The author and lecturer, David Horowitz, has just published a little pamphlet,”Go for The Heart: How Republicans Can Win” describing how conservatives are being outmaneuvered on the campaign trail.
“Year after year the Democrats’ campaign themes are monotonously familiar. They rely on scaring the voters by accusing Republicans of the same imaginary crimes: Republicans are a party that wages war on women, minorities, and vulnerable Americans. They don’t care about the vulnerable and the poor. Their policies inflict pain on working families to benefit the wealthy few.”
“ ’Caring’ is not one among many issues in a democratic election. It is the central one. Since most issues are complex and require too much information, voters care less about policy than about the candidates themselves. Above everything else they want to know who they can trust. Far more important to voters than a particular policy, they want a candidate or party who cares about them.”
“Behind Republican campaign failures lies an attitude that reflects an administrative rather than political approach to election campaigns. Such an approach focuses on policies for running the country and fixing problems rather than the political aspect of the electoral battle.”
In other words, fiscal conservatives must make a compelling moral case why it is so important to stop spending money that we don’t have.
- By piling up more and more debt year after year, we are creating a huge burden for future generations. Is this the legacy we want to leave for our children and grand- children?
- If we do not control the growth of entitlement programs, we are endangering their very existence. It’s ordinary people with average incomes who will need Social Security and Medicare when they retire. It’s our moral obligation to keep these programs sound for their sake!
- Boosting the economy with lower tax rates has nothing to do with helping the rich. In fact, it’s the rich who benefit from the tax loopholes and preferences which must be eliminated to pay for these rate cuts to benefit the people who really need them!
- Insisting on a work requirement for welfare recipients is demonstrating the tough love that they need to gain the dignity of becoming productive citizens. We need to give them a hand as well as a handout!
These are just a few examples of ways that conservatives can address the debt and deficit issues in a positive, and non-punitive, manner. Thanks to Mr. Horowitz I will attempt to take this approach consistently from now on.
The debt is from Reagan and Bush II tax cuts and Bush II’s wars. The debt was 126% of GDP coming out of WW II. Seven Presidents held the line on taxes and reduced that debt to about 35% of GDP, then we got Reagan and his unfunded tax cuts that Bush I had to repudiate. Finally we got Bush II and his row of unfunded tax cuts and two wars. The income tax rate is the lowest in over a half century. Time to grow up economically. Social Security has never adde3d one dime to the debt and it never can per the Supreme Court. Medicare is well on the way to being fixed with the reduction in the rates of healthcare cost increase since ACA was passed and it will get much better as the feds can lean on insurers for real cost controls.
You were right the first time – common people have to rely on the Democrats – Republicans are owned by the Koch brother types.
I agree with much of what you say. Although the Reagan tax rate cuts were offset by closing loopholes and eliminating deductions, he did very little to control spending and therefore had large deficits. And, of course, the Bush II tax rate cuts were not offset by eliminating loopholes and deductions, and therefore greatly increased the deficits. And Bush II mad no effort at all to control spending which made deficits even worse. The national debt has increased by approximately $10 trillion since Bush II was elected and the Iraq and Afghanistan wars have cost about $1 trillion, i.e. 1/10 of the accumulated debt in this time period.
When our economy is stagnant, such as at the present time, reducing tax rates will give it a huge boost. But rate cuts must be offset by eliminating loopholes and deductions which are huge. For example, at the present time, all of the various deductions such as for mortgage interest, state and local taxes, municipal bond interest, etc. add up to over $1 trillion per year in lost revenue. And it is primarily the wealthy who benefit from these deductions.
In short, there is plenty of blame to go around for our present economic condition. The point is that we need to take strong measures to straighten things out, i.e. to boost the economy and control deficit spending both at the same time.
We’ll be better off if we focus on how to turn things around rather on who is the most to blame for what happened!