November Question

Why do you blog so much about politics?  Don’t you worry about angering readers with different views from yours?

I have to say that it’s pretty clear that happens.  It’s hard to say how many people feel that strongly, but some obviously do.  At the same time, what I find amazing is that I’m anything but an extremist.  I don’t like either excessive government taxation and spending or the use of government to push religious views, but I do see the need for a government role in regulating the excesses of personal and business behavior — but not everything under the sun. I’m trying to point out the strengths and weaknesses of both sides, and some pertinent facts, but none of us like it [and I don’t either] when someone brings up something that calls our deeply held beliefs into question. But isn’t that one of the things writers should do?

What I also find interesting is that people who enjoyed my books all of a sudden say that they can’t now that they “know” my views.  The books didn’t  change.

15 thoughts on “November Question”

  1. Esquire says:

    I had to laugh out loud at your last paragraph – it’s pretty obvious where in the political spectrum your views sit. I don’t always agree with you, but I always enjoy having my own beliefs and assumptions challenged enough to think through ‘why’ I think the way I do.
    Now, I usually come to the same or similiar view that I held previously, but that’s because I draw from a different set of values and experiences, which lead me to similiar, but not always the same, conclusions as yourself.
    In the end, I think there is room for all of our opinions, and I am more than willing to concede I may be wrong, but perhaps only time will tell. I also, will continue to read your books, and want to thank you for making me think.

    1. It may be obvious to you, but I’ve been called everything from damned liberal to an unreconstructed conservative [or the equivalent in less flattering terms], which illustrates how definitions vary according to the individual doing the labeling.

      1. Esquire says:

        well – i admitted i can be wrong.. 🙂 but, personally, i’d categorize you into more the liberal perspective, based upon the themes you write about, here and in your fiction.

      2. Jim Ewins says:

        In my analysis, your, Modesitt, views are classical liberal- one of personal responsibility and ethics together with tempered compassion.

  2. StevenH says:

    I find it discouraging that having different opinions might lead to dislike or even hatred. If I disliked people who didn’t have the same opinions as me, I would have few friends, and no interesting conversations. The best debates are between differing views, not similar ones. In fact, the discussions I enjoy the most are those with people who challenge my views.

    I, for one, hope you keep blogging about politics (and the attendant disciplines that interact and affect it). Your broad range of experience adds a lot to the conversation, which is something you don’t get from listening to pundits. The people who are angered by it (that is, those being forced to actually think about their views and being upset by what they find) are just a symptom of the high amount of polarization that has adversely effected the country of late. I certainly hope that the high amount of polarization decreases…and fast.

  3. Robert The Addled says:

    I’ve found that my views on lighter topics tend to shift depending on what I’m reading/watching/listening to.

    It is probably along the lines of how people on debate teams who are required to argue FOR a point that they disagree with actually do end up moderating or reversing their original position on the topic.

  4. Bruce Trick says:

    I enjoy hearing the politcial views because they all comes down to doing what is responsible. Yet too few people want to do that, or take responsibility for their actions – with their votes if need be. I am glad to be from a country (Canada) that has more than just two major political parties and I can usually find a better match with my views on issues than a two party state (as the USA has turned into).

  5. xenobia says:

    I personally don’t care what your political views are. I just LOVE reading your fantasy books! You are one of my alltime favorites and that won’t change one bit! Keep ’em coming! 🙂

  6. Jason says:

    I agree wholeheartedly with Xenophobia’s statement.

  7. Gordon Long says:

    I enjoy your books enough that I have read most of them. Some I could not get into but later got into and enjoyed. I suspect that since your books strike a chord with me then it is likely that the way you think would strike a chord as well. When we disagree I often see your side in a different light and sometimes I simply have to change my thinking because I often don’t see the other side of things until you ‘splain it to me. I am 7th in line for the latest Imager at the library. Thanks for both the blogs and the books.

  8. Gordon Long says:

    Speaking of excess and the role of government as umpire: I am concerned about concentrated wealth. When the GDP goes up, Productivity goes up, wages stay the same and the top fraction of a percent skyrockets and corporations sit on trillions. It just seems that when that happens the economy slows since no one has anything to spend when it is not circulating. Greece and Rome had similar problems.Greece raised taxes on rich, lowered interest rates and the economy went another 300 years. Rome tried a few times but the senate did not like it. My history is not strong but would like to see a blog on this. I remember reading one of your blogs on fair play here.
    Thanks for reading

  9. Nigel Anderson says:

    I enjoy reading your blogs, it reminds us there is a human being with his own set of opinions and beliefs behind the pen, regardless of your opinions or mine i will continue to read and enjoy your work! Keep it up and dont stop writing 🙂
    best of wishes From New Zealand

  10. Colly Lord says:

    Please keep writing! I can see you hope your books are not only entertaining, but also that you hope they cause some of the readers to actually think about the issues the characters deal with. I feel you succeeded! Not since I swept through the local library’s entire collection of Heinlein, have I enjoyed so much reading an author’s works. And Asimov, Asaro, Chalker, Cherryh,Clarke…and so on…e.e.’doc’smith, James Schmitz, Simak,…Zelazny – and all the ones in between. I love the books that make me think as your Johan Eschbach would wish his students did. I see and enjoy the many levels of awareness framed within your stories. I only wish had wandered into Cal’s bookstore in Redding the same day you dropped by, instead of just a few weeks later. I had not known you were in town for a signing at our Barnes & Noble store because I hadn’t been to your web site yet. Please excuse this poorly written and badly punctuated comment. I really should know better than to write at 3am. 🙂

  11. Jim Ewins says:

    What I gather are your political views I respect, but importantly are the ethics embodied in your stories.
    Perhaps they generate some critical thinking.

    Many thanks for your work

  12. Pix Hearn says:

    Looking back on 2012 from the perspective of 2022, I’m not sure whether to laugh at what we thought were polarized politics and viewpoints at the time, or grieve for not giving it more weight and this possibly prevent the present state of affairs…
    As a truly avid fan, especially of your Recluce books of which I own every one and have rearward them series at least eight times (well, some were reread more often, as there were only five when I first stumbled across them), I am extremely grateful to your writings- I feel that they open the reader’s mind to viewpoints they may never have considered, and at a minimum, bring an awareness that there could BE other viewpoints that hold as much weight and validity as their own. So many of us have such a difficult time putting ourselves in another’s shoes, and your books do a fantastic job of this, in addition to being fantastically entertaining! Thank you for your dedication to sharing your stories with the world!

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