Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Social Security ‘reform’ as elaborate distraction technique?

This article steps right up to the line to suggest that Rove and Co. have created the Social Security "crisis" for the purpose of sucking all the energy out of Democrats in their effort to fight it, all the while quietly passing other, disastrous legislation:
Yet as ugly as the Social Security debate has been for Bush and the GOP, it has served—perhaps intentionally—one salutary purpose: distracting Democrats while Republicans legislate, with ungodly brio, the rest of their agenda. Class-action reform, the bankruptcy bill, drilling for oil in the Alaskan wilderness: Republicans are teeing up pet legislation and knocking it down the fairway like Tiger Woods with a brisk wind at his back. “Without Social Security,” Grover Norquist, a Rove confidant and head of Americans for Tax Reform, told me, “this other stuff would’ve been the front line of battle. Instead, Democrats are holding us up on Social Security, while we get everything else we want done.”

Is this just a convenient post hoc explanation for Republicans, or are they really that smart? I'm inclined to think that it was initially the former, but they may now have realized that the longer they persist in the Social Security silliness, which seems doomed, the easier it will be to keep ramming their most-favored bills through Congress. Not a bad political strategy.

Permalink posted by Jonathan : 2:01 PM

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