Ex­tolling the virtues of con­ser­vatism

The Compass - - EDITORIAL -

A home­less guy is walk­ing down the street push­ing a shop­ping cart with his few pos­ses­sions. The lib­eral says, “Oh my God, look at that poor man, how sad, how piti­ful, in this pros­per­ous coun­try, how un­fair, sob, sob. We’ve got to give him some money.” The con­ser­va­tive says, “We need to do some­thing to help that man im­prove his sit­u­a­tion, so he can have a sense of pur­pose, get a job, be self-sup­port­ing, and look af­ter him­self.”

Of course the lib­eral is a com­pas­sion­ate, big hearted, won­der­ful per­son, while the con­ser­va­tive is the most cruel, heart­less thing since the Mar­quis de Sade. Con­ser­vatism is not re­ally an ide­ol­ogy so much as it is that which fol­lows the laws of hu­man na­ture — the way hu­man­ity was cre­ated by God, rec­og­niz­ing the hu­man ten­dency to­wards self-de­ter­mi­na­tion, sel­f­re­spon­si­bil­ity, self-re­liance, self­con­trol. It rec­og­nizes that the fam­ily — mother, fa­ther, child — is the best way to en­sure the con­tin­u­ance of our species as cre­ated by God. It is the ten­dency to leave oth­ers alone to live their lives and not im­pose on them. It is the knowl­edge that life, all life, is sa­cred, and it is the in­stinct to pro­tect es­pe­cially the most vul­ner­a­ble. And this is how the ma­jor­ity of Cana­di­ans live their lives, raise their fam­i­lies, re­late to their neigh­bours, and han­dle their fi­nances — as con­ser­va­tives! Whether they know it or not.

But it is re­ally not sur­pris­ing that so many of them vote for lib­eral (so­cial­ist) par­ties. While ac­tual ide­o­log­i­cal lib­er­als make up con­sid­er­ably less than half the pop­u­la­tion, look at where they are.

They dom­i­nate the class­rooms, the ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem, news­pa­pers, movies, TV pro­grams, jour­nal­ism, the news media, as well as all trade unions, many char­i­ta­ble or­ga­ni­za­tions and even many churches and church af­fil­i­ated groups. We are sat­u­rated with lib­er­al­ism 24 hours a day from all quar­ters. You hear some­thing of­ten enough and you’ll come to be­lieve it. With­out even notic­ing it, the av­er­age citizen has had his con­fi­dence in him­self washed out of him to the ex­tent that he has come to be­lieve he needs the gov­ern­ment to look af­ter his in­ter­ests, ed­u­cate him, choose his med­i­cal care, raise his chil­dren and see to his ev­ery­day needs. Look at what has hap­pened in Al­berta and On­tario with this “I want the gov­ern­ment to do ev­ery­thing for me” at­ti­tude.

While they had con­ser­va­tive gov­ern­ments they were the two most pros­per­ous prov­inces in Canada; now they have be­come eco­nomic dis­as­ters.

I would ap­peal to vot­ers to please use the same logic and rea­son when mak­ing your po­lit­i­cal de­ci­sions that you use when mak­ing de­ci­sions in your daily lives. Vote for a party that has enough re­spect for you to let you live your own life with the least amount of in­tru­sion pos­si­ble from gov­ern­ment. And I im­plore con­ser­va­tive can­di­dates, don’t be afraid to ex­plain and tout your con­ser­vatism. Be­cause it is the way most peo­ple live their lives, they are likely a lot more open to un­der­stand­ing than you may be giv­ing them credit for.

Canada un­der Stephen Harper is in bet­ter eco­nomic shape than any other coun­try in the world, and that is no small feat given what the oil price cri­sis has done to other coun­tries’ economies.

New­found­land is in bet­ter eco­nomic shape than it ever was un­der the Lib­er­als. This is no ac­ci­dent. We didn’t just win the flip of a coin. In both cases this is a di­rect re­sult of con­ser­va­tive poli­cies.

Con­ser­vatism is not re­ally an ide­ol­ogy so much as it is that which fol­lows the laws of hu­man na­ture — the way hu­man­ity was cre­ated by God, rec­og­niz­ing the hu­man ten­dency to­wards self-de­ter­mi­na­tion, sel­f­re­spon­si­bil­ity, self-re­liance, self-con­trol.

Kath­leen Langer writes from Heart’s De­sire

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