In the continuing effort to read the Flash Report so you donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have to, Jon Fleischman got some considerable airtime and ink to comment on the flap between the Governor and talk show host Rush Limbaugh; earlier this week, on the Today Show, the Governor said something we liberals have known for a long time. That Rush Limbaugh is Ã¢â‚¬Å“irrelevant.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Indeed, there are websites dedicated to fact checking Limbaugh, whom as a talk show host never let the facts get in the way of a point he was trying to make.
FleischmanÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s commentary ponders the notion of whether ideologues are relevant, meaning of course, conservatives ones because anyone in the center to the left is already irrelevant in JonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s view.
In reading JonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s tortured responses on the Governor and in the questions floated by Limbaugh, it strikes me that conservatives really want to bring Arnold Schwarzenegger back into the fold as a true conservative. They crave Arnold to be a leader to their cause even though they are in the minority not only in the state but nationally. They whine over Democrats on the governorÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s staff, Democrats appointed as judges, and Democratic proposals that get the governorÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s signature without a single Republican vote. It’s also done in a “Come Back Little Sheba” way too.
What struck me from JonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s column today was this line:
Ã¢â‚¬Å“But it is important to understand that the entire issue of the proper role and function of the government at every level is inherently and ideological issue — simply because one of the main attributes of our American form of government is that we believe that the very role of government itself should be limited.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Hence my headline, words vs. deeds. The words Jon uses: limited government and personal liberty contradict the actions by Republicans in power.
Under conservative Republican governors in California (Reagan, Wilson, Schwarzenegger), the size of government has grown. Under Bush (41 & 43), Reagan, and Nixon, government grew. And under President Bush (43), government has taken a very active role in monitoring our phone calls, mail, Internet accesses and email, education (no child left behind), plus a number of civil liberties undermined by the Patriot Act. When Gavin Newsome began issuing marriage licenses to gays and lesbians, Government stepped in and put a stop to it. So much for the inalienable right to pursue happiness.
When Conservatives talk about limited government, it means freeing restrictions on businesses but not about having government attempt to legislate morality.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Ã¢â‚¬Â¦.the Governor should understand and respect that without careful consideration of the cost of a program in terms of erosion of individual liberty, and an expansion (even incrementally) of the government, we may be in danger of violating our charge to maintain a limited role for government in America.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Personal liberty? Except when it comes to issues like medical marijuana use. Or Gay marriage. Or accountability for government actions for things like the War in Iraq.
Jon doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have to worry about conservatives Ã¢â‚¬Å“violating their charge to maintainÃ¢â‚¬Â¦limited government.Ã¢â‚¬Â They already have.