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We are polarized over polarization! Who is to blame?
Political polarization is said to be asymmetrical when one of the political poles bears more responsibility than the other for exacerbating the polarization. But given the fact of polarization, it comes as no surprise that the Left blames the Right and the Right the Left. We all seem to agree that polarization is not good, but we disagree as to who the main culprit is.
Horribile dictu, we are polarized over polarization!
As a conservative, it is blindingly evident to me that the Left bears the lion's share of the blame. But leftists don't agree, many of them out of sheer mendacity, a dishonest refusal to own up to their radical agenda. Hillary Clinton, for example, is one of the mendacious, as witness this quotation from her What Happened:
We [the center-left and the left-left] are closer together than any of us are to Trump and the Republicans, who just keep getting more extreme. Bernie Sanders and I wrote the 2016 platform together, and he called it the most progressive one in history. (422)
Now that's just hilarious. Notice how the second sentence contradicts the first. Notice how she unwittingly betrays her radical agenda. The second sentence is true of course. The first is not.
What's going on here? It appears to be some sort of strange psychological projection. Not able forthrightly to admit that her agenda is extreme, she projects extremism into her political opponents who are hardly conservative, but simply less liberal that she is. There is little that is conservative about most Republicans.
We true conservatives are moderates by any reasonable historical standard. I could easily show this with respect to a number of key issues. On immigration, for example, the conservative position avoids both the anti-immigrant stance of nativists and the open borders stance of the contemporary Left. I invite you to consider the rights protected, not granted, by the Bill of Rights. Conservatives are moderates with respect to freedom of religion, free speech, the right peaceably to assemble, and so on.