Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Why Conservative ideas can’t work

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Paul Rosenberg has thought about why the ideas of the Right fail so often in practice (as we’re now seeing writ large):

It’s not just that they failed catastrophically the last two times they were tried in the last 100 years.  There are fundamental reasons why conservative ideas CANNOT work.  This diary briefly explains why.

In my earlier diary, “The Party of Ideas As Weapons vs. The Party Of Ideas As, Well, IDEAS!” I argued that GOP had never been the “party of ideas”:

Put simply, the GOP has basically had TWO ideas since 1932:  (1) Kill the New Deal and anything related to it. (2) Promote Republicans as heroic saviors and attack Democrats as depraved traitors who hate America and are trying to destroy it…. All the other ideas Republicans have had since then have simply been tactical or strategic weaponry to advance those two basic ideas, split the Democratic base, shift blame, or otherwise gain political advantage, regardless of any real-world policy consequences.  In short, Republican ideas revolve around the long-term struggle for political power, based on controlling political and quasi-political institutions, and thus controlling the political discourse.

I now want to go deeper into why conservative ideas cannot work.  Without claiming to be  exhaustive, I advance four main arguments:

(1) Conservative ideas cannot work, because they are faith-based, rather than reason and evidence/experience-based.

(2) Conservative ideas cannot work, because they are accepted—and liberal/progressive ideas are rejected—based on authoritarian obedience.

(3) Conservative ideas cannot work, because they are based on an objectively false model of the world, reflected in a false moral model for human action.

(4) Conservative ideas cannot work, because they are based on a limited level of causal connectedness, which is functionally inadequate to understand the world.

I will spell these out at somewhat  greater length …

Continue reading.

Written by LeisureGuy

21 December 2008 at 9:40 am

Posted in Daily life, GOP, Government

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