Political Spin & Backlash

The spin-doctors are already hard at work concerning the off-year elections just completed, especially those in Virginia and New Jersey, in which the republicans were successful in gubernatorial races – by a landslide in Virginia. Both states were in the Obama camp in 2008 and helped put him in office.

The bizarre situation in New York’s 23rd district pointed unmistakably to the fact that democrats disguised as republicans will no longer be tolerated in the party, except maybe in New York, especially since the conservative candidate came so close to winning the seat. The official republican candidate (spending at least $900,000) was so far behind that she actually dropped out before the election and threw her support to the democrat. Republican leaders – the ones holding the purse strings – will think twice before doling out money again to sure-fire losers.

The democrat spin is that the races mean little as far as the elections next year are concerned, in which all House and a third of the Senate seats will be up for grabs. Republicans spin the results straight into the White House, claiming that these very important elections are a referendum on what is happening (more aptly, perhaps, what is NOT happening) in the Obama administration. The republicans seem to have a better spin, especially since the democrat leaders in both the administration and the Congress are constantly galloping off in different directions and seem clueless as to how to marshal their forces into a cohesive unit to bring about Obama’s promised CHANGE. The nation is better off for this.

Obama campaigned vigorously in both states but especially in New Jersey, even resorting to the insulting use of “robo-calls,” those bothersome recorded phone messages received when one is eating dinner or trying to have a conversation with a friend. Through 23 October, loser Corzine had spent $23.6 million, all but a million of it his own money, while winner Chris Christie had spent $8.8 million. Both had plenty of funds left.

This brings up the question of just who gets to run the country. Corzine, using his vast wealth, spent $63 million and $40 million, respectively, to gain the Senate and later the governorship in 2005. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has just spent $85.2 million to succeed himself, after convincing the New York governing body to do away with the two-term limit. This stinks. More and more, government seems to be becoming the playground for rich folks who have the time and money to use it as a toy or perhaps some sort of power-grab, either real or imagined. They’re so out of touch that it’s scary.

Besides surrounding himself with “czars” and other apparatchiks (or just plain nutcases) with questionable, even shady, backgrounds – think Van Jones or Cass Sunstein or John Holdren or Anita Dunn (follower of Mao?), for instance – Obama has exerted little in the way of leadership. He signed a $767 billion stimulus bill with the prediction that the unemployment rate (7.6% in January) would not go beyond 8%. It is now at 9.8%, an increase of 29%, and rising. The democrats voted it out, the republicans had none of it, and nobody had read the bill before voting.

The House – without republican support – approved a cap-and-trade bill designed to virtually take the U.S. out of the world market while at the same time raising taxes exorbitantly on U.S. citizens. Again, nobody had read the bill before voting. Presumably, Obama has read neither bill since he has been in campaign mode all year, thus having little time for the actual business of running the government. To add insult to injury, Vice President Biden reckoned the other day that the stimulus had saved/created one million jobs at the same time people are signing up by the tens of thousands for unemployment compensation. This is ludicrous, just as ludicrous as his remark a while back that spending was necessary in order to avoid bankruptcy, or something like that.

Add the current health-care imbroglio/confusion in both the administration and the Congress to the mix and it’s not hard to see why people are voting their disaffection for what they undeniably see as the downhill trend of governance. It’s a lead-pipe cinch that no one – even if he/she has read it, a virtual impossibility – understands the House or Senate version of the health-care bill under consideration, some 2,000 pages long. The number of new bureaucracies it requires is mind-boggling, some 35 at least and each designed to generate as much red tape as possible. By contrast, someone has said the Interstate Highway Act of 1956 was made up of 26 pages.

It isn’t unusual for elected officials to default on their campaign promises, but the Obama default is gargantuan. Virtually nothing he’s promised, at least of any consequence, has happened or even come close. People are beginning to understand just how at sea the government is, realizing on the merits that government giveaways – think clunkers and bank bailouts – lead to bankruptcy and that lack of experience is devastating. The onset of the Carter administration in 1977 and its eventual and total failure is remembered by a huge number of voters, who can see the same thing happening again, though for different reasons. The Democrat Party is in a state of near-total chaos. It’s no wonder that voters in these key states reacted as they did, and the wannabes to either attain or keep office next year are watching...with fear and trembling.