Has any modern president issued such a direct repudiation of Trickle Down economics?
Now, just as there was in Teddy Roosevelt’s time, there’s been a certain crowd in Washington for the last few decades who respond to this economic challenge with the same old tune. “The market will take care of everything,” they tell us. If only we cut more regulations and cut more taxes – especially for the wealthy – our economy will grow stronger. Sure, there will be winners and losers. But if the winners do really well, jobs and prosperity will eventually trickle down to everyone else. And even if prosperity doesn’t trickle down, they argue, that’s the price of liberty.
It’s a simple theory – one that speaks to our rugged individualism and healthy skepticism of too much government. And that theory fits well on a bumper sticker. Here’s the problem: It doesn’t work. It has never worked. It didn’t work when it was tried in the decade before the Great Depression. It’s not what led to the incredible post-war boom of the 50s and 60s. And it didn’t work when we tried it during the last decade.
You simply can’t make a credible case that the president is not out there fighting for liberal causes or promoting liberal ideas. You can’t even say he’s a centrist.
His pragmatic style of governing may occasionally take on an outside appearance of centrism, but make no mistake, President Obama is a genuine liberal. He’s probably more liberal than many of those who are reading this.
President Obama is a liberal who understands the only way to move the country forward is with compromise, not kicking and screaming. And that doesn’t mean surrendering your principles or comprising your ideals. It means giving some to take some, and because the Republicans are so out of their depth, and the President is such a smart politician, there’s been quite a lot more taking than giving. Just don’t tell the media that.