Libertarian leanings, dog-loving heart
Editor's note: Today our Thursday Opinion section welcomes Lee Elci to the regular rotation of columnists. Our intent is to add another conservative voice to the discussion that takes place daily on our Opinion pages in print and online.
Lee hosts the morning drive-time slot for the local conservative talk radio station 94.9 News Now. In today's column he offers a personal introduction and outlines his fiscally conservative ideology. He joins our other regular conservative commenters, including Chris Powell, who focuses primarily on state issues, social and fiscal conservative Cal Thomas, and Marc A. Thiessen, a former chief speechwriter for President George W. Bush.
Whatever your political leanings, I trust you will find Lee's commentary engaging.
Editorial Page Editor
As I’ll be filling this space on a weekly basis, I thought it might be prudent to share some personal information about myself that only a handful of people actually know. My hope is you’ll see me as I actually am – and not some crazed right-wing heartless lunatic/monster of the type your mothers warned you about in bedtime stories.
I’m 6-feet tall and weigh 240-something pounds. At age 52 I am zooming through the wonders of middle-age at light-speed. I married a very lucky woman, Christine, who happens to be stunningly beautiful. Many people say I look eerily similar to Marlon Brando. Not “Streetcar named Desire" Brando, but "Apocalypse Now" Brando.
I can't sing, dance, golf, cook, or do magic tricks. I have zero skills in carpentry, masonry or electronics. I have a unique ability to break just about everything I touch. If it’s mechanical and you’d like it destroyed, then hand it over.
I hate waiting in lines and know-it-alls, and I despise every aspect of going out to dinner. My IQ is north of 160 (just an estimate based on my own observations), but I’m a terrible speller. I have four tattoos, a pickup truck old enough to have its own license, a great family, and an ever-shrinking circle of friends.
I’m an excellent driver, can lift 100 pounds over my head, I bleed Waterford Lancer blue, and I bet you I can hit a baseball further than you can. I love my Dog Ozzy more than 99.99999 percent of the people on this planet. If we are being hit with a biblical flood and I have to choose between saving you or my dog, I hope you know how to swim.
Somehow, I’ve become addicted to the video game Fortnite and fantasy football. I hate hunting, bullies, bugs and garlic. I believe in God and I believe in America. I like radio, Shakespeare, heavy metal music, Orwell’s “1984” and anything with fur and four legs.
And, since this seemed so very important during our last presidential election, I have average size hands (but Bozo the Clown-sized feet – 14s in case you’re shopping early for next year’s Christmas presents).
Politically speaking I am a strict fiscal conservative, a philosophy espoused (I learned that word from my friend, Day arts and music columnist and reporter Rick Koster) by folks like Thomas Jefferson, Herbert Hoover and Ronald Reagan. Boiled down, this means, I prefer spending cuts to tax increases, want to shrink the size of government, and have faith in the free market.
I endorse spending federal dollars on two things: Infrastructure and war. (Yes, I know that's not entirely possible, but a boy can dream.) In fact, in fiscal years 2015, 2016 and 2017 the United States spent about half its discretionary spending on military related expenditures. That is more than $650 billion on defense each year.
I’m fine with that! I want America to talk the talk and walk the walk.
My goals? A Big Bad Military, no debt, and no pot-holes.
The social side of me tends to the libertarian. I think you have the absolute right to be free. I truly don't care what grown men or women do behind closed doors as long as they’re not hurting someone else and I don’t have to eventually pay for it. You should be able to experience all the sex, drugs, rock and roll you can handle if that’s the lifestyle you choose. It’s your world and you should live it however you see fit.
But — and this is an important but — if lifestyle choices cause you to get addicted to pain killers, heroin, pot, booze, cigarettes or, even worse, result in disease, please don’t look to my society or my tax dollars to save you.
You see, I’m a big believer in personal responsibility. If your lifestyle leads you down the road to ruin, you and you alone should have to pay that price.
So, that is a little look at what makes me tick. What makes you tick?
Lee Elci is the morning host for 94.9 News Now radio, a local station that provides “Stimulating Talk” with a conservative bent.
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