Thursday, October 09, 2008

US needs to get over its cultural civil war

"The world needs the United States to get over its cultural civil war, and get over it fast. Not that these moral, cultural and social issues are unimportant. They are among the most important things. But they are also among the most private things. The business of government and the law should be confined to providing a liberal (in the classical sense) framework in which men and women can make personal choices about private goods. That should be only a small part of what government does. By contrast, the central business of government is to provide public goods such as national and personal security, the regulation of markets in which private enterprise can flourish, the international development that is in all our national interests, and a clean environment using diversified, sustainable energy supplies. That's what the United States needs from its new president, and that's what the world needs from the United States." —Timothy Garton-Ash

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