Don’t blame the SoCons


To repeat: religious and social conservatives, like quite a lot of other conservatives, certainly deserve to be criticized for enabling the GOP’s collapse, and Rod isn’t saying otherwise. But causing it? By way of actual policy successes? Come on now …

This, in response to Rod’s piece, wherein he reminds us that blame for the GOP’s doom lies with the Establishment.


4 Responses

  1. the religious “Jesus followers” became Bush followers and were complecent with Bush’s failed policies. Didn’t any conservative ministers come out against the war, I don’t think so.

  2. Read the whole posts. Rod and John both note that social/religious conservatives are not without blame.

  3. Gravatar Social Conservatives seeking to use government to legislate morality to the masses have been poisoning the well for too long by destroying the practical and ideological consistency of negative rights, thus opening the door to government cooptation by demagogues with various agendas and malignant vested interests from all sides of the political spectrum. Their religiously inspired diatribes against full American freedoms continue to alienate people in droves, particularly because most Americans today are rightfully oversensitive regarding matters of conscience, religion, social institutions, and private behavior.

    Until it extirpates this reactionary faction, the Conservative movement’s defense of free markets is hopelessly doomed to intellectual impotence. Economic self-reliance through free proud enterprise on the one hand, but moral paternalism in matters confined to the bedroom or uterus on the other hand, are ideologically irreconcilable positions both of which sound hypocritical when preached by the same political voice.

  4. Medaura,

    What? What? What?

    First, there is nothing intrinsically conservative about free markets; yes, we defend them, and, I think, should, but the sort of ideological free-marketism that you seem to be portraying as conservative is anything but. Look back to the origins of the left-right paradigm, and we see that it were the Left, the liberals, who supported the new economics; conservatism certainly has vested interest in promoting free enterprise and self-reliance, but not unfettered free-market economics for the sake thereof.

    I see absolutely nothing irreconcilable between what you dub “moral paternalism” and economic self-reliance and enterprise, at least when you make no attempt to separate various forms of this paternalism. “Matters [of the] uterus have everything to do with the inviolable, sacrosanct, metaphysical rights at the foundation of any free society — life, liberty, and property. The latter two are meaningless without grounding in the first. You are free to disagree with when life begins, and thus to suggest that abortion is acceptable, but you simply cannot engage in honest, purposeful discourse without accepting that a huge difference exists between something as semiotically vacuous as “moral paternalism in matters [of the] uterus” as the idea that life begins at conception.

    Finally, as much as I appreciate your visiting and contributing, I should prefer that you refrain from such simplistic canards as “legislating morality”, as if all legislation is not some form of legislating morality. Your point about the destruction the consistency of negative rights, but, again, not to make appropriate distinction, or even to allow for it, as in the case of “matters [of the] uterus”, damages your argument. If life does begin at conception, then this “moral paternalism” is necessary for the protection of the negative right not to be killed.

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