Thursday, October 13, 2005

We built this city on rock and roll

You probably think I'm going to talk about the "controversy" at home plate last night at the end of the Angels-White Sox game. I'm not. There was nothing controversial about the play at all. It was a blown call. Pure and simple. It's just part of the game

No, today's discussion involves something even more trivial than sports: political analysis.

Read Howard Fineman's MSNBC article here for reference. His claim is that the conservative movement is "falling apart at the seams." My claim is that Howard Fineman is an idiot.

First, let's take that silliest of phrases, "conservative movement." This is quite possible the most overused oxymoron of our day. Bolshevism was a movement. NOW represents a movement. Movements diverge from established social order, or from traditional values. Conservatism seeks to preserve those things. Sure, we all know to whom or to what he refers when he speaks of the conservative movement, but it's still an absurd nomenclature, and one that attempts to pass off as fad what is in reality a major political philosophy.

Anyway, on to the meat. Fineman thinks that the groups that represent conservatism - religious conservatives, libertarians, war hawks, and corporate types - have each finally decided to part ways. They've abandoned ship, and the conservative skeleton - one that is "incompetent, crony-filled, corrupt, unimaginative and weak" - is all that remains. Wow. This is all wrong.

Since when have the war hawks (synonymous with nation builders, power shufflers, and puppet masters, all acting pre-emptively) been conservative? Will someone please tell me what the fuck is conservative about die-hard Machiavelianism of the neo-cons? No, no one will tell, because there is nothing conservative about it. There is also nothing conservative about hardcore, live and let die corporateering either. Nothing. So that they are parting ways with the other two groups says zero about the state of conservatism.

And I'll go ahead and say he's flat out wrong about the libertarian types and religious going anyway other than where they are. Whither would they go? The only other options in this country are the Democratic Party or flying solo. The latter involves little to no media attention, and is the equivalent of political suicide. Joining the former would be COMPLETELY antithetical to the ideology of both groups. They're not budging.

It is unfortunate, but the Republican Party is the sole major political force in America that incorporates conservative ideology into its platform. Unfortunate because, like it or not, true conservatives are lumped into a group with others who don't necessarily share their ideology, who in fact reject it. We've already named a few: the neo-cons and corportate cut-throats. They obviously don't care about conservatism in the least. The thing is to maintain any visibility at all, conservatism has to work with a major party, even at the expense of being just one among many hats. That's the system. You've got to work with what you got.

So what am I getting at here? I guess ultimately it's that just because you are a Republican, it does not necessarily follow that you are a conservative. Fineman, in his vacuous argument, makes this false assumption, which allows him to form a doomsday prediction. His argument, midified slightly, could be applied to the Republican Party (although I still think it would fail), but not for conservatism. Conservatism is timeless. It is not a movement. Way to set up a straw man there, buddy.

Ed. Note: I recognize that what you just read was extremely poorly written and probably incohesive. In my defense, let it be known that the Franziskaner showed me no mercy last night. Please see the real bloggers for a better refutation of Fineman's madness.

6 Comments:

At 11:10 AM, October 13, 2005, Blogger mrshife said...

You were almost right. I thought you were going to talk about the other game last night.

 
At 11:31 AM, October 13, 2005, Blogger T. Leach said...

To quote James Wolcott, "Fineman will never obtain a lasting clue about anything. His translucent shell of professional narcissism is impregnable."

 
At 1:04 PM, October 13, 2005, Blogger Vince said...

Here's the good to take out of yesterday's game:

1) Pettitte threw garbage. The five runs were a direct result of his bad pitching, which was an anomaly, and will not happen twice in a row.

2) After weathering the Carpenter storm, the Astros were able to beat up on the Cardinals bullpen.

3) Shit, even while Carpenter was pitching, the 'stros got baserunners. The chances were there.

The Oswalt-Mulder matchup tilts a lot more in our favor. Go Astros.

 
At 5:54 PM, October 13, 2005, Anonymous bass said...

your beer argument had a very weak finish and a light yellow pilsner-like color. needless to say i was impressed until the end.

--fuckin sweet my word verification was "svelte"--

 
At 8:56 PM, October 13, 2005, Blogger coloradohurricane said...

I've been giving this sbject a lot of thought lately myself.

I think I'm going to make a blog entry where I walk about some of the things brought up in your post, Fineman's article, and some things I've thought a lot about.

I myself am what many would call Libertarian (although many of my beliefs are mainstream conservative), and while I find myself increasingly alienated by many of the Republican tenets, the Democrats offer much worse choices.)

 
At 9:20 AM, October 17, 2005, Anonymous Cody said...

you typed a lot of complex words Toonces. Strangely enough I was able to understand it all. However me making a comment that would match up to the blog would be like setting a kindergardner loose with a box of crayons on a PhD thesis paper

 

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