Right wingers love to talk about being fiscally conservative, but what they are really concerned about is avoiding taxes regardless of what needs to be spent to maintain the infrastructure of this country. They are even willing to look past wasteful spending by Republicans as long as they borrow the money instead of increasing taxes. Bob Herbert points out how the Republicans are the party of the free lunch:
The Republican Party is not simply the “just-say-no” party. It’s also a shameless advocate of the free lunch. Ronald Reagan famously told us he could jack up defense spending, cut taxes and balance the federal budget all at the same time.
George W. Bush put two big wars on a credit card. And now we have the perennially clownish Newt Gingrich, in an embarrassing rant against President Obama, assuring the deluded G.O.P. faithful that, yes, the party can indeed bring down the federal deficit while cutting taxes.
The Great Recession and the debacles in Iraq and Afghanistan have not been savage enough to reintroduce the G.O.P. to reality.
The right wing noise machine does a tremendous job of shielding their followers from the reality as they are oblivious to the fact that the deficit is primarily the fault of George Bush, not Barack Obama–who has a far record for cutting spending than the Republicans. Many also falsely believe that Obama raised their taxes when he actually cut their taxes.
The right wing puts a tremendous amount of money into paying people to spread the party line, often in the guise of “think tanks.” There are some organizations which do try to counter right wing misinformation. Herbert devotes a large portion of his column to reporting on an organization which I have not heard much about, but perhaps should look into further:
The liberal or progressive community was slow to counter the remarkable effectiveness of this intellectual offensive from the right. But during the 1990s and into the early-2000s, that began to change. And one of the progressive organizations that has done a really good job (but has never been particularly well known) is about to celebrate its 10th anniversary.
Demos, headquartered in New York City, grew out of a series of meetings of scholars, activists, journalists and elected officials who were concerned about the ever-increasing influence of the right on public policy. “The thinking was that there should be more moderate, liberal and left-of-center voices,” said Miles Rapoport, the group’s president. The group was formed in 2000, a year that would later see the disputed election that gave the presidency to Mr. Bush.
One of the problems with making taxes even more unpopular than they would naturally be is that this makes it difficult to raise money on necessary infrastructure. Conservatives often see themselves as succeeding purely based upon their own efforts without acknowledging the necessary infrastructure which makes economic success possible. Last night Kos was joking on Twitter:
Why do teabagger use gov’t created internet? They should stick to private one. What was it called? Oh yeah. AOL. How’d that work out?
You government hating cons, gotta stick with (old school) AOL, Prodigy, or Compuserve. Otherwise, you’re a hypocrite.
Of course conservatives will continue to use the government created internet and go along with all the government programs which help them, or which they desire such as the Iraq war, as long as they think they can get away with getting a free lunch.