CLC 07: Grover Norquist

Grover Norquist has just started speaking on tax policy. The issue, Norquist says, is that tax payers want to mostly be left alone. Home schoolers want to be left alone — they don’t insist that everyone home school, but they want to make their own individual choices. Hunters want to be left alone — they don’t want to force schools to teach from a book called Heather Has Two Hunters. Most importantly, people want to be left alone in their faith.
The “Leave Us Alone” coalition, Norquist says, hearkens back to the Reagan Revolution. It springs from we used to call Western conservatism — a small-L libertarian, center-right movement that wanted to let people live their private lives and shrink the role of the federal government. It opposes the Left, which wants to extract more and more resources from individuals in order to create a larger and larger federal government that takes away their individual choices. Norquist says that, if properly argued, the LUA coalition would win 60% of the vote.
“All the bad guys can be friends — until they run out of money.” The Left needs an increasing revenue stream to remain cohesive. Cutting off the taxes means that rationing has to take place, and Norquist says that a coalition of “parasites” will never be able to remain allied when the money runs short. He likens it to the final scenes of Lifeboat.
Norquist recommends that we nurture the liberty interests in the conservative coalitions. The concealed-carry movement has generated an entire new class of LUA activists, as have home-schoolers. We need to find those people whom government insults through its intervention and nurture their realization of the necessarily overbearing impact of the federal government. Those converts make the most passionate activists, and the Right needs to find that passion again.
Taxes form the basis of this movement, though, and Norquist makes the case that it has to start with starving the government of excessive revenue. That will force fiscal responsibility onto politicians, but more importantly, it will produce a new class of politicians who understand the need to end the spending spree. Conservatives who vote for tax increases are, in Norquist’s words, the “rathead in the Coke bottle”.
We can’t end spending while discussing tax increases. Tax increases “feed the beast” and only whets the appetite of those who divide the spoils — and worse, it encourages more groups to come to the table to get more of the revenue. We cannot cut spending without first removing the incentive to spend, and that comes from tax increases.
Transparency on spending is the next step. That’s why earmarks are more important than the dollars involved. Exposing earmarks really exposes the dirty, influence-peddling nature of the federal government. When Bridges to Nowhere finally make the news, when the Charles Rangel Center For The Advancement Of Charles Rangel comes to light, the public reacts with deserved revulsion. That gives momentum to the LUA coalition and more credibility to the notion that the national political structure does a poor job of spending our money — and that they should only be given the bare minimum essential for meeting its Constitutional responsibilities.
It’s an excellent speech. Norquist has a matter-of-fact delivery, which makes his argument even more compelling.

13 thoughts on “CLC 07: Grover Norquist”

  1. Aha! I may finally have found my niche spokesman.
    Norquist should submit his speech as an op-ed to a publication with a wide audience in order to give voice to a taxpayer revolt against the usurpation of nannyism.

  2. Liberals want to be left alone. We don’t require home schoolers to have abortions or even use birth control. We just ask not to be sent to CIA run Albanian prisons for testicular electrification. We just ask that our tax dollars not be spent on wars of aggression with no justification whatsoever.
    Leave us alone with our stem cell research and global warming anxiety.

  3. Reddog, Your wonderful post may pass over a few heads that do not see this as the pure sarcasim it was designed to be.
    That said, if “Norquist says that, if properly argued, the LUA coalition would win 60% of the vote”, this could be a strong voice ahead to stave off the “entitlement” meantality that will break a robust economy while attempting to FINISH a war on two fronts.

  4. Deficits have gotten worse under the GOP tax-cutting regimes, and worst of all when GOP administrations combine with GOP Congresses. Because (and this really doesn’t require advanced mathematics) tax cuts mean less money coming in.

  5. Serious Question to ask of Grover Nordquist if you get the opportunity, Captain. You quoted him saying:
    “Tax increases “feed the beast” and only whets the appetite of those who divide the spoils — and worse, it encourages more groups to come to the table to get more of the revenue.”
    Problem: Tax CUTS are increasing revenue to the Government’s coffers… so wouldn’t Tax CUTS feed the beast as well?
    The argument against tax increases is both the fact that they stifle the economy and personal freedoms. It is not persuasive to argue that tax increases feed the Beast when tax cuts, and frankly the willingness to increase the Deficit will do so as well.
    Greed feeds that Beast. Both for the groups who receive the spoils and the politicians who receive their support in payment. But taxes have a stronger effect outside the government than inside.

  6. Uh…Mike… (great name, by the way) your math is wrong. Look it up. Tax CUTS have resulted in huge reductions to the deficit, and huge increases in the gross income of the Government through taxation.
    It’s publicly available knowledge… go for it.

  7. I can’t believe I got suckered into donating $2,300 to the Charles Rangel Center for the Advancement of Charles Rangel. The guy at the door assured me it was “for the children.”

  8. Unfortunately, what is really needed are judges at all levels who are not enamoured with the all-powerful Federal Beast. We need judges who can say to Congress: No, you may not do that, as their is no authority within the Constitution. We don’t care what you think about the “general wellfare” and “interstate commerce” clauses; We don’t think your interpretation is correct, just as we believe previous Courts have been wrong, too.

  9. Mr. Michael is correct. The national deficit is its lowest in 7 years. It was all over the news last week.

  10. We are 6 years into an expansion and still running a deficit? Worse, as far as I know most of the war funding has been off-budget, so it is not even included in the annual deficit measurement.
    We’ve got to stop giving a pass to Republicans who vote for deficits. Voting against tax increases and for tax cuts is not enough. We need politicians who are willing to fight to live within our means, and that includes paying off our national debt in times of expansion.

  11. Now if the conservatives would just learn to leave people alone where their vices are concerned…

  12. I have had it with Grover Norquist. Google “Norquist” and “Frank Gaffney” or look him up in Michelle Malkin’s archives and you will see why. Sometimes people who say they want to drown the government in a bathtub are not kidding.

  13. Jonathan Rauch, in his great book “Demosclerosis” (about the paralyzing effects of lobby groups on the government) suggested an interesting point, that the “starve the beast” theory has failed, because it effectively subsidizes federal spending. In other words, when our taxes go down, the burden of the government “feels” lighter, so we don’t mind spending as much (it just gets put on our tab as deficit spending.) The problem is that spending never goes away because of entrenched lobby groups who defend their earmarks far more vigorously than anyone can hope to attack them (if a ten million dollar farm subsidy costs you a penny on the dollar, you won’t fight against it too hard, compared to the farmer fighting to defend his ten million dollar bounty.) Rauch suggests perversely that conservatives need to accede to tax increases – make the hand of the government feel heavier, and people won’t want it so much anymore.

Comments are closed.