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View Diary: Rand Paul as the New Jack Kemp (33 comments)

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  •  This is another huge problem (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PhilJD, Dirtandiron

    with allowing Movement Conservatism to skate from an ideological takedown and a fierce (and fiercely partisan) political counter-argument where the record and not the myths and legends are up for debate. The Zombies rise.

    How you rebuild a, say, minority community in economic crisis from the ground up? How can you both appear to champion people of color and pimp the public on more failed Movement Conservatism? Tax cuts. Enterprise zones. Tax-free eras. Rand Paul wants Very Serious People to say he's serious. Play the Kemp Card! It's still good.


    Nobody seems to ever notice that, if that were true, it would have been true in 1988. 1998. 2008. No matter! It's still good!

    This shit should have been staked in the heart by Democrats decades ago. Nope. Still good. Still total epic fail if you do it, but the myth and legend is still fine.

    "The Party of Ideas" ideas?

    I bet a doofus like David Gregory loves this, and mentions it the next time somebody tries to point out how much of a fraud and poseur Rand Paul is on a variety of serious public policy issues.

    It might work. Until Rand Paul puts his foot in his mouth and says what is really in his heart about black people and the poor. If only Rand could keep his mouth shut, it's as good a play as any for Very Serious People's attention and affection.

    "Real journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Everything else is public relations." -George Orwell

    by LeftHandedMan on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:15:33 AM PDT

    •  Saint Jack Kemp and the Poseur Paul (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PhilJD, unfangus, Dirtandiron

      Jack Kemp. Saint Jack Kemp.

      Not quite as bad as Saint Ronald Reagan, but pretty itchy in its own right.

      Saint Jack Kemp and the mythology of "Compassionate Conservatism" has bogus and unhelpful street cred with non-Conservatives to this day. I don't know a liberal activist who hasn't had a frustrating conversation with a really low low-information voter, or that know-it-all RW relative at Thanksgiving, that hasn't sounded a little like this:

      "I don't even know what an "Enterprise Zone" is, or does, but I do know that it's pro-business and good."
      Insert "No-Fly Zone" and "pro-Peace and good" in a crisis where we could go to war with the same voter.

      Democrats are weak on Defense and must prove otherwise. Democrats are anti-Business, big taxers, and must prove otherwise. These two memes have been so grossly aided and abetted over the years. (GOPer for Secretary of Defense! Stat!)  (Trickle Down Pander! Austerity! Stat!)

      Saint Jack Kemp. Not the late Jack Kemp the man, but the myth of him. The idea of him in our political pop culture that some in DC and the Village substitute for the real man and what he stood for and what his ideas or causes from Rightwing thinktanks actually accomplished.

      1980's era "party of ideas" fail, and legends, still haunt our politics and policy debates.

      Right now, in the state of Nevada, and in other states around the country, along with the same ads placed on national broadcasts, Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York is advertising that, if you move your business to New York, you won't pay taxes for a decade on our local airwaves. The Movement Conservative Right says " 'thank you, kind sir', but if you ever run for President we will be calling you the Socialist from New York all the same, you leftist cur. "

      You aren't going to out-wingnut Texas in a tax-cuts-for-the-rich-and-powerful off, but what you can do is create fiscal headaches that other people in your party are going to have to deal with while you are taking laps about how awesome you are for business because you are so-tax cutty.

      You have owned a business in New York for 40 years, and you hear your new neighbor gets to go a decade without paying all sorts of fees and taxes, you want that deal as well. I've been here all along. Why are you fucking me? Where's my tax cut. Yeah, where's our tax cut and decade with no state taxes? The next thing you know, you risk being in an own-goal of a pickle because, in your desire to pander to Rightwing ideas about how to juice the engine, you end up getting in arguments about new rounds of tax cuts, and policies that help you go about losing tax revenue that you might need to increase to help fund essential state services. You help the Right make it harder to govern, while you get no credit from the Right for the help, instead of doing other things you might be doing to improve life in your state via public policy.  

      How the hell do you rebuild thousands of roads and bridges when you help the Right set the bar for the public policy financing conversation? You don't.

      This is the fruit of Movement Conservative myth and legends being so baked-in to the conversation that, at any given moment, while you are trying to forge a more progressive pathway towards the future where all Americans are lifted up and not enslaved to the notion of trickle-down, even Democrats in the northeast give the GOP an assist in re-enforcing the ghost.

      There is a reason why an incoherent public policy poseur like Rand Paul, or a Paul Ryan for that matter, might want to be seen as the "new" Jack Kemp.

      It's all upside. All of it.

      It's like sweet rich cheesecake with absolutely no calories.

      But it shouldn't be.

      The record of failure is there. The argument isn't.

      He stands a bigger threat from the Right freaking out that he's talking about helping black people, even though he isn't, than from getting jeered in a very public way for trotting out the old epic fail greatest hits of the 80's "big idea" Republicans.

      "Real journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Everything else is public relations." -George Orwell

      by LeftHandedMan on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:26:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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