In the 2008 elections, I bothered everyone who was stuck with me by constantly saying that I wished I had a document explaining Obama’s political philosophy as a whole, not to mention any system of thought that binds his thinking together. I always felt like I was given well polished snippets which did nothing to reveal the undergirding system of thought.
It turns out I am not alone. Please read this article by David Mills, at First Things. Here is a lovely clipping:
The country does not need religous politicians to collaborate in removing religious doctrine from the public square. We need politicians who lay out their theology and explain how it both binds and directs them, and that theology includes finer points generally considered politically irrelevant. And we need this from secular politicians, who also have a theology, or if they prefer a philosophy, as much as from religious ones.
Not that we will get such disclosures. Religious candidates are happy to argue fiercely about cutting taxes or regulating banks or increasing social spending, but not about anything they can segregate out as religious" or theological." The closest conservatives come is to speak of family values" or traditional values," while avoiding answering the question of what justifies those values and why they should bind anyone else. The closest liberals come is to invoke compassion and concern for the poor without explaining how this justifies their policies.