The Slippery Slope Of Conservative ‘Values’on September 26, 2012 at 10:16 am
There’s this neat trick that conservatives do in their brains; they separate the consequences of their policies from both the real world and from each other. What I mean is, a conservative will call for cutting food stamps to “save money” but ignore the reality that children and adults that lack proper nutrition have poorer health and those costs far outstrip the “savings” from cutting food stamps in the first place. Further, children lacking proper nutrition grow up developmentally stunted and are more likely to be low income citizens in need of government assistance, leading to a rise in crime when that assistance is cut by conservatives. This is a 2+2=4 situation but conservatives are incapable (or unwilling) to do the math.
Keeping this in mind, I give you Rep. John Kavanagh (R-Fountain Hills), chairman of the House Appropriations Committee in Arizona.
Arizona, as you probably know, is a paradise of conservative ideals. They’ve run rampant punishing the poor for the excesses of the rich, they’ve pushed abstinence only courses in schools and have passed some of the most restrictive anti-abortion laws in the country. To Kavanagh’s surprise, this has somehow lead to an increase in births paid for by Medicaid. The Arizona Republic quotes Kavanagh as saying, ”I had no idea that the number had grown to that ridiculous level. That’s shocking and depressing.”
But don’t worry! He has some definite ideas about how to solve this dilemma:
Kavanagh wondered if Arizona was being too generous with the benefits, but said he’d need to look into it further. “If we compared these figures to 20 years ago or 10 years ago and we corrected benefit levels, do we have a difference?” he asked. “If the difference is truly caused by giving more people access to AHCCCS, then it could be a political question.”
And there’s the disconnect. Arizona has cut social services, all but banned abortion and made sure that people are uneducated about contraception. And when the birth rate among the poor spikes as a result, Republicans think about how to stop helping those people they put into that situation in the first place. I’ll bet my left foot that if you were to ask Kavanagh if Arizona’s regressive sex ed. and abortion policies had anything to do with the problem he would deny it with his last breath.
This is what makes conservativsm so dangerous: they only look at the ideology, not the reality and certainly not how their “solutions” interact to compound the problem.