Wednesday, May 30, 2012

David Brooks, Please Stop Giving Us History Lessons

("The Role of Uncle Sam")

Mr. Brooks suffers from a severe case of amnesia. His implicit accusation is that policies of the Democrats have created this economic quagmire. But the reality is not that bleeding heart liberals have interfered with big business or spent carelessly or needlessly. Rather, it was the ill conceived and unfunded intrusion into Iraq and Afghanistan, the unneeded and uncalled for tax breaks for the wealthy, the unfathomable handouts to big pharmacy and the unrestricted excesses of big banks that proved the catalysts for the debacle. It was not the size of government but the choices the government made under Bush that proved our undoing.

And it is not that this administration has not tried to rectify these mistakes. Our troops are out of Iraq, we are slowly disengaging from Afghanistan and our policy has now shifted to surgical strikes where the actual enemy can be located. There have been repeated attempts to reset the tax rates at levels more fundamentally fair .By way of health care reform, the impact of inappropriate subsidies will be reduced. And there is legislation, if not implementation to reign in the excesses in the financial markets.

It is not for lack of vision by the Democrats but lack of cooperation by the Republicans that policies sought to be enacted have been tabled or defeated. Obstructionism has become a word clearly and undeniably central to the strategy of those in control of the House.  Mr. Brooks speaks of the Hamiltonian tradition rejecting efforts to "divide the country between have and have nots". But there can be no confusing that the theory of government espoused by those on the right does just that, as it leaves those who are suffering to fend for themselves by cutting off their life support in desperately needed aid and cutting off funds that would educate and elevate them. It makes the poor pay for the mistakes of Bush and preserves the ever escalating wealth of  the well to do, protecting their tax incentives as "job creators".

Mr. Brooks loves to give us all history lessons, to show that his is a voice of reason predicated on a deep understanding of our roots and our culture. But it is just subterfuge and misdirection. This is not about the founding fathers at all, but a debate about our moral compass, a question of righting the wrongs of Bush and moving forward to regulate the excesses, cut out the cancers and provide opportunity to live and to achieve for the least among us. And, oh by the way, get us out the Republican created recession in the process.


Anonymous said...

Well said.The Republicans have also blessed us with the carnival barker who has been discussing his infamous birther issue once again. Ted

Anonymous said...

One of your most eloquent essays to date. I hope this one is published in the Times. Perhaps even as an OpEd piece.

Anonymous said...

Said so succinctly and undeniable. Please forward to President and the DNC immediately.