The Next Time Someone Identifies Themselves As A Conservative, This Is How To Gently Bring Them Back To Reality

By:  DocPhil  •  Politics  •  7 years ago  •  51 comments

The Next Time Someone Identifies Themselves As A Conservative, This Is How To Gently Bring Them Back To Reality

The final nail has been driven into the coffin of American Conservatism with the passage of the Senate's latest "tax reform" bill. As a liberal, I spent my life debating true conservatives about our differing points of view. We rarely came to agreement but we were able to respect each other's positions on the issues. One of the reasons for this was that both liberals and conservatives were true to their beliefs and practiced what they preached.

Unfortunately in the twenty teens, there is no clear line between liberalism and conservatism. There are those who espouse sections of each philosophy, but there are many others who utilize the identification of a philosophy as a method of using a cudgel on the rest of the population. Let's look at what Conservatism says about some issues and what the "modern conservative" frequently supports:

  1. National Debt:  The truly conservative position, and the key principle on which conservative philosophy is based is that the government should be as debt free as possible. When looked at in terms of budget and debt reduction, the conservative position would be to approve only budgets with a surplus which would then be used to decrease the national debt. Of course, this has not been the case in recent conservatism. Republican Congresses and Presidents have not passed a balanced budget in my lifetime {70 years}, nor have they ever decreased the deficit once. That is not conservatism. The new "tax reform" is going to add 1.2 TRILLION dollars to the national debt. Why? To give their donors and the richest Americans a huge tax cut. Not conservative.....just greed.
  2. Moral Authority: One of the basic tenets of nineteenth, twentieth, and even early twentieth century conservatism was the concept of "family values" and the support of politicians who were paragons of the moral values that conservatives held. Oh how the times have changed. We now have a self-identified sexual predator as President, the party of Lincoln is perched to elect a pedophile to the senate from the state of Alabama because "a pedophile is better than a democrat". It seems that a democrat that prosecuted and got convictions against ku klux klan murders isn't moral enough.
  3. Religious Tolerance: One of the most important conservative principles that came out of World War II was tolerance for all religions. Having seen the horrors of that war toward human beings solely on the basis of their religion, conservatives in the 1950s were among the most religiously tolerant and accepting in the world. Today, conservatism is actively attacking the "other". Religion means political identification to many conservatives. They are unwilling to mix with those "others" or even engage them in discussion. This is definitely not conservative.
  4. Value of Education:  Traditional Conservatism placed a great emphasis on the conservative intellectual. The leading lights in the conservative movement were intellectuals who were the lynchpins and face of the movement. That is over. There is no place in the modern conservative movement for intellectualism. Intellectuals are considered part of the elite, or even worse, part of the mainstream media. Conservative intellectuals are not welcome in the party any more and are leaving in droves. Modern conservatism is eschewing traditional education and is encouraging their followers to home school, attend doctrinaire schools, and go to higher education institutions that foster a narrow world view. This is not what traditional conservatism ever espoused.
  5. Compromise:  While there are many other areas that I can talk about, I will end with a short discussion about compromise. There was a time, not long ago, when there was an understanding in both the conservative and liberal communities that they were the outliers and that the majority of the American people were centrists who on various issues leaned either slightly right or left. Those of us who held strongly liberal or strongly conservative views understood that it was our role in the political discourse to move legislation and public opinion toward our viewpoints, not by leaps and bounds, but by degrees. Modern conservatism has totally lost this belief in compromise. It is now a zero sum game. Politics is an all or nothing approach. It is either the conservative way or the highway. You can work with us only if you accept everything we want to do or say. This is not conservatism. This is not even Americanism.

The next time you speak to a modern American "conservative", please be certain to remind them of the reasons why they are not what they claim. They are nationalists. They are Trumpists. They are authoritarians. They are not moving us in directions that are good for this country. Remind them that if they want to try something really conservative, try to be conservative. Then we can have a legitimate debate.


jrBlog - desc
Professor Expert
1  Krishna    7 years ago

Enameled copper wire touched me inappropriate manner blushing when I was 14-- I will sue! 

Dean Moriarty
Professor Quiet
1  Dean Moriarty    7 years ago

I don't care what Democrats think of them of prefer to label them as. I'm just glad we have them and they took the congress and presidency out of the hands of the Democrats. They certainly do a better job of representing me than the leftists do. 

Sophomore Quiet
1.1  author  DocPhil  replied to  Dean Moriarty @1    7 years ago

A bit of discussion here. How are they doing better in both representing you and the nation as a whole? Whenever I ask a person who is conservative, I generally get Gorsich and the Supreme Court. The problem there is that both the democratic and republican parties have the whole concept of the court wrong. It is supposed to be non-political, an arm of the people in toto, not the party in power. We've been making that mistake for two centuries. We were wrong to allow them to get involved in issues of morality in the first place, and we are wrong to try to stack a court to rule on issues of personal morality now. Other than that, however, how does this current republican administration serve the nation and yourself better than a democratic administration or congress?

Sophomore Participates
1.1.2  Skrekk  replied to  XDm9mm @1.1.1    6 years ago
They neglect to take into account the language usage of the time it was written into account and instead apply current usage to their decisions.

If the right wing nuts on the court had their way then women, blacks, Muslims and LGBT folks would have no civil rights at all despite the clear language of the equal protection clause.

Professor Silent
1.1.3  Cerenkov  replied to  Skrekk @1.1.2    6 years ago

Hysterics aside, that's simply not true.

Sophomore Participates
1.1.4  Skrekk  replied to  Cerenkov @1.1.3    6 years ago
Hysterics aside, that's simply not true.

Obviously it's true given that all the conservatives on the court recently voted against marriage equality despite there being no rational basis for such anti-LGBT laws and no credible legal justification to uphold those bigoted laws.    So clearly the RW loons on the court are not deriving their bigoted and ignorant views from the plain language of the constitution but from their own biases and nutty superstitions.

To put it another way, if textualism were the issue then both the Windsor and the Obergefell rulings should have been unanimous like the Loving v Virginia ruling was.

Don Overton
Sophomore Quiet
1.2  Don Overton  replied to  Dean Moriarty @1    6 years ago

I would love to see you add some truthful facts, not the lies repubs usually call facts

The Magic 8 Ball
Masters Quiet
4  The Magic 8 Ball    7 years ago

Then we can have a legitimate debate.

there is no reason to debate. or compromise with today's liberal. progressive. and communist pricks.

when the left supports secure borders, better trade deals and a sovereign country?  then and only then will we debate anything.  until that time? no deal.

Don Overton
Sophomore Quiet
4.1  Don Overton  replied to  The Magic 8 Ball @4    6 years ago

Says the biggest Russian prick of all.  From your comment you have no idea what you are talking about, especially about what makes up political parties.  Would you like me to post the differences for you.  Oh, never mind, you can't read, you watch too much Fox and idiots

The Magic 8 Ball
Masters Quiet
5  The Magic 8 Ball    7 years ago

The final nail has been driven into the coffin of American Conservatism 

how many times have we heard this in the past 9 yrs?  too funny...  seriously.

hey doc, you should help the left get some of the 1500 seats back they lost in govt over the same time period.

Cheers :)

Sophomore Quiet
5.1  author  DocPhil  replied to  The Magic 8 Ball @5    7 years ago

Have no fear, I'm working on it. We did pretty well in Virginia and New Jersey last month. We're working on the rest of the country now. Come back at me after the 2018 elections. I think that the people will have come to their senses and the republicans will suffer for this President and candidates like you've put up in Alabama.

Sophomore Quiet
5.1.2  author  DocPhil  replied to  XDm9mm @5.1.1    7 years ago

I'm about as chilled as I've ever been. I just believe that the American people made the greatest mistake in it's entire history by electing Trump president. There have been many presidents in my lifetime that I have disagreed with politically, but I truly believed that they always had the best interests of this nation in mind. I even served on national committees for President Reagan who I disagreed with on almost every policy issue. I could always speak to those in power when there was a modicum of clarity and intellect coming out of the other side. This is a destructive administration. An approval rating eleven months into office of 36% is the absolute justification for my optimism. No party in history has ever prevented a landslide by the out party in an off year election when their approval ratings are below 45%. Even the generic congressional poll shows the highest differential in history......56-44 in favor of the democrats. We may have screwed up royally when we nominated the weakest candidate in history in Hillary Clinton, but that will not be the case next year, nor will it be the case in 2020.

Sophomore Quiet
5.1.4  author  DocPhil  replied to  XDm9mm @5.1.3    7 years ago

Do you really think that an extra $8.68 a week in take home pay for the average worker is going to be cause for elation among American workers? When those who lose their healthcare and find out that their premiums will go up $30-50 a week for a family of 4, even Americans with a third grade education will be able to do the math. Then, when they find out that the $8.68 "windfall" will be sunsetted while the millionaires tax breaks will be permanent, there will be a full scale rebellion. 

Laffer's theory of Supply Side economics have never worked in any economy. It is a scam that benefits only those who are already rich at the expense of those who are poor and middle class. I may be a potential beneficiary of this plan, but I will make certain that I return my largesse to those who actually need it. I would like to see the same pledge from all of us who will really benefit from this monstrosity.

By the way, the only people who ever believe in polls are the ones the polls favor. Sometimes they are wrong, but over 95% of the time they are accurate.

Sophomore Quiet
5.2  author  DocPhil  replied to  The Magic 8 Ball @5    6 years ago

Correction, it was 994 seats at all levels of government in 8 years of the Obama administration. An average of 125 or so losses a year. During the 2017 off year, there were approximately 88 seats that flipped. The 2018 midterms give the democrats 35+ or - in the house, 7 governors,, -2 senate seats, and 375 state house seats. There are other minor seats changed such as county administrators, city councils, etc. which gave another 150 or so seats back to democrats.  This translates into 493 major flips for the democrats, with another 150 that we are not even counting. That is 1/2 of the seats lost during 8 years of the Obama presidency. It also averages about 250 losses a year. 

I'm not hearing much from the Trumpies about this issue any more. At this rate, there won't be any trumpicans left by 2020 let alone 2024. America is wising up. They hate Trump and his feckless congress. The pendulum swings back to the left.

Nowhere Man
Junior Guide
6  Nowhere Man    7 years ago

Pseudo-intellectual rubbish......

Professor Quiet
7  bbl-1    6 years ago

Conservatism is dead.  Murdered by Supply Side Economics, which also very conveniently murdered American capitalism.

Real conservatives, such as W.F. Buckley, Ronald Reagan, Margaret Chase Smith and even Richard Nixon among many others would turn their heads at the approach of what modern day conservatism has devolved into.  Donald J. Trump is not a conservative.  He is a threat. 

The Magic 8 Ball
Masters Quiet
9  The Magic 8 Ball    6 years ago
The final nail has been driven into the coffin of American Conservatism with

LOL   "said the incredibly shrinking blue political body"

  1. the final nail in conservatism was first declared before we took back the house in 2010
  2. the final nail in conservatism was declared again... and then we took back the senate.
  3. the final nail in conservatism was again declared but somehow hillary lost.

so... we have another final nail?   

history says the so-called "final nail in conservatism" has not worked out well for the left.

every time they drive that final nail? it winds up in their own backsides... LOL

oh wait... tax cuts?  yepp, people hate that crap... LOL  this might be the one. not :)

Sophomore Participates
9.1  Skrekk  replied to  The Magic 8 Ball @9    6 years ago

I wonder how many women will vote for the pro-rapist and anti-choice party, how many gays vote for the party of homophobia, trans folks vote for a party which seeks to erase their very identity, racial minorities vote for a party of white supremacy, Jews vote for the party which seeks to eradicate them by any means necessary, or Muslims or other non-Christians vote for the party of Christian sharia law.    And that's before we get to other groups like anyone under 30.

Looks like you're stuck with a rapidly shrinking demographic of elderly and angry straight white Christian butt-hurt men.    That's not much to base a party on but maybe the Know Nothing party will welcome you.

Don Overton
Sophomore Quiet
9.2  Don Overton  replied to  The Magic 8 Ball @9    6 years ago


The Magic 8 Ball
Masters Quiet
9.2.1  The Magic 8 Ball  replied to  Don Overton @9.2    6 years ago

if conservatism was dead? hillary would be president... 

you have been declaring the right dead for years...

the death of conservatism has been greatly exaggerated.

4 days and a wake up :)

Professor Principal
9.2.2  Tessylo  replied to  The Magic 8 Ball @9.2.1    6 years ago

They've been dying ever since Dubya.  Rump is just hastening their demise.  'Conservatism' just doesn't have the good sense to just die and go away already.  

The Magic 8 Ball
Masters Quiet
9.2.3  The Magic 8 Ball  replied to  Tessylo @9.2.2    6 years ago
They've been dying ever since Dubya.

and yet somehow they have been taking seats in congress away from the dems since 2010

and then? against all odds?  they took the presidency.

the amazing dead gop - still kicking democrat ass... LOL


Freshman Silent
10  freepress    6 years ago

The national debt, the tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires, the threat to healthcare creating increased costs or loss of life due to loss of coverage, the threats to our freedoms like the press, the right to vote and right to dissent, all of these are under threat by a man who cares less about the people of this country.

Why people keep buying his rhetoric is astounding.

Look at your wallet, look at your healthcare, look at your rights to speak, write, report, or dissent, look at the level of bad behavior coming from the top, (which no one in their right mind would ever teach to their children), then voter him out, vote out every Republican that refuses to stand up for all of us.