Sunday, May 31, 2009
Conservative Principles Compiled
Conservative Principles by Russell Kirk
First, the conservative believes that there exists an enduring moral order. That order is made for man, and man is made for it: human nature is a constant, and moral truths are permanent
Second, the conservative adheres to custom, convention, and continuity.
Third, conservatives believe in what may be called the principle of prescription.
Fourth, conservatives are guided by their principle of prudence.
Fifth, conservatives pay attention to the principle of variety.
Sixth, conservatives are chastened by their principle of imperfectability.
Seventh, conservatives are persuaded that freedom and property are closely linked.
Eighth, conservatives uphold voluntary community, quite as they oppose involuntary collectivism.
Ninth, the conservative perceives the need for prudent restraints upon power and upon human passions.
Tenth, the thinking conservative understands that permanence and change must be recognized and reconciled in a vigorous society.
Contemporary Burkean Conservativism
In western Europe conservatism is generally associated with the following views, as noted by the conservative author Russell Kirk in his 1953 book, The Conservative Mind, and (during the lat 18th century) by the British political philosopher Edmund Burke:
1. "Belief in a transcendent order, or body of natural law, which rules society as well as conscience."
2. "Affection for the proliferating variety and mystery of human existence, as opposed to the narrowing uniformity, egalitarianism, and utilitarian aims of most radical systems;"
3. "Persuasion that freedom and property are closely linked: separate property from private possession, and the Leviathan becomes master of all."
4. "Faith in prescription and distrust of 'sophisters, calculators, and economists' who would reconstruct society upon abstract designs."
5. "Recognition that change may not be salutary reform: hasty innovation may be a devouring conflagration, rather than a torch of progress
Thomas Jeffery’s conservatism
Great confusion seems to hamper the attempt to understand the term 'conservative.' In modern politics the term generally means those who adhere to the traditional understanding of the views of the Founding Fathers as encapsulated in the U.S. Constitution.
Thus, not everyone who refers to themselves as 'conservative' is a true conservative. John McCain and Lindsey Graham, R-SC, are cases in point.
In order to help clear up the confusion, I offer 10 basic conservative principles.
1. 'Government money' does not belong to government. It belongs to the taxpayers who worked hard for it, and who had funds deleted from their paychecks even before they got to see them.
2. The government that governs best governs LEAST.
3. Government normally does not solve problems. People do. Big government usually IS the problem.
4. Oppressive large governments are responsible for more murders of citizens than all of the wars in history.
5. The private sector is where the juice of society lies. There you will find ingenuity, creativity, and the creation of wealth--provided government gets out of the way.
6. Government social programs reward pathological dependency. True adults, unless hindered by debilitating physical impairment, seek independent living as free persons who are not stuck in an infantile dependency on the government nanny.
7. The one role of government mandated by the U.S. Constitution is to provide for the national defense.
8. Human rights are not granted by government. They are inherent and automatic. We are 'endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights.' Government can only choose to recognize and protect those inherent rights.
9. The right to self-defense, as encapsulated in the 2nd Amendment, is the key to all of the other rights described in the Bill of Rights. Free speech, freedom of religion, freedom of assembly, and a free press are secured and kept secure by an armed citizenry.
10. Our form of government is NOT a 'pure democracy' or 'majority rule.' In a Constitutional Republic such as ours, the will of the majority is tempered and limited by the rights of the minority, which are always intact and unalienable regardless of the 'will of the majority.'
Mark Levin’s Ten Conservative Principles
America is guided by morality, having an origin in God.
The U.S. Constitution is not a “living and breathing document.”
The Free Market fosters creativity and inventiveness
The Welfare State must be dissolved.
Illegal immigration is against the law, and threatens our security, morality and traditions as a nation.
Enviro-statism is a threat to freedom and its citizens.
The Tenth Amendment should never be forgotten, keeping Federalism alive and well.
Self Preservation is the reason for public policy.
Conservative activism must be maintained at all times to keep Americans educated.
Americans have the right to keep the fruit of their own labors.
Mike Huckabee--Solid Conservative Principles
In his new book, “Do the Right Thing,” former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee lays out what he sees as basic conservative principles. The Republican Party needs to run back to, not continue to run away from, these very simple tenets of conservatism.
Lower taxes are better than higher taxes.
The purpose of government is to protect us, not to provide for us. We should provide for ourselves.
The best government is self-government.
If there must be a form of civil government, it should be as limited as possible and as local as possible. The most local government is ideal in that it is closer to those being governed and therefore more accountable to the governed.
Peace for a nation is best achieved by having a superior military capacity than those who pose a threat.
Government should facilitate and not complicate the free enterprise system.
Excessive taxation, regulation and unmitigated litigation lead to job migration.
Government intervention and regulation should be the court of last resort and not the first option in anything.
Mothers and fathers raise better children than governments do.
Government should undergird the basic family structure and not undermine it.
The Constitution and the Bill of rights were written to limit and restrict government from interfering with the rights of it citizens, not to keep citizens from exercising their rights.