The Formation Quest
Social Issues Archive Page-
submitted by: Dana Barbour
The social issue:
Clinton's impeachment, removal and censure?
The guest thinker's position and argument: (NA on this inaugural week.)
The Moral applications Formationally....
All our self-interested talking heads ignorantly begged the formative question within their (and OUR) media circus. First, all consenting adults do have the right to sexual freedom privately. (Yes, the intuition and "common sense" of the majority of the American people by happenstance is right in part. Clinton shouldn't have been impeached or be subject to removal from office.)
But he lied, " perjured " himself? Hah! First and politically, the public has no moral right to involve itself in such private affairs in the first place. Equally in that first place, the private parties- Clinton equally included- form with the first moral right to "lie-" or not- their choice!
Two formative standards apply here. First, everyone's private rights equally and first are prior within a social contract so long as their behavior doesn't form from any political authority we otherwise might delegate to them! Second, Each individual should enjoy all such primary rights of social priority such that they fully are optionable to him or her!
Yes, such a one even may "lie," that word-concept- as distinct from a word-formative- itself failing to provide us a common-ground basis for judging ourselves or others from among ourselves.
In sum, we've no moral right politically to "censure" Bill Clinton either- not as a so-called "absolute" imperative of "conscience" or through an act of morally relative expediency. This applies even if Bill Clinton, himself, did motivate to deal in his own misguided self-interest!
Privately, of course, we'd equally have the politically-protected right to "censure" him (or anyone else,) even next politically to carry our beliefs into the ballot box as the ultimate custodians of our social contract for better or worse.
Yet, if we did vote by making a moral distinction between everyone's fully-optionable private rights to act and react differently from ourselves as distinct from their political acts as our moral custodians, Clinton would be held to account for many other of his acts....
By these same and equally applied standards, such former U.S. presidents as Johnson (the Gulf of Tonkin,) Nixon (Watergate) and Reagan (Iran-contra) likely should have been removed!
Thus there's also a correlative formative fact: All political rights first are subject to the prior consent of all the people equally, even where and when a "lie" from those within political positions immorally does deny them their first right by misrepresenting the facts to them and even if we'd even have the ability to standardize what truly does apply first to be a "lie...."
In sum, under these formative facts and their applications as possible rational facts, we don't have a morally exemplary nation-state from within which we morally even could set the geopolitical example for others.
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Last modified on June 7, 1999