The Nanny In Chief

That’s the title of Andrew Sullivan’s new essay in Time magazine subtitled “Bush thinks he knows what’s good for you, and he’ll spend money to prove it”.

It should come as no surprise that Bush is no libertarian. His rhetoric is full of talk about liberty, and limited government; but his actions indicate he wants the government to control many personal choices and to spend like a Kennedy. This has many people, like Sullivan, who support the war but also genuinely believe in limited government scratching their heads about whether his irresponsible actions are worse than those the likely rival will perform (especially constrained by a Republican congress).

I suspect that Bush will win in any case, but I wish he would consider that he might be costing himself more votes than he’s buying himself with his profligate spending and his religion-guided domestic policy-making. The fans of these policies are unlikely to change their votes because of it, while the critics are seriously considering it.

I also wish he’d consider that the money and liberty he’s using to buy re-election via policy are not rightly his to dispose of. But, I know that’s not the area of morality he cares about.


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