In his book, Buck Wild: How Republicans Broke the Bank and Became the Party of Big Government, Cato Institute scholar Stephen Slivinski details how the former home of fiscal conservatism has become a bastion for big spending and big government.
Far from being yet another liberal slam of conservative policies, Slivinski wants to see the Republican party actually live up to the principles espoused by the likes of Milton Friedman and Thomas Sowell.
Slivinski details why GOP politicians have been so anxious to join the Democrats in supporting a larger government and bloated budgets. There are numerous reasons, but it essentially comes down to one word – power.
Republicans have become more interested in power than principle. Slivinski explains why this is dangerous for the GOP and the nation and what we have to do to correct the problem.
He looks at the history of the party and how it abandoned the policies that brought it to power and heroes who have championed the cause of fiscal conservatism.
My favorite quote about the book comes from P.J. O’Rourke:
Buck Wild does more than reveal what’s wrong with the Republicans. It reveals what’s wrong with us, the voters who put them in office. Politicians are foxes. But we insist on believing that some are guard dogs. We elect them to watch the hen house, and on the first Wednesday in November there’s nothing left but feathers.
Politically, the GOP has fed and encouraged the welfare mentality problem in America instead of educating the public about why government programs are not the answer to their problems. They would rather bring home the bacon, than trim the fat.
I would love to read this book and go after my elected officials armed with all the facts and statistics presented by Slivinski. If you get a chance, pick this book up. If you have the extra money, buy me one too. I’ll take a hand-out from a private citizen, just not the government.