Bomb Throwing Pacifist
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
How to be a conservative in a few easy steps
While it will be interesting to see how these various issues play out in the long run, I have at some point or other happily devoured, chewed up, and spat out examples of each and every one of these columns at some point or other and as such am just not in the mood to refute another round of GOP talking points. As such, today I have decided that we will crawl deep down into the bile black gullet of the Republican corpus and see what it is that really drives them to such a frenzy over such important issues as wether some liberal professor at some campus somewhere said something they might not like, and if in fact there is a chance that deep down in thier own subconcious and repressed sexuality that they might actually be gay. As such courtesy of www.renewamerica.us, we bring you Robert Meyer in a little number we like to call...
The question of why someone should be a Conservative, is one that may be addressed in differing ways. Much is made out of the traditional dictionary definitions of what constitutes a Liberal or Conservative, but these types of discussions tend to obfuscate the real issue in dispute.
And besides, the way the dictionary phrased it, it made it sound like us conservative types were all a bunch of low-tax loving, minority-baiting, bible-thumping, yokels who only care about money, the upper classes, and racial majorities. And that is just plain offensive. Furthermore, I would like to point out, sir, that I for one am no Yokel.
So much of the current loathing over conservatives, is based on an entirely specious foundation as to what being conservative is all about. It might be better to start this discussion by defining just what conservatism is not.
So hopefully, by the time I have finished describing all that is well, good, and righteous in the world, there will be plenty of good words left to describe us. I suggest you start with the Devil's Dictionary by Ambrose Beirce and Dante's Inferno.
First of all, a Conservative is not one who lacks compassion. A conservative sees compassion as doing what is in the best interest of the individual or corporate body at large, over the long haul.
After all, the last seven letters of the words compassion are "p-a-s-s-i-o-n," and if there's one thing we conservatives are, it's passionate. We're passionate about a whole range of things, such as lowering taxes, scrapping environmental regulations, slapping heavy fines on recreational and non-reproductive sex, and sticking American flags and yellow ribbons on our SUVs.
We know that if you give a man a fish he has food for a day, but teaching him how to fish, gives him food for a life time. Both teaching and giving have implications on what true compassion really is about. One who gives, but never instructs, fosters an ugly sort of dependence, which leaves the recipient in the lurch once the giving ends. The teacher, on the other hand, leaves a lasting empowerment and inspiration with his/her charges. Which then is greater compassion long term?
Because if you just give someone a life jacket or inflatable rubber raft when they fall overboard, all you're going them is making them dependant upon you for their own survival. No, if you teach them to swim, not only do you no longer have to go through the hassle of swooping to the rescue and wasting a perfectly good (and expensive!) life preserver on some bum, but the fact that he can doggy paddle means that he will have at least a few minutes to make his final peace with God before he drowns.
A Conservative believes that the best charity is a boost to someone who eventually won't need that help, but that out of gratefulness, will render the same help to someone in his former position. A conservative doesn't see charity as a life-long dependency on government agencies, or a new program from a politician who is investing in his perpetual incumbency — he instead calls this a condition of bondage.
No. The best kind of charity is the kind in which you teach that unfortunate person how to make something of themselves, training them, and giving them the ambition necessary to live the American dream; preferrably by offering them a position working 12 hour days 6 days a week on a benefits-free employment plan at your enterprise. That way, if they ever forget their gratitude to you and start agitating for a raise or basic human rights, you can fire their asses and no longer waste your time on the lazy puke.
A Conservative is not opposed to all taxation, but rather sees taxes as a necessary evil, and therefore wants to encourage only the level of taxation that will support the necessities of limited civil government. Tax policy shouldn't be used as a means to punish economic social classes that have benefitted from the America Dream[...]
Presumably the same American Dream in which you are born into a position of wealth and privilege, get a job at your family's multi-million dollar company earning big bucks to do nothing, and then inhereting the whole shebang on the death of your dad, all the while extolling the benefits of working hard and rising on your own merits (while at the same time pushing for tax breaks and special privileges that will help ensure your family's permanent place in the landed aristocracy of this supposed meritocratic utopia).
Economic egalitarianism is an evil that creates more unfairness and disparity than it corrects. Some level of poverty will be with us always, and not everyone will achieve the same results, nor should we expect it to be so. Needs ought to be met through personal philanthropy and a conscience of obligation toward one's fellow man, but not through state coercion.
Some people will always be poor. In some cases there will exist an economic model in which a tiny percentage at the top of society control the vast majority of a society's resources and power. Believe it or not, there are some crazy radicals out there who maintain that this is actually a bad thing and hurts society as a whole. While I applaud the individual works of charity and philanthropic acts embraced by my upper-class bretheren, I wish them to know that I continue to stand resolutely by their side against all enemies- especially those who would engage in such revolting and discriminatory practices such as taxing rich people more heavily than the rest of society in order to ensure that all people have access to the basic necessities of life.
Conservatives aren't moral relativists. They find such a system of belief is self-contradictory. They thus believe in a transcendent truth and moral absolutes.
Which is why we believe that killing is always wrong and as such are completely opposed to abortion,
war and the death penalty. This is also why we loathe armed conflict and the cynical, casual ways in which other nations use wars to advance their own geopolitical agenda. Except when a situation arises in which it is necessary to deny communism a safe haven in southeast Asia and spread democracy in the middle east.
Conservatives aren't Neanderthals caught up in the past. They simply understand that approval of immorality isn't tantamount to being "progressive." Progress in technology doesn't impact the principles that are at the foundations of traditional mores.
In fact by challenging long-established mores, norms, and values and by debating and engaging the status quo, progressives prove that THEY are the real neanderthals, determined to impose their weird ideas of equality on us.
Conservatives do not revel in state hegemony, or believe government has all the answers, or that they should do everything. The government has a limited function to provide national defense, law enforcement, and enhance "general welfare" (not hand-outs, but universal rather than specific welfare).
In fact, most recently, the "general welfare" of society has best been enhanced when the government has stopped trying to engage in specific welfare like universal healthcare coverage, regulating environmental waste, protecting endangered species, maintaining parks and national preserves, trying to find a cure for a host of various diseases, and has instead focused on more useful, generally beneficial programs such as cutting the tax burden of big corporations, allowing companies to relocate jobs overseas, and spending so many of those precious, precious tax dollars on bigg and better guns.
Conservatives generally don't see religious faith as a sham to control people, nor do they think that man created God, but rather that he is sovereign. They don't try to claim, that God, out of necessity, is on their side. They pray for the wisdom, understanding and humility to be on God's side — for God has preferences in the conduct of human affairs.
Because when you get right down to it, all you need to do if you want to find out which side God is on is get on the phone with Tel Aviv and ask the Knesset what's on their agenda for theupcoming year. That and take careful note of when and where God chooses to manifest His terrible vengeance (all those bible-belt tornadoes, forest fires and hurricanes be damned...we're looking at YOU, Dover, PA! God's gonna get you for thta evolution ruling!).
These are some of the reasons why I'm a Conservative.
You're a cold, bitter, angry old fool who has never gotten over the fact that people you disapprove of (Gays, Lesbians, minorities, poor people, non-Christians, immigrants, foreigners) are now not only tolerated, but acutally enjoy a fairly high profile, a fair amount of political clout, and seem to be getting some traction . Thanks for clearing that up. Till next time!