51
   

AMERICAN CONSERVATISM IN 2008 AND BEYOND

 
 
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 06:29 pm
@Foxfyre,
Hayek wrote:
I still could not get your link to work but hunted up the essay. It was not the one I thought I recalled, but after reading it, it certainly reads as from the perspective of an academic liberal intellectual extolling the virtues of liberalism.

That says less about Hayek than about your idiosyncratic usage of the term "liberal" as opposed to "classical liberal" and "libertarian".
Foxfyre
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 06:31 pm
@Thomas,
I am fond of a great many people who I share little in common with. I appreciate many people with whom I do not agree. I enjoy some people's talents despite despising their politics. And I don't believe liberalism is in the clutches of aging hippies. It is far more likely to be found in places like the faculty at Harvard as was previously mentioned.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 06:31 pm
@Thomas,
Stop that, Thomas! I just snorted so loud it woke up one of the dogs.

Idiosyncratic. Love it.
0 Replies
 
Foxfyre
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 06:32 pm
@Thomas,
So if you don't like my defnitions of conservative, liberal, libertarian, Thomas, please PLEASE provide your own for perusal and discussion. I've been beat up for months on this thread by people condemning my definitions but who don't seem to have a clue what the definitions actually are.

And please don't give me some tedious cut and paste unless it is reasonably coherant, of a readable length, and you affirm that the author speaks for you. Give me your opinion of what an American conservative, liberal, and libertarian is.
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 06:54 pm
@Foxfyre,
Foxfyre wrote:
So if you don't like my defnitions of conservative, liberal, libertarian, Thomas, please PLEASE provide your own for perusal and discussion.

The following definitions, lifted from the American Heritage Dictionary, work well for me:

On the term 'liberal', the American Heritage Dictionary wrote:
1a. Not limited to or by established, traditional, orthodox, or authoritarian attitudes, views, or dogmas; free from bigotry. b. Favoring proposals for reform, open to new ideas for progress, and tolerant of the ideas and behavior of others; broad-minded.

On the term 'libertarian', the American Heritage wrote:
One who advocates maximizing individual rights and minimizing the role of the state.

On the term 'conservative', the American Heritage wrote:
adjective: 1. Favoring traditional views and values; tending to oppose change.
noun: 1. One favoring traditional views and values.

Yes, these definitions are cut and pasted. Words have meanings, you see, and these meanings can be quite independent from what you understand them to be. (And from what I understand them to be!) I hope, though, that these definitions are coherent and short enough to not cause you bothersome tediosity.
Lightwizard
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 06:54 pm
Conservatism is quite simply the support of the status quo. It's not built for change as it's mantra is, if it's not broken, don't fix it. The trouble has always been, they don't seem to comprehend when something is broken until it's too late. They get involved with pet peeves like Social Security. They subscribe to the regressionism as they constantly pine for "the good ole days." They just can't answer the question, "what specifically was so good about the good ole days and how does it relate to society today?" Technological advances are of passing interest to them as that's progress (although they want to know the bottom line of how much money they can make from it), I have in Orange County many more clients, friends, family and acquaintances who are computer illiterate or close to it. They buy a microwave to heat coffee, and a computer to E mail.
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 07:29 pm
@Thomas,
Quote:
On the term 'conservative', the American Heritage wrote:

adjective: 1. Favoring traditional views and values; tending to oppose change.
noun: 1. One favoring traditional views and values.


Going back to biblical times...
0 Replies
 
Foxfyre
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 07:40 pm
@Thomas,
Yes words have meanings but the modern American conservative does not fit these definitions. The modern American conservative does pretty closely fit the definition of classical liberal as posted earlier today.

The thing is, people and labels change, and sometimes our definitions have to change with them. It would be simpler and neater to be able to just design a hole and plug people into it, but if you prefer accuracy to labels, you rather have to dig the hole in the shape of whatever you put in it.

Modern conservatives are not at all afraid of change while modern liberals are often the ones with their heels dug in and who resist different ways of doing things such as loosening regulation, lowering taxes, removing tariffs, doing social security in a different way etc., all things favored by today's conservatives. Conservatism today is more about giving people more freedom to do for themselves while modern liberals seem more intent on more and more government control. Conservatives are more likely to want to preserve traditional values and customs more than liberals who are more likely to find ways to diminish or trash them in favor of installing different policies or propriety.

Our new President may break that mold in some key areas, however, and I hope he does. But where his liberalism comes through is in his theory that the government can use money it doesn't have to spend us out of our current economic downturn. Modern conservatives take a skeptical view of that, but if he does get it in progress, I hope he is right and we aren't.
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 07:41 pm
@Foxfyre,
Quote:

Modern conservatives are not at all afraid of change


Yeah, no. Not correct.

Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 08:01 pm
@Foxfyre,
Foxfyre wrote:
Yes words have meanings but the modern American conservative does not fit these definitions. The modern American conservative does pretty closely fit the definition of classical liberal as posted earlier today.

Says you.

Look, if you insist on making words mean whatever you want them to, be my guest. Just don't expect that what you're saying means anything to other people.
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 08:17 pm
@Foxfyre,
Foxfyre wrote:
The thing is, people and labels change, and sometimes our definitions have to change with them. It would be simpler and neater to be able to just design a hole and plug people into it, but if you prefer accuracy to labels, you rather have to dig the hole in the shape of whatever you put in it.

I hereby claim dibs on using this line against you the next time we discuss the interpretation of a law.
parados
 
  7  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 08:26 pm
@Foxfyre,
Quote:
I don't claim that Rush is a conservative.

http://able2know.org/topic/113196-80#post-3440106
It looks to me like you claimed Rush is a conservative in that post. In fact you listed 10 reasons that you think make him a conservative.


Has Thomas found the secret of conservatives? Do they lie?
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 08:32 pm
@parados,
Fox ends up contradicting herself so often, it's a wonder people continue to engage her in "conversation."

She has the skills to say something, then make small clarifications until she runs into some conflict from a previous post. It's almost funny, because she does it so often.
0 Replies
 
Diest TKO
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 09:47 pm
@parados,
damn.

Does Fox think people aren't paying attention?

That came back to bite her in the ass.
K
O
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 10:32 pm
@Foxfyre,
The most major thing we need to do is break the power of the NEA and the government school monopoly. Nobody could hope to prevail or even hold his own in any sort of a culture war while sending his children off the th enemy for indoctrination.
0 Replies
 
okie
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 10:37 pm
@Thomas,
Thomas wrote:

Foxfyre wrote:
Yes words have meanings but the modern American conservative does not fit these definitions. The modern American conservative does pretty closely fit the definition of classical liberal as posted earlier today.

Says you.

Look, if you insist on making words mean whatever you want them to, be my guest. Just don't expect that what you're saying means anything to other people.

Didn't you claim to be a libertarian at one time?
Foxfyre
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 10:53 pm
@Thomas,
Thomas wrote:

Foxfyre wrote:
The thing is, people and labels change, and sometimes our definitions have to change with them. It would be simpler and neater to be able to just design a hole and plug people into it, but if you prefer accuracy to labels, you rather have to dig the hole in the shape of whatever you put in it.

I hereby claim dibs on using this line against you the next time we discuss the interpretation of a law.


The point, Thomas, is that the conservatives I know, read, listen to, including myself, do not agree with the definition you want to assign to them. But they all call themselves conservative. The list parados wants to skewer me with re Rush is not something I said on his behalf. It is what he has said about himself as well as him describing himself as a conservative. Since I agree with much even most--maybe all; I'd have to go back and read them again to be sure--of those same points, I could say that he and I agree on what a modern American conservative is.

If you wish to define conservatives differently that's fine. But the definitions you are using are not the definitions that most or all modern conservatives, at least the ones I know about, assign to themselves.

Now you might argue that your definition is right, for them, or me, rather than the definition I or anybody else use. But I certainly have as much right to label myself as you have the right to label me.

(And yes, there is wiggle room in the interpretation of some laws, and I'm quite aware that modern liberals and modern conservatives frequently disagree on what interpretation should apply.)
Diest TKO
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 11:18 pm
@Foxfyre,
Foxfyre wrote:
The point, Thomas, is that the conservatives I know, read, listen to, including myself, do not agree with the definition you want to assign to them. But they all call themselves conservative.

What does calling themselves conservative have to do with the truth of the matter?

You asked for a definition of the word. Got it. It's not parados that's forcing you to do anything, it's you refusing to accept a definition that parados had in no part in creating. Beyond that, the point is less that you prefer your definition over a academic authority, it is that you blatantly are embarrassing yourself by claiming that you never claimed Rush was a conservative. Your failed sidestep by saying that he said those things about himself is moot because you yourself confirm those claims so clearly...

Foxfyre wrote:
Sounds pretty conservative to me


Taking his self declaration of conservatism evaluating it against your own and viola! You affirmed his claims.

I won't argue that you can't label yourself as you please but
1) if you don't wish to abide by the REAL definition, then you forfeit the right to declare yourself an authority on the issue.
2) you don't have any footing to demand others accept your PERSONAL definition.
3) it means you still must address the REAL definition as used by others because that is what they are using to craft their questions and answers to you. If conservatives are defined to do thing-A, and I ask you why they do it, you can't reply that they don't because your definition of conservatives excludes thing-A.

T
K
O
Foxfyre
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 11:20 pm
@Diest TKO,
Because none of the definition out of the dictionary or academia or whatever accurately describe the modern American conservative as I define myself and I define myself as a conservative. I never claimed to be an authority. I claimed to be a conservative and I don't fit the definitions others would really, REALLY like to assign to me.

I affirmed nothing about Rush other than he describes himself as a conservative and provides examples of what that entails. I do share at least many of the same convictions and I do define those convictions as conservative. Does Rush have any liberal convictions? I dunno . I'm guessing he probably does since nobody is 100% anything.

But the list Rush provided for his own beliefs also doesn't fit the definitions others want to attach to modern conservatism here.

But for the sake of argument, if you all are so gol darned convinced that I have no right to describe myself as I choose or assign whatever lable I think appropriate to myself, then what sort of designation would you assign to me? To a Rush? To an Ican? To an Okie? To a Thomas Sowell? To a Walter Williams?
Foxfyre
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jan, 2009 11:32 pm
Come on guys. What label am I allowed to use for myself?
 

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