Think of fear as a self-fulfilling prophesy. Conservatism is far from an unnatural response but it’s one we must outgrow. In a societal sense it’s like a society stuck in fight or flight. Gladstone didn’t go far enough with his “liberalism is trust of the people tempered by prudence and conservatism is mistrust of the people tempered by fear” Conservatism is not about prudence or sowing for the winter. It is an ideology of fear. The 3rd Reich, Antebellum American South and inquisition are examples of conservatism. The goals of conservatism alternate between permanent slavery (protracted murder) and genocide.
Contemporary conservatism is no different. It seems that Capitalism died at around the time of the moon shot. It was realized at that time that the economic problem had been solved technologically. Instead of moving to a new system based on abundance, conservatism instead pushed for artificial scarcity and a return to slavery because the power of the wealthy was based on a system scarcity.
Around that time we got the oil embargos and the founding of the American Legislative Exchange Council. The Nixon extension of Vietnam. The delinking of wages from inflation. The assassinations of the major labor and civil rights leaders. Buckley v Valejo. The ability of pharma to advertise directly. The ramping of of sponsored media, media consolidation. Not long after Regan’s non enforcement of labor law, Thatcherism, the gutting of public infrastructure the travesty of the so-called conservative miracle. A while later NAFTA, Iraq 1, attacks on social security (the rich “can’t afford social security,”) gutting of welfare safety net, 911, Iraq 2, patriot act, prosecution of whistle blowers, financial crash, gutting of consumer bankruptcy law, theft of pensions, Citizens United, austerity, attacks on neutrality. All along massive tax reductions for the rich, a thousand non- constructive billionaires, defunding of education, endless privatization toll road attempts for corporate welfare, dilution of human rights with the ramp of corporate rights nonsense. Inability to get carbon caps or address environmental concerns with green tech. Inability to get toxins out of food supply epidemic of diseases. Wide spread hunger globally and despite obesity increasing hunger in the US.
There are more than 10000 suppressed patents in the US that the government has patented to keep off the market for reasons that are not even specifically military but sometimes simply because they are too threatening to industry. This is conservatism, the suppression of technology to protect or conserve in place arbitrary power.