When and why did you move to the right-side of the political spectrum?

After observing children- my own children as well as my grandchildren- for the past 30 years, I have come to the conclusion that they are born liberal, except perhaps for that short ‘me-first’ two-year-old phase. Neither of my children and none of my grandchildren show any signs of ‘conservative’ traits except for conserving the environment. Did you ever notice those nightly news spots where some kid collected food for the poor?  Or to send money to the starving people in Africa? Or to help with the flood and hurricane victims here in the U.S.? Our hearts melt at the sight of these young angels of mercy.

Of course, as every school child knows, there was always one nasty kid in your class who belied that angelic image. One kid or maybe two who made life miserable for all of the others, but generally, we all got along and looked out for each other.  Brothers and sisters, too. Bullies were easily recognized and shunned. So were cheats and snitches. Anything out of the ordinary- out of the order of things- was met with group hostility.  We were quite the adhesive community both in the classroom and at home, on our home turf. We cared for the general welfare of each other, especially within our own close circle of friends and family.

That ‘group meme’ has persisted in our DNA for tens thousands of years because it is a survival meme- the community looks out for their own. Tribes and clans, each structured around mutual interdependence.  Twenty-first century kids know that intuitively; they understand the benefits of mutuality.  It is innate, inborn. That’s why we see kids helping others.  Even though clans and tribes have disappeared here in the United States, the ‘collective meme’ is strong and persistent.

The question arises: When and how does a person move away from that important and long-lived instinct of mutuality and towards valuing narcissism? How do socially-interactive and interdependent children grasp individualism as a philosophy and way of life during their adulthood?  What moves children in that direction?

The right-side of the political spectrum has many destinations, yet the crossing-over from the center signifies a disconnect with past social values to those of self-concern, self-centeredness. The further to the right, the closer one gets to that pejorative, narcissism and further from the common welfare meme that helped groups survive in the hostile environments of past millennia. The Wild West of film lore expressed that divide quite clearly.

Today, especially in the Republican Party, the Tea Party and in the group known as Libertarians, we see many people who wish to sever that sacred social contract between people.  They wish to strike out on their own, much like the frontiersmen, the pioneers, the prospectors of the 18th century, leaving behind that need for mutual interdependence. That is fine if that is the decision they choose, but they ought not work to tear down that social netting that binds most people together. If they wish to go off and explore new areas and begin a new life for themselves, they are free to do so, yet they ought not blow up the village upon exiting.

I, personally cannot understand that urge expressed today by the groups I identified above. My experience from my grandfather to now, as a grandfather, is one of mutual caring for both family and society in general. I have had no experience, no heritage of sacking the village and heading out on my own. The social fabric is, in fact, part of my fabric as a person, a father, a grandfather. That’s why I ask the question today- a question that I cannot answer: When and why did you move to the right-side of the political spectrum and away from the binding fabric of a society?


10 thoughts on “When and why did you move to the right-side of the political spectrum?

  1. Hello Muddy,
    I have just posted a piece on Michele Bachmann winning the Iowa straw poll and the Republican Party has officially descended into UNPREDICTABLE MADNESS.

    This ignorance showing itself as hate today is a world I do not recognize. Often times it is given credence backed by religious approval.

  2. Often times it is given credence backed by religious approval.

    You of course refer to that knot of Jesus-pimpers who call themselves Christians but would be speechless if asked to prove it.

  3. Frankly, the current status of the Republican Party guarantees another 8 years of a Democratic Presidency, whether you like it or not. The Tea Brains are not America, but by our unofficial corporate mediacracy, they have been empowered to assume that they are in control of the opposition. This is more their problem in the long run because it is an illusion which they fortunately believe.
    The reality is the same game rules that let Huckabee walk away from the Iowa Straw poll in 2008 thinking he controlled the game. No one currently in the game in the Republican party is capable of capturing the attention of America for more than 15 conceptual Warholian minutes.
    Cain is reduced to using quotes from a Donna Summers Pokeman Movie Theme song as his “poetic metaphor” to inspire the nation.
    Michelle and her husband are beating up reporters and graphically snarfing foot long corn dogs at the Iowa State Fair (I have the unfortunate and graphically totally un photoshopped semi obscene images on my blog if you are so puriently inclined to lower yourself) Meanwhile they are all falling over themselves to defend Romney’s affirmation that “corporations are people tooo!”
    And Palin? the Paris Hilton or Amy Winehouse of politics? She ain’t goin’ to rehab, baby, no, no, no……..http://thebrainpolice.blogspot.com/2011/08/krazeeeeeee.html

  4. I was a little bored so I wandered over to that Sepp person’s site (http://uncommonsqualor.blogspot.com/). I always try to understand the other guys point of view so I visited some of the blogs listed on his blogroll. I think some of you will find the read very interesting. But I question, are they really representative of the “right”? They definitely show signs of “f*** everyone else”.

  5. I don’t believe you are trying to make a valid point with your post. Children are the most narcissistic of all humans. They’re not liberal, or conservative. They’re just innocent little creatures waiting to be guided.

  6. Well, M_R, despite what is in my following comment, I think that I am still
    in the progressive wing…Well, maybe that depends on the way we look
    at that term “progressive.” However, as one ages the tendancy is to become
    more conservative. E.G., people get out of stocks and move to bonds or
    annuities. I may be more of a progressive centrist? I will appreciate hearing after I write my dismal economic thought of today on where you think I fit in the political spectrum.

    While everyone looks for a quick fix to our economy as it natural gas or
    infractructure, it seems that will be impossible. We have been in recession since 2007. Our economic structure is very weak. This is due to four
    economic structural problems. First, we have a real unemployment rate
    of approximately 20%. This unemployment has been caused by the decline
    in manufacturing, a decline in commercial and residential construction,
    increased technology in the work place, and government employment
    layoffs. There is no easy fix to these causes;
    Second, the economy is in a Great Recession because of the 2008
    financial collapse on Wall Street;
    Third, there is a serious debt problem at all levels of government and our
    own financial accounts;
    Fourth, the other nations of the world, China included, have their own
    financial problems. What that means is an inability to buy American
    products, especially agriculture.

    Obama and Congrerssional Dems had a chance in 2009 with the fiscal
    stimulus program but they let partisan programs for their local pet
    programs. There has been no long term employment benefit from the 2009
    stimulus. It bsically funded temporary jobs at a cost of nearly $1 Trillion
    and played straight into the hands of the GOP. Because of the structural
    problems, we are now faced with spending cuts and tax increases, which
    appears to be a political impasse. In my opinion, Obama’s call for
    coninuing the pay roll tax deductions and extending unemployment benefits is a farce. It will do nothing to solve the structural problems. It is doubtful
    people will use it to go out and buy goods and stimulate the economy.
    Likely, they will continue to do as they have done, that is, use it for their
    house payment or to pay down on their credit cards. Therefore, we are
    looking austerity right in the face. Budgets on all levels will be cut. There
    seems to be no other choice.

    The Federal Reserve can do very little more. They have flooded the economy
    with money and the interest rates are near zero. Apparently, all the Reseve
    can do is to guarantee that the rights will remain at zero for the next two
    years to try and give confidence to the corporations. Basically, the Reserve
    has done all it can.

    Ineptness on the part of Obama’s economic team, no match for FDR’s
    “brain trust”, the structural problems, a worsening financial collapse, and
    world economic problems is preventing any upward movement in solving
    our Great Recession. What we needed were jobs, exports, and
    corporation spending, but we got a failed stimulus, health care, and
    Afghanistan and Libya.

    It seems to me Obama was on the right track finally with his Big Deficit
    Cutting Program, $4 Trillion in cuts and increae in tax revenue. This
    has been verified by the S&P. If the GOP had accepted that plan it
    seems the downgrade would have been avoided. And, where we go from
    here is anyone’s guess. Another cliff if approaching Sept. 30!

    Yet, we can do some things. Bank reserves are at $1.6 Trillion, the
    largest ever. Additionally, the Federal Reserve has put plenty of money
    out there( this is where Paul is all wrong. It is the Federal Reserve that
    saved the financial system in 2008 and continuous since). Moreover,
    corporations have another $1.5 Trillion. Therefore, available money is
    not the problem.

    It seems to me that the only area left to work on is to develop Corporate
    confidence. We need to do something about regulations. The Health
    Care Reform Act is another area of corporate concern. Corporations
    need laws that are fair and predictable. This is especially true in a time
    of Great Recession. Maybe some regulations could be temporarily
    lifted and come back on-line when the economy improves. We can reform
    the tax system. We need to pass the trade agreements.

    We must rebuild corporate productivity. Our economic and social system
    requires strong corporate production. It is the jobs that corporations
    provided that made us the economic engine of the world. We just can’t
    throw the baby out with the bath water. There is no other place for
    government to turn to. Government needs to turn toward the corporate side.

  7. JOB- I do not make my point based on the actions of 2, 3, 4 or 5-year-old children. I believe that the ages of those ‘human interest’ stories of children giving are in the 10 – 13 category. This is where compassion for others is most commonly found. This early adolescent age is when the child begins to look outward, beyond his/her own needs, and realizes that they are part of a broader world.

    UptheFlag- you have posted quite a bit which I cannot digest at this late time of the evening. I’ll look it over tomorrow when I have more time and energy.

  8. But you do. You clearly stated that they are born liberal. It was your first sentence.

    However, that’s fine. I get what you’re implying. Even still, I disagree. Children are even worse when they are 10-13. At that time, their actions and behaviors are base off their own perceptions. They want to be loved by their peers. They want to be adored by their peers. And they do not want to be questioned.

    Does this sound like a Liberal or Conservative? Now that I think about it, maybe children are born with the most common sence of us all. Then they develope political tendencies………………………….

    1. JOB- apparently each of us has a different ‘take’ on this. That’s fine. I noted your last comment on Tenth’s blog that you have your own blog. What is the URL?

  9. so, are we supposed to be induced into believing that children become “liberals” because of some deep dark mind bending plot unleashed by the godless forces of athiest/communist/socialisst to destroy the very foundations of American Freedom? Your attempt at implication is very very vague, Mr. J.O.B….what are you trying to spit out?

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