Wednesday, October 25, 2006

One Reason We Are Where We Are Today

I present to you this excerpt from David Brock’s excellent book, “The Republican Noise machine.” It really helps to explain why we are hearing about some of the social arguments involving government that we have been for the past few decades, and more so since the Republicans took control of just about all of it. They have had an organized long-term strategy begun in the ‘70s to achieve the position they’re in today. We’ve seen what they want to do to Social Security. They want to divert the money going into it into the risky stock market (“personal investment accounts”), without explaining where the money that’s supposed to go into Social Security will come from. Keep in mind (and this is not conspiracy talk, just a simple fact) that you and I are not the prime beneficiaries of heavy investment in the stock market, the multi-millionaires and their friends (the politicians who made the millionaires’ enjoyment of their money better thanks to lower taxes) are. This excerpt shows how the wealthy conservatives invested some of their money along the way.

Because the mission of the think tanks is construed as “educational” under the federal tax code, millions of dollars in, essentially, political contributions are deducted every year as charity. The beneficiaries of this largesse – Heritage, AEI [American Enterprise Institute], and a labyrinth of media-focused imitators – began to transform the media landscape for conservatives in the mid- and late 1970s. The debate on government regulation and social spending was being reframed; liberal programs and proposals were targeted for discrediting; and conservative strategies for dismantling so-called Big Government were being widely touted in the press – deregulation, school vouchers, tort reform, supply-side economics, the property rights movement, medical savings accounts, and new military programs like missile defense – all hatched and test-marketed in this sweeping privately funded public relations campaign.

David Brock is CEO and founder of Media Matters for America.

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