“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”
–Theodore Geisel (a.k.a. Dr. Seuss)
I believe it is a symptom of mental weakness to judge the quality of words by falling back on an opinion of their author. Yet I also recognize that not every situation calls for the greatest possible application of mental strength. A brawny lumberjack need not swing with all his might to clear a little shrub from the trail ahead. Likewise, brilliant readers may find their way here without the motivation to read deeply and lavish ample consideration on my remarks.
So, here’s me in a paragraph. Reluctant Boy Scout turns mediocre student athlete turns exceptional speech and debate competitor. I entered college as a speech communications major, completed the requirements of a philosophy major (nearly completing history and political science along the way,) then left after nine semesters, sans sheepskin. I worked during those years as an announcer/producer at an NPR affiliate. Later I was involved in the launch of two seperate Web design firms, as a creative grunt at one and a partner at the other. Since leaving that world behind, I’ve been in an entirely inconsequential rock band, worked as an assistant to a somewhat consequential writer, and dabbled in numberless pursuits.
My political views do not follow from any single ideology, though I suppose some readers would tend to imagine the worst of the unspoken. Indeed, as recently as the early 90s I was an anarcho-capitalist willing to agree with the dittohead legion about most of the controversies in any given month. In fairness, I was a child of the old American middle class, sheltered from any hardship greater than partially supporting myself through college. Exposure to “the real world” quickly deflated the puffed up lies of the neoconservative movement. It would not be long before I would happily describe myself as a “godless commie,” if mainly to offer a bolder challenge to thinkers straightjacketed by conventions and taboos.
Still, I hope most who encounter this blog will judge its content by the properties of that content, rather than preconceptions related to my background or outlook. I hope to establish a recurring theme here related to the triumph of reason over emotion. Surely there are times and places to be unreasonably passionate. Opinions about matters of pressing national import should be formed in a realm far from any of those places of noble fervor.
In short, if you care enough to have something to say, then you ought to care enough to base that something on good information and sound thinking. Dismissing me as a “damned dirty hippie” might involve a factual half-truth, but doing so is an evasive alternative to confronting the merits and substance of my views.