President George W. Bush is now on his way to becoming the first full-term president since John Quincy Adams (1825-1829) to not veto a single bill. The result is a congress that has been completely unconstrained in satiating its appetite for pork and corporate welfare. In response, Democratic challenger John Kerry has maligned alleged spending cuts and called for even higher taxes and spending. The consequence is that we now have two parties competing to see which can grow government faster.
The Grand Old Spending Party: How Republicans Became Big Spenders
Bush is still the biggest-spending president in 30 years... Total government spending grew by 33 percent during Bush’s first term... The Republican Congress has enthusiastically assisted the budget bloat. Inflation-adjusted spending on the combined budgets of the 101 largest programs they vowed to eliminate in 1995 has grown by 27 percent... Under Bush, Congress passed budgets that spent a total of $91 billion more than the president requested for domestic programs. Bush signed every one of those bills during his first term. Even if Congress passes Bush’s new budget exactly as proposed, not a single cabinet-level agency will be smaller than when Bush assumed office... The GOP establishment in Washington today has become a defender of big government.Around the "internets" you'll find examples of right-wingers trying to disown Bush by defining him as a "liberal". As their proof they cite his presiding over unbridled spending and expansion of government, as if liberalism was defined by "spending". And we can only shake our heads.
Because you know what? They can make a my-pet-scapegoat out of George Bush, but they can't hide from the reality that we progressives have been waiting patiently to come to fruition for the last five years: The republicans have only themselves to blame.
Remember, this was their grand moment of glory. A republican-controlled congress, a republican president, a republican judiciary. They said they'd show us how it was supposed to be done. Responsible, prudent fiscal restraint. Honor and dignity in the white house. Etcetera ad nauseum.
They failed miserably on all counts. They all did. Not just Bush. All of them. They compose the bills that Bush always signs. They rob taxpayers to pay for their pork. They prostitute themselves to special interests at the citizens expense. They sell us out and collect their blood money. They bribe journalists to subvert the media. They commit all manner of apalling debauchery, and somehow manage to convince their supporters that they are morally superior. Through scandal after scandal, they enjoy unwavering allegiance. And as things get worse and worse, their response is to single out a member of the pack and say, "it's his fault... he's a liberal."
Well, that's as laughable as it is ludicrous. Bush is repubican, through and through. They are the party of scandal and hypocrisy. The party of irresponsible fiscal policy and ruinous economic indulgences. The party of disasterous policies both foreign and domestic. The party of such an appalling, disgraceful lack of concern for American citizens that it borders on contempt. The party that can hardly manage to issue a single statement that does not contain a lie.
What does "conservative" mean? Today, it means to conserve the Washington status quo in all its forms. All the greed, lying, bribery, cronyism, graft, corruption, crime and contempt for which Washington has become infamous.
They are the conservatives. They are the republicans.