December 18, 2010
Nancy Pelosi: A Ruler of Fools
Nancy Pelosi doesn't have much longer as Speaker of the House. But if there's one constant in our ever-changing world, it's that Pelosi will remain unconscionable until the gavel is wrested from her hand. During a recent speech on the House floor, she expressed opinions about unemployment insurance and tax policy that seem irrational even for her.
Pelosi supports extending unemployment insurance beyond the current 99-week limit. To substantiate her position, she touted unemployment benefits as a burgeoning economic catalyst. All we need do is and tap into their power. Pelosi informed Congress that "[u]nemployment insurance ... returns two dollars for every one dollar that is put out there."
A two-dollar return for every one invested is a lofty promise. No financial advisor would make such a guarantee, especially in these days of stagnant stocks, miniscule interest rates, and sunken real estate values. Not even a gold-plated, platinum diamond could augur a 100-percent return on investment.
Is Pelosi a pecuniary Nostradamus? If so, it's imprudent to squander her financial perception. To realize the full economic impact unemployment insurance portends, every American from restaurant bus boys to Fortune 500 CEOs should cease work immediately. According to Pelosi's two-for-one estimations, living on unemployment alone would boost our gross domestic product from 2009's $14.1 trillion to $28.2 trillion. In an instant, the U.S. economy would exceed that of the European Union, China, and Japan combined. And this can be accomplished while we sit home watching reruns of "Hogan's Heroes."
Does Pelosi sound crazy? As the old saying goes, "Brother, you ain't seen nothing yet." If Pelosi's take on unemployment benefits has your blood boiling, you'll erupt over her thoughts on taxation.
"Giving $700 billion to the wealthiest people in America does add $700 billion to the deficit," Pelosi claims. Of course, extending the current tax rates gives nothing to anyone. Furthermore, Congress doesn't have to "pay" for tax cuts even when reductions are on the table. But remember: in Pelosi's world, a static tax rate equals a cut because all wealth is first and foremost government property.
Even the casual observer knows that when tax rates are static or reduced, Congress doesn't send the taxpayer a check. Tax rates simply determine the percentage of wealth that remains with its rightful producer instead of going to Washington. Money that never arrives in Washington cannot add to the deficit. The $700-billion budget hole that Pelosi laments -- superficially, I might add -- resulted not from insufficient taxation, but from Washington's lust to spend like drunken sailors in foreign ports.
At this point, it's natural to conclude that Nancy Pelosi is the stupidest woman on earth. If not stupid, she must certainly be ignorant. Would that either case were true, for both stupidity and ignorance are correctable.
If Pelosi is stupid, teaching her will be yeoman's work. She knows very little and resists learning, but she can learn if her teacher is patient and persistent. It will be difficult, but not impossible. Correcting an ignorant Pelosi is much easier. Ignorance is the absence of knowledge or understanding, nothing more. Expose an ignorant Pelosi to facts, and the ignorance dissipates like vapor.
Nancy Pelosi will benefit from neither approach because she isn't stupid or ignorant. She is a spin-master, an epic fraud, an insufferable boor, and a pathological liar. But she isn't dumb. No one could attain her position while drinking the sociopolitical Kool-Aid she serves up. No, Pelosi isn't stupid or ignorant. She does, however, credit those characteristics to her constituents. Sadly enough, she's correct. Otherwise, her seat in Congress wouldn't be so secure.
A people's representative respects the intelligence of the people he or she represents. That may sound outdated, but it's true. A ruler expresses utter contempt for his subjects' intellect. Therefore, rulers, unlike representatives, treat people like stooges and serfs. Rulers quickly become proficient in the artistry of condescension and falsehood, confident that the masses are too dense to discern the truth.
Is Nancy Pelosi a representative or a ruler? Anyone who can't answer that simple question needn't worry about representation. He or she should prepare to be ruled.
Anthony W. Hager has authored more than 250 articles for various newspapers, periodicals, and websites. Contact him via his website, www.therightslant.com.