Thursday, May 8, 2008

GOP Shows Itself To Be Out-Of-Touch Yet Again


After losing two special elections in (Illinois) and (Louisiana), the National Republican Campaign Committee has been given a small glimpse of what this November may bring. NRCC Chairman Tom Cole has proven ineffective, along with House Leader John Boehner, in being able to come up with a message that speaks voters disillusioned by our nation's sorry state of affairs, which Republicans so far have done little to combat.

Newt Gingrich, ousted as Speaker of the House after the disastrous 1998 midterm elections, has sent a list of "nine policy proposals" to top House Republicans "to [help] chart a bold course of real change," thereby averting the impending disaster that is sure to hit Republicans this November at the polls. Now, what are the nature of Newt's nine new "policy proposals?" Naturally, I assumed that they would contain bold measures designed to reverse of pathetic incompetence on behalf of the Republican leadership in Congress.

Some snippets:

"1. Repeal the gas tax for the summer"

"2. Redirect the oil being put into the national petroleum reserve onto the open market. That oil would lower the price of gasoline an extra 5 to 6 cents per gallon"

"4. Establish an earmark moratorium for one year......The American people are fed up with politicians spending their money. They currently believe both parties are equally bad. This is a real opportunity to show the difference."

Nowhere in Newt's "policy proposals" did I find anything about cutting spending, much less the size of government, an issue that seems to be thrown away to the memory hole of history ever since George W. Bush and his big-government "conservatism" came to town. I am quite dismayed by Newt's little caveats with regards to the gas tax (suspend it "for the sumer") and earmarks ("suspend them for one year").

Our budget deficit is currently over $400 billion dollars. Earmarks need to be taken out for good, not for "one year," as Newt proposes. Wasting $15-25 billion dollars of taxpayer money on personal pet projects is something that I am sure Congress can do without. Ordinary Americans are not able to spend wildly without repurcussions and neither should our representatives. Real reformer entails eliminating corrupt practices such earmarks, not merely suspending them and taking them up again once people become forgetful.

Newt's 1st and 2nd proposals show more shortsightedness on the energy issue worthy of the likes of John McCain. Nowhere in Newt's policy proposals is anything at all to do with making America energy independent. Rather, he seeks the lower the ever-increasing gas prices by the abysmal margain of "5 to 6 cents," which would save Americans less than 1% percent of the cost of an average fill-up ($60-$80 dollars).

A "bold course of real change" entails policies that seek to heal and correct the failures and mistakes of the past, not merely to provide a pathetic attempt to stop the bleeding, an attempt that ordinary American would barely feel if at all.


Anonymous said...

It is rather ridiculous to blame Mr. Gingrich for us not being energy independent. In this age of global integration, while a few countries are energy independent, no country is economically independent.

The so-called energy crisis is not as bad in every part of the country and it is not the first time there as been a crisis. This too shall pass, but yes, not without pain. If the energy crisis was so bad, we would see less cars on the road and more people using buses and carpools. What do you want Mr. Gingrich to do, hold a gun to everybody's head and demand that they take public transportation?

Let's put things in perspective, no, Mr. Gingrich is not perfect, but 1998 was not a disaster, we only lost a few seats and we actually gained a little in the popular vote. Making things worse than they appear will not solve the challenges that we do have.

By the way, if we want the price to fall, deregulation is what is needed. It worked for natural gas in Ohio. I have also seen in Ohio that if prices are too low we have gas shortages. be careful when you scream for low prices just for the sake of it. This is not a free market solution. The solution is to keep taxes and regulation low.


Anonymous said...

It looks like the Republicans are once again going against anything that remotely resembles "conservatism". This is the problem that Republicans face, all of Gingrich's proposals are short-sighted and designed only to pander to the electorate. Republicans cannot, in any objective sense, be called conservatives anymore. They have expanded government spending, size and powers since they took office. Most people think that if govt. is going to be this big, then you might as well have Democrats in charge because they at least want to spend money domestically instead of overseas.

True conservatism has been lost by both major parties. Maybe we need somebody who is conservative and has proven it with conservative votes? Is there anybody out there.


DR said...

Not related, but we just wanted to wish NY Catholic Mom a Happy Mothers Day. May God bless you.

NY Catholic Mom said...

Thanks so much, dr. What a nice surprise on this cold, blustery Monday morning! :)