Guest column repeats a list of divisive cliches

AuburnMay 12, 2013 

The most remarkable thing about Martha Pierce’s recent attack on Republicans (Republicans need to clean house, May 6) is that a paper as reputable as The Olympian chose to publish it.

Pierce says the Republican Party is “on life support.” Really? Republicans control the U.S. House, a majority of governorships and a majority of state legislatures, yet we are in need of resuscitation?

Pierce claims that Republicans are “held hostage by” the John Birch Society, California “Movement Conservatives,” Tim Eyman, Joseph Schumpeter, Herbert Hoover, Andrew Mellon and ideas from the 18th and 19th centuries. Never mind that enlightenment-era thinkers, Austrian economists, and the long-defunct John Birch Society have absolutely nothing in common.

Pierce offers up all the typical cliches. Supply-side economics don’t work. Republicans value war over diplomacy. Republicans only care about the 1 percent.

Here’s a fact: President Barack Obama recently signed a bill making the vast majority of George W. Bush’s “supply side” tax cuts permanent. Another fact: 82 House Democrats, and a majority of Democratic senators, supported the war in Iraq, and only one Democrat in Congress voted against the war in Afghanistan. And one more fact: the wealthiest ZIP codes across America, the 1 percent, are voting for Democrats. And yet the myths persist.

Neither party has a monopoly on virtue or wisdom. Ms. Pierce may not agree, and that is her right. But The Olympian has no obligation to print divisive, insulting opinions which are completely unsupported by facts or analysis.

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