Sunday, May 7, 2017

Why I can't side with American conservatism

Especially now it's really easy to agree with the vast majority of things that American conservatives (ie. the "political right" in the American sense, not the European one) is saying. After all, they are (perhaps ironically) defending very liberal values in the current political climate, such as freedom of speech, as well as all other kinds of basic freedoms, basic human rights of the individual, democracy and the democratic process, constitutional rights, treating people equally, and so on. They are also highly critical of unrestricted immigration from cultures that are fundamentally incompatible with our western constitutional democratic system. And they are, of course, deeply against the current regressive leftist racist and sexist ideology.

When you eg. watch videos from a conservative source, such as The Rebel Media (which is a Canadian conservative online political commentary organization), or Milo Yiannopoulos, it's very easy to agree with at least 95% of what they are saying.

When commenting on these videos, sometimes some American conservatives will try to convince liberals to switch sides. Why continue being a left-leaning liberal? The whole political movement has been hijacked by authoritarian supremacist collectivist bigoted ideologues bent on destroying the western culture and society. Authoritarianism has taken over the entire left of the political spectrum. There's very little classical liberal ideals left anymore.

But then, when you keep watching these videos for long enough, invariably there will come topics that are the major reasons why I cannot support the American conservatives, and would never consider myself on the right of the political spectrum.

One of the major ones, which seems to always eventually pop up, is corporatism, which is something I heavily, heavily oppose.

To clarify, I support capitalism. That seems to be a dirty word in today's world, but it simply is the form of economy that seems to work best, and has produced the highest amount of technological progress and societal welfare. It's the reason why during the last 50 years we have progressed technologically, and as a society, more than in the previous 500 years. It's the reason we have welfare societies where people don't need to be homeless, and everybody gets the help (eg. medical help) they need, even the poorest of people. The amount of technological progress is just incredible, and it's mainly driven by capitalism. To me capitalism is not a dirty word. People who hate and abhor capitalism are simply deluded. (Many countries are so ashamed to run a capitalist form of economy that they even deny being a capitalist country, because that word has so much stigma attached to it. Which is just idiotic.)

However, I heavily oppose corporatism, which is a different thing. Corporatism is an extreme form of capitalism where private corporations are too unrestricted and have way too much power over the government (rather than the other way around). Capitalism can only work properly when there is a strong government watching over corporations and stopping them from abusing citizens (and other corporations). Corporations should be allowed to fully engage in capitalist economy and commerce, but they must be kept in a very tight leash when it comes to the rights of the individual people, and the inter-corporation relationships that may become abusive (eg. one corporation using underhanded tactics to destroy another). And, very especially, corporations must never have too much power to influence the government and what kind of laws the government passes, especially if these laws would be too unilaterally beneficial to corporations at the expense of the citizens. Or the environment (which, ultimately, would happen at the expense of the citizens.)

Thus corporatism is the reason why I cannot side with these right-wing movements. It's often not direct support of corporatism per se, but it's often topics that are caused by corporatism. One of the major such topics is science denialism, especially when it comes to climate change and environmentalism.

When you watch these conservative channels, it's pretty much guaranteed that eventually they will make videos denying climate change, for instance.

I really can't understand why American conservatism and climate change denialism go so tightly hand-in-hand. Take any major American conservative organization, and they will be climate change denialists, with almost no exceptions.

I believe that climate change denialism is ultimately corporatism in action. American conservatism is very corporatist, and will always defend the "rights" of corporations over the rights of people, and especially over environmentalism. It's against the interest of big corporations if the government started limiting their pollution, and thus they naturally oppose any such laws, by any means possible. And of course climate change denialism is perfect for this. And the vast majority of conservatives have been successfully brainwashed into it.

And, of course, another topic that always eventually pops up, is public healthcare (although more with organizations based in the United States than ones in Canada, for rather obvious reasons.) In the United States healthcare is a big industry and is run primarily by corporations. Which, of course, means that conservatives will automatically defend the "rights" of these corporations, even if it happens at the expense of the citizens. Thus they will always oppose European-style universal tax-paid healthcare, no matter what. On principle. They will not budge.

Gun control is a more complex topic, but once again the American conservatives go way too far with it, and not only consider their 2nd amendment the Holy Gospel, but are also quite liberal (hah!) in interpreting it, and will defend to their deaths the amendment and their interpretation of it. They will happily ignore how eg. the introduction of strict gun control in Australia reduced significantly the amount of gun-related crimes and mass-shootings, and other such examples. They will never, ever be convinced.

Because of these, and a few more minor topics, which always eventually pop up in American conservative rhetoric, I just can't side myself with them. Even if I agree with 95% of what they are saying, that 5% I disagree with is such an important 5% that it's a real deal-breaker.

Which, curiously, leaves me in a rather interesting position politically speaking. I can't side with the American right, but due to current events I can't side with the American left either (because it has indeed been taken over by authoriarian ideologues.) I cannot side with the European extreme right either (ultra-nationalist fascism) nor the European extreme left either (authoritarian neo-liberal multicultural communism). So who is left to side with? There are ideologues everywhere.

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