It was not that long ago that the term conservative was defined by the beliefs and philosophies of first Goldwater and then Reagan. Today, people who advocate policies and beliefs that resemble those of Marx, Obama, Pelosi, Reid, Hillary, and Sanders still call themselves conservative. When they use the noun conservative, they will adjust the meaning by using some adjective such as common sense or compassionate to modify its meaning..
Progressives do not modify the term progressive. Progressive is understood by all to mean a person who advocates a socialist economic system along with a political system that controls and dominates the actions, thoughts, and beliefs of the populace. This could also be called a society with only one class economically, socially, and politically, with all conforming in thought, word, and deed, and all totally equal in all senses and aspects. Initially, this society would be ruled by a dictatorship of the workers only to evolve into a worldwide society that exists in total harmony and equality. It is the equality and conformity that leads to the harmony according to the Progressive.
We must ask anybody and everybody who tells us they are a conservative to explain what conservative means to them. To Calvin Coolidge, who many would refer to as Mr. Conservative, being a conservative meant limited government. During the years of his presidency, government was actually reduced in scope, number of federal employees, and dollars spent.
To Ronald Reagan, who was the last true conservative president, it meant a drastic reduction in tax rates and a reduction in government regulations. Reagan always stressed that people should be responsible for their actions, benefiting when the consequences were positive and being responsible when the consequences were negative.
The term conservative was again defined by in the early 1960’s by Senator Goldwater. Goldwater’s definition was really a restatement of the principles on which the founders built our nation. Our founders said a great and a free nation with a free people must operate under the concepts of rule of law, government must be limited, government must be divided, and the people must be sovereign with those in government being servants.
Goldwater believed that the powers granted to the federal government and enumerated in the constitution were limiting powers as the 10th amendment reinforced. Goldwater condemned the federal government assuming powers to which it had no authority. He spoke of the massive unconstitutional usurpation of power by the Franklin Roosevelt regime. Goldwater spoke of the unauthorized control of the agricultural industry by the Roosevelt regime as an example. Goldwater unequivocally stated that conservatism meant limited government in all respects except in the protection of our nation. The federal government was assigned that power, to protect our nation, in the constitution.
When people therefore explain that they are conservative, but then advocate federal government involvement in such areas as agriculture, health care, education, and other unconstitutional powers, these people are not constitutionalists or conservatives as defined by Goldwater and practiced by Coolidge and Reagan; they are progressives.
When you are listening to the debate this evening, when you are listening to candidates for federal, state, or local office, be sure to ask that candidate to define what they mean when they say they are conservative. If you are unable to ask the question directly, listen to what they say and you will quickly understand if they are conservative or progressive. For instance, if the candidate advocates government controlled health care, they identify much more as a progressive than a conservative.
When you are discussing issues with friends, family, and others, always asks how they define conservative when that topic is a part of the discussion. The purpose is not to argue, but to give you a frame of reference. It is important to know if you are speaking to a progressive or a conservative despite the term they use to describe themselves.
The philosophies are truly opposites, for instance the progressive philosophy emphasis that the rights of the community always will supersede the rights of the individual. This means that government control always trumps individual freedom. The conservative philosophy stresses the individual. This is why the founders said the Creator gave us the right to pursue happiness. Conservatives understand the right to pursue does not guarantee an outcome. The progressive believes the outcome should be the same for all and it should be guaranteed by society and/or the government.
If you are a progressive, that is your right, but do not proclaim progressive beliefs and try to lead others to believe you are a conservative. That is dishonest and qualifies you as a phony and a fraud.