Thursday, September 09, 2004

The tent keeps growing.

So, immediately after the "selfish hedonist" comment broke, I pointed out how many other people that were also "selfish hedonists" under Keyes' theology. But leave it to the Illinois Leader to point some people I missed:
Rather than cause an uproar, this statement should have caused a yawn. It is a statement of the human condition. We are all selfish hedonists. If you dine at Gibson's, when a baloney sandwich will satisfy your hunger, you’re a selfish hedonist. If you drive a $70,000 Jaguar, when an $18,000 Chevy will easily get you where you need to go, you’re a selfish hedonist. When I order a pizza, because that sounds better than going out and running the two miles I should, I’m a selfish hedonist. And if, in the pursuit of your own intimate pleasures, you choose to demand that the rest of us be willing to change the definition of marriage to fit your personal needs, you’re a selfish hedonist. Mary Cheney is in a great big club of selfish hedonists from all walks of life, but her name makes headlines.
Yes, so add to list anyone who's ever eaten at Gibson's, drives a Jaguar, or orders a pizza. Of course, given Illinois' drop in median income, the cost of all of the above might prevent too many more people from joining the tent. And, not to state the obvious, but I haven't heard Keyes call for the outlawing of Jaguars or steak (particularly given his low-carb diet), but he did reply to Scott Thomas's statement about Jaguars on WYLL with:
KEYES: Couldn't it be, though, that part of the reason why that phrase kind of makes people uncomfortable is because it reminds us of the fact that the decision we're taking in this area of marriage actually reflects a larger problem that exists in this society as a whole, where we need to start asking ourselves--and there are large problems, like deficits and other things like this, where we would look around saying, "Are we sacrificing the future for our own short-term interest? Are we putting a burden on our future generations because we want to indulge ourselves today?" I think that that problem of selfishness is one of the key challenges on a lot of these public policy issues in our time, and maybe it's one we're uncomfortable with.
You mean that budget deficit that's the largest in U.S. history? That one presided over by the Bush Administration, besting the old record set by Keyes' old boss, Reagan? Add Reagan and Bush to the selfish hedonist list.