Thursday, May 08, 2003

Thanks much to Paul Cella for indirectly pointing me to this (scroll down, permalinks not working) from some fellow who didn't have the good grace to forward his diatribe to me, about my ramblings on whether or not conservatives can be optimists (now updated to include all replies of which I'm aware). I replied in his comments section, but if you're too lazy (or if comments are non-functional when you get there), then here's what I said:



I should point out that while I stand by everything I wrote, you selected what I wrote mildly out of context. I was using Reagan as part of a larger exegesis on whether or not conservatives can be optimists. I wasn''t stating that Reagan was good (merely) because he gave so much of America a lift from (Carter''s) malaise.

Third, I don''t seem to remember saying anything about "hating the Russians and wanting war, which was fundamental to Reagan''s supposed revival of ''patriotism.''" I just re-read the piece, and I still can''t find it. Could you kindly direct me to that?

Fourth, Carter actually threw his hands up and accepted the reality of a foreign power that slaughtered tens of millions, tortured millions more, and enslaved, worked to death, and brutalized millions more. If that''s admirable, then we truly are coming from different perspectives here. (Would FDR have been great for doing the same in 1941? Just wondering.)

Finally, I''m sorry about your "predjudice," but you''re quite incorrect: I do not doubt that there are liberal, left-wing, far right-wing, etc., Americans, and that they are part of the same nation and society as I am. I do not doubt that they are as fully American as I, and disturbing as I find it, I do not doubt that (the vast majority anyway) most do and advocate what they do because they believe in America, and American ideals. Unlike liberals, I believe it''s possible to have different policy perspectives without a Zoroastrian clash of light and dark.

Paul Cella said quite well the rest of what I would say on that.

Oh, David: Little con-blog would like examples other than breaking the ATC union, please, of leg-kicking. Little con-blog is in fact quite taken with many of the social protests -- as Reagan was -- of the civil rights movement. Little con-blog is not taken with the anarchy of the late sixties, nor of the malaise of the 1970s. Little con-blog is not taken with an American president who could say, in 1979, "This is as far as we go, folks. It was fun, b[ut] we should just resign ourselves to losing now." Little con-blog is -- to use your side''s terminology -- on the winning side of History on this one.
Now, I did say that I wanted to go to war with the Soviets for shooting down a Korean airliner full of unarmed innocents; but I don't remember hating anyone in that passage, with the exception of Carter (and he's just a suckup to tyrants).

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