There’s an article over on The Grio about how the “Tea Party is over.” It’s interesting, not just because what the author, who supposedly was involved at the start, said but also because of the rather … virulent … response from various Tea Party activists for his apostasy. He points out the underlying hypocrisy (and racism), which is something I’ve pointed out quite a lot in the past. But then again, I’m a liberal, so it’s not unusual for me to point it out. It took a while for him to “get the message.”
It’s so sad to me that a movement that began as an organic reaction to big government has been hijacked by the right. The Tea Party’s slogan was, “fiscal responsibility, limited government, and free markets” — but it has now become the religious right in tri-corner hats.
I thought we were going to have Republicans thinking for once and realizing that if Barack Obama put an entire private sector industry out of business and then nationalized that same industry and created a new cabinet level department to oversee and regulate the industry I would call it socialism … so how come I was OK with George W. Bush doing the same thing to the airline security industry? And I am glad that we are all concerned about extra-judicial drone strikes on American citizens, but how come George Bush and Barack Obama can both kill Americans with drones overseas without a trial? Is it because the targets have brown skin and a foreign last name?
But alas we learned no such lessons. We are OK with big government as long as it’s a Republican administration. We are OK with losing our civil liberties as long as a white Republican is the one in the White House taking our freedoms away.
Honestly? He managed to delude himself for quite some time. For one thing, the only reason the Tea Party was even a force at all was because of various right wing groups “hijacking” it. 🙄 I could point out that President Obama didn’t – and wasn’t going to – put an entire private sector industry out of business. I might also point out that a good many of those very same “activists” were also stating that they didn’t want anyone touching their … government provided socialist healthcare program.
It’s just one of numerous examples. It’s easy to point out that for the most part, the states that are the most heavily conservative tend to be the ones most dependent on federal spending. Which has led conservatives to suddenly claim that the President needs to spend more:
While other Republicans were slamming Obama for increasing health-care costs, in other words, right-wing populists like Palin were denouncing him for reducing them. Something similar happened when Paul Ryan became Mitt Romney’s running mate. As a member of Congress, Ryan had proposed turning Medicare’s guaranteed benefit into a voucher in order to dramatically cut spending on the program. But after joining the Romney ticket, Ryan began accusing Obama of “raiding” $716 billion from Medicare to pay for Obamacare (even though Ryan’s own budget had proposed the exact same cut). Once again, Republicans who had spent the Obama years attacking Democrats for not cutting federal domestic spending enough were suddenly attacking them for cutting it too much.
Greg Sargent calls it “Policy Nihilism.”
Mark April 11th, 2013, down on your calendars as the day that the GOP’s fiscal ruse was finally unmasked with total clarity: Republicans don’t actually want entitlement cuts. Or, to put it another way, they say they want entitlement cuts, but they want Dems to own them.
For decades, North Alabama’s been getting a pretty sweet deal on electricity rates, courtesy of the Tennessee Valley Authority. But President Obama’s budget proposal released yesterday may change that. The budget suggests that debt concerns make make it necessary to sell TVA to private businesses.
It’s amazing how many Republicans from the area serviced by TVA are suddenly finding it “a bad thing.” Why? Well, because:
By 2010, prices had shot up again, but TVA customers still paid less, on average:
TVA’s average retail price ranked 31st lowest among the nation’s 100 largest utilities in fiscal year 2010 (the 12-month period ending September 2010), an improvement from 43rd lowest in fiscal 2009. TVA’s average retail price was 7.9 cents per kilowatt-hour, nearly 20 percent lower than the group average of 9.9 cents per kWh.
These lower utility rates benefit TVA’s residential customers and they also help the region recruit industry:
TVA is providing electricity at marginally above cost to the area, instead of charging “market rates.” The “cheap power” that these areas have been using to attract businesses, or induce them to relocate there. When the President suggests that it would be good for the country’s debt to let free market private enterprise take over? The shrieks of indignation are remarkable!
It also holds true when it comes to disasters. Various Republicans were … indignant … about the “wasteful” nature of aid to the Northeast after superstorm Sandy. But when it comes to their disasters? Get out the checkbook, FEMA!
In January of 2013, before he became infamous for modernizing McCarthyism in the Senate halls, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) claimed he couldn’t support aid for Sandy victims because of the “pork” and “wasteful spending” in the Disaster Relief Act of 2013 ….
Cut to April of 2013. Texas needs federal aid because they don’t do such a great job of regulating and overseeing businesses or zoning, apparently. So when a fertilizer plant that had once been allowed to operat without a pollution permit for several years blew up and impacted a nearby school and nursing home, the devastating damage was more than Texas could cope with alone.
Sen. Cruz will visit West on Friday. He finally issued a statement from the Capitol, “We are in very close touch with officials on the ground and we’re monitoring the tragic accident closely. It’s truly horrific and we are working to ensure that all available resources are marshaled to deal with the horrific loss of life and suffering that we’ve seen.”
All of which are indicators of the other problem with conservatives, and the Republican Party. They’re all in favor of entitlement cuts and small government, except when it’s their entitlements and government services. It’s not that they didn’t “adequately communicate their message,” it’s that while they were touting their “principles,” their actions were communicating quite nicely their hypocrisy. Since they seem to be very big on “Bible based” behavior, I’ll close with this:
23 Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: 2 “The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. 3 So you must be careful to do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach. 4 They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them.
Substitute “conservatives” and “Republicans,” and they’re the same. They just won’t admit it.