Do you remember Bill Clinton's presidency? I do. And one thing I remember most is his habit of governing by polls, or at least his being accused of that. The charge was that Clinton would put his finger in the air and then declare his support for which every way the wind was blowing. This wasn't the whole truth, of course, but it was somewhat accurate of Clinton's governing style. Now we have Obama taking a page out of dear ol' Bill's book. Take a look at this.
I saw on Yahoo! News yesterday that, in his weekly radio address, Obama pledged to cut dozens of wasteful government programs. This had to be done, Dear Leader insisted, because "ever-expanding deficits and debt" were "unsustainable". Also, America's future depended on "restoring a sense of responsibility and accountability to our federal budget". Oh really? Where was Obama's concern for fiscal responsibility and unsustainable debt when he was pushing his porkulus bill and gargantuan budget through Congress? And why does he suddenly have such a pressing concern for those things now? Could it be what happened on Wednesday?
On Wednesday, hundreds of thousands of Americans took to the streets in Tea Parties to show their displeasure with Obama's reckless spending. While the mainstream media tried it's hardest to smear the protestors, their collective voice could not be silenced. It reached all the way to the White House, it seems. And Obama knew he had to do something.
Now Obama is a liberal. The only thing he loves more than taking the people's money is spending it. But he saw on Wednesday that a huge swath of the American people is MONUMENTALLY ANGRY about his profligate ways. So the Messiah gave a sop to their ire by promising to cut government programs. The catch is that cutting programs does NOT automatically mean there'll be less spending. It could only mean the SAME amount of money will be spent on fewer programs. I think the Big O is counting on Americans to assume that cutting wasteful federal programs will also mean reducing spending and, consequently, taxation. Such an assumption could blunt the anger over Obama's economic sinkhole and help present him as a centrist. A win-win situation for the Chosen One. There's only one problem. The American people aren't that stupid.
The hundreds of thousands who participated in the Tea Parties, and the millions who supported them, may have been ordinary working stiffs but they use their brains. They can see through attempts to bribe them with political tricks and worthless promises. If Obama wants to get back into the good graces of the anti-tax protestors he'd better stop treating them like dumb rednecks. Instead, he should try the engagement he's so keen on using with our enemies. If he can shake hands with Hugo Chavez he can shake hands with Tea Party America, too.