THE BLOG
10/31/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

The GOP Regulatory Debacle Was Presaged All Along

Today on my blog I am doing a serial examination of the crisis in terms of Republican complicity, the coming congressional races and the need for an Obama landslide. The excerpt below is self explanatory.

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OK, rolling up my sleeves. Here is where you can find html and PDF renditions of recent Party Platforms. Dig away. All the statements below are direct quotes from the years noted.

In 1960, the Republicans seemed reasonably sane:

Use of the full powers of government to prevent the scourges of depression and inflation.

...

... continued active enforcement of the anti-trust laws, by protecting consumers and investors ...

Shall we say that in. 1964, the mood began to change?

This Administration has violently thrust Federal power into the free market in such areas as steel prices, thus establishing precedents which in future years could critically wound free enterprise in the United States.

In 1968 they veered back toward sanity:

To qualify for jobs with permanence and promise, many disadvantaged citizens need special assistance and job training. We will enact the Republican-proposed Human Investment Act, offering tax credits to employers, to encourage such training and upgrading.

1972:

We will continue to pursue sound economic policies that will eliminate inflation, further cut unemployment, raise real incomes, and strengthen our international economic position.

1976:

We believe that liberty can be measured by how much freedom you have to make your own decisions -- even your own mistakes. Government must step in when your liberties impinge on your neighbor's.

1980. Dawn of Reaganism:

The emergence of policies and programs which will revitalize the free enterprise system and reverse the trend toward regulation is essential. To sustain the implementation of such policy, it is necessary to raise the public awareness and understanding that our free enterprise system is the source of all income, government and private, and raise the individual's awareness of his or her vested interest in its growth and vitality.

1984: Reaganism Triumphant:

The flood of regulation has stopped.

1988: Globalism Fantasies:

On every continent, governments are beginning to follow some degree of America's formula to cut tax rates, loosen regulation, free the private sector, and trust the people.

1992: The neocon formula is announced:

Presidents Reagan and Bush turned our Nation away from the path of over-taxation, hyper-regulation, and mega-government. Instead, we moved in a new direction. We cut taxes, reduced red tape, put people above bureaucracy. And so we vanquished the idea of the almighty state as the supervisor of our daily lives. In choosing hope over fear, Americans raised a beacon, reminding the world that we are a shining city on a hill, the last best hope for man on earth.

1996: A muted Bush-league chorus:

This is what we want for America: real prosperity that reaches beyond the stock market to every family, small business and worker. An economy expanding as fast as American enterprise and creativity will carry it, free from unnecessary taxes, regulation and litigation.

2000 -- Bush 2 Begins:

... a steadfast commitment to open markets, to minimal regulations, and to reducing taxes that snuff out innovation -- principles at the heart of the new economy and our party.... The old liberal approach -- using the threat of stifling regulations to redistribute wealth and opportunity -- will work no better than it ever has, and perhaps much worse, in the new economy.

2004 -- Best Laid Plans:

America's economy is the strongest in the world, and it is getting stronger thanks to lower taxes, fewer burdensome regulations, and a focus on encouraging investment. Our goal is to make sure America remains the strongest economy in a dynamic world ...