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Politics are tricky things.
I grew up in a reasonably conservative Republican-voting family. Some of my non-nuclear relatives are more left-leaning (my grandmother on my mother's side is, to quote my uncle, "so far left, she has to turn right to see left."), but my primary political education came from my parents, who were generally Republican.
Up until I graduated from high school, I'd have classified myself as "Republican." Even though I couldn't vote then, I couldn't imagine ever voting for a Democrat. After all, they were pure evil, right? The unwitting accomplices of Satan, corrupting America with immorality and bad financial decisions.
Once I got a year or two into college and learned a bit more about politics and American history outside my family bubble, I slightly altered my self-label to "Conservative," partially because I began to find discrepancies between Republicans and actual conservative values. After all, Bush cut taxes (half of conservative economic policy) but then also increased spending by a ridiculous amount (the opposite of conservative policy). Literally, he set the government's economic system against itself, reducing government revenue while increasing spending.
Nowadays, I'd say I'm somewhere between centrist-conservative and libertarian, if that makes sense.
Going along with the libertarian view, I believe in conservative fiscal responsibility with mostly social liberalism. "Do what you want as long as I don't have to pay for it," as the saying goes.
To clarify on the social angle:
I have my own beliefs about personal and social morality, but I don't believe it's my decision or the government's decision to tell people what they can or cannot do in most regards. Simply put, you can't legislate personal morality. The fact that Republicans still seem to think they can inspire/force the country to permanently ban gay marriage is ridiculous. That entire issue is a losing battle, done and gone. Even if they do have moral problems with it, they might as well let that issue go; they're not winning any more votes with that stance today. But regardless of the politics of it all, like I said, I honestly don't think it's the government's moral responsibility to dictate that issue.
One social issue that I do have a hard-fast absolute conservative view on is abortion. "It's a child, not a choice" is fitting. I don't really wanna go into that here at the moment; that could be an entire other post by itself.
On the presidential election:
I don't support Obama's fiscal policies. I don't agree with the idea of "spend more, get more." At the same time, I don't think Obama will sink America economically, nor are his fiscal policies wildly immoral and unconstitutional, as some have said. Looking at America's history over the last century, we've survived far more extreme policies than Obama's. More importantly, however, I think Obama is a generally intelligent and competent person. So, on the whole, while I might not particularly like Obama, my view of him as a candidate is only moderately negative.
Romney is almost the polar opposite of Obama for me. He says a lot of the right things, but the problem is that I honestly don't trust him one bit. Romney is a pure politician; a chameleon whose entire goal in life is to look handsome, give charismatic speeches and gain votes by sacrificing personal integrity in order to appeal to a specific support base. And he's not even good at the charismatic speeches part. It's like he doesn't have a soul to actually put into it; he's just an empty shell made of politeness and hair gel. He says he's pro-life, yet in 2002, he heartily endorsed abortion on moral grounds, with the promise that he had no intention of changing that stance. And that's only one of the many issues he's flip-flopped on. He's like a Republican 2012 version of John Kerry.
Make no mistake: this isn't me saying I'm a Democrat now. Far from it. I only mean to say that the 2012 Republican nominee SUCKS, and I don't want a two-faced incompetent idiot like that in the white house.
I'm voting for Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate.