Curmudgeonalia
I see I taste I write Links What?
March 10, 2005

The hardly conservative George W. Bush

Relevant quotes:
“We could give it all back to you (the tax surplus) and hope you spend it right.” Bill Clinton

“This is the man who prints the money. I spend it.” (This was a comment made when introducing then Secretary of the Treasury, Wm Simon, demonstrating the liberal ignorance in the field of economics)
(Senator-MN) H .H. Humphrey

“The central conservative truth is that it is culture, not politics that determines the success of a society. The central liberal truth is that politics can change a culture and save it from itself.” (Senator-NY) Daniel Patrick Moynihan

“Lest we forget, civilization emerged not from the grand documents and noble philosophies of men, but from an arbitrary little voice in the female head saying: ‘that’s not nice.’”
Florence King

It is central to understanding Moynihan’s quote that both are correct whilst not fully so. Arguing “nature” against “nurture” is to deny that both are relevant. Can anyone with an I.Q. in double digits argue that only one applies? The civil rights activities of the 60’s demonstrate that politics is indeed relevant, and the righteous anger of our citizens over the unleashing of dogs on the demonstrators exemplifies the importance of basic cultural values (as in: “that’s not nice!”) Bill Clinton and Hubert Humphrey, as always, speak for liberals, however moderate/immoderate: there’s no such thing as a bad tax, or too many taxes and it’s always possible to spend more than you have, just borrow the difference or print more money (which is a major cause of inflation—thru devaluation of the currency.)

Would you believe that the ostensibly conservative “W,” an alleged tax cutter, is unwilling to rule out surreptitiously and disingenuously raising taxes by increasing the base upon which Social Security Taxes are collected. He emphasizes that he will not increase the rate of taxation. Be attentive here, this is doublespeak. Bush-41 overtly broke his promise about “no new taxes,” was honest about it, and paid dearly. Bush-43 is becoming a little sleazy here, not to go so far as to say lying, and dissembles reality like a typical politician. He “hasn’t ruled out” anything . . . meaning that he is willing to discuss this misrepresented travesty. He reiterates his willingness to “expend political capital” over his cherished endeavors . . . but is hypocrisy to be the cause and the fashion in which he does so?

Keep in mind that with the taxable base increased anyone earning over $90,000 will be compelled to pay 12.4% in tax on the additional amount, while “qualifying” for no new or increased “benefit.” Ostensibly, this taxpayer is (maybe—and it is a maybe!) to be granted permanency of the previously temporary tax relief. Said reduction of tax represents a trifling few percent overall, whilst W is “considering” a compromise with the Liberals to permit raising the base upon which the laughably labeled “Federal Income for the Aged (FICA) tax, not insurance premium, is paid. And it is paid on all income, not adjusted gross income.

In many parts of the U.S., 90K is not a huge salary. Not modest, but not huge. If, say, one earns 120 K, the increase in FICA tax will be almost $4,000, offset by a reduction of income tax of less than $1,000! Further, the increase in FICA won’t address, let alone resolve, the looming deficits in this socialist program. We don’t yet know if “43” is prepared to compromise over personal accounts as well, which you will recall was the reason touted for entering the discussion in the first place. Great conservative, he!

I am increasingly unable to differentiate between his version of compassionate conservatism (an oxymoron of sorts) and the supposed alternative: liberal democratic socialism (another oxymoron, inasmuch as there is nothing especially democratic, and certainly nothing liberal in the classic sense, about socialism.) His spending on programs such as No Child Left Behind, and Free Drugs for the Greatest Generation (of thieves*), has placed him second on the list of all time biggest spenders . . . the first having been F.D.R. Please recall that Roosevelt was in the middle of a war which was orders of a magnitude more expensive than the current Gulf War/War on Terror. Again, great conservative, he! (Which he? Clearly F.D.R was more conservative than either Bush, and J.F.K was significantly more conservative than any of them. **)

*By way of disclosure, let me identify myself as almost (at 68 y.o.) one of that generation, as I indemnify myself by abhorring the AARP, oppose free drugs for seniors—especially Levitra. I argue constantly against programs such as Social Security. I am, or was, one of those who paid infinitely more into S.S. than I will ever get in return, and strongly support a totally privatized retirement program, albeit required by the government. It works in Chile, why not here? Further, one has to be apprised that even F.D.R., the author/sponsor of Social Security, inaugurated it as a temporary system, to be replaced by a permanently self-sustaining private system once the depression was over, and (if I recall the quote properly) “surely within no more than 30 years.” So why do the Democrats argue for the permanence of this government program, and why do the Republicans agree with them? We know the answer to the first half of the question: modern liberals favor huge and oppressive government, since they truly believe they can run our lives better than we can. It is the latter half of the question which is puzzling to me, and ought to be to you.

**I voted for Nixon--or, rather, against Kennedy because he was too liberal.

Posted by respeto at March 10, 2005 1:50 PM