So this is how liberty dies… with thunderous applause
The Star Wars fans among you will recognize the quote above – the words of Senator Padmé Amidala, as Chancellor Palpatine takes control of the Republic. Of course he does so for the good of the people, to ensure lasting security for all. At this moment in time, in the life of the United States of America, this quote applies to her more poignantly than ever before.
Barack Obama has been re-elected as President of the US – 4 more years. The Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, put up a good fight but at the end of the day he had alienated too many less conservative people who might’ve been leaning Republican heading into Tuesday’s election. Obama’s re-election truly astounds me — perhaps the liberal media has done a better job than most thought of covering up Obama’s abysmal job-creation record? Or perhaps the enticement of a free phone proved to be too strong for some to resist? How on earth did the majority of Americans convince themselves to vote for the incumbent? With US unemployment still at 8%, and real unemployment much higher; with 43 million Americans on food stamps; with a $16 trillion debt, credit ratings tumbling and economic growth sluggish, what was it that clinched the deal for Obama? Some of the blame can rest on Romney and Ryan’s shoulders — even though Romney did very well in the presidential debates, most notably the first one. I believe that the true answer runs much deeper though — perhaps America has changed.
America is no longer a nation of rugged individualists, of fiercely independent men and women. It is now a nation that would not be out of place in Europe – a welfare state, a state with the firm hand of government directing its peoples lives. Not great anymore, but good, or rather, good enough. Has America reached a tipping point, where there are simply more takers than there are makers — and the party that casts itself so clearly with those on welfare and food stamps and hand-outs can count on the support of its clients to continue to tax and regulate the industrious class? Obama has successfully managed to instill his Marxist, class rhetoric into the people — not since the days of the Great Depression has an election been so coloured with the empty rhetoric of class warfare and outright envy. Heck, Obama even told his supporters at rallies that voting is the best form of “vengeance” – vengeance against those who so arrogantly choose hard work over welfare, perhaps.
The economic problems which will result from 8 years of Obama’s policies can be healed — Ronald Reagan managed it, and so did Margaret Thatcher. My greatest worry is that the American identity will have fundamentally changed by then — that it will simply not want to come back from Obama’s big government mentality, that it will prefer the soft mediocrity of regulation and taxation to the bracing risks of freedom; ‘Live Free’ will be replaced by ‘Free Stuff’.
Maybe Obama will reach across the isle and work with Republicans this time around — only time can tell. But if his record is anything to go by, that will not be the case. This time though, he can’t blame all his failures on George W. Bush.