Friday, March 30, 2012



A column from Kathleen Parker irritated me!

We are, in a word, immoderate.

This was not always so. Once upon a time, moderation in all things was the maxim by which most people tried to live their lives. Today moderation is merely boring. Extreme is the virtue of the cool, as well as of a populace whose attention span compares favorably to a gnat's. Judging from the girths ambling along America's sidewalks, few appetites go untended.

Likewise in the political realm, passions roam unbridled. By saner standards, what would be readily identified as fanaticism is considered conviction, while resistance to compromise is allegiance to principle. In an environment where talk radio and cable TV set the tone of discourse, dispassion and facts give way to heat and opinion. In the policy arena, moral principle morphs into purity tests for politicians, and moderates run for the hills.

Such does not bode well for a nation in trouble. What we need are calm voices and pragmatic minds. Instead, we have fewer people self-identifying as moderate, down from 40 percent to 35 percent in the past 10 years. Yet, stop people on the street and they'll tell you they're sick of the partisanship and gridlock. They want Washington to reform itself. But do they really?

Two thoughts about this moderation in all things idea: 1) Yes, there are many areas of legislation and order where compromise and moderation is both necessary and desirable; and, 2) No, there are also many,many areas where moderation and compromise are highly prejudicial to the good order of the nation and its people.

Here are a few of these areas where there is basically only one right answer, or one correct position to take on your political side:

Morality; Law of the Land; Governance; Religion; Life or Death Matters; War; Guns; Will of the People. At the base of each of these subjects, and many of similar import, is a yes/no, or go/no-go binary answer, without the possibility of compromise or moderation of view.

It is: moral versus amoral or moral relativity; obey the law or disobey the law or work to overturn the law; hew to the form of government or try to change the form and our Constitution; belief versus non-belief in God; survive life or don't survive; war or no war; obey the will or the people or defy the will; and so on through hundreds, if not thousands, of these go/no go issues.

Thus, I contend that we are far more moderate than most nations, and yet, we do stick to our principles and beliefs when it matters.  Then too, we do not fall for the Democratic trap that amounts to "be moderate, be collegial, be compromizing, and just agree with us!" Meeting them halfway isn't on, because there isn't any halfway in many cases!



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