I enjoy listening to right-wing talk radio because I believe in "know your enemy."
Reality- based progressives like me who respect science and truth, unlike many Republicans, find it hard to understand how so-called conservatives are willing to embrace obvious falsehoods.
I say so-called, because my interest in politics began in the 60's, fueled by my mother's rabid Republicanism. Yet she also loved science, nature, preserving the environment. She was a conservationist, which used to have something to do with "conservative."
No more. Not in the Tea Party crazed Republican Party of today, where scientific truths have become dirty words.
(Not in China, though, where clean energy and other high tech industries are being massively supported by the government -- which threatens American supremacy in applied science.)
This afternoon I tuned into the local Lars Larson show on KXL to get additional insights into the often weirdly-functioning right-wing mind. Larson took a call from a guy who cogently argued why top predators like wolves are an important part of the natural Oregon ecosystem.
The caller also thought that runs of wild salmon needed to be preserved. Larson couldn't grasp what he was saying. Notions of ecology, balances of nature, feedback loops, sustainability and such apparently couldn't penetrate Larson's simplistic view of reality.
"If something is good for humans," Larson said, "then we should do it."
The caller tried to explain that we human beings are dependent on the natural world for our survival. If we screw up the oceans, forests, agricultural land, water supplies, energy sources, and so on, then what is "good" today (strip mining, over fishing, deforestation, overdrawing of aquifers, etc.) is going to be "bad" for us tomorrow.
This is so obvious. Yet a dismayingly large number of right-wingers fail to recognize an undeniable truth: we humans are animals, albeit intelligent ones, who are as dependent on the natural world for our survival as any other animal is.
Our actions have consequences.
If we mindlessly kill off other species; if we pollute the air, water, or earth; if we rapidly warm the planet in a fashion that no other animal has ever done before; if we exhaust the world's fossil fuel energy supplies without developing renewable sources; then...
We're screwed. Which means: ignore Lars Larson'ish right-wing wrong-headedness. Be a genuine conservative and work to conserve Earth's habitability for human life.
"we live in the natural world". scuse me but i didn't see mother nature supply the internet this message is carried on...or the computer keys that created it...or the house you're living in Hinesight or the food you eat every day...or the roads you drive on. unless you're living under a tree somewhere creating these messages on "naturally" occurring phenomena i'm not aware of. Humans bend the world around them to their uses...and we are conservative about the damage we do...but tell me how you exist only using what the "natural world" provides?
Posted by: Lars | August 25, 2011 at 07:28 AM
Lars, everything humans do and everything humans are, that's the natural world. We are made of the same 92 naturally occurring elements that the rest of the observable universe is. We evolved from a single cell common ancestor just like every other living creature on Earth has.
We are primates, the most intelligent ones on the planet. We are no less natural than the robin which built a nest in our carport this year. Our "nests" are more complex, that's all. We humans depend for our existence 100% on the natural world. That's where the energy we need to survive on comes from.
Nature. The food we eat, the air we breathe, the water we drink. It all comes from nature. Our bodies are natural; our brains are natural. Every cell of which we're made is natural. So how can our actions, our behaviors, our thoughts not be natural?
Being highly evolved primates, the problem is that our natural actions can cause natural results that are detrimental to our continued natural survival. Unfortunately, anti-science right-wingers don't realize this.
Posted by: Blogger Brian | August 25, 2011 at 08:10 AM
"Everything humans do and everything humans are, that's the natural world." Huh? C'mon, Brian, now you're just making crap up.
If everything humans do is natural, what's your definition for synthetic? How do you define artificial?
Existing in or caused by nature; not made or caused by humankind
Posted by: DJ | August 25, 2011 at 07:38 PM
I remember Lars when I lived in Oregon. I used to switch to the more calm and measured rhetoric of Michael Savage. What a sweetheart. A dear man. So misunderstood.
Do you get Dennis Prager? He is conservative, but reasonably and fairly so, I think.
Michael Medved, another conservative, is pretty smart and a history buff. You may disagree but you better come prepared with plenty of ammo if you want to shoot him down. He does have a rather passionate dislike of street bums. He doesn't like them shitting in his neighborhood park and leaving needles around.
How about Dennis Miller. Here is a pretty smart guy as well who makes sense but only if you can process all his obscure cultural metaphors and references. If you can keep up with him, the dude can be a riot.
Then there is Hugh Hewitt. Liberals have to hate this guy. He's good at what he does.
Then there are the partisan Rush, Hannity and Laura Ingraham. I enjoyed Rush back in the late 80's when Martin Sheen was grandstanding about the plight of the homeless. Rush commissioned a bus and delivered a load to Martin's house. I don't think they got past the gate. "Put 'em up somewhere, but not in my neighborhood!"
Agree or disagree, all these conservative commentators and plenty more get good ratings.
I wonder why liberal talk radio, if you can find it, gets poor ratings?
Oh well, liberals have the news media in general and places like the Daily Kos and Huffington Post, not to mention the once great, but now thoroughly corrupt and irresponsible NY Times.
Posted by: tucson | September 06, 2011 at 11:04 PM
>> I wonder why liberal talk radio, if you can find it, gets poor ratings?
Because liberals are too busy thinking and doing for themselves, unlike conservatives, who have to be told what to do and think.
Posted by: Nw | September 07, 2011 at 03:02 PM
I am a conservative. I used to be a listener. I used to be a friend. There are a lot of us "used to be's" out here. He is losing listeners. He does not have the ability to come up with original thought, but he does love to argue. He will argue heresay. He is an arrogant, ambitious man with average talents. The only thing he works really hard at is self promotion. He has hit his glass ceiling here in Portland.
Posted by: Donald Duck | October 15, 2011 at 02:47 PM
It's is true. Liberalism is a mental disorder.
Posted by: Sam Putnam | October 06, 2016 at 06:04 AM