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Dunkirk redux

From one of our ace contributors:

Unmitigated Defeat

By Publius

 
On New Year’s Day, the House of Representatives voted for a fiscal package that included a ratio of about forty times as much in tax increases as in spending cuts.  The United States government will continue to spend far more than it takes in with about forty percent of every dollar it spends borrowed money.  The impact of the withdrawal of hundreds of billions in new taxes from the private sector, with only token spending cuts, will likely send our economy into a tailspin. The fiscal cliff, as awful as it would have been, would have been more responsible than the fiscal package just enacted.  At least, going over the cliff would have cut spending along with raising revenue.
 
Throughout the process, Republicans bent and kept trying to reach accommodation with the President and the Senate.  Moving toward the center, Republicans offered alternative plans for consideration, while the President actually added to his demands.  His negotiation pattern resembled that of last century’s totalitarian regimes, ratcheting up demands instead of moving toward the center and insisting on revenues without meaningful cuts.  Yet the mainstream media blamed Republicans for the lack of progress.  Seldom has an indictment been so off base.
 
Spending far beyond our means is the problem, not revenue.  Who will bail us out from the price of our own folly?  Who will save us when our politicians lack the moral fiber to stand up and say “no more,” even should it mean they will go home in two years?  Why are there no profiles in courage?
 
We are like a family out of fiscal control, making sixty thousand dollars a year but insisting on living a one hundred thousand dollar a year lifestyle.  The issue is not whether we are running through our children’s inheritances, but will we have anything left to live on in dignity and self sufficiency.
 
The Republican Party and our nation have suffered an “unmitigated defeat,” made all the more galling because it would not have been possible without Republican votes in the House of Representatives.  
 
For those who say the Republican Party was made irrelevant by the election of 2012, they should remember Republicans control two thirds of the state governorships and the House of Representatives and lost the presidency by only a small number of votes in a few key states.  Yet, the Republican Party’s leadership has lost its voice. The leadership of the Republican Party is driving more and more of its members into the Tea Party; these leaders are the architects of the party’s demise.
  
To be relevant, a political party must offer the nation a choice of policies.  Republicans cannot and must not become Democrat “me toos.”  Why is it that when we Republicans elect people to office, they abandon the fundamental fiscal principles of our party?  What is it about the water in Washington, DC or in Albany that makes our office holders forget fiscal responsibility?  Republicans can matter, but only if they have guiding principles and if they stick to them.  Fiscal discipline needs to be the top priority.
 
Part of the latest deal kicks the spending problem down the road a few months.  Putting off what should not be avoided is irresponsible at best, criminal at worst.  Until war preparations bailed him out, Franklin Roosevelt presided over a great depression for the better part of eight years while continuing to blame his predecessor.  We are repeating that pattern.  Does anyone really think enhancing government revenue and the public sector at the cost of the private sector where the real work is performed will improve our economy?  If so, they are among those who are not learning from history and, thus are doomed to repeat it.
 
Rome failed to meet the fiscal and moral challenges of its day.  Make no mistake about it, we are witnessing the decline and fall of the United States.  We have indeed been tried in the balance and found wanting.  The future we’re heading for does not work.   Unless we change these shadows of things yet to come, we are forging a very long chain to bear for us, our children and grandchildren.
 
 
 
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