Obama 'Inherited' Only Obama
"Did they come in and inherit a tough situation? Absolutely." This from Paul Ryan, in the worst moment of the VP debate.
Barack Obama is going to lose in a blow-out, and the debates have certainly padded that margin. Having said that, both Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan left "some easy money on the table" through the first two debates that they now need to collect. The Romney/Ryan mandate will be even bigger, and effective governing afterwards will be more viable, if they but correct the media narrative of what Obama "inherited." The notion that our fearless young president innocently inherited a mess of biblical proportions is just not correct. Neither is the idea that we are in a recovery that is merely too weak to justify re-election.
The sum total of those arguments is that Obama should perhaps be fired because he's a nice guy who simply has not lived up to his promised timetables for fixing this mess. You know the mess -- the one caused by a 40-year reign of John Galt, where government disappeared, regulations were rolled back, and we had too much American energy, while businesses were writing their own rules? If only we really were in such a mess.
That entire notion is absurd, yet widely accepted. What Obama inherited in January 2009 was Obama. Maybe not personally Obama, but he inherited economic problems resulting from implementation of too many Obama pipe dream policies.
Consider some history: the economy Obama inherited had been dominated for two years by radicals named Reid and Pelosi -- with a certain senator from Illinois voting with them every step of the way, as it turns out. This inheritance included energy prices that had been skyrocketing off and on for years thanks to forty years of policies written, implemented, interpreted, and enforced by leftists at every level of government. These policies prevented this country from accessing our own incredible energy resources to the extent our economy required.
Obama and Biden firmly support all such policies.
Obama also inherited a housing disaster caused by a couple decades of radical lending policies also written, implemented, interpreted, and enforced by liberal apparatchiks at various levels of government. Meanwhile, people at the center of all of this voodoo were giving each other sweetheart mortgages, promotions, and seven-figure bonuses inside Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac -- while the rest of the population was suffering for their very decisions.
Obama and Biden support all of this as well.
In fact, when you examine the "many decades" Obama refers to as the precursor to his inheritance, you will find that liberals have been in the White House almost half the time and have controlled Congress the vast majority of the time. Moreover, they naturally control the bureaucracy all of the time -- since the bureaucracies they put in place never go away.
Setting party labels aside for a second, the salient point is that our economic successes have resulted from conservatism being enacted, while our failures result from liberalism run amok. You can observe this in many of our cities and states today, as liberal utopias gone wild are bankrupt, failing, and losing their citizens by the millions. Everywhere liberalism is put into practice, be it California or Cuba or Illinois or Detroit -- it fails. Think about how intellectually destitute you have to be to bankrupt territories as teeming with beauty and resources like California and Cuba. I wager Mitt could turn a profit in a single quarter if he ran Cuba.
And yet Mitt's campaign continues to go along with some iteration of Axelrodian history as spouted by Obama, Biden, or their many surrogates in the Jurassic media. "Let's take a look at the facts. Let's look at where we were when we came to office," blustered Biden in the debate, temporarily unaware that he has been in office since Amtrak was pulled by mules. "The economy was in free fall. We had the great recession hit; 9 million people lost their jobs ... $1.6 trillion in wealth lost in equity in your homes, in retirement accounts for the middle class."
You see, Obama and Biden were innocently attacked by "the great recession" that just "hit." Ever intrepid, they soldiered on for us. As Biden put it, "we knew we had to act for the middle class. We immediately went out and rescued General Motors." Biden didn't mention that GM is technically insolvent today, or that the "rescue" involved pilfering the company from the bondholders and giving it to the unions. His summary failed to acknowledge that GM needed rescuing in the first place only because unions had too much power and because radical energy policies had decimated sales of SUVs. This is the same Biden who just days ago told us the middle class has been "buried these last four years." Who does "just Joe" think has been in power those four years?
Of course, it's not Joe's place to point out the hypocrisy of his own arguments. But it most certainly is Paul Ryan's place to do so. Yet Ryan demurred, simply stating that "we're going in the wrong direction ... the economy is barely limping along. It's growing at 1.3 percent. That's slower than it grew last year, and last year was slower than the year before."
With due respect to Mr. Ryan, our problem is not that our GDP is limping along or that the recovery is too slow. Nope. Our problem is that the statist policies of Obama and Biden have not worked because they cannot work. The problem Obama and Biden inherited was an economy under attack from policies favored for by Obama and Biden for their entire careers. It's not that they haven't effectively reversed their inherited course. It's that they have effectively doubled down on the same course.
Now I know what some are saying. Romney is surging, so don't complain -- or Obama and Biden are imploding, so don't confuse voters with the facts. I suppose there may be some merit to those thoughts -- in a shallow inside-the-Beltway RNC strategist sort of way. I just so happen to think America is, as Ryan has said, an idea. And that idea is a Republic of limited government, and it is worth fighting for. Moreover, the 2014 midterms start the day after the 2012 election is over. If the notion that Obama inherited problems caused by limited government is allowed to stand, then the Romney-Ryan victory won't be as big as it should be, nor will the congressional elections turn out quite as they should. Any mandate interpretation will be weakened.
And more to the point, governing properly after the election will be impossible if the public still believes that Obama inherited a mess resulting from conservatism. Obama did not inherit anything but Obama. And he tried to solve it with more Obama. This is critical truth. We will never get out our republic on the right course until more of us understand that, given that one election runs right into the next.
We all need a lot less of Obama. That idea is easy money. It's still on the table. Any talk of Bain Capital or the 47% could perhaps tee this up for Romney. I hope he grabs it.