Are there positions you have that are not conservative?
For instance I support same-sex marriage, legalized prostitution and the legalization of marijuana (but not other drugs) even though I would never touch the stuff myself if they legalized it tomorrow.
Although as a conservative I wouldn't use the courts to force their legalization.
My views on most political issues like what should be legal and what should the government do to help people is that it depends. Depends mostly on the behavior of the person you are granting the liberty or public assistance to. The problem with most conservatives and liberals is that they have this everyone or no one should be granted a liberty or assistance.
For example, I don't believe anyone on probation for a crime or on public assistance should be allowed liberties like alcohol, guns, drugs, cigarettes, prostitution, having children, etc... For everyone else legal.
I believe in providing welfare benefits for people enrolled in real job training programs. If people don't participate or refuse to work after being trained, no benefits.
I also have views that you may call communist. No private ownership of land and other natural resources. An upper limit on the number of children one can have.
The whole gay marriage debate is ridiculous. I don't believe the government should be in business to sanction any one's marriage. Marriage is also discrimination against single people. I don't believe in a distinction between married and single people as a mater of government policy.
BTW, we already have government assisted suicide. Taxing people to death!
I find this topic incredibly interesting. Reading through the threads, it seems that many of you aren't really conservatives. Socially liberal positions + conservative economics does not equal conservative ideology. It's much closer to libertarianism. I'm having a hard time identifying why you consider yourselves conservative.
I have some positions that could be considered libertarian, but I find them too extreme on both economic and social issues.
I am for less regulation, but not none. I am for less taxes, but understand they are a necessary evil, but unlike the left I think we need to strive for the absolute minimum we can get away with.
On social issues, yes I support same-sex marriage but I do not support polygamy like most libertarians. I support legalizing marijuana, but do not want to see cocaine, heroin, meth and other harder drugs legalized. I sharply differ with libertarians on this.
I also think these are state level decisions, if a state wants to keep marijuana illegal they should be able to, just like if a state wants to legalize or keep illegal same-sex marriage they should be able to. The courts should stay out of it.
So am I a pure conservative like Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity? No. But I identify with the conservative philosophy more than I do the libertarian one.
I am also pro-life.
Also, if you want to know, I voted for Mitt Romney.
- I believe in survival of the fittest. I believe that the American is the fittest to take humanity into the next millennium.
- I am for minimal government entitlements, and only in cases where the person is mentally or physically incapable of caring for themselves or of having others in their immediate family care for them.
- I am for equal income tax rates for all citizens, even those in combat zones. Any other solution drives social tyranny, which I find abhorrent.
- I am for no social insurance or wealth redistribution, no matter how frightening the degree of economic instability or how obscene the level of economic inequality (see first bullet).
- I believe that abortion is a form of murder, and in such cases precluding self defense (the life of the mother), one or both of the parents should be put in jail. Notice I did not say to prohibit abortion, merely that someone must pay the price for the murder; and a very high price it should be.
- I believe that traditional marriages are the best long-term solution for creating and raising the next generation.
- I further believe that if marriage is re-defined to include same-sex or multi-partner marriages, then all marriage subsidies should end.
- I further believe that widespread same-sex marriage is societal suicide (see first bullet).
- I believe that if adults have sex resulting in pregnancy, they and they alone are responsible for that child. Only when the parents have exhausted all available resources should the state intervene.
- I believe in family-friendly television hours, and I believe breaking the family-friendly television rules is sexual harassment.
- Speaking of sexual harassment, I think that foul language used in public is also a form of sexual harassment, is degrading, and over-activates the animal parts of our brain. I am against cursing and swearing in all situations; however, I would not have the government regulate it.
- I am anti minimum wage (and yes, I've earned a minimum wage and yes, I know it is difficult to live on; "difficult" does not mean the government should intervene).
- I believe our best defense lies within ourselves; as such, all voting qualified and sound of mind citizens should have the right to be armed.
- I believe our government should be responsible in budgeting and spending our money; as such, I believe in a balanced budget.
- I am personally against all mind-altering recreational drugs, including alcohol; but I think the government should not be at war with its own citizens over the use of drugs, including alcohol. I think the government should encourage all citizens to quit using drugs, including alcohol.
- I believe in helping our friends in time of conflict, and as such, I am strongly in favor of our action in both Iraq and Afghanistan. I am one of the few Americans who has never doubted that action.
Of course I cannot cover everything here, but this is a good start. I thank Kathleen Geier, When Conservatives Talk..., for helping me outline my conservative thoughts.
If you agree with most of my positions, please join my social network because we're a rare breed. :)
Take care everyone.
Eric... you realize that your economic positions are akin to feudalistic society? Survival of the fittest puts all the power in one (or few) individuals (i.e. lords) since, in general terms, those with power will take advantage of those without (i.e. serfs). Government is simply just the collective non-powerful serfs keeping the powerful lords in check. Without proper intervention, the powerful gain all the influence in laws and policy to their benefit which usually works to the detriment of the masses.
As a business owner and homebuilder, I've seen terrible practices that would have been acceptable 20 years ago be rejected by regulation standards today. The government regulating what is acceptable for the people it represents is necessary so as the powerful don't take advantage of those that are not. Reduce government's power enough to not protect its people and you end up with a society of extremely few lords and extremely many serfs.
The economic realities of flat-tax systems which you propose further keeps power in the hands of the powerful. I used to think flat-tax systems were a good idea until I studied the realities of what happens to consumer spending in such systems. It is generally agreed that when the velocity of money increases, the economy grows. It is estimated that for every dollar exchanged, it creates $8 additional dollars as it exchanges hands from business to business, business to consumer, and business to employee. By keeping money in the hands of the job creating consumers (i.e. the middle/lower classes) with lower tax rates, businesses benefit as a result of increased demand and increased profits and the economy grows. In such cases, everyone wins. On the opposite side, to keep money in the hands of those with wealth in the form of a flat tax, those in the top 1% who only spend 10% (to throw out a number) of their disposable income into the economy vs. the middle/lower class who spend 99% or more (I've seen numbers like those who make under $50K spend 104% of their income, given debt loads and such, don't quote me on that one though) of their disposable income into the economy doesn't make a ton of sense. Flat taxes reduce consumption by 98% of us by shifting the tax burden toward those that most need to invest our capital in the economy, not giving it to the government.
THIS should be conservative economic policy. Low (or zero) taxes on the job creating middle/lower class... not increasing the tax burden on them. Conservatives of the last 30 years have been mostly successful in decreasing taxes, but unfortunately they have not been able to decrease spending to offset the cuts. Thus the deficit we are currently saddled with which began under Reagan, and has been reinforced by every president since, continues to grow. The result of this is having to keep taxes higher on everyone, including the job creating middle/lower classes... and I would argue is the reason for the continued wealth inequality where real incomes for 99% have declined in the past 30 years while those of the 1% has increased very significantly.
Garrett... thoughtful reply, but I am not convinced. Are you sure that what you are trying to avoid is truly avoidable? I am not against government regulations, but I am against theft, and what you are describing feels like theft to me.
Furthermore, couldn't the 6 billion around the world say the same about us? Are you proposing that we do the same for them? Are all humans equal? No. Some have the power to create technology or art or well-being, some do not.
Can you offer a non-religious reason for why I should be concerned about the lower class, middle class, or upper class? I am worried about my family, and I will secure my family the best I can, which includes securing America. I will help those who help me. Many Americans offer me nothing, and I will return the favor. I look forward to reading more.
Eric, I find thoughtful your reply to Garrett.
I find part of it worthy of reply, your Can you offer a non-religious reason for why I should be concerned about the lower class, middle class, or upper class?
What non-religious behavior checks that of upper class folk, especially when they have or use power?
Throughout history, the fear of assassination or revolution has checked their behavior. To minimize that fear, they have conditionally consented to democracy but in a variety of ways protect themselves from its consequences.
Furthermore, if half the voters had half a brain, they'd demand to know what the long-term impact on society is to encouraging same-sex marriage. Shouldn't this be the first question with any new experimental law? Northern Europeans and Japanese already have significantly decreased birth rates (Web Clock of Child Population in Japan). Same-sex marriage will increase the rate of decline. This does not sound like a recipe for success to me.
People are going to be gay and not have kids regardless of whether they can marry or not.