Commentary
5:00 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Richard Crowson: The Cost Of Campaigns

Among the many great mysteries of life for me is this one: political candidates who loudly proclaim themselves to be conservative, all the while gleefully flushing handfuls of thousand dollar bills down the toilet.

One of the tenants of conservatism that is usually most loudly touted is this one: diligent watchfulness over the spending of every dollar.

Indeed, with the rise to prominence (if that’s what you want to call it) of the Tea Party, tight-fisted fiscal obsessiveness is practically the defining trait of conservatism.

And yet what do we have? Campaigns all over the country where conservatives are duking it out for political office against one another. Spending thousands here, millions there, rock-ribbed Republican gladiators pummeling one another with sacks of money bigger and heavier than Sarah Palin’s make-up bag.

These are supposed to be our society’s vigilant guardians against wasteful spending. But somehow they see no contradiction in their own willingness to gush thousands upon thousands of dollars just to convince voters that they are one billionth of a millimeter more conservative than the other candidate.

Here in Wichita we have just such a race going on. A local super ultra maxi-conservative is engaged in a campaign against another mega gargantuan right-wing icon.

The only difference between them being that one has a knee that jerks to the right a half nanosecond quicker than the other.

They are expected to spend thousands in this race over virtually nothing at all.

All the money wasted in such races could be enough to make a difference in so many disabled veterans’ lives, or in countless neglected children’s nutrition, or in struggling domestic violence victims’ recoveries.

The next time one of these conservative candidates start baying about fiscal responsibility, they should consider watchdogging their own spending.