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A few months ago, there was a list floating around outlining how to be a good liberal. The one I received had 15 points outlining the views one must hold to excel in the left. It covered all aspects of the bleeding-heart mindset, from positions on gun ownership and the death penalty to abortion, the environment, socialism and environmental affairs. It came across as a humorous compilation of the prevailing attitudes of a liberal — at least until the moment one examined each belief. Then it became rather tragic.

This morning I had a note from a liberal reader regarding the columns I have written for our local paper. It appears he has spent the last few months reviewing my work, and has come to the conclusion that 1) I am conservative and 2) that I am a Republican. On the first matter, I have to concur that, from all appearances, I fall into the conservative category. (I
think it’s important here to disclose that I wasn’t completely aware of my stance until I began writing regularly for the newspaper. As my views on the matters of the day became known, I was tagged not only as a conservative, but as a hate-filled, bigoted, vitriolic liberal-basher, among other things. This is how I learned my opinions are a little to the right.)

As for my political orientation, I have never mentioned my party affiliation, though in light of my anti-socialist, freedom-loving, God-respecting, gun-hugging opinions, it would be easy to surmise that I don’t fall in the Democrat, Green Party and Socialist categories. However, that still leaves Republican, Libertarian, Reform et al., or maybe even Independent. Regardless, I have not publicly disclosed my politics and don’t intend to start now.

But back to this morning’s mail. This sensitive reader informed me that he looks forward to my “weakly” (sic) treatises on what’s wrong, right and left with this country. With great glee, he told me that he has been perusing the Internet and found something he regards as 100 percent true. He sent it to me. It’s a new list from the other side. It’s titled “21 Rules For How To Be A Good Republican,” and like the ubiquitous lists that float around cyberspace, it is attributed to no one in particular.

Of course, I read it.

And of course, I was disappointed.

Chalk it up to my na?vet?, but I’m still waiting for something from the left that offers a sliver of truth.

I won’t outline the entire list here, but thought I’d include a sampling from how to be a good Republican, which I couldn’t help but comment on:

1. You have to believe that the nation’s current 8-year prosperity was due to the work of Ronald Reagan and George Bush, but that today’s gas prices are all Clinton’s fault.

OK, I agree, in as much as any president can affect the economy, it’s important to give credit where credit is due. As for our fuel prices, Clinton certainly helped a lot by bolstering our domestic oil production and stabilizing the Middle East, didn’t he?

2. You have to believe that those privileged from birth achieve success all on their own.

Classic liberal mentality. It’s so much easier to believe that people don’t get anywhere without connections than to accept that hard work and responsibility can actually contribute to achievement.

3. You have to be against government programs, but expect Social Security checks on time.

Considering that the money for the Social Security checks came directly out of the wallet of the recipient — a little matter that is still in effect to this day and is one of the propelling reasons why so many households require dual incomes to survive — is it unreasonable to hope to get some return on your forced investment, at least until that forced investment is repealed, which I dare say won’t happen soon?

4. You have to believe that pollution is OK, so long as it makes a profit.

Except in California, where pollution and making a profit is not allowed if you provide a utility service, even if that means living without electricity.

5. You have to believe that a woman cannot be trusted with decisions about her own body, but that large multinational corporations should have no regulation or interference whatsoever.

First of all, comparing what a woman does with her body to multinational corporations is ludicrous, unless the comparison is based on how to avoid — excuse my French — getting screwed. In that event, as the fundamental precept by which liberals operate, it would then make perfect sense.

6. You believe Jesus loves you, and, by the way, Jesus shares your hatred of AIDS victims, homosexuals and President Clinton.

Phenomenal, isn’t it? But since hatred has become the all-purpose liberal tag-word for any belief, view or opinion that doesn’t coincide with the liberal viewpoint, it hardly applies to reason-driven conservatives.

7. You have to believe that it was wise to allow Ken Starr to spend $50 million dollars to attack Clinton because no other U.S. presidents have ever been unfaithful to their wives.

The private lives of other presidents are just a little irrelevant here. To conservatives, the matter was never about sex, but since most liberals believe everything is about sex, trying to explain to them otherwise would be like trying to teach calculus to someone who hasn’t learned how to add.

8. You have to believe it is wise to keep condoms out of schools, because we all know if teen-agers don’t have condoms they won’t have sex.

See previous comment.

9. You have to believe that socialism hasn’t worked anywhere, and that Europe doesn’t exist.

This is an interesting theory; however, I must point out that most Europeans don’t enjoy the standard of living Americans do, particularly their working classes, where the prospect of rising in society is virtually nil.

10. You have to believe that Chinese Communist missiles have killed more Americans than handguns, alcohol and tobacco.

Not yet, anyway. But the Chinese Communists have killed about 40 million of their own people over the last half-century or so.

As bad as it is, that’s just the half of it.

It’s enough to make me believe that the only thing you get when you sacrifice competence for self-esteem is an idiot who feels good about himself.

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