What is wrong with Republicans? Let’s be kind and presume they possess the intelligence required to understand facts and numbers, something that takes a very generous interpretation of intelligence, I’m afraid.
But let’s pretend.
The real issue then is one of priorities and values. Take Senator David Hann, a Minnesota Republican, for example. He just wasted 3 minutes on WCCO-TV telling Esme Murphy that people have to learn to “live within their means.” What does that mean?
What they mean is they want everyone to live within the GOP’s unbalanced priorities and their bankrupt values. That’s it.
You still hear from Republicans a lot of folksy talk about families gathered around the kitchen table dealing with their financial difficulties as a parallel for what government must do. Blah, blah, blah. Perhaps it never occurred to Republicans that the family most likely didn’t get into a financial mess because they chose to reduce their family income by voluntarily giving up a career for a part-time job at Wal-Mart.
For decades, the GOP has deliberately reduced our states’ and our nation’s “kitchen table” budget. They have cut taxes in good times and bad, and still want to cut taxes more, but preach the inappropriate argument that government needs to learn to live within its means.
This attack on our government has been catastrophic. Our infrastructure is in disrepair and lags by decades behind other developing countries. Our economy is for most people flat when it is at its best. We are losing ground in education, energy, health care, and social equality. (This is America?)
As Republicans see things, it is perfectly fine to waste our future on unsustainable tax cuts that require more of the poor and less of the rich. That’s a solid and consistent GOP value. Makes a lot of sense, doesn’t it? Then they go about preaching that we need to live within our means. Classless thieves always wanting more for less, especially if someone else can pay for it, that’s today’s American conservative.
The promised jobs that tax cuts provide have largely gone overseas, building huge profits for corporations and institutional investors, but only offering an indirect glimmer of hope to the increasingly shrinking number of Americans who have money saved in some of these investments. Otherwise…well, our growth industries are low-paying jobs without long-term security or benefits.
One has to wonder why people don’t talk politics around the kitchen table. Politics — messy as it is — is much easier to understand than economics. Hell, we have a pile of elected officials claiming economic expertise who can’t discern supply from demand, but that’s no bother. It is unimportant when opinions matter more than facts.
But in politics your opinions are invested by your best interests, perhaps in a more forgiving way compared with economics. You would think there would be room at the kitchen table to sort this out. You don’t even need a pencil and a pad of paper. Just some freaking common sense! Stop and ask yourself: Who is voting for these right-wing clowns? And if the answer turns back to be you, ask yourself why.
Even the best and most successful of us would be better off with a little less GOP backwardness. We have a future to worry about, after all.
Not everyone is suffering, that’s true. A lot of people still live comfortable lives and find opportunities. Some people thrive in this environment. The problem is it comes at the cost of our overall common good. A smart and socially stable population is good for business, for example. It is also good for politics and all the good choices smarter, better political leaders make for our common good. This insane and thoughtless rush to cut government fails us. The proof is everywhere.
I am, I suppose, growing tired of an empty, pessimistic morality that destroys the common good. I am tired of dancing around trying to be diplomatic about people who lead by these immoral and factually backward principles. They are ruining our country. Why should we respect enemies of all that has been good for us?
Hold these people accountable. How have the last 30 years, governed largely on conservative principles, made us better and stronger? Anyone?
- Does NPR Have a Liberal Bias or… (alittletourinyellow.wordpress.com)
- Are We as Petty as the GOP Thinks by V. Lyn (tcmag.wordpress.com)
- Anti-unionization measure in FAA bill meets GOP opposition (dailykos.com)
- Jim Wallis: Changing Bad Behavior At Davos (huffingtonpost.com)