense. We know from experience that power corrupts, and the greater the power the greater the corruption. Government is a particular example of this. The problem with power is a problem that arises from the current condition of humanity. There is no...

Is Government Good?

I have given an argument previously for the conclusion that government is an institution that is impossible to avoid having. I have also claimed that there is a difference – at least commonly speaking – between a good government and a bad government. But even if we accept these things, it is still possible to claim that government is ultimately evil. There are also all of the moral arguments that ...

Free Speech and Power

I have discussed a number of reasons to restrict free speech and have found them all wanting. It is better to have unrestricted free speech than to restrict speech in order to protect the feelings, privacy, or any other attribute of another person. But there is a different kind of objection to free speech. It might be possible for one person to “drown out” another person’s free speech. The obvious...

Free Speech vs Hate Speech

In my last post I described some of the motives and underlying assumptions of hate speech regulations. I indicated some of the problems that hate speech laws have and suggested that alternatives are necessary. Hate speech laws divide society, increase hatreds, promote ignorance and punish questions. The solution to the problems of hate speech laws and hate speech is free speech. If hate speech reg...

Offensive Speech

Some speech is offensive to others. Speech may be offensive in one of two ways. It may be subjectively offensive or objectively offensive. If we take offense to mean indignation, then this refers to speech that causes anger. Now anger is a desire for justice against someone who has slighted us unjustly. Objectively offensive speech is speech that causes anger when the offense is actually unjust. S...

Democracy and Experts

In the Western world, we tend to believe that democracy is the best form of government. We also believe that political problems ought to be solved in a democratic fashion. However, this is not always true. Democracy can only solve a certain kind of social problem. Democracy can only solve problems that do not require expert knowledge to solve. There is nowhere to see this better than in the Occupy...

Afghanistan and Obama

There is a piece of disgusting but important news from Afghanistan and a suggestion for the Republican house. The important news from Afghanistan is that underage male prostitution is on the rise. Warlords and other people are interested in continuing this practice, even though it is obviously immoral and recognized as such by Islam. The suggestion for the Republican House of Representatives is th...

Democracy in Libya?

We should be glad that the former dictator of Libya is no longer in power. From what the media is saying, the government will now become democratic. I don’t think so. I agree that the current leaders in Libya want to have a democracy. However, this by itself is not enough to ensure that a democracy actually appears. There are several places that must be compatible with each other in order to have ...

Politics Around the World

I have been checking out a very balanced news site recently. This site has coverage on all of those events that the mainstream news does not bother to report. A wide variety of news coverage is important to a democracy in the same way that having a working brain is important to a living human being. Here are some examples of news items not reported on in the mainstream press. First, Obama’s govern...

Freedom of Excellence

I have been discussing various freedoms: the freedoms of speech, association and expression. Although these sort of freedoms are fairly well known, other freedoms are not. The freedom of excellence is not as well known but it is just as important as the others. The freedom of excellence is the freedom to engage in a particular skill and do well in it. Skills are many and varied. We can divide skil...

Rick Perry: Interpreting History

Time magazine has an article describing Rick Perry’s time in the Democratic party in 1984 and the history of his political activities from then until the election of George Bush. Now Rick Perry is trying to become President. There are two different ways to read his prior activities. One way is that Perry has changed his allegiances so that they reflect his beliefs. The other way is that Perry is c...

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