Jerry Moore: Where’s the line between rhetoric and reality?
Wow, these ideas were bound to get people talking.
We’ve seen a president raise taxes, approve a massive bailout plan, increase welfare spending, insist on naming a minority to the U.S. Supreme Court, compound the national debt, use a parliamentary trick to get his legislation passed, hire more federal employees, grow the size of the executive branch, scale back our nuclear deterrent, and even advocate amnesty for illegal immigrants.
When polled online about the issue this past week, 29.5 percent of the 92 respondents said these ideas are not in keeping with our nation’s principles and endanger us. Meanwhile, another 25 percent said any president advocating them should not have been elected. While controversial, according to 42.5 percent, some of these moves are necessary from time to time, and 3 percent said this shows that only conservative candidates can preserve our constitutional heritage.
The push for fiscal responsibility was present last week as residents protested President Obama’s agenda. I attended the Tea Party rally April 15 in Naperville, Ill.
The left-leaning proposals cited earlier make some people nostalgic for the days when Ronald Reagan steered the helm. What a shock, then, to recall that Reagan was the person who racked up that list.
- Though lowering taxes in 1981, Reagan increased them the next three years. The tax hike in 1983 infused $165 billion into Social Security.
- The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 allowed about 3 million illegal immigrants to seek U.S. citizenship. Reagan pledged to nominate the first woman to the Supreme Court, which he did with Sandra Day O’Connor.
- GOP senators refined the “reconciliation” procedure in 1981 to ensure that Reagan’s budget passed. He created the Department of Veterans Affairs, and 61,000 additional workers jumped onto the government payroll while he was in office.
This doesn’t offer the picture of limited government under conservative leadership that many activists have painted. Obama is being criticized for some of these same offenses. Why the double standard?
A healthy debate about public policies must begin with factual information. People of all political persuasions are being misled by ideologues who want to spin messages rather than convey facts.
Jerry Moore is the opinions editor for Suburban Life Publications. Contact him at (630) 368-8930 firstname.lastname@example.org. His blog, Suburban Shoutout, can be found atblogs.mysuburbanlife.com/jerry-moore.