by Brad Nelson 9/2/15
“Do liberals just write about it or do they do it? Conservatism is useless if we just write about it and don’t do anything.” — a paraphrase of what Rush Limbaugh just said on his radio program this morning. He can talk faster than I can type.
This has been a theme of mine at StubbornThings. Are we just venting or are we hoping to change hearts and minds? We can forever analyze the junk in our culture. But one can get “paralysis by analysis” which is an old saying.
Perhaps I’ve been too hard on the Republican Party. Can it be said that they are simply reflecting their constituents? Everyone talks but nobody is actually willing to do anything. And the GOP has seemingly morphed itself to fit that reality. They talk. They might even say they are “severely conservative” even while helping to implement socialized medicine.
They’re all against abortion, but when it comes time to at least vote to defund Planned Parenthood, it seems simply talking about it is enough and all that is expected. And as my older brother reminded me sometime back (and this refers both to politicians and to so-called conservatives): There is a marked difference between being “pro-life” and “pro-abolition.”
Obviously some are willing to support those who will not just talk, thus the rise of Donald Trump who we have a right to expect will not just talk, even though many of his beliefs remain unresolved or sometimes downright unconservative. But at least he’s not all talk, or so we have a reasonable right to expect.
And I’ll not pretend that starting this web site is the equivalent of throwing tea into Boston Harbor. Nor, really, has Rush’s own show (while he entertains and enriches himself) anything much more ultimately than talk. He’s not an activist, per se.
Our side is short of activists. Nothing would please me more than to receive nothing but articles on what all of you are doing out there in the real world to change that world from being a Leftist one…no matter how humble your efforts. Instead, all we’re left to do is talk. And I’ve gotten tired of that myself and realize the limitations.
Still, I do believe there is a difference between gossip (or mental masturbation) and laying an ideological foundation. No movement can succeed without at least a bare notion of who where are, what we want, and where we hope to go. No one need apologize for that. But still, I think Rush has hit a major point.
This is why I tried to emphasize the idea in this upcoming symposium about The Seven Deadly Sins, for example, that we use it as a way to change hearts and minds for the better rather just do endless analysis whereby we establish how many angels can indeed dance on the head of a pin. We’ll see how that all works out.
Brad is editor and chief disorganizer of StubbornThings.
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