When I first started paying attention to politics the Democrats had control of Congress, and had the Presidency at least half the time. I heard Republicans blame the rising deficit and rising taxes on those nasty “tax and spend” Democrats. Now I somehow doubted that Republicans were entirely blameless, but given that control rested largely with the Democrats the notion seemed to fit. I was looking forward to the day when Republicans had greater control.
During the Reagan years we had a very strong Republican President dealing with a weaker Democratic Congress. The huge deficits were rather disturbing (still the Democrats??). Every time a tax cut was announced it seemed like my taxes went up. Ok - so my tax situation was not the same every year, but - did they have to go up every time?
Bush follows Reagan with … more deficits and more taxes. Someone in the Bush campaign chants “Four More Years!” and helps me decide to vote for Clinton. I wasn’t especially fond of Clinton, but I knew I did not want “four more years” of Bush.
Clinton proves not nearly as bad as I feared - possibly moderated by a Republican Congress. Aided by a healthy economy and (wishful thinking?) a Republican Congress living up to it’s promise, the deficit starts shrinking. Watching an assortment of cheap and rather rabid attacks on Clinton from some over-the-top Republicans is dismaying. Reagan and Bush had some rather dubious episodes of far more serious character.
Dole comes up to compete against Clinton, starts to sound interesting, then promises a big tax cut. Since Congress just went through a series of huge battles trying to get closer to a balanced budget, this seems unrealistic. In fact it sounds like pushing the deficit off on my children. Voted for Clinton again - count this wanting Dole less rather than fondness for Clinton.
Want to piss me off as a father and a voter? Spend money now that children will have to pay off later.
I am not fond of taxes, but I would rather see the national debt paid off first, and taxes reduced later. I just do not buy the dubious economic theories that suggest small taxes and big spending is a good combination. Staying out of debt and investing in the future - seems this should be a good idea both for individuals and for the country.
Bush #2 comes along and to get elected raises a record amount of money in a record short time. Somehow I doubt the big money is coming from folks with interests similar to mine. The combination of Bush and a Republican Congress in action lives up to my worst expectations. Now this item comes along:
Somehow I was still clinging to the belief that this sort of nonsense is something to be expected of “tax and spend” Democrats … not Republicans! Outside the mass media and party mainline, the moderate Republican voices are closest to my own point of view. I would like to believe in the party, but damn - would you please stop spending my kids money!!