Some observers from the left side of the political spectrum have been bending themselves into pretzels trying to explain why President Obama isn’t making headway with the American public in the midterm election campaign push. Their efforts would be comical if they didn’t reflect a political philosophy that has cost us so dearly.
Matt Bai, in the New York Times this week, does state at the outset the Republican view that the President is unpopular because he has pushed government control of the economy when the majority of Americans oppose it (for good reason, starting with the fact that it doesn’t work). But that’s just too — what would be the word here — obvious for a variety of Democrats who weigh in on the issue. Apparently we common-sense types are just too unsophisticated to recognize that in fact the President’s problem is that he puts himself in a “legislative box,” per former Clinton chief of staff John Podesta, now at the left-wing think tank Center for American Progress. What, pray tell, is a “legislative box”? The gist of his tortured explanation is that the President is actually so gifted a legislator, so committed to sweeping policy change, that he has been the victim of vicious Congressional politics, which has kept him from getting his message effectively to the American people.
Ah, yes, there it is again: the victim motif, the blame being placed again on anyone but President Obama and the leaders of this Statist-dominated Congress. Meanwhile, the Congressional Budget Office’s new prediction of a deficit exceeding $1.3 trillion for 2010, and the Labor Department’s report that jobless claims last week jumped to the highest level since last Thanksgiving, provide fresh evidence that we need to stop the decline by immediately suspending implementation of the new health bureaucracy, by reducing taxes, and by stopping the jobless “stimulus” and bailout spending. When the leaders of this Congress proclaim that we must throw more money into bankrupt pension schemes, bad mortgage investments, and a long list of other infuriating pet projects, they are actually just using your taxpayer dollars to buy themselves votes. And yet they are mystified that the American public is rejecting them.
To Mr. Bai, Mr. Podesta, and all those who are doing the equivalent of watching a drunk driver careening towards a brick wall at 90 mph (which is a far more apt analogy than the President’s tired “car in the ditch”; if the economy were just in a ditch and not about to crash, we’d consider ourselves fortunate, and how sad is that?) and thinking they ought to have a word with the bricklayers. Sometimes the most obvious explanation is actually the correct one, and the President has no one to blame but himself.
A note to Mr. Obama, Ms. Pelosi, and their faithful Congressman, Mr. Hall: time to grow up; take responsibility for your reckless spending and irresponsible, enterprise-choking, job-killing legislation; and either reverse course, or prepare to be replaced in November. Given the evidence thus far, the most obvious expectation we common-sense Americans should have is that we’re going to see a lot of new small-government, free-enterprise faces in the Congress come January.