President Obama on occasion compares himself to Ronald Reagan. He must think it makes him sound bipartisan. I don’t recall ever hearing Reagan tell the other side “I won” when they tried to present him with ideas. I also don’t recall him saying they had to “ride in the back.” Reagan wasn’t like that. But he was transformative, he moved the republic away from progressive ideology. Reagan also had a sunny, positive personality. He didn’t bark at people on the campaign trail the way Obama does. As Charles Krauthammer pointed out, the only thing Obama has in common with the Gipper is that they are complete opposites. Obama is the anti-Reagan.
Obama’s intention has always been to re-normalize, to reverse ideological course, to be the anti-Reagan — the author of a new liberal ascendancy. Nor did he hide his ambition. In his February 2009 address to Congress he declared his intention to transform America. This was no abstraction. He would do it in three areas: health care, education and energy.
Think about that. Health care is one-sixth of the economy. Education is the future. And energy is the lifeblood of any advanced country — control pricing and production, and you’ve controlled the industrial economy.
And it wasn’t just rhetoric. He enacted liberalism’s holy grail: the nationalization of health care. His $830 billion stimulus, by far the largest spending bill in U.S. history, massively injected government into the free market — lavishing immense amounts of tax dollars onfavored companies and industries in a naked display of industrial policy.
And what Obama failed to pass through Congress, he enacted unilaterally by executive action. He could not pass cap-and-trade, but his EPA is killing coal.