One sign of intelligence is never knowingly repeating events that led to a past catastrophic failure regardless a person’s good intentions or misguided ideological motives. However, intelligence does not enter into the equation when someone deliberately repeats harmful events for profit and when they conspire to ensure their actions cause the most damage to the most people. There are many Americans who believe Republican ideology is misguided and part of their adherence to conservative ideals of maintaining the status quo, but there is evidence that their agenda is not ideological, but evil, and Americans are paying a steep price so Republicans can prevail in the upcoming general election and eventually sell America to the highest bidder.
Today, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) assailed House Republicans for planning to extend the Bush-era tax cuts without paying for them repeating an error they made in 2001 and 2003 that helped increase the nation’s deficit that Americans are still paying for. Besides being economically unsound, it is hypocritical for Republicans to add to the deficit to perpetuate the wealthy’s tax cuts when they insisted on paying for the payroll tax cut extension, emergency aid for disaster relief, and any other program that benefits the middle class and poor. It’s obvious there are two sets of rules Republicans adhere to when the wealthy are involved. Jesse Ferguson, the DCCC spokesman said, “When it comes to giving more tax breaks to millionaires and billionaires, House Republicans don’t want to pay for it, but when it comes to middle-income families, Republicans demand that middle-income Americans sacrifice to pay for it. The hypocrisy is stunning and this is just the latest reminder of House Republicans’ wrong priorities that help millionaires at the expense of the middle class.” It is nothing new for Republicans, and it belies their faux concern for reducing the deficit because the Congressional Budget Office estimates that if the Bush tax cuts are extended without paying for them, it will add trillions to the deficit.
Republicans continue revealing their lack of concern for the deficit that both Paul Ryan’s Path to Prosperity and Willard Romney’s budget increases by trillions with enormous tax cuts for the wealthy that far exceed the Bush-era rates. In fact, if one didn’t know better, based on their penchant for increasing the deficit to enrich the wealthy, it would appear that Republicans are deliberately sabotaging the economy, and based on a recent revelation by a congressional insider, that is exactly what Republicans are doing.
In a new book, Robert Draper writes that while Democrats were celebrating President Obama’s inauguration, a group of Republican lawmakers and strategists were meeting privately to conjure up ways to impede the Obama presidency. The new book, “Do Not Ask What Good We Do: Inside the U.S. House of Representatives,” gives a telling account of how top Republicans set out to destroy the economy to portray President Obama as a failure. The four-hour private, invitation only, meeting was attended by Republican propaganda expert Frank Luntz and twelve leading congressmen including Paul Ryan, Eric Cantor, Kevin McCarthy, Pete Sessions, Jeb Hensarling, Pete Hoekstra, Dan Lungren, Jim DeMint, Jon Kyl, Tom Coburn, John Ensign, and Bob Corker. Newt Gingrich joined the party and along with Luntz was the only attendee who was not a legislator. Gingrich, however, gave a parting message as he left the meeting that revealed why the Republicans planned on destroying the economy; “You will remember this day,” Draper reports, “You’ll remember this as the day the seeds of 2012 were sown.”
There is little question that Republicans are hell-bent on destroying the economy by repeating Bush-era economic malfeasance, but the rank hypocrisy of the actions define the contempt they have for the American people and the country’s economic health. Every last one of the Republicans voted for Bush bailouts of Bear Stearn, AIG, the 2008 stimulus, and two TARP measures, and supported keeping the cost of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars out of the budget. They also supported spending $4 trillion on the top 1% of wage earner’s tax cuts while they attempted to pay down the debt for the two wars by borrowing from the Social Security Trust. With all their largesse with taxpayer dollars to bail out the financial institutions that caused the Great Recession, it was incredibly hypocritical to suddenly stop supporting stimulus legislation to help the American people and the tanking economy. In fact, by plotting to undermine the President’s economic policies, they deliberately prevented quicker recovery that could have helped struggling Americans.
When President Obama took office, the economy was losing over 700,000 jobs per month because of the Republican’s legislation and deregulation that caused the massive economic crisis. According to Draper’s account of the meeting, the Republicans decided to “show united and unyielding opposition to the president’s economic policies,” and Representative Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said, “We’ve gotta challenge them on every single bill.” To make matters worse, the Republicans are parroting the mantra that “President Obama’s policies undermine the US economy” and the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, Willard Romney, who was not at the meeting has made that statement a mainstay of his campaign rhetoric.
It is one thing to have ideological differences with the opposition party in politics, but to deliberately scheme to destroy the economy is beyond despicable. The Republicans certainly have used every method of obstruction to sabotage President Obama’s economic agenda to pull America out of its economic malaise, but they started before Barack Obama was on the national stage and they plan to finish the job if they win the White House and control both houses of Congress after the general election. The reason? If they can bankrupt America, then wealthy industrialists can take over control of every facet of government as a private enterprise to profit from everything from schools to Veteran’s hospitals to roads and national parks to name a few.
The Republican’s obstruction over the past three years is egregious, and there are no doubts their goal was impeding President Obama, but they have been on a mission to destroy the economy since 2001 and they have demonstrated, with their deficit increasing tax cuts for the wealthy in their budgets, that whether or not President Obama wins a second term, they will continue destroying the economy giving bigger unfunded tax cuts to the wealthy until the debt reaches an unsustainable level. Their unrelenting attempt to privatize Medicare and Social Security have nothing to do with reining in spending because both programs are funded by taxpayer dollars, but to take the $2.7 trillion from the Social Security Trust and taxpayer-funded Medicare funds and hand them over to Wall Street to squander in the next Depression. No-one can possibly say the Republicans did not learn the lesson of unfunded wars and tax cuts, because they knew what they were doing then just like they know that the Ryan and Willard budget will increase the deficit, and if they are successful, drive America into bankruptcy.
There are many pundits proclaiming that the extremists who swept into Congress in 2010 are the driving force behind the deficit-reduction frenzy, and it is true they have bought into the Republican myth that reducing the nation’s debt is paramount to saving America, but Republicans began sabotaging the economy long before 2010 and their intent is to finish the job in 2013 if they prevail in the general election with or without the teabaggers. The neo-cons, led by the traitor Grover Norquist, have been on a tear to destroy the economy, and thus the government, since Ronald Reagan was president and their steady march toward a privatized government is wholly dependent on bankrupting America. It is a sad, tragic end to a once-great country if one political party is allowed to send America to an economic death, but Republicans have shown themselves to be America’s tragedy for many years and the most heart-rending facet of this whole pathetic story is that one-half of the American people are willing participants in what will certainly be the end of America; and they call themselves patriots.