Bringing In The Big Guns

by digby

I missed this. My God.

Call it a pipe dream come true: When members of the Conservative Working Group held their weekly strategy meeting on the Hill on Tuesday morning, they were joined by none other than Joe “the Plumber” Wurzelbacher, who had come to offer his thoughts on the economic recovery bill.

The Senate staffers who showed up at 9 a.m. for the closed-door meeting refused to leak the contents of their discussion with the tradesman-cum-strategist, but Wurzelbacher himself revealed that the advice they soaked up was just good, old-fashioned “common sense.”

Wurzelbacher opposes the stimulus and said he questioned why the government can’t just cut its bills like other people do. He also advised staffers to take a harder line on the legislation: “Republicans on the Hill are afraid of saying too much,” he noted.


Wesley Denton, communications director for Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), whose office coordinates the group, said, “I think staffers were happy to have him there and hear his perspective. He’s an interesting person for staffers to hear from, and it certainly helps us get an understanding about how the stimulus debate is playing out in the country with regular folks.”

Right. You get a sense of how it's playing among dittoheads like JoeSam, which really doesn't require bringing somebody up to capital hill. All they have to do is tune in to talk radio and listen to their Dear Leader. And what they are saying is total bullshit.

Today, he was up on Capital Hill holding a "live hearing" and interviewing members of congress for his new gig as a journalist. And he aked Sherrod Brown a question which I think, sadly, is not actually all that uncommon for many Americans and not just dittoheads:

I mean, I cut cable when I realize that I’m not making enough money to cover my bills, I use coupons. Shouldn’t we expect the government to cut some programs?

This is a problem. Nobody has made it clear that the problem isn't caused by the government being broke and loose talk about the immediate need for "fiscal rsponsibility" isn't helping to dispel that.

Obviously Joe is a moron. But I've heard this from other people who I don't consider to be morons. Tax cuts have been sold as the magical elixer for everything so they don't question them (and nobody wants to question free money) but the idea that the government needs to spend directly when the economy is crashing does seem counterintuitive to a lot of people.

The president does a good job of explaining it, but I'm afraid that the Democratic pundits and liberal gasbags on television don't. Unfortunately, the gasbags have now shifted into constant questioning about how we'll know if it works and the Republicans are already ahead of the game fanning out all over TV to say that if the economy gets better it's in spite of the stimulus ( it's just the usual rebound of the business cycle) and if it gets worse it's because of the stimulus. I'm not saying that people will believe that, but it seems to me that it's always a bad idea to let conservative propaganda go unrebutted. It has a way of creeping into the ether until it just "rings true" at which point it's very difficult to turn back.