Posted by: Greg Huff | October 4, 2010

Rebuttal to Sherrod Brown’s USA Today editorial

This is a rebuttal, mostly by paragraph, to Sherrod Brown’s (Democrat Senator from Ohio) editorial in USA Today. Brown’s comments are in black, mine in red.

Progressives are an impatient bunch. We fight for people who have waited too long already — for health care, for educational opportunity, for jobs to keep them in the middle class.

This neglects that fact that every time government gets involved in health care, education and jobs, they have the exact opposite effect to what was intended. Progressives want these things for the supposed “have-nots” but they do not want to do it with their own money, they want to do it with yours. Tea Party members for the most part don’t mind at all progressives taking care of these things, they only ask that you do it with your own money.

But for generations, conservatives have appealed to fear to protect the privileged and preserve the status quo — fear of immigrants, fear of diversity, fear of big government. For conservatives in 2010, it’s easy:


“…protect the privileged’…Interesting statement who are these privileged? Most of the millionaires in this country were not born into wealth; they had a vision and had the tenacity and drive to put that vision into reality, making money in the process. Also in that process they provide jobs, educational opportunity and health care for those who did not have the drive or tenacity to put their vision into the physical universe. Why do you feel the need to punish these productive people?

Meanwhile, for more than a century — in churches and temples, in union halls and neighborhood centers, in the streets and at the ballot box — progressives have moved the country forward. Progressives brought us minimum wage and Social Security in the 1930s, civil rights and Medicare in the 1960s, and health care and Wall Street reform in 2010.

Wow, I am surprised you are bragging about these debacles. Let’s take them one at a time:
Minimum wage has the effect of throwing younger and less experienced workers out of the job market. What happens here is a teenager or other entry-level worker who wants a job and will work for less than that “minimum wage” is told, “sorry we cannot afford to hire you because the job we would hire you for is not worth the money we would have to pay you.” Why Senator Brown, do you want to put the young and unskilled workers out of a job?

Social Security is on the verge of going broke. One of the reasons is the money that has been paid into the Social Security Administration has been regularly looted by people like Mr. Brown to pay for other income redistribution schemes. Many on the verge of retirement who have paid into this Ponzi scheme are rightfully expecting the benefits that were promised. Why is it that you as a Senator are not on Social Security? What is your system for retirement? Oh! You have a “special” retirement program just for Senators and Congressmen.

Civil Rights? Though Progressives like to take credit for this sort of thing, it was Woodrow Wilson Progressive President of the early 20th Century that RE-segregated the Military and interned thousands of German-Americans in 1917 and another Progressive, and beloved by all Progressives, Franklin D. Roosevelt interned thousands of Japanese-Americans during World War II. I don’t think you really want to get into a debate on this point but you are doing a good job of spreading the false data that Progressives actually care about civil rights.

Health Care? Over 50% of the population today is against this and with good reason. The American public did not want this sort of take over by the government of our health system. The promise was to lower premiums and that you’d be able to keep the coverage you have (among other wild promises).

The reality is, premiums are going up even now before the full effect of this legislation is realized. The Tea Party people knew it would. You cannot bring 30 million into a system and expect it to cost less. The American people knew that the “cost curve’ was not going to be bent down but bent up as the Congressional Budget Office has now verified (after the fact of passage.)

One has to wonder just how much pressure was put on the head of this office by the president and his minions to delay that analysis until after it was passed.

Opponents of these accomplishments — some of society’s most privileged and well-entrenched interest groups — have not changed much. The John Birch Society of 1965 has bequeathed its fervor and extremism to the Tea Party of 2010.

Interesting. Most Tea Party supporters I am sure, could not tell you what the John Birch Society is but it does sound very ominous.

Progressives on the other hand will not tell you that they are the intellectual heirs of the Communist and Socialists as just proven by the support the various Communist and Socialist groups have given to the 10.2.10 “Onenation” rally that was just held on Saturday.

History tells us that rage on the right should not be confused with populism. The far right attacks government regulation as it feeds Wall Street and the insurance companies. It rails against government spending for the least privileged as it lavishes tax cuts favoring the most privileged.

What rage? The above is a generality, an accusation without any specific reference. Should I then talk about the “rage on the left” and the attacks on the free market, attacks on individual liberty, attacks on individual responsibility? Who are the “most privileged” you talk about? Who? Those that worked hard and earned a good living and expect to be able to keep the fruits of that labor? It is the political class such as Brown whom, I wager, is getting richer the longer he spends in the legislature. He and his ilk continue to pick the pocket of the working public at large.

No one should be surprised over what has happened in the last 18 months:
•We passed health care reform, so the insurance companies are coming after us at election time.

Who is coming after you? The Tea Party or the insurance companies? Certainly if the blood sucking politicians were coming after a company I owned and its survival was at stake, I sure as hell would be coming after you too. Many companies just want to be left alone to make a fair profit, providing a service the public wants, at a price they are willing to pay.

•We enacted consumer protections for homeowners and credit card users, so Wall Street is spending millions to defeat us.

“Consumer protections” is a catch phrase for getting votes. The fact is consumers need to be aware of what they are agreeing to. These “consumer protections” give false reassurance to consumers that they will not be taken advantage of. I am sure the victims of Bernie Madoff were very secure in the knowledge that the SEC was on the job.

•We worked to end tax breaks for corporations that ship jobs overseas, and now large multinational corporations are doing everything possible to beat us.

Tell us Senator Brown…where did those tax breaks come from? They came from legislation…from YOU … the House and the Senate voted on giving these breaks to corporations. Why would corporations send jobs out of the country? Could it have anything to do with minimum wage laws you are bragging about enacting. Perhaps the fact that corporations have one of the highest rates of income tax in the world has something to do with this. Perhaps the fact that many jobs have to be done by union workers making two to three times what comparable wages would be for non-union workers.

So, my question is,  Senator Brown, why are you and your anti-business cronies driving businesses and therefore jobs overseas?

We already know the damage that comes from the right’s rage. During President Clinton’s eight years, our country added more than 22 million private sector jobs, incomes went up, and we enjoyed the largest budget surplus in U.S. history.

Hmmmm. I believe this was only after 1994 when the Dems were thrown out and Clinton’s feet were held to the fire of lowered regulation, welfare reform was enacted and Clinton was dragged to the signing ceremony kicking and screaming. Only then did he say the era of big government is over.

In the following eight years of the Bush administration, only 1 million jobs were added, incomes stagnated or plummeted for most Americans, and we were left with record budget deficits.

You won’t get a lot of Tea Party people defending Bush on this. He and his congress spent like democrats. Bush never vetoed a single bill in his first term. There were plenty of people screaming then to stop spending. Why then do you want to continue these failed policies? Still, the jobless rate hovered around 4 to 5% for the bulk of his term despite such economic tragedies as Katrina and 9-11.

Yet Republican candidates in 2010 are offering the same faux populism and “solutions” of the Bush years: more tax cuts for the rich, deregulation of special interests, and trade agreements that cost us millions of manufacturing jobs. And in places like my state of Ohio, they are even offering up as candidates the same people who got us into this mess.

This bit of verbal slight of hand would fool only the uninformed. “Tax cuts for the rich” is nothing but class warfare that is continually engaged in by statist like Brown.

If we talk about “deregulation of special interest” lets talk about the special interest of the Dems as well. Lawyers were one of your biggest contributors. Well, isn’t that special? Perhaps that is why tort reform was not anywhere to be seen in your holy health care bill?

To fight back, progressives must talk about the historic accomplishments of the last 18 months in specific, understandable terms:
•We saved the U.S. auto industry in the face of naysayers’ exhortation to “let the market work,” and our efforts preserved hundreds of thousands of jobs.

Also talk about the fact that your bailout of GM and Chrysler included throwing bond holders overboard in favor of Big Union interests. (Another one of those “special” relationships dems have.)

The fact is, if the auto companies had been allowed to go bankrupt the time honored way, the companies would have been purchased by those who wanted a bargain. The unions would have either agreed to concessions by the purchaser of the assets or thrown out on their ear and non-union workers brought in to fill the gaps, allowing the companies to produce competitive products at a lower price. All the dems have done is take my money to prop up a failing company. Perhaps they will make a profit in the future but Amtrak has been operating at a loss for decades and that will probably be the fate of “Government Motors” as well.

•We passed health care reform that improves drug benefits for senior citizens, provides coverage to those with a pre-existing condition, allows a 22-year-old daughter home from college to stay on her parents’ insurance, and promises health care for millions of Americans.

Senator Brown is deluded if he thinks Americans are buying this. First of all covering “pre-existing conditions” is not insurance, it is welfare which all tax payers will pay for. The 22-year-old coming home from college will not see the rise in premiums her parents will be paying to keep her on their policy. Health care for millions of Americans is an empty promise. Doctors are already leaving the profession and there will be a severe shortage of practitioners in the coming years. Doctors will leave the profession and if they stay in they will not be taking new patients, especially those on Medicare. There will be no need for “death panels”… you are more likely to die in line.

•We made college more affordable for students and passed historic legislation for our nation’s veterans and for equal pay for women.

Government policies have made college more expensive for everyone due to interference in the education market. Grants and loans for education upped the demand for these services artificially. Universities upped their prices and increased their departments to help potential students get those grants and loans. Now many graduates are in debt for decades trying to pay off those loans. How much has Brown taken from the education special interest? Just askin’.

If you have a 401(k), take a look at it today and compare it with the day before President Obama was inaugurated. Back then, 750,000 jobs were being lost each month, with 22 consecutive months of job loss costing 8 million jobs. We’ve got a long ways to go, but this year we’ve seen eight straight months of private sector job growth.

Good grief…If NOTHING had been done but  providing a payroll tax holiday, cutting capital gains further, lowering corporate income tax and stop the bail outs of government workers we’d have seen a “V” shaped recovery. Instead we have an “L” shaped one.

Is this enough?

You’ve done quite enough, thank you. Socialism fails every time it is tried.

No, which is why progressives must rally and persevere.
The Tea Party vision of 21st century America would gut Medicare and Social Security, ignore the minimum wage, and scale back consumer protections and regulations that keep Wall Street honest and our food supply safe. It seems to me that Tea Party activists, increasingly influential in the Republican Party, do not seem to much like America the way we are.
Tea Party populism is driven by anger at our government and at our country. Real populism fights for all Americans, while Tea Party populism divides us.
Republicans have always been good at coming up with catch phrases and slogans that traffic in fear and misinformation.
But impatient progressives, like generations before us, have the truth on our side. And this time we have the perfect bumper sticker.
“Bring back pre-existing conditions. Vote Republican.”

Where do I begin with such inane pap?

The Tea Party generally wants a return to Constitutional government. All of the various programs being pushed by statists such as Brown are those that inevitably bring us closer to the government controlling every aspect of our lives. We will continue to work more and more of the year giving our hard earned pay to the government. Working harder to support an ever growing burden with the statists such as Brown at the top of the heap snapping the overseers whip.

Slavery was outlawed by the thirteenth amendment to the Constitution. How many months or years before all of our labor is confiscated by Brown and his ilk to pay for one of his “five year plans”.

This republic became the richest, (I know that is a bad thing to Brown but not to most of us.) most productive, most charitable and benevolent country the world had ever seen by having the Federal Government in the shackles of the Constitutions “enumerated powers”. Statists such as Brown and his political ancestors managed to break out of those shackles and all of us need to slap those cuffs back on. The effects of the progressive (statist) policies put in over the past 60 or so years are just now becoming manifest and it will take quite a while to repair the damage to the economy and the Constitution but it is vital that both be done.

I am very glad however Brown spoke up. He now has a well-deserved target on his back for his next election but he will probably quit before going down to defeat to a Tea Party endorsed candidate.

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  1. Are these people (Sherrod & Progressives) delusional or do they think if they repeat their lies enough the American people will believe them? They try to portray the Tea Party movement as a negative because it holds them accountable for the failures of the past. Big government is the problem and people are starting to become aware of that, which is their greatest fear. We need to be skeptical of any politicians who wishes to do stuff for us and vote for those who are willing to return us to minimal government interference in our lives.

    • I thought it was interesting that Kerry was complaining that (I’m paraphrasing) the voters were not aware and were influenced by “sound bites”. Kerry’s and all other Dems fear the electorate is aware and paying attention. They are running scared. Now that we have them scared it is time to terrify them.

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