"An optimist is a person who sees a green light
everywhere, while the pessimist sees only the red light ... But
the truly wise are color blind."
didn't vote for Barack Obama, and am too politically cynical to get
caught up in the national euphoria, I still found myself checking to
see where the moon, Jupiter and Mars will be astrologically situated
on Inauguration Day. If this really is the dawning of a new age, I
want to notice when it happens.
understand why my son said he voted for Barack Obama because "he is
calm and mature."
seemed insufficient to me at the time, and still does when I think
about it; but I realize that I am counting on these same qualities
to get us through extraordinarily difficult times.
my green-lit Obama presidency:
president isn't really a liberal, but a moderate who let liberals
see what they wanted to see; or, he is a liberal now, but smart
enough to figure out what doesn't work in the real world.
compare him to Abraham Lincoln, FDR or JFK; but he will most
resemble Richard Nixon in China, a president who can open doors that
leaders of his political persuasion weren't expected to knock on.
repeat the 1992 achievement of Independent presidential candidate
Ross Perot — explaining the need to address the national debt before
it destroys the American dream.
no right to expect miracles, but by the end of President Obama's
term, I would optimistically hope to see the United States
recovering from a recession/depression with lessons learned, both
politically and personally, about living beyond our means.
will require that bailouts end now; that instead of debating which
entity is deserving, we simply admit that we don't have the money to
bail out anything, that our national debt is already too great; and
a refusal to extend unemployment benefits beyond a year, so that
Americans will take those jobs that some businesses say they can't
fill without illegal immigrants.
optimistically hope that by the end of the Obama administration, the
country will be starting to pay down the national debt with a
resolution never to let things get so out of hand again; and will
have a solid plan to address the major "entitlements" of Social
Security, Medicare and Medicaid before they bankrupt the nation.
will set a good example for the smaller government entities, which
must address public employee pensions and other benefits before they
bankrupt states, cities and towns.
Obamas sensibly sending their daughters to private instead of public
schools in Washington, I optimistically expect that they will fight
for more choice for parents in education, so that citizens can be
well-educated enough to handle the challenges of a democracy.
President Obama can quit smoking, inspiring all of us to live
healthier lives as we support him in bringing transparency and
portability to our health insurance system, keeping it private and
International events can unravel outside our control. But after
9/11, President Bush at least kept us safe from terrorists; and I
optimistically expect that President Obama will too.
likely that the new administration will realize that, because of our
national debt, we have no money for "exporting democracy." Sorry,
world, but you're on your own until we get our fiscal house in
optimistically expect, however, that we can keep our commitments to
support the existing democracies that could come under attack, like
Israel and Taiwan.
see a clearly-defined immigration policy that recognizes we can't
take in everyone who wants to come here, but will be happy to
welcome as many as our economy is able to absorb. We are going to
need immigrants to pay Social Security taxes as the boomer bulge
collects benefits. (We also need someone to say no to the expanding
Optimistically, the national downsizing will also teach us to stop
wasting natural resources and respect the planet, while not using
"climate change" as a weapon for political control.
there's the red-light, or worst-case, scenario:
Obama really is a liberal, co-owned by moonbats, labor unions and
the AARP, and the nation is doomed. By the end of his
administration, the national debt will be greater than the Gross
Domestic Product of the United States and China combined, with no
one left from whom to borrow.
and inflation will rise together, the former making economic
recovery impossible, the latter making Jimmy Carter the former
president whom Obama most resembles. In the second Great Depression,
millions of illegal immigrants will come from countries that are
worse off than ours, overwhelming local government services.
federal government will take over the health-care industry, which
means that politicians will own us as we depend on them for critical
care for our families. Instead of being "for the children," higher
taxes will always be needed "in case you get sick" — so many will
government will also own our children through mandated government
service, including the military draft, opposition to which is where
I entered political activism 40 years ago.
young then, the world was green-lit, anything was possible. The
draft was abolished. The Cold War ended. America prospered. Deficits
decreased, life expectancy increased.
the red lights started flashing.
us see only the right things to do; and let us be truly wise.