Jonah Goldberg: ‘Liberals Are Culture War Aggressors’

Can you believe it’s 2013 and an article with the above title still has to be written? The shame of it is that many Republicans and “economic conservatives” haven’t even been able to grasp the obvious: social issues conservatives didn’t start the culture war. I use quotation marks around “economic conservatives” because typically social issues liberals inside the Republican Party are at best statist and pro big government when it comes to the size and scope of government. They merely want to spend a few bucks less than the Democrats.

Those who would insist that they really do want to limit government, balance budgets, and pay down debt, well, they need to learn how reaching those goals will be impossible with a decaying culture. When it comes down to it — there is no separating the economic issues from the social issues.

And as far as the libertarians go, let me just say, until they study the Constitution and learn what the Framers said about our First Freedom, they shouldn’t claim to support liberty. Hey dudes, Religious Liberty is in the Constitution!

Here are a few excerpts from Jonah Goldberg’s column titled above. (By the way, I still highly recommend Goldberg’s book “Liberal Fascism” — you can read my review of it here.)

Maybe someone can explain to me how, exactly, conservatives are the aggressors in the culture war? In the conventional narrative of American politics, conservatives are obsessed with social issues. They want to impose their values on everyone else. They want the government involved in your bedroom. Those mean right-wingers want to make “health care choices” for women.

Now consider last week’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to consider two cases stemming from Obamacare: Conestoga Wood Specialties v. Sebelius and Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores. Democratic politicians and their fans on social media went ballistic almost instantly. That’s hardly unusual these days. But what’s revealing is that the talking points are all wrong.


But leaving the rest of us out of it is exactly the opposite intent of the authors of Obamacare. The law forces not only arts and crafts shops but also Catholic charities and other religiously inspired groups to choose between fulfilling their mission or violating their values. You may have no moral objection to such things, but millions of people do. By what right are liberals seeking to impose their values on everyone else? Isn’t that something they denounce conservatives for?

They could have allowed for plans that exclude controversial forms of birth control — or even uncontroversial ones — which would have lowered premium costs and expanded health care coverage to more poor people.

But Democrats wanted a wedge issue to drum up a new battle in the culture war — a war in which liberals have always been the aggressors.

Read the entire article here…

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