Monday, January 15, 2007

The Republican Fourtysomething Explained

A phenomenal explanation of today's young(ish) Republicans that supports what I've observed during my 5 years of living in the South (via Glenn Greenwald):
Dreher's earliest political memories are of the Carter Administration and the Iranian hostage crisis, followed by the triumphant ascension of Ronald Reagan. He was 13 years old when Reagan was elected, so you can't fault him for viewing these events through a child's eyes. The problem is, as it is with so many of his fellow travelers, that his understanding of politics remained childish.
It sounds insulting but I think we're all colored by those first encounters with politics as a child. Luckily I didn't grow up in the United States under Carter and Reagan so I don't have any deep-rooted prejudices against Republicans or Democrats. I do strongly dislike the Soviet communists and stubborn "we-are-entitled-to-everything" 70s-style European union leaders, but both groups are practically extinct today.

3 comments:

Dan said...

Sure, our political ideas are going to be influenced, to some extent, by timing and by our environment, just as everything else about us is. The question is, to what extent? Has a person gone on to attempt plenty of objective, critical, rigorous thinking about different philosophies?

I certainly can't claim to have been fully objective and rigorously comprehensive, but I'll say this much: If vague recollections of Carter's perceived wimpiness, the preponderance of "Ayatollah Ass-a-holla" t-shirts, and Reagan's evident popularity conspired to nearly solidify decades worth of an adult's political beliefs, that person hasn't been doing a lot of hard thinking.

So how is the idea insulting? I see it as potentially forgiving.

Dan said...

Sure, our political ideas are going to be influenced, to some extent, by timing and by our environment, just as everything else about us is. The question is, to what extent? Has a person gone on to attempt plenty of objective, critical, rigorous thinking about different philosophies?

I certainly can't claim to have been fully objective and rigorously comprehensive, but I'll say this much: If vague recollections of Carter's perceived wimpiness, the preponderance of "Ayatollah Ass-a-holla" t-shirts, and Reagan's evident popularity conspired to nearly solidify decades worth of an adult's political beliefs, that person hasn't been doing a lot of hard thinking.

So how is the idea insulting? I see it as potentially forgiving.

bilco5 said...

This video supposes that we are in part formed by the times in which we grew up in. McCain was born in 1936. Wow, he is really from a different time. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62dO_pIrWoU