If you ever want to know more about my political beliefs, just watch this video clip found by regular Hit & Run commenter Herrick of Senator Rick Santorum explaining that the pursuit of happiness is harming America:
One very short summary of my political beliefs is that Senator Santorum is a horse’s ass. Just about everything else follows naturally from that.
Santorum ridicules the idea that people should be able to do whatever they want to do as long as no one gets hurt. What else is there? What justification is there for government intervention in the private affairs of Americans if no one is being hurt?
Allowing people to do whatever they want to do as long as no one gets hurt is the whole point of government. Don’t take my word for it, read what Thomas Jefferson and the rest of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had to say about it:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
Broadly speaking, I acknowledge no legitimate limits to my right to the pursuit of happiness, unless my pursuit interferes with someone else’s pursuit of happiness. I acknowledge the same principle for everyone else: As long as their pursuit of happiness does not interfere with mine, I have no objections that merit the enforcement of law.
In opposing the pursuit of happiness, Rick Santorum is exhibiting the kind of un-Americanism that is all too typical of Republican candidates (not that they have a corner on the market or anything). It’s starting to show, too. A week before the election, he’s 13 points behind in the polls and trading at 7.3 at intrade. Rick Santorum is about to lose his job.
Update: As an example of what I mean by Republican un-Americanism, John Tierney is pointing out that using the Republicans’ narrow definition of morality, there is no moral majority. Eight million Americans were on-line gamblers until the Republicans took that away. Over a hundred million Americans have tried marijuana, and more than 200 million think it should be legal for medical use.
I neither gamble nor smoke, but with that kind of busy-body attitude, it’s only a matter of time until the moral scolds get to something I care about. In America, us “sinners” vastly outnumber the Republican righteous.