January 3, 2005

The Demo Duo’s recycled rhetoric

President George W. Bush addressed the nation Wednesday, devoting much of his State of the Union comments to progress on the Iraqi warfront with Jihadistan and, on the domestic front, to Social Security reform. The President’s remarks on those and other topics were forceful and, as has become the custom, were followed by an amusing rebuttal from the Left. Not to be outdone, this column will herewith continue its own custom of rebutting the rebutters – sort of like shooting fish in a barrel.

Visibly shaken by the President’s performance, the tag-team of Sen. Harry Reid and Rep. San Fran Nan Pelosi managed to find an open mike from which to regurgitate one of John Kerry’s campaign stump speeches – all of which, you will recall, were the same.

Reid was up first, and, after regaling us with a story about a little boy who wanted to grow up to be just like him, the Senator from Searchlight asserted that “the president’s economic policies have left Americans and American companies struggling.” The Demo assumption here is that the President controls the economy. Of course, the best any president can do is just what the Bush administration has done: get out of the way of the free market. Here, fiscal conservatives (and constitutional constructionists) understand that government’s proper function is to allow the Invisible Hand to move, and to minimize interference with the economic forces that are key to the preservation and extension of liberty and democracy.

For the record, economists conclude with unanimity that our most recent recession started in the last year of the Clinton regime and was exacerbated by the 9/11 attacks. Here we hasten to add that this recession wasn’t necessarily Bill Clinton’s fault, though culpability for those horrendous attacks is another story.

For its part, the American economy has recovered quite nicely, having added well over two million non-farm payroll jobs in the past 19 months. In addition, home ownership and corporate profits are both at all-time highs, and the unemployment rate fell to 5.2% from 5.4% in January, the lowest since September, 2001 – but you wouldn’t know it from listening to Harry Reid. “We need to invest in our nation’s future with a Marshall Plan for America … to build the next economy,” said Reid. To be sure, when a Leftist says “invest,” he means “tax,” and his suggestion that government should build the “next economy” is Orwellian at best, and Marxist at worst.

The myth of outsourcing just doesn’t seem to want to go away. All in all, outsourcing – sending jobs to India and China – is good for the economy, as reflected in our low unemployment rate and consistent GDP growth in manufacturing and other sectors. Outsourcing removes lower-paying jobs and facilitates the growth of new industries, raising wages and keeping employment rates relatively stable. As such, outsourcing is merely another dimension of free trade, which keeps the markets working efficiently.

“Unless we give all Americans the skills they need to succeed, countries like India and China will take good-paying jobs that should be ours,” added Reid. Perhaps he should look into school vouchers – so “all Americans” can get the quality of education Reid’s children received.

On the subject of partisanship, Reid noted, “When we believe the President is on the right track, we won’t let partisan interests get in the way of what’s good for the country.” In other words, as long as the President’s policies comport with the hallucinations of Sociocrats like Reid, they won’t object.

Naturally, Reid reserved his biggest partisan punch for President Bush’s plan for Social Security reform. “It’s more like Social Security roulette,” he said. You can read all about it in next week’s column, but for now, understand that Democrats object to privatization of Social Security for two principal reasons – neither of which relates to “retirement security” and both of which relate to Demo job security.

First, for generations Congress has spent every dime taxed, ostensibly, to finance the non-existent Social Security “trust fund” (though there are IOUs sitting in a file cabinet somewhere). Privatization would leave some of that tax in the hands of Americans, meaning they could invest it in their own future rather than Reid and company “investing” it in boondoggles to benefit their fat-cat campaign donors and constituencies. Democrats need “their share” of your income like most of us need oxygen. Without it, their special-interest extortion rackets suffocate.

Second, allowing investments in the free market would leave Demos at the mercy of conservatives, who would hold them accountable for any attempt to legislate new taxes or regulations which would stifle private sector returns – the returns that millions of Americans depend upon.

If you managed to keep your eyelids peeled during Reid’s soporific little speech, you must have had them sewn open. Which brings us to San Fran Nan Pelosi – the woman who never blinks. (So much for digression.)

Predictably, Pelosi repeated the same stale whistle-stop arguments about the warfront in Iraq: “We all know that the United States cannot stay in Iraq indefinitely and continue to be viewed as an occupying force.” (Last time we checked, only Ted Kennedy, Michael Moore and those democracy-fearing Jihadi terrorists were calling the U.S. an “occupying force.” You’re in good company, Nan.) We are liberators, not occupiers.

“Iraq still faces a violent and persistent insurgency,” Pelosi said, “and is now a magnet for international terrorists.” As noted in this column last week, and by President Bush this week, that is precisely our strategic objective – keeping the warfront on their turf and not ours.

“We have never heard a clear plan from this administration for ending our presence in Iraq,” growled the Lioness of Haight-Ashbury. Yet however unpleasant it may be – and it is unpleasant – our country’s commitment to the War on Terrorism is a prolonged one. It’s a commitment driven by objectives, not day-planners; a commitment whose exit strategy is as follows: We will exit Iraq as soon as our strategic objectives have been met.

On a related subject, Pelosi claimed, “For three years, the President has failed to put together a comprehensive plan to protect America from terrorism.” This, of course, would explain the dozens of terrorist attacks we Americans have endured here at home since 9/11.

Memo to Ms. Pelosi: It is our belief that Homeland Security realignment, intelligence reform, and the Bush doctrine of pre-emption – as demonstrated in Afghanistan and Iraq, and in ongoing covert and overt counter-terrorism operations around the globe – constitute something on the order of a “comprehensive plan.”

In the end, given their mind-numbing efforts to rebut all that is good and right with America, Reid and Pelosi serve to remind us of Ronald Reagan’s quip, “The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they’re ignorant; it’s just that they know so much that isn’t so.”

He was a generous man!

Publisher’s Note: In honor of Ronald Reagan’s birthday this Sunday, The Patriot will dedicate Monday’s Brief to the wit and wisdom of our dearly departed friend.

Quote of the week…

“Our generation has been blessed – by the expansion of opportunity, by advances in medicine, by the security purchased by our parents’ sacrifice. Now, as we see a little gray in the mirror – or a lot of gray – and we watch our children moving into adulthood, we ask the question: What will be the state of their union? Members of Congress, the choices we make together will answer that question. Over the next several months, on issue after issue, let us do what Americans have always done, and build a better world for our children and our grandchildren.” –President George W. Bush

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