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December 10, 2012
What Does Let It Burn Mean?
As one of the first, if not the first, people to say Let It Burn, I’m clearly thrilled with the growing chorus of voices joining the movement.
Like any movement, there are true believers and Let It Burn In Name Only (LIBINO) types. Since it’s never too early to purge a movement of its impure elements, let us lay out some key principles of Let It Burn.
1- America isn’t a conservative country anymore and hasn’t been for a while. Yes, you can point to lots of surveys that show people identify themselves as conservatives and they even say government should be doing fewer things.
The fact is, a conservative country doesn’t “accidentally” elect Barack Obama twice. It doesn't continue to send Democrats to the Senate who voted for ObamaCare and force the GOP to run as the saviors of Medicare.
People want the ever expanding welfare state, they simply don’t want to have to pay for it. They are happy to pretend they can “ask the rich to pay a little more” (it won't work) or to pile on debt for some generation to be born later to pay for it. What they are very clear about in their votes is...”don’t you dare touch my “free” stuff”.
One foundation of conservatism is to see the world as it is, imperfections and all, and not the way we wish it to be. Unless we can admit the reality of the country we are living in, Let It Burn makes no sense.
If you think we're just one or two tactical moves and a great candidate away from political victory, you're not in the Let It Burn camp.
2- Gabe and several commenters yesterday wondered, why isn’t Bob Corker’s “tax cuts now, entitlements later” idea consistent with Let It Burn?
The answer is simple: It’s a deliberate action is based on doing several things- raising taxes and then magically reforming entitlements.
Even if the GOP managed to "win" this standoff with Obama by generating more revenue through tax reform than hiking tax rates, who cares? We don't have a revenue problem, we have a spending problem.
“Let It Burn” is about inaction. There’s no point in trying do anything that avoids going over the fiscal cliff/sequestration. Remember, the deal that got us to this point was agreed to by House Republicans, Senate Democrats and signed by Obama. That’s as bi-partisan as it gets. I’ve heard from squishy low information voters, Obama and the media that “bi-partisan problem solving” is the Holy Grail of politics. Well, here it is.
Will it lead to massive disruptions? Yes. That’s the point. The current system is rigged against conservative. We should play no part in its perpetuation. If you can’t win the game, concede and start new one. That’s the heart of Let It Burn.
This isn't some petty "I lost so I'm taking my ball and going home" tirade. This is what people want. It's simply not sustainable. If we can't stop them, we don't have to continue to enable them either.
What Podhoretz should have done is challenge any Republican to argue against Kritol’s analysis. That can’t be done in a serious way.
We need to start disassociating conservatism from the GOP. We’ve tried it for 30 years. It hasn’t worked.
We’ve tried to save the country from the folly of expanding liberalism and the country said, “we don’t want to be saved”. Let It Burn just means letting them have what they want and rebuilding later.
After 2010 I had some hope that we might be able to turn this massive welfare state around. The full implementation of ObamaCare means that isn’t going to happen. At least not absent a total collapse of our fiscal house of cards.
The sooner it burns, the sooner we can try and rebuild.
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