Anyone want to try to answer Sis B's question?
I know I have a bunch of Republican readers and close friends, but for the life of me I cannot figure out what any of you think about actual issues. It's all hidden behind snark and namecalling and eye rolling and back patting and I seriously, honestly, to my core, want to know what you believe and why. I want to know what you think about how the government is supposed to work. What does a functioning government look like to you? Please, if you care to answer this question, do so without saying words like "libs" or "dems" or hippies, commies, fags, or any derivative thereof. I want to know what, if any, moral authority government should have. What is the government's purpose in relation to the economy? What powers should the government be allowed to have and what should be limited? What is your view of the constitution? What are your beliefs about ALL the amendments within the Bill of Rights, not just the second?
I think that part of what mystifies me about it is the vast chasm between what I hear regular conservatives saying they believe and the type of government that has been established under the guise of conservativism the past 8 years.
I came here from sarah's place to answer your question re: the purpose and function of the gummint.
"We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."
That's why we have a government in DC.
As to what I want them to do, that is outlined in the specific, enumerated powers of the US constitution.
The most important thing the framers established in the constitution was the idea that rights were not granted to the people, rather rights belonged to the people, and could not be taken away by the government, either by force or legislation.
They even went further, to say that any right not specifically enumerated in the constitution was left to the states, and if the states didn't cover it in their constitution, then it was left to the people.
How amazing is that? Anything they or the states didn't think of, is your right to do! Gay Marriage? is it illegal on the books? Then go for it! That was the idea the framers had. The government that governs least is best, we should be left alone to live our lives at our peril. We should be responsible for our own actions, and our own choices, and however good or bad those choices are, it should be left up to our communities, through charity, to help us should we fail.
The framers thought the idea of a federal tax on the people directly should be abhorrent, as even a 1% tax could some day, some how, be raised to 2%! What would they do if they saw our current tax rates? Their idea was that the fed was funded by the states. The states elect the president, not the citizens. It wa sup to the states to decide how their votes were cast, either through popular vote, fiat, or whatever means that individual state's citizens chose.
Having said all that, what do I want my government to do?
I want them to stop social security and all other social welfare programs. Let local charities do that. Let people be responsible for their own lives.
I want the government to get out of the classrooms. I want schools to teach the ethics of the community.
A note on morality. All morality is wedded to religious beliefs. Government should never talk to morals, only ethics. Same goes for schools. Kids need to learn morals at home and at church.
I don't want the federal government ever considering "bailouts." What right does the government have to give my tax money to a private company? It's why we have bankruptcy laws.
Moreover, I want a government that realizes they have no place in the economy beyond printing the currency. The free market is the surest path to success, as it is the only path that leads to constant innovation and growth.
I want a government that is accountable to its citizens other than during campaigns. I want politicians who are humbled by the responsibility of public service. I want federal politicians think "how is this best for the country" before they think "how will this get me reelected?"
I don't want a government that tells me what I can or can't put into my body, I want a government that ensures I have the means to know what I am putting into my body and lets me decide on whether or not to do it. (This applies to drugs, alcohol, tobacco, and Twinkies.) I want a government that knows it has no business in a woman's uterus. I want a government that doesn't care what you do in the bedroom, as long as all parties consent to it, and it stays in the bed room.
I want a government that defends our borders and national interests, that works to establish favorable trade with other nations, that encourages trade between the states, and places the needs of our nation before the needs of any other.
I want a government that doesn't shy away from enforcing its own laws because the task is too hard. I want a government that realizes that NASA was a great idea, but the government has no business reaching out to the stars. Sputnik worried us because it meant the reds could range us with MIRVs. We can do likewise. Everything after that (including manned space flight) should be in the hands of private industry. How many times has the government just shrugged and gone back to the drawing boards when a multi-billion dollar craft carrying multimillion dollar satellites just goes up in smoke, or crashes because someone forgot to convert meters to feet?
How many times would that happen if the project was being run by a private company? (Good luck finding investors after posting a multibillion dollar loss. It generally teaches us to be very, very demanding and exacting in our results.)
I want the government to protect all of our rights. When is the last time a politician supported speech control?
Mostly, I want a government that is afraid of its citizens. A government that knows if they so much as try to impede on our rights, we will either imprison them or hang them.
I want a government of, by, and FOR the people. Not a government that exists for itself.