Friday, September 28, 2007

What is a Conservative?

This quiz not comprehensive, but it's not bad in terms of the choices for comparison. It offers overlapping viewpoints by listing common clarifications of talking points rather than less specific "on a scale of 1 to 5..." questions. Can you tell I'm as politically conservative as I am theologically conservative?

Fred Thompson
Score: 49
Agree
Iraq
Taxes
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Abortion
Social Security
Line-Item Veto
Marriage
Death Penalty
Disagree
Immigration
Energy
Duncan Hunter
Score: 49
Agree
Iraq
Taxes
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Abortion
Social Security
Line-Item Veto
Marriage
Death Penalty
Disagree
Immigration
Energy

-- Take the Quiz! --


So what is a conservative, anyway? The word is intended to convey the notion that historical ideological norms ought to be conserved.

Politically speaking, this means that conservatives in Saudi Arabia would be ideologically very different than conservatives in France for each set of conservatives would seek to preserve their own historical ideologies. Conservatives in the United States seek to conserve the ideology of the founding of our nation with the understanding that we have learned some lessons and the world has changed considerably since then. However, the principles of the ideology haven't changed, only the application.

Christian theological conservatism is a different thing. One could say that it is merely a throwback to conserving the traditions of a mere generation ago. There are those who follow this. However, true theological conservatism is where it is recognized that an absolute meaning was intended in the message of God to His people. The theological conservative therefore tries to discover and propagate this message.

As an American, I am a political conservative in that I am in agreement with the principles on which this country was founded. As a Christian, I am a conservative in that I believe that God has intentions that I cannot control and commands that I cannot controvert. It is my duty as one of faith to learn what those intentions and commands are as they are clearly communicated by God and teach others what I learn.

And what of non-conservatives? American political non-conservatives do not agree with the founding principles of this nation. Christian theological non-conservatives do not believe that God has intentions that they cannot control and commands that they cannot controvert.

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Note - By posting the results of the above quiz I do not intend to indicate my endorsement of either of these candidates. This merely represents the results of the referenced quiz. However, I think both of these are very capable candidates and worthy of our consideration.

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