Way back in 2008, as the Dark Age in America was nearing its end, a certain Democrat from a place called with the mantra of Hope had also (unwittingly perhaps?) stumbled on the one word that struck a chord with many, if not most, Americans: “Change.”
Americans wanted change. They saw an inept federal government unable to with an Administration with, to paraphrase conservative publication, a competence problem. Its representatives had troubles defending itself, with the then-president himself only occasionally able to articulate its goals in terms that resonated with the American people. They, in turn, saw budget deficits in the hundreds of billions of dollars with successive Congresses (of both political parties) unwilling to hold the line on federal spending.
And this Democrat picked up on the (then-apparently) free-spending ways of Washington Republicans (forgetting of course that it was his party, indeed a congressional majority of which he was part that increased the deficits which started declining in the middle of the dread W years). In the campaign, the Democrat sensing that the change America wanted wasn’t the change he has pushing throughout his academic and political career, inveighed that we’d been “living beyond our means” and promised a “net spending cut”. In his pre-election infomercial, he promised to “pay for his new spending plans with even bigger spending cuts.”
Once n that agent of change became president, he did indeed change the way things were being done. He accelerated the increases in federal spending (that had ticked up in the Bush Administration) and expanded the size and scope of the federal government. At the same time, polls began showing (increasingly so as his days in office lengthened) that the popular mood more closely resembled the rhetoric of fiscal restraint he offered in the campaign than the legislative initiatives he championed once in office.
Yes, people want change in America, but not the kind of change President Obama and congressional Democrats have been offering. We want smaller government not bigger. We want more freedom and less redistribution. We don’t want the government spreading the wealth around, we want fewer restrictions on private activity so that private enterprises can generate wealth and opportunities.
With almost every policy proposed or law enacted since the early days of this Administration, we have gotten change all right, but not the changes the American people wanted. Indeed, the changes foisted upon us are very much at odds with those a majority of us (in some cases a super majority) had been hoping for.
—B. Daniel Blatt