Friday, August 06, 2004

Quizzes and the Bloggers who answer them....

Lynn Sislo always finds interesting quizzes, so hey, why not:

1. I have never voted for a Democrat in my life. False. I am a Democrat. (I have also voted for Republicans, albeit not very often. I believe that my former Congressman, Amory Houghton, is a fine public servant.)

2. I think my taxes are too high. Well -- I'd love to be able to rant and say "Of course they are!" but the fact is, in my current financial situation (i.e., not very good but not disastrous either) taxes are not even close to being the prevailing concern. The fact that I don't make as much as I would like, especially at this point in my life, is a concern.

But generally, I've never complained about my taxes, really. I see taxes as a necessary annoyance. Sure, I'd love to live in that beautiful Libertarian dream world where there are no taxes, but I actually live in the real world and while government is hardly perfect, I don't believe that the Market can do everything better. Here's how John Scalzi once put it:

I like the idea that some of the money I send to my government goes to keep a library open in the little town I live in. I like the idea that somewhere in my little town, a kid who'd otherwise go hungry is eating dinner bought with food stamps that I paid for. I like the idea that a sailor on an aircraft carrier goes on shore leave with money I put in his pocket. I like the idea that people are researching diseases and robots are exploring space with money I chipped in to pay for them. As I mentioned, there are lots of things our government is doing with my money I wish it wouldn't do, but that's the trade-off and overall I think the balance is worth it.


3. I supported Bill Clinton's impeachment. No. It was the culmination of years of idiotic, partisan hatred. It didn't come anywhere near what I consider to be a "high crime or misdemeanor". It was "We're gonna get that SOB for something, if we gotta spend eight years and a hundred million dollars to do it."

4. I voted for President Bush in 2000. I have never voted for any member of the Bush clan, in any election. Nor will I.

5. I am a gun owner. No. I have nothing against gun ownership, but personally guns give me the willies.

6. I support school voucher programs. No.

7. I oppose condom distribution in public schools. No.

8. I oppose bilingual education. I confess I'm not sure what's being asked here. Is it teaching kids foreign languages? Or is it conducting classes in Spanish for Hispanic-descended students? I don't favor complete separation, and I think that as a general starting point, we should ensure that kids are all learning English. But I do not support making English the "official language" or prohibiting the use of Spanish in classrooms.

9. I oppose gay marriage. No. I support gay marriage. And gay adoption.

10. I want Social Security privatized. No.

11. I believe racial profiling at airports is common sense. I'm going to duck on this one, simply because from one minute to the next I take either position. I really can see why it's a good idea -- but it's a good idea that I hate. It seems obvious now, but when do we stop profiling? When the ratio of Arabic-initiated terrorist incidents to non-Arabic-initiated terrorists incidents drops below a certain level?

12. I shop at Wal-Mart. I stopped several months ago. There is nothing Wal-Mart has that I can't get somewhere else, and I'll deal with paying a buck or two more. (As a corrolary to the tax question above, it seems to me that someone who genuinely doesn't have the necessity of shopping at Wal-Mart should also not be complaining about their taxes.)

13. I enjoy talk radio. NPR and sports talk shows, yes. Limbaugh/Hannity/O'Reilly/Savage? They make me want to vomit.

14. I am annoyed when news editors substitute the phrase "undocumented person" for "illegal alien." Hmmmm -- I confess it hadn't occurred to me. But "undocumented person" is definitely a clunky, PC-type euphemism.

15. I do not believe the phrase "a chink in the armor" is offensive. Well, until I read this question, I had totally forgotten that "chink" can be a slur for Asian persons. So no, I guess I don't think it's offensive. I don't like it, though, because it's not very specific -- I prefer "hole" or "gap".

16. I eat meat. Yes. I understand the arguments for vegetarianism, but I decided long ago that something never eats that another thing doesn't die. I try to look at it from that "circle of life" perspective. You know, like The Lion King.

17. I believe O.J. Simpson was guilty. Personally, I do, but I don't really know a whole lot about the case.

18. I cheered when I learned that Saddam Hussein had been captured. My first response was, "Holy Crap, really?!", followed by happiness. And at some point I laughed at the fact that the great Saddam turned out to be too much the coward to commit suicide in the face of capture. (Not that I took Saddam's capture to be any kind of great turning point in anything.)

19. I cry when I hear "Proud to be an American" (God Bless the USA) by Lee Greenwood. No. Truth be told, I don't like the song, and it's not because the Republicans have somehow managed to claim it as their anthem. I just don't like it. I don't really care all that much for God Bless America either. But I do like "The Star Spangled Banner", and I love "America the Beautiful". And I think we don't hear "This Land Is Your Land, This Land Is My Land" nearly enough anymore. (And I have to be honest: "O Canada" is such a good song that it always makes me wish I was Canadian, for just a moment.)

20. I don't believe the New York Times. Oh, because it's a liberal paper, right? I don't read it much, actually.

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