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Dorkgirl's avatar

Why does it seem Republicans or Conservatives are so angry?

Asked by Dorkgirl (1496points) May 11th, 2009

I’m fairly moderate and over the years have voted both sides of the fence. In the past 10+ years it seems that Republicans have claimed the “conservative” title and deem anyone (or anything) not “conservative” bad. What’s up with that? Why the exclusivity? What’s wrong with moderate thought? Why the vitriol?
I’m not Republican bashing or Anti-conservative. I’m just wondering why there seems to have been such a fundamental shift in the position(s) of the Republican party.
I tend to lean Democrat these days, as I don’t feel like I’m getting slapped down for my “liberal” opinions at every turn.
And, since I’m asking, why does the Republican party keep allowing Rush Limbaugh to be their spokes person? I’m hard pressed to think that he’s truely where the party wants to go.

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13 Answers

shilolo's avatar

What was it that Forrest Gump said?....

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

All people who are really deep into politics are angry about something. There’s some angry angry liberals where I live.

asmonet's avatar

Haven’t you ever met the crazy hippies who scream about Republicans?

There’s always someone on every side.

Dorkgirl's avatar

@The_Compassionate_Heretic Indeed. It seems that I’m hearing the conservative side. I try to block out the truely vitriolic because I don’t need that in my life.
But “liberals” are not necessarily the Democratic party. I’m curious about the melding of Republican Party dogma and the embracing of “conservative”. It seems like Republican and Conservative are interchangable in their own identification of themselves and the media’s representation of them. Can’t I be a liberal Republican (or moderate)? How about a conservative Democrate? It’s almost like the Republican party has co-opted “conservative” for themselves and made an exclusive club.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

@Dorkgirl I think that happened during the Reagan years.

FrankHebusSmith's avatar

It’s cuz they’re “losing” at the moment. You may recall us liberals were very similar while Bush and the Republicans were conquering us early this decade.

allen_o's avatar

George bush? Dick cheyney? John McCain?

It doesn’t take a genius to realise that they are all corrupt money hungry business men. And using Sarah Palin was purely a reaction to Hillary Clinton, the neo-cons are more transparent and corrupt than ever, I can’t believe so many of you follow them

dalepetrie's avatar

So, do you forget Morton Downey, Jr.? 20 some years ago he had his own talk show and he’d scream at liberals, call them pablum puking scum. Of course when his show started to go downhill he carved a swastika in his forehead and claimed he’d been attacked by skinheads in an airport bathroom, and as a double whammy, his in your face chain smoking eventually killed him. And Rush…he’s not all that new, I remember right after Clinton took office, Rush had his own TV show, that he’d start every night with a graphic ala the ones they had during the Iran hostage crisis, where it would say, “America Held Hostage…Day xx”. Conservatives always scream the loudest, especially when they’re out of power…at least it has been the case in my adult life.

I’m biased, I’ll admit it, but it seems to me that much of what passes for current Conservative rhetoric is about fear. Conservatives are afraid that gay marriage will destroy the fabric of the institutions. Conservatives are afraid that the government is going to tax away all their hard earned money and give it to people who are lazy. Conservatives are afraid that illegal immigrants are going to come her and take all our jobs, overcrowd our hospitals, and spread diseases (and suck off the government teat, taking all their hard earned tax dollars). Conservatives are afraid that if we allow bad language and nudity to appear on television or in music lyrics it’s going to lead to the downfall of polite society. Conservatives are afraid if we teach anything other than abstinence based sex ed, our teens are going to get the idea that it’s OK to be promiscuous at a young age. These things make Conservatives not only afraid, but ANGRY….and they HAVE to do something about it.

Or that’s what it seems like on the surface. But really, Conservatism has become more and more about removing regulations from businesses and creating a full blown trickle down economy where businesses make all the decisions. And to be honest, most of these people who really want to see the rich continue to get richer and richer, the ones who want their taxes to be zero, and to operate under zero regulations of any kind…so that they can produce for almost no cost and sell for obscene profits…I’m firmly convinced that many Conservatives who are at heart true fiscal Conservatives/Libertarians/Anarchists at heart really couldn’t give two shits about some of these social issues, but since the days of Reagan when the Republican party first actively courted the “religious right” they’ve tied fiscal conservatism to social conservatism. Why? Because ANGER is what gets people to the polls. People rarely vote FOR someone they really like….most elections are about voting against the person you dislike the most. That’s why we have so many negative ads in an election campaign.

And unfortunately, that’s all the right has these days. Their social views may have been mainstream in the 80s when most people didn’t know a single openly gay person, for example…but now all this fear, which was based on a lack of familiarity, is just gone for many voters, so it doesn’t resonate…but the ones who still fear gays, you have to shout loud about how accepting them will destroy our nation to get the max number of the fearful to the polls. Their economic policies, which have had a stranglehold on the US for 28 years, where the idea was deregulate the top, let the money go to the rich first and they’ll create jobs with it, has failed utterly…the whole house of cards has FINALLY come down, and the only way they can resonate with people is to scare them against this HUGE government the liberals want to build so they can raise YOUR taxes and give the money to lazy people. That message just isn’t going to resonate with anyone but an angry, scared person. And Security, which was the 3rd leg in the Conservative platform…that message worked really good in the aftermath of 9/11, where you could invoke the phrase and people would be afraid that Dems couldn’t keep us safe the way Republicans could. Now people are waking up to the fact that Democrats were the ones who said that attacking Iraq would ultimately make us less safe because a decentralized Iraq would create a power vacuum that would be filled by Al Quaeda…and viola, Dems were right!

So basically, if the Republican party is to survive, and let’s face it, it’s still run by those who are used to the kind of world we were living in up till a couple years ago, they realize that they need to hold onto every last scared voter, so while they figure out what additional set of issues they need to align themselves with in order to become a viable national party again, they need to hold onto their base, and that means keeping them scared shitless by constantly screaminug about how the Dems are screwing them over. Truth be damned. Because let’s face it, fear is what wins elections…it has been since the days of Nixon…and remember that between Nixon’s first innauguration and Obama’s innauguration, Democrats had the White House for 12 years, Republicans for the other 28.

Liberals, and yes they are plenty of angry liberals, but most aren’t as “vocal” are ideologically about moving society forward in the direction they want it to go. Conservatives by nature do not want to change, they want to go with the if it ain’t broke don’t fix it mantra. So libs scream change, what’s going to motivate a conservative is to tell him why that propopsed change should be scary to everything he holds dear. Which is why Conservatives will always seem angrier…this past election just summarized it perfectly…it’s about hope vs. fear. Fear has just been a more powerful motivator for several decades now.

Lupin's avatar

I have actually heard some idiots hoping the Dow would go down as proof that our country is headed in the wrong direction.
They’ll complain no matter what happens. People need to wake up, turn off EIB, say “This is it! We’re going to make it work.”, and get busy.
@dalepetrie You summarized the issue so clearly. You’re my hero!

ubersiren's avatar

I think they really are filled with a lot of anger. Traditionally Republicans have stood for less government, limited spending, and less law. Hence the term “conservative.” But recently it’s on steroids. I think that many “conservatives” believe that God is on their side and therefore their way is the only way. This includes arrogant irrational thoughts (Iraq war, wiretapping). It’s all justified when they claim they’re doing it for the safety of the nation… the nation blessed by God, in God’s name. These Republicans, as we all know, are pompous douches, so everyone else makes fun of them and votes them out of office. I don’t mean to say it’s all about religion though, of course there are religious and non-religious members of both parties. Though, I think after the extremes of both parties establish their stances, everyone else follows suit. That means if Jerry Falwell tells conservatives that GW was a Godsend, they believe it, and liberals laugh at it. Being laughed at makes people angry. But whereas in normal situations being laughed at would make a person reevaluate himself, conservative Reps don’t have to reevaluate because their God tells them they’re right. In fact being opposed and laughed at only makes them feel more exclusive. So, conservatives lash out against anyone who is doesn’t fit their exact profile. This includes anyone who is a Rep but doesn’t conform to this new steroid version of conservatism. Like Ron Paul, who probably is closer to the original version of a Rep… remember when he was ostracized from the Rep convention and other events? It was because he didn’t promote the war-mongering, reckless spending agenda. So to the rest of the Reps, he wasn’t “genuine.” They’ve become highly elitist, arrogant, and corrupt.

There are so many reasons that conservatives are so angry but I think it’s mostly that they are arrogant and outnumbered, justified and mocked.

mattbrowne's avatar

It’s my observation that both moderate liberals and moderate conservatives are far less angry than extreme liberals and extreme conservatives.

Nullo's avatar

A lot of conservatives sided with the Republicans because they are… not closer, ideologically, but… Less opposed? Constituents have their representative’s ear, after all.

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