Colonel Colt made all men...Conservatives?
on 7/3/2004 (2)
Colonel Samuel Colt, inventor of the Colt revolver once remarked that "God created men. My revolver made all men equal"
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Probably true, in the Old West, anyway. If everyone has a gun, no one has a distinct advantage in getting what they want out of you, mainly your last silver dollar. But there is a far, far more powerfull equalater than ol' Sam's revolver: The ticking of time.
All of us are born with open, empty minds. The child's world is a magical place. Words, sights, smells and ideas are all brand new, enticing and fascinating. When I was 5 or so, I remember being fascinated with the word 'patio' for some inexplicable reason, and recall saying it over and over, engrossed in the way it sounded and the strangeness of its sound rolling off of my tounge.
Nowadays, it's more like "Get those empty pop cans off the patio, dammit!"
Doesn't provoke and entice and captivate anymore. Just usually irritates.
When I was fresh out of college, the injustices of the world and the evils of Mankind obsessed me. I was a bleeding heart, of course. How can you not be? When you read the inequities and man's inhumanity to man dealt out in history class, it is indeed a rare indivdual who can ignore another's suffering. It is normal, and frankly expected, of compassionate, intellgent, learned individuals to start life as Liberals. You usually become an activist, to a lesser or greater degree, and decide that you, single handedly, will correct all of societies ills, and construct a modern Utopia with justice and equality for all.
Then the clock starts to tick...
A new awareness creeps on you slowly. I remember a joke that quipped "A Liberal is a Conservative who hasn't been mugged yet", and that is no doubt part of it, but the greater half lies within your own rising expectations and ambitions in the world.
The very qualities that made you a card carrying Liberal in the first place, namely social idealism, intelligence and ambition, eventually metamorphose and give rise to discontent in one's financial and material condition. Simply put, smart, aggressive people want more wealth for their families and themselves.
Idealism slowly fades to the back burners, as an egocentric quest for a nice car, a house, a stable bank account and a golf club membership override the communal quest for a perfect world. As one grows older, the quest for 'me' begins to churn under the justice of 'we'.
Then the clock starts ticking, ever faster...
Suddenly, 10-15 years after college, you find yourself transformed, at least if you are doing what you are supposed to be doing. You realize that maintaining a material-rich, highly structured successful society requires a military like level of practiced conservatism and discipline, in all aspects of ones daily life.
There just isn't anyway around it. It's a cold, and at least to me, a welcome fact.
Then the clock strikes 12...
After spending half of your life living a grinding, demanding, ceaseless routine of hard work and sacrifice, you suddenly find yourself in the nation's higher income bracket. All of a sudden, you have become exactly the person you despised 20 years before. You turn to face yourself. You have met the enemy, and he is you.
Like it or not, that's just the way it is.
I suppose you can stay a hippie all of your life, but old hippies aren't sexy and aloof like young hippies, they're just called 'the homeless' in most cities, so like it your not, Becoming a Conservative is a
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