Andrew Breitbart and the advance of social issues conservatism (Part 1)

“We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”  ~ John Adams

It’s been well known for centuries that public policies impact human behavior and can have a detrimental affect on the human soul. Of course the great religions of the world have recognized it. Commandments and tenets counseled dos and don’ts. Today, laws passed by mankind prohibit and discourage, as well as green-light both beneficial and destructive habits.

This website has highlighted the permanent bond between the economic and social issues. The challenge of those who support and defend traditional values is to improve their arguments so they’ll prevail. Many of those who are wrong on the social issues can be persuaded.

Website activist Andrew Breitbart is a case in point. Just a short eighteen months ago on his show Uncommon Knowledge the Hoover Institute’s Peter Robinson interviewed Breitbart, a man whose name was just then becoming increasingly known. From the transcript:

Peter: “Who is Andrew Breitbart? Washington Television Producer, Tammy Haddad, Andrew Breitbart is ‘one of the 10 most important people in the media, who nobody has ever met.'”

It was my pleasure to first hear him when he substituted on Michael Savage’s radio show a year or two ago. Flipping the radio dial in my car I came across the program on a Chicago station and was very impressed by Breitbart’s aggressive and articulate defense of limited government economic conservatism.

This past February I had the opportunity to thank him in person for his fine work while at the National Tea Party Convention in Nashville. Eighteen months ago he was introduced by Robinson as having only had two websites. Breitbart now has six: breitbart.com, breitbart.tv, biggovernment.com, bighollywood.com, bigjournalism.com and bigpeace.com.

Andrew Breitbart is just the kind of talent conservatives need to see more of within their ranks. According to Wikipedia — he’s young (41), married with four kids. His style and success make him an effective spokesman with potential to reach that all important generation that is younger than he is.

There’s just one problem as I see it — and it’s a big one. Andrew Breitbart said in the Robinson interview that he is not “a social conservative.”

The good news, however, is that because of his own description of his conversion from economic liberal to economic conservative, Breitbart, like many others who just haven’t come around yet, is a very good candidate for conversion to social conservatism.

Here is how Breitbart explained to Robinson his political move from economic left to right:

Peter: “So what changed your politics…?”

Andrew:  “…I lived in a rent control apartment and I started to see what it did to people’s soul quite frankly. People who thought they were making out like bandits saving 400, 500, 600 dollars a month 10 years later were still there and weren’t entering the American dream. My family members [still live] in that apartment [while] I have bought two houses since then and I have been able to move up the scale.”

Breitbart then relates how watching the Clarence Thomas hearings also moved him to the right politically. The flagrant bias and what Breitbart called the “Democrat Media Complex” had him cheering for Thomas’ confirmation after having begun the hearings rooting for him to be taken down.

Two simple points need to be made. First, by their very nature the social issues impact the soul at least as much if not more than do the economic issues. Second, the left wing media bias is never more apparent than when it comes to the portrayal of the social issues — abortion and the radical agenda of those who practice homosexual activity.

Surely, those who can see the negative impact on the soul of bad economic policy can eventually understand how bad social policies also impact the soul. The stories of women who have had abortions suffering psychologically in the years afterwards are legion. And organizations such as NARTH have chronicled the physical and mental health problems that show up in much greater numbers in those who practice homosexuality. Both have economic costs involved as well.

Up next: Part 2.

©2010 John Francis Biver