and another question, suzi br. Is "a good sort" a general term referring to a good guy or just referring to the kind of person i described in the first post?
I like this alternative the best, but you might want to say "principled but reasonable" for clarity.Principled and reasonable.
These are more common in BE than in the states. The first would be acceptable but may come off as slightly stilted, but I don't know of any native speaker in the States that refers to anyone as a "bloke," so it depends on what type of English you're shooting for."a good sort"
According to their definitions, they aren't, but recently it seems that their connotated meanings have been starting to become "mutually exclusive" (which by the way I think is absurd), but I agree with your statement.I don't think the "but" is necessary; it makes it sound as though "principled" and "reasonable" were normally mutually exclusive.
Another suggestion for the second word is "rational."