The real difference between the left and the right

Its not tax policy or abortion or the Donald. Not really. No, its the ageless debate between the immutability of nature v the Blank slate. The debate stretches back centuries. Here's a good read. Its dense, but its worth a look. Basically, the idea is that human nature has certain ageless unchanging features, which bound our choices and limits our politics, or it doesn't, and the world is whatever we make it. All political debates take place in this context, whether we acknowledge that fact or not.


https://niskanencenter.org/blog/why-not-give-neoliberalism-a-chance-to-save-the-world/

here's a shorter, easier-to-read summary, written by a liberal.

http://theweek.com/articles/601420/left-vs-realitybased-community?utm_source=links&utm_medium=website&utm_campaign=twitter
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Replies

  • HextallHextall Senior Member Posts: 9,520 Senior Member
    Your best Pio-bait to date!
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 4,824 Senior Member
    Sounds like a Mundinger/Emerger debate...
  • I like stuff like this, because how societies organize themselves-the real business of politics- is always a vastly more interesting question than the various administrative arrangements that we develop to manage it.
  • Hextall wrote: »
    Your best Pio-bait to date!

    None of my pio bait has worked thus far. Even pulling a speech from Atlas Shrugged didn't work.
  • fishingcomicfishingcomic Senior Member Posts: 24,398 Senior Member
    Maybe if you posted something defending cultural appropriation. Then he can call you the typical racist white man.
    'I've spoken of the Shining City all my political life. …In my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That's how I saw it, and see it still.'" Ronald Reagan
  • creekguycreekguy Senior Member Posts: 3,918 Senior Member
    is this stuff going to be on the exam?
  • Maybe if you posted something defending cultural appropriation. Then he can call you the typical racist white man.

    ah yes. . .facebook. It has its virtues. And its drawback.
  • creekguy wrote: »
    is this stuff going to be on the exam?

    Yes, but it will be open book.
  • Maybe if you posted something defending cultural appropriation. Then he can call you the typical racist white man.

    I wish that I had subscribed to that thread so that I could find it again. I read enough of it to get the gist though.
  • George KGeorge K Super Moderator Posts: 10,043 Senior Member
    Its not tax policy or abortion or the Donald. Not really. No, its the ageless debate between the immutability of nature v the Blank slate. The debate stretches back centuries. Here's a good read. Its dense, but its worth a look. Basically, the idea is that human nature has certain ageless unchanging features, which bound our choices and limits our politics, or it doesn't, and the world is whatever we make it. All political debates take place in this context, whether we acknowledge that fact or not.


    But this just presents the extremes. The actual argument is what takes place where the Venn circles overlap - how much can we and should we constrain the darker side of human nature and try to improve upon anarchy? (not Anarchy)
    Keep your stinkin' government hands off my Medicare.
  • BuffcoBuffco Senior Member Posts: 10,586 Senior Member
    Guys, we are discussing realism vs. liberalism in my global issues class. I find that I'm pretty solidly a realist. But we haven't delivered into liberalism much, yet.
  • George K wrote: »
    Its not tax policy or abortion or the Donald. Not really. No, its the ageless debate between the immutability of nature v the Blank slate. The debate stretches back centuries. Here's a good read. Its dense, but its worth a look. Basically, the idea is that human nature has certain ageless unchanging features, which bound our choices and limits our politics, or it doesn't, and the world is whatever we make it. All political debates take place in this context, whether we acknowledge that fact or not.


    But this just presents the extremes. The actual argument is what takes place where the Venn circles overlap - how much can we and should we constrain the darker side of human nature and try to improve upon anarchy? (not Anarchy)

    I don't agree. I think the argument at the margins is THE argument. Everything else is tinkering. If there's broad agreement on basic principles, then whether or not Marginal tax rates are at 31% or 35% seems trivial by comparison.
  • creekguycreekguy Senior Member Posts: 3,918 Senior Member
    Well, I didn't understand much of that. I will say this. In the history of civilization, I think most people would agree that humans have socially progressed to a more ethical state. Slavery abolished, racism condemned, women liberated, child abuse outlawed, worker safety promoted, retirement invented and funded, medical care extended to (almost) all. In each case, it was the "liberal" political establishment promoting these ideas, and it was the "conservative" political group that always had reservations and sometimes violent opposition. At each stage, conservatives have argued that the natural state of society did not allow for these advances, that it was unfair to those paying the bills, and that they would create more problems. Well, some "liberal" proposals are counter productive, as in socialism, ethnic preferences, etc. but the conservative side of society has opposed a lot of positive change over the years.

    I hope this is relevant to this thread: I can never tell.
  • creekguy wrote: »
    Well, I didn't understand much of that. I will say this. In the history of civilization, I think most people would agree that humans have socially progressed to a more ethical state. Slavery abolished, racism condemned, women liberated, child abuse outlawed, worker safety promoted, retirement invented and funded, medical care extended to (almost) all. In each case, it was the "liberal" political establishment promoting these ideas, and it was the "conservative" political group that always had reservations and sometimes violent opposition. At each stage, conservatives have argued that the natural state of society did not allow for these advances, that it was unfair to those paying the bills, and that they would create more problems. Well, some "liberal" proposals are counter productive, as in socialism, ethnic preferences, etc. but the conservative side of society has opposed a lot of positive change over the years.

    I hope this is relevant to this thread: I can never tell.

    I'm just shaking my head here. It basically defines a conservative as someone who wants things to stay the same. Liberals are those who want a change. So by definition, this must be true.
  • George KGeorge K Super Moderator Posts: 10,043 Senior Member
    sherb wrote: »
    I don't agree. I think the argument at the margins is THE argument. Everything else is tinkering. If there's broad agreement on basic principles, then whether or not Marginal tax rates are at 31% or 35% seems trivial by comparison.

    So, are you saying it's either unregulated complete laissez-faire or a planned or state-owned economy and accompanying political structure - to the extent they can be separated? If so I can't agree. If not I misunderstand you.

    Even not at the extremes I think there are arguments inside the big tent that are not quibbles over a few numbers, such as:

    - flat, progressive or no taxation on income? And, what constitutes income?
    - draft or all-volunteer military?
    - what blend of monetary and fiscal policy?
    - how much regulation?
    - accounting for race, gender, etc. or not?

    And many more. Actually, Keynes or Austria is a good example because it matters, and only at the extremes will you find positions endorsing one to the exclusion of the other.
    Keep your stinkin' government hands off my Medicare.
  • fishingcomicfishingcomic Senior Member Posts: 24,398 Senior Member
    Steven wrote: »
    I'm just shaking my head here. It basically defines a conservative as someone who wants things to stay the same. Liberals are those who want a change. So by definition, this must be true.

    Isn't that the definition of conservative?
    'I've spoken of the Shining City all my political life. …In my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That's how I saw it, and see it still.'" Ronald Reagan
  • creekguycreekguy Senior Member Posts: 3,918 Senior Member
    Steven wrote: »
    I'm just shaking my head here. It basically defines a conservative as someone who wants things to stay the same. Liberals are those who want a change. So by definition, this must be true.
    I was trying to make some sense out of the essays. Conservatives have typically been sticks in the mud on social change. I am reminded of Barry Goldwater vainly arguing against the Civil Rights Act, as did William F. Buckley.
  • creekguy wrote: »
    Well, I didn't understand much of that. I will say this. In the history of civilization, I think most people would agree that humans have socially progressed to a more ethical state. Slavery abolished, racism condemned, women liberated, child abuse outlawed, worker safety promoted, retirement invented and funded, medical care extended to (almost) all. In each case, it was the "liberal" political establishment promoting these ideas, and it was the "conservative" political group that always had reservations and sometimes violent opposition. At each stage, conservatives have argued that the natural state of society did not allow for these advances, that it was unfair to those paying the bills, and that they would create more problems. Well, some "liberal" proposals are counter productive, as in socialism, ethnic preferences, etc. but the conservative side of society has opposed a lot of positive change over the years.

    I hope this is relevant to this thread: I can never tell.

    oh yeah, this is good stuff.
  • BuffcoBuffco Senior Member Posts: 10,586 Senior Member
    sherb wrote: »
    oh yeah, this is good stuff.
    But will it blend?

    (I hope you're typing a page long rebuttal)
  • creekguycreekguy Senior Member Posts: 3,918 Senior Member
    OMG, Professor Sherb gave me a "good Stuff" on my post!! ...Wait, how do I know it's not sarcasm?? So much angst.
  • wait. . .aren't you a REAL professor?
  • creekguycreekguy Senior Member Posts: 3,918 Senior Member
    sherb wrote: »
    wait. . .aren't you a REAL professor?

    Ha! Of geology.... not the deep thinker about civilization and politics that you are. Wait, that is you, isn't it?
  • creekguy wrote: »
    Ha! Of geology.... not the deep thinker about civilization and politics that you are. Wait, that is you, isn't it?

    Well, you know, I work out.
  • George KGeorge K Super Moderator Posts: 10,043 Senior Member
    sherb wrote: »
    Well, you know, I work out.

    Were I not so fond of you and your intellect I might inquire if you have grown ever more conservative as more and more of your grey cells become red muscle. :)
    Keep your stinkin' government hands off my Medicare.
  • Isn't that the definition of conservative?

    Yes, but Creekguy presumes that the fault lines between "liberals" and "conservatives" is never changing.

    I could easily argue that everything good in this country was driven by core beliefs of classical liberalism (democracy, individual rights, freedom of speech and religion, property rights, rule of law) as distinct from social liberalism or other political ideologies.

    The impetus of the American Revolution - classical liberalism
    The impetus for abolition - classical liberalism
    The impetus for women's suffrage - classical liberalism
    The rejection of fascism? Classical liberalism
    The rejection of communism? Classical liberalism

    Where is classical liberalism most embraced today? In the Republican Party.
  • fishingcomicfishingcomic Senior Member Posts: 24,398 Senior Member
    Steven wrote: »
    Yes, but Creekguy presumes that the fault lines between "liberals" and "conservatives" is never changing.

    I could easily argue that everything good in this country was driven by core beliefs of classical liberalism (democracy, individual rights, freedom of speech and religion, property rights, rule of law) as distinct from social liberalism or other political ideologies.

    The impetus of the American Revolution - classical liberalism
    The impetus for abolition - classical liberalism
    The impetus for women's suffrage - classical liberalism
    The rejection of fascism? Classical liberalism
    The rejection of communism? Classical liberalism

    Where is classical liberalism most embraced today? In the Republican Party.

    So opposition to gay rights and reproductive rights is classical liberalism? How about opposition to Muslims and immigrants?
    'I've spoken of the Shining City all my political life. …In my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That's how I saw it, and see it still.'" Ronald Reagan
  • Support of gay rights and same sex marriage has been supported by classical liberal organizations long before it was supported by the Democratic Party or President Obama.

    The Cato Institute has been in support since early in this century for example. Here's something from 2010:

    http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/moral-constitutional-case-right-gay-marriage

    Richard Epstein has written reams supporting SSM, while at the same supporting the right of somebody to not support it.

    As for immigrants, classical liberalism is for nothing if not for property rights - including the ownership and use of one's own abilities. The free movement of capital and labor is a core economic doctrine. That's why I'm the most pro-immigration of anybody who's ever been on this board.

    As for women's reproductive rights, if a woman wants to use birth control, nobody at the Mises Institute is going to stop her. The problem arises when the government tells somebody else that they must pay for it.
  • George K wrote: »
    Were I not so fond of you and your intellect I might inquire if you have grown ever more conservative as more and more of your grey cells become red muscle. :)

    ha. damning with faint praise?
  • fishingcomicfishingcomic Senior Member Posts: 24,398 Senior Member
    Steven wrote: »
    Support of gay rights and same sex marriage has been supported by classical liberal organizations long before it was supported by the Democratic Party or President Obama.

    The Cato Institute has been in support since early in this century for example. Here's something from 2010:

    http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/moral-constitutional-case-right-gay-marriage

    Richard Epstein has written reams supporting SSM, while at the same supporting the right of somebody to not support it.

    As for immigrants, classical liberalism is for nothing if not for property rights - including the ownership and use of one's own abilities. The free movement of capital and labor is a core economic doctrine. That's why I'm the most pro-immigration of anybody who's ever been on this board.

    As for women's reproductive rights, if a woman wants to use birth control, nobody at the Mises Institute is going to stop her. The problem arises when the government tells somebody else that they must pay for it.

    And none of that is supported by the current GOP
    'I've spoken of the Shining City all my political life. …In my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That's how I saw it, and see it still.'" Ronald Reagan
  • creekguycreekguy Senior Member Posts: 3,918 Senior Member
    So Classically Liberal is not the same as "contemporary liberal". I should have not have slept through whatever class this was covered in. I will withdraw from the debate because I am unclear where to draw these distinctions. I see liberal today as advocating collective action usually through the power of government to right the ills of society. To me, the abolition and woman's suffrage elements were collective actions taken by government, and therefore more like contemporary liberal projects. So, is progressive taxation old lib or new lib?? What about paper money?

    I will wait to see what Sherb says so I know what to think.

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