America's Locust Years

President Post-partisan is submitting a bait-and-switch budget to Congress this week: more taxes, more spending, and it's only two months after the legal deadline. So that's another year for the locusts. Scott Johnson at Powerline was already talking about the year the locusts ate at the end of 2009.

For a bit of context, Winston Churchill gave his "Locust Years" speech in November 1936, and he was talking about the mere two years that the locusts had eaten since Hitler had come to power and started rearmament.

But here in the Obama wilderness years it's four locust years of cheap money and trillion-dollar deficits with no end in sight.

Meanwhile the president met with Republican senators and accused Americans of munching up the seed corn, according to New York Times reporter Jackie Calmes (H/T Powerline).

President Obama had Senate Republicans nodding in agreement during a recent ice-breaking dinner as he described a basic problem for the nation's fiscal future: For each dollar that Americans pay for Medicare, they ultimately draw about $3 in benefits. What's more, he added, most people do not understand that.

Now, I wonder how it could be that the American people don't understand that they are not paying full freight on their Medicare benefits? I met with several good New York Times readers belonging to the Greatest Generation recently and none of them mentioned the Medicare 3 for 1 deal. Okay, one of them said that she thought Medicare worked pretty well. Maybe President Obama could exercise his considerable oratorical talents and start a national conversation about the financing of Medicare. Maybe he should send out Attorney General Holder to tell us we are all cowards.

But my most direct connection with the liberal mind comes from an innocent asterisk on the usgovernmentdebt.us Deficit page. I originally put the FY 2009 deficit of $1.4 trillion down under "Bush Deficits" but some conservative partisans objected, so I recorded their concerns with an asterisk "†" like they do in baseball. Ever since, I've been getting angry emails from liberals. Here's what one of them had to say, after I explained about the asterisk. He tasked me with the facts:

I am sure that the republicans do not want to accept the fact that G.W. Bush more than doubled America's debt either, but that is a fact! Also, the last 3 republican presidents have put $12 Trillion onto America's debt of the $16.5 Trillion total when the Iraq and Afganistan wars are included in the total debt! This is the conservative party?

My opinion is that most Democratic partisans are so stuffed up to the gills with partisan talking points that it will take an Argentina or Greece or Cyprus type meltdown to cool their jets, and they will still go to their graves blaming Bush and the greedy bankers.

Meanwhile, since the American people decided not to elect a turnaround specialist as president last November, the locusts have another four years to eat up the seed corn. Here's what the Hebrew prophet Joel had to say about the locusts.

That which the palmerworm hath left hath the locust eaten; and that which the locust hath left hath the cankerworm eaten; and that which the cankerworm hath left hath the caterpillar eaten.

Many people like this sort of thing to be translated into modern idiomatic English to make it relevant. So we can say, starting with the biggest government program of all: the taxes that Medicare and Medicaid left was eaten up by Social Security, and whatever Social Security left was eaten up by government education, and what education left was eaten up by welfare, and what welfare left was eaten up by crony capitalists. And that is saying nothing about the "Obama Deficits," also featured on the usgovernmentdebt.us Deficit page.

The prophet Joel told the Jews that the Lord "will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten," which would be good to know some time around April 2017, when the next president will already have submitted his budget for FY 2018 in early February as required by law.

According to Max Weber, the Hebrew prophets inaugurated a new style of prophecy. Instead of telling the Jews what they wanted to hear, the Isaiahs and Jeremiahs would warn of disaster when things were going well, and cheer them up when things were going badly.

After the years that Obama ate while hitting the golf course and dividing the nation with race war and class war and deficits and cheap money, we Americans will probably be hoping for a prophet like Joel. But in the real world, you get back the years the locusts ate only by working your tail off, like the Germans did during their Wirtschaftswunder after Ludwig Erhard righted the economy with hard money and supply-side economics.

Not that there's anything wrong with hard work.

Christopher Chantrill (mailto:chrischantrill@gmail.com) is a frequent contributor to American Thinker. See his usgovernmentspending.com and also usgovernmentdebt.us. At americanmanifesto.org he is blogging and writing An American Manifesto: Life After Liberalism.

President Post-partisan is submitting a bait-and-switch budget to Congress this week: more taxes, more spending, and it's only two months after the legal deadline. So that's another year for the locusts. Scott Johnson at Powerline was already talking about the year the locusts ate at the end of 2009.

For a bit of context, Winston Churchill gave his "Locust Years" speech in November 1936, and he was talking about the mere two years that the locusts had eaten since Hitler had come to power and started rearmament.

But here in the Obama wilderness years it's four locust years of cheap money and trillion-dollar deficits with no end in sight.

Meanwhile the president met with Republican senators and accused Americans of munching up the seed corn, according to New York Times reporter Jackie Calmes (H/T Powerline).

President Obama had Senate Republicans nodding in agreement during a recent ice-breaking dinner as he described a basic problem for the nation's fiscal future: For each dollar that Americans pay for Medicare, they ultimately draw about $3 in benefits. What's more, he added, most people do not understand that.

Now, I wonder how it could be that the American people don't understand that they are not paying full freight on their Medicare benefits? I met with several good New York Times readers belonging to the Greatest Generation recently and none of them mentioned the Medicare 3 for 1 deal. Okay, one of them said that she thought Medicare worked pretty well. Maybe President Obama could exercise his considerable oratorical talents and start a national conversation about the financing of Medicare. Maybe he should send out Attorney General Holder to tell us we are all cowards.

But my most direct connection with the liberal mind comes from an innocent asterisk on the usgovernmentdebt.us Deficit page. I originally put the FY 2009 deficit of $1.4 trillion down under "Bush Deficits" but some conservative partisans objected, so I recorded their concerns with an asterisk "†" like they do in baseball. Ever since, I've been getting angry emails from liberals. Here's what one of them had to say, after I explained about the asterisk. He tasked me with the facts:

I am sure that the republicans do not want to accept the fact that G.W. Bush more than doubled America's debt either, but that is a fact! Also, the last 3 republican presidents have put $12 Trillion onto America's debt of the $16.5 Trillion total when the Iraq and Afganistan wars are included in the total debt! This is the conservative party?

My opinion is that most Democratic partisans are so stuffed up to the gills with partisan talking points that it will take an Argentina or Greece or Cyprus type meltdown to cool their jets, and they will still go to their graves blaming Bush and the greedy bankers.

Meanwhile, since the American people decided not to elect a turnaround specialist as president last November, the locusts have another four years to eat up the seed corn. Here's what the Hebrew prophet Joel had to say about the locusts.

That which the palmerworm hath left hath the locust eaten; and that which the locust hath left hath the cankerworm eaten; and that which the cankerworm hath left hath the caterpillar eaten.

Many people like this sort of thing to be translated into modern idiomatic English to make it relevant. So we can say, starting with the biggest government program of all: the taxes that Medicare and Medicaid left was eaten up by Social Security, and whatever Social Security left was eaten up by government education, and what education left was eaten up by welfare, and what welfare left was eaten up by crony capitalists. And that is saying nothing about the "Obama Deficits," also featured on the usgovernmentdebt.us Deficit page.

The prophet Joel told the Jews that the Lord "will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten," which would be good to know some time around April 2017, when the next president will already have submitted his budget for FY 2018 in early February as required by law.

According to Max Weber, the Hebrew prophets inaugurated a new style of prophecy. Instead of telling the Jews what they wanted to hear, the Isaiahs and Jeremiahs would warn of disaster when things were going well, and cheer them up when things were going badly.

After the years that Obama ate while hitting the golf course and dividing the nation with race war and class war and deficits and cheap money, we Americans will probably be hoping for a prophet like Joel. But in the real world, you get back the years the locusts ate only by working your tail off, like the Germans did during their Wirtschaftswunder after Ludwig Erhard righted the economy with hard money and supply-side economics.

Not that there's anything wrong with hard work.

Christopher Chantrill (mailto:chrischantrill@gmail.com) is a frequent contributor to American Thinker. See his usgovernmentspending.com and also usgovernmentdebt.us. At americanmanifesto.org he is blogging and writing An American Manifesto: Life After Liberalism.

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