Thursday, July 01, 2010

Will We Go Back to Being the US of A, or will we Be France?

From the Politico:
President Barack Obama’s Democrats have set out to alter fundamentally the nature of the U.S. political system. The changes they’ve wrought will not be easily undone.

Obama has sought to remake America into a social democracy — like Germany or France — with a larger public sector, expanded entitlements, stronger labor unions and a changed political structure. He’s doing quite well so far.

Size of government. Are we really still a government of limited powers at the federal level? It’s hard to make that case.

The feds are running auto companies. They fired the General Motors board of directors and forced Chrysler bondholders into a settlement far less attractive than that given the United Auto Workers, strong allies of Obama.

Entitlement expansion. Obamacare has passed and is lurking in our federal and states’ budget futures. When the program is fully operational in 2014, federal spending for health care is expected to rise sharply. Many businesses could drop their coverage and force workers into the public “exchanges” created by the legislation. Millions more could be eligible for federal subsidies.

This adds up to millions more advocates for even more generous benefits and higher federal spending. Democratic politicians should be only too happy to oblige.

Changed political structure. Free speech can be inconvenient at the worst times. Democrats are pushing “disclosure” legislation, which just passed the House. It would require sponsors of political ads to appear at the end. Sponsors would also have to post all donations on their websites.

Democratic supporters have made clear the aim is to make it difficult, if not impossible, for companies to participate in the political process. Liberals once sought to protect political speakers from intimidation. No longer.

This administration has repeatedly threatened businesses with retribution if they spoke out against Obama policies — medical insurance companies and energy companies, among others. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is routinely frozen out of White House policy discussions. The goal here is to intimidate business interests and force them to accept the administration’s priorities — or keep silent.

Each of these goals is well on its way to being accomplished. Government is bigger and more intimidating, more Americans are beholden to government, labor unions are more powerful, and private business is under siege.

We’re looking more like France every day.

There’s another way we resemble nations of the European Union: high unemployment. Obama’s allies are selling the nonsense that 10 percent unemployment is the best we can do in this economy. It’s the best he can do if he follows European statist policies.

Free-market principles, dominant since the Reagan years, kept U.S. unemployment at about half that in Europe for three decades. That’s the GOP’s secret weapon.

Gee, if only the Repubs in Ohio knew more about that, like Sens. Harris and Niehaus, who voted to retroactively raise my taxes. If only the Repubs sticked to these principles, we wouldn't be in this mess to begin with and Barry would still be nothing more than a thug in Chicago.