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Bias of Informed Not Inflamed

by John on 04/24/2013

One major rule of Informed Not Inflamed is transparency.  In other words, voice your opinion but reveal your bias.

It does two things.

  1. It allows people to understand where your thinking comes from.
  2. But it also allows them to understand if you’re looking to profit from your influence. 

So, let me give you the bias of Informed Not Inflamed.

The first is Responsibility over Rights.  I am suspicious of people who scream about their rights.  Most of the time, they’re shirking their responsibilities as citizens.  Remember, the rights we get in the Constitution are limited.

Next, you’re entitled to your own beliefs and illusions – as long as they don’t infringe on others beliefs and illusions.  Thus, the suspicion and disgust of the extremism we see in places like the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The world’s problems are complex.  They’re not “either/or” or “conservative/liberal”.  All of our problems need research, expertise, collaboration, and much thought – from all of us.  Don’t be swayed by the media’s knee jerk reaction.

Extremists on all issues are dangerous.  Usually, they are trying to take us back in time and they are reacting against change.  On the left, certain groups want us to go back to an agrarian society that dismisses the industrial gains we’ve had.  On the right, we have Originalists – including Supreme Court justices — who have a rigid interpretation of the Constitution, namely the Second Amendment.  Although their interpretation deserves an airing, the other side – a more nuanced and historically accurate – does too which is: there is enough academic research and years of belief that the Second Amendment means locals can have a police force.

Informed Not Inflamed recognizes the new world reality of technology, demographics, and the developing world.  Technology is changing how we work and live. The developed nations are aging, creating problems for the old economic powers — that aren’t being properly addressed financially.  And the developing countries are gaining us because of technology and demographics.  We tend to side with research done by groups like Third Way.

We view China is a big question mark.  Yes, they could want military supremacy, but it might be they want to be an economic power to control as many of the world’s resources to make sure billions of their own people don’t revolt.

US federal elected officials are corrupt.  They do not deserve the salutations like “Senator” or “Congressman”.  Yes, many are well-meaning and they want to serve.  And yes, they have to work within a corrupt system.  But consider this: if you and I knew about a crime being committed and we did nothing, the law would consider us complicit in that crime.  Why then are federally elected officials not considered corrupt when they knowingly commit bribery – that is sanctioned by the government and our laws – and they do nothing to speak up and change it?  That leads to this.

Campaign financing is legal bribery.  Why do judges recuse themselves from trials that they have personal connections to?  Why do journalists have to reveal any bias or connection they have.  But elected officials take money from someone or a special interest and then pass laws to favor them.  Removing campaign donations removes this corruption.

Informed Not Inflamed sides with fiscal responsibility.  Our corrupt political system has led to massive and dangerous spending that has made us a nation of takers – on all sides of the political spectrum.  Yes, we need investment from government, but not a system that just throws money at projects.  We need fiscal scrutiny by our leaders and by all of us.  That’s why Informed Not Inflamed endorses Simpson-Bowles and other plans that call for equal and shared responsibility and give-backs.

Tax breaks don’t necessarily create jobs.  Yes, there is an effect where companies – being taxed less – will hire more people.  But two things also happen: businesses will invest in technology or pay current workers more; and government will have lower tax revenues that are not made up by the increase in revenues from new workers.

Corporations hurt more than help.  Jonathan Haidt, in his book The Righteous Mind, said it best: institutions bind and blind.  They will do immoral things to keep themselves viable or intact.

Too many corporations game the system.  We have monopolies/oligopolies that hurt competition and damage our way of life.  Look at what they have done.  The military/industrial complex has created a system where we are constantly on a war-footing while we are not prepared to fight a guerilla-like enemy.  The media has given us faux-news and a lack of choice.  Banking and finance companies – along with a politicized Fed – have caused decades of ridiculous boom and busts.  The energy sector has caused shocks and instability in oil prices.  Who profits?: executives and shareholders, not the public.

Informed Not Inflamed sides with entrepreneurs over corporations.  They move us forward with new technologies, new ways of managing and delivering goods and services, and creating jobs.  As a nation, we should be encouraging people to start their own businesses or creating their own jobs.  Yet, our elected officials cater to the corporations with the bigger bribe money –that stifles new businesses and new innovation.

Terms like Socialism, Fascism, Keynesian, and others should be defined when being used.  Most times when someone is using these terms to label someone or their ideas, the term is used improperly.

Informed Not Inflamed is suspicious of religious institutions.  Like corporations, they “bind and blind.”  Look at the Roman Catholic Church and the pedophile scandal and the lack of anger by a majority of Muslims against radical Islam.  Still, there is good in religion.  If done properly, religion creates community and tradition that gives people hope as we look for meaning in this world and what comes after we leave this world.

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