Once again Thomas Sowell has asked exactly the right question: Exactly what kind of “change” will Obama bring and will it be a good thing?
The magic word “change” makes specifics unnecessary. If things are going bad, some think that what is needed is blank-check “change.”
But history shows any number of countries in crises worse than ours, where “change” turned problems into catastrophes.
In czarist Russia, for example, the economy was worse than ours is today and the First World War was going far worse for the Russians than anything we have faced in Iraq. Moreover, Russians had nothing like the rights of Americans today. So they went for “change.”
That “change” brought on a totalitarian regime that made the czars’ despotism look like child’s play. The Communists killed more people in one year than the czars killed in more than 90 years, not counting the millions who died in a government-created famine in the 1930s.
Other despotic regimes in China, Cuba, and Iran were similarly replaced by people who promised “change” that turned out to be even worse than what went before.
Yet many today seem to assume that if things are bad, “change” will make them better. Specifics don’t interest them nearly as much as inspiring rhetoric and a confident style. But many 20th-century leaders with inspiring rhetoric and great self-confidence led their followers or their countries into utter disasters.
Yes, I can hear the objections already… you’re comparing the US with communist dictatorships, etc. Let me remind the objectors that all the communist governments supposedly began as more benign “socialist” states which only showed the ugly face of totalitarian communism once they were firmly in power.
Obama has already shown his socialist bent by his unguarded comment to Joe the Plumber: “we just want to spread the wealth around, we think that’s better for everybody”. How is that different from this: “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.”? (from the Communist Manifesto)
His campaign has also shown a shocking willingness to use ugly tactics of intimidation (shouting down opposing speakers on radio shows in Chicago, pro-Obama district attorneys threatening prosecution of those who say anything “untrue” about him in Missouri, pressing the Justice Dept for criminal prosecution of a group who dared to run ads mentioning Bill Ayres) and massive voter fraud (ACORN’s huge numbers of phony registrations across the county… particulary in crucial swing states).
Obama is continually showing himself to be a good student of Saul Alinsky in following his strategy of “By any means necessary.” To me it is just a restatement of the morally bankrupt excuse given since the beginning of time that “the end justifies the means.”