The Billings Outpost

Tea Party launches new war on American poor

Remember the good old days when things were bad? Those days when God was in his heaven and Ronald Reagan was in the Oval Office?

Back in the day when catsup was a vegetable. In those onerous times when  “strapping young bucks ate free T-bone steaks, welfare queens drove new Cadillacs and wealth just trickled down all over.”

Those were the days.

Cheer up, bucko. The good old days are back. T-party Christians have loosed a new war on the poor.

A pair of T-Party Republicans, Rep. Steve Daines in Washington, D.C., and state Rep. Jim Burnett of Bozeman are working up a sweat in a crusade against the poor. Both seem to despise food stamps and will do anything to limit the amount a low-income family might receive.

Burnett believes a great nation like the U.S.A. should not help the poor. Daines has joined fellow T-partiers in voting for cuts in food stamp, or SNAP, appropriations.

If that’s the bad news, here’s the good:

The flood of whack job legislation that clogged the mills of government in 2011 has waned. The mysterious Montana Cowgirl, who regularly scoops the entire Helena press corps, reported back in January, when the Legislature was in session:

“I read in the IR [Helena Independent Record] this week that Democrats proposed getting rid of Montana’s so-called anti-sodomy law, which criminalizes homosexuality, and that only two people came in to oppose it. A bill to allow the state to require all state workers to submit to drug tests received no support at all from any citizens. A bill requiring the teaching of creationism similarly did not get a single citizen testifying in favor of it. Several other GOP bills have met with similar indifference, with few if any conservative citizens attending the hearings.”

Has the fun gone out of playing curmudgeon?

What then is the new profile for successful Republican candidates? It is amazing how far “core values” can drift. When I was still earning my bars as an ink-stained wretch, no one ran for office without a military record. American Legion clubs were well stocked with World War II vets, and Korean War vets attending college on the GI Bill were changing the complexion of higher education.

A few would-be politicos tried a common excuse: “I was too young for World War II and too old for the Korean conflict.” Too many vets who served in both wars gave lie to this lame excuse.

Contrast that age of patriotism (often super patriotism) with the acceptance of the head warmonger and draft dodger Dick Cheney.

Cheney served as vice president for one president and secretary of defense for another. He evaded service during the Vietnam War with a series of deferments.

Asked why, he said he had other priorities.

Republican Congressional Candidate Mark French may have traced a T-Party eligibility profile when he called on Montanans to join him in protesting a $20 ticket he received for failure to wear a seat belt.

Issues he said he was passionate about included:

• Withdrawing from the United Nations and kicking its bureaucrats out of the country.

• Repeal of the 16th Amendment and abolition of income tax.

• Repeal of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).

• No trading freedom and liberty for “safety” (This would include safety belt laws.

• State rather than federal management of wolves.


Copyright 2012 Wild Raspberry Inc.

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