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Age and Politics

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Taure, Jul 27, 2015.

  1. Taure

    Taure Magical Core Enthusiast ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    There is a famous quote, often misattributed to Churchill:

    "If you are not a liberal at 20, you have no heart. If you are not conservative by 35, you have no brain."

    Do you think there's any truth in this? How have your opinions changed over the last few years? Has any DLPer noticed themselves growing more conservative?

    (Question is in terms of general political alignment, not necessarily party loyalty)
     
  2. Andrela

    Andrela Plot Bunny DLP Supporter

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    I've been called a conservative liberal.

    This is because while most of my views are liberal others are very conservative.

    An example: I support both abortion (liberal) and the death penalty (conservative).


    This is a change from years ago when I was more liberal and didn't support the death penalty. So I suppose I did become more conservative with time.
     
  3. Perspicacity

    Perspicacity Destroyer of Worlds ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter DLP Gold Supporter

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    I made the opposite transition. I was somewhere on the conservative/libertarian spectrum as a kid who had read a few too many Robert Heinlein novels and who was exposed daily to the likes of Paul Harvey and Rush Limbaugh. The first vote I cast for President was for G. H. W. Bush.

    This persisted until I was nearly through university and made the transition toward progressive and liberal politics. Part of this was studying enough macroeconomics to grok Keynsianism in the mathematical/systems sense, part that I saw poverty up close, realizing it wasn't all "strapping young bucks" gaming the system, and part that I moved into the ranks of professional scientist in a nation where the major political party most closely aligned with conservatism is openly antagonistic toward science, intellectualism, and public spending on same.
     
  4. ScottPress

    ScottPress The Horny Sovereign –§ Prestigious §–

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    With me, it was the reverse. I used to be all for death penalty, but then I grew up, thought about it a little more and realized how fucking scary death is. It's not something to be handed out lightly. I'm not saying it is being handed out lightly, just that it's so damn terminal. It's the point of no return.

    I don't know if I could give a general alignment. I guess I'd have to take an online quiz or something. I lay part of the blame for this indecision on Poland's political system. We're literally in a situation where there aren't any good voting options, just more and less fucked up ones. The quiet idealist in me is dissatisfied.

    But I suppose I'm closer to a liberal than a conservative.
     
  5. Andrela

    Andrela Plot Bunny DLP Supporter

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    I've been called "Pro-Death" jokingly, since I support the three deaths: abortion, euthanasia and death penalty.

    Of course death is scary. I myself hope to live forever.
     
  6. Chengar Qordath

    Chengar Qordath The Final Pony ~ Prestige ~

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    I went through a similar process for similar reasons: starting off conservative due to growing up in a conservative region with mostly conservatives in my family ensuring that I was mainly exposed to conservative ideas as a kid.

    For a long time I still thought of myself as a conservative despite most of my opinions being to the left of center. After all, my entire childhood was spent learning that the conservatives were Our Guys and the liberals were The Other Guys. Thus I identified as "Conservative, except I believe in abortion, secularism, gay rights, more socialism, bigger government..."

    It took me a surprisingly long time to figure out that it was quicker and more accurate to just say "I'm liberal."
     
  7. Radmar

    Radmar Disappeared

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    Death is but the next great adventure. Did noone tell you that before? :D

    I think it's nonsense. This kind of thing differs from person to person. I think I am more and more liberal and to the left as I grow older.
     
  8. Andrela

    Andrela Plot Bunny DLP Supporter

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    I won't listen to Dumbledore's lies, I won't!
     
  9. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    Just rebrand yourself as Pro-Adventure.

    It's all about the spin.
     
  10. Lindsey

    Lindsey Headmaster DLP Supporter

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    I grew up in a very libertarian household (Socially liberal and economically conservative) with my family mostly voting Seattle Republican (which would still be considered a Democrat by anyone in the South).

    I went to college in the South and wavered back and fourth. I became more environmentally friendly but less inclined to trust the government to do anything. At one point I did become much more conservative. My biggest legacy so far has been wanting change. The first president I voted for was Gary Johnson, even though I knew he wouldn't win. I just wanted to try and get another political party to 5% so they would be classified as a major party.

    Since I got out of college... Holy crap I've become totally pro-obama Democrat/Socalist. Free college, universal healthcare, higher taxes. It just seemed the more I studied politics in school and outside of it, the more it made sense.

    However, I'm only 23 by this point so take my changes with a grain of salt.
     
  11. Captain Trips

    Captain Trips High Inquisitor

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    Hmm, first time I voted, was back when I was 20, then voted for the swedish leftist party. However, these days I am actually voting for one of the conservative options we have here in sweden and I actually think some of their Ideas are sound, only an idiot would vote for the socialdemocrats or the enviromental muppets that be our sitting government. and the less said about the leftists the better.

    Oh dear I have actually grown more conservative. Who knew?
     
  12. Warburg

    Warburg Seventh Year

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    None of those things actually make you a socialist, unless you're also in favor of some form of socialist economic system.


    Anyway, I've actually become somewhat more "conservative" since I first got interested in politics. I guess back then(when I was 13-14) you could've classified me as a democratic socialist but I've definitely drifted to the right, on quite a few issues, mostly social but also some economic. I still vote for a party called the Socialist People's Party,(not really socialist IMO) so I'm far from being right-wing, that said I'm still only 20 and things can change a lot.
     
  13. Grubdubdub

    Grubdubdub Supreme Mugwump

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    Too soon to tell for me, but I've been leaning more and more to the left the past few years. Currently I see myself as an Anarcho-Communist, so there isn't much more left I can go! :D Realistically, I probably won't be as idealistic as I am now when I'm 40 or 50, but I will never be a conservative.

    btw, I know this idiom as you're evil if you're not a socialist when you're 20, and stupid if you're not a capitalist by 40...
     
  14. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    How can you be an Anarcho-Communist? That's a contradiction. No Government v. ALL the Government, etc.
     
  15. Taure

    Taure Magical Core Enthusiast ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarchist_communism

     
  16. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    So it's basically just purist communism instead of USSR-style communism. Interesting.

    On topic, for my part, I think that I started out much further to the left than I am now, for a variety of reasons, and have acquired some more conservative stances while remaining solidly left on most points. I don't view it as a contradiction.

    I remain a solid supporter of environmental policies to combat climate change, socially liberal, support Keynesian economics, etc. But while I support the idea of collective bargaining, I have come to see American unions as more of a menace than a blessing, and think we should cultivate more of a Japanese-style system of collective bargaining but everyone still cooperating. I think we should have single payer healthcare, but private hospitals and doctors' practices. I have moved farther right than on any other issue with security issues. I am more pro-gun than I used to be, but I still think that we have major gun problems. I remain pro-death penalty.

    I still see myself as mostly a Democrat when I'm voting, but I see stupid in both camps more often than I'd like.
     
  17. Garden

    Garden Minister of Magic

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    Started:
    -conservative but pro-immigration and pro gun control
    Now:

    Obama but with positive eugenics, more religious freedom and much less focus on race and gender issues. I'm agnostic on econ till I learn more, so I'm not really sure how I feel about his economic policy. Though I'm a big fan of that big Trade Bill he was pushing for.


    My political journey so far:

    Till I was 14 or so I was a pro-immigration and pro-gun control Republican because that's what my family is. They're quite conservative in everything but those two things. So I followed their lead in that.

    From 14-16 I was super libertarian because I was an angsty teenager who hated authority and had read Anthem by Ayn Rand.

    From Then I was very left-wing for a year or so, though in a vague way. I would have probably said something like "I'm a big fan of the Green Party" or "Capitalism is evil, man!" or something similar. I also thought religions were terrible. This was mostly a result of reading a bunch of anti-theist left-wing sites like Pharyngula, etc. over the summer.

    I moderated that left-wing impulse as I entered college, though I retained the annoyingly condescending and useless impulse of always saying stupid shit like "the system itself is bad" or "both parties are terrible, dude" or "If only everyone cared about each other more", etc. if I got involved with political discussion. As most college students do, I became super pro-drug legalization, and would talk a lot about that. To be fair to my past self, I did educate myself really broadly on drugs and their effects, and did a ton of research on them. I basically spent 75% of my web browsing time on Erowid, r/drugs, r/nootropics, or various other drug forums, occasionally reading textbooks on drug pharmacology, etc.

    After Freshman year I decided to not be an idiot regarding current events, and started reading the mainstream highbrow news on a more or less biweekly basis-- the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, NewYorker, The Atlantic, Slate, Salon, etc. So I gradually turned into a classic "educated, moderate, Center-Left" wannabe elite whose opinions were (I thought) nuanced and sophisticated. And in comparison to what came before, they probably were. I got involved with various Social Justice causes on campus like doing service on spring breaks, being involved with a mental health group that did advocacy and education on campus, etc. A couple of PoliSci classes that focused on foreign policy inclined me heavily towards Realism, which has stuck with me ever since.

    The last year and half or so I've become a lot more educated on politics and the news. This is mostly because I read Vox (a good general news website with a left-wing bias and an annoyingly condescending tone) whenever I'm walking to class or pooping, and then end up researching a ton of stuff in depth on my own. I've devoted a lot of my time to understanding the news, politics, etc. probably to the detriment of my studies, but I think its worth it.

    I've also done a lot of reading on cultural evolution and religions, anthropology, etc. So I've read a lot of big idea books on those broad topics, which I think is a good foundation for understanding society in a broad sense.
    I highly reccomend reading the modern literature about cultural evolution like Cultural Evolution by Richerson and Christiansen or a shorter book like this one.

    Putting all this together, I finally am not ashamed to state my opinions on various issues in public. I know enough to know how little I know-- but I also know enough to know how to not be ignorant about a given topic if given a couple hours. I still feel very unsure of my knowledge on economics so I'm agnostic on free market vs government intervention (as much as those two can be thought of as opposed) till I know more. I'm confident in my knowledge on biology as it relates to culture and human nature, on American history and trends, and on domestic policies generally excluding economics.

    And my political views now would be a heterodox mix of mostly open immigration, realism/pragmatism (I agree with Obama on this, honestly) in foreign policy, a big fan of positive (non-coercive) eugenics, opposed and disdainful of Identity-based Social Justice movements, wary of State intervention in parenting, a big fan of religious/cultural freedom , generally a fan of Federal intervention in education insofar as it doesn't conflict with religion, a big fan of transparency in government, don't like strict IP law, etc. I could go on and on...

    To simplify my current position

    -Obama but with positive eugenics, more religious freedom and much less focus on race and gender issues. I'm agnostic on econ for now, so I'm not really sure how I feel about his economic policy. Though I'm a big fan of that big Trade Bill he was pushing for.







    Sorry for the long post; I think about my changes in politics a ton.
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2015
  18. Grubdubdub

    Grubdubdub Supreme Mugwump

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    Basically. It's good only for small groups, a few hundred max. I don't know if it's really applicable in the macro level. I'm actually moving to an anarchic-communistic kibbutz next week for a few month to try it out. :)
     
  19. Hachi

    Hachi Death Eater

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    I have no heart.
     
  20. Joe's Nemesis

    Joe's Nemesis High Score: 2,058 ~ Prestige ~

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    Lindsey's post made me laugh. When you said you went to college in the South, and the posted what you did, I realized you very well could have meant the West Coast South . . .
     
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