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Conservatives vs. Liberals

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panetti On February 17, 2005

Little Rock, Arkansas
#1New Post! May 14, 2004 @ 05:20:42
I would like to share an observation.

Sometime last year, while I was still in student government and getting to hear the brunt of everyone's political philosophies, I decided to do some independent sleuthing. I wanted to throw off everything I had been told and led to and just evaluate things on my own, starting fresh.

So, I figured with this newfound staring point, I'd check out each party's website and give a good unbiased evaluation. I checked the DNC and the GOP, and skimmed through their party descriptions, foundational beliefs, and core values.

And you know what? When you trim off all the fluffings, and look at each party at it's most basic core -- You see THE SAME THING. I challenge you, visit both websites and start trimming stuff off, you'll see what I mean.

Both Democrats and Republicans want the same end, more or less. They just share different means.

So, now, I want to share with you what I observe to be conversative vs. liberal.

LIBERALS: Ideally, the liberal is the ultimate nice guy, loveable neighbor next door type. Liberals also capitalize on progressive thought and bringing change. More than anything, liberals seek to level the playing field so that everybody loves everybody, there is no war, no hate, and no inequality. Liberals seek tolerance as a key tool to achieving this.

My problem with liberalism is it's good in theory, but not practice. Mainly:

1) Liberals overemphasize equality to the point of blanket generalizations. Everyone is included in everything all the time. Liberals also make the grave mistake of often thinking all their opponents think exactly alike as if taken from the same conservative mold, another fatal flaw in their thinking. Liberals have overreacted to inequality to the point that they have cost themselves the ability to wisely discern.

2) Liberals more times than not are extremely hot-headed. They don't like their progressive though to be challenged, especially if that challenge is geared toward telling them they're a bit too progressive. Indeed, you can have too much of a good thing. This is merely from exprience -- many liberals I deal with fly off the handle when all you want to do is have a good debate.

3) Overcorrection. Liberals have some good ideas, but they go overboard. For instance, they tend to toss away all tradition simply because many traditions have become oppressive. Liberals have lost sight of where tradition can have its own place and serve a healthy purpose.

4) Overtolerance. Liberals have also overreacted to the narrow-mindedness of previous generations. This goes hand-in-hand with lacking the ability of discernment. This is why many liberals can't understand how racism is wrong while guarding against gay marriage isn't. A cruelly ironic side affect of history perhaps. Liberals accept tolerance to the extent it's starting to become "anything goes", when if such happens, we'll see a total collapse of our moral understanding.

I say they mean well, but with some issues, they just don't get it.

So, on to the elephants...

CONSERVATIVES: There's significant difference between the stereotypical conservative as seen by liberals and the true conservative as I believe it to be. The former is a narrow-minded stickler trapped in tradition, whereas the latter is someone who knows how think progressively on the cutting edge while at the same time maintaining the core values that have been well-established over the years and have served us well. A conservatie knows when to step forward and when to simply hold ground, wheras liberals seem to always be stepping forward no matter what, even if the next step goes right off a cliff.

The true conservative favors unbiased, open thought, for going against such noble traits is to betray the very foundation of our rebel country that we're trying to conserve in the first place. A conservative will keep his roots firmly planted while at the same time reaching far out into the wildly changing future with outstretched branches.

In short, true convervativism is about balance. Open mindedness without naivity, progressive thought without forgetting history. Moving forward while not forgetting what's in the rearview mirror. We keep the traditions and values that have made us strong (not those that have simply been without reason), and we pass them on so those who follow will share in the same strength.

But, in fairness, there is a dark side to conservitivism that must be avoided:

1) Conservatives can easily become bitter, for one thing because liberals tend to look at them as lacking intellect and enlightenment. At times this bitterness makes results in closed-mindendess and an unwillingness to listen to the other side.

2) Conservatives can overkill and become too steeped in tradition, though this is usually more true with a small number of older, more bitter members and not representative of the whole. Nonetheless, some conservativies adhere to traditions without reason, simply because it's the way "things have always been".

3) Conservatives often make the same mistake liberals do by generalizing opponents, assuming each liberal thinks just like the next.

So, that's politics as I see it. I imagine conservatives and liberals alike could argue my points, so I welcome whatever input you can provide to widen my view. I am proud to be a conservative who knows why he thinks what he thinks, and is unwilling to sway merely for popular belief.

I admit because of the biases that have formed on both sides at times, I have considered becoming a conservative independent. I think the partisan bickering has become ridiculous. I'm as tired of Republicans getting unnecessarily dirty with Democrats as I am vice-versa. But as long as the Republican core values remain, I think that's what I'm going to stick with.
jeoin On November 12, 2004

#2New Post! May 14, 2004 @ 15:35:09
this will take time to digest.
panetti On February 17, 2005

Little Rock, Arkansas
#3New Post! May 14, 2004 @ 15:45:21
Don't get indigestion!
volkov On June 08, 2005

Little Rock, Arkansas
#4New Post! May 14, 2004 @ 15:56:19
Very good observation, Panetti...But hey, what would you expect me to say?....No, really I agree with many of your points....

The means are the difference between the two ways of thinking...We ultimately want the same thing...Happiness, freedom, peace, but we see different ways of achieving it;.....Good points..
deadjim On December 23, 2010

Little Rock, Arkansas
#5New Post! May 15, 2004 @ 00:50:59

It's odd you would post a topic like this today. Earlier today, I was thinking of starting a thread just like this one, only mine would've been more cynical and would have shown more disgust.
It would've went a little something like this:

Dear UALR Forum,
I am disgusted by the partisan politics taking over every country I see. Partisan politics not only creates death via nationalism but keeps a country from accepting new ideas especially the other side.
I have seen nothing but this on this forum and I'm getting sick of it. People say one thing just to bash the other side. WHY DON"T PEOPLE REALIZE THAT THERE WILL ALWAYS BE ANOTHER gosh darn SIDE?? They act suprised when someone tries to counter a point or to show another view. I'm tired of the labels "liberal" and "conservative." If people would look at history a little better, you will see that a country ALWAYS has a liberal side and a conversvative side. So what do you do? Label each other terrorists, anti-american, evil, globalist conquerer, imperialist. For years and years; For THOUSANDS of years, a single country has always flip flopped from being liberal to being conservative. It's the current mainstream thought, it's world affairs, it's different aspects of the same gosh darn life we live in that produce these different ideals in people. I'm tired of people overgeneralizing others by calling them one of those two names. Partisan politics is sick and their citizens only follow suit. Why? BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE STUPID!! They need ideas put into their head.

And with that, I'm going home.
jeoin On November 12, 2004

#6New Post! May 16, 2004 @ 00:00:49
I don't think any of us belong to a party directly. So its okay to say our views are conservative or liberal. My views are more liberal. I trust people to make the right choices.

I want kerry to win because i don't think bush has done the US right.
incom On September 06, 2004

#7New Post! May 17, 2004 @ 03:59:52
Another pitfall people get into is the internal villification of people "on the other side of the fence". One interesting result of this I have seen is a form of intentional polarization. If some one is a conservitive/liberal for instance and become absolutly infuriated at every thing "those damn sissy a** liberals/facist conservitive pigs, are doing to ruin our great nation" so there for they begin to mold their own beleifs so as to most offend the other side, and become more and and overreactive and angry at the otherside.
panetti On February 17, 2005

Little Rock, Arkansas
#8New Post! May 18, 2004 @ 00:05:26
I also think it's interesting how every few decades it seems the Democrats and Republicans switch sides. Didn't the Democrats use to be the more conservative party in the day? When the Republicans under Lincoln were pushing to free slaves, one might have called them the more "liberal" of the two, being more progressive.

I think there are times to be progressive, and times to be traditional, and when you sacrifice one for the sake of the extremity of the other, you miss out on the big picture.

On a completely unrelated note, that's what I love about Bruce Lee's philosophy. He was always trying to balance opposites. "Be like can flow...or it can crash". I think those who have the discernment to know when to be what when are the ones who truly possess wisdom in that department. And that kind of thing doesn't come entirely from logic; I think it comes from instinct, intuition as well.

Oh yeah, and graduation's over, so I'm back.
jeoin On November 12, 2004

#9New Post! May 18, 2004 @ 02:22:04
Welcome back...
govt_cheese On May 18, 2004

#10New Post! May 18, 2004 @ 17:48:20
WOW! This is a really good thread! I have to agree that the parties are similar... Thats why I'ma vote Nader... Sure he wont win, but if he gets 5% and federal funding, there will be another choice... Isn't that what its all about anyways?? CHOICE?? Thats what it is for me.... I like to choose and not be force fed one of the two mainstream politicians that I dislike equally......
panetti On February 17, 2005

Little Rock, Arkansas
#11New Post! May 18, 2004 @ 20:10:54
I think in a perfect world, we wouldn't have parties. Every candidate would be forced to be evaluated alone, as an individual, with his own thoughts and beliefs. I think we'd all be better off in that case.

But is such a think possible?
govt_cheese On May 18, 2004

#12New Post! May 18, 2004 @ 21:02:34
Yes! That would be great! And it would work if I could buy the world a coke... But someone always wants a pepsi... hahaha I prefer water anyway! LOL
incom On September 06, 2004

#13New Post! May 19, 2004 @ 02:10:13
I don't think parties should get federal funding. "Levels the playing feild" my eye! It merely creates a virtualy unrechable plataue that serves only to support the 2 party system.
panetti On February 17, 2005

Little Rock, Arkansas
#14New Post! May 19, 2004 @ 02:20:53
Yeah, I mean how's the James Party ever going to rise to domination with that kind of obstacle?
incom On September 06, 2004

#15New Post! May 19, 2004 @ 02:38:20
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