I think you can just about characterize anyone’s views and outlook depending on how they respond to this statement from Bookwormroom:
America is far from perfect, but it does a better job than any society ever created at ensuring that everyone who works hard has a chance to succeed.
If you get some horrified look at the very suggestion that America is good or if you start getting hemming and hawing about the wonders of Cuba and its free medical care – in either case you know that you are dealing with someone who has been successful in America but doesn’t want anybody else to have that opportunity. Someone who hates the freedom that America represents to the world. Somebody who believes that what some twit in Germany or France thinks about our country is more important than what we ourselves believe.
Why does hard work contribute to success in America? For one thing we try to make sure everybody has the tools to succeed. Take education as an example:
The goal of the conservative is to ensure that even those who do not start out with many advantages can succeed if they work hard. For example, free public schools are a conservative invention. They are a statement that every child, no matter how poor, will have access to the basic tools of success. Granted, some schools are better than others, but the biggest difference between school isn’t funding, or materials, or the quality of teachers. The biggest difference is the students. Students in successful schools work harder than students in unsuccessful schools. They arrive at school every day, ready to work hard and learn. Compare absenteeism and drop-out rates in successful schools and unsuccessful schools and you’ll see what I mean. Even in our worst public schools, the student who works hard and tries to learn will learn and will obtain the tools necessary to succeed in life.
Now we are not talking about equality of outcome – merely equality of opportunity. It is up to the individual to take advantage of the freedom in America.
Conservatives teach to the test. Liberals teach, uh, unearned self-esteem. Conservatives reward accomplishment. Liberals reward, uh, breathing. Conservatives reward hard work. Liberals denigrate hard work. Conservatives believe you earn the right to move on to the next grade by passing the test. Liberals beliieve in social promotion and would rather eliminate the test. Conservatives don’t give a hoot about things like skin color, religion, and gender that have nothing to do with accomplishment. Liberals are obcessed with skin color, religion, gender, etc. Conservatives abhor discrimination. Liberals eagerly discriminate against white males (God help the person who by unhappy circumstance is born a poor white male in American — he has all of the handicaps that accompany poverty but lives in a society that assumes he is rich and punishes him for being white and male).
And in the end, rewarding hard work is only practical:
Conservativism is more practical than liberalism, too. Societies that reward hard work have always been more successful than societies that do not. Why? Because most people simply will not work all that hard if they see the rewards for their labor taken from them and given to someone who did not work at all. They recognize the unfairness of this at a gut level, and ultimately, rebel by not working so hard.
As real-world examples like Russia and Cuba and Maoist China have shown.
So do you believe in Hard Work?