The Conversation

The trickle-down economics of Barack Obama

I see that President Obama is going off on "trickle-down" economics and "income inequality" again.  Of course, it's an obvious desperation ploy, a frantic effort to change the subject by a nervous politician who thinks he can't lose by playing the class warfare card.  Never mind the failure of ObamaCare - somebody out there has a dollar more than you, and Barack the Avenger is going to make them pay!

I suppose this is marginally less obvious than standing on stage and yelling "SQUIRREL!" but it's no less absurd.  For one thing, all of this "income inequality" has been getting radically worse under Obama's policies.  Are his dead-end supporters ever going to tire of his Empty Chair routine, in which he pretends he just arrived in D.C. yesterday and can't believe the mess he found?

He also tried to make some hay about an "opportunity gap," which is pretty rich coming from the job-slaying President who blew the American workforce back into the mid-1960s... and now seeks to rally political support with a minimum-wage hike, another proven job-killing tactic.  Nothing is going to make opportunities for people at the lower end of the income ladder dry up faster than making labor even more expensive.

But let's bet back to the "trickle-down," verbiage, which got Obama's tail wagging after Pope Francis used it.  (And here I thought liberals were devoted to the separation of church and state!)  It's a magic phrase concocted by liberals to trick their gullible followers into voting themselves into poverty and unemployment.  Supposedly the mean old greedy trickle-down conservative economic theory is "give piles of money to rich people, and they'll spend it shopping at the store where you work."  The antidote is, of course, punitive liberalism - the misbegotten rage ideology masquerading as economic theory, which posits that government has a duty to punish anyone who appears to be doing too well for themselves, unless they make the proper political contributions.

In order to swallow this "trickle down" bilge, you have to accept the starting premise that all wealth belongs to the State.  You have what the State graciously allows you to keep.  This makes tax cuts a "gift" or "giveaway" to the people who are unfairly permitted to keep more of their own money.  This is the language of masters to servants, not the way elected officials in a constitutionally limited republic talk to their citizens.  You don't "earn" anything, serf.  Prove yourself loyal, and we will give you what you deserve.

It's also a massive case of psychological projection.  What could be more "trickle down" than Obamanomics?  Not only are his policies very good to well-connected super-rich people - that's why "income inequality" has been getting worse on his watch, and that's why the stock market is suddenly treated as the only valid indicator of economic success by liberals who used to loathe it - but his statist ideology is precisely premised on the idea of giving all money and property to a small group of super-rich people, the Ruling Class of elite politicians and their private-sector cronies.  This wise aristocracy then "trickles down" benefits and jobs to the huddled masses.

Everything Obama believes can be accurately described as "trickle-down."  The good of the State is the good of all.  A prosperous and rich government creates jobs, makes "investments," bestows benefits, and generally sustains the populace with crumbs from its table.  Washington D.C. is now one of the richest cities in America, per capita; in Obama's view, the rest of America exists to service it, and the capital rewards us for our obedience.  The Left loves to caricature the Eighties and the Bush years as a big tax-cut party for the rich, but if you want to see a real party held by fat cats who toss around bales of stolen money, I direct you to the District of Columbia under Barack Obama.  Check in with the GAO - I hear they throw the best parties.  If the Democrats start talking about dividing the rest of the country into "districts" and holding annual games, watch out.

I hate to break it to lovers of "trickle-down" rhetoric, but how else to describe ObamaCare?  The whole racket involves seizing money from the middle class and giving it to insurance companies, who are then supposed to trickle insurance benefits onto the rest of us, under the watchful eye of the aristocracy.  Those sky-high premiums and huge taxpayer subsidies are a pipeline from the Treasury to the insurance industry.  You're compelled by force of law to buy their products.  Few of the Evil Rich pilloried in socialist mythology ever had it so good.


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