Obama came bearing hope. A new beginning. Change we can believe in. He told us, “Yes we can.”
Yes we can . . . what?
That’s the question I’m left asking after reading about the brave budget proposal released yesterday by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.).
Ryan seeks to reduce entitlement spending. And so, he has set the Republicans up for a ferocious campaign of Democratic attacks charging the GOP with urging the de facto euthanization of poor people. Republicans are hoping the public’s concern with the deficit will cause such attacks to backfire.
The White House believes Ryan has stepped in it. That theory explains why Obama has made no serious proposals to rein in spending on Medicare, Medicaid or Social Security, which is the only way to start deleting from the budget deficit.
Obama could be wrong on the politics – or not – but he’s definitely ignoring the country’s needs.
Next to jobs, Americans believe the deficit is the most pressing issue facing the nation. It is viewed by many economists as the most urgent issue too. Not health care for all. Not a college education for all. Not legalizing illegal immigrants. Not fat kids.
Hillary Clinton said the other day that the deficit is a national security concern.
Forget about whether Ryan’s ideas are any good or not. It’s clear that he’s made very rigorous proposals to change Medicare and Medicaid – the only way to stop the deficit from destroying everything in its path – while reforming the tax code as well.
This is the type of leadership a president normally is supposed commit. Not the House Budget Committee Chairman.
Obama did once say, “Yes I can – I’m gonna do it.” But he said, “First let my deficit reduction commission make their recommendations.”
Then they made their recommendations.
On December 1, 2010, the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform issued its report. And then on December 2, 2010, Obama and his senior staffers each took a sheet of the 65-page document, and they made paper airplanes, and they sailed them off the Truman Balcony.
How is it possible that Obama, our leader, has not made an effort to deal with the most important long term domestic problem facing the country?
OMG, the reason just struck me. BARACK OBAMA IS A POLITICIAN. He thinks people say they want to cut back on dessert, but when it comes down to it, they’ll have their cake and eat it too. And punish anyone serving a smaller portion.
And I had thought . . . I had thought IT WAS GONNA BE DIFFERENT THIS TIME. I thought that first there was the Paleolithic Age era, then there was the Bronze Age era, then there was the Iron Age era, and then the Post-Political era.
No, I didn’t actually. But a lot people did. In 2008, they asked themselves, “Can we fool ourselves into thinking that a man who came up through the Chicago political machine is the second coming of Abraham Lincoln?”
And they thought for a moment, and then they said:
“Yes we can!”