President Obama has detailed the vast range of harms that the sequester would bring. They are well-known. And they are not necessary. The president sees the sequester, if it happens, as an enormous self-inflicted wound, inflicted on America by a Republican-dominated House elected by Americans.
But pointing out Republican-caused harms to millions of people -- many of them Republicans -- does not sway the ultra-right. Why? Democratic pundits say that Republicans want to hurt the president, to show government doesn't work by making it not work, and to protect "special interests" from higher taxes. All true. But there is an additional and deeper reason. Ultra-conservatives believe that the sequester is moral, that it is the right thing to do....
They believe that Democracy gives them the liberty to seek their own self-interests by exercising personal responsibility, without having responsibility for anyone else or anyone else having responsibility for them. They take this as a matter of morality. They see the social responsibility to provide for the common good as an immoral imposition on their liberty.
Their moral sense requires that they do all they can to make the government fail in providing for the common good. Their idea of liberty is maximal personal responsibility, which they see as maximal privatization -- and profitization -- of all that we do for each other together, jointly as a unified nation.
They also believe that if people are hurt by government failure, it is their own fault for being "on the take" instead of providing for themselves. People who depend on public provisions should suffer. They should have rely on themselves alone -- learn personal responsibility, just as Romney said in his 47 percent speech. In the long run, they believe, the country will be better off if everyone has to depend on personal responsibility alone.Moreover, ultra-conservatives do not see all the ways in which they, and other ultra-conservatives, rely all day every day on what other Americans have supplied for them. They actually believe that they built it all by themselves.
So for them the sequester is not a "self-inflicted wound." It is justice. The sequester is not merely about protecting "special interests." It is about the good people who pursued their self-interest successfully, got rich, and have acted "morally" in avoiding taxes that pay for public provisions by the government....
They are not merely trying to harm their own constituents just to hurt the president politically. Yes, they think hurting the president politically is moral, and they believe that any constituents they are hurting need to become more personally responsible. They see the sequester as serving that purpose.
In short, the sequester is not just about money and political power for the Republicans in the House. It is mostly about what they see as the right direction for the country: maximal elimination of the public sphere.The Huffington Post
Why Ultra-Conservatives Like the Sequester
George Lakoff | Richard and Rhoda Goldman Distinguished Professor of Cognitive Science and Linguistics at the University of California at Berkeley