I've been reading a terrific book this summer called "Makers and Takers" by Peter Schweizer.
That's the short title. The subtitle is a bit longer: "Why conservatives work harder, feel happier, have closer families, take fewer drugs, give more generously, value honesty more, are less materialistic and envious, whine less … and even hug their children more than liberals"
Schweizer's previous best seller was "Do As I Say (Not As I Do): Profiles in Liberal Hypocrisy," in which he details how many of the best known liberals in the country don't live the lifestyle they promote in public.
Liberal icons like Michael Moore, Hillary Clinton, Ralph Nader, George Soros, Ted Kennedy and Nancy Pelosi simply don't practice what they preach.
For example, Michael Moore, the crusading do-gooder who denounces oil and defense contractors as war profiteers, owned stock in Halliburton, Boeing and Honeywell.
Nancy Pelosi accepted a "champion of labor" award from the United Farm Workers but she and her millionaire husband own a Napa Valley vineyard that won't hire union workers.
"These do-as-I-say liberals don't actually trust their ideas enough to apply them at home," Schweizer wrote in the book. "Instead, when it comes to the things that matter most in their personal lives, they tend to behave — ironically — more like conservatives than liberals. Which can only make one wonder: If their liberal prescriptions don't really work for them as individuals, how can they work for the rest of us?"
The natural progression for Schweizer's argument is to go beyond the political arena in his latest book. What about everyday liberals and conservatives? What makes them different — beyond their political affiliation?
"It is my contention that liberalism and conservatism are not simply political ideologies, but represent divergent ways of life," Schweizer writes in the new book. "For those on both sides, their political views are just the tip of an encompassing worldview that addresses the biggest questions about life. This worldview influences the decisions they make about family, work, community and life."
"Makers and Shakers" divides America into liberal and conservative camps but the kind of people who fall into these categories will surprise you.
Peeling away the propaganda fed to the public by the liberal-dominated media, Schweizer poured through tax records, scholarly research, opinion surveys and private records to develop a profile of the typical liberal and the typical conservative.
What did Schweizer find?
Liberals are, in the aggregate:
… more selfish. Liberals are much more likely to think about themselves first and less willing to make sacrifices for others. They are less interested in caring for a physically ill or elderly family member, and more concerned with ensuring that their own needs are met.
… more focused on money. Liberals are much more likely to report that money is important to them, that they don't earn enough money, and that money is what matters in a job. They are also more likely to be envious of others.
… less hardworking. When considering a new job, liberals are more interested in job security and vacation time than their conservative counterparts. They also tend to value hard work less and embrace leisure as more desirable. Conservatism on the other hand is directly associated with the so-called Protestant Ethic.
… less emotionally satisfied. Liberals are much more likely to suffer from a nervous breakdown, attempt suicide, suffer from depression and be chronically angry.
… less honest. Liberals are more likely to believe that it's okay to be dishonest or deceptive, cheat on their taxes (and their spouse), keep money that doesn't belong to them, and sell a used car with a faulty transmission to a family member.
… less knowledgeable about civic affairs and economics. Despite claims that conservatives are ignorant, studies and surveys show that conservatives and Republicans tend to know more about public affairs, have a better understanding of economics, and do better on word association tests.
Schweizer found that conservatives are, again in the aggregate:
… happier and better adjusted. Conservatives are more satisfied with their lives, their professions, and even their health, even when compared to liberals with the same demographics (age, income, etc.)
… generally more successful parents. Obviously there are many exceptions, but conservatives in general are more willing to make sacrifices for their children, and their children in turn are less likely to take drugs, smoke, or drink at a young age. Conservative families are closer. They are more likely to stay in touch with each other on a regular basis and trust each other more.
… more generous. For all the talk of liberal compassion, the reality is that conservatives are much more likely to donate money and time to charitable causes. Also, the reasons that liberals and conservatives get involved in charities tend to be different. Liberals support charities to "make a statement." Conservatives want to improve the lives of the people they are trying to help.
… less angry. Conservatives are less likely to become angry at someone, less likely to seek revenge, and less likely to throw or break things in a temper.
"The research is clear," Schweizer says. "Looking at data gathered by the most authoritative and reliable academic research centers in the country as well as academic studies published in refereed journals, a pattern emerged that has until now been completely ignored. When compared to conservatives on a long list of personality and moral traits, modern liberals consistently come up short."
"Makers and Takers" is a fast read at 258 pages and the conclusion that "liberalism not only leads to social decay, but can also lead to personal decay" is backed by a wealth of research.
"Liberalism promotes a way of thinking, a way of life, and a pattern of living that are destructive on many levels," Schweizer says.
Labels: Conservatives, Liberal Media Bias, Liberals