Friday, March 21, 2008

A long delayed reply

Ben wrote a long post where, first he said that irk him and then he attacked a broad army of Conservative straw people. At first I was confused - who are these people he attacks with such vigor? Then I realized ... that's me.

Well, then.

We're compelled to defend our ideology with zeal and anger, and to do our best not to really listen to our opponents lest their ideas sow any doubt in our minds.

Speak for yourself. If you don't listen to other people, if you don't have a conversation, you learn nothing.

Me, I defend my ideas with humor and good fellowship; life's too short to be pissy.

As for ideology, I have tried hard to not have one. True ideologues are bores at parties [1] and no fun to be around.

What do I believe in? I believe that if you work hard and catch some lucky breaks you can get ahead. I believe that the prepared man makes his own luck. I believe in the power of love. I believe that the government is best when it governs least. I believe in solutions that work, above all else. Keep your powder dry. I believe that puppies are cute and smell pretty darn good.

Frannie's Puppies
Don't you want to pick them up and tickle their little bellies?

The rest of Ben's post is worth skimming; if only so you can see what I'm talking about. I have tried, and failed to come up with responses to his points; he's aiming his arrows at conservative straw men. I lack the imagination to twist my perspective around to properly answer.

But of course all this thinking about how we need to change and improve things is hard to do. Maybe only people under 30 have the energy for it, and then they convert to conservatism later in life out of sheer exhaustion.

Or I'm just a tired old man. Ya, that's it. Hit the ol' nail on the head, Ben.

[1] Anyone who has been cornered by an Open Source zealot at a party knows exactly what I mean.
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