with Ralph Nader
The National Press Club on Sep 4, 2014
Consumer advocate Ralph Nader and anti-tax activist Grover Norquist spoke on issues where the left and right can come together at a National Press Club luncheon on Sept. 4, 2014.
Like ravenous beasts of prey attacking a weakened antelope, the forces of subsidized capital and their mercenaries sunk their fangs into the United Auto Workers (UAW) and its organizing drive at the Volkswagen factory in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The UAW narrowly lost – 712 to 626 – and the baying pack of plutocrats exalted, as if they had just saved western civilization in the anti-union, lower-wage South.
History never repeats itself exactly. But it makes some pretty decent copies. As I write this on March 29, 2011, we are winding down to the end of the so-called “debt-limit crisis,” or the possible end, or the continuation of it, or what have you. Of course what is going on is not really about the debt-limit. It is about the future of the federal government in the United States and its appropriate role. As I wrote in my BuzzFlash@Truthout Commentary on Grover Norquist’s wet dream his 25-year campaign is focused only at the secondary level on taxation. It is primarily about his stated goal of “shrinking the federal government to the size of a bathtub and then drowning it in the bathtub,” or as he used to more simply state it: “starve the beast.”
You know Grover Norquist. He’s the Washington insider who figured prominently in the movie about Jack Abramoff, “Casino Jack.” Grover Norquist of the “cut taxes/shrink government” mantra that has so informed GOP politics for so many years, the mantra has become the rallying cry of that GOP front known as “The Tea Party.” Grover Norquist who used to (and he has been around for many years) talk about “starving the beast” — “the beast” referring to any Federal government programs that serve the interests of the people as a whole not just the ueber-corporate interests that Grover Norquist serves. Grover Norquist who more recently told us that this aim was “shrink the Federal government to the size of a bathtub and then drown it in the bathtub.” It is that Grover Norquist who is just having a grand old time now.