October 05, 2007
Caricatures of Liberals and Conservatives
My wife and I were driving through Madison tonight, and she expressed surprise that there were so many dedicated HOV lanes, even on non-highway streets. I derisively remarked that this was a liberal city, and liberals love their HOV lanes. She remarked rather sharply that she was tired of me harping on the fact that Madison is a liberal city. She didn’t mind it every now and then, but my continual references were driving her crazy. Later that evening, as I was discussing the bitterness a conquered culture can feel toward its conquerors, she remarked that I myself am bitter towards liberals.
That remark caught my attention. Certainly I didn’t feel I was bitter towards them. But I continued to give it thought, and I begin to see that it is at least partly true. Liberals are the enemy I think about most and spend most of my emotional energy disliking. (not to say that I spend most of my total emotional energy disliking liberals, just that out of all my emotional energy spent disliking anyone or anything, more of it goes to disliking liberals than probably any other destination.) Why is that? It’s not that I feel liberals are the worst of all enemies: Communists and Nazis and Al-Qaeda are certainly all worse. Part of it might be that I feel much more threatened by liberals than any other enemy; they’re a lot easier to find in America. :) Part of it could be that I’m more familiar with them and encounter them a lot more often. But I would go for the “threatened” explanation; it explains the emotional reaction better.
But that got me thinking about exactly what it is that I consider a “liberal”. And I began exploring the mental caricature that comes to mind when I think of liberals. And my mind is thinking so much that I can’t sleep right now, so that’s why you’re reading this and I’m typing it. My blog is something like Dumbledore’s pensieve in the Harry Potter books. It’s like a silver bowl I deposit my excess thoughts into when they’re too turbulent and distracting. Unfortunately, it’s a whole lot more time-consuming and less accurate to type them out than to put a wand to my head and drain them out. Life can be sad. :)
The following mental caricatures are just that: caricatures. They’re not photographs, they’re not fair, they’re not balanced, they’re not even particularly nice. But they’re honest, and like the political caricatures in newspapers, I think you’re recognize the sort of person I’m talking about. I think it’s better that I leave them sort of “raw”, because my primary motivation for improving them would not be to improve the image of liberals, but to appear a more fair-minded person.
It’s important to note that these caricatures are not real people. To be perfectly honest, I don’t really know anyone who matches them closely. I’ve liked every liberal I’ve ever personally met, and I hope they’re not too grievously offended by my caricatures. But I hope that they can use these caricatures to better understand me and what I mean and am thinking of when I describe something as “liberal” or “conservative”.
Caricature of Conservatives
View of History
The Western world and Christianity is the source of all good. The Western world might have a few bad points, and other religions can be half-way decent (see a conservatives view of religion later), but in general, all good is related somehow to the Western world or Christianity.
In the United States, children should be taught every success and moral victory of their country. Failures should be taught, but not dwelt on. They should also be presented with the history of other cultures, as long as those cultures are presented in a neutral light (slightly negative on those attributes in contradiction with the West). The only time another culture may be presented in a superior light is when it is similar to one of the “golden” ages of the West.
Europeans, after WWII, are something of an exception to this rule. Europe has been liberal enough in the past fifty years to have passed (tentatively) into the realm of evil. All good remaining in Europe owes its root causes to things before WWII. Or to the US, of course.
The 60s were a nearly unmitigated disaster. The only thing good about them is the fact that they ended :), the civil rights movement in general, and landing on the moon. Conservatives are constantly on the watch for liberals trying to bring back the sixties or continue on their destructive path.
America is almost a perfect place, due to the nice white Christians and those of other cultures who have accepted white culture, religion, and traditions. Some white people are bad, but those people are liberals. Lots of non-white people are good, but they’re conservatives or Christians or are fairly reminiscent of conservatives or Christians.
View of Children and Education
Children are the future, and are viewed with suspicious eyes as potential agents of the disaster. However, they are also a delight to parents, particularly mothers. Men might possibly benefit from parenting more, but women are better at it and should spend more time doing it. People should have any number of children they want; the more the better. People without kids are weird and suspicious (so are unmarried people after a certain age). Conservatives hardly concerned with over-population at all.
A child becomes a human being when it is conceived or shortly thereafter. Killing it is murder and shouldn’t be legal.
In general, the raising of children should be entrusted to parents, definitely not the government. In an ideal world, a man and a woman would get married and have babies and raise them together to be productive, conservative citizens.
Education is the process of converting a child into an adult (preferably a conservative). Bad individual choices are the source of all bad behavior, though bad environment or education has some influence. A child should always be taught as if the teacher knew more than the student (which he or she obviously does, since he or she is older. It is a general truism among conservatives that older people are wiser and more knowledgeable about important things than younger people). The only right path a student can choose is the conservative path; making another choices is a clear sign of the individual rebellion (or the corrosive influence of Hollywood and TV or the Internet). Another reason to come down hard on children straying and isolate them from a bad culture.
Morality is about good and evil. Good things are almost always conservative things. Evil things are just about everything else. :) Only conservative choices are correct, though people are free to make non-conservative choices and suffer the consequences.
In general, the only way to do right is to do what someone in proper authority (like your parents) tells you. (Unless they tell you something different from your parents. In that case, they might be correct if your parents were liberals. If not, they should get your parents permission before teaching you something different)
People are naturally evil and will choose wrong, if not properly guided by proper authorities and tradition. That’s why it’s essential to change slowly, if at all, and to submit to governing authorities. And why it’s essential to choose conservatives as leaders.
Government and War
Society and government are not the same thing. Government exists to protect society, chiefly from external enemies like armies and terrorists. When society should do something, that almost never means government should do it. When government isn’t protecting people from lethal or monetary threats, it should leave them alone. Coercion of wrong-doers (either external or internal) is strongly encouraged, but coercion of anyone else is dreadful.
Wars are natural. When the US or Western civilization fights anyone else (meaning not the US and not other Western civilizations, respectively), the other side are the bad guys. Other wars may be good or evil or indifferent, depending on the situation. War is a terrible thing, but there are lots of terrible things in the world. Much worse than war is a bad peace. War will never go away and the only way to keep from being destroyed by it is to destroy anyone who challenges you.
Religion and Truth
All religions except Christianity and Judaism are false. Other religions can be tolerated, but the true religion is Christianity. Judaism is a close friend and we can tolerate our differences.
Only Christianity and Judaism teach truth. All other religions are a bunch of nonsense that it’s not really worth trying to comprehend. “Judgmental” is a word liberals love to use to cover up their sin. It’s hard to be too judgmental, though of course it would be bad to be really judgmental. People who don’t agree with what your parents (or some other conservative source) are at least wrong and probably bad.
Atheism is the worst of all religions. Atheists should keep their thoughts to themselves and refrain from infecting their children with their ideas.
There is a God, and he agrees with your parents (assuming your parents were decent conservatives). Religion is just about the only thing short of fear and naked force that keeps civilization together.
Civilization might be having a bad effect on the environment, but we’ve got to be really careful about figuring out exactly how bad the problem is and how to fix it. We’ve got to be especially careful not to wreck our economy trying to fix it.
Global warming is highly dubious because it hasn’t been approved yet by the proper authorities.
Animals are nowhere near as valuable as human beings, even the endangered ones.
If you want, you can recycle, but it shouldn’t be a law or anything. Powerful cars are cool. And cars are essentially American, which is to say essentially good.
- Children learning about their cultures’ positive attributes.
- People from other cultures choosing to embrace ours.
- People respecting their elders.
Caricature of Liberals
View of History
The Western world and Christianity is the source of all evil. The Western world might have a few good points, and Christians can be decent (see a liberals view of religion later), but in general, all evil is related somehow to the Western world and Christianity.
In the United States, children should be taught every failure and moral lapse of their country. They should also be presented with the history of other cultures, as long as those cultures are presented in a positive light. The only time another culture may be presented in a negative light is when it resembles that of the West.
Europeans, after WWII, are something of an exception to this rule. Europe has been liberal enough in the past fifty years to have passed (tentatively) into the realm of righteousness. All evil remaining in Europe owes its root causes to things before WWII. Or to the US, of course.
The 60s were a wonderful time of freedom. They were something of a disappointment in that they did not last or change American society enough, a fact liberals continually work to change.
America is mostly an evil place, due to the nasty white people who live here and oppress all the other groups. Some white people are nice, but those people are liberals. Some non-white people are bad, but they’re conservatives.
View of Children and Education
Children are the future, and are viewed with misty eyes as potential agents of the realization of utopia. However, they are also nasty inconveniences to parents, particularly mothers. Men would benefit from parenting more, women would benefit from parenting less. People shouldn’t have more than one or two children; that over-populates the earth.
A child only becomes a human being when it is born; before that, it is a part of the mother’s body that can be destroyed like a faulty appendix.
In general, the raising of children should be entrusted to society, which means to the government. In an ideal world, women would have babies and give them up to the government, which would raise them to be productive, liberal citizens.
Education is the process of converting a child into an adult (preferably a liberal). Faulty education (or a bad social environment) are the source of all bad behavior. A child should not be taught as if the teacher knew more than the student, but encouraged along a student-chosen path. The only wrong path a student can choose is a non-liberal path; making such choices is a clear sign of the interference of parents. Another reason to entrust education to experts.
“Morality” is a word used by ignorant right-wingers. All choices are equally valid (except non-liberal choices. Even those can be valid, as long as the people making them realize they shouldn’t expect or encourage anyone else to make them.).
In general, the only way to commit evil is to make someone else do something they don’t want to do or try to make someone else believe something they don’t want to believe. (Unless you’re trying to make them believe something liberal. In that case, it depends on the culture of the target. A person from another culture must never be expected to change their beliefs, even their non-liberal ones. A person from our own culture should be persuaded to become liberal.)
People are naturally good and will choose right, if not corrupted by bad societies or bad education. This is why it is essential to control both society and education.
Government and War
Society and government are almost the same thing. When society should do something, that means government should do it. Government exists to control and perfect society and education, and can use any non-lethal means of doing so. Coercion can be permitted on non-liberals belonging to society, but not on anyone not part of society.
Wars are caused by bad governments. When two Western governments fight, they are both at fault. When a Western government fights a non-Western government, the Western government is chiefly at fault. War is a awful thing that should be banned and would go away if liberals controlled the governments of Western civilizations. (Since all other civilizations are already good, except for their Western tendencies and baggage, other civilizations probably won’t start a war with a liberal Western country. It is vaguely possible, of course. To avoid this, all traces of Western influence should be wiped out worldwide (except liberal traces, which are the only good traces of Western society).)
Religion and Truth
All religions are equal and good, except Christianity and Judaism. Even those can be good, as long as they recognize that all the other religions are just as valid.
All religions teach the same basic thing, which is that everybody should be nice to everybody else and no-one should be judgmental of anyone. Judgmental means telling someone that they’re bad or that they’re wrong. People who do that are bad and wrong.
Atheism is the best of all religions, though atheists should remember to be nice to other cultures and pay respect to their traditions.
There is no God. There may be a benevolent force that wants people to be good. But religion is still a good thing, as long as it’s not taken too seriously and not enforced on anyone.
Western civilization (and humanity in general to a lesser extent) is hell-bent on destroying the world. That’s one of its most evil attributes.
Global warming is obvious and anyone who doubts it is stupid or being paid off by oil executives (who are the most evil of all businessmen, a generally evil lot).
Animals are just as valuable as human beings and endangered species are more so.
The path of ecological righteousness is to recycle everything, drive the most fuel-efficient cars whenever cars (a dreadful invention favored by the most evil people in the world—Americans) must be used, eat only plants and plant-products, plant living things everywhere, save all endangered species at any cost, and to do the minimal harm possible. And have no children. Adopt if you must have kids.
- Children learning about other cultures’ positive attributes.
- People from this culture choosing to reject its non-liberal elements, and embracing the culture of others.
- People agreeing.
This post has been classified as "Musings"