Skip to comments.Why is Liberalism a Dirty Word
Posted on 07/15/2006 5:36:05 AM PDT by Westpole
It was striking when Mary Mapes was ask during a TV interview a simple question, "Are you a liberal?" Her reply was a denial. From politicians to journalist you would be hard pressed to find someone to admit that well yes they are a liberal. Oh sure a few Michael Moores type will say proudly they are. But try finding a politician to go on the record that they are liberals.
So why is liberalism such a bad label that even its most dedicated disciples want to ditch the term. This is all the more ironic because liberals always like to point to polls to show how popular various liberal positions are with the body politic. For example we are told in polls people don't support government interference with a woman's right to chose. Yet the very escence of Roe v.Wade was that the people did not have the right to determine this question.
So the real issue is who decides? The people or someone else. In the last presidential election the Massachusetts Supreme Court had just ruled that the State must make gay marriage legal. It directed the legislature to craft such a law. Many political observers claimed the tide of anti-gay marriage sentiment help insure a Bush win. But it was clear what griped most people was the notion that this issue like unrestricted abortion would be forced down our throats.
But that is just it about liberals. They are like the doctor with the medicine you won't like this but its good for you. We know what is best. And since liberalism by its very nature is always pushing the envelope it generally will stake out positions that are not embraced by the general public.
So of course how convinient if courts make us do what liberals cannot get otherwise enacted. Or presidential decrees (by a liberal president of course) like gays in the military. In other words liberals by definition want something to change and if it hasn't changed because the people aren't ready to accept it then they just have to find a way of getting it done.
All this is to say there is a deep antidemocratic spine to liberalism. And that is why no one wants to admit they are a liberal. Is it possible to have liberal views on issues yet support the democratic process (i.e. the legislative process) in deciding issues? Sure but I guess we call these people moderates and by this definitive moderates would not support decisions like Roe v. Wade which take the democratic process out.
Also please note two other things. Liberals will always be a minority..remember they are pushing the envelope. And liberals will always be unsatisfied. And that is why we always have an "angry left".
"We know what is best".
Answered your own question.
It costs too much.
Because they know most Americans don't support their programs and so they must twist the language to keep deceiving people.
"Liberalism" will always be a dirty word because of what the word denotes. And liberals will never progress in their thinking so long as they think in cliches such as "pushing the envelope."
The word being used more and more by liberals is "progressive". Same thing. Whatever you call them they have total disdain for democracy unless it endorses something they support.
"I don't like the term liberal because those damned conservatives who all think alike and are destroying this country have made it a dirty word."
The same folks who use the term "conservative" think they're all so original that they all just happened to come to their way of thinking on their own; unlike those vile conservatives, who got their ideas from others. Libs like to think no one has ever told them a damned thing, that they are just studious and somehow came to the same conclusions as other libs but they ALL came to those conclusions independently. They love being considered rebels and original thinkers, so the real insult is that you're making assumptions about them by labelling them, when they are sui genus or whatever the damned term is.
This is a courtesy they do not extend to those who don't think like they do, and again they don't see the irony--there's those damned programmed conservatives, and then the free thinkers who all think exactly like me...except, we're all individuals in our collective thinking.
"The same folks who use the term "conservative""
"The same folks who use the term "conservative" as a slur"
To answer the question -- "Because the Bolsheviks hijacked the word since is sounds better than "Socialist" or "Communist" and most people are too lazy to pick up a dictionary."
It is a matter of fact that "Liberals" are not liberal.
Not that hard to explain. Liberals hate America, want to destroy it, then be in charge of helpless, criminal idiots like most of the Katrina refugees
Remember when a conservative's first name was always Arch?
I would actually call "liberals" today leftists. There is nothing "classically liberal" in their way of thinking at all.
Liberal = Cover name for Socialist
Socialist = Cover name for Communist
And here they are.
Still wonder why they don't want to call themselves what they are?
Yes interesting that "conservative" is not a slur at all. No conservative denys being a conservative. The left seeking an equivalent "slur" has to apend something to the word.. like "arch conservative" as you point out. But the new one is of course "neo-conservative" or better yet for them "neo-con" That one pushes the movement to the the fringe and suggests there was something wrong with conservative that they had to come up with "neo" ..
But that is all marginal carping from the left. Conservative stands tall and proud. Liberals have to defend themselves against the uneasy sense we get that they will pull something off truely goofy unless we watch them very very closely
Yup and I call them what they are.
Perhaps all the demonstrable failures of past 'liberal' programs (the Great Society springs to mind) is reason enough for the left to avoid this description.
Yes, you are right. Modern liberalism is Statism.
"At the core of modern liberalism is the spoiled child - miserable, as all spoiled children are, unsatisfied, demanding, ill-disciplined, despotic and useless. Liberalism is a philosophy of sniveling brats ."