Watching the Obamacare roll-out has been so much fun. Seeing big government fail on a such a wide and wast platform sends tingles up my spine. Obama has discovered that Government is large, complicated, and slow to innovate. Further he's uncovered the amazing revelation that if you like your health care plan, Obama has absolutely no control over whether an Insurance company will cancel your plan - because (surprise, surprise neither he, the government nor the Democratic Party is a god. "Private Sector Velocity" is the barometer of success almost suddenly. Whatever happened to "If you've got a business, you didn't built that?" I thought Government was central source of all that good wholesome middle-class generating prosperity Obama is so fond for?
Apparently Obama has undergone some "education" of his own.
Yet all the political euphoria of watching the great Socialist of the 21st Century crumble in flames, did not erase the ever present thought in the very back of my mind that the essential conditions that lead to Obama being elected in the first place have not ended, and there are more reasons to believe that we will see a Democratic-Liberal America for the foreseeable future.
1) The Republicans Remain Divided. The Democrats United.
Despite the disaster, the Democratic Party has never seem more united. The President, Harry Reid, and about ever Democrat standing has towed the line - No turning back. Sure there have been some wranglings from minor players, but there has been nothing coming close to the very internecine warfare that repletes the Republican Party nowadays. The very VERY public spats, the inability to agree on any shutdown or debt-ceiling strategy whatsoever speaks volumes about who the stronger party is. The Republicans have yet to decide whether Libertarians even have a place in their party. The Tea Party remains an issue of contention. And to make matters worse the Republican house just passed a controversial budget which risks splitting the Conservative movement in the US in two.
Then there are the extremely public grenades thrown between Rand Paul and Christ Christie. Those two are doing more to help the Democratic cause if no one else. Marco Rubio & Paul Ryan are not far behind publicly shellacking each other over bad budget deals.
There are more Republican bickering's and back-stabbings than there are Republican victories nowadays - We'll see if the prospect of President Hillary generates the appropriate level of motivation for the party to snap out of it - but I won't hold my breath in the mean time.
2) No One Will Remember Obamacare
Despite the flaming burning white hot flames coming off of the ACA's rotting carcass, the brutal reality is that the voting public has the attention span of an insect - and maybe a dumb insect. The closest election is months away, and I doubt that this bad news extravaganza will continue for long. Eventually the system will settle out and even though people will be far worse off, they will move on adapt, and forget - because that's what people do. Sometimes that fact is lost on people in the centres of power, but it remains always true : people find ways of living with bad laws... And then they get used to them.
Unfortunately this debacle is happening now. If this had happened a year from now in September of 2014 - then the Democrats would have a huge liability. As it stands right now, the anger will dissipate as time wanes on.
3) Repealing Obamacare is a Pipe Dream, and Republicans Who Promise It's Demise Are Toast
This I find a most interesting point lost on most Republicans. I took the Great Socialist 5 years to bring the ACA into implementation (and it still will take longer than that before all the changes come into effect). They were arrogant enough to presume they could re-write the rules of a multi-billion dollar industry as easy as pie - and now Republicans think we can repeal it with even less fuss?
A general principle for me exists in life, that it takes at least twice as much effort and time to clean-up a mess than it does to create it in the first place. That should make Republicans ponder.
You should under-promise and over-deliver. Obama, whether it's drawing red lines in Syria, or telling people "If you like your plan you can keep it," has habitually over-promised and under-delivered.
Republicans would be best to get realistic, propose to "work to repeal" or make targeted changes to the law rather than follow the Obama recipe for stellar Success in Politics - and promise the improbable.
4) Women, Hispanics, and the African-American Vote
The Republicans need to take a little lesson from Canadian Conservatives and realise they can target minorities and win their votes without abandoning their principles. I'm sure there are plenty of Women, African-Americans, Hispanics and other minorities who detest taxes, distrust government, and are wary of a Government who spends too much. All Republicans need to show is a willingness to engage these people - something I've seen from no one on that side.
With the Democrats set to nominate a woman (aka Hillary) my bet is that the Republicans will nominate another MWG (Moderate White Guy) as their Presidential candidate. Forget about the excellent other choices that would placate that dynamic - like Herman Cain, Sarah, Palin, Boby Jindal, Nikki Haley... No instead my bet is that Republicans will nominate someone like Chris Christie.
Good Luck with that pair up.
In Short the Republican chances for electoral success remain low. There could very well be some success in the 2014 Senatorial elections, but that would be in my opinion short lived. Until American Conservatives learn to target minority voters better, get realistic about Obamacare, and stop stabbing each in the back, they will find themselves low on victories high on anger for the foreseeable future.
In Screwtape's words:
Congress approved a plan to end Washington’s long drama over the “fiscal cliff” late Tuesday after House Republicans surrendered to President Obama’s demand to let taxes rise on the nation’s richest households.
The bill will indeed shield millions of middle-class taxpayers from tax increases set to take effect this month. But it also will let rates rise on wages and investment profits for households pulling in more than $450,000 a year, marking the first time in more than two decades that a broad tax increase has been approved with GOP support.
"Now this useful phenomenon is in itself by no means new. Under the name of Envy it has been known to the humans for thousands of years. But hitherto they always regarded it as the most odious, and also the most comical. Those who were aware of feeling it felt it with shame; those were not gave it no quarter in others. The delightful novelty of the present situation is that you can sanction it - make it respectable and even laudable - by the incantatory use of the word democratic."-C.S. Lewis - "Screwtape Proposes a Toast"
....Posted Wednesday, January 02, 2013