Fromma Harrop in an article entitled The Progressives' Freedom Agenda has this to say about Rick Perry.
The third week in July, Republican Gov. Rick Perry said that the U.S. Constitution -- whose 10th Amendment limits federal power -- gives states the right to decide on such matters as abortion and gay marriage. The fourth week in July, the Texan recanted. He now supports a federal ban on abortion and gay marriage. Social conservatives told him they didn't cotton to giving states the right to defy their views on things they care about.Here is one example I totally agree with.
Perhaps it's time for progressives to pick up the freedom banner that was so quickly dropped in the mud of Republican primary politics. Here are examples of intrusive state and federal government, ripped from the headlines:
--"Authorities Seize $800 Million Worth of Pot in California." Last month, federal agents said they had uprooted $632,000 worth of marijuana plants in Mendocino National Forest. The raid also picked up 38 guns, 20 vehicles, trash, chemicals and 40 miles of irrigation lines in what's supposed to be a repository of nature in Northern California. The growers are said to be Mexican-based drug traffickers who threatened hikers.Yeah. The Right is strictly for the Constitution except when it interferes with their plans.
So much wrong with this picture. If marijuana were legal, there would be no associated garbage in our national forests. It would grow freely on American farms. Thousands of drug traffickers would be put out of business, and the taxpayers would save the billions they spend on eradicating a natural plant.
Law enforcement officials have a habit of overstating the size of their drug seizures, but suppose the pot pulled up in the Mendocino National Forest raid were sold legally and taxed? Harvard's Jeffrey Miron, who specializes in drug war economics, told me that the state and federal government could have "plausibly" collected $250 million to $300 million on this haul "if regular taxes were collected at all stages of production, transportation, etc." That number might be large, he added. Some economic activity in growing pot, such as fertilizer, is already taxed. "But still, some non-trivial fraction would be collected in taxes."
And Rick Perry? Ten months ago, he said that medical marijuana was OK for California but not for Texas. But he said the same thing about New York state and gay marriage, before the social conservatives revised him.
What did Thomas Paine say about "summer soldiers and sunshine patriots" abandoning principle for political expediency? Rick Perry couldn't hold firm for one lousy month.
Let me add that I do not believe for a moment In the Left's "Freedom Agenda". But they are excellent at marketing and they might just win the next election (or at least reduce their losses) with this stuff.
Cross Posted at Classical Values