McCain is here quoted in the New York Times on February 5:
And, my friends, I have specific proposals to address our economic challenges. We will be coming out with more specific proposals, and they will be based not on big-government intervention, and not on raising your taxes, not on increasing government regulation but unleashing the forces of the free market and capitalism.
And Huckabee famously wants to put the Internal Revenue Service out of business, quoted recently by the Times.
We have been standing for small business owners who know that government has for way too long had its foot on their neck, with taxes that were too high, regulations that were too onerous And our party once stood to make sure that we helped clear the way so that the free market system really worked. And we’re going do it again because one of these days when I get to be president — and it won’t be very long, about a year from now … I really do look forward to nailing the ‘going out of business’ sign on the front door of the IRS.
Talk about rhetoric heating up. Do we really want to unleash the lending industry, for instance?
In fact, though, neither Democrats denouncing corporate wrongdoing or Republicans warnings of the perils of big government is particularly new or surprising.
I think some sloppy thinking made its way into the Journal piece.
More broadly, the story choice—page one display of Democrats’ not-particularly-radical rhetoric—leads me to question whether top editors aren’t buying some tendentious assumptions about what is new, important and, apparently, alarming, in campaign rhetoric about the economy, and what is not.