“It’s morning again in America!”
— from the 1984 Reagan
re-election presidential campaign
As the Summer Olympics
was ending, with 104 U.S. medals, 46 of them gold, I was wondering
what would be inspiring to watch next. I soon learned: We are going
for the gold in a presidential election.
This is what I’ve been
waiting for: another election, like 1980’s, in which we will debate
two opposing visions of America, instead of just getting by with
focus-group positions, rehearsed talking points, efforts to pander
to various special interest groups, sappy slogans like “Hope and
I know, “morning again
in America” was a sappy slogan, until it was proven true, as
Americans recovered from the “misery index” of the Carter years and
began to believe in the American Dream once more.
However, even then
there was more work to be done on the “entitlement society” and the
national debt, which has taken us into the dusk, with the
dead-of-night pending. Certainly, Obama’s 2008 slogan “Hope and
Change” hasn’t lived up to its own sappy rainbow’s promise. Now, as
Congressman Paul Ryan says, the Obama forces rely on an “envy,
division and resentment strategy” to get themselves re-elected.
To this end, and my
amusement, the Obama campaign has been attacking Mitt Romney by
calling him “RomneyHood — Robin Hood in reverse,” apparently not
realizing that Robin Hood led the Sherwood Forest Taxpayer
Association of peasants, which fought Big Government (the wicked
Prince John and the evil Sheriff of Nottingham). With his bold
choice of Paul Ryan for his vice president, Romney joins Robin as
one of my activist heroes.
He has shown his
willingness to take a chance on the American voters, to give them
credit for understanding the problem and being ready to address it.
This team will put the economy ahead of everything else, because
without the economic fix, everything else is in jeopardy. America
can deal with war, terrorism, disease control, climate concerns,
energy concerns, all the big issues, only if America is solvent; no
country can thrive under overwhelming debt any more than we
Anyone who says that
what’s happening in Greece can’t happen here is delusional. The
Greeks, who founded democracy, got carried away voting themselves
goodies from the public treasury; we are no different. Already, some
American cities are facing bankruptcy because of extraordinary
unfunded public employee pension and health insurance liabilities,
as well as operating debt.
The Greeks are close to
the dead-of-night, the place where neither tax increases nor
austerity will solve the problem, and everyone reluctant to lend
them more money. We must wish them well while trying to turn
ourselves around before it gets that bad here.
No one who is paying
attention can deny that the deficit and the national debt are
out-of-control, that Medicare “as we know it” is heading for
bankruptcy soon, with Social Security close behind. The current
president and vice president won’t save us; the Democrats have no
budget, no plan, just the ongoing mantra “tax the rich” in response
to any fiscal question.
We also know that many
Republicans haven’t had the political courage to take on the tough
issues, except for some longtime deficit hawks and the tea party
candidates who supported Paul Ryan when, as House Budget Committee
chairman, he attempted essential reforms. A lack of political
courage may be understandable if Romney and Ryan are wrong in their
estimation of the American voters.
Obama Democrats count
on women of the “gender gap” not making a connection between liberal
economic policies and the economy that hurts their families; on
young voters not realizing that attacking “the rich” doesn’t create
jobs for them; on senior citizens following the AARP with its lack
of concern for their grandchildren; on minorities buying the
accusation that any attempt at fiscal responsibility is racist.
Romney/Ryan will reach out to them all with an honest evaluation of
the problems that can’t be ignored any longer.
After the VP
announcement, the Obama pundits seemed at a loss on the Sunday
talking head shows. One called Paul Ryan “Sarah Palin with substance
and a paper trail.” That’s an insult? Congressional Democrats are
forced to admit that Paul Ryan is principled and pleasant — because
we will all notice this — before attacking him for being radical,
extremist and religious.
I’ve been watching him
since his leadership against Obamacare; didn’t know until this week
that he is more socially conservative than I, as Ronald Reagan was,
and I didn’t care then either. At the time, the presidential
priority was turning around the economy and defeating the Evil
Empire; with Romney/Ryan, it will be defeating the selfish,
short-sighted tendencies of our worst selves, who’ll pass on
trillions in debt to future generations.
We can debate social
issues later, after we have saved the country from policies that
will leave us with little energy to argue or money to contribute to
our various social causes, not to mention charities. Right now, we
need to honor the Romney/Ryan optimism and belief in American voters
by encouraging citizens of good will to visualize morning in