Thursday, November 6, 2008

I'm not a conservative

Too Old To Work, Too Young To Retire made a comment a while back to the effect that he thought I was a conservative. I'm really not, and a post at Fighting For Liberty has made me come out of the closet.

I grew up in a strongly Democratic family, and was a strong Democrat myself. The first election where I was old enough to pay attention was 1972 (as a young teenager), and actually sat in on part of the Watergate hearings in 1974. I voted for Carter twice (I know, I know) and Mondale, although Dukakis finally broke the habit. Just so you know, I've held elective office in the Democratic Party machine.

Yes, kids, I was a socialist apparatchik.

Along the way, it's not so much that I became conservative, as that I realized that I was a slave to an idealogy. I like to think that I think for myself now, rather than toeing a party line. At least I try to think about basic premises, and think through consequences now.

But I'm not a conservative, and I'm registered Independent.

So please, Liberty, don't throw me under the bus, just because we likely disagree on some things.

In case anyone cares, here's a Cliff Notes guide to Ted's politics:
  • The War On Drugs is a complete fiasco. It's not saving people from personal destruction, it's actively destroying them (look in the prisons, or on the streets of poor neighborhoods). I support the legalization of almost all narcotics. Of course some people will destroy their lives, they do it all the time with alcohol. There's a whole sub-genre of Country Music about this, for crying out loud. But right now, the Government's the one who's doing people wrong.
  • The War On Terror simply has to be fought, because a bunch of People Out There hate us. There's nothing we can to to stop them from hating us, other than offering them a JDAM. Yes, we've screwed a lot of this up. No, it doesn't make any difference.
  • If Jim and Bob want to run off to Provincetown and tie the knot, then I simply don't care. It's none of my business, and if Jim gets really sick, itsn't any of his family's business, either. They shouldn't be able to keep Bob from the bedside in the hospital. Sorry if this offends anyone on the right.
  • There's a whole world of difference between Gay Rights and Gay Pride. The Gay community would have fewer problems with advancing Gay Rights if they had more adult supervision of the Gay Pride community. Sorry if this offends anyone on the left.
  • Shooting things is fun. Gun control is, at its heart, racist, sexist, anti-gay class warfare. The left should be ashamed of themselves here. Didn't we always believe that it was right to trust the people?
  • People who need help should be offered help. There's a place here - a big place - for the government. Bad stuff happens, people - see Katrina. This country is too good to let people starve under bridges.
  • Government help shouldn't trap people in dependency, and should address the fact that some folks will try to scam our better natures - see Katrina. Great Society has a lot to answer for here, despite its good intentions. Highway to Hell - you can look it up. The left needs to be doing more thinking about how to fix what it clearly and horribly broken in this country's social programs.
  • Women's rights and the Women's Movement no longer have anything to do with each other. Every feminist who supported Bill Clinton can just STFU right now. Only on Planet Leftie can Hillary Clinton be a feminist icon.
  • This country is great, and I'm not ashamed to say it publicly. This is probably the single biggest reason that I cannot be a Democrat anymore. It didn't used to be this way, but now you don't ever hear any talk from the left about how great this country is without hearing the word "but." Well, phooey to that.
  • I think that both the right and the left are a menace to scientific inquiry. Creationism may be many things, but "scientific" isn't one of them. And don't get me started about the "Global Warming" power grab. I'd prefer it if both sides took a nice, big swallow of shut the **** up here.
So don't think I'm a RINO, Liberty. I'm not an R at all. Sorry, but I think they're the Stupid Party, as this latest bit about someone whispering about Sarah Palin shows.

However, I'm quite the Sarah Palin fan, and think that she's someone who can appeal to a lot of folks, just like Ronald Reagan did. She'll have to lose most of the religeous right stuff, and play up the anti-corruption stuff. Government can be smaller, and less corrupt, and more effective - I wouldn't be surprised to see the Democrats give her a perfect opening for this in 2012, after a corruption-fest. But the hard core right won't win it, because they make too many people nervous.

People like me.

Please don't throw me out of your club, though.


Anonymous said...

Excellent, excellent, excellent post!

I voted for Gore. So yeah, I know what it's like to do a bit of a turn-around. I'm hardly a conservative, I just want someone who's not a socialist. Low standards, but good luck finding more than a handful in either current party.

What I want more than anything though, is for a dumbass campaign like McCain's to stop trashing the VP because they failed. The VP is the reason it was as close as it was, in my opinion.

Teletubbie murderers and workstation demolishers are always a-OK in my book, man! ;-)

Borepatch said...

As a reformed (old?) socialist, let me say Amen.

And Teletubbies are Enemies Of The State, anyway. As is NT.

Anonymous said...

Exactly. You're either With Us, or your part of the LLLF (Laa-Laa Liberation Front) and must be mercilessly crushed!

the pistolero said...

In case anyone cares, here's a Cliff Notes guide to Ted's politics
Hey, if those positions qualified one as a RINO, the term wouldn't be the epithet it's become. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I've always considered myself to be a conservative...even though I lean a bit toward the small "l" libertarian side.

A couple of things I disagree with you on.

1. The Government shouldn't have anything to do with marriage. Call it civil unions, call it a household contract, call it whatever you want, but marriage is a religious rite, and is, therefore, not the purview of government.

2. I agree that people shouldn't be left to starve under bridges; however charity is not a proper role of government. Not only is it very bad at it (as in INCREDIBLY inefficient at getting the resources to the right people at the right times), but it is entirely to susceptible abuse, to corruption, and to creating dependency.

Charity is the proper role of charities...imagine that.

Borepatch said...

sailorcurt, I agree and disagree.

No question on your point #1, except to say that if the gov is going to recognize rights based on religeous marriage (inheritance, etc), then the should offer the same rights for non-religeous marriage.

The French actually have an interesting way of doing this. First, there's a religous ceremony (sometimes), then the bride and groom go to the town hall to register as a civil couple. I hate to use the French as an example, but think that Thomas Jefferson would forgive me.

Your point #2 is a little harder. Agreed that the gov is a horribly inefficient way to deliver goods and services. However, I don't like the idea of frozen, dead bodies on the streets. I'd rather err on the side of no bodies, *provided* the help does not foster dependency.

Clinton had the words right (albeit not the actions) when he said "a hand up, not a hand out."

But you're right, charity is indeed the proper role of charities. The gov really needs to make sure that they don't displace private charity, as it seems to have done in Europe.

Jay G said...

You voted for CARTER???

And Liberty voted for GORE???

A while back, Bruce admitted to voting for Dukakis.

Holy crap, I ate lunch with a passel of freakin' hippies.

I thought I smelled patchouli...

Lissa said...

And I voted for Kerry. Poor Jay G, you're gonna lose your lunch, aren't you?

JD said...

Ted - Great post and I agree with most of it. I like to call it the Common Sense party. Of course we loose because common sense is not common. . .

Jay - I got your back, I am independent but have never voted for Gore or Carter (I was too young for Carter but voted against him in grade school class elections. . .)

Ted, Liberty, you may have voted for them but it looks like your brains have healed up nicely since then. . . = )

At least you have seen the error of your ways and learned from them. Now pass the ammo . . . = )

TOTWTYTR said...

"Clinton had the words right (albeit not the actions) when he said 'a hand up, not a hand out.'"

I know he stole that from someone, I think Reagan.

Ted, you're a conservative, but not a right wing nut. Or a libertarian if you prefer. Either way, you bring up some good points.

The right has to just forget about the Row v. Wade thing. It's settled law and drives away a lot of people who would otherwise vote Republican. In a perfect world, I'd leave it up to the individual states, which is how it was, but we're not going back to that.

The issue with Same Sex Marriage is that it's been handed down by judicial fiat, not voted by the electorate. As to the rest, I agree with you.

Just so JayG can see none of us are perfect,

McGovern (hey, I was young)
Carter (hey, I was stupid)
Anderson (yeah, I was the ONE)
Reagan (I grew up)

Oh, before I was old enough to vote, in 1968 I worked for Humphrey.

As you can see, the older and smarter I got, the more conservative I got.

As long as I live in this state, I will never, ever, vote for a (D) again.