Thursday, August 19, 2010

Yes, Russ, more of this

Lord knows I don't agree with Russ Feingold all the time, and his Naderish tendencies often drive me crazy. But the flip side of Feingold is that his principle can kick in at the right time sometimes, and it certainly has here:
Feingold said those who are looking to use the issue as a political wedge are guilty of "gutter politics" and "one of the worst things I've ever seen done in politics."

"In the end I believe in freedom of religion," he said. "If somebody owns property and it's within the zoning rules, if they want to build a house of worship that is a fundamental right. And I would make the point I am for freedom on this point, and freedom of religion is fundamental."
I still think this issue is a ridiculous, media-driven phenomenon that does involve an important principle that has, incidentally, already been upheld. The center is being built. The debate here is succeeding the event, not preceding it, which makes the entire thing pointless. The issue should be closed. But since we're still talking about it we might as well highlight instances of courage here. See also: high-ranking Maryland Representative Chris Van Hollen.

The Man, The Myth, The Bio

East Bay, California, United States
Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.