posted on Jul, 20 2010 @ 03:22 AM
Originally posted by Phage
The discussion has turned from origins to definitions. Well that certainly blurs the question. Doesn't it?
Political conservative? Economic conservative? Social conservative?
Fear of what? Which brand of conservatism. They aren't all the same. Are they?
The same goes for liberalism. While I identify myself politically with conservatism, that being conservation of Constitution, I am also born and
raised a Catholic, but am extremely liberal with my Catholic beliefs. I am conservative when it comes to jelly, and liberal when it comes to peanut
butter. Meaning, I spread the peanut butter liberally, and add just a dab of jelly.
Frankly, I think there is way too much of generalization in politics in general. Linking regression with conservatism is as prudent as linking
progress with liberalism. Classically speaking, liberalism was about more freedom for more people, but if one is going to link the Democratic Party
with liberalism it is difficult to imagine how that party today is about more freedom for more people. Conservatism has always been about conserving
something. If one is going to link the Republican Party with conservatism it is hard to imagine what they are conserving, particularly since
Republicans are just as in love with the perpetual income tax as Democrats are. The "tax breaks" they use as a platform is evidence of how in love
with the perpetuity of income taxation they really are. You can't give income tax breaks if you don't have an income tax to cut.
If Republicans were truly conservatives, and were "regressive" as someone suggested earlier, they would be arguing to regress back to the days when
there was no such thing as an income tax. If Democrats were truly liberal, and were "progressive" as was suggested, they would also be arguing for
an elimination of income taxes, since income taxation is hardly progress towards more freedom for more people. The truth is, the income tax pretends
to be a wealth redistribution scheme without the actual redistribution of wealth. It is hardly worth arguing that welfare checks are wealth
redistribution, or even Social Security checks, as they are both pittances that do not constitute wealth.
There are those who will argue they are "fiscally conservative" but "socially liberal" which all too often is tantamount to being ignorant of
finance, and idealistic about social programs. When we take the terms liberal and conservative and apply them to politics, it would be nice if we
were actually more willing to clarify the definitions of the two terms instead of rely on them as pejoratives to demonize our opponents. Alas, few
these days are willing to define words in any etymological sense, and would rather define words in a more general, non binding sense. The myth of
myths in modern lexicography is that myth has become synonymous with falsehood, and has little at all to do with describing specific tales that adhere
to a standard structure. This is the evolution of American double speak, where words are bastardized to mean something other than what their original
[edit on 20-7-2010 by Jean Paul Zodeaux]