Originally Posted by Gibonius
It's an interesting dynamic in the conservative mainstream. It seems like it stems from the whole "tough on crime" mentality going back to the 70s.
This issue is one of the interesting crossovers between libertarians and progressives. I wonder how long the Republican conservative coalition is going to hold up with the mainstream conservative (social conservatives, authoritarian apologists, etc) in charge with increasing amounts of pressure from the libertarian wing of the party.
Let's look at this the other way too. Democrats sending SWAT teams into political foes' houses, progressives and even some defense attorneys cheering when a crackpot D.A. brings up whipped up charges to appease an angry mob, MSNBC arguing about the bounds of decent speech, using the Attorney General's office to indict reporters who uncover scandals, spying on what citizens say on the phone, look up on the computer, and read in the library . . .
As a conservative, I can speak to the tough on crime dynamic above. Conservatives understand that good government requires a good responsible electorate. Predators and psychopaths threaten the careful and tenuous balance between government and citizenry.
Conservatives favor tough policies on murderers, thieves, rapists, and other threats to liberty and freedom. Liberals favor tough policies on political enemies.