There seems to be a common characteristic among those who follow the liberal orthodoxy, especially those in the old media. Their ideology and rabid partisanship prevent them from acknowledging, much less correcting, policy failures.
My brother, Rush, expounds the “Limbaugh theorem,” which holds that President Obama studiously avoids accountability for his disastrous agenda by positioning himself, with the willing aid of the media, as an outsider – as one who is merely observing, rather than primarily causing, these failures.
For five years, he’s mostly blamed President George W. Bush. The old media never call him on it, for example, in reminding him that he promised to lead us out of this economic hellhole way before now.
They never make him answer for his reckless stimulus package, which created hardly any permanent jobs and in which little money was allocated to infrastructure as he promised. They’ve never called him on his irresponsible predictions, corruption and waste on Solyndra and similar green projects. Indeed, they promote the propaganda that the financial meltdown of 2008, which liberal policies caused anyway, was worse than anyone thought, that the stimulus resulted in lower unemployment than would have occurred without it and that green project failures are just growing pains in a promising new field.
But Bush isn’t the only scapegoat. As Obama doesn’t have to worry about blatant inconsistencies, he can blame Bush one day, Republican obstructionists the next and ATMs the next. But now I’ve noticed a disturbing development in his blame-game saga.
He also has begun to blame uncontrollable forces in America, as if the unfolding of history, through no fault of his own, has resulted in a degeneration of economic conditions and we are simply going to have to live with the new normal – one that lowers the bar on economic growth, employment, the labor participation rate, income, upward mobility and even, hyper-conveniently, health care.
Obama alternatively depicts himself as a proactive agent who has saved us from economic catastrophe by jacking up spending to world-record levels, as a victim of opposition forces preceding and during his term in office, and as a chief executive who is an impotent placeholder, one who is powerless to stop the inevitable forces of malaise that have insinuated themselves into the American economy but nevertheless honor-bound to mitigate the damage and retard our imminent national demise by spending us even further into bankruptcy and redistributing what little money remains to the non-rich as a matter of “fairness.”
This wouldn’t be so bad if the media weren’t complicit in this charade. As exhibit A, I cite an article in New Geography in which the author lamented “the gradual descent of the middle class into proletarian status” as “the biggest issue facing the American economy, and our political system.” No. The biggest issue facing this economy is Barack Obama and his war on the economy and jobs – e.g., his latest unilateral minimum-wage hike, which experts say will kill a half-million jobs; Obamacare, which will cost the equivalent of 2.5 million more; his punitive taxes; his spending; his regulations; and his war on energy. He is the problem, not the uncontrollable, irreversible forces. Give me a break. This kind of story is all over the media: The perennially depressed Obama economy is not Obama’s fault; it’s not even Obama’s economy. He can’t help it; America is just going to hell, and it’s beyond anyone’s control.
Bull. America is not over; we can return to pro-growth policies if we summon the requisite political will. We can reduce our spending and taxes, reform entitlements, quit throwing money away on failed projects, and quit stirring up Americans against one another and inciting growth-paralyzing envy and resentment among groups of Americans. We do not have to resign ourselves to the fatalistic determinism Obama liberals are foisting on us simply because they refuse to accept responsibility for their policies and to join with us in reversing them.
Instructively, this isn’t the first time in my adult life that I’ve witnessed this attitude of resignation to a crippling, permanent malaise allegedly beyond our control. During the Carter years, liberals were in unison in declaring America over instead of acknowledging that Jimmy Carter was a miserably failed president.
Once again, many liberals are in denial over their policy failures because they simply can’t digest the possibility that liberalism doesn’t work. Others do realize it at least a little bit but don’t care very much, as long as they can continue to increase government control, redistribute income and otherwise advance their statist agenda. Some are impervious to the reality that capitalism facilitates prosperity; others understand it but happily oppose it anyway because they prefer the spreading of misery to great disparities in income, which their own policies, ironically, exacerbate.
Ronald Reagan refused to accept liberalism’s fatalism and its death sentence on America and brought this country roaring back in remarkably short order. With the proper leadership from those who believe in America, we can do it again. We must do it again!