Retirement and Social Security Reform
New 21st Century Politics: Getting Gov't
Out of Way
Investor's Business Daily
February 23, 2011
By Ernest S. Christian and Gary A. Robbins
Having little real-life acquaintance with America
and its people, President Obama probably was genuinely surprised
by the electoral uprising last November. The voters are smarter
than he thinks. Admittedly, in 2008, he talked 69 million
of them into voting for an illusion that was not the real
But they are catching on fast. Yesterday's cheers are changing
to derision - and real fear. Will Obama turn out to be America's
first post-freedom, post-prosperity president? Americans do
not like being deceived and pushed around. And they will not
tolerate having their pockets picked.
Obama has added to the suffering caused by the Great Recession.
By delaying and diminishing economic recovery with wrong-headed
economic and regulatory policies, Obama has cost Americans
at least an extra $600 billion in lost incomes, more than
$1.5 trillion in additional capital losses and 6 million man
years in lost work.
Obama and the Pelosi-Reid gang plundered the public purse
for nearly $2 trillion of so-called stimulus and other mislabeled
political payola. The voters who pay taxes are furious. How
will we repay the $14 trillion of debt? Now he's adding more.
The built-in tax increases will destroy us! This is insane!
Harsh words? Yes indeed. But not nearly so harsh as Obama's
cynical "policy choices" - from health care to energy
to environment - that are doing so much easily foreseeable
(and easily avoidable) harm to 300 million Americans.
Is it deliberate? Or does he not know any better? In either
case, destructive governance is a moral outrage - in America,
the same as in the Third World.
Worried about his re-election, Obama has tried to jump back
through the political looking glass into the land of "Let's
pretend." But he seems to have lost the knack. His State
of the Union address was so patently disingenuous, it insulted
the intelligence of nearly everyone.
Surely Obama did not expect voters to fall prostrate at his
feet merely because (after years of criticizing our country
and culture) he finally condescended to say a few mildly respectful
words about America, or because he implied that he might moderate
his war on free-market capitalism and other bedrock American
What are voters supposed to do? Double down on their original
mistake in 2008 and re-elect Obama in the hope that he might
be making some "progress" toward being less destructive
of America's culture, economy and Constitution? That's absurd.
If the president wanted America to "win the future,"
as he now declares, he would stop doing the destructive things
that put America's future in jeopardy.
It's not rocket science. Repeal the welter of absurd tax,
trade, regulatory and labor-market restrictions that are dear
to the heart of the Democratic Party, even though they make
it nearly impossible to manufacture goods and produce energy
in the U.S.
Repeal retrograde rules that impede the export of American-made
products. Repeal the notorious extra-territorial tax that
kills jobs by making it hard for U.S. companies to compete
abroad. And, when Americans win in a foreign market, stop
penalizing them for bringing the new money home for job-creating
investment in America. How stupid can government get?
The president's budget for fiscal 2012 is an insult to the
high office he holds. When will Obama ever learn? Increasing
runaway spending less rapidly is not a spending cut. Shifting
spending from one category to another and calling it an "investment"
is a farce - not a fix for the doomsday debt and deficit crisis
he has created.
If Obama is to avoid the condemnation of history, he must
fulfill his constitutional duty by working with Republicans
(and any willing Democrats) in cutting spending, fixing the
health care mess he's made worse, repealing job-killing regulations,
holding down taxes and fostering economic growth. And he must
stand up for America without reservation or purpose of evasion.
If the president can't or won't do his job, he should resign.
Mediocrity and failure are no longer acceptable.
There is a new self-improvement program that has emerged out
of the heartland of America - and is now beginning to catch
on in Washington. It is called CIAP - which stands for competence,
integrity, accountability and patriotism.
The era of big government is over - and so is the old "a
sucker is born every minute" politics on which it was
built. The new politics of the 21st century is focused on
getting government out of the way of economic progress and
out of Americans' personal lives, where it is doing more harm
Christian, an attorney, was a deputy assistant
secretary of the Treasury in the Ford administration. Robbins,
an economist, served at the Treasury Department in the Reagan