04/14/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Grassley and the Chorus of Doubt

How is it possible to disprove anything more thoroughly than Supply Side economics, and all its attendant Laissez Faire excesses, have been disproved, at nearly the cost of the nation? How then can Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) still peddle the notion that Obama's tax proposals miss the mark?

If the century through which we just lived was not a complete fiction, Grassley's statement that Obama's "plans fail to recognize that Americans are not an endless source of tax dollars to pay for government spending. The president's proposed budget raises taxes,", should not be worthy of even repeating. If it was not tax dollars, deferred even as they were, that added a trillion dollars to the U.S. deficit prior to Jan. 20, 2009, then Grassley assumes, and the press assumes, that the public is as it was eight years ago, complacent, uninvolved and disinterested.

I would remind Grassley that the outcome of the last two election cycles were not accidents. Having seen a misrepresented and mismanaged war, a disastrous disaster relief effort, and more recently an economic cataclysm, the American public knew full well for what and whom they were voting in '06 and '08. And they also knew full well who it was they were voting against.

The very idea that the GOP can repackage or tune the Republican message in order to recapture the government is absurd. Their only hope is doubt. They are all, as Grassley is, sowing doubt. The opposite of hope. Even worse, the opposite of what they pretend to represent, the self reliant, indomitable persona of Ayn Rand's fictions. Grassley, literally, paraphrases Ayn Rand with the statement "Tell these business owners their taxes will go up. They'll cut spending. They'll cancel orders for new equipment, cut health insurance for their employees, stop hiring, and lay people off." In case you don't remember your Ayn Rand, the creative geniuses that create all the wealth, will, if taxed too much, just quit. Ok tough guys, go ahead and quit over 3%. You won't mind if I call you a "girly man" will you?

Go ahead and quit, because you can be replaced. There is on average 10% difference between you and 80% of the population. One in ten thousand Americans can, if the opportunity presents, do what J. Robert Oppenhiemer did with the Manhattan Project. Maybe not today, but sooner than you would like to expect.

In a word, we don't need you. There are people ready, willing and able, to take your place in a matter of days. And in this economy, ever more urgently. Take you money and leave, put it in a hedge fund and your replacement will then use it to build a better and more responsible world, a world in which leadership in both business and government will give at least a modicum of attention to the welfare of the system which supports their efforts, this country, its economy and its people.

So the same chorus that shouted down doubt about the wars, the doubt about looming housing and credit debacles, the doubt about abrogating sworn duties to uphold the Constitution, is now sowing doubt in order not to help the nation, but to further the cause of those who, when control was theirs, chose to bring us more nearly to our knees than did all the might of two warlike Germanys or a Soviet Russia.

It is hard not to conclude that Republicans, as the party is now constituted, are more potent an opponent to American providence than were the last century's rival superpowers.