“It won’t be long until this is a communist country,” it was said today during a business meeting. The conversation was in regards to a Chinese supplier and their ability to expand space and operations. One co-worker jokingly stated that the government could just throw out the neighbors and raze the building, allowing the supplier to expand. The reason for this, my co-worker explained with a chuckle, is because they are communists. I retorted that it happens all the time here in the United States, too. The point was to illustrate Capitalism’s eminent domain laws that do this very thing. Another co-worker said that the U.S. was getting more communistic everyday, completely missing the point. A third co-worker mumbled something about Socialism before moving on.

I have been finding it increasingly odd and offensive that people seem to think that bandying about their political club in any situation is acceptable. After all, I don’t continue to pepper conversations with conservatives with snide remarks about how Cheney is a war criminal and Bush ruined this country. It is hyperbolic to an extent and even though I feel that way more than not, I don’t presume to make it a point of every conversation.

So what is it about some right wing conservatives that make them feel entitled to share their feelings on such matters in such unadulterated ways. And why are they so often misinformed? For example, the U.S. Constitution has been brought up ad nauseum by both right wing conservatives and right wing conservatives pretending to not be right wing conservatives by calling themselves Tea Baggers, or some such. Almost every time, these people demonstrate a dumbfounding ignorance of the Constitution, of law, and of Constitutional Law.

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The latest is one right winger claiming that the U.S. Constitution is not a living document. They go on further to state a slippery slope argument, much like the one used against health care reform and gay marriage. This person happened to be male, but I wonder how his wife would feel if she knew that her husband viewed the 19th Amendment as an abomination unto the dogma of the Constitution? I don’t claim to be an expert on these matters, but with a little research, I can poke truck sized holes into most of these arguments.

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Perhaps this push for Constitutional ignorance and Rule by emotion and majority is what has lead to the Texas State Board of Education to eliminate or severly downplay Thomas Jefferson from school texts? After all, Jefferson has this quote attributed to him:

"I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and constitutions. But laws and institutions must go hand and hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change...institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain ever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors."

Thomas Jefferson

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Tags: Constitution, Jefferson, arrogance, communism, communist, ignorance, law, politics, right wing, socialism, More…teabaggers

Comment by Dan on March 19, 2010 at 10:19pm
The other thing that really bugs me about conservatives is that they use the terms "socialism" and "communism" interchangeably as if they are the same thing. They are not. They are similar in some ways, but they also have many differences.

What's even worse is that they seem completely oblivious that we already have many public institutions that are essentially socialist. Public roads, public utilities, public schools, police and the fire department are just a few. I doubt many of them would argue that it would be a good idea to turn these institutions over to private corporations. It's about as frustrating as trying to debate evolution with creationists. How can you have a conversation when one side doesn't even have a basic understanding of the ideology they are so quick to demonize.
Comment by Silenus on March 20, 2010 at 9:05am
religion and politics are two sides of the same coin, by how most people that have something to say about them have no clue what they are talking about. i don't know that much about politics but i do know what communism is, and i bet if u was to ask someone that was opposed to "communism" if they would like to live in a class less, state less society, where everyone was equal, they might think that is a utopia. hahhahaah
Comment by Silenus on March 20, 2010 at 12:18pm
this lady is the typical conservative

Comment by Reggie on March 20, 2010 at 1:23pm
Gahhh! Forrest gets me all riled up with that video!

She doesn't even know her family income? What if her husband, who takes care of her and everything, were to meet an untimely demise? Plus, she complains that she is seeming all these "things" being pushed through quickly right after saying she didn't pay attention to politics until now. How can she have any idea about what is considered quick? Or about lawmaking in general?

Even my grandmother today was telling me how she was scared of Obama and government involvement in health care. She does enjoy Social Security benefits and Medicare, though.

"Maybe I'm not that smart". Yep. She summed it up right there. War is commonplace now? We are in probably one of the most peaceful eras of the modern age!

And I love how she gets called on her bullshit. These people are great and shouting slogans and vague sentiments, but when it comes down to reality, they don't want words put in their mouths and they squirm to avoid following their sentiments to their logical conclusions, of which one need not travel far.

And now she knows what programs the "co-founders" wanted to have or not have?

Remember the study about God being a manifestation of a person's feelings? This is exactly what I think is going on with people's beliefs about the Constitution and the wishes of the Founding Fathers.
Comment by Shine on April 21, 2010 at 12:29pm
I totally missed this before; great post! It is that exact mix of arrogance and ignorance which drives me positively insane in conversations with conservatives. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being ignorant; I know that I have a lot to learn about the Constitution and US history in general. But most right-wingers also possess an uncompromising arrogance in their dogmatic adherence to Republican talking points. Because they are so arrogantly certain that they already know everything, most conservatives have no chance of remedying their ignorance; you have to admit that you don't know something in order to actually acquire any new informatin.

Of course, there are plenty of liberals who blindly cling to naive dogmas and have not thoroughly analyzed their positions. However, the arrogantly ignorant individuals seem to be predominantly neo-cons.
Comment by Reggie on April 21, 2010 at 5:35pm
Of course, there are plenty of liberals who blindly cling to naive dogmas and have not thoroughly analyzed their positions.

Absolutely, Shine. It is not confined to just conservative groups. The Left, liberals, libertarians, and many others also have their fair share. It just seems to be that the predominant culture on the right is centered on this ignorance and it is celebrated as a virtue.

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