Reader wants his kind of conservative

“What we got here is failure to communicate.” –Strother Martin, Cool Hand Luke (1967), screenplay by Donn Pearce

A reader recently wrote (Letters, 12-14-06): “As a liberal, I seek to learn about and understand viewpoints that differ from my own, so it makes sense to me that a generally liberal periodical would include a regular column by a conservative commentator.”

There are times that your host gets the distinct impression that he’s making some progress with the conservatively challenged crowd. Unfortunately, this isn’t one of them.

The same reader finished with this: “Why do you publish this man’s [Right Hook] writing? Did you wish to provide a genuine conservative point of view to broaden your reader’s perspectives? If so, choose someone who can demonstrate conviction and critical thinking rather than resorting to low blows and parroting of other writers’ catchphrases.”

(Note to self: Give back law degree and demand refund. Apparently law school and successfully passing three states’ bar exams on three separate occasions hasn’t sufficiently honed your critical thinking abilities.)

For the record, my “blows” aren’t “low” or my shots cheap. As the name of the column implies, Right Hook puts them where they belong, to-wit: across the chops.

But perhaps a review is in order. First and foremost, this Place offers up truth. And truth—much like my writing style—can sometimes be cold and difficult to take. My job is to provide an insight into conservative thinking and point out the perfidies of the liberal philosophy generally and of Democrats specifically. The fact that I annoy liberals is simply an additional benefit that I hadn’t previously anticipated. If you need a friend, get a dog. Otherwise, what can I say? It’s a gift.

Let’s be truthful here. You can’t claim to be open to differing opinions and then be shocked when there are some. Yet, what is so mind-numbing is not that the conservative ideology is that complicated—it’s that more people don’t get it.

I mean, Democrats in particular are about as unprincipled a bunch as there is. Don’t believe me? If they really gave a rip about the working poor, they’d stop fooling around with a dollar or two hike in the minimum wage and get into the debate about what a “living wage” really should be. But of course, that would require making a principled stand.

And what about Iraq? With the possible exception of Dennis Kucinich (anti-war) and Joe Lieberman (pro-war), Democrats have done nothing but nuance their positions, From Tom “I’m for the war, but with reservations” Daschle to John “I voted for it before I voted against it” Kerry and now Hillary “I made a mistake when I voted for it” Clinton. She has her own version of recent history. Where’s she been with that revelation for the past five years? Oh, yes, 2008 is now on the radar.

And yet this is supposed to be the party of the principled?

I could show up every liberal Hollywood weenie as the hypocrites they are and fund every socialist program they have ever advocated in one New York minute. Simply pass a 90 percent income tax on everything earned by actors, comics and recording artists and make it retroactive to 1962. Any guesses whether Barbara Streisand or Rosie O’Donnell would have the loudest hissy fit?

Let’s also recognize that the foundation for all liberals’ moral and faux-intellectual superiority is based on one thing: A government program funded on someone else’s dime. And if there’s any principled liberals in the peanut gallery who wish to put their money where their mouths are, I have a couple of tax bills out there coming due.

Or are we perhaps back to Strother Martin’s assertion?