Skip to comments.Rand Paul is wrong
Posted on 06/02/2013 6:02:57 AM PDT by Kaslin
Sometimes conservatives get tagged as being against all government, said Sen. Rand Paul at a Reagan Library event the other day. Im not against all government. Im actually for $2.6 trillion dollars worth, he said. Im for spending what comes in, but nothing in excess of what comes in.
Yes, hes running for the presidency. You can tell, because hes appealing directly to the masses of Americans who, not without some reason, like big government but are afraid of out-of-control government. Hes trying to stake out a middle ground, a common sense ground.
Alas, its more a muddle ground than a middle ground, and its not very sensible.
On the face of it, he sounds reasonable: Unbalanced budgets are a huge problem, a looming threat to Americas future. His idea? Stop deficit spending. Just spend what the government takes in as normal revenue.
What could be more commonsensical than that?
This should be the bipartisan, transpartisan norm. Something we can all agree upon.
Washington insiders, of course, hate such talk, because it would curb their spending, and suggest a whole different way to manage the economy than the current method. But regular Americans, of all parties, know that debt cannot accumulate and grow forever, and that priorities demand some sacrifice. This is not austerity so much as . . . real world budgeting.
But, as basic as it is, its something of an illusion.
Time Is Not On Our Side
Federal revenue, not including loans, amounts to $2.6 trillion. So, if the government spent that amount, wed be fine, right?
This year. But next year, the amount to spend will grow, and the year after, it will grow further.
Why? Because spending is driven, in no small part, by Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and now Obamacare (the last is not an official department, of course).
Such entitlement spending depends on claims made by citizens: citizens retiring, or citizens going to the doctor, hospital, or pharmacist. The current entitlement system is set up to grow and grow and grow. So a simple I like 2.6 trillion dollars worth of government mantra means almost nothing.
The spending target is a moving target. To meet rising demands of the entitlement system, either taxes will have to be raised dramatically, other government services cut dramatically, or the entitlement system reformed dramatically.
Thats too much drama for any consensus based on a vacuous $2.6 trillion-sized government slogan. Any one of those three solutions would hurt some folks, a combination of all three would find huge outcries of unreasoning complaint.
Time is not on the side of a centrist solution. The time for simple, dont-rock-the-boat solutions is long over. Major change would be epochal. Such a change will require more than a flip winnable attitude and political stance.
The Implausibility of Rational Policy
Rand Paul wants to change current perceptions of what it means to be a conservative or a Republican. While its true that neither conservatism nor Republicanism implies anarchism (what a shocker) the idea that conservatives should support the general structure and set of proportions of the current federal government is not plausible. There is no reason to believe that even half of the federal unions current policies — as concocted by congressional aides in conjunction with special interests, voted on by distracted and preening representatives and senators, signed into law by pompous, know-nothing windbags in the White House, and then multiplied by bureaucrats in the Executive Branchs too-numerous departments and bureaus — are anything like good or efficacious, much less just.
Most policies do harm — far more harm than good. Indeed, new legislation and new regulations proliferate largely to correct the negative results of previous regulations, prohibitions and giveaways. And, in the course of this ballooning mass of chicane-cum-governance, little gets repealed. The burdensome mass of atrocious government policy just accumulates.
It was shown long ago that policies cannot be consistent, over time, in a democracy. Mathematically proved. But our common experience shows the situation is much worse than predicted. Policies are incoherent, fighting against each other, canceling each other out, or worse. And the regulations alone make a mockery of the rule of law.
The federal government is a far bigger mess than implied by Kentuckys junior senators politic formulation.
Taxes Are Still Too High
Of course, the senator recognizes all this. He knows that government is a mess. He knows theres too much spending. Though its obvious he carefully formulated his rubric to unstop the clogged minds of his opponents, Im sure that Senator Rand knows something even more basic:
TAXES ARE TOO HIGH.
Taxes are a drain on our pocketbooks, and a drain on the economy. Though politicians like to use taxation as a means of social engineering, and progressives are constantly tempted to use taxes as a means of class warfare, both these strategies backfire. Were left with the wisdom of the great economist Jean-Baptiste Say: A tax can never be favorable to the public welfare, except by the good use that is made of its proceeds. And:
The best scheme of finance is, to spend as little as possible; and the best tax is always the lightest.
All current tax revenues offer us is an upper limit for spending, not any sort of justification.
Thats surely what Rand Paul was driving at. One would think that the essence of conservatism would be to maintain more skepticism about government spending than the mere insistence upon an upper limit.
What members of the Republican Party make of such skepticism is another matter, of course. A political party is a tribe set to win elections. And the standard reason to join a tribe like that is to distribute the spoils of conquest.
And it is because of this aspect of politics that government grows. Even beyond Rand Pauls too-generous upper limit. [further reading]
Rand Paul who will meet with illegal alien groups, BUT will not meet with Latino’s and Legal Immigrants against AMNESTY! Nice Guy! (NOT!) Another Goof, who does not care millions of Americans cannot find work. His Loyalty is NOT with the AMERICAN VOTER!! TRAITOR!
We are in such deep po po it isn’t funny.
I’ll never understand why republicans have so much trouble reaching out to the right people (Americans) in the right way (without pandering).
If they want to reach out to blacks, hispanics, and business, pass policies that ease job creation. There are jobs being created in Detroit now because of GOP installed policies at the state level.
In other words, don’t reach out to any particular groups, just do what’s right for America.
Just say no to Runt Paul!
What the republican party looks like is irrelevant, Mr. Paul.
What is relevant is what the republican party stands for and what it does.
Until it figures that out, it will continue to dwindle.
Rand Paul is the voice of the future—The old ways will not work—new thinking must be tried. He is young, he still needs to learn the ropes but when he does—the nation must watch out-— He knows that America needs patriots—and an honest government. I expect great things from Rand Paul.
If pandering to illegals is the future, America is finished.
Rand Paul, trying to out pander Marco Rubio.
Wow, I think you, rand, rubio and christie need to change parties.
No. The answer is less government. A limited government that does what it is limited to do such as EFORCE IMMIGRATION LAWS.
Rule of Law -NOT rule of illegal alien mob!
Rand is an idiot.
Paul swears allegiance to “Enforcement First.”
But he is completely silent on enforcing current law.
If Rand Paul vigorously supported E-Verify and Employer Sanctions - TODAY - we would not need a Gang of 8 Amnesty.
Illegal immigrants would self-deport because they would not be able to find jobs.
Rand Paul is the voice of "lets be like the Democrats"
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