Give me your Aphorisms — by guestblogger Danny Lemieux

I confess that I really like Book’s aphorism, “Conservatives deal with facts and reach conclusions; liberals have conclusions and sell them as facts.” I like it because it works. I have used it numerous times with Liberal-Lefties and I could see that it (miraculously) forced them to think. Another one for the ages is Maggie Thatcher’s “The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money”, which has been a rallying cry for conservatives.

I like aphorisms because a good aphorism cuts straight to underlying truths. With a good aphorism, you don’t get stuck in the brambles, dead ends, closed loops and non-sequiturs that mile-mark debates with Liberal Lefties. We know that logic doesn’t work, because Liberal-Lefties are so unclear on the concept thereof. A debate with a Liberal-Lefty provides only a very short window before he/she starts emoting or name calling, at which point (as we know), debate is over.

However, a good aphorism, delivered early with ad-byte precision, forces the Liberal-Lefty to address the underlying truths of their propositions up-front. There is no escape.

So, I would like to ask /plead with all Bookworm salon groupies to help me out with good aphorisms that we can use to define the oh-so-critical debates to come. Let me start off with a few of my own:

  • Liberals believe poverty leads to bad behavior, conservatives believe poverty is the consequence of bad behavior.
  • Conservatives believe in elevating people in the name of achievement and betterment, Liberals believe in devolving people to the lowest common denominator in the name of social justice.
  • Conservatives believe America’s primary threats are foreign, Liberals believe that America’s primary threats are domestic.
  • Liberals believe wealth is a fixed value, conservatives believe that wealth is created.
  • Conservatives defines generosity as giving of one’s own, Liberals define generosity as giving of other people’s own.

Any others?

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  • JKB

    Well the best one for moral equivalency is from a country song :  You got to believe in something or you’ll fall for anything.  Don’t worry it was a country song so most liberals will think it is new.

    From the movie Serenity:  Zoe:  Talkin’ ain’t doin’

    Now for some of my own:
    Liberals ask those down on their luck, what do you want.  Conservatives ask what do you need.

    The problem with socialism in 21st century America is you can force someone to work in a mine, but you can’t beat an iPod out of them.

  • JKB

    Socialism can only come from capitalism, otherwise there is nothing to redistribute.
    From this statement by Brazilian President Lula de Silva:
    “The country had no credit, had no working capital or financing or income distribution. What kind of capitalism was that? A capitalism without capital. I decided then that it was necessary to first build capitalism, then make socialism, we must have something to distribute before doing so.”
    Nothing From Nothing Leaves Nothing… – Stephen Spruiell

  • Libby

    For liberals, a government program never fails, it only fails to be adequately funded (I think George Will said this).
    Conservatives judge success based on results, liberals judge success based on intentions.
    Liberals are only comfortable apologizing for other people’s mistakes.

  • kali

    For conservatives, government is a necessary evil: for liberals, a necessary good.
    (I can’t tell you if that’s original or not–I don’t remember reading it anywhere, but with me, that doesn’t mean much :) )

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  • Ymarsakar

    Once you give the Danegeld, the Danes will never leave.
    Apathy is the soul of brevity (bumper stickers).
    Your power is not your own, only borrowed from those that you deride as backwards and uneducated.
    Good government never depends upon laws, but upon the personal qualities of those who govern. The machinery of government is always subordinate to the will of those who administer that machinery. The most important element of government, therefore, is the method of choosing leaders.

    Y’all got on this boat for different reasons, but y’all come to the same place. So now I’m asking more of you than I have before. Maybe all. Sure as I know anything, I know this – they will try again. Maybe on another world, maybe on this very ground swept clean. A year from now, ten? They’ll swing back to the belief that they can make people… better. And I do not hold to that. So no more runnin’. I aim to misbehave.

    Captain Mal Reynolds (Nathan Fillion) Serenity

    “‘He either fears his fate too much,
    Or his desert is small,
    Who fears to put it to the touch,
    And win or lose it all.’



  • Allen

    Liberals believe the citizens should be grateful to the state. Conservatives believe the state should be grateful to the citizens

  • Mike Devx

    Allen #7:
    >  Liberals believe the citizens should be grateful to the state. Conservatives believe the state should be grateful to the citizens

    My favorite one so far!  Wish I could come up with a good one.  I should just google “Reagan best quotes”.

  • Deana

    Conservatives defines generosity as giving of one’s own, Liberals define generosity as giving of other people’s own.
    That one, to me, nails it.  Very good.

  • Mike Devx

    Conservatives plan today for tomorrow; Liberals spend tomorrow today.

  • zabrina

    As a sweeping generality, you can find exceptions to this one, but it’s the one that has most struck me in my several decades of life and observation:
    Conservatives play by the rules because they understand that without the rules being upheld everybody loses; Liberals feel that if THEY want it badly enough, it is worth lying and stealing to get it.
    In other words, Conservatives value the process as part of the environment to be conserved; Liberals come from a self-centered world of dog-eat-dog, in which they disguise their own actions as altruism.
    That’s why when conservatives misbehave and falter (easily incorporated into the realistic conservative world-view as expected-but-not-excused human frailty and human nature), they feel shame and guilt about it (e.g. Nixon resigned), but when liberals misbehave or their programs or philosophies are proven to be destructive, they attack those who point out the facts, deny the facts or change the subject, “apologize” if “anybody took offense,” and appeal to would-be critics that “their hearts were in the right place” (e.g. Bill Clinton still on the speech circuit).

  • Ymarsakar

    The Watergate scandal?
    People must have forgotten that “Deepthroat” was the guy that Nixon refused to promote to the top of the FBI. They must also have forgotten that it was Deepthroat’s direct orders which led to the illegal searches of the homes of Weather Underground, resulting in the overturned verdict against Ayers and his wife.
    That was the Watergate scandal. Nixon did far less surveillance on his enemies than the Joint Chiefs, CIA, and FBI, did on the President at the time.
    Even many so called crimes by the Right were originally perpetrated by the Left and simply blamed on the Right.

  • Bookworm

    Individuals can kill by the ones and tens; only governments can kill by the millions.  (I say this to my kids to justify my belief that it is always dangerous to consolidate too much power in government, something that is true no matter how ostensibly laudatory the government’s goals are on paper.)

  • Ymarsakar

    The Left’s chickenhawk attack is actually pretty useful in some ways.
    The derivatives are mostly erroneous because it comes from biased people with their own agendas.
    But basically, it is true that you cannot judge a thing which you are not yourself capable of doing in similar circumstances. People use this to conflate direct experience with commanding an army or fighting in a war, with the direct experience of commanding Generals and privates.
    It’s not the case, however. The skill sets are too numerous and diversified for there to be a direct relationship. No, really at the end, the only thing you need to have is the capability and willingness to kill in any situation as a civilian or military member. That, essentially, encompasses all the deaths and fighting in war combined, because that is the one common thread binding it all up. In war, you must kill, whether it be directly or indirectly. If a civilian or military member cannot themselves personally kill, anything alive, then he or she is not qualified to lead others. Because they’re commanding soldiers to do what they themselves don’t know how to do or will refuse to do: killing.
    This essentially means if you slaughter animals for a living, you have more understanding of the psychology on the battlefield than pacifists. And I would take a meat butcher of farm animals over some Ivy League professor any day of the century, in war or conflict.
    Humans being what they are, all these are simply criteria to make it easier to judge those that are capable of resolving problems to our preference. They’re not guaranteed.
    However, there is a certain irony as a result of this.

    Pacifists that don’t want to fight in a war nor have they ever procured the means to defend themselves or their society, now think they get to decide for everybody whether a war is “winnable”. These clowns think they are the “right stuff” and that everybody else in opposition should have to go fight in the war to have an opinion about the war being winnable.
    How does a chump that a criminal can beat to death going to tell me that he knows what I should or should not do?

  • suek

    Ha!  Found one (that wasn’t a repeat!)
    Can’t claim to be the author, though.
    Everyone loves the candy man…no one likes the dentist.