September 02, 2004

Another Conventiony Thursday Three

These questions sound kind of familiar, don't they?

1. Name three good things about Republicans (if possible consider this from a Democrat's perspective).

I don't know that I've heard many nice things said about Republicans by my Democratic friends (though none of them have gone this far either), but I think my friends -- if not the feminists in the linked article -- would give conservatives these points.

(a) Republicans tend to be good neighbors. I think most people want someone next door who respects property rights and individual freedoms.

(b) And on individual freedoms, many liberals might think the rhetoric of Republicans is "evil and fascist" but an honest one should grant that most of us are pretty live and let live in the way we conduct ourselves. A Republican may not approve of homosexuality, but most of them are not out picketing their gay neighbors, and those who are, are generally as roundly condemned by the Right as the Left.

(c) Republicans may not be very smart or anything, but they might let you borrow their pickup to haul stuff, if you need it.

2. Name three bad things about Republicans (if possible consider this from a Republican's perspective).

This is perhaps the hardest question of the three for me to answer. I am not a registered Republican, but I do give them money and I think I've always voted for Republicans. I find many things about the party frustrating, but I also find my thoughts difficult to articulate. The party is often too quick, in my view, to embrace fairly liberal social causes, requiring lots of government spending, when they seem compassionate -- a word I am growing to dislike -- instead of making tough and seemingly unpopular choices that would be better in the long run. It is a party of politicians and politicians want to stay in office more than they want to do the right thing most of the time. Also, many conservatives, myself included, may do okay at being partisan when everyone around us believes the same things -- or when we're writing on a blog -- but in real life it is hard for many of us to actually speak up. I worry about putting little sign in my yard. Why am I and so many Republicans/conservatives so easily intimidated? I blame it on too much time with the liberal media and too many years in academia. I tend to forget that almost 50% of the population votes the way I do and that I am not alone out there. There are many other problems and complaints I could make, but they are hard for me to pin down. So I'll stop and revisit this if I ever get a chance.

3. In a fairly contested, bare-knuckle fight who would win, Bush or Kerry?

Bush. Kerry and Bush are both in good shape, but I think someone who can do a little manual labor clearing brush at a ranch and get out riding horses and such, is going to beat the skier and windsurfer. But really, if you want the ulitmate description of the fight -- see Terry's answer.