Skip to comments.Will the Real Conservative Please Stand Up?
Posted on 04/04/2007 7:08:57 AM PDT by Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus
Article can be found here, USA today has complained!
It's been said (mostly by columnist George Will) that you can tell who the real conservative is by asking, "Who would you have voted for in 1912?"
These days, we should probably settle for people knowing who the candidates even were, never mind having a preference. Nonetheless, for the record, they were Woodrow Wilson, Teddy Roosevelt and William Howard Taft. You wouldn't know it from T.R.'s cult of personality in Republican circles today, but Taft was the conservative in the race. Roosevelt bolted the GOP, taking the progressives with him into the Progressive Party, thus opening the door to a Wilson victory.
(Excerpt) Read more at seebelow ...
Good reminder for those moonbats who shriek all the time about Bush’s theocracy.
besides, he knew guns, war and carried a big friggin' stick, "stole Panama..." from Columbia, as he put it "...fair and square"...I wouldn't have jumped ship, because I really have no ship to jump.
I would have voted for TR....(who absolutely hated the monikers of Teddy...)
I honestly don’t know much about Taft. I know enough about Teddy and Wilson to know I wouldn’t vote for them.
We are still suffering the effects of Woodrow Wilson’s devotion to self determination as in Kosovo and Iraq, even though most pundits blame the Brits for drawing the maps the way they did in the ME.
Hope he gains traction.
Teddy Roosevelt has gotten to be more of a liberal icon over the years.
Let’s be clear about one thing: “conservative” means just that—generally content about things, preferring the status quo, and resisting strong change in any direction. That is what the word means.
Those who want strong change in a more moral and/or ethical direction, who seek legislation and action to improve our collective situation are *not* “conservative”, though they find greatest acceptance with conservatives.
The derogatory label “reactionary” is closest, but insulting; so these people need a better label. Calling them “the religious right” is also meant to be insulting and derogatory, though many of them *are* religious, as it is not exclusive or always central to their motivations.
So they are “the right that is *not* ‘conservative’”. And they really should develop their own label, and not leave it up to a hostile MSM to do so. One they can use to show to both those who hold the same political ideas that they do, and conservatives, who are close to them, who they are.
The very first thing to do is to look at the republican candidates, and ask yourself the big question:
1) Are they republican liberals? That is, do they seek change in one or more political policies that are embraced by liberals? If so, they are *not* “conservatives”. (They may also be liberal on so few things that they are not RINOs, either.)
2) Are they true “conservatives”. That is, do they not seek any grand change in any direction, just maintenance of what is acceptable? Issue by issue, with some exceptions, comfortable with current practice, whatever it is.
3) Are they of the need-to-be-named right that wants considerable change to correct what they see as societal erosion, economic irresponsibility in government, and an unsteady foreign policy?
This is really the test for candidates, importantly *all* of whom can be republicans. And they are not clear and distinct boundaries, as there is considerable “issue overlap”.
Eventually republicans will have to decide where they stand and where the candidates stand to figure out what best fits to their values.
Probably Tancredo has the only commitment to free the BP agents. I am patiently waiting for word from other campaigns on their position re: the BP agents and their jailing.
I am not parting with many dimes for these candidates until they cough up a position on these guys.
I think the Republican party will not see a majority for a very long time. Defeat in Iraq is assured since funding will run out without the Democrats doing anything. Bush is preparing an amnesty knife that will viscerate the Republican base creating the distinct possibility of a splinter party insuring a Democrat in the WH in 2008.. Bush insured a Democrat victory in 2006 by prancing around with his “guest worker” program before the election. Each time he spoke, more of the base stayed home. When our leaders seem intent on destroying their own party, I don’t see much hope. If we have to shift to Guiliani to win, the conservatives will eventually find a home elsewhere.
Those who want strong change in a more moral and/or ethical direction, who seek legislation and action to improve our collective situation are *not* conservative, though they find greatest acceptance with conservatives.
If they are seeking to regain something that previously existed they would still be conservative.
No, that person using today’s media-created vernacular is a “reactionary”, not a conservative. Which again is not a word I particularly care for.
I might also add that many non-conservatives on the right are also interested in creating moral and ethical principles that were never before codified, even if they were in common usage. For example, even though parts of the US have in past spoken in languages other than English, only today is the sensibility that making English the official language is desirable.
This is novel, and only “reactionary” in places where efforts a bilingualism have already intruded. In many places where English only is being advocated, local bilingualism was never much an issue to begin with.
But in neither case, is pursuing bilingualism or English as the official language on the agenda of true conservatives, as they are satisfied with the status quo of *neither* being on the books as law. They see no pressing need.
A far more serious example is abortion. Conservatives are generally uncomfortable with it, but accepting of some degree of it in their region. Some degree of the shades of gray between full legal abortion and no abortion. They are not “issue focused” enough to want to do anything about it.
The “reactionaries”, again disdaining that word, are far more absolutist in wanting to eliminate any “color of law” from abortion, at least at the federal level, and in their particular State as well.
But even among them there is argument about limitations: fully illegal, States rights, no federal funding, and even some libertarians who are pro-abortion.
What they all have in common is that they want strong *change* to what exists today. True conservatives either want little change or gradual change.
Using that meaning for “conservative”, makes everyone into a reactionary. I’ve never met anyone who wanted everything to stay just as it is.
Taft didn’t really aspire to the Presidency. He became Chief Justice of the Supreme Court after being President. Near the end of his life, he said that he was proud of what he had accomplished on the Court, but could hardly remember being President.
Actually, that is the “silent majority” in the US. Conservatives all. As the political pendulum swings in the US, there are times when this majority wants some change, other times when it wants to be left alone by government.
For example, “do nothing” conservatism reigned during Bill Clinton. As repugnant as he was, the silent majority were satisfied with him just playing a clown while the Congress directed the country.
But when Bush was elected, he became an activist President after 9-11. The public wanted the changes that Bush wrought. But after 6 years of such changes, the conservatives are now strongly wanting to forget about Iraq and the WoT, *and* domestic policy for a while. They want government to settle down and *not* make great changes again.
Obviously, this is always not the wisest course, and it is more based on whether conservatives are motivated or just want to ignore government and live their lives in some degree of not being agitated by change.
The democrats were elected to Congress in the last elections based on nothing. The only thing they offered was obstructionism, and that is what the majority wanted. Had they promised all sorts of liberal changes, it would have fallen flat.
For example, do nothing conservatism reigned during Bill Clinton. As repugnant as he was, the silent majority were satisfied with him just playing a clown while the Congress directed the country.
Actually, the ‘90s weren’t all that bad to the conservatives. At least we got some welfare reform. Most conservatives aren’t looking for vast immediate change, we’re looking for things to be headed in the right direction.