In two earlier posts, I followed up on a thread by Kevin Drum entitled “The future of liberalism.” I decided to continue this series of posts after a discussion with a good friend in San Francisco last weekend. Our talk ranged widely, but one comment in particular stuck with me – that the left loses support in some quarters because it fails to provide the linkage to morality that many, if not most, people need.
My first reaction was denial, but at root what my friend said is true. As I mentioned in my first post in this thread, liberalism has been a politics of issues, not worldview. Conservatism, especially those strains with a religious social agenda, definitely provides a “worldview” and not just a series of positions on issues.
I think it is worth understanding whether this is a necessary structural difference between the two, or whether it’s possible to have a liberal worldview which includes a “moral compass.” The answer, I believe, will have a great deal of impact on whether Judis and Teixiera’s “emerging Democratic majority” really will come to pass.