I frequently defend "conservatives" from unfair criticism because I think most of these critics are putting a lot of people under the conservative umbrella who don't belong there, and these people are being unfairly pilioried. I could never consider myself conservative because I promote dynamism. Of course, if we're talking about certain principles which should be upheld regardless of time and place, then, yes, to that extent I fight to conserve these priniciples -- but, why I don't consider that conservative, as people think of conservativism, is because these prinicples promote dynamism for the most part. To me, statists are conservatives, protecting the status quo, and free market/ limited government proponents are liberal and dynamic -- this is how I see it.
So, I consider myself liberal and I think most people in America whom the media and political class consider "conservative" are actually not all that conservative and they aren't afraid of a dynamic economy which offers change and choice -- they also don't make a big deal over social issues. So, as we go forward toward the midterm elections and then to the 2012 elections, it appears more and more people who want a free market and a limited government will confound the pundits, and they will confound the Republican Party. Most of those being considered as part of a conservative movement are independents, and if Gingrich, Huckabee and Romney are the best Republican choices, then an Independent Party is called for.
These voters might go for Romney, but not if they think long about the Massachusetts healthcare plan.
Another big surprise is going to be with those who call themselves liberals yet support the progressive agenda. I predict a lot of people who are now protecting social concerns and statism are going to find themselves attempting to defend the indefensible -- in another decade we're going to look back and wonder how "liberal" intellectuals could be so blind. Intellectuals who've been co-opted by power and elite fashion have historically been on the wrong side of the major issues. They are on the wrong side now, from my perspective.