Tea Leaves

Poking at tea leaves following the U.S. mid-term elections is a rationalistic divining exercise. One thing is clear: American voters indicated they are unhappy with the status quo.

Unfortunately, government influence in daily life will continue to escalate.

The biggest problem the world over is the ever-expanding scope of the State in the lives of individuals. Nothing about this election is likely to check the growth of Leviathan.

Staying with the U.S. example, there are several factors which justify pessimism.

Foremost is the primarily partisan reaction of President Obama: as surprising as sunrise.  Nothing about this man suggests to me that he will regard the historic shift in Congress as an impediment to his agenda, whatever it is.

The record accumulation of “Czars” in the Obama administration and his legion of advisors suggest to me that every effort will be extended to frustrate the will of the electorate. It is a mark of this administration that the attitude toward individual Americans is one suited to an aristocracy of influence peddlers. Obama and company “know what is best for ‘them’”.

The expected gridlock resulting from the new alignment of power may be a good thing: people really are safer when legislatures can’t make new laws. However, compromises between the Republican and Democrat establishments at the expense of a small caucus of Tea Party sympathizers are most likely events.

If there are no compromises of principle—unlikely in this immoral age—there will be major gridlock and a major obstructionist political issue granted for the 2012 Presidential elections. At this juncture there do not appear to be any credible Republican contestants for the Presidency. In fact, the greatest fear among establishment Republicans is that Sarah Palin may win the primaries and lose the Presidential election. This fear is legitimate because no other clear candidate can be put forward that stands to create a similar level of excitement and interest.

Gridlock or not, the next two years will be a lame-duck period for the current administration. The President, like his predecessors in similar circumstances, will switch his focus to foreign affairs where he may wreak more havoc. Given the sudden fiscal austerity of some European nations, emerging trade disagreements with China and alienation of Israel, it is likely that Obama’s remaining years as President will be spent in kowtowing to Middle East regimes.

©Copyright 2010 Edward Podritske

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