We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
That's the title of a Barone piece this week, in which he provides an optimistic overview of the extent to which the US is not moving in the direction of European-style welfare statism, (which I think of as a modern-day feudalism). While we all enjoy mocking the ways busy-body government chips away at liberty by telling us where we can smoke, making us wear seat-belts, banning fox hunting, restricting our gun rights, etc., it is the Nanny State that is the greater threat to freedom, initiative, and personal autonomy by trading human spirit and vitality for security and safety. A quote:
"The Bush administration came into office with plans to get us off the European trajectory, and has had partial success. At the moment, it seems inclined to let the Republican Congress set the course on domestic policy, which means letting the workings of regulated private markets in pensions and health care determine our direction. Democrats would like to move us some distance toward Europe, but how far they neither say nor, so far as I can tell, know. The Bush years have not produced a crisp decision to get off the European trajectory. But they have produced some significant movement in that direction, notwithstanding narrow Republican congressional majorities and harsh partisan divisions."