FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
What is the End Game for Big Government?
Is the Republican infighting really about strategy, or is it about ideology?
Those Republicans, such as the Wall Street Journal editors and the Weekly Standard writers, who criticize Tea Party opposition to Boehner’s plan, would have you believe that they are just as ideologically committed to downsizing government. They are just advocating smarter and more politically savvy ways of achieving that goal; one that is supposedly less tendentious to independent voters. As such, they have an obligation to create a political and policy road map that will reduce government – a goal they purportedly share. Where is their plan?
We believe that unless we go to the brink, and use our leverage with the budget process to force fundamental and transformational government reform, we will never limit government. These wizards of smart obviously believe that we will have better opportunities in the future. What are those opportunities?
Over the last 75 years, and especially during the past decade, liberals have methodically constructed an incorrigible edifice of tyranny. Their magnum opus, the federal government, has foisted $14.4 trillion in debt and $100 trillion in unfunded obligations on our families; it has promulgated $1.75 trillion in regulatory burdens on our job creators, it has sucked out millions of jobs and trillions in income growth from the “little guy.” Most important, it has revoked an incalculable measure of liberty from everyone.
Any sane observer of politics, who is willing to learn from the lessons of history, should intuitively understand that a few billion in cuts, along with incremental changes to government, are no match for perennial, self-perpetuating socialism. It is akin to stopping a speeding bullet train (the last to leave the station, to paraphrase Speaker Boehner) with some twigs. Boehner’s 2.0 plan, which appears to be gaining traction, does just that.
Our detractors will protest, “but this is not the time and place for such reform; let’s wait until we have control of more than 1/3rd of one branch of government.”
“This is the best we can do, given the extraneous circumstances.”
“Wait for 2012; we’ll take back all of government and really show them.”
“Get your a@#$ in line.”
No, folks, it is we conservatives who have kept our posteriors on the line, while you have retreated from it.
When you told us to help you fight to defund Obamacare, we held the line and took the bullets.
When you asked us to help fight the liberal media in the face of a government shutdown in April, we held the line. Nonetheless, you caved for less than $500 million in savings from the 2011 Continuing Resolution. You told us that it was not the time to fight, and it was the best we could get at the time. But, we remained patient for the real fight; the debt ceiling fight, in which we would save “trillions.”
Concurrently, in April, the entire Republican conference rallied behind the Paul Ryan budget, which defunded Obamacare and set us on a path to a balanced budget, albeit in 26 years. We held the line and took the arrows for killing granny.
Now, you guys are retreating from all those promises. Not only are you surrendering our biggest leverage over the debt for non-transformational change, you are using this deal to negate the transformational changes that we rallied behind in the Ryan budget; Obamacare repeal, Medicare and Medicaid reform, and decreased welfare dependency.
Meanwhile, the clock ticks – and the programs only grow, Obamacare begins to take root, and not a single agency from the Departments of Education, Labor, HUD, Commerce, etc. are threatened with elimination. In fact, they are still expanding.
What about waiting for the enchanted elections of 2012, in which we win back all branches of government?
Nothing will change, unless we are willing to employ drastic tactics – the same tactics that you oppose – and stick with them. Even if we win the presidency and the Senate, an eventuality that is by no means guaranteed, we will not have 60 seats in the Senate to block the inevitable filibuster from 41 Democrats, who – unlike those on our side – never sell out. Even if we win 60 seats, we will not have 60 conservatives. Consequently, we will still be forced to use drastic tactics, such as the debt ceiling or budget reconciliation to enact our agenda and repeal Obamacare.
And you know what else? Even if we have 60 seats, you will still oppose transformational change. After all, how can we risk losing our power, once we work so hard to obtain it? How can we alienate those precious independent voters by eliminating departments, cutting welfare, empowering young voters to save for retirement, or open Medicare to free market reform?
So what is your end game? When will we ever downsize government?
Give us a realistic and coherent plan and we, unlike you guys, will hold the line and not leave the rest of the troops under fire in the field. If you feel that that your plan is the best one for the debt ceiling fight, then show us how you will do better for the FY 2012 budget fight in September.
The reality is that you have no plan; you only have excuses. The reason is simple. You don’t really believe in limited government, and, despite the rhetoric, lack a true sensitivity for the pernicious effects of big government.
We can’t put our rumps on the line, if there is no line, and of that line is always moving…backwards.