It seems that in the Recently concluded 2000 United States Presidential election, no major candidates nor political parties paid much attention to the rights of the states that eventually appointed President-elect George W. Bush to his office. Although Bush did bring up the issue more so than his opponent, Al Gore, he paid it little more than lipservice. Although I did not stringently observe the Bush campaign, I can not recall one instance of President-elect Bush declining to adopt a stance on any significant issue, be it ethical, economic, social, or industrial, in favor of letting each state in the union institute its own solution, so long as it isn't struck down by the US Supreme Court. In that light, no better can be said of Vice President Gore.

Now, let's assume the national-level government were to, as the US Constitution suggests they do, adopt a rather minimal view of governing: establishing non-domestic policy, providing services commonly needed by every state and citizen, setting basic fiscal policy, set common guidelines for state policy, and overseeing the military. Each state would then be allowed to resolve those issues as they best benefit the citizens of that given state. That's fewer people and less diverse of a population that must be satisfied. And, more importantly:

That's up to fifty instituted, debated, planned, drafted, accounted, agreeable solutions that naturally vie with each other, as opposed to one vying with itself.

And, in turn, each state is likely to pool solutions from its congressional districts:

That's up to 334 possible solutions that vie with each other, as opposed to one vying with itself
And that's not taking state congressional districts in account, which makes that number even bigger

Now, figure in the lowest unit, county government, and that number passes one thousand.


Why not the municipality?

Well, take me for example. My home is outside the city limits of the town in which I claim residence, so I'm not subject to any city ordinances. So, my home and neighborhood would be a largely lawless zone if the municipality was the most important unit of government.


Now, that up to 334 solutions have been proposed, and up to fifty solutions implemented (not counting those done by counties), states of similar geography, ethnicity, population, etc. can be more accurately compared. This makes objective policy analysis easier and more effective. One will seem to be the best implementation of all, and will serve as the model to states with ineffective solutions. Thus, ill-conceived laws are easily detected and quickly eliminated with before they have reprocussion upon the citizens.The job of being a corporate lobbyist is much harder, whereas a populist or general citizen activist has more of their fair share of being heard.


But aren't you a liberal?

I consider myself a left-leaning centrist. And of that, I identify more with classical liberalism (Thomas Jefferson, John Locke, Benjamin Franklin, etc.) and libertarianism than its modern derivitave (not to say that I am a conservative in everyday use of the word). I advocate reciprocal progress over absolute freedom, and the academic pursuit of science over the corporate pursuit of science for (only) its own good. I'm not for bigger government, I'm for more government. That sounds like an oxymoron at first, but what I mean is that I prefer many smaller agencies of government (a well-oiled bureaucracy I guess you could say) than one large agency with a lot of authority.


What about taxation?

What about it? It's simple: I fork over my share to the main entity of government, and every other agency that provides me with services and laws skims whatever percentage they need. It should go straight back up the hierarchy I descended down, thus it's an advantage for keeping each higher agency in its place.


Yes, I realize those last two sections are a bit beyond my league, but I wanted to clarify two of the arguments I knew I would be getting.
A question arises while reflecting upon the politically fractured landscape of the United States in early 2001: Is now a time for more state's rights, or for stronger federal government?

Either could be said to provide healing effect, while both could also be argued to cause harm.

Looking on the bright side, strong federal would bridge ideological differences and strengthen the US through Unity. On the dark side, A strong federal government could also cause resentment in the south, which has been a hotbed of state's rights concerns since the nation was formed.

More state's rights could allow ideological differences to coexist peacefully but existing differences could also continue to tear the country apart as historical precedent has shown them to have done in the Civil War, a war begun mostly over state's rights*.

During one of the myriad interviews I watched during the election debacle, Jesse Jackson made an eloquent statement about state's rights:
The Union won the war.
* Slavery was also a cause of the Civil War, but the south saw this unspeakable evil as an issue for states to choose.

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