Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Republicans - The 'Child' Party

So many things are happening right now - the hearings on Valerie Plame, Gone-zo-gate, you name it - that keeping up with it all is hard to do. As soon as I think of something to say about one subject, another one explodes. So, instead, I think I'll talk about the thread running through all this - the utter childishness of the Republican Party.

You will often hear the two parties called the 'Daddy' party (Repubs) and the 'Mommy' party (Dems), intimating that the Republicans are more disciplined and realistic, and the Democrats are more emotional and 'feel-goody'. I would like to set before you another view: the Dems as the 'Parent' party, and the Repubs as the 'Child' party.

While that may seem to fly in the face of conventional wisdom, think about this (if you have kids or have been around them, some of this may sound familiar) -

  • Children, like Repubs, tend to think in absolutes, in black-and-white, right and wrong, good guys and bad guys. Nuance confuses them. They like their answers to be simple and direct.
  • Children need an authority over them telling them what to do.
  • Children are concerned with self rather than others. They want what they want when they want it, and it's difficult for a child to empathize with others' needs.
  • Children will throw a tantrum to get what they want. Even if what they want right now will hurt them in the long run (global warming, anyone?)
  • Children don't want to accept responsibility for anything. It's always "He did it too!" "It was his idea, not mine - he made me do it!" "It's not my fault!" "It wasn't me!" - even in the face of direct evidence! If they think they can get away with it, they will say they didn't take the chocolate chip cookie with crumbs and chocolate smeared all over their face.
  • Children like to play war/fighting games. If other people get hurt, it doesn't register with them the way it does when they get hurt.
  • Children chafe at rules, regulation, and oversight, even when it's to their advantage.
  • Children like symbols, slogans, and logos, and they are very easily manipulated by the use of these. It's no accident that many kids' first symbol recognition is of McDonalds' Golden Arches®.
Now, let me say here that, in children, this is appropriate behavior. There are good reasons that they are born selfish. It is for survival. But, children will outgrow this if they are raised properly. As adults, we should know better.

Democrats, on the other hand, understand that it's not all about us and screw everybody else. We take our responsibilities to ourselves and each other seriously. We understand that if others are suffering, that it's not okay, even if we're doing all right ourselves. No, we're not perfect. But we do understand that the world is complex, the issues that face us are complex, and we can't substitute slogans, banners, and jingoism for considered reasoning and looking at all sides of an issue.

That's what the kids call 'flip-flopping'.


Yoga Korunta said...

Alicia, that means what, that 51% of the voters are immature, need immediate gratification, and someone to blame?

Send George home.

Alicia Morgan said...

In a hot second, Yoga. And with a good paddling.

Unknown said...

Just heard Mike Malloy read your blog.

Brilliant! The Party of Brats! Ain't it the truth.

Alicia Morgan said...

Bill, thanks for stopping by! It really is true, I think - there is something so immature about the whole conservative mindset. And we are being led by the Toddler-In-Chief.