America is a religion, with two mainline denominations. I am, in the eyes of both, a heretic. I'm tempted to gloat in that odd fact, but smug self-assurance is hardly a higher state than the tribal warring that passes as American politics. I add my own evils to the mix of the world's problems; when someone asks me what is wrong with the world, the first words to come to my lips are, "I am." Nevertheless, may I just suggest that by adding political systems (like democracy or monarchy or fascism) and economic systems (like communism or captialism or socialism) to our canon of sacred truths, we tend to forget that these things are all abysmally low on the scale of things that are ultimately important. They will never live up to their promises, because they always become elevated to a status above the people for whom such things exist. They become the ultimate thing, the highest thing. Our loyalty should be reserved for God and neighbor, not for documents, political ideals, economies, corporations or any other institution that does not spring forth from God Himself. Otherwise we end up treating things as though they were more important than people. Both major political parties in the United State do this, albeit in different ways. I'd call myself a conservative insofar as I think common sense, the idea that small things are beautiful, and the primacy of the family are all things worthy of defense. I'd also call myself a liberal, insofar as I think the underdog, the widow, the orphan, and the minority need (and deserve) someone to champion their cause. Sadly, I cannot call myself either, because I would immediately be associated with one of the two American "tribes", both of which have morphed into forces of unspeakable evil. What's someone like me supposed to do?