The Corner

Occam’s Razor

There’s really no mystery about the Obama administration’s second-term agenda — it’s more of the same: welfare up, dependency up, crime up, joblessness up, debt up, the workforce down, and the military weakened. Each one of these occurrences has come as a direct result of the president’s policies and, one could easily argue, were clearly predicted by his past behavior and his stated goals. Part of this was the simple, consequence-free naivety of the well-upholstered academic, and part the animus-driven malevolence of the professional rabble-rouser.

The result has been an Alinskyite America in which people are reduced to classes and the “classes” are pitted against each other in a Hegelian steel-cage death match — thesis (traditional America) vs. antithesis (Sixties campus Marxism wedded to Thirties gangster tactics), with no synthesis possible or desired.

But there’s one crucial difference heading into a prospective second term: Obama won’t be campaigning for a third term. True, he’s unlikely to suddenly develop a mature interest in the nature of governance, give up his taste for the high life, or re-assess his policies in light of their manifest real-world failure. Ideologically, however, they’ve worked just like he drew them up on the blackboard, and one could make the case that, in this at least, Obama has been one of the most successful presidents in American history.

So why not more of the same? The final two years of an Obama second term will be occupied with finding the next big thing: U.N. Secretary General, or President of the Solar System. But those first two years will be a doozy.

Michael Walsh — Mr. Walsh is the author of the novels Hostile Intent and Early Warning and, writing as frequent NRO contributor David Kahane, Rules for Radical Conservatives.


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