Republican Hypocrites


Erik Kain

Erik writes about video games at Forbes and politics at Mother Jones. He's the contributor of The League though he hasn't written much here lately. He can be found occasionally composing 140 character cultural analysis on Twitter.

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18 Responses

  1. Avatar Dave says:

    Nihilism won’t be tolerated. How dare you.Report

  2. Avatar Bob says:

    Damn you E.D. Why did you send me to M. Malkin without some kind of heads-up? My life is ruined, ruined.Report

  3. Avatar E.D. Kain says:

    Didn’t you read the title, Bob? That wasn’t warning enough?Report

  4. Avatar Bob says:

    Your code escaped me. I thought you were being rendunant. I’ll try to read more closely next time. Once burned, twice shy.Report

  5. Avatar Philip says:

    How do you know these protestors haven’t been fuming over the Beltway GOP’s actions over the last decade? There’s no way to know they’re hypocrites. It’s not like they’ve been in Washington for the last eight years empowering an imperial presidency or spending money like there’s no tomorrow.

    And anyway, presumably these Arizona Republicans voted for the likes of Sen. Kyl and Rep. Flake, both of whom have scored perfect 100s on the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste’s rating scale. Also, Franks and Shadegg, each of whom recently scored 98%. Hell, the Council even has McCain at 88%.

    Most of Arizona’s Republican congressmen are also highly praised by Club for Growth and the National Taxpayers Union, the latter of which awarded, in 2007, Flake a 96, Frank a 93, Shadegg a 92, and Kyl an 86. Flake has topped the Club’s ratings at least once.

    So, let me ask, where do you get off, Erik? (1) These people aren’t of the Beltway scene; (2) The votes they have cast, in the ballot booth, have probably been for proven fiscal hawks.

    Hypocrites? Hardly.Report

  6. Avatar E.D. Kain says:

    So you’re saying that these people were out protesting the massive spending under the Bush administration or the expansion of Government during the past eight years? Hey maybe. Maybe you’re right. I doubt it, though. At least not in Arizona. Trust me, this is my home state, and these voters also voted McCain in – hardly the “fiscal conservative” move. Fact is, Arizonans have no idea what they want. This is just “following the leader, the leader, the leader wherever he may go….”Report

  7. Avatar Philip says:

    Multiple spending and tax watchdogs regularly give McCain decent scores. He’s no Kyl, but compared to much of the Senate he’s a penny pincher.

    Plus, Mesa is represented by Jeff Flake:

    “For the fifth consecutive year, Rep. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) was the top scorer in the House with a 96 percent rating — bringing him one year closer to Rep. Ron Paul’s (R-TX) record of six first-place finishes from 1979 to 1984.” –NTU, April 2008Report

  8. Avatar Joseph says:

    I bet a lot of these people really do want the guv’mint t buy them stuff though.Report

  9. Avatar E.D. Kain says:

    Look, Philip, this was a hot-headed post. Mainly what I’m saying is that for years and years Republicans and conservatives turned a blind eye to out of control spending and pathetic governance, and now suddenly they’ve found fiscal spine? Maybe you’re right. Maybe these protesters were doing this same thing during the Bush years, but I doubt it. This smacks of the luxury of no longer being in power.

    This chart via Balloon Juice, is a visual aid for the kind of budgetary nonsense we put up with under Bush. Now only a few weeks into the new Administration we’re seeing protests like this one in Mesa? The Party of Rush is acting like a bunch of children. These signs are embarrassing, or should be. I know conservatives can do better than this. You know what I mean? Take a higher road?

    Joseph–the thing about entitlements and spending programs is they make for great sloganeering. On one side they promise the world, and people like that. On the other, for those against them, they make for great targets. In the end, though, a lot of people really do enjoy the benefits that they provide, but they are provided at such a cost and with such lousy efficiency that there really must be a better way…it’s a tricky question. I think some means testing for things like social security is in order, to be sure…Report

  10. Avatar JB says:

    Yeah, because Bush spent $1-3 trillion (estimates vary of the true cost) in his first two weeks in office. Please.

    Are you really trying to argue that Obama and his ilk are bigger fiscal conservatives than the Republicans? They both are bad, but one is worse than the other. The R’s may be an 8 out of 10, but the D’s are a 9 and this is an exponential curve.Report

  11. Avatar Dave says:

    I get it. We shouldn’t criticize Bush because Obama is worse.

    Sorry. It doesn’t work that way.Report

  12. Avatar Cascadian says:

    If Republicans had been consistent in criticism, instead of partaking in Helen’s tribal politics, it wouldn’t be in the mess it’s in. Perhaps, while having all strands of Federal Power, they could have urged constraint and conservatism instead of never ending club for growth glee. As it is, people like the one posted above just seem a joke.

    In light of the recent discussions on the value of shame, how do you make sense of this? Is shame even available within ones ostensible group? Or, are some groups just impervious to shame?Report

  13. Avatar E.D. Kain says:


    In light of the recent discussions on the value of shame, how do you make sense of this? Is shame even available within ones ostensible group? Or, are some groups just impervious to shame?

    Such a good question. I think shame has been replaced by all-or-nothings – in other words, “you’re either with us, or against us” has become the new creed in many “groups” and “movements” and healthy shame is all but lost. So much more could be said about this….Report

  14. Avatar Philip says:

    “Party of Rush is acting like a bunch of children.”

    First, don’t call it that. It doesn’t make any sense, it’s juvenile in its own right.

    Second, I just don’t get your complaint. We live in a representative democracy. Citizens influence policy through electoral support of likeminded candidates. The people of Mesa have one of the most fiscally responsible congressmen in Washington. What more can they do?

    Plus, they’re not just spontaneously protesting. The president was in town to put on a spectacle, so they figured they’d respond in kind. What’s wrong with that?Report

  15. Avatar Bob says:

    Does NOR and The Corner qualify as Republican? Don’t bother with an answerer I’m posting this anyway. Talk about hypocrites. To bad Jerry Taylor at The Corner did not read Montesquieu while W. was in office. Are readers of NOR so ignorant that they fail to see the dishonesty of such postings?

    “Who Needs Congress? [Jerry Taylor]

    Perhaps the most striking thing about Obama’s proposed housing plan is this nugget from The New York Times: ‘Except for the provision that empowers bankruptcy judges, almost all of the other elements can be enacted by Mr. Obama without further action by Congress.’

    “How have we gotten to the point where hundreds of billions of dollars can be spent and major initiatives undertaken merely on presidential whim? Answer: Congress has delegated so much power to the executive branch that the old rules we learned in high-school civics are now null and void. Those old rules, remember, held that the legislature made laws and the president executed laws. Now, Congress routinely delegates massive amounts of broad law-making authority to the president in order to avoid responsibility for anything. For a book-length treatment of this, see David Schoenbrod’s Power Without Responsibility: How Congress Abuses the People Through Delegation.

    “As Montesquieu once wrote, ‘When the legislative and executive powers are united in the same person, or in the same body of magistrates, there can be no liberty.’ “Report

  16. Avatar Bob says:

    Sorry, that should be NROReport

  17. Avatar JB says:

    Bush should be taken to task (and often was by conservatives and libertarians), but Reagan had Democrats in Congress when he was president. They substantially increased non-defense spending.

    I’m glad that people are protesting Obama’s antics and communism. If George Bush spent $1-3 trillion in the first few weeks then went on a tour proclaiming how joyful he was at his great accomplishment, I hope there would have been protests as well. What Obama is doing is unprecedented and the moral hazard he is encouraging with the mortgage bailout stands a good chance of bringing this country to the brink. Why should any of us work or pay our mortgage when there is free Obama money to be had?Report

  18. Avatar Katherine says:

    Bush should be taken to task (and often was by conservatives and libertarians), but Reagan had Democrats in Congress when he was president. They substantially increased non-defense spending.

    Weaksauce. The difference between the cost of Reagan’s proposed budgets and those passed by Congress was 2.8%. Reagan chose to have massive budget deficits; you can’t blame the Democrats for it. Just look at the difference between his spending and Carter’s – Carter had a large Democratic majority who he got on none too well with (partly because he did start out by vetoing a large bill he felt was overloaded with pork) and managed to control spending far more than Reagan.Report