Failed Democrat Party Presidential candidate and former Senator Gary Hart of Colorado has written a wonderfully rambling yet somewhat coherent piece for Huffington Post titled Liberal is... Evil.
In this Op-Ed, Hart attempts to pin the failings of the Democrat Party, liberalism, and Progressivism on "The Far Right." Without naming specific names, he certainly points to today's Conservative movement.
In his effort to place blame on anyone not directly responsible for Democrat's failures, Hart writes:
We describe our form of government as liberal democracy. It embodies principles of freedom, liberty, equality, and justice. Its principles were set forth by John Locke and embodied in our Bill of Rights. We engage in wars to bring this same government to others.Mr. Hart's argument falls here, because those of us who understand our form of government correctly describe it as a Constitutional Republic operating as a Representative Democracy. All Americans who do not wish for The United States to become a Totalitarian nation are liberal by true definition, since liberal is (as the author correctly describes in his piece) the opposite of Totalitarianism, and we do indeed find our principles embodied in the Bill of Rights.
Sadly, there is some truth to the idea that we have recently engaged in a war to bring freedom to others, but to make such a sweeping generalization as "We engage in wars to bring this same government to others" is somewhat reckless. The only conflict I am aware of that was created primarily by the United States is the Iraq conflict. Vietnam, Korea, and any other conflict we have ever engaged in was an already existent situation in which The United States simply chose to fight along side and in support of freedom.
Hart also writes:
It is understandable that the far-right fulminators begin by perverting language. They are profoundly illiberal in every sense of the word. The values of magnanimity, benevolence, open-mindedness, generosity, and unselfishness are anathema to them. Nor is it coincidence that the age of anti-liberalism is one decidedly anti-scientific, whether having to do with our evolution, changing climate, or stem cell research. Totalitarianism has always wanted to control science for its own purposes.Here Mr. Hart is simply making a lame if not valiant attempt to revise history and slander his political opposition.
It is the left, i.e. "liberals," who have shunned the word liberal. In the place of liberal, we have recently been instructed that those who operate within the Democrat Party are "Progressive," which as Hillary Rodham Clinton correctly explained is a reference to a political movement that began in the late 19th century, and essentially disappeared in the 1920's. Coincidentally, around that same time those who had defined themselves as "Progressive" suddenly began explaining to others that they were "liberal."
For Mr. Hart to claim that the right is not magnanimous, benevolent, open-minded, generous, or unselfish is patently absurd.
Anytime there is political scandal, it is the right who is willing to forgive a person regardless of politics, yet the left consistently screams for the ouster of anyone with whom their politics do not align.
Conservatives are generally much more peaceful than the "Progressives" of today. Take Bill Maher, Joy Behar, and Keith Olbermann...please, take them! Seriously, though - they are perfect examples of where the left is the more intolerant and mean-spirited ideology of the two. As compared to three examples from the right.. let's say Rush, Beck, and Laura Ingraham? I'd hang with the latter any day. The former come across like that vicious "mean girl" click made famous by a handful of movies.
It is a well documented fact that Conservatives are much more charitable by nature, offering more of their time and a higher percentage of their income then their "liberal" counterparts in every way. And to say that Conservatives are not open-minded is to not pay attention to The Log Cabin Republicans and great gay bloggers like those at HillBuzz.
And please, Mr. Hart... do not attempt to steal science from its rightful place.
We believe the climate is changing, we're just smart enough to know it is highly unlikely that humans have the capability as to destroy this magnificent planet, and it seems that largely your fake "science" has been debunked.
We do what we know is right; we recycle, we drive more economic cars, we even carpool. We'll take public transportation where it makes sense. However, we do not believe you can legislate clean air. Perhaps it is you who needs to recognize that until you unleash science and the free market from your restrictive legislation, we may never find a solution that is suitable to all needs and desires.
Additionally, It is not Conservatives who wish to destroy NASA, losing decades of real scientific progress as well as technological supremacy. And many Conservatives are just fine with stem cell research, as long as we're not destroying embryos in order to gain the most precious of cells.
You can read the balance of Gary Hart's piece here.
I noticed with great interest that Huffington Post turned off the comments for this specific Op-Ed. If you've read my work long or spent any time on Huffington Post, you know this clearly means they know they've got this one wrong but didn't wish to deny a great "liberal" such as Gary Hart his time.
As always, my comment section is available, and I welcome any perspective.