Human Events Blog

Palin Conquers the Storm

Sarah Palin’s Facebook page is a battleship from which many powerful broadsides have been launched.  On Monday afternoon, she wrote one of her longer posts, called “Conquering the Storm,” to address the Obama Downgrade.

It’s a big piece, but well worth reading in full.  Compare it to the weary talking-point retread our clueless President delivered in his statement on the same afternoon, and you can see why the markets were nose-diving even as Obama spoke.  Palin wrote the speech he should have given, but is utterly incapable of conceiving.

As Palin points out, the S&P downgrade wasn’t a surprise to people who were paying attention.  She claims no great powers of clairvoyance.  She was just reading the statements pouring out of the credit agencies, which is hard to Democrats to do, since they immediately roll those statements into clubs for beating the Tea Party.  She was also paying attention to the European horror show that Democrats work very hard at ignoring:

One doesn’t need a Harvard Law degree to figure this out! Just look across the pond at Europe. European nations with less debt and smaller deficits than ours and with real “austerity” plans in place to deal with them have had their ratings downgraded. By what magical thinking did we figure we could run up perpetual trillion dollar deficits and still somehow avoid the unforgiving mathematics of a downgrade? Nothing is ever “too big to fail.” And there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Didn’t we all learn that in our micro and macro econ classes? I did at the University of Idaho. How could Obama skip through Columbia and Harvard without learning that?

Palin was an early and perceptive critic of the QE2 currency manipulation program, dramatically outperforming all the high-level wizards of the Federal Reserve.  She’s definitely not looking forward to a three-quel:

With S&P and others now warning that we could face another downgrade if we don’t get serious about our debt problem (i.e., recklessly spending money we don’t have), Washington needs to wake up before things get worse! We’re already hearing murmurs about QE3, which is just madness and will further debase our currency at a time when the dollar’s status as the world’s reserve currency is already being questioned. The loss of the dollar’s reserve currency status would adversely impact us in every conceivable way. Our standard of living would decline as imports become more expensive (including imports of foreign oil), government wouldn’t be able to finance deficits as cheaply, and American corporations – employers – would lose a competitive edge. It would be another crack in our status as a financial superpower.

If you think losing our AAA credit rating was a fiscal disaster, just wait until the dollar loses its status as the world’s reserve currency.  Nothing like that has happened in the history of the industrialized world.  It will hit us like an atomic bomb.

Palin quotes a speech she delivered to a college audience in California: “It is a disgraceful and embarrassing situation when the United States finds itself justifiably chastised in the same tone normally reserved for near-bankrupt economies.”  This is setting off an earthquake of lost confidence throughout American and global markets.  The damage from Obama’s historic downgrade is not incalculable… but we haven’t finished calculating it yet.  If another of the Big Three agencies follows suit, as Moody’s has threatened, or if S&P downgrades us again, the aftershocks will be devastating. 

Incidentally, the media hasn’t been saying much about the third big agency, Fitch Ratings.  Here’s what Reuters reported last week:

Fitch upheld its AAA rating on the United States on Tuesday after lawmakers approved spending cuts to avoid a U.S. default, but it warned the world’s largest economy must cut its debt burden to avoid a future downgrade.

The credit rating firm said that while the agreement means default risk is extremely low, the United States “must also confront tough choices on tax and spending against a weak economic backdrop if the budget deficit and government debt is to be cut to safer levels over the medium term.”

David Riley, Fitch Rating’s primary analyst for the United States, told Reuters the firm would not rule out slapping a negative outlook on the rating when it concludes its review later this month.

Uh-oh.

Palin’s prescriptions for dealing with the crisis are the exact opposite of Obama’s dodges and whiny demands for tax increases, and they make a hell of a lot more sense than anything the President has said for months:

First, we need to get serious about our deficit. No more accounting gimmicks. No more cuts in “out-years” that never materialize. The permanent political class in D.C. might be fooling themselves with these Enron-like accounting games, but they’re not fooling the world’s capital markets. And we don’t need any more happy talk from the White House about “investing” in solar shingles and really fast trains. The White House shouldn’t even bother floating these new spending programs. We can’t afford them. Period. We need to stop this deficit spending, balance our budget, repeal Obamacare, cancel all unused stimulus funds, and reform our entitlement programs. We have to have an adult conversation about our spending commitments; circumstances have changed, and we must adapt.

Note that during the very same speech he gave to dodge responsibility for the S&P downgrade, a speech supposedly dedicated to fiscal responsibility, Obama began vomiting out more spending proposals.  He’s possessed by a veritable Captain Howdy of irresponsible spending.

Palin emphasizes the importance of rebuilding the American economy with pro-growth measures:

In addition to energy security, I embrace a pro-growth agenda that can make American corporations far more competitive on the global stage. (I will be writing more about this in the coming days.) We need to tell the world, “America is open for business again!” And let’s welcome industry by reducing burdensome regulations. The Obama administration keeps strangling businesses in red tape. From the EPA’s rulings to that nightmare known as Obamacare, the Obama administration is hanging one regulatory albatross after another around the private sector’s neck. Let’s get government out of the way and give the private sector room to breathe, grow, and thrive. We can provide businesses confidence to expand and hire Americans in a stable environment.

Why is anyone surprised that we’re in trouble, when that kind of simple common sense is a revolutionary challenge to Washington, promoted only by the hobbit terrorist enemies of the Establishment?

“Our destiny is still in our own hands if we pick ourselves up and act responsibly and quickly. We must all get involved,” Palin concludes.  She’s right, but we have arrived at the moment when we can feel destiny slipping out of our grasp.  That’s why the past month has been so frightening.  The Tea Party talks out loud about something all but the most hopelessly out-of-touch and dependent Americans feel in their bones: we are passing the final decision gate, the last chance to change course.  The President and his Party have made their course clear, and it is national suicide.

This powerful and detailed Palin essay makes an excellent condition to your collection, in case you find yourself confronted by the occasional zombie who parrots the talking point that she has no expertise, and takes no serious positions.  The people who volunteered to paw through her email would be well-advised to read this instead.  People who are still willing to re-elect the man who professes to be surprised by every major development of the past two years should try listening to someone who didn’t find any of his failures “unexpected” at all.

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