The contradiction between Social Liberalism and Fiscal Conservatism
In a response to a prior post I wanted to take the opportunity to address the common statement “I’m a Social Liberal, but I’m Fiscally Conservative” and what a glaring contradiction it creates. I’m going to copy and past some of that response here and build on it a little bit.
In order to deflect, temper, rationalise, justify or appear to be more reasonable many times people will say, “I’m Socially Liberal but Fiscally Conservative”. It’s at this point where you should be hearing the classic response of Scooby Doo to any confusing line of thought.
Social Liberalism leads to a reduction of freedoms, infringement on liberty, an increase in dependency, an erosion of personal responsibility, the evolution of dependency, and the destruction of the concept of “fairness”. It is exactly the opposite of a “Darwinistic” approach and again another Liberal contradiction. It’s Nanny-stateism.
Fiscal (Small government) Conservatives are not Social Liberals.
Conservatism is not status quo ante but a belief that a free person in a free society is the best engine for freedom for all people, for economic growth, enabling the protection of rights by not infringing on them and allowing people to learn their life lessons by trial and error. Unfortunately due to it’s lack of structure it’s easily open to atrophy and dissolution.
Social Liberals view society as a field in which fairness does not exist but must be imposed. Where people are suppressed and not free to pick themselves up but need to be picked up and supported by others. It’s a society where others have “too much” and must be compelled to provide for others. It’s a Utopian vision of Society, leveling, a construct. Social Liberalism leverages “Social Justice”, redistribution of wealth (property) and Public Services as the means to an end.
Take Healthcare. In order to address a problem of 10% of the population the Social Liberal will impose a National “solution” on nearly 100%. In the 70 years it took to get to that point it could not be addressed in any other way? No, because the end goal is not the elimination of the problem but the implementation of something on a much more grand scale, the tip of the iceburg, “for the greater good”.
Because of the “cost” to others undesirable behavior – obesity, excessive eating, types of foods, being uninsured – including inaction are now seen as being impactful on “the whole” and need to be curtailed. There cannot be a free marketplace because people don’t know better and need to be told the right way to do things, have a penalty imposed on them in order to comply. Failure to comply means the suppression of another’s “right” to healthcare.
If you speak to a Social Liberal about Healthcare they view it as a great leap forward never mind the great cost – clearly visible in countless other Countries, even our own Governmental budget – or erosion of personal liberties. It “imposes” fairness – how can that be bad? The fact that the Supreme Court found it Constitutional great – the fact that the Government can now tax you for inaction, totally acceptable. Social engineering on a grand scale.
The Second Amendment is a great example of the expendability of an established right by a Social Liberal. It’s an inherent freedom. It’s been upheld twice as a personal liberty extended to all US Citizens by the Supreme Court. When practiced by law abiding citizens it reduces crime and is nearly transparent. It’s a check and balance against a corrupt Government, another economic engine.
The Social Liberal believes that Guns are bad and you should not have them. They will work every day to take them away from you and everyone else no matter the cost or the chilling effect on that right.
It’s amazing how the same people who take the moral high ground on firearms and their impact on human life conveniently shift their moral perspective in other areas – classic Liberal moral flexibility. The definition of “IS”.
Substitute the First Amendment anywhere you would see the Second Amendment. There would be an open revolt even by the Social Liberal as it would prevent their message from being disseminated (as well as the ability to suppress others).
Government should not be involved in social engineering however a Social Liberal will tell you again and again – the Government, in many cases, is the only thing that can “do or control/make fair xyz for all people”. It’s a constant justification for Federalism, another anti-conservative practice.
Fiscal Conservatives believe in smaller Government and a basic set of reasonable operational guidelines. The result is a less costly Government less involved in the “day to day operations” of peoples lives. Social programs are very clearly massive Administrative undertakings with a ton of overhead, duplication and cost and are typically anathema to Fiscal conservative.
Social Programs – Social Security, SNAP, MediCare, HealthCare, etc. – are massively costly. That is absolutely undeniable. Gun registries, bans, etc. are also massively costly. They also absolutely ensure that you pay for other peoples choices while being able to order them around. It’s the worst of both worlds wrapped up in the Nanny blanket of compassion and Utopia.
Fiscal Conservatism and Social Liberalism are contradictory. You can’t want to expand Government and make it cheaper, you can’t force people to do things and call it Freedom or Equality and you can’t create Rights while suppressing established ones.