I will talk about my trip to the BLW and London later. For now, I have to clarify my own standings in light of the ending political season, and why I didn’t bother to worry about voting after all.
When Romney won the Republican primary, I already knew the issue was settled for me. I couldn’t support him. I was, and still am, not a fan of Obama. But there were many, many Republican candidates I also refused to support. Some seemed alright, but seemed muddled and somewhat vague about their solutions. But others just felt like the other side of the same problem, like Newt Gingrich. The very few that I liked were flushed out and stopped early.
Looking over Romney’s record, I knew I could not vote for the man. I couldn’t. The man didn’t have any real standing to criticize the president for his Affordable Care Act (better known as ‘Obamacare’). Not when he implemented his own similar healthcare plan in Massachusetts, which happened to be the small scale experiment whose results Democrats are intending to replicate across the rest.
And Obama? We saw two versions of him over four years. In the first two years, he had the keys to the kingdom. Control of the House and Senate. Cash for clunkers, Obamacare, the bailout spending. Why anyone is really that shocked about the emergence of the Taxed Enough Already (TEA) party is beyond me.
But despite the wake up call to stop, there was no earnest effort to try scaling back. The Democrats didn’t really seem to want to cut spending. The Republicans didn’t want to increase it anymore. An unstoppable force met an immovable object. So now we have the great budget debate every few months just to keep the federal government running.
But in the end, it felt like a false choice. Romney? Given the same circumstances in 2008, I quietly fear he would have done many of the same things Obama did in some shape or form. If you close your eyes and imagine the closed-door deals with the K Street lobbyists, crafting the rules of the Affordable Care Act, you could easily see either Obama or Romney signing off on it.
Repeal Obamacare? At best, Romney would have taken a scalpel to it, but little more.
A lot of people don’t like Obamacare on both sides, but many also loathe to get rid of it. It stands, if nothing else, as a symbol that things can change, that efforts can be made to alter the existing system. Killing it would be a politically inconvienent thing to do, as it would generate protests and anger. The same Progressives, Liberals and even affirmed Socialists (with or without the ‘democratic’ prefix), who hold their noses about the law would still defend it.
Despite the disdain those groups have towards it, they still label it ‘progress’, and will protect it. Almost anything that expands democratic power is seen as the ideal to them. At least until that power expands into their very direct lives. You can count on them to do what’s in their nature.
But like I said, it was a false choice.
Our options were either something similar to the last two to four years, or Romney. An awkward gentleman who claims to be the better manager but with no real convictions. A guy says something I want to hear, but then does something else. Romney went after the president over economic issues, which is an excellent point of discussion. But history proves that’s just not good enough. FDR should have lost the presidency in his reelections because of how unimpressively the New Deal tackled the Great Depression. Three successful reelections later, that was just not so.
Well, here’s to two more years of the last two years…