First, our conservative opponents transformed “liberal” into a dirty word. Then, they started attacking “progressives” for a political philosophy that advocated enlightenment and advancement, something you definitely don’t want too much of. Next thing you know, they’ll be turning “pointy-headed elitist ivory-tower-dwelling namby-pamby tax-and-spend bleeding-heart weenie” into something negative.
Blowhards on the right have not only hijacked labels that those of us on the left once wore proudly, they’ve turned what everyone can agree are reasonable positions into something that is their idea alone. I don’t know about other parts of the country, but around here, you’d think conservatives were the only ones who cared about jobs, families, responsibility and an honest living. No one is claiming on their yard signs or in their TV commercials to be an advocate for liberal causes. They’d have about as much chance of winning as if their campaign slogan was “America sucks.”
In fact, liberals are so feared here in the South that I’m thinking of dressing up as Al Gore for Halloween and scaring a pantload of carbon emissions out of my neighbors.
As possibly the only white, middle-class, middle-aged male in my entire state of South Carolina who considers himself a liberal, I feel compelled to explain myself. How is it that, in this day and age, a man can believe that applying intelligence and reason to an issue is preferable to formulating a worldview using your gut, your bile and other areas of your gastrointestinal tract? Thinking is so hard. Feeling is where it’s at in today’s political climate.
Next week is the midterm congressional elections. Everyone is predicting a Republican landslide in which Old Whitey will be taking his country back (to, at the latest, the 19th century). Before that happens, I wanted to explain a little about where we liberals stand on the topics of the day.
We have very rational opinions that simply need to be clearly enunciated. Once you understand what we believe, you’ll see we’re not so frightening after all. You may even be tempted to give Al Gore the good candy when he shows up at your door Sunday night. Not that he needs the candy.
Let’s take this issue by issue:
Jobs — We think Jobs has done an excellent job during his tenure at Apple, and we liberals will continue to buy from his company whatever he thinks we need to buy.
Immigration — We want to give the entire southwestern portion of the country back to Mexico, rectifying the error of the Mexican War. Then, all the illegals will be their problem.
The Wars — We’re pacifist by nature, as we proved by being scared to death of the draft during the Vietnam War. We really do want to help the dispossessed peoples of Iraq and Afghanistan, but we’re just not sure that shooting them is the best way to show it.
Healthcare — Free healthcare for everyone, whether they want it or not. A liberal regime would require you to go to the doctor every week until you get sick.
Financial reform — We want to dismantle the banking system and its usurious credit policies and replace the dollar with beads and dreamcatchers.
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell — Not only do we want gays in the military to tell, but we want to hear the graphic details.
Education — Like conservatives, we believe that nothing is more important than education because children are our future. We need to acknowledge, however, that children are also a very important part of our present, particularly in their roles as sex slaves and food. We would expand, rather than dismantle, the Department of Education, to include an office of the undersecretary of education for condiments and tenderizers.
Infrastructure improvements — Roads, bridges and airports must be upgraded to handle the demands of the 21st century, or else they must be plowed over and turned into farmland. We’re not quite sure which just yet, but hope to have a definitive answer by the election on Tuesday.
Race — We all belong to the human race so there’s no reason to see color. At least, that’s what my domestic partner says about what I think is a hideous shade of aqua on the new divan he bought.
Guns — We would require that everyone turn in their guns to the government before your fingers turn cold and dead.
Abortion — You’re gonna get one whether you want it or not when we take over.
Gay marriage — Anyone should be allowed to marry anyone else regardless of their sexual orientation or gender. Anyone who can’t be tolerant of alternative lifestyles should be dismembered.
Evolution — Before there was science, we relied on mysticism and myth to explain the structure of the world. Now that we’ve figured out how everything works, we need to acknowledge that science is king, and make sure that Darwin’s theory of evolution is taught as fact in public schools. But don’t require any tests; we wouldn’t want to damage the fragile students’ self-esteem.
Terrorism — We believe that the terrorists are mostly just misunderstood and misguided young people who didn’t get the supportive family environment necessary to make a well-rounded adult. But we still agree with conservatives that they should all be killed.
The national debt — In a time of economic stagnation, government spending is critical in turning the tide toward a more robust recovery. In the interest of promoting this belief, let’s give not only all of our money to China, but also all of our personal possessions.
Trade imbalance and globalization — Instead of concepts like “third world,” “developing world” and “developed world,” let’s work toward a day when there’s just One World. And I will be the King of that World.
Foreclosures — Let the people keep their houses, regardless of whether or not they want to pay for them. Just require that they rent out their bonus room to a homeless person for next to nothing.
Drugs — Liberals agree with libertarians on the right wing that all drugs should be legalized. Where we part company with them, however, is on the question of how stiff a fine can be assessed to citizens who refuse to become junkies.
Energy — Renewable sources of power will lead to a greener world, as any petroleum company advertisement will tell you.
Social Security and an aging population — We need true reform of a system that won’t be sustainable by the middle of this century and this could require things like a higher retirement age, means testing and — oops, wait a minute, I just turned 65. Bring on the government checks!
Net neutrality — Liberals use computers a lot because we’re so much wealthier and better educated than everybody else so, whatever net neutrality is, we think it sounds cool.
Crime — Criminals should be educated and trained for an occupation while they’re incarcerated. Then, when they return to society, they can be like everyone else in explaining how their Microsoft Word skills and familiarity with CompuServe make them an ideal candidate for that Midwest sales position they saw advertised on Monster.com.
Dancing With the Stars — Contrary to what you might expect of us, we actually want Bristol Palin to win, but only because she was a pregnant teen.