Conservative first, then a Republican

 conservativeConservative first, then a Republican is how I have always identified myself. In all fairness, I have always registered as a Republican since my 18th birthday in 1988. With great pride, I voted for George H. W. Bush twice. But before you quit reading any further, I will not vote for candidates for any public office that do not share my conservative values. While this is something I have always shared in private with friends and family, this is the first time I have shared this publicly.

The Gadsden flag, the image I decided to use for this post, was used by the American colonists during the American Revolution. The rattlesnake image was used on colonial currency, on newspapers, and everywhere else the colonials could express the displeasure with British rule. The snake was used after Benjamin Franklin suggested the colonists send rattlesnakes to Britain because of the criminals being sent to the colonies. Soon, Franklin’s words became a rallying point for every anti-British sentiment. It is not surprising that the rattlesnake on a yellow background would become the banner of the Colonial Marines in 1775. [1][2]

Conservative first.

I never would have considered myself as being political. The longer I’ve studied politics the more I feel the need to become involved. Since the day I left the U. S. Army in 1996, I began feeling the need to become politically active. As a college student I heard the never-ending praise of Marxism and the morality of socialism. I have even heard others claim that all Republicans are conservatives. This is incorrect. There are many who identify as Republicans who simply are not conservative. In truth, there are more conservatives that register as Republican because there is no real other choice in our nation’s two-party system.

Conservative values

I became a conservative sometime while serving out my enlistment. My conservative values became entrenched while in graduate school. Even though I may disagree with the national leadership, I still have a profound love for this nation. We often hear from the mainstream media and liberals that we have to check our love of the nation and patriotism. I’ve even been told that my love of the nation is nothing more than veiled fascism. The reasoning liberalism hates patriotism is simple. The love of one’s nation undermines the move towards globalism. Just as there’s nothing wrong with having a favorite sports team, there’s nothing wrong with favoring one’s own nation.

The virtue of pro-life…

I am a supporter of the pro-life movement. This is because of my faith and  my belief in the sanctity of life. I do not agree with the trends in Europe where euthanasia is being legalized. There’s already a movement in a handful of nations that will allow others to determine if your life is too much of a burden on the family or the community to warrant you remaining alive. [3] [4] For me, I do not understand the hypocrisy of the liberal movement. They are willing to spare the life of someone on death row but unwilling to ban abortion or euthanasia.

The virtue of a small national government

During my college education, I read the Federalist Papers and Jefferson’s response, the Anti-Federalist Papers. Within both points of view, it was understood that some level of national government was needed. What differed was the power and reach of that new national government.

For this reason, political power was designed to be shared between the national government and the member states. Since those days, the national government, through various means, has managed to increase its own power over the states. The Constitution was amended (Amendment XVII) to allow for direct election of senators – completely disregarding the intent of the framers to establish a state check on national government power. Without state control over the Senate, the national bureaucracy will continue to grow without any restraints.

The virtue of tax reform

I have often heard liberals claim the United States has the lowest income tax of all the industrialized nations. But what they fail to consider is in most European nations, there are very little local taxes and no state (provincial) taxes. If we consider all the taxes, both direct and indirect paid by the average median American family, roughly 36.6% of an annual income of $50,740. [5] In some places, such as California and New York, the total percentage can rise as high as 48.2%. John Locke, an influential English philosopher, pondered the relationship between life, wages, and taxation.

The more taxes citizens pay, the less consumer spending power they have. In reality, American industry depends on the spending of the consumer. As the government demands more direct and indirect taxes, the less disposable income taxpaying citizens have. Not only are personal taxes high, but the American corporate tax rate is currently 39.1% – the highest in the industrialized world. [6] Many argue these manufacturers pass on the taxes to the consumer. This isn’t exactly true – American corporations must keep their product cost low to compete with imported goods. This hurts American businesses in many ways.

Continued on the next page.

Alan Simmons

Alan Simmons is an adjunct instructor of history at Henderson Community College. He has been teaching at the college/university level since 2004. Within the scope of his degrees, his areas of emphasis are U.S. foreign policy, public policy history, political history, and U.S. history.

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