How can we all be so connected, and our government be so disconnected?
One of the benefits of living in the 21st century is that thanks to jet travel and the Internet, I constantly talk to Americans from every state and every walk of life. And believe me, they are not shy about sharing their opinions. It gives me a perspective that I wish more of our politicians and media people inside the Beltway Bubble could experience.
If I had to explain their low approval ratings in one word, it would be “disconnection.” I don’t think there’s ever been a time when the people in government and the media were so out of touch with the people they’re supposed to be serving. Do they actually believe that when voters demand “change,” when they really want is massive spending bills, skyrocketing debt, higher taxes, empty store shelves, spiraling crime, vaccine mandates, racism and anti-Americanism taught to their children, more expensive everything and a bigger, bloated nanny state government crushing their rights and freedoms? Trust me, based on what they tell me, they do not.
If you ask most Americans what they want from government, it’s not to have every aspect of their lives “transformed,” including those that worked a lot better before the government “improved” them. They don’t want 2,000-page bills nobody’s read, or bureaucrats telling them how much money they’re allowed to make or criminal prosecutors who refuse to prosecute criminals. The list of what most Americans say they want is pretty short: national defense; secure borders; smooth highways; care for veterans, seniors, children and the disabled who need it; good schools that teach facts; police and firefighters; a fair court system; and oh yeah, it would be nice if the trash were picked up on time. That’s about it.
Yet somehow, the government finds so many ways to meddle in our lives that federal, state and local government spending combined now equals nearly 40 percent of America’s entire gross domestic product. The accumulated national debt alone is now about $6 trillion more than the annual GDP. And in some places, they still don’t pick up the garbage on time!
In poll after poll, Americans say loud and clear: they want less government and less spending. They don’t care what the talking heads or the endlessly-surprised economists or the “too-big-to-fail” Wall Street failures or the socialist socialites in Congress say: they want government out of their lives, out of their wallets and out of their way.
Yet whenever political candidates support that philosophy, their opponents and the media paint them as cold-hearted and uncaring. Compassion has been redefined as the willingness to spend limitless amounts of other people’s money, no matter how many people it harms. And it harms plenty, from the people the money is taken away from directly to the resulting inflation that squeezes everyone from the poorest on up. The media devote almost no time to examining the very real consequences of differing political philosophies and a lot of time to gotcha games, gaffes, and who’s ahead in the horse races.
But the horse is now out of the barn. Americans have experienced firsthand the results of so-called “progressive” policies, and they’re suffering whiplash from how fast they can destroy everything. Government out of control, the debt at record levels with no end in sight, criminals and rioters taking over our cities, empty store shelves, spiraling consumer prices, elections nobody trusts anymore and seemingly no end to the “two weeks to flatten the curve” lockdowns.
From the election of 2016 to our current woes with crime, inflation, shortages and illegal immigration, none of it should’ve been a surprise to anyone. I warned what would happen for a year before the election if the left took over, not because I’m clairvoyant but because, unlike so many people who claim to represent or report on the American people, I have a modicum of common sense, some life experience, education from schools that taught real history and economics, and most importantly, I listen to the American people. And I respect what they have to say.
Now, for my next prediction for the coming year: I predict that in 2022, politicians who try to sell Americans on more leftist policies that we’ve all seen fail spectacularly will have a hard time, for the same reason that a used car salesman has a hard time selling a lemon to the same customer twice. I also predict that politicians who were elected on a promise to change those policies will stay in office only as long as they remember why the American people sent them there in the first place.