I hope that you conservatives are happy now. With your sweeping election victories in Congress, and in several key gubernatorial races, I suppose that Republican and "Tea Party" candidates will now begin the dismantling of the historic, legislative work of the Obama administration, even though the 111th Congress, led by Democrats, was recently called "one of the most successful in history" by the New York Times, and the "most ethical and honest Congress in history" by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
And even though 4 in 10 Democrats themselves do not favor Democrat control of Congress either, according to a Gallup poll last month, you conservatives just couldn’t wait any longer, could you? Bill Clinton tried to explain why he believed that you all needed more patience with the Obama administration, especially now. "All we're really asking for is two more years, that's a total of four, to get us out of the hole and get us into the future." After all, Clinton said, "that's half as much time as you gave them to dig the hole," referring, of course, to the preceding eight years when a Republican was in the White House.
But that sort of reasoning probably didn’t make a lot of sense to you, right? You are probably part of the 64% of voters last month that said the country is heading down the wrong track. I get it.
You folks just wanted to make this election about a referendum on Obama’s agenda, and the unprecedented progress that the Obama administration has made on the economy, healthcare, immigration, and the environment, just to name a few examples. I get that too, especially given the President’s poll numbers.
In fact, more Americans view Obama unfavorably (50%) than favorably (47%), and his favorable rating is the lowest of his presidency. But did you ever stop and think that maybe his low favorability rating is just because his administration’s accomplishments, such as the nearly $1 trillion stimulus bill, universal healthcare, or wealth redistribution efforts are “just to hard too explain” to voters, as Joe Biden put it? That may be why Democrats did not run on Obama’s policy initiatives this election season, but ran away from it. Maybe they weren’t embarrassed by the President’s accomplishments…they just wanted to keep it simple for you all.
And simplicity is the root of genius, after all. In the words of Albert Eistein, “Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage — to move in the opposite direction.”
Yes, Obama has made government bigger, more complex, but he’s tried to keep the message simple, at least, so everyone can understand and so you all aren’t bombarded with too much information. After all, as Obama explained in May, too much information can become "a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment, rather than a tool of empowerment, rather than the means of emancipation."
That’s why it is so confusing that, even though you folks supposedly don’t fully understand the issues, 53% of likely voters still favor repeal of the historic healthcare law. And 52% likely voters surveyed said they believed the nearly $1 trillion economic stimulus package will weaken the economy or make no difference. And that 75% of likely voters think a free market economy is better than an economy managed by the government, even though Obama had the nerve, or temerity, to provide taxpayer bailouts of private corporations, such as General Motors and Chrysler, as well as make the point that government’s purpose is to create jobs, mainly through higher taxation, or by "spreading the wealth".
You conservatives may not understand all of this because, again, these are all complicated issues that are hard for average people to understand, as Joe Biden explained. That’s why Speaker Pelosi made it simple for you all when she said that Congress had to pass the universal healthcare bill first, in order to "know what’s in it". Or when she simplified the “cause-and-effect” explanation of how increased government spending creates jobs by pointing out that for every dollar a person receives in food stamps, $1.79 is put back into the economy.
And even though 76% of American adults now know someone who is out of work and looking for a job, have you all considered what may have happened if the federal government had not spent over $1 trillion in stimulus money? "I don't know of a single person who says if we hadn't done this, we'd be better off today," said Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd recently.
No good deed goes unpunished, goes the saying. And it has been said that the Obama administration pulled our nation back from the brink of a second Great Depression, staved off higher unemployment rates, provided healthcare access to 95% of Americans, increased private sector job growth, and put the big oil, big insurance, big banks, and credit card companies on notice that they will no longer be allowed to dominate and exploit the lives of hard-working Americans. And even so, with sweeping election victories in hand, you conservatives want to tear all of that down. What’s wrong with you people?
Well, like I said, I hope you all are happy with what you did on November 2.
I know I am.