MeFi's own Mark Rosenfelder answers a reader question about whether "the idea that life needs to suck" is true. TL;DR, he doesn't think it is, but it's worth reading on for more.
Vox: The smug style in American liberalism: "There is a smug style in American liberalism. It has been growing these past decades. It is a way of conducting politics, predicated on the belief that American life is not divided by moral difference or policy divergence — not really —but by the failure of half the country to know what's good for them."
RAWStory.com reports on a study published by Psychology Today that claims the reason the OWS movement has not gained more traction within the Democratic Party (as compared to the rapid growth of the Tea Party on the other side) is that liberally-minded people see themselves more as a unique collection of beliefs that happen to be joining with other individuals, where conservatives see themselves more as part of a homogenous group of people with similar beliefs.
The left side of the American political spectrum has undergone an extraordinary transformation over the past dozen years. Perhaps because it remains a work in progress, the extent of this transformation has gone largely unremarked and seems underappreciated even among those who have been carrying it out....Left 3.0 is not only an ideological movement, but also effectively controls (or rather guides) a political party fully competitive at the national level.
According to this substantial study recently published in Psychological Science, "lower general intelligence (g) in childhood predicts greater racism in adulthood, and this effect was largely mediated via conservative ideology.". As the Daily Mail summarises, right-wingers are less intelligent than left wingers. [more inside]
Quit Lying About Roosevelt! "Amity Shlaes, the GOP's Great Depression philosopher-queen, couldn't be more dangerously wrong." [Via]
What Is Conservatism and What Is Wrong with It? According to Philip E. Agre, previously discussed here and the guy behind the Red Rock Eater News Service, the answers to these questions are simple (if 13k+ words = simple).
Open Democracy: Anticapitalists Of The World, Left And Right, Unite? Open Democracy is a very interesting project which proposes to discuss - and open to discussion - the great issues of our day. While mostly socialist and liberal - with some new anarchism intelligently thrown in - it refreshingly makes space for conservative philosopher and polemicist Roger Scruton's reflections on the political and social consequences of how we eat. Despite a vaguely anticapitalist bias, so far as I can see, Open Democracy seems to be intellectually wide open. I've been a subscriber for a while now (it's free, btw) and it's that old-fashioned thing: it makes you think. Do consider adding it to your usual peregrinations. [I'll resist the temptation of pointing to favourite essays and debates - it really is worth exploring one one's own. Jacknose was the first to refer to Open Democracy on MeFi, back in December 2001.]
Liberalism FAQ and Conservativism FAQ describe the differences (and similarities) between the two oft-discussed by seldom understood political mindsets. Both FAQs are detailed, concise, enjoyable, and not annoyingly biased. Read with caution: Knowing your enemies sometimes makes it less fun to bash on them.
"Universities have a serious problem. The type of liberalism so heavily favored by the intellectual elite has crossed the line. Professors throughout the educational world are supporting murderers and terrorists; they are justifying despicable actions because of the political philosophies of the actors. Murder, slaughter, and terrorism are OK, they say, as long as they are directed at law-enforcement officials or civilian Westerners. It's fine as long as the murderer is anti-capitalist, anti-establishment or anti-conservative." -- Written by a UCLA student