So, his current column in Newsweek magazine is an eye-opener.
This George W. says President George W., bug-killin' Tom DeLay, and Republicans in the House and Senate are NOT conservatives! He then marshals a column's worth of facts to back his argument.
For a few conservatives, the accumulation of discontents may have begun building toward today's critical mass in December 2001 with the No Child Left Behind law, which intruded the federal government deeply into the state and local responsibility of education, grades K through 12.Then, there's this:
Agriculture subsidies increased 40 percent while farm income was doubling. Conservatives concerned about promiscuous uses of government were appalled when congressional Republicans waded into the Terri Schiavo tragedy. Then came the conjunction of the transportation bill and Katrina. The transportation bill's cost, honestly calculated, exceeded the threshold that the president had said would trigger his first veto. (He is the first president in 176 years to serve a full term without vetoing anything. His father cast 44 vetoes. Ronald Reagan's eight-year total was 78.) In 1987 Reagan vetoed a transportation bill because it contained 152 earmarks pork costing $1.4 billion. The bill President Bush signed contained 6,371, costing $24 billion. The total cost of the bill $286 billion is more, in inflation-adjusted dollars, than the combined costs of the Marshall Plan and the interstate highway system.Interestingly, Mr. Will gets right to the heart of the matter of the problem: lobbyist money that has corrupted Republicanism and ripped away its facade of conservatism:
DeLay's troubles, and his party's, may multiply with coming revelations about the seamy career of uber-lobbyist Jack Abramoff. He is emblematic of DeLay's faux conservatism K Street conservatism. That is Republican power in the service of lobbyists who, in their K Street habitat, are in the service of rent seekers interests eager to bend public power for their private advantage.Isn't this bending of "public power for their private advantage" what Bush, DeLay, Abramoff are all about?
Since 2000 the number of registered lobbyists in Washington has more than doubled, from 16,342 to 34,785. They have not been attracted to the seat of government, like flies to honey, for the purpose of limiting government.
These are Charlie Boustany's benefactors and political mentors. Will he renounce the corruption that has paved his path to a seat in Congress?
Unless and until Congressman Boustany does so in a public and demonstrable way (like giving back the money that came from PACs influenced and/or controlled by DeLay and Abramoff), we are left to believe that the Congressman approves of the corruption that is at the heart of his party's control of the House of Representatives, the Senate and the White House.