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John Adams Blog

The blog of The Antient and Honourable John Adams Society, Minnesota's Conservative Debating Society www.johnadamssociety.org

Friday, June 02, 2006

Conservative Derangement

In the past few months - perhaps even since Katrina I have noticed that some conservatives have slipped into a derangement where emotional response is substituted for obvious facts. The Dubai ports deal also revealed this emotional response. Further, I now hear some conservatives citing fake facts to support their tough positions on immigration. While I think their position is reasonable and a position I would accept, the fake facts don't help convince people.

Now here is a perfect example from Hugh Hewitt:

The Department of Homeland Security has made funding decisions that are simply absurd, and recognized as such immediately by Americans of every political stripe. These allocations should immediately be withdrawn by order of the president for re-evaluation in light of the obvious threats which face population centers and the great cities of the United States. Like the ports deal, these proposed funding allocations cannot be defended. To attempt to do so is to drag out the embarassment. Pull them back, get some serious people in the room, and rework the numbers to reflect the wisdom of the many which understands that al Qaeda goes back to its targets again and again.

If you examine facts in this case you will notice that some of these big cities are getting almost the same percentage they did last year out of a smaller budget. Further, New York City reportedly asked for funds to do stuff that is unnecessary while some smaller cities do not even have an emergency program yet. Money should be spent wisely. Hewitt just assumes that the decision is a stupid one without asking why. Hewitt is the one being stupid.

One of the reasons I claim to be conservative is because conservatives are supposed to use their brain when deciding issues - remember that Churchill quote: "conservative before 25 no heart, liberal after 25 no brain?". Using your brain also leads to optimism because the future can reveal itself through reason. This is why Reagan was an optimist. However, too many conservatives now days are all heart and emotion, which breeds pessimism. Pessimism is rooted in emotion and in my opinion is a weakness some conservatives have.

Some are predicting that the Republican coalition is breaking up. If it does, it won't be because of issues, it will be because the hearts and brains will no longer understand each other.