Hatch and Grassley Have Been in the Senate for Seventy-Eight Years Between Them and Do Not Understand Basic Economics

Your Republican Party at (what they call) work.

Which is pretty bad, besides the fact that they’re elitist, classist and silly old ninnies.

Grassley, senator from Iowa since 1981 and in Congress before that for 3 terms, powerful chairman of several committees over the years, said this about the estate tax:

“I think not having the estate tax recognizes the people that are investing,” Grassley said, “as opposed to those that are just spending every darn penny they have, whether it’s on booze or women or movies.”

Proving that Grassley should be retired from public service to play Mr. Potter in live versions of “It’s a Wonderful Life”  His comment is profoundly stupid and yet also massively disgusting and should illustrate that he is the arrogant, elitist, establishment swamp that so many people in Iowa voted for Trump to eliminate.  Taken at face value he’s asserting that there are people who would be benefiting from repeal of the Estate Tax but they’re spending too much on “booze or women or movies.”  How expensive are movies in Iowa?  Or women?

[As Philip Bump has calculated it would take buying 310,697 fewer bottles of liquor to qualify for the present estate tax.]

So Grassley is saying that 99.8 percent of Americans lead contemptible lives of waste and folly, while only that remaining sliver of the extra-wealthy have shown the virtue that should win their heirs the ability not to pay taxes on the fortunes bequeathed to them.

Orrin Hatch, senator from Utah, who used to pretend to be friends with Ted Kennedy, has been in the senate since 1976.  That’s 42 years and 7 terms in the senate. The senator from the Church of Latter Day Saints said this about spending on CHIP (and other safety net programs):

“I have a rough time wanting to spend billions and billions and trillions of dollars to help people who won’t help themselves, won’t lift a finger, and expect the federal government to do everything.”

As Paul Waldman writes, this is what these people actually believe, it’s not spin for their base.  Both of these guys are too old to fake compassion anymore, if they ever had it at all it’s gone the way of testosterone, decreasing to undetectable levels.  They hold the majority of their constituents in contempt and apparently only respect their donors, who are virtuous because they have made fortunes.  Anybody who relies on the government (hm, like Hatch and Grassley?) are lazy losers.

But once again, their beliefs here are not only Darwinian throwbacks to Dickensian attitudes, they betray complete ignorance of basic economics after a collective 78 years in what has been not ironically referred to as the world’s greatest deliberative body.

If they grew mutton chop sideburns and said these things in 1817 we could ignore the mustiness of their utterances, but they’re still deciding matters for this country that they are way, way, way too out of touch to decide for anybody.  (Ex.: see women’s bodies.)

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