Thursday, September 30, 2004

Norquist Watch

You'll remember about a week ago Grover Norquist was quoted in a Spanish newspaper saying that the Greatest Generation was basically a bunch of socialists he'll be glad to see 6 feet under. Slate continues looking at what the insane Norquist said:

"This is an age cohort that voted for a draft before the war started, and allowed the draft to continue for 25 years after the war was over. Their idea of the legitimate role of the state is radically different than anything previous generations knew, or subsequent generations.

"Before that generation, whenever you put a draft in, there were draft riots. After that generation, there were draft riots. This generation? No problem. Why not? Of course the government moves people around like pawns on a chessboard. One side spits off labor law, one side spits off Social Security. We will all work until we're 65 and have the same pension. You know, some Bismarck, German thing, okay? Very un-American."

To HELL with social justice! Grover just wants to see the rich get richer, the poor get poorer, and everyone behave like they're a mountain man! Very effective in the 21st century, that variety of lunatic libertarianism.

What else has Shit for Brains been up to lately?

He's promoting illegal immigration:

Americans for Tax Reform, which is headed by top conservative activist Grover Norquist, also opposes Prop. 200, citing worries about privacy and pressure to raise taxes to meet the referendum's mandates.

They join the Arizona Chamber, Phoenix Convention & Visitors Bureau and East Valley Partnership in opposing PAN.

The ballot question looks to cut into illegal immigration by denying state welfare benefits and social services to undocumented immigrants. It also requires proof of U.S. citizenship for prospective voters and forces state workers to report illegals to federal authorities.

Defend our borders? Hell no, not when we need poor Mexicans to force wages and benefits down!

He's trying to get the Montreal Expos - moving to Washington next year to play in, of course, a stadium built with taxpayer money - named for Ronny Raygun:

If conservative activist Grover Norquist has his way, the team will be named in the same way he wants every free-standing public structure in America to be named: the Reagans.

He's talking lunacy to a paper in South Carolina:

“OUR GOAL is to inflict as much pain as possible,” Grover Norquist told National Journal of his campaign to defeat Gov. Bob Riley’s effort to restructure Alabama’s tax system to benefit the state’s poor people. “It is not good enough to win; it has to be a painful and devastating defeat. We’re sending a message here. It is like when the king would take his opponent’s head and stick it on a pike for everyone to see.”

He was talking about defeating a conservative Christian politician who was acting to address a situation in his state that he saw as inconsistent with the Gospels.

When the head of Americans for Tax Reform came to visit our editorial board last week, he passed out copies of that and two other published profiles of him. Imagine being so full of yourself that you hand strangers these nuggets about yourself:

• The Journal citing others quoting Mr. Norquist: “We are trying to change the tones in the state capitals — and turn them toward bitter nastiness and partisanship.”

• Stephen Moore of the Club for Growth describing his ally in Mother Jones: “From the moment he gets up to the moment he gets to bed, he thinks, ‘How am I going to hurt the other team?’”

• The Washington Post, on what Mr. Norquist told a liberal Harvard classmate at a reunion: “For 40 years we fought a two-front war against the Soviet Union and state-ism. Now we can turn all our time and energy to crushing you. With the Soviet Union, it was just business. With you, it’s personal.”

• The Post, quoting a rubber stamp he keeps on his desk: “Find Him and Kill Him.”

He also said a few provocative things in his meeting with us. Take, for instance, his scoffing at conservatives who want to do away with the National Endowment for the Arts: “You know, it’s like a hundred million dollars, and the National Endowment for the Arts is actually extremely helpful to the conservative movement because they fund ‘Piss Christ’ and irritate the hell out of taxpayers and remind them why they’re Republicans. And if they were to stop this, there would be fewer taxpayer activists.”

His pal, Bush strategist Karl Rove, described him to The Post as “an impresario of the center-right.” He holds court at every-Wednesday gatherings in his Washington office. The S.C. Policy Council’s Ed McMullen, who attends whenever he’s in the capital, says other regulars include Reps. Jim DeMint and Joe Wilson and their staffs.

More relevantly to us, he is the man behind the no-new-taxes pledge that has been signed by President Bush, Sen. Lindsey Graham, Gov. Mark Sanford, Rep. DeMint and other Republicans in our House delegation, 15 members of the S.C. Senate and 51 members of the S.C. House, including Speaker David Wilkins. He’s the guy some leading S.C. politicians check with before supporting tax proposals.

He's ordering around state politicians in Virginia:

The news that Attorney General Jerry Kilgore has in effect told national tax activist Grover Norquist to bug out of Virginia Republican politics is a note of sanity in an otherwise deadly political battle that is shaping up in Virginia’s Republican Party.
In the meantime, House Speaker William Howell, showing a concern similar to Kilgore’s, is creating his own think tank to “institutionalize free-market based approaches for fiscally responsible government reforms." He hopes to bring together the warring Republican factions in the General Assembly in searching for sound fiscal reforms.
Let me recap. The recent General Assembly’s extended sessions this year saw an epic battle over the state’s budget, which had been decimated by the aftermath of the remarkably ill-advised and destructive reduction of the “car tax” by Governor Gilmore and a soft Bush economy. The battle line was drawn between those who supported funding for major state programs such as education and transportation, which would require some increases in taxes, and those opposed to any tax increase whatsoever and who, if truth be known, really want to lower every tax they can get a hand on.

In the end, a large part of Governor Mark Warner’s budget was adopted, with significant help from 19 Republican delegates and 15 Republican senators. These Republicans had not turned into raving tax and spend liberals (actually, there are none of these in either party in Virginia), but were merely acting in the best traditions of Republican fiscal conservatism in opposing significant deficit financing.

This outraged the Republicans who were for tax cuts, regardless of what they did to the deficit. At least that is the way I look at it, since not a single one of these made any serious proposal to cut programs and thus reduce spending. They apparently are borrow and spend - what? Liberals who are not adverse to debt as long as taxes are not raised?

Enter Grover Norquist. His Americans for Tax Reform recently unveiled a poster picturing all 43 Republican miscreants, pegging all of them for defeat in the next election.

Now it is fine to be against any tax increases and even for a reduction in taxes. But a responsible advocate for the anti-tax position must also tell us which programs are going to be cut or reduced. It is the height of irresponsibility to slough the question off on “waste, fraud, and abuse.) Anyone who knows anything about government knows that this will never do the trick.

Fortunately, I think most voters – liberal and conservative - will see through this sophistry. So, apparently, does Jerry Kilgore, and he is rightly afraid that his could seriously hurt his bid to be Virginia’s next governor. Unfortunately for Kilgore (and fortunately for Virginia), Norquist is unlikely to withdraw from the fray, and he has supporters in Virginia who are already organizing campaigns against the Richmond 43, as I call them. In doing so, they are aiming their hatchets at the heart of the Republican Party in Virginia. Unless Kilgore and his supporters can heal this rift and mount a unified Republican campaign next year, it is going to be a very good year for Virginia’s Democrats.

Norquist is a certifiable lunatic. It's easy to laugh at his barf bag collecting and his assortment of queer - and I use that word advisedly - mannerisms. We shouldn't laugh. He's just as dangerous as the limping Goebbels, the fat Goering, the chicken farmer Himmler, and the drunken Robert Ley. Some Germans used to laugh at them, too.


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