Emily Asfahini Smith interviewed Governor Rick Perry of Texas for the Wall Street Journal editorial board over the weekend. Governor Perry made very clear in the interview – by his positioning – that he’s planning on making a jump to the national stage. He’s probably the candidate most motivated to bring libertarians back into the Republican fold – referencing Hayek here and blaming the Republicans’ problems on not remaining true to their values – of which he says fiscal conservatism is the core:
They spent too much money. They acted like Democrats.
It’s a funny thing to say, if typical. The freest spending presidencies in recent memory have been George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan. The most fiscally responsible have been Bill Clinton, George H. W. Bush (who lost the Republican base for responsibly raising taxes), and Jimmy Carter. It’s not so much fiscal conservatism that is the heart of the Republican party as deficit politics – the game the Baby Boomers have played regarding spending and taxing.
There’s a great moment in the interview though that is so typical of the absolute asininity of the Republican positioning on health care. He “explains” the bill’s position on end of life issues as this:
You’re a little too old to be spending money on, so we’re just going to put you over here in the ‘gonna die’ category. ‘Bye.’ That’s pretty gruesome and scary to people that are my mom and dad’s age.
But his next line is about how:
To talk about health-care reform and not talk about tort reform is like whistling past the cemetery…
So, his message is: Obama’s going to put my mom and dad in the “gonna die” category – and on top of that, there’s no tort reform in the bill! Imagine the insane mental leap required for a man to go directly from one of these subjects to another. Clearly, the charges of forced euthanasia aren’t meant to be taken seriously – even by those promoting them like Governor Perry. Of course, this isn’t news. But it’s worth calling out by name each lie I come across, so when it is time for voters to evaluate them again, they remember the many lies they were told.
[Image by Bonzo McGrue licensed under Creative Commons.]