By Rick Saunders
In the six short weeks that have passed since January 20, 2009, when The Chosen One was sworn in (sort of) as the nation’s 44th president of the United States, the country has witnessed a preview of a proposed morphing of its fundamental nature–evolved and matured for well over two hundred years–unprecedented in the history of the republic. And the preview is not attractive. Indeed, it is downright troubling.
This fact is becoming more and more evident as the stock market continues its collapse (wasn’t the liberal Messiah supposed to resurrect the Dow Jones like Lazarus?), unemployment rolls balloon and the true nature of what may lie ahead unfolds. Hoardes of Democrats are even rumored to be secretly peeling the “Obama-Biden” bumper stickers off their Volvos and Priuses–is that plural for “Prius?”–in recognition of the reality that maybe, just maybe the “change” that they and some 69 million Americans voted for last November was . . . let us be polite here . . . not exactly what had been promised.
(Wikipedia has the total popular vote for Obama at 69,456,897. Maybe we should split the $2 trillion in new spending among those people. That way, each could cough up their own $29,000 or so… — Jeff)
Look, when you have Democrat Sen. Robert “I-am-No-Longer-KKK-Kleagle-and-Exalted-Cyclops” Byrd slamming Obama, one month into the administration, over his ham-handed power grabs and initiatives to create White House “czars” exempt from Senatorial “advise and consent” powers, you know–or you should know–you have a problem. Remember, the term “czar” is a variation of that grand old Russian term “tsar,” meaning “emperor.” More on Russians in a moment.
Forget for a moment the unparalleled, almost comedic ineptitude of the administration in its selection of cabinet members; ignore for the time being the outrageous attempt to control future redistricting processes by seizure of the Census Bureau from the Commerce Department and placing it in the top (left) drawer of White House Chief of Staff Rahm (a.k.a. “Census Czar”) Emanuel; avert the eyes, for now, from the porcine monstrosity called the “stimulus” bill, the cosmetic appeal of which could not be improved by application of all the lipstick Max Factor has produced since its establishment in 1909. Focus instead on what this fledgling president proposes, with a straight face but decidedly jagged intent, as his rookie-year budget plan for this nation and her taxpayers — or at least those taxpayers who survive and/or stay here. Ready for big numbers? The budget that Obama has proposed consists of $3.55 trillion in spending, fueled in large part by exponential tax increases on the “rich” to the tune of over $1 trillion.
Words are one thing, but numbers are another. With all of the zeroes in place, the budget Obama proposes is $3,550,000,000,000.00. But don’t concern yourself with that, all of you in Chuck Schumer’s “chattering class.” Oh, and ignore as well the scrubbing of Obama’s name and the names of all Obama administration congressional carryovers from one or more of the 9,000-plus “nonexistent” earmarks populating the bill. Yes, Virginia, Orwell’s Memory Hole attendants are hard at work. And the proposed tax increases–mind you, we are told, only on the “rich”–only amount to $1,000,000,000,000.00. Let us review.
First, the additional spending proposed by Obama will merely set the stage for national socialized medicine and income re-distribution from the “rich” to the “not rich” like that warned of so many months ago by Joe the Plumber. A more perfect, hypergolic mix of chemicals for class warfare–and on two fronts, yet–would be difficult to formulate. And yet, it is the fovea (look it up) of Obama’s “vision” for the nation’s future.
Second, a tax increase targeting and purportedly limited to the “rich” is, at best, an oxymoron; at worst, it is simply moronic. You decide, Virginia, into which category Obama’s explanations fall. Only economic juveniles–or, as Comrade Vladimir Lenin used to call them, “useful idiots”–would try to claim, for example, that the increase of taxes upon or the destruction of tax cuts for a business would not result in an equivalent increase in costs passed on to consumers . . . including all those “not rich” consumers who Obama claims will “have their taxes rise not one cent.”
Words are important, so check his phraseology: while the consumers’ own taxes might not “change” by one cent, their out-of-pocket expenses will. This will happen when they buy their new General Congressional Motors Hummers, or flat-screen HDTV’s, or computers, or shoes, or toasters or hand-cranked can openers — the latter of which will likely play a large role in our nation’s future thanks to the proposals of the Chosen One. Rocket science, this is not: if “rich” individuals and businesses are going to be punished by having the fruits of their labors confiscated, it is beyond naïve–and some might even argue disingenuous–to suppose that they will not react by trying to offset those acts with actions of their own, including raising their own prices passed on to others, including the rich, the middle-class and the poor alike.
Recall, if you will, the words spoken by former Sen. Fred Thompson–the guy who Jeff likes to call a “Recumbent Conservative”–at the 2008 Republican National Convention:
We need a President who understands that you don’t make citizens prosperous by making Washington richer, and you don’t lift an economic downturn by imposing one of the largest tax increases in American history.
Now our opponents tell you not to worry about their tax increases.
They tell you they are not going to tax your family.
No, they’re just going to tax “businesses”! So unless you buy something from a “business”, like groceries or clothes or gasoline … or unless you get a paycheck from a big or a small “business”, don’t worry … it’s not going to affect you.
They say they are not going to take any water out of your side of the bucket, just the “other” side of the bucket! That’s their idea of tax reform.
And rest assured, inevitably as the dusk follows the dawn, those out-of-pocket expenses will spike. Up, not down. And the only thing besides free-market competition–the apparent enemy of the Obama state–that could stop it would be wage and price controls.
Could that be Obama’s ultimate goal? Socialism by necessity? All must suffer equally until none shall suffer at all? Cuba-Lite for the masses? Nah. Couldn’t be. Could it? Wait . . . didn’t FDR and Nixon do that? After all, the unprecedented tax increases proposed by Obama–floated at precisely the wrong economic moment in time for such threats, but brimming with great class warfare potential–will do nothing other than further prolong the agony of this recession. A cynic might surmise that this was the plan all along. But that would be wrong. Wouldn’t it?
It is most ironic that, in 2009, a lawyer from Illinois would stand at the west portico of the Capitol, place his hand on the same Bible used in 1861 to swear in another lawyer from Illinois as president, and thereafter almost immediately proceed to abandon and ignore some of the more enduring truths coming from the mind of that most admired predecessor, former President Abraham Lincoln. Here are but a few of those sage but now ignored observations, as relevant today as they were in the Nineteenth Century:
- “You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong;”
- “You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer;”
- “You cannot build character and courage by taking away man’s initiative and independence;”
- “You cannot further the brotherhood of man by encouraging class hatred;”
- “You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.”
Another American who offered some sage advice regarding the dangers inherent in the words of eloquent speakers is former U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, who produced two observations that all Americans should take to heart, especially in the days that lie ahead — first, that “a good catchword can obscure analysis for fifty years,” and second, that “[e]very idea is an incitement . . . [but] eloquence may set fire to reason.” Ask yourself this: is “change” a catchword? Is Obama eloquent?
America was never intended by her Founding Fathers to be the land of achievement entropy, where everyone is constrained and required by the government to aspire and succeed only to the extent of their neighbor, and be punished if they dare to aspire to or–perish the thought, achieve –levels beyond that. Instead, they conceived America to become a place where one could aspire to and achieve nearly anything. Just ask Barack Hussein Obama.
And yet, the budgetary excesses and tax increases Obama now proposes seem specifically designed to undermine that original intent. But like a booster rocket designed to hurl a payload into orbit or on a deep space mission, once the fuel has been spent and the booster’s function served, of what further use is it other than to become jetsam at the bottom of the ocean?
Two lawyers from Illnois. One is sending our great nation down the road to socialism. The other . . . well . . . is that a tear on the statue in the Lincoln Memorial?
Rick Saunders is a freelance writer who splits his time between endeavors in southern California and the American southwest. He began writing for America’s Right in December 2008.