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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Liberal, Liberalism

"Liberal" is another of those words that can defy concise explanation. However, I believe that in general, if conservatism can be fairly said to be "...trying not to do anything stupidly risky, things that fly in the face of common sense, that defy the testimony of God in nature and Scripture, that flout history, that ignore the fallen and depraved nature of mankind; as an approach to life and governance that seeks to limit government to the role laid out for it by God, thereby establishing justice and protecting Man's God-given rights," then liberalism would be the willingness to do stupidly risky things without regard for common sense, history, the fallen and depraved nature of mankind, the testimony of God in nature and Scripture, and, very often, to use government as an instrument by which it hopes to achieve its often hopelessly ill-defined and unrealistic goals. I would say that in general, the big flaw in liberalism is that it tries to base its approach to life--and governance--on the shifting sands of man's reason untethered to the revelation of God. It starts with autonomous man and tries to reason its way upward, and ends with a society in which justice is sacrificed to every man doing what is right in his own eyes--and indeed, one could make the case that that is its purpose: to allow man to justify what he wants to do anyway as being right.

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