The Pessimistic Left vs the Optimistic Right


By: Doug Hagin

There are many differences between left and right. The way the two sides look at life, humanity, liberty, the size and scope of government, the value of human life, self-defense, and race are all great examples which can be used to illustrate the extreme divide between Leftist and Rightist thinking.

There is one more area that might be the finest illustration of all of just how starkly different left and right think. That is how optimistic or pessimistic each ideology is. Leftists, and let us be clear here, by Leftists I do not mean Democrats, or Liberals. There are some definite similarities between the three ideologies, and in fact, the distinction is growing less clear every year. When I write of Leftists though, I mean those who still buy into the several forms of Marxism as viable and worthwhile. I mean those who abhor private property, self-reliance, self-defense, capitalism, and wealth. In other words, I mean the Moveon.org, and Michael Moore crowd.

Now back to the pessimistic vs. optimistic views of left and right. Take any issue and examine how the left looks at it, then note how the right looks at it. There is no issue where the left takes an optimistic view. Remember the Cold War? The left was always ready to believe America, by having nuclear weapons, and a strategy of superior firepower, was acting like a bunch of cowboys. They were full of fear and worry that World War III was going to breakout at any moment. Their solution? Surrender the position of superiority by disarming to prove to the Soviets that we were not a threat. Forget that the Soviets had vowed to bury us and force their evil form of totalitarianism on the planet. In the pessimistic minds of the left, we had to subjugate ourselves to evil, to ensure our survival.

The right sought the course of peace just like the left. However, the left viewed the conflict through defeatist eyes. The right, on the other hand, saw hope and preservation through strength. Those on the right saw a threat, and believed not that it would ultimately conquer them, but that we should strive to conquer it. Optimism trumped pessimism, as it always does, and America won the Cold War without surrendering its strength or freedom.

Look at abortion, nothing divides left and right any more clearly than this issue. The left looks at an unplanned pregnancy and sees the unborn child as a hopeless case. They trot out their false compassion, and announce that this child might be disadvantaged, or poor, or might have a difficult childhood, or might be abused, or might be disabled. Notice how every “might” a Leftist imagines is negative. Is it any surprise then that, the left, looking with eyes clouded by pessimism, thinks that killing this life is better than allowing it to be born?

Now how does the right typically look at a young mother going through an unplanned pregnancy? They imagine the baby might be adopted, might grow up to be president, might have a wonderful life, they imagine all the wonderful opportunities this little child will have. The right, like the left, thinks in “mights”, but the right looks through optimistic, hopeful eyes, rather than through eyes blurred by pessimism.

Look at the way the left looks at people. The left always sees people as inherently incapable of caring for themselves. The left views us as cattle, in need of a government program to meet our every need. To them the government owes everyone healthcare, daycare, welfare, this care, that care. Of course, with all that “care” comes extreme taxation and a general depression of ambition, and independence. Every Marxist nation in history either has failed or is failing. They do so because of the pessimistic nature of trying to solve every human need with government solutions.

Now think of how the right views people. The right sees people as unique individuals, with differing needs, dreams and goals. They see self-reliance as not only possible, but also entirely preferable to reliance on the state. The right prefers parents, not government day care raise children. The right prefers people pay lower taxes, and use their money for themselves rather than having it taken for wasteful government entitlement programs. In short, the right views people optimistically rather than pessimistically.

Understanding this basic difference in the ideological views of left and right also goes a long way towards explaining how the two view the Iraq War. The left refuses, it seems, to expect, or even believe any positive news about progress in Iraq. In fact, their ingrained pessimistic nature seems to be so strong that they enjoy hearing of negative news from Iraq. Perhaps it feeds some need they have to always see the negative side of life. Whatever the cause, the left has never shown anything but pessimistic absolutism towards the Iraqi struggle for freedom. Iraq holds elections, huge numbers turnout, defying terrorist threats, and begin to form a free government, and the left predicts an Islamic theocracy, that will suppress its people. Iraq adopts a Constitution that ensures freedoms to its people, and the left predicts its failure in short order. Again, they truly seem to desire failure for Iraq.

When the left speaks of Iraq they speak of chaos, civil war, creating more terrorists, quagmires, another Vietnam, a more dangerous world, American imperialism, and of course American military defeat. They cling to any bit of bad news as if it is a life preserver. At the same time, they dismiss any good news as propaganda and lies. They seem to accept happily any report, no matter how unfounded of abuses by American troops. Is their deluded need for pessimism really that great? It would seem so.

The right, on the other hand, sees hope for Iraq. They see a nation beginning the steps to freedom. They see a nation becoming more responsible for its own security each week. They see a people who want freedom, an end to terrorism, and a better nation with hope. They see the bad news but also see the good news that outweighs the bad. They see looming victory instead of impending defeat. They, in short, see Iraq as the left apparently never can, optimistically!

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