It's President Obama's latest talking point, and he used it in last week's big "Jobs Speech": The Republicans won't put politics aside for the American people. The translation is: The GOP won't let Obama destroy the country further...but it's just in the name of politics. It's one of the most ridiculous statements on the planet. It's like saying that a guy is putting aside friendship over a woman if he punches his best friend in the face...because that friend was physically attacking his sister.
Right now, the politically expedient thing for the GOP to do is also the right thing to do for America: Stop Obama. Yes, the GOP is politically inclined to go the opposite way of Obama anyway, but that doesn't change the fact that stopping Obama also the best thing for the country.
The narrative repeated by those whom I call "moderate by default" (aka "I look at every issue and make my mind up on each one" and yet somehow finding a way to land in the center EVERY TIME) and encouraged by the Left is: the American people want government to "get things done." Sure sounds great, right? Getting things done is always good, isn't it?
Maybe not. Let me give you an example. I set out to accomplish five tasks in a day...and let's say I accomplish all five. Great, right? I got five things done! What an accomplishment. Five things were got done! There's just one problem; the five things I did were this: Kick the neighbors dog, break a store window with a rock, beat up an old lady, rob a bank, and steal a car.
Come on...I got things done! It took a lot of work, and I got things done...right? Wrong, you say...I got BAD things done. As a matter of fact, if I had simply done absolutely nothing I would have done the neighbor's dog, the store, the old lady, the bank and the owner of that car all a favor. If someone had stopped me before I got out the door, they would've obstructed me from "getting things done" right...but it sure would've been better if they had stopped me.
The Republican Party is doing the right thing for America by blocking Obama. The President proved it by his "plan." It was the same plan. More stimulus spending (although this time he didn't call it that), more "green jobs," and more spending on "green energy, more government, more spending on infrastructure. More of the same failed and/or damaging solutions. Oh, and don't forget more demonizing the Republicans for daring to stop Obama from, to extend the metaphor, kicking dogs, breaking store windows, and robbing banks. (For those of you from Palm Beach County, FL, kicking dogs, breaking windows and robbing banks = raising taxes, accruing more debt, spending more on stimulus packages that failed.)
This "get things done" rhetoric is problematic because it assumes two things: One, both sides are offering positive solutions and two, that the solution is automatically in the center of the two sides. To answer the first, both sides are not offering positive solutions. Despite the liberal belief that money grows on trees if the item to be spent on is really super-duper important, we don't have the money for more spending. We spend too much now. (And while Obama is going to claim that the cost is "paid for" I'll bet you that it'll be paid for with cuts in ten years. I for one am tired of "I will gladly pay you in 2021 for a stimulus today," from Obama.) Obama is asking the GOP to compromise good ideas with bad ones.
Two, the solution is not always in the middle. When one side offers a bad idea and the other good, the good idea should not compromise. I know I'm committing a rhetorical no-no here, but should German Jews have compromised with Hitler? Of course not. It's an exaggerated comparision, Democrats aren't trying to kill anyone here, but they are offering damaging solutions which failed.
In short, the GOP SHOULD block Obama from "getting things done" because he wants to get bad things done.