Yuval Nevin writes, in National review:
On February 16, at a hearing of the House Budget Committee, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner was asked by committee chairman Paul Ryan to describe the administration’s plans for addressing the mounting risk of a debt crisis. His reply was: “We’re not coming before you today to say we have a definitive solution to that long-term problem. What we do know is we don’t like yours.”
Today’s presidential speech to the annual Associated Press Luncheon was basically just a long, dishonest way of saying the same astonishingly irresponsible thing. In essence, the president argued that our country’s future depends on allowing our government to grow uncontrollably, and that any attempt to restrain its growth and to keep the size of government in relation to the economy where it was during the fifty years preceding his election would be heartless and irresponsible. Keeping that growth in check—not reversing it, mind you, but allowing the government to grow only about as quickly as the economy does—would, we are told, subject our nation to unimaginable horrors. If all of Ryan’s cuts in the growth of spending were “applied evenly,” the president argued, then:
The President’s depiction of Mr. Ryan, the wonkish and formerly obscure House Budget Chairman, as some political monster is itself telling. Mr. Obama is conceding that he can’t run on the economic recovery, the stimulus, health care, green energy or any of the other grand liberal ambitions that have dominated his time in office. All of those are unpopular or failures. He was elected on hope and change, but now his only hope is to change the subject to the ogres he claims are the disloyal opposition. The President’s own budget was voted down unanimous by Congress, 415-0, Harry Reid in the Senate has no budget of his own to propose, the Congress has not approved a budget for over two years, and yet he presumes to lecture the Republicans over budgetary affairs. The deficits and unfunded liabilities now stretch out before us for as far as the eye can see (and beyond). Unless we arrive at some sort of new social model (fast), the next generation will be paying confiscatory taxes with drastically reduced services, all to insure that baby-boomers waddling around in their “golden years” get free health care and COLA-ed pension checks. The war against arithmetic is also a war against the young.
The President has wasted his political capital on political gamesmanship. Instead of addressing the economy, he spent a year and a half working on the so-called “Affordable Care Act,” spending lavishly on so-called stimulus money, bailed out failing car companies and plowing billions into speculative ‘green’ ventures, all of which have failed.
There is no choice in the next election. No matter what one’s political leanings are, we cannot continue this way, with a President who blames everyone but himself for his problems.