Left wing columnist extraordinaire Paul Krugman’s recent opinion piece for the ever famous liberal rag, The New York Times, entitled “The Politics of Spite” is another myopic and tunnel-visioned article not fit for the toilet paper that the infamous Grey Lady is printed on. In it, Krugman predictably targets Republicans as nothing more than spiteful children and seeks to convince the gullible masses – that still actually read the NY Slimes – that Republicans are the only unreasonable and cut throat party in D.C. It is only natural that an ignorant left wing ideologue conflates Conservatives with Republicans and refuses to acknowledge the vitriolic bile and unadulterated hatred that the left hurls at its opponents.
From Krugman, we – the educated and rational beings – expect nothing less. Those that have read Krugman’s tripe in the past will be unsurprised by anything that this transparently biased and foolish hack has to say.
There was what President Obama likes to call a teachable moment last week, when the International Olympic Committee rejected Chicago’s bid to be host of the 2016 Summer Games.
“Cheers erupted” at the headquarters of the conservative Weekly Standard, according to a blog post by a member of the magazine’s staff, with the headline “Obama loses! Obama loses!” Rush Limbaugh declared himself “gleeful.” “World Rejects Obama,” gloated the Drudge Report. And so on.
So what did we learn from this moment? For one thing, we learned that the modern conservative movement, which dominates the modern Republican Party, has the emotional maturity of a bratty 13-year-old.
Perhaps, Mr. Krugman is correct here. Indeed it may appear childish that we on the right experienced such schadenfreude at Obama’s completely frivolous, feckless, and failed trip to Copenhagen. Nonetheless, we rejoiced. We did. We did because everybody, on either side of the aisle, enjoys a hearty “told ya so.” Granted, we on the right experience this far more often that those on the left… and I doubt that any stalwart liberal has ever experienced it. Given that our country is experiencing record unemployment, fighting two wars, debating the take over of 1/6 of our economy by the government in the form of health care, and our general economic state is looking more like the early Carter years… and our President feels that the most important thing that he can do is pander to the IOC in Copenhagen for the Olympics eight years from now to be held in Chicago. Naturally, we are going to laugh when he fails to move them. I for one rather enjoy the fact that even the Euroweenies can see through this stuffed shirt’s veneer. It is a big, hearty, schadenfreude filled “I told ya so.” So yes, we collectively enjoy it.
But more important, the episode illustrated an essential truth about the state of American politics: at this point, the guiding principle of one of our nation’s two great political parties is spite pure and simple. If Republicans think something might be good for the president, they’re against it — whether or not it’s good for America.
Contrary to what the typical statist liberal – i.e. Paul Krugman – may wish to believe, the undeniable truth of the matter is that not everything that is good for the president is good for this country. And in the case of Obama, it is a fairly safe bet that whatever is good for him is inherently bad for this country. Once one considers the implications of his agenda and what his goals are… that fact becomes immutable. It is also important to note that this isn’t a guiding principle. Our guiding principles of liberty simply clash with the president’s agenda.
But the tactics of the two parties have been different. In 2005, when Democrats campaigned against Social Security privatization, their arguments were consistent with their underlying ideology: they argued that replacing guaranteed benefits with private accounts would expose retirees to too much risk.
The Republican campaign against health care reform, by contrast, has shown no such consistency. For the main G.O.P. line of attack is the claim — based mainly on lies about death panels and so on — that reform will undermine Medicare. And this line of attack is utterly at odds both with the party’s traditions and with what conservatives claim to believe.
Actually, I recall a good deal of rather ridiculous fear mongering. Such as “Bush wants to steal all of your Social Security and give it to his rich buddies, leaving you penniless and destitute.” “Bush hates retired people.” The list of slogans goes on. It was the typical baseless, vitriol filled invective that we’ve all come to expect from the left…. So yes, I guess that the Democrats were in keeping with their underlying ideology.
As for the GOP claims of death panels, the death of private insurance, health care rationing, illegal aliens participating in a public option, and a myriad of other serious problems… those aren’t lies, nor are they based on any. It has been proven time and again by countless fact checkers and bloggers who have actually read the bill – which is more than I can say for anyone at the NY Times, or Congress.
Think about just how bizarre it is for Republicans to position themselves as the defenders of unrestricted Medicare spending.
And since the G.O.P. opposes anything that might be good for Mr. Obama, it has become the passionate defender of ineffective medical procedures and overpayments to insurance companies.
Mark this down on the calendars folks. For the first (and likely last) time I agree with Krugman. The odd spin on the Medicare debate is foolish. It does NOT hold to the conservative principles. We conservatives have been quite miffed about the so called Seniors’ Health Care Bill of Rights. It is an utterly ridiculous line of attack. If there is one aspect of the health care bill that we should support it should be a Medicare reform. Unfortunately, Republican leadership (notice I don’t use the term Conservative) have decided to use the Medicare cuts to their advantage. The ultimate goal is to kill HR3200, one which I support. However, Krugman is right here when he points out the foolishness of using positive Medicare cuts as a bull-whip. The myriad of other catastrophically bad elements of the bill should be more than enough to drub HR3200 to death.
How did one of our great political parties become so ruthless, so willing to embrace scorched-earth tactics even if so doing undermines the ability of any future administration to govern?
At the risk of regressing to a grade school mentality… “You started it.” Remember Bork? We do. Politics in this country have always been rife with invective, personal attacks, unfounded accusations, and just plain old nastiness. However, it was the Democrats who perfected the use of Scorched-Earth Politics, and it was none other than Ted “Payin for Chappaquiddick Now” Kennedy that brought such tactics to bare. Sure, Republicans have swiped a page from the Saul Alinsky manual and studied plenty of game footage… and now they’re using many of the liberal’s own tactics against them. However, it was the Democrats, long ago, who undermined the ability of future administrations to govern. Not Republicans. Perhaps if Krugman and the rest of his liberal cronies took the blinders off and pulled their collective heads out of their asses, they would take notice of it… but I won’t hold my breath waiting for that to happen.