“Progressives” are really against progress and “conservatives” are for it

This article caught my eye.  The view of the future it presents does sound like science fiction, but, of course, most of our current technology was science fiction 50 years ago.  This is interesting in it’s own right, but it also got me thinking about the conservative and progressive reaction to progress.  Conservatives welcome it, and believe in richly rewarding successful innovators (with the marketplace determining who is successful).  Progressives aren’t exactly against progress, but they are suspicious of it.  Consider their dislike/distrust of the drug companies despite the amazing drug breakthroughs those companies have produced.  And, rather than letting the market dictate what innovations the innovators work on, they want to control the research.  For example, they are quite happy to throw tons of the people’s money at “green” innovation, hoping for progress in electric cars, wind energy and the like. 

I submit that the conservatives have it right.  The marketplace provides much better incentives to the innovators and much greater rewards to those who succeed.  And, the marketplace is a much better judge of which innovations have true value than any government bureaucrat is.

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  • Danny Lemieux

    “Progressives”, by which I mean those that follow armchair political theories developed at-least 250 years ago (beginning, in its “modern” version, with Rousseau), believe in progress, as long as it is “free”.
    Of course, in Progressive-speak, “free” means confiscated from those that produce and create value as indentured servants to the political order.

  • TommyC

    Progressives do not trust the market to make the “right” choices.  That is why big government is so important – it allows the progressives to subsidize or to force (via regulation, taxes, etc.) the kind of progress that they desire and limit the kind of progress they object to.
    Fundamentally, progressives are elitists – they claim to speak on behalf of the “working class”, minorities, etc., but in reality, they do not trust such people to make the right decisions.  Conservatives are much more inclined – by both their nature and their philosophy – to let the chips fall where they may.
    A free market provides the best determinant as to where “progress” should be, how it is to be financed, how it is to be distributed or allocated, and so on – it puts power into the hands of everyone who cares to be involved, and even to those who don’t much care.  It is self-correcting.  It rewards wise decisions and punishes foolish ones.  I sometimes think that people become progressives because they like to run other people’s lives and don’t like to have their own life adversely effected by their own poor decisions.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    LibProgs speak on behalf of the working class because they own the working class through Union intermediaries. The unions tell the workers how to much, who to vote for, and what they need to do to keep their jobs. And the Union cause is inextricably linked with the Left and the Democrat party.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    For example, they are quite happy to throw tons of the people’s money at “green” innovation, hoping for progress in electric cars, wind energy and the like.

    That’s because their friends and allies are ready to get mega rich, so they want free money from the government with their cons and pyramid schemes. Has nothing to do with producing anything useful. Never was. Any more than Madoff intended for other people to get rich investing in his mutual funds.

  • http://photoncourier.blogspot.com David Foster

    “hoping for progress in electric cars, wind energy and the like”….for the most part, they are for progress in these areas as long as it remains totally *theoretical*. Once a technology becomes real, it turns out–like everything else in the world—to have negative attributes, they turn against it, demanding that it be made perfect.
    For example, there are environmentalists suing to prevent the erection of transmission lines necessary to connect solar power facilities to any useful loads. Other are objecting to noise from wind turbines. And while praising passenger rail, they strive to prevent the expansion of railyards necessary for our existing freight-rail system.

  • Tonestaple

    And that’s why I have taken to calling them “regressives.”


    Can’t see the wood for the trees, they’re just hell bent on their mission to redesign the wheel and run us over with it.
    Fuel for thought….
    Coal is truly “America’s fuel.” The United States has more recoverable coal than any other nation; the 272 billion tons of coal reserves in the United States represent one-quarter of the world’s total estimated coal supply.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    Sadie, they’ll want us to pay reparations to dinosaurs that died to make that oil.
    demanding that it be made perfect.

    Which is why it is a con. It never ends.

  • Danny Lemieux

    Historian Paul Johnson’s excellent take-down of leftywing progressives (“The Intellectuals”) notes that the godfather of Progressivism, Karl Marx, never deigned to visit a factory or talk to members of the proletariat. As an “intellectual”, it was beneath him.

  • suek

    Has anyone ever asked a Progressive what they are progressing _towards_?  Or how they’ll know when they have arrived?


    Has anyone ever asked a Progressive what they are progressing towards?
    Hopefully, a cliff with a nor’easter storm at their backs.
    Or how they’ll know when they have arrived?
    Sound of a thud.

  • suek

    Now Sadie…
    I said “ask a Progressive”…not someone with a grain of sense…!


    suek, don’t know where they’re going but where they come from is pretty damn funny from the comment below in response to the link.
    Where do leftists come from?
    David, surely you are of the age where this was taught in “health class”, right?
    A leftist man (putz) meets up with a leftist woman who has a vagenda.
    He burns the American flag, she burns her bra, and by the light of that fire they hop into bed and admire The View.
    Nine months later a little leftist lets out his first screams and doesn’t stop for over seven decades.


    From the Scotsman: “Scotland’s wind farms are unable to cope with the freezing weather conditions – grinding to a halt at a time when electricity demand is at a peak, forcing the country to rely on power generated by French nuclear plants.”
    Well, how bad could it be?
    From the Scotsman: “Shortly before 5:30pm on [Monday and Tuesday], wind power production fell to 62MW and 61 MW respectively – just 2.5 per cent of its total capacity. At the same time on both occasions, the UK’s electricity usage rose to about 60,000MW – one of the highest ever levels of demand. Electricity demand in the UK rarely rises above 60,000MW.”
    So let me get this straight, at a time when you need it most, wind power is about as dependable as, well, the wind.


  • suek

    Are you sure you don’t have a relative commenting on Whizbang???
    That’s pretty funny…!!!

  • suek

    suek, thanks for the link. I can almost hear Paul Simon singing 50 ways to leave ‘the other’.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    Or how they’ll know when they have arrived?

    When they can stomp on people’s heads as their slaves knee down in obedience to them.

  • Mike Devx

    Ymar #18,
    > When they can stomp on people’s heads as their slaves knee down in obedience to them.

    As Ymar puts it bluntly, it really is much more about control than it is about progressivism.