As an individual who is economically conservative and socially liberal, I would like to translate Patrick Sundstrom's most recent letter to the Editor for the closed-minded liberals whom he claims to have studied. The translation goes something like this: "Whine whine whine rant rant whine whine."
The best name calling that Mr. Sundstrom can find is to say that liberals want to kill babies and hope that America will undergo further terrorist attacks. Why does the Progress print this man's rants? Am I just misreading a really great humor column?
We have all heard these same arguments for several years now from the "conservative" propaganda machines as they try to convince people to stick with The Party through the barrage of liberal logic and reasoning that is about to undo their agenda.
On the terrorism side, we hear Bush state constantly that the war on terror is unlike any other war we have fought before, yet we are still using old-war techniques. What if this war requires more than bullets and forced propaganda? Are the greatest advancements in American war strategy the hiring of contractors and the detention of enemy combatants on unsubstantiated claims?
Liberals are not necessarily socialists. Socially liberal and economically conservative are not mutually exclusive. Economics theory addresses the ability of free-markets to allocate goods and to eliminate waste, which is good for society and which socialism is not as well-equipped to handle. Most liberals agree and support this theory, but realize that sometimes a free-market fails. So maybe Mr. Sundstrom is more convinced that liberals are scary in a way similar to what Senator Joseph McCarthy thought of communists.
If we analyze socialism from a historical context in the big, scary sense of the "The Party" (i.e., The Communist Party in the USSR), we see that the actions of the "conservatives" who have taken over the once-great Republican Party are much more aligned than the liberals. I can think of several issues.
Let's start with the illegal warrantless wiretapping to spy on the country's own citizens. Then there was the blatant lying through propaganda printed in government-endorsed newspapers (because other newspapers were not allowed to operate if they spoke out against the ruling forces). Do not forget about the manipulation of intelligence to support The Party's political agenda. You may have also witnessed the purging of "unpatriotic" people who speak up with facts or news that does not support The Party's cause. Have we already forgotten The Party's ignoring and later forgetting about major environmental catastrophes that destroyed thousands of lives? The list goes on, fueled not by political ideologies, but by the corruption of absolute power.
If you believe that these correlations are perhaps a stretch, then maybe Mr. Sundstrom will agree that the government is not exercising restraint in spending even with no proof that the money is doing anything other than making Party loyalists wealthy, sometimes as a result of proven corruption. Let us never forget that the practice of excessive spending, particularly on defense, and corrupt loyalty led to a bankrupt Soviet Union. Under Bush, America has lost its edge. The world is forging ahead with new ideas, technologies, and advances in freedoms and human rights, and people are looking back on America, worried about their old friend and the country so many people used to look up to.
With close to a super majority of Americans who now believe that Bush has us on the wrong course, I would appeal to everybody who still supports the current "conservative" Republican agenda to reconsider their position. I would dare say that if you reread what Dennis Dooley said about the definition of "liberal" most people would realize that it would be un-American to consider yourself anything but just that.
As for Mr. Sundstrom, he claims to fight for freedom but then belittles people he deems unworthy to speak their beliefs. I believe we sarcastically refer to these people as "champions of freedom," and many of these champions refer to themselves as "conservatives."
Where do you fall in the spectrum? I know I stand in the middle, hoping the future will bring checks and balances and a little sound reasoning back to our country.