For some reason, I’m fascinated with the ideas of pessimism and positivism. But I believe, after deliberation, that I’ve misapplied the terms. I used to think liberals were the pessimists and conservatives, such as myself, were optimists. Liberals sat around whining and running away in war. They encouraged children to dress Emo. They believe that industry was out to pollute our precious Earth and keep the poor in the ghettos. And that all races are exactly the same, sans a few differences in skin shade. That women and men, too, are identical in their thinking and capabilities. There is no God because there is pain. Yada, yada, yada.
Then I thought a little more.
Why do liberals believe such things? It’s because they are the optimists. They believe that all races are the same because it is Right and it is Good that it should be so. And though they’re willing to see injustice when it proves to them that God doesn’t exist, they aren’t willing to concede when an unjust, cold and chaotic universe may have assigned the two sexes very different ways of doing business. And don’t even talk about racial or gender superiority. That wouldn’t be very optimistic. Because equality is Good and it’s the way things should be.
Terrorists, you ask? To a liberal, the jihadist who’s strapped some bombs to his rib cage and walks to the street corner where a dozen children are playing, just needs a good talking to. He needs to go to college or something. Needs some clean clothes and a shower.
Oh, don’t forget about liberal vegetarians. Optimists to the core. How happy a universe it would be if humans were never intended to eat meat! Because the idea of the blood-soaked slaughterhouse is a terrible scene. So it is Good and it is Right that humans who eat meat are Bad.
Nay, it is the conservative–a true conservative–who is the pessimist. But paradoxically–he’s happier than the lib. Study after study proves it. See, I was getting happiness mixed up with optimism, depression confused with pessimism. A true conservative says: “The world sucks, people are gonna betray me, and kittens die every day.” But he’s happy about it. He likes a challenge. Liberals such as Sean Penn say: “Give peace a chance” and then punch out a camera man or shake hands with Hugo Chavez. In an optimist’s world, bad people like Chavez are really good, if you really get to know them.
The paradox is easily answered thus: Conservatives are forearmed. Liberals live with disappointment, which, as any psychologist will tell you, is the root cause of despair. And religious conservatives donate far more money to charities than liberals. Unlike liberals, we accept that money makes the world go around. Libs know it is Right and Good that money should have no power. Alas!
The perfect image of the happy pessimist could be the pilot of the plane about to drop nukes on Russia in: Dr. Strangelove, who merrily rides the bomb to ground-zero.
As he says in the movie, when his crew gets the order to attack:
“Well, boys, I reckon this is it – nuclear combat toe to toe with the Roosskies… I reckon you wouldn’t even be human being if you didn’t have some pretty strong personal feelings about nuclear combat.”
So yea. I’m a pessimist. And I’m happy about it. I know it’s going to rain today. And tomorrow. I’ll just wear a raincoat and stay dry. The libs can go out in tank-tops, meditate to make it stop raining, then fill their prescription for Prozac when their world doesn’t play nice.