By Russell D. Longcore
(Editor’s note: I wrote this in 2008. As we are now in a Presidential primary season in which the top candidates fight amongst themselves for which is the most conservative…or the REAL conservative, I take a few minutes to point out some glaringly obvious points. The office-seekers…except for Ron Paul…have entirely re-defined the word “conservative” in a cynical bid to play on the societal memory of a conservatism long gone by. That’s only part of it, since only the oldest retirees could hold any memory of what true conservatism is. For the rest of America, conservatism means whatever the current crop of politicians says it means. And the conservatism of 2012 is room-temperature socialism.)
The old adage, “Actions speak louder than words,” has never been truer as it relates to the idea and ideal of conservatism.
Scores of books have been written about conservatism and liberalism, and more will be written. In my view, they mostly cloud the issues and make the definitions fuzzy at best.
Here is my definition of true Conservatism.
Conservatism is a political philosophy that stands for a government, at any level, that functions within the strictures and boundaries of a written Constitution.
That’s it. Anything less than that definition is not true Conservatism.
Now, in light of that definition, look at what the people who call themselves Conservatives today believe and do. Remember, forget what they say, watch what they do. We will use the US Constitution as our yardstick.
The Constitution does not allow for a standing army. Conservatives support unlimited amounts of tax money for standing armies, air forces and military bases in over 130 foreign countries.
The Constitution does not allow for war to be declared by anyone other than Congress, nor military invasions of sovereign nations. Conservatives have supported undeclared wars and invasions abroad since Lincoln invaded the Confederate States of America.
The Constitution does not provide for all of the various Cabinet departments, like Labor, Energy, Education, Commerce, Health and Human Services, etc. The only Cabinet departments I can see authorized in the Constitution are Treasury, War, and State. Conservatives not only like all of the various departments…they willingly fund them and fight over their control.
The Constitution does not provide for the Federal Reserve or a national bank. Conservatives work hard to place their own favorite guy as the Chairman, and manipulate the currency as they choose.
The Constitution does not promote nor restrict any faith or the practice of any religion, leaving any religious concerns to the states. Conservatives promote nearly exclusively in the religions of Western Civilization, which are Judaism and Christianity. Conservatives have always been in favor of the tax-exempt status of the Church…something else not found in the Constitution.
The original Constitution does not allow for a personal income tax or the Internal Revenue Service. Conservatives rely on tax revenues to fund the unconstitutional things they love.
The original Constitution did not provide for a Social Security or Medicare system. Conservatives have called the Federal social programs “the Third Rail of politics”…so sacrosanct that to touch them is to die politically.
The Constitution does not allow for the vast array of regulations of every facet of human existence. Conservatives in Congress have helped pass all of the regulatory legislation and regulations. They have kept most regulation in place, and only in rare exceptions have repealed regulations and law.
The original Constitution does not provide for ANY immigration law, leaving immigration policy to the states. Conservatives are hostile to nearly everyone who wants to come to America.
The original Constitution does not provide for the legalizing or funding of killing babies still in their mother’s wombs. Conservatives talk anti-abortion rhetoric, but do nothing to overturn the law.
The Constitution restricted the Federal government to very tight, very defined duties. Conservatives promote HUGE federal government.
So, we can see that those who call themselves Conservatives today…aren’t. They are big-government state worshippers. Those who embrace true conservatism today are usually labeled anarchists or libertarians, simply ignored or purposefully omitted from news coverage.
Isn’t that right, Ron Paul?
Dump DC: Six Letters That Can Change History.
Copyright 2012: Russell D. Longcore. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.