Many ideas said to be conservative are not conservative at all. Conservatives seek to return to the traditional ways of the past–the good old days. Thus conservatives ought to favor a traditional interpretation of the Constitution–the First Amendment guarantees freedom of and from religion; the Second Amendment applies to an organized militia; the Fifth Amendment protects everyone from being required to testify against themselves. Today, some falsely masquerading as conservatives more correctly should be labeled radicals. Here are some examples:
- Small Government
- Drill baby drill
- False ideas about Constitutional government
- Low Minimum Wage
- No immigration reform
- Tax Cuts for the wealthy
- Privatize education
The above ideas are reckless, ill-considered concepts, which don’t reflect conservatism at all.
Small Government — conservatives ought to be concerned with the effectiveness of government–is government doing what needs to be done cost-effectively? When false conservatives rail against big government, they are disingenuous–it isn’t really the size of government that they object to but only certain programs they don’t like.
Drill baby drill–conservatives ought to be concerned about threats to the environment. When false conservatives deny all threats they only serve the interests of energy companies. Denying the possibility of climate change and minimizing the danger of pollution reflects reckless optimism–there is nothing conservative in that.
Constitutional Government — sounds good, but is neither liberal or conservative. Those who say they would follow the Constitution often seek to give the Constitution a an unprecedented interpretation and to ignore what parts they disapprove.
Low minimum wage–a low minimum wage is sought by small business to maximize profit. The idea isn’t conservative–conservatives might better support living wages that allow workers to achieve the American Dream.
Immigration reform–conservatives ought to support the principle “one nation, indivisible” rather than seek to maintain an underclass of under privileged Americans. As in the past, conservatives ought to welcome immigrants to citizenship
Tax cuts for the wealthy–that America would be an oligarchy is a new idea. Conservatives support traditional values, thus conservatives should oppose the creation of a class of privileged Americans.
Free public education–a cultural value that predates our Constitution. Those acting to undermine and destroy it are not conservatives, but overreaching radicals.
Many claiming to be conservatives today are not conservatives but radical Republicans flying false colors. When a politician claims to be conservative, one should ask if the views expressed are really conservative or not. The NYS Conservative Party isn’t conservative at all. It invariably supports the Republican candidate whatever that person’s ideas might be. Real Conservatives would insist on a party and candidates who hold honest conservative views. It is easy to form a party in NYS; real conservatives should do that.
© William Hungerford – May 2014