President Obama’s rhetorically rudderless State of the Union Speech yesterday evening was very New Democrat, very elitist. Muddling your way through the it, if you could, required a lot of patience and concentration. A secret decoder helped. At most points it was a political droll. It was the opening salvo for the year of political gridlock.
The President, and the New Democratic Party, will focus on its leftist, pro-government, and collectivist agenda. A prelude to his upcoming executive order decrees, the President’s declaration set the stage for a politically volatile year. This New Democratic Party, and its leader, shun tradition, including the Constitution. At various points he directly, or implicitly, dictated to Members of Congress that he would go at it alone. He never said with a pen and phone. The President did not have too.
The President and the New Democratic Party would’ve spare the Nation the evening and skipped visiting with the Congress. It is what he intends to do for the rest of his Administration, ignore the will of the people the best they can. And that makes this Administration one of the more politically dangerous in recent memory. The regulatory super-state is already in much need of cutting back. As are federal taxes and other federal intrusions in our lives. These people intend to govern via what amounts to decrees, without any Congressional oversight.
Democratic Party (note I do not say “New” Democratic Party) hero Thomas Jefferson was no a fan of these speeches. The sometimes taciturn Virginian, opted to send his Congressionally required report in writing. Why? Because the display we saw yesterday evening reminded him of a monarchy: “…the pompous cavalcade to the State house on a meeting of Congress, the formal speech from the throne, the procession of Congress in a body to re-echo the speech in an answer…”. Indeed. Maybe the next President could adopt some Jeffersonian habits and traits.
Humility has been missing from the national discourse from some time. The next generation of political leaders, Democrats and Republicans, need to press beyond this mindless display of political dribble. We need to look at our Founding Fathers, or “forebears” as the President called them in his speech, as well as the Constitution. The Nation needs to be put back on track, away from the Left bank. Where individuals working hard, not the collective, push us forward.
And since I’m writing this from Virginia, I’ll close with one of my favorite Jefferson quotes: “if we can but prevent the government from wasting the labours of the people, under the pretence of taking care of them, they must become happy.” Judging from the theatre yesterday evening, there is a lot of work to be done.