How Right is the Right?
As the right jams its utopian economic theory down America’s throat, polls indicate many Americans have begun to question the historical economic basis for the right-wing’s claims. As politicians from both sides of the political spectrum seem to be drinking Eric Cantor’s Kool-Aid, out here in Middle America, our natural sensibility toward the middle of political thought is finally being offended.
The right wing continues to ignore Americans while ironically saying they somehow speak for them.
As we look to the leadership in Washington for the next step in this right-wing engineered crisis, it might be instructive to examine the basis for the fight. History gives us clues as to the viability and vulnerability of the common right-wing manifesto which seems to be winning the debate in Washington and some say threatens our American way of life. If you agree, or at least will consider, the parallels between today’s economic situation and the Great Depression, you might be able to analyze the path which the right-wing seems to be shoving down America’s throat.
Our current “economic recession” is strikingly similar to the Great Depression of the twenties and thirties in haunting ways. Both were products of years of deregulation, government spending cuts and, at a minimum, the complete discount of the power of working class spending. We have heard this song before. The only historical difference was the Republican Party’s former tendency to shut down global trade.
The wingnuts tell us we have a government spending problem in the face of massive state/local layoffs, the largest economic class separation since the aforementioned depression and stock market/financial/corporate industries which seem wildly disconnected from reality out here in Middle America. We all yawn when economists tell us these things but, we might want to pay attention. The right has proven they will take hostages like the debt ceiling in the face of American opinion to the contrary to establish the very circumstances which induced the Great Depression.
FDR’s alphabet soup of government programs and spending could not even break the back of the Great Depression. The Depression was finally broken by the greatest government spending spree ever, World War II. Yet, wingnuts want to go the other way. They seem to want a sendup of the mid-depression circumstances which insured a deep, dramatic and enduring economic decline.
The right-wing is asking America, forcing America, to give them the keys to America’s economic engine. Their corporate minders have somehow hijacked the Tea Party sentiment which sent many to Congress in the 2010 elections. They secretly co-opted a real response by some regular Americans to a government which took their money and spent it protecting corporate interests. Somehow they talked Tea Partiers into a fantasy in which corporate interests were theirs. The result may be an economy and a government which serves neither. The ruling class in America might get their collective wish. Their economic and governmental utopia might instead of making them richer only serve to relegate America to a global second class status.