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#1
Old 06-06-2017, 12:41 AM
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Fiscal conservative BUT social liberal?

Hey people,

So I was reading up on Clint Eastwood--scimming, that is, and who knew he was such a manwhore--and he claims to be a "social liberal and fiscal conservative." And there were all these other quotes over the course of time, the gist of it being Eastwood seeming pretty fickle. I can relate to some of his feelings and I can say I'm not all that disappointed to have given up my blissful ignorance.

Of course I had to read up on "social liberal and fiscal conservative" and, apparently, it means you're okay with your fellow citizens having their freedoms BUT not okay with the government stepping in to either secure or protect those freedoms and not okay with just government regulation in general. I mean, that's my take-away from the couple of places I read on it.

What do y'all think about this? Who are the social liberals/fiscal conservatives and why are they?
#2
Old 06-06-2017, 12:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Hey people,

So I was reading up on Clint Eastwood--scimming, that is, and who knew he was such a manwhore--and he claims to be a "social liberal and fiscal conservative." And there were all these other quotes over the course of time, the gist of it being Eastwood seeming pretty fickle. I can relate to some of his feelings and I can say I'm not all that disappointed to have given up my blissful ignorance.

Of course I had to read up on "social liberal and fiscal conservative" and, apparently, it means you're okay with your fellow citizens having their freedoms BUT not okay with the government stepping in to either secure or protect those freedoms and not okay with just government regulation in general. I mean, that's my take-away from the couple of places I read on it.

What do y'all think about this? Who are the social liberals/fiscal conservatives and why are they?
You can't be both "ok" with the freedom of others and against government protection of those rights. Without the latter there is effectively no former. IMO.
#3
Old 06-06-2017, 01:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Who are the social liberals/fiscal conservatives
The Libertarian Party represents this POV in the US, but you'll hear versions of it from all sorts at various times.
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and why are they?
1) If you ask any of them, you might well get a snootful of talk about liberty and how taxation is theft -- and maybe this or that'n'll actually believe in liberty as a guiding principle, take us where it may;
2) If you ask me, I'd guess quite a few just don't like helping people who "aren't helping themselves." And if you're helping the poor and needy with money, not just permissive laws, you're going to be some money on the selfish and lazy -- it's true, it's true. When from time to time I have those Libertarian "fuck this stupid safety net!" moments, they always seem to be inspired by egregious examples of people abusing well-meaning programs.
#4
Old 06-06-2017, 01:21 AM
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I'm European. Your use of "liberal" to refer to the left will never cease to puzzle me.
#5
Old 06-06-2017, 01:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Go_Arachnid_Laser View Post
I'm European. Your use of "liberal" to refer to the left will never cease to puzzle me.
I'm European and "liberal" has always meant centre-left to me
#6
Old 06-06-2017, 05:26 AM
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I'm European and "liberal" has always meant centre, leaning right in practice and extolling left in rhetoric. Plus libertarian austere economic policy.


Hillary would be a liberal of the bourgeois moralistic tradition. Obama's more a traditional sit-on-hands conservative. As for British liberals being centre-left, they were allied to the Cameron government for years, carried along for the ride like ignored painted whores by the gangsters they enabled, as their promises were not kept.
#7
Old 06-06-2017, 05:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Hey people,

So I was reading up on Clint Eastwood--scimming, that is, and who knew he was such a manwhore--and he claims to be a "social liberal and fiscal conservative." And there were all these other quotes over the course of time, the gist of it being Eastwood seeming pretty fickle. I can relate to some of his feelings and I can say I'm not all that disappointed to have given up my blissful ignorance.

Of course I had to read up on "social liberal and fiscal conservative" and, apparently, it means you're okay with your fellow citizens having their freedoms BUT not okay with the government stepping in to either secure or protect those freedoms
That seems like a strange conclusion to draw; it sounds like they're okay with the government, in the form of police and courts and so on, standing by to secure and protect the freedoms of their fellow citizens the way the military stands by to shoot would-be invaders -- and, well, that's it. You're exercising your right to freedom of speech, and some guy punches you in the mouth? Please, call a cop; that's why we pay him. You're out to exercise your right to freedom of worship, or your right to vote, or whatever, and some guy tries to forcibly stop you? Well, then, call a cop; that's why we pay him. Really, it's no different than your property rights; some guy steals your stuff? Call a cop; that's why we pay him.
#8
Old 06-06-2017, 06:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
BUT not okay with the government stepping in to either secure or protect those freedoms
I don't believe that's part of their message.

I think they're conservatives who are sick and tired of the social battles or being smeared as homophobes, racists, etc.

They might be reacting to long-term losses (by cutting their losses). Fighting for a social conservative idea might get a Congressperson more votes, but it's short-term. They can tell they're slowly losing.

This doesn't mean there aren't any who are racist, homophobic, etc but pretend otherwise. Being openly racist, homophobic, etc generally causes a politician to lose votes.
#9
Old 06-06-2017, 06:56 AM
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As for Clint Eastwood, I lost most of my respect for his politics when he performed his insulting and decidedly puerile empty-chair routine at the Republican convention.

As for people who label themselves as "fiscal conservative/social liberal," I've come to see that there are as many of them who are really just self-deluded or straight up liars, as there are of any other labeled group. Most of the ones I run across these days, don't have a liberal bone in their body. They are just hard-line right wingers who say vaguely nice platitudes about others, as a way to avoid taking responsibility for the rest of their actions being destructive of the liberty and freedom of everyone else.

And I agree with the above person who finds American versions of liberal and conservative confusing. Those labels haven't held to their dictionary meanings since before I became politically aware, back in the 1960's.

Last edited by igor frankensteen; 06-06-2017 at 06:58 AM.
#10
Old 06-06-2017, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
What do y'all think about this? Who are the social liberals/fiscal conservatives and why are they?
This MB is grossly over-represented with libertarians and libertarian-leaning types. In your two yeas here, you haven't run into any?
#11
Old 06-06-2017, 10:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Of course I had to read up on "social liberal and fiscal conservative" and, apparently, it means you're okay with your fellow citizens having their freedoms BUT not okay with the government stepping in to either secure or protect those freedoms and not okay with just government regulation in general. I mean, that's my take-away from the couple of places I read on it.
You understanding is incorrect. I am a moderate libertarian and what you describe is not part of the philosophy. Libertarians believe in a strong government that protests the rights of all - it should just be limited in scope. In the United States, that would mean strong protections of the rights outlined in the Constitution.

However, most libertarians are a little perplexed when it comes to social issues like gay marriage, drug legalization, equality and many other hot topics. The reason for that is that we think it shouldn't even be an issue in the first place. An overbearing government is the one that legislated and enforced laws that have never should have been passed so it seems a little odd to fight it with even more government.

In general, libertarians aren't vocal social activists though although we will happily share our personal beliefs if someone asks. Individual freedom is a natural right and the government should step out of the way as much as possible unless those rights are being threatened.
#12
Old 06-06-2017, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
That seems like a strange conclusion to draw; it sounds like they're okay with the government, in the form of police and courts and so on, standing by to secure and protect the freedoms of their fellow citizens the way the military stands by to shoot would-be invaders -- and, well, that's it. You're exercising your right to freedom of speech, and some guy punches you in the mouth? Please, call a cop; that's why we pay him. You're out to exercise your right to freedom of worship, or your right to vote, or whatever, and some guy tries to forcibly stop you? Well, then, call a cop; that's why we pay him. Really, it's no different than your property rights; some guy steals your stuff? Call a cop; that's why we pay him.
Those aren't "securing" examples. Those are "protecting" examples. The government wouldn't have to step in because it's already been established that those are your rights no matter what and they apply to everybody. Those are--as I've read--negative rights, rights that don't call for government action. "Positive" rights are the ones that would call for the government to step in in some way and say, "Alright, boys, this is how it's gonna be from now. You can't do this thing anymore. Here's some legislation or a court case that is making it real."

I might have my positive and negative mixed up but I gave it my best shot.
#13
Old 06-06-2017, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Shagnasty View Post
You understanding is incorrect. I am a moderate libertarian and what you describe is not part of the philosophy. Libertarians believe in a strong government that protests the rights of all - it should just be limited in scope. In the United States, that would mean strong protections of the rights outlined in the Constitution.

However, most libertarians are a little perplexed when it comes to social issues like gay marriage, drug legalization, equality and many other hot topics. The reason for that is that we think it shouldn't even be an issue in the first place. An overbearing government is the one that legislated and enforced laws that have never should have been passed so it seems a little odd to fight it with even more government.

In general, libertarians aren't vocal social activists though although we will happily share our personal beliefs if someone asks. Individual freedom is a natural right and the government should step out of the way as much as possible unless those rights are being threatened.
You being a moderate libertarian yourself, I appreciate your insight and I see what you're saying. But you said, "The reason for that is that we think it shouldn't even be an issue in the first place."

Rights like that--that you don't think should be an issue but are--aren't what I'd call secure rights. Rights that aren't secure are vulnerable to and likely to be violated. Only government can secure rights like that.

I guess what I'm trying to say is inaction leaves rights to be violated. I don't understand how a social libertarian/fiscal conservative or libertarian would compensate for that without government action.
#14
Old 06-06-2017, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Those aren't "securing" examples. Those are "protecting" examples.
You said they're "not okay with the government stepping in to either secure or protect those freedoms". And so I figured that the "either" and the "or" in your sentence were doing useful work, and so I guided off them accordingly.
#15
Old 06-06-2017, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by John Mace View Post
This MB is grossly over-represented with libertarians and libertarian-leaning types. In your two yeas here, you haven't run into any?
I actually have not run into anybody who has claimed to be one. Maybe it's because I'm from the South, so everybody is just plain ol' Republican (or the majority anyway). I'm sure I've run into people who fit the bill but just claim Republican.
#16
Old 06-06-2017, 10:42 AM
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Fiscal means related to government revenue -- it's about how the government gets its money and what it does with it.

I come at this from a completely different angle. I started out as a conservative, someone who believed that it was best to limit taxation and government spending. I originally registered as an independent, but was more closely aligned with the Republican party. But I'm also someone who believes very strongly in civil rights, which has always been my top issue. Once the Republican party aligned itself strongly with the Moral Majority, which to me meant being aligned against civil rights, I became a Democrat. The more conservatism focused on denying people their civil rights, the more liberal I became.

For many years, I've called myself a liberal, registered as a Democrat, and voted for Democratic candidates, because they were aligned me with me on civil rights issues. But I never really lost my fiscal conservatism, and I still vote that way on specific measures. For instance, I very rarely support bond measures, or measures to raise spending, unless I have very good, specific reasons to do so. I'm not a libertarian at all, and I think government has a role to play in society beyond the basics of law & order. But at heart I'm still very conservative when it comes to the government's money, and if there were candidates who took that position, but didn't hold abhorrent positions on race, religion, immigration and LGBT rights, I would support them.

I once posited an opportunity for a new party that I called the Moderate Party, that held positions similar to mine. But I'm not sure if there are enough of us to make it happen.
#17
Old 06-06-2017, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Ambivalid View Post
You can't be both "ok" with the freedom of others and against government protection of those rights. Without the latter there is effectively no former. IMO.
Then why is a social liberal/fiscal conservative? That's exactly why I'm a little confused.
#18
Old 06-06-2017, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by SpoilerVirgin View Post
Fiscal means related to government revenue -- it's about how the government gets its money and what it does with it.

I come at this from a completely different angle. I started out as a conservative, someone who believed that it was best to limit taxation and government spending. I originally registered as an independent, but was more closely aligned with the Republican party. But I'm also someone who believes very strongly in civil rights, which has always been my top issue. Once the Republican party aligned itself strongly with the Moral Majority, which to me meant being aligned against civil rights, I became a Democrat. The more conservatism focused on denying people their civil rights, the more liberal I became.

For many years, I've called myself a liberal, registered as a Democrat, and voted for Democratic candidates, because they were aligned me with me on civil rights issues. But I never really lost my fiscal conservatism, and I still vote that way on specific measures. For instance, I very rarely support bond measures, or measures to raise spending, unless I have very good, specific reasons to do so. I'm not a libertarian at all, and I think government has a role to play in society beyond the basics of law & order. But at heart I'm still very conservative when it comes to the government's money, and if there were candidates who took that position, but didn't hold abhorrent positions on race, religion, immigration and LGBT rights, I would support them.

I once posited an opportunity for a new party that I called the Moderate Party, that held positions similar to mine. But I'm not sure if there are enough of us to make it happen.
There's bound to be a lot of would-be Moderates and, if not, then anyone near the center of the right over left can be converted easy peasy (I'd bet on it), because it sounds nice to the ear. I'm like that with my own personal funds. I mean, I'd rather not spend money but it's necessary.

I don't know what all we do with our money from taxes, to be honest, but I think money spent for the good of our own is money well spent. Then that opens other questions.

I'd say, though, that it must be difficult to be a social liberal/fiscal conservative on the topic of social programs, for instance, and other things for the common welfare. Because social liberal things like that need funding, yet libertarian-minded SL/FC despise taxation, and regular fiscal conservatives still have to decide what they want taxes spent on, what is worthy. It makes my head spin.
#19
Old 06-06-2017, 11:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Then why is a social liberal/fiscal conservative? That's exactly why I'm a little confused.
You want the government out of your bedroom and your pocketbook. I'm not sure I'm understanding what is perplexing. You can surely reconcile being for gay marriage, legalized drug use, etc, and also against runaway spending or excessive taxation, no? Im a strong social liberal, and a fiscal moderate., which puts me on the liberal/libertarian edge.
#20
Old 06-06-2017, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Then why is a social liberal/fiscal conservative? That's exactly why I'm a little confused.
Because they want people to leave them alone, and they will leave everyone else alone. It's essentially a libertarian approach - an attempt to minimize the initiation of force whenever possible. I would turn the question around and ask why people would want to force others to do something they don't want to?

I find both liberal and conservative positions incredibly contradictory when it comes to initiation of force - both have elements of authoritarianism that is distasteful.
#21
Old 06-06-2017, 11:05 AM
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A social liberal/fiscal conservative is what we call a Democrat. A social conservative/fiscal lunatic is a Republican. A fiscal lunatic who holds no social opinions at all is usually called a libertarian.
#22
Old 06-06-2017, 11:14 AM
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I describe myself as a social liberal and a fiscal conservative.

I believe that we have an obligation to help folks who need help. (That's the social liberal side.) I also believe that we have to know how we're going to pay for it. (That's the fiscal conservative side.)
#23
Old 06-06-2017, 11:19 AM
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I think it often means, I want to be able to smoke dope and if my girl friend gets pregnant I want her to get an abortion but I don't want to pay taxes. Basically a self centered philosophy.

Last edited by Buck Godot; 06-06-2017 at 11:20 AM.
#24
Old 06-06-2017, 11:59 AM
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I appreciate everybody's input and the couple of jokes. A couple of responses I'm not interested in delving into, because if we don't even have that common foundation of understanding we may never find ourselves on the same page. But I suppose that dilemma comes with the topic of libertarianism ;-)
#25
Old 06-06-2017, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
A social liberal/fiscal conservative is what we call a Democrat....
This, at least after Bill Clinton was first elected in 1992.
#26
Old 06-06-2017, 12:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Who are the social liberals/fiscal conservatives and why are they?
Depends on how one defines these things, particularly 'fiscal conservatives.' Does that mean 'tries to get closer to a balanced budget' or 'tries to make government so small you can drown it in a bathtub'?

If the former, then the Dems are the social liberals/fiscal conservatives. They're the social liberals because they're against forcing a private moral code, or that of a particular religion, on the general population.

And they're the fiscal conservatives (a) because they've been pressured into it (for some reason, the press always demands that they show how they're gonna pay for their social programs, but nobody seriously expects the GOP to pay for its massive tax cuts), and (b) because anyone looks like a fiscal conservative next to a party that passes massive tax cuts without trying to pay for them.
#27
Old 06-06-2017, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Of course I had to read up on "social liberal and fiscal conservative" and, apparently, it means you're okay with your fellow citizens having their freedoms BUT not okay with the government stepping in to either secure or protect those freedoms and not okay with just government regulation in general. I mean, that's my take-away from the couple of places I read on it.
If anything, this only underscores the wide range of different definitions that exist. I've often described myself as a social liberal and fiscal conservative and meant nothing like the definition above.

I mean it in the sense of supporting generally progressive values and strong social institutions like universal health care and a strong safety net for the disadvantaged, and "fiscal conservative" in my definition simply means much stronger accountability for government spending. It's shocking that in so many cases even the most superficial audit will reveal profligate waste, taxpayer dollars flowing like water, and mounting deficits treated as inconsequential. Those two positions are perfectly compatible. The difference between that and many traditional conservatives is that (a) they argue for reduced spending but often don't actually do it, (b) their first priority in controlling spending is to cut social spending, which is among the most important program spending, and (c) for some reason they see fit to impose draconian restrictions on social freedoms and human rights in areas like abortion, SSM, and civil liberties.
#28
Old 06-06-2017, 12:46 PM
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The problem with "socially liberal and fiscally conservative" is that it's fundamentally a platitude that applies to most people, or at least most people believe applies to them. Consider what it means broken down.

"Socially liberal" more or less means that you're in favor of rights. Well, unless someone openly professes themselves to be authoritarian, they're probably going to say "sure, I'm in favor of social rights." But the thing is, 10 years ago, one could be "socially liberal" and still be against gay marriage. Even people I've known who have views that most would be considered socially liberal have arguments about why that one thing is a special exception, whether it be for national safety or it's somehow fundamentally wrong or evil or causes harm to other people.

And it's similar with "fiscally conservative" because all it really means is that one doesn't want the government to waste money. But ultimately, no one can agree on what programs the government has that are a waste of money and which ones are critical. Everyone wants the government to reduce the tax burden and be more efficient, but no one wants to give up a program that benefits them. Again, the only real way I could really see someone saying they're not fiscally conservative is if they're fundamentally in favor of vastly expanding government spending.

Originally, I heard libertarians often describe themselves that way, but I've since heard both fairly strong Democrats and Republicans describe themselves as such. So, regardless of what it's initial intention was, it seems to be so vague these days as to be worthless.
#29
Old 06-06-2017, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Blaster Master View Post
The problem with "socially liberal and fiscally conservative" is that it's fundamentally a platitude that applies to most people, or at least most people believe applies to them.
The don't-explain-the-joke joke on 30 ROCK was that Liz dated a guy who was such a loser, he identified as "social conservative, fiscal liberal."
#30
Old 06-06-2017, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
A social liberal/fiscal conservative is what we call a Democrat. A social conservative/fiscal lunatic is a Republican. A fiscal lunatic who holds no social opinions at all is usually called a libertarian.
Should I take a wild guess which one you consider yourself to be?
#31
Old 06-06-2017, 01:16 PM
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It also should be pointed out that "fiscal conservative" dose not equal "stingy". I give a large percentage of my income to charities - but only to charities that steward that money well, in accordance with their charter and limit waste. I can determine this via their legal filings and independent reviews. I'm more than willing to pay taxes, but I demand accountability in return. Unfortunately, as taxes have gone up accountability has gone down. That makes me not a happy taxpayer.

Last edited by Doctor Jackson; 06-06-2017 at 01:16 PM.
#32
Old 06-06-2017, 01:31 PM
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Who are the social liberals/fiscal conservatives and why are they?
*raises hand* I'm a social liberal and fiscal conservative. I consider myself a moderate wrt US politics and US voters. Why am I like this? Well...because.

Quote:
Of course I had to read up on "social liberal and fiscal conservative" and, apparently, it means you're okay with your fellow citizens having their freedoms BUT not okay with the government stepping in to either secure or protect those freedoms and not okay with just government regulation in general. I mean, that's my take-away from the couple of places I read on it.
Your take away is flawed, basically. Where do you get that fiscal conservative means one is not ok with any government regulation? And saying that social liberalism boils down to being 'okay with your fellow citizens having their freedoms' is laughable...what 'freedoms' are we talking about, exactly?

You are attempting to boil down a host of positions to a cartoon view...and not a good comic book or graphic novel, either, but one of those comics that used to come with your 1 cent bubble gum.

Last edited by XT; 06-06-2017 at 01:32 PM.
#33
Old 06-06-2017, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Blaster Master View Post
The problem with "socially liberal and fiscally conservative" is that it's fundamentally a platitude that applies to most people, or at least most people believe applies to them.
I understand your point but you're over-simplifying to an extreme. Just because something is on a continuum doesn't mean that one can't describe a position on that continuum according to specific set of criteria.
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Originally Posted by Blaster Master View Post
"Socially liberal" more or less means that you're in favor of rights. Well, unless someone openly professes themselves to be authoritarian, they're probably going to say "sure, I'm in favor of social rights." But the thing is, 10 years ago, one could be "socially liberal" and still be against gay marriage.
No, the major distinction is that conservatives have typically believed -- and many continue to believe -- that it's a fundamental job of government to preserve traditional social institutions and guard them against the "corrupting" influences of modern mores, otherwise society will fall apart, or something. Social liberals believe this is nonsense, and are consistent in their beliefs about civil liberties and limitations on the intrusiveness of government into our lives. Civil liberties respecting social institutions are just a way of formalizing those protections. Conservatives traditionally don't believe in such protections at all, they believe society has an interest in controlling those institutions.

You're right that at some point -- be it 10, 20, or 30 years ago -- gay marriage wasn't even on the radar. Social liberalism referred to other things, like reproductive rights, or the right to marry inter-racially. The nature of mainstream social liberalism is that it embraced gay marriage when it became a relatively mainstream social issue. Conservatism did not, and in many cases still doesn't.
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Originally Posted by Blaster Master View Post
And it's similar with "fiscally conservative" because all it really means is that one doesn't want the government to waste money.
In my view the distinction here is the degree of transparency and accountability the government should be required to have in budgeting the spending of taxpayer money. It should be hard to propose spending increases or new programs, and there should be a formal process of public consultation. There is a general attitude among governments at all levels today that money is to some extent essentially free, because in many ways it really is.

Last edited by wolfpup; 06-06-2017 at 01:45 PM.
#34
Old 06-06-2017, 01:49 PM
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I am not sure why this concept is that hard.

I am fiscally conservative in that I believe there are limits on what the government ought to pay for. I also believe that the government ought to pay for it now as much as possible instead of borrowing and passing the debt on to future generations. Roads? Yep, those should be paid for. Military? Yep, gotta have one of those and that is a proper government function. Health care? Nope, not the governments job. Housing, once again, not the governments job. Art? Nope.

I disagree with Blaster Masters definition of fiscally conservative as 'doesn't want the government to waste money'. My problem with government spending isn't just waste. There are many things that the government is paying for that I do not believe is the governments responsibility. There are programs that I think ought to be defunded by the government that do benefit me directly. Mainly arts/park programs locally. There are also some federal government programs that I do not think should exist that would directly impact my employer and my paycheck, though I am not going to go into detail about those.

I am socially liberal in that I believe what consenting adults do with each other is their own business. Gay marriage? Sure thing (a position I have held since high school when I first thought about it). Abortion? Rather confused on the issue myself but don't want to ban it. Atheist? Me too. Immigration? Yep, let everyone in, with a couple caveats. Racism? Stupid and harmful to everyone. Etc.

Slee
#35
Old 06-06-2017, 01:57 PM
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Quoth John Mace:

Should I take a wild guess which one you consider yourself to be?
Well, you could, but it'd probably be better to take an informed guess.
#36
Old 06-06-2017, 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by sleestak View Post
I am fiscally conservative in that I believe there are limits on what the government ought to pay for. I also believe that the government ought to pay for it now as much as possible instead of borrowing and passing the debt on to future generations. Roads? Yep, those should be paid for. Military? Yep, gotta have one of those and that is a proper government function. Health care? Nope, not the governments job. Housing, once again, not the governments job. Art? Nope.

I disagree with Blaster Masters definition of fiscally conservative as 'doesn't want the government to waste money'. My problem with government spending isn't just waste. There are many things that the government is paying for that I do not believe is the governments responsibility ...

... I am socially liberal in that I believe what consenting adults do with each other is their own business
I don't consider that to be "fiscal conservatism" (by my definition, anyway) but rather across-the-board general conservatism, because you're not just talking about fiscal matters like accountability and balanced budgets, but about significant policy matters -- and many of those policy matters are squarely in the realm of social issues -- health care, subsidized housing, support for the arts, for example, all of which you say you're against. Based on that, and by the definitions I used, I'd class you as a typical American conservative on most issues and no way a social liberal. By European standards you'd just be far-right.
#37
Old 06-06-2017, 02:47 PM
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What the OP describes is the mythical center that the American pundit class idealizes, which amounts to neo-liberal Democrats and whatever liberal Republicans still exist. But one might argue America's heart leans more towards fiscal liberalism and social conservatism. That was Trump's message, if you can call it that.

Simple labels break down upon examination. Like someone who seems traditionally conservative and says they support capitalism and markets, but hates the destruction of traditional values caused by corporatism, consumerism, and the vulgar media, and who actually supports social welfare as long as it doesn't go to "moochers."

American right libertarians aren't socially liberal, per se. They're agnostics whatever the issue is, just as long as the government doesn't interfere. If markets want to be socially illiberal they'll shrug their shoulders.
#38
Old 06-06-2017, 05:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
Hey people,

So I was reading up on Clint Eastwood--scimming, that is, and who knew he was such a manwhore--and he claims to be a "social liberal and fiscal conservative." And there were all these other quotes over the course of time, the gist of it being Eastwood seeming pretty fickle. I can relate to some of his feelings and I can say I'm not all that disappointed to have given up my blissful ignorance.

Of course I had to read up on "social liberal and fiscal conservative" and, apparently, it means you're okay with your fellow citizens having their freedoms BUT not okay with the government stepping in to either secure or protect those freedoms and not okay with just government regulation in general. I mean, that's my take-away from the couple of places I read on it.

What do y'all think about this? Who are the social liberals/fiscal conservatives and why are they?
Social liberal, fiscal liberal - liberals
Social liberal, fiscal conservative - libertarian
Social conservative, fiscal liberal - reagan democrats
Social conservative, fiscal conservative - religious right

Libertarians generally support government for national defense, but are indifferent to cultural issues like gay marriage, racial anxiety, gender issues, etc. They are also opposed to most government regulation of industry and the social safety net.
#39
Old 06-06-2017, 09:19 PM
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I'm another who would describe myself as a social liberal and a fiscal conservative.

With regard to social issues, I don't care who is or is not gay and think people who are gay should have the same rights as everyone else- the right to marry, adopt, parent, divorce, obtain qualifying SS benefits, find and keep work/employment, buy insurance, etc. All that stuff.
I don't care who gets an abortion or why (as long as they are of legal age with legal protections for young women).
I think marijuana should be legal and taxed like alcohol (although we need some guidelines and clarification about being impaired at work).


And I am a fiscal conservative with regards to money because I think we should spend money wisely. For example, it is foolish to "shut the government down" and read Dr Seuss on the floor.
It's dumb to have a Muslim ban/not Muslim ban or 'bathroom bills' that wastes the time of the courts.
We have been at war for over 15 years. Time to wind that money sink down.
It would be less expensive and more efficient to have basic, universal healthcare for all citizens than the for profit system we have now.
#40
Old 06-07-2017, 03:06 AM
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How are we defining fiscally conservative? I would think the term describes quite a variety of opinion; from those who think the government taking 10% of their income is too much to those who think the government taking 30+% of their income is just about enough.

Last edited by Fuzzy_wuzzy; 06-07-2017 at 03:07 AM.
#41
Old 06-07-2017, 08:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Mace View Post
This MB is grossly over-represented with libertarians and libertarian-leaning types.
Nominations for understatement of the year are now closed.

The combination of socially liberal and economically conservative isn't that unusual in the population, but I'm hard pressed to find any examples in political office.
#42
Old 06-07-2017, 08:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sleestak View Post
Health care? Nope, not the governments job. Housing, once again, not the governments job.
Funny how many governments of the world's nations disagree with you, and provide exactly those.
#43
Old 06-07-2017, 11:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Ace View Post
Funny how many governments of the world's nations disagree with you, and provide exactly those.
So? Does that in some way invalidate his opinion on what a government should be doing? Seems to me his opinion is just as valid as an opinion that says that those things are definitely government's job, indeed, high on the list of things government should be providing.
#44
Old 06-07-2017, 11:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BobLibDem View Post
Nominations for understatement of the year are now closed.

The combination of socially liberal and economically conservative isn't that unusual in the population, but I'm hard pressed to find any examples in political office.
Which makes it very hard for those of us who are socially "liberal", but fiscally "conservative". We often end up having to wait for someone who is moderately Republican or conservatively Democrat to show up and then hope for the best.
#45
Old 06-07-2017, 12:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alittlesmitten View Post
You being a moderate libertarian yourself, I appreciate your insight and I see what you're saying. But you said, "The reason for that is that we think it shouldn't even be an issue in the first place."

Rights like that--that you don't think should be an issue but are--aren't what I'd call secure rights. Rights that aren't secure are vulnerable to and likely to be violated. Only government can secure rights like that.

I guess what I'm trying to say is inaction leaves rights to be violated. I don't understand how a social libertarian/fiscal conservative or libertarian would compensate for that without government action.
The distinction is not between secure and insecure rights - it is between positive rights, and negative rights.

Negative rights are things that you can do, and nobody can stop you from doing, but don't have to help you do either. Like freedom of speech - I can say what I like, but nobody is obligated to pay for my megaphone or publish my editorials if they don't want to. Likewise the right to abortion - I can choose whether or not to have an abortion, or to pay for someone else's abortion. No one can stop me from having an abortion, but they shouldn't have to pay for it.

Positive rights are things other people have to do for you. Children have to supported by their parents, you have the right to speak to an attorney if you are arrested, and if you can't pay for one, the state has to supply you one.

It is perfectly possible for the government to protect my right to an abortion by not allowing anyone to stop me from getting one.

What happens when I want an abortion, and cannot afford it? That's where libertarians and liberals disagree. In general, libertarians say, in essence, "tough noogies". No one is obligated to pay for anyone else. Liberals say that if you can't afford to exercise some right, then the government is obligated to pay for the expenses. And that leads into the idea that everyone is not equal until the government pays for everyone to be equal. And that morphs rather quickly into social liberal and fiscal liberal.

Regards,
Shodan
#46
Old 06-07-2017, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSYoungEsq View Post
So? Does that in some way invalidate his opinion on what a government should be doing? Seems to me his opinion is just as valid as an opinion that says that those things are definitely government's job, indeed, high on the list of things government should be providing.
He can be of the opinion that the moon is made of green cheese, it doesn't make it right, especially when that opinion is in the wilderness compared to the rest of the world.

Trump is of the opinion that thousands of Muslims were dancing in NJ, celebrating 9/11, on the day. And that global warming is a Chinese hoax. And that Obama was personally involved in wiretapping him. And that facts don't really matter. And that ignorance is the proper state for decision-making. Do you respect any of those opinions?
#47
Old 06-07-2017, 01:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Ace View Post
Trump is of the opinion that thousands of Muslims were dancing in NJ, celebrating 9/11, on the day. And that global warming is a Chinese hoax. And that Obama was personally involved in wiretapping him. And that facts don't really matter. And that ignorance is the proper state for decision-making. Do you respect any of those opinions?
Who gives a shit about Trump's opinions on something else?

You apparently believe that other countries' opinions about the proper role of government should decide the question for the US. How about if you defend that opinion, and not try to change the subject?

Regards,
Shodan
#48
Old 06-07-2017, 04:22 PM
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I have a novel idea. Why don't you stop trying to inject yourself into a conversation which doesn't involve you, and controlliing what I say? Seems to be a pattern with you.

My second paragraph was in support of my first, which was a direct answer to DSYoungEsq. I respect someone's right to have an opinion on a particular topic, but I am not obligated to respect the opinion itself. I gave a series of examples, of opinions which I don't respect, coincidentally all belonging to Trump.
#49
Old 06-07-2017, 06:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shodan View Post
. . .It is perfectly possible for the government to protect my right to an abortion by not allowing anyone to stop me from getting one.

What happens when I want an abortion, and cannot afford it? That's where libertarians and liberals disagree. In general, libertarians say, in essence, "tough noogies". No one is obligated to pay for anyone else. Liberals say that if you can't afford to exercise some right, then the government is obligated to pay for the expenses. And that leads into the idea that everyone is not equal until the government pays for everyone to be equal. And that morphs rather quickly into social liberal and fiscal liberal.

Regards,
Shodan
See, you missed the boat there. No one is saying anyone has the right to have an abortion. They're saying they have the right to choose whether or not to have an abortion and the govt should not be allowed to prevent that choice. (and last time I checked, freedom from govt interference is not strictly a liberal concern)
And no one is saying that the govt has to pay for abortions, but govt supported medical insurance should not prohibit a procedure that private insurance allows. No one should be prevented from access to a medical procedure that others have access to because they are on govt assistance. The govt is not obligated to pay for anyone to exercise their rights; but they are obligated to not prevent them from doing so by withholding support.

And to the OP; as many have said paying for social programs does not require reckless spending. You just have to properly prioritize what you spend your money on.

mc
#50
Old 06-07-2017, 07:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
A social liberal/fiscal conservative is what we call a Democrat. A social conservative/fiscal lunatic is a Republican. A fiscal lunatic who holds no social opinions at all is usually called a libertarian.
That's not very accurate.
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