Heart and Mind

2004-01-23

Winston Churchill is widely quoted as having said:

If a man is not a socialist by the time he is 20, he has no heart. If he is not a conservative by the time he is 40, he has no brain.

Never mind that Churchill said no such thing -- the thought lingers on. The funny thing is, I was a proud member of the Randian right ("big business is America's persecuted minority" and all that) when I was 20, and now that I'm approaching 40 I find that I'm much more of a left-libertarian (truly, the spectacle of countless industries feeding at the trough of government handouts, preventing competition through regulation, and generally colluding with legislators and bureaucrats to extend government power in all directions, is unseemly in the extreme). What does it say about a person if he moves from right to left over time? Perhaps I've simply cycled through the viewpoints faster than others (I've always thought and acted beyond my years), reaching the usual 40-year-old conservatism at age 20 and progressing to a seasoned left-libertarianism or market anarchism by age 40. Or maybe I'm just weird!


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