Our national media have a knack for missing important trends. They are focused on what is seen as general confusion and a lack factual fidelity in the Trump administration. The media miss entirely the contrast in adult responsible behavior by Republicans and the increasingly irresponsible Democrats. Republicans at all levels of government are trying to solve America's problems. Democrats are, at best, indifferent; it requires only a sliver of cynicism to conclude that very liberal Democrats are actually working to make our problems worse.
Here's a review of five of our most pressing problems. If I'm missing some good works from the Democrats, I'd love to hear about them.
1. Bankruptcy of Social Security and Medicare. Left uncorrected, the financial weakness of these programs either will result in default on their obligations or will drive our country into bankruptcy.
From George W. Bush to Paul Ryan, Republicans have weathered a constant barrage of liberal obstruction and ridicule for their efforts to reform both programs. Meanwhile, Democrats offer nothing. Really let that sink in. They offer nothing.
That's not quite true. Obama's budgets contained ever increasing budget cuts to Medicare, which would bring us dangerously close to a default of its obligations.
2. Obamacare. From its inception, critics argued that the Affordable Care Act was actuarially unsound. They were right. There's no doubt that a few people benefit from the program, but only at the expense of many other people. There is even less doubt that the program cannot continue. It has reached the predicted death spiral. Obamacare must be undone before it causes irreparable damage to our health care delivery system.
Republicans were elected to repeal and replace Obamacare. The Democrat position is a modern version of "mend it; don't end it." Here's the catch: there are no Democratic Party proposals to mend their creation.
Liberals are completely hands off. They offer no help with the mess the ACA created, but they say if Republicans try to fix the problem, then Republicans own whatever problems ensue. It's difficult to put the breadth and depth of this irresponsibility into words. Happily, we have Michael Ramirez to express it artistically.
3. Race relations and the police. In 2016, Harvard economics professor Dr. Roland Fryer, Jr. studied 1,000 police shootings across the country and reached what he described as the most surprising result of his career. When it comes to police use of lethal force, there is no racial bias.
That's no surprise to people aware of the many studies that show police more reluctant to shoot blacks than whites for fear of appearing prejudiced.
These studies are well known and well understood. Nevertheless, liberals of both races encourage the Black Lives Matter movement. Democrats have a thing for mindless movements, but this one is particularly unprincipled. It is impossible to overstate the harm BLM causes. It perpetuates the myth that police are hunting down African-Americans, and it deeply alienates everyone else. Everyone who isn't a liberal resents being caught in a pointless protest-caused traffic jam or having a restaurant meal disrupted. Even seeing this behavior on the news is jarring for most of us.
Jon Gabriel's classic tweet sums it up. "My favorite part about the Obama era is all the racial healing."
Dr. Fryer's study did reveal a problem. African-Americans are much more likely to be treated roughly by the police. They are more likely to be pushed around and more likely to be handcuffed. That's a problem that justifies civil protests.
But those of us on the right want to know why the protests are directed against us, or against the country as a whole. Invariably the police in question work for local governments. They work for cities and countries which are, with perhaps two exceptions, run by Democrats. Democrats own this problem. They offer no solution, and they shift blame to the rest of us. That's a step beyond indifference.
But wait: there's more. Democrats aggravate community-police relations by turning police departments into profit centers. The case study here is Ferguson, Mo. It's good to note that Ferguson is a black-majority city. No Republicans are involved as the city forces its police to step up the issuance of fines levied on its own mostly black citizens. The citations and fines are for all manner of minor violations, often of traffic and parking. The goal is to increase the flow of revenue to the city. This pattern is repeated in Democrat-run governments all across the country. The sense of unfairness this creates in black citizens is both real and justified. Call me cynical, but in my judgment, this is a giant leap beyond indifference.
Why are local Democrats so revenue-obsessed? Here's point four.
4. Underfunded pension plans in Democrat-controlled state and local governments. Presidents Calvin Coolidge and Franklin Roosevelt had little in common, but they agreed on one thing: public employee labor unions are a corruption of the democratic process.
Unions were created to balance the power of workers against large and presumably heartless employers. In this case, we are the employers, and the deck is stacked against us. Our elected representatives often depend on the contributions of both money and time from government employees. Typically, the union is negotiating with itself.
The results are wage settlements higher than for comparable jobs in the private sector. If the taxpayers in blue areas want to overpay their public servants, that's none of my concern. It becomes all our concern when excessive retirement programs are put in place which cannot possibly be paid for. Some large entities as the City of Chicago/Cook County and the State of California could go belly-up. Governments could try not paying all the benefits they've promised, but that may not be legally viable. Some retirement plans are written such that once payments begin, they cannot be stopped or altered.
The indifference of Democratic politicians to this time bomb springs from a childlike faith that the rest of us will bail them out. That will not happen. The sooner Democrats are made to understand that no locality is too big to fail, the sooner this irresponsible practice ends.
5. The connection between illegal immigration and California's electoral power. California declared itself a sanctuary state and now houses a quarter of the nation's illegal immigrants. The elected officials at all levels of that state government will openly defy any attempts to enforce existing federal law that could reduce the number of illegal immigrants. The massive presence of illegals distorts our representative system.
There are at least 4 million illegals in California. It requires a special liberal variety of naïveté to believe that none of them votes. Even if none does, they are all counted in the census, which determines congressional representation and some federal funding allocations. If only citizens were counted, California would have five fewer congressional seats and electoral votes. Those seats would go to, for example, Ohio (2), Michigan, and Pennsylvania. The Democrats who've declared California a sanctuary state know exactly what they are doing.
They are indifferent to federal law, but it requires no cynicism at all to see they are actively, knowingly, benefiting themselves by doing harm to the Republic.
Examples of this sort of behavior run on without end. They reflect an attitude I am no longer willing to overlook. We have one responsible adult party, and we have the Democrats. The Democrats cast most of their acts as being "for the children." I now know which children they're talking about.