Why Do They Do Such Awful Things? Radical Bleeding Heart image

Are Republicans Evil?

Hmmm. Let's see.

They like to kill people. They like to torture people. And they like to destroy people's lives. Oh, and they like to rob people—[but that is just business, not pleasure.]

Sure, they are evil. Evil is as evil does, and they are devoted to doing evil.

Conservatives and Evil. It is important to remember that conservatives have always been on the side of evil. They fought to prevent democracy. They fought to preserve slavery. Then they fought to maintain segregation and Jim Crow. They were passionate about denying women the right to vote. And now they absolutely insist that thousands of people must die every year of curable diseases. From the things they stand for, the causes they passionately champion, you would think that they must be demons from hell.

The ruling value that unites the various political positions collected under the label of “conservative” is an abiding and unshakable faith in the efficacy of violence, brutality, cruelty, and killing as the solution to all problems, a faith perfectly immune to any and all evidence to the contrary. It is thus patent that they cherish violence for its own sake. So when psuedo-conservatives pompously proclaim that liberals do not understand evil while they themselves do, they are speaking knowledgeably, from a deep and dark well of ancient intimacy.

But of course we are bleeding-heart sob sisters and we know that things are always more complicated than that.

If you get to know every-day Republicans (not the politicians or the fire-breathing bloviators) many may appear to be extremely kind and pleasant folks. Their personalities may seem quite inconsistent with their whole-hearted endorsement of war, torture, electric chairs, and various other forms of cruelty, brutality and violence.

The Alphas and the Ovines. To understand this peculiar paradox it helps to consider the fact that there are two kinds of Republicans (yes, there are of course many kinds, depending on which prism you use to view them, but this particular division illuminates this particular problem). There are Alpha Republicans and there are Ovine Republicans. These are in many ways very different sorts of critter, but they have one thing in common: They are utterly lacking in conscience.

But aren't those guys perpetually talking about morality? Indeed they are, but that is quite different from having a conscience. A conscience is one's personal guide to right and wrong. The key word is “personal.” It comes from within. That is what Republicans lack. What they have in its place, and what they regard as a far superior guide to conduct, is what was formerly called a “point of honor.” It is different for Alphas than for Ovines.

The Alpha Republican point of honor is winning. They are ashamed of nothing so long as they feel they are in the lead. That can mean lots of things: making money, kicking the other guy in the chops, or gathering the adoration of fawning Ovines. They love to tell you that their motto is “Unless you are the lead dog, the view never changes.” They smirk when that say that.

The Ovine Republican point of honor is obedience. They are enormously proud of the fact that they always do what they are told to do, think what they are told to think, and believe what they are told to believe. They feel that there is nothing more disgraceful than thinking for oneself. That is why it is always a mistake to try to explain to Republicans why their idiotic ideas are in fact idiotic. The most wonderful thing about being a Republican is that you never have to think for yourself. You have other people to do that heavy lifting for you.

So when pleasant, amiable Ovine Republicans devote themselves to evil it is because they are convinced they are doing good. That is what they have been told. They live in a different world from you and me.

[Back: So what kind of world do they live in?]