This week's Scroll had an article by the President of the College Republicans, Tanner Nielsen.
The article reads well and is generally true, however, his points are too general and he oversimplifies the issues that he touches on and in effect the article can be considered by some to be narrow-minded. Here's why:
He said, "“Where the federal government spends too much, Congress annually deliberates whether to raise the budget by man billions or a few billion every year."
The truth is that Congress is currently controlled by the Republicans, his own party. Maybe the Republicans could learn something from President Clinton, who, although morally rehensible, at least understood money basics.
All President Clinton had to do to create the largest surplus in U.S. history was to raise taxes and then limit government spending. Imagine that, he raised income and then cut expenses. Now there's an idea.
Nielsen also said, "And where terrorism is an enemy bound to destroy us, certain members of Congress annually deliberate over means of 'co-existing' with despots and monsters.”
The reality is that because of our Republican economic foreign policy the U.S. supports dictatorship regimes as long as those dictatorships show favorable trade with America. For example President Bush was recently in China. While there he chided China for continuing to violate basic human rights. How can Bush do this while at the same time borrowing from Chinese savings and surpluses to fund the Iraq War? That is just one example of many.
He also said, "For example, people who promote laziness may call it welfare."
Is he including the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as one of those parties that promote laziness? Democrats and Republicans both agree that the Welfare system needs serious reform. However, it would be incredibly selfish and un-Christian to get rid of welfare. The truth is that the distribution of wealth in the United States has continued to be more and more unequal. What that means is that the rich continue to get richer and the poor continue to get poorer. That's just bad economics.
He also said, "As conservatives, we have little interest in streamlining government or in making it more efficient, for we mean to reduce its size."
How does one reduce the size of government without making it more efficient?
What's the moral? The moral is that serious issues cannot be summed up in 10 word catch phrases. Although Nielsen's article presents valid and serious arguments, his implied arrogance that the conservative answer is the only answer is an indicator of narrow-mindedness and partisanship.