We talk a lot about the Right and the Left and who is on the Right and who is on the Left. For instance, a large part of the 2016 fireworks was over people who said Donald Trump was not a Republican. And a large contingent of these people were neoconservatives and libertarians. To them Trump was just an opportunist who had seized on nativist talking points to appeal to the worst instincts of the working-class White Americans and would lead the Republicans to disaster in the general election because his policy priorities would be rejected by the wider American electorate. As it turned out they were dead wrong. “Making America Great Again,” and putting America first resonated with the majority of voters.
A lot of water has passed under the bridge since 2016 and the neocons have become the NeverTrumpers and have self-ejected from the Republican party and the Right in general. They are now indistinguishable from Woke Leftists except in their enhanced emphasis on all things anti-Trump.
And this is the crux of the point of this post. The Neocons were never conservatives. And it should have been obvious from the beginning that if you are not socially conservative then you are not of the Right. And that goes for others “on the Right.” Being in favor of market capitalism makes you a capitalist. It doesn’t make you a conservative. You can be an enthusiastic capitalist and compete ferociously in the free market and still be in favor of deconstructing the United States of America, the Family and Western Civilization all at the same time. So, the former dichotomy of Right and Left being capitalists versus communists doesn’t really apply to today. The Woke Left is spearheaded by Silicon Valley billionaires who print money by the metric ton but want to turn America into a digital gulag. So, defining the Right isn’t what we thought it was back in Reagan’s day and never was. Somehow Donald Trump knew that the Right wasn’t the Right and he was able to seize the high ground and overturn the establishment Republican’s narrative. He became the Right. But Donald Trump will not always be around and we need a definition of what the Right is or represents so that we can measure other leaders and other policies to see if they align with our interests.
So, what is the Right, what is conservatism? As far as I can tell, conservatism is the Right and what it means is conserving the things in life that have value, things that give life meaning. And so, it comes down to individual judgement. But I think if the “normal” opinion on what gives life meaning is assumed then what we are talking about are the rock-bottom requirements to making life human. And I don’t think you can get any more fundamental than the preservation of the family. A man and a woman raising kids is just about as basic as it gets. All that needs to be added is the framework for raising them which we call religion. So, God and Family. And because this is America, we add in the Constitution of the United States to allow all the families to interact without having to kill each other. In fact it’s probably one of the finer blueprints for running a country. God, Family and Country. That’s it.
For the most part what we have to do is see where a particular policy or leader aligns with or hampers these things and we’ll know whether it’s of the Right or not. For instance, the Supreme Court has declared gay marriage a Constitutional right. This makes it very difficult for a politician to do anything about eliminating it. But if a politician says he’s a conservative and he also espouses gay marriage or transgender rights then you know that he’s a Leftist.
There, that’s easy. Look at what politicians say they agree with and you’ll know what side they are on. If a politician says he’s anti-communist but his idea of capitalism means sending all the jobs overseas and importing low wage laborers into this country then guess what? He’s a Leftist. He may claim he just believes in free markets and capitalism but what he really believes in is globalism and therefore he doesn’t believe in the United States of America. If a politician says he believes in God but says that you aren’t allowed to object to sexual deviancy being taught to your children then guess what? He’s a Leftist.
Now how easy is that? Try it on any politician who waxes poetic about conservatism but never seems to get any results. Find out what he’s actually said about specific policy points like illegal immigration or bringing jobs back to this country or tariffs or “free trade” or transgender rights or freedom of religion. It should be pretty easy to sort the wolves from the sheep dogs.
I’ll try to put together some further examples to try to refine my thoughts on the definition of the Right and the various groups like libertarians and social conservatives and socialists but I hope this makes clear what I think conservative means. It means pro-family, pro-religion, pro-America. In other words pro-normal.