My thoughts about conservatism are evolving. I suddenly realized have to deliberately study the subject because it may have evolved over time. It may be defined differently in different eras.
I look at the Heritage Foundation website and what I see about the definition of conservatism is something I do not agree with at all.
I feel like they BLEW IT.
More on that later.
For just a moment I want to talk about what *isnt* conservative because it helps to contrast and compare with the other major viewpoints.
What do we mean by liberal? There are three basic meanings:
When a European says “liberal” he means someone who would have Libertarian type values in the USA.
When Dennis Prager says “liberal” he means ‘classical-liberal” like John Kenneth Gailbraith.
When most Americans say “liberal” they mean progressive-Marxist values.
Do liberals and conservatives agree on anything?
I do think that classical-liberals and conservatives agree on about 90% of topics. Is that surprising? The one’s who do not agree with either classical-liberals or with conservatives are the progressives, i.e., the new-left, and of course the old-left. These leftists are the progressive-Marxists.
Dennis Prager says classical-liberal and progressive-Marxists are OPPOSITES in belief. I think that is pretty easy to demonstrate, but I will leave that for later. During my lifetime most democrats were classical-liberals. Since 2008, the Obama era, most democrats have turned to progressive-Marxism as their preferred belief system. Prager has a simple label for progressive-Marxism. he simply calls them “the left.” David Horowitz has more complicated descriptions. Having been one, and knowing them very well, he labels them as just Marxists.
What do we mean by Conservative?
Gary Amos, in his book Defending the Declaration, tells us the basis of American liberty and indeed the basis of all of western democracy. The story goes back to 2000 years before Christ. It is the Judeo-Christian story of western civilization as it blended with Greek and then Roman cultures. Around 1000 AD Judeo-Christian world view served as the foundation for the emergent discovery of ancient natural law and natural rights. These concepts became the foundation for modern western democracy. America’s founders canonized some of the resulting political concepts of liberty.
Conservatives intend to conserve this ancient western tradition. That is what conservatism with a capital ‘C’ means.