The Republican Party has spent decades attempting to paint themselves as the party of “fiscal responsibility,” despite having driven our nation into a recession through rampant deregulation and crippling the middle class with their empirically ineffective fantasies of “trickle down economics“. President Obama has done an incredible job bailing out the ship, but the GOP refuses to stop rocking the boat.
Now, a survey of sixty-two economists conducted by the mouthpiece of the one percent itself, the Wall Street Journal, indicates that the biggest threat to the American economy is in fact the Republican Party’s
brinkmanship tactics legislative terrorism. Not Chinese market turmoil, or the Greek debt crisis, but politics at home is the most volatile factor threatening our economy right now: “After watching Congress repeatedly crash into fiscal deadlines in recent years, a majority of economists are expecting a repeat performance, with 55% of respondents to the latest Wall Street Journal survey of 62 economists predicting that there will be some disruption to the economy and financial markets in the months ahead.”
Year after year, the Republicans in Congress have driven our nation to the brink, and then point fingers at President Obama when the economy fails to grow fast enough- when it is their political instability slowing growth in the first place. The WSJ reported that “about 77% of economists in the survey believe these clashes have dragged the economy down in recent years, including 14% who believe that fiscal uncertainty has been one of the primary reasons that the U.S. economy has grown so slowly since the end of recession.”
We all remember the dark days of 2012, when Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and his Tea Party allies shut down the government over Obamacare and wild doomsday hyperbole of the “fiscal cliff,” wasting millions of taxpayer dollars over an ideological standoff. We may have to go through it once again. Despite assurances from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) that he will not allow another shutdown over the budget, his ability to control the nihilistic fury of Cruz and his rabble of Tea Partiers is very questionable.
And once again, the Republican have chosen an ideological whipping boy for this next round of standoffs- Planned Parenthood. Ted Cruz and the far-right wing extremists in Congress have vowed to shut down the government once again unless Planned Parenthood is entirely defunded- even though the federal funds going to Planned Parenthood are used solely for contraception and women’s healthcare.
This report just confirms the fact that the Republican Party no longer has a place in American politics. They’ve given up even a cursory interest in governing, or working to improve the lives of the American people, but are entirely willing to tank our economy in order to fight a losing battle in the culture wars. It’s astonishing that the so-called party of “fiscal responsibility” would play around with our economy so recklessly- some might even consider it treason. There’s even a 10% chance that it would plunge our nation into another recession, but apparently they would rather see our nation burn than allow women to make their own choices about their own bodies.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.