Portside Politics: Wither America?

Because the Republican Party deliberately threw the United States into massive debt they now have the tools to turn America into a nation of one percent dreams and ninety-nine percent nightmares.

After the successful subversion in 1978 of California’s democracy and California’s budget process known as the Prop 13 Trojan Horse, the California Republican Party set their sights on the Presidency of the United States. 

Reactionary Republicans, who constituted a small minority within the National Republican Party, never came to terms with the social legislation enacted during the 1930s and 1960s. Unlike their allies among the eastern establishment/country club Republicans, western and mid-western reactionaries stewed in anger after being forced to the national policy sidelines because of the Goldwater election wipeout in 1964. 

Republican rightists, however, bided their time, quietly organizing, and when the time was right, they pounced. Their time arrived  in 1980 when these rightists  managed to get their leader, Ronald Reagan, elected President of the United States. Immediately under Reagan a concealed stratagem was crafted to destroy Roosevelt’s New Deal and Johnson’s Great Society social legislation. The national debt would become Reagan’s and the rightist’s new Trojan Horse. 

In 1981 an inflation-stagnation crisis known as stagflation gripped the nation because both Republicans and Democrats paid for the Vietnam War by printing money. The national debt on the day Republican Ronald Reagan became president was 900 billion dollars. When Reagan left office inflation had been brought under control but the national debt rose to 2.4 trillion dollars. At the end of Reagan’s second term, the country owed more to foreigners than it was owed, and the United States moved from being the world's largest international creditor to the world's largest debtor nation. Four years later George H.W. Bush pushed the national debt up to 4.5 trillion dollars. Eight years later at the end of Bill Clinton's presidency, the national debt stood at 5 trillion dollars but Clinton left a 1.2 trillion dollar surplus to his successor, George W. Bush. 

During the eight years of George W. Bush's administration, Bush started two wars and paid for them by selling United States Treasury Bonds world wide. Meanwhile Bush passed the largest tax cut for the top 1 percent in U.S. history. Then the Bush administration passed legislation that created Medicare part D and paid for it by, you guessed it, selling U.S. Treasury Bonds. When the economy returned to crisis mode in September 2008, the Bush Administration created the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) which, again, used Treasury Bonds to buy up the debt of private banks. When Bush left office the national debt stood at 13 trillion dollars! 

By 2010 the rightist Republicans had morphed into the Republican-Tea Party. Consider this: From 2001 to 2010 Generation Xers lost 55 percent of their wealth. Between 2007 and 2010 all Americans lost 38.8 percent of their total wealth. The cost to California alone was 80 billion dollars. Meanwhile the top 1 percent shockingly took in a full 93 percent of all the income gains in 2010, leaving the other 7 percent of gains to be sprinkled among the vast majority of society.

In violation of the key Keynesian economic principle of paying down debt during economic upswings, the rightist Republicans had constructed the Trojan Horse of borrowing and spending never paying back that which was borrowed. And to add economic insult to economic injury the monies borrowed had to be paid back with interest insidiously increasing the sum total of the borrowed monies to foreign governments, foreign banks, and private U.S. banks. If you don’t believe me then take a close look at the Ryan Budget plan or take a second look at Simpson-Bowles deficit reduction plan. Both plans are brand spanking new Trojan Horses designed to demolish Keynesian Economics, smash Social Security and Medicare, and lord over an even bigger transfer of wealth upward. 

Because Republican-Tea Party consciously and deliberately threw the United States into massive debt they now have the tools to turn America into a nation of one percent dreams and ninety-nine percent nightmares. Wither America?

T.C. Borelli lives in South Laguna.

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Charles December 27, 2012 at 04:08 PM
What do you want me to do about it? Whatever happens happens. Plan and react. There's not much you can do and there isn't much I can do. How can I take advantage of the situation? How can I leverage the situation and the future to my advantage?
Jennifer Horsman December 27, 2012 at 08:23 PM
Excellent op ed. We need a chemical enhancement for intelligence. That would take care of the republicans.


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