Sunday, August 14, 2005

Am I a liberal?

Jesse from Pandagon posted the following comment in response to my post Am I Conservative?:
So, then, why wouldn't others consider you a liberal? This is exactly what I'm talking about - it has absolutely nothing to do with if you don't meet my personal standards of liberalism, and the fact that these people who label themselves liberal will continually lay out a list of ideas and beliefs that they contend makes them liberal...while never writing about them unless someone like me writes a post like the one you're responding to.

It's kind of hilarious, but I write this post, and I get a couple dozen people rushing to tell me what a judgemental and inaccurate asshole I am...while doing the exact thing I described.
First of all, welcome to my blog and thanks for your comment. Second, my post wasn't really exactly a response to your article, as the bulk of it was written before I was aware of your post, but the timing was uncanny. Third, for the record, I never called you a "judgemental and inaccurate asshole," and I don't necessarily think you are. Having said all that, you raise some good issues.

I can't speak for you, but for many leftists it has a great deal to do with meeting an "acceptable standard of liberalism". I don't conform to the acceptable profile of a "liberal" and I don't ascribe to the mandatory set of "liberal" beliefs, so I must not be a "liberal".

Now, you've put forward a different standard--namely, whether or not I spend the balance of my time and energy presenting what are generally considered "conservative" positions or those considered "liberal".

I'll agree with you that I spend more bandwidth personally bashing certain left-wingers. That's largely because those lefties (e.g., Dean, Durbin) generate a lot more fodder. I'm in pretty good company highlighting their absurdities. Then again, I've bashed Republicans (e.g, Santorum) when I felt they deserved it.

Further, I definitely spend more time pushing against left-wing issues. I don't deny that. I do that because I consider leftism and political correctness to be serious threats to this country. Though I disagree with certain issues which are considered "conservative," I don't consider a ban on gay marriage or limitations on abortion to be any sort of threat to our democracy. Even though I'm against running big government deficits, I'm confident we'll ultimately weather their effects. What I'm not at all confident of is whether or not we will ultimately weather the effects of rampant political correctness and multiculturalism run amok. An example of this would be, for example, folks who would try to posthumously morph a fallen soldier into a martyr for a cause he'd almost certainly find repugnant. That's what concerns me and animates me, and that's what I write about. Being anti-leftist and anti-PC doesn't make me either a "conservative" or a "Republican shill."


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