Sunday, April 4, 2010

Individuality and Political Philosophy


Last night, when listening to Neal Boortz' latest rant-a-thon on the radio, I heard him assert to a caller that most individualists were conservatives and that most liberals were the type to herd with the crowd.

Say what?

In my experience, it's conservatives who tend to be cautious and most concerned with conformity, sticking to traditional ways of doing things and who are suspicious of innovation and new and different ways of doing things. It's liberals who tend think outside the box, to color outside the lines, who look forward instead of back. That's why it's liberals who are called progressives, and not conservatives.

Conservatism tends to be reactive and not proactive. That's why you hear more about what Republicans are against, rather than what they are for. Nearly all innovation and progress in our country (and in many others) has been inspired or generated by liberals who were not satisfied to merely conform to the way things were, but questioned and stepped out into new directions.

It's a conservative spirit that answers "That's the way we've always done it", when someone asks why and wonders why it couldn't be done differently. It's most often a conservative who believes there is one "right" way of doing things that everyone should adhere to.

But of course, Boortz wasn't actually speaking of individuality, per se. He was speaking of a person's focus in what they put first in their lives, as his next words indicated. He jeered at liberals for being concerned with the well being of groups of people, rather than being concerned mainly for themselves. To him, "individuality" doesn't mean having a unique personality, lifestyle, or outlook, but rather, in simply being primarily out for oneself, rather than being concerned with the well being of communities and different groups of people.


If anyone is at all interested, today is my sixth anniversary as a blogger.

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