Category Archives: ad hoc power

In Thrall to a Libertarian

Grover Norquist, who leads the organization Americans for Tax Reform, is a Libertarian, someone so extreme in his beliefs that we need to downsize our government until it is almost nonexistent, that we would never give him power in our American government under normal circumstances. And yet – the Republicans did just that when they signed that cockamamie “no tax increases of any kind” pledge. By signing they opened the door to a Libertarian and gave him unprecedented power over the American people without any election (which he surely could not have won.)

Grover Norquist did an end run around the American people and is scoring touchdown after touchdown. If we elect the GOP in 2012 he will win the game. We will have an extreme Libertarian who was not elected inside the power circle in Washington. Unless the Republicans disavow Grover Norquist how can we vote for them?
In the past I have emphasized Grover Norquist’s penchant for moonlighting as a comedian because I felt we would feel ashamed to let a comedian lead us around by the nose. Apparently I was wrong about this. So let’s accept Mr. Norquist’s true position as the leader of an organization which represents only a fraction of Americans and yet controls the future of all Americans.
Let’s get that “no tax” pledge voided so our Congress has the potential to make whatever decision the people find necessary. It should be illegal for Mr. Norquist to hold the America people hostage to his organization. Since the Republicans who signed it will not break it, it would seem the only way to vacate it is to elect lots of Democrats.
Ironically, the Republicans are opposing a Libertarian who is trying to make a legitimate run for office. According to Monday’s NYT’s Gary Johnson, the former two-term Republican governor of New Mexico is campaigning as the Libertarian Party’s presidential nominee. He is not exactly a shooting star but apparently Republicans feel that he will take votes away from Mitt Romney. They have hounded him and kept him off the ballot in at least two states using a technicality in one case (Michigan) and the questionable use of a detective who was a retired     F. B. I. agent to appear at the homes of paid canvassers and asking to check the signatures on the petitions they were working on (Pennsylvania). These are the kinds of behind-the-scenes strong-arm tactics that we deplore in our elections. However, the real point is that the Republicans don’t mind bringing in a Libertarian through the back door, even as they are opposing the attempt of another Libertarian to enter Washington through the front door.