Monday, 17 May 2010

OK - I'm officially a Liberal

From Peter Hitchens: 
But how many times do I have to explain that market worship is not the same thing as conservatism? It's liberals who elevate the market to the position which ought to be occupied by God (socialists do the same with 'History' which in their case means the inevitability of the socialist Utopia). I've been making this point now for more than a decade, and some people are still surprised by it.
The problem here is that for too long, I've been using the word "conservative" in the American, Barry Goldwater, small government position (look him up). Which really equates to what used to be called "classic liberal". So, I'm going to say it loud and say it proud: I'm a liberal. I believe that the state should get out of my wallet and my bedroom.

Back to Hitchens' point: What's interesting, I think he's right. But it doesn't really say much for socialists and conservatives, does it? One believes in something that can't be proven to exit. The other is dealing with yesterday's problems.

I mostly despise the use of the word "progressive" because it's such a catch-all. As well as being a liberal, I also declare myself as a progressive in the true sense of the word. To retry failed social experiments that brought about poverty is in no way progressive. To elevate manufacturing in a world where we've replaced CDs with MP3s is not progressive.

And as for Hitchens believing that God should be where the market is, well, that's just fine. I presume he has his own holy grail for when he gets sick and that winged angels carry him to where he goes. Personally, I have to use products created by men.

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