To conservatives WITH a conscience

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by SMM, Oct 11, 2007.

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  1. SMM macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    #1
    There has to come a time when you realize that your party has been hijacked by the most loathsome group of social dominators this country has even witnessed. This is mot a liberal-conservative talking point. Look at the whales**t levels the right-wing has sunk to. Would you do this? If not, why support those who are?
     
  2. nbs2 macrumors 68030

    nbs2

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    #2
    No. Because I find the left to be just as bad, but with less hope of ever producing good.

    I assume that by "your party" and "the right-wing" you mean the GOP. I don't think the right (or left) in and of itself is a changing substance.

    As for the kid, you can't excuse people for running with half-run research, but putting out a brief biographical sketch of this kid would have staved that off. It's not like it was unknown that blogger-nation would start to look for skeletons. On its face, private school and a $500,000 home make that kids family look wealthy compared to me - pushing out those facts up front with a comment about full scholarships and buying the house for $50k when the neighborhood was a craphole would have cut off issues.
     
  3. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #3
    Huh? That wasn't the question.
     
  4. Agathon macrumors 6502a

    Agathon

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    #4
    They aren't. The problem with the right is not that they are full of social dominators, but that they are comprised of authoritarians (and a few who are both – read John Dean's book, which the thread title is a reference to).

    There are virtually no left wing authoritarians. It's a scientific fact. I even have the book of studies from the world's leading authority on the authoritarian personality, and he's done the research and concludes that all authoritarians today are basically right wing.
     
  5. SMM thread starter macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    #5
    I am impressed you are familiar with this work. IMHO Dean has become one of the top scholars in modern American politics. He scares the 'authoritarians'. He has the first-hand, insider knowledge they cannot refute. He is a Goldwater protégée and has an historical perspective few can match. He was personally involved with the last major authoritarian administration's wrong doings. Yet, he does not try to dodge responsibility. He fully admits his guilt, and offers no excuses. He has been the only Watergate person to do so.
     
  6. Agathon macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    Yeah, I have both of Dean's most recent books. I'd recommend them to anyone. I guess I've agreed with his basic premise for a long time. Outside of the US, conservatives still retain some of the old Eisenhower conservative ideal, which makes the current crop of radical authoritarian conservatives in the US look rather bizarre (although they have had their influence as well, especially in Canada). My own view is that it's impossible to truly appreciate what needs to be done to fix contemporary problems unless we face right wing authoritarianism and stop pretending that it deserves the same polite consideration we extend to other political viewpoints (including traditional conservatism).

    Dean's book is important to me because it turned me on to Altemeyer's The Authoritarian Spectre, which is the most illuminating book on politics I have read in the last five years. I don't know if you have read his stuff, but there's a free e-book by Altemeyer, which explains his theory in layman's terms, available at Altemeyer's site. The AS is rather more technical and full of surveys, but is even more informative.

    I remember saying to an American colleague that you could always talk to and deal with the old style Eisenhower conservatives, and it would be a pleasure, more often than not, but it's simply impossible to deal with today's radcons. Even Ronald Reagan comes across as a traditionally sober and conscientious politician compared to some of the loons we have today, and I never thought I could ever say that.
     
  7. Iscariot macrumors 68030

    Iscariot

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    #7
    What if you're not conservative, but don't have a conscience?

    In all seriousness, while the Republican/Neocon attacks on the kid and his family are grossly unfounded, unprofessional and downright vile, parading around a brain-damaged kid for political ends isn't exactly smile-time-at-the-puppy-factory kosher either.
     
  8. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #8
    Really? While I'm not exactly always a fan of the left either, maybe you can give some examples. I can't recall them ever going after a 12 year old kid and his family because they disagree with him. Especially using such bold faced lies. Even going to his house. The right parades kids around all the time for their purposes. Look at the stem cell veto speech, lots of kids there.

    This is pretty despicable, not justifiable at all, and if the left did do something like this, I'd disagree with it just as much, but I don't see it.

    They volunteered to speak out because they actually are recipients of the SCHIP benefits. They were speaking out for their own best interest, as without it, he and his sister would be far worse off. It put a human face on the issue, the same way conservatives and liberals alike do all the time. Dirty politics sometimes, but since this wasn't just some kid and he really believes in the program which is actually helping him and his family, I don't see why anyone could have a problem with it.

    Malkin and Rush were bad enough before, but this just makes them look even worse. Reluctant to make apologies or even retractions now that they've been proven wrong. As it does McConnell, currently at about 50% approval before his bid for reelection next year, who's office is connected to the attempted smear. And despite the overwhelming support of the program, even by conservatives. Here's more:

    Frost family draws ire of conservatives
    The Swift-Boating of Graeme Frost

    Can't help but wonder if someone is going to come in here to still slam the program (maybe even also attack the kid as well), especially after so many were saying in those other threads about how bad gov funded healthcare is, even for those who truly need it, even for children.

    Thank you neocons for once again being your own worst enemy.
     
  9. Iscariot macrumors 68030

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    #9
    It looks more to me like the Democratic party pimping out a cute face and human tragedy to win votes.
     
  10. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #10
    That's far preferable than demonizing people you don't like and dividing the country to win votes because your ideas can't stand on their own.
     
  11. SMM thread starter macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    #11
    Yes, that is what FOX is saying. I guess if you cannot appeal to a person's sense of doing what is right, you have to try something else, like putting a human face to the consequences of their purely selfish motives. Considering the visceral response, they did not like having to look at it.
     
  12. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #12
    Of course. And there's no end to these people's shame. They'll now assassinate the character of a kid. Anything to assuade their guilt. I can't believe anyone even listens to these fools anymore.
     
  13. imac/cheese macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    I consider myself a conservative with a conscience, and I would never support what the right-wing did to this family. In general, I do not support the current right-wing at all.
     
  14. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #14
    You must be some commie left-wing liberal! You're not a real conservative! :D

    Be careful. This is what you'll hear from these people. Disagree with them on anything and you'll be branded as anti-american. They've been doing it during this whole administration. Who'd have ever thought they'd go this low? Maybe we should be glad they did. People need to know what they're really about.
     
  15. imac/cheese macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    I was probably a phoney soldier too.
     
  16. SMM thread starter macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    #16
    Thanks for the referral to the free e-book! I really do appreciate it. I was intending to order this. I was impressed with the fine reference work in Dean's books. I did do a quick and dirty check on Altemeyer, mainly to get a sense of his position in academia and who was (if anyone) attempting to discredit him (and why). When I noted the latter group was universally comprised of conservative authoritarians, I felt his work must be pretty spot on. Once again, thanks!
     
  17. Iscariot macrumors 68030

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    #17
    man, I can't even get through The Cat in the Hat.
     
  18. SMM thread starter macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    #18
    Society needs both conservatives and liberals. I have a personal belief that evolution does not stop at physical change and behavioral adaption. I think it is also a process which brings forth changes in sociology, economics and politics. Unchecked change would be as potentially dangerous as trying to prevent it. So, conservatism and liberalism work hand-in-hand to make change a gradual process.

    Authoritarianism has little, or no value in my mind. I believe it runs contrary to the idea of democracy. Autocrats have filled the ranks of this Administration. The fact that authoritarians are universally conservatives, does not mean that all conservatives are authoritarians. And, following that same logic, not all republicans are authoritarians. I would even venture to say, many republicans are borderline conservative (leaning much more to moderate).

    I used to have many lively debates with conservative friends, employees and other associates. It was usually accomplished in a vein of sharing ideas. Nowadays, it seems like the rift between the two has opened to Grand Canyon proportions. Do you notice that too? I do not think this happened by accident. But, that is for another day and thread.
     
  19. SMM thread starter macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    #19
    Yes, that was a tough read! ;)
     
  20. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

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    #20
    well, if authoritarians are universally conservative, then you're saying that Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot and the various folks that ran those eastern european dictatorships weren't authoritians? Surely you don't mean that do you???

    That would seem to be quite contrary to the generally excepted meaning of the word wouldn't it?

    edit:
    with a bit of reading to see what the heck you were talking about, I find that Altemeyer's term is referring to personality types and not political beliefs......that yes indeed, one can be a communist and yet have a "Right Wing Authoritarian" personality....and that there's also what is called a "Left Wing Authoritarian" personality type......amusingly enpugh, it seems that a person with what most would consider right wing political beliefs can have be a "Left Wing Authoritarian" personality
     
  21. SMM thread starter macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    #21
    If I understand you correctly, I think you are making a correlation to the fact their governments are communist, which are labeled as leftist, so the leaders are liberal. Is this correct?

    I have not read any in-depth bios on any of them, certainly nothing which would provide insight to their psychological make up. What I have gleaned about them would not suggest any of them were liberal at all. They seem to be classic despots. So, I do not see any contradictions in Altemeyer's conclusions.
     
  22. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

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    #22
    When you're referring to Altemyer's term "RWA", which describes a personality type, there's the danger of it becoming confused with the word "authoritarian" which is typically used to describe a characteristic of various political systems, and those could just as easily be left wing or right wing.

    You said that "...authoritarians are universally conservative..." First, it isn't clear that you are referring to the "RWA" personality type, and second, that doesn't really agree with Altemeyer's findings, as he says that in the Soviet Union, RWA personality types tended to be supporters of the communist party.

    Basically, I think it's necessary to make it clear when you're using terms that are intended to describe personality types and not let them get mixed up with terms that describe political systems.....it's just a matter of helping to avoid confusion.
     
  23. SMM thread starter macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    #23
    Altemeyer was pretty adamant that LWAs were extremely rare. This is according to Dean quoting from his work. I do not have time right now, but I will attempt to find the actual source information for you. I have just downloaded one of Altemeyer's books. Hopefully it is in there. I have Dean on audio cassette, and cannot get it from there.
     
  24. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #24
    Which conservatives also do, as with the snowflake kids. You may have missed the part where this family is being helped with the SCHIP program, and he and his Sister may have died had this program not been in place. These are exactly who this system is designed for, the working class who otherwise cannot get care for their children, especially with preexisting conditions, as the injuries from the accident have become. And even if what you posted was true, it still doesn't excuse the backlash from conservatives who attacked the messengers because they couldn't attack the message.

    I'm sure you aren't trying to defend their behavior, or say that makes it ok, but that's kinda what's coming across. ;)

    Explains a lot. :D J/k :p


    Still wondering where those "conservatives" are, who in other threads speak out so much against orgs like Moveon for attacking people and/or say we shouldn't be paying for sick or injured kids because their parents are lazy or trying to screw the system.
     
  25. Agathon macrumors 6502a

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    #25

    Aha.... I can prove this wrong.

    I am holding my personal copy of "The Authoritarian Spectre" here. Altemeyer has a LWA test, which tests for authoritarian submission to a revolutionary leader rather than an established authority. He admits that supporters of the communist regimes were RWAs, but that does not mean that the leftists in our societies are the same, since they oppose the incumbent power. If the leftists in our societies were authoritarians, they would support a hypothetical revolutionary leader to the same extent that RWAs support the established authorities.

    If there were going to be genuine left wing authoritarians, then they would be high scorers on this test and low scorers on the RWA test. In fact, the people who get the high scores on the LWA test tend to get even higher scores on the RWA test. Altemeyer calls these people "Wild Card Authoritarians". They are basically right wingers who are extremely aggressive and to some degree pissed off with the current system. They are not left wing, since they score higher on the RWA test.

    But there are no genuine Left Wing Authoritarians really, because people who score low on the RWA, but relatively higher on the LWA test (i.e. "radical" left wingers) score much lower for authoritarian aggression than those who score high on the RWA test or high on both the LWA and RWA test (the "Wild Cards"). Altemeyer is quite clear about this.

    If right wingers in democratic societies want to accuse the revolutionary left of harbouring authoritarians, then there is absolutely no evidence of this. If you find an authoritarian in a leftist movement, they are certainly a "Wild Card" like Mussolini or Lyndon La Rouche (Altemeyer's examples) who score higher as RWAs. In contrast, there is ample evidence of conservative organizations being awash with fascists. There are no real revolutionary authoritarians.

    So every time someone like Rush Limbaugh accuses the radical left of being as bad as the fascists they claim to oppose, you can confidently say that he is wrong. Authoritarianism in our societies is a conservative phenomenon. We leftie revolutionaries are the free people, they are the fascists: it's a scientific fact. :)
     
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