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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

President's Statement Defines Conservatism

Many conservatives, including me, have at times found themselves frustrated with President Bush when they felt that he was taking a less than conservative stance on certain issues. Today, however, his comments during a morning press conference define what conservative government is all about.

In referring to energy prices, a member of the media stated that "if Americans use less energy, the current supply/demand equation would improve." He then asked the President, "Why have you not sort of called on Americans to drive less and to turn down the thermostat?"

Implicit in that question is the liberal philosophy that people need government to tell them how to run their lives.

The President's answer, however, exemplifies the conservative philosophy that people can figure it out on their own.

They're smart enough to figure out whether they're going to drive less or not. I mean, you know, it's interesting what the price of gasoline has done, is it caused people to drive less. That's why they want smaller cars, they want to conserve. But the consumer is plenty bright, Mark. The marketplace works... people can figure out whether they need to drive more or less; they can balance their own checkbooks.

The reporter still wasn't satisfied. He still seemed to think that it was important for the President to tell the rest of us that we need to conserve:

But you don't see the need to ask -- you don't see the value of your calling for a campaign --

The President interrupted him by agreeing that "people ought to conserve and be wise about how they use gasoline and energy." The President then, however, added the following:

But my point to you, Mark, is that, you know, it’s a little presumptuous on my part to dictate to consumers how they live their lives. The American people are plenty capable and plenty smart people and they'll make adjustments to their own pocketbooks...

And as much as I regret that the gasoline prices are high -- and they are -- I also understand that people are going to make adjustments to meet their own needs. And I suspect you'll see, in the whole, Americans using less gasoline...And as you notice, the automobile industry is beginning to adjust here at home as consumer demand changes. And the great thing about our system, it is the consumer that drives our system; it's the individual American and their collection that end up driving the economy.

Why can't liberals understand that?


Blogger ChuckL said...

"Why can't liberals understand that?" Because it would mean that they have no basis for controlling our lives, and thus, no basis for their existence.

But I know that you know that, so your question is rhetorical. :)

11:42 AM  
Blogger Bryan Alexander said...

Chuck, yes the question was rhetorical, but your answer is exactly correct!

Thanks for visiting.

12:35 PM  
Blogger SkyePuppy said...

That was such a beautiful moment. It also defined liberalism, in the form of the reporter: "Why can't you coerce people into doing what I think they oughta do?"

12:51 PM  

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