The Last Weekend in July
Directly and indirectly, it was a weekend of political philosophy.
Kicking it off, I expressed dismay about the pervasiveness among government officials of the principle that government must search far and wide (and manipulate the law) in order to increase revenue. Cut spending, says I. Implying something similar, Monique gave a quick review of the powers of Rhode Island’s Caruolo Law.
Then I set off a bomb along one of the fault lines of the right-wing coalition by proposing a simple amendment to the anti-prostitution bill that would bring the progressives onboard if their preferences really were about protecting the prostitutes. I subsequently endeavored to explain that insisting that Rhode Islanders lack the right to ban consensual behavior violates the fundamental civic right to determine the system under which one will live. In this line, there is apparently more work to do.
In a not-unrelated development, Monique presented evidence of the petitioning efforts of Rhode Island’s fast-growing cult of moderation. (I kid.) She also noted that Rhode Island’s rules for getting on the ballot are especially arduous compared with other states. And I observed the odd happenstance that local officials in Rhode Island seem more inclined to go to court to force state-level officials to change their policies rather than run against them… as if they don’t actually believe the players can change (or that changing the players does any good).
For a moment of Hurrah, I pointed to Cliff May’s statement that American withdrawal from the urban streets of Iraq was done in victory, not defeat.