I recall the look on Truepeer's face one evening early on in our meetings of a Thursday when I, in all innocence, proclaimed myself to be a Liberal. I didn't have a cell phone or I might have dialed for an ambulance straight away. After some long explanation I got through to him that 'Liberal' doesn't mean I'm a supporter of the Liberal Party of Canada, which he assumed. When he made plain that was his understanding I begged him to call an ambulance.
Liberal is to me, then, if not so much now, one of those from Britain in support of the merchant class, a supporter of industrialism and the marketplace monetary economy as opposed to the agricultural economy based on goods and services outside the money economy, the economy of entitlements, feudal duties, seigneurial rights and noblesse oblige. To me, at that time, Conservative meant, and means to a lesser extent today, a peasant economy, i.e. one based on labour without money, sans Capital. I still find myself, on rare occasions, reaching automatically under my arm for a persuasive counter-argument when I hear "Conservative." But then I remember, ha ha, that this doesn't mean a manorial economy, no latifundista class and smiling, happy peasants in the distance, the starving clad in traditional costumes, waving from afar. So, yes, let us define what we mean when we loosely use such terms as liberal and conservative. Liberal means free markets, money economy, free exchange of goods and labour.
What Peers and others refer to as Conservative I think of in terms of the French Revolution, and frankly, so do most today, whether they know it or not: The Liberals are the Right in that sense, i.e the manufacturing classes, the owners of the means of production, those who employ and utilize manu / labour and machinery that is used to produce further from others with same; and the Left are the latifundista adjuncts, such as disaffected lawyers. The whole fiasco of Left and Right today comes from the National Assembly in 1788ish when the profit group sat on the right side of the building, the lawyers on the left side. It was a seating arrangement then; it is less than that now. The Liberals on the Right sided with the business /profit interests, the Capitalists, the bourgeios. They stood for market freedom, including labour freedom, i.e for workers' freedom to move to better paying jobs and for social mobility. When others speak of conservatives, I don't assume they mean free marketeers.
By the most remarkable co-incidence, the photograph of my smiling face here makes me look almost exactly like a sketch of Jean-Paul Marat, a leader of sorts during the Terror after the initial Revolution of 1789. Marat was so far to the Left that he was more or less on the Right. I see it clearly in Robespierre's lament, as he wrote shortly before shooting himself in the jaw in a failed suicide attempt, "Extremes meet." And so I find it is true in real life.
Marat, to his ever-lasting credit, understood and acted upon the knowledge that one cannot leave the remnants of the reactionary classes intact to restore the status quo ante if one is a revolutionary; one cannot allow the preservation of the classes who would restore the period prior to the Revolution, i.e. the reactionary classes, those reacting negatively to the Revolution. Marat's solution to the problem of the reactionary classes' attempts to restore privilege was to cut off their fucking heads. I, being a kinder, gentler version of Marat, find the solution we require in, for example, the retrograde world of Islam, to be the imposition on the reluctant reactionary world to be School Teachers with Guns. I argue for a Rational Terror as an integral aspect of neo-colonialist "America of the Mind" manifest destiny, all of which is nicely put throughout the past years at No Dhimmitude.
You want "middle-class" values" of Universal Modernity, i.e. universal Human rights, a market economy across a free world of individualist members of free nation states? Not all democrats do. If you do, then you might agree with me that the way to bring about the furtherance of our beautiful revolutions of Modernity-- the Industrial, American, and French Revolutions-- is to invade "places" as free individuals, as filibusters, i.e. privately interested colonialists whose interest is in overthrowing the powers that be, of reducing the populations to order, and of bringing forth a self-colonization of the locals through education and brute force till the force is so overwhelming and terrifying that only the most ardent native will survive it as self-identifiers and promoters. The meek masses, having lived through the destruction of their previous epistemologies, will succumb to power and will obey the revolutionary norm; and in time, with the winnowing by armed philosophers, the colonialist Revolution will produce democrat children as American in the mind as any American in America today.
What? Am I some kind of fascist? A Rightwing religious bigot? A monster without concern for individual life? I'll get back to you on that one. A social engineer? A Platonist Philosopher King? A Leninist party hack? Uh, I'm busy right now but I'll have my secretary look into the files and she'll send you a form letter.
American did not exterminate its feudal classes in the Revolution. You ask me why. You say, "Dag, why didn't America exterminate the feudal classes in the Revolution?"
'Cause we had none! There was no one needing to die. The Muslim world? Let me count the ways. I must borrow briefly your fingers and toes as well. We, only we, we colonial members of democracies in the West, are Revolutionaries alone. No other people are revolutionaries. Even many of our own are reactionaries who wish to restore the world to a neo-feudalism, those, our so-called Left, not a spit of difference between them and the so-called Right. There is no difference between Left and Right. There is no meaningful distinction to be made between liberal and conservative. Meaning is found only in Revolutionary and Reactionary.
Rational debate of this kind of project is fine right up till such time as those who think as I do are organized and armed. Then it's a matter of which side one opts to support. I'm a liberal kind of guy. I stand for freedom and individualism. I take it with me wherever I go.Revolutonary Americanism. It's free, portable, and importable. It grows everywhere it's planted. But it has to be guarded till it's strong enough to flourish alone. I defend it. That's why I'm proud to be a Liberal and a friend of the People.