Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Politix: Backwards Into the Future

That Rick Moran over at the inaptly named Rightwing Nuthouse (change the frickin' name, for cryin' out loud) has applied his ample intellectual horsepower to why so many conservatives are mired in an echo chamber that he calls a "Reaganesque fantasyland" in which the endless mantra is small government, low taxes, less regulation and strong national defense.

Rick writes that:

"The essence of the problem is that both liberals and conservatives today see government as almost a living thing to be hated or loved depending on one’s point of view. Government is not alive, although it is close to existing as a force of nature so large and nearly uncontrollable it has become. Instead, government should be seen as a utility to be organized as best as can be humanely done so that it becomes a servant of the people and not their master.

"Believing that we can roll back the size of government and make it 'small' is a pipe dream and, along with the idea that we can demand government do a million things and not raise the taxes to pay for them as well as ask government to protect us from impersonal corporations who seek to destroy competition, exploit workers, endanger our environment, foist their dangerous products on us, and generally wreak havoc on our lives and families without someone looking over their shoulder is absurd.

"The idea that the market will fix dangerous working conditions for miners or force companies to end exploitive work rules and policies in service industries is just not tenable in a 21st century industrialized democracy. Neither will the market clean up toxic waste, sensibly protect the environment, establish minimum standards for drinking water and breathable air, or ensure that some of the remaining green places left in the United States can be enjoyed by our grandchildren."
Rick avers that for conservatism to survive and thrive, then conservatives need to recognize that today's world is not yesterday's world of Reagan. To which I humbly add two things:

The Republicans' penchant for problem solving by starting wars is especially troubling.

And liberals also need to recognize that today's world is not yesterday's world of JFK, LBJ or even Clinton, for them to survive and thrive.

The run-up to the 2008 campaigns would be a good place to start.

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