Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Zombie-Eyed Granny Starvers; Greedy-Handed Kiddie Slavers

Conservatives are reaching new depths in their insistence upon outright cruelty to children and old people. Some version of the meme has always been part of the conservatives' creed, but it's getting worse.

Everyone remembers Charles Pierce's famous labeling of Paul Ryan as a "zombie-eyed granny starver" in August 2012 in the run-up to the presidential election for Ryan's proposals regarding Social Security and Medicare in his "budget." Pierces' reaction:
Paul Ryan is an authentically dangerous zealot. He does not want to reform entitlements. He wants to eliminate them. He wants to eliminate them because he doesn't believe they are a legitimate function of government. He is a smiling, aw-shucks murderer of opportunity, a creator of dystopias in which he never will have to live.
Conservatives' fondest dream
And most people remember Newt Gingrich's November 2011 proposal that schools fire their janitors and hand brooms to kids enrolled in the free lunch program, a recommendation subsequently echoed by Rep. Jack Kingston (R-GA) as recently as December 2013.

For reasons beyond my comprehension, a commitment to absolutely no redistribution of wealth is important to many conservatives. I am thinking of an old friend of mine who used to say, "TANSTAAFL," an acronym from possibly the 1930s made famous by s/f author Robert Heinlein in 1966. You could almost see my friend raise his index finger in the classic gesture of quoting a wise proverb... at least I think it was his index finger... as if the acronym were holy writ.

In any case, "no redistribution" is absurd: the very people who advocate it loudest are the same people who would be howling in outrage if it were enforced upon their wealth. Look, folks: the whole friggin' world is a free lunch. Life is a free lunch: you didn't earn it, it just happened to you. For most wealthy people, wealth is a free lunch: that's the consequence of living in a society that legally protects most inheritance from parents to children.

So don't give me that "TANSTAAFL" nonsense! And stop starving grannies and slave‑driving children, right this minute!

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