My Conversion to Conservatism, by Tim Blair.
In 1983, during my solitary year at university, a boring but worthy anti-war left-wing film was followed by a young feminist speaker who declared there would be no violence if women led the world’s governments.
“What about Margaret Thatcher?” I asked, this being only a year after the Falklands War.
“She’s a man,” the speaker shot back. I laughed, but she didn’t, and neither did anyone else in the screening room. Small note to self: my comrades are not inclined to face awkward facts. …
In 1988, watching a John Pilger documentary with lefty friends, another such moment occurred.
Pilger, as usual, was complaining about colonialism and racism and Aboriginal injustice, so naturally we — uniformly white, urban and privileged — were lapping it up. The documentary then shifted to the former nuclear testing site at Maralinga in South Australia, where seven British bombs were detonated in the 1950s and 1960s. Pointing to a sign warning of radiation danger, Pilger observed mournfully that it was written in several languages — “but not in the Aboriginal language”.
Startled by this claim, I looked around the room. Everyone was silent, including a few who had studied Aboriginal history in considerable depth, and so must have known that Pilger’s line was completely wrong. So I just said it: “There is no single Aboriginal language. And no Aboriginal language has a written form.”
I didn’t last long with that bunch of friends, either. Small note to self: my comrades will deny even their own knowledge if it runs counter to a preferred leftist version of events.
Conservatism is easier for the same reason that honesty is easier:
Within another four years my conversion was complete. The best part of adopting conservatism after years of leftism, by the way, is how much easier life becomes. If you’re a conservative, facts are generally all you need to establish a case or mount an argument. If you’re a leftist, however, you always have to find a way around the facts, which is why combative lefties always sound like lawyers knowingly representing a guilty client.
Also, when you’re a conservative there’s a lot less marching. And the movies are better. …
On Mark Latham:
Entertainingly, many of Latham’s angriest critics would have voted for him in 2004. Then again, in an election against John Howard, your rusted-on Labor types would have voted for an animatronic flesh robot programmed to speak in a form of English known only to itself.
In fact, three years later they did.
Read it all.