Tuesday, July 14, 2009

On Becoming Liberal

My sister once asked me when I had turned into a Liberal, and I realized the other day that I always have been. I always called myself a Republican (conservative), but when you asked me about any single issue I very often held a more or less liberal position on it. I finally realized that when your individual positions are more often liberal than conservative, on a 4:1 ratio or so, you are a liberal.

I kept my life simple, of course, by limiting topics of discussion to those on which I held a conservative view. I think it was Ronald that finally made that untenable. Maybe it was George the 1st.


  1. It was Ronald - I remember the conversations where you started to cave. the sister.

  2. Arthur8:42 PM

    Jayhawk, your problem is not unlike my own. You don't like to be labeled, and especially the implied predictability about your positions. Once upon a time, the "conservative" pigeon-hole was more comfortable than the "liberal" pigeon-hole.
    As each political ideology evolved, and especially as each became more extreme, that comfortableness changed. Now "liberal" is still uncomfortable, but "conservative" is more uncomfortable. (I like to call myself a "progressive traditionalist" just to make people think.)

    To all and sundry, for a more complete description of "liberal" and "conservative" as useless labels, and their moral and policy inconsistencies, see my recent comment to "Obama Visits Africa", five posts down.

  3. hmmm.. I like Arthur's comments, ie we don't like to be labeled, and the extremity that has pervaded politics (and ruined it if it could get worse). I may be endangering myself here, but I have always thought of myself as middle-road-slightly-to more-conservative. Lately, I've thought of it as Libertarian. But I also like Arthur's description of himself - both as a description (which fits him and myself) and as a make-people-think sort of thing.