A commentary by
By Chuck Baldwin
March 30, 2004
(Used by Chuck Baldwin's permission on CR's Range)
With the Republican Party in virtual control of the entire federal government, federal spending has escalated to the highest level in American history. Not only have Republicans done nothing to decrease spending, they have actually outspent Democrats. Those who believe that the Republican Party actually supports less government and less spending must be regarded as among the most deceived and gullible people on the planet!
For example, since President Bush took office, federal outlays have increased some 24%. A budget surplus of more than $200 billion has turned into a budget deficit of over $700 billion by the end of 2004. Furthermore, our national debt now totals in excess of $7 trillion.
Beyond that, President Bush and a Republican controlled Congress have superintended over the largest trade deficits in history. Our trade deficit closed the year 2003 at $489 billion. Under Republican control, America set trade deficit records with Mexico, Canada, the European Union, China, and Central and South America.
President Bush has also proposed increasing federal expenditures for socialist/welfare-type programs such as Medicare, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), and a host of others.
Bill Moyers rightly observed that "G.W. Bush is spending non- existent money faster than anybody in modern times. He's expanding the power of the state with not just homeland security and the war on terror abroad but with one extension of domestic agency after another."
It is more than interesting that to date President Bush has not vetoed a single spending bill. Not one. Beyond that, he has proposed increasing the national debt limit by some $1 trillion.
Federal spending is so bad under the Bush administration that a recent Rasmussen survey concluded more people trust Democrat John Kerry to control government spending than President Bush by 42% to 33% (Source: Rasmussen Reports, survey of 1,000 likely voters, Feb. 6-7, 2004).
However, it seems that conservatives can only focus on President Bush's support for tax reductions. Obviously, tax reductions are always appealing to conservatives (including me), but to reduce taxes without reducing spending is a cruel hoax! More than that, it is blatantly dishonest!
It is time for the American people, especially conservatives, to honestly face the spending question. If we are going to tolerate and condone increased federal spending, we must be willing to finance it with increased taxes. If we truly want to reduce taxes, we must also demand decreased spending. It's as simple as that! Anything less is nothing but an elaborate display of smoke and mirrors, and the politicians who put on this display are nothing more than duplicitous charlatans, a Republican Party label notwithstanding.
From a strict economic perspective, the country would probably be better off with a Democrat in the White House and Republicans in control of Congress. At least then there would be a degree of gridlock which would somewhat slow down the growth of federal spending.
Of course, the best idea of all would be to elect a true fiscal conservative as President. However, to find such a candidate one would have to look outside the two major parties. The one that comes to my mind is the Constitution Party. Conservatives should be flocking to it in droves, because if they continue to support GWB, they will be culpable to spiraling spending that will eventually collapse our economy.
© Chuck Baldwin
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