You know, dammit, sometimes I actually miss the “old conservatives.”
Not old in age, but more like the conservatives of yesteryear, before the GOP became the home of the “AltRight” and neo-nazis.
The conservatives who didn’t care much for church, and would tell you flat out “I’m voting this way because I’m stingy, so fuck you.”
These would be the William F Buckleys, the Al Capps, the Richard Nixons.
Oh fuck, did I actually say I missed Tricky Dick? The world really has gone topsy turvy.
These guys grudgingly supported civil rights, but that was as far left as they went.
Their concerns were their money, their client’s money and their other money.
They didn’t want to burn the whole place down or privatize everything because, well, money. They made good money with the way things were, dammit, and they weren’t going to fuck with success.
If you asked these guys what “America” they loved, they’d flat out tell you the government. Unlike today’s conservatives who think America and the Government are two separate things (hint: they’re not.)
I don’t miss them because I secretly thought they were right — far from that.
They were wrong and they knew they were wrong, but they didn’t care and would say so. They wanted money, and status quo was how they got it.
No I miss them because today we have two bubbles, the Democratic bubble, which seems to be anyone who doesn’t want to start a war with Mexico and the GOP bubble, which is kevlar-reinforced and is impervious to any amount of reason.
I think the turning point for this was Karl Rove with his discussion of “the reality based community.”
“We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again, creating other new realities.” — Karl Rove, October 17, 2004, NYT.
Once they stopped living in reality and started making their own, any chance of a meaningful discussion died with it.
And that is how you get the bubble.
Bubbles make for mistakes. Bubbles are dangers and need to be broken.
Think about what a criminal trial is supposed to be. The whole point of one is for the prosecution to lay down their case, and the defense tries to poke holes in it. Without the prosecution, there is no trial, and without the defense, there is no attempt to establish the truth.
Right now, neither side is talking to each other. The Democratic bubble tried for eight years to talk to the GOP bubble, and they stuck their fingers in their ears and shouted “YOU LIE BOAH! YOU LIE!”
So I miss when both sides at least listened to each other, trying to find holes in the others’ arguments.