1. a religion which damns its own infidels to eternal torment in a lake of fire has little room in which to criticize another religion for killing theirs. ditto a religion that thinks it is ok to kill people in order to open up a country to evangelism. no one has said this explicitly but I have a hunch the fundamentalist support for the war had a little to do with this. one needn't rely on christianity's dismal historical record for killing and torturing infidels to question its methods.
2. social programs are not only popular, i.e., willed by the democratic majority, but absolutely necessary in a system that rewards extroverted monetary ambition more than anything else. not all of us were put together in such a way as to make tons of money and the market does not reward all ideas of merit equally. I don't care what Ayn Rand says. teachers and poets don't get rich.
3. not to say there are no power-hungry politicians among the Democrats, but what frightens me about the Republicans is that many of them seem to think that power legitimates ideology, as though power were a sign of divine favor. this is not totally unrelated to a similar symptomatic conflation of democracy and the political ideal of a free market, which has to assume that those with more money deserve the greater influence the free market grants them. not that a free market might not be desirable in many ways, but to make of it the only mechanism for distribution of wealth and political power is inherently unfair. the thing is I sometimes think the conservative position is that unfairness needs no amelioration as long as it keeps the ones in power, in power.
alright. I have to go grade papers now.