Government's Role...In General - I want the government to more or less stay the hell out of my life. In fact, I think it needs to really just do three things:
- Protect me from foreign invaders.
- Protect me from you (for example, prevent you from opening up a pig farm outside my bedroom window).
- Protect me from organizations what want to screw with me (such as monopolies) where otherwise I would have no recourse or ability to effectively fight back.
Abortion...This is a personal decision between a woman, her partner, and their God. The government needs to stay the hell out of it. I find strict abortion controls to be ultimate example of an over-intrusive government. For the record, I am not in favor of abortion on demand in most instances, but that's my personal belief, and I don't feel that my personal belief (or that of any politician) should be a matter of public policy.
The Death Penalty...Another example of a government that becomes overly intrusive. Seriously, do we want a government to be able to put people to death? Murders should be put in work camps...in Alaska...raising reindeer herds (or something equally horrible).
Healthcare...Healthcare is not a right, but I do think it is an obligation on the part of both government and individuals. Government needs to make sure that people are not getting screwed by folks who want to make enormous profits via sick people. I'm sorry, but an insurance company earning a 15% ROE while denying coverage to people who need it is just simply wrong. Conversely, individuals have to have "skin" in the healthcare game. That means, in part, that everyone has to pay something for healthcare coverage, period. I don't care if you earn $5,000 a year...part of that $5K needs to go towards paying for medical insurance. It's time for the free-rides to end. NO MORE FREEBIES.
Immigration...The federal government has a legal and moral obligation to protect our borders, period. Immigration made this country great, and I have no sympathy for the modern version of the "No-Nothings"...but...we are a nation where we expect people to play by the rules. Part of those rules include the notion that there is a process for becoming a citizen, and a failure to vigorously enforce immigration laws is a slap in the face of everyone who followed the rules to legally immigrate to this country.
"English Only"...Let's be honest here: there are more than a few folks in the "English Only" crowd who simply don't like people who are different than them. That may be offensive to some, but I think that we all know it's true. That noted, it's time for the government to say that official business in this country should be conducted in English. I have no problem with anyone speaking any language that they want, but as Americans, we all need to have a common ground for communication.
Censorship...It's time for the government to get out of the "deciding what is in good taste" business. This is yet another example of big government gone too far. Now does this mean I want S&M videos playing on CBS at 8pm? No, but conversely, it's rather stupid that a TV show can depict someone getting killed at 8pm but God forbid they a have a character utter the word "shit". Let's set very, very broad and consistent guidelines and leave it at that. All too often censorship is more about the personal standards of politicians and their interest groups than it is about anything else. For me, while I think Rush Limbaugh is a drug-addicted, hypocritical idiot (knocking Al Gore for his service in Vietnam...as ole Rushbo dodged the draft via a boil on his ass), I'll defend his right to speak to his mindless automatons .
Taxation...It's time for the government to "de-complicate" the tax code. Let's move to a flat (or flatter...say two rate tax system) or consumption based taxation. I earn more than some, so I don't have a problem paying my fair share. I do, however, have a problem with someone who earns more than me getting enormous refunds because they can claim all manner of tax loopholes.
Spending...Governments need to live withing their means, period. NO MORE unbalanced budgets, ever. If the government wants to do something to make the healthcare system in this country more effective, then I'm all for it...as long as they pay for it. The bottom line is that the laws of responsibility...as in not spending more than you have...should apply equally to governments as well as people.
Religion and Politics...Nothing pisses me off more than people who try to make the point that the separation of church and state exists only to protect religions from government, but not governments from religion. In point of act, that street runs both ways. This country was founded by people who wanted religious freedom, so the notion by some that the United States is a "Christian" nation shows nothing but contempt for those came here in the first place. It doesn't matter that the people who wrote the Constitution were "Christians"...what matters is that they had the foresight to demand that personal religious views were not meant to be tied to the hip of public policy. Yes, there is a role for religion in this country, as it forms the moral fabric of individuals; however that moral fabric should provide guidance, not hard and fast direction, to those making public policy.