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Robert Reich: April Fools – OpEd


Con Mannity here. Shrink deficits! States’ rights! Stand up to Russia! Free Markets!  I’m a conservative from the old school, with a capital “Con.”  And I love Donald Trump because he’s sticking to the time-tested conservative beliefs I’ve been pushing on this show for years.

For Example, if there’s one thing we conservatives believe its that we’ve got to shrink the deficit.

[News bulletin: Trump and Republican tax cut will explode the deficit]

Huh? [agitated] Actually, a lot of people don’t understand this, but I tell people all the time… if the real conservative goal is to cut the deficit, then sometimes, maybe the best way to do that is to expand the deficit – so there’s more to cut!  Just think about that. …

Old school conservatives like me have other principles, too, that Trump is championing. States’ Rights! We conservatives hate having big government in Washington telling the states what to do.

[News bulletin: Trump and Sessions attacking California law legalizing pot]

Ok, I’m cool! [More agitated] When something bad is going down, like hippies smoking grass, that’s more important than states rights. I hate hippies, don’t you?  And hate is a basic Republican principle. …

Back to Basics! You can’t trust Russia.  Which is why Republicans came out against Obama’s New Start treaty with Moscow, and complained that Obama wasn’t doing enough to deter Russia in Ukraine.  We have to get those bad-guy Ruskies and teach em’ whose boss!

[News bulletin: Russia helped Trump win election.]

What? Russia helped Trump? [Wildly agitated] I mean, one thing I know, Trump’s the boss, so Russia helping him get elected is teaching ‘em who’s boss.

Finally and not the least – basic conservative principle – free trade! Government, bad! Free markets, good!

[News bulletin: Trump starts trade war.]

Okay, we’re back. [He’s now upside down] It appears that  everything is upside down. But that’s okay.  As long as we stay just…like…this… I’m still a conservative. I’m still Con Mannity, and this is still Rox News.

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Robert Reich

Robert B. Reich is Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley and Senior Fellow at the Blum Center for Developing Economies. He served as Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration, for which Time Magazine named him one of the ten most effective cabinet secretaries of the twentieth century. He has written fifteen books, including the best sellers "Aftershock", "The Work of Nations," and"Beyond Outrage," and, his most recent, "The Common Good," which is available in bookstores now. He is also a founding editor of the American Prospect magazine, chairman of Common Cause, a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and co-creator of the award-winning documentary, "Inequality For All." He's co-creator of the Netflix original documentary "Saving Capitalism," which is streaming now.

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