Economic Cycles

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Santorum’s Greatest Hits

with 10 comments

***Updated 3 times at the very bottom***

I have been asked why I believe Santorum is more collectivist and authoritarian than many on the Left. All you have to do is listen to Santorum’s own words. Then, check his record. Let’s start with some great quotes by the man himself:

“They have this idea that people should be left alone, be able to do whatever they want to do, government should keep our taxes down and regulations low, that we shouldn’t get involved in the bedroom or in cultural issues. That is not how traditional conservatives view the world.”

“One of the criticisms I make is to what I refer to as more of a libertarianish right. You know, the left has gone so far left and the right in some respects has gone so far right that they touch each other. They come around in the circle. This whole idea of personal autonomy, well I don’t think most conservatives hold that point of view.”

So far, those are my two favorite Santorum quotes. Clearly he is not apologetic at all for his anti-individual, pro-collective views. Let’s now turn to his record:

The Club for Growth wrote a little bit on Santorum’s dismal voting record a few years back:

“Some of those high profile votes include his support for No Child Left Behind in 2001, which greatly expanded the federal government’s role in education. He supported the massive new Medicare drug entitlement in 2003 that now costs taxpayers over $60 billion a year and has almost $16 trillion in unfunded liabilities. He voted for the 2005 highway bill that included thousands of wasteful earmarks, including the Bridge to Nowhere. In fact, in a separate vote, Santorum had the audacity to vote to continue funding the Bridge to Nowhere rather than send the money to rebuild New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. In the 2003-2004 session of Congress, Santorum sponsored or cosponsored 51 bills to increase spending, and failed to sponsor or co-sponsor even one spending cut proposal. In his last Congress (2005-2006), he had one of the biggest spending agendas of any Republican — sponsoring more spending increases than Republicans Lisa Murkowski, Lincoln Chafee and Thad Cochran or Democrats Herb Kohl, Evan Bayh and Ron Wyden.”

Then we have the classic Red State roundup of Santorum’s big government record here.

Michael Tanner of National Review had this to say about ol’ Rick:

“He never met an earmark that he didn’t like. In fact, it wasn’t just earmarks for his own state that he favored, which might be forgiven as pure electoral pragmatism, but earmarks for everyone, including the notorious “Bridge to Nowhere.” The quintessential Washington insider, he worked closely with Tom DeLay to set up the “K Street Project,” linking lobbyists with the GOP leadership. He voted against NAFTA and has long opposed free trade. He backed higher tariffs on everything from steel to honey. He still supports an industrial policy with the government tilting the playing field toward manufacturing industries and picking winners and losers.

I could fill this entire blog with commentary about his voting record. Those quotes above are from a quick Google search. If you want the Cliff’s Notes, take a good look at Red State’s post. Otherwise, use your Google machine to dig into his voting record.

Now Santorum again in his own words:

In this video Santorum likens government to the family and maintains the position that people have an obligation to the collective just like they have an obligation to family members. He states that individuals are not responsible for themselves, but to everyone else as well. Unlike the standard Conservative view, he doesn’t believe in personal responsibility. He believes in collective responsibility. He repeats over and over that people should work “for the common good.” Even the Leftist interviewer points out that “working for the common good” is seen by many as a “little pink, a little socialistic.” Santorum disagrees.

Here is Santorum’s tirade against individualism (sorry Ayn Rand). By the way Rick, there is a society that believes in individualism. It’s called America. David Boaz of the Cato Institute then goes on to rip Santorum for being so openly against liberty and freedom.

Here Rick explains that he has “real concerns” about the Tea Party:

Rick defends SOPA here because our rights and freedoms are limited and should be regulated.

I could go on here, but I think I’ve made my point. Never in my life have I witnessed a GOP candidate for any office so openly hostile to the fundamental ideals of liberty and freedom. He does not believe that individuals have inalienable rights that cannot and shall not be infringed by government. In fact, he believes the exact opposite: that whatever rights we have are ours to keep only if government can’t find a good reason to undermine them (take a look at his SOPA answer again if you don’t see that). He most certainly does not believe in “limited government,” but rather, “limited freedom.”

That makes him a collectivist of the worst kind – precisely because many people don’t believe he is.

UPDATE: Santorum doesn’t understand basic economics. Lots of great quotes from the Cato Institute here.

UPDATE II: Reason Magazine nailed it way back in 2005: America’s Anti-Reagan Isn’t Hillary Clinton. It’s Rick Santorum.

UPDATE III: Ari Armstrong makes the case over at the Objective Standard that Santorum is just another big government collectivist. Here’s a small dose: “While Santorum claims to invoke the Founders, his views are diametrically opposed to theirs. The right to the pursuit of happiness is one of the “unalienable rights” the Founders sought to protect in creating America. That’s why it’s specified in the Declaration of Independence.”

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Written by jlongo12

February 8, 2012 at 11:17 am

10 Responses

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  1. I was going to post a very intelligent reply that explains a lot of what was being said by adding the context that you’re missing – that is, until I read your “what is this all about” page and saw that you’re a libertarian and have thus drunken the R-love(upside down)-lution Kool-Aid, which pretty much means you’re impervious to reason.

    It’s all good brother.

    I thought you were an Obama fan at first.

    bgddyjim

    February 8, 2012 at 12:10 pm

    • Sorry to disappoint you, but I’m no Ron Paul fan either. I choose the same candidate every election cycle – me. I choose me to run my own life. There is no other person on the planet that can run my life better than I can.

      Sorry you feel differently.

      jlongo12

      February 8, 2012 at 12:23 pm

      • Actually I don’t feel all that differently, the problem is that somebody has to run the country while we’re running our lives – a president is a necessary evil, unless you want Congress to run the country (but I already know better than that). Unfortunately Tim Pawlenty dropped out.

        bgddyjim

        February 8, 2012 at 12:51 pm

  2. Jim was going to post an intellegent comment until he realized that it is easier to post ad hominem arguments than to post intellegent comments.

    Todd

    February 8, 2012 at 3:17 pm

  3. I think Mr. Santorum is addressing the unfortunate fact that the vast majority of citizens cannot handle the burden of personal responsibility. Unpopular as it my be in our self absorbed society, responsibility includes individuals and a web of interconnected societies. The pure Liberatatian view is an awesome philosophy …..if…. you can handle the incredible responsibility that comes with that mantle. We witness daily the abject failure of individuals that are unwilling or unable to differentiate between right and wrong. Whereas from the pure Libertarian view, there would be no wrong because otherwise you would be trampling on personal freedoms. That is a recipe for anarchy, and that is why the Constitution calls for LIMITED GOVERNMENT. It’s a sad state of affairs to realize that the bar of this great nation has been lowered to such a point that we digress from a constitutional republic form of governance to the Utopian concept of “Self Whateverance”. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is framed from a societal perspective not the amoral and lawless expression of self that unfortunately validates our rapid decent into the anarchy fueled Occupy Movement. We are at a cross roads in our republic and we can all agree that the current administration is a detriment to our country. Mr. Santorum may challenge our deeply held beliefs that all people can handle true freedom, but sadly most cannot accept the tremendous responsibility that is granted with this ideal.

    “Our greatest happiness does not depend on the condition of life in which chance has placed us, but is always the result of a good conscience, good health, occupation, and freedom in all just pursuits.”
    Thomas Jefferson

    rab4us

    February 8, 2012 at 7:45 pm

    • “We witness daily the abject failure of individuals that are unwilling or unable to differentiate between right and wrong.”

      In the history of man, this has been and will always be the case…. There is no left OR right version of Utopia.

      Jay_C

      February 14, 2012 at 11:11 am

  4. Just another diatribe by yet another anarchist loser.

    Wit House

    February 9, 2012 at 12:20 am

    • Are you trying to make a point or are you just providing a personal example of anarchist loser?

      rab4us

      February 9, 2012 at 7:51 am

  5. “but like any freedom, there has to be regulation…”

    Cognitive dissonance much?

    Joel Aigner

    February 26, 2012 at 9:25 pm

  6. BTW, in terms of being a Ron Paul supporter has it occurred to you that many of us “support” Ron Paul simply out of the desire to make sure that the spotlight on the principle of Liberty itself is as bright as possible.

    It does the cause well to have him be in as many debates, on as many t.v.’s, in as many living rooms, as often as possible, with the most amount of people watching?

    Wouldn’t you agree?

    Joel Aigner

    February 26, 2012 at 9:29 pm


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