In case there was any confusion
Modern conservatism is, at its core, still a grievance industry. They don’t believe that all Americans pay too much in taxes – in fact, it is a common conservative complaint that many Americans pay no federal income taxes, though they still pay federal payroll and excise taxes as well as state and local income, sales, and property taxes.
Many of the entries on the We Are the 53% Tumblr are indeed admirable – stories of working multiple jobs, serving in the military, and so on – but the whole project is fused with a sneering “Get a job, you hippies” mentality (this is not an exaggeration). You would think that the reason we currently have 9.1% unemployment and a 16.5% U-6 because of left-wing laziness and not, say, poor sales.
Suzy Khimm points out the problem with these complaints: the tax cuts passed under Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush helped to push many lower-income Americans off the federal income tax rolls. A Republican Party so single-mindedly inevitably focused on lowering tax rates tend to lead to…lower tax burdens. Sometimes it means that, coupled with the wide range of tax breaks and incentives, entire income tax liabilities are eliminated. Perhaps Erick Erickson, Joshua Trevino, and the rest of the folks behind the 53% Tumblr would like to allow the Bush tax cuts to expire across the board?
The unemployed want to return to work – that is generally the reason they are actively seeking employment. Liberals want the unemployment rate to fall – not only would it be politically advantageous for President Obama and the Democratic Party, but because, well, liberals generally see massive unemployment as a net negative for a society. Conservatives want more Americans paying federal income taxes and less Americans receiving unemployment benefits from the federal government. It seems as though the only people with a stake in keeping unemployment high are those whose main objective is returning the Republican Party to glory in 2012.