Thursday, February 02, 2006

Standing for nothing

Wow – I thought I was peeved about the Democrats’ celebration for inaction at the SOTU. Tony Blankley portrays it as the defining moment for the Democrats:

If one recalls, last year, the official position of the Democratic Party was not only that they opposed President Bush's Social Security reform, they argued there was no crisis -- no major problem that required rectification.

(In fact, Social Security has $4 trillion of unfunded liability, and if major changes are not made quickly, we will only be able to pay the retired baby boomers about 70 cents for each dollar of promised benefits.)

Social Security is the single most iconic Democratic Party issue of the past hundred years -- the Democrats created Social Security in 1935, and have won countless elections since then by beating up Republicans for allegedly not supporting it. It was the Democratic Party's sacred virgin. They would lie for it, die for it, steal for it, demagogue for it -- but never cheer its demise or harm, even sarcastically.

Their collective decision to cheer the failure of the body politic to provide for sufficient revenues to pay the benefits was an act of historic shame for the Democratic Party.
Writing on Opinion Journal, Peggy Noonan picks up the nihilist theme:

It was the first State of the Union Mr. Bush has given in which Congress seemed utterly pre-9/11 in terms of battle lines drawn. Exactly half the chamber repeatedly leapt to its feet to applaud this banality or that. The other half remained resolutely glued to its widely cushioned seats. It seemed a metaphor for the Democratic Party: We don't know where to stand or what to stand for, and in fact we're not good at standing for anything anyway, but at least we know we can't stand Republicans.
Actually, the Democrats have one firm belief: they should be elected to public office. To do what, even they don’t know.

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