A conservative news and views blog.

Location: St. Louis, Missouri, United States

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Checking For A Pulse

John Derbyshire, writing in the National Review, has a depressing piece on the health of Conservativism. I may not agree entirely, but I have to admit I fear the rosy glow of health may be the mortician`s wax! (At the very least, we are not as strong as we think we are-read my American Thinker column The Hydra Lives.)

We have to understand that Liberalism takes the long view, and they are content to ride out the storms of Conservativism with patience. They have accomplished so much over the Centuries and they can afford to wait a few decades before resuming their efforts toward what they see as the inevitable. We don`t look at it that way; we see our battles in years, not decades. We plan for the next election, the next issue, the next social cause. Liberals will fight us on all of these, but they look to the horizon. We have waited too long. We are going to have to fight this war for a long time because what we must change is a fundamental worldview which is now inculcated in the minds and hearts of all the peoples of the Earth. Liberalism HAS won, in so many ways. We have to fight the whole war over again. I fear that too many on our side don`t understand this, and don`t have the patience.

Now, having ruined everybody`s day, let me state unequivocally that we CAN win, if we are prepared to keep on keeping on. If they could do it, we can also! It will, however, be a long, hard slog.



Blogger Esther said...

I can't say I'm comfortable with thinking we're "at war" with liberalism of all things. I think we're at war with fundementalists/extremists -- whether they're religion-oriented or simply politically-oriented. If we don't start inching towards the center, we're all going to be in trouble.

9:11 AM  
Blogger Jon said...

I'm not sure you actually know any actual liberals, like personally and up close. At least, your statements here seem to show a kind of gloss on "liberals, those wacky critters" as depicted by most of the newspapers, local nightly news, all the oped pages I've read in the last five years (mind you, I read the Minneapolis Strib, so I'm familiar with what people call "liberal" op-ed pages), 9/10 of the AM radio dial, 2/3 of the FM radio dial, every cable news show I've seen except the Daily Show (which isn't even real news for crying out loud!). Gosh, that's a lot of media depicting liberals as "out of touch" or even "dangerous." You'd almost think we didn't totally own all the major media outright. You'd almost think we don't have control over the mass media. With all the conservative viewpoints on the air, in the papers, on the screen, in our school boards, you'd think liberals aren't in control, that in fact the conservatives aren't an oppressed minority of victims who probably deserve some kind of reparations. Heaven forfend, is it possible that liberals aren't in control of their own image? That the protocols of the elders of liberalism have so deviously plotted to hide our true nature that they have purchased giant corporations to disguise our nefarious master plans from an unsuspecting world?

As a liberal, I must make a correction to your statement: some liberals do have a long view. It's been said that the most raving radical of any era could be considered a hopelessly conservative dinosaur one hundred years later. I've tried to hold that long view for some time. But if there really is a vast left wing conspiracy manipulating events, I sure wish they'd call me up, since I've ostensibly been "on their side" for a good 12 years now, promulgating my views, converting people to my causes, making babies...

There's an awful lot of people who are actual liberals --and many who fit into your sort of straw-liberal depiction-- who are desperate to win their political points now if not sooner. They hunger to beat back what they perceive as a broad-but-not-deep assault by conservatives. Unfortunately, I believe those short termers constitute the significant majority. They desperately heave their polls and ideas to and fro, changing consultants, hairstyles, talking points, from week to week. They get on the news and get to be spanked around by conservative commentators, and continually prove how short-sighted they are.

No, there's too too few of us who believe that real democracy and true freedom are a lengthy process, and we prostitute ourselves for short gains. When the bigwigs finally realize that we who live on the ground are just going about our business making the world more open, more liberated and therefore more free, more secure (the two are utterly interdependent of course), maybe then we can say they have the long term vision. But from where I sit, they just want to play in the mud with your side.

We'll be ready, I suppose, when you fade away.

8:29 PM  
Blogger TJ Willms said...

Jon said...
I'm not sure you actually know any actual liberals, like personally and up close.

Well Jon, with no "H" I do. I live amongst several million of them, in your state no less, and I wouldn't read the Minneapolis Strib with your eyes.Tim has captured and characterized liberalism rather accurately and eloquently. Battling leftism is like catching smoke with your hands; no matter how desperately you grasp at it, your hands always seem empty.

Even though liberalism (at times) appears to be losing its grip on reality, they cannot be ignored, as there is always another avenue to continue the battle from a different quarter. If nothing else, the left is dogged in their efforts to forward their agenda.

2:05 AM  
Blogger Timothy Birdnow said...

To Esther,

I really do understand and appreciate the sentiment, but liberals have always seen this as a war-both historically and at present. They have relentlessly advanced their agenda because of this very thing; their opponents (read conservatives) had always seen this as a gentlemanly disagreement while the left has fought a war of extermination (in a political/philosophical sense, although sometimes in a literal sense e.g. Naziism and Communism or Jacobinism). Conservatives have only begun making advances in recent years with the realization of this point.

Also, Esther, I can`t agree with you on the idea we should move to the ``center``. First off, what is the center? Liberals generally define the center as where they are. This is the Hegelian/Marxist dialectic; Thesis (liberal initiative, like gay marriage) antithesis (conservatives oppose) then synthesis (gay civil unions). This is the mechanism used by the left, and the center equates with Fabian Socialism.

To Jon,

I grew up in William Clay`s congressional district,in a 90% Democrat blue collar area, and currently reside in Gephardt`s former district-I know far more liberals than I care to!

You are using an old trick; you are trying to dodge what your side believes by claiming you are all different. Of course you are all different. Evangelical Christians are all different. Nonetheless, I can tell you the majority of an Evangelical`s beliefs based on who the identify with, and I can identify what most liberals believe based on who they identify with. I know the history of liberalism, I know where they were, I know what their leaders say. With this knowledge I can make a fair assessment of the movement.

Much of AM radio is conservative, ONE cable news station, and a couple of magazines and blogs account for the entirety of right`s tenuous grip on the dissemination of information. You libs have all of commercial television, most newspapers, much of cable plus your view is represented in more subtle ways by Hollywood and Madison Avenue, plus you own Academia. You are setting up a straw man, Jon.

Liberals making the world more free and more secure? You guys never met a law you didn`t like or a defense program you didn`t hate. Your view of freedom and security is seriously cock-eyed.

Read The Hydra Lives, Jon. You may not even understand the roots or goals of the Liberal Movement.

2:51 PM  

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