Thanks for your comments on those posts, Patty! My sister and I had a big conversation about the whole 'conservative' label actually. She is doing a PhD in sociology/education sort of stuff and said something about how there's quite a lot of study done on how people use words like 'conservative' or 'moralising' to invalidate other people's positions--ie as shock words so their position/opinion remains unthreatened. It was pretty interesting that it's actually very unacademic to say such things now, according to these studies. I mean, usually it seems that it's all the 'academics' who shoot you down for saying anything vaguely conservative.
I'm a bit of a mongrel because there's some things I'm very conservative in and others that I'm a little bit liberal. By US standards I'm probably a liberal but by NZ standards a borderline conservative. I think liberals generally annoy me more than conservatives though!! And I just don't see how some things, such as abortion, can be so widely accepted by liberals as completely okay. They don't even want to admit there's anything morally niggly about abortion at all. The main reason I would see myself as liberal is because I believe it is more important to help the poorer people of the nation than to give huge tax bonuses to the filthy rich. It also makes me a little angry to see that the reason a lot of people in the Church vote from a right-wing stance is because of issues like civil unions and prostitution reform. I just think it's wrong that so often we Christians focus on all the 'don't do this' stuff, and ignore the more leftist ideals of helping the poor (in politics, anyway; I don't want to minimise all the amazing charity work done by Christian organisations). I have a moral problem with civil unions, yes, but I have more of a moral problem with the leader of the right-wingers saying that people on welfare are lazy, and that more money should go to the already wealthy.