The Stifling of Dissent...
Vis-a-vis my *ahem* FreeRepublic problems, this was posted the very same day that I was banned"
"Jim (Jim Robinson, founder of the FreeRepublic website) recently banned a whole bunch of FRiberals (code word: those who don't completely and unquestioningly tow the 'conservative' line) who had been here for a long time. It seems that there were some longtime posters who were Republicans who joined because they hated the Clintons, but they also showed that they didn’t care for conservatives either."
The parenthetical comments are mine.
Now, if true, this is a fascinating statement. Jim Robinson is now, apparently, psychic. He also has the power to see into men's hearts and divine their motives.
Well, that explains everything, doesn't it? Omnipotent Jim read my brainwaves and figured out that I was a republican dissatisfied with Clintonian control of the government and diametrically opposed to all conservative ideology (I hesitate to call it "thought"). Of course, there was also a bunch of other folks, who incidentally, are still able to harass me by posting (to whom I cannot respond, how convenient?), but since most of the harassment revolves around a) name calling and b) expressions of glee that I have been banned, I wonder if it is actually worth worrying about or not.
Now, let's go back to that statement again.
I am NOT a republican who doesn't care for conservatives. Far from it. I have a great deal of respect for conservatives of the William F. Buckley/Mark Steyn type. They make sense and are at least thoughtful individuals. What I DON'T care for is a certain brand of conservatism that seem to originate in folks who couldn't tie their own shoes with both hands and a government program, for who the word 'conservative' is little more than an accoutrement with which to adorn their tribal affiliation. That affiliation revolves around a seemingly-Calvinist brand of Christianity which was abandoned about 100 years ago, and in which there is a widespread belief in some "Golden Age" of America where the culture was less coarse, less degraded and infinitely more God-friendly. It is an American Utopia in which the familiar forms of Americana -- the yeoman farmer, the small-town factory worker, the Norman Rockwell vision -- was alive and well, and was insidiously destroyed by the combined forces of immorality and political manipulation.
Of course, that such a 'Golden Age' never existed (certainly not in the form these folks envision it) is besides the point. American society has ALWAYS had it's seedier elements, it's criminals, it's dirty little secrets. They just weren't seen all that often, and certainly never DISCUSSED in 'polite company'. It went ignored because to pay it any attention to these issues would be disturbing to all 'decent' people. What these folks really object to is not the coarsening of the culture, per se, but that it's so much more visible and obvious. When it's obvious, you can't ignore it, and that's what these folks are best at: ignoring that which is inconvenient, or inconceivable, to them. So, in the end, what this brand of 'conservative' is can basically be summed up thusly:
a) They live under the impression that the past can be resurrected.
b) They invariably refuse to stare truth in the eye. That which is inconvenient and distressing can be safely ignored.
c) God exists, and is a benevolent force, rather than a superstition used to bludgeon folks into submission.
d) That we can go back to something that didn't exist.
e) That anyone who is not of their ilk (small-town/Midwesterner/Christian/Delusional) cannot possibly understand them, and therefore, must be ignored, and if THAT isn't possible, then they must be villianized before they are able to convert or convince others.
To their credit, I will give them this:
a) They are tenacious.
b) They are completely correct with regards to abortion.
After that, they're akin to Nazis.
THIS is the brand of conservative I object to, because they're whiny busybodies who rail aganist the (liberal) government and it's power to destroy 'decent' society, but who wouldn't lose any sleep if the same government formed a special police force to peek in people's bedroom windows looking for those enegaged in sexual acts proscribed by Scripture.