Years ago, back in the 1980s, neoconservative godfather Irving Kristol said: Enough of this green-eyeshade conservatism, where conservatives carefully balance the budget after every Democratic bender. Conservatives should go to Washington to cut taxes and when it's time for the Democrats to return to power they should make sure that the government is broke.
The last green eye-shade Republican was President George H.W. Bush. He raised taxes in a recession and got tossed out by a rebellion in the Republican ranks.
But President George W. Bush was smarter. He left the federal government absolutely flat broke, and left his successor with a bunch of nasty choices.
Candidate Obama had promised the moon to his supporters: health care for those disinclined to pay for it; yet more money for government education, and lots of lovely grants and renewable energy for environmentalists.
But the trouble is, what with the recession and the bank-bailout and the auto bailout and the state-and-local government bailout, is that there just isn't the money there for all that stuff.
So if President Obama was smart he would have entered office realizing that, like it or not, Democrats had to put on the green eye-shades and get the government's finances back on an even keel. He would have said: I tried. I tried to find the money for the vital investments we must make in the Democratic faithful. But the money just isn't there. Those Wascally Wepublicans left the nation in the lurch, and I must get us out of the ditch.
Then, after a couple of years of cuts, he could go for broke with lots of lovely new programs for the Democratic faithful just in time for the next presidential election.
Instead he kept to his original spending agenda, piled a trillion dollars of extra pork on top, and still promised to fix the economy.
The numbers don't add up, and you can see why if you look at the full FY10 budget, released by the Government Printing Office yesterday, and loaded on usgovernmentspending.com last night.
Take a look at the numbers. The Defense budget is not going to go down, despite the fervent yearnings of our liberal friends. Tax collections are cratering, particularly the corporate income tax. And of course, health care costs are going to continue to climb ever upwards.
What is needed is retrenchment. But retrenchment goes against the very DNA of a Democrat.
But here's the rub. If the Democrats don't do it, then someone else will. The Tea Party movement is a movement of ordinary folks that are just fed up with the liberal gravy train. They know that there's a lot of loot swilling around, and they know that they aren't getting their share. And they are damned if they are going to fork out more money so that liberals can continue to enjoy their government sinecures and pensions while they look uneasily at their 201k accounts and put off retirement.
They weren't born yesterday. They can see politicians preparing to raise taxes, and they can see the poor helpless poster boys being rehearsed backstage.
Here's my guess. When President Obama comes to the American people asking for more taxes, they are going to tell him to get lost. And Nancy Pelosi, and Harry Reid, and any other Democrat that doesn't keep their head down.
But meanwhile, check out the facts at usgovernmentspending.com and usgovernmentrevenue.com. They are fresh and new with the latest budget data.