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Extreme Conservative Beliefs?

Updated on June 3, 2016

Introduction

Recently, the media have often reported on Conservatives and their beliefs as "extreme" right wing. When repeated enough, the people are lulled into this false narrative. In this hub, I would like to explore how extreme are Conservative beliefs? Please help me by taking the polls at the end. Thanks.

-Oct. 2015

Some Common Conservative Beliefs

  1. Follow the Constitution of the US
  2. A balanced budget (minimum debt)
  3. A strong national defense (peace through strength...Reagan)
  4. A limited federal government (federalism)
  5. A secured border (legal immigration)
  6. Energy independence (support for all forms of domestic energy production)
  7. A local public education system (with choices including vouchers and charter schools)
  8. A color blind justice system (MLK judge by the content of character...)
  9. Self reliance (less government dependency)
  10. Traditional family value
  11. Pro life (defend the defenseless)
  12. Right to bear arms (2nd amendment)
  13. A free enterprise economy (not crony capitalism)
  14. A belief in God


Some Details...

  1. The Constitution is the foundation for our country. Our elected officials have forgotten the document that should be the framework for governing. They pledge an oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution and yet they seem to ignore it.
  2. The main part of government is to be accountable with the revenues. Our current national debt is over 18 trillion dollars. We have spent more than we take in year after year. It is just irresponsible to burden our children and their children with this debt.
  3. A strong national defense is the best way to peace. Our past leaders understood that. For millennials, you may not have known President Kennedy or Reagan, one Democrat and one Republican, both faced challenges from the Soviet Union during the cold war. Their leadership lead to the downfall of the Soviet Union in 1989.
  4. Limited Federal Government is a conservative principle because it is part of the Constitution. The tenth Amendment limits the Federal government's role and left most to be carried out at the State and local level.
  5. We are a nation of immigrants and a melting pot of many races and culture. However, a nation is defined by its borders and language. We have a generous legal immigration policy though the implementation could be drastically improved. We need to improve the legal immigration process and stop the illegal immigrants crossing our borders. It is wrong to have a two tier status for our immigrants (legal and undocumented). They are open to abuse and exploitation by the criminal elements.
  6. Our country's progress depends on having available energy. Conservatives believe that we need to work towards energy independence by pursuing an all forms of energy including solar, wind, nuclear, oil, gas and coal. Let the market decide the best most efficient energy sources.
  7. Our public education system is broken and Conservatives belief in trying a different approach. The teacher's union have dominated the debate and won't allow any changes to help improve the situation. We can begin by adopting charter schools in some inner cities. The local community is best at determining the course of action for their schools.

More Details...

8. Our justice system should be color blind. Conservatives agree with Martin Luther King who says a person should be judged by the content of his character instead of the color of his skin. Equal treatment under the law is another tenet of our Constitution.

9. Conservatives believe in having a safety net to help the disabled and the down trodden but we want people to rely on their own skills and hard work to get ahead. We don't want to encourage an entitlement society that grows larger year after year. Dependency should be a last choice. It was John F. Kennedy that said " ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country..."

10. One of the three pillars of our society is the family unit. For thousand of years, it is the family that has kept us together as a civilization and the propagation of our culture and heritage. Today, the basic family unit is under attack on all sides. Is it any wonder that we are experiencing social and economic problems that are self inflicted? When you have a high rate of unwed mothers especially in the black community, how can they succeed?

11. Our Declaration of Independence includes the following "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness..." Can a fetus in the womb be denied these rights? What about late term abortions? at what stage of pregnancy is the fetus viable? The actions of Planned Parenthood as exposed by the latest hidden videos demonstrate what happens when life is devalued by some and the organs of fetus be treated like a tissue to be harvested and sold for profit.

12. The right of the people to bear arms is the only insurance policy against a potential tyrannical and over reaching government. Additional gun laws will not deter criminals of getting them.

13. A free enterprise system of commerce is the best path to prosperity. However, that does not include government bailouts of wall street. It is the crony capitalism that are practiced by our current political elites and tycoons that are destroying Capitalism. We need to level the playing field for all so that no one group can benefit because of their political clout. That is the legitimate function of government.

14. A believe in a higher power "a creator" is also the basic tenet of the founding of our nation. It is this higher power that we derive the unalienable rights from. Our rights to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness is given to us from God. That is what differentiate us from all other nations at the time.

What is Extreme?

The definition of extreme is "the furthest from the center or a given point; outermost."

However, the perception of being extreme is dependent on where you sit.

What if I told you that the list of positions above was held, for the most part, by John F. Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States.

Does the adjective Conservative change your impression or opinion of these issues? Should it?

Why is it you hardly hear from the media "extreme liberal beliefs" or extreme left wing?

Extreme Left -----Left-----Moderate------Right------Extreme Right

Where do you sit on this scale?

Summary

As I said in the introduction, the media have paint a narrative that Conservative beliefs are extreme even though they make up 40% of the population. Are they telling the truth or are they trying to influence public opinion? Please take the poll and submit comments on any of the issues I cited. As a Conservative, I believe many of our beliefs are just rooted in common sense. They are not exclusionary or discriminatory. They are policies that have been tested and have worked. I would like to know what changed?

Next time you pick up the newspaper or watch the news on TV or listen on your radio or read an article off the internet, pay attention to their wording. How they phrase the story will expose their bias. Thanks for reading.

Unscientific Poll

What is your political leanings?

See results

Unscientific Poll

Are The Beliefs Listed Above Extreme? (1 to 5) 1 least and 5 most extreme

See results

Comments

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    • Kathleen Cochran profile image

      Kathleen Cochran 20 months ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      Thank you for all the research and work that went into this hub. It is very informative.

      The only one I take issue with is No. 4 A limited federal government. This one translate most often to fewer regulations. The idea that left to a person's own conscience people will usually do the right thing. In the 40 years of my adult life that idea has run rampant and led to the near destruction of our economy and the ruin of many lives. It is on this point that the left and the right most often part ways.

      No. 14 is also a point at which those two extremes interpret the meaning in different ways. If the only life you protect is the unborn and your own, how godly are you?

      Again, well done. I hope this work gets a lot of views. It deserves to be read and considered.

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 20 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Kathleen, Thanks for reading and the feedback. On number 4, the limited federal government refers back to the Constitution. It is not to say there should be less or no regulations. It is a question of who should be in control. The Constitution has enumerated powers given to the federal government and the rest is left up to the States. When the Fed. government over reach and try to control everything and using the power of taxation and funding to coerce the local community to do this or that, these "mandates" are not the best way to go about it IMHO.

      It is always a balance between public good and individual liberties. In most cases, the local government has the better handle on things that affect locally. A one size fit all solution is generally the least effective.

    • Kathleen Cochran profile image

      Kathleen Cochran 20 months ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      In theory, you are absolutely right about #4, but in practice this position is often misused, which is where trouble starts (as with most things in DC) Even as a progressive, I'd be happy to get rid of the department of education, which is an area that fits your argument perfectly. Local control is where the community can set the best standards for their children - as long as they set standards. That's where the wheels have come off the wagon in the past. Hopefully lessons have been learned, the hard way, and this part of our society would be better off if the national government got out of the teaching business. But local communities can't govern national banks, infrastructure, and defense. In those areas we have to work together.

    • RonElFran profile image

      Ronald E. Franklin 20 months ago from Mechanicsburg, PA

      I don't think the media indiscriminately paints conservative principles as extreme. It's usually not so much the principle itself as the dogmatism with which it is expressed, and that "all or nothing, my way or no way" stance those on the fringes take. For example, I haven't seen any respected journalists or commentators who classify belief in the right to keep and bear arms as extreme. But the idea that the 2nd Amendment requires that there be no regulation of weapons at all is definitely extreme. So, we have the specter of Republican legislatures mandating that open-carry guns be allowed in every public space (except, of course, in the legislative halls in which they themselves congregate).

      BTW, far left liberals/progressives can be just as dogmatic, inflexible, and extreme as the far right. IMO it's a characteristic of people who are convinced that they are right, and that those who disagree are morally corrupt. That happens on both extremes.

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 20 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Kathleen, I'm so glad you agree with me on some items. It shows we have common grounds. One of my frustration with the current political scene is that I believe both parties have been corrupted and the people behind the scene is pulling the strings and creating division among the people. This is by design. I think there are much more issues that we agree on and can work together to help improve our government. That is why I am reaching out to millennials in an effort to appeal to their common sense.

      BTW, on education, check out the 74 million group - https://www.the74million.org

      It is co-founded by Campbell Brown and they are trying a new direction to improve education for our kids.

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 20 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Ronald, Thanks for checking in. From your bio, I see we have something in common - we are both ex IBMers. I agree with you that both sides have extreme positions. It is the reporting that I am highlighting here. With the exception of Fox news and a talk radio, the majority of the press are liberal. As I point out in my hub, from where they sit, they see all conservative positions as "extreme". That is the problem. I don't even think they realize it. Among the crowd they hang out with, this is the narrative-conservatives are extreme.

    • Kathleen Cochran profile image

      Kathleen Cochran 20 months ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      "More unites us than divides us." Can't remember who said that, but it's a good starting point. If you are reaching out to millennials, my kids are your target market more than me. But I'd like to keep reading your hubs to keep an open mind.

    • junko profile image

      junko 13 months ago

      jackclee: the most convincing part of a big lie is the truth there in which make a lie seem true. A fact is I am conservative about many things. I am also liberal about many things. Because I am African American in vote mostly Democrat to a Conservative moderate or extreme I am a liberal. I know for a fact Conservatives even extreme one are liberal about many things. Nobody is 100% liberal conservative or independent. As a liberal and conservative descendant of slaves I could never be an extreme conservative that embrace the constitution and the founding fathers because they in their constitution felt at the time Africans were subhuman. So those who today embrace the status quo regarding the constitution and feel we should be guided by those words absent any amendments to reflect changes in hundreds of years are extreme conservatives. More than half of your 14 points are liberal stances. That is my view from the underclass, thanks for inviting me to respond to your views

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 13 months ago from Yorktown NY

      Junko, that's good. We have some common grounds. I am conservative and I do support the Constitution in it's entirety including the ammendments. I also believe conservatism is the way to properity and individual success. My hubs on advice to millennials is my gift of wisdom learned over my lifetime. I hope you will not let the label and the miss conception of conservatives cloud your judgement. My hub on Conservatism Defined and Civics 101 are also a good description where I stand politically.

    • junko profile image

      junko 13 months ago

      I check your hub on Millennials and I commented...

    • wba108@yahoo.com profile image

      wba108@yahoo.com 3 months ago from upstate, NY

      " Let the market decide the best most efficient energy sources."

      Amen to that, letting the government micromanage energy industries, creates more problems than it solves.

      "Limited Federal Government is a conservative principle because it is part of the Constitution"

      This is the centerpiece of American government, without it we no longer have a government "of the people". It also goes a long way to creating an accountability for spending.

    • junko profile image

      junko 3 months ago

      wba108

      On September 17, 1787 the US Constitution was Signed. At that time the population of the US was enumerated to be 3,929,214. The population of the US in 2014 was 318.9 million. 33 amendments since 1789 is too conservative

    • wba108@yahoo.com profile image

      wba108@yahoo.com 8 weeks ago from upstate, NY

      Junko - I 'm not denying times have changed but there's a difference between changing our methods and changing the principles from which the nation was founded on.

      The principle of a limited government is the key to freedom. The maxim that "as government expands, liberty shrinks" is a timeless truth. There are of course changes that need to be made because of growing population, advances in technology and economies but that's what the amendment process is for.

    • junko profile image

      junko 8 weeks ago

      wbw Thanks for not being a Time Change denier and I agree changes need to be made by the amendment process to a foundation based on White Angro-Saxon Protestant Male values. Of The total 33 amentments to date few reflect the change in We The People of today.

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 8 weeks ago from Yorktown NY

      Junko, there were only 27 ammendments.

    • junko profile image

      junko 8 weeks ago

      27 out of 33 proposed amendments have been ratified, 33 proposed admentments is too few 27 is still too few . Jack I was responding to wbw's post to me, give wbw a chance to answer me before you try to correct me, please sir

    • junko profile image

      junko 15 hours ago

      Jackcee you still trying to force your views on others, You were not anything nice with Mizfit chick, I read what you said. Now you are saying Trump is better than Obama as POTUS. You are under paid. Just passing through and throwing you a wave, My Conservative friend.

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 14 hours ago from Yorktown NY

      Junko, what did I say that was not true? President Obama was a failed president. Not only for me but to most Americans including black Americans. The disconnect is revealing. The media and Hollywood and inside beltway and pundits have a positive view of Obama yet middle America does not. That is why they elected Trump over Hillary.

    • junko profile image

      junko 11 hours ago

      This Middle Americans, are they mostly WASP Males and their sphere of influence who voted for Trump? Did middle americans write The Declaration of Indepedence, The Constitution, or start The Civil War? Middle America in relationship to what, the oceans north or south?

    • jackclee lm profile image
      Author

      Jack Lee 6 hours ago from Yorktown NY

      It's nothing to do about race. The middle America is more about geography. It is where farms and manufacturing and mining and and oil drilling and much of production take place. This is also where tradition like family, church, and community are valued. Contrary to Hollywood amd Washington DC, and wall street...

      This last election was a rejection of progressive ideas and the ruling class.

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