As I outlined in yesterday’s column, demographic changes are shifting the political market equilibrium in the United States away from individual liberty, limited government, private property, and the rule of law. I know just how much many classical liberals grieve this apparently irreversible change of fortune. I see the sadness in the eyes of my students; and I listen with sympathy to the anguish in their souls.
Much of classical liberal philosophy has been jettisoned by the new ruling coalition that has emerged to ensure that Obama’s social market political philosophy becomes embedded in the nation’s culture. Yet, I caution against too much despair. Liberty defined negatively as the freedom of an individual from coercion by others has always been difficult to defend.
If I offer you such freedom, with the implication that liberty requires responsibility and a willingness to stand on one’s own two feet, it is always hard to beat out a counter-offer that promises you sustenance from the cradle to the grave, albeit at the price of total dependence upon the state.
In the big picture, however, such cradle to the grave promises have always turned out to be fools’ gold. Witness the collapse of the USSR and its Evil Empire, largely because its promises never materialized. Anticipate the forthcoming collapse of the Communist Party in The People’s Republic of China for much the same false promises.
From such a perspective, it does not take much of an imaginative leap to anticipate the collapse of Obamanomics as Obamacare collapses into medical rationing that excludes the poor and the elderly from a health care industry that is chronically under-funded in terms of the commitments that it purports to provide.
As the trend rate of growth of the US economy declines under the influence of Keynesian fiscal drag, and as the credit-worthiness of US federal debt declines to junk status under the influence of Obamania, so other cradle to the grave promises will dissolve into fools’ gold.
At some point, disillusioned members of the Rainbow Coalition will quit and classical liberals once again will have a role to play. What is crucial, during the coming four-year dark Obama night, is to keep the still small candle of liberty alight.
Only by maintaining the light from that precious candle will future generations be bequeathed a sound basis on which to rebuild the United States from the depths to which the first half-black Pied Piper in the White House will lure, and then eventually abandon, them.