People when asked if they are selfish they will indignantly tell you that they are not. If you then ask them if they try to do what is in their best interest they will say “well of course, doesn’t everybody” Following that idea if I say everyone is selfish I will get a lot more denials than if I say that people act in their own best interest. It makes sense then that if you base a system upon people achieving their best interests something good and workable will be accomplished.
----------This shows how a word can change how a message is received. The above comparisons are of the same idea, one is considered bad the other not. Call it spin,
Below is a link to a dictionary that will help explain it.
We see that selfish was from and colored by Protestant religious attitudes. Basically saying that a person is full of himself (prideful) and not caring for others, considered a sin by most religious people, and most people today also.
-----------I bring this up to illustrate a basic conservative (or constrained) tenet. Conservatives believe that man does indeed look after his own best interests.
-----------We don’t believe that will ever change. It is a fact of life that has to be dealt with. We do not think that people will overcome this because it is a basic drive or instinct. Conservatives try to direct that instinct into making a society that allows freedom to the most at the least expense to all. We do not believe in complete freedom for everyone to act as they desire, not because it is a wrong or immoral idea. We conservatives don’t believe in it, simply stated, because it is impossible to achieve.
----------It is my opinion that this basic human nature trait if used properly can get us closer to an actual utopia on earth than all the utopias based on the other idea that somehow Man will change or be changed into a selfless person (by Drugs, or God or Congressional Statute!)
How do we use this instinct then in constructive ways. First, I believe all extremes will eventually lead to ruin and lack of freedom. History is littered with examples of great ideas gone bad. Both liberal and Conservative examples. They went bad I believe not because they weren’t adhered to fully but because they were; to the total disregard for human nature. Man in his self interest will lead to the “power corrupts” idea, until it corrupts completely and the system falls apart. We as conservatives need to understand that fact.
----------At this point (the recently dirty word) compromise must enter. Our system of government is a compromise as talked about earlier between constrained and unconstrained visions. People on either side did not give up their core ideas, but were able to find common ground upon which they could both further their beliefs, which led to constructive compromise not appeasement. Then they were able to function and the constitution was created and has given rise to more individual freedom than otherwise would have been possible.
----------My conclusion is that freedom still to this day has a better chance to survive if we follow the basic reason why the constitution was able to be even written. The desire for men with a goal to find common ground from which both sides at the same time were able to further their self interest together. A desperate need drove these different minded individuals together to find common ground. If Conservatives are to reassert their common ground with the electorate, then we must listen learn and then use that knowledge gained to find constructive conservative solutions to America’s problems.
Regards, Live Dangerously be a Conservative