I think your characterization of conversatives as being chiefly concerned with wielding power is exactly 180 degrees wrong. We are not concerned with wielding it. We are concerned with not wielding it at all and allowing people the freedom to control their own destinies. Fundamentally, the wisest use of power is to not use it. That is the basis of the idea of small government. We especially don’t trust far-away governments of unelected bureaucrats over which the people have little to no control to exercise power, which is the “progressive” ideal: that the people be ruled by experts, as articulated in the early 1900s.
(I put “progressive” in quotes because I refuse to concede even for a moment that their program in any way represents progress.)
I agree that the social conservatives’ program of interfering in the private lives of consenting adults is not in accordance with this ideal. However, I also think that the Left has gone far too far in the other direction, not only by punishing wrongthink in the name of political correctness, but by raising one’s sexuality to the status of completely defining an individual to the complete exclusion of the myriad other factors that affect and define their lives. The politics of identity are far more corrosive than the rise of Donald Trump, which is at least in part a reaction to them.
The money is a red herring. Regulating it is nothing more than an attempt to regulate speech, just as regulating ammunition is an attempt to regulate firearms. That’s why I’m unable to understand why people who trumpet the value of political speech to the skies nevertheless trust government — which can be turned against them just as easily as it can be turned against conservatives — to regulate it.
As for being uncomfortable in the realms of money and power, there are plenty of leftists who aren’t — and they inhabit Silicon Valley, and Hollywood, and Washington, DC, and New York City, and all of those places along the coasts they fly over the rest of us to get between. When billionaire financiers pour money into leftist causes, claims of being uncomfortable around money ring a bit hollow.