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Big trouble for the GOP

January 05, 2009

Re "Big Government? Not now, not ever," Opinion, Dec. 29

Richard Viguerie's Op-Ed article is only another instance of the right scrambling to convince people that conservatism has not been wholly discredited in the last eight years. Even though they have held the majority of governmental power over the last 30 years, Viguerie has the audacity to compare American conservatives to outnumbered English forces at the Battle of Agincourt.

Please. The reality is simple: Conservatives had the opportunity to enact every loopy policy they had been dreaming of in their classrooms at the University of Chicago, and it was an unequivocal disaster.

When has a political party ever had its ideology put so completely into practice? But with that kind of fulfillment comes the obligation to deliver. Now that they've failed, they're trying to weasel out of the responsibility for it.

Andrew Matthews

Los Angeles

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The good news for conservatives is that the concept of big government is not dead. The bad news is that it never existed in the first place.

You're wrong if you think Republicans aren't in there, toe to toe, proposing legislation. The difference is, conservatives are offering laws to protect business owners. Democrats try to protect those who work for business owners.

Complaining about Big Government is just a way to spin "don't tax me." Sorry, but a civilized society comes, literally, with costs.

Becca Esensten

Los Angeles

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Small-government proponents are in the battle of their lives to protect the doctrine of small government in spite of the damage wrought by the Bush administration and some opportunists on Wall Street and in big business.

So why is it that the party of small government, the GOP, seems unwilling to acknowledge the damage that has been done by its myopic alliance with the Christian right, soldiers drafted for their voting power who know nothing of or care little for the "small government is best" axiom of the Republican Party?

While this so-called Republican base is demanding ever more legislative intervention into Americans' private lives and supporting vast government expenditures on matters of supposed biblical edict, such as the unconditional defense of Israel, they reveal that they are not standard-bearers but merely opportunists, using the Republican Party's political machine with scant regard for its core principle that personal liberty via small government, carefully structured, can work best.

Juliet Hotchkiss

Oak Park

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