Today's most widely accepted political belief is that because an unprecedentedly high percentage of Americans -- 81 percent -- believe the country is headed in the wrong direction, the Republicans are headed for a major defeat this coming November.
If this is the case, it can only be because the American voter translates "headed in the wrong direction" as "because the Republicans have had their way, so it's time to let the Democrats have theirs."
That should not be the case. I count myself as one of the 81 percent who believes America is headed in the wrong direction, and that is precisely why I am voting Republican. Moreover, I suspect I am not alone among the 81 percent in ascribing the wrong track to the leftist, not the conservative, influence on American life.
But if "headed in the wrong direction" really does mean for most Americans that voting Democrat will put our country on the right track, it is hard not to conclude that America has begun the decline that has ended all great civilizations. For if the Democratic Party -- given how far left it has become -- comes to control Congress and the presidency, America's values will soon stray so far from what they have been since its founding that it is difficult to imagine ever being able to undo the change.
Given that "on the wrong track" is defined as unhappiness with the economy, with President George W. Bush, and with the war in Iraq, let's analyze all this.
First, are the 81 percent unhappy with their own economic status or with the economic direction of the country? They are obviously not the same things. But whichever it is -- and it may well be both -- why do most Americans believe the Democrats' prescriptions are going to help? Why will a huge tax increase on all Americans earning over $200,000, on capital gains for all Americans and on social security (if Barack Obama is elected) help the economy?
When have tax increases ever helped an economy? Why will America almost alone among the industrialized democracies move in the direction of higher taxes? Are all these other countries that are lowering taxes harming their economies?
Dennis Prager is a SRN radio show host, contributing columnist for Townhall.com and author of his newest book, “The Ten Commandments: Still the Best Moral Code.”