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Jim Hightower
NationofChange / Op-Ed
Published: Wednesday 21 September 2011
Prince Rick warns the commoners that big government is bad, bad, bad — because it intrudes into their lives, forcing things like Social Security and Medicare on them.

More Perry Tales

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Image: NationofChange

It’s bedtime, children, so put on your jammies, scootch under the covers, and I’ll tell you another “Perry Tale.”

Once again, the Texas-governor-who-wants-to-be-your-president is flitting hither, thither and yon — spreading little “Perry Tales” about his record. The bonny prince is trying to make it to the big White House in Washington. It’s a bit of a strange quest, because he calls the Capital City “a seedy place,” and he tells the commoners in the land that he hates — nay, deeply loathes! — the very government that he wants to head.

With his tea party hat carefully positioned atop his bounteous crop of perfectly coifed hair, Prince Rick warns the commoners that big government is bad, bad, bad — because it intrudes into their lives, forcing things like Social Security and Medicare on them.

Strangest of all, though, this prancing prince of privilege would not be where he is without the steady “intrusion” of big government into his life. From first grade through college, his education was paid for by local, state and federal taxpayers. He was even a cheerleader for the government-run college he attended. Also, as cotton farmers, he and his family were supported with tens of thousands of dollars in crop subsidies from the pockets of national taxpayers — a big government “intrusion” into his pocketbook that he wisely avoided condemning at the time.

Then, after a brief stint in the federal government’s Air Force, the perfidious prince hit the mother load of government largesse: political office. He’s been hunkered down there for 27 years and counting. In addition to drawing more than a quarter-century’s worth of monthly paychecks from Texas taxpayers, including $150,000 a year as governor, Prince Rick also receives full health coverage and a generous pension from the state.

Wait, there’s more — he gets $10,000 a month to cover the rent on a luxury suburban home, a flock of personal aides and even a state-paid subscription to Food & Wine magazine.

So, children, the moral of this Perry Tale is to ignore the prince’s hypocritical hype — and look at what he actually does. When he says he intends to make government “as inconsequential as possible,” he means in your life, not his.

And now, Rick the Right-wing Sprite is sprinkling fresh fairy dust across the land in an effort to soften his earlier screed against America’s Social Security program. During the past couple of years, in the heat of his lusty romance of the rowdy tea party crowd, Perry has wooed and wowed those who hate government by offering passionate denunciations of Social Security as “a Ponzi scheme,” “a monstrous lie” and a “failure.” The national retirement program, he thunders, violates the Constitution’s “principles of federalism and limited government.” His unequivocal message was: Kill it!

But — oops —- now in hot pursuit of the GOP presidential nomination, he’s learned that even most Republicans wince at his macho wackiness on a social program they support and millions of them use. A CNN poll in August finds that 57 percent of Republicans want no major changes in Social Security. Why? Because, despite the Ponzi-scheme Perry Tale, it works.

So, the red-meat tea partier who had savaged the program has suddenly turned into a senior-hugger, offering a revised, gentler Perry Tale. In this one, he never, ever meant to abolish Social Security. Nay, Perry now says with a pixie twinkle, he only wants to stimulate “a legitimate conversation in this country about how to fix that program.”

If you’re not sure what “fix” means, ask your dog.

Perry might heed the blunt words of another Republican, who was twice-elected to the White House, Dwight Eisenhower: “Should any political party attempt to abolish Social Security ... you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can (abolish it). ... Their number is negligible, and they are stupid.”

Until our next Perry Tale, goodnight children, and sweet dreams.



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ABOUT Jim Hightower
National radio commentator, writer, public speaker, and author of the book, Swim Against The Current: Even A Dead Fish Can Go With The Flow, Jim Hightower has spent three decades battling the Powers That Be on behalf of the Powers That Ought To Be - consumers, working families, environmentalists, small businesses, and just-plain-folks.

Blast Dorrough's picture

The point that I feebly tried

The point that I feebly tried to make is that we're at about that time in history when a strong leader [Jefferson] was elected following a similar "Reign of Terror" as the one that we experienced under the lawless Cheney-led Bush White House of thieves. However, Jefferson immediately recognized and branded the "Alien and Sedition Act" as a "libel on legislation, which under the form of a law, was for some time placed among them." President Obama has more or less overlooked the "libel on legislation" under W. Bush, i.e., The Patriot Act, The Faith-Based Initiative designed to pander votes of "Christians"sponsored on taxpayer funds and wars designed not only to plunder of U.S. revenues and resources but the resources of Iraq and Afghanistan. Not to mention their organized crime designed to steal the "wealth" of the U.S. working class, small business owners and the retired Seniors of those classes, all under the guise of legitimacy to the egalitarian and economic injury of the noted American classes---the real economic backbone of the United States. Not to mention the Corporate communist capitalists, as in Chinese communist capitalists of cheap labor, who have outsourced U.S. technology, jobs and manufacturing base to China and elsewhere out of greed, leaving some 50,000 manufacturing plants useless. The Bush perversion of our Constitution was done with impunity in mockery of Rule of Law. The Corporatecrafter and their hireling congressional aiders and abetters on-going sabotage our constitutional Republic is done with impunity. Whether President Obama has the political courage to do what is true, good and right for our constitutionally mandated "Republican Form of government" now under usurpation by the Corporatecrafters, their congressional hirelings and supporters remains to be seen. Under similar circumstances true statesmen have risen to the occasion. Jefferson did. FDR did. We shall see.

Blast Dorrough's picture

I love to read the words of

I love to read the words of truly informative writers in the ilk of a Jim Hightower. Such writers bring true meaning to the phrase: "The pen is mightier than the sword", or mightier than the legislative evil of the congressional hirelings of the Corporatecrafters united with evil, demonic Christiancrafters. It is a wonder that such parasitical reprobates have a voter base at all. The evil Corporatecrafters have yet to earn a single dollar of their vast wealth that is not tainted by their greed, corruption and sabotage of our constitutional Republic. The following quotes evidence that the ink was not dry on the Constitution when the Corporatecrafters united with demonic Christiancrafters began to re-usurp their lost political power after the American Revolution. Bear in mind, that the Revolution was not only fought against the evil of Kingcraft, but the evil of Corporatecraft and demonic Christiancraft as well:

"Nothing need be said to illustrate the importance of the prohibition of titles of nobility [meaning the "titled" greedy persons of wealth and imagined nobility, hereditary privilege and "entitlement" to plunder the world's revenues and resources at will with impunity]. This may truly be denominated the corner stone of republican government; for so long as they are excluded, there can never be serious danger that the government will be any other than that of the people." ---Alexander Hamilton, Federalist Paper 84, May 28, 1788, while arguing against the Bill of Rights petitioned for by The People who rose en masse against ratification of the proposed constitution without their demanded in effect bill of prohibitions. It is no accident that the very first words of the First of Ten Amendments to the Constitution known as the Bill of Rights read: "Congress shall make no law RESPECTING an establishment of religion." That prohibition necessarily includes not respecting the influence of religious dogma in matters of government and civil matters. This was the original "new Guard" uprising ordained by the Declaration of Independence.

"It is but too true that we have a sect [of demonic Christiancrafters] preaching up & pouting after an English constitution of king, lords, & commons, & whose heads [of Corporatecrafters masked as "Federalists"] are itching for crowns, coronets & mitres." -- Thomas Jefferson Letter of June 19, 1792 to Thomas Paine.

"What an effort, my dear Sir, of bigotry in Politics & Religion have we gone through! [Making reference to the kingly rule of the John Adams' presidency known as "The Reign of Terror" that was limited to one term by the election of President Jefferson in 1800]. The barbarians really flattered themselves they should be able to bring back the times of Vandalism, when ignorance put everything into the hands of power & [Christian] priestcraft. All advances in science were proscribed as innovations. They pretended to praise and encourage education, but it was to be the education of our ancestors. We were to look backwards, not forwards, for improvement, the President himself [Adams in pander of the Christian vote] declaring in one of his answers to addresses, that we were never to expect to go beyond them [demonic Christiancrafters] in real science. This was the real ground of all the attacks on you. Those who live by mystery & Charlatanerie, fearing you would render them useless by simplifying the Christian philosophy,--the most sublime & benevolent, but most perverted system that ever shone on man, -- endeavored to crush your well-earnt & well-deserved fame....It is with heartfelt satisfaction that, in the first moments of my public action, I can hail you with welcome to our land, tender to you the homage of it's respect & esteem, cover you under the protection of those laws which were made for the wise and good like you, and disdain the legitimacy of that libel on legislation [the unconstitutional Alien and Sedition Act of which the ill-named Patriot Act of today is a statutory clone], which under the form of a law, was for some time placed among them. -- Thomas Jefferson Letter of March 21, 1801 to Dr. Joseph Priestley. Apparently, W. patterned his "presidency" of evil after the Adams' evil "Reign of Terror."

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree with you!!!

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree with you!!!

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree with you!!!

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree with you!!!

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree with you!!!

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree with you!!!

Throughout the Arab world it

Throughout the Arab world it seems the lower classes have finally been pushed down so far that their only chance for survival is to revolt and move up. If Perry and others get their way it will happen here. Obama, I believe, has his heart in the right place, but he doesn't rule by decree. The tea party is the last of the upper middle class being fooled into thinking the top class actually gives a damn about anyone but themselves. Until we all realize we're in this boat together we'll still be fighting among ourselves for whatever bones the rich deem to allow us. Now is the time to stand together with Obama (for want of a better leader) and let the rich know we won't be pushed any farther down.

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree

Amen to JohnJohn...I agree with you!!!

I also agree with Jim

I also agree with Jim Hightower...he is a former neighbor of mine from Denison, Texas...he graduated from high school with one of my sisters and our Moms were dear friends!

I agree with JohnJohn!!!

I agree with JohnJohn!!! Well written

Mr. DePass: I think you're

Mr. DePass:
I think you're missing the point. It's not that attending public school should prevent one from criticizing government. Rather, it is the sheer hypocrisy of benefitting from government largess while seeking to destroy it. It's the hypocrisy of the Tea Party selectively allowing benefit to corporations as the expense of the middle class.

I wish the "Tea Party" had

I wish the "Tea Party" had the influence you folks ascribe to it. And just what corporations do you perceive are controlled by the "Tea Party?" GE? And who in the world do you think works for all those evil corporations if not the middle class? For the record, I don't think corporations should pay any tax. After all, only people pay taxes, and any taxes paid by corporations are simply passed on to people who buy their products and services. I was "Tea Party" long before Rick Santelli suggested we ought to have another "Tea Party." God bless 'em. They will probably be the salvation of the country--if it can be saved.

What planet do you live on?

What planet do you live on?

Not only does he foist

Not only does he foist Medicare and social security on us, he also loathes our load of teachers, firemen, police, and local officials. If I still lived in Texas, I would be tempted to set fire to his hair brush and see who he calls to douse the flame.Thanks. Judy Woodard.

An excellent article, but who

An excellent article, but who is reading it and who is paying attention? I chose to leave the USA for good when Ronald Reagan was elected President. This is a decision I have never regretted. I have raised my daughter in Europe and she speaks three languages fluently and two others with less proficiency. I have a small retirement and when I found out that my social security, which I earned in the USA, would be cut in half because I receive a foreign retirement, I was not pleased. Then I found out that the first Bush pushed this decision through congress with little or no objection as so few Americans get a foreign retirement. I paid into my European retirement with foreign currency that I earned in Europe. What does one have to do with the other? Nevertheless, I have to be content that I receive anything at all because I have come to expect nothing but injustice from the USA. If Perry is elected, and I think he will be, it will only reinforce my belief that the USA is a dysfunctional country with only a few really decent people. I tried to convince my daughter to go for her graduate education in the USA. She decided that she just didn’t like America. She said everyone is only for themselves i.e. there is no social consciousness. I never said that to her and she realized this on her own. With Perry as President, I can only imagine that all social awareness and consideration will go by the wayside and the rich will prevail. I thank the country I live in everyday that we have socialized medicine and it is wonderful!!!

I can't imagine Perry being

I can't imagine Perry being elected it would be the American people biggest blunder and I think the American people are a little smarter than that but wait they did elected Little Bush to two terms, where do you live I may have to move.

Perry is the chosen one. Like

Perry is the chosen one. Like Obama, selected and groomed to play their parts in the grand charade. Le dans du roi. Bush on one side, Obama in the middle and Perry on the right - two clowns and a pickle and not a waiter in sight.

There's nothin' for it it boys, but to run for the hills ... Perry is coming! Wish it could be otherwise, but we've all let it get too screwed up ... too out of control .... too much greed and too much power in obscene hands. That honest men must blush when they mention the names of our leaders ... and the plight of the people.

Perry is coming, that's for sure ... but something else is also coming. It is not a miracle or a promised Messiah, Mahdi or Superman. It is the slow but sure awakening of a great mass of people as a result of both the distressing times we're living in, and the growing use of the the internet and cell phone media to spread consciousness ... not just idle twitter.

I believe that that Consciousness will peak around about the time of the Elections and we may all yet be surprised. So be of good faith ... for it is Hope that is coming and bringing with it, real Change ... from the people up - not from the top down.

i heard ralph nader explain

i heard ralph nader explain it all in a nutshell last year when asked abt obama's job so far and he said that when you pick the least worst of the 2 parties , what you wind up with as president is the worst of the two parties and will continue to do so as long as you limit your choice in this direction - this coming from the first person to take down a corporation for putting dangerous cars on the road and advocating for the public's well being - by the way , why is it that no one other than congressman paul is advocating on the side of our constitution as our guide to good gov't and what of these citizen politicians being held accountable to the oath they all swore to uphold the constitution of the united states - where is the penalty for this violation or have we all become cowardly sheep - my vote would have to be for the man or woman who's only needed platform woul be to stand on his or her record of abiding by our constitution - this is a better indicator of character and civic duty than all the bs i've heard coming from these reptiles that the media circus gives voice to

I agree Jim that Perry rates

I agree Jim that Perry rates high on the scale of hypocrisy. The only talent he has is working the commission system you folks have in TX that oversees the various public-private partnerships in the governor's favor. He appoints his major donors to head many of these commissions. The Dallas Morning News had a great series of articles about your ETF fund. I am not certain on the spelling, however it is designed to promote technology start ups (new companies). Nothing wrong with that except for the way that it has been run. All of what you included in your piece is factually correct. Great job.

how many times can you

how many times can you mispell scary? in caps no less

I wish Texas-native writers

I wish Texas-native writers like Jim Hightower would also remind folks that Texas has a weak governor form of government, which gives the governor little power or management experience. And we all know how putting a weak governor into the presidency is bad for this country, thanks to George Bush. Also, I agree with Dorian Brown about Obama (and scarey Perry) and the need for an independent challenger.

I have been told that Perry

I have been told that Perry has never lost an election and has a magic rabbit's foot. Scary.

Personally I am not a Perry

Personally I am not a Perry supporter, and I must say this article is not as vaccuous as the one Chris Hedges wrote about 9/11 heroes, but it is definitely a competitor. I knew the name Hightower sounded familiar--you're the guy Perry beat for Agriculture Commissioner. How clever of you not even to reference that in your article. Now, you think attending a public school should prevent one from criticizing big government? It's fortunate for Texans that Perry beat you!

Required reading.

Required reading.

jussmartenuf's picture

Right on Jim. Blow this

Right on Jim. Blow this phony's cover. Thanks for your diligence. I am a supporter and subscriber of the Lowdown. I want you to run for the Senate!

Mr Hightower, You are

Mr Hightower, You are absolutely correct that you are dealing with an extremely stupid egomanical person in Mr Perry. And, I appreciate your pointing that out. But, would you please keep it to yourself until he gets the Republican nomination? It will not be sufficient to defeat Michelle Bachmann. She can be dismissed as just too stupid to win. Mr. Perry actually represents the Tea Party philosophy and can articulate it. Defeating him is necessary to destroy this movement. Of course, they are making a nice effort at destroying themselves, but Perry needs to represent the Tea Party philosophy and be shredded in debates to put the final nail in the coffin.

No surprise that this guy

No surprise that this guy lies and lives his life off the public taxes while hating and making up stories about how bad government is. Ask him to return his salary, benefits and luxurious living as Gov. He is such a clown or buffoon that our comedy clubs must be having a ball! Why would all these corporations and others be giving him millions of $'s to support his election if he didn't work for them? Thank you for this great article, Jim.....you tell his story so well.

Corporation give him money

Corporation give him money because he's a buffoon that can be used to their benefit. He's a yahoo from the back woods that learned to use the system for his own benefit, He's like GW to the extreme., He can be bought but like he said not for 5000 dollars but a hell of a lot more he's dangerous, he wont be elected he wont even be the nominee, Americans have had enough of Texas style government at least I have and if the unthinkable should happen and he does get elected then America wont be America any more.

what a useless screed. mr. h

what a useless screed. mr. h neglects to tell us that mr. perry beat his ass in an election twenty years ago. perry is leading in the race for president; h is writing a column. gee, taxpayers paid for perry's education.....surely grounds for him not to be presiden???

I can't beleive, we found a

I can't beleive, we found a fool that defends Perry are you kidding me is your Cool Aid spiked! Truth is truth you can't get away with that, he is an idiot and if you vote for him and you defend all the garbage he says then your and idiot also but in this America we leave in even idiots have the right to vote.

Nobody is responding because

Nobody is responding because we all know Hightower is right and he says it all so much better than the rest of us.

Laura, you said it!

Laura, you said it!

I was really hoping that

I was really hoping that Michelle Bachmann would be the candidate of choice for the tea bag nation. I really just wanted to see her in a debate with Obama. It would, I imagine, be something akin to Mike Tyson taking on a 14 year old schoolgirl in the ring. But governor haircut will probably be good enough.

I like your style!!!

I like your style!!!

Jim Hightower. You are a very

Jim Hightower. You are a very creative writer and this is an excellent article.
Why is noone responding to it? Perry is SCAREY! He is a stupid, scarey, self-centered politician who needs to be kept from being elected POTUS! Obama has failed us miserably and most US citizens do not want him to win the 2012 election but Perry is SCAREY! Keep writing Jim Hightower and write about a democratic or Independent challenger strong enough to beat both Perry and Obama.

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