Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Conservatives Liberals Libertarians and the Art of Seeing and Believing

A fried of mine sent me the following bumper sticker:

Conservative: Seeing is Believing
Liberal: Believing is Seeing

Our reply went something like this:

The distinction between Seeing and Believing is an artificial one.

Belief, verily, is the Absence of Proof.
Not Everything we Believe is True.
Not Everything we See is Accurately Perceived.

As Ralph Waldo Emerson so accurately observed:

"People only see what they are prepared to see."

Belief and Seeing are thus two sides of the same coin, toss it as you will.

To take a line from computer-speak:

The human doesn't see things as they are, but as HE is. - Racter

Such is man's attention to political issues that he neither sees nor believes that there is an invisible elephant. That is, unless of course, that elephant is standing on HIS own big toe.

Hence, people with no income do not complain about taxes. People with income do.

The Conservative "Sees" the Past. Usually, with an outdated pair of spectacles.

The Liberal "Sees" the Future. Usually, with a buggy beta-version of the newest sight improvement gizmo.

The Libertarian prefers to go blind throughout the world rather than accept the obvious.

The REALIST sees the world from the perspective of age, experience, necessity and wishfulness.

In other words, we live in an imperfect world. And thank goodness for that. It makes things ever so much more interesting.

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