Perhaps you’re not all stupid…. although…

As we (the rest of the world) heave a huge sigh of relief at the result of the US Presidential election it’s morning here and I’m happy that Obama is the president elect.

However, it looks like Proposition 8 will get up in California. EPIC FAIL. I hope the remaining ballots tip the result in the other direction, I really do.

I don’t see how the state (where state includes country and state… i.e. governments) has any right to legislate anything to do with human relationships.

What is marriage? Beyond the personal committment between consenting adults, it sets up a few things in case one party is incapacitated or dies. So why don’t we have a set of forms for this information?

In case I’m unable to make my own medical decisions, a list of people who (in order) I want to make them for me. If I’m not married, surely I still have a right to say who gets to make medical decisions for me.

On the “who gets my stuff when I die” front, a legal will pretty much covers that.

Some places seem to have tax benefits if you’re married… which to me is much like the government interfering in something that is none of its business. Surely being with a partner is its own reward, not something you do for tax incentives.

So you’re left with things like: shared property if relationship ends, right to adopt, access to fertility treatment etc

Shared property: How is this different from “two friends buy a house together, share it. they then fall out/decide to sell and there is dispute as one put more $$ into it”? It’s not, it’s just on a larger scale.

All I can say on who gets to reproduce is that it is surely a child is best raised by people who love them and can provide them with a safe, nurturing and positive environment.

Solution? Abolish Marriage.

Well… at least any legal definition thereof and everybody can live happily ever after.

Except that’s not what the issue is. It’s a debate between those who believe in personal freedom and right to live as you choose (on the proviso that it does not cause harm to others) and those who do not.

I have exactly zero time for those who think abortion should be illegal. When no child on this earth dies of hunger or easily preventative disease, I will then hear your argument. Odds are I will disagree with you, but until that day, you are just heartless.

But for the moment, we have until January 20th to see what more Bush/Cheney can do to make Americans constantly apologise for their country.

There is a great deal of hope for Obama, so I say this: don’t fuck up.

(Oh, and please don’t follow our new guys and try and erect a great internet firewall… because the club of countries that do that: Iran, Myanmar, North Korea, and Syria is one you really want to be part of).

I remain cautiously optimistic.

7 thoughts on “Perhaps you’re not all stupid…. although…


    I was going to comment about the US being in a similar club in regard to executing children, but that changed in 2005 (even under Bush the US didn’t entirely suck). Here’s an interesting section of the above article:

    # One of the most notable aspects of its decision in Simmons is the Court’s
    # reference to the law of nations. “Our determination that the death penalty
    # is disproportionate punishment for offenders under 18,” Kennedy
    # wrote, “finds confirmation in the stark reality that the United States is
    # the only country in the world that continues to give official sanction to
    # the juvenile death penalty.”

    I’m with the Marquis on this one:

    # With ever-increasing numbers of death row inmates being exonerated, public
    # sentiment favoring the death penalty is waning. The Marquis de Lafayette
    # said nearly 200 years ago, “I shall ask for the abolition of the punishment
    # of death until I have the infallibility of human judgment demonstrated to
    # me.”

  2. RE: delegating medical decisions while incapacitated. you DO have that right. it’s called a medical power of attorney. any solicitor can draw one up for you and witness signatures.

    you can do the same for financial decisions too, with a financial power of attorney.

    both are things that need to be considered VERY carefully before entering into them.

    as for the rest of your comments on marriage, I have to agree 100%. I also agree with the statement “abolish marriage”, but think it would be better stated as “abolish government recognition, definition, and regulation of marriage”.

    IMO, personal relationships are none of the government’s business and it’s not their place to recognise or refuse to recognise ANY such relationship between two (or more) persons of any gender.

    in fact, i think it’s criminal that governments effectively merge two identities when they get married (or when they’ve shacked up for 6+ months) and treat them as one unit, rather than as a pair of individuals who have freely chosen to associate (and can also freely chose to disassociate).

    and it’s even worse that the government gets to define a mandatory and non-customisable set of rules governing that association, particularly in financial matters. any such rules/agreements should not be set by government or by default assumptions about how people “should” conduct their relationships, they should be set, if required, by negotiated agreement – make people THINK about the issues before they commit to them rather than just accept a whole bunch of default rules without any consideration.

    Finally, governments DO have a legitimate interest in looking out for the rights and welfare of any children resulting from any relationship, but that’s adequately covered by child support and child welfare legislation.

  3. > Surely being with a partner is its own reward, not something you do for tax incentives.

    True — as far as the partnership aspect goes.

    Three bugs:

    (1) marriage, per se, goes far beyond a mere partnership;

    (2) business partners are in there to get as much out as possible. A marriage run like that is broken from Day One — each needs to _give_ as much as possible (& also _want_ to do that);

    (3) this is all underlain by a web of trust. No trust, no functionality, GAME OVER PLAYER <1>

  4. > I have exactly zero time for those who think abortion should be illegal.
    > When no child on this earth dies of hunger or easily preventative disease,
    > I will then hear your argument.

    The two are not connected. The big, ironic bug here is that freedom-of-choice people do not offer the child any freedom of choice (nor, for that matter, do those who oppose them).

    > Odds are I will disagree with you, but until that day, you are just heartless.

    Disagree but agree.

    In general, we basically don’t _care_ about “the other side,” throw an SEP field over the issue — which is _completely_ heartless.

    Sub-artefacts of that are people with no heart for a stressed mother, or no heart for a doomed child, or both.

    Ideally, the child — having no choice — would be automatically catered for (along with starving, diseased etc children). The social mechanisms should also be repairing a stressed mother or an uncaring father. Real Life is unlikely to cooperate, but those are goals, & we are supposed to be intelligent enough to do stuff like realising noble goals.

    Inheritance is a systematic way of establishing a default method for supporting children. There is also an implied responsibility factor, but as with anything else, the “why” is far more important than the “how” so if a parent basically fails to give a damn, there is little one (or one’s society) can do to motivate them to be responsible.

    My 2c worth, feel free to condemn at will.

  5. Child is also the wrong word to use. We’re talking about an embryo or fetus (of which people debate when life starts) versus a child (where there is no debate).

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