Sunday, August 08, 2004

What is a "Liberal"???

Since the label, "Liberal", has come into disfavor lately among those like John Kerry; this point may become moot. I have used this point in the past to argue, successfully, that those that have used it are not in fact Liberal.

Mirriam Webster defines it thusly.

capitalized : of or constituting a political party advocating or associated with the principles of political liberalism; especially : of or constituting a political party in the United Kingdom associated with ideals of individual especially economic freedom, greater individual participation in government, and constitutional, political, and administrative reforms designed to secure these objectives

But a few short months ago the definition was different:

Main Entry: liberalism
Function: noun
Date: 1819
1 : the quality or state of being liberal
2 a often capitalized : a movement in modern Protestantism emphasizing intellectual liberty and the spiritual and ethical content of Christianity b : a theory in economics emphasizing individual freedom from restraint and usually based on free competition, the self-regulating market, and the gold standard c : a political philosophy based on belief in progress, the essential goodness of the human race, and the autonomy of the individual and standing for the protection of political and civil liberties d capitalized : the principles and policies of a Liberal party.

A few other definitions:

Main Entry: conservatism
Function: noun
Date: 1835
1 capitalized a : the principles and policies of a Conservative party b : the Conservative party
2 a : disposition in politics to preserve what is established b : a political philosophy based on tradition and social stability, stressing established institutions, and preferring gradual development to abrupt change
3 : the tendency to prefer an existing or traditional situation to change.

Main Entry: progressive
Function: noun
Date: 1846
1 a : one that is progressive b : one believing in moderate political change and especially social improvement by governmental action
2 capitalized : a member of any of various U.S. political parties: as a : a member of a predominantly agrarian minor party that around 1912 split off from the Republicans; specifically : BULL MOOSE b : a follower of Robert M. La Follette in the presidential campaign of 1924 c : a follower of Henry A. Wallace in the presidential campaign of 1948

Main Entry: state socialism
Function: noun
Date: 1879
: an economic system with limited socialist characteristics introduced by usually gradual political action.

As you can see above, actually those that call themselves Liberals/Progressives are State Socialists. They have merely co-opted their respective labels in an effort to blunt the stigma associated with Socialism. It all reality the people that Call themselves Conservatives actually tend to be more classically Liberal that the people who have co-opted the Liberal label.

George Orwell, noted is his novel "1984", if you control language and education, you effectively control the masses. By changing the meaning of words and by the process of political correctness, the ability to even discuss things like politics or race, is removed.

When I noticed the change in the definition of Liberalism I checked on another word, (marriage). It's definition had also been changed.

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