Obama Needs to Shift From Liberal Policies

Obama Needs to Shift From Liberal Policies

By Jay Ambrose - January 23, 2010

Go back some decades, and it looked as if liberals were going to be the death of America. They wanted to take it really easy on criminals. They favored welfare programs that destroyed families. They backed foreign aid that buttressed tyrannies. Their way of dealing with enemies was unilateral disarmament. Still other proposals could have spent, taxed and regulated us into oblivion.

The voters didn't like all of this, the L-word became a curse, and so liberals went into something akin to a witness protection program. They changed their name to "progressives" and if they did not quite hide out, they became less obtrusive with some of their views. Yes, they griped, fumed, engaged in numerous sneak attacks and thumbed their noses at the opposition, but they did turn the lights dimmer than before on their grand vision of free-enterprise destruction and runaway statism.

Ah, but then after their surprising 1990s ascension came the self-destruction of earmark-happy, spendthrift congressional Republicans who seemed to assume power was theirs forever, even if many of their principles were proving strangely evaporative.

So first off, the Democrats took back Congress. Then Barack Obama used unexcelled rhetorical skills, a recession, an unpopular war in Iraq and George W. Bush's deep decline in public estimation to capture the White House. Conservative values had supposedly been rejected, and behold, it was the liberal hour, a time for the enlightened few to strike back, to fix things - glory, glory hallelujah!

The arrogance was suffocating. Resurrected liberals were practically smirking as they instructed us to sweet-talk our way out of terrorist threats, advised we should quickly duplicate Europe's semi-socialist mistakes and condescendingly dished up all manner of other liberty-smothering ideological inanities that would transform America into a poor imitation of what it once was if anyone actually acted on them.

Washington Democrats said they would do their best.

Let's all get Keynesian, the liberals said, and pretty soon Obama and friends were giving us a stimulus package costing as much as the war Obama opposed. But then, oh, dear, it turned out not to work, job losses actually accelerated and meanwhile, along with other spending enthusiasms, it was threatening to eviscerate our future with mounting debt.

Our liberal-inspired Democrats weren't through. Obama and his congressional buddies had a trillion-dollar, ineffectual, welfare-worsening health care plan they aimed to pass through secrecy and dishonest deals, and then they wanted to eat away at our industrial base with a global warming program achieving nothing. There were hopes of making illegal aliens legal ... but wait, what was that rustling in the bushes?

Why, it was dissent. It was tea party rallies. It was independents telling pollsters they were losing faith in Obama and the Democrats. It was commentators refusing to scatter to the woods when the outraged, don't-dare-criticize-us liberals rose up and roared, claiming media bias even though the bias was mostly on their side. They just couldn't stand it, these liberals, and they kept harrumphing about vicious ignorance when they were the ones whose moral superiority had been exposed as fraudulent and whose intellectual flabbiness had been put on display for the world to see.

Ordinary Americans have caught onto all of this, and so, I am sorry, liberals, but the word of the day for you is "lose." Your side has lost elections in New Jersey and Virginia, and now your side has lost the Senate seat previously held by the very liberal Ted Kennedy in very liberal Massachusetts to Scott Brown, a Republican.

The message to the Democrats is simple. Either give up your liberal ways and veer toward the center or face political catastrophe in November's general election. The message to liberals generally is also simple: Get back into your witness protection program.

Scripps Howard News Service

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