Friday, July 19, 2013

Conservatives and the Snob Factor

David Solway writes about the deep division among conservatives because of class distinctions:

It seems me that the fault in the conservative orientation resides not so much in the intellect per se as in the will, a volitional exhaustion, a weakening of purpose expressed as a gradual turn toward the liberal perspective. Intellect is then mobilized to justify the backsliding tendencies of the will, as if in a rerun of the historical debate between two great Medieval theologians, St. Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotus. Aquinas argued that intellect determines truth and the will carries out the appropriate actions. Scotus held otherwise; the will bloweth where it listeth, and the intellect assembles the arguments to support its appetitive pursuits.

... But there is another, equally perilous rift that alienates a part of the conservative community from itself, namely class consciousness. Many of those who have benefitted from an elite university education and hail from prosperous families tend to react with suspicion, or even with a certain disdain, toward their lower-and-working class counterparts who speak with regional accents, prefer tankards to carafes and are, on the whole, less erudite and articulate than those whom I call “palatine conservatives.” ...

... The conservative “institution” is enfeebled by these two inherently disruptive factors: a depletion of the political will, and the specter of class distinctions — and it is the left that profits from this infusorial derangement. But it is most disheartening to observe the extent to which sociolectical disparities and class assumptions, generally from the top down, can introduce a spirit of discord and superciliousness among those who should be, as it were, above such congenital hauteur.
IMHO, the class disdain is even greater among the so-called "liberals," than among the so-called "conservatives." Most liberals political beliefs are built upon disdain for a particular group of people--the rampant killing by abortion of minority children, the anti-American and anti-Christian ideologies they support, feminism, anti-gun, etc. I suspect that a lot of the stunts pulled by the Democrats--the election irregularities, the unceasing attempts to inflame the Democratic base, the endless campaigning, the attempts to consolidate and centralize power, misuse of the bureaucracy, the blatant lies--are symptoms of a deep rooted panic among the Democratic elite.

I would also point out that "conservatives" are actually blendings of two basic groups: true conservatives and classical liberals. (Obviously, the reality is much more complicated, but that is why I chose the term "blendings"). Unfortunately, the true conservatives are generally just as statist as the falsely named "liberals" (i.e., the liberal fascists) on the left. "A house divided cannot stand," and until the Republicans make a choice between being statists or classical liberals, they will have difficulty fielding national level candidates that can gather the necessary popularity to win.

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