Demonizing Conservative Thought

The president has adopted an electoral strategy of demonizing conservative thought.  In a now-infamous speech, President Obama referred to his conservative opponents as "stuck in the past," and as "naysayers" who "don't believe in the future."  He scoffed that his detractors were "founding members of the Flat Earth Society" who "just want to keep on doing things the same way that we've always done them."  The president contrasted his critics with people who "refuse to stand still" and who "put their faith in the future."  In a second speech, discussing Congressman Ryan's proposed budget, the president implied that liberal policies create "opportunity" and "upward mobility" while conservative policies entrench inequality.  These false dichotomies mischaracterize conservative ideas. These were not merely off-the-cuff remarks intended to smear political rivals.  This caricature of conservative ideas is popular among liberal social scientists.  In 2012...(Read Full Article)

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