What the hell happened? Is Santa Claus a turncoat, a closet Democrat? Americans were good this year. We paid our taxes. Those of us with jobs worked hard and we did our best, but there are no presents under our tree.
Remember the Republican Pledge to America, the conservative retort to the president’s failed American Promise (see: The Lie Behind the President’s American Promise)? The GOP contract talked about “unparalleled recklessness with taxpayer dollars,”¹ proclaiming:
The need for urgent action to repair our economy and reclaim our government for the people cannot be overstated.²
The world will not end on New Year’s Day. Apocalyptic predictions about fiscal cliff doomsday are coming from the same lawmakers who created the fiscal cliff to coerce themselves to do something, anything, to get government spending and deficits under control.
There are two kinds of taxpayers in Illinois. The first endorses the stupidity cooked up in Springfield, no matter the consequences. The second kind of taxpayer knows better, endorses responsible fiscal policy, and understands that it is time to get out of a state doomed by debt (see: Live in Illinois?
When Democrats gather around the campfire do they scare each other with stories about the Tea Party? The specter of fiscal responsibility has terrorized the GOP’s spendthrift opposition since 2009, a lurking reminder of Congress’s predictable failure to do anything about debt, deficit, and federal spending.
How appropriate that the governor of Illinois, a state suffering from fiscal policy gone horribly wrong, should vouch for the president on opening day at the Democratic Convention. During the 2008 race opponents charged that Illinois’ favorite son was inexperienced. They were wrong.
An economist droning from my car radio was promoting the idea of government-backed retirement plans. The argument was that the private sector failed to provide adequate retirements for workers with 401(k)s, so it is time for Washington to step in and do the right thing.