Watching right wing media fawn over Rush Limbaugh yesterday really got me thinking about something...
In one interview Dan Quayle was talking about Rush's ability to speak on conservatism and highlight its virtues, which he summarized about 3 or 4 times as "less taxes, less regulations". In another interview (I did not get the speaker's name) she described conservatism as "not being for handouts, but rather an opportunity to build your own leg up in life".
Regarding the first interview, what I realize is that "less" anything is a relative term. In order for you to be "for" less of something then someone else must first propose an amount of that thing. In other words this cannot be a value, it's merely opposition to someone else's values.
But I found the second interview more bothersome, for if this is how conservatism is defined then it is an entire ideology built on opposing a strawman. To define yourself as being against handouts is to assert by definition that anyone who does not share your ideology is for handouts. Setting aside that this completely misrepresents what liberalism is all about, this is more importantly and once again; not a value but merely opposition to someone else's values.
So I ask, if you are a conservative and you largely agree with what these interviewees had to say... what is your ideology "for"?