Why Are You Conservative?

What is it that makes conservatives conservative?

I was reading an interesting article over at Entrepreneur’s Journey this afternoon. Yaro Starak is someone I admire. He is a real Internet success story and has a ton of great ideas about business, entrepreneurship and being successful.

In the post I read today, Yaro said:

“Observe how you feel when you think about writing your blog. Think about the subjects you are covering and what they mean to you and your readers.”

That got me thinking. A flurry of questions raced through my mind…

What animates conservatives?

What exactly am I trying to do with this blog?

Why do some people see such corruption in government and others see such greatness?

What do conservatives really want?

Will the change we want even be noticeable?

Why do we care?

When you – my conservative friends – go to a Tea Party, or call your Congressman, or call a radio talk show, or complain to your husband or wife…what is going through your mind?

Turning the question to myself…why would I take 5 years of my life to write post after post about conservatism?

One thing is for certain, distilling all my thoughts into a single purpose or animating feature is DIFFICULT.

I think the basics are:

Understanding history – Russia under Stalin, Germany under Hitler, China under Mao (and right up until today) are all very real situations. People in CHina are killed or jailed for doing what I do. I believe it could happen here.

My kids – I look at my little kids and wonder what life will be like for them. Will the government make them live in a certain area? Limit what they can buy? Force them into some occupation? Jail them for expression? That scares the hell out of me.

Seeing freeloaders pisses me off – If you’re crippled or retarded, I understand and I’m happy to donate some tax dollars to help you. But when able bodied men and women take food stamps because they are lazy and feel entitled, it makes me furious. What we have is our money being confiscated and given away, in most cases wasted.

Understanding history part 2 – I’ve read all about the founding. Book after book including The Heritage Guide to the Constitution, AJ Languuth’s Patriots: The Men Who Started the Revolutionary War, The Federalist Papers, the Debates on the Constitution and on and on. What I understand is how the country was founded. Then I take the knowledge and bump it up against what I see – GREATNESS. I also see EXCEPTIONALISM. While I understand how we got to be so great, I also see liberal ideology tearing it down.

A general sense of “get out of my life” – At every turn, government is getting in my face. It’s a never ending parade of taxes, regulations, forms, deadlines, rules, stickers, permits, licenses and time-wasting nonsense. It recently took me a day and half of missed work and three trips to the DMV just to get my drivers license renewed.

Scrubbed language – We woke up and realized that we couldn’t talk anymore and it makes us MAD. Retarded, bum, oriental, midget, women’s work, illegal alien, and even Merry Christmas are all off limits. The list is long, but you get the idea. How about we just call it like it is instead of whitewashing life?

I think these are the basics. I think these are the few animating features of us regular people who are standing up shouting, “No More!”

At the end of the day, we don’t want to see the leftist boot on the neck of our children. So we blog, show up at Tea Party events, listen to Mark Levin, call our congressmen, all in an effort to stop the government machine.

At least I think that’s it…

What do you think? Why do you care about this stuff?


  1. You pretty much covered it for me!!!
    I would add…a sense of duty…Not to just throw away 200+ years of what our ancestors work, dedication, fights, and deaths gave to the world. A bastion of freedom.

  2. I first started writing in support of Mike Huckabee. That was in September of 2007. After he dropped out of the race, I fell off the grid for a couple of months, not knowing what to write about. Before that, it was almost exclusively about Huckabee. I finally started writing about the news, politics, and current events of the day. Political Realities was born out of a desire to share my thoughts, for many of the same reasons you have shared.

    My wife often asks me if I think I am really doing good by writing and publishing on the blog. The only answer I can give is I hope I am and that someone has to tell the truth about what is really taking place in our country.

  3. That’s right, Erin. Kennedy’s famous quote hit the nail on the head. (Of course, liberals took his quote an turned it on its head.) We should want to do for our country, not sit around wondering where the next handout is coming from. And therein lies the difference: Conservatives think “doing for our country” means being productive, law-abiding citizens. It means participating in your church. It means volunteering for youth sports teams. It means doing everything possible to earn a decent living and provide for our families and children.

    The left thinks “doing for our country” means allowing more of your paychecks to be confiscated by government, so they can redistribute it to the “less fortunate.” Because to the left, keeping more of what you rightfully earn is selfish.

    Well, here’s a bit of telling it like it is… The are plenty of people more fortunate than me, and I am more fortunate than plenty of others. Guess what? I don’t give a damn. It’s none of my business what anyone else earns, but as long as a person is able-bodied, they shouldn’t get a dime from government at any level. I should say, get a dime of my tax payments…

    @Larry – that is really kind of amazing. I look at your blog now – http://www.ldjackson.net – and It is a massive volume of thoughtful commentary. What you have done is create a treasure for your children and grandchildren. Imagine what your young grandkids will think in 70 years when they go back and read your words from way back in 2010? Just imagine that!

  4. Good post!

  5. Thanks, Tom! I bet there are more reasons for being conservative… I think our life experiences play a large role too. I’ll have to add some of those ideas…

  6. pat carlson-gutta says:

    I am a bit confused about what it means to be conservative… I’ve been a teacher…public school, publically financed. I worked hard at this, thought I was doing a good job… didn’t make a lot of money… So was I a failure? I’m also now, and for the last 27 years, a nurse, privately paid, and have to comply with a lot of regulations. The regulations make it harder, believe me… but some of my employers have been able to get around them. Like you aren’t supposed to throw old used bedding or clothing onto the floor, or in a hall in a Nursing home, or hospital… but sometimes, the only time covered clothesbins would appear was when state inspectors would come around. Then there is hand washing, locking up medications, not reusing needles, not restraining patients, warmth of food, timing of meals, cleaning up between patients, not talking about patients… all of these are regulations. There are literally hundreds of regulations just on hospitals and nursing homes in terms of safety, privacy, etc. Are we trying to get rid of all these? It would certainly make the jobs easier. Which regulations are we against? I need to know because some of my friends do ask, and I really don’t know which ones are just bad regulations…
    Second thing is this… If we were to take away the minimum wage, Would we also remove the laws about making parents provide for their little kids at home ? That way parents could stay away enough to work double shifts without having to pay for daycare. When I was little, I watched my brothers quite a bit, and I was young, but nobody would have accused my parents of child-abuse. Course for the most part, dad’s job paid enough to support the seven of us.
    Third… I really like Ayn Rand, and her philosophy… but. In her day, was there any concern for the environment . Seems to me that we didn’t recognize any limitations as far as air, water, oil, gas etc. I felt much freer to, for example, just throw everything away in one place… Now we have to recycle… It’ annoying, but I do think about reuse, and using up resources… So as a conservative… how do we balance regulations, and freedom… That is my question.

  7. Hi Pat – I think you’ll find your answer over time. I’m not sure I can answer it for you in a simple reply.

    That said, my opinion is that your question is kind of a straw man fallacy…. The choice is not between what we have today and NO regulation or law at all.

    Conservatives are for small, constitutional government; not no government at all.

    All that we need is found in just a few documents. First and foremost, the Constitution. That provides a complete list of powers the federal government has. If any part of the Constitution is unclear, we need look no further than the Federalist Papers for clarification.

    Go look up how many pages of new regulations there are JUST THIS YEAR. Bump that up against $16 Trillion in debt.

    Conservatives want small, constitutional government. It is as simple as that.

    I would not insult you by presetting books for you to read. But I will share some titles that are a brilliant summary of conservative thought… Well…instead of a list, how about Liberty and Tyranny by Mark Levin. That is the authoritative modern work on what it means to be conservative, in my opinion.

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