hard heads soft hearts

a scratch pad for half-formed thoughts by a liberal political junkie who's nobody special. ''Hard Heads, Soft Hearts'' is the title of a book by Princeton economist Alan Blinder, and tends to be a favorite motto of neoliberals, especially liberal economists.

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Saturday, July 27, 2002
I haven't been updating my blog because 1) my interest in politics comes and goes, so there was a stretch where I wasn't reading much and so didn't have much to say 2) so many good blogs out there (like armed liberal!) it seemed pointless to put much effort into a new one. I intended it more as a personal scratch pad, and had a vague idea of writing full articles and then distributing them somehow.

In any case, I have an idea for my blog that could be fun. Basically, to cut and paste/ compose a "suggested policy platform for idealistic liberals". By "idealistic" I basically mean that political and practical problems are put aside for the moment: the only consideration would be what is the right course for the country.

This sounds like a megolomaniacal, windmill-tilting excercise, and it is, in part, but I believe what would make it worthwhile is I would operate from the firm principle: "no reinventing the wheel" That is, before trying to come up with any new or original ideas, I would try to absorb all the smart ideas already out in circulation and then evaluate them in some coherent way. For example, the first task I will set myself will be to compare/contrast the Republican and Democratic party platforms.

In terms of politics, I've been feeling a need to step back from the shouting and think hard about what ideas I support, what policies would work, and then to act on that understanding in some sensible way. If other people feel that way too, it could turn out to be a cooperative effort, which would be really cool. we'll see how it turns out.

Hopefully future installments will give a clearer idea of what I mean to do