Chris, thank you for your response. I would like to try and contest what you’re saying point by point at the risk that you’ve already decided you’ve said enough.

So, with your first paragraph, you’re essentially saying that Bernie Sanders is the enemy of democracy. I doubt that Sanders is the enemy you claim him to be, but I must admit, you’re one of the first conservatives that I have ever encountered to refer to our country as a democracy. I think we can find ourselves in agreement there.

You also make a point that Trump is attempting to protect our liberties by stacking the courts with “originalists” who believe in life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Maybe I missed something because what I’ve seen over the last decade or so, has been a court system dedicated to working for for the interests of big business.

And if your complaint about a centralized government is sincere, businesses operate much as governments do. Big businesses have bureaucracies, too. Just ask Comcast customers and Hobby Lobby employees. We’re kind of up to our eyeballs in monopolies, leading to monopsony. Is that the free market you had in mind? If so, remember that Republican presidents have governed for the majority of the time in the last 4 decades.

As far as I and my ilk are concerned, we would prefer to be governed by a democratically elected government than the government of big business.

Yes, I am a proponent of the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact. Yes, I think it would be a great thing for this country. But in response to your comments regarding the same, I did a search on Google to see if the literature agrees with either one of us. The results are rather mixed. There are strong arguments, either way for or against the Electoral College. So I’m not convinced of your arguments, but I must say, I’m not fond of presidents who win the Electoral College and lose the popular vote.

With regard to our concerns about stacking courts, I’d say that Republicans have been very focused on the judiciary at state and federal levels for a good reason. Their base is declining. And as the demographics go young, brown and black, their base will decline further, still. I’m white and I don’t really mind the trends. Conservative Republicans will need unelected bureaucrats serving a lifetime on the bench to do their bidding as a check on the legislative and executive branches of government as the population becomes more liberal. Your comments are strident and seem to exhibit a touch of worry. But don’t worry, the same rights we liberals secure for us, we will secure for you, too.

With regard to socialism, *none* of the Democrats running for president are advocating socialism in the form that we once knew. You know, no property rights, no state-owned businesses. What they’re really promoting is capitalism with a strong safety net, you know, like Scandinavia. And you know there are billionaires from Scandinavia. You might like to check out this Gizmodo article featuring comments by Bill Gates, Charlie Munger, and Warren Buffet, for more details on that story. You’ll see that Gates is spot about the scope of the debate.

And finally, I understand where you’re coming from when witnessing the very poorest of San Francisco. What you’re witnessing is what happens when the richest 3 men in the United States owns as much as the bottom half of the United States. Is that an efficient allocation of resources? Are billionaires evidence of an efficient allocation of resources, as capitalism claims to produce?

Look at all the beaches covered in plastic. That’s from capitalism. Will capitalists clean that up? Or will they take a holiday at a better beach? Is *that* an efficient allocation of resources? I think not.

I read the arguments you’re making and I see what I was, and how I used to think in 1992–1995. I was there. I was in the Patriot Movement back then. I knew the law well, then. I learned administrative procedures and how to use the FOIA to get my own records. That was a history lesson I will never forget. I can empathize with your arguments, but after seeing both sides, I can no longer sympathize with your arguments.

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Husband, father, worker, philosopher, and observer. Plumbing the depths of consciousness to find the spring of happiness. Write on.

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