Are We Electing an Emperor?

Amid all the gnashing of teeth over the opinions of various GOP presidential candidates on social issues, I think it’s time to pause and take a breath.  We may be attaching too much importance to their opinions.

Should we care if Rick Perry or Michele Bachmann don’t personally like gays? Only if they’re running for Emperor or Empress of the Universe.  Presidents may often behave as if they think that’s what they are (the current one especially), but they are not.  And as long as we shrink the size and power of government instead of shooting it full of more and more steroids, they will never ascend to such lofty heights.

Anti-gay social reactionaries’ opinions on gay rights, or on other social issues, are just that:  opinions.  They do not have the power to make them anything more than that.  And it is still within the power of We, the People, to keep them from ever being anything more.

Sure, they’re upsetting.  But even at the party-primary stage, the citizenry can exercise some leadership on keeping the danger to a minimum.  We can do that by asking each candidate one very simple and straightforward question:  “What is your philosophy of government?”

What do they believe the government’s role to be? How much power do they think it should have? If Michele Bachmann, for example, really has any business being a Tea Party candidate, then we need not worry about what she personally thinks of gays.  It would be outside the scope of government authority for it to do anything to harm us.

Would it give us lots of goodies? Certainly not.  As a libertarian conservative, I don’t want any goodies from the government.  I merely want it to leave me the hell alone.

At this point, I would probably vote for just about anything with a pulse in order to defeat Barack Obama.  Who would very much like to be emperor, and would — in a second term — do everything possible to make himself one.

Ken-Doll Romney is hardly the second coming of Lincoln.  But it looks as if he may very well turn out to be the Republican nominee.  I’m not a Republican, but a Libertarian, so I have no say in the GOP primary here in Arizona.  But if Romney ends up squaring off against Emperor O, I’ll almost certainly vote for him.

 

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About heine911

I'm an Episcopalian, Classical Liberal Ladies' Woman, helping to save Western civilization, searching for the perfect wife and enjoying every minute of it all.
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13 Responses to Are We Electing an Emperor?

  1. Tim Mc says:

    never been a fan of “anybody but thinking”, even less of a fan of supporting candidates that insist on fanning the flames against gays, promise to re-instate DADT and think that I’m not due equal marriage and spousal rights. Calling me a product of satan doesn’t help much either. I’ll be backing the party that called for structural reform of Wall street banks, and responsible social safety nets. This country already had free reigning capitalism and we rejected it. I see no reason to repeat the mistakes of the past.

  2. Lori Heine says:

    Tim, please just relax and breathe. These people are almost all frauds and charlatans, and they believe — first, foremost and probably only — in themselves and their own glorious little careers. They will say anything to get elected. Anything.

    I refuse to attach enough importance to what they say to care. It’s what they do that matters, and Obama has destroyed our economy. I haven’t had a regular job since he took office. No matter how gay I am, I can’t afford to starve to death because he says some sweet things about us. He’s done very little for us but talk — and expect us to gullibly believe him.

    No president is going to have the power to unilaterally reinstate DADT. Not until he/she waves that magic wand and makes ice cream fountains and unicorns appear for everybody.

    And as for what they call us, or what they think we are — first of all, where are you getting this stuff? Did you HEAR them say these things, or did some leftist talking head say they said them? Secondly, let’s get a grip on what is happening next year in the presidential election. We are not crowning an emperor or empress. We are hiring a servant.

    The president is, on a daily, practical basis, a good deal less consequential to me than the woman who scrubs my toilet. I don’t give a fat damn what he or she thinks of gay people. I am his or her boss, and he or she is my servant. I pay this person to work for me — period.

    The only way we are ever going to defeat our enemies is to drive them out of all major parties and render them politically homeless. We can’t do that by getting into a fainting spell every time one of them says something stupid. I intend to make the sort of idiots they pander to as politically powerless and inconsequential as possible. Sometimes that means holding my nose.

  3. Tim Mc says:

    I’m sorry you are out of work as well, what’s your field? Do you live in Phoenix or Tempe? I know a few companies out there I can ask about jobs.

    “Obama has destroyed our economy” lol who needs to breathe now Lori? geesh we have a 14.5 trillion dollar economy, an economy in recovery. Banks and investment companies cratered our economy. Trillions of dollars were bet on incredibly stupid promises of continuous growth and “safe” investments. The people who did that, who lied for profit and corrupted their own regulators and drove the markets off a cliff, they are the ones responsible for the mess. How the government responded to that mess was interesting. My party that I supported at the time, that I had voted for, said “There is no problem” Banks don’t need more regulation, in fact regulations are the new devil and we are going to remove more of them. This after Enron, and BP. The other party, the party I had always considered crazy started proposing real legislation, they started looking for money to pay for all the entitlement programs and wars that Bush started and didn’t fund. and they started asking question about why so much of the money was so concentrated in the hands of so few. They didn’t seize any guns, they deported more illegals then Bush ever did, and they didn’t demonize gays.

    all the while the republicans kept getting more shrill, the same crazy rants that I used to hear about Bush where now thrown at Obama. Vicious, stupid demagoguery. Blaming him for what Bush allowed to happen, blaming him for what wall street did, ignoring his attack on the teachers union, ignoring the fact that he proposed republican plans to fix major issues. Now it’s ok to boo soldiers, jeer at the dying, and to promise your supporters that it’s ok to be stupid and hateful.

    I’m definitely not a small government libertarian. in fact I’m much closer to an imperial socialist, so I’m sure we’ll have a different opinion on a lot of these topics. Looking over the DADT repeal, there actually is a way for it to be removed. A motivated president could actually just issue an executive order and ban gays again. all the repeal did was undo don’t ask don’t tell. It didn’t specifically say that gays were permitted, just that it wasn’t illegal for them to be open about their sexuality. Given the state of the republican primary I see this as a real threat.

  4. Lori Heine says:

    Tim, I’ve been in insurance for most of the last thirty years, and I will take another insurance position — but I’m trying to get out of insurance. I’m a writer, so I’d prefer to find a good, regular writing position somewhere. For the past two months, I’ve been working a temp job as a writer, and I love it. I want more of that.

    I respect where you’re coming from, but “imperial socialism” has, historically, been far more distastrously oppressive to gays than anything else. The problem is that once “progressives” get ahold of government and grow it bigger and more powerful, they can’t keep Right-Wing reactionaries from getting ahold of it. Nor do those “progressives” prove to be any better.

    There isn’t sufficient space to go into it here, but I — like many other gay conservatives — actually started out as a progressive Democrat. I actually become more and more conservative AFTER coming out as a lesbian. I’ve been surprised at how many other gay conservatives tell a similar tale. Every dirty, lowdown, treacherous, double-crossing thing that has been done to me since I’ve come out — and BECAUSE I’m gay — has been done to me by “progressives.”

    I have come to the conclusion that they are moral idiots — savages. They have no moral core at all, and they want only one thing: power. They don’t intend to use that “imperial socialism” to help you or me; they’ll only cynically exploit us to get what they want, and then throw us overboard without so much as a second thought.

    They need some convincing, but most of the Right-wingers I know are actually more supportive of us, once they’ve come too know and understand us. They are shocked when they realize how much of their reactionary thinking has actually come from the Left. When they begin to see us as individuals — which IS the conservative way of looking at people — they can no longer see us as automatically their enemies.

    Individual freedom is really our one hope for the future. Just as it is everyone else’s.

  5. Tim Mc says:

    well I’m in a field that mostly caters to advertising, but I’ll ask around, never can tell what will happen when you beat the brush.

    I think I understand where you are coming from, but since I’m around atheists mostly I might have a different experience, there are always those, progressive or conservative that carry on the traditions of bigotry that they were raised with, can’t change that, sorry that you’ve had such negative experiences, it’s been the opposite for me. I’ve come to the point where I dislike those that spout party lines or ideology reflexively uniformly. Of course there will always be those that don’t realize the level of their own bigotry when they try to force their views onto you. But over all I’ve been welcomed into my groups without issue. I’ve found that those that don’t hold religious views are over all much more accepting of gays regardless of their personal beliefs because they accept that people can be different from them. However that isn’t to say that sexism and doesn’t exists with atheists just that they will often question their own views more readily than others.

    I’m past the point however where I give a pass to people for causal bigotry and regardless of their political affiliation I’ll call them out on it and demand equal treatment.

    Personally I’m not sure that’ I’ve ever encountered another imperial socialist so I don’t have much to say about them. However as a humanist I’ve scaled back a lot of my warmongering and tried to work towards human betterment rather than human domination. meh positions change, we’re mammals after all.

    however as much as I believe it is vitally important to elect gay positive GOP officials, I think it is disengeniousness to believe that you can change a gay bashing politician’s views after they are elected. Or to discount what they say publicly in the hopes you can change their minds privately. So I think the differences between the LCR and Goproud are telling when one will let anything pass to get a GOP person elected whilst the other takes at least some principled stands against gay bashers in the party.

    Personal liberty is important no question there, but when you elect people who are willing to sacrifice gays liberties for votes, I don’t think that is wise.

  6. Lori, this is exactly what I’ve been saying about Bachmann (Who I intend to vote for in the Arizona primary). She can’t actually do anything to hurt gay people, it’s not within the realm of Presidential power. Progressives may be fooled into thinking it is, because their current Emperor-In-Cheif (I’m thinking Palpatine-esque robes, lol) has been pretending for 3 years that he can do any thing as President without consulting anyone else or following the normal checks and balances. However a conservative who believes in the constitution and knows the limits of the Presidential office, can’t actually do a damn thing to enforce their opinions.

    Nor do I think a candidate like Bachmann would want to. She seems far more interested in economic and foreign policy and solving the problems of this country, rather than worrying about social morals.

    To Tim about the DADT repeal. You said “Looking over the DADT repeal, there actually is a way for it to be removed. A motivated president could actually just issue an executive order and ban gays again. all the repeal did was undo don’t ask don’t tell. It didn’t specifically say that gays were permitted, just that it wasn’t illegal for them to be open about their sexuality.”

    This is patently false, at least part of it. Before DADT (which was celebrated by the GLBT community as a big move forward when Clinton created it) gays were not allowed to serve in the military at all. After DADT they were allowed to serve as long as they kept their sexuality to themselves. That is a big change.
    Now, if a President tried to reinstate DADT (or some other rule saying gay people can’t serve) this is what would happen.
    The government and military would start to wonder about what to do for all the service men and women who came out while it was legal. Clearly the only way would be to grandfather those men and women in, so that they could be openly gay, but no future soldiers could be.
    Someone would sue and that law suit would work it’s way up the ladder, probably to the Supreme Court. Who would look at the order and throw it out as unconstitutional because it creates inequality among soldiers. There is precedent for the Supreme court overturning executive orders, in case you were wondering.

    See, checks and balances are all a part of our system and they help a lot…when people don’t ignore them.

    Besides, you mention executive orders. Any conservative worth the title knows that executive orders should be used very sparingly. Obama has been the one with a trigger happy finger on the executive order button for the last 3 years. He has issued 105 in the last 3 years. The only other two Presidents to issue nearly that number (to my knowledge) were FDR (yeah, like that’s a surprise *eye roll*) and George W. Bush, which was during a war when Congress gave him the power to issue those orders and wartime is one of the appropriate uses of executive orders.

    Lori: sorry this was such a long comment!

  7. Lori Heine says:

    Thanks, Meredith. We’re on the same wavelength here. I think the reason Michele Bachmann has not commented much on gay issues is because she doesn’t intend to attack us — and doesn’t want to get backed into a corner where she has to say something to appease her hard-core base.

    That is actually quite ethical and responsible. I think it’s time I stopped joking about her and calling her “Bride of Chucky.” I was probably listening to people who have rigid prejudices without much actual knowledge of her principles.

    My relatives live in her district, in Howard Lake, Minnesota. They’re liberals, so they don’t like her. But I’m not in the habit of letting my relatives tell me how to think.

    Funny, the family lesbian is probably its most conservative member.

    • I feel like I’m more conservative than most conservatives on some days…certainly more conservative than a lot of the gay conservatives I’ve met.

      Don’t get me wrong, I see nothing wrong with poking fun at those in power. Even presidential candidates, but I like for them to be seen in a rational and logical manner as well. I like the jokes to be about things they actually believe (i.e. I make fun of Ron Paul quite often for several things he’s actually said) just not things that have been assumed about them.

      I feel like that’s Bachmann’s game plan as well. And I respect that and understand it, especially while she’s running for nomination.

    • Houndentenor says:

      Bachmann’s appeal baffles me. For a party that claims to want smaller government, how can a woman whose entire career has been working for the IRS and then as a member of Congress and whose husband runs a clinic mostly funded by Medicaid (and who promotes that quackery of “reparative therapy”) be appealing to conservatives or libertarians.

      And yes, she has had a great deal to say about gay people over the years. A quick search will yield dozens of quotes.

      • Lori Heine says:

        A December 28 comment is showing up before one from the 24th. Weird! I still don’t understand how this system works…

        Houndentenor, I agree that Bachmann probably has some nutty ideas about gay people. But my point, in this post, is that we shouldn’t have to care about what she thinks of us, because it shouldn’t be our problem. If it is, we have become a dictatorship or an autocracy.

        It could be that she’s defrauding the Tea Party people,. but I don’t know. Maybe when she said those crazy things about gays, she was only giving her opinion.

  8. Lori Heine says:

    Tim, I have to wonder if you spend enough time, anymore, around people with traditional religious beliefs to know for sure that they are less accepting than liberal atheists. I’ve never been very impressed with liberals in general, or atheists in particular — and it certainly hasn’t been my experience that they’re any more tolerant or enlightened than anybody else. Actually, they seem to be rather less so.

    All I can tell you is that there are some really kind-hearted people out there who are quite conservative religiously. I graduated from a Southern Baptist university, and when I came out — several years later — not one of them abandoned me. Every one stood by me, and they all still do.

    It might be a good idea just to give them a chance. If you only know a few, and they’re jerks, I can assure you they don’t represent anybody but themselves.

  9. Houndentenor says:

    Yes, a new administration could bring back DADT, continue DOMA and a whole host of things that do actually harm gay people. Yes, Lori, who we elect as president does indeed make a difference. Do you think McCain would have signed the repeal of DADT?

  10. Lori Heine says:

    It makes a difference, but that is because we allow it to. If the government were not beefed up on steroids by statists who want it to control absolutely everything in our lives, it would not make anywhere near the difference it does.

    The power will never devolve back to us if we don’t take it back.

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