I typically refrain from discussions of political matters with family members, but find it difficult to remain silent. Is this "essay" how you view our family? (seeing as how we all consider ourselves to be conservatives)
I don't consider myself to be far left or right....rather probably somewhere in the middle. Unfortunately, no political party has yet to reach out to what amounts to the "middle majority"....folks that care for others, but expect some sense of decency in governing institutions. I don't hate taxes, I don't hate people different from me, I believe in public school (along with my right to choose to send my child to a private school, if I so desire.....and no, I don't support vouchers). I am a Christian and I don't force it down your throat.
Perhaps so-called "Liberals" are too busy fighting "Conservative Americans" (or a small group of ignorant jerks like the one who wrote the essay) to pay attention or notice the characteristics/values of the true majority of Americans. And perhaps we don't choose to follow the guidance of people who seem unable to do anything but tear everyone else down....and that includes the person who wrote the essay.
Instead of wasting your time fighting this "battle" with a few far-righters, why don't you spend it building something the majority of Americans would like to be part of?
If you consider yourself somewhere in the middle, you're not conservative. The essay concerns the powermongers on the Right, like Karl Rove, Rick Santorum, Pat Robertson, Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh and yes, I do believe they feel exactly like the writer says.
You and I aren't the political abstractions of liberal and conservatives addressed in the essay; we're everyday people who care about our family and country. But the people who run the current political machinery are extremists who don't hold your moderate views on education, immigrants, taxes or much else you value I'd suspect. I treasure public education, clean environments, fair taxation, social justice, and personal freedom. None of these issues is represented by Republicans, so I don't vote for them.
They run on knee-jerk social issues to get common people to vote for them, but once in power impose law after law that punishes those very voters, you and me. Remember tax cuts for the super-wealthy? The eradication of estate tax? No more capital gains taxes? The debt generated by those gifts to the wealthy have generated billions of dollars of debt for our children. Do we want this?
Remember the "Clear Skies" initiative that actually loosened polluting regulations on industry? Where's the funding for "No Child Left Behind?" What about "tort reform" that takes away an effective weapon--legal action--against negligent corporations? Now we're at war based on lies and the poor who make up the majority of the military are dying every day while Bush cuts funding for veterans. Do we want this?
What have conservatives done for working people directly, ever?
You're right. Liberals should work to build a positive answer to the extremist views now ruling our country. I'm embarrassed by the Democratic party's loss of contact with people just like you. You are the exact voter who should find the Democrats appealing, but we have let you down. The civil and just society that liberals have fought and died for, a society that provides free public education, safe working environments, civil rights, progressive taxation, public services, medical and financial security for our most vulnerable, moral foreign leadership, equal opportunity, and enlightened religious leadership, is being strangled by the Machiavellian extremists on the Right and all the Left seems able to do right now is flail about and whine.
I hope the Left finds direction quickly, for both our sakes--and our children.