TP's Summary Response to "San Francisco" "Liberals" Post

Comments have been great! [To the “Fed Up and Pissed Off” post of 11.08.06.] Here’s what I wrote on Sunday as a Comment, included here as a separate Post:

I re-read the Post, and for the life of me I can’t find any defense of so-called “liberals,” whatever that word means. (In fact, I thought I went way out of my way to avoid-evade the topic.)

My Tuesday-Election Day hope-expectation was-is, first and foremost, the restoration of checks-and-balances. Even that, however, does not mean “taking sides”—I’m not at all sure how things ought to turn out. I’d just like two powerful sides to issues rather than, effectively, one, which amounts to submission of Congress to the Executive; among other things, concerning the threats to Privacy (always capital P). And to say that sure as hell—despite what Rove & Co, has tried to feed us—does nothing to suggest “soft on terrorism.” I’m a defense hard-liner, perhaps Joe Lieberman or John McCain flavor; AND a Privacy fanatic. (Almost all my liberal, whatever that means, friends, such as my wife (!), shudder at my hawkish-ness.)

While I personally love every aspect of SF’s diversity (e.g., woman fire chief and woman top cop; women in virtually all top jobs), that is not the point. If SF is “liberal” (whatever that means), I was mainly pointing out it’s a helluva lot more than “liberal.” E.g., home to matchless capitalist-pigism (wealth, financing, entrepreneurs, innovation, research universities). Now I happen to think—as do Richard Florida and Juan Enriquez cited in the original Post—that the evidence clearly suggests that Diversity (capital “D,” all flavors) is an essential correlate of off-the-charts innovation—and, per me, a lot more fun and enriching in general. (As opposed to Vermont where diversity—lower case “d”—means white male deer hunters and white male non-deer hunters.)

I am hardly endorsing Pelosi-ism. Parts I applaud, but I am HORRIFIED at her apparent anti-China bias—since I believe that an open, friendly relationship and minimum trade restrictions between the USA and China are at least as important as sorting out Iraq. And Charles Rangel heading the de-facto trade committee makes me nauseated. (My fellow Vermonters, without my help, just elected Bernie Sanders to the Senate. Among many questionable things, he wants to tax corporations for sending jobs offshore—what a dangerous jerk.) (Then there’s my pal Sherrod Brown, the Senator-elect from Ohio, who ran on a platform of protecting manufacturing jobs—how foolish.)

Like most people—typically called “the all-important independents,” which I think includes upwards of 80% of us—I feel free to choose from Column A and Column B as I see fit. I surely “admit” to being left of center on many so-called “social issues” such as “choice,” but also near-loony “right” on any and almost all economic-trade stuff. Absurdly free trade (starting immediately with CAFTA)! End of “earmarks”! Balanced budget! Welcome most every immigrant! (Is that “left” or “right”? Not sure.) Just enough protection of intellectual property to encourage innovation, but not so much as to stifle innovation. Etc. Etc.

Good God, could we lighten up on the bullshit labels, acknowledge that all sane people are mixed bags, and get down to work!

Tom Peters posted this on November 13, 2006, in News.
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