Friday, February 14, 2020

The Monomaniac

     Have you heard the phrase “one-issue voter?” It was more prevalent some years back. It refers, of course, to the citizen so concerned with a single issue in public policy that literally nothing else matters to him when he considers candidates for public office. In other words, he’s a policy monomaniac.

     There have always been one-issue voters, and there always will be. The logic to it is fairly simple: If Smith believes that the whole of the Republic could stand or fall according to the government’s decisions about this one issue, then that issue deserves to be paramount. Nothing else matters nearly as much.

     Problems arise when there are lots of issues that have plausible claims to paramount status. In a Constitutional federated republic such as the United States, I could tick off about a thousand such topics, but that arises from my monomania, about which I’ll say more in a moment.

     There are monomaniacs of many varieties. For example, just now we have a gaggle of folks who are anti-Trump monomaniacs. They don’t think of themselves that way. We who value President Trump’s fighting stance for his convictions and his agenda have other terms for them as well.

     As I said, I too am a monomaniac of sorts. My monomania is about constitutionalism: the doctrine that there must be a Supreme Law to which all other law is subordinate. Your monomania, if you have one, may vary. But I’m not relentless about it, though I was when I was much younger. In ordinary conversation with others, I strive not to seem monomaniacal about it. Rather, I look for points of contact that offer the possibility of getting the other person to see things as I see them.

     The relentless monomaniac is a tiring fellow. You can’t really talk to him; you can only agree or disagree with him. At parties he’s the one everyone strives to avoid engaging. On the Web he’s unable to talk about anything but his obsession. There are quite a few such on the Web.

     There aren’t many folks who actually think about politics. I’m not sure things were ever much different. Whatever the case, it’s a lamentable state of affairs. A little hard thought could ameliorate (NB: not “solve”) a lot of problems. But hard thought, like hard work, isn’t many people’s idea of fun. It certainly doesn’t appeal to the relentless monomaniac.

     I struck a site from the Liberty’s Torch blogroll this morning because I’ve grown tired of the proprietor’s monomania. All he needs is the barest hint, the mere whisper that you’re on the wrong side of his pet issue, and he’ll call you everything but white. Moreover, he “shoots from the lip” without knowing anything about the person of whom he’s speaking. In my book that’s close to unforgivable.

     If you must be a monomaniac – and it’s possible, at least in theory, that all stances formed from sincere conviction must ultimately be monomaniacal – please don’t be a relentless or humorless one. It would render me unable to read your ventings. I value my Web reading list, especially in the early morning when I’m casting about for the subject for the day’s tirade.

     Most important for today’s exercise in character improvement, don’t go talking trash about people you don’t know anything about. Leave that sort of shit-slinging to the Leftists.


Ragin' Dave said...

*checks the blogroll*

*sees that he's still there*


Remnant60 said...

I guess I fall (loosely) into your definition of a monomaniac
voter...years ago I took the "short-cut" of
only voting for folks that were strong in upholding 2A.

My reasoning being that if they thought I could not be
trusted with then how
could I trust them with decisions that probably precluded me
from even being a consideration in their thought process...i.e.
I'm just a child that needs to have sharp objects kept away
from them.

Respect is a two way street.

It has served me fairly well for decades,
(barring sheep in wolves clothing) and dove-tails somewhat
with your monomania of constitutionalism...I just drill it
down to one amendment.

The reason I (think) I fall loosely into your definition is that I
don't evangelize my view on this.

*come on, that was fairly clever I think

evilfranklin said...

IMO constitutionalism is not monomaniacal.

Consisting of many distinct areas of expertise; economy, immigration, international affairs, national affairs, individual rights, etc; the Constitution provides for many priorities.

Unfortunately, the Founders of our Republic suspected that the Constitution would eventually be undermined: "A Republic, if you can keep it"; "the Constitution was designed for a moral and just people". The first ten amendments (Bill of Rights) were demanded by the states or they might not have agreed to sign. Such was their lack of trust in a central government.

When "formal" education was foisted upon us the words and phrases of the Constitution became ripe for interpretation. Thus, with the corruption of education, came the corruption of the meaning of words and phrases. With the corruption of words and phrases came the corruption of the Constitution.

Those of us that believe in the original meanings of the Constitution have been forced to prioritize our support for particular amendments.

Having naively trusted the people that we voted to represent us in D.C., we have learned, through the advent of the internet and mass communication, that that trust is not warranted. We have learned, through self education, that we must pay closer attention.

Many, if not most of us, have become aware of treaties and laws and rules and EO's that harm us and the American ideal.

Religion is being destroyed. Immigration is being forced upon us. Our efforts to improve our lives through hard work and logical thinking are being turned against us. Our inalienable rights are being undermined. The government wantonly and openly works to steal our life, our liberty and our property.

Still we work for and hope for and pray for the best. But, we have become aware enough to prepare for the worst.

Is it monomaniacal to do so?

Linda Fox said...

I like to keep in mind that these are humans we are disagreeing with. Humans can change. Here's an interesting piece from Quillette about one such human.