“Attitudinal Conservative” is a phrase I use to describe people whose outlook, especially political, doesn’t match their way of living. While it MIGHT be construed to have an element of hypocrisy in it, that doesn’t capture the expected idea precisely. They claim to be conservative yet almost nothing observable identifies them as such.
This does NOT refer to those conservatives who study the issues, details and know every angle of their arguments.
We all know at least 1 person who seems to know an inordinate amount about conservative politics. I say “seems” because most of their knowledge is shallow, unfocused, very much like everyone else, just with a narrowly-defined ignorance. If they have an opinion, you will hear it, whether your eyes are rolling like a hungry, rabid zombie. They say specific things, sometimes with detailed numbers, names, and dates.
Suddenly, after listening to them, I realize they are just babbling, mostly smoke and mirrors.
Trust me: this means that the person listens to and/or watches only conservative TV and radio. Usually, their media diet is 99% Fox. Am I saying that Fox News is nothing but conservative garbage? Almost.
You can’t turn the TV on to any other news channel without hearing a complaint about the “slant,” blah blah blah. Even if you have it on the Disney channel showing fake news, you will get commentary.
(Not that most liberals don’t don similar blinders with their programming, too… it’s just that liberals aren’t as damned irritating when they do it. : ) )
Getting back to the point, “attitudinal conservatives” almost always consistently do things that violate the tenets of their supposed conservatism. They have abortions, support government growth or support when it helps them specifically, argue for programs that rely totally on socialized healthcare, education, etc. Don’t confuse them by pointing it out, either – or you will catch holy heck for it. And even if they instinctively realize you might be right, the ‘attitudinal conservative’ will try to force an exception to prove their specific actions or circumstances don’t fall into the category at hand.
All I ask is that you watch these people and notice the difference between what they say they believe versus their own words and actions. If you compile a list of these contradictions, it will rival Santa’s naughty list.
Endnote: much of my criticism regarding attitudinal conservatives applies to any group whose arguments and identify are tied to a dogmatic system of belief.
…and I’m probably wrong about this, too…