Archive for the ‘Reagan’ Category
After reading Rand Paul’s op-ed about Ronald Reagan, it’s clear he doesn’t understand President Reagan. This part is particularly upsetting:
Many forget today that Reagan’s decision to meet with Mikhail Gorbachev was harshly criticized by the Republican hawks of his time, some of whom would even call Reagan an appeaser. In the Middle East, Reagan strategically pulled back our forces after the tragedy in Lebanon in 1983 that killed 241 Marines, realizing the cost of American lives was too great for the mission.
There were Reagan supporters who would’ve done anything for him who didn’t have a clue about President Reagan’s strategy. Apparently, Sen. Paul doesn’t either:
There is a time for military action, such as after 9/11. There is a time for diplomacy and the strategic use of soft power, such as now with Russia. Diplomacy requires resolve but also thoughtfulness and intelligence.
What President Reagan did wasn’t “soft power.” What he did was show the world, especially the Soviet presidents of the time, that he was committed to simultaneously waging war by rebuilding the U.S. military and through showing the Soviets that their economy couldn’t keep pace with a U.S. economy that was growing like gangbusters.
In short, President Reagan’s idea of “soft power” was to scare the bejesus out of Soviets militarily while burying them economically.
As for President Reagan’s conservative critics, they literally littered the landscape. It was 10 times worse with Democrats. As a newly elected senator, John Kerry said that President Reagan’s installing Pershing II missiles in western Europe would destabilize the U.S.-Russian relationship. Six years later, the Berlin Wall was smashed by liberty-loving East Berliners.
Apparently, Sen. Paul didn’t notice that President Reagan didn’t start serious negotiations with the Soviets until his 2nd term. Once, when a reporter asked President Reagan why he hadn’t held a summit with his Russian counterpart, President Reagan replied “Because they keep dying on me.”
Old school ‘experts’ thought it was unthinkable for a U.S. president not to have a yearly summit with the Soviet leader. President Reagan was a master negotiator. He wasn’t worried about doing things for appearances sake. President Reagan didn’t start negotiating with the Soviets until he’d laid the foundation for intimidating Gorbachev.
Another thing President Reagan should be praised for is his fierce insistence on winning and losing. When asked what his strategy was towards the Soviets, President Reagan simply said “We win, they lose.” The world was stunned when they heard that. They didn’t like it, either, when President Reagan called the Soviet Union an “evil empire.” He was right in calling them evil.
What else would you call an expansionist-minded, murderous empire that throws dissidents into harsh gulags? That’s where Putin got his worldview.
I’ve talked frequently about the Reagan Doctrine, which I describe as President Reagan utilizing the threat of military force and economic superiority to negotiate the USSR into history’s dust-bin of failed ideologies.
It worked in toppling the Soviet Union. It’ll certainly work now in toppling Putin. At this point, we have proof that Sen. Paul and President Obama haven’t grasped that concept, much less unleashed its power.
Technorati: Reagan Doctrine, Ronald Reagan, Tear Down This Wall, Cold War, Strategic Defense Initiative, Pershing II Missiles, Republicans, Rand Paul, John Kerry, President Obama, Appeasers, Mikhail Gorbachev, Vladimir Putin, Gulags, Russia, Soviet Union
Just when President Obama, Vice President Biden, John Kerry and Hillary Clinton thought it couldn’t get worse, it did. This article provides the salt for these clowns’ open wounds:
First, Sarah Palin. In 2008, the Alaskan conservative warned that Putin was on the prowl. Quote: “After the Russian army invaded the nation of Georgia, Senator Obama’s reaction was one of moral indecision and equivalence, the kind of response that would only encourage Russia’s Putin to invade Ukraine next.”
Wow. Mrs Palin not only got the country that Putin would threaten right, she also predicted the reason behind it. Obama’s “indecision and equivalence” over Iran, Egypt and, most importantly, Syria, has probably encouraged Putin to believe that there would be next-to-no Western response to an attack on Ukraine.
This was highly predictable. It’s only surprising to the children at Foggy Bottom and in the West Wing. They either didn’t see this coming or they didn’t care. History won’t award a gold star to any of these fools for their decisions prior to Russia’s invading Crimea. (A dunce’s cap for each is the better fit.)
Unfortunately for the Feckless Foursome, the humiliation doesn’t (and shouldn’t) stop there:
Second, Mitt Romney. Romney’s foreign policy approach was broadly mocked in 2012. The country was keen to withdraw from overseas conflict in the wake of Iraq and Afghanistan and Mitt’s vague neo-conservatism seemed out of step with the public mood. Sometimes, said the critics, it came off as something that his advisers were coaching him to say; a nod and a hint to AIPAC rather than a strongly held belief. Rachel Maddow concluded, “It’s not just that Romney is uninformed; it’s that he hasn’t figured out how to fake it.”
Romney confirmed the sceptics’ worst fears when he described Russia as America’s “number one geopolitical foe.” Barack Obama lashed out with some adolescent sass: “The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because. The Cold War’s been over for 20 years.”
Actually, people who lived through the 80′s are praying that we’d that type of leadership back. That was when Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Margaret Thatcher and Pope John-Paul II brought down the Soviet Empire. That was when Jeane Kirkpatrick and Lech Walesa contributed to the collapse of the Soviet Union.
The Feckless Foursome didn’t notice or didn’t care that Putin still thinks that the collapse of the Soviet Union was “the collapse of the century“:
Mr Putin therefore went out of his way to extol the virtues of democracy and talk up Russia’s potential for foreign investment. He lamented, however, the collapse of the USSR in 1991, calling it “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe”.
That’s quite the contrast in sobriety. The Feckless Foursome insisted that Russia was a friend that didn’t have expansionist goals, despite Putin’s expansionist rhetoric. While Rachel Maddow was making herself look stupid, Mitt Romney and Sarah Palin said unpopular things that turned out to be 100% right.
Finally, I’d love asking Mrs. Clinton how that reset button thingy is working out lately.
Technorati: President Obama, Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, Reset Button, Vladimir Putin, Russian Bear, Soviet Empire, Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin, Ronald Reagan, Tear Down This Wall, George H.W. Bush, Margaret Thatcher, Pope John-Paul II, Lech Walesa, National Security, Cold War
This Peggy Noonan article dovetails nicely with Glenn Reynolds’ excellent column about “Irish Democracy”, which I wrote about in this post. First, here’s Dr. Reynolds’ explanation of the foundation of Irish Democracy:
In his excellent book, Two Cheers For Anarchism, Professor James Scott writes:
One need not have an actual conspiracy to achieve the practical effects of a conspiracy. More regimes have been brought, piecemeal, to their knees by what was once called ‘Irish Democracy,’ the silent, dogged resistance, withdrawal, and truculence of millions of ordinary people, than by revolutionary vanguards or rioting mobs.
Simply put, people refusing to buy insurance through the Anything But Affordable Care Act’s exchanges are putting the ABACA in impossible financial straights. This was made necessary when Senate Democrats and this administration wouldn’t listen to the American people. In Ms. Noonan’s opinion, they still aren’t listening:
As the president made his jaunty claims and the senators and congressmen responded semirapturously I kept thinking of four words: Meanwhile, back in America…
Meanwhile, back in America, the Little Sisters of the Poor were preparing their legal briefs. The Roman Catholic order of nuns first came to America in 1868 and were welcomed in every city they entered. They now run about 30 homes for the needy across the country. They have, quite cruelly, been told they must comply with the ObamaCare mandate that all insurance coverage include contraceptives, sterilization procedures, morning-after pills. If they don’t—and of course they can’t, being Catholic, and nuns—they will face ruinous fines.
In this instance, it isn’t just that the Obama administration isn’t listening to the American people. It’s that they’re ignoring the Constitution, too. That’s before considering the fact that this administration made exceptions to the ABACA for its well-connected friends.
The message sent to the nation is exceptionally straightforward: Well-connected friends of Barack Obama get special privileges. People whom this President despises get the shaft. (That’s right. I didn’t forget about the bitter clingers.) President Obama’s disdain for blue collar people isn’t news. It’s just disgusting. That’s why people have turned their back on him.
Meanwhile, back in America…
Meanwhile, back in America, conservatives targeted and harassed by the Internal Revenue Service still await answers on their years-long requests for tax exempt status. When news of the IRS targeting broke last spring, agency officials lied about it, and one took the Fifth. The president said he was outraged, had no idea, read about it in the papers, boy was he going to get to the bottom of it. An investigation was announced but somehow never quite materialized.
If ever there was something that got the masses fuming, it should be the thought of a politically ruthless administration using the IRS as a weapon to eliminate its political enemies. And yes, this administration has used the IRS as a weapon against TEA Party activists and other conservative organizations.
In less than 3 years, we’ll have the opportunity to wipe the memories of this administration from our memory. It’s imperative that we accomplish that. It’s imperative that we elect someone that will listen to the American people. That means electing a pro-reform governor that respects the Constitution, preferably Scott Walker, Bobby Jindal, John Kasich or Mike Pence.
I didn’t include Jeb Bush or Christie in that bunch. They don’t respect the Constitution. People want politicians that don’t think of themselves as being above the Constitution or the rule of law. Bush supports Common Core, which wants to strip away local control of education. That’s certainly anti-constitutional. Christie supports gun control, something totally at odds with the Constitution.
It’s time we elected a president that’s run things and accomplished things that’ve helped families. Bobby Jindal fits that description. While campaigning, he listened to parents who hated the education options their children had. That’s why he pushed for school choice. Thanks to his listening, school choice legislation was signed into law in Louisiana.
John Kasich fits that description. He fought for the same union reforms that Scott Walker did. He also cut taxes while eliminating Ohio’s deficit. Thanks to Gov. Kasich’s popular pro-growth agenda, Ohio is headed in the right direction.
Scott Walker listened to Wisconsinites’ cries for lower property taxes. He pushed union reforms that stripped them of the right to hold school districts hostage by saying that they had to buy health insurance through the teachers union’s insurance company. As a direct result, health insurance costs to school districts dropped dramatically…until the ABACA was semi-implemented.
Whether you call it the TEA Party movement, Irish Democracy or whether it’s just doing what President Reagan believed in, it’s time for conservatives to elect someone that actually wants the people to decide what’s best for them. We don’t need another administration that thinks it’s supremely qualified to tell families what’s best for them.
Only in Washington, DC would people praise Sen. Schumer as being a top strategist. This morning, Schumer will deliver a speech that essentially disparages the TEA Party:
“There is a glaring weakness, one very weak link in the Tea Party’s armor, which is an inherent contradiction within the Tea Party that I believe can be exposed to greatly weaken their hold on the policy debate,” Schumer will say, according to excerpts of his remarks.
“The fundamental weakness in the Tea Party machine is the stark difference between what the leaders of the Tea Party elite, plutocrats like the Koch Brothers want and what the average grassroots Tea Party follower wants,” he will say.
First, it’s interesting that Sen. Schumer doesn’t have the foggiest clue about the TEA Party and why people agree with their principles. TEA Party activists are foreign to him because he’s a wealth redistributionist and they’re capitalists. Let’s have Sen. Schumer debate someone who actually knew what he was doing. Sen. Schumer, the wealth redistributionist, thinks that it’s essential that we tax “the rich.” Here’s the counter to that:
Sen. Schumer thinks that government is the solution to our problems. The Anything But Affordable Care Act is proof of Sen. Schumer’s belief in that philosophy. Our ‘guest philosopher’, like most TEA Party activists, thinks otherwise:
Our ‘guest philosopher’, like the TEA Party activists, thinks tax reform is essential:
Thanks to our guest philosopher’s policies, the US economy experienced the longest economic recovery in our history. Thanks to the policies championed by President Obama and Sen. Schumer, we’ve had the longest economic stagnation since the Great Depression.
We’re at a crossroads. We can tolerate President Obama’s failed redistributionist economic policies and see our economic standing in the world disappear or we can embrace President Reagan’s pro-growth economic policies that led to the greatest economic expansion in US history.
At this point, that isn’t a difficult choice.
Technorati: Chuck Schumer, President Obama, Wealth Redistributionists, Anything But Affordable Care Act, Great Stagnation, Democrats, Ronald Reagan, Tax Reform, Capitalism, Prosperity, TEA Party, Conservatism
Each time that the jobs report is released, the White House posts its spin about what it means. This is from the most recent post about the jobs report:
As our economy continues to make progress, there’s a lot more work to do. Though December’s job growth was less than expected, we continue to focus on the longer-term trend in the economy – 2.2 million private sector jobs added and a 1.2 percentage point decline in the unemployment rate over the course of 2013. Today’s numbers are also a reminder of the work that remains, especially on one of our nation’s most immediate and pressing challenges: long-term unemployment.
What’s interesting is that chronic unemployment doesn’t happen during robust economic recoveries. This chart will cut through the Obama administration’s spin:
According to the Minneapolis Federal Reserve’s statistics, the increase in GDP for the 17 quarters after the 1981 recession was 23.1%. For the 17 quarters since the end of the recession in Q2 of 2009, the gain in GDP has been 10.3%. You can’t see the 17-quarter gain for the Reagan recovery because the growth literally went off the chart.
This isn’t a nostalgia post. Quite the contrary. It’s a comparison between President Reagan’s pro-growth, low taxation, low regulation policies and President Obama’s policies of crippling regulations and major tax increases. The statistics speak for themselves. This chart speaks for itself, too:
According to that graphic, the annualized GDP growth under Reagan topped 7% for 5 straight quarters, with a high of 9.3% for Q3 of 1983.
At the same time during the Great Stagnation under President Obama, annualized growth rates were 3.9%, 3.8%, 2.5% and 2.4%. In short, the Great Stagnation’s statistics indicate that economic growth has been pathetic. President Obama won’t face the voters again but the people who voted for his economic policies will face the voters next November. Every person who voted for the Obama budget is a Democrat. They can talk all they want about preventing another Great Depression with the stimulus but that’s speculation at best.
The recession Reagan inherited was deeper and had more perils to be fixed. America’s industrial infrastructure was crumbling. People were speculating whether the Big 3 automakers would forever trail the Japanese. Those same people wondered if Japan and Germany would be the new economic superpowers.
The Kemp-Roth tax cuts included capital gains tax cuts, which helped Detroit rebuild their assembly lines. In less than 3 years, Detroit was humming with activity.
That was only part of America’s problems. They faced high unemployment and even higher inflation. Thanks to President Reagan’s pro-growth tax and regulatory policies, millions of jobs were created. The unemployment rate dropped dramatically because people got great jobs, not because people quit looking for work. Inflation dropped, too.
Five years after the banking crisis, the economy is still struggling. The jobs being created are mostly part-time jobs. Median household income has dropped. Regulatory burdens are adding crippling compliance costs. Instead of using their profits to create jobs, small businesses are spending that money complying with Washington’s insane regulations.
Reaganomics worked because it gave businesses an incentive to take chances. That’s the only time-tested method for lifting people out of poverty and for turning the middle class into entrepreneurs. President Reagan understood that. President Obama doesn’t.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, these graphs and charts are worth a few chapters in a book because they show which policies worked and which policies are failing.
Technorati: Reaganomics, Kemp-Roth Tax Cuts, Regulation Reform, Economic Growth, Industrial Infrastructure, Capital Gains Tax Cuts, Big 3 Automakers, Republicans, President Obama, Tax Increases, Compliance Costs, Unemployment, Great Recession, Great Stagnation, Obamacare, Overregulation, Democrats, Socialism
I’ve written here frequently about foolish people writing for the St. Cloud Times. This time, I get to write about Dr. Roy Saigo’s wise words, mostly because they’re the skills I learned as a supervisor at Fingerhut. Here’s something Dr. Saigo said that I can relate to:
The second thing Collins emphasizes is the most effective CEO is not a celebrity. If the boss is a celebrity, then you have “one genius and 1,000 helpers.” He talks about CEOs who tell the media they are going to produce the best products, be the best grocery chain, university, football team, etc. Yet, successful companies build their businesses with practical, achievable goals and little fanfare. I call this accountability.
Part of my training to be a supervisor was a class called Interaction Management. One of the things that IM emphasized was identifying key principles. These key principles could be anything from getting a simple job done that takes little time to empowering workers to master a multi-faceted responsibility that might take 3-4 hours.
At Fingerhut then, the key to accomplishing important responsibilities wasn’t about instructing the employee what he or she needed to do. It was about telling them about their responsibilities to their co-workers and their employer. How they got from Point A to Point B wasn’t important as long as the thing got done properly and in the fastest time possible.
I tried to live by a saying I’d heard from a former night shift supervisor. His instructions to his workers was simple: make me look good in the morning. Which leads to this key paragraph in Dr. Saigo’s article:
A successful team develops a positive, can-do spirit, toughness and, most importantly, trust and a sharing of the joy of success.
Ronald Reagan once said that “It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you don’t care who gets the credit.” Of all of the wise things Ronald Reagan said, that sentence was consistently proven true. It’s something that others have picked up on. Superblogger Glenn Reynolds wrote a book a few years back. Appropriately, it was titled “An Army of Davids.” The key principle that Reynolds conveyed to his audience was that there were hundreds of experts just waiting to be discovered and utilized through the internet. He didn’t think that everyone on the internet was a genius. It’s just that he thought that he knew that, for every highly-publicized expert on TV, there were hundreds of experts on the internet just waiting to be found.
Reynolds’ attitude wouldn’t be possible if he was an egomaniac. Successful people have to have an ego because they couldn’t survive without it. The difference between successful people and and egomaniac is that egomaniacs are control freaks. They’re the fastest people to the microphone when there’s success. They’re also the people you won’t see admitting failure.
Reynolds couldn’t have written that book if he was a control freak because he needed to admit that there were lots of outstanding people in every discipline in the United States. Thanks to his book, lots of people were empowered.
One of the things that’s becoming clear this year is that the political class doesn’t understand the United States. This weekend, I’ve read 2 articles that illustrate that perfectly. First, Scott Rasmussen’s article cuts through the clutter quickly:
2013 has been a tough year for the political class. The most recent evidence comes from Colorado.
Earlier in the year, the political elites in Washington were certain gun control would be enacted following the horrific massacre at a Connecticut elementary school. When nothing passed, they expected politicians who refused to support more gun restrictions would face consequences for their actions.
There were consequences. Just not the one’s the political class expected.
After Colorado passed its own version of gun control legislation, two state senators were targeted by a grassroots effort for removal through a recall vote. It was the first time in the state’s history that the recall process had even been attempted. Outside money poured in, and gun control advocates outspent the NRA and its allies by a 6-to-1 margin. Despite the tremendous financial advantage they enjoyed, both state senators were removed from office because of their support for gun control legislation.
Simply put, in state after state, gun control activists misunderestimated the people’s love of freedom. I don’t mistake this as a newfound love of the Constitution amongst the masses. It isn’t that. It’s that people want the ability to defend themselves.
An early sign of trouble for the elites came with public reaction to the so-called sequester. More precisely, the D.C. panic was caused by the lack of public reaction.
Politicians, mainstream media organizations, defense contractors and others did everything they could to scare the public. President Obama himself used his State of the Union address to say, “These sudden, harsh, arbitrary cuts would jeopardize our military readiness.” To make sure voters understood his concern, he added, “They’d devastate priorities like education, energy and medical research. They would certainly slow our recovery and cost us hundreds of thousands of jobs.”
But it didn’t work. People didn’t rise up in revolt and demand that Congress stop the sequester.
Instead, voters recognized that the politicians were crying wolf. The so-called cuts were not harsh and devastating. They were embarrassingly modest. In fact, all the sequester really did was reduce the growth of federal spending a bit. So, when the sequester went into effect, there was no revolt. Instead, hardly anybody noticed. Only those who work for the government really felt any impact.
For a week straight or more, the administration trotted out cabinet secretaries to tell the public that life would end if the sequester happened. The only thing missing from their presentations were illustrations of the Apocalypse as a backdrop.
Instead, we felt a pin prick.
The other article that illustrates how out of touch DC is is Salena Zito’s fantastic article titled Main Street wants action on jobs, not blunders on Syria:
CHAMPION, Pa. – Tracey loaded three large cardboard boxes with tomatoes, peaches, green beans, cucumbers and fleshy beets for a young couple about to embark on their first adventure in the art of canning. Rows of perfectly presented vegetables lined the shelves of her family’s farmers market, where State Route 31 meets the base of a mountain.
The young couple peppered her with questions about “putting up” their produce as they recalled watching their parents filling cellars with canned vegetables and fruits that lasted from autumn through spring.
They also chatted about jobs and ways to cut corners; all three expressed worry about an economy that has not improved for more than a half-decade.
Behind them in line, a group of young people discussed the possibility of war with Syria, all of them astonished that this is what the White House is focused on. “We keep waiting for the White House to talk about jobs in a meaningful, constructive way so that our families, communities and schools stop crumbling,” said one young woman as she contemplated buying fresh honey.
This administration hasn’t deviated from its original economic plan of dumping lots of money into the economy, first through the stimulus, then through the Fed’s quantitative easing. It isn’t that the plan failed totally. It hasn’t. Still, economic growth has been stagnant to the point that we went from the housing bubble collapse to the Great Recession to today’s Great Stagnation.
Coming out of one of the nastiest recessions in US history, President Reagan instituted massive tax cuts, including cuts in the capital gains rates. In September, 1983, the US economy created 1,100,000 jobs. In August, I cited some disturbing statistics from Zerohedge’s post in this post:
Of 953,000 Jobs Created In 2013, 77%, Or 731,000 Are Part-Time
Think about those statistics juxtaposed against Reagan’s jobs report for September, 1983. Reagan created more fulltime jobs in a single month than this president has created jobs, full- and part-time, in half a year.
Meanwhile, when people still trusted government, Reagan took down the Soviet Union. Fast forward to today, where President Obama and his Secretary of State can’t even get on the same page to deliver a pin prick attack against Syria.
President Reagan’s strength was his trusting the American people to do the right thing. President Obama’s weakness is his insistance that he’s always right. People have proposed plans for a stronger economy. President Obama has ignored those blueprints. People have proposed things to fix the biggest mistakes in the PPACA. President Obama has ignored those, too, because he thinks he’s right.
In his last speech from the Oval Office, President Reagan said something that I can’t forget. He said “it’s amazing what you can get accomplished when you don’t care who gets credit for things.” President Obama could mouth those words but he’d follow that up with a reminder that it’s his brilliance that saved the day.
The difference is that President Reagan never forgot that he was a man of the people while President Obama can’t hide the fact that he’s a creature of the DC Beltway.
Technorati: Political Class, Colorado Recall Elections, Gun Control, President Obama, John Kerry, Federal Reserve, Quantitative Easing, Syria, DC Beltway, Great Recession, Great Stagnation, Democrats, President Reagan, Job Growth, Capital Gains Tax Cuts, Soviet Union, National Security, GOP
When MSNBC’s Chuck Todd mocked President Obama for his latest pivot to jobs, the Washington Post’s Greg Sargent took umbrage via Twitter:
Genuinely sad to see supposedly neutral news orgs mocking the idea of a “pivot” to jobs.
First, was MSNBC ever a “neutral news org?” Apparently, it is in Greg Sargent’s opinion. That should tell us everything we need to know about Sargent’s opinions. Thankfully, others pounced on Sargent’s tweets. Here’s one from DCDude1776:
LOL! You haven’t noticed the pattern? Poll #s sink—> pivots to economy E-V-E-R-Y T-I-M-E
Here’s something more from Richard Grenell:
It’s just that he’s pivoted all the way around
Is it just me or does it seem like President Obama has pivoted to jobs more often Anthony Weiner holds press conferences admitting he’s been sexting again? The thing about pivoting is that it causes people to go in circles, which is what the economy is doing. Growing at 1% (roughly) per year isn’t how to build the middle class.
Let’s focus on some economic realities. First, it’s impossible to strengthen the middle class when we’re turning into a part-time nation. Last month’s job report said businesses created 195,000 job. Then it said that 240,000 full-time jobs were lost and that 360,000 part-time jobs were created.
Economists attributed this to President Obama’s ACA. Employers aren’t hiring full-time workers because of the PPACA. Increasingly, they’re hiring part-time employees instead. If the PPACA continues to be the law of the land, we’ll continue to turn into a part-time nation.
President Obama can’t point to an impressive growth spurt on his watch. That’s because his economic plan isn’t geared toward growth. It’s geared towards creating a European stagnation economy.
In the 1992 debates, Bill Clinton said, rightly, that doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. With a stagnant economy, lackluster job growth and an obvious culprit to blame for all this, you’d think President Obama would quit insisting that his plan is working. Unfortunately, he’s so arrogant that he won’t accept reality.
The nation is a mess. His policies have failed repeatedly. Part-time employment is increasing. Full-time employment is either shrinking or stagnating. That isn’t the recipe for success. It’s the pathway to failure. For altogether too many Americans, Obamanomics has led to chronic failure.
I’ll summarize things by citing Sen. Ted Cruz’s tweet comparing Reaganomics with Obamanomics:
Reaganomics: Start a business in your parents’ garage.
Obamanomics: Move into your parents’ garage.
Republicans, it’s time to tell this president that his economic policies are a total disaster and that it’s time to start with new, pro-growth policies before it’s too late.
When John Dickerson wrote that President Obama should crush Republicans, I’m betting he didn’t expect the firestorm he’s getting. I’m betting that’s why he wrote this defensive-sounding article. First, here’s what Dickerson wrote in his first Slate article:
Washington’s partisan rancor, the size of the problems facing government, and the limited amount of time before Obama is a lame duck all point to a single conclusion: The president who came into office speaking in lofty terms about bipartisanship and cooperation can only cement his legacy if he destroys the GOP. If he wants to transform American politics, he must go for the throat.
This afternoon, he published this:
On the eve of the president’s inauguration, I wrote a piece about what President Obama needs to do to be a transformational rather than caretaker president. I was using a very specific definition of transformational presidencies based on my reading of a theory of political science and the president’s own words about transformational presidencies from the 2008 campaign. It was also based on these givens: the president is ambitious, has picked politically controversial goals, has little time to operate before he is dubbed a lame-duck president, and has written off working with Republicans. “Bloodier-minded when it comes to beating Republicans,” is how Jodi Kantor put it in the New York Times. Given these facts, there is only one logical conclusion for a president who wants to transform American politics: he must take on Republicans–aggressively.
It’s worth noting that Mr. Dickerson is CBS’s chief political correspondent. It’s also worth noting that Mr. Dickerson didn’t ask the right questions or give responsible advice to President.
It’s shameful that a network political director/correspondent would think only about gaining a political advantage instead of doing what’s right for America. It’s apparent that Mr. Dickerson hasn’t figured it out that truly transformative presidents make life better for the people they serve.
Crushing political opponents while pursuing a failed policy agenda might get an administration through a fight but that isn’t what transformative presidents do. That’s why history will record President Obama’s administration as a failure, especially economically.
At this point, the only thing that will make President Obama an historical figure is his being the first black president. Sadly, his signature political accomplishment has hurt the American economy while leading to many people losing hope.
That’s the definition of a failure. Mr. Dickerson would be well advised to note that failures aren’t transformative figures.
Liberals do not grasp the distinction between Ronald Reagan and (either) George Bush. This blind spot creates a massive confusion and hazard to their ambitions. Obama defeated neither the Reagan Narrative nor Team Reagan. Team Bush appropriated, and then marginalized, both. Obama beat Team Bush, not Team Reagan. The implications are huge.
This post isn’t about trashing Karl Rove or the Bush family. Frankly, that’s a waste of time when there’s important things to be done. Instead, it’s about identifying underlying principles undergirded President Reagan’s policies. Mr. Benko is spot on with this analysis:
Real conservatives saw Reaganomics as a way of creating broad-based opportunity, not as catering to the rich. It worked out exactly that way in America and throughout the world. The blossoming of free market principles, especially low tax rates and good money, brought billions of souls out of poverty, from subsistence to affluence.
Several things worked together to make America infinitely more prosperous during Reagan’s time than during President Obama’s time in office. First, the dollar was much stronger than during President Obama’s time in office. That’s partially because President Reagan’s domestic energy policy was infinitely more robust than President Obama’s. The less money we needlessly ship money overseas for oil, the stronger the dollar is. Our trade deficit shrunk, too.
The new conservative Republican leaders are strikingly formidable. The leaders of the new generation, like Reagan, and Kemp, before them (and Kennedy still earlier), all recognize the power of the “rising tide lifts all boats”.
It isn’t a stretch to think that conservatives like John Kasich, Paul Ryan, Scott Walker and Marco Rubio will re-ignite the Reagan Revolution. Each of these men have spotless conservative credentials, which is why they fire up the base in ways Mitt Romney and John McCain couldn’t.
When President Bush won in 2004, he got 62,000,000 votes. McCain got fewer votes than President Bush. Mitt got fewer votes than Sen. McCain. Had Paul Ryan been at the top of the ticket, however, it isn’t a stretch to think he would’ve topped President Bush’s vote total.
That’s because he’s the spitting image of Reagan. The Reagan Revolution was fueled by a glut of great ideas. A Ryan Revolution would be powered by the same thing. Most importantly, he’d talk conservatism like his native language. This isn’t an attempt to trash Mitt. It’s simply stating the obvious. He just didn’t prosecute the case against President Obama the way Ryan would have.
President Bush’s spending turned conservatives off because he had a Republican House and Senate much of the time. President Reagan’s spending was done, in part, because he had to rebuild the military after President Carter gutted it, partly because Tip O’Neill controlled the House.
Everything President Reagan fought for was targeted towards creating prosperity. He didn’t back away from a fight, either. When PATCO went on strike, he fired them because they broke federal law. When Tip O’Neill accused him of not caring about the average working Joe, Reagan responded mightily. His temper flaring, he marched back to the podium, then said, essentially, that he’d made his money because he’d worked hard, then adding that it wasn’t given to him.
It’s a fight Mitt Romney backed away from too often in his attempt to win over women voters or independents. It’s a fight the next generation of conservatives will fight with vigor.
Tags: Reagan Revolution, Ronald Reagan, Jack Kemp, Prosperity, Pro-Growth Policies, Strong Dollar, Oil, Job Growth, GDP, Paul Ryan, Scott Walker, Marco Rubio, Conservatism, President Bush, Karl Rove, Mitt Romney, GOP Establishment