Of course I'm liberal, I believe in liberty.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Thought Vs Feeling; Intellectual Vs Emotional

It seems I touched a nerve when I said "Liberals tend to go the intellectual1 route while conservatives tend toward the emotional." I'm a little surprised this pushed any buttons since my footnote said "in this case I mean 'intellectual' in the worst sense of the word, as well as the best" and I went on to state "confusing intellectualism for intelligence is one of my pet peeves, a crime my side of the debate often makes." In other words, I wasn't saying liberals were more intelligent than conservatives, only that liberals perceive themselves that way and sometimes go to great lengths to project that image. I claimed this was a bad thing.

Paul in the comments section wrote:
On what planet?

Liberals live and die by the appeals to emotion....

"We have to raise taxes... it's for the children"


Liberal: "We have to tax the rich and make sure they pay their "fair share."

Conservative: "If you tax the rich disproportionately, you take capital away from the people who are the employers of the world and therefor they can hire less people.

Reducing tax RATES allows more people to find work, meaning an increase in overall tax REVENUE and a corresponding decrease in social spending requirements."


emotional v intellectual???? I could get a 2000 word post from this topic.

Not trying to be a jerk but that was just a profoundly bizarre thing to say.
Let's see, I live on the planet where Republicans, despite having the rich as their base, constantly whine about the "liberal elite" which is two groups, "Hollywood" and academia. Is anti-academia the same as anti-intellectual? Sure sounds like it to me.

I live on the planet where Republicans are trying to create a new aristocracy by eliminating the "death tax". "It's for the family farms."

I live on the planet where the Republicans seem to own the American Flag, "freedom", patriotism and "the power of pride" and then go on to cheer for war as if it was some sort of football game.

I live on the planet where Bush goes to great lengths to appear like some average Joe, just a guy on the ranch clearing the brush. I live on the planet where Bush tries really, really hard to appear much more stupid than he really is. (He had me fooled once upon a time, but no more.)

At a minimum I think we should all agree that Republicans have taken anti-intellectualism as a campaign strategy, even if conservatives themselves don't really think that way. Certainly the libertarian wing of the Republican party tends toward the intellectual and it is the libertarians that dominate the blogosphere.

I think part of the problem is both sides need to appeal to the masses and those appeals often need to be passionate and emotional. I guess it shouldn't surprise me that both side's tend to hear their own well thought-out intellectual arguments while hearing the opposing side's emotional appeal. We then hold up their emotional appeal as a straw man only to smack it down in a blaze of brilliant rhetoric and logic.