Why Democrats Have Not Cut Off the War's Funding

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Why don’t liberals
ever suggest that the government lower taxes after a war is over?

I have watched
liberal politicians for 50 years. I have never heard one of them
call for tax reductions after a war. Always, they say, “Now let’s
spend the money that the IRS collected, plus the money we borrowed,
on the poor. Don’t lower taxes.”

With whatever
money the public was willing to pay to fund the war, the Democrats
want to spend forever: to seek votes of the poor and votes of guilt-ridden
middle class liberals.

This is
why you rarely see liberals vote against a war
. They love what
war does: it expands the level of taxes that voters will accept.
Then, when the war goes sour — and only then —
they call for peace. They don’t call very loudly. The only way
for Congress to get peace is to cut off the funding
But Democrats refuse to do this because they hate tax cuts more
than they hate war.

Jim Wallis
is typical. He calls himself a radical Christian. He campaigns as
a defender of peace. That is all to the good. But he does not send
out letters telling his donors to call on Congress to stop the war’s
funding immediately. That would alienate his Democrat donors and
his contacts on Capitol Hill, who are unwilling to do anything this
controversial. Instead, he calls for an end to the war on these
terms: the government gets to keep all the money that went for the
war, permanently, in order to give to welfare bureaucrats to spend
on the poor (after deducting their salaries and overhead).

Liberals have
done this ever since 1945. The result? Ever higher Defense Department
spending, and not much welfare spending by comparison.

Liberals are
incurably nave. They think the U.S. government will quit spending
on war-related items just because a war ends. But military spending
always goes up. Liberals never do get their hands on most of the
post-war loot. They do not learn from experience.

It was President
Eisenhower, a Republican, who warned in his farewell address against
the military-industrial complex. His successor, John F. Kennedy,
won the election in 1960 because he said there was a missile gap
between the USA and the USSR. (There wasn’t, and he
knew there wasn’t during the campaign

With this as
background, listen to Wallis’s
March 28, 2007 appeal to his supporters

Congress to Pass a Moral Budget. Congress is deciding on the outlines
of this year’s federal budget. At stake are billions of dollars
for working families and poor children in the United States and
around the globe.

For years
now, people of faith have been fighting bad budgets that prioritize
tax cuts and military spending over social supports for the poorest
in our society. This year, Congress has an opportunity to pass
a budget that puts people first.

Tell your
representative to vote for a moral budget that honors our commitment
to “the least of these”!

is a saying among some fundamentalists, “Once saved, always saved!”
Wallis has rewritten it: “Once taxed, always taxed!”

2, 2007

North [send him mail] is the
author of Mises
on Money
. Visit http://www.garynorth.com.
He is also the author of a free 19-volume series, An
Economic Commentary on the Bible

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