One Woman's World
AMERICA'S LOST TRIBE
by Elizabeth T. Andrews
American Reporter Correspondent
CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- For want of a word a nation is lost.
For want of a word that defines those of us who are politically conservative and philosophically liberal, we are forever stuck with the words "Democrat" and "Republican" - and the well-greased political machines that define them.
"What do you mean, Elizabeth, by 'politically conservative and philosophically liberal'?" said a concerned, ultra-liberal friend.
What I mean is there are thousands of us who still believe that the least governed are the best governed. We don't believe common sense and God died, leaving government in charge of every aspect of our lives. We don't believe in allowing border-breakers that violate American laws to become pampered American citizens.
We don't believe in free breakfasts, lunches, dinners, clothes, medicine, housing, or a free college education for people - illegal or otherwise - who are allergic to an honest day's work.
We don't believe any government has the right to force us to take care of your sick, old mother if you can take care of her yourself, but we do believe individuals, families, churches and communities should be there for those who truly cannot help themselves.
The above is a politically conservative position.
What I mean by "philosophically liberal" is that neither I, nor the government, have a right to define your morality.
If you are an adult it is none of my business who you invite into your bedroom, or what you do when you get there.
I have no right to tell you that you can't visit a pathetic "topless waitress" nightclub, watch "peep shows" that degrade both you and the performers, or that you shouldn't drink yourself to death.
I have no right whatsoever to inflict my religious persuasions or personal definition of morality on you as long as you are peddling your own little red wagon and not blocking the road of other little red wagons.
For want of a good name, the "politically conservative" and "philosophically liberal" Libertarian political party is lost.
Libertarians will never get to the the debating platform, or glean any respect from Americans interested in a viable third party if they don't change the name. It sounds too much like "liberal" - and "liberal" smacks of "Damn all government. Full speed ahead into hedonism."
For want of an examined personal understanding of the word "government," the words "conservative" and "liberal" are meaningless and "We, the people" are lost.
We think we know what the word "government" means. After all, we, the willing people, make government possible. We elect people who will speak for us, protect us from burglars and terrorists, and buy our life-saving medicine when we get old.
Big government is about big business and how to control the people without people realizing they are being controlled. And since there is no longer any "little government," state or national, we can put that little dead horse to rest.
Our state and national elected representatives pretend to speak for us in order to get elected - and re-elected. They serve their terms inventing stupid, unnecessary committees to study stupid, unnecessary issues like why college students have sex, and how to teach country boys to chop wood.
They labor long to make sure their friends get paid in triplicate for meals served to American soldiers in Iraq, and to insure that their rich friends get all the juicy government contracts to make hammers and commode lids that cost you, the taxpayer, about 50 times what you'd pay for them at Wal-Mart.
There are no longer any genuine political parties as our grandfathers once understood and defined them. There are only very sophisticated, very corrupt wealth-oiled political machines that employ hundreds of the smartest, slickest linguistic con artists to tell us seductive lies and feed us addictive candy.
These well-paid word-artists take words and phrases and shove them, oh so gently, down my and your throat and up our noses until we think these words and ideas are ours.
If you do not believe me, between now and November take a pad and pencil as you watch and listen to the national palaver about the upcoming November mid-term election. Jot down how many times President Bush says "My job is to protect the American people" (doesn't that warm the cockles of your heart on a two-quilt night?) and how many times the Democratic word machine brainwashes us with "get out of Iraq," "leaks," "American family values," and leads us into the la-la land of American politics.
If I bomard you with the phrase "the American people want" long enough, you will start believing the bungling Mr. Bush ranks right up there with God, even though he can barely talk without a script written by a well-oiled word machine. He is a plastic President propelled into that once-glorious office because of his name and the millions of dollars spent for him by his family and friends.
He was elected the first time due to some improvident hanging chads in Florida's voting machines, and the second time because most Americans prefer the known incompetent to the unknown possible incompetent.
And if I bombard your ears repeatedly with "family values," "American values," values, values, values, you'll probably vote for Democrats in November because you will be utterly convinced the Democrats are men and women of values - good ol' boys and gals just like We, the people.
We can do little, you and I, to alter the upcoming November political fiasco. But we can start today separating what we know to be true about all government from what we have been brainwashed by slick word-mongers to believe is true.
An unexamined political conviction is not worth owning, and an unexamined vote is an exercise in futility, today, tomorrow - and in November.
Elizabeth Andrews is based in Cartersville, Ga., where she writes poetry. Write her at firstname.lastname@example.org, or P.O. Box 816, Cartersville, GA 30120.