Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Learning by Default


Peggy Noonan has a very insightful column in today’s WSJ (subscription required), regarding some of the signature problems with the Obama administration. Highlighting the President’s aloof dismissal of the majority of American opinion regarding illegal immigration, the unseemly manner in which a hideous health care law was inacted, and the government’s inability to plug an oil leak, Noonan zeros in on the central thesis that the Founders understood over 200 years ago, namely that:

“…even though the federal government has in our time continually taken on new missions and responsibilities, the more it took on, the less it seemed capable of performing even its most essential jobs.”

And that’s the problem, isn’t it? On the one hand we are told that if we surrender enough of our liberty, enough of our property, enough of our rights, an omnipotent and caring government will take care of us, feed us, heal us, cause the seas to subside, etc. On the other hand, these same people cannot manage to secure the border, balance a budget, plug a leaking pipe, or care in the least about the will of the people. And so the President continues audaciously proving lessons that were learned long ago, that a government which over reaches will inevitably fall short. That the sum of human experience has yielded certain truths, and that those truths are as relevant today as they were when the Founders enshrined them in the Declaration and the Constitution. That an American President instructs us in the wisdom of the Founders by default is sad. That he does so under the ironic banner of “Change,” is tragic.

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  1. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    It’s interesting that our government was small when there was less variation between the lives of different Americans… back when more folks lived off the land. Government has grown in reach and power as the livelihoods of Americans have become more diverse and more specialized with emerging technologies. In other words, our politicians accepted their limits back when they had a much better chance of understanding the issues Americans faced. Now we have power-hungry politicians pretending they understand deep-water drilling, space exploration, organ transplants, and countless other highly specialized pursuits.

    • #1
    • May 29, 2010, at 3:08 AM PDT
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