Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Two Upcoming

Update: The comments have been persuasive, and have created some changes in the upcoming posts. My "developmental" idea was indeed based on the limited sample of Arts & Humanities people who equate their own coming of age with the abandonment of simple moral/patriotic narratives in school (Remember when schools had simple moral/patriotic narratives up until high school? Yes children, they did, and not just the Christian schools - which sometimes had them through high school), plus those who were raised as fundamentalists who felt that they "grew out of" such beliefs. So I'll relook at the whole thing. As to the government/society equivalence, Der Hahn's point is taken - I will try to explain better what I meant to say.

Further additions to my "Sauron himself is but an emissary" series occurred to me. I am working on longer posts, but they aren't coming together well. To get your brains primed for the topics I will not two additional core features of liberalism. 1.) The concept of American society is very close to the idea of government in a progressive's mind. Government is seen as the primary expression of a society. Thus, when they use the word "we," they have a flexible variety of meanings for the term. 2.) Conservatism is regarded a s a developmental stage on the way to liberalism - intellectually, socially, and morally.


Donna B. said...

Have you read Moral Politics by George Lakoff? I haven't, but what I've read about it seems to contradict the idea that conservatism is a developmental stage on the way to liberalism.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

I have not, though I recall reading about his "body-mind" stuff. Or maybe it was "embodied mind." I don't recall whether I thought him wise, but he's at least the real deal in linguistics.

I'll check it out.

I certainly don't think conservatism is a developmental stage, but liberals often use language that suggests they think that.

karrde said...

Well, the one liberal I knew really well hinted that any other view was the result of ignorance.

(In an almost-gnostic sense, that he was a student of secret knowledge that brought sense to the world, and if I joined him in the secret knowledge I would become one of the Enlightened Ones also...)

karrde said...


Of course, I can't claim to have met the full panoply of liberals/progressives.

It's possible that I knew one who thought of conservatism as a phase he grew out of, but I'm not sure.

I will say that almost all I've met who hold the liberal/progressive viewpoint seem unable to conceive of any power in society besides government.

Der Hahn said...

You might mean something different by the statement, possibly closer to karrde's comment about power centers in society, but I disagree that liberals see government as the expression of society. I think that sentiment tends to be true when the principal government actors have a liberal/progressive bent (remember 'those are our planes now' and how patriotism became acceptable again on 1/20/2009?). When conservatives are the principal actors then government is usually seen as force that must be kept seperate from society.

Dr X said...

I don't believe that either conservatism or liberalism represent a developmental stage, one leading to the next. They are both attempts to understand the world within the context of explanatory ideologies. Life and the world are very messy affairs and our minds face a huge task in attempting to make sense of it all.

Of course, our ideological 'maps' of reality are constructed within the context of the limited experience and knowledge each of us possesses—inevitably biased by an array of competing pressures arising from our own particular needs, circumstances, vulnerabilities and internal conflicts (and strengths, as well). Which ideology, if any, will appeal to us first is largely a matter of the world we know and the internal and external challenges we face as individuals.

jaed said...

remember 'those are our planes now'

That is a really weird mindset. (And it's one that I can't find a parallel for on the right; I literally don't think I've ever heard anyone express anything like this when Bush took over from Clinton [regardless of the rabidity of feelings about Clinton], nor the opposite when Obama took over from Bush.) Really, the armed forces represent you only when a member of your political faction holds the presidency?

It seems somehow related to the common occurrence of liberal Americans - celebrities and non - announcing that if the Republican wins the presidency this time, they will abandon the country and move abroad. I can't say I've never heard anyone on the right make such a threat if the Democrat wins, but it's rare.