Location: Indianapolis, Indiana, United States

I'm just trying to develop an online body of work (even if the work is throwaway nonsense) to advance my writing career.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008


You know perfectly well you're a hypocrite and so am I. Regardless of our religions or ideologies, everyone has failed at some point to remain true to the values he or she professes to follow. It happens, and I can live with it. Often as not, I have had to live with it because I myself was the hypocrite.

We all know Democrats can be hypocrites. The word liberal implies open-mindedness and acceptance of others when, in fact, many who claim allegiance to liberal ideals can be as dogmatic and rigid as those from whom they try so hard to distance themselves. Similarly, those on the left often display a smarmy condescension toward those who disagree with them. Having admitted all this, the level of hypocrisy emanating from the Republican Party has lately become insufferable for me. I realize I'm painting with a broad brush here, but one has little choice but to do so considering all the nuances associated with politics.

First, we must consider who has wielded the most political power recently. The Republican Party has dominated the White House for the past eight years and controlled Congress for much of the same period. We have witnessed the party that vociferously opposed "Nation Building" embark upon very costly and interminably long projects intended to alter the political landscape of two separate countries in a practice conservative columnist George Will once referred to as "nation building pursued incompetently." Many argue that the September 11th terrorist attacks fundamentally altered this country's foreign policy approach. That's right enough, up to a point, but it doesn't excuse scores of absurdly expensive blunders made by the Bush Administration and its subordinates. Check out Will's column from November 11 2007 and Bob Drogin's book "Curveball" for further details on this.

In addition, we have seen the political party that emphasizes fiscal responsibilty for government create an almost unfathomable mountain of debt. This party's supporters believe in personal responsbility and not resorting to finger pointing and victimhood, but spend an awful lot of time decrying a biased media, blaming them not only for many of the nation's problems but also for keeping Republicans from getting their message out. This party wants government off the backs of citizens and embraces individuality and personal choice, though not when it comes to abortion or gay marriage. Their rhetoric insinuates a general disapproval of social programs but that opposition appears now to depend on what type of social programs they are. If it's a plan to impose the teaching of "intelligent design" in public schools, that's money well spent!

In all fairness, a discussion about abortion constitutes more than merely arguments about personal choice; it includes also a philosophical question about when life begins. Still, it's not difficult to spot the inconsistency. Conservatives often insist on strict adherence to the Constitution, but abortion is not directly addressed in that document, so the deferred to source typically becomes the Bible. Nothing wrong with that, except it's not the Constitution. Some may believe the Bible unequivocally trumps the Constitution but the founders of this nation hitched their wagons to the latter document, so the Bible qualifies only as a major influence. Therefore, to many Republicans, the Constitution isn't everything, it's the only thing, unless the Constitution doesn't address a particular matter or the Bible says differently. Well, okay!

Understand, a great deal of heat conservatives receive is due to the general air of strictness they claim to exude, only to about-face on anti-flexibility when it suits them. This is the same principle that gets liberals lambasted when they exhibit closed-mindedness and intolerance. Perhaps if the Democrats prevail in the upcoming election cycle, I will be calling attention to their folly and transgressions. My perceptions tend to change somewhat, depending on which party holds the power (does that make me a hypocrite as well?) However, until such time, I suppose I'll have to include myself among those in the "mainstream media." Gosh, I'm underpaid.


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