Conservatives, Liberals, and Liberty

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by bradl, Nov 9, 2010.

  1. bradl macrumors 68040

    bradl

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    #1
    In my general romps through various blogs involving leadership, I stumbled onto a very interesting post, that is very relevant to, well, just about everything here in PRSI, and how much our knowledge and interpretation of the words "conservative", "liberal", and "social" are in today's society. I found this to be very refreshing, and would like to open up a rather cordial discussion about them. Enjoy.

    http://orrinwoodward.blogharbor.com/blog/_archives/2010/11/6/4673745.html

    In a LOT of ways, Mr. Woodward is right, especially in the historical sense. It was right around that time which we had transitioned from the Agrarian Age to the Industrial Age, which a huge shift in wealth had occurred, and government expanded. With that, came the responsibility of power, which went out the window (Stock Market Crash of 1929 rings a bell). But thinking about it, we've been in a State-type power for quite a while, and while Blues and Reds can argue their talking points, pundits stomp their feet all they want, and those calling themselves "anti-Anti" with know real knowledge into what they are saying get on their soapbox, absolutely nothing is being done about the real problem that has gone on for almost a century. In the meantime, Patriot Acts, bailouts, and more from the pundits slowly brainwash us into not seeing what is happening under our noses.

    After reading this, and looking up some of the things Mr. Woodward recommends, it really makes you wonder if the politicians, let alone the voting public, really know what they are getting themselves into, and how things shift each year elections come up..

    BL.
     
  2. KeriJane macrumors 6502a

    KeriJane

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    #2
    Yes, that sounds about right.

    I've noticed that the names "Conservatives" and "Liberals" have become distorted caricatures at best, particularly "Liberal" which no longer has the slightest connection to "Liberty".
    Nowadays, one must look to Libertarians for liberal principles as "Liberal" now usually indicates "Statist" or possibly "Communist".

    "Conservatives"? Well that's a little more clear as most who fly this banner pracitice some conservation, particularly conservation of personal resources.
    I feel that many who picture themselves as conservatives are actually libertarians and some of the rest are more like the bad 'ol robber barons (Capitalist Pigs).

    Still, we must keep up with the current meanings assigned to words or risk being misunderstood. No matter how odd it may seem, "Liberals" those people who would once defend your right to say something, anything to the death.... are now the biggest Censors of all!

    Oh well,
    Happy Tuesday!
    Keri
     
  3. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #3
    Please elaborate. Most people in this forum who consider themselves liberal would absolutely defend your right to say as you please. Case in point, many here defend Fred Phelps right to free speech, including myself. That's pretty extreme. Meanwhile, conservatives wish to keep equal rights from many of our citizens.

    Society and life have changed. It's not the good ol' days when the US was sparsely populated and resources were plentiful. It's quite simply NOT. If we don't all start working together, this country will be doomed. That does not mean that we keep pretending that every man is an island.
     
  4. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #4
    Sorted.
     
  5. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #5
    When I read things like this that are absolute distortions, I think you're right.
     
  6. fivepoint macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #6
    A lot of truth in the OP. I've been saying for a long time in these forums how the two parties have far more in common than they have setting them apart. It's just big-government on the left and slightly less big-government on the right. The root Romanword 'liber' (the free one) belongs no where near the word 'liberal' as it's used in politics today.

    The only strong political voice for true liberty at this point seems to be coming from the Tea Party and candidates like Ron and Rand Paul.
     
  7. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #7
    If that is "true liberty", you can keep it.
     
  8. whooleytoo macrumors 604

    whooleytoo

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    #8
    I don't really agree (as an outsider, looking in).

    Both sides like to think of themselves as "giving/providing/protecting" rights. But it's not 100% true in either case. Both sides favour selective rights for the individual; they just differ on which ones.

    Conservatives will tell you they live for personal liberty. Great. Then can a citizen choose to take drugs, marry a same-sex partner? "Hell no, the government must stop that!".

    Liberals are all in favour of rights too. Great. How about the choice to own a gun? How about the right to keep your own wages, free of high taxes; or the freedom to express your opinion, even if others find it offensive? "No, we know what's best, some rights you should not have".

    Neither side believes in absolute freedom; it's all just an argument over where exactly you draw the line.
     
  9. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

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    #9
    Nothing but political degeneracy, harking back to a golden mythical past, with nothing to offer contemporary society in the 21st century. While other nations are outstripping you in infrastructure, wealth distribution, aspects of technology and job creation, a large proportion of you are adopting the language of the confederacy and metaphorically posing in tri-cornered hats and muskets.
     
  10. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    #10
    As often happens around here, the OP attempts to define a complex issue with, "There are two kinds of people in the world..."

    I think that people are a little more complex than the OP would have us believe, but I do understand the allure of simple explanations.

    I know it's comforting to put people in neat little boxes with neat little labels. And for those that require that kind of security blanket, the OP is the warm and fuzzy material that helps some get through the scary darkness.

    Nightie-night. Here's your blankie.
     
  11. fivepoint macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #11
    No attempts to label 'contemporary society' or the '21st century' as something unique to history and unable to fit within the well-shaped lessons our past has taught us will ever hide the truth that true liberty is worth the cost that comes with it, and that liberty, freedom, small-government, and capitalism represent the single best hope on earth for safety, health, and prosperity. The troubles we're experiencing today are directly attributable to the expansion of government, the nanny-state, big brother; and only a return to the principles that made our country great will ensure our ability to regain our once prized attributes. If that means I have to wear a tri-cornered hat, then so be it.
     
  12. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #12
    Did you ever take it off?
     
  13. fivepoint macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #13
    Not even when I shower.
     
  14. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #14
    Nope- and it's also made of tin foil.

    And becoming more and more stupid with every passing year.
     
  15. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #15
    It's incredibly tragic that a country that has accomplished so much is now just permanently spinning its wheels.

    Progress in the US has come to mean regression, no matter what the cost.

    I pity FP and the tea party types because they are unable to see that they are pawns in the Kock brothers' game.
     
  16. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    #16
    It's the tortured, spastic dance of social progress: two steps forward, one step back.
     
  17. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

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    #17

    Two things:

    1. Please, outline specifically in listed points how the economic troubles that that the US is in and more or less foisted on the rest of the world are directly attributable to government. A timeline would be great, leading up to the point where bankers queued up to be bailed out by the government while jobs were being shed at about 700,000 per month. Why a list? Because we can then examine point by point whether what you're saying has any validity, comparing it against the public record.

    2. If your theories were correct about the role of government and the economy, please explain how it is that Germany, with an extensive social safety net, formidable government planning, excellent public services and infrastructure... and strong unions is currently experiencing record growth with living standards easily the equal of the US? If what you claim about your 'worldview' is correct, this would be an impossibility. There's no point in having a 'worldview' unless you're prepared to talk about how the world works.

    Thanks. :)
     
  18. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #18
    I really hope you aren't holding your breath.
     
  19. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #19
    He'll be back but it will most likely be with interpretations of events bent to fit his preconceived notions of how the world should be run and how things are inherently wrong if they are not run that way. That's the problem w/going wholesale into a specific ideology, it limits one's ability to effectively adapt to the world as it truly is because all one can see is the hypothetical world of their ideology. If all one has is a hammer that doesn't magically turn all obstacles into nails.


    The only '-ism' that is worth its salt, IMO, is pragmatism. Find what works in reality regardless of what is 'supposed to work' according to an ideology based on a perfect world populated with perfect people.


    Lethal
     
  20. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #20
    Oh, I completely agree. That's the problem for conservatives. What works so rarely fits their ideology.
     
  21. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #21
    So they do their best to ensure that nothing works.
     
  22. bradl thread starter macrumors 68040

    bradl

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    #22
    This actually gets back to my point in the OP. Are we talking "Conservatives" in the current lexicon, which the word is thrown back and forth on all of the cable news channels and various blogs, or the ideology that it originally was and should have intended to be?

    Same question with the word "Liberal".

    (If you can't tell, I'm trying to get some discussion going on how the what the words are, in relation to the power they hold in government then and now, not the day-to-day namecalling used.)
    BL.
     
  23. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #23
    Just to put a cat among the pigeons, in Australia the Liberals are the conservatives.
     
  24. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #24
    What you mention in your OP is irrelevant, as times and technology as well as population size have changed, so have the meanings of those terms. We simply can no longer live like we are all islands in this country. We can't. It's killing us.
     
  25. samiwas macrumors 68000

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    #25
    Good luck with that one.

    That just means that Germany is socialist and full of lazy liberals, and that no one there really tries hard to accomplish anything because without pure capitalism to drive them, they have no reason to. That's why Germany doens't fare very well in the world. :rolleyes:
     

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