Friday, June 08, 2007

David Brooks - a Hamiltonian Liberal?

While lauding himself as a "Hamiltonian conservative", David Brooks today finally admits the only thing separating himself from "big government liberals" is... methodology.
We Hamiltonians disagree with the third group, the mainstream liberals, because their programs haven’t worked out. Retraining programs for displaced workers have flopped. Tax code changes to reduce outsourcing are symbolic. Federal jobs programs aren’t effective. Moreover, the high taxes you need to pay for these programs sap the economy. There’s now a pile of evidence showing that higher taxes mean reduced working hours. In the face of Chinese and Indian competition, we don’t need Americans working less.
Which is presumably why he endorses programs like... expanded funding of education, and free, quality daycare for single parent homes - today adding free nurse practitioner visits to somehow help "stabilize" those families? And talks about how much better off we would all be if only parents loved their children more?

Today, in addition to adding reforms often requested by the political left, such as increased portability of health care and retirement benefits, Mr. Brooks adds this populist element to his "big government" agenda:
National service should be a rite of passage, forcing city kids to work with rural kids, and vice versa.
This would be what? The billionth call for mandatory national service by somebody who has never participated in any form of national service, and wouldn't have to participate in the program he espouses?

Ah, but liberals are often accused of hypocrisy by the likes of Brooks, and as we just established....

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