Why are they called conservatives when they aren't actually trying to conserve either the status quo or our nation's wealth, but push a regressive agenda that also involves direct government control over our lives?
Because there's a lot of history, and many of these labels don't mean much etymologically. s**t has just evolved over time so that "liberal," at least in America, generally means someone who supports socially progressive viewpoints and a mixed economy,
Liberalism (from the Latin liberalis) is a broad political ideology or worldview founded on the ideas of liberty and equality. Liberals espouse a wide array of views depending on their understanding of these principles, but generally liberals support ideas such as capitalism (either regulated or not), constitutionalism, liberal democracy, free press, free and fair elections, human rights and the free exercise of religion.