These are the political principles which I hold dear:
THAT the individual is the primary unit of both society and the economy of salvation;
THAT he is born with certain unalienable rights, the rights to life, liberty, and property being fundamental among them;
THAT his liberty is not to be infringed by any community of persons except for very good reason;
THAT fallen human government is an egg waiting to hatch into tyranny the first chance it gets;
THAT paradise is not to be built by human hands;
THAT the distance between a government and its people is directly proportional to its craving for tyranny;
AND THAT the rule of law, once legitimately created, must be scrupulously obeyed, for, as said the Man for All Seasons, ‘I’d give the Devil the benefit of law, for my own safety’s sake!’
This is the tradition of Burke, Hayek, Aquinas, Blackstone, de Tocqueville, and Adam Smith — not to mention the Founding Fathers.
My first voting priority is the fundamental rights and liberties of men, which would have made me an Abolitionist in the 19th century, a Suffragist in the 20th, and a Pro-Lifer in the 21st — Republican causes all.
My second voting priority is a devolution of government functions away from the national government toward the states and their citizens, with an accompanying reduction in our vast debts, in accordance with the social justice principle of subsidiarity, the Constitution, and wise public policy (in that order). This appears to be the heart of what the Tea Party stands for, so I identify as a Tea Party supporter, without ever having attended a rally. (I wish the Tea Party would spend more time reading the Federalist Papers, as they once did.)
My third voting priority is, I suppose, foreign policy, but my opinions on foreign policy have been in rather a state of flux ever since I became disillusioned with the unapologetic Bush-doctrine neoconservatism of my youth. I approve of promoting liberty and development everywhere, but I have come to seriously question the efficacy or charity of promoting freedom by the military overthrow of dictators.
This year, I am supporting Rep. Paul for president. Mr. Santorum is my second choice. Neither candidate is anything like perfect, but no candidate ever is. They both have the fundamentals right, even though their practical policy preferences end up diverging almost immediately. A Paul presidency would, I think, do a great deal of good for this country, although his supporters (like President Obama’s a few years ago) are largely cultish, messianic, and unwise.
I believe that is quite enough to reveal that I am, indeed, just another white, young, male, conservative, heterosexual, textualist, middle-class Papist — though perhaps not in that order. Hopefully, later postings will prove more stimulating, but I find it is helpful to begin with first principles and sally on forth from there. Perhaps the nineteenth century clichés I spout are long enough out of fashion that they are once again somewhat novel.