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All the Angry Liberals


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all-the-angry-liberalsAmerican Spectator:

WASHINGTON -- I was innocently making my way through the weekend newspapers when I came upon a "think" piece in the Washington Post by a dreamer named Chris Mooney, a self-confessed "liberal." Yes, he actually admitted to it.

He has conferred with psychologists to ascertain the difference between liberals and conservatives. By the way, it is always a tip-off when one writes that he has resorted to psychologists, as opposed to political philosophers, to explain what are after all political differences. What the writer is saying is we now have "science" on our side, as opposed to mere learning, and the scientists' findings are unassailable -- and, as it turns out, claptrap, tendentious, self-regarding claptrap.

Now comes Mooney's claptrap: "There's now a large body of evidence showing that those who opt for the political left and those who opt for the political right tend to process information in divergent ways and to differ on any number of psychological traits." To come to the point, liberals "score higher on a personality measure called 'openness to experience.'" And conservatives, "in contrast, tend to be less open -- less exploratory, less in need of change…." We conservatives appreciate "order and structure…." You will recall how open to experience liberals have been when we attempted to introduce vouchers, charter schools, missile defense, and supply-side economics. Liberals are wildly curious about conservative positions on all manner of issues, and as for openness may I suggest you light up a fat cigar, say in an outdoor café, or ride your bicycle without a helmet. See how open our liberal friends are then.

Fortunately, this past weekend I also read the Wall Street Journal (that is how open "to experience" I am) and came across an interview with the distinguished British political philosopher -- and I might add -- American Spectator contributor, Roger Scruton. Scruton, as luck would have it, had some arresting things to say about the differing mentality of liberals and conservatives. All without having to resort to the partisan findings of lightweights and imposters. He said of liberalism: "My own view is that left-wing positions largely come about from resentment -- I agree with Nietzsche about this -- a resentment about the surrounding social order. They have privileges, I don't. Or, I have them and I can't live up to them. Things should be organized differently. And there's always some sense on the left that power is in the wrong hands."Scissors-32x32.png

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