Sunday, July 24, 2016

It's Now Up To Libertarian and Moderate Republicans to Stop Trump, if they want to

So it's official. Several days ago Donald Trump became the Republican nominee, and by and large the GOP has embraced him, even with his problematic platform. It appears that winning office and defeating Hillary Clinton is more important than small government and individual liberty for them.

Many libertarians and moderate Republicans must be quite upset right now. But the truth is, now they hold the key to stop Trump from actually taking over their party. If Trump doesn't win in November, his 'takeover' of the party is over instantly.

The question is, can enough of them bring themselves to vote Democratic for once? Even if the candidate is Hillary Clinton? Time will tell, but I think at least some of them will. I would, if I were in their position.

Adele - Hello (cover/parody)

Download the full song here.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Hillary Clinton will soon pick a VP. Should she Go Left? I don't think so.

Hillary Clinton may announce her pick for vice president as soon as Friday. Some commentators are saying that she should pick someone to her left, for example Elizabeth Warren. I disagree.

Right now, with Donald Trump as the Republican nominee, there are many Republicans who feel they have nowhere to go this election. I think many people who believe in the concept of freedom, even if they are economically on the right, would not be able to bring themselves to support Trump. So if Clinton offers a more centrist VP, a uniter rather than a divider, many such people may in fact come to her in November. Running with a leftist VP would force many of these Republicans to embrace Trump.

Those calling for Hillary to go left for VP are worried that her own 'business as usual' approach is not exciting enough for people to support her sufficiently. But a politician can be not 'business as usual' while still being close to the center. President Barack Obama himself is a good example. Overseas, former British prime minister David Cameron and Australian opposition leader Bill Shorten are also good examples from the center-right and center-left respectively.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

For Marriage Equality's Sake: Why it's Good that the UK Won't Have a Second Brexit Vote

British Parliament has rejected a petition calling for a re-run of the Brexit referendum, and both Prime Ministerial candidates have insisted that Brexit will go ahead. Whilst some Remain supports are dismayed, I believe this is the only right decision, and I congratulate Theresa May in particular for sticking to the right decision, despite her personal support for Remain.

The principle is that, once a referendum is run, governments ought to abide by the result, and without unnecessary delay. Anything less would be insulting to the idea of democracy. Whilst Remain supporters are welcome to continue to build their case for a future referendum to rejoin the EU one day, the referendum that has come to pass must be put into practice. Some Remain supporters cite the low turnout and the close margin as reasons for a re-run, however, as everyone is free to turn up or not, and the UK has never had compulsory voting, these are clearly not valid reasons to challenge the result.

Remain supporters may believe they should try anything to save their cause, but if they do so, it would legitimise similar attempts by other groups regarding other causes, even in other countries. Already, in Australia, some conservative MPs have signalled ways they may choose not to respect the national results of the upcoming marriage equality plebiscite. Any attempt in the UK to circumvent the Brexit vote would certainly embolden these people.

Governments finding ways to ignore results of popular votes have dangerous precedent setting consequences, and should not be ever attempted.

Download the full song here.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Supreme Court's ruling on Texas's Abortion Laws: It's Only Fair

The US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) decision to strike down Texas's abortion laws, specifically those laws which creates overly burdensome requirements on abortion clinics to operate, has generated a fair bit of controversy over the last few weeks. As someone who is 'pro-choice but personally opposed' (or 'pro-life but anti criminalisation), let me offer my perspective.

As SCOTUS has decided that abortion is to be legal in all 50 states, this remains the law of the land. Consequently, any attempts to circumvent this situation ought to be illegal, or any right guaranteed by SCOTUS can be similarly circumvented (including marriage equality, for example). Therefore, this ruling is very fair, and I hope no other state attempts something similar ever again thereby wasting SCOTUS's time.

If someone feels strongly about reducing abortions, they can provide counselling services, and spread the word. But what they cannot do is to be tricky with the law, preventing access to what is considered a protected right, no matter how passionate they are about it. Being tricky with the law only serves to erode public trust in the law, I believe.