The Refreshing Honesty of Grover Norquist

 It took us until noon or so today before we managed to force ourself to actually read Grover Norquist’s Op. Ed. in today’s New York Times. You see, we’re so used to bubbling up and boiling over with fury every time we read a disingenuous, dishonest and mendacious opinion piece by a prominent conservative that we just weren’t sure we could take one more. In these pieces the author generally strikes a tone of deep concern for the federal debt, the solvency of Social Security and Medicare and the well being of  “average Americans,” proposes solutions that would devastate all three of those things while pretending to improve them, and then backs it up with a series of blatantly false studies, cooked statistics and fuzzy math.

But Norquist’s piece surprised us in that regard. For not only does Norquist dispense with artificial concern for the country’s debt picture, he’s quite straightforward in announcing that his entire program is built around the notion that the government must be dismantled at all costs, the deficit be damned.

The problem to be solved is not the deficit; it is overspending. Federal spending in the 2008 fiscal year was $2.9 trillion, and Washington will now spend $3.8 trillion in the fiscal year that ends on Sept. 30. Raising taxes is what politicians do instead of reforming and reducing the cost of government. Advocates of larger government prefer to talk about deficits rather than spending. Why? Because there are two solutions to a deficit problem: spend less or raise taxes. The issue, in other words, isn’t the pledge; it’s Washington’s inability to deal with its own overspending. There is only one fix for a spending problem: spend less.

Again, this is refreshing becuase, up to now, the Republican Party and the mainstream media have held to the fiction that Republicans are fiscal conservatives whose primary focus is balancing America’s books. Consider the high regard that the commentariat seems to hold for the “seriousness” of fiscal fraud Paul Ryan, whose budget proposals dismantle Medicare, gut Social Security and hand wealthy Americans a massive tax cut.

As it happens, and as if to drive the point home further, Paul Krugman, today presents a rather startling statistic that reveals just how fiscally conservative (in the true sense of the word) the Clinton Administration proved to be over its 8 years in office:

Between 1993 and 2001, federal debt held by the public fell from 49.2 percent of GDP to 32.5 percent of GDP. What stopped the paydown of debt wasn’t liberal big spending; it was demands from conservatives that the surplus be used to cut taxes. George Bush said that a surplus means that the government is collecting too much money; Alan Greenspan warned that we were paying off our debt too fast.

If balancing the books is your ultimate goal, then the administration of Bill Clinton (with its higher accross the board tax rates) is clearly the fiscal model to be followed. But that’s not at all what Norquist, or the ideologues on the Right want, as Norquist tells us quite explicitly.

So now that we have the principal architect of Conservative slash and burn budgetting telling us outright that the GOP program has very little to do with paying down the Federal debt, and is little more than an ideologically driven program to dismantle Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Unemployment Insurance and the entire government regulatory apparatus, will the mainstream media stop pretending that Republicans care about the Federal Deficit and the National Debt?

Sadly, I think you all know all too well the answer to that rhetorical question.


Grover Norquist: Fuck the poors and let them guzzle corn syrup.

Hey now, corn syrup is both delicious and incredibly unhealthy. It’s really a win-win!

You mean Emperor Norquist? The man that controls the legislative and executive branches of the federal and state governments, that guy?

In other sky-is-blue news, Pat Buchanan admits to being nothing more than a racist prig.

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