Saturday, October 02, 2004
Part of a CNN focus group meant to gauge public reaction to Thursday's US Presidential debate was a thirty something year old yuppie who described himself as "a social liberal and fiscal conservative".
What does this paradoxical contradiction in terms really mean?
It means that he's a liberal as far as it concerns his, his friends' and his boyfriend's lifestyles (the so-called "social liberal" aspect) but doesn’t want to pay for this by extending it to the traditional beneficiaries of liberal largesse (hence "fiscal conservatism").
There seems to be a lot of this strange hybrid fruit around – high earning selfish, self-absorbed, hypocritical Buddhist latte liberals sitting around in cafes speaking nonsense.
But when it comes to expanding the circle a bit, beyond them and their coterie, NO, STOP, no more Mr. Liberal!
The late Danish politician Pim Fortuyn* was a prime example of this – left-wing liberal when it suited him (his homosexuality) but a flaming right-wing fascist when it came to others, immigrants, Muslims, etc.
There's no such thing as a selective expedient sometime liberal – you're either in or out.
*I'm not speaking ill of the dead, Mr. Fortuyn was an inteligent cultured man tragically cut down in his prime, I'm just highlighting a contradiction.