Inside the Beltway: A cautionary tale

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It didn’t take long: Here comes all the edgy speculation about President Obama’s second term in office, and the implications therein. “Build your wealth. Protect your faith and family. Secure your freedom. Don’t just survive Obama. Learn how to outsmart his big-government, socialist system and thrive,” advises Wayne Allyn Root, a boisterous talk radio host, author, Las Vegas oddsmaker and former Libertarian presidential and vice presidential hopeful.

He is now readying “The Ultimate Obama Survival Guide: Secrets to Protecting Your Family, Your Finances, and Your Freedom,” destined for bookshelves on April 15, tax day.

“Root delivers the cold hard facts: how Obama is working to steal your liberty, your hard-earned cash, and your opportunities, and where he has already got a leg up on his redistributionist, anti-personal-freedom agenda while no one was looking,” proclaims eager advance materials from Reg-nery Publishing.

Mr. Root supplies “practical, real-life ways you can fight back, not just in the ballot box but in your bank account, on your tax forms, at your church, in your home, your schools, and at your doctor’s office. He’s not just talking about political activism. He’s giving step-by-step instructions you need to protect yourself and your family right now from the Obama invasion of every aspect of your life,” Regnery exclaims.

Boehner’s equivalent

“Will Senate Democrats ever pass a budget?” asks House Speaker John A. Boehner, who points out that the last time those lawmakers tackled “the most basic responsibility of governing” was on April 29, 2009. With the House set to vote on a “no budget, no pay” bill this week, Mr. Boehner points out a few things that could be done in a similar four-year span. Among them:

“The Keystone XL energy project would create thousands of jobs — and you could construct the whole thing, all 1,179 miles of it — twice,” he says.

One could also drive from Key West, Fla. to Seattle 684 times, travel back and forth from Earth to moon in a spacecraft 179 times or climb Mount Everest 292 times. A typical student could earn a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Chicago during the same period.

“It took 491 days from September 1941 to January 1943 to construct the Pentagon. You could build three of them in the no-budget time period. The United States declared war and led the Allies to victory over the Axis powers in less time than it’s taken Senate Democrats to pass a budget,” the speaker concludes.

Hope changes

Predictably, there was less public interest in President Obama’s second inauguration. In 2009, 60 percent of Americans surveyed witnessed the ceremonies. This time around, it was 38 percent, according to a Gallup survey released Tuesday. Mr. Obama’s speech also warranted less enthusiastic reactions — including 12 percent who rated the oratory “poor” or even “terrible,” the survey found.

“It is not surprising that fewer Americans said the inauguration made them more hopeful about the next four years than did so in 2009,” observes Gallup analyst Jeffrey Jones. “Specifically, 37 percent of Americans said they are now more hopeful about the next four years after Monday’s presidential inauguration ceremonies, compared with 62 percent after Obama’s first inauguration.”

There’s a partisan divide, of course. Two-thirds of the Democrats report they’re still hopeful, compared to 7 percent of Republicans.

Obama not Reagan

Well. Guess that settles that.

“Is Obama the liberal Reagan?” asks a National Review online poll.

And the answer: 79 percent of the 8,800-plus respondents said “no.”

‘Do your jobs’

Here comes the big push. FreedomWorks is “activating” its membership of more than 2 million fiscal conservatives to contact their lawmakers and demand a “no” vote “on the debt ceiling legislation proposed by Republican House leadership that would raise the debt ceiling, minus the long-term budget solutions.

“Once again, Republican leadership is negotiating with itself to temporarily bail the big spenders out by lifting the U.S. debt limit for four months, with no immediate accompanying budget reforms or spending reductions,” says Dean Clancy, the group’s legislative counsel.

“It’s been almost four years since the Senate fulfilled its constitutional responsibility to pass a budget. Our government is almost $16.5 trillion in debt. That exceeds the entire annual output of the U.S. economy and equals more than $52,000 for every citizen,” he warns.

“If that’s not scary enough, those numbers don’t include the more than $100 trillion in unfunded entitlement promises. If this pattern continues, the major credit agencies have threatened once again to downgrade our nation’s credit. This will make paying down the debt even more difficult. And amid all of this, House leadership wants to raise the debt ceiling clean? Get serious, guys. Do your jobs.”

Target practice

“When cats are outlawed, only crazy old lady outlaws will have cats. Dozens of them.”

— National Rifle Association radio host Cam Edwards, reacting to news that New Zealand environmental activist Gareth Morgan proposes a ban on cats because they kill native birds.

Poll du jour

• 63 percent of Americans favor President Obama’s “Dream Act” which would shield illegal immigrants brought here as children from deportation under certain conditions.

• 48 percent of Republicans, 76 percent of Democrats and 59 percent of independents agree.

• 62 percent of Americans overall favor providing a legal way for illegal immigrants already in the U.S. to become citizens.

• 53 percent of Republicans, 72 percent of Democrats and 55 percent of independents agree.

• 54 percent overall say immigration is “an important issue to them personally.”

• 41 percent favor Democrats to handle immigration issues; 34 percent favor Republicans.

Source: An AP/GFK poll of 1,004 U.S. adults conducted Jan. 10 to 14.

• Squawks and proclamations to jharper@washingtontimes.com.

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