One Response to One Possible Future

  1. Rick says:

    So who says Republicans are living in the past? Grover Norquist, the originator of novel conservative ideas such as reducing government down to a size that it can be “drowned in a bathtub”, then comes up with the idea of the “digital” president — that is, a chief executive who essentially has enough working “digits” to hold a bill-signing pen. I can’t help but wonder if a president with no supervisory authority whatsoever, much less brain, might qualify under U.S. labor laws to be designated an hourly worker, along with the right to join a union.

    Say what you will about them, these conservatives just can’t stop thinking things up, including Paul Ryan, who keeps coming up with budget after budget, each looking pretty much like the one before it. This most recent one, for instance, seems to have in common with its predecessors the facts that it is (a) “mean” to the poor, and (b) also kind of “stupid”, as policies go.

    Of course, arguing that something is “mean” or “nasty” to the poor doesn’t persuade conservatives, who aren’t that concerned with harming people who they think don’t deserve concern. On the contrary, Republicans are most likely to see the Ryan budget as finally showing some long-needed “tough love” to America’s poor people, who obviously only became a burden to the rest of us because they’ve been coddled for all these years by Democratic elected officials, who led them to believe they don’t need to go out and get a job — ignoring the fact, of course, that many of the poor already have jobs, but jobs that don’t pay enough to live on, and that many are looking but can’t find jobs, because in our economy, there are way more workers who need jobs than there are jobs that need people.

    And when I say the budget is “stupid”, I mean that it’s a roadmap that will hurt the whole country, not just poor people. The thought here is, cutting all these programs that help keep merely poor people from become homeless poor people, keeps us from turning into a Third World Country, which is the kind of country that conservatives are always bragging that we’re not.

    Forget cutting spending by $5-trillion — which, by the way, reduces the size of the economy by at least that amount, unless you count the multiples of every dollar of spending this takes out of the economy — we Democrats need to get ourselves involved in the discussion with Republicans that they tend to scrupulously avoid.

    For example, we need to needle Ryan on whether or not helping smart but poor kids go to college is good for the country or bad for the country? Also, rather than turning Medicare into block grants to people to spend on healthcare the way they want, why not just cut to the chase and abolish Medicare, which is where he seems to be going with all this anyway? And so does he think abolishing Medicare is a good idea? Try to get him and his followers to detail exactly what they would have us do with all the starving people that will result from being thrown off food stamps.

    This would be an uncomfortable argument to get into, not just for conservatives but also for us liberals, but it’s one that goes to the root of what we, the people, want our country to be, and sooner or later, it has to be done, so it might as well be sooner.

    One wonders how long the Republicans, as wonderfully detailed by Joan Walsh, can maintain this trifecta (“voter suppression, voter demoralization and gerrymandering”) trick of theirs designed to hold on to power, before they are either forced to formulate a blue-print for America that makes sense for all of us rather than just the oligarchic few, or else are totally swallowed by the inevitable demographic hoard.

    But until either of those things happens, they just seem to be slouching toward dystopia.


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