Post the First

I swore I would get rid of this blog title when I had the chance, and moving to this new space seemed like it would have provided just that. When pressed, though, I couldn’t think of a new one that gave any comfort it wouldn’t eventually bring the same dissatisfaction. It’s the same reason I was in a band with a stupid name for such a long time. Conservative by nature, I’ll take the dissatisfaction I know over the dissatisfaction I don’t. I like the way Will Wilkinson said it: “that’s what I typed into Blogger one day, and if we can’t be faithful to things we typed into Blogger one day, what’s the point?”

That’s actually something I try to live by. I tend to agonize over what I write, fully anticipating what I say to be used against me—perhaps in the present debate, but just as important, perhaps in an entirely different debate. I wouldn’t be much of an originalist if I didn’t think that words and ideas mattered, if I didn’t think that we shouldn’t be bound by the intellectual consequences of the arguments we advance. If we can’t be faithful to our own ideas, then really, what’s the point?

By way of a more straightforward introduction, I’m an attorney in a mid-sized firm in Orange County, California that handles primarily business litigation. You’ll be happy to know, however, that my blogging seldom resembles anything to do with my work. You may or may not be happy to know that I tend instead to write on political theory (as opposed to politics), rhetoric (as opposed to punditry), constitutional law (as opposed to decisional law), and other topics when I think I can do better than just adding noise or a “me too.” I’ll also write about language foibles when they occur to me, or atheism. (For some reason, I’ve been spending a lot of time hacking away at atheism lately.)

I will end by confessing that I am conservative in just about all the ways that matter. I say that not because you might fail to recognize my conservative biases.  Certainly, you won’t.  I say that so you know that I recognize my conservative biases. Politics can get pretty boring with all the blue and red jerseys. It’s far more rewarding to explore the underlying precommitments that lead us to choose one side or the other. I’ll always try to be honest about mine here.

Tim Kowal

Tim Kowal is a husband, father, and attorney in Orange County, California, Vice President of the Orange County Federalist Society, commissioner on the OC Human Relations Commission, and Treasurer of Huntington Beach Tomorrow. The views expressed on this blog are his own. You can follow this blog via RSS, Facebook, or Twitter. Email is welcome at timkowal at


  1. Welcome, my fellow sub-ordinary and brother member of the California bar! I’ll look forward to your musings and thoughts, especially with an active Supreme Court docket coming down the pipe in the next few months.

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