Right now our two party system is almost descriptive of the two main umbrella parties. Both are open tents where anyone can join the party who elects too. The Democrats claim to stand for a broad franchise, democracy and an open tent approach to governing. The Republicans are more whiggish than they ever have been since the whig party broke up in the 1850's. They still support the "supremacy of congress" over [this] President but they no longer support a program of "modernization and protectionism", that's the job of the Democrats. But they still are the party of the business classes dominated by business tycoons, which has been the feature of the Republicans since 1877.
Now we Dems, we are the party of our business classes too, in uneasy alliance with labor -- and the rest of us.
When you hear Cons talking they praise "Schumpeter's creative destruction" and think that anything the "Government" does to ameliorate or stop that "creative" destruction retards change and has negative side effects. That is what they are teaching, I suppose in Business classes nowadays I suppose. In this view unemployment, businesses shutting down and moving to the South and then to China is just "competition" working itself out. The storms and dislocations are "natural" and for the followers of modern Schumpeterism the government should coin "sound money" and stay out of the way of Business. No wonder Businessmen love the theory!
"The opening up of new markets, foreign or domestic, and the organizational development from the craft shop to such concerns as U.S. Steel illustrate the same process of industrial mutation—if I may use that biological term—that incessantly revolutionizes the economic structure from within, incessantly destroying the old one, incessantly creating a new one. This process of Creative Destruction is the essential fact about capitalism." (p. 83) [econlib]
So they take a negative and turn it into a positive in classic newspeak.
I was listening to Sunday's "Melissa Harris Perry" broadcast on NBC, and she's there saddled with 3 "economists" who thought this was the greatest thing in the world. The same cons who will tell you that "evolutionary theory is not true and the world was created 6000 years ago" will opine rapturously about Schumpeter's warmed over Spencerianism. I think they count on their audience not actually reading both Bible and the works they quote. Hence the word "con" instead of conservative.
Our two party system is dominated by a sick and slick warmed over 19th century ideology that used to be balanced by equally sick and slick left wing ideas but has now been rebranded with focus group developed "messages" that aim to support the interest of a pyramid scheme of business that runs a narrow class of billionaires over a slightly less narrow class of millionaires over a vast soup of businessmen and wannabe millionaires who see their own starvation or failure as "competition" and the hunger and privation of workers as "creative destruction." It's a mob ideology, a sports team ideology. An ideology where ancient Romans throwing their enemies to the lions would be right at home. How we see things influences how we behave and if somehow there is no shame in "outsourcing" until your relatives starve enough to accept Vietnamese wages, then we live in a shameless world.
Virtue and Vice
The opposite of virtue is vice. That means the opposite of virtuousness is viciousness. Our system is vicious. The only thing moderating it is the charity of bad conscience supported by tax deductions and government programs. The viciousness comes from classical ideas like those of Spencer and Schumpeter. And those who defend them have indoctrinated themselves into a vicious ideology that has no virtue, no merit. They treat capitalism as an idol. A kind of Mars in Drag who claims to be Athena, but is idealized warfare and buccaneering as vicious as any other kind of piracy. All in the name of getting soap and clothing to market. If "Schumpeter's Creative destruction" is capitalism, we need a revolution.