Friday, August 24, 2012

If Conservatives Acted Like Liberals, We'd Claim 'Liberals Hate The Poor'

By Bob Dutko

What a week. Jobless claims rose again to 428,000. The poverty rate is now up to 15.1%, and the response from the left is "let's keep doing what we've been doing for the last 2 1/2 years." If Republicans acted this way, liberals would be accusing us of not caring about the poor.

After all, this is the standard M.O. of the left. Pro life? You must hate women. Pro-traditional marriage? You must hate gays. Oppose Affirmative Action? You must hate blacks. Support enforcing illegal immigration laws? You must hate foreigners. Reject Global Warming? You must hate science. Reform Social Security? You must hate senior citizens and (of course) oppose more taxes on the rich. You must hate, or at a minimum, don't care about the poor.

The reason the left plays this game, but conservatives do not, is simple. Liberals are not offended by intellectual dishonesty. Conservatives are. It goes against our grain. If we played the same game, we would accuse the left of "hating" Christians, traditional marriage, unborn babies, God, the Bible, CEO's, our military....and the list goes on. But honestly, how many of these claims do you read on conservative blogs or hear from conservative commentators? You know the answer. It's virtually none.

Ed Schultz said on his show: "The Republicans lie!! They want to see you dead!! They want to make money off your dead corpse. They kind of like it when that woman has cancer and they don't have anything for her!!!" Now, ask yourself, just how turned off by this language are liberal Americans? Only turned off enough to make him the highest rated, most popular liberal talk show host in America with his own show on MSNBC.

If I ever responded on my radio show to, we'll say, Democrats trying to cut military spending by saying, "Democrats want our soldiers dead!!!! They want to make money of your dead soldier son's corpse!!! They kind of like it when your son comes home from Afghanistan in a body bag!!!!” - if I talked like that, my listeners would turn on me and my ratings would plummet, trust me.

Conservatives don't put up with that garbage. Liberals, however, respond by giving Schultz higher ratings among liberals than any other liberal radio talk host in America.

Which brings me to liberals and the poor. Conservatives have proven throughout history that lowering taxes on all Americans, (yes, including the rich) actually helps the poor, yet Democrats refuse to help the poor in this way. Instead, they insist on raising taxes on people making over $200,000 (President Obama's definition of a Jet-owning billionaire).

When Ronald Reagan lowered taxes on all Americans, he was demonized for including the rich in his tax cuts. They called it "trickle down" economics. He was, of course, accused of "caring only about the rich and not the poor". Sound familiar? Yet let's take a look at what actually happened to the poor during the Reagan's "trickle down" economics:

  • Inflation (which hurts the poor more than any other group) came down from 13.5% to 4.1%.
  • Unemployment went from 9.5% to 5.2%.
  • Over 18 million new jobs were created.
  • Median family income rose every year from 1982 to 1989.
  • Charitable giving (which helps the poor) more than doubled to over $100 billion in 1988.
  • The left wing Joint Center for Political Studies estimated the black middle class grew from 3.6 million to 4.8 million, a 33% increase.
  • Real black median family income from 1981 to 1987 grew 12.7% (46% faster than whites).
  • The national poverty rate in 1981 was 14%. By 1988 it was 11.6%.

So help me understand. If doing what Reagan did had these results on the poor and doing what Obama has done produces our current effect on the poor, don't conservatives have a legitimate right to claim liberals must hate, or at a minimum, not care about, the poor?

Well, I would say no, we don't. That would be intellectually dishonest. While that may be the kind of tactic the left is used to from it's voices, I have no desire to resort to that kind of dishonesty, let alone turn off the majority of conservatives.

So, no, liberals don't "hate" the poor, but - news flash - neither do conservatives. We just have a better, more proven way of helping them.