A guide to understanding liberal political philosophy
The following will be taken by some as a blanket condemnation of all liberals. It is not. It is a view based on personal experience with both direct conversation and interaction on social media.
Given the polar extremes of conservative and liberal philosophies- government is the answer on one side, government is the problem on the other- discussions involving political philosophy are often more like dueling monologues. Conservatives and liberals rarely agree on much, so when the two are engaged in a political conversation, each side typically presents a viewpoint that is diametrically opposed to the other. However, in many conversations, it’s a safe bet that logic and documented facts will be nowhere to be found.
Liberals invariably argue that their comments are strictly based on facts and logic, but an examination of conversations, particularly those on social media, show that not to be true. In the preliminary stage of a discussion, liberals (also known as progressives) habitually buttress their arguments with statements that do not directly address the issue at hand, are based on irrelevant information, or appear to be a drug-induced combination thereof. Other common tactics include side-stepping the core issue, disregarding documented facts, and, when all else fails, name-calling. While oblique responses to straightforward questions may be what oh-so-enlightened liberals claim to be valid statements, they fail miserably at presenting a reasonable response.
Another significant influence on liberal political philosophy is the lens through which those who lean left view the world. When viewed through that lens, each person is seen as either a victim or a victimizer (the latter being any person who has been financially successful). The only exception is for “defenders of the oppressed”, those people who might otherwise be termed a victimizer, but have worked (or claim they have worked) to help victims. That help typically takes the form of assisting “victims” take advantage of government assistance programs, or other methods of settling into a life of dependency. As might be expected, liberals do not address the fact that championing victims often furthers the “I’m a victim” mentality; leading someone to options that make them even more dependent on government assistance (hand-outs) simply reinforces convictions of dependency. That would never occur to a liberal because in his or her mind, victims are entitled to be supported by others because they became victims through no fault of their own. (See the Doctrine of No-Faultness below.)
My research into the motivation that prompts intelligent people to stand firmly behind foolish and often erroneous statements was instigated by a number of conversations in which I have engaged. And although some of the statements contained herein may seem cavalier, at the core they address a basic need for information that may enable conservatives in understanding that which is neither logical nor factual. Basing my conclusions on personal experience might seem limiting, but experience has shown it is not; liberals take an almost identical “chapter and verse” approach to any discussion.
With no logical explanation that would assist in a better understanding of the basis for liberal philosophy, I felt compelled to begin work on a handbook that would provide conservatives with some insight into the basis of statements made by liberals, and provide a means upon which to base a response.
Such insight can best be gained by reviewing the following doctrines. Familiarity with these doctrines will prove helpful in understanding the liberal line of reasoning, and also provide the basis for accurately predicting liberal responses to virtually any conservative statement.
Ironically, in response to the initial portions of this handbook, liberals have used the very doctrines it defines to attempt to discredit the doctrines it defines. A favorite among them is “The Doctrine of Associated Irrelevance” (See explanation below.) which appears to be the mother of all Liberal Doctrines. Keep in mind that although some of these doctrines are a bit convoluted, and were written with tongue firmly implanted in cheek, they are completely valid.
With these doctrines in hand, you will be well on your way to understanding the rationale and motivation behind statements made by liberals. Additionally, you’ll be able to respond by foiling attempts to divert discussions away from the original topic. The liberal response to redirecting a discussion back to the original topic is usually more off-topic statements in the form of different side-steps, a complete change in topics, and when the going gets really tough, personal attacks.
Some conservatives also engage in the same tactics used by liberals. However, in my experience, those occurrences are comparatively rare. They typically arise when emotions run wild and override logic.
The Doctrine of Associated Irrelevance
The Doctrine of Associated Irrelevance can be applied to a broad spectrum of issues and is almost universal in its application by liberals. It is used both to dispute fact-based statements, and to divert attention from the original issue. When a statement is backed by documented facts, or the non-factual basis of a statement is exposed, a liberal will ultimately realize he or she will lose the debate at hand. A liberal’s preferred method of avoiding an admission that he or she is incorrect is to move the discussion to an entirely different, but somewhat related subject. That fervor for side-stepping relevance is what elevates The Doctrine of Associated Irrelevance to its exalted status as mother of all liberal doctrines.
The Doctrine of Associated Irrelevance defined-
Use of facts, statements, or actions that are associated with, but not directly relevant to the subject at hand is a useful means of diverting a discussion to a subject that is associated with the topic at hand, but is in fact irrelevant.
Use of associated irrelevance is a liberal’s go to strategy because it works extremely well. Not only does the introduction of irrelevant facts divert a discussion to a different (but associated) topic, it also potentially puts the person with an opposing viewpoint on the defensive. As an example, as the national debt soared under the Obama administration, the favorite liberal response to a criticism of Obama’s policies was, “George Bush increased the national debt too. It was $10 trillion when Obama took office”.
The Association– It’s true that the national debt increased under George Bush, as it did under every president since 1957 (the last time the national debt decreased). There is in fact an association between the increase in national debt under former presidents and the increase during Obama’s term in office.
The Irrelevance– The association (national debt increases under previous administrations) is true, but those statistics have no relevance to the fact that under the Obama administration debt has increased 90%– from $10 trillion to $19 trillion. The irrelevant association of previous debt increases with current ones can be a very effective means of turning attention away from the original topic, which was debt increase under Obama. The initial response of a conservative will be to define or defend the irrelevant statement. But as soon as the conversation shifts from the original topic, the Doctrine of Associated Irrelevance has been successfully implemented. in this case of a discussion about national debt, the unprecedented increase under the Obama administration is indefensible. The fact that debt has increased under other presidents, both Republican and Democrat, indicates that neither side has acted with proper fiscal responsibility. Yet the liberal response to what has become the Mt. Everest of national debt is simply an attempt to redirect the conversation into a discussion of debt increase during Republican administrations.
On the other hand, many liberals seem to think that reference to less than judicious spending in the past has relevance to, and justifies current out-of-control spending. It’s difficult to square that thinking with the oh-so-enlightened liberal position that they’re smarter than everyone else; in essence, the liberal argument attempts to use a bad policy to justify one that’s worse.
With respect to legislation pertaining to illegal immigration reform and enforcement-
Statement #1– People who enter this country illegally are still people.
The Association– The law applies to people.
The Irrelevance– The law doesn’t challenge the fact that illegal immigrants are people. It addresses the fact that they are people who broke the law by entering the country illegally. This particular use of irrelevance isn’t so much an attempt to redirect the discussion as it is a nod to victimhood. The illegal immigrants are victims and as such victimizers should do penance by turning a blind eye to their illegal entry.
Statement #2– If illegal immigrants aren’t allowed to enter the country, or are deported, the price of fresh vegetables will skyrocket.
The Association– Many farm workers are illegal immigrants.
The Irrelevance– A potential increase in the price of lettuce is not a justification for breaking the law. Next time you get pulled over for a traffic violation, try telling the officer that you were speeding, or ran a stop sign because you wanted to get to the store before the price of lettuce increased. See how that works for you.
The Doctrine of No Faultness
The Doctrine of No Faultness became especially relevant with the advent of the Obama administration, which exonerated itself from fault by blaming all the country’s ills on the Bush Administration. However, no faultness is not a new concept; it appears to be a core value of the liberal philosophy that was simply elevated to a new level by the Obama Administration. Rather than denying responsibility, which implies involvement and fault, citing no-faultness provides a free pass; if a specific action isn’t a person’s fault, he or she isn’t responsible and can’t be held accountable. Although it’s not a formally recognized legal argument, no-faultness has a long and storied past in court proceedings, marriages and elections.
The Doctrine of No Faultness defined-
Everyone is a victim to some degree, therefore anything you do or say isn’t your fault. Through logical extension therefore, if someone said or did something in response to your statement or action, he or she is protected by the Shield of No Faultness because it isn’t his or her fault that he or she reacted to something that wasn’t your fault. The Shield of No Faultness is infinitely expandable and may be extended to anyone at any time because it isn’t his or her fault.
The Doctrine of No Faultness ties in perfectly with the liberal view that everyone is either a victim, a victimizer or defender of the oppressed. No doubt, the actions of victimizers are a result of them once having been victims. so even though they are now victimizers, it isn’t their fault, because they were once victims, which also wasn’t their fault. Defenders of the oppressed are simply people who, through no fault of their own, were also victims at one time. However, it would stand to reason that before they were defenders, they were victimizers. They went on to become defenders of the oppressed in an effort to ease the guilt of achieving financial success– through no fault of their own.
More to come…
Art is a bonehead, plain and simple. Way too much Obama Kool-Aid. Probably a tree-hugger as well. You have my sympathy.
Youe example of No Faultedness perfectly applies to the far right wing conservatives who blame Obama for things beyond his control or were already in place thank to Bush. When Bush is blamed it is because the far right keep blaming Obama for things that are the result of Bush and his policies which they don’t like the Democrats pointing out. You can claim this supports your doctrines but all it illustrates is the finger pointing going on that does the country no good and keeps it from moving forward. I see a lot of this as dating back to Gingrich’s leadership of Congress and is a key reason why I don’t want to see him as the nominee. Tongue in Cheek or not this blatant finger pointing and false accusations of Liberals needs to stop if the coutnry is to move forward.
Hopefully, you’ve figured out that the doctrines were written a bit tongue-in-cheek. But the genesis for them was my conversations with a number of liberals. From my perspective, they are in fact liberal doctrines. I’m sure some conservatives also subscribe to the Doctrine of Associated Irrelevance, but The Doctrine of No Faultness is pure liberal philosophy. In fact, if you dig deep, you’ll find that denial of fault is at the core of liberal philosophy.
Your doctrines apply to the Republicans as well as the Democrats as they did the same things while Clinton was in office and now with Obama. Just state the doctrines apply to the party out of the White House and they make perfect sense. Its one of the problems with politics today. Too much manufacturing of issues (or placing blame)from the extremists on both sides and too litle of actual moderation and compromise so the country can move forward.
I understand. And it’s not your fault.
Just illustrating the folly of your doctrines.
Thank you for putting “The Doctrines” into practice.
I heard a lot of the same arguments placing fault from the Bush adminstration and conservatives about Clinton. Are you suffering from short term memory loss or just conservative bias? The argument is strictly politics and used by both sides. Again you repeat the incorrect numbers for increase of debt under Obama by including debt added under Bush’s last budget plus the TARP which carried over into Obama’s term. Basically both your doctrines are not liberal but standard politics by both parties as they both use the same arguments especially when they are out of power. Trying to spin facts doesn’t work with anyone who is paying attention.
Sounds about right…lol.