Liberals are acting conservatively. Conservatives are acting liberally. Liberals are calling for conservative measures to slow down the process of re-opening businesses. Conservatives are advocating for the liberty to get back to business.
To be "liberal" means to liberate, to stand up for the rights of a free person. To be "conservative" means to preserve, protect and uphold traditional values.
Originally, liberals wanted free spending on health care, education and assistance for the lower and middle class. Conservatives wanted to conserve public funding, to reduce the role of government and to keep taxes low.
The compromise was to fund everything, to provide tax cuts and to live with huge deficits. Liberals and conservatives have agreed to historic levels of direct, government funding for individuals and corporations. Neither side cares about the debt, and no one sees this as welfare.
Conservatives act like liberals when they support liberal spending for corporations and the military. Liberals act like conservatives when they support limits on corporate welfare and military spending.
The pandemic has accelerated the confusion between liberal and conservative. Conservatives call for liberal rules to open business. Liberals take a conservative approach to go slow and protect workers. The new paradigm that is emerging is this:
Conservatives stand for the interests of business while liberals stand for the interests of the working class. There was a time when you could say, "What is good for business is good for the worker." Today, sadly, that is rarely true.
Dan R. Ebener
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