Tag: libertarians

Sex is not Freedom

SEX…for lack of a better term…SELLS!

In the end, that’s what it comes down to, isn’t it?  Sex is not just for shampoo and cars and beer.  It sells candidates and political parties, too.  Whenever someone starts talking about “social” issues, or “cultural” issues, or “religion”, usually it boils down to what that person thinks, politically–yes, politically–about sex.  Who has it with who, when they have it, how they have it, and even why they have it.

Sex for President…

Now before everyone starts shouting and throwing things, keep these two things in mind:

1) everyone that’s ever had a conversation with me about politics knows that “social issues” and “religion”, etc, are not the things that get me out of bed politically.  I’m concerned with other things and thus, one could argue (regardless of my personal opinions) that I’m neutral on most of these issues…seriously.

2) I don’t want anyone to get the impression from any of the following that I believe the Government should have anything to say about how anyone conducts their personal lives.  My overarching point is that they shouldn’t.  Period.

All that being said, let me make a few comments about the two most recent dustups over…well…sex.

One was the Sandra Fluke nonsense where little miss (30 year old) law student at Georgetown raised all kinds of holy hell about not having access to free birth control provided by her university.  Of course, everyone by now knows that she KNEW this going in, and, having been a “women’s rights” activist already, decided to attend Georgetown BECAUSE of this policy so she would have a chance to fight the good fight against it.  No, that doesn’t make her a slut, but it makes her excessively disingenuous.

The premise here, regardless of how inappropriate Rush’s description of her intentions, is that we have a State that is mandating that employers/insurers grant FREE access to birth control so that women have the ability to have as much sex as they want without the consequences (well at least one particular one).  Despite the fact that there were ZERO Social Conservatives out there clamoring to ban birth control, apparently not getting it for free is the equivalent of the Scarlet Letter.

A few Libertarians (Reason.com and the Humble Libertarian and I’m sure there were more) were smart enough to point out that “Reproductive Freedom” does not mean “Reproductive Justice,” meaning having the ability to use something does not mean that is has to be provided to you for free.  (Otherwise, as I’ve said before, the Second Amendment would mean that every American must be provided with a gun and a lifetime supply of bullets…at birth).

But this still begs the question: Why is it so critical that the State protect a woman’s “right to choose” to have sex without risk of pregnancy? Well one argument on the “equality” front is that men don’t have to deal with the consequences like women do, so they can have as many sex partners as they want and, unless they’re Arnold Schwarzenegger in one of the worst movies ever, they’ll never get pregnant.

So what? So where is it written in the annals of Liberty, Freedom, and Equality, that women are the same as men sexually, and should by some right ordained by God have equal access to sex? Apparently, so “pursuit of happiness” translates as “as much sex as one wants without having to be burdened with the consequences of sex.” Therefore: free birth control.  Dismissing the fact that there are TONS of other barriers other than simply gender that keep many Americans from having free and fair access to sex…For instance, should bald, fat, ugly guys form a PAC and demand equal access to sex?

The truth is that women statistically don’t WANT as many sex partners as men do.  For more on this topic, I’d direct you to a documentary (part of a series of documentaries) on the “Nature vs. Nurture” question.  A documentarian in Norway illustrates the innate insanity of the notion that there is no difference between men and women and it’s all about our evil, capitalist, paternalistic, male-driven culture that is just holding women back from their rights as horny humans. A few warnings: 1) there is a little nudity in the beginning (it’s a European documentary, what do you want me to do?, 2) it is mostly subtitled, and 3) it’s 40 minutes long (which one of those bothers you most says a LOT about you. ;) ):

The documentarian doesn’t go into any of the more American themes of teenage pregnancy and number of kids born out of wedlock, etc, and the economic ramifications of such, and I won’t go into them here either. But it boggles my mind how much concern the “Social Far Left” (and that includes a LOT of Libertarians, albeit certainly not all) can put so much emphasis on “sexual freedom” as THE MOST FUNDAMENTAL MEASURE of liberty and choice, when every single version of Civilization in recorded history acknowledges that restraint and some level of sanctity regarding sex makes for a freer and more independent populace.

I can forgive the Liberal left, because they have no other mantle to put the refrain “freedom” than on the sexual one. Obviously they’re not concerned with freedom, especially freedom regarding healthcare, if they are dead set on FORCING employers and insurers to act as a go-between on birth control with policy holders. Removing middle men would make more sense.

However, I’m less forgiving of those who consider themselves freedom fighters constantly singing the same song of “reproductive freedom,” which actually means “freedom to have sex and NOT reproduce”. There is ZERO evidence that an increased “low risk” sex life leads to more happiness and independence (in women or men), and suffice it to say that promoting promiscuity is indeed THE LEAST productive activity in the battle to preserve our freedoms (unless, of course, you’re promoting promiscuity WITHOUT birth control…more freedom-loving Americans having babies wouldn’t be so bad ;) ), and I wish that more Libertarians would stop to think how lucky they are to live in a society that has social norms which stigmatize promiscuity, because there are few successful civilizations that do not, and usually the removal of those norms results in downward slide of that civilization.

To illustrate this a bit, let’s take a look at the newly nominated Libertarian candidate for President, Gary Johnson’s site BEFORE he decided to run as a Libertarian:


And then take a look at it now:


His stances haven’t changed really at all, but he now has “Coalitions” on Poker, Marijuana, “Choice”, and “Marriage”…the positions he takes are fair positions, but there is little mystery that he’s positioned himself, and the Libertarian Party as a result, as the “cool” president who says, “Hey Dude, live and let live, as long as you’re not hurting anyone else!”

And let me preempt something here: The position that “He’s not PROMOTING these things, he’s just saying that Government shouldn’t prohibit it,” is a fair position, but it’s one that ignores human nature. If you looked at a candidate’s website that encouraged going to church every Sunday and “Family Values,” you wouldn’t say, “Well, they’re not really Christians, they’re just encouraging others to do that.” You would assume that they are representing themselves as a Christian family man. (Put another way: politically, there is a reason people cite their gun ownership and hunting prowess when bragging about their Second Amendment bonafides.)

And this brings us to the most current “Social” issue, and that’s Obama’s endorsement, non-endorsement, support of gay marriage. The funny thing is, on the substance of what he says, I agree with him: two people who love each other should be able to call themselves married, and whatever church wants to bless that union should be allowed to do it, other than that, the legal implications should be handled by the States? What does the left conclude from that?

“Thanks, Joe…Thanks a Bunch…”

First Gay President….really?  Wait a minute.  Hang on.  Because Obama believes that two people, regardless of gender, should be able to legally tie themselves to each other financially and adopt and/or raise children together (he didn’t say that, explicitly , but that’s the implication, if we’re talking about rights….right?).  So…how does that make him gay?  Now, I know that Newsweek, the creator of this ridiculous cover and article don’t actually believe that he is or has become gay because of his support for gay marriage, any more than someone believed that Clinton’s “First Black President” title really make him black…but it begs the question: what is it about his support of gay marriage “equality” makes him supportive of gayness?  Supporting legal equality doesn’t equal supporting the act of gay sex, does it? Well…YES…as we’ve already covered.  It does.  His stance, from those inside the gay community, is a blessing of gay sex.  Look at the way Joe Biden (“boldly” mind you) expressed his support, “I am absolutely COMFORTABLE with men marrying men and women marrying women”  He touched on the legal rights, but he began, with emphasis, on his all-important COMFORT level.

The dirty little secret here is that the “gay rights” movement is not looking for legal equality, they are looking for acceptance…and now they have it from the VP and from POTUS.  It doesn’t matter that the President hasn’t moved the ball forward one iota on the issue, legally…what matters is he and the VP are COMFORTABLE, personally, with gay sex, and gay couples.  By the same token, the Social Conservative right is NOT comfortable, therefore this stance of comfort is an abomination, despite the fact that he has an explicitly Tenth Amendment view of it legally, because he’s comfortable, he might as well be…the First Gay President.

And the media has spent COUNTLESS hours, days, weeks, and months on the issue of contraception, gay marriage, etc, while brushing through discussions of a $16Trillion deficit as just another day in Washington.  The President is “making history” for expressing…comfort…with a certain sexual lifestyle which many are…let’s face it…not comfortable with.

Let me ask this, and think about this carefully:

If the President expressed support for adultery, open marriages and “swinging” without anything other than supporting it, and saying something along the lines of, “The States should work out all the legal details, but I think in General, it’s a travesty that fathers are often denied access to their children simply because they sought alternative physical attention outside the home.  And further I think the American people should keep an open mind as to what constitutes a family.  After all, my daughter seems to be OK with the idea”  Would the left conclude that he was shedding archaic and stodgy paleoconservative norms and thus applaud his enlightened view of sexuality?  Would the right conclude that he probably sleeps around?  Maybe…maybe not, but my guess is the reaction would be different.  Even though these types of activities are MORE common, and MORE a part of modern American life than homosexuality ever will be, it would be frowned upon.  Otherwise, I suppose we’d see a cover on Time or Newsweek with Obama with a hot chick on each arm saying, “The First Philandering President.” (Sorry, Bill…you didn’t express “comfort” with it.) Then, Hugh Heffner would host a fundraiser and pull $30 million dollars from the “sex” industry.  No? There is no philandering father lobby…so probably not.

“But hey, that’s different,” you say, “this a choice, homosexuals can’t choose who they are!” OK, what about a brother and sister…they didn’t choose their family…if they decide they want to be wed in holy matrimony, maybe after a couple failed marriages outside the family, should they be able to?

“NO! That’s CRAZY! You’re gross!” Why? So who is the high priest that’s making this decision of what social mores are expendable and which are not?  (Again…no real “Incest Lobby” that I know of, and the odds of a “First Incestuous President” cover is pretty low. And yes, you’re right…pretty gross)

But what does sex have to do with legal rights?  Who is fighting for the right to have sex?  Are there sodomy laws being thrown at gay americans, and evil Christian judges sentencing them to life in prison for “deviant” behavior? No? So what does sex have to do with it?  (Come to think it, even adultery is not a crime…it’ll cost you in a divorce settlement, though, so there are legal consequences).

Another one:  If a future President Romney were to express that the FLDS (those Fundamental Mormons that live in a polygamist combine) in Texas is being unduly discriminated against and that if a community wants to live in these United States with multiple wives and the children raised to believe this is good, then does that pass the same test of defending “reproductive freedom” and “civil rights”?  Would there be a “First Polygamist President” even though he’s not a polygamist, but is just looking out for the rights of people to live exactly as they please as long as they’re not hurting others? You betcha! Slightly different, mind you, because although it would still be on the cover of Time and Newsweek, the supporting article would be decidedly less glowing and supportive.  The defenders of “sexual freedom” would clamp down like the Spanish Inquisition on steroids judging the familial and sexual deviance of such an abomination.

Why? Well…Romney is a Republican…that’s the main reason.  OK…what if Obama supported Polygamy? It’s consistent…he’s neither gay nor is he polygamist, so the stance is basically the same. Neither of these scenarios is plausible is going to happen, though. NOONE is going to endorse polygamy on ANY grounds of sexual, personal, or intellectual freedom, because the FAMILY UNIT is still important…at least if you listen to politicians across the political spectrum it is.

So why is the entire political system wrapped up sex?

The truth is, the family unit IS STILL important.  A civil society requires this institution more than it requires almost anything else to survive.  But this institution HAS to survive on its own…Government, being limited in its ability to do anything without devolving into tyranny, CANNOT define, limit, or altar our sex lives.  It will not, and should not.  There is a reason why a monstrous percentage of elected officials are heterosexuals married with children.  Anything else is the exception, not the rule.  Even Obama, the Progressive that defines all modern Progressiveness CONSTANTLY touts his family accolades, and boy do they look lovely on camera.

So what does this mean? “Family” is about raising kids…and raising kids requires someone to have sex (my God, I hope THAT doesn’t change anytime really soon), and that requires the action of one man and one woman.  That is the biological reality.

Rights? That is something else entirely.  There is no right to get married, but given that there are barriers that gay couples have that heterosexual couples do not, I say, eliminate the barriers, but keep one thing in mind: siblings have the same barriers, a mother and daughter with stupid ex husbands or crackhead daughters-in-law have similar challenges of both inheritance and child-rearing.  Widows who have moved in with a college roommate…fathers and godmothers…you name it.

There are a variety of situations which a “Civil Union” can help remedy, but do they have to act like they love each other as a “married” couple?  Or put another way, do they HAVE to be having sex?  Why is the State concerned with who loves each other and who is having sex?  And why are we, the voters, concerned with it, and further why are we concerned with what our elected officials are “comfortable” with?  Any solution should be a solution that takes sex off the table…otherwise, someone is acting as high priest of sexual properness.

So family values is really more about valuing family…valuing the ability of individuals to tie themselves into a community in whatever way they see fit and raise their children to be responsible and productive citizens.   “Marriage” as a legal matter is simply a short cut…it is the norm, and it will remain the norm.  Biology doesn’t lie. It is the default model of the family unit and it has been that way for countless hundreds  and thousands of generations in a variety of civilizations all over this group.  It is the human reality that cannot be dismissed as simply “cultural” without making some MONSTROUS sacrificing in civilizational security.  That doesn’t mean that people should be denied equal “rights” to arrange their affairs differently based on their “preference” or simply circumstances, but it also doesn’t mean that we should just pretend that “marriage” is anything different than it ever has been.

We do not have to promote “reproductive freedom” nor do we have to promote “gay rights.”  We certainly do not want to legislate it, and as a result of that we should refrain from making SUCH a big deal about it.  The point that I’m trying to get across here is this: There is a distinct difference between telling the Government to stay out of our sex lives, and PROMOTING sex without consequences…we do not need to do the latter to accomplish the former.

And there is a big difference between having a belief that marriage is a sacred institution that Government can acknowledge as a legal shortcut to inheritance and child-rearing, and taking the stance that ANY accommodation to someone with a different preference or situation is somehow destroying the institution of marriage.

Those of us who consider ourselves fighters for freedom and limited government–and that includes those who think that saving the world from internet pornography is an important liberty issue, AND those that seem to think that touting the virtues of legalized prostitution is a critical liberty issue–need to step back and think about what our priorities are.  We need to stop obsessing about sex all the time.  It sells, but what are we selling?  We’re not selling liberty and independence by selling sex. We’re selling our future down the road because someone has the same views about us on sex.  We’re missing the chance to focus like a laser on the role of government, national debt, enumerated powers, free markets. These are the things that will save us from oblivion.  No amount of “sexual freedom” “reproductive freedom”–or lack thereof–is going to get our country back to where it once was.  The culture issues–and they are real–have to be solved by the culture, not the Government.

And for those of you who call yourselves “Progressive” or “Liberal” who have little or no interest in individual liberty, stop pretending that “reproductive justice” and “gay rights” is going to save you from the jackboots that you’re creating. It’s not hypocritical, really.  It’s just childish. Either you care about individual liberty or you don’t (you don’t), so stop pretending like you do while sacrificing our freedom on the altar of “free love.”  It just makes you look stupid.   Your children (if you still believe in those…lest we overpopulate and lay waste to Mother Gaia) will not care that you stood for “sexual freedom” when the thought police comes and takes them away for not eating enough vegetables, or whatever shameless bit of eco-fascism you dream up to take the place of the religion you so despise.

All of you stop it…just stop it.  There is just entirely too much at stake, and our freedoms are too important to make it all about sex.

Sorry…Why Are We Talking About Religion Again?

There are some out there who are bemoaning the audacity of “Social Conservatives” defending their faith regarding the contraceptive dust-up coming out of the DHHS this last week or so.

As has been covered before, I’m sure, social conservatives cannot and will not completely divorce their religion from their politics, and nor should they. They SHOULD respect the limits that our Constitution places on Government (especially the Federal Government) in enforcing “morality” of every flavor.

That being said, the problem I have with this whole religious discussion is not Santorum (or anyone) accusing Obama of abiding in a completely different theological mindset (that of “social” and “environmental” “justice”–which basically puts Nature way way up there above Nature’s God and Humanity as a whole), what I have a REAL problem with is that we’re talking about religion anyway…or even the First Amendment for that matter.

The truth is that this Contraception thing has NOTHING to do with religious liberties or the First Amendment. It has to do with one simple basic thing:

SHOULD the Federal Government be allowed to FORCE, by the point of a gun, a company, an organization, a church, a union, or an individual to pay for the healthcare of another person, and SHOULD the Federal Government proscribe the details by which that healthcare is paid for.

The fact that we’ve just passed up that conversation and made it a religious liberty argument means we’ve lost the argument, and the fact that we’ve passed up the religious liberty argument and are now talking about sex, means we’re doomed to not have any rational discussion about the matter at all.

Contrary to the view of some of my more libertarian brethren, this is NOT just religious extremist Social Conservatives preaching hell-fire and brimstone over the contraceptive issue. This is a good chunk of our current political framework: establishment, Tea Party, and otherwise just not being able to get ahead of an argument effectively, and falling into a trap set by a media dead set on making ANYONE who doesn’t support the premise and foundation of Obamacare (much less the monstrosity that is the actual bill), into knuckle-dragging hicks.

KEEP IN MIND: This is only the beginning. The ONLY detailed proscriptive benefits data that has come out of the DHHS is for preventative medicine. If this bill sticks (MGHMOUA) then EVERY SINGLE ASPECT of what, how, and when healthcare benefits are paid by companies and insurance companies will be dictated by the DHHS. This is only coming out because of the preventative care element coming over a year ago meant the the DHHS had to detail exactly what “preventative” meant.

It is EXCEEDINGLY unfair for anyone to sit back and just pretend, though, that this particular decision is not an ASSAULT on every Pro-Life activist and person of faith in the country. It is exactly that…Maybe Santorum preached too much…sure…fine…OK. But we’re all in a fight for our lives, folks…we should be united at every level against Statism, even if it’s not Sunday morning and we didn’t want to get preached at, we’re on the same side.

Put another way, this Contraceptive issue and all the ensuing, unfortunately rather predictable, conversations about religion and sex that comes from it…is NOT a time for die-hard Libertarians to make fun of Christian Conservatives as being too provincial or holier-than-thou.  It is instead a time for Limited-Government Conservatives of all parties (even those hanging on for dear life to the GOP) to stand together as one against a tyrannical regiment that is now being codified into law by Madame Secretary.

This is real folks.  We need to pick our fights…and this is the one, and the Administration is who we’re fighting, not Rick Santorum.

On the awesome power of libertarians

A friend told me he met a colleague who insisted he was a libertarian. I bet in 2004 a lot of these guys weren’t saying how libertarian they were…

This was my rant to him on Libertarians and the bailout:

Libertarians are republicans who like to smoke pot.

That’s an old joke.

I voted for McCain and my GOP congressman, but not my Senator, since he voted for the bailout. Soon Kay Bailey Hutchinson, my other senator, will be running for governor. I will be voting against her as well. I hate not being listened to. I wrote and called both senators and my representative against the bailout and received a letter in the mail from my representative. That was pretty cool.

I voted for the libertarians on every other election. Much to my chagrin, most of the democrats won local judge elections as 2-3% voted libertarian in each election. The breakdown was 51-Dem, 49-GOP, 2 Libertarian. That is the way it breaks down when you vote libertarian. My county has had mostly GOP judges forever and that is good b/c they keep the criminals in jail, where they belong.

The sad thing about these elections is that good, smart Senators like John Sununu lost their seat whereas jerks like Ted Stevens win (they are still counting, slowly, the votes in Alaska. The best scenario is he wins and steps down and Sarah Palin nominates a new face).

But this isn’t only a GOP problem. Look at Chicago and New Jersey and see what happens when one party dominates.

The longer this thing goes on the more it becomes apparent the current crisis is due to a lack of transparency and encouraging bubblicious conditions. Sadly, everyone thinks the solution is encouraging more reckless behavior, encouraging yet another bubble, especially now that Obama is taking office. The first thing Obama will do when president is bailout GM, etc., which is corporate welfare at it’s worst, on principle even worse than the current bailout, and not change for the better. We were told that these banks needed 700 billion just to keep afloat and the signal now is that, well, now that we have this money in hand we can use it for helping this industry, which votes democrat (Michigan) and especiallly backed Obama. So I guess we really didn’t need all that money for greasing the wheels at the banks, then, right? Any argument made for the auto industry could apply to Starbucks, or Sun Microsystems, and to some extent American Express. But choosing which industry to save seems rather arbitrary at this point, and is not what gov’t does best. Over 20 American car manufacturers have gone out of business, I don’t see why all of the sudden gov’t has to start bailing them out. If GM can’t make a profit selling 9 million cars a year this is a systemic problem that a few billion free dollars won’t solve. Let them all declare bankruptcy, merge, and renegotiate their terms with the UAW and their creditors. The US auto stocks are now trading at 2$ so I don’t know think most shareholders will just have to eat it at this point. Remember that most execs are compensated mostly with stocks, most of which in their company so their holdings are now zero. So if you let them fail it is much worse on them financially, and much truer to the way a free market operates, than to bail them out and then go through the kangaroo court process of demanding limits on their compensation.

Libertarian Party Debate

At the risk of offending someone in the Libertarian Party, I must start with a disclaimer:

I began watching their debate this past weekend (a week late) with the hopes that I would see a REAL debate on issues of the role of Government, and personal Responsibility.

What I got was a cross between a Star-Trek convention and an anti-war rally.

The main problem I had with the debate (on May 24th) between the Libertarian candidates, was that it was not a debate.  They basically fell all over each other trying to be more “Libertarian” than the other.  Noone disagreed on anything; noone challenged anything.  The first hint should have been Mike Gravel being on stage; who by almost EVERY STANDARD is the OPPOSITE of Libertarian:  A progressive to the core, his mere presence confused me.

I was going to wax philosophical about my feelings even more, but Stuart Rothenberg beat me to the punch:

You’d think that, at the very least, Libertarians would look coldbloodedly at their own status and avoid the usual delusional propaganda that we all are force-fed by Democrats and Republicans. After all, they are a mere asterisk on the American political landscape, and some of the convention participants were funny and self-deprecating. But no, even the Libertarians are glued to the ridiculous rhetoric that they are “in this to win.”

I’ll take it a step further and say that they should recognize their comments as even more jingoistic and rhetorical than any Republican or Democratic debate I’ve ever seen.  I can at least congratulate them on nominating Bob Barr, who, although not inspiring, compared to some on the stage, could be considered downright Charismatic, and then contrast that with the Vice-Presidential Candidate, Wayne Allyn Root, who I was thoroughly convinced was going to start selling me Oxy-Clean…at any moment.

The depressing thing is I agree with a good chunk of their rhetoric.  I could take it all…the “military-industrial-complex,” the “get Government out of your wallet,”  and even the anti-”war on drugs” tripe.  But I would have to agree with Huckabee’s comments recently that described the Libertarian movement as “soulless.”  Less Government is a good thing to stand for…but what’s missing from the picture is what fills that void.  Personal responsibility should be couple with Personal Accountability, or at least some acknowledgment of the REASONS behind an overactive Government.

I especially cringed when someone (the nerdy guy in the middle from Massachussetts) used the tired and exasperating excoriation of State’s Rights by bringing up Jim Crow laws.  So States should never have any say so in how they govern ever again because they once had Jim Crow laws?  What kind of logic is that.

{It reminded me of a video I saw the other day of Noam Chomsky saying that the argument that capitalism has improved the standard of living of virtually every civilization it touches is poppycock…Why?  Because someone made the argument that slaves in the South were treated better than blacks in the cities.  There’s some ironclad logic.}

The Massachusetts candidate was vying for Gay Marriage rights, which is a legitimate Libertarian view (that I vehemently disagree with), but since when does State’s Rights become a COMPLETELY invalid argument for responsible Government.

Most of the rest of it was “Vote Libertarian because the ‘two-party system’ doesn’t work.”

YAAWNN.  Very…very disappointing.  If anyone has the bright idea that the Libertarian Party has the answers, they are sadly mistaken.

Ron Paul, the patron saint of Libertarianism

Here’s an article about the Ron Paul phenomenon. As expected, there’s a little too much emphasis on the “liberal” part of modern “libertarianism” (the war on drugs is mentioned more than once), and of course the war on Iraq is cited as a cornerstone of flawed interventionism. Here, however, is the part that describes most accurately the “libertarian” tendencies of some within the Republican party.

…In the 1990s, conservative Republicans rose to power by relentlessly attacking Big Government. Yet the minute they took control of both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, they kicked out the jams on even a semblance of fiscal responsibility, signing off on the Medicare prescription drug benefit and building literal and figurative bridges to nowhere. From 2001 to 2008, federal outlays will have grown by an estimated 29 percent in inflation-adjusted terms, according to the Office of Management and Budget.

And I almost took issue with this part:

Now with about 5 percent (and climbing) support in polls of likely Republican voters…

Until I looked at the numbers. It seems he’s gotten a little boost just within the last couple of months. I sincerely think he should hang in there and nip at the big money in the race (although according to this article he IS the big money lately). Hopefully, maybe, possibly, we’ll have an actual discussion about real issues at one of these debates