Archive for Thursday, June 24, 2004

Liberal criteria

June 24, 2004


To the editor:

I have read with interest Michael Irwin's letter of June 19. His last line puzzles me. He "guesses" that he is a liberal? I was born in 1924 and have lived through the Great Depression, participated in at least three wars and have kept up an interest in the world about me since I got my first library card.

If Mr. Irwin wants to resolve his status as a liberal, I have some simple tests for him to apply. Does he believe that the federal government should use his taxes to establish entitlements to "eliminate" poverty? Should the government set a minimum wage for laborers without regard to the number of jobs which will be eliminated? Does he suspect our current war against terrorism is being fought for the benefit of the corporate world? That our current leaders are lying to and deceiving us? Does he believe, against all the empirical evidence to the contrary, that we have a permanent two-class society of the rich and the poor rather than a mobile society, one that enriches those who work hard and penalizes those of us who no longer have a job?

If Mr. Irwin answers yes to two or more of the questions I have listed, there is no doubt that he is a liberal.

R.G. Henley,


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