Sunday, July 24, 2005

Wanda Asks, Alicia Answers

(a cheap way to get another post up, but since it ties in with the theme, I thought I'd repost Wanda's comment and my answer, with a sentence or two added...)

One thing I wonder about is why if conservatives strongly believe what they proclaim to, then why are they not more upset with BushCo's clear intent to involve the government in the most private aspects of our lives. If they really are people with strong morals and ethics why are they not more upset about the behavior of those in the White House?
The only conclusion I can come up with is either they aren't paying attention,or else they really don't have such high values after all.

You know, Wanda, the only reason I can come up with is in the post between these two - that finding out that what you put all your faith and trust in is completely wrong is too much for a lot of people to handle, especially those of the farmer mindset whose wiring tells them not to change; to stick with what they are doing, as would be necessary to ensure that their crops continue to grow. Because if you challenge that, everything that you believed about yourself and the world comes into question. The question is, "If I was wrong about this, what else am I wrong about? Am I right about anything?" It is a shattering of self, and most people are not prepared to go there. It's the only rationale I can think of for the curious pride that conservatives take in not seeing the other guy's point of view, and hold intolerance to be a virtue and tolerance to be a moral failing, unlike liberals, who often do try to see things from both sides.

The more I think about this, the more I see that it was a stroke of genius on Rove's - I mean, Bush's part to feed into the farmer mindset by emphasizing that he never changes - that no matter what, he 'stays the course' and all the rest of that rot. I can see now the subliminal brilliance of that message - all the crap about being a 'strong leader' and positioning himself as someone who never backs down, etc., etc.

There are some people able to make a 180 and change their complete worldview based upon the evidence in front of them. The ones that do, like Robert and Marie, impress me very much. I remember when Arianna Huffington was a conservative and starting to write columns, and I remember thinking, "God, you're so smart and thoughtful - can't you see that this is a load of crap?" And the next thing I knew, she was a liberal! Now, I don't always agree with her about everything, but I will never fail to be impressed with how she took an analytical look at the facts and changed her position accordingly. That takes cojones.

The people who are hanging on to this contradictory and illogical view of Bush and Co are like people after a shipwreck clinging to a shard of wood, trying to stay afloat. What they are trying to do is to avoid drowning their concept of themselves.

I think the only way people like that will turn around is for enough conservative leaders to condemn the actions of the White House so they will feel like they have permission. Once it is the 'official' position of enough high-profile conservatives, I believe they will jump on board, but that's what it's going to take.


oldwhitelady said...

I've also wondered about the so-called values Wanda questions. It's amazing how they can be so hypocritical.

as for your post, Alicia, I agree that people have a hard time realizing when they are wrong. When and IF they do, it is hard to admit it. As you say, it takes a lot of "cojones" to do so.

Alicia Morgan said...

Zackly, OWL - have you noticed that Bush has NEVER ever admitted ANY mistake, ever? He doesn't have real stones, in my estimation - just gall and braggadocio. He's happy to put troops in harm's way by hollering, "Bring it on!" since he's been pretty much babysat by Daddy's boys all his life. But personal honesty and bravery?? Not on your life.

I keep thinking about Lincoln...

Alicia Morgan said...

I know! Unbelievable, isn't it? I wonder if there have been a lot of these over his lifetime - I imagine the cumulative brain damage may be substantial...