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CONSERVATIVE STEREOTYPES

Posted by Tim Bryce on April 16, 2014

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Some sleight of hand to vilify conservatives.

(Click for AUDIO VERSION)
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Following the release of one of my more politically inclined columns, I was accused by a reader of being an ultra conservative. The reader based his comments on established stereotypes of conservatives which I personally find distasteful. Such images have become rather old and tiresome, but were still effective in the last presidential election. These stereotypes were concocted by the Media over time and inevitably raise their ugly heads during election time. What concerns me though is these images are simply fallacious and aimed at misleading people away from the true issues at hand. Let me give you some prime examples of conservative stereotypes:

CONSERVATIVES ARE PRO-BUSINESS, EVEN AT THE EXPENSE OF SQUASHING ANYTHING THAT GETS IN THEIR WAY, INCLUDING THE LITTLE GUY.
I think it is no secret that conservatives believe in the free enterprise system, the land of opportunity, and an honest day’s wage for an honest day’s work, but I do not believe they are as ruthless as they are portrayed. They are unapologetic capitalists who want less government control, not more. Conservatives tend to see government as the servant of the people, not the other way around. This drives people crazy who oppose this way of thinking, particularly socialists and communists. It’s no small wonder that capitalists are portrayed as “fat-cats” who profit off the worker.

The reality is you will find just as many liberals in the board room as you will find conservatives. Further, anyone who has faced the realities and risks of starting up his/her own company, particularly a small business, is somewhat inclined to appreciate capitalist principles.

CONSERVATIVES DO NOT SHARE AND WANT TO CREATE A MASTER/SLAVE CLASS SOCIETY.
This is just plain bunk. First, greed knows no political ideologue. Second, we’re back to the capitalist argument whereby conservatives appreciate hard work and reward accordingly. Look, it’s simple, you cannot do everything yourself; you have to delegate, empower, and support your people, which includes compensating them accordingly. It’s just plain smart business. Third, conservatives give generously of themselves for a wide variety of causes. Although they balk at turning their wallets completely over to the government, conservatives gladly lend a helping hand to those who truly need it. Liberals certainly do not hold a monopoly on charitable causes.

CONSERVATIVES ARE ANTI-ENVIRONMENT.
It is generally believed that if you are a conservative, you have a fundamental disregard for the planet; that you want to rape the Earth and eradicate its resources. My question is, “Why?” This would imply that conservatives are like some visitors from outer space here to plunder the earth’s resources and leave a dead shell. I’m afraid I haven’t seen the conservative flying saucer yet, and I think we are all stuck on this planet together. In fact, conservatives have found such things as conservation, recycling, and land reclamation are not just good ideas, it’s smart business.

CONSERVATIVES ARE ULTRA RELIGIOUS.
Show me a fanatical Bible thumper and I’ll show you a conservative; Right? Wrong. I can’t begin to tell you how many liberals I have met through organized religion. We often hear of the “Religious Right” which primarily consists of Christian groups, but I don’t recall where it is written that a belief in Jesus Christ is a prerequisite for becoming a conservative. In fact, I’ve met conservatives from just about every religious faith imaginable. I will grant that conservatives tend to derive their core values from their religious beliefs, whatever they may be, but they are certainly not religious fanatics.

There is an interesting dichotomy here: whereas conservatives are accused of unethical behavior in business and the environment, they are also portrayed as religious zealots. I guess the assumption here is that organized religion doesn’t promote ethical behavior.

CONSERVATIVES ARE UNEDUCATED, UNIMAGINATIVE, AND ONLY FOLLOW PARTY LINES.
There is a general belief conservatives are incapable of intelligent discourse, are crude and lack creativity, and thereby must be told what to do. Gee, it kind of sounds like the goons in the Nazi Party under Adolph Hitler doesn’t it?

The notion conservatives are old-fashioned fuddy-duddies who resist change is erroneous. I know a lot of liberals who have been unbending in their ideas since the 1960’s.

Since conservatives tend to have a business perspective they are somewhat inclined to be freethinkers, meaning if it makes sense to them, they’ll buy it, regardless of who sells it. They will also make it plain if they do not agree with you, and perhaps this is what bothers their opposition. In fact, I find conservatives to be more open to debate; for example, consider the popularity of conservative talk radio programs (you don’t see too many liberal programs do you?)

CONSERVATIVES DO NOT HAVE A SENSE OF HUMOR.
For a long time, conservatives have had to endure all kinds of jokes as communicated through political bumper stickers, cartoons, and late night comedians. In the process I think they have developed some rather thick skin and do, in fact, appreciate a good joke, although I admit their humor is not as destructive as others. But what is good for the goose should be good for the gander. Try poking fun at a liberal and you are accused of blasphemy. Now that’s funny.

CONSERVATIVES ARE RACISTS.
I’m not even going to dignify this with a rebuttal. Pure bunk.

CONSERVATIVES ARE ANTI-WOMEN
(See “Conservatives are racists”).

CONCLUSION

The concept of conservative stereotypes is nothing more than brainwashing for the purpose of social engineering by the media. Young people are taught early on that being a conservative is not “cool”…

“Did you know he is a conservative?”

“Really? He’s one of them? Wow! That’s lame.”

Behind the facade of the conservative stereotypes is a deeply-rooted resentment to capitalism, which the conservatives embrace. Anti-capitalists want to replace the system and evenly spread the wealth regardless of how much effort a person exerts to earn it. To conservatives, capitalism is the stimulus that encourages people to become entrepreneurs; to move forward and take risks, to boldly go where no one has gone before, to evolve, and hopefully succeed.

Like I said earlier, I have been accused of being an “ultra” conservative. As an aside, a friend recently pointed out to me, how come we do not apply this adjective to liberals (an “ultra” liberal)? I guess it is another attempt to stereotype conservatives as extremists (and liberals are not?).

It has been my experience that conservatives take their fiduciary responsibilities seriously, they are not afraid to be held accountable for their actions, they want to lead a worthy and meaningful life, and possess an ethical makeup derived from their religious beliefs. If this is what an “ultra” conservative is, then I plead, “Guilty. Most guilty.”

“Show me a young Conservative and I’ll show you someone with no heart.
Show me an old Liberal and I’ll show you someone with no brains.”

– Winston Churchill

Originally published: 3/2/2009

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:
timbryce.com

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Copyright © 2014 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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7 Responses to “CONSERVATIVE STEREOTYPES”

  1. Kevin Schachter said

    Now how about the flip side?

    Like

  2. Tim Bryce said

    A J.F. of West Palm Beach wrote…

    “I think there are three types of conservatives, religious, non-religious and anti-immigrant. The non-religious conservatives are the ones you are primarily speaking about in your article and they represent the largest cohort of conservatives and accordingly conservative ideology.

    But not to be dismissed are the religious right. They vote conservative for social reasons which translated means they are against gay marriage and/or abortion.

    The increasingly vocal anti-immigrant conservatives are the ones that really scare me. But there is also a large chorus of anti-immigrant liberals, unfortunately the stereotype exists that only conservatives are anti-immigrant.”

    Like

  3. Tim Bryce said

    A B.H. of Boulder, Colorado wrote…

    “My wife and I grew up in Oklahoma at a time when there were NO republicans running on the ticket – you simply couldn’t find one – yet, they would vote for a republican presidential candidate almost all the time. My wife used to say the definition of a democrat was someone who had no compulsion whatsoever about spending YOUR money. It’s amazing how many young people as LIBERALS suddenly find themselves thinking more and more like conservatives as they get older and find out the true fiscal and personal impacts of all those policies they thought were so important and essential as a young person. But, by that time, it’s too late.”

    Like

  4. Wayne said

    The absurdity of those claims is off the charts. Instead of a capitalist perspective, let us embrace reality and in doing so go ahead and join Harry Reid whlle he uses the powers of government to clear grasslands in Nevada of ranchers to conveniently push the land to the Chinese for 1/8 its value. Let’s join in while the EPA takes every mudhole and ground depression in America under the umbrella of “navigable waters” and proceeds to impose its “unlegislated laws” gain stifle business, enterprise, and freedom all under the of environmental concern. Let’s joint the liberals in redefining marriage and leaving the barndoor open in the process so that plenty of precedence is already there if farmer Jones wants to marry his cow. Let’s all get in a circle of Democrats and sing “Kumbaya” while over legalized and partial birth-abortions taking place all over America in unfit and haphazard facilities and praise the Lord for our so-called “reproductive freedom”. I think you get the point here. The Left can hand our all the labels that it wants but in the end, when they look around their own party, they will find more than their share of socialist and communist and in my way of thinking, that is worse than having a capitalist in presence any day of the week. ~WB

    Like

  5. Tim Bryce said

    A D.L. of Fresno, California wrote…

    “Good article on how conservatives have been mislabeled. It is a manipulation by the MSN and Hollywood that has been going on for decades. If people really took a good look at the conservative principles and the progressive principles there would be no contest between them.”

    Like

  6. […] CONSERVATIVE STEREOTYPES […]

    Like

  7. Tim Bryce said

    An L.M. of Poughkeepsie, New York wrote…

    “Being pro-business is a dirty word in today’s culture and a reason to get black listed as persona-non-grata by the radical leftist cabal…..”

    Like

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