The minds of conservatives and liberals

By Lane Sharman

Conservatives protect the American way of life. Liberals like to explore new ways of being. Conservatives count. Liberals imagine. When the two groups work together by listening to one another and taking action, humanity survives. Liberals took conservatives to the new world as a way of escaping a crumbling, old world. Conservatives protect liberals today from zealous expenditures that are too risky.

This is a system. This is a stock called life, liberty, happiness and equilibrium. When the minds of both are open to the other, the stock expands and contracts with some balance around a point of equilibrium. There is depletion and renewal. The forces depleting and renewing are ever present. Conservatives preserve and liberals renew the stock. And, renewal and preservation are essential to maintain its “moment of equilibrium.”

Stocks in equipment, cash and nature decay. Conservatives need liberals to show a path towards renewal of these stocks. Once created, liberals need conservatives for the fair and just allocation of those stocks based on merit. Nature is not always in a system of perfect equilibrium as seen when considering things like earthquakes, climate change, flooding and droughts. Yet, generally, nature is a good example of a complex system hovering about a moment of equilibrium with a capability to evolve. Ditto can be said for a well-run corporation that considers its social as well as economic depletions and renewals.

In modern societies, liberals and conservatives discuss how to replenish and rebuild. They wager intelligently how to expend existing stocks in order to renew them. They borrow when resources are low. They save when profits are strong. But, they do this in a form of mutual cooperation knowing that survival generally hangs in the balance.

When leaders listen to both conservative and liberal minds, they can make better decisions. When they do not listen or participate in the political process, they function within their own liberal or conservative vacuum. Nature abhors a vacuum. Society cannot function with leaders unwilling to listen and weigh both the liberal and conservative mind.

The greatest attribute of a leader is an active ability to suspend his or her conservative or liberal bias in order to choose the best course of action. Both liberals and conservatives are essential for renewing and preserving equilibrium. My hope for the future is that we encourage more leaders like this to run for office. And, elect the few who demonstrate this greatest form of leadership.

Lane Sharman is a member of the Solana Beach Clean & Green Committee, a co-founder of the San Diego Energy District Foundation, the founder of the Borrego Water Exchange, and the Managing Partner for Solana Energy. He can be reached at lane@solanaenergy