Bill Buckley's boast that he could always detect a liberal got my brain a whirring. I've had one case for sure in my life where I had pegged someone 100% as liberal and turned out to SPECTACULARLY wrong. Nice looking, single woman few years younger than me, walked to work rather than driving a car, happy, outgoing, intelligent, obviously caring -- she just looked and seemed, well, "liberal". She was and is not -- mostly likely to the right of me a little bit (not that there is anything wrong with that)!
The term "Gaydar" might we related -- I've had to be told on multiple occasions "they're gay", when it never crossed my mind. Oh, sure, the flamboyant obvious case -- "Liberace, Elton John, etc", but Rock Hudson? Nope. Lesbian, no hope, I'm totally oblivious.
Here is what I believe.
I suspect that females have "Gaydar" that exceeds even the gay. They are wired to realize if they are "being checked out", and to realize if another female is being "checked out", especially by "their guy' (targeted or captured). Much like it is claimed that our 688 attack subs would figure out where our "boomers" (missile subs) were at because there was a "sonic hole in the water" (we built them TOO quiet, they were a sound screen), the "Gaydar" is really detecting that the male in question isn't giving off any level of female attention reading for ANY woman in the group ... ergo.
I believe that the default person is "liberal", meaning that they believe that humans are generally good, or if not good, easily educated to be good. When someone has been properly educated and socialized, they will as a matter of course be a fellow liberal. The more intelligence, communication ability, creative ability, artistic ability, social grace, etc a person has, the more likely it is that they are liberals. Liberalism is the natural state of political belief for a healthy happy human that wants to get along in society and be successful. Given basic intelligence, a normal desire to get along with others, and even fairly minimal education, any sentient person is liberal. It is a core liberal matter of faith.
As a conservative Christian, I agree liberalism is the natural human state. People like to see themselves as good, and they like to see those that agree with them as good. I was a liberal until I was 21 myself -- it is often said that if you are not a liberal when you are young, you have no heart. I agree with the generalization humor in that, but I disagree with the other part that if you are not a conservative by "40", you have no brain. I believe that high intellect and especially a high level of education, skill in a field, and even financial success (depends on type, small business will tend to turn people conservative) will generally encourage one to be and stay a liberal. The increasingly leftward direction of the US to BOistan, where liberalism is increasingly the state religion as well as just a good idea, makes it painful to not follow the crowd in especially the coastal areas and large cities.
My belief is that the biggest differentiator is belief in God ( the beginning of wisdom is the fear of God). Certainly not all conservatives are Christians, but in order to be a conservative, you need to hold to a set of values that can't be constructed by reason. They have to be, "felt, intuited, discrned". Modern brain science shows that unless we are a psychopath, sociopath, asbergers, etc person, we all DO feel the moral impulse.
Where does it come from? As we might all guess, that is a matter of faith. Hard work has been put into coming up with a narrative that might allow evolution to create it (eg "group selection"), however at best, that is always going to be highly speculative (as an atheist would say religion is).
Modern BOistan has gotten so lost that there are indeed a number of people who are supposedly God believing "christians" who don't believe much of the Bible or in the diety / redemptive power of Christ. Brokaw may even be one of those. It allows one to intellectually call themselves "chrisitan", while believing none of the tenets of the faith (Christ is Gods son, died for our sins, which we admit to, and will save us if we accept his life, death and resurrection and follow him as a result). The "secular christian" is essentially no different from the "secular humanist" in thinking that there may or may not be an afterlife, but since I'm certainly better than most people, I don't need to worry about it.
Again, this is a GENERALIZATION, so there are definiely "many" cases where it doesn't apply -- atheist conservtives, actual political liberals that somehow manage to correlate that with real faith (although I can't explain it, I'm not the judge, Christ is), the point is that in general, the conservative view follows quite naturally from "looking for God" ... or at a minium, the transcendent. The idea that this isn't all there is.
So as a conservative, I believe that man is flawed -- he has a moral nature, but he has an animal nature as well, and that is too prone to take over and cause short term evil that tends to begat longer term evil (cover-up, attachment to the evil, attempts to justify, etc). Also, without faith in a higher power, attention to long-term gain and willingness to accept short term pain for the long term benefit is difficult at best. Eternity is the longest of long term -- so foregoing questionable earthly pleasures in light of eternal gain makes a lot of sense to people with that outlook, obviously NONE to people without it.
If we didn't die, get sick, have to work in order to be fed clothed, etc, then liberalism would be the clear ticket. No responsibility (at least none except voting for "good people"). A world with a TON of "rights" ... freedom to say exactly what you want and recently to not have to hear anything that you don't like, free health, free education (to learn how to have greater pleasure ... like study the Karma Sutra), free shelter, free food, free beverages and recreational drugs (at least they SHOULD be covered!), guaranteed respect and participation trophies, freedom from war, violence (unless beating up a conservative for pleasure), etc, etc. A good reality if you can get it.
As PJ O'Rourke once said, liberals believe in Santa, conservatives belive in God. The only problem with liberalism is that there is no Santa!
It is clear why the young tend to be liberal -- in BOistan up to 21, and lately even 26 and beyond, many of their lives are close approximations of the previous slightly whimsical description. For a wealthy guy like Brokaw, it at least "seems" like the proper alingment of large beauracracy just "might" be able to keep things rolling in general, and it has certainly worked out GREAT for him! Yes, the "sickness and death" thing has started to intrude, but modern medicine helps keep the sickness thing as somewhat less horrible than formerly, and at least mostly hidden. Death is a nagging problem, but it MUST be kinda OK -- everyone does it, certainly it has to be graded on a curve at the very least, and "I'm OK". Why, even if it did somehow turn out that I was "personally responsible" (insane, but this nagging feeling ...), hey, I talk way better than just about EVERYONE, and when you get right down to it, I AM a pretty darned nice guy!
After all, I turned down NIXON (of course) ... in the unlikely event there is a hell in Brokaw's mind, I'm certain he sees Nixon as justifiably there. He LIED to the American people! He erased a tape!
Do I think I can usually spot the conservative in the room? Sure, the same way as a 688 attack sub spots a boomer, or a woman a gay. Because there is the absence of "standard liberal chatter" from that person. They avoid politics just a little bit more than is even the average. They never bring up SNL, and laugh only uncomfortably about "the great skit that really put Trump / Sarah Palin / W in their place!"
For some strange roll of the dice, I'm an even rarer breed, the "conservative inconoclast'. I keep silent not because I would not be perfectly happy to have the give and take, but because of the level of discomfort, hatred, and down right leaving the room screaming that will be ingnited if I expose myself is truly terrible. For some reason, the comination of large size, relatively glib tongue, not being totally stupid, and being decently aware of liberal positions as well as COUNTER positions is especially incendiary. if I dragged my knuckles, they could look the other way and go cluck cluck, but as it is, well, "they can't normalize pure evil"!
My thinking is that the reason for this is that it makes them question their assumption that "anyone reasonably intelligent / well read / emotionally able to communicate", MUST be a liberal! Certainly they at some level know this is not the case -- Buckley after all was WAY more intelligent, well read, glib tounged, etc than I, but my sense is they feel that anyone with even a wisp of that sort of madness ought be clearly marked, and not allowed to just walk around in the open. Perhaps the "outlier conservative preserve" should be formed in the interest of keeping liberals safe.
So I stay stealthy. At my workplace, I'm sure there are suspicions ... they know that I'm an Elder and a LCMS church! They haven't heard me say anything nasty about Trump! I've only laughed minimally and probably detectably and uncomfortably at nasty things said about Trump and Trump voters at the office where politics are to be STRICTLY off limits! Of course the executive director went out and marched in the woman's march, a couple of the people have "Vote Democrat" on their cars and in some strategic not too public spots in their office. After all, when you ARE a good person, you have to be just a little proud of it!
... and that's the way it is! As another noted liberal used to say. As a rather funny postscript, I went off to find a Youtube of Walter doing the signoff (easy to find if you want), but instead explained that he came up with it because "other distinguished broadcasters had one, why shouldn't he?" even though his boss correctly pointed out that it might well not be true -- they may have made mistakes, not gotten all the information, drawn wrong conclusions, etc. But, "people liked it" -- as many DO tend to like "authority", so it became part of the liberal manufactured "reality" of the US -- "fake, but true", or at least accepted as "true". "Uncle Walter" was always right, and we could all believe him ... as he signed off each night with something that was suspect at best, and in many cases, a direct lie.
Americans have enjoyed fake news for a very long time!
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