Conservative Republicans Are War Socialists

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Michael Lind, a Beltway leftist, gets the conservatives exactly right in his latest article in Salon:

Few conservative Republicans confess to their policy of military Keynesianism. As long as they are out of power, Republicans theatrically pose as fiscally conservative enemies of big government. If the GOP recaptured Congress or the presidency, however, Ron Paul would be locked in the attic again and Paul Ryan’s plans for downsizing the federal government would be shelved in a locked cabinet in one of those secret government warehouses depicted in “The X-Files” while even more money was shoveled at the Pentagon….

The U.S. economy increasingly resembles the dual economy of the Soviet Union, with an overfunded military sector and a chronically weak, dysfunctional civilian sector. Like the Soviet Union in its decline, we are bogged down in an unwinnable conflict in Afghanistan. The Soviet system was supported to the end, however, by Soviet military and intelligence personnel and defense factory workers and managers. Their equivalents exist in America. Conservatives are not being irrational, when they ignore the civilian economy while fostering the military economy that provides orders and jobs to many of their constituents. Theirs is the logic of Soviet-style conservatism.

Out of power, the Republican Party preaches Ron Paul-style libertarianism. In power, the party practices Martin Feldstein-style military Keynesianism and military socialism — and Hank Paulson-style financial sector Keynesianism and socialism.

Read the whole article, and thanks to Javier Ramirez.

11:28 am on September 19, 2010