The speech was delivered with his usual panache, but it reinforced the fact that Senator Obama and his party continue to believe that the nation is corroded by a legion of unnamed crises, and that the singular solution to them all is government intervention. For every plaint — personal or political — he had a program, to be paid for by the taxpayers. He lamented over expensive cars, unaffordable credit-card bills, and high tuition, most of which are caused by government regulation passed by Congress. However, he blamed all of these problems on George W. Bush, rather than Congress, of which he is a part.
He continues to believe, against all evidence, that healthcare and education are government concerns, and should be controlled even more by government, despite its dismal record so far. He says, “I will tap our natural gas reserves,” “I’ll help our auto companies re-tool,” and “I’ll invest 150 billion dollars over the next decade in affordable, renewable sources of energy.” He will “recruit an army of new teachers and pay them higher salaries,” and “keep the promise of affordable, accessible health care for every single American.” And on and on. That is quite an agenda for one man to accomplish, yet with government, and the power to tax at the barrel of a gun, all things are possible.
Of all people, Senator Obama should know better. In his autobiographical book, Dreams From My Father, he chronicles three years of community organizing in South Chicago in a massive and decaying housing project called Altgeld Gardens. His book provides ample empirical evidence that government itself destroyed the lives and hopes of families there, along with employment opportunities, education, family unity, and much else. He describes the way the Chicago political machine served only the powerful and connected, both under the notorious Mayor Daley, as well when black mayor Harold Washington took over. All that changed was which cronies got the graft.
Thus, when Senator Obama suggested in his nomination acceptance speech that government can succeed in solving economic and personal problems, he is defying all of his own experience about which he writes so compellingly in his book. Unless he can transcend all the experience of history so far, his aspirations that government can solve all of our nation’s problems are as false as the movie set temple from which he delivered his oration.
(AP Photo/Skip Peterson)