Further, people can both form governments and dissolve them.The only legitimate purpose of government is to protect these rights.What that leaves us with are candidates, platforms and political parties whose ideas are inconsistent and often incoherent.
What is chosen is a matter of taste rather than a matter of thought.
Just as people with similar tastes in food tend to frequent the same restaurants, people with the same tastes in politics tend to vote for the same candidates.
In 1776, most people believed that rights came from government.
People thought they had only such rights as government elected to give them.
Since in all these systems the state is the personification of the class, the race, society as a whole, etc., all these ideologies imply that, to one degree or another, individuals have an obligation to live for the state. Indeed, almost everything that is good about modern liberalism (mainly its defense of civil liberties) comes from classical liberalism.
And almost everything that is good about modern conservatism (mainly its defense of economic liberties) also comes from classical liberalism. William Fulbright (a favorite of the liberal media because of his opposition to the Vietnam War); North Carolina’s Sen. Robert Byrd, one-time Ku Klux Klan member and king of pork on Capitol Hill; and small government types, such as South Carolina’s Sen.Yet they are quite content to have the government deny terminal cancer patients access to experimental drugs. In elections, most liberals support restricting the role of financial capital (money); but they want no restrictions on real capital (printing presses, radio and TV broadcast facilities) or organizational capital (labor union get-out-the-vote resources).Most conservatives are at least consistent in opposing almost any restriction other than mandatory disclosure. Goodman In the history of politics, there is only one fundamental, abiding issue: It is individualism vs. Do individuals have the right to pursue their own happiness, as Thomas Jefferson thought and as the Declaration of Independence deemed self-evident?Or do we have an obligation to live our lives for the community or the state, as most societies have claimed throughout most of history?All forms of collectivism in the 20th century rejected the classical liberal notion of rights and all asserted in their own way that need is a claim.For the communists, the needs of the class (proletariat) were a claim against every individual. For fascists (Italian-style) and for architects of the welfare state, the needs of society as a whole were a claim.As reflected in and other forums, contemporary conservatives tend to hold the opposite views.Liberals tend to believe that marijuana consumption should be legal, even for recreational use.To even try to use words like “conservative” and “liberal” when describing them is more likely to mislead than to shed any useful light. As reflected on the editorial pages of and other forums, contemporary liberals tend to believe in an almost unrestricted right to abortion and actively encourage stem cell research and sometimes even euthanasia.Yet they think the state should never execute someone, not even a vicious serial killer.