Given that the White House is in Democratic hands, the nation is blessed by the fact that this President lacks the intelligence, the leadership qualities, and the work ethic to lead effectively. The nation is now blessed also by the fact that a decisive majority of the electorate understands that a Democrat-controlled Congress implies progressive socialist legislation. In this reality lies a significant political opportunity for the GOP.
The first precept of successful governance is to do well while doing good. If a political party legislates wisely while rendering itself unelectable, its good policies quickly will be reversed. If a political party takes care of its own majority while legislating badly, why would it want to stay in office? The do well while doing good precept focuses politicians minds remarkably effectively.
The economy of the United States currently is in serious jeopardy. The full extent of the danger is masked by the international reserve status of the dollar. But that is ephemeral, if present trajectories are not quickly reversed. At the same time, recovery is fragile, weighed down by the dreadful economic policies of the Obama administration over the period 2009-2010. What to do, what to do?
The best that the GOP can hope for in 2011 is to trim projected fiscal outlays by $100 billion – peanuts I understand when weighed against a projected $1.5 trillion deficit. However, a determined GOP can pull this reduction off, splitting the Democrats both in the House and in the Senate. A small victory is always important when turning the hinge of fate. Remember the importance of Montgomery’s victory over Rommel at El Alamein in 1943. ”This is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, I believe, the end of the beginning!’
Then, instead of wasting time and energy in pursuing hopeless battles – such as overturning Obamacare while its’ originator still wields the veto power – the GOP should turn to the issues raised by the Deficit Commission. It should link with sympathetic Democrats, yes even with the Messiah, if he is so inclined, and attempt to formulate a long-term program of fiscal reform, to be presented to the nation in the 2012 elections,
This, in my judgment, comprises doing well while doing good from a GOP perspective:
1. Secure agreement to legislate for increasing the age of access to Medicare and to Social Security from 67 years to 70 years by 2015.
2. Link Social Security pensions and pension increases to the CPI, not to average wages.
3. Tax social security income fully at the same rates as all other income.
4. Increase Medicare charges on all recipients who earn more than $100,000 per annum at 2010 prices. And allow all Medicare recipients to supplement medical payments at will.
5. Limit access to Medicaid strictly to families earning no more than poverty level incomes.
6. Trim discretionary federal spending by 15 percent in real terms by 2015.
7. Eliminate all tax loopholes, including personal deductions, without exception. Tax incomes at 10 percent up to the defined poverty level. Thereafter, tax all personal income at 25 percent . By so doing, all individuals are made aware that spending increases hit their wallets. There is no representation without taxation, unless one lives in the gutter.
In my judgment, such a reform initiative, fully prepared and well-articulated, is a vote winner for 2012. And if President Obama should sign off on such a program, in order to win re-election? Well so be it. The nation would be well-served. There is no need to rely on men of good will to achieve success. Just tie those of ill will to the mast of the good ship!