Monday :: Feb 28, 2005

Why Republicans Want to Dismantle Social Security, Reason #82


by rayman

Yet again, I humbly lay down before the sage seer of political intrigue, Mark Schmitt. Here, the Mighty One calmly and devastatingly provides the best explanation I've read as to why Republicans are hell-bent on dismantling Social Security:

Now, there is another way that Social Security privatization could create Republicans, and I think this is actually closer to what's on the mind of the less utopian strategists. (That is, those not named "Gingrich" or "Kemp.") It's the negative: they believe Social Security creates Democrats, by fostering a positive sense of government, which in Texas is called "dependence." They don't care about the private accounts so much as eroding as much as possible of the guaranteed benefit.

[...]

Here it's useful to remember that Karl Rove's historical parallel is the 36 years of Republican dominance from the McKinley election in 1896 to Hoover's defeat. That was a brutal period in American economic life. Government offered nothing in the way of benefits for workers, minimal widows' pensions, no aid for children, monetary policies that were cruel to farmers and regulatory laissez-faire that was cruel to workers. And yet, year in and year out, people took it, without question. It was the natural order of things. Only the greatest economic collapse in our history forced change. People generally don't demand what they don't have. When Social Security is gone, it will not come back, no matter how badly the accounts do. And people will not respond to its absence by becoming Democrats and demanding the restoration of an economic safety net for seniors. Rather, they will forget it ever existed and vote Republican, confirmed in their belief that government doesn't do a damn thing for anyone. There is little doubt in my mind that this is the thought process in "Bush's brain."

We are truly standing in the presence of blogospheric genius, ladies and gentlemen. Thanks, Mark.

rayman :: 5:23 PM :: Comments (19) :: Digg It!