« Wishing for Wellstone | Main | Rewriting polls »

Grover's Back

Right-wing impresario Grover Norquist has not backed down from his belief that the Estate Tax is a policy comparable to the Holocaust. And the forum in which he chose to revisit this issue is none other than The Forward, New York's Jewish daily:

He told the Forward yesterday that the analogy was perfectly valid because "the Nazis were for gun control, the Nazis were for high marginal tax rates."

It's too bad my grandfather's not still alive. I'd love to ask him whether it was really high marginal tax rates that sent my family on a desperate struggle to get out of Germany and over to FDR's America.

I've come to think that Norquist is basically an adolescent, with the adolescent's strange obsession with saying the thing that is most likely to get a reaction. I saw him speak the other day, and you can see just that smug teenager's gleam in his eye when he says something that he thinks will get everyone all atwitter, especially a nice earnest NPR host. If he weren't doing politics, he'd be a second-string Howard Stern-type DJ.

On the other hand, there is a substantive role that Norquist apparently plays in coordinating the right-wing strategies in various states, such things as putting "paycheck protection" initiatives on the ballot in seven states at once, with the goal of diverting organized labor from other causes. I wish one could find out more about what he actually does for the right, and hear less of his shock statements, like that he wants to drown government in the bathtub.

p.s.: Meanwhile, in perhaps the lamest performance by a newspaper columnist so far this year, Richard Cohen of the Washington Post wrote about Norquist's original, widely reported outburst, which took place in October, on January 6. "This is how it happens in my business," Cohen began, explaining that he didn't hear about Norquist's remark until it was reprinted in Harper's which he happened to read over the holidays. Lame.

Posted by Mark Schmitt on January 23, 2004 | Permalink


Grover is partially correct that something about government is wiping out populations, and my informal research indicates the problem is government spending.

I have found, to my satisfaction, that the bigger the proportion of an economy devoted to government, the bigger the decline in population, as measured by fertility. I accepted this premise by examining fiscal burden, as measureed by Heritage fiscal burden index, and correlated that with immigration adjusted fertility rates for Western Europe and Japan. I think it can be proven also that more also government increases the pressure for illegal immigration.

I would think that academics should look at this further, being careful to even out as many variables as possible. I certainly would be careful about advocating more government until the matter is resolved.

Where Grover is mistaken is to believe that taxes are the cause of government spending. The history of tax cuts and tax increases over the last 20 years would indicate that tax cuts are the main cause of increased government spending. I suspect, without proof, that the wealthy currently are consuming more government than they pay for. I still am looking for analysis of the uses of government, and the likely benefeciaries of these government actions. I would bet that the left can prove the case for increased taxes on the wealthy without resorting to an ideological argument.

Posted by: Matt Young | Jan 26, 2004 8:01:18 AM

I know it may be a bit early to proclaim this the Freudian slip of the year, but it is going to be hard to beat.

I was driving to school this afternoon and caught the end of Talk of the Nation on NPR. Neal Conan was interviewing Norquist. Neal wraps up the call and explains that Grover is the president of ATR, "a small-minded... a small-government advocacy group."


Here is the audio.

Posted by: Adam Mansfield | Jan 27, 2004 7:31:23 PM


los foros
anunciate ya anuncios gratis
ven a chatear gratis
liens gratuits en dur

web directory



portal web de motril



Posted by: portal web gratis | Sep 8, 2007 12:39:05 PM