Fiscal conservatives and the ironic lead

Now and then prominent Republicans will have public financial troubles.  When these reach the newspapers, the intrepid scribes that construct the stories invariably setup ironies by noting the Republicans in question are known to be ‘fiscal conservatives.’

And this is a bit of an insipid game.  Recently in Minnesota the state Republican party was in arrears on rent for their state headquarters, and also had a rolling operational debt of some significance.  That’s not flattering, obviously, but the suggestion of the typical ironic article lead – that the state Republicans are ‘fiscal conservatives’ – is supposed to imply that the Republicans are hypocrites.  It follows then, if you are attuned to the joke, that their overall message of low taxes and governmental spending is invalid.

I don’t see how there’s a logical path to get you there.  As I say, insipid.   However, there is this example in the last few days.

http://www.startribune.com/politics/statelocal/240963271.html

Too-shay, article writer guy.  You have harpooned some irony.  Under the circumstances, I don’t see how you can be Nienow and have any credibility as a ‘fiscal conservative’.

It’s a short newspaper story, but there are some nuggets therein that are kind of incredible.  By which I mean, not credible and rather fantastical.  And by fantastical, I would take the ‘fan’ part from ‘fantasy’.

I’m just spitballing here.   Not saying, just saying.  But note:

The business that got the loan, now in default, ostensibly ‘helps parents select a camp’.  Um, ooookay.   This is a job?  This is a white collar professional service business?

Maybe that answers itself, eh.  Whatever this business is, it doesn’t generate revenue in an amount to pay the monthly payment on the $600k SBA loan.  Which was like $7k a month.  I’m thinking if it did generate $7k a month, you wouldn’t take out an SBA loan at all.  You’d just live on your $7k a month.

There are several more inferences you can speculate about given the fantastical details here, but I’ll limit myself to what I’ve already puzzled about.  Suffice it to say, a Republican who has used an SBA loan this awkwardly is not credible enough to be a leader within the state GOP.

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3 thoughts on “Fiscal conservatives and the ironic lead

  1. PM

    I have to agree with your large point–what is this guy doing in a leadership position?

    (I also have to ask, following up another of your points, what kind of weird capital requirements would a company like that really have? Sounds to me like the only investment you need to make that kind of a consulting deal work is a website,)

    Of course, there is another popular meme about conservative politicians–the family values guys who are not (personally) very family value oriented (David Vitter comes to mind, as well as a host of televangelists).

    See, that is the thing–people assume that if you support a public policy based on fiscal conservatism, that you would also, personally, act as a fiscal conservative. If you suggest that the governments budget woes are like a family budget (you don’t spend more than you make, which we all know can work well on a personal or family basis, but is total BS for a corporation or for a country), then your family budget ought to follow those guidelines that you espouse–or else you really do appear to be a hypocrite–advocating a set of principles (for others) that you do not apply to yourself.

    All of that is ironic, and appropriate to point out.

    Reply
    1. Erik Petersen

      I dunno. Maybe he hadn’t previously revealed himself to be a fringy character. This reveals it though. It walks like a duck.

      One thing for me – you know, I am ostensibly a Republican. But I don’t donate, and I don’t go caucus. With the fringy characters – and I am thinking Daudt at the moment now, but there are typically 5 or 6 you can reel off at any time – it’s personally difficult in Minnesota to take that extra step and formally be a Republican. Too much weirdness.

      Yes, the family values thing is the other half of that hypocrisy, certainly in terms of the newspaper articles I am putting my finger on.

      Reply
      1. PM

        The family values thing seems to me (totally unscientific personal impression here) to be far more prone to that hypocrisy/irony thing, because i do think that the people who really feel compelled to openly/publicly/loudly avow “family values” (generally concerns about people having too much sex of the wrong kind) often have hang ups of their own about sex. This is, of course, especially true for those televangelists.

        I am ostensibly a democrat. I have tried to do the caucus thing several times and always felt repulsed by the process and (some of) the people. Too much posturing about silly issues that make no sense (nuclear free zones, anyone?). Hey, I get it that people want to make statements about issues that are important to them, but lets please stick to statements.

        I do make contributions to politicians (strategically, because they are willing to support a cause/institution that is near and dear to my heart) of both parties, and i have friends who work in both parties.

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