How does it feel to step up to the voting booth in Illinois to vote for the politicians – all the state Democrats and many of the establishment Republicans – who have made this once great state the prime example of what is bad about big government?
Today’s Wall Street Journal pretty much hits this theme in many of its opinion articles, beginning with Sheldon Adelson assessment of the dire fiscal future of Illinois.
Take, for example, President Obama’s adopted home state. In October, a nonpartisan study of Illinois’s finances by the State Budget Crisis Task Force offered painful evidence that liberal Illinois is suffering from abject economic, demographic and social decline. With the worst credit rating in the country, and with the second-biggest public debt per capita, the Prairie State ‘has been doing back flips on a high wire, without a net,’ according to the report.”
“Political scientist Walter Russell Mead summed up the sad results of these findings at The American Interest: ‘Illinois politicians, including the present president of the United States, have wrecked one of the country’s potentially most prosperous and dynamic states, condemned millions of poor children to substandard education, failed to maintain vital infrastructure, choked business development and growth through unsustainable tax and regulatory policies—and still failed to appease the demands of the public sector unions and fee-seeking Wall Street crony capitalists who make billions off the state’s distress.'”
“At times, it seems almost as if President Obama wants to impose the failed Illinois model on the whole country.”
Meanwhile, new media outlets like Brietbart.com and LegalInsurrectioncom are reporting that minorities in Chicago are becoming disenchanted with government solutions to their problems, with up to 43 percent unemployment in some neighborhoods. Jason Riley writes in today’s Journal,
The election of Barack Obama four years ago gave blacks bragging rights, but bragging rights can’t close the black-white achievement gap in education or increase black labor-force participation or reduce black incarceration rates. A civil-rights leadership that encourages blacks to look to politicians to solve these problems is doing a disservice to the people they claim to represent.
And the despair expressed by Americans on Staten Island and parts of Long Island, too many suffering from inept emergency services (that would be FEMA) following Hurricane Sandy, has a shameful parallel in Mary Anastasia O’Grady’s analysis of the effects of the same storm in Cuba.
Independent journalists have been chronicling the Cuban state’s failure in the Hurricane Sandy crisis. They have reported that government weather advisories did not warn of the storm’s catastrophic nature, and now the reporters are covering the state’s bungled handling of the disaster. Food, even bread, is scarce, and displaced residents have nowhere to lay their heads.
These messages are loud, clear and everywhere. We need private sector businesses to build jobs; we need religious and charitable groups to take over disaster services; we need citizens taking back their right to express personal responsibility for their lives and welfare. We need government solutions to fade into the background. Don’t get wobbly tomorrow, Election Day, in this great and good Constitutional republic. The choice is there, and it is yours.