Sunday, October 2, 2011

Great Conservative Accomplishments

Conservatives seem never to tire of being on the wrong side of history. Hubris leads conservatives, in one of the great panders of American politics, to claim the Founding Fathers as their own, but those icons of American history were revolutionaries, treasonously so according to conservative supporters of King George. 19th century conservatives fought the Civil War in an attempt to maintain a slavery-based economic system. President Hoover's conservative, laissez-faire economic policies led directly to the Great Depression. Similar policies, starting with President Reagan and culminating with the hapless George W. Bush, likewise, and with painful predictability, presaged the recent Great Recession.

Great Depression
Social Security, Medicare, child-labor laws, integration of the military and of public schools, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and healthcare reform are all victories for America bitterly opposed by conservatives pandering to their backward constituents. Quick! Name 3 great accomplishments of conservatives in all of U.S. history. Give up?

The verdict of history is clear. Political conservatism, born of the fear of change, is unerringly wrong-headed. Our nation's greatness arises from a willingness to embrace the challenges of the day and to lead the world in effectively addressing issues of social and economic justice. That is the true legacy of our Founding Fathers. As always, that legacy is under attack by foot-dragging conservatives whose backward-looking policies are a prescription for ceding moral and economic leadership in the 21st century.

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