The next few weeks and months may be the most dangerous time for wise public policy circa 2009-2016. Unless someone else gets into the presidential race and wins, one of the current crop of candidates will be the next president. (For anyone trying to get off the bottle, that ought to sober him up.) And regretfully, people can't count on a newly elected president to go back on all his campaign policy pronouncements once ensconced in the White House. For some new presidents, they may feel ashamed at breaking all their promises in the first year. For the less scruple-driven new presidents, it will just seem to be politically unwise to flip too many issues off the Truman Balcony before even the first snows of winter fall upon the new president's Capitol.
Thus, what the successful presidential candidate says in the spring and summer of his ascension year might actually become federal law and policy. Thankfully, most of the candidates haven't announced their policy plans in much detail yet.
For example, as Obama said last Thursday night in Iowa, he is in favor of addition, rather than division. This is a proposition that most fifth-graders struggling through math can agree with heartily. But for us adults, what exactly is Obama planning to add up? New federal programs? And if he likes addition, does he also like its handmaiden, subtraction? If so, is he planning to have the Internal Revenue Service subtract more of my income?
On the other hand, Hillary believes experience is useful in life and in a presidency. All of us over a certain age who no longer have youthful vim and vigor will nod approvingly as Hillary sings her praise of experience. Of course, the danger for Hillary on that is that some of us won't be nodding so much as we will be nodding off. And given her experiences in life, is she planning to learn from them or to continue them?
Huckabee wants to help the little guy. Who can argue with that? I know more than a few multimillionaires who sincerely believe they are little guys -- compared to the multinationals and big New York and London finance houses they have to deal with every business day. It's all a question of the definition of little.
Blankley, who had been suffering from stomach cancer, died Saturday night at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, his wife, Lynda Davis, said Sunday.
In his long career as a political operative and pundit, his most visible role was as a spokesman for and adviser to Gingrich from 1990 to 1997. Gingrich became House Speaker when Republicans took control of the U.S. House of Representatives following the 1994 midterm elections.