What's up with that? I know that OSC is officialy a Democrat who favors the Bush administration and the war in Iraq, and who oposes gay marriage.
But he also holds views which are not those of an old style conservative Democrat. His economic views, for instance, appear to be somewhat, leftist.
I am looking for a qoute somewhere where he defends Communism as a theory, although not as it has been practiced by Communist countries.
None of this is that odd. There are plenty of people who hold some Leftist and some Rightist views. The difference is that I have never read anything OSC has written that has not been scathingly critical of Leftists and Liberals. I mean, he seems to hate them (and pretty much all of them) with a passion.
Is he perhaps a moderate who writes like a radical? Does anyone remember if was less outspokenly anti-Leftist/anti-Liberal before the War on Terror?
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There are plenty of people who claim to be in one party while essentially sounding like a mouthpiece for the other end of the ideological spectrum. At worst, they're just pulling the 'title in name only' biz to try to gild their position as being moderate and self-critical*. At best, they are like the doubtlessly millions of Americans who really don't care that their 'associated' party is traditionally assumed to represent their ideals, since they don't trust the party at all. It's actually really easy to meet conservatives who happily caucus with the Democratic party.
The dems moved centrist in the last election (see: "westy dems" and the phenom of western governorships) and grabbed points for interest in fiscal conservatism, civil libertatianism, and gov't accountability. Meanwhile, the GOP's strategy for their last decade or so of rule was to energize the hard-right base (evangelicals and the like) to push candidates through and maintain dominance in Congress, while simultaneously acting so outrageously as to be associated with cabal tactics and corruption.
Put it all together; I can only imagine that more than a few conservatives would at least call themselves Democrats, if even just to make a point. It's even easier to assume it may be genuine if there's a large chunk of ideology which actually meshes with the associated party (such as, for instance, what you describe as OSC's 'leftist' economics). And support of Communism in theory is mostly irrelevant to either political party. The vast majority of Americans, whether lefty or righty, have essentially concluded that communism is a failed economic practice.
*a good giveaway for an 'in name only' character is one who insists that they are a member of party X, but is often caught stating that party X should not be trusted with a majority, or that if party X gets 'their way' on an issue, disaster will result.
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Maybe it's the case that OSC has long been a democrat for what he thought were important issues; since, more important issues have come up on which he and his party have moved in opposite directions.
I.e., he still thinks government should be helping with health care, helping the poor, etc., but he knows that these issues are not now as important as whether or not America turns it's back on Iraq or apoligizes for opposing Jihad.
Sentimentality, or else the thought that America can eventualy return to times in which national security isn't a concern, or the (naive?) hope that the democrats in power can distance themselves from "peace" activists may give him cause to keep the title Democrat when he agrees with them on many issues but not the most important ones.
(No offense intended by the analysis, just the impression I get from reading the usually spot-on World Watch columns.)
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OSC sees the War on Terror as important to our commitment with Israel. I'm very puzzled about this, since most the Jews that I know personally are Reform or Conservative and basically oppose the War on Terror.
I guess I would have to grant that one's religion generally doesn't have much to do with whether one supports the war, though many people relate it to that. But I know in OSC's mind, the war relates to Israel's security and is one reason he feels strongly about it.
I was just thinking today about how we waited until 2003 to start the war in Iraq because of Israel's invasion of Jenin in 2002. Back when Arafat was still alive. Odd times.
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