11.01.2008 0

Of Ruse and Reality

  • On: 11/03/2008 10:06:49
  • In: Barack Obama
  • By Isaac MacMillen

    Barack Obama’s campaign has been marked by an ethereal glow, as an almost messianic zeal has taken over. While some may claim that it is largely inspired by the historic nature of the candidacy, it is worth noting that the historic campaigns of Sen. Hillary Clinton and Gov. Sarah Palin did not and have not inspired that same feverish devotion.

    No, there is something more to this unbreakable fidelity. It was built upon the “hope” and “change” mantra that Sen. Obama preached, turned into a sort of “gospel” promising “salvation.” But even Sen. Obama himself now realizes that he has created a level of expectations that, if not satisfied early in his administration, could cause his demise.

    So Obama has begun to prepare a campaign of expectations management, lest the momentum from the machine he created ultimately overwhelm him. Despite the favorable chances of working with a Democrat super-majority—the possibility of a filibuster-proof Senate—Sen. Obama still says that it will be “hard” for him to clean up Washington.

    Should he indeed take office with 60 Democrat Senators and a majority of the House, he will have an easy time implementing his policy objectives—reinstating the (un) Fairness Doctrine (muzzling freedom of speech), renewing the moratorium on offshore drilling (driving up gas prices), passing the Employee Free Choice Act (ending the ability of union workers to cast a secret ballot), cap and trade to fight “man-made” global warming (severely harming the U.S. economy)—the list goes on.

    But by looking closely, one can clearly see why Sen. Obama is concerned—he is not yet assured of complete control of Congress.

    Senator Obama’s radical agenda may yet be stoppable—if the Republicans maintain the ability to run a filibuster. History is with the Republicans on this. Not since 1965, under President Lyndon B. Johnson, did a president have a filibuster-proof senatorial majority. With 41 solid votes, Republicans will be able to stall—if not completely stop—many of the items sent their way.

    Some issues will not need a filibuster to succeed, though. Those tax cuts under President Bush? Expect them to expire with nary a sorrowful look from the Democrat Congress.

    In the past 40 years, Democrats have held the presidency plus a majority in both houses of Congress only three times. These majorities resulted in massive explosions of government, the effects of which we are still feeling today.

    In 1965-1968, Democrats under President Johnson were able to pass the “Great Society” socialist programs, including Medicare and increases in food stamps. 1977-1980, Democrats under President Jimmy Carter passed the Full Employment Act, and America learned what “hyperinflation” and “stagnation” were. 1993-1994, Democrats under President Bill Clinton passed the largest tax increase in history. In all three cases, the American public reacted violently against the encroaching liberal agenda, giving the Republicans substantial victories the next year.

    Sen. Obama will face the same problem if he takes office. His agenda promises hope, change—a revived economy and “good times” again. But with the current economic climate, and the fallout from the Democrats’ liberal agenda, the situation will only get worse.

    After a year in office, spending skyrocketing, perhaps a deficit well over $1 Trillion, and still millions of uninsured, unemployed—will Americans view this purveyor of hope and change as a fraud? By all appearances, the stern possibility of that reality has caused even the hope-master himself to give pause to his high-flung rhetoric.

    Isaac MacMillen is a contributing editor of ALG News Bureau.


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