Scifi author Ray Bradley wrote a book called “The Martian Chronicles”, and I remember the tagline on the old paperback copy my dad had was “Still thinking like an Earthling?” The question was a challenge to those with minds still stuck in the past. People are trapped, much more than they realize, in the outdated thinking patterns of yesterday.
OneSTDV is a conservative, and an HBD conservative at that. Yet he still suffers from the warped perspective of modern American politics- the idea that liberalism is “compassionate” and conservatism is “uncompassionate”.
Yes, even conservatives believe this. What we call “conservatism” in America is really just a partial and grudging reaction to liberalism, not an alternative philosophy with its own morality.
The New Deal State- or the system, or whatever you want to call it- came to power in the 30’s, the product of a combination of European socialist ideas but very much also from reformist Protestant Christianity. It was intended to take away the control of society from the individual, and even the local community, and place it in the hands of an enlightened Northeastern elite.
Most of the population was fine with this, as long as they got paid. Still there was a strong libertarian streak in the US, and the idea of paternalistic control from far away seemed foreign, and worse inefficient.
Two kinds of opposition arose to this, commonly assumed to be the same thing, but really quite different. One was the strongly anti-communist, anti-socialist philosophy of the libertarian right. The John Birch Society and Barry Goldwater were examples of this philosophy. For them the New Deal State was a terrible imposition on the freedoms of the American people, something closely allied with foreign enemies that had to be dismantled. This faction wanted to dismantle the New Deal and put America back on a more libertarian footing that it had before.
The second kind was represented by Ronald Reagan and the business community. Reagan was a New Deal Democrat most of his adult life, and only broke away from this when he saw, to his disgust, the way communists were manipulating and trying to take over Hollywood. A big portion of the country supported the New Deal- federal financial regulation, labor regulation, federal public works and other federal spending. What they didn’t like is that the American far left- communists and their allies, as represented by Henry Wallace- saw this as just the beginning of transforming society. They liked a large, strong federal government, but they also liked their society just fine. They thought the continued growth and excesses of the New Deal needed to be stopped, but the New Deal itself need not be dismantled.
It is this kind of thinking that we think of as conservatism in the US. Its message, from the 60’s through the 80’s was, “the government can do many fine things, but it can’t do everything. Good intentions are wonderful, but too much government intervention and assistance is inefficient and actually counterproductive. We need to limit government to what is really necessary.”
Note that this does not question, or challenge in any way, the moral basis of liberalism. It assumes liberalism is good, moral, compassionate, well-intentioned, and only questions that it is sometimes impractical. Again- liberalism is good and moral, conservatism is just a matter of efficiency and practicality.
Liberals thus, as conceded by modern conservatives, always have the moral high ground. They can always claim idealism and good intentions. Under these circumstances, a conservative is at best a wet blanket and at worst a shill for businessmen.
In a social environment controlled primarily by emotion- as a mass consciousness society must be- conservatives are limited to saying “yes, but….” and making tiny changes on the margin to liberal initiatives, or proposing slightly less expensive, slightly more market-oriented versions of liberal programs, such as Mitt Romney’s Massachussetts health care.
And so our epic argument is over whether the federal budget will be $3.65 trillion, as proposed by liberals, or whether it will be $3.6 billion, as proposed by the racist, fascist, teabagging scumbags. That federal revenue is $2 trillion goes unmentioned, except as proof that America is firmly in the grip of racist fascists, without whom it would easily be $4 trillion- or $5 trillion! or $10 trillion! There will be no limit to what we can do when we have conquered racism!
There is an alternative to this. The alternative is simply to deny that leftists possess the power to define what is moral, what is right, and that we are obligated to obey them. This is a radical alternative that puts one far outside the moral pale. I’m willing to be called evil, racist, fascist, uncompassionate, and all the other names they have, because I don’t acknowledge their power.
Far from being moral or compassionate, leftism in all its forms- from the Marxist-Leninist revolutionary terror state, to the Stalinist bureaucratic terror state, to Latin American caudillismo, to the American New Deal soft authoritarian oligarchy- is a monstrous crime against the human mind and spirit, that reduces man to a beast under the yoke, without the slightest shred of moral or legal legitimacy. To quote our president’s minister- God Damn socialism, God Damn liberalism, God Damn “compassion”.