Palin: Party Like It’s 1773
Sarah Palin and the Tea Party aren't as clueless as their detractors think.
So, it seems that Sarah Palin told a crowd of Tea Party-ers to that the shouldn’t “party like it’s 1773” because there’s lots of work to do between now and the election.
Several detractors, notably Markos Moulitsas and Gwen Ifil, mocked her for being an idiot. Melissa Clouthier, Michelle Malkin, and tons of others quickly point out that 1773 was the year in which the Boston Tea Party took place — a point made earlier in the speech and rather obvious in context, anyway. So, for once at least, Palin’s not the idiot.
Not a big deal, really. Twitter is a medium that rewards instant snark, not restraint. And one could be forgiven for seeing the quote out of context, not recognizing the date, and just assuming Palin goofed. There is, after all, precedent for that. But the thing to do after discovering the error is to correct it and move on.
But Scott Eric Kaufman, aka SEK, goes in the other direction:
Conservatives are extremely amused by the fact that Markos Moulitsas et al.apparently didn’t know that the Boston Tea Party took place in 1773 but Sarah Palin did. Not mentioned so often is that she knew it because it was written down on a sheet of paper in front of her. Like Sarah Palin, I can appear very knowledgeable about almost anything when I’m reading a speech written by someone who actually knows something. The larger irony here, though, is that a group of people who have no idea why the Boston Tea Party happened are crowing because a few liberal bloggers aren’t exactly sure when it did. Such is the legacy of No Child Left Behind: they memorize the dates, but have little or no idea why they’re actually memorable.
Look, I’m no fan of Palin. She’s decidedly not, so to speak, my cup of tea. But she’s hardly the only major politician who reads speeches that others wrote. Barack Obama, for example, is a very bright, highly educated fellow and doesn’t write his own speeches. Does she get any great credit for being able to read the year 1773? No. But nobody is crowing about that, but rather that people who consider themselves her intellectual superior got it wrong when she got it right.
Similarly, I’m not a Tea Party guy. While I share some of their broad ideological goals, I’m not a fan of the leadership, rhetoric, and lack of policy sophistication inherent in the movement. But what’s the evidence that they’re any less knowledgeable about the Boston Tea Party or American history than the average citizen?
(While we’re at it, whether NCLB was good policy or not, primary and secondary history classes have mostly been about memorizing dates for decades. It’s a common frustration for college social science teachers that students who’ve theoretically had coursework on the basics are generally clueless.)
I gather from a comment he makes in the discussion section that Kaufman’s point is that people have no right to complain about “taxation without representation” when, in fact, they have representation. And I tend to agree. But the current Tea Party movement has essentially the same gripe as did its predecessor: That they have no voice in their government because out of touch elites living far away in different circumstances are making public policy.
Recall that the Brits considered the idea that the Colonists had no representation absurd. They were subjects of king and Parliament represented the interests of all of England — which was more than a century away from anything like universal manhood suffrage.
And recall that the modern Tea Party protest was an uprising against a series of very unpopular bailouts of banks, underwater lenders, car companies, and others. The polls showed that the overwhelming majority of people opposed these measures. But Congress and two successive presidents pushed them through, anyway, thinking they knew better. While Edmund Burke would applaud this type of representation, it’s not entirely unreasonable for people to be frustrated and think their vote doesn’t matter. Especially when an unpopular policy continues after an election in which the sitting president is thrown out and his party’s legislative delegation punished a second straight time.
Unlike the original Tea Party, they’re not engaging in acts of criminality and terrorism to make their point. Fully recognizing that they’re in a democratic society, they’re holding peaceful rallies and fully operating within the existing system to change it. While the Tea Party is largely Republican, it’s populist and anti-Establishment. They’re organizing to throw out Establishment Republicans like Mike Castle and Lisa Murkowski and are willing to risk losing elections rather than elect bland centrists like Mike Castle. They’re extremely frustrated with the status quo and demanding change.
Editor’s note: The original version of the penultimate paragraph said “Congress and the president” when, in fact, President Bush began the policy, which was continued and accelerated under President Obama.
Fixed that for you 😉
Yes, indeed. I note that later in the piece, actually. And, you may recall, I excoriated Bush for TARP and, especially, for bailing out the auto companies after Congress specifically rejected the idea.
Cool. I dropped this in the other thread, but it seems to relate here as well. Tyler Cowen has a post on “expecting too much”:
“To support this attitude I am willing to sound fiscally unreasonable, if necessary.” That’s the Tea Party, among others.
Populist outrage and frustration is seldom wonkishly logical.
Well maybe I have a last-century idea that everyone knows how to balance a budget. That it isn’t “wonkish.”
Planet Money had an interesting piece on a woman who makes it work on $16K a year, plus aid.
The story has an interesting arc, and I recommend it. But the three things Ms. Calzado has going for her are (1) that she is personally fiscally conservative, and (2) she works hard, and (3) she’s smart
“Especially when an unpopular policy continues after an election in which the sitting president is thrown out…”
??? Perhaps you meant the sitting president’s party’s nominee defeated?
“While the Tea Party is largely Republican…”
I find it highly amusing that nobody in your neck of the woods has the slightlest clue about who and what constitutes the Tea Party.
James, I don’t think it’s just unpopular programs, it’s the means by which they were implemented that undermined their perceived legitimacy. Where was the debate in Congress over taking the TARP money to give G.M. to the UAW? What about the healthcare reform mandate that isn’t a tax, except when it is a tax? What about the Cornhusker kickback? What about passing a law through a reconciliation process that for 99.999999% of America sounded nothing like what they learned about how bills become laws?
On this page (for me at least) there is an ad being run by a politician who told his constituents he didn’t “care about the Constitution.”
@Tano: Bush started the bailouts. Obama just doubled down. Kinda like Afghanistan.
@ Patrick: I know plenty of Tea Party supporters and read dozens, if not hundreds, of articles about the movement. There’s no denying that it’s largely Republican and socially conservative.
The problem, PD, is that the Tea Party thinks “fiscal sanity” is a list of favorite complaints. It doesn’t have to add up to a budget, nor include their own favorite programs.
How many of them cash government checks while complaining about “Obama socialism?”
Meh, for me that undermines their perceived legitimacy.
***On this page (for me at least) there is an ad being run by a politician who told his constituents he didn’t “care about the Constitution.”***
Well, to a point, I don’t care about the constitution either. This is the point. What we get from the right is an ideology. We hear tax cuts, free market principles, the constitution, and God and country. But what does that have to do with middle America? What has any of these ideologies have to do with someone losing his job. We saw the ideology of “stay the course” (tax cuts) for eight years while we lost the jobs. I want the economy managed and workable for all of us. There is no upward movement as we lost the jobs. And I cringe when the right says it is the constitution. Again, if you can’t run the country, then it means nothing.
The original tea party was a populist movement, full of conspiratorial views on the intention of the crown and imperfect knowledge about the tax that incited them.
1773 is different than 1776.
I suggest Gerry W if you run for political office you don’t tell people you don’t care about the Constitution, you’ll offend voters of all idealogies.
James, I think what Tano was questioning was how do you “throw out” a 2 term President. It is constitutionally impossible for a 2 term president to do anything BUT step down.
Actually, the Tea Party was about entrenched business interests (tea smugglers, including John Hancock) using populist sentiment to incite fury against a law (the Tea Act) that made it easier for a competitor (the East India Company) to bring their products to market (the Crown allowed them to sell their tea in the colonies without paying the duties they had to pay in London). The law had the support of many American statemen at the time (in fact, there’s a good amount of evidence that it was Benjamin Franklin’s idea), because they hoped it would reduce crime and violence (tea smugglers fought turf wars the way drug smugglers do today) and allow for a good product to come to market. Additionally, it was hoped that it would keep the East India Company economically viable, so it could continue to make its large payments to the Crown and avoid having to raise taxes further.
The slogans may have been idealistic (“No taxation without representation”), but the real goal was to keep the tea smugglers in the black (which worked).
Here’s the real deal, and why this is an impasse:
56% of Americans are opposed to tax increase, and 66% opposed to entitlement cuts.:
It’s the overlap that kills us. Some fiscally challenged (non-“wonks” in James terms) want it both ways. They are the ones who say no to taxes and no to spending cuts.
The data is broken down by age and party, but that just hides the real problem, which is the overlap.
***I suggest Gerry W if you run for political office you don’t tell people you don’t care about the Constitution, you’ll offend voters of all idealogies.***
I find caring about the constitution offensive as it is used as an ideology and ignores most of the population. I still want to know how the country will be managed. I want to know how jobs will be created. I want to know what is in it for the middle class. If I can use the human body as an expression. If all you talk about is the constitution and God and country, then you are talking about is the neck up. Anything below the knees is forgotten.
And on another note, let us have a politician that says he does not care about lobbyists and interest groups and receiving campaign money.
@Tano and @Tom P:
Fair enough. But, while he wasn’t on the ballot, 2008 was as much a rejection of George W. Bush as it was a clamor for Barack Obama.
A lot of chickens came home to roost for the Republicans in 2008. As much as the Tea Party would like to break out, we have nothing so broad based in 2010.
But the current Tea Party movement has essentially the same gripe as did its predecessor: That they have no voice in their government because out of touch elites living far away in different circumstances are making public policy.
James, I just want to point out that you’re making a more sophisticated argument here than the Tea Partiers are, which is commendable, but which does obscure my point: namely, that people who take liberties with history have no ground to criticize people who flub a date. It’s the equivalent of people who, e.g. would call themselves the Bull Moose Party because they believe Mormons are ascendant but laugh when someone says that Jane Addams endorsed the party in 1911. There’s a trivial sense in which they’re correct–the No Child Left Behind sense, as I indicated in the post–but the overall they’re so obtuse that their complaint can’t rise to the level of anything better than partisan bickering.
I’m frustrated by the Tea Party for a variety of reasons, including my reflexive anti-populism and a sense that they’re nihilistic. But I’m resigned to the fact that mass political movements aren’t very sophisticated and than most people can’t really articulate their belief systems in a way that would please an academic. It’s just an absurd standard to which to hold people.
And, while I’m a decided non-fan of Palin, I can understand her supporters taking glee at critics who call her an idiot when she’s right on the point that’s sparking the insult.
That the modern Tea Party is only tangentially related to the original doesn’t bother me any more than that modern Americans who call themselves Progressives have little in common with Teddy Roosevelt or Woodrow Wilson. One can admire the spirit of a movement from a long-ago era and not cleave to it — or even really understand its context.
Unless the Tea Party folks are going to vote for someone other than Republicans in a few weeks, I am not sure what your point is. The Tea Party is quite clearly a faction of the Republican Party and will prove such by supporting Republican candidates on Nov. 2. This a pretty straight-forward, empirically verifiable fact.
Or, if you prefer poetry: a rose by other other name would still smell as sweet (in other words: people can call themselves whatever they like, but if they vote Republican, they are–at least for the purposes of that act–Republican).
I’m surprised that you see much light between them and mainline Republicans.
Are the Republicans any less populist and any more pragmatic?
Maybe someone could refresh my memory and point me to the Republican plan.
I don’t think we’re disagreeing here, but I just want to add one thing: I teach freshmen composition, so the standard to which I’m holding professional politicians is “able to argue better than an eighteen-year-old kid from Orange County who’s never left California and has no idea what the rest of the country is like” … which isn’t that lofty a standard. Put differently:
When you devote your life to teaching argument, issues of irrelevance become all the more grating. There’s substance there, as your comment demonstrates, but it’s being ignored in order to score what people who don’t know any better consider “points.”
The Tea Party is a fraud. I have yet to see any evidence that they are serious about achieving their professed goals, or that they understand what they’re objecting to so vociferously. This does not make them unique. It makes them Republicans.
The essential difference between Democrats and Republicans is that Democrats want a big government and think we should pay for it. Republicans want a big government but don’t want to pay for it. They harvest votes from hypocrisy, from posturing about “small government” they do nothing whatever to bring about, and then denouncing any effort to actually pay the bills.
The Tea Party likewise seems to have no practical interest in cutting government to any significant degree. And just like all Republicans they prefer to avoid paying the bill.
The fact is we need a big government. And we’ll continue having a big government because it’s 2010 not 1773, we have 300 million people, and we are not a nation of yeoman farmers but a nation of service industry workers.
Democrats want to pay for government. Republicans want to lie about it. Tea Partiers want to lie about it and do it very loudly. The only difference between Republicans and “Tea Partiers” is volume.
***I don’t think we’re disagreeing here, but I just want to add one thing: I teach freshmen composition, so the standard to which I’m holding professional politicians is “able to argue better than an eighteen-year-old kid from Orange County who’s never left California and has no idea what the rest of the country is like” … which isn’t that lofty a standard.**8
Somebody making sense here. I have always questioned a Palin or Miller from Alaska, just what do they know what is happening in the Midwest, North Carolina and South Carolina. They would probably ask “why aren’t you getting oil royalties?”
I’m afraid that is true, looking at the poll I linked above. 65% of Democrats would raise taxes to fix the budget. Only 20% would cut entitlements. But it would work if Democrats were a nation.
The same can’t be said for current(*) Republicans. Only 29% would raise tax, and only 41% would cut entitlements. That wouldn’t even work if the nation were 100% Republican.
* – to leave me out of it.
should be “60% of Democrats would raise taxes to fix the budget. Only 22% would cut entitlements.” not that it changes the outcome, but for accuracy …
“I find it highly amusing that nobody in your neck of the woods has the slightlest clue about who and what constitutes the Tea Party.”
Are there any Tea Party candidates who are Democrats? It’s a serious question.
It would appear from the comments that Alex Knapp has a better appreciation of the dynamics of the Tea Party than SEK, plus he’s 100% less condescending about it.
It would appear from the comments that PD Shaw thinks there was something called “the Tea Party” that had dynamics worth appreciating at some point in history, which means his knowledge of said subject is worth condescending to.
Alex Knapp wrote about the original tea party. You’re claim that people who don’t agree with your interpretation of 1773 are equivalent to people who deny that slavery was the root cause of the civil war appears to be based purely upon condescension against people whose ideology you disapprove.
Reynolds, how did you get to be as old as you look in the picture which accompanies your comments and remain so full of it? Many of the commenters here seem to have no clue who or what the Tea Party is made up of. Many opinions but few facts. We do know what the other side is made up of though, don’t we. The leaders on the left did not study Mills or Jefferson. They know not of Adams, Madison or any of our founding fathers. They do, however have full knowlege of what Marx and Mao had to say. Our President was a student of Ayers and Alinsly. Liberals now call themselves progressives, yet they do not tell us what we are to progress toward or make progress from. I think we are progressing from freedom to slavery to the state. You must be pretty inept to need government to take care of you. The only thing I want government to do is outlined in the Consititution, not as the liberals have defined it but what it says in plain english. This post started off about Palin talking about partying like it was 1773. The founder of the Daily Kos and others made fun of her for what they perceived as a mistake. That is what happens when you know more about the Soviet revolution than the American revolution. Let us face it. Lefties are uneducated, yet well trained, boobs who only are able to repeat what they are told. The majority of commenters at this blog belong in that catagory.
Taylor, if the Tea Party represent the Republican party. Please explain Miller, Angle and O’Donnell as well and any incumbant Republican who lost in the primary. I hope no one trusts your analysis for anything important in real life.
Zelsdorf, let’s assume that if you were voting you would vote for both lower taxes and lower spending.
What would you do about the fact that most Republicans don’t even agree with you?
What makes you think most Tea Partiers really do?
Neither group has named the cuts they’d make to make the budget work with lower taxes.
Really? I find that difficult to believe. Mostly because every liberal political scientist I know has studied them.
However, I assume by implication that you are arguing that the Tea Party is motivated and in agreement with the political philosophies of Mill, Jefferson, Adams, and Madison. So it’s worth noting that John Stuart Mill supported a minimal redistributed welfare state. Thomas Jefferson believed in outlawing speculation outright (bye bye stock market) and believed that the United States should simply print money rather than borrow it if it needed to increase spending. John Adams was instrumental in establishing a precedent for fair treatment of prisoners of war in the American Revolution, even as the British refused to grant the Continental Army the same courtesy. James Madison believed that the United States should never possess a standing army, which he believed would pose a grave danger to liberty.
If the Tea Partiers are supporting a platform of a redistributionist welfare state, outlawing stock exchanges, outlawing torture, and disbanding the military in favor of a militia, they are being awfully quiet about it.
So do I. That’s because I think it’s a good idea to study all political ideas, even those you disagree with. Or are you implying that liberals in the United States are all Maoists? The available evidence suggests otherwise.
Do you have any evidence that Barack Obama studied under Bill Ayers? I find that difficult to believe, given that Obama never studied at the University of Illinois, Chicago School of Education. Additionally, I don’t believe that Saul Alinsky evern taught a course, but wouldn’t it be a GOOD thing, in your view, to study Alinsky? After all, Saul Alinsky was a libertarian who supported Barry Goldwater’s candidacy for President….
now c’mon zelsdorf, people without the courage to put their own pictures in their avators can’t be throwing stones at those who do.
Alex, Alex, Alex: You insist on discussing the Founders as though they were actual historical figures with a long written record of carefully-realized positions and sometimes contradictory philosophies.
The Founders were not real humans, like you and me, you ninny. They are a group of mythical beings who were created by Jesus to supply later generations of Americans with support for whatever dumb-ass notion happened to pop into their heads.
“The leaders on the left did not study Mills or Jefferson.”
Dunno about Mills, but I know this about Mill, he wrote:
“Although it is not true that all conservatives are stupid people, it is true that most stupid people are conservative.”
Reynolds, how did you get to be as old as you look in the picture which accompanies your comments and remain so full of it?
Well, I can’t take too much responsibility for the avatar, it was created by the publicity department at my publisher.
In real life I look much, much older.
Alex Knapp wrote about the original tea party. You’re claim that people who don’t agree with your interpretation of 1773 are equivalent to people who deny that slavery was the root cause of the civil war appears to be based purely upon condescension against people whose ideology you disapprove.
First of all, I wasn’t responding to Knapp: I’m the “a.k.a. SEK” from the original post, so if anything, Knapp’s indirectly responding to me. Moreover, I don’t even disagree with Knapp–nor Joyner, for that matter–so I’m not sure how I can be condescending to him. My original point was simply that people who grossly appropriate a historical moment for their own ends don’t have any moral high grounds when it comes to flubbing history. My second point, as articulated in the comments, is equally mundane: namely, that there is no group of “original Tea Partiers” to which this modern movement can claim to be the intellectual heirs.
Those who participated in the Boston Tea Party were considered thugs by the likes of Samuel Adams, who spent his life distancing himself from the riot his words unwittingly inspired. In short, then, the modern day Tea Party isn’t harkening back to the ideals of the Founders, but embodying the spirit of the riotous idiocy the Founders inspired when they yelled “Tea time!” on a crowded harbor.
@Gerry W. You said: “Well, to a point, I don’t care about the constitution either…I want the economy managed and workable for all of us.” I see why you don’t care about the Constitution, as it prohibits us from having a “managed economy”. As for your desire for a “managed economy”, I thank God you don’t have your way, as I have no desire to live in nations like N Korea, the former USSR, nor Cuba. I may be a dumb, unsophisticated, brainless Tea Partier, but I’m nowhere stupid enough to believe in planned or managed economies. Only a died in the wool, totally mindless ideologue would EVER believe in a managed economy.
@michael reynolds you said: “The fact is we need a big government. And we’ll continue having a big government because it’s 2010 not 1773, we have 300 million people, and we are not a nation of yeoman farmers but a nation of service industry workers.” I do fundamentally grasp why you think that TEA Party types are, well, less than coherent. In your mind, a very large, expensive, highly redistributive government which empowers vast consumption of commodities can be supported by high taxes on a service based economy. That kind of disordered mind cannot comprehend a TEA Partier point of view, because a TEA Party kind of person like me recognizes that you believe that a massively expensive government can be supported by a nation filled with people who do nothing besides mow each other’s lawns and serve each other burgers. Which is to say, you comprehend nothing about the creation of wealth as a necessity in order to have such wealth to fund the consumption of commodities. Something the TEA Party people grasp as a normal function of breathing. Small wonder you have no understanding of the mindset of the TEA Partier.
Somehow I expected an answer like this. We used to build our country our country. We have the interstates and we put men on the moon. Today, we leave it up to China. Whole new cities built, interstates, airports, etc. and what they call state sponsored capitalism. Singapore does central planning (high tech and stem cells) or it would not survive. South Korea has surpassed all with the best battery technology with government support. Today, we get nothing in America. You are on your own. Forget about globalization, forget about the infrastructure. We don’t need these things. But alas. The right says we need religion. The right has become a joke. Go ahead and vote for the Palins and O’Donnells. They only represent a bunch of nuts.
The problem is, if you go too far left or too far right, you end up with the same problems. Just different avenues getting there. And furthermore. China does not care about our constitution. They will be running the world, while we still try to figure out where we are supposed to be. So stick you head in the sand along with laissez-faire and be last to finish the race.
Did you say where that increased creation of wealth comes from?
It would be easy for me to get ahead of the discussion, and assume you mean things that failed in the 2000’s …. so I’ll just let you answer.
“Shared Prosperity Lost”
@Gerry W. I do understand your confusion. Interstates and going to the Moon do not make an economy. And Singapore and S Korea are not worthy of emulating. You see, we HAVE those ‘central planners’ busy at work, and they’ve been planning our society for 70 years now. They’ve managed to kill off almost our entire manufacturing base, they’ve driven much of our industrial research base, and are still targeting every productive business left with massive mandates, taxes, expensive regulations, along with straitjacketing it with endless rules and coercive tax policy as it concerns how they do business. Yes, you got EXACTLY what you wanted, and now the nation is almost entirely bankrupt and ready to implode.
You see, there is NO successful example of a planned economy. There is no group of human beings on earth so smart they can plan and manage an economy. Just fools so arrogant, and fools so stupid as to believe in them, and they’ve been in charge for far too long.
@john personna I’m not understanding your question… Are you asking me where wealth creation comes from? Do you understand what wealth creation is?
See, we have a current administration that believes in redistribution as the means of prosperity, and the Democrat party has believed in that for a number of decades, and we redistribute massive amounts of money each year, and for all of that, we’ve done nothing but get on the fast train for complete collapse of our nation – socially, economy, industrial, and even our currency is collapsing imploding.
So, when I happen to point this out, it should be relatively obvious, even to dolts like myself that redistribution and service industries are not the road to prosperity.
What is your vision in running the country?
I’m surprised that you missed my meaning, Tea Partier, especially given my reference to the 2000’s.
I think I understand wealth creation, and that it is very old. It probably goes back to the first time someone knapped a piece of flint into a knife. (Wealth! A knife is worth more than a rock.) Wealth creation has been an undercurrent of history, spanning economic and political regimes.
Wealth creation was around in the 2000’s, when we got on this latest cycle of debt and deficit. Wealth creation was there, but was not enough to balance Mr. Bush’s budgets.
I’m asking, if you are going to make growth and wealth creation an answer to budget gaps now, how that would work?
Why didn’t it work then?
Maybe since I’ve given you a chance, I should just tell you what I guess … you don’t know or care. You just have a “faith based” economic policy.
Vote out the democrats and growth will just come back. It is cargo cult capitalism. Never mind that it didn’t work all through the 2000’s.
@john personna : “Maybe since I’ve given you a chance, I should just tell you what I guess … you don’t know or care. You just have a “faith based” economic policy.” The only “faith” I have, is that if you remove the massive governmental burden, that the natural drive for people to make money, to better themselves, will result in economic revitalization. That includes rebirth of the industrial sectors of the economy, and other wealth creating activities.
I don’t believe such things can be centrally planned – as nobody has ever done it – and I don’t believe that you can, given ANY methodology, support governmental consumption of 1/4 to 1/3 of all wealth created. Nor can you simply redistribute from creators and earners to the non-creators and non-earners and retain a viable economy.
As for your “just vote out Democrats” comment, it’s hard to be civil when you reveal you’re so narrow minded in your thinking. It must be hard to go around in life believing that everyone’s dumber than an idiot. Rather, I think that old adage about ASS UMPTION and making asses of yourself is very much applicable.
@Gerry W. “What’s your vision for running the country?” Well, first, we have a country that is by design “ungovernable”. We are a nation of 300+ million sovereign citizens with a government we delegate limited duties and powers to at will and solely at our discretion ( or, that’s the way the Constitution set it up). So, my view is that this country has NEVER been intended to be “run” in any sense or fashion and that the people answer to no authority, nor depend on any for their direction, welfare, or needs. We have no use for any large central government, as it is decidedly at cross purposes to the way the country is supposed to work. The Constitution specifically forbid the federal government from being any imposition on our daily lives, our business, our businesses, nor was it to provide us with anything except a rigorous defense of our individual liberties, defend the sovereignty of our states, and defend us collectively from enemies around the world, and not much else.
So Tea Partier, how many times have I asked you why that didn’t all just work in the Bush years?
You understand that if it had, you’d never have had this Obama administration to worry about, right? We’d still be sailing on the ever-freer markets express.
So why aren’t we, really?
We had lower income tax, lower capital gains tax, and a mannequin installed at the SEC. Why didn’t it produce growth to pay the debt and deficit? Why did it produce instead “jobless recoveries?”
So tax cuts and laissez-faire is the only answer. Putting aside what Bush spent money on which angers the right, what we saw what tax cuts and laissez-faire. It ignores the problems of the day. It ignores globalization and the loss of jobs. And it ignores our infrastructure. People still fall through the cracks. There is nothing perfect. Democrats don’t have it and republicans don’t have it. Believing in one concept is for fools.
While I do agree that government is too big, on the private side, maybe we have too much competition in our old capitalistic system. What I am saying is that without that upward movement since we have sent our industry and jobs overseas, maybe with what we have left, everyone is just killing each other. In a nearby town there is an Autozone, Advanced Auto Parts, and an O’reillys in a four block area. Now, I would say this is too much competition and if one store goes out, there is no place for ex employees to go to as we have a globalized world and Apple or other companies are having their widgets made in China. China has started at the bottom, just like we did a hundred years ago, which is a huge advantage. We supplied the world and that is not the case today.
And going back to Bush and the tax cuts. The tax cuts should have been used for two or three years to stimulate the economy and not used as an ideology. We are still under the Bush tax cuts and I do not see the prosperity.
And what are we stimulating? The fed is printing money, we have had the tax cuts since 2001 and 2003, we have sent our money to Iraq, we neglected the infrastructure, and we keep sending our jobs overseas. Seems like someone on Wall Street and in Washington has a screw loose. And to cut spending when the economy is down is usually bad. Yes, we are trapped in a corner. Too bad nobody has any answers.
Now here is an answer but not the only answer. Do what China did. Give each entrepreneur a hundred thousand dollars and go at it.
@john personna “So Tea Partier, how many times have I asked you why that didn’t all just work in the Bush years?”
It wasn’t tried. All that happened during the Bush years was more and deeper Democrat agenda.
@john personna “We had lower income tax, lower capital gains tax, and a mannequin installed at the SEC. Why didn’t it produce growth to pay the debt and deficit? Why did it produce instead “jobless recoveries?””
Your question is so far removed from reality, it’s hard to grasp what you’re asking. Are you saying the “Bush years” were Constitutional government, without massive government interference in the marketplace? If so, you’re truly crazy. If not, why are you asking an irrelevant question, as it relates to what the solution is?
@gerry W :”So tax cuts and laissez-faire is the only answer. Putting aside what Bush spent money on which angers the right, what we saw what tax cuts and laissez-faire.”
Uh, no. The Bush years were insignficant from the Clinton years, from the Bush years from Reagan years, from the Carter years, from Nixon years, from the LBJ years, and so on. All were simply continued expansion of governmental influence, control, size, cost, obstruction to wealth creation, and soon. All came with continued increases in government spending, and so on.
None of those years, in fact, nothing since the 20’s has been anything approaching “laissez-faire” economics. Even then, it was barely, as we had crazy ideas concerning money, currency, protectionism, and other issues, as well. We did not, however, have a massive redistributionist government at both state and federal levels, nor did we have the billions of rules and regulations and a tax code of millions of words, and so on.
Tea Partier –
If removing government interference in the economy is what is necessary to drive economic growth, why doesn’t Somalia have the fastest growing economy in the world?
@Gerry W: “Now here is an answer but not the only answer. Do what China did. Give each entrepreneur a hundred thousand dollars and go at it.”
Good God. I have absolutely NO desire to live in the economic hellhole China is. Nor have I any desire for thier massive unemployment, nationwide poverty, and hellhole standard of living.
China as an economic model?
There is only one possible answer… You’re a troll, who posts the most absurdly stupid things on earth, pretending they’re wise, just to make the conversation as idiotic as possible.
1) I don’t think you understand what a centrally planned economy looks like. See, for example, the Soviet Union and its 5 year plans.
2) What you are describing as “constitutional government” in terms of the economy never existed and it is fantastical to assume that there is widespread support for what you are advocating.
3) In re: government and the economy (and the constitution and the Founders) please go read up on Alexander Hamilton.
@observer: “If removing government interference in the economy is what is necessary to drive economic growth, why doesn’t Somalia have the fastest growing economy in the world?”
Hmmm… you’re in the same shoes as Gerry W. If you have no comprehensible thoughts on the matter, why are you posting? Your version of unleashed entrepreneurism is Somalia? You’re unable to grasp the difference between tribal rule within artificially drawn boundaries which eventuates in military clash between factions for control, and a nation of laws and properly limited government? It would appear so. That being the case, your ability to have this conversation presently probably doesn’t exist. You should be doing a lot of reading…
@Steven L Taylor “What you are describing as “constitutional government” in terms of the economy never existed and it is fantastical to assume that there is widespread support for what you are advocating.”
What is the purpose of the US Constitution?
@ Tea Partier:
1) You ignored my questions.
2) The main purpose of the US Constitution is to provide a basic framework for the governing of the United States of America.
@Steven L Taylor
1. You did not ask any questions, you made 3 statements.
2. Utterly incorrect.
I wrote: “We had lower income tax, lower capital gains tax, and a mannequin installed at the SEC. Why didn’t it produce growth to pay the debt and deficit? Why did it produce instead “jobless recoveries?””
Mr. Tea responded: “Your question is so far removed from reality, it’s hard to grasp what you’re asking. Are you saying the ‘Bush years’ were Constitutional government, without massive government interference in the marketplace? If so, you’re truly crazy. If not, why are you asking an irrelevant question, as it relates to what the solution is?”
Actually, you’ll notice that my question is very much rooted in reality, the Bush reality.
But I think you’ve convinced me that I don’t need to ask any more questions here.
@John Personna “Actually, you’ll notice that my question is very much rooted in reality, the Bush reality.” Your “question” presumes a very much unreal misrepresentation of anything and everything I’ve said, as well as the TEA Party movement as being a simplistic “undo Obama and everything will be swell”.
It is to your political benefit to mislead people into thinking that type of line, but then, you seem uninterested in anything remotely relating to a truthful discussion, with your questions loaded with every kind of false premise, etc. It, of course, is against your best interest to have the kind of government and nation you seem to want.
Well Tea, it could be my reading, and not your writing, but I’m certainly having trouble following you. From above, I don’t think I’m the only one, either.
If you are suggesting that we need a government unlike any we’ve had before, that you aren’t just trying to unroll Obama, but also Bush II, Clinton, Bush I, Reagan, (definitely) Carter, Ford … where does it stop?
I think you are suggesting something far more radical than the real Tea Partiers do. They just pretend that a little less tax will make everything happy, even though that was tried more than once in the last 50 years.
Fair enough–you ignored the statements and did not address them at all.
Second, go ahead and enlighten us as to what you think that purpose of the US Constitution. I am especially curious as to the grounds by which you declared my answer “utterly incorrect.”
@steven L Taylor : The purpose of the US Constitution, is the specific contract between the states which forms the federal government. It specifically delegates certain powers to the federal government, and reserves ALL OTHER DUTIES AND POWERS to the states or the people themselves. It creates the form of the federal government, describes its duties and functions, and establishes itself as the supreme law of the land, with all other law being subordinate to the Constitution, including all branches of the federal government.
IT is NOT a “framework for governance”, since this nation is specifically NOT TO BE GOVERNED. It is, according to the Constitution, a nation of sovereign states and individuals, with an extremely small, limited, and highly restricted federal government, which is NOT to govern the states or the people, but merely serve as the binding glue which creates a union of sovereign states.
@john personna. “If you are suggesting that we need a government unlike any we’ve had before, that you aren’t just trying to unroll Obama, but also Bush II, Clinton, Bush I, Reagan, (definitely) Carter, Ford … where does it stop?”
It stops where the Constitution limits it. Article 1, section 8, which delegates duties and powers to the Congress, and anything NOT authorized specifically by that is… well, unconstitutional and illegal.
“I think you are suggesting something far more radical than the real Tea Partiers do. They just pretend that a little less tax will make everything happy, even though that was tried more than once in the last 50 years.”
Radical? What’s radical about following the law? Nothing whatsoever. Not only am I not radical, I am straight down the middle of the road Constitutional. The Constitution is extremely clear, deliberate, concise, and you advocating violating it is the only “radical” nonsense being said here.
I’m sure there’s a few TEA Partiers somewhere who might be satisfied with a little tweaking around the edges, but that’s nothing worth paying attention to. Either we follow the Constitution, or the Republic is destroyed. And, as you can see, the government NOT following the Constitution, starting back in the 20’s and 30’s, has basically destroyed the nation. There is one and only one hope, and that is, we return back to what works – that being the Constitution.
This is the problem that we have ran into in recent years speaking about the constitution and separation of powers. We got the tax cuts, but globalization was ignored. In other words, cities and states cannot compete with third world labor at a dollar an hour. The factories have closed down. Now, we have seen bailouts, extension of unemployment benefits, cash for clunkers, and casinos for every state to fill in the gap. Relief like this came from federal funds, some state funds, and some city funds-perhaps all wrong. The problem is globalization and 2 billion potential cheap laborers. This problem is so enormous that it will need Washington to deal with it and they have not dealt with it. It is a nationwide problem and a world problem. Cities and states cannot deal with this, with just tax cuts. It is no different than defense (although you will site the constitution that the federal government should provide for the defense). Well, globalization effects all of us and it will have to take a big (federal) policy to deal with it. Again, cities and states cannot do it. Now Bush gave us the tax cuts, but the factories closed down, people are out of work, you have a mix of spending and relief that is not effective, and cities and states are going broke. So now, what should we do? People and states cannot handle this by themselves. You merge 2 billion cheap laborers at a dollar an hour to our population of 300 million and you can see what the problem is. It will be loss of jobs, lower wages, and higher deficits and debt. Oh deficits and debt-a federal problem.
I think you are thinking about the Article of Confederation, not the Constitution of the United States of America.
And it would help your argument if you at least used basic terms properly. Even if your description is accurate (it isn’t, but that’s another issue), you are still talking about a specific model for governance (albeit a fictional one). Even if you believe in the more extreme interpretation of the 10th Amendment that one can come up with (which is pretty much what you are saying and then some), you can’t read the general principles in the Preamble, let alone the specifics of Article I, section 8 and state that “this nation is specifically NOT TO BE GOVERNED”–indeed, it is absurdity.
As a parting thought, here’s a quote from a letter from James Madison to George Washington prior to the Philadelphia convention:
A nation “not to be governed,” indeed. Perhaps you have an unusual or nonstandard definition of the word “governed”? You do realize that having rule of law requires, well, being governed?
Your positions underscore a general lack of understanding of the Constitution, the Federalist Papers, the Convention as well as fundamental and basic principles of government and politics.
As such, you are not a doing a very good job of demonstrating the wisdom of the Tea Party movement from which you take your name.
@Gerry W. “This is the problem that we have ran into in recent years speaking about the constitution and separation of powers. We got the tax cuts, but globalization was ignored. In other words, cities and states cannot compete with third world labor at a dollar an hour. The factories have closed down.”
First, Cities and States do not compete. They are not engaged in the creation of wealth. Business is. Can a business compete against third world production? Even if third world’ers are paid at 1 to 4 dollars per hour? Oh, absolutely. But what business CANNOT survive is unions which blackmail the company into pension and other overhead costs so horrendous they go broke. The entitlement mentality that says “working at a job should shield me from any hardship or cost”, and as a result… Between the combined effects of environmental extremism, anti-business taxes – like capital gains and double taxation of corporate profit we DROVE our industrial base away. It was never and still is not that Americans cannot compete against foreign production. It was and remains that brain-dead-stupid tax and other policies and regulatory extremism killed our industrial base, and the current administration is targeting everyone else for destruction. Chrysler has NO problem paying $20/hr w/reasonable benefits, to build cars, and compete with Mexico, China, Korea just handily. You seem to forget that workers with $1/hr wages are nowhere NEAR as productive as us Americans.
@steven l taylor : Definitions of “govern”.
1. ( also intr ) to direct and control the actions, affairs, policies, functions, etc, of (a political unit, organization, nation, etc); rule
2. to exercise restraint over; regulate or direct: to govern one’s temper
3. to be a predominant influence on (something); decide or determine (something): his injury governed his decision to avoid sports
Absolutely this nation was NEVER intended to be “governed”. Our government was NEVER intended to control us. WE are to control it, as our servant. The highest authority in the USA is the citizen. The Federal government is NEVER to control the people, the people are to use it to conduct the limited purposes of defending the rights and freedoms of the individual AND NOTHING ELSE. From the Declaration of Independence… “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.” The very idea that the people should be “governed” is nonsense. It flies in the face of EVERY founder’s ideals. It contradicts the Constitution completely, which reserves all power to the people, except for minor authority delegated to the Federal Government, and then gave us representatives to represent us in those few matters.
So, when Jefferson wrote about instituting a new government, he really meant abolishing government. Gotcha.
You might want to re-read #1 on the definition you provided and then go look up the constituent elements.
Look, I can understand that you don’t like the way the US is governed but your argument about the word “governed” is utter nonsense. This is like arguing that the moon is made of cheese.
Out of curiosity, what’s your major?
@steven l taylor You cite :“I would propose that…the national government should be armed with positive and compleat authority in all cases which require uniformity; such as the regulation of trade, including the right of taxing both exports and imports, the fixing the terms and forms of naturalization, etc. etc.”
And claim that a discussion over whether states or the federal government should be setting import and export taxes and chosing whom to naturalize is proof we the people are not sovereign over our government? That’s both a lousy argument, and indeed, more evidence of my original assertions.
@steven l taylor… “what’s your major?” My “student” career ended 27 years ago. I majored in electronics engineering. What does this have to do with anything?
*** You seem to forget that workers with $1/hr wages are nowhere NEAR as productive as us Americans.***
I find that as a strange kind of answer. Bill Maher thought it to be amusing to those that always say” we are the greatest nation in the world.”
A lot of union jobs left the country, but it does not stop there. All jobs are vulnerable to globalization, automation, lean principles, or the internet. Cities and states are competing for jobs. We have people as well as China, Mexico, and other countries and all are competing for jobs. Business will go where they think the environment is best for them and not for the people.
You say unions blackmail, but business does it also. Cooper Tire in Findlay, Ohio has gotten 26 million from Ohio to stay in Ohio, and Findlay has given three years of no cost of water and sewer. I call it blackmail and a lot of it is happening today. ABC news reported last night that, many companies like Google avoid taxes legally by shifting money from one country to another. All totaled, ABC news has calculated 60 billion dollars in loss tax revenue.
What seems to me to be brain dead, is the same old trickle down, tax cuts, free market, and God and country syndrome without recognizing globalization. We have closed factories and small business who relies on those business, and yet we hear the same old tax cut policy and the fed is printing money when we gave away our jobs.
What we have not done, and what we did years ago was invest in our country. We have invested in our country, in our people, and in the future. Now, that is what is missing.
I am sure, a lot of parts in a Chrysler are made in Mexico and other countries. There are no easy answers, but I think it is more complicated than whatever ideology you believe in.
@steven L taylor: What’s your obsession with attempting semantic arguments?
Are you afraid to discuss the TRUE meaning of the 10th Amendment? You know, the clear one with no ambiguity whatsoever?
“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
The powers delegated to the federal government are enumerated in Article 1 Section 8. i’m not ignoring the role of the president or courts, but those are not under discussion here. The 10th Amendment CLEARLY AND WITHOUT ANY AMBIGUITY limits those powers and duties to PRECISELY those which are specifically delegated. Everything else is totally illegal and Unconstitutional. Period. End of discussion. No other reading is rational.
Setting import and export taxes and rules about who can become a citizens and how falls under the general rubric of “governing.”
I asked you major because you argued like a college undergraduate, and so was taking a leap that that was, in fact, the case.
And yes, one can have a debate about the Tenth Amendment.
However, it is difficult to do so if you don’t understand fundamental terms like “governing.” This is just a simple fact. It would be as if I was making assertions about your field but denied basic, accepted definitions of electricity or somesuch. It makes discourse both tiresome and utterly unfruitful.
@steven l taylor : “However, it is difficult to do so if you don’t understand fundamental terms like “governing.” This is just a simple fact. It would be as if I was making assertions about your field but denied basic, accepted definitions of electricity or somesuch. It makes discourse both tiresome and utterly unfruitful.”
You’re right, arguing with me over the semantics over what sense of “governed” is intended is pointless. I’m not changing my mind, and you’re seeking some minor point of personal discrediting to work on, rather than discussing the proper and Constitutional role of our federal government. We have a clear, unambiguous document which establishes the duties and powers, none of which is hard to understand, nor written in ‘legalese’.
My only question to you, is why you condone violation of the Constitution? Without it, we live in tyranny.
@gerry w : “Business will go where they think the environment is best for them and not for the people.” Duhh.
So why is it you want the US to be immensely hostile to business? Why tax business? Corporate tax is monumentally stupid. It drives off investment to other places. Our rabidly insane EPA and environmental laws drive off business. Our just plain insane worker laws drive off business. Our insane levels of taxation drive off business. Why do you want to do that?
Oh, and BTW, “protectionism”, is worse than anything else you have mentioned.
@gerry W. “I call it blackmail and a lot of it is happening today. ABC news reported last night that, many companies like Google avoid taxes legally by shifting money from one country to another. All totaled, ABC news has calculated 60 billion dollars in loss tax revenue.”
LOL, so, when money moves to avoid taxation, you think that’s something wrong? Frankly, depriving the government of money is a moral and patriotic obligation. The state governments should be living with half of what they have, and the federal government should live within 1/3 of what it has. The rest is ours to rightfully keep, we are NOT slaves to the government.
@gerry w. : “I am sure, a lot of parts in a Chrysler are made in Mexico and other countries. There are no easy answers, but I think it is more complicated than whatever ideology you believe in.”
No, it is YOU who is blindly ideological. You recognize that money flees taxation. You recognize the business moves to where it is wanted, and away from where it is punished (taxed). You recognize that people act rationally in their own best interest. And then, you reveal that you’re neither rational or sensible, when you complain that revenue to the government is lost. That’s a GOOD thing. It means that good is being done with the money. You see, the blind ideology that believes that lots of the people’s money going to the government is good, is a mindless, blind, irrational, radical ideology. Common sense alone tells you that it’s dumb.
@gerry W: “And what are we stimulating? The fed is printing money, we have had the tax cuts since 2001 and 2003, we have sent our money to Iraq, we neglected the infrastructure, and we keep sending our jobs overseas. Seems like someone on Wall Street and in Washington has a screw loose. And to cut spending when the economy is down is usually bad. Yes, we are trapped in a corner. Too bad nobody has any answers.”
Damn wrong, we DO have answers. It is to cut the cost of government, both regulatory and direct taxation by 100% on the business sector. Stop redistributing people’s wealth and stop subsidizing doing nothing by the population. Stop raising the cost of everything by massive amounts due to stupid and mindless regulation, and for heaven’s sakes STOP SPENDING LIKE MINDLESS IDIOTS at both the federal and state levels!
I won’t deny we have problems in the areas you say. But I don’t see a perfect person or party that will deal with these things. Every politician is bought off with lobbyists and interest groups. Instead of electing, I would rather appoint a Donald Trump to the presidency with a board of directors that represent the middle class. That isn’t to say that there should more or less regulation or tax cuts. It is what is best for the middle class and our country. Business is getting away with a lot when they have products made overseas. Not only it is cheap labor, but they don’t pay the taxes that support our government, and they only pay $2000 for a shipping container. Now, I don’t blame all of them. In fact, there is so much competition from low paying countries that we will continue to lose our middle class lifestyle. So my concern, is to preserve the middle class when we see the potential 2 billion cheap laborers eating away at our jobs. And when we have not (at a governmental level) invested in our country as state controlled China has, as Singapore has, then we will keep losing. I know you cringe at that, but having it your way, we still have to have the middle class get paid much much less.
Somehow, I get the feeling it is the race to the bottom. Pay no taxes, pay little in wages, and do away with regulation that has protected people. This is not healthy as a society and you will end up with just rich and poor. And we see this with all kinds of statistics as our country went more and more with failed ideology.
I get the feeling that you are going to go on and on with this. We need your opinion, but I think it should be at a balance to other considerations.
@gerry w : “I won’t deny we have problems in the areas you say. But I don’t see a perfect person or party that will deal with these things. ”
I’m just absolutely amazed that you can see this… but not see it, all at the same time.
THERE IS NO PERSON OR GROUP OR POLITCIAN WITH THE ANSWERS. That’s why you get the government the hell out of the mess and let the people work it out. WE CAN DO IT. Government can not.
You keep searching for the perfect centralized plan. That’s a waste of time, dangerous, and frankly, foolish. Let the people succeed. We will, if we get the monster millstone off our backs, so we can get back to what we need to do, improve our lives and collectively improve our country.
I just wonder how much the right wing is paying you.
@gerry w. : “I just wonder how much the right wing is paying you.”
Wow. That’s the sum of respect you have for anyone who disagrees, call them a prostitute… I never called you names, never accused you of being bought. Other than my stunned response where you advocated we adopt China’s economic strategy – which is a monumental failure so far – where we live so much better than the average Chinese, even during a depression… It is incomprehensible that any thinking person would think that we’d want to “try” such inane foolishness… I’ve tried to be honest and not denigrate you as a person. But that’s not possible for a liberal, is it?
Liberal = mindless bigot, apparently. Closed minded, bigotted, hate filled, angry and vengeful. Sheesh.
TP — Do you really think that if we abolished all environmental and workplace regulations this country would be any better than China, which you call a hellholw?
@wr “TP — Do you really think that if we abolished all environmental and workplace regulations this country would be any better than China, which you call a hellholw?”
Your question is incomprehensible. Do you believe that our environmental regulations are what has given us a much better economy, much lower unemployment, much higher standard of living?
Who is advocating we have no environmental protections? Why are you not asking THEM what they want?
When someone introduced a bill to subsidize cod fishermen, this was James Madison’s response:
If Congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands;they may appoint teachers in every State, county and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post-roads; in short, everything, from the highest object of state legislation down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress…. Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited Government established by the people of America.”
James Madison, in Federalist 41, had to say the following:
“Some, who have not denied the necessity of the power of taxation, have grounded a very fierce attack against the Constitution, on the language in which it is defined. It has been urged and echoed, that the power “to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, and excises, to pay the debts, and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States,” amounts to an unlimited commission to exercise every power which may be alleged to be necessary for the common defense or general welfare. No stronger proof could be given of the distress under which these writers labor for objections, than their stooping to such a misconstruction.”
It is very clear that I am DEAD CENTER centrist when it comes to the application of the Constitution, as it concerns the powers of Congress. There is NOTHING in the slightest “radical” about interpreting it to say precisely what it means – which is that Congress has a few, limited powers, and is prohibited from ANYTHING not specifically delegated to it. This is not a radical idea at all. IT is a very centrist, ideologically neutral idea, stemming from the objective study of history and government.