Michael Tomasky said it well, in "The Lies and Lunacy in Tim Pawlenty's Economic Plan", "The Republicans have lost any connection to earth, and the Democrats are afraid (with a few noble exceptions) to tell the American public the truth."
It is in this context, that perhaps we shouldn't be entirely surprised that among the notable celebrated likely serious contenders for the GOP Presidential nomination are Santorum, Romney, and Gingrich. Santorum is so far right-wing that he's been known to make other conservatives nervous. Romney is best known for a plan from which he's desperately trying to disassociate himself and claim it wouldn't be good for the country. And Gingrich has that remarkable contradiction of championing the "Defense of Marriage" while himself going through wives like tissue during cold-n-flu season.
In a nutshell, the GOP is running a bowl of mixed nuts.
Ah, but there's Pawlenty, right? For quite some time, most of what we heard about Pawlenty was that he might be a bit boring ... that he lacked charisma. Perhaps he's not so boring after all. He's put forward a "plan" that's more or less total fiscal insanity. That's some exciting stuff. You can't be entirely boring when you put forward a plan that ridiculous. Then again, it does rather come across as the natural extension of the direction in which Republican policy has been heading.
As Tomasky put it,
"The lie, which one hears from Republicans on cable television on a daily basis, is that “we spent our way into this crisis.” Yes, federal spending has gone up significantly in the last decade. But increased spending wasn’t as decisive as decreased revenue. The truth can’t be said often enough: We did not spend our way into this crisis; we de-taxed our way into it."If folks take that lie and base their world around it -- around the madness that cutting taxes would always be good and couldn't possibly be the real cause of deficits -- then they're going to come up with some really absurd plans.