The extent to which the demagoguery of Grover Norquist has crippled the political process can be seen in John Boehner’s statement on the current state of play over debt ceiling negotiations. The critical text can be found in this morning’s Al Jazeera English account, based on the usual wire sources. Here are Boehner’s words:
The president is emphatic that taxes have to be raised. As a former small businessman, I know taxes destroy jobs.
This may not be a matter of flat-out lying to the American public; but it is certainly an excellent case of calculated distortion. One wonders just what kind of excuse for logic leads Boehner to conclude that taxing the ultra-rich destroys jobs for those now out of work in the wake of the economic crisis. If Boehner were honest about his experiences as a “small businessman,” he would have to own up to the fact that the greatest enemy of small business is larger business, all those massive globalized conglomerates that make it impossible for small businesses to make ends meet and while continuing the evade the efforts of our government to get them to pony up any contributions to revenue for the Federal Budget.
More and more Americans whose lives have been ruined by the economic crisis are waking up to the fact that Norquist’s Tax Payer Protection pledge amounts to a pledge to bankrupt both American citizens and quite possibly the government as a whole. The only consequences is that the rich will get richer. If the dollar loses value, they can always shift their wealth over to other resources. The rest of us get to go down with the ship.