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The words "liberal" and "conservative" have been distorted

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posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 07:01 AM
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Ive had just about enough of the labels "liberal" and "conservative" being abused. Much of what passes as "liberal" or "conservative" on this website and thousands of others has nothing at all to do with the values of a liberal and the values of a conservative.

A liberal is an open-minded person who lives by the motto "live and let live". It is not someone who engages in a constant hatred and vilification of Republicans, Traditional Values, Corporations, Religious Practice.

A conservative is a person of integrity, a person of traditional principles. It is not someone who engages in constant hatred and vilifaction of Democrats, Minority-Groups, Peace-Loving people.

Capitalism (associated with Conservatives) is the basis for this countries productivity and creativity. It is not primarly an arena of greed and exploitation.

Human-Rights movements (associated with Liberals) are the basis of this countries freedom-for-all. They are not primarily an arena of crime and poverty.

George Bush is 100% correct in identifying North Korea and Iran as troublemakers.

Obama is 100% correct in identifying European Models of Health Care as proven successes.

Those who do nothing other but find fault with "the other side" are neither liberals nor conservatives but merely hate-mongers.

The fact that half of the country actively hates the President for nothing other than him being "on the other side" is abormal. Its unhealthy. Both liberal and conservative values hold support of the President in high regards. Support of the President does not mean agreeing with all of his policies. It means having good intentions to help build a country that is good for all.

To some members of this website: No true conservative would ever think of killing homosexuals, just as no true liberal would ever think of killing christians. These stereotypes are an insult to intelligence, an insult to millions of people, and the main cause of things going downhill.

Once respect and appreciation of one another is regained, things start going uphill again.

[edit on 31-8-2009 by Skyfloating]




posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 07:45 AM
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I agree with you whole heartedly.

When I was growing up a conservative/Republican was someone who was not opposed to change or reactionary but had more of the attitude of lets take change slowly...they were also more closely associated with Main street as opposed to Wall street and understood that what was good for one was not necessiarily good for the other.

Over the past 30 years or so the Republican party and conservative ideology in general has been hijacked by what is called with movement conservatives who are more representive of corporations and predatory capitalism than the ideals of Main street.

Richard Nixon would be too liberal for the people who have co-oped the GOP today.

As for the liberals while they too have been co-oped politically by a Democratic party that is controlled by their version of movement conservatism the fundamental ideals of liberalism has not changed as dramatically as old school conservatism has.

Our ideals are not necessarily the same as the Democratic party though they do overlap...

True liberalism is focused on leveling the playing field of bias and prejudice so that everyone has the chance to succeed...of helping the poor and disenfranchised and taking care of the environment...its touchstones are compassion and fairness.

...In reality true liberalism is not antithetical to true conservatism and in fact can compliment each other.

Up in New England for example you find a political hybrid whose attitude is socially liberal but fiscally conservative...and people up there like it.

[edit on 31-8-2009 by grover]



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 08:23 AM
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reply to post by grover
 


I see where you are coming from and agree...except with your definition of capitalism. Here you use the wording "predatory capitalism", but elsewhere Ive seen you speak out against capitalism in general. So, in defense of capitalism allow me to say that in my definition of capitalism, or in the definition of its original meaning, it is a blessing to society and not only the source of billions of dollars of help, philantropy, trickle-down-benefits for the poor but also the basis of everything you have...from the clothes you wear, to your internet-connection. Calling criminal acts of greed "Capitalism" is a distortion imo.



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 11:11 AM
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reply to post by Skyfloating
 


I am not opposed to capitalism per se...but rather corporate capitalism as it is practiced today which I call predatory capitalism which is in the long run harmful to society.

When corporations were first created in the 16th and 17th centuries governments were extremely skeptical of corporations believing (rightly as history has shown) that is was little more than a way to not only spread the cost and risk around but also as a way of evading responsiblity of its actions.

Up until mid-19th century (even here in the US) Corporations charters...what they could do and how long they could last was strictly controlled both here and in Europe.

Remember the British government did not create the British empire...corporations like the East India Company did and the governments stepped in in essence to clean up the companies messes.

Despite claims to the contrary our choices become increasingly limited under corporate capitalism not expanded.

Corporate capitalism has devoured our national government and given its druthers it would like all true fascism's dictate every aspect of our lives...

Despite the left and the right howling about how the opposite parties leaders being fascists (aka bush minor and Obama) the real fascism rampant in America today comes from the boardroom...Remember Mussolini's definition of fascism as the marriage of corporation and state.

Moral and just people will do things for their job that they would never do personally...

I am an individual...a human being...not a consumer.



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 11:35 AM
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A liberal is an open-minded person who lives by the motto "live and let live".


Okay, then who are the people that want to take my earned money and give it some able bodied person who won't look for a job?



Obama is 100% correct in identifying European Models of Health Care as proven successes.


Proven successes?

I think not.



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 11:45 AM
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reply to post by wookiee
 


Have you ever considered the possiblity that the so called able bodied person cannot find a job...their job skills have been rendered obsolete or the jobs in their area don't pay enough to live on as opposed to being a mooch which is what you imply?

Also why don't you ask some of the Europeans who are here on ATS about their health care? Odds are they wouldn't trade places with you for nothing.

The rhetoric from both sides are full of stereotypes but the realities are often far different.

[edit on 31-8-2009 by grover]



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 11:56 AM
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I agree with you OP on the premise that those terms have been twisted, I see them being used as devisive labels all the time, liken them to racial slurs if you will...divide and conquer.

I'll admit I'm not one to read about the history and inner workings of capitalism, but I do know this, everything we take for granted as being put into place to help us can and probably will be used by our leaders against us. Capitalism may have helped build this country, but if you throw huge corporations and/or government into the mix, it becomes a monster.

Examples:
Religion, Income Tax, Banks, MSM, any major War, legislation such as Patriot Act...etc, you get the point,

"Everything corrupted once man touch it"



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 11:57 AM
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The American understanding of Liberal differs from the British concept. In Britain, the liberal party is not left wing, it is centrist. It is concerned with liberty and freedom. This also includes the freedom to be poor. Wealth redistribution is not a LIBERAL policy, it is a SOCIALIST policy. The idea of 'left-wing liberals' is an incorrect American distortion. Liberalism is classically neither left-wing nor right-wing.

Socialists are not liberal per se. Some can be, but it is not a pre-requisite of being a socialist.



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 01:07 PM
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reply to post by grover
 


I cringe at humans being called "the consumer" too. But Im not with you when it comes to anti-corporatism. My feeling is that anti-corporatists are taking the exception (ENRON) and acting as if its the rule.

Corporations have provided employment for billions, infrastructure, technology, etc...without which we`d be living in the stone-age.

Essentially a corporatation is nothing more than a business-entity. If that business-entity breaks the law that does not mean that "corporations are bad" but that that particular company broke the law.... (?)



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 01:10 PM
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Originally posted by wookiee
Okay, then who are the people that want to take my earned money and give it some able bodied person who won't look for a job?


Dont mistake extreme-leftists with liberals. And dont throw away all liberal ideals just because some of them are questionable.




Proven successes?

I think not.


Yes. European socialized healthcare has been working just fine since decades.



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 01:14 PM
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reply to post by CRB86
 


The distortion is one of recent years. First liberals were labelled socialists. And then socialists labelled themselves "liberals".



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 01:17 PM
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reply to post by JKersteJr
 


Point of the whole matter is that I have not seen a single poster here who supported both the Bush Presidency and the Obama Presidency.

In my eyes thats very...telling of how brainwashed-into-division this nation is.



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 02:36 PM
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Skyfloating
EXACTLY, how can someone be so illogical to think one side always has it right and the other side always has it wrong?

I can't help but think of sports and fanatical fans when this issue gets brought up, people jump on the bandwagon of whoever is hot atm, and will attempt to defend that team even though they may know nothing about the inner workings. They celebrate when their team wins, they're appaled when they lose so they start acting on emotions.

For instance when Mark Mcgwire started blasting obscene amounts of HR's some years back, a lot of people jumped on the bandwagon, including my Dad, immediately this guy becomes an icon. Nobody questioned why Mcgwire all the sudden gets noticeably bigger in size at 40, reports about steroids or HGH use are circulated but these "fans" can't possibly accept that. It's because they were emotionally involved in the idea that he was a good clean guy when apparently, he wasn't.

My 2 cents

[edit on 8/31/2009 by JKersteJr]



posted on Aug, 31 2009 @ 04:18 PM
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First of all, the two labels are over used. We live in a culture where the terms, in the practical sense, are meaningless.

Fifty years ago, they meant something. However, they mean little today. I mean, I tend to lean towards what one would call conservatism, but I also have liberal views regarding somethings. I am not an "ultra" anything.



posted on Sep, 1 2009 @ 02:22 PM
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So are the two who demonstrated the stereotypes at the beginning of the thread going to return to back up their views?

I figured not Extreme left-wing and right-wing bias never hold up to rational scrutiny.

[edit on 1-9-2009 by Skyfloating]



posted on Sep, 1 2009 @ 03:15 PM
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reply to post by Skyfloating
 


I have never considered myself extreme left or for that matter extreme anything...I do however consider myself a staunch liberal and by that I mean an open minded and compassionate individual...I will say this though:


I grew up believing John Kennedy’s famous, “Ask not what your country can do for you; rather ask what you can do for your country.” I grew up believing Martin Luther King Jr.’s, “I have a dream.” I grew up believing, “All you need is love.” I grew up believing the Earth is all we have so we’d better take care of it because moving is not an option. Besides, what good are property rights if the land is poisoned and cannot support life? I grew up believing that to change the world you must change hearts and minds first. I still believe these things. I believe that society is not just an aggregate of business concerns but a community of people. I believe that until the needs of all the people; from the mansion to the hovel are met, nothing will change. I believe that unless it is applied equally, there is no justice. I believe that if you truly want to help the poor, then they must be given a reason to hope. Because without hope why should they care, much less even try? I believe as the Rig-Veda said almost five thousand years ago, “Truth is one, sages call it by various names.” I believe that the truth of a religion is in whether it leads the heart to God, and that only the individual can determine that. In short, I am a liberal and proud of it. And, at this late date see no reason to change. I refuse to accept a grim hearted conservatism that has perverted Kennedy’s call to public service to read, ask not what you can do for your country, rather ask what tax cut and bailout your country can give to you.

I am sick and tired of liberal being used as an insult, a dirty word, and a scapegoat. We have a long and honorable history. Work eight hours a day, forty hours a week? Thank a liberal. Are you on Social Security and Medicare or Medicaid? Thank a liberal. If the air and water are cleaner today than thirty years ago, thank a liberal. A minimum wage other than what the bosses can get away with paying, safer workplaces and public education, unemployment insurance? Thank a liberal...

...When all the rhetoric is stripped away, the purpose of government is to provide a safe place to raise crops and children. The rest is merely icing on the cake. The question is, what is that a mandate for? Is it solely a mandate for internal policing and external defense leaving everything else up to a laissez-faire marketplace and the individual? Or, is it a mandate for broader social and environmental concerns as well? For the conservative the answer is yes to the first question. For the liberal the answer is yes to second also. Put another way, the conservatives claim the rights and freedoms of the individual are deemed paramount. For the liberal, the rights and freedom of the individual must segue with, and at some point give way to the greater concerns of community and vice a versa. The environment is a classic example of this.

The rape and pillage of the Earth is foolhardy at best and self-destructive in the long run. It boils down to this; unless we are willing to accept a massive die off of the human race to bring our population more in line with what the Earth’s resources can comfortably support, or change our lifestyles so that the resources we have are distributed more equitably, then we must nurture what we have. Already whole fisheries are collapsing and the rain forests, our main source of oxygen, are being destroyed at an alarming rate. The polar ozone holes are growing larger, the Earth is warming and deserts are spreading devouring precious crop lands. These events should be outside the realm of politics and be a matter of great concern to all of humanity. It is morally wrong to assert that the common resources that we all need and share can be owned by any one person or corporation and exploited for short term profits. This narrow minded vision will only lead to disaster. Chief Seattle said, ”The Earth does not belong to us, we belong to the Earth.” The planet and all that is on it must be nurtured for all and held as a common inheritance. After all, if we waste and lay bare the Earth then we are, simply put, doomed. There is no other Earth to move to. Ways must be developed to cultivate what we have for the good of all and come up with alternatives for what we lack. If we must talk profits, to do so would reap in the long run far greater profits, to fail to do so will only reap the whirlwind...

...Way too many are poor and way too many are starving, if not for food then for meaning, direction and hope in their lives. In the glaring disparity between the have’s and the have not, the seeds of hatred are sown. The extremes are vast. When the poverty level here in the United States would support a person like royalty in many parts of the world, something is terribly wrong. And, to add insult on top of injury, many of the well off here resent the poor their needs. When too many people are hungry and the talk of hope cruel, when justice is only for those who have, when whole communities have nothing left to lose, watch out. Desperation breeds desperate measure as terrorism has shown us. Underneath the global veneer of Nike, Disney, McDonald’s and Wal-mart, the old cultures and civilizations still exist and for many, they are still worth fighting and dying for.

If we really want to fight terrorism then we need to fight it by supporting responsible governments answerable to their people not to international corporations. Give real assistance to the poor in the form of honorable and decent ways of making a living, not a 10 cent (or less) an hour job in a Nike sweat shop or worse. Don’t pillage their environment and heritage in the search of a quick profit. Respect cultural traditions and treat people honorably and with justice. Fighting terrorism with bullets and bombs will achieve nothing but more bullets and bombs. The sad history of Israel has shown us that.

These are deep and profound issues that cannot be dealt with via sound bites and photo op’s. If we are truly a global society, then we need to finally put nationalism aside and behave responsibly. America’s response to these issues will make or break what Bush the first called “The New World Order.” Bush the second has hired a Wall Street ad agency to sell America to the world, which simply shows how out of touch he really is. Terrorists aside, the vast majority of the world population do not hate America or Americans. They may be poor but they are not stupid. What they hate are the selfish policies of the American government and the corporations which they serve. These issues have never been about simple material goods and marketing ploys but are deeply spiritual, rooted in a sense of justice and fair play. Trying to deal with these resentments with bombs and ad campaigns is to simply ignore the reality of them...

...Mussolini said,” Fascism should more properly called corporatism, since it is the merger of state and corporate power.” He should know. Just look around at what is going on almost sixty years after his fall and honestly ask if this is not what is happening.

A global economy doesn’t have to be built on giant multinational corporations, ignoring the needs and wishes of local people in the search for profits. It can be built on cooperation and mutual need as well.

Neoliberalism, the economic “theory” that gave rise to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank, NAFTA and scores of other trade agreements is designed more to keep the industrial countries on top than to help the third world ones. It has nothing in common with true liberalism and is simply a front for predatory capitalism. Just as Neoconservatism has little to do with historical conservatism but is more a front for aggressive American nationalism. In this case the two seemingly opposed world views work hand in glove to dominate and pillage the planet. There is not one instance of a developing country being helped by their policies. If the truth be told, the IMF and the World Bank behave more like global loan sharks than tools for development. The result for any country that is seduced into accepting their “assistance” is akin to the poor man having to pawn his possessions to re-coop the money lost from paying off the pawn shop. The result for any country accepting their aid is a never ending downward economic spiral, destitution for its citizens and increased hatred for the west.

True justice happens when it is applied equally and the playing field is level. True justice happens when race, gender, sexual preference or nationality means no more or less than the color of an eye. True justice happens when the smallest and poorest among us can stand up and have their voices heard. True justice happens when it is finally realized it is the people not corporations that really matter. Whoever said the bottom line is profits lied. The real bottom line is people. If those who actually do all the work aren’t happy then they won’t do a good job or give good service. And, if the customer isn’t happy, there will be no profits. The same is true of wages, if workers are underpaid and can barely survive then they can’t afford to buy. Even those who think only of gains and losses should be able to realize that. People must be given a reason to hope and something to aspire towards and a minimum wage job at Wal-mart or McDonald’s isn’t it. Finally, true justice happens when we realize that no man is an island, that we are all in this together and that the fate of the least of us matters too.


These excerpts are from an essay defending liberalism that I wrote in a college English class.

[edit on 1-9-2009 by grover]



posted on Sep, 1 2009 @ 03:15 PM
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reply to post by Skyfloating
 


Extreme anything never holds up to rational scrutiny. You know why? Extremism, no matter whether you're talking religion or politics, is not rational. Only rationality holds up to rationality, nothing else.

[edit on 1-9-2009 by SpeakerofTruth]



posted on Sep, 1 2009 @ 03:24 PM
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reply to post by grover
 


The progressive movement, as well as the conservative movement, were noble ideas at one time. However, both have strayed from their original appointments.

The progressives of today are nothing even remotely similar to the progressives of FDRs era. That's why I laugh at any comparison of any liberal today and FDR. Generally, when I hear the word progressive or "liberal" today, I think socialist. Believe it or not, a socialist is different from the original label of "liberal."

The same holds true for conservatism. You can't be intellectually honest and say that conservatism is in any way similar now to what it was even as recently as the Reagan era. It's not!! When I hear conservative, I tend to think fascist or tyrant.

It's an unfortunate state of affairs, but it's where we are at this point.



posted on Sep, 1 2009 @ 03:29 PM
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If ATS is a good sampling of what goes on in the nation, then it is quite possible that the huge gulf which separates and divides the two political parties will be at the root of the downfall of the country. Nobody is giving an inch, and I do believe it will be our ruin unless somebody comes along to join us together; who is able to work with our similarities and commonalities, focusing on those to strategize for a positive outcome.

The divisions and distain range from the very lowest to the very highest levels in our society. We are trapped within our own political ideologies, and closed mindedness.

We need more discussions such as this.



posted on Sep, 1 2009 @ 03:46 PM
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Originally posted by grover
I grew up believing John Kennedy’s famous, “Ask not what your country can do for you; rather ask what you can do for your country.” I grew up believing Martin Luther King Jr.’s, “I have a dream.” I grew up believing, “All you need is love.”


Excellent




what good are property rights


ooops...a sudden drop from liberalism to marxism.





I grew up believing that to change the world you must change hearts and minds first. I still believe these things.


True.




I believe that until the needs of all the people; from the mansion to the hovel are met, nothing will change. I believe that unless it is applied equally, there is no justice.


I, the capitalist, also have a concern for the poor. My heart especially goes out to Rwanda, Angola and Uganda. However, my means of helping them is not by remaining poor myself.



I believe as the Rig-Veda said almost five thousand years ago, “Truth is one, sages call it by various names.” I believe that the truth of a religion is in whether it leads the heart to God, and that only the individual can determine that. In short, I am a liberal and proud of it.


Beautiful.



I refuse to accept a grim hearted conservatism


Stereotypical label.



Work eight hours a day, forty hours a week? Thank a liberal.


Yes, thank a liberal. And for available jobs, thank a conservative.



If the air and water are cleaner today than thirty years ago, thank a liberal.


Yes, for this I thank a liberal.



freedom of the individual must segue with, and at some point give way to the greater concerns of community


Such as all banks and churches being closed down because some minority group feels offended by them?





The rape and pillage of the Earth is foolhardy at best and self-destructive in the long run.


The earth is more resilient than you guys think. Its no cry-baby.

Nevertheless, of course some respect of the environment is due. But dont insinuate that all corporations are necessarily anti-environment. Neither are conservatives categorically anti-environment.




The polar ozone holes are growing larger, the Earth is warming and


Disinformation. The earth warms every few thousand years as a result of natural cosmic events.




Chief Seattle said, ”The Earth does not belong to us, we belong to the Earth.” The planet and all that is on it must be nurtured for all and held as a common inheritance.


Correct. But lets also appreciate some of the technological progress we have made and all the things we have learned from since the industrial revolution. Lets appreciate that thanks to advances and business in medicine, thousands of illnesses we had only 100 years ago, no longer exist. Lets thank this business-driven nation for providing you with a house, clothes, food, infrastructure.



There is no other Earth to move to.


How would you know?




..Way too many are poor and way too many are starving


Yes, tribal, collectivist and socialist policies have taken their toll on many societies.



an hour job in a Nike sweat shop or worse.


Actually nobody is forced to work for Nike or McDonalds.



Fighting terrorism with bullets and bombs will achieve nothing but more bullets and bombs.


True.


I give you a B- for your essay. It contains a lot of truly liberal and positive ideals but some of the lapses in economic logic and an over-emphasis on the poor being victims rather than at least partially responsible, take the grade down.



[edit on 1-9-2009 by Skyfloating]




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