Wednesday, February 21, 2007

dean's world: left vs right discussions

Interesting article from the Dean's World blog:

There is a reflexive, reactionary dislike of America that's become deeply ingrained in a lot of people on the left, and that tends to show especially strongly in wartime. There's a strong streak of contempt for America on the right as well (see The America Sucks Right), but it tends to be very muted when the country's at war.

I'd say those all add up to a left that acts more surly, nasty, and childish than the right these days. But it also tells me it's not likely to be that way forever.

All of this is why I try hard not to call anyone a liberal or a conservative anymore. Especially when I'm talking to, or about, individuals. It's why I try to talk about ideas rather than ideology. It's no secret that I lean Republican these days, but I'll vote for the right Democrat in a heartbeat. So to me, here's where you can tell the difference between a reasonable person and a jerk:

"You only say Z because you voted for X or you secretly believe Y." People who level such accusations don't want a discussion, they want a fight. They are looking for hidden motivations and conducting cheap armchair psychoanalysis, seeking to dismiss you and your positions thereby.

"You think Z? So that's why you voted for X or said Y? Hmm. I can't say I agree, but..." This is a person who wants to talk. They may be coming from the left, or the right, but more likely, it's from somewhere that doesn't fit that silly spectrum.
<>< TM

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