Excerpted from the book "How to Win a Fight with a Conservative" by Daniel Kurtzman
With all of the nonsensical talk about plumbers and pigs with lipstick, hockey moms and washed-up terrorists, it's easy to lose track of what this election is really about.
To help clarify matters as Americans head to the polls, here's a look at the core beliefs that define liberals and conservatives. We'll leave it to you to decide which represents the "real America."
THE LIBERAL MANIFESTO
Liberals believe in clean air, diplomacy, stem cells, living wages, body armor for our troops, government accountability, and that exercising the right to dissent is the highest form of patriotism.
Liberals believe in reading actual books, going to war as a last resort, separating church and hate, and doing what Jesus would actually do, instead of lobbying for upper-class tax cuts and fantasizing about the apocalypse.
Liberals believe in civil rights, the right to privacy, and that evolution and global warming aren't just theories but incontrovertible scientific facts.
Liberals believe there ought to be a constitutional amendment that (1) prohibits another Bush from ever occupying the White House, and (2) prevents George W. Bush from ever becoming baseball commissioner before he does to our national pastime what he did for America.
Liberals believe in rescuing people from flooded streets and rooftops, even if they're too poor to vote Republican.
Liberals believe that supporting our troops means treating our wounded vets like the heroes they are, and not leaving them to languish in rat-infested military hospitals under the outsourced management of incompetent cronies who think they're running a Taco Bell franchise.
Liberals believe in the audacity of universal health care, green energy, voting paper trails, the common good, and that, no matter how fascinating a story it may be, a president should never sit around in a state of total paralysis reading "My Pet Goat" while America is under attack.
And above all, liberals believe that it's time to come together as a country and put a collective boot in the ass of shameless conservative fear-mongers, hate merchants, and scapegoaters who are sucking the freedom out of all our souls.
THE CONSERVATIVE MANIFESTO
Conservatives believe in faith-based wars, naked pyramids, the Confederate flag, gated communities, golden parachutes, and that what's good for Wal-Mart and Exxon Mobil is good for America.
Conservatives believe in fear-mongering, gay-bashing, entitlement to power, patrio-fascist jingoism, more fear-mongering, neo-Puritanism, giddy apocalypticism, and in building bridges to nowhere.
Conservatives believe in beautiful Hummers befouling spacious skies, amber waves of abstinent teens, and crowning thy good with estate tax cuts.
Conservatives believe in liberating people with cluster bombs. Conservatives believe it is great sport to hunt pen-raised, wingless quail from a car.
Conservatives believe in dodging drafts, agitating for wars, smearing Democratic war veterans as unpatriotic, turning against wars when they become unpopular, and then accusing liberals of being spineless flip-floppers.
Conservatives believe they've just seen an apparition of the Virgin Mary in a grilled cheese sandwich.
Conservatives believe that abstinence-only education has worked so well for their pregnant unwed teenage daughters that it should be replicated all across the nation.
Conservatives believe there is a "real America," where the flames of hatred, racism, and xenophobia can be easily stoked by linking your opponents to terrorists, and a "fake America" for everyone else.
And more than anything else, conservatives believe that no matter how big of an economic disaster you create, how badly you alienate allies, botch intelligence, or mismanage wars, it's still liberals' fault.