"Science isn't about WHY. It's about WHY NOT. Why is so much of our science dangerous? Why not marry safe science if you love it so much. In fact, why not invent a special safety door that won't hit you on the butt on the way out, because you are fired." — Cave Johnson (Portal 2)
I believe that local elections (and eventually national) would greatly benefit from switching off the antiquated first-past-the-post system. Both the Democratic and Republican parties, national and state-level, are greatly disconnected from the average American.
I think there are some good ideas that some good ideas can come from right-wing individuals, however, in the US many conservatives refuse to cede any ground
"At its root is a disease that has infected our politics, one that will make some political leaders do anything – including lie and incite violence – to hold on to power. That’s what we’re seeing before our very eyes." - Rep. Greg Stanton (January 6th, 2021)
I generally try not to wholly disregard groups, however from my engagement with many Neo-cons online, I've come to fundamentally regard them as one of the single greatest threats to American democracy.
Conservatism is a political ideology that tries to uphold traditional values and institutions at the cost of any progress, with a focus on preserving social hierarchy and the status quo. It oft claims to emphasize individual freedom, free markets, and limited government intervention in economic affairs. However in their pursuit of maintaining the status quo, they often seek to limit individual freedom.
Firstly, conservatism often prioritizes the interests and values of the wealthy and the elite over those of the working class and marginalized groups. It often promotes policies that help the rich at the expense of the rest of society, such as tax cuts for the wealthy and deregulation of industries. These policies can lead to concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a few. Conservatism resists social and cultural change, such as moves to reduce inequality, as they view it as "unfair". It often seeks to maintain traditional gender roles and oppose efforts to promote LGBTQ+ rights, racial and social justice, and other progressive causes. This resistance to change can perpetuate harmful systems of oppression and discrimination.
Finally, traditional conservatism often values the past over the future and seeks to maintain the status quo rather than embracing progress and innovation. This can lead to a reluctance to address pressing social and environmental challenges, such as climate change, poverty, and inequality.
Overall, while traditional conservatism may emphasize individual freedom and free markets, it can also have negative consequences for marginalized groups and the broader society, and may not adequately address important challenges facing the world today.
Liberalism is an ideology that forms the building blocks of our very nation. It is a political ideology that emphasizes individual freedom and equality under the law. It is often associated with the political left, however, it is not a left-wing ideology in and of itself. For example, it was originally a liberal idea we should have a separation of church and state, and that we should elect our leaders.
Leftism is a broad term that encompasses a variety of political ideologies that are typically characterized by a focus on social justice, equality, and the promotion of collective well-being. These ideologies include socialism, communism, and social democracy. Leftist ideologies often advocate for the government to play a larger role in redistributing wealth and providing social services, as well as promoting workers' rights and protections.
From my social liberal perspective, leftism is a means of addressing social and economic inequalities and promoting a more just and equal society.I tend to lean towards supporting a mixed economy, in which the government regulates and provides certain services, while also allowing for private enterprise and individual freedom. They may see leftism as a way to balance the needs of the individual with the needs of the community, and to ensure that everyone has access to the opportunities and resources they need to thrive.
However, I also have concerns about the potential negative consequences of some leftist policies, such as their impact on economic growth and individual freedom. Many ideas espoused by leftists often minimize individual freedom for "the benefit of society at large", many in ways I don't feel are positive. They may also argue that there are other, more effective ways to achieve social and economic justice, such as through market-based solutions or targeted interventions.
Overall, the relationship between social liberalism and leftism is complex and multifaceted, and I love to explore this more.
In politics, it can be useful to know which particular ideology someone subscribes to. However, I do not fall perfectly in line with any particular ideology. I describe myself as an Omni-Liberal, which is a made-up, tongue-in-cheek term to encapsulate the general position of:
- Having the core values of liberalism (e.g. freedom and equality).
- Taking the best parts of all different kinds of political ideologies and using them together in a pragmatic way.
"We Shouldn't Fear Change Itself." — Misty (Cyberpunk 2077)
I consider myself to be a capitalist.
At a high-level, capitalism seems to be the best-known economic system to generate wealth. I believe the responsibility of any economic system should, first and foremost, be to allocate resources in an economy as efficiently as possible to create the largest possible base from which to draw taxes to redistribute to those who need it most. I recognize in many Western countries, especially the United States, we seem to have a big problem with the "redistribution" part.
One such issue I'm interested in is the locking down of publicly funded research that society as a whole should benefit from getting locked down by private companies using patents and other unethical means.
There are different kinds of capitalism, ranging all the way from laissez-faire (e.g. free market) to state capitalism (e.g. China). Completely free-market systems have serious downsides (e.g. monopolies, unequal bargaining power) and don't properly account for negative externalities. Thus, I believe that capitalism should be reigned by a strong government that tries to correct these problems, similar to how Nordic countries function. Not surprisingly, this is the economic model of nearly all economies in the West.
“It is fatal to look hungry. It makes people want to kick you.” ― George Orwell, Down and Out in Paris and London
I do not support populism.
Populism is usually defined as "the people" versus "the elites." This happens on both the right (e.g. the alt-right & Donald Trump) and the left (e.g. Bernie-or-busters, or online socialists). Populism is powerful because it feeds off negative emotions, but is often not based on facts.
Socialism / Communism
"Truth And Good Are Values Proven To Cause Division." — Delamain (Cyberpunk 2077)
I do not support socialism or communism. I believe that these systems are fundamentally flawed and have been proven to be ineffective at producing wealth and improving the lives of the people. Many people online fundamentally refuse to accept this, and I believe that this is a big part of the reason why the left is so divided. Many online socialists refuse to engage with even those who would be solid liberals. I've personally experienced this with numerous individuals I've previously and currently consider to be close friends of mine.
One such fundamental flaw in my opinion is similar to that of the core flaw of laissez-faire capitalism. Many people who espouse socialist ideas believe that those in power would be perfect individuals, who would only act in the interest of the system as a whole, and not self-interested as people often act.