President Obama thinks he knows what the primary objective of Republicans in Washington should be: to "get things done." Bashing Rush Limbaugh last week, Obama urged GOP lawmakers to ignore the voices of obstructionism and sign on to his behemoth stimulus package: "We shouldn't let partisan politics derail what are very important things that need to get done." Meeting with GOP leaders on Tuesday, Obama repeated his entreaty: "I don't expect 100 percent agreement from my Republican colleagues, but I do hope that we can all put politics aside and do the American people's business right now."
Since when did it become the Republican Party's top priority to "get things done"? It was as annoying a campaign platitude when John McCain adopted it as it is now coming from Obama's lips.
History has shown us that "Get Things Done" is mindless liberal code for passing ineffective legislation and expanding government for government's sake. "Reaching across the political aisle" and "putting politics aside" always entail selling out the right and putting conservative principles aside. How about preventing the damage done by Democratic meddlers trying to get their "things done"? How about getting more things undone?
For the past year, I've chronicled the inevitable lard-up of bipartisan bailouts and stimulus boondoggles -- and the predictable Chicken Little dance in Washington when these massive emergency "fixes" have fallen short. Contrary to the belief that Obama is America's Lightworker who can defy political gravity, H.R. 1, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, guarantees more of the same old borrow-spend-panic-repeat cycle that got us into our current mess in the first place. This is not an investment in America's future. It's an unprecedented mortgaging of America's future -- which is why the bill is forever known in my book as the Generational Theft Act of 2009.
The ruckus over Nancy Pelosi's contraception funding (which still may sneak its way into the bill) is the tip of the iceberg. Despite Obama's vow to prevent earmarks from bogging down the bill, the package is stuffed with goodies for every special interest group from left-wing fraudsters ACORN and other subprime shakedown activists ($4 billion for "neighborhood stabilization") to Hollywood ($246 million in new targeted tax breaks) to universal health care promotion ($600 million) to dubious "green job" projects ($24 billion). More fundamentally, there is no there there.