I’ve been decidedly apolitical for the past few years. I have a few pet issues (like Net Neutrality) and am probably more Libertarian than any other recognized political flavor. I also believe in individual rights — as it relates to freedom, property, reproduction, and bearing of arms.
With that said, I must say I was quite surprised to find out more about Ron Paul, a Republican candidate for the Oval Office. With a couple of glaring exceptions, I really like his stance on most issues. I mean I REALLY like them. I don’t know if I can vote for him with his stance on those couple of issues, but I do find him pretty impressive in most areas. If I were to employ the 80/20 rule, he’d win my vote, but I’m not ready to do that quite yet.
And how did I find out about him, after deciding to be apolitical during this election? I found an article on him spending a weekend poking at his iPhone until he hacked it and installed a “tweaked” Ubuntu distribution on it. I find that impressive. Impressive enough that I went to his campaign website to learn more… and then to Wikipedia to compare him to his competition for the Republican nomination for 2008.
I’m not saying the man has my vote, I am saying that a candidate that supports homeschooling and educational choice, the right to bear arms, staunchly supports the constitution, loudly voices his dislike of debt and his stance against the Patriot Act is a candidate likely to serenade me into action.
This one candidate did something that I didn’t think would happen — especially not this early in the game — he made me go and check out the platform of the candidates and start sorting out who I would NOT vote for so I can determine from the couple of options left standing, which one I can support. Now, of course, I have to go and do the same to the Democratic party and become versed on any promising independents this year.
I have never been as politically apathetic as I have been recently. Historically, I’ve despised people who were politically apathetic even more than those who were political evangelists. Now, I’m back in the swing of things. Heck, I may even make a presidential political contribution this year — once I sort out all the candidates — and that, too, would be a first.
It is ironic that a Linux guy is the reason I’m looking at a political election with renewed interest. Funny how life works, isn’t it?