I think most people look for a balance between progressivism and conservatism…

So Jeb — he wants to go by Jeb, not Bush (he’s his own man), is in the race officially now. I still do not have a handle on what he is all about but a lot of what the rhetoric is all about in these races is socialism vs. capitalism (even though both major parties support capitalism) or progressivism vs. conservatism (and those two ideologies have intermingled in both parties over the years, although in more modern times the Democrats have identified more with progressivism and the Republicans conservatism.

It is safe to say that we are likely to get a stronger push for progressivism and even socialism from Hillary Clinton and maybe a larger dose of conservatism from Jeb Bush, except that Mr. Bush has progressive tendencies sometimes.

But I would wager that both candidates see it this way: at times we need to take care of people adversely affected by the vicissitudes of capitalism — ups and downs of the market, of the rate of employment, and technology that replaces humans  or reduces the number needed at work, not to mention natural calamities. We also need to have a level playing field, and basic human rights, and safety at work and everywhere for the well-being of the public, and we need to take care of our nest, our planet. For this we need features of progressivism and sometimes socialism (without moving toward pure socialism).

But to do the above we cannot in the process destroy our means of production which makes all our endeavors, our survival, life as we know it, possible.

As individuals most people do not want to have all or a major portion of their own personal efforts go towards helping strangers who may not even help themselves or who lack the motivation.

But most people somewhere in their heart feel an obligation to society (even if it is just because there but for the grace of God go I — but it is usually a little more).

And finding that balance is what it is all about for the vast number of the electorate who can swing either way. Those at the extremes don’t bend. But in government and politics the extremes at both ends of the political spectrum do the same thing when they get a chance to take control: socialism/communism (identified often as far left) results in dictatorships with no individual rights and where the state is more important than the individual and fascism or extreme nationalism (often identified as on the far right) has the identical result.

That’s why I identify myself as “middle of the road”.

 

P.s.

I did not mean that the far right in the United States are actually fascists; I’m just using the term as generally applied. When talking about politics overseas it gets confusing — when the old Soviet Union died, those who still supported communism were called “conservatives” because they did not want change. But that is mixing apples and oranges and has nothing to do with U.S. politics.

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