Saving money through pretending | WisCommunity

Saving money through pretending

[img_assist|nid=44272|title=VOTE HERE|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=287|height=65]Among many other egregious and anti-democratic policies, Wisconsin Republicans assure voters they are very concerned both about cutting spending and enacting a strict Voter ID bill to make people provide limited forms of approved ID at the polls. Never mind that the latter measure is designed to curb an almost entirely imaginary threat. The deficits the GOP is trying to fix will get worse thanks to their budget-slashing in the midst of a slow recovery.

Of course, as MSNBC's Rachel Maddow often notes, it's not really about the money. It's about the GOP grabbing more political power while emasculating their opponents by saying and doing just about anything that will accomplish that, even if it's legally and ethically questionable, and even if it deconstructs democracy in the long run. No big surprise; these dudes hate government. So why trust them when they're in charge?

Even so, from a fiscal standpoint, the Wisconsin GOP really needs help. Because a Voter ID measure will  actually cost the state tens of milliions of dollars in new spending. How to curb spending while voting to add yet more of it? Well, actually, conservatives in Massachusetts are showing the way: They've hit upon the clever tactic of simply pretending that state has a voter ID requirement and exhorting uninformed voters to show their "voter ID" cards at the polls. Hey, all it costs to lie is a billboard! From the Boston Globe, via DailyKos:

Latino advocates are blasting a billboard erected near a largely Latino district in Southbridge that demands voters show ID on Tuesday's special election primary for a Statehouse seat.

The billboard, sponsored by Tea Party-connected groups Empower Massachusetts and Show ID to Vote, tells voters to "protect the integrity of the vote" and "show ID." The groups say they also will dispatch "poll observers" to monitor the 6th Worcester District House special primary Tuesday ...

State law does not require voters to show ID to vote.

The Massachusetts scam is another expression of the Bush administration's stated philosphy that reality was merely what the Bush administration said it was. Handy tool, that!

Now, it isn't as though Wisconsin Republicans aren't practiced at pretending. They pretend that "big union bosses from D.C." have ordered mass protests and have scammed public workers out of ...  what? Lower wages and compensation? The GOP also pretends that gutting environmental rules, educational funding, mass transit subsidies and more will actually bring quality jobs to Wisconsin and make this a better place to live for most residents. Some Republicans even have gone so far as to pretend that Democrats and union members are busy plotting their assasinations.

Nationally, House Speaker John Boehner just proclaimed that Repubilcans had cut $40 billion from the federal budget -- overlooking a $6 billion increase in defense spending that brings the real recission to $34 billion. Only in GOP-think does cutting taxes and spending more dollars increase revenue. Scott Walker's doing some of the same back here, eliminating a pre-existing slate of vacant state positions and then chalking up the imaginary savings from jobs that haven't been filled for years, in some cases.

But the Wisconsin GOP obviously haven't perfected the Big Lie yet, and that's where the real savings kick in.

Just imagine a near future in which Scott Walker merely pretends that job growth is up, deficits are gone, people are happier, health care is better and cheaper, precocious puppies don't poop and all the votes are being counted. Yes, yes, just think of all the additional money that will save rich taxpayers! And all the GOP has to do is pretend there's a tough Voter ID bill in effect and dissuade the poor, the elderly, the disabled, college students and anyone else who tends to vote Democratic from entering polling places. Cheap at twice the price!

The pretending will fail, but only if the mainstream news media don't continue pretending along with Republican logic-free thinkers. The news at the moment isn't very reassuring, what with many new outlets proclaiming Rep. Paul Ryan as a rock star for suggesting that massive budget and program cuts hurting most Americans along with huge tax cuts for a few wealthy Americans and $3 trillion in new federal debt are the way to fix everything. Oh, yeah, that is so very bold. When are citizens going to stop listening to these pretenders? Wisconsin is open for business, and, evidently, still open for idiocy.


April 12, 2011 - 5:05pm