BASEHOR, Kan. - The poor Republicans. They've been in such a hurry to run to the microphone to denounce anything that runs afoul of their cherished "no taxes, no regulation" ideology that they've neglected to notice that they're increasingly becoming irrelevant as a party of ideas. In a sign that those cracks are growing ever larger, Senator Tom Coburn, (R) Oklahoma, submitted a bill for consideration that would eliminate tax subsidies for the ethanol boondoggle, something that Grover Norquist, head of Americans for Tax Reform, said amounted to a tax increase.
Fareed Zakaria, in his recent Time Magazine opinion piece, wrote about conservatives' outmoded ideology, saying,
Consider the debates over the economy. The Republican prescription is to cut taxes and slash government spending -- then things will bounce back. Now, I would like to see lower rates in the context of tax simplification and reform, but what is the evidence that tax cuts are the best path to revive the U.S. economy? Taxes -- federal and state combined -- as a percentage of GDP are at their lowest level since 1950. The U.S. is among the lowest taxed of the big industrial economies. So the case that America is grinding to a halt because of high taxation is not based on facts but is simply a theoretical assertion. The rich countries that are in the best shape right now, with strong growth and low unemployment, are ones like Germany and Denmark, neither one characterized by low taxes.