The issues we’re discussing here are among the most divisive and difficult in American life. Besides the role of religion in our political discourse and public life, nothing creates as much controversy as economic policy, taxes, and the role of government.
There’s a time and place for political theatre. For biting satire, outright anger, shocking signs, and all the paraphernalia of modern political demonstration. We need to remember that Hitler mustaches on pictures of the President, angry protests, and vilification of public officials, have a long and cherished history in the birth of our nation, however offensive some of us might find an individual message or sign, etc. Remember tar and feathers, dumping bales of tea into harbors, and burning effigies of King George III. Americans are not shy and not polite about the issues that touch us most deeply.
But there’s also a time and place to encourage deeper, more respectful discussion.
My goal is that Liberty and Equality can be a place to discuss issues of political economy, history, and philosophy with a reasonable degree of civility.
I cannot promise that authors (including myself) will not express disapproval of government policies, the actions of politicians, or the strategies of political parties. We will.
What I will be enforcing as Editor is the following civility policy:
We reserve the right to remove any comment or post that contains a personal attack on an author or commenter.
We reserve the right to ask an author or commenter to revise their statements in order to make their point, but without inciting flame wars or vilifying authors or other commenters.
If a person decides to revise their statements in order to improve the civility of the conversation, we commit to reposting appropriate revisions and ensuring that points of view are heard.
We commit to enforcing this policy on ourselves as authors as much as possible, and expect that commenters will not be shy about pointing out how we fail to live up to it. This is the Internet, after all.
Please join us in respecting this policy in your comments. It will make for a better discussion about these important issues.
Mark E. Madsen
Editor and Author, Liberty and Equality