Tuesday, August 1, 2017

A Note on Authorial Tone

I was reading my old posts and it struck me, the tone of my blog must seem rather inconsistent to readers. I can explain why, however. From 2007 through 2014 I had a blog on Townhall.com. When it was shut down, I saved each web page making up my blog, and have been slowly copying over those posts, and have copied about 1/3 of the 3000-4000 (really!) posts I wrote in those 7-8 years. However, my thinking, and my style, has changed a lot in the 10 years I have been writing. When I started, I was more of a traditional conservative writer, I was more hostile toward the left, less willing to see that disagreement did not require animosity, and much more blind to the flaws of the right. Since then, especially in recent years, I have left the GOP and have spent a lot more time thinking of the flaws of the right and left and noticing in how many cases they share the same problems. Thus, as the rest of the world is becoming more partisan, I am becoming more open, trying to persuade rather than spout polemics.

Nor is that the only change, though it is probably the most noticeable. I also started as something akin to a libertarian, seeking to reform the world into a minimal government paradise in one fell swoop. I may have been a bit more nuanced, but it does not come across in writing. Since then, I have come to realize top down imposition of freedom is a bad idea, and have moved to favor as my primary goal the shifting of power from a central government to as local a political entity as possible. Of course, doing so will not ensure small government, some localities may retain the current scope of government, or even add more, but I like to think, in general, local government will somewhat reduce government's scope in most regions, and over time we will see the state shrink.

Finally, I have lost faith in any quick fix. I wrote of a few changes needed to allow for small, local government, and I do stand by those reforms. But I have come to realize, even if we had the best laws (and we do in one sense, as the Constitution, as written, is pretty good), the minds of the voters matter more than anything. And so, rather than political action, I believe the hope for reducing government, and localizing it, rests not on any political victory, but on the slow, tedious, unglamorous activity of persuading our fellow citizens of the benefits of smaller and more local government. Until we do that, political actions will, at best, provide temporary relief.

Hopefully this will help explain the rather uneven tone of my blog. If you read something that seems terribly out of character, check if there is a note at the bottom giving an earlier publication date. Most likely you have run across a much earlier incarnation of my blog.

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