What is the best kind of conservatism? Crunchy-conservatism (the natural order, tradition, Wendell Berry, community, rural, decentralization, eating locally, small businesses, small-is-beautiful)? Or free market conservatism (technology, progress, Adam Smith, the individual, urban, centralization, eating globally, big corporations, big-is-better)?
I devised an experiment to answer the question scientifically. In May, I planted two tomato plants side by side. One was a heritage tomato (a natural, uncontaminated strain from the olden days). That embodies crunchy-conservatism. The other was a hybrid tomato (scientifically bred by an agri-corporation). That embodies free market conservatism. I gave them the same amount of water and other attention. I would see which tomato is the best, and that would tell me which is the better ideology.
The hybrid sprung up as a big bush. The heritage grew into a small, scrawny vine. The hybrid produced an abundance of tomatoes. They ripened far earlier than they were supposed to. The heritage finally grew three hard little green balls that refused to ripen. We have been enjoying the hybrids for weeks, but finally one of the heritage tomatoes turned red.
I set up an elaborately controlled blind taste test. My wife could not tell the difference. I could. Though it was close, I thought one of them had a better flavor. It turned out to be. . .(drumroll, please). . . the heritage tomato! Thus it is proven that crunchy-conservatism is the superior ideology.