Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Back to Obstructionism

Doing what Republicans do best, Mitch McConnell has announced the he and his Republican colleagues will seek to slow down the new administration's planned stimulus package. So after adding $ 4 TRILLION to the national debt over the course of the Bush administration, which led not to growth but to the greatest loss of American wealth since the Hoover administration, the Republicans have suddenly decided to become vigilant about excessive government spending.

Notice that this vigilance only appears when the government proposes to spend money to rebuild infrastructure and put people back to work. The concern over increasing the national debt did not manifest itself when the Bush administration cut taxes primarily for the wealthy. Nor did I hear about Republican protests when the government was paying billions to expensive military contractors in Iraq. And it was the Republicans who led the charge to increase drastically the costs of the Medicare drug benefit program, by insisting that this legislation preserve the profits of the pharmaceutical companies. This fall there were Republicans mainly in the House who protested the bank bailout and the auto company bailout. At least they get some points for consistency. But do the Republicans really want to start sounding like Scrooge when the government proposes to extend its largesse to actual working people who have been hurting the most from this recession?

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