- Aug 6, 2019
To quote an anarchocapitalist author in a book about the rise of the new right, which I read recently, "conservatism is progressivism going the speed limit" - he gives examples like the expansion of the State during the civil rights movement, Medicare and medicare expansion for prescription drugs and some others, which were enacted by Republicans, after years or decades of progressive Democrats calling for those very things.many so called conservatives are pro big govrnment.
So I'd say that conservatism is inherently a big government movement, just at a slower pace, even without considering recent political realignments. And it makes sense. You get political power, and spend your time using government to achieve your goals, you're naturally going to want more of that. It's also in the nature of the political process and compromise, at a fundamental game theory level. Think of it like a sliding scale. One political party thinks there should be zero of something on a scale of 0 to 10 (say publicly funded healthcare), while another wants 10. So they compromise, and end up at 5. Now 5 is the new 0, since it's not politically fiesable to roll back to 0, and the other guys still want 10. So they compromise again and end up at 7 by the original scale, and on and on until the party that wants more eventually starts wanting more and more, 15 and 20 by the original scale, until you reach a point where, for example, Medicare is the second most expensive program for the federal budget covering tens of millions of people (or is it over 100 million now), including relatively wealthy retirees, when originally, all that was wanted was an insignificant amount for completely indigent people.
It's just inherently part of power and politics and government to expand indefinitely, until the whole thing comes crashing down on itself. Another thing I'm glad I'll get to miss experiencing, for whatever it's worth.