On Conservatives

Once upon a time I considered myself a conservative. I no longer do, mainly because I don’t know what the word means any more. I thought that a conservative was someone who stood for self-reliance, limited government, fiscal responsibility, foreign policy realism and had a deep and unwavering suspicion that people who claimed to be able to fix the problems that have bedeviled man for millennia were either charlatans, fools or both.

My eyes have been opened. While Bush the Lesser was president, conservatives supported none of these things. Now that the Republicans are out of power, they’re claiming them as core principles again. Lew Rockwell famously argued that the only thing conservatives stand for is “lying from noon into night.” I think it’s a fine piece of political rhetoric, but I don’t agree. I don’t think conservatives are lying. That would require them to have principles worth lying about. They don’t because a conservative is simply someone who hates liberals.

Close your eyes and imagine the dream world of the liberals. It’s a marvelous place. Married homosexuals in Toyota Prii (I insist that’s this is the correct plural of Prius) carpool with endangered species. The various peoples of the earth hold hands and sings songs about love and sharing and all wars consist of pillow fights. In the evening the sick and infirm are wheeled outside to bask in the free healthcare that drops from the sky and no one ever has to die. I call it Liberaltopia and I often visit there in my dreams.

Conservotopia is another matter. It is a bitter land where the air is laden with the scent of sulphur and the screams of the damned. Here is where the feminists, environmentalists and hipsters are slowly tortured for eternity. They confess their errors and beg for forgiveness, but none is to be had. There are no demons in this land—all the torture is conducted by faithful conservatives. This is virtue’s reward. When evening comes, they leave their work and gather at the one oasis of serenity and beauty in this desperate land. It is a hilltop palace with peaceful gardens and tasteful sculpture. Here they may rest from their labors and gather at the center to worship the only begotten Son of God: Ronald Reagan.

I am not cool with this.


Anonymous said...

They say that “hate” is rearing its head, and that President Obama and the Democrats are the victims of it. Let me make a couple of predictions: I predict that the chairman of the Republican National Committee will never say, “I hate the Democrats and everything they stand for. This [politics, basically] is a struggle of good and evil. And we’re the good.”

Howard Dean said that about the GOP: “I hate the Republicans and everything they stand for. . . .”

I predict that an editor of a conservative magazine will never write a piece called “The Case for Obama Hatred,” beginning, “I hate President Barack Obama.”

A New Republic editor did this, about Bush.

And there is increasing worry about assassination: that someone will take a shot, not just at the president, but at the first black president, which would be extra-catastrophic for the country. A few protesters have carried signs urging violence against Obama, or smacking of violence. Let me make some more predictions:

I predict that a network talk-show host will not show a video of President Obama giving a speech and put the following words on the screen: “SNIPERS WANTED.”

Craig Kilborn of CBS did that to George W. Bush.

I predict that U.S. senators will not joke about killing Obama.

In 2006, Bill Maher had a conversation with John Kerry. He asked Kerry what he’d gotten his wife for her birthday. Kerry said he had treated her to a vacation in Vermont. Maher said, “You could have went to New Hampshire and killed two birds with one stone.” Kerry replied, “Or I could have gone to 1600 Pennsylvania and killed the real bird with one stone.”

This is the same Kerry who, in 1988, said, “Somebody told me the other day that the Secret Service has orders that if George Bush is shot, they’re to shoot Quayle.” Then he said, “There isn’t any press here, is there?”

I predict that a New York official will not tell a graduating class about assassinating President Obama.

Also in 2006, comptroller Alan Hevesi said to students at Queens College that Sen. Charles Schumer, his fellow Democrat, would “put a bullet between the president’s eyes if he could get away with it.”

I predict that no columnist for a leading European newspaper, and leading world newspaper, will write, “John Wilkes Booth, Lee Harvey Oswald, John Hinckley Jr. — where are you now that we need you?”

Charlie Brooker of the Guardian did that to George W. Bush.

I predict that no major writer will write a novel debating the morality of killing President Obama.

Nicholson Baker did that to Bush, with Checkpoint.

I predict that no filmmaker will make a “fictional documentary” that fantasizes — and I’m afraid that is the word — about murdering President Obama.

Some Brits did that to President Bush with Death of a President.
So who are the haters? Look in the mirror.

Anonymous said...

I looked in the mirror. After "Damn! I'm one handsome man," the first though through my head was "Your reply was a catalogue of resentments with no positive agenda. Precisely what I accused conservatives of."