Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Lore Pohlman

It appears that about 40% of the country makes up a core of blue… people who are wedded to their leftist philosophy as if it were a religion… they believe it will succeed despite all evidence to the contrary. From the economic malaise it has inflicted on the United States to the economic meltdown that is playing itself out in Europe to the wholesale abandonment of the leftist policies by governments from Beijing to Delhi to Hanoi. Despite the complete lack of a single demonstrable example of a sustained success of the Marxist / Keynesian / Alinsky philosophy, they still believe and it appears that virtually nothing anyone in the red corner can say can change their minds.

Today the aspirations embodied by their messiah are no longer just theoretical solutions and aspirational promises. This is not 2008 when the press could blame all of America’s woes on a reviled Bush White House. It’s not 2008 when Barack Obama could tell stories about how he plans on putting America back to work by rebuilding our infrastructure and creating green jobs. It’s not 2008 where Barack Obama could promise to make America respected again in the eyes of the world by closing Guantanamo and ending the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. It’s not 2008 where Barack Obama could rail against George Bush’s “years of unprecedented fiscal irresponsibility.” On the contrary, in the summer of 2011 President Obama finds himself in the middle of a perfect storm of failure, yet it seems to have no effect on his followers.

The most recent issue is of course Solyndra. The solar panel company that was the poster child for the green jobs that were the key to fulfilling his campaign pledge to future generations that (his election) “was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal.” In 2009 the Administration gave the company $535 million in loan guarantees and in March of 2010 the President toured the company, declaring “the promise of clean energy isn’t just an article of faith.” Today the company sits bankrupt and taxpayers are out half a billion dollars. What’s worse for President Obama’s green jobs agenda is the fact that apparently each of those touted green jobs costs $5 million…

On the jobs front the President has just gone back to Congress and requested that they give him an additional $500 billion for a second stimulus program… because his previous $1 Trillion stimulus plan worked so well. The President suggested that his stimulus program (circa 2009) would bring unemployment down to 7.1% by August of 2011. In reality, his stimulus program did pass yet unemployment stands at 9.1% today. Fully two million more Americans are unemployed today than were promised by the President.

On the single most important issue of the day, jobs, President Obama has demonstrated not only that he is out of ideas, but that he wants to double down on the same bad ideas didn’t work in the past… and he wants to pay for the whole thing by raising taxes by $1.5 trillion. Unfortunately for him, things don’t look any better anywhere else. Domestically, inflation is on the rise, the economy is on life support and federal deficits are larger than at any time in history. Internationally, America’s leadership is once again so strong that the Palestinians are heading to the UN to ask for recognition despite US opposition, the Arab spring threatens to put Islamists in charge across the region, Europe is crumbling and Asian allies wonder about America’s commitment to the region as Taiwan is left twisting in the wind by the administration’s decision not to sell the island nation 66 new F-16 fighter jets for fear of offending the Chinese. Politically, the President’s leftist policies have so pummeled the citizens of New York that last week the GOP captured a house seat that had been held by the Democrats since 1923.

While the nirvana that was to be ushered in by Hope and Change has not materialized, it’s not because the administration has demurred from putting its policies in place. On the contrary, they’ve done so in most cases either by legislation or executive action. Despite all of this failure, a solid 40% of the electorate still supports President Obama and the discredited policies of the left. One wonders how is it possible that seeing all of this they could still believe? Then again, maybe it’s not so difficult to understand. A sign of a religion after all, is believing in something despite all empirical data that suggest it might not be true, or perhaps more accurately, the lack of empirical data that suggest it is true. The difference between a religion and the leftist policies of President Obama is that the former typically promises nirvana in the afterlife while the latter is supposed to be focused on this one. Nothing can prove Heaven doesn’t exist and therefore believers continue to believe. It’s called faith. History on the other hand, from FDR right up to Barack Obama, demonstrates clearly that the socialist, redistributive policies of the left simply do not work. Yet, the believers still believe, and vote accordingly. That fits Einstein’s definition of insanity. In this case it might just be called stupidity.