Good Fences #31
30 minutes ago
Time: 1:00 PM
Location: Capitol Building
Address: 77 S High - Columbus, OH. 43215
3.) The fundamental thing you need to understand when talking to deficit hawks is that when they say something is painful or that cuts will hurt people, you need to recognize that what they really mean is that the cuts will be painful TO SOMEONE ELSE and hurt people THEY DON’T KNOW AND WILL NEVER MEET. That’s why it’s so easy to be a condescending asshole about the budget. That’s why it takes nothing to suggest raising the retirement age for Social Security. That’s why, after taking a month off from writing on the internet to recover from a cold, he can tell people who work back-breaking manual labor every day of their god damned lives for much less money than he or McMegan earn that they should “contribute” more to their health care costs.
Wisconsin’s State Senate Democrats are now officially hiding from police in a “secure location outside the Capitol.” So they must no longer be in the state, because when you think Wisconsin, you think danger.The porpoise of my posting all this? For ZRM, this comment:
At first, the banquet audience at the 38th annual Conservative Political Action Conference paid Mitch Daniels, Indiana's Republican governor, the conventional compliment of frequently, almost reflexively, interrupting his address with applause.
But as they realized they were hearing something unconventional - that they were being paid the rare compliment of being addressed as reflective adults - they reciprocated his respect with quiet attention to his elegant presentation of conservatism for grown-ups.
America, he said, faces "a survival-level threat," a new "Red Menace" consisting of ink. No enterprise, public or private, "can remain self-governing, let alone successful, so deeply in hock to others as we are about to be." Some people accept or "even welcome" a "ballooning of the state" that consigns America to "a gray parity" with other profligate nations. Such people believe history is controlled by a "leftward ratchet," always - never mind "the Reagan Interruption" - moving toward a more powerful state.
Americans must say "an affectionate thank-you" to the last century's major social welfare programs - then sunset them, after those Americans "currently or soon to be enrolled" in them have passed from the scene. Social Security and Medicare should be updated to conform to Americans' "increasing longevity and good health." Medicare 2.0 should respect Americans' dignity and competence by empowering them to make "their own decisions" by delivering its dollars directly to individuals and expecting them to "pay for more of their routine care like the discerning, autonomous customers we know them to be."
To spur economic growth, we must "untie Gulliver": "The regulatory rainforest through which our enterprises must hack their way is blighting the future of millions of Americans." Barack Obama's recent executive order to prune the forest was, Daniels said, akin to the world's leading rap music producer suddenly expressing alarm about obscenity. And Daniels thinks conservatives' "first thought" should be about "those still on that first rung of life's ladder":
"Upward mobility from the bottom is the crux of the American promise, and the stagnation of the middle class is in fact becoming a problem, on any fair reading of the facts. Our main task is not to see that people of great wealth add to it but that those without much money have a greater chance to earn some."
Author of the most succinct characterization of the Obama agenda ("shock-and-awe statism"), Daniels has practiced the lean government he preaches. Under him, Indiana has its fewest state employees since 1978, the nation's lowest state-government employment per capita, the lowest effective property taxes and the third-lowest per capita spending. So he has the credentials to counsel conservatives about the need to compromise in the interest of broadening the constituency for difficult reforms.
He reminded his listeners that when he was serving Ronald Reagan, the president admonished him and others that "we have no enemies, only opponents." The case for less strident conservative rhetoric is practical: "As we ask Americans to join us on such a boldly different course, it would help if they liked us, just a bit."
Do not, Jefferson warned, undertake great departures on "slender majorities." Conservatives criticized Democrats for doing just that regarding health care.