Last May’s $307 billion agricultural bailout will pump taxpayer dollars into the pockets of farmers, many with multi-million-dollar incomes augmented by record high prices for many crops. These subsidies further fatten consumers’ grocery bills. In addition, 2002’s five-year farm fiasco cost $190 billion.
The 2003 Medicare Drug Plan will cost $783 billion through 2018 to airdrop pharmaceutical benefits on all Americans over 65, regardless of personal wealth, and even if they already have health insurance, including drug coverage.
GOP presidential nominee John McCain will benefit by reminding voters that he opposed nearly all of this government largesse. He should explain that his administration thus will not be “more of the same” as Obamacrats keep chanting. To the contrary, it will embody Washington’s liberation by the forces of limited government.
The Bush administration disgracefully has requested and or agreed to everything denounced here, save for 2008’s farm bill, which Bush vetoed, albeit too late to matter. Porcine Republicans — 100 House members and 35 senators — shamelessly overrode Bush’s objections.
Bush deserves applause for liberating Afghanistan and Iraq. Likewise, since 9/11, he has kept al-Qaeda and its bloodthirsty followers sufficiently under fire overseas — and under surveillance at home — to pre-empt another strike on the U.S. mainland. Back home, he appropriately slashed taxes, appointed constitutionalist judges, and approved the Washington, D.C. school-voucher bill.
That aside, however, President Bush is ravaged by the same Big Government Republican bacterium that consumed his father’s costly, collectivist, and calamitous administration. Just four months before George W. Bush mercifully takes that last flight to Crawford, it feels as if Ronald Reagan never lived and Lyndon Johnson never died.
– Deroy Murdock is a New York-based columnist with the Scripps Howard News Service and a media fellow with the Hoover Institution.
© 2008 Scripps Howard News Service