Thursday, April 10, 2008

McCain, Reagan, and money

Once again, McCain is determined to prove that he knows nothing about domestic policy.

This time it was a town hall meeting where he was asked about how he's going to fix the budget deficit.

Asked About the Deficit, McCain Cites Reagan’s Example

By Michael Cooper

WESTPORT, Conn. – When Senator John McCain was asked here this afternoon how he plans to balance the budget, he said that he hoped to do so by stimulating economic growth – and approvingly cited the example of President Ronald Reagan.

There was one thing he did not mention during his response: the deficit nearly tripled during the Reagan presidency, partly due to tax cuts and increases in military spending.

That's exactly right--like other Republicans, McCain wants to canonize Reagan, but he can only do that by either lying about, or being totally ignorant of, Reagan's economic record.

Over the last seven years we've seen what Reaganomics--now known as Bushonomics--does. If you slash taxes on the rich, throw ungodly amounts of money on the military, and have no plan to pay for everything, the budget goes in the tank. That's how we went from surpluses to record deficits.

At the same time, McCain says he's going to balance the budget, while repeating various points of conservative dogma about government spending: "the government is the least efficient way to spend your money". Now McCain may know some extraordinary people, and the record of the Rice/Rumsfeld/Powell cabal gives me little confidence, but I don't think I know many people who could use their own money to create a national defense system more efficiently than the federal government can. The whole idea of government, which the Republicans, clinging to the Reagan slogan that "government is not the solution to our problems, government is the problem", don't seem to understand, is that the reason we have a government is to do things that we can't do as individuals.

So once again, McCain is handing us a weapon to hammer him with. We just need to use it.


Blogger Adam Briggs said...

Of course McCain has to blather on about Reagan and elevate him to God-like status since Republican voters will believe anything good said about him, no matter how wrong it is. Less government? I don't think so. Republicans always seem to spend way more than Democrats. It's better to be a tax-and-spend liberal than a spend and tax your kids Conservative.

April 14, 2008 11:21 AM  

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