Pawlenty Speaks Good Dollars and Sense

Pawlenty’s straight-talk, Rx approach seems to be modeled on the modern intervention methodology.  This is quite apt, I think,  for an electorate who, a mere 30 months ago, got completely stoned on hope-dope and delivered the presidency to their pusher.

Now, who could have imagined that 2008’s “stoned on hope-dope” election would produce calamity? Anyone?

Like all good grown-ups should, Pawlenty insists upon a major intervention ASAP. Positive intervention with the hope-dope folks is precisely what he’s offering:

I promised to level with the American people. To look them in the eye. And tell them the truth. 

I went to Iowa. And said we need to phase out federal ethanol subsidies. I went to Florida. And said we need to raise the retirement age for the next generation. And means-test cost-of-living adjustments for Social Security. I went to New York City.  And told Wall Street that the era of bailouts — carve-outs — and handouts had to end. 

I’m willing to tell Americans the hard truth. And I believe Americans are ready to hear it.  

But the truth about our economy isn’t hard at all. Markets work. Barack Obama’s central planning doesn’t.

Substance over style. Hard truth over more spell-blinding fairy dust. Seems like a very timely approach to the 2012 election if you ask me.

Pawlenty’s tax-code overhaul sounds like pure American dream. When hard-working, middle-class breadwinners realize what’s in it for them, the national demand for sleeping pills may subside a bit. Three tax rates:  0 -- 10% -- 25%:

A one-third cut in the bottom rate. To allow younger — middle — and lower-income families to save and build wealth. And a  28% cut in the top rate — to spur investment and job creation.

Pawlenty also came out in favor of the balanced budget by law for the feds, saying we need to put Congress in a “spending straitjacket.”  That was my favorite line, by the way, in the entire speech. Message from the people to the government:  “Step away from our checkbooks. Now.”

Pawlenty is smart to remind voters every single time he speaks that he has actually spurred a sizable economy – Minnesota’s – for eight full years as a two-term governor. Having presided over the budget of one of the 49 states that require balanced budgets by law is a pretty sterling qualification to have upon one’s resume as America hangs upside down upon the cliff’s edge in waiting-for-the-Greatest-Depression-shoe-to-drop anxiety.

Pawlenty, should he get the Republican nomination, will be faced off with a guy who didn’t even so much as run his own paper route before ascending to the most powerful political position in the universe. If Pawlenty wants to make the comparison on his economic creds, he had better be reminding the voters at every turn that people stoned on hope-dope, who decide to put their pusher in charge of their bread and butter, are just begging for a slow death by starvation.

All in all, I have to say that Pawlenty is definitely in the running for my vote, despite his charisma-challenged presentation. But I’m an older, white, married gal, with a whole lot of home-budgeting, hard lessons under my own belt.  The folks Pawlenty must convince were, less than three years ago, candidates for straitjackets themselves.

Will Pawlenty’s intervention model appeal to them now that they are reaping the disastrous consequences of their own folly?

Ah. That is the real question of 2012 -- for all of us. Can the hope-dopers give their pusher the shove and leap into health and prosperity, latching the white coattails of a very sober interventionist?

It’s looking very iffy at the moment.

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