Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Disdainful, but dependent. That’s how I would describe the teenagers who seemed cool to many in junior high and high school. Parents, most teachers, and other authority figures were objects of their disdain because they were hopelessly uncool - not as aware of how the world was changing as they themselves were. Most of those teenagers grow up, however, because their parents tolerate their rebellion only up to a point and then cut them loose to fend for themselves. Thus they learn what Margaret Thatcher said: “The facts of life are conservative.”
Others don’t. They never seem to learn the facts of life, probably because they continue to blame something outside themselves for their personal failures. Other people are to blame, or the system is to blame for all the world’s problems as well as their own. They were ostentatious non-conformists who portrayed themselves as “counterculture.” They wanted to bring down the establishment culture, but didn’t have anything plausible to replace it with. Those young people had a vague idea of what they were against, but little idea of what they were for - and they still don’t as “adults.”
A few “cool” teachers indulged the fashionably-alienated teenagers in the old days because they didn’t fit in either. Now, however, they comprise whole faculties. As they do in any time or place in history, these “rebels” believed they knew the ways of the world while their “establishment” parents and teachers did not. But they were dependent for their physical sustenance on the very system they disdained. They needed food, clothing, shelter, medical care, and someone to pay their tuition at the colleges and universities they eventually went to, rebelled against, and ultimately took over. That’s how I understand people like Bill Ayers, his wife, Bernadine Dohrn, and the other pampered radicals from the sixties and seventies who steer the Democrat Party today.
The free-enterprise system they rebelled against is what produced in abundance the material necessities they consumed but didn’t appreciate. Capitalism, and the democratic republic in which it operates and thrives, have long been objects of their disdain. Now, with the impending election of Barack Obama and the bolstering of Nancy Pelosi’s and Harry Reid’s majorities in the Congress, those cool, disdainful, and still dependent people are about to secure their lock on the establishment. They’re not young anymore, but they haven’t grown up enough yet either to understand what they’re doing. As they expand New Deal and Great Society entitlement programs to an unsustainable level, the system they hate will no longer will be able to provide material necessities. The national debt is over $10 trillion and the dollar is no longer the world’s currency of choice. The hand that feeds them has been bitten and gnawed upon so long and so much it’s getting weak. The goose that laid the golden egg is going into molt. Those overgrown teenagers are about to discover that there’s a limit.
As they go about their Robin Hood redistribution policies over the next two to four years - as they “spread the wealth around” like Obama told Joe the plumber - it’s not going to be “good for everyone.” How much do Democrats think they can crank up taxes on “the rich” who are already paying most of the taxes? And how is Obama going to cut taxes on 95% of Americans when over 30% of them aren’t paying any taxes at all? What will he do with them? Just give them our money? They can call it whatever they want, but the rest of us “Joe the Plumbers” out here know what it really is. It’s Marxism: “From each, according to his ability. To each, according to his need,” with Obama, Pelosi and Reid deciding who is able and who is needy. That’s “Change” all right, but not “Change You Can Believe In.” I sure don’t believe in it.
Those of us who work our butts off aren’t going to keep doing it if government is going to take the fruit of our labor and “spread it around” to those who sit on theirs. That’s the hard reality. A radical leftist Obama Administration with a radical leftist Congress to back it up promise everything. As columnist Mark Steyn puts it: “The spirit of the age is: Ask not what your country can do for you, demand it.” He’s a Canadian who came to the United States and admires us as a last outpost against encroaching European-style socialism. Now he laments what he sees coming if Democrats sweep the election next week: "[For] a vigilant republic of limited government and self-reliant citizens, [an Obama Administration] would be a Declaration of Dependence.”