Throughout the historical record, there are innumerable instances of individuals and groups guilty of treacherous action to defeat, or hinder, an endeavor through deliberate acts of subversion. In most cases, saboteurs are ideologically motivated to create injury out of hatred for their target, and Americans have seen the level of damage conservatives are willing to cause this nation for no other reason than advancing their extremist vision of a libertarian-controlled America. It is simplistic to think teabaggers and Republicans are misguided and misinformed about the damage their policies, if enacted, will cause the nation, because as ideological saboteurs, they know what will result if their policies are enacted and it is just one reason they are enemies of the state.
The recent failure of House Speaker John Boehner to garner support for his people-killing Plan B to avoid Republican’s fiscal cliff revealed that despite how injurious Plan B was to the nation and its people, it did not create enough damage to satisfy Boehner’s ideological caucus. The irony in Boehner’s failure is that the rebellion is the product of the GOP’s decades-long allegiance to Grover Norquist’s anti-government agenda and adherence to Reagan-conservative’s mantra that the United States government is inherently evil and the people’s enemy. The rebellious group’s stated goal is to let the economy go over the fiscal cliff to “see what happens” and hold firm to their pledge to never raise taxes on any American. The ideological insanity in their desire to see the economy fall off the cliff guarantees every American’s tax rate will increase, and therein is just one instance of how ideologues’ anxious to sabotage the government are implicitly sabotaging themselves and their cause.
The elation at the prospect of sending the economy into recession and damaging the government after Republicans failed to support Boehner’s plan was typical of America-hating libertarians, and exposed their ideological purity and pathological hatred of the United States government. After 25 years of anti-government rhetoric, Republicans created a phalanx of legislators who are a direct threat to the economy, which could slip back into another Republican recession if the GOP prevents Congress from governing, and it defines them as a serious threat to democracy. The tragedy is their excitement at subverting the economy and preventing progress the American people clearly desire and voted for in the election just over a month ago.
Some of the comments from thrilled teabaggers and Republicans hoping for a recession are shocking coming from American citizens, but it informs the state of conservative ideologue’s minds. One teabagger from Wyoming claimed Boehner’s failure was a victory for anti-government conservatives and said, “Let’s go over the cliff and see what’s on the other side,” even though the “other side” means tax increases on every American leading him to say “hat’s off” to Republicans for rejecting Boehner’s plan. Another GOP official in Louisiana said “people are frustrated with Speaker Boehner. They hear people run as conservatives, run against tax hikes. They want them to keep their word,” and a former GOP chairman said he was ecstatic and claimed “Republicans really need to stand on their principles. They have to hold firm.” Another Republican committee chairman from Washington said “If we have to endure the pain of the cliff then so be it, and while it may spell the end of the Republican Party … at least we will force the government to cut and cut deep.”
A Boston teabag leader was cautiously enthusiastic at the internal political upheaval and said “Republicans need to unite against Obama. It looked like from the very beginning they were just going to cave to what President Obama wanted, I didn’t want that to happen. Now I’m hopeful that they’re standing up for taxpaying Americans.” Ideology is a vicious infirmity, and it is painfully obvious that in their abhorrence of compromise and hatred for the President, they are opposing the one man who is standing up for taxpaying Americans, including teabaggers complaining they are “taxed enough already.” One wonders if they will blame the President when their taxes increase because teabaggers and the GOP rejected the President’s offer to maintain the Bush rates for 98% of taxpayers.
Although a small contingent of saboteurs are anxious to see the economy go over the cliff and guarantee tax increases on every American, a survey conducted this month found 81% of respondents want Republicans in Congress to compromise in the current negotiations to get a deal done rather than “stick to their positions even if it means not coming to an agreement.” The vast majority of respondents agreed that “recent difficulties in reaching agreements and passing legislation in Congress” fell on Republicans. However, Republicans have fought tooth and nail to convince their caucus that there is weakness in compromise, and now that it is required to save the economy, they should not be surprised that any conciliation, regardless how beneficial to the Republican cause, or 98% of Americans, is doomed.
It is disastrous for democracy when a few ideologues, encouraged by decades of prodding from conservatives, have enough sway to deliberately send the economy into a recession and raise taxes on every American, but that is what often occurs when extremism supersedes love of country. In some very recent polling, 53% of Americans, including 22% of Republicans, believe the GOP’s views and policies have pushed them far outside the mainstream. Another poll last week found that 61% of Republicans would accept raising taxes on the wealthy in order to avoid the “fiscal cliff,” and yet with less than a week before the cliff arrives, Republicans show no sign of making any concessions or negotiating to avoid massive defense and domestic spending cuts and raising taxes on all Americans. Although it is down to recalcitrant teabaggers and Norquist-ideologues, all Republicans bear the responsibility for the impending austerity crisis that is certain to cause a recession and punish every man, woman, and child in America. For nearly four years Republican leaders have opposed, obstructed, and blocked any of the President or Democratic measures to help the economy or create jobs and they wear their obstruction, hostage taking, and sabotage as a badge of honor.
There is plenty of blame to go around for the current situation America finds itself in, and it is high time to stop pointing the finger solely at Grover Norquist or teabagger organizations around the country. Norquist is not an elected official and teabaggers only ascended to their position of power because Democrats stayed home during the 2010 midterm elections. However, Republicans have spent nearly 30 years preaching the dangers of government and taxes that have led the country to this point, and now it appears there is no turning back from certain economic crisis and its basis is conservative ideological purity, rejection of compromise, sick tribal mentality, and worst of all, a pathological hatred of the United States government. What is most terrifying though, is that these ideologues are content creating an economic crisis as well as their own demise and like a suicide bomber, their hatred supersedes any notion of self-preservation, or their country’s economic health, and there is little anyone can do but sit helplessly and watch as Republicans celebrate their sabotage of the government, the economy, and the American people.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.