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unless I missed some, have you taken a position on anything recently? Or do you just attack little bits and pieces of a posters message?

Only the really really stupid parts.

I keep noticing comments from you, but hard to tell what you believe in and why.

I am, apparently, a "Centrist"

"Centrists favor selective government intervention and emphasize practical solutions to current problems. They tend to keep an open mind on new issues. Many centrists feel that government serves as a check on excessive liberty. "

I pick and choose my positions according to what I see as solutions to problems, rather than dogmatic ideals propounded by the left or the right.

For instance, I support the individual right to own firearms, but have no problem believing that the government has a right to require registration of them (as they did with the "militia" so frequently ignored by gun enthusiasts when discussing the 2nd Amendment), and believe if they can require a "safety course" for getting behind the wheel of a car, they can certainly do the same for "owning a gun."

I believe the government has the power of taxation, and that it has used it fairly well over time. As evidence I look around and notice that we live in the richest country in the world, and that much of our advantage comes from the various infrastructures which were built with public monies in whole or in part: the Erie Canal, the railroads, the highway system, the airports, or which were promulgated and shaped by Federal legislation: the electrical grid, the telephone system, the internet, broadcast radio, and broadcast television.

I believe that government intervention in the "free" market is not proscribed anywhere in the Constitution, and indeed the Founding Fathers did it with reckless abandonment, setting up tariffs on "unfavored industries" and protectionist schemes to favor domestic workers as they thought appropriate.

I believe that the talk about the media being "biased" is mostly claptrap, largely because "bias" implies that there is some "true center" from which we may gauge what is "left" and what is "right." I see evidence of what I consider bias to the left, and I see a huge amount of control of the media concentrated in Conservative hands, largely "big business" reporting on "what is good for big business". That is not an accusation, it is merely an observation. It is difficult for any "small minority" to be heard, whether that is "home schoolers", "marijuana proponents", or "people who think the earth is flat". It is quite easy for GE or Bill Gates to get their message through.

I believe there are many areas where the "free market" fails, and that there are things properly labeled "the common good." Education is on which I think obvious. "More educated people" is a better thing for our society (or any, really) than "fewer educated people", and I am delighted to pay my taxes to support "education" even though I have no children and thereby do not directly benefit.

Are there other areas? Yes. More people having "electricity" and "telephones" is a good thing, both for those industries and for our society. "More roads" makes for more efficient distribution, that it also happens to be an indirect subsidy which makes automakers rich and mass-transit investors poor is just a by-product.

I believe the "free market" dictates that pharmaceutical companies devote their research to providing fat-burning drugs for rich people rather than malaria preventing drugs for poor ones, and that a "common good" correction may be in order for this market segment. How to implement that I wouldn't know, but I would not be philosophically opposed to people suggesting solutions.

Likewise "general" or "portable health care", although I am loathe to discuss that, since it affects me personally. Monday night at midnight I lost all health coverage, and have not been able to secure it, at any cost, from any provider, including government programs anywhere. I do hope I don't have a car accident tomorrow and bankrupt my wife, although that is now entirely possible.

There are many programs which were wrong in the first place, or which have outlived their usefullness. Tobacco price supports, studies on cow flatulence, the House Chaplain could all go away and I wouldn't care. On balance we have done far more right than wrong with our government, and the proof is all around me, every day, everywhere I go.

I note, rather than continuing to allay your curiousity or confirm your suspicions, that I voted in the Republican primary election here some weeks ago, although I voted for the more "centrist" candidates who lost, and I may vote for the Democratic candidate in the general election. I don't know yet; I don't know enough about them.

I also inform you that I have voted for Democrats and Republicans, I have contributed to Republicans and Democrats based on their particular positions, and that I hold some beliefs which people would call liberal (ACLU, women's reproductive choice, environment) and some which might be properly labeled "convervative" (school choice, private ownership of guns, death penalty.)

Back to being "centrist". In this longer quiz, I also wound up remarkably close to the center. Just a tad in the "Gandhi quadrant", but almost as dead center as you can get. Just FYI.

I hope this clears up any confusion you may have had, and that I have addressed your question in substantive enough terms.

If not, that is unfortunate, but it is unlikely to stop me from pointing out the idiocy of your one-sided diatribes and your manic tendency to ascribe all evil to one side and all good to the other.

The world just doesn't work that way. I particularly doesn't work that way when you reject any countervailing opinion at the outset and get all of your information from rabble rousing websites which proudly display a status of credibility on a par well below that of Mad Magazine.
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