Monday, August 30, 2004

Newfound Blogger

Craig Howard of Buffalog recently e-mailed me and let me know that he enjoyed something I wrote and linked it in his own blog. Such an unnecessary courtesy, though much appreciated, caused me to check out his blog. I haven't looked through more than the first page, but it looks as though there might be more good things to come. So stop over and see what you think. Note: Here is the post he sent me, in its entirety.
Seeing the Light Ally thinks back. "And it reminds you of the time the light went on for you and you realized that conservatism was not as dorky as it originally sounded - hell, maybe even those dumb conservatives had a point." I love reading peoples' stories of their journey from left to right, although it's one I never had to make. My grandparents and my parents alike were solid conservatives. And growing up I knew why -- it was discussed and that, I think, made all the difference for me. For my family, conservatism had nothing to do with religion, we were beyond casual about church attendance. And it had nothing to do with money, Dad had a tiny dairy farm in upstate New York and in the good years we might have risen to being considered poor. No, it was all about self-reliance: for each person, each family, and by extension, the country. If you take money from the government (or anyone for that matter), they'll be able to tell you how to lead your life. If you leave your children's care in someone else's hands, you may not like the outcome. And if we ever let ourselves become weak as a nation, we'll really be in a heap of trouble. Now I'm summarizing twenty-some years of parental (and grandparental) guidance into a few obviously simplified sentences; but it all boiled down to the obligation to responsibility for oneself. And I still think it's all true and I'm glad if Ally agrees. [UPDATE:] I just remembered hearing an interview on NPR (you actually listen to NPR, Craig? Yes, I do -- whenever Rush isn't on) a couple weeks ago with the author of a book titled, What's the Matter with Kansas?: How Conservatives Won the Heart of America. The author is trying to answer the age-old question (among liberals) about why so many lower-income people don't all vote Republican. It's confusing to them because the Democrats would give them stuff, so why do they vote against their own apparent self-interest? I haven't read the book and I didn't focus on the interview, but I believe the author's theory is that the Republicans are lying to them or some such nonsense. To me it's rather obvious -- it's the old self-reliance, self-responsibility ethic that hasn't yet disappeared from much of our society.