The Reichstag fire next time

Steve M catches Ezra Klein in flagrante contrario with some counterintuitive Slate-style stuff about how president Romney will be Keynesian because he wants to turn the economy around. It’s not unpossible that a right-winger will use Keynesian economics — after all, people who believe in homeopathy use conventional medicine sometimes when they’re desperate, old-school-loving DJs will play Madonna to get people on the floor, etc. — but I think it’s unlikely, since it won’t be centrist 80s Romney who runs the country, but post-Bushpocalyptic Cassius Cantor. I think Steve M gets it about right:

I think we’re likely to get shock-doctrine economics — yes, tax cuts, but also (as Romney has promised) the Paul Ryan budget and Cut, Cap and Balance, which, by making balanced budgets mandatory and imposing a ceiling on government spending as a percentage of GDP, will literally make Keynesian deficit spending in a recession illegal. I think they’ll try to gut Social Security and Medicare for those under 55. I think we may get a national right-to-work law.

Suppose for the sake of argument that our national debt has become a huge problem. How did it become a problem? Because of the Bush tax cuts, the Iraq War, and the recession (which, whatever its root causes, came about under Bush).

Suppose for the sake of argument that future spending on Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security has become a huge problem. How did it become a problem? Because of massive increases in the cost of medical care, which has been exacerbated by Republican obstruction of national health care policy (the US spends about 50% more on medical care as a proportion of GDP than other western countries).

If Romney wins, and uses the so-called debt crisis to end collective bargaining rights, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid as we know them, it will be nothing less than another Reichstag fire.

Tell me I’m wrong.

195 replies
  1. 1
    Bruce S says:

    “Tell me I’m wrong.”

    Do I look like a clown to you. You think I’m funny?

  2. 2
    redshirt says:

    Lets just give up and let the Republicans have their way. I’m so TIRED of hearing them complain! Surely, if we give them everything they want they’ll behave. Right?

  3. 3
    Culture of Truth says:

    That’s probably right, though it does go against recent history – from Reagan, and Bush I through Stupid’s drug benefit, wars, tax cuts and other giveaways. The GOP are massive flipflopping hypocrites on less government spending and Mittens is their unprincipled poster child.

    But then again,with the rise of brown acid eating elements like the tea party, times have clearly changed — (or have they?)

  4. 4
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    What Bruce S said.

    Look, the 1% are going to get some “shock doctrine” one way or another. It’s more or less the same question asked of Jack Benny by the mugger.

  5. 5
    matryoshka says:

    Yes, we are going to get shock-doctrine economics and a whole host of other beatings–hell, we already are–but hey, what’s on TV? All that stuff is so boring.

  6. 6
    Suffern ACE says:

    Nope. I don’t know where Ezra thinks the Keynesianism comes from in any Republican plans. You have a set of people who look at the new deal failed in the 1930s and will fail us now. They have made it very clear what they plan to do. I don’t think any Romney voters are under the impression that their priorities are guided by Keynes.

  7. 7
    Lit3Bolt says:

    You’re not wrong. That was the point of No Child Left Behind, which had good reforms but was tied to impossible standards that is leading to vouchers and privatization. It was the point of media deregulation, financial deregulation, Iraq War, healthcare laws, “gun control” laws, etc, etc

    If a law doesn’t make a huge profit for corporations, it doesn’t get passed.

    Also, gotta love the Slate-style contraianism from Ezra who’s basically admitting his job is worthless and both sides do it because SHUT UP DEBATE CLUB THAT’S WHY.

  8. 8
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    The ghost of Gaius Cassius Longinus demands an apology.

    This shit is horserace creation. Or idiocy.

  9. 9
    smintheus says:

    There’s nothing these right wing extremists won’t stoop to. Case in point: Vote suppression in WI recall, right on cue.

  10. 10
    Jerzy Russian says:

    You are not wrong, but I will tell you you are wrong if it makes you feel better. Just let me know.

  11. 11
    Brachiator says:

    I think Steve M gets it about right

    Yep. The Republicans did not have a rational economic policy when Bush and Cheney were in power. Why would they magically start behaving rationally under Romney?

  12. 12
    Valdivia says:

    Thank you for putting this squarely on the frontpage. I have been truly agog since I saw this yesterday. Not only are you right about the utterly flawed underlying logic of Ezra’s piece, but the implications of acting in this way–vote for republicans because if you don’t the country will be destroyed in their nihilistic search for power and revenge–would mean we actually don’t live in a democracy anymore. One of my favorite pithy definitions of democracy from dem theory is: it’s a system where a party loses elections and acts as a loyal opposition when they do, i.e. they recognize they lost and act accordingly. By this new calculus we no longer live in such a system.

    Also. Too. Triple points for the High-Fidelity reference and the new Cassius moniker for Cantor.

  13. 13
    Bruce S says:

    Culture: GOP “Keyensianism” has been of the Starve the Beast deficit-inducing-in-good-times-and-bad variety, designed to hobble government over the long run (while rewarding political allies along the way, like military contractors and pharmaceutical companies, with federal largess. It was also initiated in a world of greater GOP “nuance” – i.e. when a Dick Lugar was understood as fundamentally conservative and right-wing radicalism was just one pole of the party, rather than it’s center of gravity.) 30 years after Reagan initiated the basic strategy – at least at the level of ideology – Grover and his Krazies want to close the deal, go in for the kill, drown the baby, etc. etc. Clinton and Obama have both acted like fiscal conservatives who aren’t insane or driven by hostility to government rather than long-term prudence. But fiscal prudence over the long term is not what the budget wars are ultimately about. The goal is to savage the safety net and reward the 1%.

  14. 14
    RyanayR says:

    OK, hold on, don’t use Reichstag Fire as a comparable example, or allegory here. The Reichstag Fire was the intentional burning of a national institution under a false flag operation for the purpose of the dismissal of civil and political rights of a group. Are you saying that the national debt is the Reichstag and Republican policies are the fire? Or, are you saying Medicare and Social security are civil rights and the debt is the Reichstag Fire? A little too much reification for my taste. Also, Nazi analogies are overused.

  15. 15
    aimai says:

    Everyone knows that Republicans never hire other republicans to fix republican problems. It is and always has been a Mafia Bust Out style operation. They come in, loot the place, crash the economy, employ their friends and then just as the country goes belly up they leave (or get pitched out) and turn the place over to the nearest Democratic Goo Goo (good government) candidate to clean up and build up a new surplus for them to loot. They happilly jumped aside for Obama to clean up their mess–remember the Onion Headline “Black Man Takes Worst Job In Country?”

    This iteration of the Kali Yug the tea party and the mega-billionaires decided to go for broke and not let the Democrats fix things. Romney might just get in on the strength of all those aging billionaires who have decided that taxe cuts for them are more important than letting the economy right itself, just as they would rather burn down the world than save it on global warming. There is no way, given the current climate of assholes and nutcases on the far right, that Romney would do anything more than grease the skids to hell.

    aimai

  16. 16
    Maude says:

    @Brachiator:
    Were there any rational policies during the Bush II years?

  17. 17
    Mike E says:

    @smintheus: I was generally thinking about this last night, though the method I envisioned was the flyers in the “traditional” Dem neighborhood variety, saying Don’t forget to vote June 6th! or some such

  18. 18
    I Love Cows says:

    Nazis are everywhere.

  19. 19
    Dave says:

    The only issue I would take is with the analogy to the reichstag fire. Romney would be a vehicle for a fascist congress and assorted nut jobs. Not Hitler, but Mussolini.

  20. 20
    Bruce S says:

    Ezra needs to keep a careful eye on the WaPo water cooler. I’m guessing that Gene Robinson, Harold Myerson and E.J.Dionne stay away from it. Ezra is starting to sound like he’s been drinking some of that stuff.

  21. 21

    @aimai: Welcome back!! At least I haven’t seen you around here in a while.

  22. 22
    nastybrutishntall says:

    But nach Mittens, uns. So it’s cool.

  23. 23

    @Bruce S: Where have you been? Ezra has been gunning for the tag of “The young David Broder” for a while now. I could tell since, at least, when he was first hired by Kaplan, if not before.

  24. 24
    smintheus says:

    @Mike E: We do get the traditional GOP counterattack however, in which they deny any involvement in the stunt and accuse Democrats of vote-suppressing themselves in order to smear Republicans.

  25. 25
    Mike E says:

    @aimai:

    Mafia Bust Out

    Exactly. These things are best left to the pros. We are witnessing quite the astonishing run of brazen grifting here, and our useless press can only nod and say, “Atta boys!”

  26. 26
    fasteddie9318 says:

    @RyanayR: OK, the national debt “crisis” is one giant false flag operation designed to give Republicans a path back to power, from where they can work to privatize and/or eliminate the social safety net, including Medicare and Social Security, as well as enact massive tax cuts for the upper class and doing whatever they can to stamp out the last threads of organized labor’s power and the ability of the lower classes and minorities to impact the political system in any way.

    There, no mention of The-Event-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named.

  27. 27
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    The single-most effective solution to the future Medicare and Social Security shortfalls are government death panels. Republicans vehemently opposed this common-sense solution.

  28. 28
    Steve says:

    For the most part, Republicans aren’t actually ignorant of the fact that government spending creates jobs. They are just conveniently forgetful sometimes.

  29. 29
    jimmiraybob says:

    It also seems far more likely under a Mittens administration that there will be at least one more Middle East war. He will have to – have to – satisfy that part of the base. It’s central to that sector of the base’s strong and deeply held and most cherished and sacred gut feeling*, that it’s been too long without a full-scale military invasion of another country.

    And, it would create jobs. Mittens = win, win.

    *similar to but not quite the same as severe gas cramping. They, apparently, can tell the difference.

  30. 30
    Bruce S says:

    Phil P – yeah, Ezra has been sipping at the Kooler for a while, but there’s a big difference between Klein and Broder (aside from the obvious of not being officially dead in the biological sense after years of existing as a hollow shell.)

    Ezra has a work ethic and his periodic crap WaPo-esque opinions are in a larger context of committing journalism on a daily basis. Frankly, Wonkblog produces more useful information in any given 24 hours than the entire rest of the WaPo combined. If he were solely a lazy opinion columnist, I would take your point. But this crap comes more as asides than his stock in trade.

  31. 31
    Metrosexual Black AbeJ says:

    If you get a chance, write to Andrew Sullivan and nominate this for a Moore Award, pls. I already did from a couple of my non-DougJ accounts.

  32. 32
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Poor Ezra. His starpower has fallen a bit since he was flogging for the Dole-AHIP health care legislation popularly known as Obamacare.

  33. 33
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    Can we coin a new term for this from of government? “Hostageocracy”, perhaps?

    What a coward Ezra is. Had this nation been composed of folks like him from the beginning, we’d all still be singing “God Save The Queen”. Despicable.

  34. 34
    The Dangerman says:

    @Suffern ACE:

    I don’t think any Romney voters are under the impression that their priorities are guided by Keynes.

    Romney voters won’t be guided by Keynes because Romney voters know Keynes lost to Obama in Illinois.

  35. 35
    Betty Cracker says:

    @RyanayR: I’m not sure that analogy is so out of line. Basically, the Republicans are making it impossible for anyone but themselves to govern, which kinda puts a crimp in that whole “democracy” thing. And they’re busily disenfranchising legitimate voters, etc., with a Democratic president and senate right now; let’s see what they do if they succeed in selling the debt “fire” to the public.

  36. 36
    Bruce S says:

    @Metrosexual Black AbeJ:

    This post is even more inflammatory and tendentious than Mein Kampf.

  37. 37
    Culture of Truth says:

    You’re probably not wrong, but if it’s any consolation Mitt is very likey to lose in November, and in any case, there is not one person in the entire country who is going to vote for Mitt based on Ezra’s analysis.

  38. 38
    Ruckus says:

    Can’t tell you you’re wrong when you’re so right

  39. 39
    Bob2 says:

    Yglesias, McArdle and Ezra Klein must’ve had some interesting dinner parties.

  40. 40
    Bruce S says:

    @Forum Transmitted Disease:

    From the look of my TeeVee today, we still aren’t over the goddam Queen. WTF is it about that silly family that deserves all-Queen-all-the-time coverage…of her watching boats and airplanes in a ridiculous hat, no less.

  41. 41
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @jimmiraybob:

    It also seems far more likely under a Mittens administration that there will be at least one more Middle East war.

    What? We gave those fuckers a war in Libya and instead of beating off to bombs, they complained.

  42. 42
    Yutsano says:

    @Bob2: Sigh. They fall so quickly into Villager groupthink these days.

    @Just Some Fuckhead: Inorite? Ingrates.

  43. 43

    No, you’re not wrong, sadly. The period from 2013-2015 (at least) would be the most destructive years this country has seen since the 1860’s.

    And no, that’s not dramatic hyperbole, it’s a prediction. It will be the GOP’s last chance to dismantle the FDR/LBJ welfare state before demographics takes over. They are certain to take advantage of it. And, with nothing to replace it, the GOP’s half-century long quest to reduce the US into Greater Brazil will be complete.

    Know this, and fight it.

    I’m more curious as to WTF happened out there in the greater culture, to cause so many centrists/leftists to suddenly turn. IMO, nothing substantive has changed (same polls, same economy, same ads etc)… so why are the Sullivans and Ezras of the world suddenly (and synchronously) accepting the idea of a Romney victory before we’re even in the full election season???

  44. 44
    Culture of Truth says:

    I’m so contrarian I’m officially rooting for the Queen. Go harmless royalty!

  45. 45
    Bruce S says:

    @Yutsano:

    Villager Groupthink is actually a step in the right direction for “Jane Galt.” She’s always been hopeless and totally foolish.

  46. 46
    Skippy-san says:

    Oh you are most assuredly right. And you have captured what is for me-the reasons I now hate the party I used to vote for. The GOP has gone so far off the deep end, and has become so heartless that there is no forgiving them for the bad things they have done, and the even worse things I fear they are about to do.

    ” This thing will get out of control. It will get out of control and we will be lucky if we all live through it.”

  47. 47
    fasteddie9318 says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead: Because we weren’t killing enough Browns, and since Obama himself is one of Them, wingnuts just know he was doing it wrong.

  48. 48
    LanceThruster says:

    Rmoney would pretty much mean the death of the Republic. He’s clueless and craven, and Shrubya showed what a perilous combination that is.

    I do not think we could survive many more GOP halcyon days.

  49. 49
    The Dangerman says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    …and instead of beating off to bombs, they complained.

    They complained before the bombs fell and then complained after the bombs started falling. Now they’re complaining about Syria before the bombs start falling (of course, since Syria is an unsolvable clusterfuck, it’s the perfect problem to hang around Obama’s neck).

  50. 50
    Culture of Truth says:

    @Judas Escargot, Your Postmodern Neighbor: Every times a beltway journalist writes an article about the virtues of a Romney Presidency, David Broder’s corpse gives birth to a kitten.

  51. 51
    SteveM says:

    @aimai:

    They come in, loot the place, crash the economy, employ their friends and then just as the country goes belly up they leave (or get pitched out) and turn the place over to the nearest Democratic Goo Goo (good government) candidate to clean up and build up a new surplus for them to loot.

    I think they’ve gone past that now. They didn’t really let Obama clean up the mess. They’re desperate — they want shock-doctrine economics (high debt, high unemployment) until we have no choice but to swallow Greece-style austerity.

  52. 52
    gaz says:

    I’m one of those people that has marked my calendar. I’m waiting this out. Even if I’m wrong about my “Romney will win the nom, and lose the general” thing I’ve been spewing since time immemorial, my certainty in it grants me some measurable amount of peace. In any case, I’m prepared to leave the country for Mexico, and will either way, so I have my plan b to fallback on in the worst case (and the not worst case, heh). And yes, Mexico is fucked, but there are plenty of advantages to living there, if you can navigate the mess.

    I can’t bear the village spew. It’s just too much toxicity for me. It’s easier to wait on the sidelines and ignore them.

  53. 53
    Raven says:

    Huge turnout in Wisconsin.

  54. 54
    Brachiator says:

    @Maude:

    Were there any rational policies during the Bush II years?

    Good point. I don’t see much of anything that suggests that Mitt would oppose any of the irrational shit that the Republicans pushed during the Dubya era.

  55. 55
    Mattski says:

    If you look at the history of it. When repubs control congress and the white house, Government spending always goes through the roof. Why would it be different this time?

    Borrow and spend lots of money keeping your fat cat friends happy. Cry about the budget crisis. Cut spending on the poor. Then borrow and spend lots of money keeping…..

    anyway you get the picture.

  56. 56
    Culture of Truth says:

    Time for Mexico to buid a wall of its own.

  57. 57
    Mike E says:

    @The Dangerman: I saw what you did there

  58. 58
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    Tell me I’m wrong.

    Unless Mittens goes for an end run around congress austerity like that will never get threw, even with GOP controlling both houses. The 27% do love socialism when it’s their socialism. It will basically be some deregulation, some tax cuts, some token gestures and a lot of noodling until the next crises.

  59. 59
    Bruce S says:

    @Culture of Truth:

    If the Brits eliminated Parliament and re-instated the Royal Family’s political power, I’m predicting that the Queen would put an end to this disastrous austerity and follow the sound advice of Lord Keynes. Also, a Ministry of Silly Hats, headed by John Cleese.

  60. 60
    Mike E says:

    @Raven: I’m not the prayin’ type, but please lawdy…

  61. 61
    danimal says:

    Jeez, people. Ezra isn’t advocating for the election of RMoney. He’s simply proposing that RMoney will follow the policy trajectory of GWB and the GOP will follow along.

    There is room for debate about whether the GOP has changed policy preferences and will engage in a repeal-the-New-Deal-and-embrace-the-Ryan-Plan or go back to a Keynesian stimulate-the-economy-through-tax-cuts-and-targeted-spending program. Bushonomics can be Keynesian; the 2001 and 2003 tax regimes were promoted as a form of stimulus.

    Ezra Klein is simply acknowledging that the GOP will grant RMoney considerably more latitude to stimulate the economy, if that is part of RMoney’s policy program. I have no doubt he is right about that.

    The GOP is more cynical than doctrinaire, in my opinion. They will stop obstructing economic growth if and when their guy is in the White House. (IOW, they are substantially more interested in GOP political power than in being patriotic Americans, they really can DIAF for that.)

  62. 62
    Bruce S says:

    @danimal:

    So you’re suggesting if a white guy does it, it’s not “Socialism!” I have to admit that what we’ve seen over the last three years just might be that pathological.

  63. 63
    Raven says:

    @Mike E: Big turnouts generally favor dems, no?

  64. 64
    different-church-lady says:

    Tell you you’re wrong? I can’t even figure out what the ‘eff you’re talking about.

  65. 65
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    I suspect Romney’s tax and medicare cuts will be wrapped in a large stimulus package to make the economy tick up for just long enough to make the tax cuts look like they are working. Then, when the economy goes down again, he can argue that more cuts are needed.

  66. 66
    danimal says:

    @Bruce S: Yes. They are lying. Republicans are filthy propagandists and liars, or their enablers. They are wretched people who need to be driven from power.

    But their astounding cynicism and lies may be effective.

  67. 67
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Judas Escargot, Your Postmodern Neighbor:

    I’m more curious as to WTF happened out there in the greater culture, to cause so many centrists/leftists to suddenly turn. IMO, nothing substantive has changed (same polls, same economy, same ads etc)… so why are the Sullivans and Ezras of the world suddenly (and synchronously) accepting the idea of a Romney victory before we’re even in the full election season???

    The stock market is correcting. Seriously. In the past those who have been predicting nothing but doom for this sluggish economy have been as wrong as those who have been predicting robust growth is just around the corner. But when the Stock Market Declines! OMG! The sluggishness is a bit much.

    It’s kind of like going ape for weeks as gas prices make their annual spring increase. OMG we haven’t seen prices like thise since… 12 months ago! We’re doomed!

  68. 68
    The Dangerman says:

    @danimal:

    …the GOP will grant RMoney considerably more latitude to stimulate the economy, if that is part of RMoney’s policy program.

    The problem being that Romney’s “stimulus” will be huge tax cuts and eviscerating the Social Programs enacted since the New Deal.

    Someone said it above – this is the Republicans last, best chance to burn it all down before the demographic timebomb kicks in and they are going to be Arsonists.

  69. 69
    quannlace says:

    Ryan Budget ‘logic’- Give the rich more and they’ll work harder; give the poor less and they’ll work harder.

  70. 70

    @LanceThruster:

    Rmoney would pretty much mean the death of the Republic.

    As we currently know it, yes. WIth at least 2, maybe as many as 4 uber-conservative Justices to ensure that no future Congress will be able to undo the damage.

    Also, too, I’ll just come out and say it: I do not want a Mormon President. It’s a shadowy cult, with an agenda to convert the US into a theocracy.

    LDS has already installed itself deep into the bureaucracies of some of the three-letter agencies (don’t take my word for it, google it). Harmless religions don’t generally do that.

    Those who require even more paranoia can also google “White Horse Prophecy”.

  71. 71
    MBunge says:

    @danimal: “He’s simply proposing that RMoney will follow the policy trajectory of GWB and the GOP will follow along.”

    Even if that were true, and there’s every reason to think it isn’t with the radicalized nature of the Tea Party Congress, what he’s missing is that GWB’s economic policies sucked ass. Spending money and disregarding the deficit isn’t freakin’ magic. You have to spend money in the right way and in the right place to make a difference.

    Mike

  72. 72
    El Cid says:

    I think it’s mainly a cute effort to argue that certain systemic imperatives are so huge and important that they will override current Republican ideology / organized class interest.

    I think it’s terribly wrong.

    This isn’t the early 20th century.

    Programs like Social Security actually came out of upper-class backed research and policy planning programs, because the billionaires of that era identified with the future stability and prosperity of the USA as their own long term interests.

    Not today. Today’s billionaire legions don’t give a fuck. The US can fucking roast in hell, what’s important are 2 things:

    (1) Grab everything you and your peers and your power alliance network can get right fucking now;

    and

    (2) Do everything necessary to prevent anyone from ever getting in the way of (1) should any such barrier ever arise…

    The only “long term” is in calculating what’s fucking left after this year’s grab.

  73. 73
    Bubblegum Tate says:

    As a DJ who plays pretty much nothing but old-school music (and who is bemused at how wide the frame of reference for “old school” has become), I absolutely will NOT play Madonna to get people on the floor. Never have, never will. Not even just the instrumental parts of the Jellybean Benitez 12″ remixes.

    If I really need to cater like that, then I do so with Michael Jackson. Madonna is not welcome.

  74. 74
    rea says:

    I see what Ezra’s saying, I really do. It would be best for the future of the Republican Party if they took office, abandoned their phony ideology, and fixed the economy in a way that they would not permit Obama to do. But that’s assuming that the Republicans are purely evil and not stupid, or some combination of evil-and-stupid. That’s a risky assumption on which to bet the future of the country and the world.

  75. 75
    BGinCHI says:

    Here it is in a nutshell.

    Look at this chart:

    http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.....?ref=fpblg

    Obama has cut gov’t spending more than anyone in decades.

    Not only is this not recognized, but he’s thought by every media outlet to have increased spending since the GOP has framed this issue. DC wired for Republicans.

    And yet, and this is the clincher, it’s a TERRIBLE idea to cut this kind of spending in a recession.

    So there you go: damned and damned. This is end of history stuff.

  76. 76
    Mike E says:

    @Raven: Mostly favors Dems, but you’re right close to the Wingnut Event Horizon there in Badgerland.

  77. 77
    Suffern ACE says:

    @BGinCHI: Yep. It’s not like Obama is Mr. Uber Keynesian. Basically the choices are super stupid austerity and long term harsh austerity, or running budget deficits to give us a chance to repair our balance sheet to return consumer demand. Neither candidate can do much about the source of the demand slack without some program to eliminate consumer debt. That is not likely going to happen no matter what. The president isn’t about to say “House prices! You stop falling now so people will start borrowing again!”

  78. 78
    RyanayR says:

    @Betty Cracker: OK, but here’s my issue, there’s better, less emotional analogies to use. I think the problem with nazi analogies is that they are almost always not directly relevant, and are generally intended to play at people’s emotions. And I would argue that conflating revolutionary tools like the Reichstag Fire with political tools like the debt ‘crisis’ isn’t sound. And yes, I agree that Republicans are trying to rig democracy in their favor, but I doubt very much they would like democracy done-away with.

    Essentially, I don’t want Balloon Juice sounding like a left wing version of a Breitbart or Glenn Beck site via Nazi Analogies. Being a history nerd, it pisses me off to no end.

    The debt crisis in its essence is Republicans blaming Democrats for problems created and exasperated by their own policies. I think one could find a better analogy. I think the nazi thing is just easier; it takes no effort. Make the effort.

  79. 79
    BGinCHI says:

    @Suffern ACE: The scariest part of this to me is that the capitalists (folks like the Kochs, Ricketts, Adelson) are the worst at capitalism.

    They are like a parasite that doesn’t know better than to kill its host organism.

  80. 80
    nastybrutishntall says:

    @Bubblegum Tate: Come on, man, you know Lucky Star is the shit. It’s got boogie and you can repeat and ride in and out of it like a drive-through liquor store.

  81. 81
    SteveM says:

    Bill Clinton last night:

    [Clinton] said Republicans’ economic policy is “austerity and unemployment now, and then a long-term budget that would explode the debt when the economy recovers so the interest rates would be so high, nobody would be able to do anything.”

    That’s what Ezra is saying, but at least he sees the consequences if Ezra is right: it means, four or eight years from now, the first post-Romney Democratic president (assuming there ever is another Democratic president) will be saddled with high interest rates, and an even bigger deficit and debt (and, of course, all the blame for it). So I think you’ll get the repeal of the 20th century now or it will be demanded all over again when Hillary or Andrew Cuomo or Martin O”Malley is president.

  82. 82
    Brachiator says:

    @danimal:

    Ezra Klein is simply acknowledging that the GOP will grant RMoney considerably more latitude to stimulate the economy, if that is part of RMoney’s policy program. I have no doubt he is right about that.

    No, Klein has not presented a shred of evidence that Romney and a GOP congress would implement any pro-stimulus policies. History is against this view.

    Klein is indulging in fantasy, based on his own wishes and dreams, not analysis or informed punditry.

  83. 83
    fasteddie9318 says:

    @RyanayR:

    And yes, I agree that Republicans are trying to rig democracy in their favor, but I doubt very much they would like democracy done-away with.

    I confess, the fine distinction between “rigging it in their favor” and “doing away with it” escapes me.

  84. 84
    piratedan says:

    @Raven: any bets that there are no returns from Waukesha county until the Walker people know how many votes they need to win?

  85. 85
  86. 86
    Bill Murray says:

    @The Dangerman: Hey now, don’t forget the military build up. Military Keynesianism is still Keynesianism

  87. 87
    Raven says:

    @piratedan: Voter fraud! The Fox idiots are on it like white on rice.

  88. 88
    Betty Cracker says:

    @RyanayR:

    I doubt very much they would like democracy done-away with.

    I wish I had your confidence. I understand what you’re saying about the analogy being emotional — it definitely is. But the Republican game here looks very revolutionary (as opposed to merely political) from where I sit.

  89. 89
    daveNYC says:

    @gaz: Leaving the country isn’t a bad idea. Moving to the country next door probably is. If the USA goes down the crapper, both Mexico and Canada will get hit pretty hard.

  90. 90
    Mike Lamb says:

    @danimal: What in this primary cycle or in the events since 2010 suggests that anyone, let alone Romney, will get the lunatics in the GOP to “follow along”?

  91. 91
    The Red Pen says:

    Tell me I’m wrong.

    You’re wrong.

    I agree with you, but you asked.

  92. 92
    piratedan says:

    @Raven: hey now, it’s only voter fraud if a Republican loses, otherwise it’s simply “political gamesmanship”.

  93. 93
    Mike E says:

    @fasteddie9318: And this troll objects to teh Hitler, so all we have left is LOTR analogies.

    What can we do in the face of such reckless hatred?

  94. 94
    daveNYC says:

    @Brachiator: Bombing Iran and/or Syria would involve a fair amount of defense spending, so there is that. There’s also the chance that huge amounts of pork would make their way into the budget. But I’d bet that any increase from that would be crushed by the gutting of what is left of the safety net. Medicade would be mangled, unemployment benefits would be cut, and they’d probably cut SS and medicare (but grandfather in people above age X).

    Add in the two to three Beef Supreme Court justices that he’d name, and we’d be screwed for at least two decades. Longer if the existing conservative justices play the super long game and retire in order to let younger nutjobs take their places.

  95. 95
    Chris says:

    @danimal:

    The GOP is more cynical than doctrinaire, in my opinion. They will stop obstructing economic growth if and when their guy is in the White House. (IOW, they are substantially more interested in GOP political power than in being patriotic Americans, they really can DIAF for that.)

    I wish I’d been around longer so I could compare the teabagger insurgency with previous “grassroots” freakouts (like the 1994 one). But given how insane the teabagger base has gotten and how much of a death grip they have on the party – 2010 being the year of “move right or be squashed like a bug, even if it costs us the election” – I’m not willing to bet on it. Especially given how distrustful they are of Romney; he’s going to have to toss them some serious red meat in his first two years to reassure them. Maybe it won’t take the form we’re talking about here, but whatever it is, it sure a hell isn’t going to be good.

    And I don’t trust the notion that “the elites know better, maybe the base believes the crazy but the elites will stop it from going too far.” First, I don’t think political and economic elites are any less prone to being irrational or falling for their own cons than the general public, especially the current conservative ones. Second, because even if they’re aware that their policies are leading the country to disaster, I’m not convinced they care. If America turns into a banana republic, well, elites live very well in banana republics, with even more absolute power than the MOTU have here and now. As for the public unrest that results – they might not be worried about it, having no memory of revolution or guillotines, or they might be confident that they’ll pull through by paying half the poor to kill the other half, or they might just think by the time it gets to that point, they’ll either be dead or they can just emigrate.

    Sorry for the excessively pessimistic take on things, but the politics of the last few years have me in an excessively pessimistic mood.

  96. 96
    BobS says:

    You’re wrong (more likely careless) to adopt the right-wing framing of Medicare and Social Security as being part of the same problem. They aren’t. Medicare is a problem because of inflation of health care costs, while the ‘problem’ of Social Security can be solved by eliminating the cap.

  97. 97
    eemom says:

    The engaging in “what ifs” regarding a hypothetical Romtron presidency strikes me as not only a sickening but an utterly pointless exercise. Am I missing something?

  98. 98
    danimal says:

    @Mike Lamb: Ezra’s post indicates that he thinks the ‘rational’ Republicans will return once they have power. And they may.

    But it’s not a risk that any of us should take. We just don’t know what the ratio of cynical pols to true believers is on the GOP side.

    In the 2000’s, they fell in line with Bush’s tax cuts, educational reform, Medicare EXPANSION, etc, so there is precedent there. You are correct that they have shown little sign of controlling the lunatics since 2010. There is a real risk that the nihilists do, in fact, control the GOP these days.

    I hope and pray they don’t get anywhere near the levers of power until the crazies are properly corraled.

  99. 99
    Elie says:

    Americans will deserve the government that they select… whatever that is…

    Now tell me again why Bishop Romney is not trying to be both church and state? Actually, I think he is trying to encompass the financial/and business arena too? One stop leadership shopping for the lazy.

  100. 100
    schrodinger's cat says:

    Well Ezra Klein is a villager in training, writing for the Pravda on the Potomac, what else do you expect from him, except Mitt fluffing.

  101. 101
    Irony Abounds says:

    It isn’t difficult to imagine. The goal of the Republicans, and in particular Romney, is to ensure that they have control over the next 6 to 8 years. There will be massive tax cuts, coupled with austerity measures that will not really take effect for 6 to 8 years. Couple that with the huge amounts of corporate cash that will come pouring into the system once Romney is elected and you have a vibrant economy for most of Romney’s first term, which allows him to be reelected and the Republicans to say we told you so, followed by the complete and utter destruction of the American economy which implodes under huge deficits and wealth inequality that makes today’s version seem like a socialist’s dream.

    Does anyone truly think that a party that is committed to torpedoing the economy to insure Obama is defeated will not also be committed to propping up the economy by whatever means necessary to insure Romney is reelected?

  102. 102
    jimmiraybob says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    What? We gave those fuckers a war in Libya and instead of beating off to bombs, they complained.

    Wrong Commander in Chief. They’re picky that way.

  103. 103
    RyanayR says:

    @Betty Cracker: Well, look, the way I see revolution is that it is a fundamental change of the political reality or system or power. There’s all kind of theories about what constitutes what kind of revolution. But obviously Citizens United is more revolutionary than the debt crisis bullshit. The abuse of the Fillibuster is more revolutionary than the Ryan Plan. I don’t hold Social Security so sacrosanct that any diminishing of it is an affront to our political system. I would rather it not, but if it is, there are prices to pay for those who try and mess with it. Ask W Bush how that went for him.

    And the disenfranchisement of voters in America should be prosecuted. Why isn’t it? Honestly? That’s a failing of our justice system, and it should be fixed. Republicans who choose to do so should be in prison, period. And America has a long and stupid history of reneging on voting rights of its citizens. In Washington State, where I live, the rights of women to vote was granted and rescended twice in our history. Was that revolutionary? Maybe to some. My threshold for revolution I guess is a little high; maybe I’m revolutionarily jaded. But damage to something like Medicare or social security can be undone. The Republicans we see today are a dying, toxic, ugly breed of politician that can’t go on forever. And if there is revolution sometime in the future, I see it more in lines of French Fourth to Fifth republic, than Russia October 1917. But yeah, I am optimistic. That can change though.

    Also, I’m not totally opposed to giving up and agreeing with you, having just read today’s B-J article on Louisiana’s proposed voucher system.

  104. 104
    Hunter Gathers says:

    Shorter Ezra Klein – Vote for the White Guy or the country gets it.

  105. 105
    beltane says:

    @eemom: It would be pointless except in the case that Klein is deliberately trying to demoralize Democrats. If this is his intent, he truly is the worst sort of “Vichy Dem” imaginable. I’m not fond of the Vichy Dem epithet in general, but Ezra Klein has certainly earned it here.

  106. 106
    jwb says:

    @Irony Abounds: Only the government has sufficient resources to prop up the economy and the tax cuts won’t do anything for the economy at this point. That is, the billionaires can’t spend their way to the country’s prosperity. That’s why if Romney is elected, the prospects are pretty good for a world war, since that is one of the few acceptable routes for GOP spending.

  107. 107
    eemom says:

    Maybe I really do need to get the hell out of here for a while. The split personality disorder between (1) mocking the emmessemm for its horserace fixation and marveling at the grotesque contortions of reality to which its little Broders like Klein will resort to achieve it, and (2) jumping right on the fucking bandwagon when the bullshit-spewing jockeys trot by, is getting too much for me.

  108. 108
    Raven says:

    @Chris: You should have seen the “Negroes for Nixon” at the 72 Dem Convention in Miami!

  109. 109
    Brachiator says:

    @daveNYC:

    Bombing Iran and/or Syria would involve a fair amount of defense spending, so there is that.

    Balloon Juicers keep saying this, but without much understanding. Bombing Iran might indirectly cause all kinds of havoc in the oil markets. Bombing, along with boots on the ground, would explode the deficit without providing any economic stimulus. You know, like the Bush war in Iraq.

    “Huge amounts of pork” doesn’t mean much, and again ain’t stimulating anything, especially if it is simply funneled to corporations.

    Also, Balloon Juicers keep going on about the safety net. Again, if you kill the middle class, talking about a safety net for the poor, or anyone, is largely meaningless.

    This is to say that I think that some people are underestimating the disaster that a Romney presidency might bring.

    And this is without the possibility that the Tea Party and other GOP extremists would demand even more draconian and oppressive policies.

    Also, too, I would fully expect a Romney presidency to endorse and allow the state level war on women, nonwhites, and gays.

  110. 110
    Forum Transmitted Disease says:

    I wish I’d been around longer so I could compare the teabagger insurgency with previous “grassroots” freakouts (like the 1994 one).

    @Chris: In 1994 most people regarded the “Contract On America” crowd as a joke. Because they were. Buncha grifters throwing a wink and a nod at the slave state Know-Nothing crowd while running America’s business as usual and skimming their take off the top.

    The difference is now you don’t have grifters, you’ve got suicide bombers and they are True Believers.

  111. 111
    fasteddie9318 says:

    @Brachiator:

    Also, Balloon Juicers keep going on about the safety net. Again, if you kill the middle class, talking about a safety net for the poor, or anyone, is largely meaningless.

    Killing the middle class also makes it easier to justify doing away with the safety net (the more people you manage to push into poverty the more those programs cost and the less we’re able to afford them), so your point is well taken.

  112. 112
    beltane says:

    @Irony Abounds:

    Does anyone truly think that a party that is committed to torpedoing the economy to insure Obama is defeated will not also be committed to propping up the economy by whatever means necessary to insure Romney is reelected?

    If the Republicans control all three branches of government there are much easier ways they can insure Romney’s re-election than to prop up the economy for the benefit of non-rich people. Every single corrupt little 3rd world regime pays lip service to democratic institutions; only a diehard believer in American exceptionalism can be so delusional as to think it couldn’t happen here.

  113. 113
    PaulJ says:

    “…I think we’re likely to get shock-doctrine economics—yes, tax cuts, but also (as Romney has promised) the Paul Ryan budget and Cut, Cap and Balance, which, by making balanced budgets mandatory and imposing a ceiling on government spending as a percentage of GDP, will literally make Keynesian deficit spending in a recession illegal.”

    I think long before they succeeded in getting any of this done the economy will have cratered (25%+ unemployment) and it wouldn’t be safe for a politician to be seen in public.

  114. 114
    PaulJ says:

    “Does anyone truly think that a party that is committed to torpedoing the economy to insure Obama is defeated will not also be committed to propping up the economy by whatever means necessary to insure Romney is reelected?”

    They really just can’t help themselves, so No. They have reached the point where they actually believe up is down.

  115. 115
    Chris says:

    @RyanayR:

    And if there is revolution sometime in the future, I see it more in lines of French Fourth to Fifth republic, than Russia October 1917. But yeah, I am optimistic. That can change though.

    Not to be pedantic about your choice of analogies, but the only reason that transition went more or less okay is because of De Gaulle. Take him out of the equation and IMO the odds are good that the officers who ended the Fourth Republic would’ve turned France into another version of Franco’s Spain or Greece under the Colonels. If France at the end of the fifties is your analogy, we’ve got plenty to worry about, especially as we don’t have a De Gaulle lying around.

    @Brachiator:

    This is to say that I think that some people are underestimating the disaster that a Romney presidency might bring.

    Dios mio, that IS a depressing thought. But probably an accurate one.

  116. 116
    celticdragonchick says:

    o/t

    Where’s the fucking dinosaur killing, Chixulub Crater creating asteroid when you need it?

    Wingnut Townhall columnist Doug Giles (he of the chest beatin’ gun totin’ Jesus who hates wimpy little American girly men fame), his wife and daughter (hooker Hannah from the Acorn video debacle) have a new teevee reality show.

    God help us.

  117. 117
    Hunter Gathers says:

    @Brachiator:

    Also, too, I would fully expect a Romney presidency to endorse and allow the state level war on women, nonwhites, and gays.

    Like hetero white male progressives actually give a flying fuck about all that. Obama didn’t give them their public option, close GITMO and slap Mitch McConnell with his dick on national teevee, so therefore he must be defeated. They won’t be the ones targeted by the pogroms anyway, so they’ll be free to daydream about the upcoming Nader/Grayson administration.

  118. 118
    Ed Drone says:

    @SteveM:

    They’re desperate—they want shock-doctrine economics (high debt, high unemployment) until we have no choice but to swallow Greece-style austerity.

    Ah, but Greece is busy up-chucking that same medication, England and Spain are showing considerable gastric distress from it, too, and the whole Castor-Oil-has-nothing-on-this-stuff approach is becoming debunked as this century’s version of bleeding the patient.

    We may escape this particular set of snake-oil quacks yet. I certainly hope so.

    Ed

  119. 119
    Bex says:

    @Judas Escargot, Your Postmodern Neighbor: Interesting. I have a friend who’s about as conservative as it gets (although not an evangelical/fundie Christian) and he would agree with you completely.

  120. 120
    Metrosexual Black AbeJ says:

    @eemom:

    We’re having an election. It’s only fair to think about what our choices actually are.

  121. 121
    TenguPhule says:

    One of my favorite pithy definitions of democracy from dem theory is: it’s a system where a party loses elections and acts as a loyal opposition when they do, i.e. they recognize they lost and act accordingly. By this new calculus we no longer live in such a system.

    Exactly, we live in a system where mandatory en masse assassinations of Republicans at all levels is the only way to save the country.

  122. 122
    Ben Cisco says:

    I was going to post on this last night, but something inside of me snapped and I got way to angry to even try. Telling that Ezra spent all that time bagging on POTUS for “caving” in to this or that, only to shit cinderblocks when he finally realizes that the GOP will try to burn the country down if their guy don’t get to run it. That is some straight up 5th Columnist, Stockholm Syndrome shit right there.

    Not to mention cowardly as a motherfucker, too. To hell with him.

  123. 123
    PaulJ says:

    “…Like hetero white male progressives actually give a flying fuck about all that. Obama didn’t give them their public option, close GITMO and slap Mitch McConnell with his dick on national teevee, so therefore he must be defeated…”

    Yeah, the Democrats have done a bang-up job of holding back th etide of crazy. What a bunch of losers they’ve turned out to be.

    “Vote for us, we don’t suck as much as the Republicans.”

  124. 124
    beltane says:

    @Ed Drone: If they give us Greek style austerity we might just respond with an American style Syriza which will make the Village reach for their smelling salts.

  125. 125
    Valdivia says:

    The idea that the ‘rational’ wing of the GOP is going to all of a sudden be in charge by magic is delusional. They ceased to exist and be relevant since the party went into denial after Bush that their policies and dreams were put to the test and took us to the brink of destruction. Their solution: more of the same, but worse.

    Complicit with them is the whole Village who react like a team of giddy cheerleaders and fail to see the damage these policies do, fail to report on them and fail the nation in their actual role, i.e. Truth Vigilantes.

  126. 126
    daveNYC says:

    @Brachiator: An increase in spending is an increase in spending. It’d be a crappy stimulus, but it’d still be there. I’m not saying that we can bomb our way to prosperity, especially since the impact on oil prices from hitting Iran would probably crash the economy, but in a Romney presidency I think we would get an increase in the ‘G’ part of the GDP equation. Everything else he would do would make it pretty meaningless though.

  127. 127
    Dave says:

    LOL if you’re waiting for a demographic time bomb to usher in a permanent Democratic majority.

  128. 128
    gene108 says:

    Posted on wrong thread.

  129. 129
    TenguPhule says:

    : Ezra’s post indicates that he thinks the ‘rational’ Republicans will return once they have power.

    The last Rational Republican’s bones have been rotting in their grave for over 100 years.

    At this point, they are a cancer threatening to go terminal if not removed.

  130. 130

    @Bex:
    And I’m a liberal un-Christian who’s generally skeptical of conspiracy theories. But not this one. I don’t trust Mormons.

    Strange Bedfellows, I suppose.

    That said, it’s a shame that no one with the means is sending those emails out to grandma…

  131. 131
    RyanayR says:

    @Chris: Making more of a point of how the transition went, as opposed to how it could have went had no strong leader were around. And that’s not a pedantic point to me; but it’s more of a hypothetical. Also, I guess one could argue the same about Russia 1917 that if Alexander Kerensky was more of a strong leader with more right-wing/centrist support, the October revolution would have failed and the Soviet Union would have never been. But it’s all speculation. Who knows.

  132. 132
    Valdivia says:

    @TenguPhule:

    this thought has been running through my head, I confess.

  133. 133
    Hunter Gathers says:

    @Dave:

    LOL if you’re waiting for a demographic time bomb to usher in a permanent Democratic majority.

    You may not have noticed, but that has already happened. Mittens cannot win with the numbers that he currently has with minorities (which will be a full 30% of the electorate this year). He’s told the Hispanic community to go fuck itself, which means that the mountain west ‘swing states’ are beyond his reach. He’s not going to even try to compete in Pennsylvania. Despite what pundits tell you, Iowa, Wisconsin and New Hampshire aren’t swing states. That leaves Ohio, Florida, Indiana, Virginia, and North Carolina as the only true ‘swing states’. Mittens could sweep them all and still lose.

    So let’s focus instead on how left-handed white males aged 35-50 from Appalachia will vote. We must also focus on the hurt fee-fee’s of Progressives.

  134. 134
    handsmile says:

    This particular bit of economic metaphysics has been bandied about the more posh Village salons for the past few weeks, so eventually it must wash up in Pravda on the Potomac. This balloon was mercilessly strafed by Chris Hayes and his “Up” program panelists two weekends ago however.

    Should the Marquis de MIttens be enthroned in the White House, it is all but certain that the GOP has regained both houses of Congress (and questions about the birth certificates of Justices Sotomayor and Kagan are being declaimed). Mittens the First, still regarded with suspicion by many of the rampaging GOP faithful and without his own praetorian guard of Washington veterans, will never risk betraying those responsible for his election by failing to implement the budget imperatives of the Paul Ryan Bible of American Economic Exceptionalism.

    The fantasy peddled by Klein and others boils down to something like this: having demonstrated his unwavering determination and staunch principles during the primary and election campaigns, Rmoney will demand that cowering congressional courtiers like Mitch McConnell, John Cornyn, John Boehner, and Eric Cantor abandon the economic policies they have insisted upon for the past four years. His new-found but no less steely commitment to Keynesian economics will persuade the patriotic fervor of the teabagging GOP base that austerity and the eradication of federal social and medical services is inadvisable. Paul Ryan will meekly withdraw his budgetary and financial decrees until the economy recovers through federal government stimulus measures.

    Fortunately for Ezra Klein, he can spin such fables without concern for his own economic well-being.

  135. 135
    Ben Cisco says:

    @Hunter Gathers:

    and slap Mitch McConnell with his dick on national teevee

    Although that would be some pretty funny shit right there.

  136. 136
    FlipYrWhig says:

    I have a hard time seeing how even a program of steep tax cuts for rich people would succeed in stimulating the economy so dramatically that it would offset the steep cuts to services that they’re also planning. Plus, when governments cut services, it seems like it’s most often Democrats who get the blowback anyway, because the people whose services get cut scapegoat the even poorer, even more stigmatized people beneath them for getting what they imagine to be a free ride. It seems to me that Republicans get credit for the idea of cutting spending (on someone else), and Democrats get blamed for the actuality of spending being cut (on me!), at least when it comes to white lower-middle-class people.

  137. 137
    Brachiator says:

    @daveNYC:

    An increase in spending is an increase in spending.

    No. It’s not. If this were the case, the deficit busting military spending under Dubya would have provided a boost to the economy. It did not.

    I have no idea why anyone would insist on this when it is so easily contradicted by the facts.

    Also, too, bombing Iran, in direct support of an Israeli military campaign, would have horrendous consequences. Even as it went ahead with the insane Iraq War, the Bush Administration went out of its way to keep it looking like a direct or indirect support of the aims of Israeli war hawks. You would not have that cover with an attack on Iran.

    Also, keep in mind that Romney is big friends with Netanyahu. Best buddies. From an NYT story:

    But in 1976, the lives of Mitt Romney and Benjamin Netanyahu intersected, briefly but indelibly, in the 16th-floor offices of the Boston Consulting Group, where both had been recruited as corporate advisers. At the most formative time of their careers, they sized each other up during the firm’s weekly brainstorming sessions, absorbing the same profoundly analytical view of the world.
    __
    That shared experience decades ago led to a warm friendship, little known to outsiders, that is now rich with political intrigue. Mr. Netanyahu, the prime minister of Israel, is making the case for military action against Iran as Mr. Romney, the likely Republican presidential nominee, is attacking the Obama administration for not supporting Mr. Netanyahu more robustly.

    Bombing and occupying Iran, even as Iraq continues to struggle to recover, would only emphasize the view that the US has a malicious, deliberate objective to cripple Muslim countries to benefit Israel.

  138. 138
    jheartney says:

    @Valdivia:

    Complicit with them is the whole Village who react like a team of giddy cheerleaders and fail to see the damage these policies do, fail to report on them and fail the nation in their actual role, i.e. Truth Vigilantes.

    I was with you till this last bit. No one should imagine that the Village has any mission other than to propagandize for the oligarchy. They aren’t Truth Vigilantes any more than I am the Tooth Fairy.

  139. 139
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @handsmile: I think the idea is that Republicans would permit the kind of economic stimulus that could come from tax cuts under Republican dominance, but they won’t permit even that from a Democratic quasi-majority. There’s something to that, I think, viewed narrowly. But I really don’t think the Republicans are itching to spend borrowed money on anything. And that, to me, is what deserves the adjective “Keynesian.”

  140. 140
    jheartney says:

    Exactly, we live in a system where mandatory en masse assassinations of Republicans at all levels is the only way to save the country.

    Careful what you wish for. Living through a violent revolutionary period is harder than it looks. I’d imagine a sizable number of us wouldn’t manage it.

  141. 141
    Chris says:

    @Hunter Gathers:

    You may not have noticed, but that has already happened.

    If it hadn’t, they wouldn’t be doubling down on voter disenfranchisement…

  142. 142
    the farmer says:

    The analogies you are looking for aren’t to Reichstag fires or Nazi Germany or Mussolini’s Italy — but rather to Francoist Spain. Or the Spanish Confederation of the Autonomous Right (CEDA) during the first few years of the Second Republic. Romney and his billionaire buddies aren’t fascists, they’re monarchists. The Tea Party movement (and guys like Rick Santorum for instance) more resemble Falangists than Nazis because of the the emphasis on Christian-right and clerical authoritarianism. Something resembling Franco’s Spain is what the Right Wing wants. Monarchism, Conservatism, Christian Right, Authoritarian.

    Read the first 150 pages of Paul Preston’s recently published book “The Spanish Holocaust” and you’ll see what i mean.

    *

  143. 143
    Heliopause says:

    Tell me I’m wrong.

    I don’t think it’s a matter of whether you’re right or wrong, it’s whether you’re getting your Plan B ready. You’re a front-pager on a popular blog, what’s your plan if those things start happening? I’m not talking about vague allusions to pitchforks, I’m talking concrete courses of action. You’re suggesting that the country’s reaction to four years of Obama’s incrementalism will be a blitzkrieg of fascism, so perhaps a fresh approach is called for.

  144. 144
    rikyrah says:

    Suppose for the sake of argument that future spending on Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security has become a huge problem. How did it become a problem? Because of massive increases in the cost of medical care, which has been exacerbated by Republican obstruction of national health care policy (the US spends about 50% more on medical care as a proportion of GDP than other western countries)

    If Romney wins, and uses the so-called debt crisis to end collective bargaining rights, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid as we know them, it will be nothing less than another Reichstag fire.

    Tell me I’m wrong.

    I’m not gonna tell you that you’re wrong.

    I wanna take a 2 by 4 upside the head of any non-Republican who utters the words ‘ there’s no difference between Obama and Romney’.

    if folks can’t see that the very existence of a middle class in America is at stake…

    FUCK YOU!

  145. 145
    Valdivia says:

    @jheartney:

    Sorry if that didn’t come out as the sarcasm it was. As in the NYT ombudsman was outraged that journalists had to be Truth Vigilantees all of a sudden. I meant that’s what they should be, but haven’t been to the detriment of the republic for a long long time.

  146. 146
    Steve in DC says:

    Erza isn’t that far off.

    A lot of people remember Senator Turtle and Rush talking about “making sure he fails”, but then they forget a few key things.

    Republicans expanded medicare, bailed out the banks, bailed out GM, delivered Romneycare, and liked it. They hated it when a Democrat did it, and just like the last Democratic president we had they tried to destroy the system.

    Now of course this is where you recall The Turtle and his words about making sure he failed, but fewer people remember Bill Kristol and others said about that time. Summed up, they flat out admitted that if the Democratic party delivered on healthcare and fixed the economy they’d have another period of Democratic power like the new deal generation and be forced out of power. These programs would be put into place and there would be the potential for another new deal.

    Make no mistake about it that’s what’s going on. The question is when Mitt is power does he go with the wing of his party (and the socially liberal fiscally conservative wing of the Democratic party with dolts like Cuomo) to savage the new deal once and for all… or does he actually try and fix the economy and tweak healthcare and try and establish the Republican party to new voters.

  147. 147
    NR says:

    I think they’ll try to gut Social Security and Medicare for those under 55.

    Obama wants to do this, too. The difference is, if Romney tries it, the left might actually fight him. If Obama does, they won’t.

  148. 148
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @RyanayR:

    OK, hold on, don’t use Reichstag Fire as a comparable example, or allegory here. The Reichstag Fire was the intentional burning of a national institution under a false flag operation for the purpose of the dismissal of civil and political rights of a group. Are you saying that the national debt is the Reichstag and Republican policies are the fire? Or, are you saying Medicare and Social security are civil rights and the debt is the Reichstag Fire? A little too much reification for my taste. Also, Nazi analogies are overused.

    This. Just a shitty analogy all around.

  149. 149
    sparky says:

    @Metrosexual Black AbeJ: i’ll take the bait:
    one can rather plausibly argue the US has already had its equivalent of 1933, and it didn’t have much to do with social benefit programs. consider: establishment of special secret prisons and special courts (which some have quit calling them joke courts), unchecked and uncheckable internal spying, aggression in warfare abroad, execution by executive sanction, and so on. it seems to me that these events bear a rather closer resemblance to the effects of the Reichstag fire than, say, reactionary efforts to dis-establish the patchwork that passes for a safety net in the US.

  150. 150
    jimmiraybob says:

    @the farmer:

    Read the first 150 pages of Paul Preston’s recently published book “The Spanish Holocaust” and you’ll see what i mean.

    In the meantime, here’s a review.

  151. 151
    Barry says:

    @Lit3Bolt: “Also, gotta love the Slate-style contraianism from Ezra who’s basically admitting his job is worthless and both sides do it because SHUT UP DEBATE CLUB THAT’S WHY.”

    At this point I’m filing Ezra with the rest of the wh*res at the WaPo.

  152. 152
    catclub says:

    @Bruce S: “The King’s Speech”
    was one in a long line of events that convince a body that royal families are a real waste of air.

    And Downton Abbey proves the more general case of ‘the rich’.

  153. 153
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @sparky:

    US has already had its equivalent of 1933

    And it was fifty years ago, not twelve, or four. I can’t be the only person who remembers the Church Committee.

  154. 154
    eemom says:

    @handsmile:

    Fortunately for Ezra Klein, he can spin such fables without concern for his own economic well-being.

    In these simple words are contained the heat of a thousand hells with which my fury at this nonsense — and, even more, at seeing it taken up as a topic of serious discussion among people who really ought to fucking know better — burns.

  155. 155
    Blue Neponset says:

    Ezra is right. We will all get stimulus checks if Romney wins. The Republicans care more about staying in power than they do about their agenda.

  156. 156
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @NR: Aw, horseshit.

  157. 157
    eemom says:

    @Metrosexual Black AbeJ:

    We’re having an election. It’s only fair to think about what our choices actually are.

    Not sure what you are meaning by “choice” here. If you mean entertaining a Romtron presidency as a choice you might actually make, then wow, that’s fucked up.

    But if you mean, as I suspect, that since a Romtron presidency is a non-zero possibility at this point you might as well get started breaking out the dystopian fantasies that you delight in playing with like little toys whenever the black clouds of real disaster gather on the horizon — e.g., last fall’s neverending sicko Obama impeachment fantasies — well, that’s why I perhaps ought to drag my ass out of here because, to put it lyrically, I don’t find this stuff amusing anymore.

  158. 158
    Brachiator says:

    @Blue Neponset:

    Ezra is right. We will all get stimulus checks if Romney wins. The Republicans care more about staying in power than they do about their agenda.

    So, the state level roll back on women’s rights, the anti union stuff, is not part of any agenda, just the Republicans doing everything they can to stay in power.

    But you have a point here. Dopes will get a check for $400, millionaires will get thousands in tax cuts, and the dopes will say, “I just been stimulalated! Thank you, President Romney.”

    And when unemployment continues, wages remain stagnant, and banks screw people over again, the dopes will look around in a daze and wonder, “What happened?”

  159. 159
    Blue Neponset says:

    @Brachiator:

    So, the state level roll back on women’s rights, the anti union stuff, is not part of any agenda, just the Republicans doing everything they can to stay in power.

    Unfortunately, those agenda items won’t affect the R’s ability to remain/win back power. The low information voter has no idea about those things, he/she will remember getting a $400 check in the mail though.

  160. 160
    chopper says:

    mittens wouldn’t do shit as president. even if he wanted to knock out some Keynesian stimulus, congress would shut it down and mittens has shown he has no ability to order the GOP around. he’s locked up the nom and the right still jerks his leash every time he tries to move toward the center.

  161. 161
    David Hunt says:

    @Culture of Truth:

    Every times a beltway journalist writes an article about the virtues of a Romney Presidency, David Broder’s corpse gives birth to a kitten.

    Which then dies a horrible suffocating death buried alive in his coffin. That seems to be horrifically appropriate.

  162. 162
    Brachiator says:

    @Blue Neponset:

    Unfortunately, those agenda items won’t affect the R’s ability to remain/win back power. The low information voter has no idea about those things, he/she will remember getting a $400 check in the mail though.

    But the original idea was that the GOP would do anything, including implement reasonable stimulus programs. Now, you are saying that the GOP will do crazy, oppressive shit, but people won’t notice.

    This makes no sense. You can’t have it both ways.

    And even the supposed low information voter will notice when his wife or daughter or granddaughter can’t get birth control pills or an abortion. The supposed low information voter will notice when he or she gets laid off, after Mittens promised jobs for all. The supposed low information voter will notice when he or she loses insurance, can’t get insurance or is otherwise fucked.

  163. 163
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @eemom: I think your first instinct was correct:

    Go.

  164. 164
    mds says:

    @PaulJ:

    I think long before they succeeded in getting any of this done the economy will have cratered (25%+ unemployment) and it wouldn’t be safe for a politician to be seen in public.

    Correction: It wouldn’t be safe for a Democratic politician to be seen in public, since it will somehow be their fault because of their “tax-and-spend” ways. Liberal elitists, feminists, “blahs,” Hispanic immigrants, and Muslims will also be to blame. I mean, really. Scott Walker and the Fitzgerald Boys have been turning Wisconsin to shit, and yet an enormous mob of self-righteous fuckwits are stampeding out to support him today because public schoolteachers have dental insurance. These greedy slavering sociopaths at the top will burn the country to the ground, and scapegoat the powerless for it.

  165. 165
    danimal says:

    @Brachiator: And when unemployment continues, wages remain stagnant, and banks screw people over again, the dopes will look around in a daze and wonder, “What happened?”

    They will blame the Dems, after Faux News has provided them the talking points.

    Folks, it’s important to know the opposition, their tactics and their goals. Federal deficits are a tool of the right-wing. It’s a problem they NEVER want to solve, because they use this tool to divide the poor and middle classes (We would give you nice things, but we just can’t afford them because the nasty Dems are spending your money so recklessly…).

    If you don’t believe me, ask yourself what the GOP did when the deficit was erased and the debt was getting paid off circa 2000. You can claim that the GOP was naive and mistaken about the Bush tax cuts, or you can conclude that they accomplished exactly what they were designed to accomplish.

    Just because Ezra is pointing out how they play the game doesn’t make him a GOP plant; he’s exposing the charade. Exposing the charade makes it harder for GOP ‘moderates’ and ‘Blue Dog’ Dems to claim ignorance (though God knows they will still try). Fight Them.

    ETA: I’m not even going to try to fix the blockquote fail. My apologies, and FYWP.

  166. 166
    Brachiator says:

    @danimal:

    Just because Ezra is pointing out how they play the game doesn’t make him a GOP plant

    I never claimed that Ezra is a GOP plant.

    I am saying, however, that his punditry is full of shit.

    You can claim that the GOP was naive and mistaken about the Bush tax cuts, or you can conclude that they accomplished exactly what they were designed to accomplish.

    No one has ever claimed that the GOP were naive about the Bush tax cuts. They have always wanted to make them permanent without regard to the impact on the economy. They still do.

  167. 167
    MomSense says:

    Hey you won a Moore Award!! Well done you!

  168. 168
    nwithers says:

    I also give you a hearty congrats on your Moore Award! any space for it on your mantle?

  169. 169
    Tractarian says:

    @MomSense: Don’t put the cart before the horse; he’s only been nominated.

    Still, it is quite an honor to be even nominated for a Moore Award. I salute you, “Metrosexual Black AbeJ”, whoever you are.

  170. 170
    RalfW says:

    I think the main problem with Ezra Klein’s piece is that it acknowledges that the GOP hostage situation is under way, and the only way to end it is for the hostage takers to win all the levers of power.

    And that’s messed up.

  171. 171
    Blue Neponset says:

    @Brachiator:

    But the original idea was that the GOP would do anything, including implement reasonable stimulus programs. Now, you are saying that the GOP will do crazy, oppressive shit, but people won’t notice.

    I wrote a blog comment not a dissertation. The original point remains. The R’s will do what they have to to stay in power. If that means giving stimulus checks like Dubya did ten or so years ago then they will do that.

  172. 172
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Brachiator: They won’t say “What happened?”, they’ll say “The Democrats must have given too much to the blacks again.”

  173. 173
    Brachiator says:

    @Blue Neponset:

    I wrote a blog comment not a dissertation. The original point remains.

    Whoa. No need to get testy. We are both speculating.

    And my point is that Dubya didn’t stimulate shit. The war in Iraq didn’t stimulate shit. I don’t expect anything significant from Romney.

    Sadly, the only way that we can see whether this is true is if Romney gets elected. And I hope to every deity and the mighty Avengers that this never happens.

    So, the only other way that we can check this is to look at the past. And here you are wrong.

    I agree with you that Romney might offer some smoke and mirrors.

    Yeah, the Republicans want to regain power. However, they have not shown in the past that they will try to do anything effective. Rather, they seek to push an agenda, and cover it with an overlay of doing something for the economy.

  174. 174
    Metrosexual Black AbeJ says:

    @MomSense:

    I hope it was because of this email I sent him.

    Dear Andrew and Co.,

    Long time reader, first-time writer in. Love your blog, it’s about
    the only place a Burkean centrist can get a fair look at things these
    days.

    I have a possible Moore Award nominee — the vile gang at
    Balloon-Juice comparing Romney to Hitler

    http://www.balloon-juice.com/2.....next-time/

    Keep up the good work!

  175. 175
    Binky Bear says:

    @Bruce S: In the same way that Anakin Skywalker isn’t quite Lord Vader yet.

  176. 176
    celticdragonchick says:

    The Moore award nomination has gone up at Sully’s.

    C’est la vie.

  177. 177
    Tickrack says:

    @Tractarian:

    Getting nominated is half the battle, just ask Jonah Goldberg.

  178. 178
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead: Can’t let the Black Guy win at anything.

  179. 179

    […] Balloon Juice’s DougJ, has been nominated for a Moore Award by Andrew Sullivan for this post! Congrats! If DougJ is at all true to my mental picture of him, that post will be framed on his […]

  180. 180
    Blue Neponset says:

    @Brachiator:

    Yeah, the Republicans want to regain power. However, they have not shown in the past that they will try to do anything effective. Rather, they seek to push an agenda, and cover it with an overlay of doing something for the economy.

    We will get Republican stimulus, military spending, stimulus checks and grants to the states. They will pay for it by gutting social programs or raising taxes on the poor or they won’t pay for it at all. Ezra’s point, which I agree with, is that the R’s will do something if Romney wins. If Obama wins they will go to the mattresses over everything and nothing will get done.

  181. 181
    danimal says:

    @Metrosexual Black AbeJ: Brilliantly played. Burkean centrist…lol. Especially since a tiny smidge of reading the comments would have led to this: @Metrosexual Black AbeJ:

    Have you found a way to monetize spoofing? You’d be part of the 1%.

  182. 182
    Brachiator says:

    @Blue Neponset:

    We will get Republican stimulus, military spending, stimulus checks and grants to the states. They will pay for it by gutting social programs or raising taxes on the poor or they won’t pay for it at all. Ezra’s point, which I agree with, is that the R’s will do something if Romney wins.

    Your guess is noted.

    Mine is no stimulus, no grants to states, no raising taxes, doubling down on spending cuts, a small rebate to lower income taxpayers matched by a massive fucking of illegal immigrant taxpayers with legal children by excluding them from being able to take the child tax credit.

    Military spending, don’t know about military programs. But an attack on and occupation of Iran will kill the GOP at the Congressional level and insure Democratic victories at the next mid terms. Unless the Dems do something incredibly stupid and back an invasion.

    Bottom line. GOP economic plans will not provide a stimulus, but will guarantee a recession.

    Place your bets.

  183. 183
    Keith G says:

    What a coward Ezra is. Had this nation been composed of folks like him from the beginning, we’d all still be singing “God Save The Queen”. Despicable.

    And so it goes. The BJ hive mind has set it’s powerful and highly rational (if not perfectly researched sights) on another violator of the just cause.

    Ezra has a well reasoned point that is substantiated by history and some of you have…..well…nothing but venom and a wish to glam on to the cool cynical kids table.

    Just like the greater Democratic Party, the Republicans have a fractured party. There are (among some others) the administrative and legislative wings. The administrative wing cares about running the country and pleasing enough of the voters in enough of the states to stay in power.

    The legislative wing is made op of dozens of craven demigods who were put in office by ideologically solid, safe districts. Most are cognitively incapable of contemplating the true needs of our general welfare.

    If Romney wants a second term, he will need to govern from the center right and keep the independent and Hispanic voters from hating him. If he goes full wingnut, he will destroy any GOP chances in the midterms and in 2016 and could take all of our near-term futures down with him.

    edited

  184. 184
    Brachiator says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    They won’t say “What happened?”, they’ll say “The Democrats must have given too much to the blacks again.”

    Possible. But I wonder how much misplaced resentment people can stew in before they can see what is right in front of their faces?

    And as I noted, I think that a Romney win will be especially bad for illegal immigrants and their children.

    This is one of the things that makes me detest Romney. Absolutely detest him. He should know, as a Mormon about how groups can be persecuted, hounded from state to state, even driven out of the country. But I have never seen anything from him, in 2008 or now, that indicates that he has the slighest understanding about these issues.

    I do not believe that he has the courage or the wisdom to fight off the worst that will come from the Tea Party and other extremists.

    So, with respect to social policy, foreign policy, and economic policy, I am not seeing anything of value coming from a Romney administration. Not even to keep the GOP in power.

  185. 185

    […] 4.DougJ over at Balloon Juice makes an excellent point:  The Republicans created the current fiscal crisis we are in with the Bush Tax Cuts, the wars, and the Recession that have pushed up our Debt to unacceptable levels and it will eventually threaten funding for Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare.  They also have purposely obstructed any attempts to make the economy better (reduce Health Care Costs, provide sufficient stimulus, etc).  So they created this huge economic problem, they are doing everything in their power to make that problem continue, and they are using it not only as a campaign point but also as an excuse to gut Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare.  This is the new GOP playbook.  It happened in Wisconsin under Gov. Walker.  When he entered office he had a surplus of $56.3 million and then he gave a huge tax cut to corporations, which created a big deficit.  Walker then used the existence of the deficit as an excuse to gut the unions.  In the military this called “false flag” operations.  In psychology, there is a syndrome for individuals called “Munchausen by Proxy” or “Induced Illness”.  Ironically, while the GOP has been using this strategy ever since Pres. Obama has been elected, you will see that there are many cons online that will accuse Pres. Obama has engaging in “artificial crisis creation” in order to gain more power for himself and “soshulism”.  And that my friends is called “projection. Share this:TwitterFacebookRedditDiggStumbleUponPrintEmailTumblrLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

  186. 186
    eemom says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    Tee hee.

    I knew you were gonna say that, fuckie — and ’twas just about then that I decided to stick around after all.

  187. 187
    Lord Omlette says:

    Congrats on the Moore Award nomination! ^_^

  188. 188
    MomSense says:

    @Tractarian

    Shoot, I totally saw what I wanted to see and gave Metrosexual Black AbeJ the award!

    @Metrosexual Black AbeJ

    Keep up that kind of self promotion and you could find yourself a political contributor at MSNBC. Better start practicing saying “both sides do it” while looking simultaneously thoughtful and like a reluctant truth teller.

    Now how do we get you the award? I think I’ll send Sully a bottle of Maker’s Mark and a wooden cup with your name on the card.

  189. 189
    Monkey Faced Liberal says:

    Dude. You had me until the Reichstag fire.

    We can start comparing Romney and the Republicans to the Nazis after they invade Poland and establish death camps. Until then, lets just respect Godwin’s law, shall we?

  190. 190
    Justin says:

    Military Keynesianism is an appropriate term for what Reagan practiced. That is actually in many textooks. In other words, Republicans are all for Keynes (government spending to prop up the economy) but only in terms of creating jobs through the war machine. The Nazi analogy is not so far fetched, Hitler’s “economic miracle” (funded, by the way, by Wall Street and Prescott Bush) could also appropriately be called military keynesianism. It was the same under Bush II, greatly expanded military operations, sweet deals for defense contractors, low taxes on those earnings…it’s a jobs plan of sorts, just a jobs plan that depends on setting the world on fire (again, the Nazis, sorry but it’s true). Romney’s own words, and the nature of his party’s animating impulses, make it pretty clear that he would be belligerent in terms of foreign policy, he says he wants to increase the military budget, not cut it like he wants to cut everything else. It’s counter-cyclical and would create “demand” – for guns, vehicles, bombs, planes, materials (not to mention qualified torturers), but this brings us back to the question of what is good for the country. I doubt we’d find very many here who think a massive surge in military spending to support a Mittzkrieg is what we need. We’ve been down this road less than four years ago with Bush, and look at the results. Not only would the wars never be paid for and be a weight around the country’s neck, but, not to put too fine a point on it, a lot of people will die. We’ll be a war criminal nation again (of course Romney supports torture as any good Republican does today). I remember when Bush ran for office, styling himself as a “compassionate conservative.” People thought Bush was “moderate” and would somehow hold back the crazies. He made the exact same claims Mitt Romney is making about his “private sector experience” and wanting to run government like a business, and he governed almost unopposed with a pliant Republican Congress. Fast forward to 2008 and it brought us the biggest recession/depression in 80 years.

  191. 191
    Justin says:

    Just want to be clear though, Romney’s military keynesianism would not help the people who have been hurt worst by the recession, it would help those who are already well off or already employed. If they used the market to determine where the materials and supplies and what not came from, it probably would have only a marginal effect on aggregate demand here in the U.S.. About as much as during the Bush years, in a way the ramping up of the war machine and writing the wars/tax cuts off as debt just masked what was already a bad situation. Instead of working at a factory or what not a lot of people ended up doing some type of contract work in the Iraqi desert, not exactly an ideal or safe work environment and you only have job security if the war continues. War ends as it should, and you’re suddenly our of a job. In a sane world we would be able to shift our funding towards jobs that support the kind of things that people want and need in today’s world (education, health care, public service, child care, etc). And to some extent we’ve done that in the last three years, but not nearly enough, thanks to Republican obstruction. They are liars and we should stop listening to them. If we win the House back, hold the Senate and WH, Harry Reid should change the filibuster rules on day one, don’t you think?

  192. 192
    Chris says:

    @Brachiator:

    This is one of the things that makes me detest Romney. Absolutely detest him. He should know, as a Mormon about how groups can be persecuted, hounded from state to state, even driven out of the country. But I have never seen anything from him, in 2008 or now, that indicates that he has the slighest understanding about these issues.

    And now you know why I, having been raised Catholic, am so completely revolted to see the Catholic hierarchy and so many Catholic voters cheerfully endorse the party that’s made a living kicking working people, poor people, immigrants and unpopular religion the more they’re down. That’s the story of American Catholics for well over a century, and they damn well ought to know better – the voters, if not the hierarchy.

    But in the words of Harry Truman, a wise man: “Put an underdog on top and it makes no difference whether his name is Russian, Jewish, Negro, Management, Labor, Mormon, Baptist, he goes haywire. I’ve found very, very few who remember their past condition when prosperity comes.”

  193. 193
    Chris says:

    @Justin:

    People thought Bush was “moderate” and would somehow hold back the crazies.

    In fairness, I think it’s possible that Bush might have governed as more of a moderate if things had stayed like they were in 2000 (a razor-thin election, the public still turned off by the legacy of Gingrich’s aggressive partisanship). But 9/11 gave him a golden opportunity to go fucking haywire and from his POV, he’d have been crazy not to take it.

    I believe the Nazis also had something of a welfare state, too (the Germans originally invented the concept decades earlier as a way to placate the little people and thus prevent class warfare). That’s one difference between them and our teabaggers, who I think really do want to go all the way in gutting it.

  194. 194
  195. 195
    A Humble Lurker says:

    @PaulJ:
    Somebody hit a nerve, I see.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] 4.DougJ over at Balloon Juice makes an excellent point:  The Republicans created the current fiscal crisis we are in with the Bush Tax Cuts, the wars, and the Recession that have pushed up our Debt to unacceptable levels and it will eventually threaten funding for Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare.  They also have purposely obstructed any attempts to make the economy better (reduce Health Care Costs, provide sufficient stimulus, etc).  So they created this huge economic problem, they are doing everything in their power to make that problem continue, and they are using it not only as a campaign point but also as an excuse to gut Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare.  This is the new GOP playbook.  It happened in Wisconsin under Gov. Walker.  When he entered office he had a surplus of $56.3 million and then he gave a huge tax cut to corporations, which created a big deficit.  Walker then used the existence of the deficit as an excuse to gut the unions.  In the military this called “false flag” operations.  In psychology, there is a syndrome for individuals called “Munchausen by Proxy” or “Induced Illness”.  Ironically, while the GOP has been using this strategy ever since Pres. Obama has been elected, you will see that there are many cons online that will accuse Pres. Obama has engaging in “artificial crisis creation” in order to gain more power for himself and “soshulism”.  And that my friends is called “projection. Share this:TwitterFacebookRedditDiggStumbleUponPrintEmailTumblrLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

  2. […] Balloon Juice’s DougJ, has been nominated for a Moore Award by Andrew Sullivan for this post! Congrats! If DougJ is at all true to my mental picture of him, that post will be framed on his […]

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