Re: Got a question mr. retired civil servant.

Eric Watt Forste (
Sat, 30 Aug 1997 18:14:55 -0700

Abraham Moses Genen writes:
> It is the problem of opinion based on superficialities. Discussing
> public policy on the basis of an individual's personality and/or
> ideosyncrasies rather than the cumulative thought processes,
> constraints and contingencies that go into value determinations is
> simplistic.

Interesting. So are you saying that it simply doesn't matter if
a politician is (or all politicians are) lacking in character?
Or if a political system reliably produces (rewards, whatever)
only politicians who are lacking in character?

Also, I am interested to hear your theory of how a participant in
the democratic process should go about following "the cumulative
thought processes, constraints, and contingencies" when deciding
how to vote. Most of the methods I have run across for attempting
to keep track of these things either seem unreliable (I had thought
that character was a good guide, but now you seem to be telling us
that it is not) or else to take up so much of my time in researching
my vote that I have no time left in which to earn taxes for the

This is especially the case where I live, in California, because
we have an extensive system of initiative and referendum which
requires a great deal of research to participate in in a meaningful
way. Of course, research is not literally *required*, so the
results of the elections are sometimes a bit surrealistic. I
suppose that's why I like living in California. I've always been
fond of surrealism, and I find the political environment here
to be quite Daliesque.

(Oh, dear, I shouldn't have said that last. It's clearly
evidence that I need to get my head shrunk by professional
help. State-licensed, of course.)

Eric Watt Forste ++ ++ expectation foils perception -pcd