Thursday, February 24, 2011

What Is The Real Agenda Of The Budget-Cutters?

Campaign for America's Future: What is the real agenda of the budget-cutters? Are they really trying to bring the country back from the edge of financial ruin? Or did they bring about the appearance of a borrowing crisis to create a public panic that enables them to impose "solutions" that change the very nature of our country -- while doing little about the borrowing?
In the news this week, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker "ginned up" a budget crisis, then introduced legislation that removes collective bargaining rights from public employees, and over time effectively destroys their unions. Similar measures have been introduced by Republican governors or legislatures in several other states.

This legislative attack on public employees follows more than a year of "preparing the ground" with a coordinated campaign from conservative organizations to convince the public that public employees are overpaid and that their pensions are "bankrupting" state governments -- not the effects of the recession.

In the news soon, the coming strategic "shutdown" of the federal government by Republicans. After decades of forcing through tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations, again and again -- most recently just a few weeks ago -- Republicans and corporate conservatives are engaged in a national campaign promoting the belief that there is a "deficit crisis." Their solutions involve gutting the things government does for We, the People like consumer, health, safety, labor and financial, retirement and income protections, while keeping things the government does for corporations and the wealthy "off the table."

We see variations of the same formula over and over. Here is how it works:
  1. Cut taxes for the rich and corporations (corporate stock is mostly owned by the top 1%); big deficits result.
  2. Claim a deficit emergency and use their domination of corporate-owned media to whip the public into a panic, creating the appearance of demand for corporate-approved "solutions." Manipulate the appearance of consensus.
  3. With taxes and military “off the table” push through cuts in the things government does for We, the People.
Repeat as often as needed to create a plutocracy.

Read the rest of the story at the Campaign for America's Future.
Texas Observer: For many Texas legislators and conservative activists, the budget crisis is a thing of wonder—a once-in-a-generation chance to drown government in the bathtub, to use anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist’s infamous phrase.
In the mid 1980's conservative activist Grover Norquist famously said, "My goal is to cut government in half in twenty-five years, to get it down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub."

"Starving the beast" so it is small enough to "drown in the bathtub" is a fiscal-political strategy adopted by American conservatives in the 1970's to create and greatly increase budget deficits via tax cuts so that it forces ever increasing reductions to government.

The term "beast" refers to the government and the programs it funds, particularly social programs such as welfare, Social Security, Medicare and Public Schools. [see Forbes]

As Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst succinctly put it in his inaugural speech: “We pronounce the word ‘C-R-I-S-I-S’ as ‘opportunity.’” [Texas Observer]

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