As I was struggling to stand-up this little outpost I knew that early on I was going to have to dig into the concept of muddleheaded thinking. Since I am using (and abusing) the meaning of the word for my own purposes, I will specify the phenomenon I am focused on as Conservative Muddleheadedness – since self-described “conservatives” who really aren’t – are generally the ones who self-identify as little more than late twentieth century liberals when allowed to expand on something outside the three to five core “conservative” talking points. Back at my legacy on-line home, I introduced the topic with this:
…a near perfect example of the muddleheaded reasoning that exposes the weak underbelly of the big tent “conservatism” that results from years of building annexes upon annexes to accommodate every self-identifier that steps up knowing little more than that they are not as bat crap crazy and Nancy Pelosi…therefore they are by default “conservative.”
I then provided a couple of essay questions from incidents that I have witnessed over the years for readers to test themselves:
- SCENARIO A: A city government seeks to ban all smoking of completely legal products in restaurants within its borders. Based on the concepts of American liberty, state and discuss the case for the proper position that exhibits “the virtues required to be functioning members of a free society.”
- SCENARIO B: The governor of a state mandates via executive order that all girls in the state will be required to receive Gardasil treatments before entering sixth grade. The order includes an “opt out” clause. Based on the concepts of American liberty, state and discuss the case for the proper position that exhibits “the virtues required to be functioning members of a free society.”
Feel free to try your hand at those test questions…but that is not really what brought me to this point tonight. In fact, I will admit that I am not fully prepared to fully engage the topic this evening. However, a post on Instapundit has presented an interesting test for the Muddleheadedness gene and I wanted to put this out for consideration. Here are the two articles involved. I invite you to study both to see if you can identify the muddlehead and/or muddleheadedness involved:
- The American Conservative denounces Rushdie, complains that his book was ‘deliberately insulting to Islam’
I admit that I have only scanned the material so far. I have not printed hardcopies and given this the proper treatment with my highlighter…but I trust I know what I am seeing here. We’ll see if anyone else does too.