Monday, December 13, 2010
Why I Hate Republicans, #45210
Can anybody give a single sound reason (beyond the obvious self-interest of the wealthy) for extending what were supposed to be temporary tax cuts to upper income citizens? And can any such reason possibly be ethically consistent with the imperative to address our ballooning national debt?
Can there be a psychologically-healthy explanation for people in numbers far greater than those who will benefit directly lobbying for and supporting this extension?
The Republicans come into the lame duck session vowing to roadblock any and all Democratic initiatives unless the tax cuts are extended en masse. Given that the lame duck session is the Dems' last chance to push through anything even remotely progressive, the Repubs' continuation of their two-year 'party of no' modus operandi is a smart political tactic; but how does extension of ALL the tax cuts come to be the priority? And how does this strategy come to find support from the millions who voted for the resurgent Republicans?
Progressives are upset at the deal between Obama and the Republicans, and rightly so: the chief "concession" gained by the President for his ready cave-in is an extension of unemployment benefits--something which the Republicans opposed (and for which opposition they've managed to elude paying any political price)! Everything Obama "got" in the deal ends up costing all of us more money: everybody continues to have unsustainably low income tax rates; payroll taxes have been reduced; inheritances get an unbelievable $5 million tax-free buffer; unemployment benefits get extended. With conservatives having made such hay over the past two years about the dangers of the deficit, I think we can now say with confidence where the Republicans' real priorities lie.
The President says that we should support what amounts to an across-the-board Republican plan (the only thing they didn't want was the politically-failsafe unemployment benefit extension, and they'll take credit for this now thanks to Obama's insistence that it be included in their plan) because the alternative--Republican road-block--will be worse for the country. And whose fault is that? Why not stick up for what's right and let conservatives face the fire they've made? It is no failure of the Democrats if they should refuse to yield to an unreasonable demand, no matter what Faux News says; some deals are just too expensive in money or moral capital to accede.
Once again we find the entire country held hostage by a small group of rich white guys for the benefit of their special club and they appear to be paying no price for it whatsoever. How is it that we continue to let conservatives set this disastrous agenda? Where are the sputtering, illiterate sign-waving Tea-Baggers as another $900 billion--almost another trillion dollars!--is being added to the deficit? How do we jam the Capitol Mall to protest that poor people are gaining access to health care but remain silent while another trillion dollars is added to the deficit for no defensible reason whatsoever? How do we prioritize such a big addition to the deficit for the needless gain of the one tiny segment of society which has been immune to the pains of recession?
The war on science; the promotion of big-business concerns above every other thing; the hobbling of education both by failing to properly prioritize and fund it and by actively opposing fact-based reasoning; the hypocrisy of their fiscal ideas; the reliance on lies and spin and fear mongering in their propaganda machine; the crass use of Jebus and the flag to rope in the country's ignorant, credulous masses; the conviction that corporations have the same status as individual citizens: these and many other reasons are why I despise conservatism in its present form.