FDR didn’t just shovel money. We got tangible projects from his administration. And millions of Americans to this day give him the credit. Even President Ronald Reagan would tell interviewers in the White House how he voted four times for FDR, despite the fact that his administration worked daily to curb the excesses of Big Government.
How could President Obama have sat in the U.S. Senate for four years and not know that there are no shovel-ready projects? Every senator who wants to build a post office in, say, Dixon, Illinois, knows you must wait years before putting the first spade to the dirt. Franklin’s cousin Theodore “made the dirt fly in Panama,” true, but neither the U.S. nor Panama had to do environmental impact studies a hundred years ago.
Barack Obama should have known that what he was really selling was snake oil. And his opponents should have been bolder in stopping his raid on the Treasury.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) is right: This Obama joke about no shovel-ready projects is no laughing matter to the 14 million unemployed Americans. But it’s even worse than that. If the President was unaware of the fact that it takes years to break ground then he is woefully unprepared for his office. If he knew this and cynically plowed ahead, then he is willfully misleading us.
Government by consent is debased when the people say Yes and later learn they’ve been sold a pig in a poke. Obama’s election campaign was based on the audacity of hope. His economic recovery based on shovel-ready projects was based on the audacity of hype. I sure hope the Obama Library is shovel-ready.