Friday, February 18, 2011
No Libertarians Allowed
Here is the double-talk we get from conservatives. First, this is the new chairman of the American Conservative Union, Al Cardenas. Cardenas first starts out saying that the CPAC conference, sponsored by the ACU will always be inclusive and then starts laying down rules to make sure that isn't true. In the process he also redefines conservatism into something unlike that which Goldwater or Reagan would recognize. He says that conservatives don't discriminate on the basis of orientation, provided gay people don't want the same, equal rights of others.
Cardenas says that conservatives will welcome anyone who supports conservative principles and then he lays out some of those very important principles. First, he doesn't mention limited government. He doesn't talk about free markets, or private property rights. He doesn't talk about lowering taxes. One can be accepted in "conservative" circles today and be bad on all those issues.
Under the new "vetting" process they will decide who can be allowed to attend based on the really important conservative principles. And those are opposition to repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, and opposition to equal marriage rights for gay people. Wow! There are very few conservatives left, it would seem.
Not even Barry Goldwater would have qualified since he supported allowing gay people to join the military. Cardenas says that a group that advocates gay marriage, even if its members are straight, will not be allowed to attend. That leaves out the Cato Institute and the Libertarian Party, for instance. Gay people who advocate second class citizenship for gays, however, will be welcomed.
What has the ACU done? They have effectively dismissed the traditional platform of the conservative movement, at least as it was before the rise of the bigoted Religious Right, and replaced those planks with something that is entirely about social issues. The great demarcation for conservatives today is not whether they support free markets, after all, look at how they adored George Bush. The defining principle of modern conservatism is hating gay people.
And this means they reject the majority of Americans. Most Americans have repeatedly said, in polls, that they wanted repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Most Americans has said they would support either marriage equality or civil unions. If one must be against both to be acceptable to conservatives that would leave around 20% of the population. This is what they are stooping to in order to placate the hateful fundamentalist who have the Republican Party by the balls.
Libertarians, exactly why do you think you have anything in common with these people?