Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The pundits are telling the truth. But they think that they're lying

Browsing through a bunch of the election post-mortems early this morning, I noticed a general trend.
The professional typists are coming away from yesterday's election with the following lessons for us all:

1) Americans are racists.
2) President Obama didn't properly communicate the general awesomeness of his accomplishments.
3) The porkulus package wasn't big enough. 
4) Losing the House will do the Democrats some good, since the Republicans will make a useful foil for Obama and the Senate. 

The mainstream media doesn't really believe any of this.  They think that they're lying. 
In reality, they're telling the truth. 
Let's take these one at a time. 

1) Americans are racist.

Yes, they are.  But it's not a racism of the in-your-face variety.  It manifests itself in what Bush The Lesser called "the soft bigotry of low expectations".  It shows up in our remaining Affirmative Action regulations.  And it appears when we put a junior Senator from Illinois, with no executive, management, or even legislative experience into the most challenging job in the free world. 
Hundreds of thousands of people had their Affirmative Action moment in 2008, felt totally great about it, and then experienced the worst buyer's remorse most of us have ever seen in a mid-term.  They either stayed home or changed their minds.
Yes, many Americans are racists, and they see people through that filter.  But 2010 wasn't the racist election.  2008 was.   

2) President Obama didn't properly communicate the general awesomeness of his accomplishments.

Once again, the pundits are telling the truth.  But to acknowledge that Obama's efforts to justify ObamaCare, Porkulus, or Cash For Clunkers didn't make sense?  That would undermine their entire worldview. 
The Democrats didn't fail because of a lack of communication on Obama's part. 
Good lord in heaven, I am so tired of that man's voice. 
He talked and talked and talked. 
This is the moment that is now.  Now is the time that is after the past but before the future.  The present time of badness is so much better than the failed eight years of relative goodness.  And on and on and on.  I could produce reams and reams of it without making a lick of sense, that even Obama's Mama couldn't distinguish from the real thing.  People are just sick of having to listen to it.   

Here's Mark Twain, on his experience with an evangelist named Hawley:

Well, Hawley worked me up to a great state. I couldn't wait for him to get through. I had four hundred dollars in my pocket. I wanted to give that and borrow more to give. You could see greenbacks in every eye. But he didn't pass the plate, and it grew hotter and we grew sleepier. My enthusiasm went down, down, down - $100 at a time, till finally when the plate came round I stole 10 cents out of it. So you see a neglect like that may lead to crime.
As always, Mr. Twain has a takeaway illustration for us all.  Please, please, please, when you run out of things to say, stop talking. 

3) The porkulus package wasn't big enough.

Absolutely correct.  If the stimulus package had been twice as big, more people would've gotten a boost before the election, and it might have changed a few things for a few people. 
But consider this....If a thief breaks into every home in your neighborhood, takes most of the property, pawns it, and then spends the money on jewels for his girlfriend, the pawn shops, the jewelry stores, and the girlfriend will all be grateful.  They're more grateful for a large theft than a small one.   
The pawnbrokers, jewelers and girlfriends are mistaken when they think this will be the start of a continuing trend. 
So when Paul Krugman says the theft from the private sector wasn't large enough, he was right.  But not for the reasons he thinks. 

4) Losing the House will do the Democrats some good, since the Republicans will make a useful foil for Obama and the Senate.

Once again, the professional commentators don't really believe this, and this is just a sour grapes response to a blowout of an election.  But here's the truth in what they're saying:
The punditocracy (meaning the non-bloggers) tend to believe that a great seismic shift happened yesterday.  Biggest change in Congress since the Great Depression.  A huge swing in the balance of power. 


We will see some Kabuki Theatre between Obama and Boehner.  Both parties will use the others' picture in their fundraising.  The Republicans will be useful as boogeymen, but that'll be the only difference. 

The car will keep going in the same direction, down the same highway, but with a different driver.  The Dems have pulled over at a roadside park, gotten out to stretch their legs, and crawled in the back for a nap.  They have made out well.  They've gotten a trillion dollars worth of pork into the pockets of their supporters, they've destroyed 600,000 cars for union autoworkers, and they're well on their way to crippling private enterprise with ObamaCare, Cap'n'Tax, and other abortions.  Oh, and we're still at war with the same people we were bombing during the Bush stint at the wheel.

The car will stop at different restaurants, and the driver will change all the radio station presets.  The driver might even buy fuel from different truck stops. 
Nothing else is going to change.  You can forget about an ObamaCare repeal.  It just doesn't work that way.

The national debt stands at some point between 13.5 and 14 trillion dollars. 

Do any of those who are excited about the Republican victory believe that the debt is going to be smaller in 2012 ? 
Following the example of my friend Mike Coyne, I'll bet $100 that our debt is higher in 2012 than it is now.  We can work with the $14 trillion number.   
Any takers? 

There IS a solution to this problem, and it is called The Libertarian Party. 

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