It’s our beloved tagline: “Not just another conservative blog…” But why?
A little over a year ago, Liberty Relearned was born bearing the tagline: “Not not just another conservative blog.” The idea of the blog then and now, was to teach about conservatism, not through regurgitating the same pabulum you’ve heard over and over again, but by going deep into its central concepts. Lots of people call themselves conservative, they listen to conservative radio hosts, read books by conservative authors, maybe even belong to conservative organizations such as the Tea Party. Everybody who reads this blog comes with their own concept of what conservatism is. For some, conservatism means following social norms based upon religious or traditional values. For others, it means following common-sense fiscal principles. Still others refer to the Constitution and the values of the founding fathers. Is there then a common thread or commonality of thought among these types of conservatives? What does it mean to be a conservative? These are the questions that post by post, over time this blog seeks to answer.
If you’re on social media (and who isn’t), you’re constantly exposed to ‘meme warfare’, those snappy snippets of wisdom. You might like them, and think they’re clever, and indeed many of them are, but while memes may serve to reinforce a position, they are not very effective at teaching them. They are mainly concerned with personality, and tend to emphasize the negative– how bad Obama, Bernie, Hillary, etc. are. The question is: To the extent these things might be true, why? Why is the conservative approach better? Meme warfare, while fun, and entertaining, is like the junk food of conservatism.
Books can be great for learning about conservatism, but all books were not created equal. Some books, and some authors specialize in a very narrow facet of conservatism. If you have only five books on conservatism in your library, and one isn’t by William F. Buckley Jr., you need to plan a trip to the bookstore, or to Amazon. At least one of the others ought to be about, if not by, one of America’s founding fathers.
Conservative talk radio can also be an excellent source of information. Like books, though, not all programs were created equal. As some books fall under the heading ‘pulp fiction’, some programs could fall under the heading: ‘pulp conservatism’, merely recitations of conservative or Republican talking points. Some are quite educational, if you find a host that not just entertains, but enlightens you, tune in as often as possible and read their books. Many shows though only focus on current events. That’s great, but it’s assumed the listener already has a base of conservative knowledge. In any event, they are probably the means by which most people are introduced to conservative thought.
Of course if you’re reading this, you’ve chosen the web as at least one source of conservative information. Needless to say, there is a wide range, both in subject matter and quality, of blogs. On one end, you have the academic sites. These over the course of time can be the equivalent of a college level course on politics. On the other end are those that focus on meme warfare and political satire. Both have value, both are great in getting the conservative message across in their own ways. Somewhere in the middle, perhaps more toward the academic end, is LibertyRelearned.com.
The distinction that hopefully will come through if one follows this blog over time is that there is, as the name suggests, sort of a dual purpose for its existence. There is the slant towards libertarianism and against such oppressive schools of thought such as authoritarianism, statism, and socialism. There is also the educational component– the component meant to answer fundamental questions like: What are the central themes of conservatism, socialism, capitalism, and such? What is so great about our system that we fought to preserve it for over sixty years against the U.S.S.R. during the Cold War? Just what is so great about free-market capitalism? These are the questions that this blog seeks to answer, or better yet, provide some information to help the reader find their own answers.