Happy are the Conservatives


No, this isn't another blog on the results of last week's local elections on the other island, but a reflection on a report I found via the satirical Christian website, Ship of Fools, which suggests that those of a more conservative bent, socially, politically and theologically are more content than those who have more liberal tendencies. Conservatives apparently reported greater life satisfaction and well-being than more left-leaning individuals and scored highest on measures of rationalization, which gauge a person's tendency to justify, or explain away, inequalities.
Now this doesn't explain the right's tendency to moan, and stir up fear about everything from asylum seekers to the World Council of Churches, but certainly is borne out by the tendency of most social activists I know to slip into a collective slough of despond every time they come together.

The issue for me is not one of theological orientation, but complacency, feeling that everything is black and white, and that we (whoever "we" are) have all the answers. Where conservatism drifts into the position that even though "the rest of the world is going to hell in a rocket-powered handcart but I'm out of here on the rapture elevator" then there are problems... Just as when liberalism drifts into the "we're all headed for heaven on earth, and would get there a lot quicker if you evil conservatives thought and acted like us," mentality...

But I don't think we should be adding this particular analysis to the amplified versions of Jesus' beatitudes...

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