Filed under: Capitalism, Conservatism, Economy, Freedom, History, The United States | Tags: Believe in Liberty, Freedom and Independence, The American Idea
In the aftermath of an election, perhaps it would be better if we just curled up with a good book, went to a movie or watched one or several at home. Wait a bit before you even try to think about it. Passions, whether exaltation or despair, are just too high. How many have you heard saying that it’s just all over? We have lost our country to the barbarians.
So, five days on, perhaps we can begin to talk common sense. Barack Obama won the election over a man with much better qualifications for coping with the problems facing the country. So how did this happen?
Obama ran a relentlessly and viciously negative campaign. The largest states of Florida, Ohio and Virginia were saturated with attack ads on Romney for months. Obama won with declining percentages, and way fewer votes than he had in 2008. The constant attacks for months took their toll.
The Obama organization did an excellent job of turning out their base, targeting specific voting groups and directing their attack ads to the group identity of low-information voters. For example, the “War on Women,” directed to young women who perceived themselves as feminists, were regaled with “The Life of Julia”, Sandra Fluke’s contention that young coeds needed government-paid contraceptives, Barack Obama cared about them because he has signed the Lily Ledbetter Act which meant that women would receive equal pay for their work, Romney wanted to do away with Roe v. Wade, a video that suggested voting for Obama was like having sex for the first time, you had to do it with a good man, and an odd piece that suggested they should vote with their “lady parts.” Gaaakk.
There is and was no war on women. That was a lie. Roe v. Wade was decided by the Supreme Court in 1973. It is the law of the land. A woman’s right to buy or use contraceptives was settled 60 years ago. Taxpayers think women should pay for their own. $9 a month is not an insurmountable barrier. Life on the government dole, like Julia’s, is deadening to life and spirit. Equal pay for women was guaranteed back in 1963. The Lily Ledbetter Act gave a woman a little more time to file a claim that she received unequal pay. Called the “more pay for lawyers act.” Does nothing to change women’s pay. Google ‘equal pay for women’ to see the extent to which Democrats played on the low-information of young women in order to get their votes.
Black voters were regaled with stories of how white people were trying to take away their votes with a requirement for photo ID which was likened to a poll tax. Nevermind that you cannot be a functioning member of society without photo ID, cash a check, have a bank account, or go into the Justice Department. Democrats clearly do not want to eliminate the potential for dead people, non-existent people, and non-citizens to vote, and will go to great lengths to make sure they can. There were even claims that Republicans wanted to reinstitute slavery. These people have no shame.
Something further must be done to assure the ability of deployed members of the military to vote. The I guess we must have mailed them too late, plane crash must have burned them all up, and they didn’t sign on the proper line, needs to stop, and the officials who are in charge must face large and mandatory fines, or jail time, if our troops don’t get their ballots. They do so much for the rest of us, and seeing that they are able to exercise their right to vote is fundamental.
Obama attacked Romney relentlessly and viciously, with no regard for the truth. Romney was supposed to have outsourced jobs to China (lie), been at fault for the cancer death of a worker’s wife, (not possible), been too rich to have any interest in ordinary people, to be a corporate raider (not what Bain does), a constant flip-flopper, much was made of his special crate for the family dog, the “dancing horse” that was only an exclusive sport for the mega-rich (dressage is a serious treatment for MS), repeated endlessly and viciously, the attacks took a toll. Barack Obama became the candidate who “cares about me.”
The third prong of the Democrat campaign was Obama’s refusal to accept blame for anything. From the beginning of his term, he blamed the financial crisis on George W. Bush, (who tried 17 times to get Congress to deal with Fannie and Freddie), claimed credit for rescuing the auto industry in general and GM in particular.
GM was 3 days from running out of cash, and Bush wrote the check to bail them out called TARP. Obama ignored the law, stiffed the bond holders and the car dealers in order to pay back his union supporters in the UAW. GM may well fall back into bankruptcy because the major problem they faced of over-generous union contracts and pension benefits was not allowed to be determined by a bankruptcy court. Taxpayers have not been paid back, and probably will never be.
The recession which Obama has glorified as “the worst since the Great Depression” wasn’t any such thing, and ended, officially, in June of 2009. Increasing unemployment and business failure can be directly attributed to vastly increased regulation, crony-capitalism, overcriminalization, and unworkable laws like ObamaCare and Dodd-Frank that place excessive burdens on business. Obama does not understand economics, and doesn’t listen to those who do.
Low-information voters—a term that describes only those who pay little attention to politics until the election — are especially vulnerable to misinformation and negative politics. We all are to a certain extent, but when you don’t know the players, the history or the facts, you are easily swayed.
The goal of the Democrats is to win, this time and every time. Politics has become their religion and winning is the goal. Power for its own sake. They have some ideas for making the country over to their taste, but their ideas are bad, and proven to fail. They operate as a group. They attack the other party but do not criticize their own.
Republicans can’t stop criticizing their own. They cannot stop fighting over who is conservative and who isn’t conservative enough, who is a moderate, and what’s with the tea party. Losing candidates are raked over the coals. The Democrat’s demonization of Booosh wasn’t enough, the Republicans had to join in? Declared over, done, and to blame have been Bush, McCain, Palin, Romney, Ryan, John Boehner, all losing candidates for the nomination, most Republican pundits, Gov. Christie, and all Republican election advisers. Just stop it.
It’s harder for Republicans, because they expect the people to be citizens. To put aside silly ideas that any politician “cares about people like me,” and recognize that politicians are responsible to us, that we pay their salaries and pay for their perks, and in return we expect them to work hard for good government. We expect citizens to make the effort to get informed, and we’ll try to help to the extent that we can. It’s an uneven battle.
Politicians are simply ordinary people, no better and somewhat more venal than the rest of us, and some are a lot worse. Barack Obama has offered us “Godfather Government,” and we’re not happy about it. He rewards his donors with taxpayer funds, favorable regulation, and government largess — referred to as crony-capitalism. He has been given vast campaign funds by favored groups, and he will pay them back with the legislation they want, and the chance to get rich on taxpayer funds which they will in turn offer as campaign funds, which must be paid back with more political goodies.
It is not productive to attack Romney, Ryan or their campaign. They were excellent candidates, fine men that we can be proud of supporting. Save your attacks for the dishonorable campaign conducted by our opponents. Our job is harder than theirs, because we must sell ideas, because as Paul Ryan explained so often — America is based on an idea. Michael Medved remarked in the immediate aftermath of the election that “people don’t vote for ideas, they vote for emotions.”
Are we then to play the Democrats’ game? Just play to win because that’s all the matters? Make winning our religion? Say to hell with the truth and principle, but win at all costs? I don’t think so. And it’s not all over, not by a long shot.