Friday, August 31, 2012

Meet the New Plan, Same as the Old Plan!

There's an old joke that makes the rounds of my Progressive friends that no matter what the problem facing the nation might be, the conservative answer is always "cut taxes."  Gun violence?  Cut taxes.  Explosion on an oil rig? Cut taxes.  Hurricane?  Cut taxes.

Humor, to be funny, must contain a nugget of truth, though in this case, the nugget is more of a boulder.

Roosevelt Institute Fellow and blogger Mike Konczal looks at the various policy promises & positions expressed by the GOP since 2004 and finds some remarkable similarities, regardless of the challenges facing the nation
But the same exact playbook is there in 2006, as it was in 2004 and 2008, and as it is 2012. Domestic oil production, school choice, trade agreements, cut spending and reduce taxes and regulations - it's been the conservative answer to times of deep economic stress, times of economic recovery, times of economic worries and times of economic panic. Which is another way of saying that the Republicans have no plan for how to actually deal with this specific crisis we face.
When your only tool is a hammer, you beat the shit out of the nation until it comes to heel, I suppose.  I'm only surprised that this model doesn't extend back further than 2004.

I peeked at W's 2000 nomination acceptance speech and it does indeed reference schools, spending cuts and tax reductions, but the bugaboo of regulation did not appear, nor did the silly concept of "energy independence."  Perhaps W learned something in his time as an oil executive that energy is a global market and the notion of independence is a fallacy.  I know it's a stretch, but perhaps.

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