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Friday, January 20, 2006

Darcey Zings It

Dust My Broom carries a short quote from an appalled Canadian liberal politician:
“What’s going to happen after the election? Are these social conservatives going to stay in hiding … (or) are they going to come out and start expressing their views, advancing their causes?”
So much for the Charter of Rights and Freedoms! I guess the Liberals define free speech as "You can say anything you want as long as you are saying what we want to hear...."

I would think this were funny if it were not for the very real suppression of free speech in the US, particularly in the universities. There is something sick about quashing debate in a university. Of all the places in which free speech is important, surely universities must be one of the most essential places. But see FIRE, and weep. By the way, Scott McConnell won in court.

And SC&A is carrying on a dialogue with a Canadian:
Our colleague is well read, well informed and a life-long member of the Liberal Party, a membership passed down from father to son. As a resident of Toronto, a Liberal stronghold, he views a Conservative win as an absolute disaster. When asked why, he remarked that (gasp!) Conservative Steven Harper, if elected to head the government, might actually appoint members to the Canadian Senate that share his political views! Our associate thought that was an outrage. We remarked that if Mr Stevens were elected Prime Minister, that would be his right, and in fact, his obligation.
It goes on. The part about Make Poverty History is particularly good. The organization, particularly in the UK, is under fire from both the left and the right. This article is particularly hilarious, keep reading and after a while you get a picture of internal jealousy and backstabbing as various Sheehan types vie for the spotlight. The Znet article makes much of the terrible Eurocentrism of the MPH agenda, but it is impossible to allow African organizations to control the agenda when they support extremely disastrous regimes like Mugabe's. The point I am making is that even with the best intentions and will in the world, the answers to these questions are not simple, and have to be founded in local reality. Good intentions and money are not enough, which is what keeps me giving to aid organizations like Mercy Corps. At least I know I'm not funding tanks to slay the political opposition.

I believe that Hernando De Soto's "The Mystery Of Capital" holds more answers than ideological fervor. Bad systems of law and oligarchic societies are keeping more people in misery than even trade barriers and dictators, although the socialists will never concede that. The key to preserving a good and stable system of law is representative government and strongly enforced civil rights so that societies can debate, and none of this can be accomplished by an outside agency. We can feed the hungry if the men with guns will let us, but we cannot make them prosperous; we ought to acknowledge that and figure out what we can do in their favor.

Call it the "Liberalism of Results", because the "Politics of Meaning" is already taken.

Amen on De Soto--confirming again the importance of the rule of law.

The Economist is predicting a Harper win, but -- given the late Liberal trend last time -- I'm still pessimistic. Still, I've a date with Darcy through Monday night.
Carl, I'm guessing that it will be close between the NDP and the Tories, and that a Liberal/NDP coalition will end up ruling. I've got my fingers crossed on this one.

As for the rule of law - without a settled and stable base of law, democracy itself becomes tyranny.
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