Liberals and Conservatives, Part 2

There's another difference between conservatives and modern liberals aside from the allegiance to, or disregard of, a universal moral order -- and it's even more significant: their respective worldview.

If you're conservative-minded, you probably think your liberal friends are wishy-washy, feel-good types. If you're liberal, you probably think your conservative friends are rigid and judgmental. There's a reason for this. Liberals tend to believe that all human beings are inherently good people, that if they do wrong it isn't really their fault; it's society's fault. Writes D'Souza, "Liberals believe that people who fail or do bad things are not acting out of laziness or wickedness; rather, society put them in this unfortunate position. Since people are innately good, liberals hold, the great conflicts in the world are not the result of good vs. evil; rather, they arrive out of terrible misunderstandings that can be corrected through ongoing conversation and through the mediation of such groups as the United Nations."

Consider the Iraq war, in which D'Souza's analysis fits beautifully. Obama believes the above, whereas Bush, the conservative, doesn't. What does someone like Bush believe?

"Conservatives recognize that there are two principles in human nature -- good and evil -- and these are in constant conflict. Given the warped timber of humanity, conservatives seek a social structure that helps to bring out the best in human nature and suppress man's lower or base impulses. Conservatives insist that because there are evil regimes and destructive forces in the world that cannot be talked out of their nefarious objectives, force is an indispensable element of international relations."

You don't have to agree with everything Bush did during his presidency -- I don't -- to share the above philosophy. But the distinction between an Obama (or a liberal) and a Bush (or a conservative) cannot be overstated. Simply put, they each have a different understanding of human nature. A liberal will beat his head against the wall trying to prove that all people are equally good. A conservative, on the other hand, knows this is futile. All people are entitled to equal opportunity in order to do good, but they will not all succeed simply because they've been given the opportunity. Liberals struggle to accept this basic fact of human nature. It's why Oprah's favorite quote is, "When people know better, they do better."

If only that were true.

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