Mr. Conservative on religion and politics

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  • Mahousniper

    Nailed it.

  • Thin-ice

    I remember getting to vote about the time Goldwater was running for president. I remember how we thought he was a right-wing extremist at the time. Considering today’s Republican party, he looks like a mild, moderate, reasonable politician! He certainly wouldn’t make the cut as a Republican.

    • grumpygirl

      They’d be calling him a RINO. Back from the days when Republicans really believed in balancing the budget and small government.

  • Elemenope

    He did live and work at a time when the Democratic party was the party bought and sold by Christian pastors. There is an unbroken chain that runs roughly from William Jennings Bryan to Jimmy Carter of Democrats who enthusiastically embraced the trappings of religion, while their GOP contemporaries were skeptical of the same; from his perspective, the social reactionary Christians who took over the GOP were as an invading force, not an internal cancer. It is an excellent reminder that the political coalitions that exist today need not have the same bedfellows as they will tomorrow, for they certainly didn’t maintain the same ones yesterday.

    • LRA

      And why did all those southern religious types defect from the Democratic party in the first place? Was it because they were running away from the Civil Rights Movement? How Christian!


      • grumpygirl

        Back in those days, there were the traditional but liberal Republicans, like the Rockefellers, and there were conservative Democrats, the southern Baptists. It was during the Reagan years when the Republicans started aligning themselves with the conservative Democrats. The sad result of this is that now the Democrat and Republican parties no longer need to compromise to a middle ground anymore. Both parties in those days needed to compromise to find a middle ground for just their own parties. Sigh, those were the days when Republicans really were about balanced budgets and small government. I was a registered Republican when I first started to vote, but nowadays I’d be embarrassed to be one.

    • Revyloution

      I greatly admired Goldwater. It was men like him, William F Buckley and Mark Hatfield that made me register as a Republican when I turned 18

      • Rob Jase

        As did I.

        It was Reagan and Bush I, when he sold out to become VP, that made me drop out of the GOP.

      • Brian K

        I don’t share all of your fondness for Buckley (his racism and classism was merely camouflaged by his accent, faux intellecualism, and turn of a phrase), but I still have some fondness for Goldwater.

  • mikespeir

    It would be easier to be conservative if people like Goldwater were the norm on that side of the fence. Of course, as Thin-ice points out, the conservatives of today wouldn’t have anything to do with him.

  • Lxndr

    Probably the last Republican Presidental candidate in the past ~40 years I would have supported. Of course, that was when Democrats were creepy religionists.

  • Camels With Hammers

    Great quote. If that does not sum up the Catholic Church this week, even after they got a major concession yesterday, I don’t know what does.

    • Elemenope

      As much as I’ve been irritated with Obama over the past year or so, I was extremely impressed by the subtle way he sort of kicked the Religious Right in the teeth on the way to forming a policy that would get contraceptives into employees’ hands despite employer objections.

      Anti-contraceptive arguments are a solid loser, politically speaking; it’s one of the many reasons Santorum lost his senate seat with one of the widest margins in modern history. Religious liberty, on the other hand…heck, even atheists are all about religious liberty. So they probably thought they were being quite clever by making it a religious liberty issue instead of a contraception access issue. Only, I’m quite sure they did not anticipate Obama mooting the religious liberty issue by going around the employer altogether, revealing the liberty argument for what it is–a canard–while sticking them back with their original extremely unpopular position (complete with hilarious soundbites ready for instant replay in the general election season). And six months later, the only thing most people will remember was that people complained about something most people find uncontroversial, Obama proposed a reasonable compromise, and the other side reacted like dicks.

      • Paul

        I’m not sure that Obama’s compromise will work with the Catholic Church. I used to work at a residential treatment facility they ran here in Atlanta and had my medical care through them. They do not use an insurance company but self insure and just use a company that can handle the paperwork and dole out the payments. Birth control is such a major issue for them that I can’t see the compromise working. They were great at covering the bills for my son’s prenatal, delivery and post natal care but of course, even though we weren’t Catholic, having babies made us ok in their eyes.

      • Michael

        The bill does not apply to religious organizations for the most part.

  • vasaroti

    A great sign to take to the Reason Rally in DC,

  • Stony

    My [highly conservative] family delight in calling on the ghost of my dead mother to back up their crappy positions, saying, rightfully, that she was a “Goldwater Republican”. I point out time and time again that the Republican party of today would be unrecognizable to Goldwater, and certainly to Mom. Her being deceased makes this a bit of a sticky argument, from both sides. Not to mention Goldwater.