The Time for Empty Talk Is Over
September 1, 2011
As President Obama’s presidential term has unfolded, he has made it increasingly clear what he meant all those times he haughtily said, “I won.” It’s his world, and he has no intention of sharing control over it.
This was on stark display when he attempted to pre-empt the Republican debate with a grandiose joint session of Congress called solely for the purpose of delivering another round of economic propaganda.
He would have us believe that his speech will be of monumental import, but everyone knows, Democrats included, that it will be nothing more and nothing less than a sales job. There will be nothing new in this speech, no new ideas, no new information.
There is never anything new in any of his speeches, including the 50-plus orations he delivered on Obamacare, but he nevertheless keeps going back to the well. He has degenerated into a habitual pattern of presenting an idea and, after the public rejects it, making further speeches to convince us that we are the ones who are wrong. With each new speech, no matter the subject, he ends up with fewer supporters of the proposition in question, yet he remains oblivious to the diminishing returns he is achieving.
He’s been talking about jobs incessantly since his presidential campaign began. When he presented his stimulus package, he wasn’t equivocal; he betrayed no uncertainty. He didn’t say to the American people: “Folks, I am recommending bold action. I realize we just spent nearly $1 trillion on TARP, but I’m asking you to trust me with almost another $1 trillion of borrowed money to try something that might strike you as a dangerous gamble. I’m not sure injecting this money into the economy will stimulate growth, but we have to try something, even if it very well may leave us in an even more precarious national debt predicament.”
Instead, he assured us, with great confidence, that his plan would work and that it would jump-start the economy and get people back to work. He was so sure of his plan that he even acknowledged that his re-election would depend on its success or failure.
Back then, unlike now, he had enormous political capital and the confidence of a great percentage of the American people, many of whom trusted him.
Today we know the results of his reckless experiment. The economy and jobs are tanking, and our exploding debt portends imminent financial collapse.
But from all appearances, he remains as clueless to his economic failures and the bankruptcy of his ideas as he is to their unpopularity with the public. How much more empirical evidence will he need before he quits shoving us toward the cliff?
Perhaps the only thing more difficult than conceptualizing the sheer magnitude of the number 842 billion is trying to figure how anyone could seriously think that injecting more borrowed money would stimulate the economy when $842 billion didn’t. Please ask yourself whether anyone who claims that is an insufficient amount of money to test a theory should have your trust about any subject remotely touching on economics.
And yet that is what the Paul Krugmans and the Obamas would have us believe; the government hasn’t spent enough money, and if we just hire more people to dig and refill ditches, we’ll get back on the road to recovery.
Obama’s reckless experiments would be objectionable enough if the only negative result they generated was to depress an already ailing economy. But he continues to add unconscionable amounts to the national debt as if it’s a nonevent.
It would be one thing if he were to demonstrate any openness to ideas that he hasn’t already tried, ideas that deviate in any way from his leftist playbook.
But any semblance of newness in his upcoming talk will have nothing to do with substance, only packaging. He’s such an inflexible ideologue that he’s incapable of entertaining new ideas. Even if he came to believe, correctly, that the only way out of this nightmare would be to radically reduce spending, structurally reform entitlements, streamline the tax code, relax onerous regulations and restore some certainty and predictability in the business environment, he would not act on those beliefs. He will not pursue an agenda that violates his leftist ideas.
So I don’t have to be clairvoyant to know that his speech will just be more propaganda designed to divert attention from his failed record and upstage his Republican challengers. That’s what makes his stunt to overshadow them all the more reprehensible.
Obama is the one man standing in the way of reversing the economic meltdown and the existential debt threat to this nation. It’s time for him to quit playing games with his speeches and join Republicans in taking remedial action to restore America’s financial health.