As Rand Simberg writes, Barack Obama, while on the campaign trail last year, “persuaded many small business people to pull in their horns and make plans to keep a low profile (including laying people off) in order to avoid the wealth confiscation of the populist, socialist, economic storm they saw coming with his election.” And once in office, he’s very much kept up that tone. What could he have done instead?
Though he might have caused trouble with his own party, Obama could have certainly forged a coalition of Republicans and moderate Democrats were he really the post-partisan, reach-across-the-aisle lightworker that we were promised in the campaign — a promise belied by his actual record in the Senate. It’s called triangulation, and Bill Clinton learned post-1994 that one could not only succeed politically with it, but that it could deliver good results for the country as well (at least until the bubble popped in 2000).
The only problem with it is that Barack Obama is incapable of doing anything so smart, either as a campaigner or a president. Unlike Bill Clinton, Obama is a committed ideologue — a man raised by Marxists and mentored as a youth by a communist, who sought out similar types in college by his own admission in the autobiography he may or may not have actually written himself. He’s a man who ran on the ticket of an avowedly socialist party in the 1990s. He’s a man who sat in the pew of a racist, anti-Semitic, America-hating demagogue for two decades with no objection, until he discovered that it was becoming inconvenient to his political goals. He’s a man who has willfully marinated his entire life in an ugly stew of socialism, racialism, victimology, class warfare, and other “progressive” tropes fashionable in academia and elite America but abhorrent to many of the rest of us.
So it should be no surprise that Obama has no sensible solutions for stimulating the economy, and will brook none. He is no more capable of stimulating an economy than was Mao Tse-tung, the hero of one of his close advisers. And for exactly the same reasons.
A commenter at my blog a few months ago made an interesting point. Clearly the people currently holding the reins of power believe that their policies comport the most with their political goals. But it’s not at all clear that growing the economy — or at least the productive, non-governmental part of it — is one of those goals.
Related: “Cuba orders extreme measures to cut energy use.” California really does lead the way towards the future!
Update: “Destroying Manufacturing?”