Sunday, July 19, 2009

I can't add anything to this:
Guest WaPo OpEd on "Obama's predicament"

Every once in a while you run across something so well written, so precisely articulated, and so perfectly spot-on, all you can do is cut and paste. From Nick Gillespie and Matt Welch opining in the Washington Post:

"The key to understanding Obama's predicament is to realize that while he ran convincingly as a repudiation of Bush, he is in fact doubling down on his predecessor's big-government policies and perpetual crisis-mongering. From the indefinite detention of alleged terrorists to gays in the military to bailing out industries large and small, Obama has been little more than the keeper of the Bush flame. Indeed, it took the two of them to create the disaster that is the 2009 budget, racking up a deficit that has already crossed the historic $1 trillion mark with almost three months left in the fiscal year.

Beyond pushing the "emergency" $787 billion stimulus package (even while acknowledging that the vast majority of funds would be released in 2010 and beyond), Obama signed a $410 billion omnibus spending bill and a $106 billion supplemental spending bill to cover "emergency" expenses in Iraq and Afghanistan (and, improbably, a "cash for clunkers" program). Despite pledges to achieve a "net spending cut" by targeting earmarks and wasteful spending, Obama rubber-stamped more than 9,000 earmarks and asked government agencies to trim a paltry $100 million in spending this year, 0.003 percent of the federal budget.

Such is the extent of Obama's magical realism that he can promise to post all bills on the Internet five days before signing them, serially break that promise and then, when announcing that he wouldn't even try anymore, have a spokesman present the move as yet another example of "providing the American people more transparency in government."

What the new president has not quite grasped is that the American people understand both irony and cognitive dissonance... Don't pretend that a budget that doubles the national debt in five years and triples it in 10 is the work of politicians tackling "the difficult choices." Americans have a pretty good (if slow-to-activate) B.S. detector, and the more you mislead them now, the worse they'll punish you later."

The only thing I question is that last highlighted bit. For all the smarmy cynicism and sarcasm, the authors have a real optimism about the American electorate. I wish I could share their Pollyanna faith in my fellow citizens. The more I see, the more I fear that most Americans fall into the one condition not covered by the Abraham Lincoln homily. Obama/Axelrod are well on the way to proving that that you can indeed fool most of the people most of the time.

[NOTE: I did find something to add - a couple of self serving links to the embedded quote]

Divided and Balanced.™
Now that is fair.

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1 comment:

Edgeoforever said...

Agree on the unsubstantiated confidence in the electorate. Those who invested a billion in this frontmen are not going to allow it to only work for one term.