Can Republicans still say they're the party of small government? | The Tylt

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Can Republicans still say they're the party of small government?

Republicans have always considered themselves the party of small government. This theory is laid out by writer Dennis Prager in a series of essays for The National Reviewdefining the difference between liberals and conservatives. 

This is such a significant difference that it might be said to be the defining difference between Left and Right. Without the belief in an ever-expanding state, there is no Left. Without a belief in limited government, there is no conservatism. Moreover, this difference is one that all people should comprehend in order to know whether they are on the right or the left.
The Left believes that the state should be the most powerful force in society. It should be in control of educating every child; it should provide all the health care for all its citizens; and it should supervise just about all other areas of society. There should be no competing power. As to the all-important question of how much government is too much government, I have never encountered a person of the Left who had an answer to that question.
The Left believes that the state should be the most powerful force in society.
Conservatives believe that the individual, not government, is the essential component of a good society. The government’s role in society should be limited to absolute necessities such as national defense and the resource of last resort to help citizens who cannot be helped by other citizens, private organizations, or charities.

This new memo lays out policies which would be some of the most invasive in this country's history. Looking past the obvious civil rights issues that will arise if the administration follows through on this plan, keeping track of the genitalia of every baby born in the United States is the very definition of big government. Per The Atlantic

Looked at another way, the policy could just as well raise objections among people concerned about “big government” and defending individual rights. Scientific implausibility aside, this is a federal agency proposing widespread genetic testing and keeping records of citizens’ genitals. This is a proposal by the government imposing an expectation that everyone look and act in one of two ways, and that everything in between is somehow not right—an aberration, an anomaly, a flaw, a problem, a disease—rather than a marvel of the natural world, a way that humans survive and thrive not despite but because of our complexity as a species.
Even those who believe a simplistic dichotomy does and should explain the world—regardless of the millions of people who exist as evidence to the contrary—should see reason to question the American-ness of government imposing such a rigid prescription on everyone.

Evan Greer, a queer activist, musician and writer, agreed in an essay for NBC News

Should the government be able to tell you what underwear to buy? Or what to name your children? Or how many times a day you can go to the bathroom? No. That would be invasive and wrong.
But under a new policy reportedly being considered by the Trump administration, the federal government would attempt to tell millions of transgender people like me not what we can do, but who we can be. It would attempt to tell us that, legally, we don’t exist — that in the eyes of the state, we are not ourselves.
It’s the ultimate form of government intrusion.

Many Republicans still define themselves by this small government ideology. 

So, from an ideological perspective, because we, Republicans, place the merits of the private sector and the power of the markets at the core of our political orthodoxy, we are actually better positioned to achieve more innovative ideas and creative policy solutions.
It is, in fact, Republicans who should be leading new ideas that leverage the private sector to achieve new and sustainable policy solutions. It is Republicans who should be advocating for innovative public-private partnerships that can efficiently and sustainably address the complexity of the challenges that we face.

Writer Drew Magary wrote in a 2017 piece for GQ that this administration is running perhaps the biggest government in the country's history, despite Trump's many campaign promises. 

[T]his goes beyond merely fattening the calf. If you think of Big Government as an echo of Orwell’s Big’s still here. In fact, it’s doing better than ever, thank you very much. Police have been gifted persondozers. ICE has been granted license to seize DACA recipients—Americans in everything but birthplace, just like Teddy Cruz!—and do as they please with them. States that legalized weed are in danger of being hounded by the attorney general and his band of narcs. Companies are politely stifling dissent against the administration and the government as a whole...This week, the Senate voted to spend $700 billion more on our armed forces (what the hell, Democrats?). Indeed, Congress’ main spending priority is not the welfare of American citizens, but rather the weaponry needed to keep those citizens—and citizens of other countries—in line.
Does this sound like a smaller government to you? Fuck and no, it doesn’t. That was just one of many lies sold to voters by both Trump and the Republican party. The GOP never wanted to reduce the power of the Federal Government. They just wanted to reduce the number of people who HAD that power. That’s how they can reform like the T-1000 every month to take away your prescription meds. They barely have to answer for anything, now that they’ve gerrymandered districts into balloon animal shapes and placed Double Dare obstacles in front of every blue district voting station.
Can Republicans still say they're the party of small government?
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