Published in The Arizona Republic on September 16, 1992
On September 5, you criticized President Bush for doling out more than $8 billion to buy votes this November. Much of this is going for programs that he opposed until in became politically expedient to support them. This editorial comes one day after an editorial in which you stated that "poverty won" the war on poverty and ask "Is it not perhaps time to cashier the generals and try some new tactics?"
And yet The Republic and many other conservative publications continue to endorse President Bush because "he's not Bill Clinton."
When will conservatives cashier their generals and cultivate new leaders who are serious about read tax, budget, and regulatory cuts, as opposed to merely "slowing the growth" of government? Liberal rhetoric notwithstanding, 80 percent of new federal spending since Ronald Reagan took office has gone for non-defense programs. Moreover, there appears to be no real emphasis among Republicans on reversing this trend.
This is why I have re-registered as a Libertarian. The Republicans and Democrats continue to fiddle while America degenerates into a Sweden with missiles. The Libertarians, however, are serious about eliminating both unnecessary programs and most of the taxes you and I pay to fund them.
Many conservatives confuse Libertarianism with anarchy. Let me point out that we have the greatest social chaos in those places where people rely the most on government, namely the inner cities and the Indian reservations. Republican politicians may talk a good game about traditional morality, but they are committed to maintaining the welfare and educational establishments that have done grave damage to this morality.
Reasonable people may disagree as to what constitutes limited government. It is safe to say, however, that if limited government is a cornerstone of conservatism, then conservatives must begin to look somewhere besides the Republican Party to find candidates who represent their beliefs.
Douglas F. Newman
Freely Speaking: Speeches and Essays by Doug Newman
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