It’s safe to say that the last Outrage, “Hypocrite Bush”, was one of the least popular we’ve ever written – in fact, it seems like most readers hated it. We got plenty of        feedback – some reader comments amused us,some surprised us, and some made us wonder what our readers really think. In the immortal words of Joan Rivers, can we talk?

Some readers suggested that we should never condone violence, even in jest. Is violence ever justified? If someone broke into your house and stole your TV set, would you be justified in using force to stop that person? If someone stole everything you had, what should the punishment be? Should corporate executives who embezzle money be harshly punished? But in none of these cases does the magnitude of the crime approach taking $190 billion of hard-earned taxpayer money, and using that money to secure political advantage. Since politicians make and enforce the laws they can, in general, make sure that when they take other people’s money their actions don’t violate the law. But is any legal action a defensible action?

One might take the point of view that the greater the crime, the harsher the punishment. If someone is convicted of stealing a car, they might serve, what, two years? But if a politician such as President Bush violates everything he has said about the virtues of free-markets, and betrays the voter’s trust, and misuses tax dollars to secure his own political ambitions, should he or she not be punished?

Other readers accused us of not being sufficiently “detached” in our commentary. Hey, if you want detachment, you can read bland pseudo intellectuals like George Will. We’re Outraged, always have been, probably always will be. (With all its disappointments, one of the virtues of the Net has been that it’s a forum for ideas, and passions, that lie outside the mainstream. If you want moderation, read the New York Times.) Were the founding fathers “detached” when they wrote about the abuses of British power during the revolutionary struggle? I don’t think so. Detached analysis is fine for think tank wonks, but it rarely engenders the sort of passion that leads to real change.

As for those readers who defended subsidies as a way of protecting the small family farm, we think you ought to look at who really gets most of the money – big farmers, not small ones. Big farmers who live betterthan you or I, my friend. And as to protecting the small farmer, are you also willing to pay taxes to subsidize the small family owner grocer? How about small, family run law firms? We know you’re willing to subsidize family political dynasties.

We also wonder what Outrage readers really believe in? Here at the Outrage, there’s no question about the matter – we believe in the sovereignty of each individual: without harming others, each individual should be able to spend his or her life, and money, in whatever way they see fit, according to their own values. We don’t really care about political parties or politicians, except to the extent that they violate our basic principles. But do you care about ideas, or people? If you’re a Republican, do you support George Bush, even when he violates the ideals he was elected to represent? If you’re a Democrat, do you support Bill Clinton, even if he harasses, or even rapes, women? What matters to you more, the person, the party, or the idea?

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Readers Rage Back!

A day in the life of our postmaster

We are, of course, amazed that our readers occasionally disagree with our brilliant and witty essays. In fact, sometimes quite a few readers think that The Outrage editors are wrong, misanthropic, idiotic, selfish, deluded, or all of the above.

Mother Outrage always told us that even the dull and the ignorant should have their say, so we've allowed space below for those dissenting opinions (and for shameless flattery).

  1. --Anonymous--
  2. Dave
  3. Dave Dawson
  4. Ed Harris
  5. Rick Christeson
  6. Amelia
  7. Ken Jensen
  8. Jay Patrick
  9. P.T.
  10. chuck
  11. Bill
  12. CCG
  13. John
  14. Chad R
  15. Athan Vellianitis
  16. Nance Napcat
  17. paul
  18. tammy a.
  19. tammy a.
  20. Michael Pipe
  21. Mike
  22. philip hoffmann
  23. Ben Shaton
  24. Phil Barrett
  25. Tom Tyner
  26. Azmodius
  27. Robin L. Orenbuch
  28. matthewlawrencem
  29. Elton McLendon Sr.
  30. Oh Yeah
  31. Lorraine
  32. Adrian
  33. walter s
  34. Kevin Godwin
  35. Velvet Marlana Brazen
  36. George Salisbury
  37. bbear
  38. --Anonymous--
  39. --Anonymous--
  40. JusticeNOT
  41. willy