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Joe Wyatt: The GOP ghost hunt

As I sit by the campfire I enjoy the chill that is aroused by a scary ghost story, even though I’m no believer. That said, does anyone know exactly when Republican leaders turned their attention away from their constituents in order to hunt ghosts?

My staff has concluded that the GOP’s ghost chase began when the Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld administration sent troops to find non-existent WMD. Four thousand dead troops later — still no WMD, and no apologies.

When a Harvard-trained constitutional lawyer was elected president, the wraith pursuers descended out of the attics, lit their torches and grabbed their pitchforks. They charged ahead with furious certainty as they stalked the president’s Kenyan, socialistic, communistic, Muslim, gun-grabbing tendencies — which did not exist. Their efforts remain nonsense, yet they faithfully continue in hopes they will grab something real.

If the president is a commie, surely he is the worst one in history. During his presidency the stock market has more than doubled its value, we have added more than eight million jobs in the private sector while more than six hundred thousand have been lopped from the public payrolls. He almost singlehandedly saved the U.S. auto industry. Yet, the GOP has so solidly opposed each of the president’s capitalistic efforts, one wonders who the socialists really are.

Republican leaders are lost in the dark woods without a map, directionless except for the likes of Sen. Ted Cruz (R- Texas). He recently told a rapt audience that he wants to abolish the IRS. Really? He wants to be the first president to work for free?

Our own Rep. Shelly Moore Capito continues to embrace the GOP’s ghost hunt. She repeatedly votes for the Paul Ryan effort to make us better off by elimination of Medicare, as if the highly successful healthcare program with three percent overhead is a monster to be feared.

Recently, Rep. Capito tossed us this bucket of foolishness. “Families across America rely on balanced budgets to make ends meet, and our federal government must do the same,” she said with a straight face. But it isn’t true. Families spend more than they take in if they carry credit card debt, have a mortgage or make monthly car payments. It sounds good when Rep. Capito says it, but her words are flummery. With little flashlights on their heads, her listeners are led into a cave of bats, only to imagine that the U.S. with a balanced budget will automatically become Eden.

October computer glitches signaled an Obamacare “death spiral,” we gleefully were told by the folks at FoxNews. That expectation reached a dead end in March, with no confirmed sightings of any such otherworldly entity.

Endless inquiries about what happened in Benghazi have failed to locate the imaginary scandal that the Chair of the House Government Oversight Committee, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), had dreamed existed. Nevertheless Issa, who possibly graduated from the on-line College of False Earnestness, holds more hearings. There is the boring inquiry about the IRS. We know the tax agency gave special scrutiny to organizations with Tea Party in their names, same as it did to organizations with Progressive titles.

Is there a ghost of a chance that some thoughtful, responsible Republicans will step up and do something to make our lives better? Let the Discovery Channel folks creep around musty basements in hopes they will locate goblins that aren’t there. Let the GOP of responsible cooperation emerge from its underground vault. The sunlight will not vaporize it.

Joseph Wyatt is a

Gazette contributing columnist and a

Marshall University professor.


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