Four years ago was historic. The first black president was inaugurated. For the first time, a former First Lady became the Secretary of State. It was the first time the Democrats controlled the Oval Office, House of Representatives, and the Senate since the nineties. It was the first time I stopped yelling at the news and rolled my lazy butt off the couch and started actively participating in the political discourse (okay, that part’s not really historic).
And the historic episodes did not cease. The interim four years continued exploding historic records, littering “firsts” in many areas throughout the Obama era: a first for a $13 trillion national debt, then a first for a $14 trillion debt, followed by a first for $15 trillion debt, and now we’re left with another first of having over a $16 trillion debt. Never before in the history of the world has a single country ever amassed such debt. We’ve seen a first time in our nation’s history that gas prices remained at such a high level for so long. A first time our nation garnered a deficit of over $1 trillion in a single year, then torched that record by doing it for 4 years in a row. Unemployment over 8% for over 43 months: that was a first since the Great Depression. The sad list goes on.
Sure, President Obama inherited a tough situation. But we didn’t ask him to run. He ran voluntarily. And surely the President knows that the presidency is notorious for being on the end of history’s mischievous caprice, as it thwarts plans and throws tantrums. It comes with the office. Many presidents had their plans altered by history’s quixotic lurch. That is no reason that the people should not hold the President accountable for the promises he made. It’s a tough office. If its holder cannot handle it and live up to the task, as dutiful citizens, we must let him go and give someone else a shot. Failure is failure, and empirical failure must not remain in that office.
Look, I’m a conservative. I admit it proudly. And I’m obviously opposed to pretty much everything this administration did in the past four years. If you’re not a conservative, and you voted for Obama, did he do what he promised you? Did he cut the deficit in half? Did he reduce the unpatriotic debt (his words)? Close Guantanamo? Pass the immigration reform he promised? Are you satisfied with your 2008 vote, or do you now fear he’s just another politician that failed to deliver what he promised? The truth is we’re at a time in history where failure is not an option, and empty promises cannot be tolerated. I’ve written about the looming economic tipping point this nation faces many times, and it will not dissolve by the illusory salt of empty promises. Our national debt is existentially serious, and we must do our part.
A foundational problem is that many politicians believe that they are the rulers, we are the subjects, and anything they say to get elected is precisely that: just something said to get them elected and to forget about once they’re in office. We need to make politicians believe differently. The days of inconsequential blithe insouciance from the electorate are over. If we keep it up, we will be subjects. We must act like the citizens our nation deserves and hold politicians accountable, and forever actively participate in our civic duty. It is time for us to stand up, plant a foot, and shout back, “You didn’t do what you promised, either because you were unable or unwilling. No matter. It’s time for you to go.”