(What happens in Washington
will affect your pocketbook.)
Barack Obama sold his massive spending programs by misrepresenting the views of those who might oppose him.
Here are some examples, excerpted from an article by Karl Rove some time ago.
Obama said, “I reject the view that . . . says government has no role in laying the foundation for our common prosperity."
Who said that? Certainly not congressional conservatives, who believe that through reasonable tax cuts, fiscal restraint, and prudent monetary policies, government contributes to prosperity.
"Regulations were gutted for the sake of a quick profit at the expense of a healthy market." Who said that, and what regulations were gutted? I don’t know anyone who has said anything like it.
Obama decried “a philosophy that says every problem can be solved if only government would step out of the way; that if government were just dismantled, divvied up into tax breaks, and handed out to the wealthiest among us, it would somehow
benefit us all. Such knee-jerk disdain for government -- this constant rejection of any
common endeavor -- cannot rebuild our levees, our roads or our bridges."
“In every case government is the problem or that government should be dismantled root and branch.” Who constantly rejects "common endeavors" like “building levees, roads or bridges?” In his congressional stimulus sales pitch he says, “There is a set of folks who -- I don't doubt their sincerity -- just believe that we should do nothing.”
Who were these sincere do-nothings? Every House Republican voted for his QE2, evidence thatthey wanted to do something. Every SenateRepublican -- with the exception of Judd Gregg, --voted for alternative stimulus proposals.
Then Obama described the Bush-era tax cuts as "a surplus became an excuse to transfer wealth to the wealthy." Earlier he said, "Tax cuts alone can't solve all of our economic problems -- especially tax cuts that are targeted to the wealthiest few."
The Bush tax cuts were not targeted to "the wealthiest few." Everyone who paid federal income taxes received a tax cut, with the largest percentage of reductions going to those at the bottom! The share of taxes paid by the top 10% increased to
46.4% from 46% -- and the nation experienced 52 straight months of job growth.
Obama proclaimed, "We have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and
discord." Which Republican ran against him on fear, conflict and discord?
Obama portrays himself as a non-ideological, bipartisan voice of reason. Everyone resorts to straw men occasionally, but Obama's persistent use of the device is troubling. It is the fundamentally dishonest way of a person who lacks confidence in the merits
of his ideas.
It was said that Lincoln crafted his arguments in "resonant words that enriched the political dialogue of his age." Obama's straw men aren't enriching the dialogue of our age. They are cheapening it.
Words for Today
Abraham Lincoln said, “You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer. You cannot further the brotherhood by encouraging class hatred. You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. You cannot keep out of
trouble by spending more than you earn. You cannot build character and courage by taking away man’s initiative and independence. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.”