The 5 Craziest Policies In Texas Republicans’ 2012 Platform


Written by Travis Waldron

The Republican Party of Texas released its 2012 platform this month, outlining its policies on taxation, education, and a host of other issues related to the economy. Texas Republicans, according to the platform, support eliminating the minimum wage and the prevailing wage, doing away with the Department of Education and Department of Energy, and “reducing taxpayer funding to all levels of education” — but those aren’t even the most damaging positions.

Here’s a look at the five most outrageous beliefs Texas Republicans hold:

1) The party opposes almost all forms of taxation: The Texas GOP supports “repeal of the Sixteenth Amendment,” which instituted a national income tax, and instead favors a wildly regressive national sales tax that would hit low- and middle-income Americans hardest. It also favors making the Bush tax cuts permanent and repealing the capital gains tax and the estate tax, the latter of which it claims is “immoral and should be abolished forever.” On the state level, it supports abolishing property and business taxes, and property taxes on inventory, and opposes efforts to institute a state income tax, an Internet sales tax, professional licensing fees, and taxes on real estate transactions. Instead, it supports “shifting the tax burden to a consumption-based tax.”

2) It supports returning to the gold standard: “We support the return to the time tested precious metal standard for the U.S. dollar,” the platform states, echoing Rep. Ron Paul (R), the state’s eccentric congressman and presidential candidate. While returning to “sound money,” as the platform calls it, is popular among far right-wing conservatives, it is “not feasible for practical and policy reasons,” according to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. Most economists agree that the gold standard never worked and that returning to it now would have disastrous consequences for the American economy.

3) It supports privatizing Social Security: Given that Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) called Social Security a “Ponzi scheme” during his ill-fated presidential campaign, it may be no surprise that the Texas GOP opposes one of the nation’s most successful federal programs. “We support an immediate and orderly transition to a system of private pensions based on the concept of individual retirement accounts, and gradually phasing out the Social Security tax,” the platform says, ignoring that had such a plan been enacted prior to the Great Recession, it would have cost an October 2008 retiree tens of thousands of dollars (and that was before the market bottomed out in 2009). Millions of Americans lost everything in private accounts during the recession, and Social Security was all they had left.

4) It opposes multicultural education and “critical thinking”: “We believe the current teaching of a multicultural curriculum is divisive,” the platform says, adding that it supports teaching “common American identity and loyalty instead of political correctness that nurtures alienation among racial and ethnic groups.” In Arizona, where Republicans banned multicultural programs, students in those programs actually out-performed their peers. Texas Republicans also believe “controversial theories” such evolution and climate change — which aren’t controversial at all — “should be taught as challengeable scientific theories subject to change as new data is produced.” There’s more: the GOP also opposes the teaching of “critical thinking skills” because they “focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.”

5) It supports corporal punishment in schools: “Corporal punishment is effective and legal in Texas,” the platform states, adding that teachers and school boards should be given “more authority to deal with disciplinary problems.” Actual research, however, shows that corporal punishment is bad for children and their education. Research shows that corporal punishment is “associated with an increase in delinquency, antisocial behavior, and aggression in children,” according to the American Psychoanalytic Association, which “strongly condemns” the use of such punishment. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents and schools use other forms of punishment because “corporal punishment is of limited effectiveness and has potentially deleterious side effects.”

This post was originally published by ThinkProgress.


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Photo: Thinkstock


Duane B.
.4 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

Tom R.
Tom R.5 years ago

I just don't understand how it is possible for anyone to be so stupid that they cannot think that there might be two sides to a story and that they need to check out the other side to make sure that they're not wrong and backing the fanciful or erroneous side.

If NASA considers global warming to be a threat greater than any other to the security of the United States of America, isn't it worth finding out a bit more before writing it off as a "challengeable theory"?

The fact that the Bible was written by a bunch of terrified and ignorant goatherds struggling to come to terms with their existence and that modern scientific literature is published by people who spend considerable amounts of time in education at the highest levels should give you a pretty good clue about the accuracy of the two different sources.

The list goes on. The GOP need their heads checking.

Sharon G.
Sharon Galaviz5 years ago

Perhaps if one openly admits to being Republican, mandatory psychological counseling would be in order???

Heidi S.
Heidi S5 years ago

yay america!! ......reading this gave me a headache >

Kathy Perez
Kathy Johnson5 years ago

what the...?!

Jos� Mar�

Thanks for the info

Nancy Crouse
Nancy Crouse5 years ago

Of couse the GOP opposes critical thinking because when people question things it makes the GOPs cringe and want to wriggle out of any questions that puts them on the spot and have to come up with a response that is thoughtful. This is something they do not want.

Paul C.
Paul C5 years ago

Indeed things are bigger and STUPIDER in Texas.

Mary B.
Mary B5 years ago

Whoops, I ment to say the more the income, the less the rebate. not the tax.

Mary B.
Mary B5 years ago

About the only thing I agree with is 'get rid of property tax' It is the most unfair tax ever and is NOT based on a persons ability to pay. Even if your home is paid for, if your income can't cover the Prop taxes [ think retiree with only SS to live on] the county can take it.
The other thing I agree with is shifting income tax to a federal sales tax, but NOT Cains plan. Check out Fair They have a plan that's been at least 20 years in the making and it includes monthly rebates of sales tax on necessities to low income people. Actually, the rebate goes to everybody, but the more income, the less the tax. And the tax is only on new items, not on everything along the chain of supply in the making of it. The idea is that would help keep costs down. Anyway, they have a website where everything is explained in detail. It will take some time to read, but please do not let the notion that just because it had a right wing source that it's bad. This was started long before the present crop of neo-cons came on the scene.