'The best fiscal conservatives in politics are all social conservatives'

So says Washington Examiner columnist Timothy P. Carney, in a column hailing outgoing South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint as a "libertarian hero." Excerpt:

Until last year, DeMint was the only senator with a lifetime 100 percent from the Club for Growth. He still has a perfect record, but now he has company: Rand Paul, Mike Lee and Ron Johnson -- all pro-life conservative freshmen derided as "Jim DeMint disciples" by the likes of lobbyist Trent Lott. [...]

Look at the Club for Growth scorecard again. All the most fiscally conservative senators are pro-life. You have to go down to No. 27 in the Club's rankings -- Mark Kirk -- to find a pro-choicer.

Self-described "fiscal conservatives and social moderates" almost never end up being both. Most end up embracing taxes, regulation and spending like Mark Kirk, with a Club for Growth lifetime score of 52 percent. The rest become pro-lifers like Pat Toomey.

Traditional morality and limited government aren't enemies. They're friends. DeMint proved that, and he left behind heirs who will continue to do so.

Discuss.

In a February 2009 column about Arnold Schwarzenegger's "failure," I more or less agreed with Carney's observation that social moderates have been almost universally disappointing on fiscal conservatism (though in fairness, so had just about every other sitting politician at that moment). And in a post last week, Nick Gillespie reminded us why DeMint's libertarian shift is yet another excellent reason why you should make a tax-deductible donation to Reason today!

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  • ||

    Because clearly the only opinion of relevance when defining "Social Conservatism" is one's stance on abortion.

    OMG ABORTION STANCE IS OALL THAT MATTERS MUST BEAT DRUMM CONSTANNNTLY!!!!?!?!?!

  • Hyperion||

    Geh rights count a little, just not as much as some good baby killin.

  • Brandybuck||

    I find it fascinating that the overwhelming majority of (non-libertarian) pro-choicers demand government funding for abortion. Despite the rhetoric on both sides, abortion is here to stay. The only question is regards to late term abortion. And so the debate shifted to funding.

    Progressives just love their gubmit funding. I fully expect the debate over legalized marijuana to shift to free pot on demand. You'll see it first with free medical marijuana for the poor who need it but can't afford it. Shortly thereafter you'll see law students testifying before congress that their pot use is so high that they need federal funding of blunts.

  • Pippers||

    Pro-choicers didn't shift anything, the Pro-lifers did. If they couldn't make it illegal, they wanted to remove funding from everyone who touched the subject, which just happened to be everyone and their mother, thus, basically shutting it down. If you can't win one way, try another.

  • deified||

    Just like today all taxpayers are forced to provide free alcohol on demand.

    Wait...

  • Rights-Minimalist Autocrat||

    The shorter version of the article: "There are not many libertarians in public office."

    Well, no shit.

  • John||

    Here is my theory. For most people being a "social moderate" is just another way of saying "I have no balls and don't really like to offend the liberal orthodoxy". If you don't have the balls to go against the grain on social issues, what makes you think that you will have them to go against the grain on fiscal ones?

    Are there some people who are legitimate heartfelt social moderates? Sure. But a lot of people are social moderates because they just don't have the courage to be anything else. And those people tend to be politicians.

  • Jeff||

    Sounds about right.

  • ||

    "to go against the grain on social issues"

    But the projection leads from an anti-abortion stance to all "social issues" is astonishing. "social issues" is pretty broad. Is it really only Baby Killin' and Teh Gah? Because almost every pundit trying to define Social Conservatism seems to define it that way.

  • John||

    No it is not. Both abortion and gay issues are similar in the sense that you really have to be a subversive hell raiser to go against conventional wisdom on either subject. Come out and say how life begins at conception and abortion should be illegal under any circumstances in Washington or a faculty lounge and see how many friends you have. Do the same with gay marriage and see what happens.

    The easy thing to do is say "it is a right to choose' and "everyone has a right to be married" and go along and get along. It is not then surprising at all that the people who go along and get along on social issues do the same thing when it comes to spending.

  • ||

    So do you believe gays do not have the right to be married? If so, what do you base this belief on?

  • John||

    That is not the point. The point is that believing as such is not a popular thing to believe.

  • ||

    It is EXACTLY the point. Your claim (correct me if I'm wrong), is that most people who claim to be socially moderate do so due to peer pressure.

    I would argue that those who claim to be fiscally conservative and socially moderate due so out of principle. Unlike Conservatives and Liberals who have no principles. You cannot be for fiscal freedom and against gay marriage and claim you live according to a consistent philosophy.

  • ||

    Of course you can claim it. T o n y claims it all the time.

    I think one of the more arrogant stances of most libertarians (and I'm super-guilty of this myself) is the belief that the logically consistency that they define is rock solid and indisputable.

    Once one realizes that you're not going to win the argument on logical consistency grounds, as the other side of the argument isn't readily going to recognize their logic as being inconsistent, then the debate can make a bit more progress.

    Otherwise, you just end up being stuck in "Damn, they're stupid" point of view and you get nowhere (nowhere politically, that is).

  • John||

    You cannot be for fiscal freedom and against gay marriage and claim you live according to a consistent philosophy.

    Of course you can. States recognizing marriages has nothing whatsoever to do with the fiscal state of the government. That is just complete nonsense on your part. We had an enormously small government for centuries when homosexuality was a crime.

  • ||

    Has everything to do with liberty.

    You cannot claim that you should have the freedom to do what you will with your money and turn around and claim you shouldn't have the freedom to marry the person of your choosing.

    The two positions are morally incompatible. That is why I asked you, if you believe gays do not have the right to be married? If so, what do you base this belief on?

    If you believe the two beliefs above are compatible, please explain the principles that bring you to that conclusion.

  • mnarayan||

    You cannot claim that you should have the freedom to do what you will with your money and turn around and claim you shouldn't have the freedom to marry the person of your choosing.

    The two positions are morally incompatible. That is why I asked you, if you believe gays do not have the right to be married? If so, what do you base this belief on?

    If you believe the two beliefs above are compatible, please explain the principles that bring you to that conclusion.

    Plenty of people believe that giving people the freedom to do what they want with their money improves the economy (and average well-being).

  • ||

    What does that have to do with principles?

    Are you saying you decide your stance on a given issue based upon how you "feel" about it or do you apply some sort of measure that helps you decide your stance?

    I'm asking what that measure is.

  • mnarayan||

    You cannot be for fiscal freedom and against gay marriage and claim you live according to a consistent philosophy.

    This is what you originally said, and subsequently seem to expand upon. It not correct. If you squint a lot, you might be able to make the reverse implication, but you have to close your eyes to get to your statement.

    If you want a detailed explanation of how one might arrive at fiscal conservatism while opposing gay marriage, I would suggest reading the four books that DeMint wrote that appear to be about the subject. I imagine they're pretty boring though, so you may want to pass.

  • ||

    "You cannot be for fiscal freedom and against gay marriage and claim you live according to a consistent philosophy." John is just the GOP joe. He has no consistent philosophy. Just bitter rage at non-evangelical Christians and women who don't know-tow to their betters (i.e. anyone with a Y-chromosome ).

  • sarcasmic||

    Is it really only Baby Killin' and Teh Gah?

    Yep. That's it. If a politician vocally opposes those things, then they're a fiscal conservative. That's right. If you are against those things then you are a social conservative, and you can't be a fiscal conservative without being a social conservative, so being a social conservative must make you a fiscal conservative.

  • Hyperion||

    Being a fiscal conservative, in other words, not being in favor of spending other peoples money and borrowing more because other peoples money is never enough, automatically makes you a racist, homophobic, sexist, children murdering, extremist, domestic terrorist, Rethuglican. The science is settled. So, MOAR taxes.

  • ||

    "Being a fiscal conservative, in other words, not being in favor of spending other peoples money and borrowing more because other peoples money is never enough, automatically makes you a racist, homophobic, sexist, children murdering, extremist, domestic terrorist, Rethuglican. The science is settled. So, MOAR taxes." It dose not, but you guys aren't helping undo that perception.

  • Mickey Rat||

    The article means that there is a high correlation between fiscal conservatism and social conservatism. That does not mean that fiscal conservative/social liberal do not exist, just that they are damned rare.

  • SIV||

    Like Yeti and unicorn rare.

  • ||

    "Like Yeti and unicorn rare."
    Tell me, SIV, am I a Yeti or a unicorn?

  • Mensan||

    I'm really getting sick of defining political ideology in terms of liberals and conservatives (i.e. Dems and Reps). How about we start calling Republicans fiscally psuedolibertarian and socially Christofascist; and Democrats are fiscally totalitarian and socially progressive.

  • Loki||

    I don't even think Democraps are all that "socially progressive", whatever that means (I'm assuming you mean that they're in favor of social freedom, which is laughable when you extend the definition beyond abortion and gay marriage). I think they just use group politics to divide and conquer. IOW, they really only care about teh gays as long as they can use the issue of gay marriage to get gays to vote for them. Same goes for abortion and women.

    Actually I don't expect the dems to ever do anything about gay marriage because then they wouldn't be able to use it as a wedge issue or to secure gay votes.

  • SIV||

    "Socially progressive" means banning rare hamburgers, large cokes, smoking,firearms, SUVs and using government carrot-and-stick policies to coerce people in to low calorie "cruelty-free" diets, regular exercise and travel by public transportation.

  • Cytotoxic||

    It also means freedom of choice only in the uterus/bed and with government monies shoehorned in.

  • Mensan||

    Yes, that was my intended definition. I thought we were all on the same page about what the 20th century progressive movement (i.e. cradle-to-grave welfare/nanny state) is all about, but perhaps I should have clarified.

  • Mensan||

    I meant SIV's definition was what I intended.

  • Pippers||

    Yes, because the gay vote is the largest base ever. They sure love those wedge issues! Did you regurgitate this out while wearing a chemtrail gas mask?

  • carol||

    What is so socially "progressive" about Democrats?

  • SIV||

    They like to ban stuff that's bad for you and support federal funds for midnight basketball and more cops on the street.

  • Hyperion||

    Is it really only Baby Killin' and Teh Gah?

    Yep, that is it. All other social issues are irrelevant.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Totally this.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Just about nails it.

  • Imissbuckley||

    I agree that a politician being "socially moderate", tends to mean a weakness on that candidate's part in going against conventional wisdom. However, I think it has less to do with the sort of national political correctness you're talking about, and more to do with the state or region a politician is in.

    For example, Mark Kirk is the Senator from Illinois which is a blue state. This means that he's has to appear as Democratic-leaning on any number of big issues. This means votes for "the jobs bill", the Dream Act, or whatever other progressive bullshit is popular in his state.

    On the flip-side this means that men like Joe Manchin, (the Senator of West Virginia), won't support things like gay marriage, can't come out for full abortion "rights", and will bitch about things like MTV to appear more culturally conservative.

    This is also one of the reasons why Scott Brown lost in Massachusetts. Because he wasn't "moderate" or "liberal" enough, he was dropped like a bad habit.

  • ||

    "

    Here is my theory. For most people being a "social moderate" is just another way of saying "I have no balls and don't really like to offend the liberal orthodoxy". If you don't have the balls to go against the grain on social issues, what makes you think that you will have them to go against the grain on fiscal ones?

    Are there some people who are legitimate heartfelt social moderates? Sure. But a lot of people are social moderates because they just don't have the courage to be anything else. And those people tend to be politicians." Translation from John to normal: You can't love liberty unless you hate queers and women who leave the house.

  • Hyperion||

    Rand Paul is a social conservative? He's against the WOD, so how does that work? Because he thinks the states should decide on abortion, that makes him a social conservative? I guess that today anyone who is not so pro-abortion that they get a tingle up their leg when thinking about some good ol baby killin fun, are social conservative. That or he doesn't think every slut wannabe should be provided with free tax payer funded birth control for life.

    Oh, and FU, Demint, you fucking quitter. Just when you decide that Libertarians might be right, you desert us? Nice.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    "I guess that today anyone who is not so pro-abortion that they get a tingle up their leg when thinking about some good ol baby killin fun, are social conservative. That or he doesn't think every slut wannabe should be provided with free tax payer funded birth control for life."

    Yes, that is pretty much the definition used by feminists and the media. So welcome to the club, fellow pro-lifer!

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    Oh, and FU, Demint, you fucking quitter. Just when you decide that Libertarians might be right, you desert us? Nice.

    DeMint's not stupid. If he's leaving, it's probably because he sees the shitstorm coming and doesn't want to be caught up in it when it finally hits.

  • Sudden||

    Or he sees the greatest potential for expanding liberty to be taking the reigns over at Heritage to push the nation's pre-eminent conservative think tank in a libertarian direction?

    /hope.

  • Robert||

    Rand Paul is a social conservative? He's against the WOD, so how does that work?


    Simple: Position on the WOD doesn't count, because "everyone" is in favor of it, so much that nobody ever asks about it, and even if they hear what you say about it, it's not taken seriously and quickly forgotten.

    This is true, BTW, any time you take a position that's not among those that poll between about 35-65 and 65-35. As a few of you may know, I'm for legal infanticide. However, people tend not to take me seriously on abortion policy at all because I take such an extreme position. Some think I'm being facetious and think I'm anti-abortion. When I ran for NYS senate in 2002 as nominee of the Conservative & Republican parties, even though I answered a questionnaire and laid out my position on the open-ended part, a pro-abortion group had me down as anti-abortion. It might've been because they took me facetiously, or because I was on the Conservative line, or because I said I disagreed with the opinion in Roe v Wade. It wasn't until this year, when I ran for state assembly as a Conservative, that someone finally questioned my county chairman about the answer I'd given in 2002! (The chairman didn't even know about it, or hadn't remembered. I'm the county sec'y too.) And I'd run for public office again at least once in the interim.

    So take a position too far out there, you don't push the envelope, you just fall outside it and lose influence.

  • ||

    OT: This is a Michael Bay movie? I guess they go on a rampage and kill half the population of Miami...or something.

  • Whiterun Guard||

    It's got Rob Corddry in it, so I'll see it.

    On a pirated DVD in Liberia.

  • Mensan||

    An action comedy based on real-life kidnapping and murder. That's tasteful.

  • ||

    You mean like Fargo?

  • Lyle||

    Bobby Jindal sort of fits this bill too. Although he and and Rand Paul aren't really social conservatives, they're really just defenders and promoters of religious liberty. Jim DeMint may be like that too actually.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Nowadays, religious liberty *is* a socially conservative position.

    Now, I'll grant that the risible anti-Sharia activists are "conservative" after their own fashion, but apart from that, the people attacking religious freedom today are on the proggie end of the spectrum.

  • Hyperion||

    Every proglodyte I have ever known, are anti-christian to an absurd degree. They are totally obsessed by it. Many of them also hate Joos, but never make mention of Islam, that seems to be Taboo and cannot be discussed.

  • sarcasmic||

    Every proglodyte I have ever known, are anti-christian to an absurd degree.

    Dude, they're just showing tolerance. You see, Christians are intolerant. So hostility to Christianity is the height of tolerance since tolerant people show tolerance by not tolerating intolerance.
    The Joos control the banking system, so they are to be hated. Except for good Joos like Krugnuts.
    Other religions are OK because they show tolerance by not tolerating Christians, Muslims especially.

  • RickC||

    I see the same knee-jerk reaction amongst progs to being white. Read a column the other day (sorry can't remember whose) where the writer recounted a, to him, stunning experience while attending a graduation ceremony at one of California's premier universities.

    The female valedictorian's speech included a line about how by 2050 the U.S. would no longer be a majority white country. All the white students present cheered this news. I guess the propaganda inculcates a lot of self-hatred amongst a certain demographic.

  • Loki||

    All the white students present cheered this news.

    The self hating white prog-tard is almost as much of a streotype now as the self hating jew.

    Also they think that those poor oppressed minorities will finally give all the "bad" white people (i.e. non prog-tard) their comeuppance.

  • Loki||

    Every proglodyte I have ever known, are anti-christian to an absurd degree. They are totally obsessed by it.

    Describes my sister to a tee. This was an actual conversation I had when we were going somewhere in Denver:

    Me: "Keep going in the general direction of the big church over there."

    Her: "What church?"

    Me: "See the building with the big cross on it?"

    Her: "Oh I tend to to not even see crosses, I just block them out."

    Me: "Very tolerant and open minded of you."

    Her: *glares impotently for a few seconds and then STFU*

  • ||

    "Every proglodyte I have ever known, are anti-christian to an absurd degree."
    It is so horrible how Christians have been persecuted in this country. Denied marriage, shut out of adoption, and even sent to jail for consensual sexual relationships. So awful.

  • Sevo||

    "defenders and promoters of religious liberty."

    What mean?

  • Lyle||

    Not-anti Christian. Jindal's voucher program allows parents to send their kids to religious affiliated schools. It has to because the most the good schools in the state are religious, Catholic and Episcopalian schools.

    Some parents will choose to use it to send their kid to some crackpot preacher's school though too. Oh well. Liberty.

  • Lyle||

    most of

  • R C Dean||

    Traditional morality and limited government aren't enemies. They're friends.

    Mebbe, mebbe not. It depends on whether you view the jackboot and the nightstick as appropriate vehicles for the expression of your traditional morality.

  • Whiterun Guard||

    All Americans agree on how they want the economy to be: tons of free shit and low taxes.

    So the only thing to disagree on is social issues.

  • albo||

    low taxes

    Except on the rich--they should get higher taxes.

    Why? Well, just because.

  • John||

    And remember, the rich means "anyone but the person talking".

  • sarcasmic||

    That's easy. By virtue of the fact that they are rich, one must conclude that they haven't paid their fair share. Because if they had then they wouldn't be rich!

  • Hyperion||

    No Americans, that is zero that I am speaking of here, want to pay higher taxes. They want YOU to pay higher taxes.

  • RightNut||

    Interesting point...My only thought on why current social conservative politicians are fiscal conservatives as well is that social conservatism has taken an absolute beating in the last 6 years. From 2000-2006 social conservatives controlled the federal government. Did this time period end up in a reawakening of social conservative values in America? No. Did it lead to long term electoral success at least? No. Even Republicans seem to be sick of social conservatives from the failures of Rick Santorum and Mike Huckabee. Politicians are slippery creatures, but part of that is understanding when the ground has moved under your feet. Social conservatism has failed to win elections. Time to try something else.

  • robc||

    From 2000-2006 social conservatives controlled the federal government.

    Neocons arent socons.

  • RightNut||

    Neocons care far far more about foreign policy than domestic. For domestic policy social conservatives definitely were in power for that time span.

  • Chris Mallory||

    No, there was pretty much a vacuum, except for the Neo-cons telling the So-Cons "Support us or Israel dies and we all know that Jesus loves Israel."

  • RightNut||

    Maybe you weren't around for Bush's compassionate conservatism BS. No Child Left Behind, Medicare Part D, Terry Schiavo, Safe port act, ect...

  • Cytotoxic||

    Neocons do have a domestic agenda and much of it is agreeable to SoCons ex WOD. Basically agreeable authoritarianism.

  • robc||

    Neocon domestic agenda is agreeable to socons on social issues and progressives on economic issues, as neocons favor big government.

  • Hyperion||

    Time to try something else

    They did, they ran a RINO who pretended to be social conservative, fiscal conservative, or whatever else they thought would get votes. They did this twice and lost both times. Their answer? More of the same, but sell it better next time. That is the GOP strategy.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    "From 2000-2006 social conservatives controlled the federal government."

    Yeah, I shudder when I recollect G.W. Bush's Police for the Promotion of Virtue and the Repression of Vice wandering the streets throwing acid in the face of unveiled women.

    When you see certain socons agreeing on any repressive measure, you will also see them snuggled up in bed with the progs. Eg, gambling and drug bans.

  • RightNut||

    Do you guys really not remember this guy.

  • Juice||

    Or this guy.

  • R C Dean||

    Social conservatism has failed to win elections. Time to try something else.

    Looks like what the Repubs are going to try is Dem-Lite on higher taxes and MOAR SPENDING!!

    Honestly, from a purely tactical perspective, why the House doesn't just pass a 90 day extension of the damned Obushma tax rates and postponement of the sequester and go home is a mystery to me. Get it out of the lame duck session, maybe try to work a deal (if you have to) when at least the President is in town rather than on his 3 week Hawaiian vacay. Make the Dems kill it, if they want to, whatever.

  • Sudden||

    Methinks Boehner is just looking for a txpayer subsidized "business trip" to Hawaii.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Borrow-and-Spend Republicanism!

    Yay!

  • sarcasmic||

    Citizens! In all times, two political systems have been in existence, and each may be maintained by good reasons. According to one of them, Government ought to do much, but then it ought to take much. According to the other, this two-fold activity ought to be little felt. We have to choose between these two systems. But as regards the third system, which partakes of both the others, and which consists in exacting everything from Government, without giving it anything, it is chimerical, absurd, childish, contradictory, and dangerous. Those who parade it, for the sake of the pleasure of accusing all governments of weakness, and thus exposing them to your attacks, are only flattering and deceiving you, while they are deceiving themselves.
    Bastiat
  • Hyperion||

    I agree with Rand Paul, the only one making sense on this fiscal cliff non-sense. Give the Dems everything they want, vote present, and let them pass any tax hikes or spending programs that they want to. Let them go completely nuts. Let's get this show on the road. They will never stop their insane spending until they crash the economy completely. So why wallow in this misery for decades when we can get it over with quickly?

  • RightNut||

    I'd like that myself. My only worry is that Dems will campaign on having saved the economy from Republicans who only want to protect the rich, and that Americans are no longer smart enough to see the obvious lie.

  • Cytotoxic||

    I don't think that's a good idea. "Crashing" does not mean a clean 'ReBoot'. It could mean a new authoritarian/Zimbabwe style perma-decrepitude.

  • Hyperion||

    It could mean that, but there is no stopping it, so why not just get it over with? People have discovered that they can vote themselves more free stuff, so we are screwed, it's just a question of how long the misery continues before the crash.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Softer landings are better landings.

  • Robert||

    Because we won't "get it over with". If the economy crashes completely, it's laying there broken on the ground, not like some Looney Tune figure that gets up and dusts itself off. It's not as if going broke sooner gets you out of the hole faster.

  • SAL||

    Not only abortion is not a measure of social conservatism at all, but looking for a correlation pattern in the U.S. Congress, where the only party who claims to be fiscally conservative happens to be essentially socially conservative, has no statistical value. In fact, some of the best fiscal conservatives are the most libertarian ones (as Ron and Rand Paul).

    Traditional morality and limited government aren't enemies.

    Please refer to the billions spent on the war on drugs, heterosexual marriage fiscal privileges, enforcement of prostitution-related 'crimes' etc

  • SIV||

    The WoDs and "human trafficking" (ie "White Slavery") are progressive causes.

    This country was a hel of a lot more "socially conservative" when a 12 y/o girl could walk a block over from the red light district to purchase laudanum from a druggist.Perfectly legal pre-1914.

  • Calidissident||

    Come on SIV. Human trafficking is a progressive cause? I wouldn't call it a cause of any political movement. Progressives may not have a great record on the WOD, but polling consistently shows that self-identified liberals are more open to ending it (at least partially) than self-identified conservatives are. Including exit polls from the measures in Washington, Colorado, and Oregon.

    SAL, I also agree with your point. Given that most social liberals are in the Democratic Party, which is also fiscally liberal, it's not surprising that whatever fiscal conservatives you will find will also be socially conservative. Gary Johnson hasn't been in Congress, but he's one of the most fiscally conservative governors in recent memory, and he is pro-choice

  • SIV||

    "Human trafficking" is the cause du jour for Nicholas Kristoff and anti-prostitution feminists.

  • Calidissident||

    Prostitution isn't synonymous with human trafficking. There are many girls in the human trafficking industry that are legitimately being forced into it and I don't think that should be legal. Now there are a lot of progressives against prostitution in general. But there's an even greater number of SoCons

  • johnl||

    Name one.

  • Calidissident||

    Name one what? SoCon who thinks prostitution should be illegal? How about 99% of GOP politicians? And the vast majority of evangelical church goers. Seriously?

  • SAL||

    Cali, apparently it's necessary to state the obvious, that the average GOP voter is more conservative than the average Democrat

  • nebLiver||

    I think one big thing these social conservatives miss (or ignore?) is that they essentially advocate two different sets of law for gay couples and straight couples (e.g. the fiscal privileges you mention). How is that small government or more specifically, on the side of a sound rule of law?

  • SAL||

    I believe they ignore that blatant injustice because they aren't moved by coherent principles but by tradition.

  • Robert||

    Actually I think they are moved by a coherent principle that's about 1,000 yrs. old, just not commonly recognized as such: that we need to make & save money and have baby boys so they can go off & fight crusades against infidels, and girls so we can repopulate after plagues.

  • R C Dean||

    heterosexual marriage fiscal privileges

    Let's see, I pay significantly more taxes under the marriage privilege (at a guess, around $15K per year).

    Our property is all held jointly with right of succession, so it would pass tax-free whether we were married or not.

    As far as I can tell, being married is a non-trivial fiscal burden. If there are some fiscal privileges out there for married people, I'd love to find out about them so I can start cashing in.

  • johnl||

    When one spouse makes much more than the other, they pay less by being married. When they both make similar amounts, they pay more.

  • SAL||

  • jaydubya||

    I fail to see the point. Is Mr Carney trying to claim that there is some causul relationship between one's opinions on abortion and one's opinion on government spending? How does supporting further government regulation of women's ovaries lead to supporting less government regulation in other areas? Social conservatives tend to support measures that lead to significant spending - the drug war, tax breaks for churches, wars of choice. How do these opinions fit into the social conservative fiscal calculus?
    My own opinion of social conservatism is that it apes the miopic socialism of today's democratic party - a hodgepodge of wedge issues designed to foster voter coalitions that are, when viewed together, nonsensical practically and ethically.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Gosh, a correlation between not wanting to *kill* the unborn and not wanting to tax them without their consent? As if there was a common element of support for the rights of the unborn? And as if the people who have no problem with killing the unborn don't have a problem with saddling the unborn with unsustainable spending commitments which can only be dealt with by high taxes or default?

    So illogical...

  • jaydubya||

    You failed to address the point of my post, sir. The author of the article cited above claims a causal relationship between fiscal and social conservatism. I fail to see the link, as noted here: "Social conservatives tend to support measures that lead to significant spending - the drug war, tax breaks for churches, wars of choice. How do these opinions fit into the social conservative fiscal calculus?" Besides a trite rejoinder equating abortion with murder (google "begging the question fallacy") do you have a response?

  • aelhues||

    Slightly off point maybe, but how is a tax break, spending?

    Slightly more on point, and maybe I missed it, but a causal relationship?

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    I fail to see the link, as noted here: "Social conservatives tend to support measures that lead to significant spending - the drug war, tax breaks for churches, wars of choice. How do these opinions fit into the social conservative fiscal calculus?"

    Political tribalism and nostalgic impulses more than anything else. SoCons tend to equate drugs, hostility to Christianity, and anti-military radicalism with leftist hippies from the 60s-70s, which most Republicans were on the vanguard of fighting against during that period. When people are are traditionalist-minded see a movement steeped in cultural marxism that's actively remaking your country into something radically different from the one they grew up in, they'll tend to support whatever those radical movements are fighting against, simply out of reaction to their overall hostility towards those movements.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    If you think "tax breaks for churches" are an exclusively socon thing, then try to repeal them. You'll find a lot of proggy churches and their allies opposing you.

    And if you think "wars of choice" are socon, then is Obama a socon for his war in Libya and his prolongation of the war in Afghanistan?

  • jaydubya||

    I should note here that my comment in no way voices support for or opposition to abortion. Drawing a weak correlation between opinions on taxes and opinions on abortion only serves to show us how a number of politicians have chosen to get themselves elected: through a coalition of "church folk" zealots and "chamber of commerce" corporatists. I agree with both groups on some issues from time to time. For example, as a personal, moral issue I am deeply troubled by abortion. And as rule, I typically support any measure that reduces taxes. That said, I find both groups distasteful and they find us distasteful - one need only look at the attempts to purge us from the republican primaries to realize that these people are not our friends, and it is unlikely they will ever be.

  • extricated||

    I don't understand many elements of social conservatism; however, I don't see abortion as strictly a "social-conservative" issue. The intent isn't to restrict the choice of a would be parent, it is securing the liberty of a yet to be born human.
    This is probably part of why there are huge debates regarding when "life" begins. In most (if not all) states, a criminal can be charged with murder if their criminal actions kill an unborn child. Is the child's status as "blob of tissue" vs. "unborn baby" dependent on whether it is wanted by the mother?

  • Virginian||

    Traditional morality serves a purpose in a society with a limited government. It used to be that being an unmarried mother led to major economic hardship. Now it means that your EBT card gets 1500 dollars on it every month. Incentives matter over all else. The breakdown of the traditional family is not because of gays or porn or teh Messicans or teh Muslimmzz or whatever other nonsense. It is due solely to the fact that a woman can now have multiple children from multiple fathers and suffers no real hardship from that choice, because the State is ready to step in and financially support her and her offspring.

    Why do you think women, in general, are so statist? The single mother support system that is the welfare state, combined with an ever expanding bureaucracy to create make work jobs for females with degrees that range from absolutely useless to ones with marginal utility means that an overwhelming number of women are dependent on big government. Luckily, they can vote to continuously expand it.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    Why do you think women, in general, are so statist? The single mother support system that is the welfare state, combined with an ever expanding bureaucracy to create make work jobs for females with degrees that range from absolutely useless to ones with marginal utility means that an overwhelming number of women are dependent on big government. Luckily, they can vote to continuously expand it.

    It was pretty much inevitable that when women got the vote, that government would become massively more expansionist and intrusive--because it had been women at the forefront of most of the social reform movements of the Progressive Era.

    And that was fine at the beginning, because in a low-scale, culturally homogenous society, these sort of New Deal-style programs can have a greater impact at a much lower cost. Progressivism will fall to pieces in a "diverse" society eventually, because everyone divides up tribally and looks to protect the interests of their own group ahead of the others.

  • J_L_B||

    Progressivism will fall to pieces in a "diverse" society eventually, because everyone divides up tribally and looks to protect the interests of their own group ahead of the others.

    Ironic, considering that progressives champion a society where everyone divides up tribally.

  • aelhues||

    Nearly all of my family and friends are significantly more socially conservative with regards to policy than I am, but are nearly, equally fiscally conservative.

    If you frequent most popular conservative blogs, that seems to be the norm. There is certainly a fair amount of variance in how much of the power to enforce morality, individuals want in the hands of the government in general, and certainly more specifically the feds.

  • Joea0211||

    Being anti-abortion does not make you "non-libertarian". Even atheists who believe in the "natural law" can be anti abortion. If you believe the fetus is a unique individual and that that persons existence begins at conception then it has the same right to live as any other human being. You can make the case as most libertarians do the the fetus is a "parasite" that is feeding on the Mother and therefore the mothers rights supersedes the fetus but that is an arbitrary philosophical decision. Abortion rights is a inaccurate measure social conservatism.

  • ZackTheHypochondriac||

    "Being anti-abortion does not make you "non-libertarian"."

    yes it does, regardless of which way you want to do it.

    1st version- if the fetus is its own entity and has full negative rights, then the woman has the right to remove it from her property(womb). if it dies, oh well, it should have provided for itself better.

    2nd version- the fetus is the property of the woman, in this case it is her right to do whatever she wants with her property, kill it or torture it or whatever.

    this means its not only okay to let fetuses die(1) or kill them(2) it is also okay to do (1or2) to infants, toddlers, animals and so on, until they become capable of providing for themselves or become their own property.

    abortion is controversial among pot smoking, anti war republicans not libertarians.

  • ZackTheHypochondriac||

    I should clarify, this only applies to people who think abortion should be illegal, you can of course be morally against abortion as a libertarian, just not legally against it.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Simply to riff on what John said above - the kind of person who defends unborn life in season and out of season, despite the mockery and the accusations of vaginal rape, is someone with principle who is willing to brave the opposition of short-term thinkers. So why should it be surprising that many of the same people are consistent supporters of deficit reduction, despite the screams of short-term thinkers?

  • ||

    FUCK THE ABORTION ISSUE!!!!

  • carol||

    I am adamantly pro-life, against the WOD, support gay marriage and I guess I am a bigoted, nativist Rethuglican because I happen to believe that countries should have every right to control who is allowed to cross their borders. Am I a so-con? I would say that I am and I don't see anything about being a so-con that interferes with my being a strict fiscal conservative. In fact, I think that the two views are complimentary.

  • Robert||

    "...to control who is allowed to cross their borders"...in either direction?

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Meanwhile, Planned Parenthood fires a scapegoat...I mean rogue employee who expressed a willingness to cover up statutory rape. Too bad the event was caught on tape by a pro-lifer, because now people will think Planned Parenthood was simply attempting damage control after one of its staff got caught.

    http://www.lifenews.com/2008/12/10/state-3699/

  • np||

    'The best fiscal conservatives in politics are all social conservatives'

    Aside from local politics in New Hampshire, libertarians never gain any traction, so to be elected you either run as D or R. And obviously any campaigning or rhetoric on the fiscal conservatism will be on the Republican side. However! In order to win on Team Red, you must also have some social conservatism bona fides.

  • ||

    I'm a fiscal-conservative/social-liberal (whatever those words mean anymore), so you can ask me what it's like.

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