The Lonely Conservative

Observations from a conservative mother of two living in the blue state of New York. My husband and I run a small business, and I blog.

Karen is a winner of Top 25 Political Moms - 2012

What political issue are you most passionate about?

The economy is a top issue for me, like most Americans. Wages aren't keeping up with the cost of putting gas in our cars and food on our tables. But the national debt is even more troublesome to me than the sluggish economy. As a mother of two young children, I worry about how this debt problem will limit their choices in the future. They don’t get a vote, but politicians are spending away their future earnings. If things don’t change soon we’re going to end up like Greece, or worse.

The size and scope of the government has become so bloated and massive that it’s stifling economic growth and we’re losing freedoms every day. Thomas Jefferson said “A wise and frugal government which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government.” That’s a pretty simple summary of what I believe the government’s role is. We don’t have a wise and frugal government anymore. We have a massive, intrusive, wasteful government. It gets worse by the day.

As someone who with a small family business, I also believe it's time to bring public sector pay and benefits in line with the private sector. It's quite offensive to hear politicians talk about "fairness" knowing my husband and I will be working into our seventies and financing the retirements of public workers. How is that fair?

How do you to teach your children the importance of civic duty?

My husband and I have taken our sons with us when we vote. They’ve come to campaign rallies and have helped stuff envelopes for candidates we support. But civic duty goes beyond politics. We teach them through the way we live our lives. Manners are extremely important to us, because who wants to live in a community where everyone is rude to each other? When they sign up for sports teams we make sure they know they’ve made a commitment to the team and shouldn’t quit halfway through the season. They’ve gotten involved in charitable activities through our church. We try to teach them the value of hard work, and living within our means, through our own actions.

As a political blogger, I hope I’m teaching them that when they see something going on in government that’s wrong, it’s their right and duty to speak up.

What's a political issue you've changed your views on?

I used to be inclined to give politicians in the Republican Party a pass when they violate the principles they espouse. Now I see myself more as a conservative than a Republican and I believe politicians from both parties need to be held accountable for their actions. I’ve been focusing primarily on the Democrats lately, since they still hold most of the power in the federal government. But I won’t hesitate to call out Republicans when they do the wrong thing.

As far as social issues go, I’ve shifted a bit more libertarian lately. Our republic has some huge problems, and I don’t like to dwell on issues that should be left up to individuals and families. I just don’t like paying for the choices of others. I do believe that our culture has been degraded over the past few decades, and would like to see that change. But it’s not up to the government to change the culture - it’s up to all of us.