Granted, the GOP had to do something. They, the Republican Party, have been wandering in the wilderness since being ejected for their gross mismanagement while in control of all three branches of the federal government under Bush. GOP overspending, disregard for personal privacy, and nation building efforts made possible the Obama administration and filibuster-proof Democratic legislature. What seemed to be the lesser of two evils, the Democrats, then proved that they too were all about cronyism, big government, and nanny state policies. So, the GOP did something…they generated a “Pledge to America.” This pledge, while perhaps satisfying the farthest of the right and pacifying those that still believe the GOP stands for smaller, limited government, is an affront to conservatives (both Republican and Democrat), to civil libertarians, and to any that believe government has become too big to be representative.
Below are bulleted points from the “pledge” with Libertarian responses in parenthesis:
– Stop job-killing tax hikes (‘Tax hikes’ should be removed from the lexicon of government. All taxes kill jobs and reduce the earning power of individuals. This should read: Reduce taxes across the board by 20%.)
– Allow small businesses to take a tax deduction equal to 20 percent of their income (Allow? This is the problem with government. It believes that it is in a position to ‘allow’ us to keep our own money. See comment above.)
– Require congressional approval for any new federal regulation that would add to the deficit (Why does ‘require congressional approval’ mean anything to us anymore? This should read: Make deficit spending illegal.)
– Repeal small business mandates in the new health care law (Small businesses, big businesses, and families are impacted by the Obama health care law. This should read: Repeal the health care law.)
– Repeal and Replace health care (Replace? Replace with what? Are we to trust that the GOP has a better governmental plan for our health? See comment above.)
– Roll back non-discretionary spending to 2008 levels before TARP and stimulus (2008 levels?!? In 2008 we were already spending billions more than we had. This should read: Roll back spending to 1970 levels.)
– Establish strict budget caps to limit federal spending going forward (This should read: Require a balanced budget.)
– Cancel all future TARP payments and reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (This should read: Cancel all TARP payments and end Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.)
– Will require that every bill have a citation of constitutional authority (Really?!?! We’ve come so far that congress must ‘require’ a bill be constitutional?!? This should read: Follow the Constitution.)
– Give members at least 3 days to read bills before a vote (This should read: Make every member of congress sign an affidavit stating they have read a bill before they vote.)
– Provide resources to troops (What does this mean? This should read: Support our troops by only placing them in harm’s way for defense of the Nation.)
– Fund missile defense (Why is this item specifically called out? Whose district is this special project in?)
– Enforce sanctions in Iran (This sounds like the run-up to another war. This should read: Defend American soil from aggression.)
We have ‘thrown the bums out’ over and over again. Prior to each of those tossings, we’ve been sold things like the “contract with America” or “change we can believe in.” Now, we get the “Pledge to America.” We deserve better. We owe it to the idea of America not to fall for these gimmicks…again.
Let’s stop ‘throwing the bums out’ and start ‘keeping the bums out.’ Reject foolish catch phrases and campaign rhetoric. Vote your principles. Vote Libertarian.